Weihenstephaner Pilsner | Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

very good
163 Reviews
no score
Send samples
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

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 163 | Ratings: 588
Photo of bubseymour
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pale golden And clear with nice head and retention. Good carbonation

S- A very nice combination of noble hops malts and bready notes.

T- A very malty and bready pilsner but has a crisp and hoppy finish. Very tasty.

M- nice full bodied and carbonated on toungue.

O- Avery fine pilsner in every regard. Highly recommend for lager and pilsner lovers.

 355 characters

Photo of horshack7
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: It pours a clear golden with a head that is bright white only about an inch tall.

Aroma: Bicuity, light grain notes, twinge of butteriness with a touch of lemon peel.

Taste: Buttery texutre with only a twinge of crispness on the palate. Lemon, bready, bits of grain with wisp of malty sweetness.

Notes: Solid top to bottom very tasty. Cheers.

 357 characters

Photo of cbutova
3.85/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Poured into the World Cup 2010 Weihenstephaner Weizen glass with a clear light golden body. Frothy white head forms and retains well. A small ring remains after all things clear leaving only spotty lace.

S- A fresh cracked malted grain note comes off the top with light fruit, caramel and spicy/floral hops.

T- Light caramel malt, fresh cracked grains, yeast bread and hops. Spicy, floral, herbal and slight citrus notes are taken on from the hops. More fruit flavor here with notes of apple and grapes.

MF- Body has a light overall consistency with a creamy silky feel. A clean bitterness is left on the palate.

A nice balanced pilsner flavor with good fruit and hop notes. Weihenstephaner seems like the Sierra Nevada of Germany.

 738 characters

Photo of BretSikkink
3.82/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy golden color that clears up as the head settles. White foam, good size and stick. Nose is grassy with a good dose of lemongrass hopping. Munich malt mingles with the pale. Flavor is fairly assertive for style and there is a decent finish of malt and hops -that is, actual beer ingredients. Other pilsners take note: this is a German pils with some attitude. Nice citric note in the middle for complexity raises my score a hair. 

 434 characters

Photo of doktorhops
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I thought I had run out of Weihenstephaner's to review but lo and behold "Pilsner" presents itself in my local with a presence that says "Trinken sie mich Dok! Ich bin gutes bier!", and I guess I couldn't resist it's odd pun-loving lederhosen wearing German charms.

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a 500ml Stein glass (the perfect combo!).

A: Pale straw coloured body. Cloudy too (interesting look for a Pilsner). There is a 1 inch white head from the hard pour I did that sticks around for the beer swilling action.

S: Cut grass and fresh hay aromas lay the base for what I suspect is a fine brew. There are also classic yeast sour dough aromas with a smidgen of honey in the back notes.

T: Typical German Pilsner here - all sour bread and bitter hop notes with a beefy grain base. Nothing spectacular and to be honest the Czechs really have the style nailed (they did invent it after all), and German Pilsners to me are really an afterthought when all the Weissbier grains are spent, so who can expect too much from Weihenstephaner when their Weissbiers are already the best? If only the hop variety was a bit more interesting they might be on to something.

M: Similar vein to their Weissbiers; creamy texture with a mid to low carbonation.

D: Meh, Weihenstephaner, meh. I'm marginally disappointed in the world's oldest brewery as their Weissbiers are so damn good and this is so damn average. Maybe I expect too much, maybe not, try it for yourself and see. To me this brew is like a filler beer so they can say "We have a Hefe, a Dunkel, a Krystal, a Heavy, AND a Pilsner"... ??? If you're as good a brewery as Weihenstephaner you may as well attempt to make the best f**ken Pilsner that was ever made, don't settle for 304th best [rant over].

Food match: Would go well with seafood (calamari, crayfish, Atlantic trout or salmon) or grilled beef cuts (rump, t-bone or eye fillets are good)... or if you can't decide "surf and turf" it. Vegetarian option would be pan-fried portobello mushrooms with a mesclun vinaigrette salad.

 2,039 characters

Photo of dansmcd
3.41/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pale and bubbly. A finger of soft, fluffy head. Nice lacing follows.

S - Very subdued in the nose. Grassy, herbal hops.

T - Crisp at the top, lemons and white wine. Clean hops balance with a very light malt presence.

M - Light and highly carbonated. Typical of the syle.

O - Pleasant and drinkable. Nothing wrong with this lager. Well-crafted as you'd expect from the Weihenstaphan brewery.

 398 characters

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.

 557 characters

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.

 672 characters

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

 658 characters

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.

 1,274 characters

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.

 622 characters

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 ....

 424 characters

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.

 520 characters

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.

 1,130 characters

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.

 916 characters

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.

 312 characters

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.

 559 characters

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.

 847 characters

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.

 736 characters

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.

 801 characters

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.

 280 characters

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.

 500 characters

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.

 286 characters

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.

 537 characters

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.

 369 characters

Weihenstephaner Pilsner from Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
3.93 out of 5 based on 588 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.