Diabolical Dr. Wit | Spring House Brewing Company

11 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Spring House Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.70%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
Diabolical Doctor Wit is a white ale brewed in the authentic Belgian style. This Belgian style Wit starts off with a wheat base and is left unfiltered. It is then carefully spiced with coriander and bitter orange peel and aged with lavender to introduce a unique floral bouquet that complements this complex yet refreshing fruity thirst quencher.

Added by Kegatron on 07-10-2009

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Reviews: 11 | Ratings: 47
Photo of cosmicevan
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

notes from 6/18/2014 visit to the tasting room...
murky yellow color, fizzy head
nose is zesty and spicy wit with oranges and lemon
zesty taste to match the nose.
great vibe to this beer, super refreshing and one of the better wits i have enjoyed in my beer journey.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.42/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap in a pint glass

Appearance – Served a light yellow colored brew with the tinniest bit of haze. Upon being served there was only the tinniest bit of foam on the top of the brew with no lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is mainly of a sweeter aroma of orange and a little bit of candied sugar smell. Accompanying these stronger smells are some aroma of spice as well as yeast , lemon and grass.

Taste – The taste begins with flavors of a wheat and bready flavor. As the flavor advances citrus flavors of an orange and lemon nature come to the tongue. A little bit of spice of coriander and clove also hit the tongue at this time with the lightest flavor of yeast. These flavor bring the taste to its end where they are joined by a light grassy like flavor to leave a rather crisp taste to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the brew is on the quite thin side with a carbonation level that is on the average side. Both are rather fitting for the crisp wheat and citrus flavors for the brew, being quite appropriate and good for the style.

Overall – Good and refreshing, but nothing too exceptional.

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Photo of orangesol
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap at the Tasting Room.

A - Pours hazy golden yellow with a decent one finger tall white head leaving spotty trails of lace down parts of the glass.

S - Smells of light spice, lemons, bready wheat and the same yeasty aroma as the other light beers.

T - Starts off with some chewy wheat and a nice lemony twang slowly giving way to hints of the typical witbier spices and a bit of hop bitterness. Finish is dry, not lingering for very long.

M - Medium-light body with moderate carbonation. It get pretty thin toward the end of the glass.

O - A pretty decent witbier but I think I will stick with some of there other beers, namely the dark ones..., in the future.

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

Sampled at the taproom in downtown Lancaster.

The beer pours a somewhat hazy, tannish gold color with fairly good head retention and light lacing. The nose is attractive as well, and is pretty much text book wit. There is the expected coriandor and light clove, with maybe a hint of honey. The flavor profile is more of the same, except there is a considerable wheat flavor in the mid palate, and some bitterness in the finish. The beer comes off as a bit light and watery, which I guess figures in a 4.7% domestic wit.

Shrug. Nothing wrong with this, but it really doesn't distinguish itself from an ocean of other domestic wits out there.

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Photo of stakem
3.3/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Draft at the Springhouse taproom in Lancaster. Served in a half pint glass. The brew appears a very muddy looking yellow to tan. A thin cap of white bubbles sits atop as leaves very fine spots of lace on the glass. A swirl hardly revives more than a few bubbles back to the surface.

The smell is a bold display of lemon that smacks you right between the eyes. It is very perfumey and more artificial smelling than anything. It's like coriander but with an extra kick that almost burns the nose. All around the edges are faint grainy sweet notes and a touch of fruits. It's not bad if you try to ignore the robus lemony essence. This would be much more enjoyable to me if it was tuned down just a bit.

The taste is as aggressively oily and rindy with lemon as the aroma would lead you to believe. The lemon flavor is somewhat like coriander but taken to a more bold level with an oily feel that coats the inside of the mouth with a resinous cling. I can't help but think there is something artificial going on here that just augments the expected flavors and takes them to a boldness of character that is just overdone. Trying to see past the lemony cling is a bit of fruit and mild grain.

This is a medium to light bodied brew with a moderate amount of carbonation. If they were going for a lemon assault, they nailed it. This isn't something I would enjoy more than a few ounces of. I didn't pick up on much character outside of the lemon. Not even the faintest note of yeast or distinguishable grainy quality which is what I typically look for in this style. I enjoy my "thirst quenchers" either mildly tart or crisp and refreshing/easy drinking. This was none of the above. Based on other people's descriptions/reviews maybe I had a weird anomaly. I will give this a try again in the future but based off this most recent experience I can't recommend this to anyone.

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Photo of oline73
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on-tap at the brewpub in Lancaster. Poured into a sample glass.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy yellow with an amber hue. There is a layer of white head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Crisp wheat with a mild citrus tartness and some spices.

Taste: Wheat malt with some mildly tart citrus. The finish is herbal and crisp. Light and quite easy to drink.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with carbonation that is quite sharp and tingly with a dry finish.

Overall: I definitely enjoyed this one. The tart citrus notes were quite enjoyable. I would have another.

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Photo of callmemickey
3.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Golden colored body. One finger thick white head. Decent retention and moderate lacing coverage .

S: Bold floral presence. Getting quite a bit of coriander, lavender, and orange peel. Some grain comes through. A bit of yeast in the nose too.

T: Not quite as complex and enjoyable as the nose. Lots of spice and floral notes. Orange peel comes through quite a bit. Grainy body. Lavender is interesting but somewhat amorphous. At times it gets in the way, at others its a nice accent.

M: Medium-light bodied. Good carbonation. Not as refreshing as I was hoping for. The orange helps, but the lavender drags the beer down a bit. If the lavender was toned down just a tad the refreshing character might improve.

D: Interesting and tasty. Ultimately not as refreshing as I'd wish for.

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Photo of philbe311
3.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Capone's...

A - A golden copper color... A thin light creamy white head remains throughout... A medium bit of moderate paced lively carbonation...

S - Like opening a multitude of spices (Coriander, Rosemary, Sage, Marjoram) in the middle of a field of flowers... A distinct yeasty presence... Unique and intoxicating...

T - The surprising mix of unique scents from the bouquet carry through to the palette... Brimming with complexity as the spices and lavender compete for prominence... Also present are notes of light citrus and wheat...

M - Refreshing... Light... Crisp... Clean... Bristling with enjoyable carbonation...

D - As memorable a witbier as I have ever experience... Insanely quaffable... Easy drinking... Super sessionable... Highly recommended... A stellar surprise in the world summer offerings...

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Photo of ffejherb
4.1/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to brewslut for sharing this growler on 4/14/10.

A - Emerged from the growler as a hazy golden liquid with a thick wall of bubbly white goam that eventually diminished into a thin ring that deposited some sparse lacing around the glass.

S - Peppery nose with spicy Belgian yeast and a healthy dose of clove. Malt character seems to possess a toasted grainy aroma, while a light lemony citrus zing accompanies the spicy and grainy notes.

T - Opens with an apparent peppery and spicy yeast character with a hint of clove, followed by a citrus hop character suggesting lemon zest. Finishes with plenty of toasted grain and bready goodness. Flavor is quite nicely balanced overall.

M - Light to medium bodied with a slight syrupy texture and moderate carbonation, which provides quite a brisk, prickly effect on the tastebuds. Finishes spicy on the palate.

D - Very good Witbier with fantastic drinkability and well-balanced flavors. I'm looking forward to more of these experimental and one-off batches from Spring House.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.87/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


After posting this review, I was contacted by head brewer Matt Keasey, who had the following to say regarding the unique flavor of this:

"I just read your review and wanted to let you know that lime was not added to the beer. The beer was aged on Lavender, which has been changing the flavor and complexity of the beer since it was added."

So there you have it. It's even more unique than orginally thought and I'm going to tweak my original score to reflect that. I'm very interested to see just how this beer will continue to develop. Thanks for the info Matt!

64 oz brewery fresh growler into a couple of glasses. Split this with the wife, and fellow BAs Deuane & SierraGS.

Pours a hazy golden orange, that is topped with a finger of foamy brite-white head. Retains with a thin, yet frothy look, that leaves back some foamy lacing which quickly slides down the sides of the glass. The aroma is extremely floral and spicy with coriander, orange zest, and what appears to be a VERY strong lime presence. Firm bready wheat in the back of the nose, adds some beef to this.

The taste starts with a solid base of sweet wheat character and orange peel, before transitioning into some more yeasty accents, and that same aggressive spicy mix of coriander and lime,which is really coming out strong. Maybe just a bit too much actually. It definitely dries out the back of the profile. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a fairly crisp and prickly carbonation that meshes well with the sharp spicing in this. I'm not sure of the ABV on this but I'm sensing a touch of alcohol beef to it. I'm guessing around maybe 6%? I'm glad that I shared this, as a full growler maybe have been a bit tough to get through by myself. This is still drinking much better after 2 glasses than I thought that it was going to when I first started it though.

Very interesting take on the Whit style, with the addition of the lime to this. Deuane & Carolyn seemed to think that this was imparted from the use of kaffir lime (which I've come to find out is actually quite commonly used to add this quality to various beers, liquors, and malternatives). In this case, I think that it may have been a touch overdone but I for one am glad to see something a little different locally on tap for the summer.

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

I didn't add the beer to the database, so I question the inclusion of 'The' in the name. Not a big deal though. Served on-tap at Spring House's tasting room.

A: The ale is wickedly light, lemonade made from the powdered mixture. Haziness doesn't do the body justice. A billowy head is white as new fallen snow, accentuating the lightness of the beer.

S: The nose is a one-two punch of tart wheat and lime. I can't stress the lime enough, as it drives the witbier's aroma much more so tha orange or any other spice.

T: The taste builds off of the nose, throwing the wheat tartness and lime out immediately. Behind the lime, more witbier flavors emerge with lemon and orange peel featuring prominently. The wheat's tartness is never far from the surface, keeping each sip fresh.

M: The mouthfeel is pleasantly defined by the lime, more so than any other lime beer that I've had (I think that Chupar un limon is the extent of my lime experience). I do like that the wheat and witbier flavors are not shy.

D: If you like lime, you'll love this one. The flavor is so strong that I knew I'd never get through a whole growler of it.

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Diabolical Dr. Wit from Spring House Brewing Company
3.72 out of 5 based on 47 ratings.
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