Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

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Wheat Beer - Kristallweizen
Ranked #1
Ranked #4,770
4.07 | pDev: 9.83%
Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
Notes: In our golden-yellow crystal-clear wheat beer the fresh citrus flavour harmonises very well with spicy banana notes. The fine sparkling gives it a tangy and animated appearance. Throughout summer and winter, it’s a prickling experience. It goes well with fish, seafood, white meat or it can be enjoyed as an aperitif. Brewed according to our centuries-old brewing tradition on the Weihenstephan hill.
Reviews: 906 | Ratings: 2,073 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by the Alström Bros:
Photo of Jason
Jason from Massachusetts

4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 500 ml (16.9 oz) slender brown bottle with info about the beer on the back label as well as the freshness date.

Appearance: Rich shimmering clear golden colour and an effervescent bubby carbonation forms a thin yet unwavering white lace.

Smell: Fruity of bananas and pears with hints of melon and placid clove spice aroma. Trace wheat malt in the nose, cracker-like maltiness.

Taste: Modest body with a crisp solid carbonation that is both slightly sharp in the bite and fluffy in the mouth feel. Quick to the sharpness of the carbonation and spicy clove character gives a tingling sensation which cleans the palate. Fruity flavours lay subdued in the back though some alcoholic esters are obvious. Hops are nearly nonexistent with only a minute trace of flavour towards the end. Wheat malt is straightforward with a nutty and mild acidic twang more towards the finish. Relatively clean after taste with some remaining spicy wheat flavours.

Notes: Drinkable without a doubt with a palate cleansing quality, certainly good drinking and a great lunch time brew. Goes excellent with a cobb salad.

Oct 06, 2002
More User Reviews:
Photo of RoyalT
RoyalT from Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Light yellow in color and clear with strong carbonation and a beautiful head that foamed up nicely and had some good retention.

Smell – Big, fluffy wheat characterizes this nose. The yeast and light fruiting make up the typical Kristal Weizen aroma.

Taste – Wonderful example of the style. The yeast and light fruits, predominantly bananas and peach, make up the delicate yet distinctive taste.

Mouthful – This also was very authentic. IMO, the mouthfeel of a weizen is the most important aspect of the style and that which is most often missed. Here though it is terrific. The body is light yet fluffy in the cheeks. The carbonation dances around the tongue.

Drinkability – Great for in between meals, especially on this Christmas Day. I will definitely buy again.

Update – I love a good Kristal Weizen and this is the only good one that I’ve had in the US. I decided to re-rate it with a 2004 vintage since my original review was in 2003.

This nose is just huge. I don’t remember it being this big. It’s gorgeous, really, and heavy on the yeast which is how I like it. It’s the same at the taste. This is a solid 4.5 overall and by far my favorite example of the style that I’ve had in the US. Nothing else that I’ve sample even comes close.

Dec 25, 2003
Photo of lilbuddha
lilbuddha from Maryland

4.85/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Note: this is my favorite "go to" beer. I've drank literally hundreds of these.

A - Beautiful and easily identifiable. Clean. Head is thick and lasts.

S - A bit weak, my first impression was that this might not have any flavor to it.

T - Ah here it is. For such a clean look, its got this nice little bite carried on the carbonation, kinda drying aftertaste. This is delicious cold, but I really prefer all the Stephaners just barely cool, and on occasion warm. These really just get better as you get about 1/3 through the glass its lost its chill.

M - Carbonation carries the flavor, smooth

D - For some time i drank these in place of light beer and would get quite inebriated... its just too easy to down these, and I've got a somewhat easily bothered stomach.

Going to update this the next time I have one warm.

Dec 08, 2009
Photo of Rijtjeshuis
Rijtjeshuis from Canada (ON)

4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Look (4/5) – Pours a very light straw colour. Head is decent: rose well of a standard pour; soapy texture; very white; and, falls a bit quickly to a cap without any real lacing. Clarity is brilliant. There’s some really nice visible carbonation.

Smell (4/5) – Some decent wheat graininess provides a nice background. The standard weizen yeast flavours of banana and cloves jump out at me right away. The balance between them is ideal; I like a bit more clove than banana. There’s also a note in there that I would describe as a bit sulphur-like, it’s not hugely strong and blends very nicely with the flavours. No hops and no alcohol notes are noticeable.

Taste (4.5/5) – Similar to the nose. The grain bill boasts some nice wheat graininess as well as a bit of very light melanoidins (I’d guess at a Munich pilsner malt with maybe there was some light Vienna/Munich malt included in the grist here). The flavours of banana and cloves are dominant, but they’re milder and lighter than you get in a hefe. No hop flavour, hop bitterness is medium-light. The sulphur-like notes were not very strong on the palate.

Feel (3.5/5) – Medium-light body (the malty sweetness of it gave it a slightly more substantial flavour) and high carbonation. Pretty standard fair for the style, but good.

I’m really much more familiar with hefeweizens than I am with krystalweizens, but this was a great example. Whereas a hefe is somewhat more substantial in both flavour and body due to the suspended yeast, I found that this one was a lot lighter and went down much smoother. This is a great summer brew is served cool enough. I still prefer the hefe that these guys make.

Jul 29, 2012
Photo of drmeto
drmeto from Germany

3.26/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

-pours a clear straw golden with a medium to big,foamy,white head
-medium to high carbonation visible
-banana,white bread,doughy,honey,clove,hay
-banana,white bread,doughy,citrus,fish,salty,grainy,herbal
-medium carbonation
-light to medium body
A pretty big downgrade from their Hefeweizen.
The finish is really weird.Up until then it's decent.
The Kristallweizen from Paulaner, Franziskaner or Maisel are superior to this.

Jul 12, 2017
Photo of Dr_Gonzo
Dr_Gonzo from Kentucky

4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a tall clear pint glass. Pours a clear (as advertised) golden yellow, with a huge head that has great retention and lacing.

Aroma consists of a weissbier. Notes of yeast, dough, banana, light caramel, wheat, bread, mild spice, and mild lemon.

Much like the smell. Taste is very yeasty and wheaty, if not fruity with the notes of those mentioned above. Other notes of peaches, apples, and pears. Feels smooth.

Nov 21, 2018
Photo of Kubishark
Kubishark from Maryland

4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at Max's Tavern in Baltimore. A fairly light yellow golden, "kristal" clear, highly bubbly beautiful beer with a nice foamy head. Smells subtly spicy and fruity and very sweet, with some malty notes as well. This is probably the "cleanest" tasting beer I've ever had, it seems so pure and exact, like everything is exactly in its place and balanced. Like a hefeweizen had a child with a pilsner or a kolsch: it's crisp and malty and slightly hoppy and smooth and sweet. The feel is near perfect for the flavor, it's light and refreshing and goes perfect with a meal. Overall this is one of my favorite beers of all time and proves once again the mastery of Weihenstephaner.

Oct 04, 2016
Photo of droomyster
droomyster from Virginia

3.89/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a a clear gold with a constant upward stream of fine white bubbles and an extremely long lasting, frumpy, pure white head. Aromas are ordinary for the style: bananas, cloves, and yeast. Flavors are good and consistent with the aromas. What stands out about this beer is the mouthfeel. It's difficult to get a sense of its body because it is hypercarbonated to the point that it erupts in plumes of foam the moment that it touches the tongue. The overall effect is of a beautiful looking beer that is interesting to taste but that I wish would stand still for a moment so that my palate could peg it down.

Aug 15, 2010
Photo of IBUnit63
IBUnit63 from Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into that tall NOLA souvenir glass in the back of the cabinet...

Pours a crystal-clear lemon/Pilsener color with a HUGE, thick meringue head. Lots of carbonation.

Excellent banana esters combined with orange zest and coriander and a little vanilla (?) or, more accurately, banana pudding with 'Nilla wafters. Good wheat and yeast electricity with a piney Saaz-ish hop presence.

Wow - I really like this - fuller flavor than expected. The balana and vanilla take a back seat to the excellent wheat presence and electricity. Nice mild pine for hop bitterness.

Clean as hell on the palate - sweetness coats the mouth nicely but hop bitterness qives this a quick finish.

Very drinkable and enjoyable - another excellent effort from Weihenstephaner - almost like a baby







By the way, why is it that I type 5 letters in a row and only 3 show up? Can someone help me with that? C-Bob - figured you'd ask this already...'zup widdat?!

Sep 17, 2008
Photo of berley31
berley31 from Canada (NB)

4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured with a large, white fizzy head that diminished to 1/4-finger after a little time. No real lacing. Body is medium-yellow and brilliantly clear.

S: Very peppery and fruity... the cloves and banana are there, but not to the degree that I've noticed with other Weizen beers.

T: Very refreshing, with moderate spices (especially clove and pepper) and light fruitiness.

M: Light-to-medium bodied, slightly creamy, with very fizzy carbonation.

D: A very-easy drinking beer, and would be excellent on a hot day. Flavors aren't as powerful as with some other weizens I've had, but in a way this works to an advantage of sorts.

Mar 15, 2010
Photo of MadCat
MadCat from New Jersey

4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle.

Appearance: Clear golden yellow color, voluminous white head that takes its time to dissipate, leaves good lacing

Smell: Much cleaner nose than their Hefeweizen, I smell bananas, pears, wheat, and a little light malt.

Taste: Again, a much cleaner taste than the Hefeweizen. Bananas, pears, wheat, light malt, clove, and a touch of nuttiness. I'm assuming the absence of the yeast contributes to the cleaner taste and nose.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body, crisp carbonation, very refreshing. Would make for a good hot summer day beer. Slightly dry finish.

Overall: Very good. I would more likely go for other styles by Weihenstephaner, but I could see myself getting this again.

May 04, 2011
Photo of Ranz
Ranz from Texas

3.5/5  rDev -14%

Sep 12, 2014
Photo of Azpittil57
Azpittil57 from Arizona

4.26/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Dec 22, 2015
Photo of kplooki
kplooki from Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

Dec 03, 2014
Photo of larryi86
larryi86 from Delaware

4.46/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle poured into a weizen glass

A- A clear golden straw with a two finger white head.

S- Bananas, cloves, wheat, some citrus, touch of bubblegum, some earthy spice.

T- Wheat, cloves, bananas, citrus, hints of bubblegum, slightly earthy.

M- Smooth, light to medium body.

O- A very well done and balanced Kristallweizen, this isn’t much different than their Hefeweizen.

Jun 20, 2021
Photo of jarmby1711
jarmby1711 from Australia

3.09/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Another Kristal Weizen that was fantastic to look at .
Clear, it has a head that stayed right to the end and a bead that fizzed all through.
From there I was let down The smell had nothing particular characteristic other than "wheat beer".
The style suggests it should be soft and clean on the palte , this bordered on astringent ,perhaps because there was a clove flavour dominance.
It developed through the palate which made it interesting and drinkable but far more like a hefe weizen than I was expecting

Oct 03, 2005
Photo of PhageLab
PhageLab from Virginia

4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My first Kristalweizen, as well as my first Weihenstephaner brew. Poured into a weizen glass.

A - Careful pouring this one, made for a massive head of pillowy froth. Coloration was pale golden, and it was populated with rising suds. Retention and lacing was immaculate. Awesome presentation.

S - Very sweet banana notes, that's pretty much it, but it does entice and water the palate.

T - Hefe-Light? Interesting, big clove and banana notes, with a body that is both yeasty and peppery. Finish is clean and citrusy. All the flavor of a hefeweizen with a lighter body.

M - Light body, clean finish, nice carbonation level, very nice feel, small hints of spice in the aftertaste.

D - Impressive on every level. Extremely well balanced and rounded. A definite revisit for me, and a big recommendation here.

Feb 11, 2008
Photo of Exiled
Exiled from Texas

4/5  rDev -1.7%

Nov 15, 2011
Photo of Sarunas7
Sarunas7 from Kansas

3/5  rDev -26.3%

Jan 16, 2012
Photo of heerboth
heerboth from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

Nov 26, 2014
Photo of blastoderm55
blastoderm55 from Texas

4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sep 29, 2015
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Marvicsin from California

4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Dec 04, 2016
Photo of mushroomcloud
mushroomcloud from Texas

3.21/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Straw golden color - when they say Kristall they mean Kristall. Clear and clean. Took about 5 minutes to pour. Huge 5" bone white head with excellent retention. Some patchy thick lace. Lots of visible carbonation. Good looking beer.

S - Wheat. Spicy cloves. Powdery bubble gum. Very average overall.

T - Lots of wheat. Yeasty. Spicy white pepper. Bubble gum in finish. Simple. Nose and flavor are almost identical.

M - Thin and light body with mid range carbonation.

D - Drinkability is decent. Very average wheat beer overall.

Feb 18, 2007
Photo of pokesbeerdude
pokesbeerdude from Colorado

4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16.9oz bottle from Supermarket Liquors in Ft. Collins, CO, $3. Into a weizen-esque glass.

A: Crystal clear gold in color with a massive, dense white head, like half the glass worth of head. Excellent retention, almost so much so that I can't pour the rest of the damn beer in the glass. Massive gobs of lacing are left behind.

S: A fair amount of wheat malt, slightly lemon like in profile with a bit of an earthy hop bite. A bit of a German weizen yeast profile but it is a definite second fiddle to the wheat malts. Not bad.

T: Much like the nose leads on, a rich wheat malt profile with a slight bit of lemon like tartness. A touch of earthy hops and a faint hint of bitterness. Just the right amount of clove and banana in here to set it straight as a weizen. Really tasty.

M: Slick in the mouth, carbonation isn't nearly as abrasive as I had anticipated, in fact it is very light and rolls along the tongue. Finish is bone dry and spot on. Really nice.

O: I still enjoy the hefeweizen more, but this is no slouch. Really an enjoyable pint. Definitely will drink this again come summer time.

Feb 26, 2012
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decimator from Canada (ON)

3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle poured into a Weizen glass. ABV marked at 5.4%.

A - Poured a light clear golden yellow with a huge bubbly head. Head reduced to a steady foamy layer. Plenty of active carbonation. Decent lacing.

S - Bananas, bread, some spiciness, hint of citrus.

T - Malts upfront, tangy fruitiness in the middle, mild herbal bitterness in the finish.

M - Medium body, slick, medium carbonation, Crisp finish.

O - The aroma & flavour is more muted than the Hefeweizen. I love wheat beers but filtering it seems to take away some of it's unique characteristics. Despite that, this one still has plenty of flavour and is certainly quite drinkable on a hot summer's day.

Jun 17, 2012
Kristallweissbier from Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 2073 ratings