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Krampus (Imperial Helles Lager) - Southern Tier Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Krampus (Imperial Helles Lager)Krampus (Imperial Helles Lager)

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very good

1,012 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,012
Reviews: 414
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 12.31%
Wants: 83
Gots: 79 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: brewdlyhooked13 on 07-15-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Krampus (Imperial Helles Lager) Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,012 | Reviews: 414 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jimmah120
4.01/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

bomber with no date into duvel

look is a deep aber brown with a rocky, khaki head. smells piney and bitter at first, with a lot of bubblegum, peppermint, and plastic coming in later. Taste is much better, grainy booze, hint of peppermint, drying grassy hops, and a lot of semi-sweet toffee malt. the flavors jive very well together. slickly bitter, slightly syrupy feel. lingering peppery bitterness.

one of the only holiday brews i've thoroughly enjoyed. ST didn't overdo the holiday spice and brought the hops, what else can i ask for?

jimmah120, Jan 17, 2013
Photo of Gatch
4.21/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 10/17/13

A: Clear, unfiltered, and light copper in color. Off white, yellowish, fizzy head with good lace and retention.

S: Lots of fragrant, roasted malt and a fantastic hop presence without being overly hoppy. Fruit, bread, and a bit of booze. Exactly as I expected an Imperial Helles to smell.

T: Malt shines here. Booze complements it. Slightly fruity with a tasty hoppy finish.

M: Super smooth, a bit of pleasant sweetness and booze, and the proper carbonation and body.

O: Unique style with what seems to be an accurate representation. I love Helles Lager and this truly is an imperial. A great sipper with massive lager qualities and flavor. Well done!

Gatch, Dec 09, 2013
Photo of Stigs
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

bomber poured into a pilsner glass...

A - pours an obscene amount of tight, frothy head thats sticking around for awhile. lacing all the way down the glass. the beer is a slighty hazy bright amber, with a ton of carbonation.

S - slightly muddled piney hops, matched evenly by some caramel sweetness. very faint notes of mint, fresh herbs (basil, thyme), and some soapiness. a decent amount of alcohol also present. a little off-putting.

T - really interesting, waves of the hops (piney, grassy) and malts (mostly bread/biscuity, caramel). small explosions of more floral hops and some citrus. odd, but good.

M - a lot thicker than expected, nice syrupy kind of feel really lets all the different flavors play around in your mouth. spot on carbonation.

D - an excellent sipper for the style...enough going on to keep it interesting. wish i had this a little fresher as i think some of the hops have died, but doesn't prevent this from being an excellent beer.

Stigs, Nov 26, 2009
Photo of Roguer
4/5  rDev +2.6%

Roguer, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of bmjivi221
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

bmjivi221, Jul 17, 2013
Photo of utopiajane
3.26/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This pours with brilliant clarity and s small stream of bubbles rising up to meet a thick head of off white foam from a vigorous pour that fell slow enough and left reasonable lace. Nose is at first bright with citrus peel and caramel malt. Then as it warms a mineral or metallic smell starts to evolve and a yeasty twang like in a traditional lager. The hops are floral and the malt is caramel instead of bread and I find that it smells a lot like a DIPA one minute and then a little bit like a lager the next. Orange peel. The taste is somewhat flat and muddled. I would even call it stagnant mid palate. The beer has a tremendous citrus but it isn't crisp it's just tart. The yeast trying to be a lager yeast adds a bit of sour twang and the metallic taste doesn't go well with that. The malt is sweet and caramel but bread would be enough. There's a bit of spice and a bit of alcohol on the palate.

This finishes with not only a hop bitter but a metallic aftertaste and a sour off flavor. It also finishes slick and with some hop oil. As this drinks it becomes more pleasant. Lemon takes over in the finish.

utopiajane, Nov 20, 2013
Photo of ChugginOil
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Founders pint glass.

Pours a translucent dark amber color. There is 2 fingers of cream colored head with nice retention. Lots of sticky lacing.

The nose has a good amount of citrus hops along with a stong smelling lager yeast. Sweet bready malt is also present.

The taste hoppy as hell with a nice bitterness to it. The citrus zest is nicely balanced with a sweet malt akin to biscuit. Alcohol is nearly non existent as there is no heat.

The mouthfeel is a lot thicker than expected. Medium-heavy body with a semi-dry finish.

Overall, this is a nice reresentation of this style with good balance.

ChugginOil, Dec 15, 2011
Photo of johntfox
4/5  rDev +2.6%

johntfox, May 20, 2013
Photo of M1A2
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

M1A2, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of bernat1971
3/5  rDev -23.1%

bernat1971, Jan 17, 2014
Photo of abcdefghijkyle
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

abcdefghijkyle, Nov 06, 2012
Photo of scootny
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An exceptionally clear lightly red copper brew. It produces a two finger head of light tan frothy foam. Good retention and good lacing. A good covering on top of the brew. No carbonation evident.

Smell is piney with sweet caramel and malt.

Taste is a like very clean IPA. Hops hit first and with force, mostly pine. Sizable malt backbone swings the balance back toward Helles lager. Spicy notes of cinnamon and grapefruit in the middle. Finish is sharp and dry with a powdery hoppiness coating my mouth. Hops hide a faint fusel alcohol component. Malty scones linger with the hops.

Mouthfeel is smooth and medium thick in weight. Carbonation is quite active lending to the quenching nature of the drinking experience. Silky as you swallow.

Drinkability is pretty good. Easy to kill a bomber but the abv will give you pause.

More like a "German DIPA" than a Imperial Helles to me but a nice beer nonetheless

scootny, Jan 01, 2009
Photo of Lanstrum
3/5  rDev -23.1%

Lanstrum, Nov 25, 2013
Photo of adam42381
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber into a New Belgium globe.

Appearance: Pours a medium caramel color with orange highlights and a 3 finger fluffy white head. Excellent lacing. Looks like a double IPA.

Smell: Floral, citrus and piney hops with pale malt. Smells like a blend of American Pale Ale and a mild IPA.

Taste: Pale malt and bitter citrus up front followed by caramel in the middle and a blast of grapefruit at the finish. The alcohol doesn't come through until you've already swallowed. There's definitely some warmth on the way down. Aftertaste is a mix of bready malt and bitter citrus. This is a very hoppy beer. I'm not really sure what an Imperial Helles Lager is supposed to taste like, but I like whatever this is.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a good amount of prickly carbonation. Fairly sticky.

Drinkability: Good drinkability. Goes down pretty easy for a beer with an ABV of 9%.

Overall: Good beer overall. I don't see this as an Imperial Pilsner, but I'm not sure what an Imperial Helles Lager is anyway. Whatever it is, it's a tasty brew that will hit the spot for most hop lovers. Give it a shot.

adam42381, Feb 02, 2011
Photo of Goliath
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a relatively clear rich amber color with a large two inch off white head. Head retention is excellent, and it subsides leaving some lacing behind.

The aroma is nice. It's a very rich scent with some faded hop quality and a big malt bill. The grain comes off as sweet with a big dose of caramel and cereal grain.

The taste is pretty good. It's much more mild mannered than I would have assumed. There is the faded presence of hops up front that turns into a light bitterness on the finish. The grain is a bit more subdued than I had hoped and I'm not getting most of the qualities I smelled. Nevertheless a slightly sweet grain is available. I'm a little wanting in this department.

The mouthfeel is decent. It's full bodied, thick, and oily. I really enjoy the substance that can be found in a mouthfeel like this.

Overall it's a solid beer. Very fun story to be paired with a Frankenstein style. It has some really great qualities I was just left wanting it to be a little bit more than it is. I'm wondering if I had picked up this bottle at the beginning of the holiday season as opposed to the end if it would have had those qualities I'm looking for? I think I'll grab one next year as soon as possible and see what I think then.

Goliath, Jan 10, 2012
Photo of PhillyStyle
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle:

The beer poured a deep, dark clear amber color, with a very nice white head that was well retained that left behind some nice lacing.

The aroma was malty sweet with a hint of hops.

The taste was very good. Nice, bold malt flavor with some citrus hops to balance it really well. It also had a breadyness quality to it as well. It seemed as if the taste got better and better throughout the bottle.

Mouthfeel was good, medium body with the right carbonation. The beer was smooth and had a nice dry aftertaste. Overall, I was very surprised by this beer, I bought 2 bombers and have been wanting to go back and get some more.

PhillyStyle, Jan 18, 2011
Photo of Kromes
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A clear copper color with a thin off-white head that laces the glass.

S: Toasted malt and a crisp, grassy hop aroma.

T: More of the same from the aroma. Starts with a good toasted malt base and then the hops kick in. There are also some fruity esters that show up maybe peach and citrus. The grassy hop flavor is good and I was hoping it would finish clean, but it finished a little bitter and with a bit of alcohol flavor and burn.

M: Medium body with good carbonation and a bitter burn in the finish.

O: Pretty good. Not something I would go seek out, but for an imperial pilsner it is good.

Kromes, Apr 01, 2012
Photo of Wayne17
3/5  rDev -23.1%

Wayne17, Jun 21, 2014
Photo of chcfan
4/5  rDev +2.6%

chcfan, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of StArnoldFan
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

StArnoldFan, Nov 03, 2014
Photo of jarrgal
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%

jarrgal, Jun 10, 2013
Photo of BrownAleMale
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a Kasteel chalice glass.

Appearance- An orangish color with a quarter inch of whispy white head that dissipates into a light layer on the surface. Some very very slight lacing.

Smell- At first a piney hops then a srtong bready malt aroma.

Taste- Wowza, what a malt bomb. Bread malts, biscuits,grains, and corn with a slight piney hop finish. Also, a slight roasy quality on the finish.

Mouthfeel- Thick mouthfeel. Almost like eating fresh bread. A meal in a bottle for sure. This is like doppelbock style.

Overall- Great beer that would be nice on a cold night with a slice of warm buttery bread. This sets the standard for lagers.

BrownAleMale, Dec 04, 2012
Photo of sparx1100
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

sparx1100, Feb 12, 2013
Photo of patm1986
5/5  rDev +28.2%

patm1986, Nov 18, 2011
Krampus (Imperial Helles Lager) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 1,012 ratings.