Samuel Adams Cherry Wheat is a beer that I’ve been tempted to try from time to time, but for some reason I’ve just not been able to bring myself to buy it. As it happened, Liz, our intrepid Brew Club member brought it in for our latest beer exchange!
Not being overly impressed with the strawberry flavored beers from Lancaster Brewing or Pete’s, I’ll admit to being more than a little jaded about the Sam Adams Cherry Wheat – even before I opened it. Still, I’ll try putting that aside and review the beer on its merits.
The Sam Adams Cherry Wheat is a 5.2% ABV fruit-flavored ale. The first thing I noticed about the beer after opening it was the aroma! Pouring the Cherry Wheat into my glass, the cherry aroma became even more apparent. Even though the cherry smell was really strong, it smelled to me, very natural and not as synthetic smelling as the aforementioned strawberry beers did. It says right on the bottle that its a “wheat ale brewed with real cherries and natural flavors added.”
As you can see in the picture, the Sam Adams Cherry Wheat poured into my glass creating a white foamy head typical of wheat beers. The Sam Adams beer itself was an amberish color that didn’t look like anything out of the ordinary. It might have a very slight reddish tint, but maybe that’s just me knowing its a cherry flavored beer?
On to the taste! The taste of this beer was initially a little surprising to me because the cherry smell seemed so strong – and then the cherry taste was not quite as bold. Cherry is DEFINITELY pronounced in the flavor, just not as much as it is in the ‘nose’. I thought this beer would be like drinking cherry juice – but it wasn’t.
The beer was relatively light bodied, and very drinkable in the sense that it was smooth and slick. Just a little hop toward the finish, but otherwise I mostly tasted cherry (obviously) and some malt flavors. The Samuel Adams Cherry Wheat left an OK mouthfeel and wasn’t really that bitter and it provided a lingering cherryish aftertaste that wasn’t bad.
My overall impression of this particular Sam Adams beer is mixed. I certainly enjoyed it more than either of the two Strawberry flavored beers I just had, but I’m still not a fan of fruit flavored beers. Ain’t gonna happen – not today anyway!
That all being said, if you ARE a fan of fruit-flavored beers, than I think you will like the Sam Adams Cherry Wheat. Its a quality beer, as are most of the Sam Adams beers, but this simply boils down to personal preference. It doesn’t taste like a cherry wine cooler, but for a beer it is on the sweet and fruity side (kind of like Neil). Did I say that?
So, if you want to try a good fruit flavored beer, give this a try. Its better than the Lancaster Strawberry Wheat and the Pete’s Strawberry Blonde, and also better than the Leinenkugel’s Berry Weiss which is probably modeled after this beer anyway.
On the other hand, if you like beer that tastes like beer, you won’t feel like you’ve missed anything if you skip it, but you can’t go wrong with the Sam Adams Chocolate Bock!
Have you tried the Cherry Wheat? What did you think? Do you have a favorite fruit-flavored beer?