American Wheat | Madhouse Brewing Company

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American WheatAmerican Wheat
20 Ratings
American WheatAmerican Wheat

Brewed by:
Madhouse Brewing Company
Iowa, United States

Style: American Pale Wheat Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our American Wheat is an original example of this relatively new beer style. Light and refreshing American-style wheat beers have gained popularity for their lively effervescence and easy drinking flavor. Wheat malt gives this beer a creamy texture, with late hop additions to bring out a pleasant citrus aroma.

18 IBU

Added by BuckeyeNation on 05-02-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 20 |  Reviews: 16
Reviews by msjacilynn:
Photo of msjacilynn
3.42/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Review from old notes: 7/31/10

A: hazy yellow with a thin foam and lacing.

S: lemon and wheat.

T: Citrus and light grains...nothing complex.

M: thin but too much carbonation.

D: while this is pretty one dimensional, I still found it to be fairly refreshing. would drink again, but nothing will blow you away.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.13/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

"The world is so full of simpletons and madmen that one need not seek them in a madhouse."

--Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Bright goldenrod beneath a massive chunk of pale almond colored foam that was foretold by a loud escape of CO2 on cap cracking. The head is soft, featureless and unsticky. It isn't the sort to leave much lace... but actually does a pretty good job in the end.

There isn't much going on in the nose. Maybe a bit of untoasted grain, although that's it. No hoppiness (unfortunately) and no nastiness (fortunately). This one has some work to do on the taste buds or it will be a long 12 ounces.

American Wheat is average in every sense of the word. It's extremely simple beer whose flavor, such as it is, would most likely run away and hide when combined with any sort of food. Maybe that's the whole idea, assuming the MBC brewers are going after the BMC crowd.

Ale yeast is its only saving grace. Specifics are untoasted cereal grains with a light sugary coating and a pleasant fruitiness that doesn't quite taste like banana. I'm feeling a little better about things as the ounces pass, but still can't pull the trigger on a higher taste score.

The mouthfeel feels slightly thin (even for the ABV) and has that 'busy early, lazy late' feel that a lot of overcarbonated beer has. The extremes aren't too extreme, however.

New craft breweries in the state of Iowa are a good thing. To state the obvious, *good* new craft breweries would be an even better thing. It's easy to understand why these guys started things off with an APA and an APWA, but a little more imagination and aggressiveness couldn't hurt.

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Photo of tone77
3.33/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A big shout out to cpolking for providing this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle. Has a cloudy golden color with a 1 inch head. Smell is mild, some citrus and wheat. Taste is tart, lemons, wheat, not overpowering and fairly refreshing. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a pretty good beer.

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Photo of emerge077
2.43/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Into a tulip glass it pours an attractive saturated orange, hazy and opaque in the light. One finger of white foam settles and fades to a mellow wispy skim of the surface. A swirl rekindles the foam quickly.

Odd lemony aroma, leaning towards the antiseptic side of things. Some simple wheaty notes are there too, but the odd medicinal/sterile element just seems slightly off.

Flavor has a bit of the same antiseptic/analgesic Anbesol medicinal weirdness, with an undercurrent of simple wheat. Pretty strange, more likely it's a potential infection setting in. Lemon, wheat, and a fizzy seltzer water feel. Bad medicinal aftertaste. Something just isn't right here, the rest of the glass is going in the garden.

Single from John's Grocery, Iowa City, IA.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of FreshHawk
3/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Hazy light golden color with a small, tight, creamy, frothy, soapy white head. Decent retention that disappears a little quick. Thin, creamy layer of lace.

S - Pretty faint aroma with light wheat being the majority of the aroma. Some citrusy lemon aroma and a bit of yeast.

T - Typical pale wheat flavors. Some light wheat flavors paired with some lemony citrus, and a touch of spiciness. Some yeasty flavors mid-sip. Slightly sweet grainy taste.

M - Light body with about average carbonation. Crisp bite with a pretty clean finish. A bit too thin though.

D - Easy to drink, but it doesn't inspire me to drink more. Just kind of blah in flavor.

Notes: Average pale wheat flavor. Some light wheat flavors with just bits of citrus and spice. Nice for a cool summertime brew, but nothing spectacular. Probably better things you could get.

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Photo of mdwalsh
4/5  rDev +31.6%

Photo of TheQuietMan22
2.68/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Straight pour into a pint glass. At first the color was a slightly hazy, lemonade-like straw. After loosening the slight sedimentation at the bottom of the bottle and pouring it in, the beer slowly clouded but remained the lemonade-like color. Two fingers of thick white head dissipated quickly for a wheat beer to leave a spotted lacing and thick ring around the edge.

Smell: Smells like a watered down wit. There is a light aroma of wheat and yeast, but a lemon citrus aroma dominates. There is also a hint of spice, but I cannot decide if it is coriander or pepper.

Taste: There is a minor wheat presence, which is good, but there is a lot more barley in it. Light lemon citrus is complimented by a little spice and fruit, which might be overripe apple.

Drinkability: It is nothing spectacular, but it is drinkable. It would, though, never be my first choice on a hot summer day.

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Photo of zeff80
2.6/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A - Poured out a cloudy, straw-yellow color with a thin, fizzy, small head of white bubbles. Short-lived and no lace.

S - It smelled of wheat, lemon and grasses.

T - Lemon taste up front. Then an odd fruitiness - like apple but sweeter. Very little wheat flavor.

M - It was crisp, sharp and somewhat dry. A light bodied ale.

D - This was weird. Not a good example of the style.

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Photo of beerwolf77
2.21/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Another beer snagged while in Iowa. Split into tulips.

A: Pale golden yellow. Tiny bit of head. No real lace left behind.

S: Light hint of wheat and a tiny bit of hops. Not a whole lot going on here.

T: Almost no flavor. A touch of acrid bitterness with a faint wheat finish.

M: Light body with a good amount of carbonation.

O: Nothing to drink here. Keep moving.

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Photo of BigRedN
2.55/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Poured from the bottle into a weizen glass. The beer is clear with a bright yellow color. A fluffy white head nearly 2 inches sits atop the liquid. Fades rather quickly to a thin cover on the beer and leaves little patches of lace. Looks kind of like a typical macro lager.

Smell: The aroma from the beer It smells clean for lack of a better word. I get little to nothing on the scent, a slight scent of lemony citrus, but no real scent of wheat or yeast or bread.

Taste: A touch of sweetness on the outset, followed by an odd bitterness on the finish. In the end, I find the taste (or what is supposed to pass for flavor) very lacking. Past the lips, on the tongue, down the throat, this one doesn't have much.

Mouthfeel: Light in body, thin. Very well carbonated, it is lively. Many tiny bubbles dance throught the liquid from the bottom of the glass to the top.

Overall: Just another run of the mill American wheat ale. While this is not my favorite style, this one is not up to par IMO. If I were to present someone a good representative of the style to try, this would be far from it. I guess that is why I was able to buy this at $2.00 for a six on discontinued closeout. I wouldn't want to pay much more than that.

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Photo of birchstick
3.4/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours yellowish with a decent head on it. Nose is lemony and citrusy with some wheat malts. The taste is pretty sweet, with a nice lemony citrus flavors. Creamy mouthfeel that goes down nicely. Not über complex, but delicious and easy drinking. Pretty good for the style.

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Photo of afinepilsner
2.67/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz brown bottle

Madhouse American Wheat was a hazy pale yellow color. It had a fizzy white head that quickly disappeared. The smell was light wheat and a touch of lemon. The taste was light and crisp with and odd, funky sweet flavor coming through towards the finish. It was fairly light bodied with high carbonation. Drinkability was below average. There are definitely better wheat beers out there.

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Photo of dwhitney
1/5  rDev -67.1%

Photo of PintPal
3.62/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into Boulevard Smokestack Tulip

Pours a surprisingly clear light gold color with a huge billowing white head. Lots of sediment had settled on the bottom, so the traditional unfiltered haze didn't develop until late in the pour. Head lasts a long time as expected.

Aroma carried a bright citrusy notes. Lemon notes compliment the grainy wheat that peeks through. Just a slight hint of piney american hops behind the more citrusy varieties giving off grapefruit and lemon notes. Yes I know I repeated myself a lot here.

The taste begins with super smooth wheat malt that quickly leads into a bright floral hop burst. Not a lot of hop bitterness, just a slight touch on the very end before leaving a floral citrus aftertaste. I keep tasting lemon for some reason, and I'm not complaining.

The mouthfeel is pretty light, sliding through the palate with lots of carbonation cleasing for the next sip. Very refreshing light drink, leaves you waiting for another sip.

Overall this was an extremely pleasant refreshing american wheat. Not the most outstanding brew ever, but a very good drink and one I would be happy to order or sip on a hot summer day. A very easy drinking very refreshing beer that I will miss when I'm not in Iowa anymore.

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Photo of DesMoinesMike
3.38/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had a bottle at the Hopspring release party. It's an ok example of the style but there are plenty others that pack a greater punch.

Pours a cloudy mid-brown with moderate foam. The aroma is some wheat with some floral and brown sugar. The taste is a moderate wheaty flavor with a touch of whole-grain and sweet malt. The body seems a bit thin but goes down fairly smooth and leaves a pleasant aftertaste. This is more of a backyard BBQ brew to sit back and enjoy the day with. Not very sophisticated, but fun.

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Photo of siradmiralnelson
3/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 12oz bottle into Pint.

A. 2 finger head. Average retention. Fairly large bubbles. No lacing. Color is a cloudy golden yellow.

S. Citrus, lemon, yeast. A little spiciness. No hop aroma.

T. Taste is pretty average. Some citrus. A bit of a strange bubblegum flavor. Crystal malt. A little sourness. Yeast is one of the stronger flavors. No hop flavor.

M. Light body. Medium/high carbonation. Lingering aftertaste.

D. Reminescent of someones pretty average homebrew. Not sure I would sell this commercially. Not a bad beer, but average at best. Hopefully there are better things to come from Madhouse Brewing Company.

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Photo of columbiankramer
4/5  rDev +31.6%

Photo of CharlieMurphy
3.89/5  rDev +28%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Very common. Can't help but think BMC. straw yellow with a low head but good fizz.

S: Smells like corn, old moist malts just before souring from the mash, pee, salt, honey, wheat, and some rusticness,. I'm craving corn now.

T: The rustic flavors have shifted a bit. Its more or less just a slightly different arrangement and intensity of the flavors in the nose. Actually surprised at how satisfying this is for the style.

M: Just below medium carb. With residuals attributed to a salty aspect. Not bad but a few of these would establish their weight.

O: This one surprised me and was a good substitute for eating my dinner.

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Photo of katan
3.4/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint

A - This beer has some insane carbonation - way too potent. Huge head, had to stop the pour. Is well retained, light white in color. Pours awfully clear, light golden to straw. Amazing there is no yeast suspension in a bottle conditioned beer.

S - Very subdued nose. Light amounts of wheat graininess and some spicy yeast notes. No hopping detected.

T - Starts off with a light malty note, no astringency - just simply sweet. Gets more bitter mid-stream, with some bready yeast notes making an appearance. No hopping detected. Finishes with a more sweet, floral note and some kind of grainy off flavor.

M - Moderate beer body, strong carbonation bite. Very grabbing to the tongue. Finishes clean.

D - Easy drinking wheat - had a few of these while watching the grill. Flavors are not overwhelming. Somewhat filling.

I was hoping for a more flavorful american wheat from one of Iowa's new breweries. I just came away underwhelmed.

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American Wheat from Madhouse Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.04 out of 5 with 20 ratings