Wits or Blanches have long been one of my favorite styles. Unfortunately in the US, most people’s first impression of the style is tainted by Coor’s faux-craft Blue Moon which is a pale shadow of a pale shadow of a poorly constructed Belgian Wit. It’s sweet, flabby, overly citric, and under carbonated. You can even add a slice of orange to cover up its less than stellar flavor profile. Like many older styles of beer, it’s a simpler beer that can be overlooked and under appreciated. But that presumed simplicity can hide a very subtle and complex beer.
A well executed wit is a thing of beauty. Pfriem Family Brewers has long been brewing a Wit bier. It’s part of their entry level Belgian series available in Draft and 500ml bottles. Unlike the other Belgian-styles they brew, this one isn’t bottle conditioned in their warm room. However, their newest seasonal release in their mid tier line, the gold label series, is the next evolution of their Wit. Brett Wit takes their entry level Wit to another level by bottle conditioning it in their warm room and finishing it with their house Brett Brux Trois strain.
Appearance: Hazy blond, off white head, solid retention.
Aroma: Earthy, crackers, coriander, light pineapple, orange zest, peppery, floral.
Taste: Orange peel, earthy, floral, tropical fruit.
Overall Impression: None of the elements are out of proportion. The Brett, at this point, is a nice, integrated piece of the entirety and not the only note as is often the case with poorly executed Brett beers. This takes the Wit to a higher plane of existence and adds in some lovely, complex, earthy, and moody notes to what can often be a simple and bright beer. This is an exemplar of the the style and what it can and should be.
Availability: This is currently on shelves for a limited time in the Pacific Northwest.