Big Blue Van

American Wheat Ale College Street Brewhouse & Pub


Big Blue Van, an American Wheat Ale brewed by College Street Brewhouse & Pub

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Big Blue Van is an American Wheat Ale brewed by College Street Brewhouse & Pub, and for the purposes of this craft beer review, the ale was served in a wheat beer glass from a can.


The Wheat Ale pours a mostly clear golden hue and is topped by a thick cap of dense off-white foam that shows fair retention. The head’s reduction leaves behind mottled swirls of fine bubbles. An aggressive pour yields the best results.


The aroma is bright with a scent of sweet blueberries and vanilla.


A light bitterness of floral hops transitions to a taste of wheat bread that’s been slightly sweetened with vanilla. Mildly tart blueberries are mixed in and the finish is rounded out with bready malt and vanilla.


Its feel is soft and smooth with a less-than-medium body and light carbonation. Finishes slightly acidic.


The label reads “unfiltered” but the pour shows near brilliant clarity and its head retention could be better but otherwise, the appearance is fine. The scent of blueberries and vanilla comes through strongly making the aroma easily the best feature of this brew. The blueberries and vanilla aren’t overpowering and nicely complement the bready malt base. Unfortunately, its mouthfeel isn’t sufficiently carbonated. Which is a shame as the rest of this wheat ale is pretty darn good. The clarity and lack of carbonation could be due to the age of the brew as it was canned nearly four months ago. And thus, a fresher example may be better. Regardless, Big Blue Van smells and tastes amazing, making it certainly worth a try.

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About the American Wheat Ale

The American Wheat Ale is similar to the German Hefeweizen but it has more hops and less yeast. Its color ranges straw to gold with varying clarity. Although the style typically uses less wheat than the Hefeweizen, its clean fermentation allows for a variety of wheat flavors with a complement of hops. Its feel hovers around medium or a little below with ample carbonation. The American Wheat Ale is similar to the American Blonde Ale, but utilizes Wheat instead of the typical Two-row Pale.