Redback Beer | Matilda Bay Brewing Co.

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Redback BeerRedback Beer
57 Ratings
Redback BeerRedback Beer

Brewed by:
Matilda Bay Brewing Co.

Style: Kristalweizen

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Styled on the traditional German wheat beer or weizen style of beer. Redback has a fruity/clove aroma, a generous creamy mouth feel and refreshing hop finish.

18 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-28-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 57 |  Reviews: 42
Photo of bicorrea
4.49/5  rDev +34.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Have such a good memory of this beer!
The first time I had it, I was "lost" in Fraser Island, with a friend, half of the day was gone, and we didn't even make to the Mackenzie Lake, I was a bit pissed off, when I simply decided to have a beer, while my friend was driving. So, not expecting much, I opened a bottle of Redback. WOW! Instantaneously, I had a smile in my face and all was great again!
There's no way of opening a bottle of Redback and not remembering of this day, so every time I have the pleasure of making it, I feel great!
Overall, for me, the taste is great, I really enjoy this kind of beer.
But to be honest, I would not be able to classify the colour, tho, I was not a connoisseur at the time.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.45/5  rDev +33.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

345ml bottle, silkscreen differs from the BA pic in that it has "Redback" on the top of the oval, and "Original" across the bottom. This bottle was hoofed back from AUS myself back on my first visit back in 1992. So this bottle is ancient, and has been fridged continuously since then. Probably wouldn't review it, due to the style most likely not aging well, but since this recipe predates the corporate changes that some mention in their reviews, I thought it would be a curiosity. So here goes...

Opens with a hearty pfft, as I would have expected fresh, so that's a start. Poured into an imperial pint glass, forms a 1" frothy bright white head over the clear golden brew. Active carbonation swirls bubbles about. Head hangs on while I was off rinsing the bottle and such, only losing half its height in 5 minutes or so.

Aroma is of spicy wheat, as expected. Taste is light wheat character, with sedate spices moted here and there. Mouthfeel and drinkability are superb. Small bubbles over the tongue enhance the smoothness, and knocking this back swallow by swallow is the epitome of ease.

This brew is all that I remember it to be, and I am shocked that a 13 year old kristalweizen could withstand the age. These facts only make the heart heavier with the apparent news that this brew is no longer what it used to be. I guess I'll just have to savor this last bottle, and at least we'll always <sniff> have the memories...

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Photo of D3toX
4.25/5  rDev +27.2%

A classic brew with a unique character that I could certainly identify in any blind taste test....have not tried, but always keen. A pioneer of wheat beer in Australia.

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Photo of Kuemmelbrau
4.25/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I must admit, this is the beer that enabled me to finally appreciate how good beer could be. I lived in the Perth/ Freemantle area for a number of months in 1999. Although i had drank plenty of it, before that time i wasn't much of a beer drinker. Until one late June day that i stumbled into the local Kalamunda (its a town) liquor store and decided to sample some beer other than those i had before. (i spent my first month there deciding my personal winner in the ever long struggle between VB and EB- congrats EB) Redback was my first choice, being from Louisiana i could appreciate the poisonous spider salute, and i was bitten at first sip. This beer has a excellent color to it light golden yellow it practically exudes wheat. Clear as day, it was something i wasn't used to only being familiar to yeasty hefe-weisen. Truly liquid bread. Upon smelling it i was delighted by the balance between the clove and banana esters. Most Australian wheats that i tried were without a doubt on the far banana side i assuming as a result of the climate. This one was different. Its makeup was surprisingly smooth; with a light mouthfeel this beer is extremely drinkable. Its taste is nice and wheaty with subtle light malt aftertones. And the hops! Now, i know that many folks say that the high alpha hops grown in the southern pacific region tend to be too "dirty" tasting, but i am a firm believer in their earthy, spicy bitterness. In this beers case they should have Pride in the Ringwood (sorry : ) but the Saaz hops used in addition to the australian hops lends to a nice mild spicy bitterness. In hindsight this is the ultimate beginners wheat beer, not that it won't stand up to many of the worlds great wheats. Three cheers for one of Australia's first great craft wheat beers!

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Photo of vancurly
4.09/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My first ever wheat beer... consumed in the mid 80s or somesuch. Probably at the London Hotel in Balmain, who always were a step ahead of the rest.
Even then, it was sold over the bar with a slice of lemon aka Corona & lime. But I think Redback is iconic, and doesn't need the fruit.
Golden yellow, whipped white head, very attractive looking beer. No haze. The head fades quickly, unlike the distant German cousins. Mixed aromas & flavours of lemon, wheat malt, some subtle hop flavours yet little bitterness.
As for matching style, there are far better examples. Yet to be honest, I can't objectively review this; it's a part of my formative years, and I love it.

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Photo of joecast
4.03/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

updating my four year old review. actually, just deleted it and entering a new one.
345ml bottle. best before 8/9/08 4.7%abv

looks fantastic in the glass. deep golden color. high carbonation and a full pillowy white head. mmm.

aroma seems to fill the room. mainly clove but some softer banana and bubblegum. big yeast presence as well which surprises me considering its a fairly clear beer.

flavor tends towards the sweet side, but the high carbonation keeps it lively. really well balanced with some sharpness at first, then it smooths out with that sweetness making it easy to keep lifting the glass.

very enjoyable. wonder if this is brewed down the road at cascade?? bottle doesnt mention anything like that, but this certainly seems fresh.

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Photo of Cs1987
4.02/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Gold, high carbonation, 1 finger of head with very good retention.

Smell - Quite strong, banana and some other sweet fruits and spices are detectable.

Taste - Great nutmeg-like spiciness, well balanced with sweetness

Mouthfeel - High carbonation, a little sticky.

Drinkability - A great, easy drinking summer beer.

Overall - Like most Matilda Bay beers, this is a very good representation of the style.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.92/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hmm. Somehow, I've managed to go this long without reviewing this beer, probably one of the more ubiquitous Aussie pseudo-craft brews. It pours a suitable clear pale golden colour, with a very fine if largely non-retentive head of white. Nice lacing, fine body. It's a shame the beer doesn't have a big, frothy German-style head, but otherwise, it looks pretty decent.

Nose is good. Genuinely good for a Kristalweizen: clear, clean banana and bubblegum characters, along with just a hint of spice, but certainly along the smoother and sweeter ends. There's a hint of acidity to it, but not the thinness you often get from a sub-par wheat beer. Really quite good.

Taste is similar, and genuinely good, stylistically. Smooth, clean wheat characters along the length, with finishing touches of bubblegum, and the ever-present banana ester aromatics. It's quite light, but there are few if any flaws to it.

Overall, this is pretty decent. To be fair, it's very light on, but the style in general is pretty light on as well, and this does a decent job of capturing the same aromatics and flavours.

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Photo of Macca
3.89/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours a clear light straw colour without much of head although it seems to a heavish carbonation.

Fantastic nose of bananas and wheat. Some spice in there as well and a bit of sweetness. I love it.

Very malty on the palate. A little bit of the banana persists.

Quite a high carbonation. A belchy beer for sure.

This isn't going to change the world but I think I could do a session of it quite easily. All the better when I got the 6-pack just for subscribing to a magazine.

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Photo of madvoice
3.88/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a light golden straw colour with about 3/4 finger width of head that hangs around for quite a while. Sits there nice and fluffy.

Smells very sweet, fruity and wheaty.

Tasted quite sweet and light with malt/banana flavours and a little bit of citrus.

Found this to be very fizzy but it didn't detract from the drinkability. A rather burpy beer.

Could quite easily drink a sixpack or more of these in succession. Not a bad drop.

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Photo of Stuckey_Stuckey
3.8/5  rDev +13.8%

Photo of Stavage
3.77/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very clean golden yellow ale exhibits a decent finger of fluffy white head with good retention.

Fairly appetising smell to this one. Definite wheaty smell, and the banana phenols that go along with it. Hiding behind it is that nice malty 'aussie pale ale' scent which I love so much. Perhaps a touch of citrus in there too.

Taste follows on from the scent, definite wheat and banana characteristics with a decent malt backbone underneath. Nice citric touch as well and maybe a little clove spiciness but not a whole lot there. Hops don't seem to play a big role, not a bitter beer by bitter beer standards. I just wish the flavours were a little fuller. Couldn't find anything wrong with the taste, there just could have been something more or something else to really elevate it.

I found the mouthfeel quite good, but I guess I also view this as an 'Aussie' wheat. The carbonation IS quite high, higher than I would normally want. But I'm not minding it here. I also find it fairly smooth and its refreshingly dry. As a summer lawnmower beer or a summer day in the pub with mates beer, this would definitely go down well as a change of pace.

When it comes to basic, easy to drink but decent summer beers I think Redback has earned a place on the tap. Not overly complex, easy to drink, refreshing, tastes ok, smells great.

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Photo of jarmby1711
3.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Overall I thought this was a very meelow demonstration of a Kristal weizen.
It has enough wheaty sharpness with the hints of citrus and cloves but softens off in the after palate to be quite sweet and smooth.
It pors well looks and smells ok .
It seems to be a good "introduction " to the style.
A great option on a very hot day and well chilled.
I had this with Lemon grass and chicken and went well

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Photo of magnusdave
3.75/5  rDev +12.3%

Photo of aeolianshredhead
3.67/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dull Orange colour, fairly see through with a 1.5 finger head. Head is lost fairly quickly and becomes more or less a patch on top. A little inconsistent lacing.

S- Very distinct honey aroma. Possibly a little yeasty. Pleasant though.

T- Nice, mild and quite sweet. Orange peel, mandarin and generally citrus fruit which seem to blend reasonably well. A touch grainy on the back. The hops don't give enough of a balance to the rest of the palate but all in all, it tastes fine.

M- Crisp and light. Very soft on the tongue and obviously highly drinkable.

O- Very solid brew. Could be more going on, but it is what it is: Highly sessionable and tasty.

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Photo of Brew_42
3.65/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Damnit it's cheap but in Korea it got the job done in a sea of shitty beer so it will forever have a special place in my heart.

Clear gold almost no head. Some banana and clove like you might expect from a hefe or kristalweizen.

Taste follows the nose with some tartness on the back end.

Not bad and very cheap.

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Photo of chinabeergeek
3.65/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

from notes, tasted mid to late june 2009, kro's nest, beijing, china

importer label indicates bottling date of 9 months before the best by date of 16 nov 09.

poured into mug.

clear golden honey straw. 1.5 finger head fades to wispy layer and ring. splotchy lacing is pretty sparse.

aroma: mild banana and clove. detectable bready and yeasty character. trace euro hopping. very faint phenols in back w/ more spice. hints of tea?

taste: bready malt and yeast, but a touch watery. banana, clove and pears, but again, a touch watered down. mild to moderate bitterness from mild notes of grassy noble hopping. cloves mix w/ phenols and esters into the finish.

light and crisp, slightly watery, but with moments of creaminess. prickly carbonation isn't TOO fizzy. faint resins and phenols.

not horrible. actually a pleasant surprise, considering my low expectations.

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Photo of basica
3.63/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one is Australian's attempt at a typical wheat beer style brew. I got the Redback together with my bottle of Newcastle Brown Ale from Beercellar. I was a little curious about this one as I am a fan of wheat beers, be it Belgian or German. The Redback pours out a little surprisingly; it was a typical bright golden pilsner color that is "see through" as opposed to the cloudy and murky hefeweizens. The head was a little more bubbly than the usual Hefeweizen or Witbier heads and mild retention on that one. The smell was wheat malts and yeast; taste was also somewhat along those lines but significantly stronger on the malts with some spices and there was also a bananna tone peeking out towards the finish. The slightly dry finish move into the after taste which was initially dominated by banannas then apples and finally the familiar grapes. The malt backing was present all the while and the after taste was fairly strong and lasting. The mouthfeel was between thin and medium for the body with an apt amount of carbonation and the smoothness was the water smoothness rather than creamy smoothness that many of the european witbiers exhibit. This one's not bad but in view of more readily available German Hefes and Belgian Wits, I will pick those.

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Photo of ADZA
3.63/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another beer that i havnt had for ages and am reviewing,it pours a pale see thru straw colour with nice carbonation that leaves a one finger head and subtle lacing,the aromas are bananna and wheat,it has a nice mouthfeel for the style which starts out medium bodied then finishes light,dry and crisp with hints of bananna,wheat and pale malts the dominant taste,this is one of those beers that could easliy drink alot of on a nice hot summers day and would go very nicely with Seafood.

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Photo of LittleCreature
3.6/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - 3.5
Poured a fluffy 3 fingers of off-white head, which reduced in patches. Looks highly carbonated, the colour is a pale gold.

Smell - 3.5
There was some skunk upon opening, but this disappeared quickly. A moderately scented wheat beer, no banana, but some bubblegum and citrus sweetness.

Taste - 3.5
Really refreshing like a wheat beer should be. Crisp with a relatively high level of sweetness, tastes of white bread, citrus and a little clove, and very little bitterness in the finish. Aftertaste is pleasant and fresh.

Mouthfeel - 3.5
Carbonation is relatively high, but this reduced considerably as the beer warmed. Feels light in the mouth with lots of small bubbles.

Drinkability - 4.0
Very drinkable, as most wheat beers are. I would definitely consider buying this as a session beer.

OVERALL - 3.55
I have heard bad things about this beer in the past, but after drinking, I don't believe them (and think they probably came from lager swillers who were scared by something different). As far as I can tell, this is a solid, highly drinkable wheat beer. Price is decent, as is the quality. There are tastier, more interesting what beers out there, but not as readily available or for this price in WA.

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Photo of Finite
3.57/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A golden colour, slightly pale. The head retention is poor but forgivable due to the crispy fresh malt and wheat taste. This is a very refreshing beer with unique characteristics. Little hops in this one. The flavor deviates from a crisp fresh wheat to a sweetness then finishes with a crisp wheat taste.

This is a unique taste however I have heard it used to be better. If it was better than this then it would have been a classic.

Still not a bad brew. I could see this going with seafood.

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Photo of sulldaddy
3.55/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I had this beer on a trip to Australia at the Redback Hotel.
The beer is served in a wheat flute with a lemon wedge before I can ask for no lemon. The beer arrives a bright gold color with several streams of bubbles rising from the bottom. A thin bleached white head fades to an edge layer rather quickly. Aroma is lemony citrus, but could be due to now removed lemon. I also get grainy malt and some very mild biscuity yeast. First sip reveals a crisp lite body and average fizzy carbonation. The flavor is sweet and citrusy with some sugar as well. Very lite flavor makes the beer quickly drinkable and it is good on this warm spring day in Melbourne. The beer is not brewed on premise and is contracted out to Matilda Bay.
Not a bad beer for a warm day.

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Photo of jamie2dope
3.53/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I really enjoy this brewery, they seem to be on the ball with all of the beers i've had so far. This one poured a decent enough looking orange color with a small white lacing. Smell was of cereal grain, some sugars here and there, not much else. Taste was pretty good, very hoppy with some biscuit notes. Mouthfeel was probably the highlight of this beer, as it was very crisp and refreshing. Although this beer would be great for a hot summer day, I don't know if I would get it again. It wasn't a bad beer but perhaps a bit boring. Happy Trails.

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Photo of Mtadder
3.5/5  rDev +4.8%

Photo of BrazilianAussie
3.5/5  rDev +4.8%

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Redback Beer from Matilda Bay Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.34 out of 5 with 57 ratings