Weihenstephaner Kristallweissbier | Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

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Weihenstephaner KristallweissbierWeihenstephaner Kristallweissbier
1,906 Ratings
Weihenstephaner KristallweissbierWeihenstephaner Kristallweissbier

Brewed by:
Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan

Style: Kristalweizen

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-30-2001

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Ratings: 1,906 |  Reviews: 839
Photo of chefelf
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This style was recommended to me by a customer at a beer store and I was eager to try it. I selected this brewery since it claims to be the oldest in the world. If they've been making beer for nearly 1,000 years they must be doing something right.

As advertised this was crystal clear with a good amount of tiny champagne-like carbonation coming from the bottom of the glass. Nice, fluffy white head.

Tastes, not surprisingly, like a very nice hefeweizen. I haven't had any other kristalweizens but I would certainly recommend this one to anyone looking to try one for the first time.

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Photo of SWMeyer4141
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I never really knew what a Kristalweizen was. I always see this beer at my local beer store and just pass it up. Apparently a filtered version of a Hefe, May be pretty good...

Poured into a Pint Glass...

Appearance-Clear golden yellow. Carbonation rocketing from the bottom of the glass. Really nice soapy white head that leaves some nice lacing.

Smell-When I first smelt the beer I definitely got some subtle banana and clove. Now It's smelling alot like a pilsner with some spice. Some breadiness as well.

Taste-Big banana up front. Clove, Citrus and some bread also.

Mouthfeel-Crisp, clean, refreshing. Medium bodied with medium to high carbonation.

Overall-I prefer a hefeweizen. However, this was definitely alot less filling and very very easy to drink. This is the only beer I've had of this style, but I can't imagine one being much better.

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Photo of greenmonstah
3.88/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear yellow with two+ fingers of frothy white head. Nice retention, lacing.

S - A lighter aroma than the hefeweizen, but very similar. Banana and clove, but they are mere hints compared to the hefe. A clean grainyness exists as well. Not bad, but I am not floored.

T - More aggressive than the nose, this features the same banana, clove, and yeast flavors, but toned down from a classic hefe. More intense than the nose, and with a clean finish that allows only the bread-yeast flavor to remain. Lingering.

M - Light in body, very refreshing. A bit sharp from the carbonation, which is very forward.

O - Overall a fine beer, but not nearly on the level of some other Weihenstephan beers.

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Photo of plaid75
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ion draft at The Good Life, Massapequa Park, NY.

Poured a dark straw hue with a half finger white cap.

The smell featured light esters and a touch of sweetness.

The taste was dominated by yeast esters with some wheat chew and a sloppy sweetness.

The mouthfeel was full and the sweetness left a heavy sensation.

Overall a decently tasty ale. The sweetness was a bit offsetting.

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Photo of rvdoorn
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: the beer pours a clear yellow-golden color with a huge fluffy head.
Smell: Very fruity, apple, banana, clove, lemon and wheat
Taste: Wheat and fruity flavor, citrus, mango and blackcurrant. Light bitter-dry finish
Mouthfeel: Medium body, medium carbonation.
Overall: Nice brew, would drink this one again. Bit more bitter than most in the style

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Photo of TheQuietMan22
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured into a half-liter weizen glass. The color is a clean and clear — very filtered — pale gold. Three fingers of thick, fluffy head dissipated very slowly to create a billowy cap and eventually a half-finger lacing. There is no yeast at the bottom to give it a meringue-like topping, though.

Smell: The aroma is crisper, sweeter, and not as wheaty as that of its unfiltered brother, but it exhibits many of the same characteristics. The apple is much more dominant than the usual ripe banana, and there are also hints of lemon, orange, clove, and bubblegum.

Taste: It mirrors the smell for the most part: dominant apple followed by ripe banana, orange, lemon, clove, and bubblegum. There is also, surprisingly, a bite of ground pepper spice.

Drinkability: Very good stuff. Having never had kristalweizen before, color this hefeweizen lover impressed.

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Photo of PeprSprYoFace
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my Weihenstephan Weizen glass. Pours a clear golden color with lots of bubbles. The white head was very thick at first but dissapated to a thin one. Nice lacing.

Aroma is that of a good German pils mixed with a bit of cloves and banana and bubblegum from a German hefe. Little bit of wheat.

Taste is good. Same as above. German pils and hefe mixed. Smooth and refreshing.

Mouthfeel is a bit too high carb. Otherwise it's crisp and refreshing.

Overall a solid beer. Good for if you want. A bit of that hefe taste but a bit more refreshing for the hot days.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear light yellow with a huge 3 inch stark white head that fades to a small puffy cap. Nice rings of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smells of wheat, spices, and slight banana. Taste is of wheat, spices, and a subtle banana flavor. There is a nice spice aftertaste with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and clean mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer from the world's oldest brewery.

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Photo of soulgrowl
4.27/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Perfectly clear, a delicate pale yellow with a thin, white head. Huge punch of banana pancakes leads the aroma, with some solvent notes, a twist of lemon, cinnamon, and clove in tow. Judging from the smell it would be equally at home on the Christmas dinner table as it would be on a beach in the South Pacific. The flavor matches the aroma's powerful banana and clove profile, and adds to it a note of refreshing pineapple, making this at once tropical and Germanic. Smooth and lush with a full, fresh bread finish; bitterness is low, but it is balanced by good attenuation, spice, and a faint, fruity tartness. Very nice - full flavored like a hefe, crisp like a kölsch.

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Photo of rfgetz
4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clean golden yellow color with cap of frothy white bubbles. Scent is Fantastic and best described as a blend of white bread and mineral waters - not terribly exciting to read I'm sure but great none the less. Taste mimics scent. Fresh yeasty white bread, light hints of white pepper, clove, mineral water and banana. Lighter side of medium bodied, light creaminess and good carbonation. Very nice presentation of style - enjoy how the filtration moderates the yeast and allows notes of grain and water to stand out.

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Photo of Retsinis
3.68/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My wife and I had been buying the Hefe from this brewery as of late, and so she grabbed this one last night and we shared the bottle.

A: Poured from the bottle into a small brandy snifter. The beer pours a clear golden yellow, with a slight copper amber hue. Fizzy white head rose about two thirds of an inch, then settled down to about a half inch that retained throughout.

S: Scents of mild clove, slight banana, and earthy mineral water. Also a hint of bread in there too.

T: Mirrors the nose, but very lackluster in the sweet malt area. Pilsner malt, kiss of citrus, mild yeast esters.

M: Light and thin, high carbonation.

O: Enjoyable, but a little less satisfaction drinking this one in contrast to the Hefe for me. While it has the mineral quality, and balance, it lacks as much clove, and malt body of the Hefe. Likely it is just the style that is not as enjoyable to me, though I rarely see Kristalweizen's on the shelf either, and this being likely the epitome of the style, may just not be for me personally.

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Photo of ccrida
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On draught served in a large mug (.75L?), Weihenstephaner Kristallweissbier is a clear gold with a small white head leaving scattered, foamy lace.

Smell is fairly estery, nice banana note, some graininess as well. Always a sucker for Weihenstephaner's yeast.

Taste is similar, more clove then banana esters on the palate, nice little spiciness complemented by the wheat, on the clean side, a bit toned down compared to a hefe.

Mouthfeel is on the crisp side, medium light bodied.

Drinkability is high. A tasty summer quaffer, the dialed back esters crank the sessionability up a notch regarding palate fatigue and quenchability.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep golden straw color with a huge fluffy white head that sticks itself to most of the glass. Endless carb. streams come from the bottom of the glass. Smells of clove and spicy wheat malt along with hints of sweet malt and banana. Taste is light and refreshing with lots of clove and spicy wheat malt. Lemon, sweet bready malt and banana play a supporting role as well. Creamy firm mouthfeel, medium body and an ample amount of carbonation. Great light summer type beer.

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Photo of imbibehour
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a wheat ale style glass.

Crystal clear golden body with a heavy bubble carbonation from the bottom. Good bit of classic white foamy head equal pin sized for the bubbles. Looks highly drinkable, especially on a super hot day today.

Big brown clove smell, almost kind of burnt. Mild floral and herbal grassy sense as well. Maybe a sense of coriander/cilantro.

Big mix on taste of several things but one doesn't dominate over the other. Gaseous carbon dioxide first, quickly giving way to a sweet grain, then banana. Very light bodied and hint of crispyness, but I really like this very dry clove finish on the swallow and aftertaste.

Refreshing drink, I appreciate it, but it's probably not a favorite style for so I can't rank it much higher personally.

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Photo of tjsdomer2
4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Wow! Some of the best carbonation in any beer I've seen. It out champagnes champagne. Clear yellow through and through. Huge head of foam that dissipates into a nice layer. Lacing is one part that isn't excellent.

Smell: Pretty clean apple cider notes. A faint hint of floral hops. A bit of yeasty banana in the background.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Excellent. Great combination of hefeweizen notes with pilsener aspects as well. Thick and banana-y, yet clean and lemony at the same time. Mouthfeel fizzles out at the end a little watery, but not enough to be a real complaint.

Drinkability: The combination of the styles doesn't make this ideal for either category, so there's a bit of an identity crisis with this beer. Overall, a versatile beer.

Overall: Definitely a good change of pace and a good transition beer.

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Photo of eduardolinhalis
4.14/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured in its own weizen glass.

A - Huge fluffy bubbled aired white head. many tiny bubbles fleeing from the bottom. Pale yellow and clear color. A filtered Weiss, right?

S - Strong smell of banana in the nose. Cinnamon and cloves. Delicious flowery-spicy combination. Also malts and yeasts. The pure definition of liquid bread

T - Much like the aroma. Wheat is very evident followed by the banana and spices (again, cinnamon and cloves). A bit earthy too. Very very light hops bitterness. Just great

M - Medium and bit molasses body. Big carbonation. Dry taste and light bitterness. Very pleasant and drinkable

O - Delicious as expected from a Weihenstephaner. Refreshing and delicious

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Photo of SirSketch
4.11/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Fills about a 1/3 of the glass with luscious white head and tons of tiny carbonation bubbles fleeing from the bottom. As the label suggests, a 'crystal-clear' pale yellow color.

S - Big banana bomb in the aroma, along with yeast-driven spiciness and moist, oily white flour bread dough. The nose comes as a surprise because of the pilsner-esque appearance.

T - Much like the aroma, except the banana takes a back seat to the spicy, peppery notes. Some orange juice flavor, too.

M - The heavy carbonation and bone dry finish makes this a flavorful thirst quencher.

O - My first kristalweizen, and I have to say I'm a fan. A little less yeast flavor than its 'mit hefe' counterparts, but still delicious.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.41/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours out as a clean and clear looking yellow color. The head was fluffy and had a pretty good retention. The smell had a pilsner-ish aroma, a little earthy too. The taste was pretty good, some malts and a hoppy bitterness in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel was on the lighter side and had a crisp feel to it. Overall not a bad brew, worth trying.

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Photo of samie85
3.08/5  rDev -24%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-Pours a very clear golden color with loads of sparkly white head. I think this one might have had a gusher infection or else was very over-carbonated.

S-Loads of clove-y yeast esters with some wheat notes and not a lot else.

T- Some wheat and quite a bit of clove yeast esters with a light, crisp bitterness.

M-Crisp and medium bodied although the wheat contributes a bit to body and feel.

D-Never have been a fan of the German weissbiers, and this is no exception. Although they're not my favorite, I can always appreciate a well-crafted brew.

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Photo of EricCioe
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This pours a clear pale gold with a nice, three finger pillowy eggshell head that dies down in time to a small, tightly bubbled cap. On the nose there is a very clean mixture of wet, sweet grains, with a little bit of spice further down and a mushy, banana-bread-ready banana hanging out over everything. In the mouth the mushy banana envelops the whole palate, with a sweet grainy backbone standing firm behind it. The body is ultra creamy, with some nice carbonation driving the banana all over the tongue for a nice medium finish.

Overall, I like this beer well enough but the drinkability just isn't quite there for me. It tastes fine and has a great feel but it just isn't something I picture myself reaching for very often.

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Photo of JizackFH
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - This beer pours a clear yellow straw color. It has a big 3-finger white head on it. The head has good retention, and it leaves some nice lacing behind on the glass. There are also plenty of rising carbonation bubbles visible.

S - It smells of wheat and yeast. There are also some scents of banana, clove, and some other spices.

T - I am getting the yeast and wheat up front, which is immediately followed by a small kick of banana. Towards the end of the drink I am getting the clove and other spices. The finish has some lingering spice notes and some dryness.

M - It has a medium mouthfeel and good carbonation. It goes down smooth, and it is very refreshing. There is some lingering spice notes left tingling on the palate.

O - This has good drinkability. It goes down easy, and the flavor is great. Overall, I thought this was very enjoyable beer. It is refreshing, and great for a hot day. This is my first beer of this style, but I can't wait to try another.

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Photo of bamadog
4.22/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review is from notes taken on 5/29/2011 and poured from the bottle to a pint glass.

Appearance: Pour is a very pale, light straw yellow, almost the color of champagne; upon opening the bottle, there is a bit of foam trying to escape, so it's got a pretty big head on the pour, starting at 1 and 1/2 finger of white foam; body is crystal clear, I mean, crystal; body shows pretty strong carbonation bubbling up throughout; head has solid retention and it takes a while to dwindle down to a full, lush and shallow cratered cap;

Smell: Smell is good -- fair banana-sweet yeastiness with a touch of clove spiciness to it; touch of wheaty, dry graininess underneath it; nothing overwhelming in terms of complexity, but it comes across as simple, and as I once heard pwoods say, "clean" (really a good description.

Taste: Very solid, and much like the smell, fairly simple; nice banana-sweet yeast flavors, with a perfume-like clove spiciness; a definite, dry, wheaty, cracked graininess provides a solid backbone and just a mild, very mild, hop bitterness underneath it all.

Mouthfeel: Body is light, and the carbonation comes across as spritzy and leaves the gums a little tingly, as well as the back of the throat; a thin, dry sticky coating lingers on the roof of the mouth for a brief moment, but fades quickly enough, providing for a clean finish.

Drinkability: Light body, moderately low ABV, good flavors that aren't overwhelming with a sweet and spicy touch with just a hint of bitterness, this beer begs to be drank all day long. It's really a great summer beer and I'm kind of bummed that I've waited this long to try it, but when it's 92 and humid outside, this is a great way to go.

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Photo of msubulldog25
4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of two classic Weihenstephaners presented as birthday gifts by a friend at last Friday's 40th Birthday Bash. A 500ml bottle (coded '9060' on the back), poured to a couple tapered weizen glasses; had to share with Mrs. Bulldog. Thanks Renee (& Leon) for your thoughtfulness!

Gott im Himmel! In all meinen Jahren beim Bier trinken ich habe nie versucht diese art ~ that is to say (in poor German), Good Lord, this is my FIRST Kristalweizen taste/review. For shame.

A: Truly can't imagine a more 'crystal' pour, nor a more spectacular head; brilliant straw/gold, cut by steady bubbles ascending to a thick 3-fingers of creamy, snowdrift whiteness. Lace is a slight disappointment (random flakes), only because the rest of it was so darn pretty.

S: Has all the aroma of the classic Hefeweissbier these guys have mastered: the cloved spiciness, the candy/bubblegum, the subtle fruitiness. Oyster cracker notes, bready dryness. Nice.

T: Grassy and grainy, dry and sweet from sip to sip - a nicely balanced and rather complex mouthful found in this seemingly simple ale. Ripe pear and mushy apple, sprinkled spice and some earthy berry.

M: Clean feel, crisp without a biting over-carbonation. A bit thinner then the chunkier Hefeweissbier, but that's expected. A little mineral dryness and an 'envelope flap' sticky/starchy finish.

O: As mentioned early on, my first (as I recall) of the style. Embarrassing as that is, the fact that this so damn tasty and drinkable only compounds the error of my neglect. As quickly as mine disappeared, S's was gone twice as fast. It has been declared worthy. Now bring on some summer, weatherman...

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Photo of biegaman
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Weihenstephaner Kristall is much clearer than a typical weissbier, but isn't without some smudging haze. Still, it manages a glorious golden-yellow tone that, although the glass stretches only about half a foot to the sun, radiates a great deal of its brightness. Little bubbles float up in unison like you see in one of those 'oxygenator' things that are attached to aquariums. Head is fluffy but incomplete.

The aroma on this Weihenstephaner confirms that you can filter a hefeweizen but you can't filter out the hefe (yeast) character. Seriously, with every sniff I asked myself "What filtration?" It smells almost (if not, as) effervescent as the classical Weihenstephaner Weissbier which, I may remind you, is widely considered the prototype of the style.

The taste also reminds us that, like the villain in any horror movie, yeast does not die easily. Even more vividly than in the smell, notes of over-ripened banana, apples and pear blend with crisp, sun-kissed straw and wheat and are doused in a lightly peppery, clove-like spice. It is far more assertive a flavour than you typically get with beers this light in colour.

Still, however, the mouthfeel is very clean. Its carbonation is piercingly high but is quenching without compromising on flavour and its texture is simultaneously grainy, creamy, bubbly and spicy. Given the reputation of German brewers in general, and the stellar character of this brewery in particular, it goes without saying that this is superlatively well brewed.

If I could buy the world a Coke... it would actually be a German wheat beer, and why not this one? If the Germans know one thing about brewing it's how to make a beer that is appealing to just about anyone and infinitely drinkable with breakfast, lunch, dinner (or any time in between). This is a full-flavoured but easy drinking beer perfect for those hot, dog days of summer. Like every Weihenstephaner offering, it get's my recommendation.

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Photo of InsolublePancake
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Crystal-clear light gold with an enormous white head that sticks around for quite some time.

S- Very nice spicy clove aroma with that chalky weizen yeast in the background. Good sour malt backing.

T- Very light in flavor. Soft bubblegum and clove flavors with a light vegetal character. Finishes dry with almost no bitterness.

M- On the light side of medium and very highly carbonated, yet somewhat soft and creamy. Quite nice.

This is a very good beer and a great quencher for a summer day. The flavor could be a little better perhaps, but it's still quite nice. I'd get it again for sure. Recommended.

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Weihenstephaner Kristallweissbier from Bayerische Staatsbrauerei Weihenstephan
Beer rating: 4.05 out of 5 with 1,906 ratings