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White Beer

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I want to learn more about white beer and the brands of white beer that are available in the US. My favorite so far is Hoegaarden, but I now understand that there are other beers that are similar to this one, for example Blanche Pis de Bruxelles and Blue Moon. Does anyone have a good list of white beer brands and thoughts on this topic? I also like hefeweizen, but Hoegaarden is my favorite. Thanks in advance.

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  1. witbier is one of my favorite styles. Blanche de Bruxelles is an excellent one. These others are all good examples I've had, in no particular order. Not sure where you live but you might be able to find some of them.

    White Ale - Hitachino Nest, Japan
    Blanche de Brooklyn - Brooklyn Brewery, NY
    Witte - Ommegang, NY
    Wahoo Wheat - Ballast Point, CA
    White Rascal - Avery, CO
    Wittekerk - Belgium
    Blanche De Chambly - Unibroue, Quebec

    1. Not sure where you live in the US, but Allagash White (Portland, Maine) is one of my favorites. I live in Mass. and can find it pretty easy here. I have also seen it served in NYC.

      Sam Adam's White isnt bad either (but not near the caliber of Allagash). It is their Spring Seasonal and I just bought some on Friday. I like it in a pinch because most Sam's Seasonals are readily available in Mass.

      1. Thank you guys. I'm in Los Angeles, and I'll look for the brands you've mentioned in pubs and specialty stores near me. :)

        3 Replies
        1. re: katkoupai

          I do want to second the Hitachino Nest White. I have yet to be disappointed from them and I have bought on both coasts so it should be easy to find.

          1. re: katkoupai

            In LA you probably won't find the Wahoo Wheat, or Blanche de Bruxelles, and definitely won't find Blanche de Brooklyn.

            One that you *will* see that I don't recommend is Great White from Lost Coast.

            1. re: Josh

              I had Blanche de Bruxelles at a local pub in Pasadena. We have BevMo here, Galco's and other specialty stores that have a variety of beers. There is also a Belgian beer festival coming soon to the same pub where I had Blanche de Bruxelles. The name of the pub is Lucky Baldwin's, and I'll post a link, so you can check out the beer menu.

              http://luckybaldwins.com/beer.html

              By the way, of those mentioned, Blanche de Chambly and Hitachino Nest White are both ones that sound very good to me. I will look for them. Thanks.

              I see that Lucky Baldwin's does have Hitachino Nest and Blanche de Chambly, in their bottled beer selection. :-)

          2. I will definitely second the recs for Hitachino Nest (though I've found it's often crazy expensive, here in Oregon a local grocery store sells it by the 12-oz. bottle for four bucks and change...but it's not necessarily so, I've found six-packs in other parts of the country for a reasonable six-pack price) and definitely the Allagash White. That's probably the best combination of widely available, affordable, and really damn good white out there.

            I really wouldn't recommend the Lost Coast Great White, which I thought was bland and funky-tasting. Though if someone else has had a great bottle of it (or a great tap), I'll quickly admit that my local grocery where I get most of my beer seems to treat the great majority of their beer pretty badly, and it could be awesome if not stored by the boiler in the basement for months

            I actually kind of like Blue Moon, and I think it's a decent introduction to the Wit style, even if it is a Coors product. It's got some decent belgian White Beer flavors but somehow still pleases a crowd.

            1 Reply
            1. re: lpfaf

              I've never had a good bottle of Great White. I think it's just a bad witbier.

            2. A couple more popular wits:

              Victory whirlwind wit
              St. Bernardus witbier
              Celis White

              Here is a more definitive list:
              http://beeradvocate.com/beer/style/48

              6 Replies
              1. re: LStaff

                I actually tried that St. Bernardus once. Had completely forgotten about it until you mentioned it. As I recall it was a pretty standard wit. I'd be very curious to try the Victory one. Their beers are typically among my favorites in their respective styles.

                1. re: Josh

                  I haven't had the whirlwind wit in a few years since I bought that rancid 6 pack (right around the time they installed the new equipment). But prior to that it was a summer time favorite. It used to be slightly different from the usual model since it had more orange flavor than the usual lemony flavors that I pick up in witbiers.

                2. re: LStaff

                  Thanks for this great list. There are sixty white beers on it! :)

                  1. re: katkoupai

                    Actually, the link has 630 beers on it! :)

                  2. re: LStaff

                    For some interesting info on the style, do a google search on "Pierre Celis", the guy who single handedly revived the style. When Celis White was brewed in Austin before Miller ran it into the ground, it was a great beer. The Celis White (as pointed out by LStaff above) brewed now is from Michigan Brewing Company, supposedly with Pierre's recipe, but I haven't tried it. (word is he no longer has anything to do with it).

                    On a sort of related note, an AB rep was in our local HEB last week promoting their own "white" beer, giving samples. I forget what the name of this offering was. I can't remember the exact context, but he dropped the "H" word in our conversation. Something to the effect of, the "Hoegaarden" style. Well, I guess it was the same style, if you mean a watered down version of the style for Bud Light drinkers.

                    1. re: TroyTempest

                      It's a common American phenomenon. Apparently the absinthe distilled for the US market (Lucid) has less anise flavor because "Americans don't like it". I'd love to know who these arbiters of mediocrity are, dictating what products get to market.

                  3. If you are traveling in the midwest, be sure to try Bell's Winter White (from Kalamazoo).

                    1. Witte Kirk is my favorite. I've really gotten into the white beers from Belgium and Holland over the past year.