Positive Contact | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

very good
214 Reviews
Positive ContactPositive Contact

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Positive Contact is the second batch of the Imperial Belgian-Style Wheat beer that Sam and Ben brewed a couple months back. For this batch, we stepped up the spice and cider additions. Instead of 200 lbs of apples, Ben pressed 300 lbs of organic Fuji apples for a total addition of 25 gallons of fresh pressed cider, which was added to the whirlpool in order to really bring out the cider character. The amount of cilantro was nearly quadrupled with 4 lbs total, which was pureed with a portion of the cider and then added after the boil was done. The cayenne was doubled, but added directly before the beer was transferred from the kettle to the fermenter in an effort to minimize the burn while increasing the flavor and aroma contributed. A different type of wit yeast was used and then fermented slightly cooler to keep the yeast character minimal and act as a supporting role to the main players the cider and spices. Lastly, this batch was boiled for less time than the original batch, leaving the beer with a lighter straw color than the amberish hue of batch #1.

Overall, Positive Contact is characterized by its bright spritzy cider character and autumnal herbal quality derived from the cilantro, cayenne, and yeast.

19 IBU

Added by THECPJ on 12-28-2011

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Reviews: 214 | Ratings: 1,097
Photo of Beer-Revelry
1/5  rDev -74.1%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This is the biggest waste of money I think I've made yet on beer. NONE of the Flavors promised on the label are in this beers taste, aroma maybe, but it tastes like a sweetened, weak Duvel. NOT WORTH THE MONEY! WOULD GIVE A ZERO IF I COULD!

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Photo of jsanford
2.66/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Cheers to The CPJ

Pours a hazy dark gold with a creamy white head that settles to a think cap and some sudsy bubbles. Smells like...a Witbier. Maybe a bit of apple cider and cilantro, but mainly just a banana-forward Wit yeast. Bland. Taste is similarly dominated by a Wit yeast, lots of banana and clove, a touch of apple, and grassy herbs. Not getting any of the cayenne. Tastes like Namaste with some apple. Smooth mouthfeel, fairly creamy, with a medium body and good carbonation. Overall a pretty bland, uninspired beer that tastes like any other Dogfish beer.

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Photo of CampusCrew
2.86/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Well i was expecting more of a cider, not an average wheat beer. Love the color and fast rising bubbles. The was acutally head rentention. I was like thats amazing for a cider. Aromas were weak. Some fruit aromas and some earthy spice. The taste was disappointing. Cilantro added to the bitterness, zero sweetness and no to little apple flavor. Loved the cayenne kick. Well balanced heat. But the body and flavor of the base beer was weak and the cider aspect just wasnt there. This was nice paired up with some fish and veggies but not my favorite dfh brew. I guess expectations can ruin your thught process. I was expecting a spicy cider.

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Photo of swetsastonic
3.22/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I wasn't overly impressed with this one. some very interesting ingredients, but tastes like something pretty standard that I've had before. not a bad beer, but not one I would get again.

that being said, I drank the second half after having a decent amount of habanero hot sauce and it actually improved the taste a lot. I'd be interested to hear if others agree with that.

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Photo of PeterIngemi
3.23/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Split a 750 ml poured into a duvel glass.

A: pours a nice clean golden color with two fingers if white head that dissapates on the slow side and leavs some spots of lacing.

S: smells like a wheat beer, I can get a touch of cayenne on the end. Also a bit of a cider note, but the wheat beerness is deffinatly dominating here.... Wish the label of the beer had mentioned that. I'm not a huge fan of wheat beers. Maybe I should have researched the beer more...

T: deffinatly a belgiany wheat beer, and now after having looked up this brew I can see its an imperial wit... There is a bunch of spicyness going on here, none of which I am a particular fan off, really not my style... Cloveyness, bubblegum, a touch of cayenne on the finish, I really don't get to much of the cider either a slight Appleness if I hold it in my mouth.

M: medium bodied with medium crisp carbonation,

O: I did not particularly enjoy this.... A wheat beer with subtle apple character and a load of spice.... Particularly Belgian yeast spice which really dominates this brew.... Maybe enjoyable to some... But not me.

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Photo of DIM
3.24/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Clear, bright golden yellow; not cloudy as a wit should be.

Apple cider in the nose and not much else. Some band-aid like Belgian yeast maybe. Lots of sweet apple cider on the tongue as well, that's all there was up front. The finish was odd. Plastic-y yeast and some hints of what could be called cilantro;no cayenne pepper to be found.

As a cider this was okay. As an experimental wit this was a miss.

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Photo of starkmarvelo
3.25/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

DFH Positive Contact

Clear, Bright golden, lots of carbonation, 2 finger head. Good retention

Clove, banana, light apples, a bit earthy. Not a whole lot of other aromas. And they're not very pronounced other than banana

Herbal, banana, cayenne heat in the back of throat works with alcohol warmth. Apple skin and a bit of sweetness middle of tongue as it warms. Getting quite a bit of tartness at the back of the tongue towards the end of my first glass.

Medium, coats well. Lingering taste of apple skin and aged cheddar.

Very different. Extremely clear for a Wit and a few shades darker . I like the cayenne bite at the end, it hides the alcohol well. There is a lot going on here. I wouldn't have guessed its a "cider hybrid" though. Not bad. Not great. The 9% hits you pretty good after a while so be careful. Worth the try. B-

Don't buy again

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Photo of oline73
3.26/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours a mostly clear golden amber color with almost a finger of fluffy white head that leaves a layer on top of the pour.

Smell: Sweet and malty. I'm picking up the Belgian spice from the yeast and some apples. There is almost a white wine not here as well.

Taste: The wit yeast contributes heavily. Lots of Belgian yeast spice. I'm getting the malt as well as the apples. The white wine doesn't show up a whole lot here. I'm getting some spice from the cayenne in the finish, but I don't get a whole lot from the cilantro.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with tingly carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

Overall: This is a fairly weird beer. I'm not sure that it needed the spice in the finish. I'm glad I tried it, but wouldn't pick up another bottle.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.29/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

9% ABV confirmed. 1 pint 9.4 fl oz brown glass bottle with okay label art and branded copper pressure cap acquired at Cap N Cork Junior Market for $15.00 and served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high; I'm in the mood for a good witbier - but I'm skeptical about Dogfish Head.

Served cold, straight from the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

The cap yielded a crisp "psh" upon opening; no beer surged out or anything. Carbonation appears adequate but not overdone.

A: Pours a two finger white colour head of nice cream and thickness. Retention is good for the ABV - about 4 minutes. Body colour is a clear pale straw yellow. Translucent and transparent. It's got me worried; every good witbier I've had has been cloudy but this isn't. Was it filtered? Seems off for the style. I'm hesitant. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Lemon and orange citrus fruit notes. Estery. Pale malts. Fresh, fruity, and inviting. No yeast character is detectable. No alcohol is detectable. Some cream. Light spices - cilantro sticks out. Not getting the cidery notes mentioned on the label. The aroma is typical of the style overall. Minimal floral hop character. A moderate strength aroma - pretty assertive for a witbier. Appealing and inviting.

T: Orange and lemon citrus fruit esters. Pale malts. No real yeasty character. Alcohol is more prominent than in most witbiers, but still well concealed. Vague cilantro does come through. Apple skin. Not getting any cayenne pepper as listed on the label. Clean and crisp. Pleasant to drink. Decently balanced. Forceful for the style; it doesn't come off natural or traditional. The alcohol in particular is upsetting. Attempts to be complex at the expense of balance and purity. Not at all subtle. Approachable, but it misses the mark for the style.

Mf: Crisp and clean. Smooth and wet. Suits the flavour profile well. To style. Overcarbonated. Decent presence on the palate.

Dr: Price point is way too high considering the quality here. I wouldn't get it again but it's an interesting take on a witbier. It feels very American and non-traditional; the brewers are trying to pack in flavour needlessly. A witbier is a subtle and balanced style; these brewers are forcing complexity where it has no place. Alcohol is too high and noticeable for the style. A decent attempt at the style, but a misguided one. The efforts to make it cidery and spicy largely fail, and we're left with a bad excuse for a witbier in terms of conventions. I'll be sticking to Allagash White; it's supremely better and the price point is more respectable - even though it's imported farther.

Low B-

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Split with Bilco.

Appearance: Bright, slight chill hazed, gold. Head is bright-white and pillowy. Big, soft, and creamy. Decent retention from a solid, but not high carbonation. Nice streaks of lacing. Head drops to a small cap and collar.

Smell: Loaded with a deep fruit character. The cider really comes through, pushing apple flesh and even some mealy pair. Light, soft spiciness increases as the beer warms. A touch of alcohol in the back. Earthy and herbal. Juicy. Big yeast presence adds another layer of spice. Cooked and slightly caramelized malt sweetness.

Taste: Cider and Belgian yeast. Spiciness derives more from the yeast, but there's a small hint of cayenne on the back. Nice and earthy with a big punch of apple flesh. Biscuit dough and even a lighter, almost crackery snap. A ton of apple. A bit rough, grainy, around the edges. Malts are sweet, but not too sweet, which is a nice change for DFH. Some caramel malt sweetness. Herbal and a bit leafy. Yeast becomes more pronounced as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly dry finish. Mediumish body with a slightly above average carbonation. Not perfectly clean on the finish.

Overall: We have neutral contact.

Definitely not the worst beer DFH has ever churned out. Surprisingly complex, but it missed the mark a little, and ended up too sweet/close to cider. The yeast helped a bit, but just seemed to muddle things a bit.

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Photo of MLasoski
3.33/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I'm reviewing this beer as I'm listening to Side 1 of the Deltron 3030/DFH special edition vinyl! Never listened to Deltron 3030 before until 2 weeks ago and I'm pleasantly surprised. Now onto the beer... (Shout out to Joe Canal's West Deptford for handing me one of the records!)

A: From bottle to my DFH signature pint glass, it forms a puffy, foamy head about 2 inches thick. The body sits underneath with minimally visible carbonation and is a solid gold color.

S: I definitely smell the witbier characteristics; however, was expecting a bit of a apple/peppery aroma which I didn't notice. If I had to reach I get a light apple crisp smell. I'm blaming this on my allergies unfortunately.

T: I'm getting the cider and I'm getting the witbier; however, I expected the cider to come through more or less. I seriously think its my allergies.

M Light carbonation combined with a medium body makes it easily drinkable. There is a subtle spicy note as it goes down.

O: Gotta hand it to Dogfish Head for being innovative. I enjoy every one of their offerings and this is no exception. I just wish I could taste more. I'll buy some more later next week and possibly review this again.

I bought an extra bottle to experiment with. The record cover comes with recipes printed on it from top notch chefs (e.g., Mario Batali, Sean Paxton, David Chang).

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.33/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle courtesy of suspect pours a hazed gold color with a large, stiff cap of white head. Good retention and lacing.

Nose is lots of coriander, soft wheat and honey. I can smell the cilantro if I try and the apples/cider make a sweet fruity appearance.

Taste is quite cidery with a mild yeasty wheat bite at the end. The pepper is pretty tame and I wouldnt have noticed it if I didnt know it was there...the cilantro is a bit of an enigma, as the flavors are incorporated nicely and I do get a bit of vegetal stem-y-ness. The coriander is omnipresent and is about the only thing holding this beer withinthe witbier category. Alcohol is a bit high and overall the beer is just kind of fruity/cidery. The flavors are pretty well integrated thoough and is an interesting pour. I am not a fan of the double-wit style, so take that for what its worth.

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Photo of travolta
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

App: piss yellow, creamy champagne head. Thick lacing.

Nose: sweet banana and cider. Green pepper, cinnamon. Sourdough notes.

Taste: perfectly crisp, sparkling cider, a little yeasty. A tiny bit of hotness on the tongue.

Notes: Reviewed at Lucky Baldwins in Pasadena waiting at the bar for Amanda in 2012.

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Photo of AdamBear
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-Golden with a nice white head

S-smells like a mix of spicy witbier and an apple cider. The apple smell is fresh. Medium strength

T-comes in with a spicy and slightly bitter taste of pale Belgian wheats. It's a decent taste. Has a touch of booze to it. Has a light matching after-taste. Slightly syrupy.

M-medium creamy with a dry finish.

O-I'm not a huge fan of this here beer. It has just an off quality to it. The flavors really, really don't mesh together well at all. 

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.39/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3

11 ounce pour - $9.00 at Taco Mac in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: A hazy, dark golden appearance, with a slim coating of white suds.

Smell: Slightly grainy malts with a musty, yeasty apple-scented aroma, some additional fruitiness, various fragrant spice notes, and sharper alcohol whiffs.

Taste: A flash of sugared sweetness overtop grainy barley with some light doughy hints and wheat malt. Apples, along with additional orchard fruits blended as best it can with rose hips, cardamon, tangy green grapes, fresh herbs, drying phenols -- it's a bit soapy, perfumy at times. Additional maltiness with the sustained spices on the warming finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium-plus carbonation.

Overall: PC is a beverage that desperately needs to be paired with food. Me, I was fairly neutral about this contact.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
3.4/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

At tha lil wiener hipster joint - Linx, for some "frites" and a few brews.

Raul's brother ordered this not knowing what it was (he poured half out to me) and I sure wish that he didn't. Raul's like, yeah, he gets it, but like a floozy wearing wedges, he wishes that he didn't (get it, that is). It's palatable, and like a girl in wedges, he won't turn it away. But also like said hoochie, Raul wishes that this beer could just put some stilettos on.

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Photo of RuckusDu
3.41/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another DFH experiment. I have not been a fan in the past, but am always open minded. 750ml bottle into Duvel tulip.

A - Clear golden body. Head is very white with only slight yellow in it. Great lacing. Foam sticks around for a long while.

S - Very Beligan like in the aroma. Some lemon and banana. Lots of cloves. Simple and sweet.

T - A lot more tart than the smell. Still tons of clove and banana. Lemon sourness and just a hint of red and green apple. Nice.

M - Strong carbonation which is combined with a medium body.

O - If you like Belgian yeast and the like, you'll love this beer on a hot day. A nice lemon flavor added to it to make a good beer.

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Photo of 12ouncecurls
3.42/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - 2 fingers head, very fine bubbles with good lacing, color was slightly opaque being a bright, orange and honey mix.

S - sweet and fruity with a spicy, yeasty tinge to it.

T - well balanced considering the components, first reaction is dry for a cider and sweet for a beer, I do taste that banana/clove sensation that other reviewers have mentioned, did not taste any heat from the cayenne, but did notice the slightly soapy taste coming from the cilantro.

MF - pretty shapeshifting, I thought very creamy up front, but finishing pretty dry and bitter

O - I think it's a pretty well executed beer considering the components, however not a beer I would add to the list to remember, skip the cilantro and I would try again ( usually hate the taste unless the peppers have enough heat to overpower it)

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Photo of hops202
3.42/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a dogfish Spiegelau glass.

Decent look upon first pour. Smell is very similar to a hard cider. Taste is very crisp and cider like as well but than followed by a punch of yeast, maybe even the slightest bit sour at the end. Still very light and drinkable for a beer of 9% ABV. Dogfish can hide their alcohol well - much like a "designated driver."

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Photo of THECPJ
3.42/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes:

Appearance: murky orange brown with no head

Smell: apples, pears, coriander, spice,

Taste: apples, spice, malts,

Mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body

Overall: interesting take on a witbier. Definitely get some cider qualities from the apple and pears. Glad I got to try it.


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Photo of rdilauro
3.48/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours like a a light American Lager, except this one is somewhat more brilliant and you almost see some body in this beer. The head was a nice but short white creamy head.

I had a hard time picking out one assertive bouquet. There were several different noses going on, all nice. At the first sip, the apple taste can right through. It was a crisp , not to tart of an apple taste along with some very complimenting spices.

At each sip, I discovered more apple and spices. This is a soft big round beer that you will enjoy keeping in your mouth a bit. The aftertaste trails away gracefully and I always hope beers do.

A good beer for the Spring time

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.48/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a clean pale yellow color with a white head. In the aroma, a dryer malt, and almost pils like. In the taste, a dry fruitiness, with a small dry nuttiness. A small hop like bite and a medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry fruitiness in the aftertaste. Decent, fruity and quite lager like.

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Photo of brentk56
3.48/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color with a modest foamy head that leaves some splashy lace behind

Smell: Fuji apple and sweaty feet with a soapy aspect

Taste: Apple cider flavors, up front, with the cayenne adding heat in the middle; soapy flavors, after the swallow, though the cider flavors linger underneath

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: This is one of the Dogfish "misses" for me; really don't care for what the cilantro brings - normally I like cilantro but I am certainly not picking it up in this beer

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Photo of drabmuh
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brew pub in Rehoboth beach, served in a shaker pint. Beer is yellow and mildly hazy, white head, large bubbles, no lacing, low retention.

Aroma is apple-y and grainy, smells like a witbier.

I guess I can taste some of the apples but not the cilantro or the chayenne pepper. It tastes like a witbier and a grainy witbier at that. not a favorite. Not a repeat.

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Photo of ShanePB
3.51/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle
Served into a tulip

A: Chill hazed orange golden color with a big creamy, fluffy white head. Nice amounts of lacing sticking to the wall, as well as a really nice retention cap atop the whole way down.

S: Belgian yeast, corriander, peppercorn, spice, and some faint pressed apple juice towards the back. Not as overly cider-like in the aroma like expected. Muddles the line between a classic Witbier and some apple cider qualities, for sure.

T: Plenty of Witbier qualities up front; spice, corriander, orange peel and a very prominent Belgian yeast component. The apples are more on the back end, there isn't the slight tartness or sweetness that generally comes with a cider here at all. More dried apple skin, not really any "juice" either.

M: Bubbly, decently carbonated but the higher ABV gives this a fuller body than expected. When I think Witbier and cider, I don't think of this body. The alcohol is detectable on the back end and linger.

Another interesting experiment from Dogfish Head. I love trying their unique beers, and this one was decent. Nothing in it makes it amazing, but it's not bad either. Quite different but I was hoping more of the apple cider qualities were here.

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Positive Contact from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
3.86 out of 5 based on 1,097 ratings.
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