Beer Review: WEIHENSTEPHANER / SIERRA NEVADA BRAUPAKT

Beer Review: WEIHENSTEPHANER / SIERRA NEVADA BRAUPAKT

Upon pouring the Weihenstephaner / Sierra Nevada Braupakt into a specialty glass, the beer presents itself as a naturally cloudy amber Hefeweizen. The firm, creamy head exhibits remarkable mousse-like texture, creating a volcanic topography that rises above the glass without spilling over. The deeper golden color adds to its visual appeal, and despite a slight haziness, it maintains a perfect look. However, it’s worth noting the substantial yeast sediment at the bottle’s bottom, which some might find less appealing.

Aroma

The aroma is a classic representation of a Hefeweizen, featuring the familiar combination of banana bread and bubblegum. Subtle notes of sage and phenolic compounds such as white pepper, clove, and cardamom contribute to the olfactory experience. The addition of Chinook and Amarillo hops brings a touch of lemon, yet fails to significantly alter the traditional hefeweizen aroma. Interestingly, a slightly catty character reminiscent of Heineken emerges, overshadowing the expected freshness.

Taste

Moving on to the taste, Braupakt offers an herbal and pleasantly bitter profile, deviating slightly from the typical characteristics of its style. While sugar takes a back seat, banana bread remains prominent at the front of the palate. The mid-palate and finish introduce a spice ensemble of white and black pepper, cardamom, clove, and sage, leading to a chalky texture from the suspended yeast. The beer glides across the palate with medium density, concluding with a dry, herbal bite for a swift finish.

Mouthfeel

The mouthfeel of Braupakt contributes to its overall appeal. The creamy density of the foam enhances the beer’s texture, providing a harmonious experience. The yeast in suspension adds a chalky quality, creating a distinctive feel as the beer traverses the palate. The medium density ensures a balanced and enjoyable drinking sensation.

Overall

In conclusion, Braupakt stands out as a commendable beer by various standards. Though not compared side-by-side with the regular Weihenstephaner, it leaves an impression of being slightly drier and notably more bitter than the traditional hefeweissbier. The phenolic spice medley takes center stage, surpassing the dominance of fruity esters and sugar found in other hefeweizens. Despite the Amarillo and Chinook hops being integrated rather than standing out as an “American twist,” Braupakt demonstrates masterful craftsmanship. Its limited edition status adds to its allure, leaving the hope that this exceptional brew will endure in the market for an extended period.