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Celis White | Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.

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BA SCORE
83
good
39 Reviews
THE BROS
56
awful
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Celis WhiteCelis White
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
Belgium
vansteenberge.com

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Belgian version. For the US brewed version go here: http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/565/5222

Added by Todd on 01-06-2003

BEER STATS
Reviews:
39
Ratings:
78
Avg:
3.65
pDev:
18.36%
 
 
Wants:
4
Gots:
9
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 39 | Ratings: 78
Photo of biboergosum
4.05/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

250ml bottle - why the tiny serving size, to go with the regular price?

This beer pours a hazy pale golden straw colour, with two fingers of tight foamy white head, which leaves some decent padded lace around the glass in its wake. It smells strongly of crisp wheat grain, citrus, and coriander. The taste is sweet wheat malt, orange pith, and a mild coriander/pepper spiciness. The carbonation is present, but quite mild, the body medium weight, smooth, and somewhat silky. It finishes off-dry, and mostly clean.

I don't know where the "modern" brewing techniques come in; that aside, this is a pretty enjoyable witbier - maltier than the norm, with the expected fruit and spice quite, but not overly, reserved.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.5/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a cloudy dirty yellow color ale with a large pure white foamy head with great retention and good lacing. Aroma of coriander and huge wheat malt notes are very enticing and surprisingly more present then I would have anticipated. Taste is an incredible mix between some coriander with loads of wheat malt with light bubble gum notes and a zesty and citrus finish. Full body with limited filtration and great carbonation. I must admit to being totally surprised by this one; it has some much more character then I would have anticipated and a great balance between all ingredient. Definitively one of the most underrated beer I had a chance to taste recently.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.2/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on-draught into a stem-tulip at Beachwood BBQ in Seal Beach, California. Reviewed from notes. This is the Belgian brewed version.

A: Pours a two finger head of white colour, slight cream, fair thickness, and decent retention. Colour is a cloudy yellow.

Sm: Lemon peel and clean barley. A mild strength, boring aroma.

T: Tame lemon peel over a barley foundation. Simple. Balanced. Decently built for the style.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Nicely thick without being overbearing. Complements the flavours nicely.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable. I might get it again if I was in a witbier mood.

High C+

***
July 29th, 2016: 2nd impressions from a draught pour at La Trappe in San Francisco ("as House Witte").

C+ / ABOVE AVERAGE

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.79/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On-tap 10/4/2015 at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub, in Pawtucket, RI served in a tapered pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a short white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains wheat, some Belgian yeast, light caramelized malts, citrus and some spice.

T: The taste starts out with some tartness from flavors of citrus and wild Belgian yeast. Then some breadiness comes in from wheat and a thin malt character. The sweetness and the hops presence are mild but bring some balance. The after-taste is tart.

M: Crisp and smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer to drink for a while.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.86/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Kind of an unassuming bottle, compared to the other Belgians around it at Total Wine, but I'm willing to give it a chance regardless. It pours a cloudy straw-orange topped by a finger of white foam. The nose comprises coriander, orange zest, clove, light melon rind, and a pinch of black pepper. The taste brings in more of the same, along with a few twists of lemon for good measure. The body is a hefty light, with a light moderate carbonation and a fluid feel. Overall, a pretty tasty wit. It's pretty easy to see how this style caught on here in the States, given the precedent set by this little guy.

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Photo of Derek
3.12/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The battle of Wits... Back-to-back-to-back with Hoegaarden (Interbrew, Brussels) & Blanche de Chambly.

25 cl bottle, best before 17/02/06 (17BE 15:42).

A: Surprisingly, the fluid looks the same as the Hoe (I thought the oats would make it murkier). It doesn't produce or retain as much head as the others, but it does leave a little lace.

S: Plenty of aroma, with the most citrous. A tarte/sour smell that's unique among the three.

T: In comparison, there's more citrous, but otherwise the taste is a little bland. It has a tarte, slightly sour aftertaste (which probably isn't meant to be there).

M: Lightest body and carbonation, slightly acidic.

D: Alright.

I expected more.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

When I ordered this, I was suitably confused about where it was actually from. The bottle stated that it was brewed at Van Teenberge for "Celis Europe", but then spent most of its time talking about Austin, Texas. Interesting pedigree. Drank at Cambrinus in Bruges on a very hot day outside. Witbier was the charm.

Poured half, swirled, and poured the other half. My efforts result in chunks of sediment floating in a very cloudy, opaque lemon-juice yellow colour. Head is fine and full, although collapsing in the humidity after a while. Lace is patchy. Looks pretty good for a wit. I'm not sure I've had a cloudier or more sediment-riddled one at least.

Nose is fruity and citrussy, with sweet orange and marmalade dominant. Some apricot comes through as well, and although there are some light yeasty phenols, there's minimum true spice. Not bad, but very light on, though.

Taste is sweet, with floral honey characters and flavours of dried apricots. Finish is clean and dry, with a hint of yeast and a slight musty bite. The crisp finish is refreshing on such a day, but it didn't have much of the citrus or spice I'd like in the style.

Not a bad wit, and a slight deviation from the style, which I take as a positive thing. Perhaps a little too sweet, and lacking some complexity, but it ends up a pretty refreshing brew, nonetheless.

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Photo of bark
3.03/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The colour is yellow with a tint of white-orange; the liquid is very hazy. The head is finger thick, white and firm, it builds a nice crater.

The smell is loaded with yeast, green apples, wheat dough, herbs and sour with some interesting bitter flavours.

The first flavour that hits the mouth is the one of banana flavoured marshmallows. There is some sour notes; green apples, wheat flour. The aftertaste is quite mild (and surprisingly short) with some sourness, apple pie with cinnamon and a hint of cream.

Carbonation is strong – large bubbles. The mouth feel is dry and a bit rough.

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Photo of stcules
3.6/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy, pale straw colour, with a good foam, creamy and persistent.
Good smell, fresh, typical of a wit beer: spiced a lot of orange, fresh fruit, citron, pepper. Very good flavour.
The taste is fresh, lightly spiced (pepper), with a light body.
Very good drinkability, refreshing and thirst-quenching.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.06/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Celis White has a thick, white head, a murky, yellow appearance, lots of powdery sediment throughout, and thin lacing left on the glass. Once the caked sediment is swished and poured in, this beer clouds up, considerably. The aroma is of sweet, white bread, coriander, banana, and other spices. Taste is of those elements, with bubble gum and low bitterness. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Celis White finishes dry and easy going.
RJT

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Photo of Flounder57
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Served in a snifter at the Union Brewhouse in Weymouth.

Appearance: A one finger head was poured that reduced to a thin layer. It is a hazy pale yellow orange color with good clarity and vision of bubbles coming up through the glass. Frothy lacing down the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Vanilla, wheat, spices, yeasty esters, and green apple.

Taste: Vanilla, wheaty, pale malts, spicy, yeasty, green apple, and chewy characters.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied, smooth, crisp, refreshing, a little chewy, a little dry, and medium to high carbonation.

Overall: To be the first and original witbier made, I do have to say I enjoyed this beer quite a bit. Will look for more of this in the near future.

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Photo of Todd
2.34/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Presentation: 25cl brown bottle with "Austin Texas Beer" adorning the label. 28/05/03 best by date. Had this at the Kulminator in Antwerp, BE.

Appearance: Cloudy, pale straw coloured wit with a creamy head and a pretty decent level of retention.

Smell: An unexpected aroma. Soft, grainy, touch of spice and a dose of diacetyl that wasn't invited to the party, but showed up anyway.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Smooth at first, turning with a sharp and crisp bitterness and feel on the palate. Splash of orange. Buttery diacetyl follows, which is both odd and out of place. Phenolic clove, yeasty with a raw and bitty / coarse finish.

Notes & Drinkability: This is "the original" Celis White by Peter Celis and contract brewed for the European market. I expected a lot, but the diacetyl was simply overwhelming ... making of a highly disappointing beer.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Grandaddy of the style.

Pours a straw color, very pale. The head is all of a few millimeters in height. Just some sheeting on the surface.

Prominent notes of orange rind, lemon rind, pale wheat malts, and coriander. The nose of a prototype. Mild, lightly sweet, faintly tart, and quite familiar.

Sweet/tart lemon and orange citrus with a very pale grain character of tangy wheat and grassy pilsner malt. Low bitterness, with some flaring in the finish. Quite tasty, in fact. A sturfy example that's lighter than most. Very summery flavor and feel. Body suffers from thinness. Not a crime for a wit, but I do prefer some milkiness. Carbonation is down-pat with high efficiency. Almost, too high. A bubble burn is felt in the sides of the mouth.

I'm so glad to have access to this classic again. Celis White will always stay true to my heart.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.91/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer was cloudy pale golden wtih a white frothy long lasting head which laced the glass from top to bottom.

The aroma was muted coriander and light citrus with a bit of diacetyl which was at a moderate level but was never offensive. The diacetyl in the aroma continued to increase as the beer warmed.

The flavor was light lemon and orance citrus with a soft wheat character and a low muted coriander. Once again the diacetyl was moderate in the flavor.

The finish was dry with light lasting dry spice into the aftertaste. The body was medium light with a decent carbonation and a creamy mouthfeel. A very refreshing beer on a hot day in Brugge.

Draft in proper glass at Garre in Brugge on 9/13/06.

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.42/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bought this at the Bier Temple in Brussels. Couldn't resist the cowboy label...a far cry from the plump-monk-with-mug type thing. And the U.S. version I'd had at a beerfest tasted promising. (Ever read up on this beer? Confusing history...)

First, I have to mention the bottle. What beer drinker doesn't hate these tiny 25 cl bottles? Especially when the beer itself isn't exactly high-octane. (5% listed on the label)

Poured a very pale yellow, though a little hazy. Nice big fluffy white head sticks around a while, and the bubbles are fast and numerous.

Aroma is orange, lemon, and a pronounced smell that reminds of a corny confection like Fiddle Faddle. Strong yeast wafts out too, with a warming sensation that cannot be the alcohol but certainly tickles the nostrils like it is. A complex nose on this one.

Flavor is robust, more round and complex than many witbiers. A spicy heat is detected, like cinnamon, yet very much balanced with elements of citrus fruit and wheat. Yeast comes through to help add another side to the beer, giving an earthy, nutty element. Perhaps the most complex wibier I've tasted.

Mouthfeel achieves both creaminess and a little zing, just right for the style.

Too bad the Belgian version of Celis White is retired. This is a most excellent witbier, entirely satisfying, and I wonder if the U.S. beers bearing the name can stand up to it.

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Photo of safaricook
4.08/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured 250ml bottle into my tasting glass on one of those few sunny days this year welcoming what seems to be summer finally. I left the yeast sediment in the bottle because I think this wouldn't fit for a witbier.

Appears murky orange with some fine carbonation, 2 finger dense white head that reduces after some time to a thin layerleaving the occasional lacing

typical aroma for a witbier: ripe sweet oranges, less coriander

orange sweet with some sourness to balance it, again very faint coriander, ends with some sweet but drying bitterness

thin body, refreshing, very fine tickling sensation, with the carbonation thinning out after a while the body gets a bit watery, unfortunately

All in all a great summer beer. I almost gave up on my quest for a witbier that I liked. What appeals most to me is this great subtly orange flavor and aroma paired with the refreshing champagne-like carbonation.

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Photo of IronDjinn
4.05/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From a 250 ml brown bottle, best before date on back label is 15/02/11. Pours out a cloudy opaque straw colour, tight creamy white head that slowly settles.

On the nose is light tart wheat, some sweet bready malt, light white pepper dryness, faint citrus and coriander. All very clean.

Flavour starts with some tartness from the wheat, some citrus rind, bready sweet malt rised up in the middle, soft dry finish.

Medium-bodied mouthfeel, soft creamy texture, light crisp finish.

A refreshing well put together Wit, the flavour is pretty mild and subtle but it all works together.

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Photo of charlzm
3.1/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I suspect this is the American Celis White, but Beer Advocate doesn't allow reviews of that beer, so it might be this one?

Consumed at Steingarten, West Los Angeles on February 25th, 2012. Reviewed from notes.

Clear, lemony yellow appearance. More clear than a typical witbier. Fine one finger white head provides moderate sheeting. While not a bad-looking beer, it doesn't like "right" for the style.

Banana, lemon, coriander aromas.

Flavor is much like smell with a slightly grassy note as well. Lacking in yeasty character or wheat notes.

Carbonation prickle. Smooth drinking.

Good hot weather beeer that went with my dinner quite well but not very authentic. Still, enjoyable on its own terms.

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Photo of thierrynantes
3.92/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (33cl), tasted in 2007.
Appearance: opalescent colours of pineapple juice. Slow sparkle that causes the rapid weakening of the foam.
Smell: Nose of orange flower water and yeast.
Taste and mouthfeel: first sweet, then slightly sour, which makes it particularly refreshing.
Drinkability: a good white beer

Review added 10-27-2007, translated from french 2-5-2008.

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Photo of rastaman
3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A tasty belgian wit. Cloudy, with beautiful head. Aromatic nose (lemony and a toucb spicy)Spicy, lemony, clovey, and generally quite tasty, summery taste. On the sweeter side but with some tart acidity (not much at all in fact, but just enough), Allin all, generally a nice experience, nice session drinking.

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Photo of HardTarget
4.08/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Enjoyed on tap at the Staminee de Garre in Brugge

Aroma: Fruit, mostly lemon, with a bit of sour. Again, it’s hard to get aroma in a bar.

Appearance: Very hazy, cloudy really, light yellow glass with a thin white head that lasts enough to give curtains of lace.

Flavor: Close to the Austin and Michigan versions, but closer to the Michigan version as it lacks the lactic acid punch the old Austin version gave. It seems a bit sourer than the Michigan version though. Still, a classic wit; round wheat characteristics, sharp and spicy with coriander, but overall light and refreshing.

Mouthfeel: Light body, moderate carbonation.

Overall Impression: Refreshing. It was just fun to see the old Austin, Texas glass, was hard not to walk away with it.

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Photo of josanguapo
4.25/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

From elcervecero. In Teku glass. After dinner. Very pleasant aroma and taste, with just the adequate amount of coriander. Very refreshing and drinkable. A shame its too short bottle size

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Photo of Absumaster
4.17/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A yellow, murky beer with a big frothy head that seems to last forever.

Smell has some grainy wheat notes. The yeast provides a phenolic smell and some vanilla notes. The orange zest and coriander are present. A light lactic acid whiff comes through and adds to the complexity of the beer.

Taste is full of wheat and is light in maltiness. The yeast is spicy and the spices are pronounced. Clear orange zest and coriander. A subtle lactic acid tartness that is very welcome in a witbier and especially in the (re)founder of witbier. Mouthfeel is a little sticky and a bit sweet. Aftertaste is dry and lingering spicy.

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Photo of deebo
4.97/5  rDev +36.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap in Bruges and loved it. This review is from a bottle with a BB date of 3-30-12.

A-Yellow/golden color with a fair amount of haziness. Pours 2 fingers of fluffy white head that leaves some lacing on the glass.

S-Yeasty, the fruity esters are remniscent of lemon. Sweet bready malt.

T-Similiar to the aroma. This beer has lots of character. The malt bill is heavy for a 5% beer. A slight sour end note that is not bitter.

M-Great, body is rich, creamy and delicious. The carbonation is medium and carries the flavors of this beer well.

D-I would make this a staple if I could get more of it.

O-Could be my favorite version of the first style I fell in love with when discovering that not all beers taste like light lagers. Great complexity and balanced perfectly.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

25 cl bottle purchased at The Bottle Shop in Brugge, Belgium in April 2007. Not sure why it's retired- it's still available in Belgium! Tasted in the hotel room using a room water glass.

Pours a cloudy lemon yellow with a very pretty white head of nearly invisible bubbles. Aroma of wheat, lemon grass, and herbs. Flavor is pleasant, light and enjoyable. More mellow than the original Hoegaarden. Delicious and clean. The lemony, herbal flavors are more subdued.

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Celis White from Brouwerij Van Steenberge N.V.
3.65 out of 5 based on 78 ratings.
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