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Saranac Hefeweizen - Matt Brewing Company

Saranac HefeweizenSaranac Hefeweizen

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

281 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 281
Reviews: 196
rAvg: 3.47
pDev: 12.1%

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Hefeweizen |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: brewdlyhooked13 on 10-22-2002)
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Ratings: 281 | Reviews: 196 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly

New York

3.03/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Part of the "12 Beers of Summer" mix pack

Hazy orange/yellow color, with a small head (and I swirlled it) that dissappeared completely in 2 minutes, no lace.

Aroma is banana, wheat bread, and slight colve.

Taste is same as smell, with a touch of hop on the finish

Mouthfeel is nothing special, light body, mild carbonation, no aftertaste.

Since it's so light, I gave drinkability the highest score, not for the hefe connoisseur, but good for a hefe novice.

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2007 21:32:01 | More by JoeyBeerBelly
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


3.03/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cloudy beer, a little tinge of orange in addition to the yellow, kind of looks like that Bitter Monk dipa swimming in brett. Mild yeasty banana clove aroma, standard fare.

Easy to drink, all the usual suspects in a hefeweizen are there, banana, dry yeast, a bit of lemon flavor. On the plus side, even though everything is slightly muted with Saranac brews, this one tones down some of the hefe flavors I'm not a big fan of, so in some ways this works, since it isn't overloaded with clove aspects.

Pretty straightforward and mildly enjoyable. Not recommending it, but not saying it sucks or to stay away.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2011 20:35:41 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of cracgor


3.05/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Not especially cloudy, but a light golden haze. The head pours to a cake-like white consistency that reduces down to a thick collar that doesn't produce lacing but looks nice regardless. I feel like the body could be cloudier so it deserves a 2 while the head is good and deserves a 4--thus my appearance rating of a 3.0.

Smell: Grassy wheat smell, hints at what is described as a banana, but the cloves dominate my nose.

Taste: has the distinct "banana" flavor (personally I don't think any hefeweizen tastes like banana-it is a different distinct flavor that reminds me more of fresh bread than banana). The spicy/clove flavor comes in second and provides balance to the sweeter bread flavor. However, nothing special in the flavor.

Mouthfeel: spicy feel, medium bodied, but once again nothing great. Could also be a little more interesting with carbonation or fullness to my preference.

Drinkability: easy to drink a glass. Not that high on flavor so all in all a pretty good summer drink, very refreshing.

Notes: this isn't the best hefeweizen you can buy, but if it comes in a mix pack, it is worth the try to introduce you to the style. It has the basic qualities even if they are not as perfectly created as others.

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2005 23:13:33 | More by cracgor
Photo of WVbeergeek


3.05/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance is a honey clouded unfiltered gold, with a bright creamy textured white head forming thick above the rim of my glass. Sparse speckled lacing sticks to my pint as the head dwindles. Aroma is upfront with the banana esters and limitied on the clove and vanilla aspects more bubblegum and other candy like esters flow. Sharp citrus bite peaks through as well with a really sulfur like smell coming throuhg as well. Flavor wise the banana esters and vanilla cream with chammomile tea like qualities really coat the palate. Powdered yeast cakes and an undertow of citrus with a spicy feel really lay it on as well. Mouthfeel is medium bodied slightly stick and cloying at times but carbonation carries it decently. Drinkability I can't get over the sulfur and banana bomb in the flavor, seems like their in the right direction but miss the mark just a bit. Much better than the likes of a Sam Adams labeled hefe that is just an American Wheat.

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2008 21:20:38 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of emmasdad


3.05/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This one poured a hazy, light golden color, with a large-ish, rocky white head. Aromas of banana, cloves, biscuits and a light graininess. On the palate, this one was light bodied and refreshing, with flavors of banana, light clove and a little biscuit. ™

Serving type: bottle

09-29-2011 05:01:38 | More by emmasdad
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.08/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color with a thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is heavy with banana, there’s a little bit of wheat and not much of anything else.

T: The taste starts out with a banana sweetness but it’s not as strong as it is in the smell. The sweetness quickly fades into a bready wheat flavor. The hops presence is very mild and the malt character is very thin. The after-taste is bready and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth with a little bit of crispness, medium body, light-to-medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Not very tasty, goes down ok, not very filling, there are definitely much better beers within the style that I would choose over this one.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2007 03:07:07 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of aerozeppl

New York

3.08/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Slightly hazy orange color. Not nearly hazy enough for the style. Minimal white head.

S: All the Saranac beers I have had all have a common stale smell.

T: Banana dominates this one and I am not a fan of banana. The wheat is there nice and strong though. No clove. Not bad especially for the price.

M: Med body. Good for the style. Nothing to laud or complain about.

D: Saranac shines in the summer. Before then it can get iffy. These are great session beers however. While not as good as some other examples of the style.

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2008 02:18:47 | More by aerozeppl
Photo of Beastdog75

New Jersey

3.1/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

(Saranac "12 Beers" sampler, 2002 edition).

This is an American attempt at the German style that for the most part remains true to the style, but it does seemed a little "dumbed" down, probably for American tastes. This bottle had "limited release" printed on the label, and I don't know if this one is still in production, but if it is it would be a good introduction to the style.

Saranac Hefeweizen pours a light golden color that is almost crystal clear until the sediment is added, and only then is there a desirable amount of cloudiness. A thin foam head lasts for about 30 seconds and then dissipates, but leaves some decent lacing. The smell is strong on those typical hefe scents: cloves, spices, and yeastiness, with only a hint of banana. The mouthfeel is kind of thin and somewhat watery, and it is very lightly carbonated. The spicy/clovey/yeasty flavors are dominant throughout this brew, and it is one of the sweeter hefes that I've tried. For me, I didn't detect that much banana. There is a slight wheat presence, and perhaps even a hint of butteriness in there. The hop bitterness was on the light side. Going into the aftertaste was some moderate dryness, and it finishes out with no alcoholic warmth.

This was a pretty valiant attempt at an American hefe, but it seemed a little one-dimensional to me, as it was a bit sweeter than I would have liked, and a little watery in other facets. That doesn't stop it from being quite a quaffable beverage, however.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2003 05:37:03 | More by Beastdog75
Photo of francisweizen


3.1/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This brew is a nice light amber colour with a fluffy white head of foam. The aromas are heavy on the banana, light fruits, yeast, sugar, and malts. The taste is fruity, yeasty, and full of flavor. The mouthfeel is creamy and quite smooth and the drinkability is good!


Serving type: bottle

11-22-2003 04:23:12 | More by francisweizen
Photo of DmanGTR

New York

3.1/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - poured cloudy honey with a 1/4" head that disappeared quickly

S - nuts, yeast, banana, mild hops, wheat

T - very similar to the smell, nutty, citrus and bananas were more pronounced, light tanginess, mixes with wheat and pale malts. Fresh hoppiness but very light in that respect

M - light bodied, medium carbonation, slightly dry finish

D - quite drinkable, thirst quenching

Overall - An ok wheat ale, the banana notes were pronounced but pleasant. This would make a decent session beer but I've had better wheat beers.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2009 23:39:58 | More by DmanGTR
Photo of jar2574


3.13/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From bottle to glass, we get a nice dense white head and good carbonation. The beer is a light golden color. Left the beer for a quick phone call and noticed excellent head retention when I came back.

A strong clove scent here, enjoyable. The taste is of malts and clove, but it's watery / flat.

Not a lot of bite in this hefeweisen, it's a pretty smooth drink. I like a little crisp kick in my hefeweisen though. Pretty average brew.

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2007 12:20:16 | More by jar2574
Photo of Ragingbull


3.13/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Dark yellow color with thick foam head and a moderate amount of prickle. The nose is very mild, but has the expected banana and other "yeasty" smells floating off. The attack is clean and easy with a fruity flavor and a dry finish. The mouthfeel is nice and creamy and enjoyable in the mouth. The finish dries a little bit and is quite a contrast to the mouthfeel. That is the most interesting thing about the beer to me. . . the juxtaposition of the creamy mouthfeel to the dry finish. Its okay, but there are other hefeweizens that I prefer.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2009 15:44:19 | More by Ragingbull
Photo of zeff80


3.18/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out an orange/gold color with a bubbly, white, one-finger head. It was highly carbonated and left no lace.

S - It smelled citrusy and of banana. Also, there were some notes of pine.

T - It tasted sweet and fruity. There was a banana flavor present and some yeast.

M - It was fairly crisp and sharp. A light-bodied beer.

D - This is pretty good and a descent American representation of a German hefe.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2007 02:11:07 | More by zeff80
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

3.18/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was the third beer I pulled from the summer sample pack. I really love Hefe's, especially in the summer so I am always stoked to try another, went into this was feeling good and ready for it...

A - Poured a dull hazy golden yellow amber. A nice two inch thick head of foamy white lace graced the top immediatly and ever so gently rested into a thin layer of lace that covered the top and stretched from side to side. Very nice visible carbonation was evident thoughout, looked very nice.

S - Aroma was rather light, almost too light. Grains and yeast were apparent but again, you really had to search for it to find it. Some light peach maybe in the back, but again just nothing wowed me here. Smell was pretty much your run of the mill average Hefe, did not impress, but I will say average.

T - Very light and frankly a bit bland. It came off as just your average Hefe, I expected more, not sure why, but it fell kinda flat on me. Lots of wheat in it for sure, and had a nice hop finish almost, but just came accross as average I guess I have had some good hefe's lately that have spoiled me.

M - Good. Nice consistency and a smooth delievery/ Nott slick or watered down was able to roll it nicely. Went down quite smooth.

D - Very good, definatly a session beer. Very light and not very filling. This was your summer lawn mower beer.

Overall this was a totally average Hefe that was simply just average. I actually just thought it would have been better for some reason, dont know why, but this came off as just plain to me. Not bad at all, just average.

Serving type: bottle

08-08-2007 23:21:46 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of ithacabaron


3.2/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A decent attempt at a hefe. Not as cloudy as I'd like, but the esters of banana (especially) and clove are quite present.

Additionally, this beer does a poor job of retaining it's head after it is poured -- very odd for a wheat.

Not the first thing I'd grab if I'm looking for a hefe, but definately a decent shot at the style. Nice price too.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2003 01:37:03 | More by ithacabaron
Photo of albern


3.2/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer came in the Saranac summer variety pack, and as one reviewer commented, they are starting to taste very similar, which isn't a good thing. This beer is a slightly cloudy, deep yellowish orange, with little head and very little lacing. The smell is very good, and it clearly is bananas, orange rind, and clove. The taste is mediocre but refreshing. You can taste the cloves, bananas, malt, some hoppiness towards the end, but this is also a bit watery, light bodied, sweet turning to tart towards the end, and not all that interesting. Ehh, that's about all I can say. I is certainly better than than the Bavarian White that is in the summer variety 12 pack which quickly washed down the drain. Unfortunately, I still have one more bottle of that to deal with. As for the Hefe in the variety pack, I will drink the other one, but with no real enthusiasm and no relish.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2007 21:45:18 | More by albern
Photo of tastybeer

North Carolina

3.2/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

My pour is a barely hazy amber color with a very tiny white head. No lace either. Aroma is wheaty orange with faint spicy things. Flavors are very light and hard to grasp. Mouthfeel is ok but nothing exciting. Body is mostly light and it turns out this is easy to drink at least. Especially when your thirsty. Nothing very special but worth reminding me to get better hefeweizens.


Serving type: bottle

06-13-2007 01:11:20 | More by tastybeer
Photo of BeerBuilder


3.23/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Has a cloudy straw color typical of Hefeweizens. Forms a white head with a decent amount of lace-work. The aromas are of bananas and clove. The banana and clove go into the flavor as well. There is also a bit of a grainy flavor. Overall, a very light and refreshing beer, good for a hot summer day.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2002 10:11:40 | More by BeerBuilder
Photo of BlindPig


3.23/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Thin white head on a cloudy orange body with yellow hues.
S- Big banana, clove, bubble gum aroma. A lot of wheat comes through and get a nice bread aroma too.
T- The taste follows the aroma. You get some grass/wheaty hops in there too though and they leave a light bitterness on the tongue. A power wheat flavors comes off the tongue also. It is almost like you can taste cheaper ingredients.
M-Thin/medium body with medium carbonation. Almost a powder feel to it too.
D- It's not bad but I wouldn't want another. There are a lot better hefe's out there and easier to get than this.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2007 20:55:40 | More by BlindPig
Photo of Kendo

New York

3.23/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Into a weizen glass it poured a slightly hazy honey-golden body with a 1/2-finger bubbly white head. Some bubbles rise to refortify it, but there's no lacing left behind.

S: Cloves, bananas and bubble gum-sweetness. Heavy on the cloves.

T: Very light in general, but what's there is dominated by yeasty flavors -- mainly cloves and a hint of ripe banana. It finishes with a slightly metallic taste.

M: Light -- actually, it's thin -- in body. Moderately spritzy in feel.

D: Good. It's light, so it won't weigh you down. But I don't think there's enough going on to keep you interested. This beer is a good candidate for a lemon, in my opinion, to give it a little more flavor and to cut through the yeast and the sweetness.

Notes: I drank 3 different Hefes/Weizens this weekend: Harpoon's UFO, the Smuttynose Summer Weizen and this. Saranac's offering was clearly the low end of the 3. It wasn't bad, but it didn't impress me much.

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2007 14:01:06 | More by Kendo
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

3.23/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy dark golden color with a fluffy head that sticks well and leaves some lacing

Smell: Mild banana tones with a touch of clove

Taste: Starts with a mild banana bread flavor, which quickly fades after the swallow, but not before leaving a little bit of white pepper and clove on the tongue

Mouthfeel: Light and watery; moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Inoffensive and a reasonable stab at the style but there are many better examples, both domestic and imported

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2007 21:17:35 | More by brentk56
Photo of BucannonXC5


3.23/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Less than a finger of head. Color was golden orange, slightly hazy. Minimal lacing on the top that dissipated almost instantly. No film on the sides.

Smelled a big whiff of hops up front. Banana, wheat, grass, slight lemon and Circus Peanuts.

Tasted pretty close to the smell, but with the addition of buttery hops. Banana, wheat, grass, honey, light caramel and still the Circus Peanuts. Reminded me a bit of the taste of Vegas.

Light body. Thin texture. Very carbonated. Somewhat long finish.

This beer started out pretty good, but became pretty average by the end. Refreshing and nice for the summer, but that’s it.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2012 04:27:08 | More by BucannonXC5
Photo of MTNboy


3.25/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance- This has nice authentic German Hefe look. It was a nice yellow with a bronze hue. Thick off white head and lace. Maybe not as cloudy as actual German Hefe.

Smell- I felt I had a good banana-clove aroma.

Taste- Mild banana, malt and citrus flavor are followed by mild hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel- Thin for this style.

Drinkability- It is refreshing and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2008 14:27:28 | More by MTNboy
Photo of nomad


3.28/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a soft orange gold, with enormous amounts of carbonation that stayed fairly constant. Had a good sized soft head, little stain, and mediocre lace. Un-filtered? They say so, but I don’t believe it.

Smelled of serious banana, some bubblegum, little clove, and a nice wheat tart to it all, but had a slight chalky edge, too. Yet, like all Saranac beers, the nose is in general thin and sweet, smelling way too light and tending to fade a lot as the beer opens up to the elements.

Tasted of melon, mostly. The wheat was a very light version, so no hearty wheat body (what I love) and no sour edge to make things refreshing. The lemony flavor and bad hops create a pasty and unappealing finish. There were also, seriously, some soap flavors.

In all five major rating aspects, too watered down. Dirty cheap, though, which is great for a hefe lover – wish that could raise the score but can’t.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2003 09:44:26 | More by nomad
Photo of garymuchow


3.28/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Quite a nice and pleasant aroma with qualities of banana, slight clove, a little phenol and a general light (and sweet) fruitiness with a backing of wheat. Big full steady head that's white and fluffly. Dark gold, but only slightly cloudy. Surprisingly light in overall flavor, that is such a contrast to the complexity of the aroma. Kind of duller and flatter version of the aroma, with some wheat and phenol, very low fruitiness or clove. A little dry. Does have a thirst quenching quality. Light (not necessarily thin) to medium feel and low sense of richness. Overall, a great aroma and appearance otherwise average, at best. Decent thirst quenching qualities. Doesn't warm up particularily well.

Serving type: bottle

06-18-2003 03:53:58 | More by garymuchow
Saranac Hefeweizen from Matt Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 281 ratings.