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Weihenstephaner Pilsner | Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

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Weihenstephaner PilsnerWeihenstephaner Pilsner

Brewed by:
Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

Style: German Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Golden-yellow and bright, with 32 bitter units and quite hoppy compared to most of the other Pilsners our Weihenstephaner Pilsner comes up with a distinctive aroma of hops with a pleasant bitterness. This combination provides a balanced mix and guarantees great enjoyment. Brewed according to our centuries-old brewing tradition on the Weihenstephan hill.

Added by brewdlyhooked13 on 05-23-2005

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Reviews: 157 | Ratings: 573
Photo of aeolianshredhead
3.31/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a nice gold with a frothy white head. Quite effervescent. Looks just the way a German Pilsner should.

S- Light citrus hops. Possibly a touch of grain. Not a whole lot going on.

T- Very clean and well balanced. A little on the meh side though. Mainly its a slight sweetness which falls into a small hop bitterness. Decent.

M- Best aspect of the beer. This one has a great body with some big, but pleasant carbonation which compliments the light palate perfectly.

O- It's a good beer. There is nothing exceptional about it but it's worth a try.

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Photo of karait95
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pale yellow color very translucent with a white big head on top very well formed with small bubbles that dissipates slowly and leaves behind a lot of traces on the glass, the carbonation is constant and forms a permanent layer on top of the beer, the looking is good for the style.

S: Is not to intense, but you can sense the barley malts and some hops not to strong but also present.

T: Mainly barley flavor is present on the mouth, also some hops are part of the tasting and some faint sugar like.

M: It is a refreshing tasting but in general a little too bitter, at some point it is balanced with some bittersweetness, the ending is good a little dry on the back.

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Photo of eduardolinhalis
3.72/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

330ml bottle poured in a weizen glass. Re-reviewed at the Wiehenstephan monastery @ Freining, Munich area, 28th of September, 2012.

A: Pours a pale yellow color with a big white bubbled white head. Medium retention and many many lacings left in the glass

S: Extremely simple smell. Sweet grains, honey and flowery hops. White bread Lager yeasts style

T: Follows the nose. Again, extremely simple. Dominated by sweet malts. Honey. Very crispy and bready. Light pleasant citrus and flowery hops bitterness

M: Smooth light body. Medium to low carbonation. Very drinkable. Nice bitter end

O: Very honest German Pilsener. Weihenstephaner quality. Recommended

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Photo of Domingo
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had this in Freising during my trip in 6/11. Not sure why this doesn't typically make it to the US when it's clearly bottled and exported to other regions.
Pale straw served in a tall 1/2L mug both times I tried it. Not sure why, but they didn't seem to have all of the proper glassware that day. Still, no issues with the beer in the glass. The extra foam made the pour take a bit longer than the usual helles.
Like the other lagers at Weihenstephan, a strong pale bready character permeates this brew. The up-front taste is a slightly sweet white bread note that transitions into a fresh floral (Hallertauer I'd assume) hop note. The hop character isn't as dusty or as perfume-y, but more herbal. Drier than the Hacker-Pschorr pils I had earlier, but not quite as hoppy as the Augustiner. Pretty standard south German pils, although definitely better than some of the others from Munich proper.
The texture is perfect, though. Just the right amount of foam to keep things from being too thin, and it never totally settles out or loses effervescence.
While not going to blow you away, it's a nice refreshing lager with some additional hop character and reduced residual sweetness compared to their helles.
Not my favorite from them by a long shot, but still pretty tasty.

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Photo of nozza
4.31/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The brewery that claims to be the oldest in the world really know how to produce a pilsner!

The beer pours exactly how you would want a pilsner to, a brilliant white creamy head which laces very well and a pale straw colour.

Not a lot of aroma, a slight malty background.

The taste is almost perfectly balanced, both hops and malt flavours are present in perfect harmony and it has a light citrus finish.

Very light, very crisp but still with the creamy nature of the head. Low carbonation helps.

Overall this is fantastic! If you love your pilsners you will love this beer. I could easily see this as a session beer.

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Photo of Daredevil
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Weihenstephaner claims to be the oldest brewery in the world ... fortunately they do not simply rely on that label, but rather do their best producing exceptional brews ...

The Pilsner could be called something like the "invisible brew" (or the like): you may sell, almost no color, no smell and no taste ... but surprisingly the lack of attributes actually works very well and defines a classy Pils of potent pureness ....

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Photo of juju7
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brilliant, old school pils. These days I've been drinking more along the new world pils lines but this is a good reminder of how it's done. Laced very nicely. Nose is soft, subtle and floral. Really pleasant. Brilliantly flavourful without being overpowering or in your face. Like a hot chick walking down the street who knows she's hot but she doesn't acknowledge all the dudes staring at her. A really creamy mouthfeel with moderate bitterness, a long finish and the feeling that you've drunk a beer worth remembering.

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Photo of Stavage
2.86/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a weizen glass, got a pretty nice big creamy white head on top of a pale straw liquid body. Head retention was ok, not much lacing.

Got a grainy straw scent. The spicy saaz hops smell is there, though it didn't hit me that strongly at first. There is a faint sulphuric smell in there which is a tad unpleasant to me.

Grainy malt flavours, a bit of sourness and a spicy sharp bitterness. I'm finding the bitterness dominates, and it is the bitterness of biting into an inedible fruit seed. If the hops character was a little more complex or the malt body a little fuller I probably would have found this far more enjoyable.

Light bodied as expected, carbonation is spot on. The taste is sharp and dry yet something is leaving a slimy film on my palate.

Overall my write up is probably a little harsh after being impressed by other Weihenstephan brews. This isn't a bad German pilsner but their are others which have impressed me far more. I might have enjoyed this more paired with a good steak, or maybe my palate just wasn't in the mood today. I'm willing to give it another go, but I'm not in any rush to do so.

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Photo of dgilks
3.43/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Looks are pretty much spot on for a pils. Straw coloured, good clarity, big, billowing white head with good retention. Could be slightly clearer.

Classic pils aroma. Pils malt, light but noticeable spicy noble hops and some sulphur. Good though the sulphur is possibly a touch high.

Some light malt sweetness plays with moderate bitterness at first. Some low level flowery hop character comes through as well. It doesn't have the crispness expected of the style and the finish could be slightly drier. This batch may be a touch underattenuated for the style.

Just under medium body with lower than average carbonation. I may have accidentally knocked too much carbonation out with my pour but I was fairly gentle. This is a bit disappointing.

Clean and refreshing, this beer has all the hallmarks of a classic pils in terms of flavour and aroma. Unfortunately, it lacks the crisp dryness that makes a pils great.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
2.87/5  rDev -27%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Crystal clear pale gold pour, with a small head.
Grainy and biscuity malt aroma, with some off-putting cardboard notes, but with next to no hops.
Exactly the same flavours, with a harsh unpleasant bitterness.
Carbonation too high, too watery.
Not enjoyable, but at least it wasn't the usual euro skunky lager.

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Photo of ADZA
4.4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a pale see thru honeyish colour that has decent carbonation that leaves a fast vanishing one finger head with average lacing it has nice aromas of hubba bubba grape bubblegum filled noble,grassy hops a very pleasant aroma and the taste is as beautiful as the aroma it has a thin mouthfeel to be expected for the style that is perfectly balanced out with the crisp fresh tastes of noble hops with a soft bubblegum finish,i really like this beer and plan on making it a known face in my collection,in my eyes a well known breweries hidden jewel.

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Photo of Orangevango
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: very pale brilliantly clear golden color with an ample head that sticks around for a bit but eventualy is reduced to a thin white layer of larger bubbles. Carbonation can be seen rising through the beer.

S: More or less a floral and spicy hop aroma, pleasent and unskunked.

T: Sweeter than I expected, A very light hop bitterness. Pleasent, but not captivating by any means.

M: Thin and well carbonated, has a nice tingle on the tongue.

D: Drinkable as hell, I could drink this endlessly without even realizing I was drinking... to be honest, its too drinkable for my tastes, but that is the style's hallmark. Most foods would probably overpower this beer, but It would be interesting to try with some milder flavored things such as a spinach salad or a mild fish with a fresh lemon squeezed on it. A spicy food might also go well with it.

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Photo of TheSarge
4.45/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A less popular beverage produced by this brewery is their pilsner. I didn't imagine they made this style, but it came with my little taster's pack.

Appearance is a good example of the style. A good amount of bright white head, and a golden body with impacible clarity.

Aromas I detect are lemony zest, with a faint grassy character. Also a slight toasty biscuit fragrance is perceptable.

The taste is sharp and to the point. Zero amounts of skunkiness, which plagues some of the more popular German Pilsners. Lemony hops with a vivid malt character.

This brew is very clean and a beautiful example of the style. There is even a slight warming finish, which is odd with only a moderate ABV. This pils deserves your serious attention.

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Photo of laituegonflable
2.44/5  rDev -37.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a pale golden with steady carbonation feeding a nice fluffy head. Dissipates slowly to leave a nice sticky lacing film around the edge. Clear and transparent. A good looking pils.

Nose is very nutty with a fair amount of spicy hoppiness - saaz maybe. A bit of unwelcome yeast aroma but it's not overwhelming. Could use a bit more complexity, needs more hops maybe.

Taste is a bit weak and watery, again with a bit of an unwelcome sticky yeast. A few hops on the front palate. The finish is a bit dry and bitter which is good but the main palate is not tasty enough to impress. It's decent drinking but I'd expect more from Weihenstephaner. Could use more bittering hops and aroma hops, really. Just a bit flavourless and the yeast seeps through too much. Mouthfeel is fizzy and overcarbonated.

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Photo of Macca
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This pours a light golden colour with a good two fingers of head which drops to a minimal covering.

The nose is of grain and grassy notes.

Ok palate, again the grain/ grassy thing.

Medium bodied with a crisp finish.

An ok pils but not as good as I would expect from this lot.

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Photo of dasenebler
3.77/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is kind of a rare find in Berlin, as Weihenstephaner's wheat beers are much more common. Anyway, I was glad to be able to pick it up.

Poured a golden yelllow, really not any different from your run of the mill pils, save a slightly better head and retention thereof.

Tasted nice, a balance of lightness, bitterness and hops, and breadiness. Slightly more distinctive hop flavor than the average pils. Solid overall. Not as smooth in terms of carbonation as I expected, but whatever. Good.

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Photo of thierrynantes
3.7/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer bottle (33cl.), tasted in 2008.

Appearance : light yellow color, with with foam head (not persistent).
Smell : sweet aroma of malts.
Taste and mouthfeel : bitter and intense hop. The bitterness is balanced by the rich malt.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style German pilsener.

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Photo of koolk
3.6/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden straw with a large fluffy white head that persists well.

Has a well balanced nose of grains, citrus and grassier hop notes. Clean and enjoyable.

Palate has simple flavours of light malt and only a slight aftertaste of green hop bitterness. Not overly strong, but is pleasant and has a very crisp and dry finish.

Well balanced, good body and very refreshing.

Not an overly complex beer by any stretch, but this is a top session beer. At the price and size and availability (in Aus at least) it is well worth a look at.

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Photo of wiseguy142
4.27/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this at a Biergarten in Lichtefelde West in Berlin. I think this is by far one of the best and most unique German Pils I've had. It's not as skunky and boring as a lot of the German pils.. nothing like Victory Prima Pils etc so it's a little unorthodox. Significantly sweeter, candylike, but still with a clean pilsner taste that makes you keep wanting to drink it.

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Photo of madvoice
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a rather light golden colour. Very clear. Has a very thick creamy head that lasts quite a while and laces the glass all the way down. Smells very citrusy sweet and malty. Has a very crisp taste with light carbonation. The beer has a nice bite to it before it smooths out. Quite enjoyable.

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Photo of stcules
3.43/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Yellow to greenish. White head, average compactness, with thin bubbles.
Quite decent smell, fresh hop, and a malty background.
A better taste, fresh, clean. Average hopping. Pleasant, drinkable.
Fresh aftertaste, with good hop, herbal, hay-like, and white flowers.
Good pils.

Drink from the tap in Berlin presents the thiny thiny, compact and persistent.
The peculiar characteristic of this beer is the balance and cleaning. Pleasant, elegant and drinkable remarkable way. The votes have been revised accordingly.

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Photo of Cs1987
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Light gold, 3 fingers of head which reduced.

Smell - Strong grains.

Taste - The taste is quite strong and pretty much what you'd expect from a German Pilsner. However, although it is hard to describe, I found there was something a little off about the taste.

Mouthfeel - The weaker parts of the flavour seemed to linger in the aftertaste. Carbonation and texture were both very good, though.

Drinkability - A bit harder going than your average pilsner/lager.

Overall - A little disappointing. Not up to the high standard of every other Weihenstephaner beer I have tried.

2009 EDIT: Okay, many reviews I did in 07/08 were inaccurate and contained idiotic statements due to my lack of beer experience at the time, but this is possibly the most inaccurate of them all. I have now decided this is the best German Pilsener I have tried, thanks to its fantastic balance and lack of flaws. The score has been bumped up from 3.45 to 4.

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Photo of brendan13
3.28/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a 500ml stein with an inch of white head on top of a fairly light yellow beer. Lots of small carbonation bubbles racing to the top. Some sporadic patchy lacing.
S - Some slightly sweet grain & grassy hop notes.
T - Similar to the smell, the hops are a bit more noticeable in the taste - grassy & herbal.
M - Lighter side of medium bodied, medium to high carbonation. Fairly dry finish.
D - A pretty decent pilsener. Tasty & sessionable.

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Photo of Kulrak
3.7/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden straw color with a decent amount of foamy white head that sticks around for a while, but eventually fades to a thin layer. Smells slightly of noble hops with some floral aroma there as well. The taste is clean, with some slightly malty sweetness there, but there's a lot of noble hop flavor and enough bitterness to finish a little bitter. Mouthfeel is light and creamy, very nice. Overall, it's a very drinkable pilsener, wouldn't hesitate to get it again.

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Photo of LittleCreature
3.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - 4.0
Poured 2-3 fingers of thick, foamy white head, which took a long time to reduce to a creamy looking half finger. A very pale straw colour (not unlike many a white wine) with few fine bubbles rising. Leaves a lot of lace.

Smell - 3.5
There was a nasty smell as I opened the bottle, which disappeared almost immediately, leaving very little discernable smell. There is a vague hoppiness and sweetness, and certainly nothing offensive.

Taste - 3.5
Even for a pilsener this is very refreshing. Crisp upfront, with a smooth middle and bitter, dry finish. Tastes of plain crackers, and bitter hops with a little malt sweetness to balance. Highly competent, but nothing mind-blowing.

Mouthfeel - 3.5
Less carbonated than average for a beer of this style, goes down very smoothly and feels quite light in the mouth.

Drinkability - 4.5
Definitely sessionable, especially if you can find it at a good price. If you love your pilseners you will have no trouble drinking this all night.

Interesting that I tried this one day after Pilsner Urquell. PU is definitely the more interesting, tastier pils, but I feel that this is better quality and fresher. Price is on the high side, but so is the quality, so value is average. That said, I've heard that many Weihenstephaner beers are cheaper than soft drink in Germany. All I can say is, lucky bloody Germans!

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Weihenstephaner Pilsner from Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
3.93 out of 5 based on 573 ratings.
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