Ginga Kogen Weizen | Ginga Kogen Beer

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84
good
74 Ratings
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Ginga Kogen WeizenGinga Kogen Weizen
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Ginga Kogen Beer
Japan
gingakogenbeer.com

Style: Hefeweizen

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
“Ginga Kougen Beer” is a “Hefeweizen” style beer a yeast wheat top-fermented beer brewed with more than 50% of wheat malt. It is unfiltered beer distinguished by its fruity aroma and pale color.

Added by Todd on 01-03-2003

BEER STATS
Ratings:
74
Reviews:
32
Avg:
3.69
pDev:
11.65%
 
 
Wants:
6
Gots:
8
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 74 |  Reviews: 32
Photo of Soto
4/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of Maillard
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of augustgarage
3.93/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Really gorgeous bottle and artwork - unfortunately it is a BLUE bottle which means it really should be kept away from light until you're ready to pop one open. This is the U.S. import version, though I think the recipe is the same. No bottled on or best before date than I can discern.

300mL poured into a French fruit juice glass.

Very cloudy pear body with glimmering chartreuse yellow highlights. The head rises up to a little over a finger high with a cautious pour and then slowly recedes to nothing. Very nice, delicate, almost cellestial lacing (which is fitting for a brewery that translates to "Plateau of the Galaxy").

The aroma is faintly metallic and stale, probably due to it being light-struck if not too old. Moving past this you can still get a good dose of banana bread, and a light lemon note. Not much spice going on.

A wheaty tartness pervades, though it is backed by a sweet almost custardy banana/tapioca element (probably from the yeast) which adds a fine balance. There is also the a very weakly bitter note that fades rapidly in the finish - perhaps the noble hops playing a role. It reminds me of a sort of cross between a witbier and a hefeweizen in some ways - though a fresher example might change the overall profile a bit.

Creamy soft mouthfeel with active carbonation. There is a chilly feeling even after the beer begins to warm up a bit - if I were of a more metaphysical mindset I might attribute this to the snow-heavy region of its origin.

Overall, really quite decent. It seems this brewery spent a good deal of time touring their German counterpart's facilities and learned quite a bit. This is an excellent alternative to the more popular rice lagers from Japan - I look forward to purchasing more of this (though I would sacrifice the beauty of the bottle for the protection of a can if I had the choice).

 1,855 characters

Photo of Brabander
3.25/5  rDev -11.9%

Photo of TrickkyGangsta
4/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Naerhu
3.26/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Ingredients: Malt (wheat 55%, barley 45%), hopps.

This is a toned-down weizen with a fine white head, beautiful lace, cloudy orange/gold color and sour/floral aroma. Simple pleasant flavor which was lacking in fruit and spices typical of style were muttled. Super-fine bubbles, however carbonation weaker than what I had hoped for.  

Although this is a review for the can, I have had the bottle and would swear that they bottle is different and far superior.

 471 characters

Photo of soulgrowl
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy lemon yellow with a tall and pillowy but audibly fizzy head; retention is good, but not great. Otherwise this looks exactly how a Hefe Weizen ought to look.

Smell: Spicy and refreshing, very clove-forward with a side of spearmint, along with a standard green banana fruity tartness and a pleasant tone of freshly popped popcorn. The yeast combines very nicely with the malts to create a sweet, doughy essence of white bread. A tad too citric for the style, in my opinion, with some odd lemon-lime soda notes in the background.

Taste: Sourdough bread and lemon rinds predominate, with a sprinkle of cloves and just a hint of banana. Hops are perhaps too pronounced, as their citric tang seems to interfere with the yeast and malts. Not bad, but not nearly as smooth or as balanced as I like my Hefes. Finish is short, but with a light lingering bitter tang similar to quinine.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth, but well punctuated by some lively carbonation. My only complaint is that it feels a bit too light.

Drinkability: Meh. A decent wheat beer, but also a very basic one.

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Photo of NeverSettle
3.25/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of stomioka
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of afksports
3.31/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Blue bottle "with the reindeer" that pours dirty and with a finger of head. Grainy, but they do let you know it's unfiltered. The smell is actually nice for a weizen, with lemon and honey being the most present.

The taste is a bit tart, followed by the sweetness of a citrus, maybe even a bit tropical. Carbonation provides a nice feel in the mouth to help out the medium body. By the bottom of the glass the grains became too much to finish.

I'm picturing myself on the beach in Japan, sipping this under a canopy overlooking the Pacific, and having it so cold that the mountains and the reindeer make sense. We'll see if that ever happens.

 644 characters

Photo of kuishinbo_tantei
3.25/5  rDev -11.9%

Photo of amano_h
4/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of AlvinLin
4/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of donnebaby
3.56/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Ginga Kogen beers are probably my favorite Japanese beers from what I've tried. The appearance of this one, bottled, is truly memorable: it comes in a 500ml thinnish blue bottle w their classic etiquette of two reindeer flying among stars over a forest of spiky green trees (my personal interpretation ;)

There's some thin lacing going on, w some fine bubbles quite slowly diminishing to a thin 2cm head that remains. It's a nice cloudy honey body, appetizing. Pours beautifully.

It's got a clean, even Weizen smell, pretty floral. The carbonation is pretty low, but I prefer a Weizen that's not too bubbly; even so, there's a nice bit at the beginning, smooth. The taste has great flavor, rich, with sweet lasting notes of banana and wintergreen. It's very much drinkable, and a nice treat to enjoy by itself. A well put together beer.

 843 characters

Photo of falconxman
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of SurlyDuff
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cool blue bottle. Surprised to see this at a sushi restaurant in town alongside kirin, asahi, etc. It was $6 for this stubbly litte 300ml bottle, but as it was something i've never had, nor seen before, i had to give it a try.

An interesting unfiltered hefe. Cloudy yellow with a good frothy head that I had to fight through. It's unfortuatly got some macro twangs in there, but lots of good clove and coriander. Brilliant orange peel and citrus. A tad overly sweet, and like I said theres some macro skuzz. THe blue bottle also might not have helped with the freshness.

 572 characters

Photo of JohnTurano
5/5  rDev +35.5%

Photo of tjd25
4.02/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The head's creamy, the body of a slightly hazy golden color. It looks pretty active.The usual suspects in the smell: wheat and yeast, together with ripe banana aromas, maybe hints of strawberries. An impression of freshness invades the nose.
The taste is basically what you would expect from the smell and from a hefe weizen: nice refreshing yeasty and wheaty flavors, some sweet banana notes; the difference with other beers of the style was the more pronounced citric aspect of the brew: very sweet, there's almost some tart biting the tongue after the first gulp. Sweet almost like powdered sugar on a meringue, with the crispness, the melting aspect and the floury notes of a meringue. The mouthfeel is thick enough, very creamy and enjoyable. A nice level of carbonation. The finish is quite dry, but the round feelings of the first sips of the beer remain in my mind as I drink it. Good.

 895 characters

Photo of sephyrott
2.4/5  rDev -35%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Photo of chanokokoro
4.13/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a 300 ml bottle into a weizen glass

Pours a cloudy light gold capped with a two and half finger clean white fluffy head. Above average retention and plenty of splotchy lacing. Bready yeast, banana, clove, and light lemongrass accent. Opens with banana tinged yeast, clove and perhaps a hint of coriander. Finishes with lightly sweet white bread, perhaps even some angel cake and more banana hints. Abundant, bubbly carbonation, very pleasantly creamy. The heavier side of light bodied to very light medium bodied. An excellent hefeweizen. I'm hopeful that the local Japanese supermarket will keep this stocked through the summer.

 642 characters

Photo of I3eer
3.98/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A very German hefe but overly carbonated.

41 characters

Photo of BallsDeep
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of jeranbrews
3.22/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Popped the top of the pretty blue bottle. Pours a nice evenly cloudy lemon honey yellow. Some continued carbonation that lasted several min. The head is a very low, clumpy, eggshell-white experience. LAcing was present but not remarkable.

S - Instantly linseed and lemon peel smells entered the room when the cap was popped. Some honey-comb sweet waxy smells and a bit of powdered sugar.

T - Sour, like lemon pudding that someone forgot to put sugar in. Not overly hoppy. But not enough malty texture either. Pretty much a one flavor experience.

M - Reasonably smooth. A tiny trickle of carbonation eases down the throat just like the lacing in the glass.

D - Overall a fine drinkable example of this style. Not as filling as some hefeweizens, and it's a bit sour, but hops are balanced nicely.

 802 characters

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Ginga Kogen Weizen from Ginga Kogen Beer
3.69 out of 5 based on 74 ratings.
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