Hoegaarden Original White Ale | Brouwerij van Hoegaarden

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Hoegaarden Original White AleHoegaarden Original White Ale
Very Good
5,362 Ratings
Hoegaarden Original White AleHoegaarden Original White Ale

Brewed by:
Brouwerij van Hoegaarden

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by purplehops on 07-08-2001

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Ratings: 5,362 |  Reviews: 1,809
Photo of HaysAmerica
3.65/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a hefeweizen glass. Pours a nice hazy yellow color w/ quite a bit of nice white head. Lacing is minimal but that's ok. The nose is pretty typical. Coriander, orange peel, pepperish, a little bit of that bubble gum you get from a good wheat beer as well. A slight lemon to the nose.

Taste is as I would hope for. Nice bready & somewhat yeasty character. Could use a bit more of that in my opinion. The coriander is present & the orange peel provides a nice supporting character. Hops seem to be grassy & herbal providing a good contrast point. It seems a little watered down. Seems to e missing something. Ah, yes, that Belgian funk that makes those beers oh so distinct.

Mouthfeel is light on this & makes it very drinkable. Alcohol is in the average range so you can easily enjoy a few on a hot summer day. It's mildly refreshing & certainly provides much of the draw to this beer. Overall, I'm not blown away by it but I can see where this would be the quintessential starter for the style. Prosit!!

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Photo of dcook11
3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

A- Thick two finger soapy white head thats fades into a pencil thin one and eventually goes away all together. The beer itself looks similiar to Moutain Dew. Fizzy lemonade. Not really any lacing.

S- The smell is complex. The initial smell is of banana Laffy Taffy, clove, jasmin green tea annd belgian yeast. As it warms the jasmin green tea "bite" seems to fade into more of a candied sweetness dominated by the taffy and banana notes.

T- Initially banana, clove, belgian yeast, jasmin green tea. Just a kiss of bitterness at the finish. As it warms banana taffy dominates.

M- Light bodied with a crisp edge from the carbonation.

O- Great session brew. Low abv. Complex. Tasty.

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Photo of 24Beer92
3.76/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours out a very carbonated white frothy head thats about an inch and a half thick. Cloudy golden in color. You can deffinatly smell the lemon and almost a sweetness. Taste is somewhat watery even for a white ale. The lemon deffinatly stands out right away, dries out into the orange peel. The mouthfeel is very carbonated, almost feels like a champaign. Overall an ok beer for those who like a beer they can drink all night long. A beer i would deffinatly recommend if you like white ales.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a tap into a pintish-type glass at Rí Rá in Las Vegas, Nev. Just a touch of head. Color had a lemon look. Slight film/lacing.

First smell was banana. Also some other fruits - lemon mainly - and some cloves? Very refreshing smell.

Refreshing first sip with lots of flavors. Wheat and grain seemed to dominate. Also a light spice of something. Maybe pepper? Could have been the cloves. Ending taste had some kind of blood taste. But I like my blood, so it worked out.

Really great mouthfeel. It stayed good throughout and was much better out of the tap then out of the bottle (like I’ve had before). Average carbonation.

I’ve had this before, but I really enjoy this beer. It was even better out of the tap. Perfect for the summer.

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Photo of r0nyn
3.38/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at O'Donoghue's in Nyack. Served in a pint glass with a wedge of lemon (which was promptly evicted with great prejudice).

Cloudy and unfiltered, as is on par for the style. Minimal frothy white head that leaves trace amounts of lacing clinging to the inside of the glass. Smell has a prevalent amount of citrus notes, along with hints of coriander and other spices. Definite wheat component to it as well, along with an almost palpable breadiness in the nose. Mild and sweet malt notes round out the end.

Taste has the same essences as in the nose, just a little bit more subdued, which is both surprising and a little disappointing. I guess I was expecting a certain level of robustness and I didn't get it. Still, there are notes of citrus and spice to provide the major components of flavor, along with a twangy, slightly sweet wheatiness. A little bit of an acidic kick in the finish. Mouthfeel is pleasing, with a reasonably medium body and a finish that leans a bit to the dry side, but not all the way. Some zingy carbonation provides a bit of a tart pop at the end.

Not a bad witbier at all, and certainly better than the other offerings on tap. I would have preferred more of a flavorful experience, but Hoegaarden is a perfectly serviceable brew and still miles and miles ahead of that adjunct dross that passes for beer at most bars today.

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Photo of doktorhops
3.74/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Okay so as we all know by now that according to my personal opinion a beer (or anything for that matter) shouldn't be called "original" unless it is, well finally today I'm tasting a beer that IS the original of its style; Hoegaarden [sic] original white ale!

Poured from a 330ml bottle into a "chalice" type wine glass (yes I cleaned the glass well).

A: Well first off it looks pleasing with a cloudy yellow/gold body, like pineapple juice, and a bone white dense 1cm head that dissolves to a thin lacing.

S: Coriander and orange peel make an interesting addition to a brew that has some classic wheat beer aromas (cloves, banana, sourdough). There is a hint of sweetness like honey in there as well, however this is a background aroma.

T: This is where Hoegaarden really wins me over; spice & pepper flavours in the foreground overlay a bold grain character with fructose and sourdough back-notes... it has changed though... its definitely been watered down to some extent compared to how it used to taste... not sure when it happened but I suspect it had something to do with the recent price drop as I've had it before (late May '11 in fact) and it was much bolder in the flavour department.

M: Not as rich and creamy as a traditional wheat beer. Medium bodied, light Champagne frizzante with that oppressive wateriness reminding me of its former glory.

D: Still very drinkable however I am disappointed by whatever has happened with this fine ale. Given the choice I would easily pay extra to get back the flavour intensity it previously had. Oh well, c'est la vie!

Food match: I'm gonna put it out there; grilled salmon with a light salad and a fried potato cake... thats right.

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Photo of tito42
3.98/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle to my Boulevard tulip. Best by 04 JUL 2012 stamped on label.

A: Very cloudy, pale straw in color. Thick, foamy, white head with excellent retention and nice lacing.

S: Strong aroma of grassy wheat, doughy yeast, banana and white pepper.

T: Wheaty yeast with a cane sugar sweetness up front, yielding to a peppery finish.

M: Just a tad on the watery side, but a very pleasant finish that gives you spice and carbonation without drying the mouth.

O: A very good witbier. Less spicy and a little sweeter than its American counterparts, but just as tasty and overall better than most witbiers I've tried.

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Photo of CountJustinian
3.77/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tap pour into *shudder* a plastic cup...

Hard to evaluate the appearance of a beer in a plastic cup, but it looked run of the mill pale orange with some cloudiness and a decent head. Lemony smell was evident. Beer was crisp and very drinkable with powerful lemony/citrusy flavor for a white beer. I don't generally like to associate beers with seasons -- if it's good, it's good -- but there was something very clearly summery about this one. Would drink it again on a hot day. Very good for its style.

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Photo of DannyDan
3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a yellowish cloudy body with a creamy white head. The lacing and retention are good on this beer. The nose consists of lemon peel, hay, biscuit, and wheat. The taste starts out with a lemony hops taste along with some spices, pepper, yeast and biscuit. The mouthfeel is a crisp clean smooth finish that makes this a good choice for a summer beer.

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Photo of bierkoning
3.57/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

good beer. representative of the style.

pours from a bottle into a stemmed glass.

very light color, bright gold and yellows. Crisp white head that stands pretty tall for quite a while. decent lacing.

flavor is okay, a decent session beer, not amazing, but not bad. a little watery and just kind of lacking a tremendous amount of flavor.

I would drink it again, and of course, i never turn down a free beer :-)

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Photo of depechemode1983
3.37/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pretty good looking Witbier. Cloudy bright bright yellow in color. Retention is fantastic. Lacing is just patchy and random.

S - Wheat, clove spice, and lemon zest are right up front. Theres a nice lingering candy type sweetness in the middle with some peppery undertones. Pretty classic.

T - Very peppery. I dig it. Wheat lightens it up a bit and the lemon gives it a little kick. The candy like sweetness I was picking up in the nose is almost completely absent. Almost the complete opposite of the smell.

M - Medium bodied over all. Could use a little more carbonation. Border flat almost. Not horrible though.

O - Ive had this one on several occasions. I think the tulip glass really helped this one out. I don't remember this beer being this good.

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Photo of magictacosinus
3.6/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured in a pint glass as followed by instructions on the bottle. Freshness date is listed as 2/13/12.

Appearance: Cloudy (due to the yeast) with a pale, yellowish color. It poured a giant head that slowly shrinks.

Smell: A great sweet malty and wheat smell. Some notes of clove and citrus in there as well. Any fresh wheat-based beer should smell like this.

Taste: It tastes as sweet as it smells with cane sugar malt flavors, and contains an herb-tinged finish. The nice tasting yeast is actually the main factor for drinking this beer. The beer is quite watery, which is normal for beers of this type, and allows it to be a refreshing drink. However, for my liking, this is a bit to low on hops or even the extra kick of sweetness aided with more malts or alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Not much to really say, other than it is refreshing, easy to drink, and perfect for any time of the year - especially the summer.

Overall: This is still a good, classic example of witbiers and am happy to see that it's common to find in any average corner store. After revisiting this beer, however, I'm far more interested in trying the grand cru version that is only found in Belgium, as I've read that it's an unreal tasting experience!

Edit 8/29/11: This version of Hoegaarden is far better on tap, which earns a B+.

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Photo of Francepants06
3.62/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured a hazy light yellow beer with a large snow white head which dissipated slowly. Lots of carbonation.
It smell like bread, wheat, with citrus.
it tasted exactly like one of my least favorite styles, but overall it tasted great, it tasted of lemon grass, citrus, wheat, malt, bread, grainy. the mouthfeel was light to medium which definetely confirmed that this is a summer beer. I have tasted the bottle and on tap and I feel that on tap the beer has less of that wit taste, which i prefer.

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Photo of cmq103
3.6/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12-oz. bottle into a Hoegaarden Belgian Beer glass.

Appearance: Cloudy yellow with a decent 1/2" frothy head that stays around for a while. Decent spotty lacing as my glass emptied.

Smell: Moderate lemony citrus, coriander and clove spices. I don't sense much banana in the nose, which is kind of what I was hoping for. I also got a light bready/grassy aroma.

Taste: Slightly sweet citrus, but with a sourness to it. I also get a mild spicy wheat flavor. This is a pretty tasty beer.

Mouthfeel: Nice lively carbonation which allows the flavors to really shine. This is a crisp light Witbier beer, but a little on the watery side compared to other Witbier beers I've had.

Overall: I enjoyed this one but found it to be lighter in flavor to my two favorite Witbier beers: Allagash White and Southampton Double White Ale. I did like it better than Blue Moon, which I found to be a bit too sweet for my liking. This beer would go perfect on a hot summer day when you're lounging poolside in the backyard and want to have a few.

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Photo of MattyG85
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 11.2 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: Cloudy golden yellow with a moderate amount of bubbles. Solid two finger white head fades into a thin patchy layer. Lacing is pretty light.

Smell: A good amount of wheat and Belgian yeast with a strong aroma of coriander spice. Also some hints of orange peel, banana, clove, and lemon.

Taste: Like it smells. Lots of wheat and yeast with orange peel and coriander spices. Subtle hints of banana, lemon, and clove. Good balance between sweet and spicy.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a medium to high carbonation. Very smooth and zesty.

Overall: A very tasty and easy drinking white ale. Nicely balanced.

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Photo of NV9
3.96/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Nice looking beer, Interesting colour, not see through, almost looks like a cloudy Mountain Dew, but with a good amount of foam that lasted.

Very nice smell fruity/citrus for sure, with a faint wheat smell that is almost completely buried by the stronger citrus smell.

Good tasting beer, there is some spice evident in the taste that I didn't notice as much in the aroma.

The carbonation takes away from the mouthfeel to some extent but a good drinkable beer.

Overall, an above average white/witbier, much better than most of the Canadian immitators.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.65/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this on draft at Maewyn's in York -served chilled in a Hoegaarden glass.

The color is very hazy, cloudy golden with a thick 2 finger white cap the lace sticks ok and bead is very fine. The smell is good there is gentle wheat aroma with mild yeast esters, not forceful aromas, but not the style for that either. The feel is good, lots of creamy yeast and wheat smoothness with subtle spice and tanginess from the yeast which also works with the high carbonation level. I like how the sweetness is gentle and balanced by the spice with a semi-dry finish.

The taste is mild with some good flavors from the wheat which is cereal like -toasted and lightly sweet. There is a mild citrus tinge and hint of pepper from the yeast but overall this is flavored primarily from the wheat which has a nice fresh, clean flavor. The yeast adds to the beer without being to full to make it feel bready which I like. This is a good wit, not the best but it is an originator it has lost some footing to others in this style which I prefer like Allagash. I would not hesitate to drink this, since it is pretty widely available.

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Photo of rickyleepotts
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer smells very citrusy, and almost clean and crisp in the nose. I would almost want this beer served with a lemon wedge… or a lemon sphere. (Is that what you call it?) Anyway, this beer smells incredible. It's weird how beers smell so good and then how that can affect the flavor of the beer. The beer also looks carbonated in the glass… let's see what this brew tastes like.

Whoa! This beer punches you in the face, and that carbonation that I was talking about is still there. It's actually almost too carbonated. But it settles down as you move into the aftertaste. Speaking of the aftertaste, it sticks around. It lasts for a while actually. This beer would be a good summer beer. Hey, it's summer… makes sense, right?

The label is actually pretty cool too. Not sure what it means, but when I was sitting at the bar the lady beside me made a comment about it. (I actually used to see her all the time when I went into Kinko's. She is just a super nice lady!) Anyway, the beer is good. Not too uncommon, as most liquor stores will have it. Bottoms up people because this beer is good to the last drop.

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Photo of PokerGod
3.74/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass

Appearance- cloudy dishwater color. Not a beautiful color, but intriguing. Copious amount of head which lingers for a while before dissipating to a nice crown. Light lacing.

Smells nice. Spicy and fruity. Immediately upon smelling my tastebuds begin to water. the smell reminds me of when I used to smoke clove cigarettes. Very nice.

Taste- I taste the cloves that I smelled. Very spicy and yeasty. Quite nice.

Overall- Wheat beers aren't my favorite style, but this is a nice approachable wheat. It has a great spicy taste thats a bit different from others. a decent beer. I would consider buying again.

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Photo of gatorguy
3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've had this beer many times before, and is a favorite of mine in the summer, but never reviewed it until having some at Brewfest tonight. Pours a hazy yellow color with a nice finger head that fizzes to leave little lacing. Smell is wheaty, with some hints of lemon and banana. Taste is a nice mix of malts, some hops, wheat, lemon, and banana. Banana and a nice malty backbone prevail in the finish and serve to give a nice finish. Mouthfeel is light overall. This is one of my favorite witbiers, and a great summer brew.

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Photo of codfeast
3.85/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle to chalice.

A: hazy pale straw color, thin head, sticky lacing.

S: yeast, wheat, a hint of spice.

T: sweet to start(bananna, candy sugar) then turned to a mild spice, from the yeast.

M: Nicely carbinated, prickly on the tounge. a real nice dry finish.

O: A refrshing, crisp drinking beer. the flavors a toned down quite a bit, but it has a real nice balance.

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Photo of BeerAmbassador
3.15/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy pale with a bone white, two finger head. As it dissipates it leaves a thin film of froth on the top with just a bit of lacing. Aroma is assertive on the coriander and orange with maybe a bit of lemon and wheat in the background. Flavor is tart and refreshing, orange tartness upfront, coriander mid palate, but a bit of a watery finish. Not much length. Decent medium carbonation. I know that this is supposedly the first Belgian White ale, but something tells me over the years of being bought out by larger companies it has lost something along the way and become a more watered down version of it's original self. But that's just speculation I guess.

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Photo of fsvan
3.87/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into pint glass.

A- Very pale yellow, hazy unfiltered yeast show how witbiers got their name.

S- Potent smell. Tons of orange/orange peel, with a lot of spice that is hard to put my finger on. Together it smells like fermented orange.

T- Tons of orange. A lot of Belgian yeast. The spice (coriander?) comes through on the finish. No real hop presence. No detectable alcohol.

M- On the light side of medium.

O- A nice, affordable and easily obtainable wit.

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Photo of jcurtis55
3.83/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had my first Hoegaarden on tap at a PF Chang's. By far the best beer in their selection. I'd not tried Hoegaarden before, as I usually prefer the heavier maltier beers over hoppy beers, but this one was an excellent summer beer, and I was really taken with how well it went with the Chinese food, even the hot and sour soup. But the beer seemed to have a bit of sweet and sour mix itself. The first thing I did was pitch the orange slice they put in it. This isn't Corona, it doesn't need any help.

I was taken right away with how light a yellow this beer was with a very nice white head, but this is my first time trying a Witbier. It was a touch cloudy and produced a nice lace.

It was hard to get much of a read on aroma, as it was served up in a pilsner glass, but I primarily got fruit and corriander.

The taste was similar to the smell, but I got more hops at the midway point of the drink. The citrusy taste along with the spice and hops made a nice combo.

I'd always avoided the white beers, assuming the would be too light to intrigue me, but Hoegaarden opened my eyes and leaves me willing to try some more Witbiers.

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Photo of Stocean1
4.23/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - 2 finger fluffy white head on a pale banana almost white colour - huge head retention with gooey lacing which clings to the side of the glass for dear life

S - citrus orange lemon hint of banana and of course wheat malt - floral and some coriander - spectacular scent

T - similar to the scent except far more subdued although still very nice

M - creamy light bodied brew - slightly dry with medium carbonation - this is an incredibly sessionable beer

O - how have I not picked this up before??? This really is one of the best hot summer day brews on the planet - Easy drinking yet with plenty of flavor

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Hoegaarden Original White Ale from Brouwerij van Hoegaarden
Beer rating: 3.78 out of 5 with 5,362 ratings