Special Edition - White Ale | Mendocino Brewing Company

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Special Edition - White AleSpecial Edition - White Ale
Special Edition - White AleSpecial Edition - White Ale

Brewed by:
Mendocino Brewing Company
United States

Style: Belgian Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

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User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 120 | Ratings: 149
Photo of TheMarkE
3.56/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pale straw colored with a moderate head and lacing. Noticeable carbonation.

Smell: Citrus and spice.

Taste: Spice, lime, wheat, yeast.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a slightly bitter and tart finish.

The Verdict: Not bad. A Belgian ale with coriander and key lime which give it a different flavor, especially the key lime.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.34/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a murky light orange with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of wheat, grain, spice, citrus juice, and citrus zest aromas. Taste is much the same with grain, spice, and citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer that is drinkable, but I think the mix of smells is slightly better.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of brongladest
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%

A: golden, hazy
S: fruity esters, orange
T: orange citrus fruit, slightly sweet
MF: light to medium body, crisp
overall: easy to quaff, id buy a six pack to share with friends

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Photo of seedyone
3.91/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

05/14/14 On tap at Rattle n Hum, NYC. Loads of orange and coriander up front, with a nice crisp citrusy - lemony finish. Here is a good example of an front to back differentiation of tastes. This could be a good long session beer if that's what you're looking for. Bring on the BBQs.

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

12 oz bottle

Clear golden body; lots of visible carbonation.

Feel: very crisp, lively carbonation. Medium body is surprisingly ful for style.

Spicy aroma.

Flavorful with a bit too much coriander; Some lime peel flavor; spicy; mildly bitter; fanitly tart.

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Photo of hosehead83
3.37/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.
Cloudy, chill-hazed gold in color, with a bright white head of foam.
Aroma-Faint lime note, spices
Taste-Faint coriander,wheat, spices. Lime peel in the finish provides a nice little bite. Pleasant and refreshing on a warm afternoon.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

yellow in color with tons of carbonation and a huge fizzy white head that let down quickly. Aroma is light banana, clove and citrus, nice and light and airy with touches of lemon zest and fresh spice as it warms. Very clean taste, perfect hints of citrus and spice layered on the banana based malts. Quick, clean, light and very drinkable.

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Photo of GbVDave
3.45/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Loterbol tulip.

A: Pours an opaque pear nectar color with lots of suspended sediment. Topping this was one dense finger of creamy, bright-white foam that featured good retention. Lacing was minimal.

S: Yeast and coriander loom large here, as does citrus and a bit of toasted wheat.

T: The citrus of the nose steps it up and clobbers the other "Wit" flavors into oblivion...wearing out its' welcome in the process.

M: A little too on the tart side for the style, for me. A bit too thin also.

D: Not horrible in the least, but a bit meh.

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Photo of maddogruss
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a bottle of this from Cloverleaf Tavern.

A: Pours a hazy, straw yellow body with a silky, but small white head with pretty low retention but some lacing along the glass until the finish.

S: A nice, lemon zest smell with some sweet, honey-earthy malt undertones.

T: A pretty earthy and floral taste with a lemon backbone. Lemon notes make themselves more evident in the aftertaste, but as the beer warms up, the floral notes start to make their presence more known. Overall, a nice tasting beer.

M: A pretty silky smooth, medium bodied beer that was crisp and refreshing overall.

D: A nice mouthfeel and taste combination makes this beer pretty nice on the palette and a pretty drinkable beer, especially for the summer. Overall, not too bad of a white ale.

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Photo of GeneralZod
3.58/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear golden color. Did not have much head retention.

Smells of citrus. It is what to be expected of a white ale.

Taste good. Almost like a water downed version of Hoegarden

Slippery, watery, and slightly carbonated.

It is good beer for a hot summer day.
Would come back for more.

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Photo of gromis
2.58/5  rDev -25%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This pours from the bottle a medium gold with lots of carbonation. My glass almost looked like a glass of champagne, not that I'm complaining.

The nose on this one is a zesty citrus and carbonation smell.

The first impression is that it has a heffi type taste. It does have a subtle sourness in the fade which is not unpleasant.

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Photo of HURTemHIZZY
3.3/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a hazy yellow with an absolutely massive white head that is very fluffy and sticky. actually too much head for me, its pretty hard to pour this in one pour even with the gentlest pour you can muster. Leaves some grea tlacing down the glass.

Smells primarily of wheat, fairly light, with some nice hints of citrus, lemon and orange. A bit of coriander, and some noticeable spice. Nice aroma, a bit light, though.

Taste follows suit, but has a bit more spice and some more coriander to it. The lemony citrus also makes itself a bit more noticeable in the flavor. Nice tasting brew.

This beer had a lot going for it, but the body really threw it off for me. It looked fairly carbonated from the pour and the head, but this is just ridiculous. The carbonation level is so high that the beer is at times difficult to drink. Makes it much less drinkable and enjoyable than it should have been.

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Photo of NA1NSXR
3.25/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - A touch more transparent than other unfiltered white ales I've had. Nice large foamy head and the trademark carbonation rush. Decent lacing.

Smell - I'm getting some wheat, orange peel, and coriander. Not so much lemon in the nose. Overall a reasonable mix of aromas for a white. The is a decent strength to the smell.

Taste - There is certainly nothing bad about the taste here. It lacks bite. I am getting a tasteless type of flavor to start that is mixed with some of the orange, lemon, and coriander elements and then the beer ends with a decent dose of wheat.

Mouthfeel - It turned out to be less carbonated in the mouth than it looked in the appearance. I'm not really a big fan of carbonation in general but this beer could've use a tiny bit more.

Drinkability - This is a decent effort and its certainly drinkable. My qualm with the beer has more to do with the balance...I would prefer more citrus, less coriander, a bit more tart. There is nothing bad though, so its really more of a matter of preference, and I've been having a lot of white ale lately so this unfortunately takes the back seat to some other examples.

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Photo of floraday
3.79/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a wine glass.

A: Quite cloudy gold in color. No head to speak of with lots of carbonation and big bubbles.

S: Aromas of yeast with citrus and spice. Hints of coriander. Citrus and yeast are the dominant aromas with wheat in the background. A rather pleasant smelling beer. No metallic off-aromas that I find common to this style.

T: Lots of yeast and citrus. Nice! The aromas mentioned above are present on the palate. A little spicy.

M: Feels good in the mouth. Nice summer brew.

D: Very nice brew for the price. Would pair perfectly with lighter fare.

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Photo of wnh
3.95/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a mug.

Pours a hazy, murky old-gold-tinted straw, full of yeasty sediment, with a large, fluffy, foamy, quick-rising white head hinting at a high level of carbonation.

Fresh and clean citrus aromas, big on the orange and lemon. There's a good bit of coriander spice to balance--considerably more than the "subtle hint" mentioned on the bottle label, but still pleasant--with a clean sort of yeastiness on top of a strong backbone of (unmalted?) wheat. Fresh and inviting. Fruity on the palate, dominated by orange peel. I don't know that I've tasted such strong orange zest/juice notes in a beer that was in fact so devoid of hops. Interesting. Quite strong on the coriander--a little too strong, really--but brightened by clean, semi-sweet lemon peel.

Highly carbonated, which could very well be the result of my timing in drinking this beer; brewed for the summer, and I'm drinking it in early November. Has the yeast in the bottle worked to make this beer more carbonated than the brewers intended? Whatever the case, some careful pouring is necessary to let the beer settle to make this more palatable. Easy drinking and quite sessionable.

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Photo of colts9016
3.39/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass at 41 degrees.

Appearance: A nice white frothy creamy head that has a fair amount of retention. The body of the beer is a pale straw color. There is a lot of effervescence in the beer. A lot of yeast is floating and suspended in the beer. The clarity of the beer is slightly hazy.

Nose: A fragrant spice, wheat, a herbal note, zesty orange, and bouquet of flowers. There is a light honey note in the background of the beer.

Taste: A light wheat beer, there are herbal, spice, zesty orange, and floral notes.

Overall: The mouth feel of the beer is carbonated, astringent, and edgy. The body of the beer is light and the finish is crisp. This beer is descent there isn't a lot of flavor in the beer. I was expecting the beer to be more flavorful because of the pungent nose.

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Photo of brownbeer
3.75/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazy orange-yellow with suspended sediment.

A lot of coriander on the nose(almost too much) with a pretty straight for orange and lemon citrus.

Zesty lemon, coriander, yeast, caramel maltiness as it warms. Banana, vanilla?

Well made beer that's easy to session and pretty true to the belgian style.

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Photo of kimcgolf
3.49/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle to a hazy golden color with thin whitre head that lingered awhile with little lacing, and suspended yeast throughout. Nose was a spicy, biscuity scent with a hint of fruit. Mouthfeel, while a little on the thin side, was tingly and a hint tart. Flavor picked up the scents of the nose, though not quite as strongly, and the finish was pleasant.

Nice summer beer.

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Photo of adamette
4/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Live review. Poured from a bottle purchased at Heinen's in Willoughby Hills, Ohio as a single for $1.35 into my Brewery Ommegang Witte tumbler. I also saw this for sale as a single at the Mentor Cost Plus World Market earlier today as a single.

A Nice white creamy head over a straw yellow, slightly opague body with visible sediment lingering around in the body as well. Very nice look, better than I expected. 4.0

S Nice spice profile over the expected wheat, yeast grain smells. 4.0

T/M A bit harsh on the spices in my opinion but a very solid Witbier that I welcome with nice wheat notes and a good smoothness that you do not always get from a Witbier. 4.0

D Good with enough interest to keep you sipping until it is gone.

Notes: At this price point it is my favorite Witbier. I would go so far as to say that it rivals Ommegang Witte.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.92/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to stephens101 for this one.

Pours a cloudy yellow/white color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy white head, which does leave some sticky lacing behind. The nose is malty, with some yeast, lemony, citrus, and some spices. The taste is malty, yeast, very nice lemon/citrus thing going on (I like), with some spice. Medium body. Drinkable, this is a very nice thirst quencher, I'm very surprised by it, nice brew, thanks Lane.

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Photo of secondtooth
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Mmm. This cloudy, unfiltered Belgian-style spiced ale is
characteristically bold, rich, and complex. Hints of citrus,
coriander, and clove, and nicely zesty and strong, yet still
well-balanced. Mendocino's White Ale is not one to chug, but for a
sipper, this one's a treat. Forget the diets and try one of these.

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Photo of nickynick
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Mendocino white poured a nice cloudy light amber, with a nice white head, and good lacing. It had a classic white ale look. Smell was full of citrus, with a hint of yeast. The taste had hints of bread. A good amount of citrus flavors. I found the taste a bit on the sweet side, and lacking spice a little bit. Mouthfeel was ok, it lacked a little of the carbonation I am looking for in a white ale. Drinkability was good. Overall I found this a decent white ale. It was an ok version of the style. Nothing I would go out of my way for, but would not turn one down.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
3.11/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A hazy yellow body that has tons of yeast sediment that swirls around in clumps and specs. A finger and a half of white head that hardly sticks around at all.

A little bit sour with lemon and orange flavors. A little bit of coriander.

Up front comes mostly orange and lemon flavors. The little bit of sourness that was in the nose is magnified in the flavor. The sourness is a little bit more than just something coming from the lemon flavor, I think it might be a bit of wild or contaminated yeast. The fact that it isn't entirely unpleasant and kind of works with the beer makes me review this bottle instead of chalking it up to a dud. In the finish, the bite of the peppery coriander comes in, followed by a wheat bite.

Really high carbonation here, but enough body to stop it from being unpleasant.

Pretty drinkable beer. I can't say I like any sourness in my Wits though.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.43/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Inflatablechair came over on the 4th with a nice mix 6'er... I enjoyed one of these bottles early in the night... and thought I had the last .. but tonight I found the remaining bottle in the back of the top shelf of the fridge.. Thanks Sam... Mendocino is a wild card for me.. I appreciate the leftover.. Poured into my shaped SA glass....

I only want a beer or two tonight.. Moving sprinklers around and found this Wit.

1" head... good lace and a pretty nice cap.. the brew is pale ... very very pale gold..

The nose is pretty phenolic for a Wit.. alot... really alot of yeasty spiciness.. a little peppery.. but more coriander is making my nostrils pay attention.

Flavor has all the above with a pithy citric element.. I like the yeasty notes most good Wit's provide.. but on the palate.. this one is coming up significantly short.. it seems to try and make up for the shortcomings from the brewing process and brewing recipe.. with spice additions..

The body may be on the heavy side.. and the carbonation may be a tad light... but.. overall.... despite my above reservations.... Mendocino has a pretty descent summer session... but it seems a little to close to so many other average Wits in the same zone.


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Photo of Beerbythepool
2.59/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle to pint glass.
I must have had a bad pour because the head started to overflow and I had to pause. Over 3 fingers of head that held for a long time before I could finish the pour.

Color was golden and cloudy with suspended malts or yeast...or who knows.

First smell is lemon then a I get corriander. Not sure if my bad pour caused this, but I see small spots of rust color in the head that remains. Maybe the beer is bad, but I will need more research on this issue as I have never seen this before.

Very unfiltered, good lacing that coats the side of the glass.

Flavor is watered down. Quick to drink, but not sure if that is a good thing or a sign that I want to get this over with.

Mouthfeel is ok, but seems like they were afraid to choose a flavor and go for it. If you are looking for a Belgian white ale there are plenty of others that do a better job.

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Special Edition - White Ale from Mendocino Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.44 out of 5 with 149 ratings