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Horizon Wheat Ale

Judges Rating: 
20 / 24
4 / 6
30 / 40
7 / 10
Overall Impression: 
15 / 20

Stevens Point Brewery has been brewing in Wisconsin for over 150 years, taking time off only for Prohibition when it produced near beer and soft drinks. Its Horizon Wheat is the third entry in this issue to have taken home gold from the 2010 Great American Beer Festival. A classic American wheat ale, Horizon offers up aromas of light, bready malt, a twinge of tangy wheat, and kiwi fruit. Lee commented on the “mild, muted” nose and felt it was clean and approachable. He suggested the aroma would benefit from some “spicy, floral hop” to lend some complexity. Tim drew out some faint orange and lime, but said these notes were muddled by “a touch of sulfur.” Underneath the top notes, Tim found pleasant soft, crackery malt backed up by a light touch of candi sugar sweetness. This beer pours a hazy, sunflower yellow punctuated by a distinct haziness that verges on being cloudy. The head is rich, creamy and dazzling white. Grainy malt and tart wheat dominate the flavor, with hops providing a balancing bitterness. Rick picked up a “light, toasted flour” malt flavor, followed by a sugary sweetness that “skewed the balance.” Tom found the malt bready and sweet, but enjoyed the wheat’s “tart brightness.” Both judges deemed the beer too sweet for a thirst-quenching style. Horizon Wheat would be a welcome addition to any picnic table across the land.