Sunday, September 27, 2015

White Birch Blueberry Berliner Weisse

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Chad9976 (1464) - Albany, New York, USA - SEP 27, 2015
I reviewed White Birch’s regular Berliner Weisse back in July and was not too keen on it. I decided to give the blueberry edition a try in hopes it would be an improvement. And indeed it is, but not by a whole lot. Much like the traditional version, this beer is pretty mild and unremarkable. The addition of blueberries does make the palette a little more interesting, though. 

I poured a 12oz can into a mug. There was no freshness date and it cost $2.60 ($0.22 per ounce).

Appearance: Hazy straw color; no visible carbonation. Pours to a small, white, soapy head which evaporates quickly and completely.

Smell: Fairly light nose overall with mild lacto and blueberry puree scents.

Taste: When you add fruit to a niche style brew it becomes a battle of the base brew versus the fruit addition. Is this beer a Berliner Weisse with blueberries or a fruit beer that’s a little tart and sour? Not being an expert on the style I’m not going to say how it compares to spec, though going by my experience it’s pretty familiar. A light palette with a bit of lemonade-like tartness right away. The blueberry flavor emerges on the second half and has a classic puree flavor; akin to that found in most blueberry-flavored foods and drinks. It’s neither authentic nor faux; but it is a nice addition. The sourness is pretty mild overall, though the blueberry does complement the beer’s natural tart and sour components quite nicely. If this were more strongly-flavored it would be pretty great, but it’s okay for what it is.

Drinkability: This is obviously the kind of beer that would work quite well in the summer. However, at 5.5% ABV it’s much too big to be considered a session beer. It’d be tempting to do so since the mouthfeel is very light, thin, and tepid. A brew like this should have champagne-like effervescence, but it’s a bit dull. Refreshing while in the mouth, which is nice, and a fairly clean aftertaste. Drinkable for sure, but one is all you need.

RATING: 6/10

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