5% German Hefeweizen
The past two weeks I have had the privilege of assisting The Beer Diva, Kirrily Waldhorn in an Australia-wide corporate ‘tour’ featuring Beer Blending Masterclasses for between 50 and 100 folk who, let’s be fair, have had little experience with Hefeweizens. The gig has given us that rare opportunity to watch the initial reactions, the head-snap and the accompanying ‘Wow!’ and the slow but sure move towards; “I don’t really like beer, but that’s OK!”
And let’s face it, if you’re going to introduce people to a hef, it may as well be one of the country’s best. Or one of the world’s best, even. The Burleigh Brewing HEF took the Gold in the German Hefeweizen category at the World Beer Cup a few years back. And don’t mention the win to the Germans – they’re still a bit pissed at that.
The Crafty Pint says;
“It seems that pretty much every microbrewery in Oz has some form of wheat beer in their range, but they’re not always particularly good. Thankfully, Burleigh’s HEF is among the best, with flavours as full as the moustache on its label. Winner of the inaugural Queensland Food and Wine Show beer comp, it’s packed with banana and clove aromas and flavours from the special German yeast with a touch of citrusy tang. Goes well with seafood or spicy dishes.”
News.com.au back in August 2011 was effusive and flowing in its praise of this oft-misunderstood brew and even went as far as to implore its readers to pour the beer thoughtfully into a glass;
“THERE’S a sense of austere grandeur about Hef’s mo, alluding to a richness that carries through in the bottle. But this style of brew also points to the kinds of upper-lip foam-catchers you see at German beer festivals. Just five years into its history, this (5 per cent) German-styled wheat beer continues the Burleigh Heads brewery’s run of gold medals at the World Beer Championships. Hef’s dashing aroma jumps from its stylish pale gold hue and creamy, white foam. Its wheat-keen head delivers lashings of banana and vanilla ice cream and whisps of pink bubblegum. Its mouthfeel is silken – a rush of gently effervescent sweetness with clouds of orange zest and subtle spice.
All this natural goodness is kept in good nick with oxygen-absorbing lid liners for peak freshness. Between the mighty Hef and Burleigh’s cracking, dry 28 Pale Ale 70s Style, the barbecue set will be mumbling under its mo over what’s in your Esky.
The twist: Many drinkers are too keen to write off wheat beer as filling or bloating. Chances are they’re drinking it from the bottle. Slow-pour it into a glass and you’ll reward the senses with a protein-rich head, aromas and colours. Drinking from a bottle excites the CO2 into action, filling the belly with foam. Hef is an easy-drinking-session beer that doubles its pleasure in a glass.”
A favourite of the various voting panels for The Critics’ Choice, HEF has taken spots #66, 47, 37 and 38 over the four editions.
As big a test as this beer is for some novice drinkers, so too was it a task for Matt Kirkegaard to write all four pieces for the HEF, rewarding the native Queenslander with the duty of extolling its virtues with a fresh set of words each edition.
“One of the best local versions. Lolly banana aroma with some vanilla and bubblegum, subdued clove and a citrus finish. Full and smooth across the tongue.”
“You need a very good reason to go past a locally made beer in favour of an import, and Burleigh HEF makes a very strong case for you to stick with an Australian. Perfect with good goat’s cheese.”
“It can be a little unfair to single one beer out of a solid portfolio and label it best, but this beer certainly has its claims to the title, even in Burleigh’s accomplished range. A beer that just nails the Bavarian hefeweizen style, bursting with banana, it’s a gold medal winner at the World Beer Cup.”
And last year;
“A constant inclusion in Australian ‘best’ lists and a WBC winner, though perhaps due to the vagaries of style or the Australian palate, other Burleigh beers seem to crop up more frequently in the market. It’s a shame brewer Brennan Fielding is an exacting stylist and just nails it with this German inspired wheat beer.”