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Andechser Spezial Hell - Klosterbrauerei Andechs

Not Rated.
Andechser Spezial HellAndechser Spezial Hell

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

60 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 60
Hads: 107
Avg: 3.84
pDev: 13.54%
Wants: 12
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Klosterbrauerei Andechs visit their website

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-18-2002

Its clear gleaming look and firm, fine pored head goes hand in hand with its fresh and pure aroma. Malty nuances are the first impressions.

Spezial Hell is pleasantly tangy with a full, round malt body that cannot fail to fascinate. The soft flavour carries a distinctive balance of sweet accents and bitter hoppiness.

It concludes on equally soft malty nuances – a classical festival beer in the tradition of old Bavarian brewing.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 60 | Hads: 107
Photo of captaincoffee
3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nose has light malted grains, but overall is quite muted. Taste is crisp and clean, light bread. Extremely easy to drink. Not a lot to say, and not any aspect that stands out, but somehow it is very enjoyable...could drink all day.

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Photo of drmeto
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

-pours a clear straw-golden with a big,foamy,white head
-medium carbonation visible
-honey,apples,sulfur,lemons,spices,cracker malt,grassy
-honey,spices,alcohol sweetness,spice,grass
-light body,medium carbonation
Pretty good Dortmunder/Export

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Photo of BeerDrinkersWorldTour
3.18/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Crisp, clear, streaming, golden body with a big white foam head that has good retention.

Smell - Crisp kilned malts dominate the aroma profile of this beer giving it a straight up lager like aroma. There is good hop nip in the aroma here and over all good balance.

Taste - Bitter hoppy front which is well balanced by the mild malty middle to this one. The malt sweetness is mild but constant and again provides a good lager like flavour.

Mouth feel - Decent body to this beer and has a light astringency that leads into t cloying end.

Overall - Another well balanced beer that although not as good as some from the brewery is still a very fine beer.

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Photo of jonb5
4/5  rDev +4.2%

0.4 Litre, served in handled mug.

A: Very pale straw colour, clear, two finger head, kept a lid of foam
on top, also had some lacing.

S: Not overly pronounced, but a bit of subtle orangy Bavarian malt.

T: Hint of sharpness added to the south Bavarian malts, notes of orange.

M: Minimal carbonation, light body, went down OK.

O: More export than Helles, very drinkable.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.54/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

This beer was a bright, light yellow color with a nice-sized white head.

Sweet malt aroma with some floral and grassy hops.

Sweet malt taste, bready. Late floral hoppiness.

This beer was a perfect beer to start my evening. Light, crisp, very drinkable. It paired well with some almonds I was eating.

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Photo of JCBears
4.29/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.5

appearance: crystal clear, a pleasant rich head but not doughy, effervescent without being over bubbly

smell: straw smell with a bit of fruit on the sides, nice mix

taste: nice where can I start. First its smooth flavor of great rich malty sweetness. On the end is a nice bight but not too much. Really loving this flavor.

mouthfeel: bit weak wish it hung out a bit longer, but it is more of just a bitter flavor not the full Monty

overall: A good brew they made this one so you would want one after another. I like it definitely recommend to anyone

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Photo of IchLiebeBier
3/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Golden; clear; effervescent; medium head

Aroma: Malty; citrusy; honey-like

Taste: Juicy with a slightly bitter start and slightly dry, bitter finish

Remarks: A little too bitter for me

Did not score A, T, S, M at that time; disregard those scores

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Photo of Cozzatoad
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle

A- Golden colour, perfectly transparent, some carbonation bubbles reaching the top. Nice white head, a couple of fingers, nice retention and lacing

S- Clean classic pale lager smell: grainy, a fresh herbal whiff, mild citric notes backfront

T- Again perfectly clean as the smell suggested. Very pleasant and natural feeling crackery crispness from the malts, quite bitter (for the style i mean) herbal/grassy notes on the back of the mouth and in aftertaste. A lemon note and the slightest hint of spiciness also present, bringing that very appreciated touch of complexity that still doesn't take away anything from the amazing drinkability. Perfectly dry finish leaves you longing for another sip

M- Body and carbonation are a bit more vivid than the usual helles (this is in fact what would be once called an export version). Can't really say why but crispness is somehow more pleasant than in most helles, still the beer is amazingly smooth and easy

O- A plain excellent beer in all what helles are supposed to be. Just very very good

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.18/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours rich white head at first, then the liquid rises as the head settles. Clear golden color. Rich lacings. after a really long time.

S: Malt and bitterhops - nothing else, but a very nice balance. Modest but still rich. This is like "don't mend what's not broken".

T: Again this is a very "simple" beer - but man they've made the most of bitterhops (eventhough rather mild) and malt. No other tastes are present - and that makes me grateful!

M: A mild sour but more bitter aftertaste stays for a surprisingly long time - me like! Body is light while carbonation is rich but still modest.

O: A question comes to mind; can the brewer at Andechs brew a product that isn't top notch? In my opinoin; NO, not even in his sleep. Yet another fantastic Bavarian beer.

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Photo of JonnoWillsteed
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I really enjoyed this beer.

A - Pale Helles style beer
S - very little, to my nose
T - Fantastic. Slighty rich from the 5.9%, complimented very well by some solid hops.
M - In a way it's almost creamy smooth.
O - I'm very impressed, it is a lovely beer. I doubt I'd ever get tired of a couple of these a week!

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Photo of CwrwAmByth
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a light, clear golden colour with a small white head.

Smells quite lagery and malty.

Tastes ok, no very strong flavours except alcohol except for some vague malts and yeast.

Overall an ok beer but not strongly recommended.

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.81/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from Worldwide Spirits
Best before 19.06.12 (just made it)
Poured into an Ayinger willi glass

Andechser's Spezial Hell is a fine helles lager, bringing in balanced malt and hop components for an at-once sweet, spicy, and slightly bitter beer that hits all the right notes for someone who enjoys lagers. The only component to be worked on would be the aroma, which I found to be a bit less expressive than desired.

Pours a clean white head of 2-3cm that gradually fades to a thin (0.2cm?) cap atop the body, leaving very modest amounts of lacing as it does so. Body is a golden orange color, light bringing out a pale yellow-gold throughout. Carbonation is substantial and noticeable in its never-ending rise to the top.

Aroma features strong, sweet maltiness, with a bit of a yeast and bread-like tint. As the beer warms, there's a bit of flowers-with-pollen scent, likely from hops, as well. Not bad, but could be more upfront and robust with its bouquet (of course, this could be an age thing, since the bottle is best by today).

First flavor across the tongue is some light grain (like hot cereal) and sweetness. Front of the palate continues the sweetness and adds a bit of honey and gentle noble hop character. Mid-palate continues in bolder strokes of grain and bread-like malt components, honey, and noble hop components that are both a bit floral and spicy. Back of palate is sweet and bread-like malts well-balanced with bitter and slightly spicy hop characters. Aftertaste has a nice balance between malty, bready flavors and spicy hop characters.

Beer is medium to medium-light bodied, with active, refreshing carbonation that is slightly prickly on the tongue, but pleasing and effective with the beer's nature. Overall mouthfeel is crisp and smooth, with a dry finish that makes taking another sip pleasant. As to be expected, no ethanol warmth.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.28/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Thirstybird for bringing this one back from Germany. 500ml bottle served at 48 degrees in a pilsener glass. 12 09 12 indicated on the back label. Pours a translucent gold with a loose, two inch, off-white head that sizzles and pops as it slowly recedes. Tiny bubbles effervesce from the base of the glass to the underside of the cap. Nose expresses cereal grains and a light grassiness - fairly clean. Taste consistent with nose - very clean and refreshing with a light, lingering German yeast character at the back without the skunk. There's also just a kiss of noble hops to keep it from coming off as overly sweet. Mouthfeel is light and lively with a fairly clean finish. Overall - wow. I'm not too familiar with the style but this beer really hits the spot. Light and refreshing with a great balance. Really easy drinking and although not really a session beer per se, I could see myself having a few of these in a sitting.

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Photo of tugdriver7
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I get the Reinheitsgebot. I really do. And this was proof to me that there's something to it besides economic success for grain growers in 16th Century Germany. 500 ml bottle hand-carried just a day ago from Germany by C,N & E (Thanks!!). Part of a multi-pack souvenir selection. They got to go to the Andechs Monastery, but this was the next best thing for those of us that didn't go to Oktoberfest. The bottle had a May 2012 freshness date. Yeah, that fresh. Deep gold in the glass with a nice frothy lemon-tinged head. Taste was rich, slick malt with a hint of fruity hops and a nice, rounded lager flavor that ended with just a touch of bitterness. Exactly the kind of beer you'd expect from a legendary German brewery. That said, there was a hint of residual oxidation (cardboard-like) flavor that surprised me because the bottles are so fresh. A common "off flavor" in bottled Germans, it's almost unheard-of in kegged beers. But the bottom line was that this one was fantastic; rich mouthfeel (much more so than their regular lager) and my favorite from this multi-pack. Made me wish I could taste it on tap myself someday.

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Photo of Forb
4.39/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured on-tap at the Kloster Andechs...

Appearance: Pours a beautiful light and lively golden hue with a mouth wateringly inviting head.

Smell: Fairly middle-ground with a neutral kick of grassy, grainy, hoppy deliciousness. It leaves you to be surprised by it's delicious taste.

Taste: Utter beauty. This is by far the most drinkable and delicious of helles lagers I have tasted. My all-time favorite for this category. Worth a trip back just to get this beer alone.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation livens the palate along with the smooth highly drinkable consistency that is this oh so special beer.

Overall: A must have with a trip to the Holy Mountain! Alongside the plethora of beer that this monastery pumps out this is a good base for the magnificence that this place will bestow upon your taste buds. Gogogogo!!

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Photo of ikats
4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer is bright yellow in color, clear and with nice fluffy white head that disappears without leaving much. Aroma is filled with clean malt sweetness with bright grassy hops. Taste is very similar to aroma - clean malt with some refreshing bitter hops. Very nicely balanced. Low to medium body with low carbonation. Very drinkable (surprisingly so given 5.9% abv).

I find this beer to be a very drinkable refreshing lager. I can see getting in trouble drinking too much of it (too drinkable for this higher alcohol beer).

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Photo of gameface23
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Light, golden yellow with a fizzy white head. Amazingly clear. This is probably the cleanest looking beer I have ever seen.

S: Rustic bread crust and herbal hop notes. Again, it's a very clean beer.

T: There's a nice noble hop character that is balanced with pils malt graininess.

M: It's light-bodied and finishes bone dry, but there it is smooth.

D: A very nice beer. I mention the fact that I don't generally like lagers on every lager review I have ever done, but I have respect for this one. It's clean and flavorful.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500mL bottle purchased in Frankfurt 2 weeks ago, dated 13-06-11. So considered fresh per the monks' dating system.

I love Munich Helles lagers and this is one I've been wanting for a while. It pours a light golden color, clear, with a wet-looking layer of foam that never dissipates. In other words it looks like it should. The aroma is neutral, what comes through is light malt, mostly bread dough. Subsequent whifs bring in more of the same, plus some light grains.

It tastes a little sweet upfront, slightly bitter in the aftertaste, and mildly grainy throughout. Very good for the style, if a little subtle. Maybe harder to tell from others of the style, which is a shame, but still a very solid flavor for the style.

Decent carbonation, maybe a little less than usual, with a full mouthfeel, silkier than usual. Overall I like this but don't feel the need to search it out again, there are others I can find in the USA that scratch the itch just as well.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pilsner glass.

Color is a light golden color with a slight amount of haze, though there is still plenty of visible carbonation. Two-finger white head eventually falls down and leaves some nice bubbles around the edges. Really nice lacing around the edge of the glass. Nose is a bit of grain with a very mild fruit presence. Some light pear.

The taste is mostly just grain with some faint white bread. A bit of very light fruit. Feel is a bit light and creamy with low-ish carbonation. Some nice flavors throughout, but fairly plain without much to really draw me in.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.73/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Kostrizer stein. Beer is yellow and clear with moderate carbonation and a big white head that leaves some lacing on the glass.

Aroma sweet and grainy with a mild to moderate level.

Beer is light in body and pretty bitter from the grains on the back end. Its mildly sweet up front. This is the least favorite of the three lagers from Andechs I've had recently. It lacks a little bit of something, its too thin, too bitter, finishes too dry. Still a good helles though.

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Photo of washingtonydc
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Germans are known for many things, but surely chief among them is an exacting, disciplined focus on technical pursuits, whether it's Bauhaus or automobiles. But BMW can't claim a monopoly on such successes--one needs look only a half an hour west of the ultimate driving machine's distinct headquarters to find a band of monks doing the lord's work by marrying German precision with beer.

The Andechs special helles is poured from the tap into a half-liter stein. It's a pale straw, crystal clear with a healthy head. Grains and honey, with just a hint of flowers, waft from the mug. A deep pull of the beer offers a slightly spicy (by German standards) bitterness and a crisp, sweet finish. It rolls in the mouth lightly and refreshingly--this is a beer you can spend a summer day drinking by the maß.

But in a Gestaltian sense, it's more than the mere components--it's perfectly balanced, expertly tuned, and a paragon of craftsmanship. It's simply one of the best beers in a country skilled in the art of brewing. It's as German as apple pie is American--and no less delicious

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Photo of FreshHawk
4.32/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Very clear, crisp golden color with plenty of bubbles. Fairly large, thick, light, rocky, foamy white head with decent retention and a thin layer of bubbly lace.

S - Good grainy base with plenty of grassy, herbal, and floral hops. Slight sweet and bready malt is well balanced with that hop aroma. Hint of mineral aroma on the finish.

T - Similar to the nose. A nice grainy and bready malt base. Mid sip to the finish there is a nice floral and herbal hop flavor. Not too strong or overly bitter, but it provides a nice counter to the malt. A nice balance between the two, the malt is stronger, but the hops provide a nice little kick. A touch of mineral and spice flavors toward the end.

M - Medium body with a healthy amount of carbonation. Pretty smooth and refreshing with a bit of a spritzy feel. Quite refreshing.

D - Very easy to drink beer with a good amount of hops and carbonation to give it a bit of a kick with the malt. An easy and enjoyable drink.

Notes: Best before 18/10/10. A very nice, easy to drink beer. Well balanced with a good amount of flavor. Made for a great beer to sip on a sunny and warm day. Refreshing and has just the right amount of hops to keep it interesting. Definitely worth a try if you can get it.

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Photo of jmhart
3.67/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this from the barrell at Kloster Andechs.

Deep golden in color with a creamy head that remained for just the right amount of time. Zero sediment.

Highly malty with a strong aroma of typical german hops. Minor elements of straw and yeast are present, as well as other earthy aromas. Very crisp on the nose.

Maltier than expected in taste. The hops that were present on the nose are balanced nicely with the sweetness of the taste creating a surprisingly mild lager. Acid is high creating a bite that isn't altogether pleasant.

Mouthful is rich and creamy with a bite.

Overall, an average lager. I'm glad I had it but would choose other brews from Andechs before selecting this one again.

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Photo of smanders
4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - clear golden body with a white, thin head.

Smell - sweet malt with the smell of grain in the background.

Taste - mellow bitterness with a slight sweetnessl.

Mouthfeel - very light and crisp.

Drinkability - Very high. Like everything else from this kloster, enjoy whenever available.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.64/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Matt for bringing back all these hard-to-find Andechs brews. Best before February 18th, 2010 - served in a Pilsner Urquell flute-style glass.

A - Transparent golden straw body with no visible bubbles. Three fingers of off-white foam that dissipates slowly to a nice half-finger cap. Excellent retention and attractive splotchy lace rings.

S - Pretty generic lager smell - very clean, with obvious grain/barley malt, and a bit of fruity esters. There's also a bit of spice, which I'm guessing is from the noble hops, but it felt kind of faded.

T - A little better in this department - more light fruitiness and biscuit and less overt graininess. Very clean finish and aftertaste.

M - Slight carbonation tingle, medium body, very smooth, slightly dry finish. Clean and refreshing.

D - Very easy to drink, due to the light flavor profile. The excellent feel helps the drinkability quite a bit, as it goes down easy and without any unpleasant side effects (aftertaste, bloat, etc.). Still - it's a little too bland for me to use as a lawnmower beer.

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Andechser Spezial Hell from Klosterbrauerei Andechs
86 out of 100 based on 60 ratings.