Terrapin Gamma Ray | Terrapin Beer Company

very good
353 Reviews
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Terrapin Gamma RayTerrapin Gamma Ray

Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company
Georgia, United States

Style: Wheatwine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally Side Project #3 released in 22oz bottles, now the summer seasonal on Terrapin's Monster beer tour and available in 12 oz bottles by the 4 pack.

Added by Georgiabeer on 10-09-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 353 | Ratings: 471
Photo of Strix
4.01/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy straw color with very little head.

Wonderful aroma, smells like a strong hefeweizen, wheat, clove, banana, honey, bubblegum?

Not all of that makes it out in the flavor, but it's reminiscent of a hefeweizen - full of clove and banana. I can definitely taste some honey, though I might not have pinned it down had it not been listed on the bottle. Some alcohol presence, but considering the ABV, it's well masked.

Mouthfeel light and highly carbonated.

This was interesting. My first wheatwine, and it was quite nice. I've been impressed by Terrapin.

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Photo of hwwty4
4.17/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Sebletitje for this one.

Poured a 22oz bomber into my Tripel Karmeliet tulip. This beer pours a hazy honey amber with a nice 2 inch head that quickly rescinded into just a little ring around the glass leaving no hint that it had ever touched the sides of the glass. The aroma has most of the classic Hefe attributes with banana, and clove but also pears, other fruity esters and sweet raw honey come through. The taste is surprisingly dissimilar from a hefe. While there is still a little banana, pears are the dominant fruit flavor with sweet honey being also pretty prevalent. The mouthfeel is a bit light for how viscous looking this beer is. Surprised me a bit. This is a good beer, but a bit on the sweet side for a 22oz'er. Would have really loved to see this in a 12oz bottle because a double deuce is a little too much.

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Photo of SirSketch
4.39/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very cloudy, golden yellow beer with orange hues throughout. Not much head to it. The smell was very much reminiscent of a Belgian brew, with loads of yeasty funkiness to it. Citrus, honey and light grainy aromas to it as well. Some esters try to escape but are hardly noticeable.

Has strong Belgian yeasty and citrus flavors, followed by a huge malty kick that I wasn't expecting. Light banana and clove notes to it as well. Very heavy in body, despite the look and smell. semi dry aftertaste that is very sweet. This beer throws you for a loop, and I loved it!

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Photo of flexabull
3.64/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of tjbartjr, thanks again!

Pours a bright and cloudy gold color, with not much of a head at all. Not all that appealing to look at.

Aromas are very spicy, boozy, oak like, bright fruits, citrus, almost like oranges.

Taste is very spicy, and boozy. Some oak, kind of sweet from the honey and with crisp green apple flavors. Finish is dry, and hot with a bite from the alcohol.

Mouthfeel is good, pretty full up front with a crisp and sharp finish.

Drinkability is ok. This beer is kind of all over the place. Some sips I like it, others... not so much. This beer needs some refining, and probably could use some time in the cellar. Decent effort, but kind of flawed.

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Photo of Zeckster
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

So I've been looking for a wheatwine since BA did that report a couple months back. Just found it at Gator Bev in Gainesville, FL.

Anyway to the review.

Poured into a wide mouth stemmed wine glass. It gave off a nice hint of whitish head before reducing. The color was hazy and I feel reflected its taste very well. I had it cold and it tasted like a sweet wheat without the 11% alcohol feel. Maybe if I let it warm to room temp the alcohol would have become pronounced, but that didn't happen.

It felt a little zingy in the mouth. Maybe a result of the carbonation.

I would most certainly have another go at this beer. Also need to start looking for more of its ilk.

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Photo of IPAcraig
4.47/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Electric hazy yellow, with a hint of orange. Could use a bit more head.

I love a hefewizen with a big bana presence. This has more banana aroma and flavor than any hefe I have ever had. It has a bit of Belgian Tripel fruit as well.

Boozy, fruity, and packed with banana of course. A bit hot. A lot going on here.

Creamy and rich.

I am going back for seconds if there are still some in Nashville. Unique and tasty.

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Photo of cjgator3
4.11/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle

A- Pours an orangish amber color with a thin and fizzy off-white head that quickly disappears.

S- The aroma is sweet candied sugar, honey and bananas and some fruity esters as well. The nose is pretty appealing, can't wait for the taste.

T- The taste like the aroma is sweet, but I do not find it to be too overwhelmingly sweet. The banana flavors that appear in the nose are also prevalent in the taste. The finish is a little warm in the finish, but it is not as hot as I would have guessed considering the 11%.

M- The mouthfeel is a little thinner than I expected with a moderate amount of carbonation.

D- The alcohol is definitely there, but I think this beer does a pretty job at masking it. Gamma Ray is dangerously drinkable considering its high ABV.

Overall, Gamma Ray is another great brew from Terrapin. I am a huge fan of the Side Project series and look forward to the next on. I am impressed with this offering and can't wait to see how it ages. highly Recommended!

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Photo of PhillyStyle
2.94/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from a 22oz bottle:

This was my first Wheatwine, so I was a little unsure of what to expect and I may try again, just to make sure that it was not just that bottle, but...

A: The beer gave off a good appearance, looked like apple juice but with a slight haze to it. I could not get much more than a one finger head and it dissipated very quickly. The head was an off-whitish color, but not much carbonation.

S: The aroma was good, with it mostly being wheat, with some sweetness from the honey and the alcohol was present.

T: Again, not really know what to expect, but the taste was almost like a double hefe, very strong wheat flavor with some sweetness from the honey and some alcohol, which got stronger as the beer got a little warmer. It may have been a little too sweet.

M/D: This is where this beer really fell down, it was way under carbonated and it felt like I was drinking something from concentrate that did not have the right amount of water added. Again, little to no carbonation, so it made the beer feel very heavy and thick. The drinkability suffered due to above mouthfeel characteristics. I did finish the 22oz but it did take some time.

I may give this another shot simply because this was my first Wheatwine and I really like the Terrapin Beer Company.

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Photo of bhalter8
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a glass goblet and noticed a nice cloudy golden color with a thin white head. The smell is rather light, maybe a honey hint at most. I feel the appearance and smell defy the taste of this beer. This beer does not overwhelm in either of those categories, but I personally, love the taste. The taste of clove and barely bite are nicely balanced by the wheat and honey additions. The combination is absolutely delicious, and makes for the most drinkable 11% ABV beer I can think of. I seem to be in the minority with this opinion, but I really feel this beer is unique, but tasty.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
3.73/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - nice golden yellow, slight haze, with a decent just off white head that quickly fades to a ring
S - light wheat, honey and medicinal alcohol
T - nice honey and sweet wheat notes with a hint of clove and more alcohol warmth
M - medium light bodied, light to medium carbonation, warming but almost too light in body
D - an interesting beer, one lacking in depth of body for what I'd like for this style.

nice in many ways, a bit light in body and hot. I'll cellar this for a while and see if the heat dies down.

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Photo of oberon
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an oversized wine glas a hazy auburn color with a well formed one finger white head that left patchy lace behind as it settled.A complex mix of phenolic spice and smoke to go along with notes of raisin and sweet alcohol,alomost like a spiced rum.Quite sweet on the palate,the mass quantity of honey shows itself, it gets a bit sticky after awhile, brown sugar and raisin mixed with stinging alcohol hits with a leather-like finish.Silky smooth mouthfeel to this beer but the alcohol can get to ya no doubt,still a good nitecap brew.

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Photo of GatorBeerNerd
3.12/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle bought for me by a friend from Green's poured into a Terrapin snifter

A: Pours a nice orangish brown color. There was no head to speak of at all and no lacing at all. The color is nice, but I would like at least a bit of head and lace.

S: A very sweet aroma. A bit of the honey does come through along with a bit of banana. Quite a bit of booze aroma comes through which is no surprise with the ABV. It has an interesting aroma, but nothing really stands out for me.

T: The taste is quite sweet as expected by the aroma. I like the initial sweet honey flavor, I do not even mind the large alcohol kick, but the after taste does not agree with me. It reminds me of after taste of a thick cough syrup or medicine.

M: A very thick syrupy mouthfeel. There is quite a bit of alcohol burn with this one.

D: Not very drinkable in general, but based on the style, I gave it an average score.

I tend to really like Terrapin's lineup. In fact, I would easily claim they are the best of the local microbreweries by far. This one just didn't do it for me. Its not terrible, but I wish I had only got one bottle instead of two.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is, I believe, my first wheatwine - and me likes!

Aroma is strong and wheaty and has the "rubbery" undertone I associate with good wheat beers; there is just a whisper of sweetness, probably from the honey. Flavor is crisp and smooth, strongly wheaty with more than a hint of sweetness and just a teeny bit of hop bite. Texture is pleasingly smooth, and aftertaste is satisfying. Too bad this is a one-time-only release.

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Photo of wescj
4.24/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a hazy, golden amnber. Looks thick coming out of the bottle. Starts off with a half inch of white head which goes to nothing pretty quickly. Only a small ring around the glass which leaves light lace.

Smell of honey hits the nose first, followed by sweet, syrupy candy and bananas.

Taste works with the smell. Sweet and banana flavors. Very warming. Almost like a mix between hefes and belgians. Something funky in the aftertaste.

Moouthfeel is syrupy and sticky. Stays on the tongue for a while.

Drinkable enough. Wouldn't want more than one bomber, though.

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Photo of CrellMoset
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of edelweiss - thanks!!! Poured, appropriately enough, into a 22 oz. Terrapin snifter.

Appearance: A hazy golden, orange-amber colored beer with a fluffy, white head with average retention that fades into a thin sheen of foam and a ring of sticky lace. Lacing is actually fairly attractive on this one, at least initially. Looks very similar to an amped-up hefeweizen - slightly more hazy, slightly stickier lacing (due to the wheat proteins, I'd assume).

Aroma: Sweet - the honey really comes through here. It's really complex, at least in that dimension, but overall, dominated by the traditional hefeweizen notes, if that makes sense. You get a lot of cloves and white pepper, banana, honey, faint yeasty earthiness, and other malty notes. Oy.

Taste: The addition of honey here was really genius, because I imagine any beer that tasted like this - largely, like a traditional hefeweizen - but with an 11% abv would be overwhelmingly boozy. But the sweetness really cuts a lot of that out. The spiciness here is INTENSE, and I don't know if it's clove-like, from the yeast, or spicy, from the alcohol, or some combination of both. Either way, that's the one thing that knocks this one down a peg or two. It tastes like an amped up hefe, with lots of extra simple sweetness. To recap, since I just realized I didn't really discuss what this beer tastes like, you get a lot of powdery wheat, tons of simple sweetness, a nice chewy, full body, lots of spice, bananas, a few other light, spicy, fruity esters, and a faint hint of alcohol ... though nowhere near the 11% billed.

Mouthfeel: Pretty thick, with tons of unfermented sugars, residual sweetness, a mild amount of prickly carbonation (or is that yeasty spiciness? alcohol heat? I don't know!).

Drinkability: Doesn't taste like 11%. Not by any stretch. Though I can "feel" it. This is a damn good beer, though, tastes like an imperial hefe in every possible way. I first tried this at the WBF in Durham, NC. My review notes for that essentially read, for every BA review category, "Tastes like an imperial hefe," "Tastes like an imperial hefe," "Tastes like an imperial hefe." Turns out that review was spot on. This is a good beer, w/ tons of spice, tons of alcohol, and tons of wheat, hefe character. Give this one a try.

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Photo of rajendra82
4.27/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I chose a half liter Weizen glass to pour this into, and it looked appropriate partially, as the body was pale gold in color, but there was no haze, and the typical Weizen head was totally absent. The smell was pretty spot on though, with bananas, cloves, and a touch of pear. This started off as a typical wheat beer, with the fruity and sweet bits playing on the tongue up front, then mid palette the gloves came off, and a snappy bitterness and some white pepper and cardamom like spiciness showed up. The finish was warm and boozy. Quite light and slippery on the tongue, so I suspect the honey fermentation resulted in most of the alcoholic strength. Quite a unique and pleasant ride this Wheatwine turned out to be. Wonder if this would age well?

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Photo of Godot
4.47/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was really excited to see this at my liquor store as they haven't had great luck bringing in any of the one-offs from Terrapin in the past. Hopefully this is a sign of things to come. The beer poured a gorgeous ruby straw color with a white head that disappeared almost immediately. The smell is ripe bananas and floral honey. The honey smell definitely gives some depth to nose. The taste is fruity and sweet with a little bite of medicinal herb flavor which adds some complexity. Its a rich beer with honey sweetness which drops the drinkability a bit, but its definitely one of a kind and a beer I look forward to trying again. Keep up the good work Terrapin.

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Photo of TasteTester
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this bottle as an extra from a great trader in Athens, Ga.

A-Light copper/amber color, almost looks like a very light pinkish. No head on the pour and no lacing to speak of.

S-Bananas and candy. Alcohol is very present.

T-Tart bananas, candy sugars, good alcohol bite. Warm and soothing.

M-Slightly sticky and the warmth stays around after swallowing.

D-Maybe 2. Bombers of this may get you bombed.

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Photo of shivtim
4.07/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Shared a bottle of this at Twain's ($12 a bottle).
Pours out a very hazy orange with a tiny head that instantly fades. Nose is dense honey and wheat, with Belgian qualities. Taste is deep intense honey, with tangy grapefruit, a wonderful sweet/sour balance with spicy white pepper and fresh bread mixed in. Alcohol taste is completely absent. Mouthfeel is quality. Drinkability depends on how you handle that ABV. Best side project yet.

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Photo of daryk77
4.6/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

220z. bottle

Beer pours easy, not too much head with a deep orange color. settles nicely, leaving a white ring of lace around the glass.

Lets talk about the smell, great stuff here, big banana smell with sweetness, very faint hops if perceptible at all

Taste is exceptional, sweet and banana up front but smooth an warming on the way down, great transition. This resembles an incredibly well crafted tripel.

Mooouth feel is great, exactly where it should be. Thick form the malt but the abv. is subtle adding to the overall body.

drinkability is OUT OF CONTROL. It feels like a sessionable 11% abv. beer which is waaaay too dangerous. So good.

For god's sake get your hands on this beer via trading or whatever it takes, you will thank yourself and so will you tastebuds. At $5.99 bottle it's a steal.

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Photo of chaz410
4.44/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

All I have to say is thank you, specifically Dustin for letting me try this phenominal beer!

I loved this beer. My second favorite beer from Terrapin next to the monster.

The nose on this beer is basically the combination of a wheat based beer, a belgian dubble, and fruity notes.

The taste is really an amplified version of the smell, it's basically like drinking a combination of a high quality banana based wheat beer with a dubble belgian with zings of fruit such as dark grapes.

I loved it, get it, you'll thank me, and terrapin

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Photo of jdubjacket
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22-ounce bottle into a pint glass. Pours a murky golden color with not much of a head. Smell is very sweet with alot of cloves. Taste is sweeter than the taste. The honey is very pronounced in the taste with wheat, cloves, and a bready taste. Moderate, fluffy carbonation in the mouth. ABV is very well-masked in this one. Good brew from Terrapin.

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Photo of MSchae1017
4.14/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer was tasted from the bomber in my 22oz Terrapin snifter.

The beer pours a hazy deep orange with a frothy off white head that dissipates quickly leaving no lace. The aroma is intensely sweet with aromas of honey, banana and clove. The flavor is also intensely sweet with from the honey. Additionally there is the flavor of bananas, cloves, spices, and caramel. The mouthfeel is full bodied with medium carbonation. Overall, a decent beer. Very sweet, might have been better to share with someone else. But overall I like that they are trying something new.

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Photo of ruckzuck
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Woo #3. Out of my Duvel tulip, as I let a friend use my Terrapin snifter last night and haven't washed it

A - pours an incredibly hazy golden amber body with a thin film of white head. The initial head was quite small before subsiding to that

S - tons of honey fills the nostrils while aromas of wheat, banana, clove, and peppery spices show up along with some bready malt. This beer has a powerful aroma, you can totally smell it while it sits on the table next to you

T - again, the honey really jumps out. As I roll around the palate the banana starts to come out as well. Swallowing reveals the rest of the nose as listed above, and it's actually pretty awesome. This is really complex; I quite like it

M - medium bodied and incredibly creamy. Goes down very smoothly

D - well, this may have just topped Hop Shortage as my favorite Side Project so far. Terrapin has done something pretty awesome here, and I'm glad I bought multiples while at Green's. 11% ABV? Really!? You really can't tell from the nose or the taste, and this beer drinks quite well. I will definitely enjoy the rest of my stash of this, and I might pick up some more if I can. Highly recommended, and I can't wait to see what Terrapin comes up with next

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Photo of ATLbeerDog
3.79/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a 22oz bottle - Pours a cloudy pale yellow/orange. Not the prettiest beer to look at. No carbonation, no lacing . Smells of wheat, honey, and light malt. First sip is creamy with spices and honey complimenting the wheat. Tons of complexity here. There is a lot going on, but the honey really dominates. The 11% ABV is super well hidden.

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Terrapin Gamma Ray from Terrapin Beer Company
3.77 out of 5 based on 471 ratings.
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