My local Waitrose sells Erdinger and as there's an Erdinger glass in the kitchen cupboard that seemed a good place to start.
The alarm bells should have started ringing when I looked at the bottle though. It was 5.3% ABV which puts it at the weaker end of the German wheat beers. I can remember one Summer researching the various wheat beers on offer, which ranged from 5.2 to 5.6% ABV and finding that each increment in ABV improved the beer. Being at the lower end the Erdinger was definitely lacking, so even though I had the proper glass (and wheat beer glasses do look the business) it was a bit of a disappointment.
My next beer was one I bought when stocking up for my World Cup beer sweep stake entry. Troublette is a Belgian wheat beer, slightly stronger (5.5% ABV) but a far better beer. Lots of flavour, but still refreshing a few more of these would have gone down very nicely.
As I'm a bit out of practice with wheat beer I can't really remember what are meant to be the defining characteristics of German and Belgian wheat beers. Cloves and bananas Vs Coriander and Curaçao orange peel? Anyway the Erdinger didn't have much flavour and the Troublette did.
And to complete the international line up, I also found a wheat beer from England. Whitstable's Raspberry Wheat (5.2%) would I guess be more at the Belgian end of things, what with having raspberries in it.
It was totally different from the other two though, having a touch of sourness in the taste, but not unpleasantly so. It wasn't really one for guzzling, as there's only so much sourness I can take, but it had the refreshingness I was after.
If anyone could recommend me some more wheat beer to enjoy whilst the weather's still hot I'm all ears.