Sam Adams Cherry Wheat

By on January 28, 2007 @ 10 PM (38 Comments)

This beer is bad. How bad? I poured 4 of the 6 bottles down the sink. A single tear was shed because I hate to see any beer go to waste, but this was undrinkable bad. Too hoppy, too much cherry – it was almost medicinal. Yes – almost like that cherry robitussin you had to choke down as a kid. I think any kind of fruity beer should have a hint of fruit, not an overpowering taste of fruit. Don’t waste your money on a six pack or a single. Sam Adams can make some good beer, this just isn’t one of them.

Sam Adams Cherry Wheat Rating: 0 out of 10 (?)

38 Comments (Add Your Comments)

  1. Dirk Jahn says:

    I think you are completely wrong with this review. It is a great tasting beer, I found only a hint of cherry flavour, definately not overpowering as you stated. I am a fan of wheat beers and tried this one for the first time. Enjoyed it a lot.

  2. Ned says:

    I think you either love this beer or you hate it. I had always said it tastes like children’s tylenol. Totally medicinal. Artificial cherry flavor. I hate it.

  3. Jason Brouwer says:

    Those who say this beer is medicinal tasting and artificial are the same anoying snobs that are wine tasters who get more pleasure out of giving their unwanted and over exadurated opinions on the fine nuances of wines. This is a great tasting beer for an ocasional breakaway from the classic beer flavor. Suck it up ,sissy!

  4. John says:

    No wine snobs here Jason – we’ll man up to any number of lambics, strawberry beers, blueberry beers and any other fruited beers that are done right. A hint of cherry – good. A cherry mouth rape – bad!

  5. bruce says:

    this is the best beer in the world for breakfast!
    waking up in the morning cooking eggs and bacon drinking a sam adams cherry wheat, nothing is better ! advice: only drink 4-6 before noon and switch.

  6. KAJ says:

    Great Beer, only wish it was avail. in Canada. 8%m zowwee!!

  7. Dad says:

    After seeing all the comments on this beer I thought I would try it again so I got a single. The overpowering aroma was of a jar of cherries I used to put in vodka collins when I was courting the Lovely Mrs. Beer Love in the early 70’s. It had way too many hops for a wheat beer. It started pretty bad and as it warmed it got pretty nasty. If this was the only beer in the world I wouldn’t stop drinking but would drink a whole lot less. I love the comment from Bruce, saturated fats, cholesterol and nitrates in the AM work for me too but I would probably just have 4-6 red beers and then maybe a nap before switching. Everything’s better with bacon.

  8. RodneyH says:

    IMO this is by far the best beer sam adams has to offer. I don’t think it’s too overbearing or medicinal at all. It has a nice hint of cherry and I like the hops. You want nasty, try the blackberry witbier. SA blackberry witbier is one of the worst beers I’ve ever tasted, along with magic hat#9. One of the best fruit/wheat beers out there is Ithaca Beer Co. apricot wheat.

  9. Robbie says:

    I absolutely love this beer. I’m stunned by the review. My brother introduced me to it over the holidays and I drank a whole six pack. I do think it has just the right touch of cherry and no unpleasent flavors on top.
    I do admit to being pretty picky about beer, though. And I’ll agree it gets nasty when it gets warm.

  10. Matt says:

    I agree that this one is a pretty lame attempt by Sam Adams. I love their Boston Lager so trying the Cherry Wheat was a natural move, but this is underwhelming. It’s not balanced, the cherry flavor is all in the nose and not on the palate, medium bodied like the lager, but quickly dissipates and isn’t pleasant at all.
    I wouldn’t rate it a 0, more like a 3. There are plenty of nasty, watery, flat, boring beers out there to fill up the 0 column.
    Where are all the Belgian reviews?

  11. matt says:

    It really depends on what you’re pairing the beer with whether it’s overpoweringly sweet. It has the distinctive flavor of benzaldehyde and that’s the only flavor note, i think they added a bit too much cherry flavor and ought to have soured the beer with Brett like a lambic and added more bittering hops. It makes a good drink on its own, but mixing it with salty tostadas +avocado is a bad idea, and eating it with fresh berries makes both the berries and the beer taste like a packet of aspartame. I could take it or leave it.

  12. Goose says:

    Not a big fan of cherry flavors except in of course cherries, but the reviewer who said the blackberry witbier was nasty needs his or her head examined. Most “fruit” beers ARE nasty, however the blackberry witbier isn’t one of them. Normally I’m a stout or porter guy, but I usually try Sam’s brewmaster packs as released, and the summer selection this year had two standouts the Blackberry and the Summer.

  13. Jon says:

    I’m not a huge fan of fruit beers or lambecs but I like this one. I cooled it way down and sat on the front porch on a hot summer day and tried it. I didn’t find the cherry to be overpowering at all. I could smell it and slightly taste it but not enough for it to be cloying. I had a couple and bought another six a few weeks later. My girlfriend, who is not a beer lover, liked this one enough to drink one also.

  14. Bob says:

    Cherry Wheat is really good! I honestly dont know how this beer is medical tasting or over powering. If you like flavor then pick this beer. If you like simplicity and more of a beer type of taste then dont get it. In my opinion I give this a 5/5. One of my favorites.

  15. Steve says:

    Both Cherry Wheat & Blackberty Witbier are FANTASTIC beers!!!

  16. Dad says:

    John and I had the Blackberry Witbier at a beer dinner last June and I was favorably impressed. I am not able to find it locally but will keep an eye out for it.

  17. Shaun says:

    I think it’s pretty obvious from the reviews here that the cherry flavor and aroma in this beer are hit or miss with people’s different pallets. I’m on the bandwagon of giving this beer a 0 as well. But some people really seem to enjoy it. To each his own. This is why you can’t just go by how other people review a beer. You need to try it for yourself! Thanks for the site fellas! Cheers!

  18. JennO says:

    I first tried this beer a few years ago and instantly fell in love! It is by far my favorite beer. I love the sweet cherry taste! I buy a case every year while on vacation. I can not imagine vacation without it. I don’t understand how anyone can say it tastes like medicine. I can’t stand cherry medicines. This tastes like a Shirley Temple mixed with beer. It’s AMAZING! I will agree though, it tastes bad when warm but I think all beer tastes bad warm.

  19. John says:

    JennO – A Shirley Temple mixed with beer? I don’t know what to do with that! Although I do enjoy a good radler (beer with sprite or lemonade).

    However you’re completely wrong if you think all beer tastes bad warm. We used to think the same thing and now we have something called the “60 degree test” – if a beer tastes good when the beer temperature gets above 60 degrees it’s a well crafted beer. A lot of darker beers – porters and stouts – will meet this criteria. Dad and I have even had some beers pass the 70 degree test. Usually the higher the alcohol content the warmer the beer can be and still taste great. You’ll also find as beers warm you pick up way more flavors. Most American mass market beers won’t pass the 60 test as they’re marketed on “cold” because that’s the only thing that can stun the taste.

  20. Darth Miniscus says:

    Well, I have tried this beer and amazingly enough , I am drinking one as I write this. I am amazed at how you first taste all cherry notes through the palate and the nose, then the cherry flavor dissapears, revealing a very hoppy, almost english beer flavor. Both flavors are quite robust in nature. The cherry side tends to be a bit acidic, where the malty side almost balances it out with a heavy , hoppy frothy note. I found this experience interesting and it kept me intrigued enough to continue enjoying it. I will probably not get it again as this really is something you will either like or completely dislike. I find it heavy and complex, and yes it needs to be absolutly ice cold to enjoy in my opinion. Pairing this beer with a dish will prove to be a challenge due to it’s two – fold nature. This beer is a real work of art for tasters, but only if you tend to enjoy the more fruit styled beers, would I reccomend it.

  21. Emma says:

    I just tried this beer, and can honestly say it is the most unpleasant brew I’ve ever downed, with the exception of a dirty martini. And the Sam Adam’s Cherry Wheat is as diametrically to a dirty martini as possible. Both, however, I find undrinkable and try desperately to foist off on other people.
    I agree that it tastes like cough syrup. I got it on draft, and maybe if it had been super-chilled, it would be palatable, but that’s always a bad sign.

  22. Michael says:

    I’m one of the ones in the “love it” camp. I always buy a 6 of this and a 6 of one variety of my local microbrew’s stuff (usually an IPA or an amber ale). It’s a better change of pace than almost anything else I’ve tried. I’ve don’t ever drink two of these in a row, so that might be part of it, but I think it’s a great change of pace beer.

  23. Jeff W. says:

    Wow, came to this site for the first time and was a little shocked at the review on this one. I too, can’t stand beers with too much fruit in them. I have always shyed away from the beers with Orange, Lemon, etc. in them. To me a great “fruit” beer just needs to have a slight hint of the fruit flavor and not overpower the beer. I think Sam Adams’ Cherry Wheat does that. I love it. Drink it all the time. Maybe the reason is I am a fan of the Dopplebocks? Not sure. Granted…and a warning…you need to drink this beer very cold…and keep it cold. If you drink it too warm the cherry flavor will be stonger and you will get some bitterness. I’ve had this beer from a tap at Flying Saucer and it was downright amazing…especially after a long hot Southern day outside. If drinking from a bottle, try pouring it into one of those frozen mugs from your freezer. Enjoyed reading all the comments.

  24. Anthony says:

    I agree with those who think it has a cough syrup after taste. I tried it on two different ocassions and didn’t like it either one. The Blackberry Wit has a much better, fresher taste. Thankfully enough Samuel Adams makes plenty other flavors to make up for this one. One everyone likes everything, that’s there is a variety and S.A. has the best. Obsolutely the best American brewer.

  25. mitch says:

    i just drank a cherry wheat sam adams with a chicken ceasar salad, and liked it enough to have a second for dessert. i agree that the cherry flavor is pretty artificial, but not unpleasant to the appropriate pallate. i am looking forward to finding it bottled and trying it colder.

    i am probably not your average beer drinker, as i dont enjoy simple beers and will always pick strongbow or scrumpyjack cider over any beer offered.. just noticing how buzzed i am after 44 oz as well haha.

  26. Deryck says:

    I am sorry but this beer is great. The lowest I can see this beer being rated is a 7. Combine it with Guiness and its an 8 or 9!!

  27. Anthony says:

    Well Deryck, all I can say is different tastes for difference people. It all depends on who’s doing the tasting. I guess that’s why they make so many varieties, so they can please a wider group of beer lovers.

  28. Nick says:

    I’m definitely in the “I hate the sam adams cherry wheat” camp. That being said, I think that there are merits to both sides of the argument.

    The vast majority of the robitussin experience is in the nose. Drinking it with my nose pinched, the cherry-like flavor was significantly less, but it still wasn’t a pleasant flavor.

    Insofar as the temperature taste is concerned, definitely agree it becomes a less pleasant beer as it warms up. That being said, I’m not sure what temperature is designed to be optimal at. Beers that are slightly on the warmer side do much better by me — I find that excessive chilling kills most of the taste — reason why I drink my scotch/whisk(e)y with just a splash of water, instead of adding rocks.

    Adding fruit (or other stuff) to a beer is always a highly subjective thing. Some people love, others hate. Sweet and fruity aren’t automatic disqualifiers for me — there are some great lambics out there that successfully manage to make the marriage work.

    If this beer were a bit more like the abita purple haze in that the presence of raspberry is more of a subtle flavor on the palate that lingers a bit, rather than a huge up-front note in the nose, Sam Adams might have made a better beer. IMO, that is.

  29. John says:

    Nick – thanks for the comments. So much of tasting a beer is the nose, it’s almost impossible to separate the smelling and the tasting. I say if you have to try it with your nose pinched, then they did something wrong (gueze lambics aside). You’re right as well – chilling kills the taste in beers, which is why American beers market themselves on “cold” as if it was a feature of the beer itself.

    We know from experience though it’s possible to do cherry very well in a beer – one that warms well even. Look no further than Founders Cerise – this beer blew our minds and was everything a cherry beer should be. Try that if you haven’t – you’ll like it way more than a Purple Haze. Same key though – background flavor – not foreground flavor.

    Luckily we all know Sam Adams is capable of some magnificent brews, so nobody should be deterred from anything Sam Adams based on this review.

    You obviously know your stuff, Nick, so cheers to you!

  30. Amar says:

    A terrible mistake by SA. Totally agree with the reviewer. The cherry flavour was so artificial nd medicinal tht I just left the glass after two sips. Have tasted many types of beers but its the first one which i didnt dare to complete . Hav to drink two more guiness after rinse and flush tht cherry taste .

  31. Phil says:

    Let’s face it guys all those lime, cherry and other bullshit beers are just that bullshit. They are for teenagers and other babies that cannot drink real beer.

  32. Alex says:

    i agree with every point of this review. the cherry was overwhelming and tasted exactly like cough syrup. luckily my friend Sylvia and I had bought some blue moon that night just in case this beer we were testing turned out to be a stinker. sadly, it also ruined sam adams for me since this was my first beer from them. not that they dont make a good brew, but the memory remains.

  33. John says:

    Hi Alex –

    Don’t let it ruin you on Sam Adams – they’ve got some gems in their line up. Grab the Sam Adams Octoberfest this fall and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

    Thanks for the comment!



  34. Brady says:

    This is the 4th beer I have read from your reviews John and you have been spot on thus far. I happened to pick a few of my fav such as Amber Bock, Sam Adam’s Octoberfest, and Red Stripe. I found them honest and helpful. I am sure I am in no way going to agree with you on all of your reviews but they have been graded fairly. Now I figured I’d look up a beer I find quite disgusting…Cherry Wheat. It tasted like a Cherry Tire. Keep up the good work and I will make sure to point this page out to some friends.

    Go raibh maith agat.

  35. John says:

    Hi Brady – Glad to find someone with a similar beer taste! I appreciate you taking some time to read the site.

    To that end I kicked back with a Dogfish Head Punkin Ale tonight – along with Sam Adams Octoberfest that you mention it gives me another reason to look forward to fall.



  36. Tyronicus says:

    this beer tastes like what I imagine reindeer piss would. I live for sammy oktoberfest…winter lager pretty good but prefer chicago goose island…Pretty much loathe all the fruity (cherry wheat, cranberry lambic, blueberry whatever) from Sammy. Have really been enjoying the Sammy Black Lager. Not that my opinion matters cuz we all gotem

  37. Tyronicus says:

    Another thot maybe-and i am no real brewer–if they upped the hops for bitterness where the cherry comes through as a hint it might work

  38. dale says:

    I love Sam Adams, and I own a few shares of Boston Beer Company, but I hate Cherry Wheat. It reminds me of cough syrup. I tried it in 2007 when I first started getting into craft beer and didn’t like it. I tried it a couple of times in 2010 to see if my palate had come around to appreciate it, and I still hated it.

    To each their own, but I’ll pass on Cherry Wheat in the future.

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