German Weissbier

Glassware: Weissbier vase
  • Germany
  • Ale
  • ABV = 4.3 – 5.6% (Normal)^
  • IBU = 8-15
  • SRM = 2-6
A gold-coloured, wheat-based German ale with a distinctive banana-and-clove yeast flavour.

Appearance:

  • Colour^ = Straw to gold
  • Clarity = Unfiltered; hazy

Key Aromas & Flavours:

Aroma
  • Malt = Low to moderate; bready or grainy wheat
  • Yeast = Moderate to high; banana-like esters, clove-like phenols
  • Hops = None to low; floral, herbal or spicy, if present
  • Other = (Optional: low to moderate vanilla and/or a faint bubblegum character)
Flavour
  • Malt = Low; bready or grainy wheat, plus a grainy-sweet malt character
  • Yeast = Low to moderate; banana-like esters, clove-like phenols
  • Hops = None to very low; floral, herbal or spicy, if present
  • Perceived Bitterness^ = Low
  • Other = (Optional: low to moderate vanilla and/or a faint bubblegum character)
  • Balance = Towards the malt; the perception of sweetness is more due to the absence of hop bitterness than actual residual sweetness
Aftertaste/Finish

Well-rounded, flavourful palate with a relatively dry finish

Mouthfeel:

  • Body = Medium; suspended yeast may increase the perception of body, but it’s never heavy
  • Carbonation = High to very high; effervescent
  • Creaminess = The texture of wheat imparts the sensation of a fluffy, creamy fullness

Characteristic Ingredients/Processes:

  • Malt = 50-70% malted wheat, plus Pilsner malt
  • Yeast = Weizen ale yeast
  • Hops = German hop varietals
  • Process = Decoction mash is traditional

Historical Development:

Bavaria has a wheat beer tradition dating back hundreds of years, but brewing wheat beer used to be a monopoly reserved for Bavarian royalty. Modern Weissbier dates to 1872 when the Schneider Brewery began production in Munich. However, pale weissbier only became popular since the 1960s.


Commercial Examples:

Schneider Weisse Original (Tap 7), Weihenstephaner Hefeweissbier, Paulaner Hefe-Weizen Naturtrüb


^Sourced from the Cicerone Certification Program’s International Certified Beer Server Syllabus.
All other information is sourced from the BJCP 2015 Style Guidelines.


Discovering Beer is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Cicerone® Certification Program.


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