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Samichlaus Bier Helles - Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg

Not Rated.
Samichlaus Bier HellesSamichlaus Bier Helles

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

349 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 349
Reviews: 217
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 15.78%
Wants: 17
Gots: 47 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg visit their website

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  14.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: mikesgroove on 11-25-2007)
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Ratings: 349 | Reviews: 217 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tempest
2.93/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Bottled 2007

Looks a clear gold, without much head retention. The aroma is of white grape and sweet, bready malt. The flavor and mouthfeel is rough to say the least. There's a strong, dry alcohol flavor, in line with watered-down vodka. The malt just comes off like a very concentrated light lager with caramel malt ad a touch of grassy hops. It's not all-out offensive, but I won't be finishing this one. I'll return to this one after I let a bottle mellow for a year or two.

Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a smallish 11.2 oz bottle to a beer glass, the liquid is a nice clear gold with soso carbonation. The head is small and leaves very little lace.

The smell is alcohol socked bread.

The taste follows a very nice bready big brew. And bam lots of alcohol too. Taste complexities include, pear, peach and cherries. But it seems the huge 14% ABV will chase most.

The mouthfeel is huge full body, subdued carbonation and a bit of burn.

The drinkability... Well ha this brew is a sipper to be sure. Take it easy kids.

Prosit Und Zum Wohl, MK

Photo of arguemaniac
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

What's this!?! Another version of one of the best beers ever brewed?! I must try it...

Pretty similar, really. Syrupy, heavy sweetness with a rich, fruity raisin character. The alcohol is pronounced, but somewhat milder than one might expect. The drinkability is a bit limited, but the flavors a remarkably smooth, given their overall intensity.

Now, there isn't an assertive toffee character here like there is with the regular Samicluas, but it's still very similar. Now, I should have had more patience and aged it for a few years before reviewing it, but I can tell this one would be superb after sitting in my cellar for a while.

Highly recommended...

Photo of Vancer
3.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Helles, eh? Well, sure poured a golden amber, thin head tried to bubble up, but the 14% suppressed it. Surprising aroma of the euro skunk, not heavy, but noticeable - along with some spicey malts.

Tasty brew of sweet cinnamon candied apples, dunked into a malty bin for a year. All the alcohol brings along a fairly sweet quaff, but it does finish sharp and crisp.

Very nice brew, easy to drink even with the booze wallop - but the $17 for a 4-pack of 11.2ozs puts a hurt on the wallet.

Photo of Domingo
3.58/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Saw this next to the normal 2007 Samichlaus and the store owner said it was the first batch of it they've gotten.
Pours a nice golden color, but with almost no head. It's certainly not flat, as it's pretty typical for anything non-Belgian that's this strong. The color looks like a maibock or a czech pils...but obviously with a lot less foam.
Smells like a maibock. For something this strong, it actually still has some hop character to it. It doesn't smell as boozy as it actually is, which is pretty surprising.
When you taste it your immediate reaction is "this is a helles or helles bock." The malt taste and hops are there, it just feels a little bit more sticky. That's the instant you taste it. About a milisecond later you're hit with a huge wave over overpowering sweetness that carries over into the finish. It's almost like taking a sip of a beer that's been layered on top of brandy.
Honestly, I liked it at first, but that sweetness and kick is just too much.
For a 12oz bottle, this is a splitter. Pour this into 2 or 3 brandy snifters and split it with some friends. It's a little too sticky and potent for more than one bottle...at least for me.
If you like maibocks or brandy, this might be up your alley. I really wish it wasn't as boozy as it is. If this were about 9-10% I bet it would be wonderful. The hops are there in the smell and even in the up-front taste. It's just too bad they can't hold up.
Pretty good in small doses, but know what you're getting.

Photo of SaintsFan
3.63/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Very crisp orange...absolutely no head, though. Really kind of unremarkable.

S: Very sweet and malty...plenty of fruit in the nose (pear, green apple, etc), as well. Definitely a blast of alcohol in there too.

T: About as subtle as a sledgehammer...alcohol is definitely present, but this is a 14% abv beer here. Some citrus-like sweetness...further sips seem to highlight the alcohol even more. Definitely a warmer.

M: Rather thick and syrupy, but not in a bad way. Suits the high ABV.

Drinkability: For this much booze, not too bad...but it is REALLY hot.

Overall: An interesting experience...but really makes you appreciate some high ABV beers that do a better job of hiding it. This definitely needs some time in the bottle.

Photo of homebrewhawk
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2007 Vintage. 11.2 oz bottle served in a brandy snifter. Poured a clear pale gold. Thin white head that dissipated quickly. Boozy aroma with a little fruit. Very full bodied almost syrup. Lots of malt sweetness with some caramel. There is a little bit of hop bitter. Warming but not hot considering the ABV.
A nice beer to sip on a cold evening. For malt lovers only!

Photo of theformula
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beer #21 in my 366 Days of Beer Quest, tasted on 1/22. "First bottling since 1986".

A: Pours a golden yellow body into a snifter; very pilsner-like. This is Samichlaus?! A tiny white head forms but dissipates instantly. Clarity is great w/ small bubbles rising.

S: The 14% ABV is integrated really well into this Helles version, this has very German pilsner-like qualities. Light cereal grains and hay are first picked out with the sharp, fusel alcohol note making a statement. A balancing sweetness of raw honey and something like white grapes and peaches as well.

M: Med. body with low-med. carbonation. The M.F. is pretty slick and gelatinous almost, coating.

T: Samichlaus always was to be respected, as this Helles demands as well. Sweet and syrupy like brandy, with light grains and hay balancing it with a big alchohol presence to make it warming.

D: A great beer, yet I like the doppelbock version a bit more. The alcohol is certainly there but it's not overpowering, strangely enough. This is like a beer-brandy. Great nightcap.

Photo of aforbes10
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from City Wide in South Bend. Pours golden orange to yellow. Soda like bubbles ringing the outside. Laces like a scotch. Odor is fruity, clean. hints of teak, apples, mild cherry, brandy. Taste is burning, warming alcohol, grapes, raspberry and sweet toffee. Alcohol is almost a flavor in itself. Sweet malt backbone. The whole thing seems understated, but at the same time huge and demanding. Mouthfeel is syrupy and thick, like congealing Jell-O. Overall its a sipper, a beer liquor. Warming a smooth and pretty impressive.

Photo of Scoobydank
4.38/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Bright white head that disapears immediatley. The color is that of a sprakling aple cider. So a nice amber color. Very inviting.
S: I am picking up just a hint of burnt nuts. Just a touch of peach
T: A delcious creamy vanillasweetness is the biggest thing immediately. The nuttiness from the smell sitcks around on the back.
M: Big warm creaminess for a big full roundness for a very pleasant mouthfeel
D:Great considering it was 14% alcohol. It did not taste hot at all. Definitely something that can get me in trouble.

Photo of mjd83goblue
3.65/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

11.2 oz bottle from Bella Vino.

Pours honey colored and very clear. Hardly any head. Smell is a fruity/floral mix with nothing really sticking out, and a ton of booze.

Taste is similar to the original Samichlaus is some respects, but with a more pronounced bubble gum and vanilla flavor. Also some honey adding to the overdone sweetness. Cloying sweet, doesn't finish nearly as nicely as the original. Alcohol is more prevalent and more burning as well.

Still good, but I'd take the original over this one any day. Also, in a blind test, doppelbock would not come to mind. More like an old ale (but obviously it isn't an ale).

Photo of merlin48
3.65/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2007 bottling with the red and silver label as pictured. Pours a clear pale yellow body with a skimpy white head that quickly falls into a film. Aroma is malty and bready with some phenolics that suggest a Dogfish Head 120. Some vague floral hops. Medium body with a somewhat syrupy mouthfeel. Malty and earthy taste with some floral hops. Warming alcohol is very whiskey like. A nice sipper on a winter night but I prefer the regular Samichlaus to this Helles. This one could use some more aging.

Photo of vtfan77
3.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Light gold with a decent head, considering the beer's 14% alcohol content (and that's per volume!).

S- Some grainy malts and a sweet bread-like smell start things off. The alcohol is actually quite subdued. It comes through more as a peppery spiciness than full-blown alcohol fumes. Overall the smell is pretty weak at first, but it strengthens as the beer warms. It's still pretty subtle, though.

T- The taste begins with a nice honey sweetness. More bread-like malt and even some spicy hops are in there too. The alcohol hits hard, but it's not overwhelming. It just adds a nice kick to the beer.

M- Smoooth. A medium-full body is accented by just the right amount of carbonation, and the beer is like velvet on the tongue. Plus, there's that nice tingly sensation you get after a mouthful thanks to the alcohol.

D- Actually pretty good. A small bottle is plenty, but it's very good for 14%. It went down much quicker than I thought it would.

This is definitely a good beer, although I don't see how it's all that much different from the regular Samichlaus (besides the color). I guess I'll have to force myself to do a side-by-side at some point. Nonetheless, this is a good beer to end an evening and a must-try for lovers of strong beers. Recommended.

Photo of Traquairlover
4.3/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

11.2-oz bottle poured into a white wine glass.

A = Beautiful clear amber, very little carbonation. Coats glass when swirled. Looks like a white port inthe glass.

S = White pepper, wet grains, yeast, sunflower pollen. Very complex yet understated smell. The alcohol definitely make an appearance, too.

T = Smooth lagered taste, but lots of force. The alcohol hits as soon as the liquid hits mid-palate. The taste is mostly simply that of malted grains, but there are spicy peppery hints and a certain amount of unused yeast still in the mix (surprising given how high the yeast already pushed the ABV). Helles is good but a little uneven, not as good as the standard Samichlaus in my opinion. May mellow with age though.

M = Thick bodied, low but noticable carbonation, good mouth coating.

D = Depends what you want. This is clearly a good beer, but it is very strong. I think it needs some time to age before drinking, right now (1 year old) it is too sharp, but next year I wll happily try this again (and put next year batch down to rest).

Photo of irishevans
3.28/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I am by NO means a Helles Bock expert, so this is my mucho ignorant review. a transparent gold/amber color, no head just a haze here and there. smells very sweet borderline barley wine smell. tastes like a weak barley wine sweet, tangy, but not a "whoa" neck-twisting finish. the mouth-feel is kind of tart, a nice kind of tart though, and a bit crisp as well. as for drinkability it's not such a quick drinker, or a multiple bottle in a night kind of beer. i will drink this again, but in about 5 to 10 years, once it has had time to mature.

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is helles good!

Pours a thin clear lager yellow with little to no head. nose is of an intense lager. The taste is very very interesting. It is very thin up front but quickly turns to some dark fruit taste (didnt expect that) This is very tasty and has almost a barleywine sugar taste to it. The mouthfeel is nice and thick and the aftertaste lingers forever!! I actually occasionally prefer this to samichlaus. Good brew, should do great in my cellar.

Photo of ntillemans
4.85/5  rDev +29.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured this one out into a snifter from an 11.2 oz bottle.

A - Very little head, which quickly vanished entirely. Golden and clear.

S - Strong alcohol smell, some fruitiness and caramel...very malty.

T - Caramel sweet and alcohol... very intense, reminds me of bourbon whiskey.

M - Very smooth creamy taste, with a bite in the back of the throat

D - For the high alcohol content, this was a smooth drink...but dangerous.

Photo of dedrinker
3.25/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Light honey/ gold color with virtually no head and little carbonation. The aroma was that of sweet malt and alcohol. My girlfriend (the veterinary technician) claimed she smelled male rat musk. Hmm. Serious rubbing alcohol flavor bringing up secondary aromas of new band-aids. As the beer warmed up there was a more pronounced flavor of honey/ mead, and then aroma turned into an urban alley frequented by beer drinking bladder relievers. There was good and bad in this. I don't think it wise for a beer with so much alcohol to be attempted with such lighter malts, as all manner of trouble shows through.

Photo of kwakwhore
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As a Samichlaus aficionado, I was extremely curious to try this one.
Light orange gold pour with a small white head. Beautiful clarity to the brew.
Bit of sweet malt in the aroma along with some alcohol.
Lots of sweet malt mixed with alcohol in the flavor. A bit of candied fruit with a small amount of hop bitterness in the finish.
A little bit syrupy in the mouthfeel. Alcohol warms all the way down the throat. One usually thinks of a helles as something to drink in the summer, but this is a fine winter beer.
I couldn't drink more than two of these in an evening, but for its strength it's an easy beer to drink. Urbock 23 on steroids. I hope that Eggenberg keeps making this one.

Photo of beerking1
4.53/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours medium gold, very clear, and with a medium but quickly fading head. Aroma is almost pure malt, very little hops, but some. Alcohol does come through, although very cleanly, in the aroma. Palate is full, and appropriate. Flavor is a wonderful malty, alcoholic and very clean beer. Uber-maibock anyone?

Photo of CWiggins
4.28/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The events as they unfolded:
1. Read about Samichlaus beer in BeerAdvocate.
2. Saw it in North Carolina less than two weeks later, first at Brawley's (Charlotte) and then Sam's Quik Stop (Durham). Picked up a four pack immediately! (I still have one bottle of that pack.)
3. Walked into Sam's just two evenings ago and encountered two--not just one, but two--different case stacks of Samichlaus beer, one of a new variety. Both species retail at $16.99 a four-pack, and I couldn't resist picking up a single bottle of the Helles Lager to try. There's not too much of a hurry to pick up the Doppelbock; Sam's still has some left over from last season!

I agree with the previous reviewer that perhaps this is the wrong style category for this beer. Almost none of the traditional Doppelbock characteristics are present here, with the sole exception of ABV strength. Helles Bock may be a better choice, but Samichlaus Helles Lager certainly reminds me of the many Imperial Pilseners I've enjoyed recently. Hmmm.

It pours a dark yellow into my pint glass; the near-white head is not substantial and isn't sustained for very long. The liquid is nearly transparent, and bubbles continue to rise from the depths of the glass to the surface. It's quite a beauty to hold up to the light and watch for a bit.

There's so much going on in the smell: there are elements of heavy yeasts and malts combined with floral esters, all backed up with the scent of warm alcohol. One barely needs to proceed further.

The body is nearly chewy, and the feel of alcohol on the tongue is noticably strong. Lighter flavors of grain and hops are married to the heavier floral and sweet flavors. It's refreshing, and yet, as the same time, a serious undertaking. I wanted to guzzle it like some thirst-quenching soda or fruit-flavored water, but the heaviness keeps it more at bay. One is all I can handle!

Quite an interesting brew, and one I'll certain to keep around for winter and spring.

Photo of bradleyseven
3.98/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I will preface this by saying that i dont believe that "doppelbock" is the appropriate style for this beer to be lumped into...yeah though it is a very (very, very, very) high-alcohol lager, and is produced under the Mark that is notorious for a particular high-alcohol doppelbock, i tend to think that the simple fact that they put the word "helles" in the name of the beer dictates that the beer be concidered an Helles lager; I have therefore reviewed this beer with my understanding of "helles" in mind...

from a forum post that i made before this beer had been added to the dbase:
"we just got this into the bar (2 cases), and I have just cracked one open to sit down and write a review, and alas there is no listing for it in the dbase (and i have not been diligent enough in my reviewing to have the ability to add it)...so i will just go ahead and write a review here:

11.2 fl oz brown glass bottle with red and silver label, stating the standard for samichlaus: brewed on the 6th of December, aged for 10 months, with the addendum that the 2007 bottling of the Helles was the first since 1986. Poured (in a 14oz englished pilsner glass) a crystal-clear dark-straw / light-amber color; with very minimal head and less lacing than a Coca-Cola.
Smell is of day-bread: slightly yeasty, slightly sweet, slightly wheaty, slightly malty; all very evenly balanced.
Taste leans towards sweet, but maintains much of the bright, easy-going-helles-lager flavours of raw grain and crispness from the carbonation as well as the drying hops;
On the other hand, the mouthfeel betrays these tastes with significant linger on the tongue, as well as a heaviness/thickness that tends to be way too much on the tongue for what i expect a "helles" to posess. There is quite a bit of stick-to-your-tongue action here, and not as much bubble on the tongue as I would have wanted, and (go figure) the 14% ABV is blatantly obvious on the back of the throat.
Drinkability: well, i would be hard pressed to drink more than three of these...if only for the fact that walking would be slightly difficult afterwords...I am currently half-way through one and the feeling in my throat is starting to remind of the days when i drank scotch on a regular basis. I will say that this is a prime example of a Helles on steroids, it is much boozier, and certainly a bit sweeter than i would expect of an Helles, but other than that it does remain true-to-form (so well as I know the style) and if half of one didn't make me as tipsy as this one has, i would really be in the mindset of drinking a few of these...."

Photo of FirkinDave
4.68/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Just came in stock.

Pours a golden straw color, still decent carbination for a 14%er.

Poured into a Cantillon glass for the nose. A noticable chocolate and blueberry came up, plus the candy sugar.

The first taste was of upfront candy sugar and slight hints of tangerine. This beer is big. Contained large mouth feel, not a big aftertaste. Light hop bitterness as the beer warmed, hints of champagne throughout.

The easiest way to describe this beer is as "extremely enjoyable."
Last brewed in 1986, I hope they keep release this beer yearly from now on.

Photo of mikesgroove
3.9/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml bottle poured into a snifter

Ok so I saw this one on the shelf and was a little curious. At first I by passed it as it looked the same as a regular but then noticed it was a special edition so I had to pick one up. It poured a nice pale golden yellow with a smallish head that faded quickly. The aroma was full of malt and grass like smells with a touch of alcohol, but that is to be expected. The flavor was much sweeter then I thought it would be with a nice rounded caramel tone a good amount of brandy like alcohol thrown in. Some bready and cereal like malt base making up the rest with a sweet sugary finish that was sprikled with a touch of floralness. Overall this was a good bit different then the normal, seemed to be a bit sweeter, defintly lighter looking and a touch hotter with the alcohol. Very intresting find and will have to go back to the store and grab a couple more.

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Samichlaus Bier Helles from Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg
85 out of 100 based on 349 ratings.