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Helios (V Saison) - Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

Not Rated.
Helios  (V Saison)Helios  (V Saison)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

446 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 446
Hads: 1,059
Avg: 3.86
pDev: 18.39%
Wants: 24
Gots: 100 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States | website

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale | 7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 02-06-2009

Repackaging of V Saison
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 446 | Hads: 1,059
Photo of fsvan
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into New Belgium Globe. Best by date of April 6, 2012.

A- Pale, yellowish gold. Very carbonated. Fills half the glass. Head is big and structured, leaving a crown in the middle of the glass from the etching at the bottom. Very sticky.

S- Light fruits...pear, green apple. Some peppery spiciness. Some earthy yeast notes. A hint of banana. A little lemon-like acidity. A lot going on here.

T- Very dry. Earthy yeastiness. The green apple/pear notes are there, but not as prominent. A tiny sweetness on the finish. Very nice, but not exactly special

M- Light, well carbonated. Easy drinking as I like in my saisons.

O- A pretty nice domestic saison. I gave it a 4.5 overall because at $3.99 a bomber, with a long shelf life, you really can't go wrong.

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Photo of ZBowden
4.39/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazy golden lemon orange with a thick white head, smells of yeast orange peel with slight spice slight tart raspberry, tastes of bitter yeast with lemongrass orange peel peppery with cider like tartness. Mouthfeel is full and bright with high carbonation and smooth finish.

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Photo of evilkalla
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving: Bomber into a very tall glass.

A: Pours a clear, pale yellow, with an inch of fairly thick head. Lots of carbonation is visible.

S: Smell is great. I get hints of belgian yeast, rose petals and other flowers. Somewhat fruity as well.

T: Huge Brett up front, a slightly malty backbone and a bitter finish. The Brett character, however, dominates this one. Not my favorite but not bad.

M: Finishes clean and crisp. Very nice.

O: I'm good with beers where the Brett character is a little more muted, but there's a lot of it in this one. I guess that's not bad if that's what you like. Not a bad beer overall but this particular one isn't for me. I still give it 4/5 since it's very well done.

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Photo of BeerAmbassador
3.84/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden yellow. Very lively carbonation in fact I turned my back for a second just after I cracked the bottle and I had foam coming up the bottle and running down the sides. Assertive Brett aromas up front with a bit of tart lemon and a little spicy note, almost like grains of paradise. I find the Brett pretty dominant on the palate on this one, not bad for me since I like Brett, but its a bit more domineering than I want in a summer Saison. Carbonation is very high in fact tied with the fact that it foamed over on me when I opened, it leads me to believe the Brettanomyces got a little out of control on this one. Still, I am able to enjoy this beer as it offers a fair amount of complexity.

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Photo of sjverla
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Nose: Nice and tart and a little funky. Pleasant spicyness and faintly citric.

Appearance: Semi-hazy 14k gold color. Frothy white head rose high and left quickly but laced well.

Taste: Surprisingly funky. Good barnyardy quality. Just a hint of tartness on the sides. Subtle hint of lemongrass rides along the top. Finishes a little funky and a little bitter.

Overall: Really fantastic. At around $4 it's going to be a frequent get.

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Photo of LI_PO12
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle into pint

Appearance light gold, slight haze, white head

Aroma farmhouse funk, some fruity esters apple and pear, slight lemony citrus, hay, a bit too much alcohol poking through but ok.

Flavor again a bit too boozy, but nice funky yeast, citrus, some fruitiness, pear, all good elements for a saison present but they muddle together too much

Mouthfeel medium higher side of carbonation,

Overall for 4.50 a bomber this is great. I'm not sure how old this bottle is but imagine its not fresh, still tasty and drinkable. Probably a good saison for those new to the style.

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Photo of Mancer
3.76/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured (into a Tulip glass) a hazy golden amber. The head was excellent and poured 3 fingers high. The head retention was also excellent as a 1 finger head stuck around for must of the beer. There were lots of bubbles visible. The smell is by far the worst part of this beer. I can't even explain what it smells like, but somewhat reminds of urine. My nose however did not agree with my mouth. The initial taste of the beer was that of spices, hints of lemon, and some citrus hops. The flavors meshed nicely, and I'm glad it didn't taste like what I smelt. This brew had a light body with moderate carbonation.

All in all this is definitely a beer to try and for the price, more so.

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Photo of jlandis
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours clear golden with a solid fluffy white head. Looked beautiful, but the clarity seemed out of place for a saison.
S - A subltle lemon spice aroma with faint belgian esters.
T - A tart lemon pepper earthyness with a sharp hop presence.
M - Dry with aggressive carbonation.
D - Highly drinkable - not the best saison I have ever had, but very good. The inexpensive price (under $3 for a bomber) means I'll be coming back again for this one.

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Photo of thepenguin
3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed 5/30/12

L: A darkish straw color.

S: Yeasty, earthy, musty, only somewhat spicy. It’s a bit funky, peppery, and certainly grainy. Not mind-blowing.

T: Dry, peppery, with substantial bitterness upfront. Finishes dry with a bit of hop bitterness. Kinda grainy. Not terribly complex, and could definitely use some more fruit-like esters, but not unpleasant either.

F: Pretty light body with medium-high carbonation. Some lingering alcohol warmth but not too much. Leaves a nice slickness on the palate.

O: This a pretty good, easy-to-come-by, cheap American saison. Belgians are not Victory’s strong point in my opinion, but at around $4 a bomber this is a good one to keep stocked.

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Photo of sophisticated
4.23/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ooooh man. This was delightful. The carbonation was HUGE on this guy from the loud PFFFT upon opening the bottle to the massive out-of-control head. A gentle pour created about half-liquid half-head, long retention, and spots of fluffy lacing. Even the second pour caused the head to fly up (and unfortunately over) the edge of the glass. The rest of the beer was cloudy yellow with bits of yeast sediment.

The smell was nice, and strong. Spicy pepper, Belgian yeast, lemon, grassy hops, mild malts.

And the taste - mmm...The Belgian yeast flavor is there but also a strong spice-note that grew stronger as it warmed. It was dry - reminded me of a white wine at times. Some lemon, some grass, a little sour.

The mouthfeel was very crisp, almost to the point of being sharp on my throat. Also very light on the tongue.

Great drinkability. This would be a good hot day beverage, a good drink to pair with a meal...Or alone. I've only had a few Saisons, but to me this is a solid beer and a solid Saison.

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Photo of nezelrac
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - cloudy blond with a moderate pale white head that quickly subsides and leaves decent lacing - I am beginning to wonder about the glassware at my local

S - strong set of estery notes (citrus, grapefruit, yeast) and typical funkiness with pleasing grain notes as well, seems to have more hops than I would have expected

T - nice balance of malt and yeast influences, the hops are more pronounced - especially at the finish, there is also a good dose of yeast driven funk and sourness

M - lively set of sensations, good carbonation with a firm edge

D - very, very drinkable, though I wish it had been warmer day

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Photo of julian89
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Translucent pale yellow with a decent sized white foam head and fair retention.

Smell: An earthy fruity saison. The herb smell is not a pronounced as in other saisons. The spice and citrus is just as strong though.

Taste: Flowery, citrusy, and bready. A typical saison, but fairly light considering the 7.5%.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light bodied and carbonated.

Drinkability: Pretty pleasant saison.

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Photo of danmcg62
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a hazy golden color with a thumb width head. You can see the carbonation flow up the sides of the glass.

S-I smell raisins at first sniff. Grassy, meadowy smell comes to mind. Spring flowers are there as well. Interesting mix of smells.

T-Lemony, pepper taste at first sip. Citrus fruits are here too. Mild hop bitterness comes through as well.

M-Spicy and thin feel throughout the mouth.

O-Overall a solid brew. Not overly drinkable. Definitely need to take your time with this one. Nice stuff from Victory as usual.

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Photo of OrangeMen
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled Aug 2014, 1 yr and 4 months in the bottle

Appearance- Pours a bright golden yellow color, transparent w/ lots of suspended particles. Finger thick, pillowy, white colored head. Slow rising carbonation bubbles. Moderate head lacing.

Aroma- Funky yeast, mild lemon tartness, earthy grass and hay. Bread crust w/ mild sweet creamy aromas. Lemon peel, slight citrus and tropical fruit notes. Hints of spices and pepper.

Taste- Sweet bready malts, honey sweetness. Funky earthiness, wet grass and hay, spicy pepper, mild lemon tartness, mustiness. More subtle citrus notes, pineapple, tart apple, and pear.

Feel- Lighter to medium feel, slightly creamy and tart. Moderate carbonation, slightly spritzy.

Overall- At current age the brettanomyces yeast has come very forward, lots of funky flavors, tart fruits, and earthiness. Fruit flavors are subtle, but still there enough to add complexity. Malt base has a certain sweetness that comes through and adds nicely to other flavors. Very well balanced beer that has aged beautifully. This would be a fun and relatively cheap expirament to do a side by side fresh bottle and 1 yr + bottle.

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Photo of mtbbaboon
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber poured into a tulip glass. Color is Bright cloudy yellow with white fizzy head. Fair amount of sediment floating around. Thick head settles into a nice creamy layer of suds. A little lacing but not a whole lot. Smells like a saison should smell. Yeast, spices, pepper, citrus, perhaps some cloves. Lots going on there. Tastes grassy and lemony. Hoppy bitterness comes though at the end. The taste isn't as complex as the aroma. Medium mouthfeel that drinks rather easy. Dry, smooth texture to it. All in all it's an enjoyable beer to drink.

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Photo of batty
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Entered from notes taken early September of '09. bought/drank in Cambridge, MA

A: golden, clear, bright white head drops quick to a thin layer. could use longer-lasting head. little lacing

S: a little weak, pale malt, light apple, strong funk

T: touch sweet on tip of tongue, nice crisp aple taste middle, and STRONG 'farmhouse' taste. makes sense in the style and i like it, but quite aggressive. finished earthy hop, w/ just the touch of floral. slight grapefruit peel, citrusy lemon. good.

M: thick. beautiful.

D: a little strong on the 'farmhouse' and less crisp than most, but still great.

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Photo of doopydoogle
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber poured into a Bell's tulip:

A - Clean golden yellow with some visible carbonation. The head is velvety and leaves a decent lace.

S - Caramel malts, spicy, almost with clove. Big yeasty character with some faint phenolic tones. Bready tones with rye suggested. Biscuity with some toffee and nuttiness.

T - Zesty, sharp, and pronounced, with a distinct yeasty flavor that is followed by a fruity essence with hints of grape soda. The finish is clean with minimal bitterness and a residual fruity yeast chracter. Spicy tones give an essence of clove and cardamom, with notes of starfruit and lychee dancing beneath.

M - Good carbonation and a crisp mouthfeel.

O - Not bad. Lacks a bit of the complexity I've come to expect for the style, but immensely drinkable and a good price at $2.99 for a bomber.

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Photo of mbudner
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bomber into a snifter.

A- Pours a light golden color, TOO clear for a saison, with a big, fluffy, 2-finger white head. I don't know from a brewing standpoint if clarity is desirable in a saison, but I have sampled dozens and never seen one so clear, so it is slightly off-putting resulting in a lower score (strictly subjective, but I may be wrong from a technical standpoint.)

S- Banana-like ester scent. Smells yeasty. I get some lemon and spice in the nose as well.

T- The flavor is of a yeasty banana with a little bit of booze and spice on the tail end. The heat is a little surprising from a saison. I also get some bitter hops and a distinct earthiness in the finish. Slight rubbery or latex flavor in the aftertaste. I get a little bit of funkiness after this has warmed up for a long time, very, very slight.

M- Good amount of carbonation, a little thin in the finish.

D- Overall, it is very drinkable. Not the best saison I have had by any means, but nothing in it makes it hard to drink. I wish it had a little more funk. The flavors simply don't mesh that well and nothing really sets this one apart. Great value for your money ($5/bomber in center city Philadelphia, where single bottle prices are outrageous) so definitely one I would consider buying again, but not a stand-out saison.

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Photo of WCBCFrank
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Victory Helios (formally known as V Saison) pours golden and nice white cloudy head in a pint glass or tulip glass. Helios is something of Saison switch-hitter. At first sip is has mellow malt qualities, but toggles to a carbonated, green apple, yeasty, and subtly spicy finish. I love saisons and this stands out, specifically because it is saison Victory style.

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Photo of philerman
4.52/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Purchased via a growler fill at Whole Foods in Plymouth Meeting, PA and poured into a flute glass. Growler had been refrigerated almost a week but no discernible damage.

A: Golden/honey brown with a pleasant amount of bubbling.

S: Flowery overall, but not overpowering. Some citrus notes as well.

T: A little bit bitter, not unpleasantly so though. Stays with you quite a bit over a slow glassful.

Overall impressions: Nice beer for a Saturday night. Not too much of an alcohol burn for something this strong. Probably my second favorite Saison.

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Photo of halo21
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: I poured this hazey golden yellow beer into a Sam Adam's perfect pint glass, leaving room for a nice fluffy and chunky white head; which stood up strong for most of the pint, and left decent lacing.

Smell: Sweet and fruity - light orange and lemon - with a bit of malt sweetness/toast, all package nicely with a good dose of yeast.

Taste: Spice and earth up front from the yeast, followed by a nice citrus hop section, all finished with a smooth malty sweetness. There are a few more layers to the beer of other fruit esters and the yeast really comes through on this one, with some spice and funk.

Mouthfeel: Lively with a medium body. Drying sweet finish.

Drinkability/Palitability: Very high; this bottle went fast between the two of us, and left us wanting more.

Notes: A great saison; I hope the Helios is just as tasty.

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Photo of Crittervision
2.9/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

perhaps im a little too quick to get excited when i hear "wild yeast strain." wasnt sure what i was getting into aside from that.

appearance is filtered yellow-gold. bubbles emanate from the sides of the glass with vigor, not dissimilar to pbr actually. but! tack on a dense pillow of bubbles half an inch tall that shows no signs of disappearing and i guess youve got helios.

smell is saisony (come to find out on here that it is one, yay me), somewhat adjunct (reminiscent of pbr again...), champagney, and sweaty.

taste is dominated by sweaty sock / sticky locker room. eeeeh. think duvel plus unsexy workout plus old lemon. not so hot. no vhs tape.

mouthfeel is heavy, highly carbonated, but pleasant.

drinkability is not so great. sock bad. still manageable.

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Photo of turnstile
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This saison from Victory visually fits the style with a large, rocky head and dark golden body. Hazy from the yeast sediment. As the head dissipates it leaves slight lacing on the glass. Sweet malt and light fruity aromas dominate the nose. A biscuity yeast scent lingers with notes of cherry and lemon. Helios is again hits the mark in the farmhouse style with a crisp mouthfeel and medium body. The taste is malt-forward with a great ginger character and a rush of spice in the finish. Mild hop bitterness. The 7.5% ABV is hidden well which aids in superb drinkability. The label states that Victory was going for a specifically Belgian style, but it could use some improvement in the hop profile and choice of yeast before it's close to its Belgian forefathers. Overall, a great summer beer that I'll come back to.

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Photo of Flashy
2.18/5  rDev -43.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Purchased in a bottle from Wegmans, not refridgerated.
I hope this was a bad bottle as it tasted skunked. Besides good carbonation and mouthfeel this tasted bad, bad, bad (as in spoiled). Found the expiration date on the bottle and it's 2/12 so I must assume that either I hate this kind of Ale, the bottle has been seriously mis-handled or this type of beverage has been fooling people for years and is another case of the emperor not wearing clothes.

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Photo of dehjosh
3.74/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Almost too much a kick in the mouth. The alcohol plays too much in the taste and smell of the beer. This was my second beer of the night and half way through it makes me feel kind of drunk already.

Do not get me wrong. I do recommend it but you need to expect that this beer is heavy in alcohol.

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Helios (V Saison) from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
87 out of 100 based on 446 ratings.