beersearcher (2382) - Glendale, California, USA - JUL 20, 2011
Pours a hazy orange yellow. The aroma is slight on the banana and clove mix. Taste is a little less powerful with those flavors as well. Too light for me to rank higher than say, Kellerweiss from Sierra Nevada. Nice and sparkly though. galensmith (29) - Texas, USA - JUN 21, 2011
On tap at Tony’s Darts Away. The beer equivalent of that kid you sat next to in high school health class - entertaining during those dull hours but otherwise completely forgettable. JohnnyJ (5570) - San Diego, California, USA - APR 25, 2011
Bottle. Cloudy orange pour, white head. Banana, sweet grainy malt, yeast, and light grassy hops. Simple and drinkable, but not one of my favorite styles. headheldhigh (100) - Walnut, California, USA - APR 17, 2011
On tap from Bootleggers. Pours out a cloudy golden orange which produced a nice head. Smells of hops bananas, bubblegum and malts. Tastes slightly sweet of ripe bananas bubblegum and hops. A refreshing brew. Barreras (1689) - Diamond Bar, California, USA - FEB 8, 2011
Earlier Rating: 4/17/2011 Total Score: 3.3
On tap at Bootleggers pours out a cloudy golden orange with little head and lacing. Smells of ripe bananas hops and summer hay. Tastes sweet with the banana bread coming through strong. Finishes sticky sweet. Not my favorite style but I did enjoy it.
Pours a cloudy yellow color with aroma of sweet licorice or over ripen banana. Taste is mildly sweet with a slight fruityness left on the palate. Overall a decent and pleasing hefeweizen beer that I was glad I tried.
JohnC (3008) - Mission Viejo, California, USA - JAN 29, 2011
Earlier Rating: 7/25/2010 Total Score: 2.7
Pours a cloudy yellow orange with a mild citrus aroma. A creamy aftertaste that is not overwhelming. A light tasting, refreshing beer.
I had this on tap at Bootlegger’s. This hazy yellow pour has a some citrus and banana in the nose and flavor. I didn’t quite catch the vanilla flavor but the flavor was an interesting take on a hefe. DarkElf (3062) - La Jolla, California, USA - JAN 19, 2011
Earlier Rating: 9/14/2009 Total Score: 1.9
well, it looks like a hefe, but it’s flavor is more on the lines of a witbier. lots of citrus, but very little banana or crispness
19-Jan-11 (22-oz bottle: Purchased 03-Nov-10 for $3.99 at Total Wine & More in Tustin, CA) This middle-of-the-road hefeweizen pours a slightly hazy, golden-orange body with a short, fizzy, white head that fully dissipates in less than a minute; there’s not even a thin ring of bubbles, so lacing is impossible. Straight-forward aromas of sweet, banana bread and banana pudding are pleasant but very simplistic. Fairly doughy and wheaty on the palate, but equally prominent are the banana esters from the yeast – ripe, sweet, almost sugary – and there is a hint of clove as well. A gentle reminder of grassy hops resides very far in the background, rarely catching my attention. Medium in carbonation and medium-full in weight, kind of heavy for a hefeweizen, and because the beer is definitely on the sweet side with little to counteract the sweetness, it’s not especially drinkable. Overall, this beer is decent, but it’s sweet, simplistic, and a bit boring, certainly not a beer that makes one contemplative. SDalkoholic (2395) - Linda Vista, California, USA - NOV 21, 2010
Bottle from Ken N Bottle #2: Poured into the glass as an opaque glowing yellow that was much hazed while the head was a small layer of thin foam. The aroma was moderate with background scents of German yeast and banana. Flavor is a combination of sweetness and bitterness with a huge grained wheat flavor over ruling the additional tastes of banana and bubblegum. There is an empty aftertaste that makes me ask where did the flavor go? But, I’d have to say this is a decent attempt at a hefe and is easily quaffed down especially on a hot day such as today. Ratman197 (14978) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - NOV 15, 2010
Bomber poured a cloudy golden amber with a quickly disapating ring of off white foam. Aromas of wheat, carmel and light banana. Palate was light bodied and crisp. Flavors of carmel, wheat, light banana and light citrus with a crisp lingering carmel finish. ralflott (12) - Michigan, USA - OCT 23, 2010
Summary - Bootlegger’s has an excellent taste - good banana flavor but not too sweet, perfect mouth feel,very good finish and ideal level of carbonation. One of the top 5 American-made German Hefeweizens I’ve tried.
Background (so you know my frame of reference) My taste in Hefeweizens runs a little on the sweet side. I lived in Bavaria for a few years in the 1970s, when Weissbier was only available in bottles (risk of explosion was the routine explanation). I worked for about 6 months in a pub in Munich and had the chance to try most of the leading Bavarian Weissbiers, my favorites being Schneider Weisse and Schneider Aventinus Weizenbock.
I have tried many American made German-style Hefeweizens and found only a few I really enjoy. Bootlegger’s Old World Hefeweizen is one of those. I bought a bottle at Whole Foods in LA and sampled it alongside Hefeweizens from Mission St.(steinhaus) , Trader Joe’s, Island Brewing (Carpinteria), Franziskaner, and Sierra Nevada ("Kellerweiss"). I had Bootlegger’s at the top, with Sierra Nevada close behind and Franziskaner an honorable third. (Mission St. and Island were generic, as was Trader Joe’s, which had no redeeming qualities other than price.)
I visited the brewery in Fullerton on a lark and found the fresh product
in my growler even better. It makes you want to take small sips so you can have more swallows before you’re incoherent. Even though the tasting room was not open, the staff and the master brewer were quite accommodating and informative. The other beers and ales on tap we sampled were all good, but the Hefeweizen and Golden Chaos (Belgian) were superb.