Victory Helles Lager - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Victory Helles LagerVictory Helles Lager

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BA SCORE
82
good

353 Reviews
THE BROS
82
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 353
Hads: 808
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 13.81%
Wants: 38
Gots: 88 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-17-2001

Formerly Victory Lager
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 353 | Hads: 808
Photo of Bouleboubier
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Referencing my trusty wiki color swatch guide, or whatever it is, the color is maize (in the family of yellow). I feel it has a moon-yellow glow to it. The head can be sizzly, snappy, and up to an inch thick or it might not show up. Nearly still body, as in bubble-free.

Quite the spicy pilsner hop character to the smell. I'd say spicier. It's working out to be similar to Troegs' Sunshine Pils (for those of you in the gno). Faint lemon zest and yeast linger as well.

The flavor is strange but enjoyable. Serious sting or tartness that reminds me of wheat a la Berliner Weisse (the color plays into that notion, I'm sure). Zesty, so zesty. Filtered grainy qualities. The most subtle lemon honey kiss at the back.

Maybe it's the zip on the top of the sip, but I get a heavy-ish feel underneath here. Not HEAVY-heavy - not viscous... The liquid drops down on the tongue like a sleeping slob rolling off a couch. A honey kissed lemon tea feel - sorry, that's what comes to mind.

The beer's a lot better than I anticipated - "lager", at least as far as US beers go, conjures up ill feelings. I seriously need to, in the future, match this up with the cream of the crop in this style (i.e. German). Great summer beer. Chicks will dig it, too. (1,243 characters)

Photo of MP72
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A- pale gold with a nice white head which sadly diminished quickly. Very clear on par with the best german helles.

S- not a lot going on a bit bready and grainy ,,slight lemon smell. Overall weak in the nose.

T- Very clean and with a bit of hop bite and some euro skunk just enough to give it some pilsner character. Not at all in a bad way.
Finishes nicely and leaves you wanting more.

D- Very good nice moderate ABV and easily quaffable since it is a bit on the thin side even for a helles.

Overall Victory wins again I love these guys from my home state and this is a nice summertime beer for the heat we're having and a fine Helles. (640 characters)

Photo of HitokiriNate85
4.07/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by 11/22/2010

A - Very light, straw gold. Light carbonation is visible giving the beer a thin, bright white head. Great clarity. Basically what I'd expect for the style. Unfortunately, in the end it doesn't leave much of a head and doesn't lace in the least.

S - Light grain and bread notes. Flower and lemon notes from the hops. Very clean and seems pretty spot on.

T - Just as good as the smell led me to believe. Victory really hits the mark with its lagers. Follows the nose really well, and it honestly does remind me of Prima Pils a lot. It's more bready, less grainy, and the flavor is a lot more rounded(Prima Pils being sharper in comparison). It has a really nice bitterness and a great flowery, lemony hop profile.

MF - Very nicely carbonated, and there's enough body to make it known but not so much as to make me think I'm drinking say, a bock.

D - It's a very clean, full-flavored helles lager. That alone makes it more drinkable that most other beers. It's very fresh tasting and very good. It's awesome to have such good examples of German styles made a few hours away. (1,095 characters)

Photo of Agold
3.3/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Unfortunately when i poured this beer there was virtually no head to speak of. It is straw colored and pretty clear. The nose has some grain in it, and maybe a hint of spicy hops. The grainyness in the nose carries through to the taste with a minimal amount of diacetyl butteryness, a bit of an off flavor for a lager like this, but not unpleasant. There is good medium-light mouthfeel for this one. Good enjoyable, but not exceptional beer. (441 characters)

Photo of Stigs
3.62/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, served in a standard pint glass

A - pours with a thin layer of loose white foam which quickly settles to a film and ring. the beer is mostly clear and *very* pale straw colored.

S - grainy but with a nice grassy and slightly lemony hop kick at the end. light a light Prima (which is nice).

T - begins with strong malt grains and biscuits before a flash of grassy hops. quickly again the lightly buttery and bready malt takes over.

M - thin body but the carbonation falls just a tiny bit flat. lingering sweetness and grains.

D - light and drinkable, a bit malt-heavy for my taste but seems to suit the style pretty well. will make good work of the other 5 bottles from my Victory variety pack in this weather. (727 characters)

Photo of deapokid
3.27/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Replacing the amateurish review I wrote on 06/03/2007:

The other lager included in the Victory sampler pack, this thin and translucent beer takes on a grain color with limited head and no retention.

Aroma bouquet includes malt, butter, grain, alcohol and a hint of skunkiness. It's a bit typical, but never offensive.

Taste is a blend of sweet butter, corn, crackers, milk, biscuit and the slightest bit of hops. Aftertaste is completely free of any metallic qualities.

Mouthfeel is smooth with a slight dryness in the conclusion and limited bitterness.

This is certainly a drinkable beer and a nice try at a Helles lager, but, when paired alongside the superior Prima Pils, it falls flat. (694 characters)

Photo of Durge
3.43/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Cold from bottle to pint glass, this lager is a clear golden color with steady carbonation, a fair white cover and modest lacing. The aroma suggsts a slightly sour mash idea with a little leafy hop. The flavor brings a pretty watery apple cider malt with a mild hop bite. The taste isn't bad but it's kind of wimpy with carboard hints and maybe a touch of toffee. The constitution of this lager even reminds me at times of watermelon. The hop finish keeps it interesting, otherwise it's forgettable but fairly drinkable. It works. (530 characters)

Photo of brianjay
3.6/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

FULL DISCLAIMER: I am not typically a lager drinker, but these hot summer days make it a lot easier to grab one off the shelf.

No head on this one. It is a cloudy, bright yellow body. A little bit of movement, but not much. Not much aroma either. The yeast produces a bit of floral, earthy aromas but you have to search for it.

A grain/malty flavor on the back of this one, and the herbal flavors of the hops gives it a bit of character.

Overall, nothing here is overpowering. A well balanced and frighteningly easy beer to drink. Load up the cooler with a six pack of these. (580 characters)

Photo of vette2006c5r
2.9/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 4.5

Victory Lager poured a bright golden color with almost no head. Even though it was a fresh bottle, it smelt a little skunked, and veery light. It tasted like a traditional lager but very light. The flavors were barley noticable. Overall I was dissapointed with this. The flavors needed to be much stronger, tasted like a watered down sam adams lager, but cost more money. Deffently not the best lager, or the best beer by victory. (430 characters)

Photo of rfgetz
3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazed gold color with moderate poof of head that leaves quickly with little lacing. Scent is very mild, faint notes of grass, hay and flowers. Taste is clean with the touches of grass, hay, faint sweet malt and light bitterness with no off twang. Lighter side of medium bodied, adequate carbonation. A high quality lager that tops all macro offerings. (368 characters)

Photo of appenzeller
1.85/5  rDev -48.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Me: pilsner nut. I love and treasure pilsners in the old Czech and Bavarian styles.

I tried Prima Pils given all its good reviews (see my earlier review), found it to be mighty tasty but definitely way off for the true style. In particular, it lacked the smoothness and technical quality of a true pilsner. So, I thought I'd see if Victory found it in their lager.

Nope. This is a skunky, overpale lager. No subtle hops profile, just skank. Malts are nonexistent but what there is . . . skank. I'm willing to write off this review as an old beer, but then . . . why is it that I can still get a really nice Spaten, Urquell, or Czechvar here in the states--granted not totally fresh but not this skank?

I think if we're going to tank imports for lack of freshness (as reviewers here do), then surely we need to do that with the domestics--which have less of an excuse. (871 characters)

Photo of bigfnjoe
3.41/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A- pours a slightly cloudy light gold with a thin bright white head that quickly fades. No lacing. Looks like...a domestic. Oh god no.

S- smells like grassy hops and corn. You know what...I don't really mind it. Sometimes, you need something thats not a total hop bomb or ridiculously malty. Its a good smell.

T- there is a little bitterness there...overall, really light tasting, not a ton of flavor.

M- light. Carbonated. Thin. No real feel to it at all. Feels like...well, generic beer.

D- I'll give Victory this, they've created one hell of a drinkable lager. Its got some decent flavor to it so doesn't seem like you're drinking colored water, but overall...its a basic lager. Nice alternative to a domestic, but its not something I'd drink on a regular basis (810 characters)

Photo of TommyW
3.91/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Crystal clear gold body with a bubble, white head.

S- Grassy sweet malts with a bit of bitter hops.

T- Semi-sweet, grassy and hay flavors from the malt with a touch of bitterness from a European-ish hop profile.

M- Crisp and clean over a medium body.

D- Very refreshing lager that is close to the style. (310 characters)

Photo of haddon
3.72/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- pours a light, golden yellow out of the bottle with nice frothy white head. not much carbonation bubbles & night much lacing down glass

S- lemon & grassy notes are about all I detect. perhaps a bit grainy hops as well. I never quite feel lagers bring a lot of notes on the nose but this is pretty indicative for the class.

T- tastes much like the nose: floral hops, grassiness & lemons. pretty clean and fresh.

M- light body that is a little light on the carbonation

D- this is drinkable beer for the dog days of Summer. pulled this out after I mowed the lawn and it did the trick! (589 characters)

Photo of speter
3.87/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Pours a pale golden yellow with a good two-finger head in my pilsner glass. (Note: it's key to get a fresh bottle of this; I got an out-of-date bottle a month ago, and it was nearly flat.)

S: The nose is surprisingly good for a lager, which tends to be light in the scent department. There is a nice grassy malt scent with a lightly-citrus hop bouquet. (I don't think I've used bouquet in any of my reviews yet, so deal with it.)

T: Pretty much spot-on Munich-style helles. Malty and lightly hoppy, but not heavy in the mouthfeel.

M: Light and refreshing. A great summer beer.

D: It's over 90 °F/33 °C here today, so I could easily polish off a couple of these. (670 characters)

Photo of omnigrits
3.5/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a straight pint glass. Pale yellow with very little head which soon disappears completely. No lace.

Clean, bready malt aroma with a touch of hops. Flavour is mostly sweetly malty but nicely balanced with the hops. Good body with some prickly carbonation. A decent but not outstanding Helles lager. (324 characters)

Photo of MirkoCroCough
4.48/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle into pint glass.

Crystal clear, bright shining light.

Very clean beery nose.

It's all in there and it is well balanced.

Good!

Clean and crisp.

This is a wonderful beer. Quality with no pretense. Impossible not to find enjoyable. Another homerun for Victory. (270 characters)

Photo of rdub
3/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

My first Victory branded beverage. I had high hopes and this one was pretty much average. I was hoping for Munich Helles style flavor but got "basic" out of it. The appearance was golden with a one finger head and a tiny bit of lacing. Smell was balanced as was the taste. Like I said above, Basic. Mouthfeel was right down the middle as was drinkability. Actually drinkability was pretty good and would be good for a rookie to try. (432 characters)

Photo of zoso1967
3.73/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very pale yellow with an ever so delicate head that fades fast and leaves some equally delicate lace. The aroma is slightly sweet and malty, herbal hops with a bit of floral perfume. The flavor is just as delicate and smooth with a bready malt base and a herbal, floral hop character. This beer is none too exciting, but very tasty with a nice noble hop character. The mouthfeel is very light and refreshing with a nice dry finish that begs for another sip. Obviously this is very drinkable, and would be a great beer for any friends still into the BMC beers. Not the best Victory beer, but another solid offering. (622 characters)

Photo of witster18
4.02/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Lager yes... hellas style... not so much.

This is a dam^ fine lager. Very subtle flavors. Mild sweetness and a touch of hoppy citrus. Just a slight bite of dort/export lager here and that really makes it for me becuase there is a lack of the usual oversweet slightly alcohol floral of most hellas lagers. That makes the style in limbo, but this is basically a mistake free lager... the perfect lawnmower beer if you will.

one led to another.. and another... etc....

would probably still be drinkin the stuff had I not run out.

Probably my third fave lager behind dort gold from great lakes and Brooklyn Lager. This is a toned down version of a fantastic lager.

I'll definately revisit. (690 characters)

Photo of gfreed
3.15/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bright and clear, with a light, foamy white cap that lasts just long enough to let loose a cloud of sweet-smelling corn. The thin body and fairly fizzy texture makes this very easy to down, and the low ABV makes it easy to follow one with another-- that is, if you're in the mood for an uninteresting lager that has the sour smack of an adjunct beer (as far as I know there are no adjuncts used here, but the taste is still there). This is a serviceable beer squarely aimed at the middle of the road, fine for slamming at the barbecue or getting mindlessly hammered on your front porch after work. Otherwise... eh. Pass it by. Better yet, go buy a six of Weihenstephan helles lager instead. (690 characters)

Photo of Kallessin
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a yellow straw color, very clear with a lot of bubbles rising to the surface. Very white foamy head that settles to a thin film within a minute or so.

Has a very subtle sweet malt aroma with some grain and a fair amount of spicy herbal hops in the forefront.

The flavor is very much like the aroma - sweet subtle malt, light bread and cereal grains. There's a mild spicy/herbal hop flavor.

It's light bodied with prickly carbonation. Very clean, crisp with a light dryness.

This is a light, easy drinking beer - really simple and subtle flavors, but satisfying. It would be perfect for a backyard BBQ on a warm afternoon. (631 characters)

Photo of Avagadro
4.53/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Straw-colored and crystal clear, This lager produces a frothy egg-white head capping off the lazy bubbles floating from the bottom of my pint. I would have liked to see some more vigorous lacing, but everything else is so spot-on that I can still justify the 4.

S: This is already seeming more like a German Pils than a Helles, not that there's a world of difference, and, as such, I'm not expecting too powerful of a bouquet. The nose is dominated by cereal grains and balanced out by a touch of spicy hops. The bouquet is a touch muted though, even for a pils.

T: The taste is easily the brew's best quality; sharp, crisp hops accentuate the delightfully dry body perfectly to create a remarkably refreshing brew with a certain subtlety that is seldom seen in the states.

M: V-Lager is very light and bubbly. Exactly to style.

D: This is one of the finest lagers available on US soil. I'm sure many of Victory's devout followers will be upset by the restrained hopping of this one, but I am very pleased that the brewers risked popularity in order to put out a more traditional product. Keep up the good work Victory! (1,126 characters)

Photo of Halcyondays
3.61/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours slightly hazy yellow with a soft white head, great lace.

S: Bready malt, nice Helles nose, but nothing substantial.

T: Delicious sourdough bread malty German flavour. Distinct hop notes at the end add balance. Good flavour.

M: Smooth and creamy. A bit chalky. Medium-bodied.

D: A real nice lager, glad I got to try this legendary East Coast brew. (385 characters)

Photo of BlackBearForge
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Victory Lager pours a bright crystal clear lemony yellow with pale amber highlights and a frothy white head that breaks down into a thin surface covering quickly. Lacing is minmial.

The aroma smells like really good fresh beer for lack of a better description. Fresh baked bread and lovely floral Noble hops.

The flavor is an exercise in balance between the light bready malt and the Noble hops. There are no big heavy handed out there flavors, no giant hop attacks, just good refreshing luscious German style lager you could drink all day. Simple doesn't mean a lack of quality and the beer has quality. Muted honey and ever so light citrus flavors present themselves.

The mouthfeel is medium light, soft and perfectly carbonated.

I honestly did not know what to expect from this beer after reading so many negative reviews. I couldn't be more pleased however and can see downing many bottles of this in the future. It's not big, it's not hoppy, it's just good, dependable quality beer, what more can you ask than that? (1,024 characters)

Victory Helles Lager from Victory Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 353 ratings.