Hofbräu Original - Hofbräuhaus München

Not Rated.
Hofbräu OriginalHofbräu Original

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very good

1,206 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,206
Reviews: 441
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 13.46%
Wants: 40
Gots: 134 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hofbräuhaus München visit their website

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-19-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,206 | Reviews: 441 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bosox941827
4.6/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in 1L mug at the Chinese Tower biergarten in Munich.

A - Served foaming and darkish yellow in an absolutely massive 1L mug; a good 3-4 inches of head on top hangs around for a while.
S - A slight hint of hoppiness, with malt character thrown in as well. Sounds dumb, but it smells like a prototypical "beer" to me.
T - When you provide a beer that is typical served in 1L containers, it better be drinkable and this beer has that in spades. A bit sweeter and malty than the other Munich brews, it still has enough hop character to make it perfectly balanced. If you really want to, this beer has enough character to stand up to a detailed tasting, but really it's made to be drinkable and thirst-quenching, and it achieves that perfectly. Much more character to it than any large American beer, and remember, this is made to the German beer-quality law, so there are no adjuncts in here. A tasty, well-made quaffer.
M - Decent amount of carbonation despite the casking, with just a bit more heaviness than other typical lagers.
A must when in Munich, either at the Hofbrauhaus itself, or at one of the many other gardens or kellers in Munich or elsewhere.

Photo of JoeAmerican77
2.38/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours out an absolutely crystal clear gold, with one inch of white head

Smells of sweet skunk and baby grass alcohol and malts

The taste is of wet grains and really just super expected lager but less

Mouth feel is watery with a cheap carbonation like soda. I feel like this is their version of the US' fizzy yellow stuff

Photo of mryuk
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a filtered light golden yellow with three fingers of head.

smell is very light with slight hop undertones.

taste is very light and crisp with little substantial flavor.

mouth is light with lots of good carbonation.

overall its a nice lager...very light and crisp. really nothing special but sitting in the hofbrauhaus it tastes delicious.

Photo of dasenebler
3.53/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

.5L, in Germany, best before 8/29/11.

Pours a clear, effervescent gold with a nice, foamy and creamy head. Very good retention.

The aroma is of sulfuric lager-ness, plus some subtle Noble hops.

The flavor is good. Actually pretty bitter for a Helles, with a bit of a bite, but still not Pils territory. Little bit of doughy malts, but mainly tea-like bitterness, especially on the lingering finish. The mouthfeel is moderately to highly carbonated, with a decent softness.

Could use some more balance, but very drinkable and refreshing with the bitterness.

Photo of Natural510
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, no discernible dating.

Pours a hazy, light golden color with generous, billowing white head.
Scent is heavily grassy and breaded with an overall sweetness from the malt.
Breaded malt, grain and husk with a sweet, clean finish makes up the flavor. Mild hop bitterness balances the malt.
Full-bodied Helles with good carbonation and mouthfeel.
Very good Bavarian lager, simple yet pleasurable. Nice choice to pair with fish or salad, along with everyday usage.

Photo of MmmmBeir
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I currently have a keg of Hafbrau Original and my rating is based on what is sold here in the U.S. Overall, it's a 4.0. The Hofbrau sold in Germany is much better. It's so clean and fresh - straight from the barrel and naturally carbonated. Definitely one of best beers I've had.

Photo of Ochsenblut
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pure white two finger head dissipates to a millimeter lacing covering this blond beer throughout the drinking experience.

The smell is rural with its grassy/floral hops notes and crackery malt. The taste is sweet and grainy, moving into a grassy hops bite. Slight citrus and graininess remain along with a very faint hops presence in the aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is medium with medium carbonation. The Helles style isn't about complexity.

This beer washes down heavy meals and sorrows.

Photo of Giggy
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bright gold in color with a foamy white head. Tangy malt nose with some faint clean grassy hops in the background, along with some lemony notes. Flavor is well balanced and slightly favors sweetness. It is a clean, smooth, slightly-sweet malt palate, with a bit of a sour aftertaste, all without being watery. It won't wow you with its complexity, but this beer is a solid choice.

Photo of CuriousMonk
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap at the Hofbrahaus in Las Vegas into a 1L beer stein and probably in Munich back in my days. Light gold color with a big white head. Good lace as the beer drops. Subtle malty aroma with light kiwi and apple touches. Bready malt flavor that is lighter in intensity, and a dash of bright watermelon. Subtle spicy and fruity hops in the flavor, with a touch of bitterness. Medium-light body and smooth but ample carbonation. A nice, malt accented helles. Very drinkable beer (hence the high ranking I gave it).

Photo of beerme343
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice light gold and yellow in color. Moderate white head of small bubbles with a good lacing on the glass.

Light aroma of malt and toast, not too powerful on the nose.

Well balanced flavor with oat bread and honey. Very delicious for a light lager.

Finish is smooth and sleek with a good mouthfeel and very drinkable. Could be a nice session beer.

Photo of secondtooth
3.83/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This lager pours a transparent pale gold with rather large and frothy head. Nice and intricate lacing, about 3/4" in my lager glass.

Scent is strong and grainy, with hints of buttery toast.

Flavor is mild up front, with a nicely sharp hop pungency at the finish.

Hofbrau is a basic, no-frills lager, but with enough balanced flavor to be worthy. Solid, enjoyable, and quite drinkable.

Photo of peterdoubleyou
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Darkish yellow/golden color. Nice foam, so-so lacing.

S: Grassy with some hops. Really spectacular smell, not too overpowering.

T: Sort of grain/bread, very nice taste. Hops come through very nicely here, paired very well.

D: Not too hard hitting and definitely a quality beer. Great beer to sit down and enjoy.

Definitely recommend, was not too impressed with the initial appearance but hey, it tasted great!

Photo of Sachsenfreude
4.45/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

appearance; crystal clear golden yellow, many fine carbonation bubbles that help maintain a consistant, yet thin white head. Sporatic lacing left from original head that resulted from the pour. Throughout drink a thin curtain of lace is left behind but slides back into the drink.

smell; mild sugar cereal and wild grains. Grassy hops in the backround hold any sweet flavors back.

taste; Upfront not much of anything. Then some dry malts come in, barley and millet comes to mind with a bit of cream. Quite grainy in the finish with some bland aged mustard seeds. A bit of malty sweetness battles with grassy hop bitterness before the hops take control. Mostly barley and a hint of pleasant grain sweetness remains in the aftertaste. Complex yet simple!

mouthfeel; very loose but with substances. The malts are a little chewy but overall quite a smooth and slick drink. Moderate amount of carbonation and little alcohol burn.

drinkability; very refreshing and crisp without sacrificing complexities in the flavor, one of the better choices for the style.

Photo of mdfb79
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From 12/26/10 notes. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a yellow golden color with two inches of fluffy white head and mdoerate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of grass, bready malts, earthy tones, and grain.

t - Tastes of wheat, grain, bready malts, herbal and earthy notes, and grass.

m - Light body and moderate carbonation.

d - A pretty good German lager. Lots of floral and earthy tones in it and easy to drink. Would have again.

Photo of vdread
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hofbrau Original pours a pale yellow color with ample head.

smells of some grainy malt, and, remarkably, no skunking!

tastes of slightly sweet, buttery, somewhat grainy malt, noble hops. bitterness and hop flavor at a minimum. this is a pretty straightforward beer as far as taste.

mouthfeel good, creamy, not light like i expected from the color. nearly no aftertaste.

i typically don't like helles lagers, but this one is great. it's buttery and slightly grassy, enough flavor to be worth drinking, but then again, it doesn't really keep me interested for long.

Photo of mikeg67
3.1/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle. Pours golden in color, almost without a head, lots of carbonation. Aroma is of grass and hops, some malt as well. Medium, clean body. Flavors are a good amount of noble hops and sweet malt. This beer much exceeded my expectation. Typical German lager.

Photo of Frothboss
4.55/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Golden yellow with nice thick head that resides at the top of the glass and slowly goes down to a thin layer after a minute fueled by the steady flow of carbonation.
Smell carries a sweet toasty malt with grassy piney undertones.
Tastes very nice, well rounded. Want to take another sip as soon as i put the glass down.
Light smooth body helps this one go down very easy.
Overall very impressed. Nice well balanced brew. I really enjoy Hofbrau Original, it is a regular and welcom visitor to my fridge and my palate. This beer truly does hold alot of character and my wife will even drink it.

Photo of pharmer
4.65/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A:Pours a golden straw color and forms a 2-finger frothy white head when poured into a pilsner glass. The head lasts for about 3 minutes and leaves behind some nice lacing. A thin head remains throughout the drink.

S: Beautiful. Don't mistake this for skunked, it is intended to smell like this. Grassy, with some hops in the background.

T: A smooth light feel in the mouth. A big dose of grains, followed by a medium bitterness of noble hops. This beer finishes perfectly and leaves you wanting more.

Notes: Having just recently found this beer, I have to say I really like it. Would be highly sessionable, if only it wasn't so expensive.

Photo of champ103
4.15/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a perfectly clear golden straw color. A two finger white head forms with good retention. As the foam finally recedes, light lace is left behind.
S: Fresh cut grass, big biscuit like grains. Floral and herbal even. Overall pretty simple, but excellent.
T: Follows the nose. Lots of toasted, biscuit like grains. Grassy and floral. Very simple, but I can't get enough of it.
M/D: A lighter body, but perfectly dry, crisp, clean, and refreshing. An excellent beer to quaff. All day with this one.

A perfect Helles IMO. Simple, but it does not skimp on character. An excellent beer. Highly recommended.

Photo of Sudsy89
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz. bottle, chilled.
Poured into a big 23oz. pilsener glass, massive foamy head reached to the top! High level of big carbonation bubbles, pale straw color. Head stays around for a few minutes, leaves noticeable lacing. Aroma is "bready", although I did notice a strange skunkiness when I first opened the bottle, was unexpected. Taste is mostly grain, grassiness, sweet malts. As other reviewers have noticed it's not very bitter, has just a hint of hops, but for a lager I find the taste to be good, much "cleaner" tasting than American adjunct lagers as it's brewed to German Purity standards. This is a great example of a classic German lager, nothing extravagant yet flavorful enough, highly drinkable, refreshing.
I'll definitely be picking up a six-pack next time!

Photo of tjsdomer2
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Great white foam with good lacing. Bright golden with active carbonation. Good standard beer.

Smell: Flowers and some grass. Fresh biscuits as well. A lot like Spaten. Very subtle. Thumbs up!

Taste/Mouthfeel: Sourdough bread and good floral hops. Great smooth feel with nice carbonation.

Drinkability: Easy to kick back and enjoy. A relaxing, easy-going beer.

Overall: Basically the same original Spaten.

Photo of StoutHunter
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a 6 pack of this a while ago and am down to my last one so i might as well review it. Poured from a 11.2oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A- This one poured a clear golden straw color with 2 fingers worth of fluffy white head that turned into a thing layer that stayed till the end.

S- A crisp clean grain smell is the most prominent with some hops in the back.

T- Pretty much the same as the smell with both the grains and the hops complementing themselves nicely. Crisp and balanced perfectly.

M- Light bodied with lots of carbonation.

D- About as drinkable as you can get, a 6 pack wouldn't last too long on a weekend night.

Overall i enjoyed this beer as a great sessionable lager that has deserved a spot in my fridge. I am really diggin this style compared to american lagers. A good tasting lager then can be drank all night.

Photo of cetherid
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into a pint glass


a golden straw colored beer. a nice thick creamy white head.

An earthy grainy smell...some yeast/fresh bread smell to it. a little malt in there. getting some subtle fruity smells in there as well.


sweet malts. slight bitterness. again, some slight fruity tones in there. very tasty beer.


Light bodied. nice amount of carbonation.


very high. a crisp clean refreshing beer that is light bodied but great flavor. I would love to have to bratwurst while drinking this now. Would be a great beer to have a big liter mug and grilling some german fare outside.

Photo of rarbring
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer is clear warm yellow, a white head, rather little lacing.

The smell is bread, a touch of molasses and dried grass.

Tasting like a rather sweet loaf of bread, some fruity citric notes, like a mild rhubarb soup.

Rather much carbonation, a medium body with a dry finish.

An honest and well balanced beer, sampled at beer tasting at De Klomp, Linköping, Sweden.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a crystal clear bright golden hue with an eggshell white head. Minimal lacing speckled around my glass. Aroma has a nice grassy/herbal spicy noble hop accent with hints of green bottle but nothing like the average Euro lager. Pale biscuit malts balance out the hops, flavor has a slightly metallic edge with a spicy h erbal hop note in the flavor. Mouthfeel is light bodied sturdy carbonation no off flavors left behind, nice hop burps after a couple sips. Refreshing and solid everyday drinking beer, this could definitely be a staple if cheap and readily available.

Hofbräu Original from Hofbräuhaus München
85 out of 100 based on 1,206 ratings.