Oranje Weisse from Amsterdam Brewing Company Limited in Toronto, Ontario pours a uniformly hazy, orange juice-like yellow colour with a medium-large white head that dissipates quickly, but leaves a decent lace and collar. This wheat beer uses two types of orange peel, coriander and anise to create a spicy and sharp aroma, but also has a honey and banana softness that takes the edge off.
The taste of Oranje Weisse is quite coriander-forward, maybe too much so. There is a decent malty sweetness to it and added anise gives it a certain pine-like flavour, but the coriander really dominates and creates a distinct dryness. The mouthfeel is relatively thin, but has a real creamy quality to it as well. Very easy to drink, has a prickly carbonation as it passes the tongue and an earthy, mushroom-like, almost peppery finish.
This mass-market witbier from Anheuser-Busch in Baldwinsville, New York pours with a huge frothy white head that burns off within a few minutes on top of a typically cloudy and slightly rusty, iced tea-coloured brew. The smell of Shock Top Belgian White is mild, with banana taking the forefront, accented by bubblegum and a hint of spice.
Shock Top Belgian White has a rather mild, but crisp and refreshing taste. An orange-lemon-lime peel blend used in the brewing process is noticeable without being overpowering and coriander comes through on the finish.
The mouthfeel is quite thin and watery for a witbier, with very little carbonation after the head burns off. This is definitely a macro-brewed “BL Lime” take on the style that I can best describe as “semi-filtered”. An orange flavour lingers on the back of the tongue between sips.
Lemon Tea Beer from the Mill Street Brewery in Toronto, Ontario is cloudy in appearance and golden-amber in colour. It doesn’t pour with much of a head, but what’s there stays as a collar. This unique hybrid of wheat beer, two teas and lemon puree has a predominantly sweet, honey-like aroma, with fresh grainy tones and a slight maltiness.
The sourness of the lemon purée comes through in the taste of Lemon Tea Beer right away. The mouthfeel is a bit thin and watery for a wheat ale, but carries a decent-feeling carbonation. The bitterness of orange pekoe and earl grey teas really balance things out, resulting in a very clean aftertaste and overall refreshment quality.
This flavoured wheat beer pours an amber-tinged golden colour with a soapy white head that settles as a collar. St-Ambroise Apricot Ale from McAuslan Brewing Inc. in Montreal Quebec carries a surprisingly natural-smelling ripe apricot aroma with a sweet malt backing.
The taste of St-Ambroise Apricot Wheat Ale is also dominated by the apricot flavour and it has a very dry, wine cooler-like backing with a subtle chemical note. There is a malty sweetness and a slight earthy hop tone, but both fail to stand out from the apricot flavour. To me it tastes more like a cider or cooler than a beer with added flavour.
This seasonal offering from the Muskoka Cottage Brewery in beautiful Bracebridge, Ontario pours a nice and hazy amber-orange peel colour with a medium-sized, tight head that falls to a collar after a few minutes. Muskoka Summer Weiss smells extraordinarily fresh and bright. Citrus dominates the aroma and is accompanied by a fatty, buttery banana-like smell, coriander spiciness and honey sweetness.
The taste of Muskoka Summer Weiss is just as fresh as the smell. Sweet, toasty and bready malts and citrus are followed by a good dry bite. In a word, it’s outstanding. The beer is very crisp, with a prickly carbonation on the tongue and a smooth, creamy and slightly syrupy aftertaste.