Carmel Wheat Beer
United Brewing Group

Carmel Wheat BeerCarmel Wheat Beer
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Wheat Beer - American Pale
2.85 | pDev: 21.4%
United Brewing Group
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Carmel Wheat BeerCarmel Wheat Beer
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Reviews: 23 | Ratings: 33 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by TheLongBeachBum:
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TheLongBeachBum from California

2.35/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Another broken pack “single” from Trader Joes. The previous two singles I picked up were excellent (Grolsch Amber Ale and the Moretti La Rossa Birra), but I knew the luck could not ride that much longer.

12 fl.oz bottle with a colorful label markets and promotes the beer well on the crowded beer shelves at my local Trader Joes. Has a picture of a large tree with a twisted trunk. A good mix of strong colors makes this bottle label stand out from the crowd. It needs to, because the beer itself can only be described as very average.

Pours initially with a huge head that floats atop the weak looking beer, but this settles to a 1/4” light bubbly covering. It is one of those awful slightly cloudy golden colors, or is it a milky haze? Who knows? I am unsure if it is supposed to be cloudy or clear, I don’t think the beer knows either. For me, if you are supposed to have a cloudy looking beer – make an effort. A half hearted attempt just makes the beer look insipid, especially when the head dissipates.

Nose is rather off-putting to be honest, damp sweaty odors were enough for me not to investigate much further to be honest.

Tastes are feeble, edgy and rather juxta-posed. It doesn’t work. Plain weak tasting that has little or no resemblance to a Wheat Beer at all for me. I could easily mistake this for an offering from a macro-swill producer. No dominant character at all, nor has it any redeeming features.

Perhaps it should be called Carmel “Weak” Beer, rather than Wheat.

Not a beer I will buy again – just too weak in all departments and rather disappointing.

Jan 18, 2003
More User Reviews:
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beerguy101 from California

2.16/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Medium gold, somewhat cloudy, small head. Aroma is grainy and sweet. Light malts and light hops. Mild tasting wheat beer, not a lot of flavor. Some banana taste, kind of typical for a wheat beer. Finish is clean. Aftertaste is smooth. Not much to this beer.

Aug 04, 2003
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BeerManDan from California

3/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is just a average beer, there was nothing outstanding. The appearance when poured was a light golden wheat color and the aroma was of wheat and cloves. The taste was of wheat and cloves, with a hint of banana's. This is a good fill in beer when nothing else is around. I wouldn't buy it again.

Nov 26, 2002
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Bitterbill from Wyoming

2.65/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Bottle part of a mixed 6pack. I couldn't find any dating.

It pours a clear light gold with a small head of foam.

I smell wheat, little bit of caramel malt sweetness.

The taste has wheat, the malt is overly sweet imho, and there's a vegetable flavour that isn't appealing to my palate. Earthy vegetables? Best that I can describe.

Good enough mouthfeel.

1 bottle will do me.

Jul 26, 2018
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ElGordo from Oregon

2.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Body is a rich golden color, topped by a finger of off-white head. Not even a touch of cloudiness - I guess this a fully-filtered wheat ale. Somewhat sweet aroma of light caramel malt, with a slightly nutty character and a touch of light, fruity hops.
Palate is overly sweet, heavy on sweet caramel with some adjunct notes. I don't know if they used cheap wheat, or also some adjunct malt in here, but something seems a little off. The mild hop profile provides a little balance, lending some notes of light fruit. Medium body has some lively carbonation, but doesn't pick up much lightness from the wheat. I'm not at all impressed with this one. Meh.

Nov 21, 2009
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Boilermaker88 from California

1.81/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Bottle said "Wheat Beer" in big letters, and in tiny letters underneath, "hefe-weizen". Trust me, it's not much of either.
Poured into one of my trusty weissbier glasses, this beer sported a slightly hazy golden color and a wispy, gone-in-a-flash white head. Mild amounts of bubbles witnessed.
Smell was virtually non-existant and what I did smell was a weak mix of wet straw and an unpleasant sourness.
Taste was flat, bland, nothingness until a slight grapefruit/lemon peel bitterness emerged at the back of my tongue. No banana, clove, or anything else to lead me to believe this is a "hefe-weizen".
Feel was light, watery, and flat despite the carbonation.
This beer did nothing for me except reinforce my dislike for American wheat beers. I barely choked this down. Instead of recalling the governor, California should recall this sad attempt at a "hefe-weizen".

Sep 17, 2003
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Mustard from District of Columbia

3.34/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Presentation: 12oz. brown bottle; no "best before" or "bottled on" date; no ABV %; tired spiel about Carmel beers "paying homage" to California and its lifestyle atop the neck.

Appearance: Pours a pale tangerine; somewhat hazy; smallish, snow-white head; b-cup's worth of lace; not much in the way of head retention.

Aroma: Lightly of sweet grapefruit with, perhaps, a hint of honey.

Taste: Benignly sweet upfront; primary flavor characteristic is of grapefruit; slightly tart, faintly bitter finish; a tad watery with subtle floral notes; just a whit spicy; as per the American pale wheat style, little in the way of banana or spicy clove flavors; medium bodied with a somewhat creamy mouthfeel.

Notes: Standard example of a largely forgettable style; easygoing sweetness might make this -- and/or others American wheats -- a good gateway candidate for macroids.

Oct 01, 2003
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Troyone from California

2.18/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a darkish grainy wheat color with little head and some carb action.

The smell is not significant with a caramel beer aroma.

Moderately acidic caramel malt taste with a orange hops flavor.

Light/med bodied, soft carb, and a flat astringent finish.

A dissappointing example of a wheat beer.

Jan 17, 2006
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Dukeofearl from California

2.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle from a "mystery bag" of beer (8 bottles for $4.99) at the local Trader Joe's in January/February 2007. So I suspect this is "aged" beer.

Pours a decent clear orangy-yellow with a minor head, but no retention. Lots of carbonation rising to the top, where it almost immediately disappears.

Aroma of wheat, a light fruitiness (semi-citrus), and that's about it. Mostly grainy, no hop aromas.

Flavor is beer- slightly sharp and tart from otherwise un-noticed hops, basic malt base. This is one of those "it's OK" beers that really hasn't got a lot going on. A little off-putting astringency at the end. It's not bad, but it doesn't have much to recommend it either.

Not recommended.

Mar 10, 2007
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Zorro from California

2.61/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer is a pale shade of amber in the glass with a quite robust off-white head.

Smell is sweet and a little bit like white wine with a slightly fruity and flowery scent. Fair wheat cracker malt scent.

Taste is most definitely wheat malt and just barely sweet. Flavor is mostly wheat cracker with a decent amount of hops in the background. Hopped to the level of a mild APA it isn't quite up to Gumball head level though. This gets a little sweeter as you drink it and a mild lemon twist flavor in the finish.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Nothing really great or bad about this one. An OK American wheat beer but really if I want a beer of this type I would pick Widmer instead.

Nov 25, 2006
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misterscooter from California

3.47/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer seems to fly a bit under the radar. I found it at Trader Joes and it is not brewed in Carmel, Monterey or anywhere near there. Actually, farther north in Mendocine, apparently by the Mendocino Brewing Company (home of Red Tail Ale). But you'd never know from the bottle with its Cypress tree and statement of being brewed on the coast of California.

Anyway, it is a slightly cloudy straw color with a nice white head, fairly thick, on top. There is a light honey and grain smell with an after-odor of graham cracker. Not too sweet, though.

The first taste is a nice, slightly sweet wheat flavor. Very smooth. Feels good on the tongue and leaves a dry, lightly hopped taste at the end as you swallow.

Overall, a slightly better than average beer for a good price. Not the higher end of some beers from this brewery but still worth a pick up.

Nov 15, 2005
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flexabull from California

2.98/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy gold color with a decent head.

Smells dusty, vegetal, and slightly sweet.

Taste is creamy, light and crisp. The finish is crisp, but all in all, the flavors are lacking in this one. Nothing offensive though.

Mouthfeel is good. It is full and think .

Decent beer. Not something I would seek out though.

Apr 18, 2007
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ccrida from Oregon

3.88/5  rDev +36.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle picked up at the Mendocino brewery, Carmel Wheat Beer (it says Hefe-weizen underneath that on the label, which it obviously isn't) is a hazy dull gold with a large white head that has decent last and leaves decent lace.

Smell is grainy, a little sour, salty and mineral laden, with a dash of sugar.

Taste is surprisingly malty, caramel mostly, also a little grainy and salty, better then the nose, not much but nothing too exciting. Still, it grew on me. I normally don't caree for this style at all, and the caramel maltiness was a nice touch that I enjoyed.

Mouthfeel is carbonated, a bit drier, with a light body.

Drinkability is OK, better then I expected, a little to sweet for some perhaps, definitely not a hefe, but a decent little APWA, albeit a generic one.

Sep 28, 2008
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Georgiabeer from Georgia

1.73/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Picked up a single 12oz bottle of this from Whole Foods in Santa Cruz. Thank goodness I didn't go for a six pack! Not impressed at all. Pours piss yellow with a head that fades quickly. Smells vaguely fruity and buttery with notes of lemon and antacid- or maybe thats lemon antacid. Tastes similar with an unoleasant buttered popcorn taste, and not enough citrus or other fruit to keep it lively. The mouthfeel is slick and mildly unpleasant. Avoid.

Aug 10, 2009
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stephendr from California

2.28/5  rDev -20%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Gold color medium , clear – frothy medium white head –nose is wheat , citrus ( lime / lemon zest ) , grassy , wet hay , slight hopps , and slight malts - taste mild kind of nondescript hint of malts , grainy , grassy , and pomegranates <weak> – creamy sweet watery mouth feel – , cereal , grass , and sweet corn aftertaste

Oct 08, 2006
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tpd975 from Florida

2.75/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for this one.

A: Pours a pale yellow with a puffy head.

S: Aromas of light wheat, muted citrus, and pale malts.

T: Light wheat, citrus, bread, not impressed with this one.

M: Very thin, dare I say watery.

D: It's like water you could drink a ton of it, but who would want too?

Mar 11, 2010
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NickMunford from Wyoming

2/5  rDev -29.8%

Jan 22, 2012
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illidurit from California

2.2/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass. Clear piss/apple juice color with a bit of chill haze. Thin fizzy white head that fades to a sickly smattering of froth. Diacetyl aroma with a sweet butteriness and possibly some corn? No hallmark wheat notes. Flavor is essentially carbonated diacetyl with a grainy undercurrent. High carbonation, thin body. Not recommended.

Mar 26, 2009
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Kemmerlin from Colorado

3.48/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Poured unfiltered very light orange yellow color with a quickly diminishing head.

S: Sweet and sour smells with some citrus and salt mixed in there.

T: At first tasted skunked almost like drinking urine but then peach and tangerine pulled through and was followed by the grains used in the malts.

M/D: Good mouthfeel not bitter or tart a little sweet. The drinkability was ok but I will not be buying this one again.

Mar 17, 2008
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MisterClean from California

3.4/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Party beer, nobody knows where friends got it from.

A - Unfiltered, with a light orange body, and slight head. Head dissipated moderately fast.

S - Peach and tangerine with a slight bit of coriander.

T - Peach, tangerine, coriander, and wheat.

M - The mouthfeel could have had more character versus just carbonated. Kind of bitter from all the carbonation.

D - Drinkable on a hot day, but there are many finer examples of what a real hef should taste like.

Jul 13, 2008
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Rayek from Colorado

3/5  rDev +5.3%

Jun 09, 2014
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HalfFull from California

2.92/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

An interestingly enough looking suspect at my local Trader Joe's, I once again took advantage of their singles pricing policy. This beer pours a slightly opaque golden straw in color and offers little head or retention.

Smell is very much to the wheat side, with a little malty cooked banana, but otherwise void of the typical nose. And the bottle does use the Hefe-Weizen moniker, albeit below the much larger 'Wheat Beer'..

Taste isn't bad but yet not quite what was expected. Much richer than expected and with a dry slightly bitter finish. A decent beer at a decent price but lightly carbonated for the style and a bit malty dinging the feel a bit.

Brewed by Carmel Brewing Co. of Carmel, CA originally, who was bought by United Brewing Group of Salinas, CA, who currently contracts to Mendocino Brewing in Ukiah, CA. Trader Joe's carries other Mendocino Brews so this seems like logical family interactions. At this time, I would like to thank Al Gore for inventing the Internet so I could do this research from my desk.

Sep 04, 2008
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IRONRakkasan from California

3.5/5  rDev +22.8%

Apr 14, 2014
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jeffjeff1 from California

3/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I got this in Monterey while I was on my honeymoon.

Appearance- golden color, head dissipates quickly

Smell- mostly malt

Taste- mostly malt

Mouthfeel- light to medium bodied

Drinkability- It was ok. I would drink it again. Not horribly bad just kind of average.

Jul 02, 2010
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bumchilly25 from Canada (BC)

2.75/5  rDev -3.5%

Apr 21, 2014
Carmel Wheat Beer from United Brewing Group
Beer rating: 73 out of 100 with 33 ratings