Friar's Belgian-Style White Ale | Sherwood Forest Brewers Ltd.

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Friar's Belgian-Style White AleFriar's Belgian-Style White Ale
39 Ratings
Friar's Belgian-Style White AleFriar's Belgian-Style White Ale

Brewed by:
Sherwood Forest Brewers Ltd.
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Belgian Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): not listed

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TheManiacalOne on 09-07-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 39 |  Reviews: 36
Photo of BlackBeerPirate
2.5/5  rDev -29.4%

Photo of gcotts
3/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev +13%

Photo of TMoney2591
3.47/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Chicago Bears shaker pint glass.

Random single happened-upon at my local Binny's. Worth a shot, thought I. It pours a mostly clear golden straw topped by a half-finger of light off-white foam. Plenty o' floaties hangin' 'round in here. The nose comprises lemon zest, wheat, cardamom, and sweet caramel. The taste really hammers home the lemon and cardamom, with a touch of rye bread, nutmeg, and light biscuit writhing in the background. It's interestingly good to me... The body is a rather light medium, with a moderate carbonation and a kinda grainy feel. Overall, an okay wit, more like a Belgian-inspired radler than a wit, frankly. It's not the paragon of the style, but it's surprisingly enjoyable.

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Photo of WanderingFool
3.35/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Friar's Belgian-Style White pours a hazy honey yellow with a small, fizzy white head on top. The foam disappears quickly leaving only a few spots of lace behind.

The aroma is spicy with notes of clove, lemon grass and orange peel. A little bit of bready yeast in there too.

Each sip of this light to medium boded beer is slick on the palate with a light carbonated snap at the tip of the tongue. The flavor is sweet and spicy. Bubblegum, banana, wheat, clove and lemon grass are all present. It finishes slightly tart with a lingering flavor of banana and clove.

This is an easy drinking beer that's not overpowered by spices. A good beer to introduce someone to Belgian styles.

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Photo of jzeilinger
3/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours a clear golden yellow color with moderate carbonation, and a thin white lacing, minimal head.

S - Grainy, earthy, very light lemon and coriander zest with a mild grass/compost and hemp aroma. (???)

T - Mimics the nose. Overall, slight herbal zest and grainy. The other flavors fall in behind it in one of the other two categories.

M - Heavier side of light body and leaves an earthy grit in the mouth. The aftertaste is pronounced herbal.

O - Just not doing it for me.

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Photo of alkemy
3.17/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Out of a 12 ounce bottle and into a pint glass…

A- Slightly hazy, somewhat deep straw yellow in color. Two fingers of fluffy white head didn’t really stick around long for me. Little to no lacing.

S- A combination of buttery banana and clove dominate. There’s also yeasty bread and a slight citric note.

T- Tastes much the same as it smells. Clove is not as powerful here, but the citrus is quite noticeable. Spicy banana bread comes in as well. There is a bit of bitterness in the finish also.

M- It’s light bodied and fairly creamy on the tongue. Pretty light and crisp feeling.

DB- Not super for the style. I typically like these to be lighter and hazier with yeast. Drinks easy enough, but I won’t go seeking this one out again.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.35/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours three-finger white head that fades slowly and leaving some lace. Hazy pale amber color, some yeast left in bottle. Light-medium carbonation and light-medium bodied. Yeasty nose. Flavor is yeast and light semi-sweet lemon. $2.15 for a 12 oz bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma.

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Photo of cbutova
3.82/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pale, hazy straw yellow with a fizzy white head that forms to a minimal size. Frothy ring stays around leaving some spots of lace.

S- Heavy on the clove, fig, raisin and spice. A bread aspect behind this with banana, bubble gum. Dominated by yeast as I see often with the style. Some toasty nuts here.

T- Once again heavy yeast notes of raisin, clove, banana, fig and spice. Banana is a bit more subdued and more fruit comes in the way of lemon/citrus. Some floral hops.

MF- Creamy light body with high carbonation stinging the palate. Very foamy and light.

DB- A pretty good witbier. Nothing really jumps out to take away from the balance. Drinks smoothly and easily.

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Photo of matjack85
4.01/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

All the beers from this brewery follow a Robin Hood theme on their labels. This one features Friar Tuck enjoying his witbier. $1.49 for a single 12oz brown bottle at the Binny's in Plainfield, IL. A March date is notched out on the side of the label, but no clue as to whether it is a born on date as in March of '10, or if it's a best consumed by date as in March of '11.

The beer pours a cloudy orange color with very little head, very short-lived retention, and very little lace.

The beer had a nice fruity pineapple/orange smell along with a hefty dose of coriander spice.

The beer has a touch of sweet wheat flavor and lots of orange/pineapple fruit flavor, but what it is really loaded up with is coriander spice. Just a touch of herbal hop bitterness in the finish.

Light, crisp, and refreshing mouthfeel with plenty of carbonation.

Very drinkable with no alcohol flavor, although you'll have to like the flavor of coriander spice to enjoy this one.

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Photo of Rayek
3.6/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Weizen glass.

A: Very cloudy straw color, with mild carbonation. The rocky off-white head starts strong, but rapidly settles to a collar of foam. Leaves bits of lace.

S: Coriander, lemon, orange zest and biscuit aromas, are all present. The coriander is the most prevalent

T: The flavors of match the nose well with a combination of dry biscuits, coriander and lemon. Finishes tart and dry.

M: The grainy body has just about the right level of carbonation for this style.

D: This is a nice, thirst quenching Wit. It doesn't really stand out from the crowd, but I'm glad I grabbed it.

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Photo of zeff80
3.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a cloudy, orange color with a very small, off-white head of thin foam. The head was short-lived and left little to no lacing.

S - It smelled of coriander, yeast and orange peel.

T - It had a spicy, yeasty bite with some sweet wheat flavors.

M - It was crisp, sharp and very smooth. A light bodied ale with a dry finish.

D - This was a surprising good brew considering how slowly it has been moving off the shelves here.

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Photo of BennyL1
3.87/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle with a freshness date of Jan '11

A - The beer pours a cloudy straw color with a small, lasting head. Some lacing along the glass.

S - Coriander, coriander, and more coriander. The orange is also present along with a small wheat note.

T - Tastes like it smells. Sweet orange and coriander along with wheat up front. The brew didn't have much bitterness but it wasn't overly sweet either, very good balance.

M - Light but in a good way. What you would expect from a good witbier.

D - Super drinkable. A six pack wouldn't last very long at all with a thirsty drinker.

Overall a very solid beer from the local Sherwood Forest brewery. This beer definitely wants to make me try more of their brews.

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Photo of hustlesworth
3.28/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A- hazy golden yellow amber topped by a fizzy, leathery skinned white head that recedes to a thin disk a little quicker than it should. thankfully, some nice splotches of lace adhere to the glass.

S- the aroma is big on coriander, huge on coriander as a matter of fact, with very few other aromas perceptible. Some hints of orange are in there, but they are along the same bandwidth as the citrusy coriander aromas and the two become nearly indistinguishable. thick volatile coriander compounds are felt heavily in the nostrils. too. much. spice.

T- the taste of orange peel definitely comes through, seeming like navel or sweet valencia as opposed to bitter curacao. juicy fresh orange flavor is nice, but coriander still dominates and fills up the sinuses in such a way that discerning other flavors requires a shovel and an archaeological sifter. there's some grassy hop flavor, very little bitterness (good), and decent pale malt and wheat sweetness. finishes with a brut sweetness but not quite dry, with still plenty of coriander. the fashion that the orange peel was used here is what bumped the score up from average to good, but there's still a very hard line between this 4 and a 4.5.

MF- lacking that wheaty softness that i'm looking for, this one starts out plush but quickly goes to thinly juicy as soon as carbonation gets a foothold. that would be fine if the bubbles lasted-- they are prickly and tight but disappear as quick as they came on, leaving the brew flat, thin, and unsatisfying.

D- this dude has alot of ups and downs. the friar could be an excellent example of wit with just a few minor tweaks. the first being carbonation and perhaps grain content, and the second being not so damn much coriander. with these ideals in mind, it's really not that bad but could be far better.

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Photo of puboflyons
2.95/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle with an expiration date of Oct. 2010. Sampled on August 2, 2010. It has the expected cloudy, pale yellow pour one comes to expect from a Belgian style white ale. There is about a quarter inch of long-lasting, silky white head. The aroma is alive with wheat, yeast, malts, and clove. I liked the look and the aroma but the taste and body were more of a disappointment. Not so much the taste as it had a good Belgian style wheatiness to it but the body was extremely thin and almost watery. I was looking for more in the way of the mouthfeel.

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Photo of Manoftyr
4.27/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Appearence-Pours a straw yellow into the glass, about a half finger of head rises and recedes leaving no real lace and a small ring at the top.

Aroma-Smells of the usual Belgian wit ale with coriander, citric zest and other assorted flowery spices. It smells appealing.

Taste-Taste follows the aroma, this beer is all about the top spice flavors blanketed on a pleasantly light backbone of wheat. Refreshing.

Mouthfeel-Par the course for the style, maybe a a little watery thin but nothing that really impacts the drinking, besides, it's a wit, it's not supposed to feel heavy.

Drinkability-Super quaff-able, a six pack could go in minutes amongst two thirsty drinkers.

Notes-This is one seriously underrated Wit ale, but it seems like a lot of the more negative reviews are from one or two years go; maybe the brewery changed the recipe between now and then? At any rate, this is a damn good American craft Wit Ale.

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Photo of StaveHooks
3.31/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a cloudy orange. Half inch head goes away about halfway through. Some lacing going on.

S - Grain, musty clove, roasted corn, muted tart citrus, sweet Belgium yeast.

T - Coarse wheat, Belgian yeast, white pepper, spicy citrus, harsh florals. Spicy clove aftertaste.

The nose on this one didn't impress but the complexity of flavors made up for it. Lots of flavors going on with this beer. A little rough around the edges but a good wit if your looking for some spice. Good mouthfeel for the style.

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Photo of damndirtyape
3.43/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Single bottle (no date despite having a laser stamp that was halfway removed and a best-by mark on the side of the label that had nothing on it - sloppy quality control) poured into a tulip.

Appearance: The yeast in the bottom of the glass did not carry over on the pour (makes me think this was on the shelf for awhile), which led to a clear yellow-amber-gold color, with lots of carbonation bubbling up and a very persistent white foam. The foam was almost self-replenishing when drinking it down. Chunks of lacing here and there.
Poured again into a shaker pint - rotating the bottle a lot to get the yeast in. This time the beer is a cloudy yellow-amber gold. The head is still white, but the lacing is greatly diminished.

Smell: Musty - faint coriander smell. I'm not getting the love here.
Upon pouring again with the yeast coming over in the pour, the smells are stronger - the mustiness is reduced and the coriander is stronger. Some faint fruit/banana smells as well - definitely better with the yeast.

Taste: Earthy with a hint of citrus, and a a hint of sour pucker finish. I wonder how this would have been if the yeast had made it through.
With the yeast coming along in the 2nd pour - the earthiness is more grain-like (wheat), and there is more of yeast flavor combined with the hint of citrus. The sour finish is mostly gone.

Mouthfeel: Plenty of carbonation which cleans the palate and leaves a crisp finish in the mouth.
Carbonation is diminished with the yeast coming over and the finish is not as crisp.

Drinkability: No...I'm not enjoying this. I will try again and see if I can get the yeast to come through. Went okay with a meal (pork BBQ and sweet & sour green beans) but I've had better.
This beer is definitely better when the yeast comes along in the pour, making it a good, but not great beer.

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Photo of emmasdad
3.55/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I had never heard of this brewery when I picked up this bottle today as part of a mixed six pack. Poured a medium straw color, with a nice little bit of billowy white foam. Smells like any other white ale, lemon, Belgian yeast and coriander. Flavors follow along pretty closely, a little bit sweet, with a lot of coriander on the finish.

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Photo of CHickman
3.23/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Came with the Beer of the Month Club.

Pours cloudy gold orange with a foamy off white head that lasts for a while; decent lacing that clings to the glass.

Smells of spices, yeast, coriander, wheat, orange peel, pepper and slight skunky grass odor. Typical Belgian wit beer aroma.

Tastes like it smells, with a mix of yeast, grains, coriander, spices, wheat, orange peel, pepper, lemon, clove, apple, bread, herbs, light caramel, light hops, light sweet malt, faint banana and like the nose there's a slight skunky grass taste, which gives a dry sour pucker at the end. This is a pretty complicated beer that seems to be spicy up front, but isn't very spicy at all and just has bold flavor which reminds me of roasted garlic - the flavor is evident, but it doesn't offend the palate and actually seems to allow a lot of different tastes to peek through but none dominate.

The mouthfeel is creamy with light crisp carbonation, and the overall body is light and crisp which leaves a dry sour pucker.

This beer really has too much going on, as it's all over the place, and while it's not bad it is confusing. Definitely an interesting beer that bombards your tastebuds, but I'm not sure I could have more than 1 or 2 in a sitting. It was decent.

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Photo of crhensel
3.4/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

(Bottle into tulip -- sampled on 2/12/10) Pours a light orange/dark straw color with a very small head that fell very fast. The nose showed hints of the orange and banana one would expect from this style, as well as some pepper and coriander. In the mouth, this was a little on the flat side, but has a nice creamy mouthfeel. The taste is where this disappoints. Seems like someone was a little heavy handed on the spicing here. These dominate the flavor, to the expense of what usually defines the style. Lightening the spice a touch would push this from the mediocre to pretty darn good :)

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Photo of tpd975
3.78/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a hazy pale yellow with a tall creamy white head. Nice retention with tons of sheet lace.

S: Highly spiced, lots of clove and corriander, with some light white pepper.

T: Belgian yeast all over the place. The above mentioned spices with a hint of banana chewing gum. Light citrus as well.

M: Medium in body, nice carbonation.

D: Just okay. Don't really mesh together. Too much spice.

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Photo of RickS95
3.19/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Straw colored, looks like ginger ale in a glass with a cloudy head.

Smells like summer; flowers and spices dominate.

Has somewhat bitter, peppery taste, which is expected given the smell.

A little harsh in the mouth, bitterness comes on strong and stays into the finish.

A decent beer for the warmer months.

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Photo of armock
3.53/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a hazy yellow color with a white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of a lot of spices right away with some citrus

T - Follows the nose lots of spice upfront with some citrus in the finish

M - This beer has a light body with high carbonation to it

D - This would be a very good beer if they cut back a little on the spicing of this beer but its still a decent wit worth a shot if you like wits

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Photo of albern
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Yup, this is a solid B of B- beer. It pours a fairly light colored golden, with ample carbonation. Not tons of head on the beer, just a thin cover of retention, a bit of lace but not much. The nose is herbal, sweet malt, Belgianesque candied sugars, some grassy pricklishness in there too.

The taste is better once things settle. It's very light bodied, very light tasting, sweetish malt, a touch of prickly mouth feel, a touch of florals, some coriander type tastes are coming through too. There is a bit of greenish apple in this beer, but not of the tart variety. This beer is just too light and insubstantial to be taken all that seriously. Its a decent witbier and I'll leave it at that.

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Friar's Belgian-Style White Ale from Sherwood Forest Brewers Ltd.
Beer rating: 3.54 out of 5 with 39 ratings