Thunderbolt Wheat | Warbird Brewing Company

Thunderbolt WheatThunderbolt Wheat
Liked This Beer
3.66 w/ 21 ratings
Thunderbolt WheatThunderbolt Wheat

Brewed by:
Warbird Brewing Company
Indiana, United States

Style: Hefeweizen

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-08-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 21 |  Reviews: 20
Reviews by emerge077:
Photo of emerge077
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

BBD: 1 30 09

Into a rinsed weizen glass, 4-5 fingers of foam billow up to the rim. Racing carbonation gave it a lively appearance, and the color went from yellow to murky orange-brown with the yeast poured in. Bigger chunks of sediment fall to the bottom. Bubbles are big and sparkling, leaving spotty dish soap lace. Good head retention.

Wheat and dried fruit, maybe golden raisin, some citrus and floral notes. Lemony citrus flavor, with a cidery quality. Smooth wheaty body, held up by some mild astringency. Light floral hop bitterness in the aftertaste. Very well carbonated with a little bite from the CO2. Body could be smoother, is seemed a little rough when compared to standards like Paulaner or Hacker Pschorr. Still it was an effortless drinker, so overall not a bad choice.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of ohmybock
2.46/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I'm not sure when this was bottled, but there is a 7W1X2F code on the label...whatever that means. It pours a hazy, fairly light color for a wheat beer, but after the yeast was added it got quite muddy...even for a hefeweizen. The aroma leans toward a sour/lactic character with minimal spice. The taste is wheaty, but almost leans more toward a north-German wheat beer than a south-German hefe. I can taste a slight spicy character, but it's too light. The tartness of this beer dominates more than anything else. This brew reminds me of a sub-par hefeweizen which has been spiked with some Berliner Weisse. This is not what I look for in a German-style hefe. On a positive note, this wheat beer seemed to get more drinkable as it warmed. Also, I like the label design/art on the Warbird bottles.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.28/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale hazy golden orange hue with a bright white foaming head, rises well above the rime of my conical shaped glass. Big fluffy white head is dimpled and leaves nice chunky lacing with each sip. Aromatics deliver a sharp citrus and wheat combo with faint yeast accents, maybe just a touch of herbal and clove qualities but it highlights the tart citrus and sharp wheat notes in the nose. Flavor has a creamy yet powdered yeast heaviness that just seems to ruin the typical quality hefeweizen feel. There's clove and citrus qualities with a touch of esters but no banana or bubblegum tones going down. Again more citrus, clove, and sharp wheat notes show up than anything else. Mouthfeel is not as light and spritzy as I would like my hefe, it weighs heavy with that powdered yeast adding girth and slowing down the amount of carbonation. Typically when I pour a hefe there's streaming carbonation from the bottle of the glass, that's just not the case here. Drinkability is okay not a total screw up and a 100 times better than the average American Wheat, this is a hefe I just feel there's better examples to spend my money on like the new Sierra Nevada Kellerweiss or Penn Weizen to name a couple. Still enjoyable and definitely refreshing so I wouldn't be turning any of these down any time soon.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a short weizen glass)

A- This beer has a thin mass of snow-white bubbly head that fades to a thin ring of foam that slides down the glass after each sip. The golden yellow body has a light hazy and a strong carbonation of big bubbles.

S- The aroma of dry pale malt has a note of green hops and a light bubble gum hint in the background. There is a green note but not really distinctly hops.

T- This beer has a dry tart flavor of wheat bread and a hint of cloves. There is a faint banana note in the background. The clove flavor increases as the beer warms and becomes pretty strong. The finish has a dry pine resin note at the finish.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a tight fizz.

D- This beer has a light smooth flavor with some nice depth to it. The notes of bubble gum, cloves and bananas are supporting flavors to the wheat flavor and don't really seem to dominate.

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Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes from this morning's tasting:

The color is a cloudy gold. It left a nice white head with light spotty lacing.
The aroma is wheat, cloves and citrus with coriander.
The taste follows suit, the cloves and coriander coming out with a little more strength.
The mouthfeel is crisp and body is light.
This one is a good example of a hefe, and more accurate than many American efforts.

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Photo of findlayfan
3.45/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Second of the four Warbirds my wife brought from Indiana.

Poured a cloudy straw-colored body with a substantial three-finger white head.

Smell was bready with a bit of banana - banana bread beer? A bit of sourness as well.

Not obvious carbonation, but quite fizzy in the mouth - better than I expected from the appearance.

Nice hefe - will try again.

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Photo of russpowell
3.55/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A tribute to arguably the toughest plane the Air Corps & Air Force ever put in the sky ( Okay maybe Thunder Bolt II, the A-10 is as tough 60 years later.. )

Pours a hazed straw color with much effervescence & 3+ fingers of pearl colored head. Good lacing & average head retention. Slight pear fruittyness & more astringency as this warms. Finishes with a touch of passion fruit, slight clove flavor, dryness & lemony hops

S: Juicy fruit & peppery hops

T: Lemony hops, slight metallic twang, & slight grainyness/astringency up front

MF: Medium bodied with low carbonation & somewhat juicy

Drinks alright, the astringency slows you down, an alright hefe at best

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Photo of morimech
4.07/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy yellow with a large white head that slowly recedes to a thin cap. Nice lacing is left on the glass. Full of banana and clove aromas. No mistaken this as a hefeweizen. More cloves than fruit flavors. A little fruitiness on the finish. Finishes dry and clean. Classic hefe flavors. Light body with fizzy carbonation. A little harsh if not unremarkable. A well done hefeweizen and one of the better American takes of the style. Good flavor and easy drinking. Well crafted.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.17/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz received as a very thoughtful extra in trade with jhammerly... enjoyed from my Schneider Weisse small weizen glass.

2 Finger head dies back.. no lacing .. very pale hazy yellow.

Aroma is very good ... even when compared to its German counterparts.. big clovey notes..

Flavor is again very nice .. classic German hefe ... more clove than banana .. only slight lemony tang .. medium body and lite carbonation adds an overall creamy texture..

Overall, I don't know that I could tell this from a German hefe if had blind .. In fact I know I couldn't. Very good.

A big thanks goes out Jimi .. I love trying good American takes on traditional styles.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.56/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle obtained via SS08 from kirok1999. Thanks for the opportunity.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 2+" white head above the slightly cloudy dark golden brew. Head lasts and lasts, with sporadic hunks of lacing here and there. Aroma is lightly of cloves, enough to smell like a wheat beer, which is more than can be said of many American versions. Taste follows the nose, clovey to start, lightly prickly of hops as the experience continues, some tartness. Mouthfeel and drinkability are ok to pretty good. You could do a lot worse than this one.

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Photo of Kahlerbock
3/5  rDev -18%

Photo of zeff80
3.6/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, golden-yellow color with a bubbly, foamy, small, off-white head. It left no lace.

S - It smelled very fruity. Nice wheat aroma and notes of clove.

T - It taste of fruit and wheat. It had a spicy and yeasty flavor.

M - It was crisp and very sharp with a smooth finish. A light bodied ale.

D - This is a good wheat ale. It really didn't taste like a hefeweizen, more like an American Pale Wheat Ale.

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Photo of matty
3/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is about as average as a beer gets.Very light yellow color,unimpressive scent though not bad and average taste.More on the watery side than carbonation.I would say give it a shot. It's not bad and it packs a little punch.I personally would drink this if it was available to me at the present time.

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Photo of tgbljb
4.35/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a cloudy amber-orange color with beautiful creamy white head. Good retention amd attractive lacing.
Smell is notable for bananas, lemon, orange, and a touch of spiciness.
Taste is exceptional, with strong banana flavors. There is also a distinct bubble gum taste present. Immensely refreshing.
Good taste retention with an ever so slight dry tartness at the finish.
My 4th beer from this brewery, and the 4th winner. Keep up the good work.

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Photo of JamesS
4.33/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a great golden color with wonderful head and a bit of nice lacing (especially for a wheat beer) and quite a bit of carbonation. Nice scent, very broad and malty with great wheat tones and a nice little bit of sour spice to it. Excellent taste, as well, very wheat (straw like) with excellent undertones of clove in it, with a nice semi-sweet aftertaste. it goes down very smooth, even considering the carbonation. I was very impressed with this beer.

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Photo of Foxman
3.58/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It pours a hazy golden yellow, like light honey from a jar. Two fingers of white head sustain long enough to make a point. Thin rules of lacing tier the inside of the glass.

In the aroma, tangy sweet wheat is apparent but thin, and the air is quickly filled with banana and clove. There's also a green, grassy note that is unexpected.

Upon tasting, the wheat is the grain king, with a mildly tart general sweetness that gives a bit to the malt with a distant biscuit note. Bananas and clove are again the leading edge of the esters, but they drop off quickly in the face of a substantial and abrupt tart apple crispness. The finish is very crisp and dry without a whole lot of distinct character. It's decent, but not notable.

There's a creamy, soft flow across the palate that is aptly peppered by the zesty carbonation, and the result is a happy feel.

So, I had just about finished this before desert arrived at Jones in Olde City Philly, and end of the night sweets splurge. It didn't have enough character to clash with the confections, and not enough to stand out before they came. Sure, it goes down well as the style should, and it's not offensive, but it's just close enough to average to make it a one and done. Cool label, cool concept, luke-warm product.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.28/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice to see these bottles for sale in Atlanta now. I bought a sixpack of this at Hop City. Pours a hazy, very pale golden with a 2 finger pure white head that settles to a cap. Light lemon and banana aromas with perhaps just a touch of clove in the background. Tastes very nice at first sip with some sweet banana and spicy clove with a slight lemony background, but then the carbonation explodes in your mouth and erases much of the deeper hefe flavors in a shower of seltzer like notes. Overcarbonated, and finishes too light in the flavor department. With more balanced carbonation, this could be a solid hefe, especially if the finish had a bit of spice or sweetness to it. As it is, its just mediocre.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.12/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a fully clouded yellowish with very minimal head that disappears. Nose is completely like banana bread. Just total funk going on here. I love this nose, and this is exactly how it should be smelling. Flavor is excellent. Very thick hefe characters going on here with the banana really coming forward. Smooth and consistent flavor profile. Feel has a lot of carbonation really attacking the tongue on it, which I find odd because I get no head. Liquid is the typical body. Overall a pretty darn good brew that I would definitely suggest giving a shot if you have the chance.

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Photo of jhammerly
3.44/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Hazy, golden body with a thin white head.

S - An intense banana aroma that dominates anything else.Some hints of clove coming through.

T - Slightly sweet with some banana and touches of clove. Some bread-like character as well.

M - Thin to medium body with good carbonation that tingles on the tongue.

D - Not my favorite style, especially during the colder months, but I could stand to have a couple of these again.

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Photo of Oxymoron
3.77/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The P-47 Thunderbolt was also know as the Jug. Fitting. Pours a mostly cloudy off yellow color with a soft white head with good retention but limited lacing.

The nose has strong hefe notes. Banana esters really over cap other aromas, but notes of cloves and some wheat and bready finishes. Some lighter lemon and bubblegum as well.

The taste is more in balance but a light malt backing and tone down phenolics. The malt has some grainy flavors with a lighter wheat and biscuit backing. The bubblegum comes out more than the nose indicates but balances with banana and a stronger clove flavor. Some paint-thinner tastes on the backend.

The body is dry and leaves a tart, boarder line sour, aftertaste. Nice silky textures. Overall a good hefe, I wouldn't mind a jug of.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.27/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

"Let your plans be dark and as impenetrable as night. And when you move, fall like a thunderbolt."

--Sun Tzu in 'The Art of War'

Cloudy maize with bright lemon drop highlights when backlit with direct morning sunshine. The ivory colored cap is on the small side and doesn't look too interested in lace deposition. This is still a respectable looking hefe.

The aroma is more than respectable, it's downright classic for the style. I'm glad to smell that the brewers used a bone fide hefe weizen yeast strain and didn't try to pass an APWA off as something it wasn't. This should be delicious beer.

Thunderbolt Wheat is, indeed, wonderful stuff. I'll even go so far as to say that it's Warbird's best beer and is one of the Midwest's best hefe weizens... if not *the* best. As always, abundant ingredients and a kick-ass yeast strain are the keys.

The untoasted pale and wheat malt backbone is sturdy for the style, while still maintaining a smooth, easy drinkability. The yeast provides plenty of lightly sweet banana and spicy clove, earning Thunderbolt an impressive 4.0/5.0 on my hefe weizen banan-o-meter. If you love fruit and spice, you'll love this tremendously well-crafted ale.

The mouthfeel isn't supremely plush, but it's plush enough. Besides that, there's a perfect amount of carbonation. This beer deserves a wider distribution and a lot more love.

Thunderbolt Wheat falls like... well... like a thunderbolt out of the blue. Nothing that I've had from these guys prepared me for the excellent hefe weizen that is rapidly exiting my glass. If beer geeks thought this stuff was brewed in Germany rather than in Fort Wayne, Indiana... look out below!

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Thunderbolt Wheat from Warbird Brewing Company
Beer rating: 47.6% out of 100 with 21 ratings
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