Review: Granville Island Brewing - Robson Street Hefeweizen

Today I have a look at Granville Island Brewing, specifically their Hefeweizen.  With the summer coming to a close and fall now upon us, I thought it would be nice to enjoy what most would classify as a summer beer - if only to put off the realization that autumn is in full swing and winter will be here in a few short months.

First, let's talk about GIB.  Founded in 1984, they became Canada's first microbrewery.  For over twenty years they brewed in their Granville Island facility, and in 2006 they moved into what is now their chief brewing facility in Kelowna.  The original brewhouse is still open and operating to this day, and is well known for it's tours.  I know I'll be by to visit next time I get to make it out that way.

It's good to be here. Nice slogan, GIB. That's what I imagine the beer saying when it ends up in my belly.

It's good to be here. Nice slogan, GIB. That's what I imagine the beer saying when it ends up in my belly.

Before expanding and opening the Kelowna facility they were purchased by Andrew Peller Wines in 2005.  After four short years they were then purchased by Molson Coors (via Creemore Springs.)  Now an other three years later they continue to brew, seemingly unchanged by being acquired by one of the major retail breweries.

Now that you've had your brief history lesson, let's get on to the good stuff, shall we?  

The beer of the hour: Granville Island Brewing's Robson Street Hefeweizen!

The beer of the hour: Granville Island Brewing's Robson Street Hefeweizen!

This was purchased at the LCBO in a 6 pack of 341mL bottles.  The alcohol content is an even 5%.  It pours an almost clear (slightly cloudy) golden yellow.  The carbonation is highly visible.  As you pour, a thick white head forms with little retention and leaves behind a thin lacing.  The aroma smells faintly floral with banana in the forefront.  After a few sniffs wheat and yeast notes become more noticable.  That being said, the nose is pretty light on this, nothing overpowering.  After your first few sips (or gulps) you'll pick up wheat and bread flavours with a sweet banana finish.  The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy.  I was a little surprised at the carbonation because it looked highly carbonated when I poured it. 

Overall this is a smooth and sessionable beer.  I would say that it attempts to stray slightly from the standard Hefe style without getting too adventurous - making it just unique enough to know what you're drinking, but not so different that it will alienate Hefe enthusiasts.  I think I'd enjoy this with a light lunch or dinner, such as a variation on a garden salad with nuts and orange in it.

Thanks for reading friends! 

-James