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Hell Or High Watermelon Wheat Beer | 21st Amendment Brewery

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730 Reviews
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Hell Or High Watermelon Wheat BeerHell Or High Watermelon Wheat Beer

Brewed by:
21st Amendment Brewery
California, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-10-2002

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Reviews: 730 | Ratings: 2,700
Photo of Sammy
3.32/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Someone sent me a can as an extra from the West Coast. Hey its an extra and they hadn't thought that fruit beers are not normally my thing. Pours a light pinkish tinge colour with quick fizzing disapearing head. Mild sweet aroma. The taste is acceptable for a few gulps, light mouthfeel. This isn't real watermelon put in the tank.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.46/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap for the 4th Anniversary event at Blue Palms Brewhouse in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours a hazy orange with a foamy bone colored head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of wheat, grain, yeast, spices, and some slightly fruit (but not watermelon) aromas. Taste is much the same with a very mild watermelon flavor on the finish. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is refreshing but the watermelon presence is mild and hard to pick out in my opinion.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.53/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

tough to make watermelon work in a beer, and they have done a nice job keeping this from being too sugary, but the watermelon seems more like a candy or a juice drink than a natural piece of fruit, and so its odd in a very light and mild wheat brew. this is cool when its ice cold and super hot out, even cool in a celebration where you might spray beer everywhere, but for contemplative beer drinking, it leaves a bit to be desired. they cant all be intellectual projects though, and so we have to appreciate this for what it is. its a really easy drinking, not too sweet, light bodied, highly carbonation fruity but not too fruity, wheaty but not too wheaty summer brew that has plenty of capacity for refreshment. i reckon its a little underrated on here, the juicy watermelon goes well with the pale wheat, and its fermented down pretty clean. right from the can at a music festival or out on a boat or something is where this one belongs. one of the better large scale watermelon beers i have had to be honest, but i must confess the field is a little weak. appealing for one or two, less so beyond that.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.78/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This is the first Watermelon beer I've ever had. The color was hazy and yellow the aroma was sweet and had the natural aroma of the watermelon. The flavor was a little of te light side. It wasn't that bad but I think that if a watermelon wedge was added to this while drinking that it would amp this brew up and make it a lot better.

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Photo of metter98
3.18/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is pale yellow in color and poured with a thin white head and quickly faded away.
S: There are light aromas of wheat with hints of watermelon in the smell.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, except that the watermelon flavor is a bit more prominent.
M: It feels light-bodied and watery on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer definitely goes down very easy but has an unremarkable taste. It would be a good choice for a hot summer day when you are just looking for a cold beer but not much else.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.71/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Nothing tastes more like summer than the unofficial fruit of watermelon. And when trying to use that refreshing taste to create an unofficial beer of summer the concern is whether the delicate and crisp taste could stand up- even to a light American Wheat Beer.

But as the beer pours, there's little evidence of the fruit inside. The hazy straw ale is nicely golden at its depths. A certain tilt of the glass can show a pinkish stain, but maybe that's also my mind playing tricks on me. Its foamy head rises with a character that's partly frothy and partly sprite. With retention and lacing both moderate, I get the impression that its head character would underwhelm if I allowed the session to last very long.

There it is! Not just watermelon, but all sorts of melon with strawberry and cantaloupe. And with supporting aromatics of bread and pulled candy- the scent hinges on hard candy flavor with those fruity scents front and center. Not all fruit, the beer's mild citrus and leafy aromas cast a hoppy note on the senses going into taste.

Its flavors start earthy and sweet as the wheat of the beer is mildly grainy-sweet and filled with shortbread. The melon flavors start moderate and continue to build, each sip more heightened than the other with a taste that hinges of the dripping ripeness of watermelon and that of candy. Yet its herbal, leafy and mildly grassy finish returns to hops as the ale crispens right up.

Light bodied from sip 'til finish, the ale is somewhat watery, but perhaps by design. Its creamy-dry upstart quickly sheds its carbonation to usher in a grainy and wafer-thin finish to prop up the taste. Its finish is herbal and grassy with minty warmth.

Akin to Abita's Strawberry Harvest, the ale underneath the fruit offers tepid support and the fruit, though truly seductive seems a bit contrived. If the balance is off, then it is beautifully off. I have a soft spot on my palate for these types of beer.

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Photo of brentk56
3.77/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dirty pale lemon color with a very modest head; not much in the way of retention or lace

Smell: Oddly enough, I pick up a bit of spice cake with a chocolate dusting; the watermelon is present, but hidden beneath the other aromas

Taste: The watermelon comes through much more so upon the taste, with hints of the chocolate powder and spice cake being much less pronounced than in the aroma; after the swallow, the flavor fades but the hints of watermelon reappear at the very end

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: The beer grew on me; I like that it is not sweet and has some underlying complexity; I doubt I would seek it out very often but kudos to the brewer for developing a signature recipe

Thanks, hoppymeal, for the opportunity

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Photo of biboergosum
3.31/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz can, procured somewhere in Southern Idaho last month. I like the lounging Lady Liberty image on the label, where she's lifting a gargantuan watermelon from a passing barge in San Francisco Bay.

This beer pours a hazy bright medium golden hue, with two fingers of frothy, foamy white head, which leaves little in the way of persistent lacing around the glass as things melt away. It smells of fruity wheat grain, melon-like, I suppose, with a fair amount of dry yeast. The taste is soft sweet wheat malt, and frozen watermelon fleshy fruitiness, with a bit of grassy hop bitterness. The carbonation is quite low, the body light, but not without weight, mostly of the fruity variety, which renders things rather smooth. It finishes off-dry, and clean, the initial eponymous fruit punch (heh) petering out.

While not a bad beer overall, the focus on the watermelon as guest starring ingredient has predictably feeble results - an echo of an already delicate flavour doesn't add up to strong, memorable flavours. That said, agreeable enough for days like this (+30 degrees), where ease of drinkability and cute advertising rule.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
2.21/5  rDev -33%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2

Can: Poured a light yellow color ale with a small pure white foamy head with minimal retention. Aroma of watermelon and light wheat malt is weird and not really enticing. Taste is a mix between some watermelons which is more dominant then expected with some light wheat malt. Body is thin with light carbonation. Boring thin wheat with light watermelon flavours.

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Photo of emerge077
3.01/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Into a tumbler it pours a pale golden orange color. Some feeble foam clings to one side, a loose texture to the bubbles. Visible carbonation, murky clarity.

Smells like any other "wheat beer"... bland and somewhat grainy. Not much discernable watermelon, though there's an indistinct fruity note to it.

Some watermelon flavor, though accompanied by a bland watery character, more like the white rind than the sweet red fruit. Light astringency, the mouthfeel is basically nonexistent. Probably not something i'd revisit personally. Cool new can design though.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
3.67/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Loved the first beer I had from this brewery.. another cool name and artwork on the can for this one. 5.2% ABV for a fruit beer? Damn, pretty high there. Pours a cloudy yellow.. not much head to it and little lacing if any. Smell is slightly sweet with some pale malt aroma in there. Taste is fairly light bodied with a decent mouthfeel, nice wheaty taste to it with a kiss of watermelon flavor at the end. I appreciate the fact that they didn't overdo the watermelon and make it way too sweet. Also, they didn't make it hidden either and you can actually taste it.. found a nice happy medium here. A pretty solid fruit beer, won't blow your socks off but pretty drinkable and pretty unique.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.18/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale yellow with a thin white head that recedes fairly quickly and does not leave much lacing behind. Nose is pretty one dimensional with watermelon dominaing. Semi-sweet but not overly ripe. Taste is similar, although a bit of the wheat characteristics make heir way through. Feel is a bit light but well carbonated. Drinkability is decent, and this is better than many other fruit forward APWAs.

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Photo of jlindros
3.75/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Good 2 finger head with retention pale white-ish orange color not very opaque

N: Nose has some wheat and some biscuit but mostly watermelon and touch of cream

T: Taste has watermelon right up front, some nice wheaty flavors, a little yeasty and some sweet sugars but otherwise not sweet at all, a little special B type malts with Belgian creaminess, little biscuit and slight hop

M: Mouth is light and a little airy but also creamy

F: Finish is pretty dry and has a slight bitterness on the finish but more watermelon on the tongue, pretty refreshing beer surprisingly

Final Thoughts: Bought this beer for my wife to try to get her into beers with a watermelon, but turns out this is closer to a "real" beer than a fruity watermelon beer. It has a nice malty and wheaty biscuit taste and followed with some slight hops. I liked it more than her. My guess is Nikko and Shaun tried to make a Watermelon beer that beer drinkers could enjoy too, or as the last step between a fruity mellow beer and an IPA. It's also a great summer drinking beer after a hot day.

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Photo of mothman
3.12/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours ½ finger of white head. Little retention. Color is a light hazed golden yellow.

Aroma: Watermelon and wheat. Lemon zest and spice. Earthy.

Taste: Watermelon and cantaloupe. Spices and zest flavors. Wheat. Lemons. Earthy hops.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and smooth. Refreshing. Lighter bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends kind of dry.

Overall, this is a refreshing summer beer, but not crazy. Not very much to say about this one.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.38/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can into a pint glass. Special thanks go to thequeue for this back in the Secret Santa '08 BIF.

Pours a clear gold with several fingers of rigid brite-white head. Retains with a thin layer of foam that skims the surface, leaving spotty lacing back that sticks. The aroma is light bread and floral tones with a definite fruity sweetness to it but I'm not readily picking it out as watermelon though.

The taste is pale malts balanced my some light hop activity. Watermelon is much more evident in the taste. The taste isn't overdone but does come off as a bit artificial. The mouthfeel, as you would expect, is light bodied with a soft carbonation and all around easy feel.

There was anything actively bad about this but IMO, watermelon just doesn't cut it as a fruit in my beer. It always comes out tasting like someone threw a watermelon Jolly Rancher into a light-bodied Pale Ale. Just not my cup-of-tea.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.75/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

21st Amendment's Watermelon Wheat Beer pours a hazy orange body with a bit of a pinkish cast and golden highlights. The creamy white head holds fairly well, and it leaves some initial splatters and splashes of lace about the glass.

The aroma is quite bold, and displays fresh-cut watermelon rind.

The flavor is a little more fruit-like, a touch sweet, and remarkably authentic. It starts sweet, reveals its watermelon character, and then fades readily from the palate with just a little bit of melon flavor left behind.

It's interesting and quite easy to drink, but a bit one-sided. However, it makes a great summer beer, and would probably be great at backyard barbeques!

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Photo of mactrail
4.09/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Nearly clear golden yellow with a pile of suds and lots of lacing in the tall Blanche de Chambly glass. Slightly tangy with a persistent but mild flavort of watermelon. Some wheaty taste with a malty flavor. Light bodied but silky on the tongue.

Clean, refreshing, with a flavor of cucumber when you take a sip, followed by the watermelon aromatics. Warm with just a touch of sweetness. I don't know why this is hated so much, by some anyway. But then I hate cinnamon in beer. Thoroughly drinkable. From the 12 oz can purchased at Whidbey Beer Works in Oak Harbor, Washington.

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Photo of chinchill
3.29/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle, then revised with a sample on tap in September 2015.
Hazy golden body with a good head.
The aroma is not as appealing as the flavor which is good and has an actual watermelon note.
I suppose this requires a fairlly mild flavor in order for the watermelon to shine through.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.53/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Muddy lemon with a significant yeasty blurriness. The ivory colored crown maxed out at several fingers and looks good enough, both after the pour and as it descends. I like the lack of clarity and the attractive array of frost-like lace.

If I use my imagination, there *might* be a whiff of watermelon in the nose. Otherwise, the beer smells dull and not very distinctive, like an especially tart 'n tangy APWA. The flavor has some serious work to do. As is often the case, warming opens things up enough for the next highest score to be granted.

Hallelujah! Hell Or High Watermelon Wheat Beer actually tastes like the fruit for which it's named. This is one unique beer. It gets high marks for having just the right amount of fruit flavor and for tasting natural rather than artificial. I guess that's what happens when 400 lbs of melons are used per batch.

The base beer is less than outstanding. There isn't much malt, it tastes a bit grainy and there's a little too much bitterness. Maltier and sweeter would be better, as long as the amount and quality of the watermelon juiciness remains the same. The finish is kinda, sorta crisp and quenching.

Although it isn't wonderful, the mouthfeel has just enough going for it to be considered above average. It's light-medium, is firmer than it is smooth and is generously bubbled. Not bad... not bad.

Hell Or High Watermelon Wheat succeeds because it tastes authentically watermelon-like. That's a good start. Here's hoping that 21st Amendment isn't completely satisfied and continues to tweak the recipe. Thanks to Georgiabeer for the opportunity.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.55/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce can - $5.25 at Taco Mac in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours out a hazed, light yellow body with a small, quickly evaporating, white head.

Smell: Huh. No more than a very nominal wheat character and the purported fruit addition provides for a mere hint of greenish, vegetal tones. You could've said it was zucchinis and I would've gone along with it.

Taste: Lightly sweet, minor taste of wheat malt. Faintly grainy. Near nil bitterness throughout. Thin trace of watermelon husks which holds until the flat, yawnworthy finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Sorry, but this one just didn't do it for me. It's difficult for me to be particularly interested in a bland wheat ale with a boring watermelon character. Bummer.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.35/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz can into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep yellow color, with a thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of wheat, watermelon, citrus, light caramelized malts, citrus and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out fruity and a little bready with a strong watermelon sweetness followed by wheat and a hearty malt character. There's a mild hops presence that brings some balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly bready.

M: Smooth and crisp, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, this a decent fruit beer to drink for a while, but unless you're in the mood for the watermelon flavor there isn't much to this beer that would make me want to drink it otherwise.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: can from Pinocchio's beer garden, Media, PA

Interesting idea, and I've seen it around enough to the point where I had to pick up a can.

Poured clear golden into a tumbler. Big white foamy head that dissipated after a few minutes to just a thin layer. Aroma (first impression) was stale and unimpressive, and I started having doubts that I picked up a bad beer. Then I took a sip. Watermelon!!! Very distinct, very fruity, but not overbearing or sickeningly sweet, and truly watermelon. Very light and smooth, no acidic harshness that often pervades wheat beers. Light body, easily drinkable. Great summertime beer. I want more.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got a can of this one as an extra recently and decided to open in it up with lunch the other day. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was enjoyed on 08/30/2009.

The pour was very nice, light with a big fizzy white head on top. Lots of carbonation was visible throughout the session, really a very lively looking beer through the light yellow color. Aroma was light, small hop notes, hints of light candy, like a jolly rancher almost with a light touch of grain. Same goes for the taste. Clea, crisp and very refreshing it was an easy session beer for me. Very light, with a candy like aftetaste, it really did taste like they brewed it with a jolly rancher, just really had that kind of flavor. Not much aftertaste and to be honest it went down like water for me.

Overall nicely done. I would go here again, why not. A bit light for me to really call it a fruit beer, but I have had some damn nice fruit beers lately. Still more then decent though.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.83/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I purchased this at Shawan in Liquors in Md. Poured chilled from the can into a goblet

A - a hazy light marigold color w/ 2 fingers of soapy head w/ tiny bead, The wheat has good retention as lace clings to the glass

S - The smell has a malty, creamy wheat aroma w/ slight fresh mown hay scent and mild sweet esters w/ subtle wheat toastiness

M - The feel has mild sweetness and relatively full body for the strength w/ a high effervescent intro and sweet middle, but drops off significantly and finishes smooth and clean

T - A crisp wheat flavor w/ mild watermelon note w/ light fruit ans subtle rind taste w/ toasty, creamy wheat flavor. The flavor finishes off w/ slightly sweet and mild watermelon juice flavor.

D - A really drinkable wheat w/ nice complimentary watermelon taste - not overdone and adds to the overall drinkability - a refreshing wheat/fruit combo.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.45/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On-tap at 21A

A: The beer comes with a small piece of watermelon affixed to the glass (a la an orange/lemon with hefeweizens of ill-repute). The beer is a slightly hazed straw color.

S: The nose definitely exhibits some watermelon, but it is more watermelon rind in nature. A bit of sweet, bread malt underneath.

T: Plenty of watermelon flavor, so at least it lives up to its name. Mostly watermelon rind and watermelon jolly rancher with just a hint of wheat.

M: The body is on the lighter side with plentiful carbonation.

D: I don't know how much of this I'd actually be interested in drinking at a time, but it's not a bad beer. Quite refreshing and better than some of the other beers that were on tap.

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Hell Or High Watermelon Wheat Beer from 21st Amendment Brewery
3.3 out of 5 based on 2,700 ratings.
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