Little White Lie | Russian River Brewing Company

very good
59 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
Russian River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by xlperro on 07-17-2004

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Reviews: 59 | Ratings: 230
Photo of ikats
4.8/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I picked up my growler of Little White Lie at the brewpub and drank it a few days later. Hazy, bright yellow in color with fluffy white head. Since I like this beer a lot, I'll describe it as happy yellow in color or better yet, smily face yellow.

Aroma is full of spices - coriander and others. Very inviting. Taste contains some citrus notes. This beer is very balanced. It's playful on the tongue, but goes down smoothly without any unpleasant notes.

This beer is light-body and crisp. Wondeful on any day, but especially great on hot summer days. Very easy to drink and refreshing.

I really enjoyed this offering from Russian River. American wit beers often disappoint me, but this one is refreshingly different. I am really impressed and it's reflected in my score for this beer.

Kudos to the Russian River team!

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Photo of GClarkage
4.58/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

08/04/05- On tap at the Toronado in San Francisco, CA

Presentation- From the tap into a standard pint glass.

Appearance- Looks like a cloudy lemonade. Creamy thick head and excellent lacing.

Smell- Sweet and super spicy. Lots of fruit, corriander and other spices.

Taste- Mmmm, mmmm good. As noted in the scent, super spicy with white pepper and corriander. Sweet lemonade taste with a touch of a sour kicker in the finish.

Mouthfeel- Creamy as hell. Medium carbonation. Thick and a tad sticky.

Drinkability- Can you say pool party? This beer is made for the heat. Maybe even tastier than the St Bernardus wit I had earlier this year. Damn tasty and refreshing.

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Photo of harpus
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Looks like a cloudy lemonade. Creamy thick head and excellent lacing.

Smell- Sweet and super spicy. Lots of fruit, coriander and other spices.

Taste- super spicy with white pepper and corriander. Sweet lemonade taste with a touch of a sour kicker in the finish.

Mouthfeel- Creamy as hell. Medium carbonation. Thick and a tad sticky.

Drinkability- Very drinkable

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Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.42/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Russian River, poured into a small pint glass. Small white head collapses into a light straw colored body. White, soapy lacing quickly slides down the glass. Aroma is of coriander, citrus and a touch of funk. Taste is of cloves, mild banana and sour citrus. Nice interpretation of a Belgian style, as expected.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.37/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at the City Beer Store

A: Pours a hazy orange with a thin white head

S: Coriander, orange and wheat in excellent balance.

T: Easy drinking with the emphasis being on the orange. Dry and delicious

M: Well carbonated with a delicious dry finish

D: Off the charts!

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Photo of jeffjeff1
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this today at the brewery for my birthday.

Appearance- cloudy yellow color, thin head

Smell- citrus fruit, spice, very much like a belgian ale

Taste- citrus fruot, spice, flavor reminded me of belgian ales

Mouthfeel- light to medium bodied

Drinkability- very good, one of the better witbiers I have had

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Russian River itself, on to the beer:

A soapy head sits on top of this pee yellow colored beer. There some good lace that is sticking around the glass as the beer is consumed. The nose offers sweet lemons and spices, and cream of wheat.

This is delicious. The base of malted wheat provides a good hearty base for the orange peel, cumin, and vague citrus flavors to get attached to. It's very flavorful overall and maintains a very good balance of flavors. It's light bodied with some creaminess and very refreshing.

Just a great witbier. This is a Russian River beer that I'd love to taste in the Southland.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On-tap at Russian River in Santa Rosa.

Pours a fully hazed yellow-white hue, with a soft, light weight to the body. Head is full and solid, and so white that it's straining blue. Lace forms in patchy sheets. Looks good.

Nose is great: peppery with a touch of acid. Some Belgian yeastiness comes through giving it a roundness and supporting the spicy, zesty characters, but the tartness is very welcome. It's bright, clear and fresh. Lovely stuff.

Light, clear entry on the palate, before the peppery spice pops in again, giving a really fresh and fragrant flavour. The finish is rounded off with a touch of witbier yeast, slightly earthy, organic and rustic. This is the real deal. Feel has a touch of astringent bite, otherwise pretty light.

Supremely drinkable and lovely: this is one of the best witbiers I've had. Great job, RR.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This pours a light, hazy gold-white in the glass.
Coriander, cloves come across in the aroma, with a refreshingly pleasant crisp coriander-orange peel note on the palate.

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Photo of Murchmac
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Radiohead said it best:

I slip away
I slipped on a little white lie

Damn good beer. Pours a beautiful warm oxy clean orange. Little head.

Didnt smell it, as it was bought for me and was just hanging out.

Taste phenomenal. Like a cross between grapefruit, tangerine, and wheat malt.

Fucking love this beer. Great aftertaste, not so high in alcohol, drink this on a hot summer day listening to kid a by radiohead.

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Photo of IronCitySteve
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brew pub.

A: Pours a hazy yellowish orange color witha small white foam head that dissipates to a film. There is ample lacing down the sides as well.

S: The yeast is the most predominant smell present. There is also some light lemon, orange and grapefruit citrus but it is really mild.

T: Starts off with a big gulp of wheat, but it is quickly balanced out by the citrus flavors. In the middle there is some nice amounts of banana. On the back end there is a nice balance between all the fruit and wheat.

M: A nice light bodied beer. Quite clean and refreshing on the palate.

O: When people think of Russian River, a witbier is not the first beer people think of, but this beer should not be under estimated. It is quite tasty and refreshing. Would certainly have this again.

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Photo of donnebaby
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opaque white gold creamy body and a fat head of thick synthetic cream. Chalky thick aroma. Taste is distinctly not sweet for a witbier, with medium to high bitterness in each gulp. Dry white wine. High carbonation. Would very much like to try this again, sampled at Booneville.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Served a super cloudy orange-yellow color with a finger of creamy white head atop. The head faded fairly quickly leaving behind some nice lacing on the glass.

S - The aroma is a mix of light citrus fruits and some malt and yeast. There is also some banana and some wheat mixed in as well.

T - Starts off with a mix of citrus fruits and yeast and light spices. There is also just a bit of banana flavor in the background from the yeast. Through the middle, the yeast and the banana flavors get a bit stronger with some wheat flavor coming through. The finish is a mix of spices, citrus, and yeast that linger nicely.

M - Medium-light bodied with moderate-heavy carbonation. Feels really lively and crisp on the tongue. The finish is just a bit dry and fairly clean.

D - Very drinkable. The flavor profile is remarkably well balanced from start to end really showcasing all of the best elements of a Witbier.

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Photo of sloejams
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A good buddy of mine travels to the Russian River valley every so often. Do I use the term "good buddy" because he always comes back with something delicious from Russian River Brewing Co? Perhaps.

This trip he returned with a couple of growlers including the Little White Lie. His words, "it's a lot like Hoegaarden". I like Hoegaarden, even now that InBev went "Roger and Me" on the city bearing the beer's name. Well, I still like the taste - that is. I gots no love for InBev. Anyhow, this ale is very Hoegaardeny.

It pours a cloudy straw white. The smell is of wheat, clove, orange peel and the slightest bit of coriander. The taste brought the sweetness of the spices out over the backbone of the wheat. Tasty. Tasty like Hoegaarden. I find that American wits overdo the coriander a lot of the times. This one did not. In fact, I'd say that it was even more subtle in use than Hoegaarden itself.

But all of this was not any surprise to me. Vinnie Cilurzo is a master brewer. This is another fine offering.

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Photo of lhaqq
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Light straw-yellow body, small amount of white head.
S: A lot of wheat and sweet malts, also some cream.
T: Wheat with some spices, finishes sweet from the malts.
M: Creamy but light and good level of carbonation.
D: Fine, not masking too much of an abv. One of the better witbiers I've had.

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Photo of Cmack15
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had this beer on tap at the Russian River Brewpub. Beers appears cloudy and hazy like lemonade which is appropriate for style. The beer tastes clean and refreshing on the dry side with soft spice notes. A nice interpretation of the witbier style.

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Photo of BeerAmbassador
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a hazy light golden color with a very creamy head. It almost looked like meringue and stuck around for a while. Aroma was lemon, dried orange, coriander as well as some other floral notes that I couldn't pinpoint. Slight bitter but pleasant finish. This white ale is a bit more assertive than most that I have had in general but still very good.

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Photo of hoyagus
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Great wheat from a non wheat drinker. Very bright and citrusy. Cloudy yellow appearance. Frothy head. Taste is citrusy, not particularly wheat heavy or yeasty

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at Naja's in Redondo Beach. Translucent white color, looked like Hoegaarden.

Smelled like Hoegaarden, tasted like Hoegaarden. Maybe this is high praise, maybe I haven't tried enough witbiers...

I liked it, but it didn't stand out from it's competition. I could easily drink it again though.

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Photo of weeare138
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Well, this has been one that I've wanted for quite some time. I was finally pleased to get a chance to enjoy it direct from the source...
Appears a hazy, straw gold with a small white head that slowly fades out into a mild cap and collar. Streaky lacing is left around the glass. Solid streams of CO2 find their way up to the top of the glass.
Smell is of cloves, lemons, coriander seed, and white pepper. This smells really nice, especially for an American version of a witbier.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with some tart wheat, doughy yeast, and spices that all seem to mellow and even out when taken in at once. Delicious stuff here.
Mouthfeel is light/medium bodied, crisp yet smooth, along with a light spicy chalkiness that leads to a dry-as-a-bone finish.
Very refreshing and enjoyable. I should've gotten some of this to go.

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Photo of illidurit
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewery. Cloudy pale straw color with a white head. Leaves some wet spotty lacing. Aroma is bananas and coriander, with some citrus in there too. Wheat malt flavor with estery notes of banana, also lemon and a big dose of spice. Highly carbonated, with a dry spicy finish that showcases a touch of hops. Great summer refresher beer.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Opaque white gold, slightly cloudy/hazy and with a nice head of off-white as well that leaves nice lacing. The eye candy is certainly there for this and most every other RR beer that I have sampled so far in my journey. Aromas are all fresh coriander, and wit beer spices with some nice citrusy hints, and some fresh bready malty notes as well. Hops are there but just as a spicy flair on the finish. The taste follows suit, some nice coriander and spicing, and some citrusy notes along with the already mentioned fresh bread malts and peppery hop flair finish. Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied, creamy smooth and substantial. Drinkability is very good as well. Not as good as many of the Quebecois and Belgian versions that I have sampled, but pretty damn close, and perhaps one of the top US versions made in history...

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Photo of mjl21
4.13/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewpub. Poured into the RR Belgian tulip glass. Comes in at 4.6%.

A-A hazy straw yellow with a nice one finger head that slowly dissolves. Lots of lacing is left on the glass.

S-Banana, clove, coriander, wheat, and Belgian yeast.

T-Very much like it smells. Get some nice sour lemon notes at the end.

M-Dry with crisp carbonation. Light bodied.

D-Low abv and the fact that it is light bodied make this a very drinkable beer.

I usually will order one of these when it comes on tap every year. It is a very good low abv beer and the perfect choice for someone looking at something on the lighter side.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.12/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yum...this was quite a good wit beer, one of the best I've had.

Beer served on draft at the brewpub. Beer is yellow to white and pretty hazy with a nice head that settles quickly to a mono-layer of bubbles that breaks and barely covers the top of the beer. Minimal lacing on the glass and carbonation is moderate. May be a little under carbonated for the style.

Aroma is like lemon grass with mild spice, some graininess from the wheat and some yeast character. Smells quite nice.

Its probably slightly too cold to drink but the beer is light in body to medium in body and effervescent in the mouth. Its spicy but not overpowering, clean and finishes a little dry. Overall its a great tasting wit, it balances the yeast character with the midpalate fruit and spice and doesn't linger.

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Photo of flexabull
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours like a typical wit. Cloudy gold color, with a slight white head on top.

Aromas are spicy, yeast like, and with some lemon notes.

Taste follows the aromas. Very yeasty, spicy, lemon like, and with a coriander taste as well. There is also a general creamy maltiness.

Mouthfeel is good. Pretty full for such a light style beer.

Drinkability is good. A nice Wit that is worth trying... but I'll say this, when at Russian River, it's hard to choose this over some of the more tempting offerings. I still was not upset that I tried this one.

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Little White Lie from Russian River Brewing Company
3.93 out of 5 based on 230 ratings.
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