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Wells Banana Bread Beer | Wells & Young's Ltd

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Wells Banana Bread BeerWells Banana Bread Beer

Brewed by:
Wells & Young's Ltd
United Kingdom (England)

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by rastaman on 08-15-2002

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Reviews: 884 | Ratings: 3,015
Photo of tobelerone
2.82/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A clear orange colored beer; not much of a head. What’s there falls fast; minimal lacing remains.

Aroma is all sweet bananas and toasty malt. Not bad, vaguely artificial however.

Taste follows the nose; simple sweet banana flavor with light maltiness, again the slightly fake fruit taste. More like extract than fresh bananas.

Medium-thin body, medium carbonation. Slight creaminess but overall a bit lacking in the mouthfeel department.

I wanted to like this beer; I certainly like bananas. It just wound up as a disappointment to me. Flavor is so-so at best and lacks that comforting hominess one associates with banana bread. Mouthfeel seems off and the whole thing just doesn’t gel all that nicely.

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Photo of John_M
3.4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I'm still kicking myself for ordering a glass of this at Max's the other day. Told myself I needed to be less stodgy, don't always have to order IPA's and Belgiums. Sigh...

The beer pours a light amber color with good head retention and lacing. On the nose, well, the beer smells like banana bread. A rather sweet and malty banana bread if truth be known. However, as soon as I tasted this beer I knew I'd been had. The banana aroma is a complete gimmick, and the beer itself is very light, thin, watery and simple. Finish is practically non-existent. I could tell the abv. was pretty low, but even so I would not describe this beer as very drinkable.

This beer isn't poison, but it's nothing special either. Very unimpressive.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.5/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 500mL bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: clear, deep orange body, rather like an IPA. Head is two fingers of pillowy ivory foam with moderate retention. Looks rather good.

Smell: smells kind of like malty bananas. The banana aroma walks the line between smelling like fresh bananas and smelling like artificial banana flavoring. The bottle says both "brewed with bananas" and "banana flavor added", so maybe this is exactly what is going on.

Taste: this beer has a very biscuity, bready kind of flavor going on. Banana flavor is more natural but the intensity is quite toned down from the aroma. It's not my favorite beer ever, but it is a great example of truth in advertising: this tastes just like banana bread.

Mouthfeel: light-medium body with an OK level of carbonation. I think a little bit more body would be great here; the creaminess would complement the banana very well.

Drinkability: pretty darn drinkable. I think the novelty of the flavor and the bit of sweetness would start to wear pretty thin on me, though, after a couple of pints. This is a very middle-of-the-road beer; definitely worth trying but not something I'd want too often.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
2.75/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Copper with a white head that leaves some lacings.

S: Obivous ripe bananas, and maybe a faint malty tone.

S: At first there is sweet ripe bananas, then it's a bit funky, and after that there is unbalanced bitter hops. You can also trace some pepper mint.

M: Turns a bit more bitter but it's not very positive.

D: I'm kind of confused - is this a candy-shot or is this beer? I won't buy it again, but it was an interesting experience never the less.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.62/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the 25 fl. oz. bottle no. 23/03/11-A-L0083-04:04. Sampled on September 7, 2010. The pour is copper-amber with a lot of fluffy tan head that slowly pops downward although it remains about a quarter inch thick. The aroma bursts with banana flavorings, tropical fruits, and a malt character. The taste had a solid bitterness with banana flavorings mixed in. It lives up to its name.

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Photo of weeare138
3.47/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears a transparent amber with a small, white head that slowly fades into a mild collar. Tiny speckles of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of obvious banana, heavy caramel, biscuit, and a touch of vanilla.
Taste is of the aromas. Heavy caramel leads the way with a touch of banana that seems to be hidden in the background.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, heavy of crystal malt, slightly astringent due to sweet grain.
Hmmm...an interesting concept that I can give them credit for trying. I'd rather just stick to having a slice of banana bread with a nice, robust porter, or milk stout.

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Photo of Derek
3.38/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear, copper-amber with an off-white head, ring of retention leaves a bit of lace.

Definitely some banana in the aroma... it seems real, and somewhat over-ripe. Light breadyness; bit of caramel.

Some underlying banana bread in the flavour, but it's very british (earthy & buttery). Light caramel sweetness, modest bitterness.

Moderate body has a hint of residual sweetness.

Overall it's interesting, but I'd certainly prefer a German Wheat.

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Photo of dar482
3.48/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color is a wonderful light copper/amber with a big foamy head.

The aroma is great. Sweet bread, big Belgian yeast, banana, light citrus.

The flavor is a bit funny. It has some sweet banana, then a funky yeast, breadiness, and crystal malt. The body is lighter than a “bread” beer. The mix of banana and breadiness reminds me a lot of the Weinhenstephaner Dunkel, but obviously not there.

I ended up making banana bread with most of the beer, which was great. I wouldn’t normally drink it because of its confusing flavor. The aroma is nice at least.

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Photo of jdhilt
2.02/5  rDev -42.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a three finger cream head that fades slowly leaving a trace of lace. Chrystal clear amber color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Strong banana nose. Starts as a malty/hop mix but then the banana flavor kicks in, a strange soapy banana aftertaste. $4.09 for a 19.25oz bottle from John's Market Place Tigard, Or. The bottle ABV is 5.2%.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
2.24/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

I've actually had this multiple times before, but either my review's been lost or I've not actually reviewed it before. This was a 500ml clear bottle purchased from Dan Murphy's in Alexandria.

Pours a clear burnished golden colour, almost tending towards amber. Head forms a bubbly froth on pouring, but settles out to a modest ring with some slick film across the top. Minimal lacing, and the body looks quite weak. Not a great look all up: it would be better on a hand-pump.

Nose is much more like those banana lollies you get than true banana or even the eponymous banana bread. Sickly sweet, quite cloying and most artificial. Swirling it doesn't help much, although some of the malt comes through a little, giving some more golden syrup and treacle which strangely enough helps make it a little less sweet and cloying.

Taste is mercifully less cloying and sickly, but it maintains that artificial banana character right from the start to the back of the palate. Apart from that, there's a rather loose grainy malt character that oddly feels rather empty: as though there's no real substance to the sweetness of the banana. Fine but prickly carbonation also countermands some of the cloy, but adds a fizzy acidity to the mix which doesn't work well at all.

Overall, this is pretty poor stuff. The banana is a gimmick and no more, and it doesn't work with the other characters of the beer at all. It certainly doesn't live up to its moniker, a concept I can believe would actually make a rather tasty brew.

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Photo of corby112
3.3/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden orange color with a one finger off-white foam head that quickly settles into a thin ring. No lacing to speak of.

Aroma is dominated by ripe banana with a decent malt backbone and slight hops. Bready yeast along with the ripe banana notes make this smell exactly like banana bread.

Surpisingly hop forward with a some nice floral characetr. The flavor is again dominated by a sugary sweet banana flavor. Slightly bready medium body which is pretty crisp and clean with some biscuit nutty malt. Kind of a silly gimmick but actually succeeds in tasting like banana bread.

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Photo of rudzud
3.52/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had tried this at a beerfest a year or so ago and remember liking it. I must have been a few in, because this isnt nearly as good as I recalled. Purchased at Julio's.

A - Poured into a pint glass. It is a light copper pour with a half finger white head that quickly faded leaving a slight halo around the glass.

S - Not bad, sweet banana extract type aromas and thats pretty much it.

T - Similar to the nose this is mostly the banana extract type flavour with maybe a hint of nutty flavor at the end that resembles walnut. Some slight bitterness as well

M - Medium carbonation with this results in a somewhat crisp mouthfeel.

D - Not digging this as much as I did before. Smell and taste is a bit too artificial for me, resulting in an almost fake tasting brew. Just didnt do it for me.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.65/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I love Banana Bread but I did not love this beer as much as I do the real thing of course but it was a good effort. It was ok though. Poured with a nice cream head that fades slowly leaving a trace of lace. Had a clear amber color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Strong banana nose. Starts as a malty/hop mix but then the banana flavor kicks in, a strange soapy banana aftertaste.

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Photo of wl0307
3.15/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Coming in a 500ml clear bottle (why has the brewery changed the bottle from brown to clear anyway???), filtered and pasteurised. BB 31/07/09, served cool in a straight imperial pint glass.

A: dark amber hue with good clarity and constant flows of moderate carbonation; the beige frothy head settles to a thin cap to last.
S: banana oil (the sharp edge of the scent), overripe bananas and buttery bread, "almost" like a banana-cake that the cask-conditioned version was reminiscent of. Also a touch of melted caramel lingers in the background, along with a little plastic edge which maybe rings a bell of banana-flavouring.
T: slightly spicy (a bit like dried green olives) and weird-herbally bitter on top of a much more restrained taste of banana-flavouring, grainy malts, and medium-bodied biscuity malts; a long but again, weird, sour undertones of fruitiness almost like mango-skins or apricots lingers. In the aftertaste, the bitterness stays at a low level but sufficient to provide some hints of hops.
M&D: slightly fizzy on the texture, medium- to thin-bodied for a 5.2%abv. ale, and the filtered+pasteurised version is way less enjoyable as the cask-conditioned version. I guess, without a slightly richer and fresher body as the cask version demonstrated, the more artificial and thin side of this beer has simply woken up to rock the boat.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.45/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: bright sunset orange color with a small off white head.

S: Huge fresh banana bread aroma, with some light toasted notes.

T: Leaves a fresh banana residue coating on tongue. Hops are bitter floral and balanced well with flavor. There is some spicy alcohol in the finish. Good banana flavor, spicy hopping. Not terribly complex just bananas.

M: Creamy mouthful, big spicy banana bread flavor.

D: Moderate overall but good for what it is, a banana beer. novelty wears off pretty quick and becomes a rather a boring drink after one.

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Photo of clayrock81
4.08/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A seethru dark golden body with minimal head but it was a little rocky and it kept up with the beer. A light banana and yeast smell, nothing else. The taste is banana bread and that is it. I could see how other people might not like it that much, but I love banana bread so I thought this was great. A mediumish body that went down extra smooth - liquified banana bread. A little pricey, but I will have another one.

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Photo of akorsak
3.69/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to ksak for sharing this bottle from Al's of Hampden.

A: The beer is an autumnal yellow/brown combination that hasn't list its translucence. Not much head on pour or thereafter.

S: The label doesn't lie. This is as close to banana nut bread as I've ever come in a liquid. The banana is intense, freshly pureed, but very nice. A big score on the nose, even if it is sweetened up artificially.

T: The ale is fairly one dimensional, with the banana acting as star of the show. The sweetness doesn't linger for long though. Before it passes on, a grainy graham element mixes with the fruit to create a banana cream pie flavor. After the fruit passes, things fall apart quickly.

M: The upfront dose of banana works for as long as it lasts. The creaminess pairs well with banana.

D: An interesting ale. Banana as a sole ingredient (and not a yeast by-product)? Paint me surprised.

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Photo of cjgator3
3.6/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16.9oz bottle. Pours a golden amber color with a white head. The aroma features a good amount of banana. The taste has a little bit less banana flavor but it is still evident. The mouthfeel is light bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Overall, this is a pretty decent brew tha is definitely worth a try.

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Photo of Haybeerman
3.27/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Bright clear golden/orange color. Poured a wispy white head that dissipated immediately to a skim that was thicker on the edges. Laced inconsistently in thin rings.

S: Nailed the banana bread; sweet, overripe bananas. A light earthy spice (maybe?).

T: Bananas and sweet malt. No noticeable hop character. Somehow the beer is not cloying. Does seem taste is artificial.

M: Light to medium body. Moderate carbonation. Smooth with a little CO2 on the back.

O: Surprisingly drinkable. Not terribly balanced. Not a big fan of artificial flavors either.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.37/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3


Appearance - Clear amber/copper colour with a small size fizzy white coloured head. There is a slightly lower than average amount of carbonation and there is a fair amount of lacing. The head lasted for maybe 2 minutes... if that.

Smell – Bananas, malts, caramel, grains

Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and of course most of the taste is made up of bananas. it actually reminded me a little bit of how a banana Popsicle tastes. There are also some malt flavours and some caramel. The beer finishes with a banana sweet aftertaste.

Overall – Well.. it tasted kind of like banana bread I guess.. It's definitely worth trying this beer just for novelty. I'm not sure I could drink more than 1 in a sitting though. I don't think I'd buy it again.

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Photo of wordemupg
2.95/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

500ml bottle poured into pint glass April,3 2011

A clear copper with a very short lived finger of head that leaves no lace

S smells like bruised banana and adjunct lager with some bread crust

T what I smell with a little spice I can't quite place

M thin but well carbonated and a long length but I'm not loving the aftertaste

O not one for me, I don't mind banana flavors in the right beer but not like this

pretty basic and tastes very synthetic, it's not that it tastes bad but it doesn't taste like beer to me. pretty average and I'm not sure what market they're trying to target with this one

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Photo of VelvetExtract
3.17/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Bottle. Pours a copper color. Aroma is not what I was hoping. I wanted to smell some banana with bread complements. Instead I got a big whiff of artificial Laffy Taffy banana. Not enamored with the nose at all. The flavor was a little less intense but I don't get a banana bread flavor as much as I get a fake banana flavor. Subtle, creamy feel to the body. My hunch that this would be fake-flavored was why I had advoided this beer even though I love banana bread.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.57/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

16.9 ounce bottle, best before 3/31/2009. Served in a Sam Adams BL glass, the beer pours a clear copper/amber color with a half inch white head that went away very quickly. Lacing is average. It smells like a combination of overripe bananas and banana nut bread. Taste is pretty similar to the aroma, but there's also a nice slightly hoppy bitter aftertaste that lingers around a while. It does taste mostly like banana nut bread. Mouthfeel/body is light, with average carbonation. Drinkability is OK, but I don't think I could drink more than a bottle of this at a time. But it is smooth and it's not hard to drink at all. If you like bananas then you should like this beer.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.96/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Man I have been waiting for an individual to try ever since I found a big bottle case.

Poured into my tulip tasting glass.

A - Clear yellowish in color with little to no head.
S - Best part of this ale was the smell. Fresh baked bread banana bread on the nose. Very inviting.
T - Not as much banana taste as expected. Mostly dominated by a bread malt flavor but the bitter bite was pretty harsh.
M - Kind of harsh to drink. Could it be the ABV because at this low I really didn't expect the bite.
D - It's a good thing I didn't pick up a case because I really don't seem to like it. Good novelty beer though!

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Photo of Immortale25
3.6/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery snifter. Bottleneck says 20/08/14.

A- Pours a reddish dark amber color with a 1/2 inch off-white head that retains a bit before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of bubbly surface foam. Non-resilient lacing leaves a jagged ring behind.

S- Bready malt with a hint of toffee and, sure enough, banana bread. Small hint of oxidation.

T- Gotta hand it to 'em: it really tastes like banana bread. Sweet, fruitcakey banana bread with some malt and a slight tinge of alcohol in the back. It's also not too sweet and overbearing. Balanced isn't the word since it's pretty one-dimensional but it's easy to drink...that is if you like banana bread like I do. Minimal hop bitterness.

M- Slightly syrupy with medium carbonation and a body leaning toward the fuller side.

O- Not something I would drink all the time, but it's neat to revisit every once in a while (got this particular bottle for free) just to remember that there is a beer out there that tastes exactly like banana bread.

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Wells Banana Bread Beer from Wells & Young's Ltd
3.51 out of 5 based on 3,015 ratings.
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