Reserve Wheat Ale | Telegraph Brewing Company

BA SCORE
88
very good
84 Reviews
Reserve Wheat AleReserve Wheat Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Telegraph Brewing Company
California, United States
telegraphbrewing.com

Style: Berliner Weissbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by RidiculedDisplay on 02-22-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
84
Ratings:
179
Avg:
3.94
pDev:
10.41%
 
 
Wants:
45
Gots:
31
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 84 | Ratings: 179
Photo of Gueuzedude
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled January 2009; Sampled April 2009
A fairly soft pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a three finger thick, pale, just off-white colored head. The beer is a pale gold color that shows a lightly hazed, straw-gold color with a white sheen to it when held up to the light. The aroma smells of grassy grain up front, this is followed by a light tartness and the finish has a sweet, lemon verbena not that is soft but distinct. Crushed whole grain cracker notes form a solid wheat signature in the aroma, though I was expecting this to smell more sour and / or funky. The herbal character is nice with its lemon focused finish.

The beer is tart, though not aggressively so, but it is enough sourness to be quite refreshing. Pretty much bone dry, but there is a perception of lemon zest towards the finish that seems to add a suggestion of sweetness. The carbonation adds quite a bit of fizzy effervescence to this brew as it dances across the tongue and it also adds a pepper-like spiciness to the finish. The beer is also quite light bodied; it is really quite refreshing, even if a little gassy at times. The grain does not play as big a role in the flavor as it does in the aroma, but there are still some flavors of hay, some saltine cracker notes in the finish and a bit of an earthy grain note.

A bit more simplistic than I was expecting, the Brettanomyces character is really quite muted at this time; this would have been a welcome boost to the complexity of this brew and perhaps this will develop a bit more with time. If the yeast character was a bit more interesting I would almost call this a great example of a Saison (though it does lean a bit more towards a clean Berliner Weiss); it is light and refreshing and the lactic character adds a nice touch but is not overwhelming.

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Photo of yourefragile
3.82/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle, bottled on Jan 27, 2009, poured into a tulip. Sent in a trade by...someone, can't remember who, thanks though!

Pours a pale hazed straw golden color with a quickly dissipating large fizzy bone white head. Head settles into a thick ring and thin film of tiny bubbles with light streaks of lacing. Aroma is mildly lactic and sour, with strong notes of banana, wheat, citrus rind, lemon, florals and light pepper. Body is very light and fluffy with extremely active, sharp carbonation which nicely complements the lactic and lemon sourness. Flavor is much less of a typical wheat beer than the nose would have suggested. Lemon zest dominates the flavor, with some hints of the sweet malt and yeast. Very berlinner weissy (well, a very sweet one) and highly drinkable and refreshing, but the overly effervescent body combined with oppressive lemon and lactic flavors obliterate most of the wheat presence. I enjoyed this a lot more than my score suggests since this was very unique, but the balance and composition misses the mark for me.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.78/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours a hazy yellow, solid white head, good retention.

S: Lactic acid, lemon.

T: Big on the lactic acid though not overbearing. Notes of fermented yellow/green apples, lemons, and a hint of strawberry I always get with this beer.

M: Full-bodied for the style, brisk/fizzy carbonation, but not too much, dry, clean, definite acidity.

D: A very nice Berliner from Telegraph, a beer to compare with the Bruery's for the best I've had in Southern California. Not the greatest drinkability as it is heavy in a way at times, but a refreshing, interesting beverage nonetheless.

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Photo of weeare138
3.82/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to hopdog for this. Bottled 1/12/09...

Appears a fizzy, light gold with a small white head that slowly fades into a mild cap & collar. Streaky lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is of lemon up front, tart wheat, and a touch of berries.
Taste is of the mentioned lemon zest, obvious wheat, along with tropical fuit and banana being detected.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, tart, with with acidic citrus tickling the tongue on the finish.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.72/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Toronado in San Francisco.

Pours a cloudy, but very light lemon yellow colour. Head is minimal, but fine and filmy where it appears. Minimal lace as well. Looks very light in the body, and looks still when tilted.

Clean, and oddly hoppy nose, with a slight wheaty acidity. Some acidity, a pleasant roundness and a bit of assy funk. Mostly, the characters derive from the wheat, with a very slight sweet citrus overtone. Very nice.

Taste is lemony, with citrus dominant and a very light bodied wheat backbone. Funky finish, like orange citrus candy, and an echo of celery: fresh and bright. Feel is very thin, which works, but it's still very thin.

It's a nice beer. Easy to drink, but with plenty of interest. The wild elements give it its edge.

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Photo of scottfrie
3.92/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into wine glass.

A: Pours a light yellow/golden with a big bright white fizzy head that quickly faded away into nothingness leaving no lacing.
S: Light notes of funk, green apple, sweet fruits and berries and a touch of wheat.
T: Lightly tart notes of sour green apples, clean wheat, lemon zest, apricots and minerals. The finish is sweet and the aftertaste is lightly sour. No vinegar but there’s a good dose of acid.
M: Lightish body, really active carbonation that is quick and tingly. The mouthfeel has a few gritty dry tannins, and I get a weird film in the aftertaste that coasts my mouth.
O: Really drinkable and light. The flavors and acidity are mild and go down refreshingly enough. This would be a good intro sour.

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Photo of popery
4.3/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Bright straw yellow with a dissipating head.

S: Sweet and sour wheat with some floral notes and a mild lactic bite.

T: It's a very well done Berliner Weissbier for my taste, but it's certainly on the mild end of the sour spectrum for this style. The tartness is restrained, which I really appreciate because it brings out more of the spicy wheat flavors. There are also notes of lemon and coriander.

M: Good, mild tartness. Admittedly, it probably goes downhill with age. So, drink it fresh.

D: Very drinkable, very refreshing. Compared to the German versions I've tried, this beer is more accessible. It's almost like they blended a small amount of an APA or another mild style into it. The Berliner Weissbier tang is there, but there was little actual pucker in my mouth. I hope that more American breweries take up this style if they can achieve results like this. Then again, I wonder how much my reaction is from just being able to have this beer very fresh, while the German beers suffer from the time lag of importing. In any event, I hope that people try this beer and realize that it's a style that has the potential for returning to popularity among American palates.

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Photo of illidurit
3.92/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy bulletrain76. Pours a slightly hazy light gold color, much darker than a typical German Berliner Weisse. Lactic lemon zesty aroma with candied citrus and some sort of unidentifiable spiciness. Hard to stop smelling this one. Flavor is wheaty with lemon meringue, slight banana pith, coriander(?), and a wheat malt finish. Solid tartness. Nice robust flavor and body.

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Photo of woosterbill
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Bottle into a Cantillon tulip. Thanks to Tony for sharing.

A: Clear pale amber body with a few weird worm-like chunks. One finger of frothy white foam. Mediocre retention, no lace. I'm not going to lie, it's kind of gross looking - are those sea monkeys?

S: This is going to sound a bit weird, but it smells just like a Dairy Queen. I can't say with any certainty exactly what that entails (does the tangy wheat malt remind me of cheap cones? does the fruitiness recall the artificial cherry flavor of Dilly Bar coating?), but it's a remarkably vivid scent memory for me. More objectively, I get lemon, wheat, vanilla, and just a touch of lactic tartness. It's weird, but rather enjoyable.

T: Tart, lemony, and vegetal. Strange herbal notes on top f the wheat and sourness. Cherry syrup on the finish (it WAS Dilly Bars!). Bizarre, but ok.

M: Light + lively; nicely soft. Pleasant.

O: This was anything but popular with the tasting group, and I think my weak praise for it (rooted more in nostalgia than actual admiration) is as damning as a straight-up negative review. I enjoyed experiencing this beer, but I'll not be looking for a second date.

Cheers!

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Photo of FosterJM
4.13/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

346th review on BA
bottle to wine glass
750 ML bottle, 2/15/10 bottle date

App- "It looks yellow dad" This is what my 4 1/2 year old says to me and she is correct. Light yellow with a nice two finger head.

Smell- Funky with a lemony note. A somewhat white wine note with a little acidity.

Taste- Slightly delicate with a hint of funk and citrus. Not overbearing at all. You still get the wheat profile to the beer which is nice and that they didnt try to overrun the flavors while trying to "sour" the beer.

Mouth- Thin bodied as expected and a nice high carbonation level with a nice crispness and acidity.

Drink- A good way to end the day with a flavorful and low abv beer. I could put back a few bottles of this pretty quickly.

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Photo of hopdog
3.92/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle acquired in trade with WeeHeavySD (thanks!).

Bottle labled bottled on 1/12/09. Poured a medium and hazy yellow color with a smaller sized white head. Aromas of wheat, cereal, and lighter citrus. Tastes of citrus, wheatiness, cereal, and lighter spices. Lighter tart finish.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.79/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 1 pint, 9.4 oz. bottle into a pilsner glass. Color was light golden, but not quite pale. Looked a bit like lemonade or pineapple, or maybe a mix. About ½ inches of head. Minimal lacing on the top that dissipated very quickly. No film on the sides.

Smelled a lot of different flavors, including pears, apples, cloves and a touch of puke. If not puke, then sour beer.

Tasted very sour and tarty from the get-go and right away I noticed a lot of carbonation. I also got the pears, which I smelled so heavily before. The cloves try to make a late run of it, but it wasn’t too strong. Overall pretty tarty.

Medium body. Oily texture. Fizzy (high) carbonation. Astringent finish.

This was my first ever sour beer. At least that was what I’d call it. It has its moments, but I’m sure others must be better. Maybe I’ll go back to this after I try a few others.

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Photo of Brew33
4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Received via trade with Azureoval. Thanks Josh.

I've had their Gypsy Ale and enjoyed it so I figured I'd give this beer a try and I was impressed. Cloudy yellow beer with a dense, 2 finger head. The aroma is really great. Slight funk, Lemon tartness, sour, and some light wheat beer notes. The flavor is really very good too. Tart, lactic, lemony, with a dry, raw wheat finish. Tons of wheat in the aftertaste as well almost to a fault. It's a little harsh in the finish. The mouthfeel was excellent. Slightly creamy, tight carbonation. The drinkability should be a 5 but the corn husk, raw wheat aftertaste dings it and the taste a little bit.

Overall a very enjoyable beer. I'd definitely drink it again. If I had regular access to it I'd probably drink quite a bit of it.

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Photo of NickMunford
3/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours very light yellow with a highly carbonated head. Poured into a pint glass and about a quarter of it was head. It dissipates pretty quickly and leaves no lacing.

S: Smells pretty light with some mild floral notes. And a hint of sourness.

T: I didn't really pay to much attention to the label when I bought this. I saw "wheat ale" and was expecting more of a hef style. So it was a bit of a surprise when tasting it, but not really a bad surprise. There's definitely some sourness there, but not enough to make you pucker. I'm also tasting a little lemon/lime flavor, but not too much.

M: Feels decent in the mouth. Only slightly tart, and a lot of carbonation.

D: Easily drinkable. I usually take a little more time when drinking a beer, but I find myself taking bigger mouth-fulls of this one, so it's going down pretty easy and fast.

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Photo of charlzm
3.77/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed 07/18/09 at Blue Palms, Hollywood, CA.

Clear, light golden with no active carbonation. The head is a very fine thin skin of foam.

Aroma of bubblegum.

Mild wheat tang with subtle bubblegum flavor. Conservative levels of funk and a citric sourness. Soft, powdery (talc and floral) character to finish. No bitterness in evidence.

Soft mouthfeel.

Not at all a difficult drinker, but in the absence of any assertive flavors, the experience is a little lacking.

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Photo of brewandbbq
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle at 58 degrees.

Pours clear, light gold with a two-plus inch head of hissing white froth. After a quick drop, the porous foam dissapated to a partial skim coat on the surface along with a few streaks of lacing.

Aromatics lead off with tart lemon with hints of cut grass, wet hay, pineapple skin, and light malt. Quite earthy and slightly musty with plenty of zesty lemon.

Light bodied with a crisp, quenching mouthfeel.

Tart lemon, grapefruit, and a wheat twang start the palate. Hints of spice and mild funk follow through.

Finishes with a lingering tartness, lemon oil, and earth-rubbed citrus.

Tasty enough and certainly dry and quenching. The tartness stays fairly level throughout and never builds to what I would consider "sour". More funk and sourness would be welcome on this end.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
2.98/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to Blaine for sharing this unusual brew.

A - It pours a straw-yellow hue, hazy, and is capped with a good sized white frothy head.

S - The nose is quite lemon-y, but also is reminiscent of household cleaners and bug spray. Needless to say after that last descriptor, I am way south of fond of it.

T - The taste is light years better than the intolerable nose. It is, again, lemon-centric and earthy; offering notes of lemon zest, verbena and fresh-squeezed lemon. The brew has a refreshing taste. Too bad it comes with the attached aroma.

M - The feel is light and frothy, with a lot of soft effervescence. Not hugely enhancing, but it works.

O - I would not like any more of this, due entirely to the disgusting nature of the nose.

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Photo of SpdKilz
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

New Beer Friday!

Appearance - Pours into my Bell's Tulip with a hazy golden color. There is about a finger of white head that dissipates rather quickly leaving little lacing.

Smell - Woah, very funky. First smell I get is the lactic (old milk), tart lemons, and some slight sweet wheat aromas.

Taste - Quite tart - an interesting combination of lactic and lemon citrus flavor. There is a definite wheat profile, along with some earthy funk. The warmer this gets the more the flavors become more pronounced.

Mouthfeel - Light mouthfeel, plenty of carbonation, and finishes a bit dry.

Drinkability - Easy to drink for a "wild ale" and it is my first wheat wild ale. To be perfectly honest it is not as enjoyable as some of the other American Wild Ale's I have had but it was good to try (though for this price range I'd rather buy a Jolly Pumpkin La Roja).

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Photo of bashiba
4.08/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a bright hazy orange, lots of sediment with a big white head, some nice lacing and long lasting.

The smell is light and slightly lemony and sour with a hint of wheat.

The taste is very nice, has a nice wheat malt backbone with zippy lemon and citrus flavors, has a nice medium sourness. Very light and refreshing.

The mouthfeel has very nice carbonation and a light slightly dry finish.

This is a great wheat beer, the sourness is a very nice complement.

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Photo of farrago
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Gives you an easy two fingers on the pout but the head is so loose and openly knit that you can watch it sizzle down to nothing in a few seconds, slightly cream white color, hardly any lacing to speak of. Translucent haze in the glass, copper orange hued liquid, more bright yellow at the rims, any bubbles are widely dispersed and on the sluggish side. The nose is crisp but not piercing, clear emphasis on the lemon citrus and leafy green matter, the wheat is on the unprocessed side, more grain than bread, while there is a minerally or quinine element it remains clean and not intentionally “dirty,” light clove as in uncooked or unused, the fruit scents are mainly green apple, pear and peach pit, texturally it is soaks in unevenly which actually helps you notice it more. In the mouth it’s light-bodied, more tart than overtly sour, with a puckering acidic character. The carbonation provides a light prickle at best, mild fizziness through the finish. Here the metallic earthiness is more assertive and puts tang in the lemon to lighter orange citrus flavoring. The raw grains are hard to parse out, same for the pre-powdered spices. While you get the same green apple, apricot to peach pit/skin fruit there’s something which reaches for tropical, like star fruit or persimmon. Its unwillingness to go full bore in any one regard both its strength and weakness.

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Photo of bump8628
4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Corked and caged 750ml poured into a tulip. Surprisingly clear with just a slight haze to the straw gold body. Mild carbonation produces a thin mat of white head. Subtle and soft lactic sourness hits the nose and palate first. Lemon juice, grass, and a background note of earth and herb (from the lemon verbena?). A smooth vein of musky funk runs through the beer and adds a nice complexity. Another wave of tartness hits the back of the palate on the swallow. Really nice and refreshing, but still plenty complex. Certainly inspired by Berliner Weiss, but this beer brings a little something else. Well done.

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Photo of augustgarage
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750mL bottle into my Lindemans flute glass. Bottled on January 27, 2009 (making this sample about 6.5 months old).

Liquid is a heavily carbonated very pale color somewhere between chartreuse yellow and pear. A small tower of snow white foam rests on top, with decent retention, continually fed by the rapidly escaping bubbles. Nice rocky lacing. Brilliant crystalline clarity.

Aroma is sour cherry, lime zest, crab apples, and a hint of rice wine vinegar.

Crisp clean entry on the palate, like biting into an apple. Very tart, just short of puckering with a very slight yeastiness. White grape skins and mild malt in the finish. Lemon verbena is certainly there as well, though the Brett. is too subtle in my opinion.

Effervesence is powerful, leaving a tingling sensation suggesting more body that is really there (this is quite a light brew).

Not particularly complex (sort of a dumbed down, almost lager-like, lambic ale), but very refreshing and well balanced none the less.

Low ABV makes this great for languid Summer weekend days...

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Photo of kbutler1
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle. Pours a crystal clear light golden color with a tannish white fluffy head. Slight sourness in the nose with some fruit like pear. Light mouthfeel. Light sourness balanced out with a little sweetness. Pretty subtle. Easy drinking. Not overly complex by any means. For 5.7%, the alcohol is absolutley unnoticeable.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.13/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy, bright straw color with a large white head that takes some time to go down. Scent is nice lemon zest with some tart aromas. A bit of wheat in the nose as well...as well as cider-like scents. Taste is initially pleasantly tart with flavors of lemon and spices. Lots of lemon with just a bit of bread and wheat. Mouthfeel is light bodied and highly carbonated. Drinkability is very high. Overall, this was an awesome beer that I was not expecting to be as great as it was. To me, this is more like a berliner weissbier than a wild ale. Highly drinkable.

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Photo of beagle75
3.94/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml corked bottle into a tulip.

A: Rich, translucent golden color with 1.5 fingers of bright white head that diminishes quickly. No lacing remains on the glass. This beer is a few shades darker in color that most wheat beers.

S: Slight wheat and hay, moderate lactic sour smell.

T: Wheat throughout, with initial tartness that gives way to funky brettanomyces and slight bitterness. After a while a trace of phenolics begin to build to the point of being noticed, but they stops short of taking over.

M: Effervescent and highly carbonated, this beer is balanced by the kind of substantial texture that I expect in a wheat beer of quality.

D: Easy to drink, considering it is brewed with wild strains of yeast and bacteria. Note that this beer is not aged in wine barrels, unlike many of the more high-profile american wild ales. It reminds me of RR Sanctification, with wheat added. The rich wheat backbone is very well represented here and it makes me want to try a traditional (non-sour) wheat beer by this brewery. There is a lot here to like, get it if you can.

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Reserve Wheat Ale from Telegraph Brewing Company
3.94 out of 5 based on 179 ratings.
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