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Hoffmann Helles - Climax Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hoffmann HellesHoffmann Helles

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

45 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 45
Reviews: 29
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 14.89%
Wants: 5
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Climax Brewing Company visit their website
New Jersey, United States

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: RonfromJersey on 07-18-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 45 | Reviews: 29 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of skee1080
4.88/5  rDev +29.8%

I had the privilege of sampling Climax Brewing's Hoffmann Helles straight from the carbonation tank at the brewery. Dave Hoffmann, owner and head brewer, was nice enough to come in one evening, give me a tour, and let me sample some of his beers. There's nothing quite like fresh beer straight from the tank! Since I had the beer last night, these notes are from my memory.

A-Medium gold color. The beer has excellent clarity and a beautifully thick white head. The head was extremely large at first cause it was coming straight from the carbonation tank, but once the beer settled, it was the perfect pint.

S-Bread baking is the first thing that comes to mind. The beer has an intense malt aroma, slightly biscuity and some toasty notes. There's a background German hop aroma as well.

T-The biscuity sweet malt flavor is delicately balanced with the hop bitterness. Little detectable hop flavor, but that's appropriate for a Helles.

M-The thing I really loved about this beer is that the carbonation wasn't overwhelming. A lot of light lagers (especially the macros) have way too much carbonation in my opinion. The Hoffmann Helles had decent carbonation, but not over the top, leaving a creamy medium body that I wasn't expecting in a lager.

D-I finished half a pint of this in like 3 minutes and easily could've drank a few more glasses. The Helles is incredibly easy drinking and a refreshing change from some of the "extreme" beers.

skee1080, Mar 26, 2009
Photo of thefireman
4.83/5  rDev +28.5%

Had this brew on tap at the Drafting Room in Springhouse. Clear amber with foamy head. Smells terrific. I knew this was going to be nice.

Initially floored by the caramel, floral taste heavy on malts. Extremely pleasant and refreshing, especially after drinking a Victory Hop Devil with my meal. Wow! Real nice.

Nice finish that makes me want more. Extremely drinkable!

This is the first I have tasted something out of the Climax Brewing Company brand. I must find more.

thefireman, Apr 06, 2008
Photo of Rastacouere
4.7/5  rDev +25%

Draft at Barcade under the name Hofmann(sic) Helles. Clear light golden hue, shining, decent sized white head, mostly lasting. Great hallertau? Hops nose, very floral and lemony, grassy, spicy enveloped by delicious strawy pils malt. The power of the maltiness takes form on the tongue developing mind-boggling pureness of flavour, bread and biscuits of the highest order. Very fruity as well with lemon and tropical fruits being surprisingly omnipresent and bringing a pleasant low level of acidity which enhances drinkability to rarely encountered levels. Not too dry, not too sweet. Oily texture, small bubbles, restrained carbonation. Awesome focus in there, so soft, so clean, so pure balance glory. Another tour de force by Climax. Exceptional.

Rastacouere, Sep 12, 2005
Photo of Krispogo
4.5/5  rDev +19.7%

Krispogo, Jul 23, 2014
Photo of RonfromJersey
4.5/5  rDev +19.7%

Brewery filled, store purchased growler.

A polished yellow gold body, topped by a hearty helping of whip cream froth, alive with peaks and ridges.. Good lacing immediately evident.

Nose is grassy, with a closing spicey note.

The initial malt landing is firm, but clean. It's not light and airy, not syrupy, just a quick jab that gets your attention before the noble hops jump on to even the seesaw. The hops come in ride the malt away, smoothing edges, and then remaining on stage for a few solo tumbles around the mouth in a delightful aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is a fine balance. Drinkability: maybe it's time to start buying these Climax growlers in pairs.

Another fine addition to the Climax Lager line. Enjoy it this summer.

RonfromJersey, Jul 18, 2004
Photo of ATPete
4.43/5  rDev +17.8%

Another great beer from Climax Brewing Co.

A- Crystal clear amber/gold with a big booming white head. Some rising carbonation.

S- Fruity, Malty, Hoppy, Clean, Floral, Fresh, Balanced.

T- Suburb balance, the perfect blend of malts and hops. I get some caramel, grainy bread, pale malts, nice bitterness from the hops, even some fruit and pepper jump in to the mix.

M- Nice light carbonation, medium to light mouth feel

D- This growler stands no chance right now! In line with the rest of the Climax brews this years Helles is extremely drinkable.

Dave and Co. have done it again, great brew! a must try!

ATPete, Apr 04, 2008
Photo of Gavage
4.33/5  rDev +15.2%

Appearance: pours a clear golden yellow color with a huge 3"+ bubbly head. Lacing is thick.

Smell: grassy notes and some malt sweetness is pleasant.

Taste: big grainy and bready malt profile here. Some grass, very soft lemon zest, and mild bitterness makes up a very flavorful version of the style.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp throughout. Medium bodied. Aftertaste is relatively clean. Refreshing too.

Drinkability: its easy to sit down and finish a growler in a long afternoon session watching some sports on the tube. Nice beer.

Gavage, Jan 24, 2009
Photo of drtth
4.3/5  rDev +14.4%

Served in a shaker pint glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As served the beer nice clear golden amber color but a thin layer of foam and s minimal ring around the glass. The foam quickly recedes to an island and a ring of foam that leaves some lacing. Within a few sips there is neither foam nor lacing.

Smell: The aroma is clean fresh, lightly grassy and floral, and has some nice gentle bready character to it.

Taste: The flavors are subtle and delicate and include slightly sweet bready malt with grassy hop flavors and a light, almost citric, bitterness that underlies the whole.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium bodied and slightly prickly with the fine, light, persistent carbonation. The finish is medium long, begins with lightly sweet bready malt and then trails off to a light refreshing dryness.

Drinkability: There are two words to describe this beer, "subtle" and "balanced." I found this one nicely drinkable. Each sip followed the other naturally and easily and I did have a second one even though there were other beers on the menu I'd not tried yet. ☺ A very nice Helles lager from a small brewery that does some big-on-quality beers.

drtth, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of NJpadreFan
4.28/5  rDev +13.8%

Climax- Hoffmann Helles Lager

A- Hazy, almost murky, orange brown. Cloudy yeastiness with a thick white head. Good lacing.
S- Big bready grainy malt with lemon, honey, and dry grass.
T- Sweet lemon and honey touched malt. Grainy bready malt. Crusty bread, biscuity, and a light touch of shortbread. Dry earthy hops.
M- Lightly sweet with huge bready malt. Dry earthy hops appear in the end but creamy sweet bready malt dominates.

Overall- Delicious. Drank the growler, quickly, in 1 sitting. Well done!

NJpadreFan, Feb 27, 2010
Photo of Jmamay22
4.22/5  rDev +12.2%

From the growler pours a hay yellow colored beer with a hefty off white head that holds well. Smells of spicy hops with a strong malt base of bread.

The spicy hops sit at the forefront of my tastebuds with a slight hint of lemon. Finishes with a doughy sweetness. The mouthfeel is light with moderate carbonation. A great representation of the style from an American brewery. The growler was great to share during this past world cup.

Jmamay22, Jul 18, 2010
Photo of confer
4.22/5  rDev +12.2%

Had this beer out of a cask at the Tap and Table.

A- Golden but not very clear, maybe because of the cask. Nice head that stayed around for a while.

S-Smell was good, fresh.

T- The taste got better as with each swallow. Nice easy lagerr flavor almost no hoppiness.

M- Smooth and creamy out of the cask.

D- Delicious and very drinkable beer. I will look for it in sixes and enjoy some more.

confer, Jul 07, 2009
Photo of MasterSki
4.15/5  rDev +10.4%

Growler thanks to Beerloco. Served in a pilsner glass.

A - Pours with a finger of eggshell foam that dissipates to some haze. Glass-coating lacing complements a hazy golden straw body.

S - German noble hops lend a floral note, fruity esters, caramel, and grain. Solid smelling helles, with a potent nose.

T - Very clean lager taste, with notes of honey, fruits, and caramel. Finishes with lemony and grassy hops and light bitterness. Very clean aftertaste.

M - Nice refreshing medium-light body, with light but zesty carbonation. A bit of graininess, but otherwise quite smooth. Finishes with light stickiness.

D - This stuff is super session-worthy. Easy to slam, with the low ABV (whatever it is), and pleasant texture. Nice solid refreshing flavor.

MasterSki, Apr 29, 2010
Photo of philbe311
4.08/5  rDev +8.5%

A - Minimal slightly off-white head quickly fades leaving a minimal lacing and a slight collar... A pure medium gold color... Possibly the slightest of hazes... Moderate carbonation... A bit of lacing clings to the glass as the session proceeds...

S - Freshly kneaded dough... Grains... Some floral notes... Perhaps a touch of spiciness...

T Mild, but rather interesting... Pale malts... Muted hop presence... Bready malts... Hints of lemon and banana...

M - On the lighter side of medium bodied... Brisk carbonation... Clean... Crisp... Refreshing... Smooth...

D - An easy drinking Munich Helles Lager... Could easily drink a couple of these and then some in a sitting... Well balanced... Would gladly drink again and would recommend to both beer geeks and beer novices... Nicely done by a brewery that I had never heard of prior to having this pint...

philbe311, Feb 17, 2011
Photo of Blanco
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Blanco, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of VikeMan
4/5  rDev +6.4%

VikeMan, Dec 19, 2011
Photo of abcdefghijkyle
4/5  rDev +6.4%

abcdefghijkyle, May 24, 2013
Photo of shaebs99
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Poured a golden yellow with nice amounts of foamy white head

My rating of the smell may be unfair. Since this was poured into hotel glasses instead of proper glassware. Enjoyed while spending week in Jersey. Balanced aroma. Light grassy hops and malt. I want more, but this may be due to the glass.

Taste is well balanced. Grainy, bready with some pale malt notes. Clean finish. I would also like this to be a bit crisper, just a touch more carbonation.

Very drinkable and enjoyable beer. Not my favorite lager, but one of my favorite helles (up there with Weihenstephaner and Stoudt's for me). Would love to make this a regular in my Summer lineup, but is unavailable to me on LI

shaebs99, Jun 02, 2008
Photo of jnardone235
4/5  rDev +6.4%

jnardone235, Sep 03, 2012
Photo of Ego
3.93/5  rDev +4.5%

store bought brewery filled growler...raised the temp to just below cellar.

large soapy white head sizzles as it settles down, pale straw, almost too pale imo, lacing is decent, carbonation is slow to moderate in the glass, head retention is pretty good. nothing special, nothing that would make you blow goat chunks....

assertive grassy and malty, some sweetness peaks through, it almost smells like wet wood (not a complaint), very nice.

taste etc...
round and well bodied in the mouth, the carbonation prickles just a hair keeping this from being to syrupy, the malt really bites here, there are subtle aftertones of bitterness but they are more periphery than anything. this tastes very "natural" (whatever the hell that is supposed to mean)

another fine showing from hoffmann's aka climax. as usual his german styles are good representatives.

music: slayer - christ illusion

Ego, Jun 03, 2007
Photo of gory4d
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%

Pours a clear fizzy yellow with a low white head; not much lacing. The smell is crisp minerals, biscuit, grass, lemon. Taste is lots of grass and biscuit, with some faint lemon notes and something tannic that seems out of place. It's viscous, medium in body, under-carbonated due, perhaps, to a poor job filling the growler. It's a good beer, could be a little better; in any case it's very easy to drink, and one I'd happily drink again.

gory4d, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of aficionado
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%

Golden yellow body, clearish but not as clear as can be, 2 finger white fluffy head, lots of random lacing, high carbonation. A little yeast sediment issues but nothing really detrimental.

Smells pretty good for a Helles. The fruitiness of the apples comes through along with some grassy notes and aromatic grain. Gets musty though as the beer warms. I enjoy this better quite cold.

Unripe sour Granny Smith apple, Meyer lemon, sweet grain, and just a hint of banana. The subtle sourness helps to bring out the fruity flavors better so it's not all just bready grain. The only thing that bothers me is that it's not too smooth as far as the bitterness goes.

I can tell the boys at Climax take a lot of consideration into the quality of their water. The mouthfeel is great for a refreshing Munich Helles. Moderate light body with a crisp feel.

Not an incredibly complex beer, but I don't want Munich Helles to be bourbon barrel aged or have dozens of different layers. This is a great beer. Munich would be proud. Enough said.

aficionado, Jul 20, 2011
Photo of InspectorBob
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

InspectorBob, Jul 30, 2013
Photo of dgherm
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

dgherm, Sep 13, 2013
Photo of bonbini26
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%

Poured into a pint glass from the growler

Pours a clear golden color, with a large 3 finger white head. The aroma is little on the faint side, some grassy hints, and maltiness comes through. Bready, grainy, malt taste, faint, lemon zest, and some bitterness in the finish. Mouthfeel is on the low end of the medium mouthfeel scale, pretty clean aftertaste, and smooth. Definitely a session beer on a hot afternoon.

bonbini26, May 04, 2009
Photo of corby112
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%

Draft at Rembrandt's.

Pours a clear, dark golden yellow color with a one finger frothy white headthat slowly settles into a lasting ring.  Sporadic spots of lacing left behind.

Subtle earthy, floral aroma with hints of grassy hops and pale malt along with some light fruit notes.  Smelly slightly creamy with hints of apple and faint alcohol.  

Medium bodied with a nice crisp floral hop bite up front that is countered by sweet pale malt, subtle alcohol and light fruit notes.  Slightly earthy and grassy and faintly dry but not very bitter.  Well balanced with pale pilsner malt and a crisp light apple flavor.  Slightly dry  with a bit of alcohol in the finish.  Well balanced and really easy to drink especially in this humid weather.  

corby112, Jun 29, 2011
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Hoffmann Helles from Climax Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 45 ratings.