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Putting the Wheat in Wheat Beer

By July 5, 2016Blog

It’s entirely possible to go on a beer tour of the world that would rival any culinary tour. Different countries, and in some cases even different regions within the same country, have their own unique style of making beer. The rise in popularity of craft and home brewing has saved us all a trip, allowing us to sample some of the best beers in the world, right here at home.

The Whereabouts of Wheat Beer

Wheat beer is an excellent example of a beer that took quite some time to make it out of its native lands. Predominantly found in Northern and Central Europe, wheat beer is also known as Weissbier and Witbier. These tasty treats are top-fermented and contain a higher percentage of wheat, relative to the malted barley in the recipe.

The result is a light, refreshing beer that goes well with citrus fruit and is the perfect finish to a meal that’s a little on the greasy side. But don’t let the crisp, refreshing nature of wheat beer fool you! There’s a common misconception that because wheat beers are light in colour, they’re also light in alcohol.

That may be true for some varieties, but it’s not universally true for all wheat beers. In fact, some of the Weizenbocks have been known to weigh in at a hefty 7-9% alcohol content, so be sure to take it easy.

Best Hops for Wheat Beer

Wheat beers are the antidote to the recent trend of bitter beers. These are not “sitting around the fireplace in a leather chair discussing politics” beers. Wheat beers are “having a good time in the backyard on a hot summer day” beers.

Because of its origins, the hops used in wheat beer are generally what are known as the “noble hops” which include: Saaz, Spalter, Hallertauer, or Tettnanger. Can’t find them anywhere? There are reasonable substitutions for all of these varietals, and we can help you choose the right ones based on your recipe and your personal tastes.

Be sure to contact us for help if you get stuck at any point in your brewing efforts. Around here, beer is more than the way we make a living; it is our way of life.