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White Oak Wheat Beer | Innis & Gunn

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White Oak Wheat BeerWhite Oak Wheat Beer
73 Ratings
White Oak Wheat BeerWhite Oak Wheat Beer

Brewed by:
Innis & Gunn
Scotland, United Kingdom

Style: German Kristalweizen

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

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Ratings: 73 |  Reviews: 27
Reviews by BeerForMuscle:
Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.99/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

More User Reviews:
Photo of biboergosum
3.47/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle. Don't worry, original submitter, I didn't know what the hell this is either.

This beer pours a crystal clear, bright medium golden yellow colour, with three fat fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and well-bubbly off-white head, which leaves some streaky, wayward EKG pattern lace around the glass as it quickly subsides.

It smells of vanilla and buttery caramelized wood (of course), very faint spicy wheat grain, and little else. The taste is more heady saccharine vanilla, lightly wooden caramel, a more noticeable breakfast cereal-like wheatiness, a bit of leafy and earthy noble hop astringency, and maybe a touch of warming alcohol.

The carbonation is more or less absent without leave, with nothing remaining to remind us of its actual existence, the body a so-so middleweight, but kind of clammy and tacky in its smoothness. It finishes sweet, replete with vanilla and caramel - natch - a touch of the wood that feels shame, and an ethereal booze heat.

Yeah, I don't know why my reviews for I&G aren't just cut and pastes from any of their previous 'efforts' (yes, there are a few scant exceptions, don't get your plaid knickers in a knot). Apparently, there are adjuncts in this brew that I totally failed to notice - bergamot (no big loss), and blood orange (boo). What a waste, but I'm sure this will once again play well to the gateway naïfs.

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Photo of thehyperduck
3.72/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

330 mL bottle from the LCBO; best before Mar 2016 and served well-chilled.

Pours a sparkling clear golden-yellow hue, generating one finger of loose, white-coloured froth at the surface. It is rather short-lived, lasting no more than a handful of minutes before being reduced to a foamy collar, accompanied by a few splotches of lace. Not the liveliest-looking of wheat beers. Citrusy tones of orange and bergamot give the nose a pleasant Earl Grey tea vibe, in addition to some bready, wheaty malt sweetness, with a notable layer of vanilla beneath this. The oak and butterscotch/toffee flavours that are a universal feature of this brewery's oak-aged products are also noticeable, but are superseded by the aforementioned aromas. Smells like classic I&G crossed with a witbier.

Some bready, wheaty malt flavour comes through upon first sampling, along with notes of blood orange citrus and bubble gum - but these are soon overtaken by familiar tropes. Namely, that signature blend of vanilla, oak and toffee that all I&G fans will recognize. These features carry on through the finish and into the aftertaste, which is surprisingly warming for the abv. Medium-bodied, with moderate carbonation levels; the mouthfeel is not particularly satisfying, nor is it appropriate for a hefe/kristalweizen. It's more of a sipper than a gulper, but given the small format I wouldn't expect it to last terribly long in either scenario.

Final Grade: 3.72, a B grade. This is actually a pretty decent product, but it still fails to break free of this brewer's well-established mould. Still, this is the third bottle I've had in as many weeks, so I can't fairly say that it isn't a perfectly acceptable beer to drink - though if I were to take it strictly as a hefe/kristalweizen, it is a highly unorthodox example and thus difficult to grade fairly. I can't get too riled up one way or the other about this one. The usual conclusion applies: if you like other I&G beers, you'll probably enjoy this one, but it certainly isn't going to convert the opposition.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.28/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottle: Poured a clear amber color ale with a nice foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of bergamot and light spices with sweet wheat malt is intriguing. Taste is a sweet mix of wheat malt, some light char oak with some blood orange and bergamot notes. Body is about average with good carbonation. Too sweet for my liking for interesting combination of unusual ingredients.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.14/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I have had several bottles in this series tucked away for some time now, awaiting the moment to strike. I have just been inspired by another site's user and am now embarking on a journey, not of body, but of sight, mind and casks! The eradication of the Bottle Baklog at Chez Woody continues.

From the bottle: "Oak Aged like no other beer"; "Hand-Crafted Sottish Beer"; "Seasonal Edition"; "Wheat Beer with Bergamot Orange Peel and Orange Oil added"; "Carefully matured for 46 days prior to release"; "Approved for bottling [undersigned] Esther M Binnie"; "Master Brewer [undersigned] Douglas Gunn Sharp"; "Innis & Gunn White Oak Wheat Beer Oak Aged Beer"; "Inspired by the aromas and flavours more typically found in a cup of Earl Grey tea, this German-style Wheat Beer has been brewed at a warmer temperature to encourage sweeter, spicier flavours to develop. The brew has been aged over oak and then finished with bergamot and orange to create a fragrant, refreshing finish."

I Pop!ped the cap & commenced a slow, gentle pour since I have gone off of aggro pours (unless) warranted). Once sufficiently decanted, I gave it a vigorous in-glass swirl that raised two fingers of foamy, rocky, French Vanilla-colored head with decent retention. Color was Golden-Amber (SRM = > 5, < 7) with 24-carat clarity, summoning forth The Gelt Gang of Croesus, Midas & Mammon, all clamoring for a taste! Eek. Nose had the characteristic coconut-like smell of alcohol aged in oak, especially uncharred white oak. I love that smell! Mouthfeel was medium. The taste was very much of white oak, but with a slightly citrusy twang. I was reminded of the transition to citrus-based solvents in the early-1990s and the way that the orange-citrus based cleaners made everything smell so pleasant as opposed to the old lab rat smell that the previous cleaners gave off. White oak & orange?!? What a brilliant combination, especially when used in a fairly clear-tasting style since filtration takes the yeast's banana & clove esters away. I dislike the former & do not mind the latter, but do not mind the absence of either. Warming, the citrusiness really began to assert itself and when I got both orange and oak together, I was ready to swoon. Finish was semi-sweet, but very mellow. Tea-like, indeed.

 2,283 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.52/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

With inspiration of Bavaria close at hand, the Scottish brewery of Innis & Gunn embark upon a filtered wheat ale with elevated citrus and a crisp and clean backbone for utter refreshment and effortless in drinkability.

Its bright gold austere and fluffy white froth suggests something more of a robust pilsner ilk, but the nose is bright with citrus, apple, banana, faint clove and white pepper. Bready-sweet to taste, the beer hosts a crisp cereal character with nuances of fruit and spice gaining steam.

As the middle palate develops, its bright and raw grain is pleasantly elegant and crisp with the character of fresh baking bread. Coriander leads with way with its perfumy citrus taste, followed quickly with background hefeweizen banana and clove balance. Lemon, orange and white pepper trail with slight vanilla and lingering grain sweetness for ongoing interest and intrigue.

Medium-light in body, the beer's residual sweetness and raw grain flavor continues to provide heft while its finish is minty, grassy and pleasantly tea-like as its aftertaste is quick, peppery and fleeting with a glipse of citrus peel.

 1,122 characters

Photo of ColForbinBC
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'll admit it - I love Innis and Gunn's beers because they're all different from the norm and for someone who appreciates whiskey and rum, these tend to have notes from those that complement the individual brews quite nicely. When I saw that this was available at the Cloverleaf on their fall PhD list, I was intrigued since I hadn't had anything from them on tap and didn't even know that they had a Hefeweizen in their lineup.

"So how was it, Pat"?

"How is this not cloudy?"

Sure enough, that was my reaction to this. No, it wasn't a bad beer and no, I didn't have a hard time finishing it but this wasn't anything like any other Hefeweizen that I've ever had. For starters, it was nearly clear but yet still golden in hue, with a frothy head and a few semi-rings of lacing that stuck around on the side of my glass mug. The wheat? It was there somewhere but buried under the bubblegum and candied sugar notes. Sweet is not how I'd want to initially describe one of these but that was the case here as the relatively full body took a back seat to it. Some butterscotch, rum spice, ashen woody notes, and vanilla came in underneath that...which would have been fine had this not been a Hefe-well, you get the idea...

This was surprisingly strong too, both in alcohol and in taste. Fans of Innis and Gunn will not be disappointed here as this lived up to the standards that they've set for their offerings. The full body, light carbonation, and lack of what to the sight and taste was just something that threw me off and I don't think that I ever adjusted to that sense of something not quite being right. The slickness of the mouthfeel only compounded the anomalous nature of this and as much as I ended up savoring this, I couldn't rate it higher in this category. Worth a go once because of the unique nature of this "Hefeweizen".

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Photo of vinicole
3.49/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Wrongly attributed by me as Hefeweizen when I should have put Kristallweizen. I don't know how to go back and alter it.
Clear and golden.
Vanilla and oak.
Spicy with a strange bitter sweet finish.
Moderate carbonation.

 218 characters

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.24/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Carefully aged for 46 days. Aged in oak.

A clear, mellow gold coloration.a fat, tall solid white crown is a tower.

Big, wheat, sour, citrus and herbal mixture, vanilla-oak cask and spices make up this very pungent, delightful aromatic nose. The spice and wheat aroma is very heady. Orange peel and orange oil are additions, providing a peppery citrus effect that is unique.

A massive, sour, heady wheat flavor, mild citrus with a big, fat, sweet oak cask bottom end. The mix is full of crazy complexity, subtle tones of vanilla, old cedar, various herbs and spices, tangy, earthy wheat thing makes this a sipper worth savoring.

There is a very definate, classic German style wheat beer base, with mutating, electric notes of sour citrus, tangy vanilla and antique wood....spices all over the place! I rather like the unique approach to this oak cask aged beer with interesting additives. It all comes together very well.

A rather jazzy bite in the feel, relaxes and finishes smooth with a subtle dry bite. ....true.

Such a unique brew. Wheat based, aged. Very well done!

 1,089 characters

Photo of Electros
3.6/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of ChrisCage
3.74/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

A- This one pours a very clear, ginger ale color with a thin film over the top of the beer itself, but it does retain well. Carbonation bubbles are large but they do lumber their way to the top in a non aggressive fashion. As for the lacing, well it's pretty minute and leaves an oily film on the side of the glass. Not overly impressive to look at.

S- This is mild overall with an oaked overtone, with sweet barley and wheat malts blended into the aroma. There is a caramel note that doesn't overpower the nostrils, with mild hints of vanilla, yeast and biscuit as well. Not really a hopped finish about it either.....nice smells in general....just mild!

T- Interesting flavors, that are quite mild, which is slightly disappointing to me from these guys. Main flavor happening is toasty oak and marshmallow sweetness....vanilla, toffee and grainy flavors are melded together with a finish that is dry and woody. Not bad....just not as flavorful as I was hoping and/or expecting!

M/O- This is probably the best department for this beer, with tight, yet mellow carbonation throughout, allowing the full potential of the flavor to show through. This is light/medium bodied as well and I think this is an excellent hot weather beer, but probably the weakest of the lineup from these guys that I've ever had....I don't hate it but I don't think wheat beers are I&G's strong suit...at least not right now. Still, give this a try!

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Photo of Brenden
3.74/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This is a mostly clear beer lying somewhere between golden and amber in color. The head is a frothy one that rises pretty high and sustains itself rather well. The strong layer of foam that remains on the top leaves a good amount of sticky lacing behind.
There is a touch of oak to this one, adding a bit of dryness in the flavor particularly, and it seems just enough to temper the sweetness that borders on cloying. A very distinct note is orange oil, and the oil specifically, adding a specific bitterness and citric note that isn't the same as either flesh or rind. Mingling with the bergamot, it actually makes for an interesting and complex blend of aromas and flavors. Whether that's complementary is subjective, but I like it all in all.
The feeling is frothy but still crisp. It's semi-sweet the whole way through, and the oil just refrains from coating the tongue. The body is a pretty solid medium.

 916 characters

Photo of rfgetz
3.9/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of TheHammer
3.37/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: This beer is crystal clear brass color, and the Innis and Gunn website indicates this is merely a German style beer but supposed to have some haze. I'm inclined to review it as a Kristalweizen regardless, but if this was intended to be a hefe, it's not right. Points lost for the general style confusion. Poured with a finger and a half of head that stay around till the half way point, but did not lace.

Smell: It smells a little bit odd, as there is some orange notes which aren't being caused by the wheat, but by the fact the beer itself is brewed with oranges as their website reveals. There is a slight oakey note in the background with some vanilla to it, and touches of biscuit but the mild orange is oddly dominant.

Taste: Starts with a dose of biscuit malt and a slight blood orange tinge that gives way to wheat elements as an orange flavoured bubblegum note comes out and ending with toffee and vanilla tempered by a slight oak hit.

Mouthfeel: Unlike most wheat beers, this one comes off as a bit acidic. Probably because of the blood orange aftertaste that I'd expect from a wit, only with more punch. The carbonation helps out the entire beer, although transitioning feels all over the place, like the beer can't make up it's mind what comes next or what it is.

Drinkability: On the lighter side of medium bodied, which is a little surprising given how high the alcohol content is. The problem though is it comes across as far too light and fruity to be the kind of dessert treat beer that most Innis and Gunn offerings are, and trying far too hard to be everything for me to call it an easy drinker.

Final thoughts: Probably one of the poorer offerings from Innis & Gunn that I've had in a while. It's not bad, I mean I'd drink it if offered, but I would be hard pressed to seek this one out again. I just have to question the wisdom of aging wheat beer in oak barrels. Normally you use oak to give the beer that heavier, whiskey or sweeter vanilla or rum quality. However, whiskey and the normal citrus and banana notes of wheat beer don't really mix and sweetening up a predominantly lighter drinking style, just seems excessive. Certainly points for trying new things, and it's a weird one so I'd give it a try it on that merit, but really that merit alone.

 2,293 characters

Photo of Evil_Pidde
2.55/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Photo of RedAleMan
3.66/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of InspectorBob
3.32/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of djrn2
3.4/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of andrenaline
3.61/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A crystal clear hefe, thin layer of head with some retention and sporadic lacing. Nose has hints of honey and oak, vanilla and candied apple. Hints of banana and clove alongside a solid dose of vanilla, oak and bready wheat. A decent brew, but a contrasting flavour profile that somewhat detracts from the base beer.

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Photo of barczar
3.65/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Aroma is dominated by orange and wheat, with herbal, tea-like notes adding complexity. Fairly floral, possible from bergamot.

Flavor reveals a big orange peel presence upfront, becoming dry and lightly bitter mid palate, finishing toasted and oaky. Perfumey floral notes surface as the beer opens up. There's a lot going on here.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.67/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Hugh37
3.16/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of TripelMark
4.04/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Howlader
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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White Oak Wheat Beer from Innis & Gunn
Beer rating: 3.58 out of 5 with 73 ratings