Japanese Name: サントリー クラフトセレクト ヴァイツェン
Release: Mar. 29, 2016
Type: Japanese Beer (ビール)
Purchase Price: ￥213 @Aeon
The past March saw the rebirth of Suntory’s Craft Select series. Its volume 1 Pale Ale and volume 7 Golden Ale came back to the store shelves, with Pale Ale now being permanent in the beer lineup. New to the series is Weizen, a wheat based ale stated to have a reduced bitterness imparting a stronger fruit flavor. After I stopped seeing the new beers on the store shelves in my region, I had given up on drinking the whole series. Now that Suntory has brought Craft Select back, hopefully I can get to try the whole lot.
In the glass, Weizen doesn’t show off any spectacular coloration, it’s just the plain straw you’d expect in a wheat ale. However, it does sport a fragrant fruity aroma, a little on the citrus side with a little spice mixed in, coriander seed seems to be a recurring theme. Lots of bubbles tickle the tip of the tongue. The first gulp isn’t really as fruity up front as you might expect, very toned down. The flavors do show up on the backend though, almost the same as the nose. The aftermath ends up being very floral though, with the finish being more fragrant than bitter.
Although there are many wheat beers that I have enjoyed in the past, the current run of weissbiers are a bit too fruity and fragrant for my tastes. For a Japanese beer from the Big Four, it is interesting but I would prefer a little less fruitiness and more bitter. In any case, give it a try, you might like it more than I did.