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Aecht Schlenkerla Helles Lagerbier - Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

Not Rated.
Aecht Schlenkerla Helles LagerbierAecht Schlenkerla Helles Lagerbier

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

354 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 354
Hads: 590
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 11.59%
Wants: 44
Gots: 27 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla visit their website

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  4.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: rastaman on 09-29-2003

“Schlenkerla Helles” is brewed with fine Bavarian aroma hops from the area around the city of Nürnberg. It's lagered in century old caves underneath the historic Schlenkerla brewery and maltings. Schlenkerla Helles is boiled in the same copper kettles and bottom fermented by the same yeast as the historic Schlenkerla Smokebeer. Its subtle smokiness without using smoke malt makes “Helles Schlenkerla Lager” a unique representative of the classic lager beer style “Bavarian Helles”.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 354 | Hads: 590
Photo of JizackFH
3.53/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - This beer pours a nice clear golden yellow. It has a nice fluffy 2-finger white head on it. The head had good retention, and it left a nice sheet of lacing behind.

S - It smells of Pilsner malts and some sweetness up front. There is an earthiness aroma to it, and some hop character as well. Also, I am getting a tad bit of smokiness.

T - The taste is very malty, and there is some sweetness and a bit of smoke. There is an earthiness to it, as well as some notes of caramel, hops, and bread. The finish is pretty clean, it just leaves a bit of lingering bitterness behind.

M - It has a medium body and average carbonation. It goes down smooth and is quite refreshing. Good feel for the style.

O - This beer has pretty good drinkability. It has a nice flavor and goes down easy. I think this would be a nice beer to have while sitting outside on a hot day. Overall, I enjoyed it, and I would pick it up again. (918 characters)

Photo of macpapi
3.55/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a .5 liter bottle.

Pours a light copper to straw-like color with a full and fluffy white head. The clarity of this brew offers a good medium for rising bubble activity throughout the glass.

Smells of smoked malt. This smokiness reminds me of bacon or treated ham. There is also a bit of straw on the nose.

Taste, like the smell, is dominated by smoked malt. There is also a bit of bitterness, just a touch, and a slight touch of bacon--though not as prominent as some of the other beers Schlenkerla brews. Finishes a bit dry.

Moderate carbonation, sharp bitterness, and a nice and full flavor define the mouthfeel.

On the whole, this beer packs a good deal of smoky flavor, and is well-balanced. It is a nice and pretty drinkable brew. (752 characters)

Photo of dcmchew
3.56/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours pale golden with a white one finger head in an Austrian mug, lots of fizziness.
Grainy smell, some faint wood, smoke.
Smoked biscuity malts, lots of grain. A little too lemon zesty, aside for some nice acidic apple. Grass towards the finish, then some unwanted metallic hops.
Light body, almost watery, crisp, almost refreshing.
Never had a smoked helles before, it was interesting, although with a few off notes. I guess Schlenkerla are really great at crafting dark liquid bacon, but this helles was a bit of a let down. (528 characters)

Photo of AustinBeerLvr
3.57/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured a half-liter bottle into a pint glass.

A: This helles has a substantial looking body, especially considering the style. Would almost be perfect, except for the lack of lacing it left on the glass.

S: Smells just like a very, nice clean helles lager with a good dose of smoke throughout. Ironically, the clean flavors blend very well with the smoke smell.

T & M: Starts off with a classic helles malt sweetness and is quickly blended with the smoke flavor, which is a little too strong in my opinion. Towards the end, the hops kick in and are nearly perfect in terms of bitterness, but the smoke flavor holds on for a bit too long. Mouthfeel is great, as the beer feels like it has plenty of body.

D: During the first several sips, the smokiness is overwhelming. However, as you sip it further, it seems to start to blend more with the beer. That said, this is my first beer from Bamberg (the inventors of "smoke beer"), so I think this is very good for a "smoke flavored helles". Not something I would normally drink, but I think this would be a great beer for any beer geek to try, as it's very interesting. (1,127 characters)

Photo of jsanford
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at the Churchkey in Washington, D.C.

Poured a hazy gold with a soapy white head. Aromas of smoke, light, crisp malt, and some grassy hops. Taste is similar to the nose, slightly meaty smoke, crisp malt, honey, and toasted grain. Finish is long-lasing and bitter, and smacks nicely of smoke. Mouthfeel is light and crisp, very drinkable despite the advertised 6.5% ABV (BA says 4.3%, not sure which is correct). Overall a nice intro to Schlenkerla, but give me the Marzen or Urbock any day! (497 characters)

Photo of eberkman
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Deep Ellum in Allston.

Presented in a tall, handled stange. Clear pale gold with a substantial white head that had decent staying power for the style.

A bacon-like smokiness in the nose blended with an otherwise typical lager combination of grassiness, tartness and bitterness.

Taste was very similar -- grassy with a bitter tinge, but with a smoked pork essence at the front and back end. Fairly clean in the middle.

Nice crisp mouthfeel, especially considering that it was coming from a tap.

Drinkability is slightly above average -- at 4.30, you can put away a bunch of these. But the novelty of the smoke gets a little old. Also a little nagging, since they're not going all out like a rauchbier. (715 characters)

Photo of crnipeter
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours relatively thin yet well formed creamy white head that sets to a firm cloth atop of effervescent yellow body with good clarity. The nose is dominated by Pils malt sweetness while smoke is virtually nonexistent. Flavor is pils malt sweetness with woody smokiness and towards the dry finish mild spicy noble hops and hop bitterness show up. Light bodied with moderate carbonation and somewhat creamy sensation. (414 characters)

Photo of bbeane
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not sure of the freshness of this one... gonna give it a try anyways

A- Poured into my DFH chalice... Pours a mostly crisp (has a bit of sediment in it which is why I'm questioning the freshness) golden color with a nice fluffy white head and decent retention

S- Aroma is a bit disappointing compared to the other Aecht Schlenkerla beers I've tried. Not much smoked notes, just some light floral hops

T- Starts with some floral hop flavor with some smokey notes. Finishes with a bitter bread flavor

M- Light/medium body with light carbonation

O- Eh... this one was just ok IMO. Not on the same level as their Marzen

CHEERS!! (631 characters)

Photo of biegaman
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I curiously anticipate this one, thanks again harry!
Neat retro 70's looking looking 500ml bottle. Neat.
Pours an apple golden, head would form somewhat. A little cloudy. Aroma of a peaty cider. Plenty of fireplace like peat, with notes of apple and pear. The smoke takes over the in the taste department, setting it apart from other Munich Helles, giving it much more character. Really distinctive peat smoke. A lot of ripe apple in the taste. A bold malt bill too. Distinct (especially within its style) and quite filling, drinks heavier than a standard German lager. Happy to try! (585 characters)

Photo of Irrigate
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Colored golden like a typical lager, and the head dissipates quickly. The smell is crisp and slightly smoky. This would be a great "gateway beer" into rauchbier like the Schlenkerla Marzen. Personally, I think the smokiness is so slight that it teases rather than fulfills. But then again, this isn't labeled a "rauchbier". Still very interesting. (347 characters)

Photo of foogerd
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a- Light golden yellow clear body with a small white head.

S- Light grainy smoke, hay , light grassy hops.

T- Very drinkable tasty lightly toasted and smoked malts with a light touch of hops that lend a touch of spice.

M- Nice tickling carbonation light body.

O- Very quaffable brew. (287 characters)

Photo of turkob
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

My first review! Studying for the BJCP so here goes

A: Very translucent and absolutely filled with bubbles. Pours a thick, cloudy white head that subsides slowly and looks beautiful. Golden with a hint of amber.

S: Little smell at all. A little sweet, I can pick up a hint of malt and even less noble hops, but really almost completely without aroma.

T: Very crisp. A mild but distinct malt profile with a hint of hops on the finish. Grainy but mostly sweet.

M: Finishes dry. Lots of carbonation makes the beer tingle in your mouth. Not a lot of body, but not thin either.

O: A refreshing and light beer with plenty of flavor to keep you wanting more. I'd like a little more hops on the finish, but you can definitely drink a couple of these without blinking. (764 characters)

Photo of curasowa
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear, golden color with one finger of white head that fades to a ring.

Aroma: Typical dry, mildly husky German malt aroma with notes of rye bread, faint chocolate and smoked meat.

Taste: Dry, crisp malt upfront, then pretty astringent with some smokiness and a little chalk. Some faint herbal hops finish things off before a pretty fast finish with some lingering graininess.

The Rest: Medium bodied; A pretty tasty Helles with some additional character from the smokiness. (489 characters)

Photo of FLima
3.61/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Light golden color with a thin head.
Mildly smokey aroma with floral and herbal notes.
Flavor of slightly smoked malt with its sweetness, nevertheless it is quite clean as a Lager should be. Notes of grassy hops and bread. Hints of minerals.
Light body with good carbonation.
Decent helles with an elegant smokey touch. But don’t expect bacon or any heavy ash smokness, and you will be fine. (393 characters)

Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.61/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pale gold brew with a ton of carbonation and a small, but continually replenishing, head. Thin streaks of lacing on the glass.

S - Hay and a bit of well cooked corn.

T - Slightly smoky, hay, a bit peppery, hint of paraffin, lots light malt and a hint of corn. After taste is a bit of corn, smoke, but mostly a grassy bitterness.

M - Carbonation extremely high, watery, thin, pretty refreshing.

D - Piecewise, I'm not impressed, but all together this beer is pretty nice. (479 characters)

Photo of Gmann
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden straw color with a small pure white head. The aroma is of a bready/doughy malt and a nice spicy hop. The taste is of the doughy munich malt and spicy nobel hops. More of a hop profile than your typical munich helles. There is also a tin like flavor as well. The feel is moderate, nice malty chewiness, fizzy carbonation; finishes sweet and spicy. An easy drinking brew, the spicy hops neutralize the munich malt so this brew doesn't have the typical munich helles flavor. Worth a go. (503 characters)

Photo of dsa7783
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

1 Pint, .09 fl oz bottle copped from Gary's in Madison for $3.29...
Sampled all of this brewery's smoked beers, so I was curious to know what their Helles Lager would taste like...
Overall, this was a typical depiction of a light, easily-drinkable style - certainly nothing above and beyond, but a pleasant drink that was crisp and fairly smooth...
Straw-colored, light-blond appearance with a very minimal foamy head that quickly dissipated and left hardly any lacing...
Faint grainy smell apparent with slight florals thrown into the mix...
Light, crisp, clear, refreshing taste - went down like water with not much going on in this department...
Drinkability was fairly good - easy to down because of the very modest 4.3% ABV...
Otherwise, a decent stab at the style... (772 characters)

Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sunny yellow corn color. Hazy body. Slight natural carbonation.

Light smokiness similar to this brewery's rauchbier. Esters. Clean Pilsner hops. Noble character. Floral and grainy. Corn.

Light smoke. Crisp and clean with a sweet malt base. Corn and light fruits. Spice. chamomile. Dry finish.

Light and sweet. Good malt base with a very slight hop bitterness.

This is a nice beer. It goes well with my hamburger and fires. The flavor profile is simple but it does have that nice Aecht Shlenkarla smokey flavor. I would drink this again. (542 characters)

Photo of BogleHill
3.63/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a hazy golden color in appearance. Frothy head dissappears fast. Stagnant particles remain. The aroma is of slightly sweet smoke. The flavor is very roasty caramel with a slight smoke finish. A quite drinkable brew - I would get this again. (250 characters)

Photo of scruffwhor
3.64/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Looks liek a normal helles. Golden, crisp looking yellow with one column of bubbles making its way to the top. But it doesn't smell like your normal helles. It's smoked. But smoked cyrstal and pale malts. Very lioght smokey aroma mixed with grass and pilsnert malts. Tastes like a distant smokehouse. Light mlating with an equally light smoke flavor. Very unique. One of a kind. (378 characters)

Photo of tigg924
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: orange/yellow, 1/4 inch head, high carbonation, clear

Smell: pork, smoke, and grass

Taste: grass, bigger than expected hops, somewhat smoky finish

Mouthfeel: I can feel the moderate carbonation. This beer has a weakish semi-sweet start with a moderately bitter finish and medium body.

Drinkability: This is the least smoky of the Scherlenkerla offerings and only has a touch of smoke on the aftertaste. A decent lager, I could have two but would no desire for a third. (484 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured clear golden yellow color lager with a medium white foamy head with average retention and limited lacing. Aroma of floral malt with some sweetness also noticeable. Taste is a mix between some floral malt with some sweet notes but I could not distinguish any some at all. Body is quite full and slightly oily with some medium carbonation. Interesting but not really smokey. (387 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle picked up at Chevy Chase in DC. Served in a tulip.

Pours a light straw color with a thin white head and not too much lacing, even after a good swirl to raise the head back up. The nose brings a good amount of smoke along with mild lager characteristics lingering in the background. The smoke definitely overwhelms the lager, which which basically just means a lightly-smoked carbonated beverage. This creates problems for both the nose and the taste. The feel is redeemed is the Helles' crispness is still there and fits well with the smoke. Fairly good, but not my favorite of theirs. (593 characters)

Photo of cbl2
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No best by date, but brewed only once.

Pours a crystal clear pale straw with a thin layer of white foam on top that settles quickly.

Slightly smoky like the rest of their beers, though not as prevalent, with some crisp cut grass aromas.

Smoked ham flavor with a mildly hopped drying sensation towards the end. A unique twist on the style. (350 characters)

Photo of connecticutpoet
3.67/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I heard about this beer last night, and saw that ppoitras found it at Julio's, right near where I work. So I went down at lunch today, and damn I am glad I did! I got the last bottle they had out... the shelf was empty and there was just one in the cooler. Don't know if they had more in the back, the guy I talked to had no clue.

This beer poured out clear and yellow, with a noisy, fizzy head. A pratty average lager look, but with a hint of lacing.

The aroma was hoppy, with hints of lemon and a definite pepperiness.

The taste was definitely smoky. But it wasn't overpowering. The hop bitterness was a little bit much, but overall it was mostly balanced.

Mouthfeel is light and crisp. Pretty good.

Drinkability... a little better than average. Would have given it more, but the bitterness was a wee bit too prominent. (838 characters)

Aecht Schlenkerla Helles Lagerbier from Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
89 out of 100 based on 354 ratings.