Wheat Beer Basics

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There are many kinds of beers out on the market these days, but wheat beers remain one of the oldest styles. What is wheat beer anyway? It is a combination of wheat grains and barley with nonexistent hops presence, a yeast like flavor, and foggy appearance. This is truly one of the oldest beers out there and one that is adored by most traditionalists. Where did the first wheat beer come from anyway? The first wheat beer was called “Hefe Weizen” and came from a land called Bavaria and has remained a local favorite since. This is despite other German ales being slowly pushed out by lagers.

wheat beer

Style

German brewing purity law suggests wheat is not allowed as an ingredient in beer at the moment. Then how did the style end up surviving, if its main ingredient was not allowed? It had to do with a special decree sent down by the royal family in the land which ensured the beer would still be brewed. The only necessity was for the brew to be made only by the royals. This has since been broken and remains a non-issue in the 21st century.

What is in it?

There is no standardized look and feel to the wheat beer and its ingredients. Each one is slightly different in how it tastes and is composed. The traditional wheat beer that was founded in Bavarian lands would contain water, yeast, 50% malted wheat, and Noble hops. The type of yeast that was used in the wheat beer was specific to the beer as it came in the form of ale yeast. Other forms of the same beer contain things such as unmalted wheat and spices. Americans turned wheat beer into something more fruity to improve/enhance its taste.

Tasting

“Hefe Weizen” is generally foggy with its appearance as this is because of the wheat proteins that can be found in it and the suspended yeast. The head is thick, long-lasting, and white. While, the nose tends to carry clove and bananas. It has a nice fullish and soft feeling in the mouth as the taste buds are tickled.

Pairing

They tend to go great with any food and that is why it has lasted and will last for a very long time to come.

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