Berliner Weisse | Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

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53 Ratings

Brewed by:
Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
United States

Style: Berliner Weissbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 2.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Pale, German-style, light-bodied wheat beer with refreshing tart, acidic and lemony characteristics and little hop bitterness. Woodruff or raspberry syrup can be added to balance the sourness.


Added by weeare138 on 07-09-2006

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Ratings: 53 |  Reviews: 28
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.97/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Typical Berliner weisse. Nice appearance. Fair head retention considering the style. Clean-ish aroma. Surprisingly gentle sourness in the flavor with a malt component as well. My initial reaction was that this would sell well to the masses, and that perhaps they'd gone a little bit easier to achieve that, and then I tasted 1809 from Weihenstephan - - and it was very similar. Nice!

 430 characters

Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of Thorpe429
3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Lancaster location on Memorial Day 2011.

Pours a very, very cloudy straw color with a short white head and a spot or two of lacing on the way down. Thin white collar throughout. The nose has a bit of light acidity along with a bit of lemon and maybe some peach. No real bready character. The flavor has a bit of light lemon and accompanying acidity plus a slight amount of wheat. Light body with good carbonation and a slight acidity. Not as much acidic character as I would like from a berliner, but it hit the spot on a very, very hot day.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.97/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ Iron Hill on 7/10/09. Served in an oversized mug. This was offered with a choice of Woodruff or a raspberry syrup to sweeten it up a bit but I opted to check this little beauty out in all of her naked glory.

Pours a hazy pale gold, with big foamy layer of brite-white head. Retains with a thin fizzy layer that skims the surface, leaving some decent looking filmy lace back. The aroma is crisp and tart in the nose, with a smack of citrus and just a bit of floral activity. Once you get past the tartness, there is also some definite underlying grainy malt activity going on as well.

The taste is very tart and just crackles in the mouth, with lemony citrus transitioning into a more slightly acidic edge towards the back of the swallow (although it never does become souring). You can feel the malty sweetness of this hanging around the outskirts of the flavor profile but the tartness just never fully lets it in. There is a definite steady dryness to this but much like the overall tartness of this, it never quite gets mouthpuckering. The mouthfeel is actually feeling more medium bodied to me. Pretty amazing considering how low the ABV on this is. The feel is overall crisp and sharp in the mouth, with falls right in line with the flavors involved here.

I knew that they were going to be putting on a variety of Wheat Beers on tap here over the summer but to find a Berliner Wiesse on tap (and a 2.5% ABV to boot!) was a real treat! Crisp and flavorful, the tartness is aggressive (which held back the drinkibility back a bit for me) but this is one rarely seen style offering that is worth checking out.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.97/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

I am astounded at the depth and breadth of styles that Paul Rutherford will attempt. I look forward to Sahti and Gose sometime in the future. In the meantime, this was a fairly obscure style here in the U.S. until Nodding Head began making it about a decade ago. A decade?!? Wow, it seems so recent. At any rate, Wayne-O, my server, told me that they have both raspberry and woodruff syrups available, should I care to indulge. Ha! No, thanks. That is cheating, to my way of thinking. The idea is to use less and less syrup each time until you are weaned off of syrup altogether. Wayne just shrugged and said that he is required to offer. Onward!

It came with a finger-and-a-half of bone-white head with low retention. The color was a cloudy yellow, like freshly squeezed grapefruit juice. The nose was slightly sour with a cereal graininess. It was a lot less shocking than the first time I tried the style, especially in light of the spate of sour beers that have come into vogue of late. The mouthfeel was full and effervescent with a mildly sour tang on the tongue. The finish was puckeringly, parchingly dry. This was a spot-on example of the style. Major props to Mr. Rutherford! That said, a glass or two would be plenty. Sour is not necessarily my bag.

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Photo of duceswild
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of Slatetank
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap at the brewpub in Lancaster on 8/10 -served chilled in a traditional pint

A - A mildly hazed golden with visible carbonation and 1/4 inch crown of white w/ tiny beading. The lace is lightly clinging and head retains well for the style

S - The smell has a mild lemony note with slight lactic yeast presence augmenting the mild toasted wheat element in the nose

M - The feel is good with a refreshingly high carbonation with mild tart, not sour texture from the lactic acid and mild cream essence from the yeast

T - The flavor of this Berliner has all you look for in a traditional example - nice mellow lemony flavors mixed with gentle wheat malt and light spice with the carbonation leaving a dry palate cleansing effect making you return quickly for another taste - refreshingly tart without any harsh acidity

D - This is exactly what I like to drink when it is over 90 degrees in PA, so a great drinkability score is necessitated. I enjoyed the crisp flavor and the acidity was in line with a traditional example of Berliner Weisse, glad I got to try this Kudos to Paul for this tasty wheat

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Photo of orangesol
4.02/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at Iron Hill Lancaster.

A – Pours pale yellow with a small half finger tall white head leaving light lacing down the glass.

S – Smells of lemon zest, chewy wheat, and a touch of light funk. This one is pretty spot on for the style.

T - Starts off with a strong tart lemon kick slowly giving way to a mix of chewy wheat and a very light sweetness that fades quickly. The lemon is strong but the wheat helps to bring it back down to earth. The finish is a mix of tartness and chewy wheat. This is easy to drink, perfect for a hot day like today.

M - Light body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Tart, crisp, feel with a mix of lemon and chewy wheat lingering on the pallet for a short period of time. Very nice, light, feel that is easy to drink.

O - I really liked this one. It was very easy to drink and the flavors were spot on for the style. I might have to try this one with one of the syrups in it next time but the regular version is very good as well.

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Photo of stakem
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Lancaster location multiple times over the weekend of 5/21/11. It's been almost a year since I last had this brew, this time coming straight from the source.

This is served in the standard IH glassware, it's a sort of short weizen glass. The Berliner appears a clouded color that is very light and not quite yellow. It has a strange appearance that is so light in color, it looks almost like a coctail of watered down milk or lemonade. A cap of white bubbles sits atop with less than a half finger of strength and quickly dissolves holding with some bubbles sticking close to the edge of the glass. Some faint spotty lace sticks to the glass and bubbles rise constantly through the body.

The smell of this brew is lightly lemon-like with lactic notes and a lot of fresh, sweet cereal grains and wheat that fill the majority of the nose. There is a very mild funky aspect mingling with the lemony lactic notes but I feel like I am stretching here to find more characteristics to this simple brew.

The taste is tart with a lemony citrus zest aspect right upfront. There is a solid amount of cereal grain and wheat flavor throughout the body lending a light sweet grainy flavor to contrast the tartness. The aftertaste is fresh and grainy with a mild salivation factor from the lemony tartness. This brew never really gets sweet or acidic, it just mingles between tart and grainy. Very pleasant and fresh tasting.

This is a light bodied brew that boasts an active amount of carbonation that is lightly prickly on the tongue. It never quite gets to be fizzy which is good because just a bit more carbonation would have put this over the edge. Quite a fresh and fantastic tasting brew. There is no indication of hops or alcohol which is fitting of the style. Quite crisp and a wonderful summertime offering. Very, very drinkable I couldn't resist having multiple glasses. My only gripe about this brew is that is seems to have more focus this year on the grain quality and less lactic character.

 2,008 characters

Photo of BMart
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of tobelerone
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Iron Hill Media. Eschewed the syrups.

Pours a very pale yellow with a small white head that settles rather quickly. Minimal lacing. Fairly mild aroma, with grainy wheat and lemon juice acidity. The flavor belies the nose; tons of sour and puckering lemon juice flavor dominates the palette and the wheat component takes a back seat. Assertive acidity and subtle funkiness. Neither bitter nor sweet in the least. Long and lingering acidic finish leaves the teeth squeaky as the enamel is stripped away!

Light bodied, medium carbonation, clean and refreshing. A very nice example of the style and a must try for fans of sour beers.

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Photo of ShanePB
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled a few times on tap this month already. Between my girlfriend and I, we've tried it with the peach, raspberry and woodruff syrups added - as well as straight up. All 16 ounce pours served in a tapered glass.

A: Pale, straw colored body with a wispy, bubbly and prickly white head. It didn't last for long but did retain a nice ring around the glass without any lacing at all. Not atypical for the style.

S: Citrus tart notes combined with wheat give this aroma a refreshing kick start. Some orange and lemon notes come through as well, finishing with a nice funky note. You know this is going to be tart.

T: Without any syrups, this is a puckering citrus tart taste. Lemon and wheat are most pronounced with some sour cane sugar notes towards the end. The finish is definite yeast with some green, sour apples. With the addition of the syrups in the correct proportions, the beer becomes more sweet to balance out some of the tart qualities. My girlfriend preferred it with the raspberry, I preferred it straight but the woodruff addition was a close second for me.

M: Bubbly, prickly, light-bodied and crisp. A wonderful feel for this beer -- very refreshing.

This is one beer we couldn't keep our hands off of, each time we've been there. It's so tasty, light and crisp that it would make the perfect beer for this weather.

 1,337 characters

Photo of BARFLYB
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of yourefragile
4.42/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a pale clear gold with a wispy light white head. Aroma is sour and refreshing, like fresh squeezed lemons. Body is medium thick with extremely active fine carbonation. Flavor is wheaty and very lemon sour. Dry finish with lingering lemon zest. This is a great, refreshing summer beer; happy to see it on tap for so long.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazed yellow straw, spotty head. Scent brings tart, under ripe citrus rind, musty dried grain, some bready and peppery yeast. Taste follows scent - not as tart as others in the style and definitely more bready. Lighter side of medium bodied, lacking a bit in carbonation. A good take on the style.

Update: Recently attended event with this beer brewed by 3 different locations, with each having its own unique balance of tartness. Chestnut Hill and Media locations were the better ones available.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.25/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of weeare138
3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appears a transparent hazy pale gold with a small white head that slowly fades out. Small spots of lace are left around the glass.
Smell is light lemon zest with a tiny sour tartness on top of a gentle wheat blend.
Taste is of the same aromas in a nice blend.
Mouthfeel is very mild on all counts from the light mouthfeel to the simple tartness on wheat.
Drinkability is good and refreshing. I took mine naked despite the recommendations by the bartender to add the woodruff syrup.

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Photo of akorsak
4.27/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A growler fill on 29-May-11, gotta stock up before Memorial day.

A: The Berlinerweiss is a cloudy yellow, a sickly color that, under the right light, takes on a greenish hue. A rapidly-growing head overflows on the first three pours. That dense white head, pure as fresh driven snow, leaves no traces behind.

S: Tart wheat owns this beer, light and citric lemon and green apples. The entire package is light and refreshingly sharp. No need to waste words on the beautiful aroma - it nails the style.

T: Wheat, wheat and more wheat. The tartness leads off, grainy with lemons and apples. That tartness isn't sharp or sour. The rest of the grains also run their course upfront, providing a chewy wall that disappears quickly. The wheat flavors linger, a tartness that sucks all the sweetness away. The result is very dry, bone dry even. The acidic bite, the strength of the wheat, is so surprising when one considers that the beer is less than 3% abv. A stunning style; a good version that doesn't require and syrup to round it off.

M: Tart and refreshing, this beer is perfect for a hot late May day. The initial punch of acid followed by the slow burn is very dry. Good thing the low abv makes taking another sip advisable.

 1,227 characters

Photo of JNForsyth
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of DrJay
3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I took mine without syrup. The beer was a dull, pale yellow with a bit of haze topped by a thin, white head. The foam was already in a ring when served and it produced a bit of spotty lace. Mild aroma with some grain and a citrusy, lemon zest character. Strong tartness with a lemony sourness and a mild caramel or toffee candy sweetness that lingers in the finish. There's also a hint of earthiness as well. Light bodied with moderate carbonation and dryness. Slight slickness. Light, refreshing, and quite drinkable sans Woodruff syrup.

 538 characters

Photo of THECPJ
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes: Had on draft at the Iron Hill Brewery in Media, Pa.

appearance: golden yellow with a 1 finger white head

smell: sour, tart, sweet, wheat,

taste: tart, wheat, apples

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, mediuim body,

overall: very nice representation of a Berliner Weiss. Had it with woodruff syrup, raspberry syrup, and straight up. Wife enjoyed the woodruff and I preferred it without any syrups. Highly recommended.


 452 characters

Photo of Griffith
3.25/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of Tucquan
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on 2012-09-21 in Lancaster, PA at the brew pub

A - Pretty clear yellow with a 1.5 finger pillowy white head.

S - Not very aromatic although there's some light wheat, citrus and the added woodruff.

T - Creamy at first then a touch of lemon and then the sour apple flavor comes through followed by the citurs and the nice woodruff taste.

M - Light-medium body and light carbonation. Very creamy.

O - I asked for 1/2 the normal addition of woodruff and this worked well with this light brew; not overpowering the light malt body. Nice.

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Photo of DrMindbender
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

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Berliner Weisse from Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
Beer rating: 3.91 out of 5 with 53 ratings