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Velas Helles - Smoky Mountain Brewery & Restaurant

Not Rated.
Velas HellesVelas Helles

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

74 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 74
Reviews: 32
rAvg: 3.27
pDev: 19.57%
Wants: 0
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Smoky Mountain Brewery & Restaurant visit their website
Tennessee, United States

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-06-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 74 | Reviews: 32 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of metter98
3.25/5  rDev -0.6%

Photo of BEERchitect
3.33/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Built upon the simple and time-honored recipe of German Lagers done the lighter way- the Rocky Mountain Brewery devises an elegant and refreshing recipe to show how lagers don't have to be dull, boring, or empty.

Mostly bright, the Light Lager pours with a deep straw or light gold color. Forming a creamy stark-white head, the beer billows to the top of the glass before slowly receeding- leaving intricate lacing patterns in its wake.

Grain sweetness, slim malty notes, the sulfur from apples, the acidity from lemons all seem to complement the nose- along with a light bouquet of floral hops. Tasting grainy-sweet, the malts show a touch of honey, bread dough, and mild earthiness. Picking up the esters of apple and lemon at middle palate- the taste then morphs into a dry, minty, and herbal bitterness to close a tad on the spicy side.

Light in body, the ale shows a bolder sweet texture than is usual for the style. Less dry, the ale shows a lot of variance as it transitions to dry cracker, slight warmth, and fleeting sweetness.

It's a simple lager that shows visitors of the brewery that there's more to beer than just the banal taste that's marked on nascars or by talking frogs.

Photo of mikesgroove
3.2/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at the Brewgrass festival in Asheville, North Carolina. Consumed on 09/20/2008 and reviewed from notes taken at the time.

The pour was ok, a light straw colored lager was the first thing noticed. Very clear with a nice amount of carbonation. This converged into a decent sized head of white that faded nearly immediately upon forming.

The aroma was light, very light, to be honest almost non existent at times. After warming it came around a little showing some decent grain and bread like malt tones and a touch of some light earthy hops. The flavor was more of the same, with the key word here being very light in the profile especially. Decent body on top of a mostly grain profile, with more then adequate carbonation making up the bulk of this. Easy to drink I will have to admit, though the flavor was a bit too thin for me at times, it was still more then decent overall.

Overall not a bad little lager, though the subtleties were severely lacking it was still fairly decent. I would see no issue with throwing this down on a hot day, though I am sure there are much better lagers out there for sure. I am not really sure what to take away from this one as it is a hard style to really having any different in but I still feel even given that this is barely above average in any regard.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.53/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear, deep yellow body with a soapy, sudsy, white head.

Smell: An unassuming nose, smelling lightly of German malts and notes of floral hops and honey which come together to convey a slight honeysuckle scent.

Taste: A taste of Pils malt layered with a coating of sweet-tasting honey. Small hint of bread dough. Faint floral hop character kindly imparts no more than a light bitterness. A bit of honeyed sweetness remains on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Velas is a tidy, tasty, refreshing Helles that's quite drinkable.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.05/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A solid pour into my 25cl glass yields a billowing, initially four-finger thick, pale, off-white colored head. The beer is a clear, gold copper color that shows an almost brilliantly clear, lighter version of the same color when held up to the light. The aroma is a mix of herbal honey malt notes, a touch of grassiness and a lemon herb hop character. There is a touch of grassy grain in the finish as well. This has a fairly nice aroma for a Helles that is pretty spot on for the style (except for that herbal honey note perhaps).

This beer is dry tasting up front, with an almost tart note that lingers into the finish. There is a light bitterness that mingles with the tartness in the finish; the tartness seems to be just a bit more noticeable than the hop bitterness though. The beer is also a bit over-carbonated, which is why it started to foam up as soon as I popped the cap, the effervescence is a bit too much for this beer to stand up to, but luckily this is easily remedied. A touch of tart green apple flavors up front seem to be what the herbal honey notes in the nose have turned into. This is quite light bodied, though not out of style.

The tartness in this beer is quite light, but it is distinct, this would certainly point to an infection of some sort (the over-carbonation could be a sign of this as well), and it certainly does take this beer out of style. As the beer warms up the honey notes in the nose start to take on a bit more fruitiness. Not bad, but certainly not what I was expecting or hoping for; in many ways it reminds me of a Berliner Weiss, it is not quite there though as the sourness would need to be a bit more gripping. Actually if this was labled as a Berliner Weiss I would have enjoyed it quite a bit more as it does have a nice, clean tartness to it.

Photo of wrightst
4.25/5  rDev +30%

Photo of dbrauneis
3.75/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of weeare138
1.13/5  rDev -65.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Thanks to hopdog for this...
Appears a hazy light gold. Some scattered, white lace.
Smell is of buttered rotton corn and other skank ass vegetables.
Taste is of sour creamed corn...blech!!!
Mouthfeel is of rancid, gross, sour malt that isn't impressing me in the least. In fact...it's sour and plain out gross!
F this brew! I hate it!!!

Photo of atrocity
2.25/5  rDev -31.2%

Photo of Dogbrick
3.78/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to johnrobe for sending me this. The guy with the funny hat on the label is worth the price of admission. Billed as a "light German style lager" which doesn't really tell you much. Pours a gold color with a medium off-white head and mild effervescence. No lacing. Very light and sweet aroma of honey and even a little bubblegum. Very light-bodied with an unimposing hops flavor, with some malt and citrus as well. Finish is lightly sweet. Complexity is not a factor but this stuff is insanely easy to drink.

Photo of WOLFGANG
3.75/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of mrfrancis
2.75/5  rDev -15.9%

Photo of Brent
3.38/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Perhaps the least personality of the beers I've had from this brewery. Very mild, with some malt caramel flavors. Hopping was modest, but the overall flavor profile was fresh and clean. Nothing wrong with this beer, it just really does not distinguish itself in any way.

Photo of crobinso
3/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of argock
2.6/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass. No freshness date. Received as a gift in a mixed 6-pack from my friend Jody.

A: Golden with 1-finger white head with poor retention but a few dots of lace. Not as clear as it should be.

S: Fairly malty aroma with herbal, earthy noble hops nose. Not too bad actually. A little bit of corn.

T: Flavor is full of off-flavors, very solventy with a strange heavy bitter vegetative hops flavor that is too earthy. There is no brightness or crispness to the flavor.

M: Decent light body but the strange hops flavor and solventy nature lend a somewhat astringent feel to this beer.

O: Not a very good Helles lager -- off-flavors galore. I was able to choke it down but it was a bit of a struggle.

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance - light golden color with wisps of sediment floating around mid-glass and up, slowly spreading to the rest of the pint glass.

Aroma - caramelly and malty, but not sweet. Smells wonderful.

Taste - tastes buttery and lemony. Kind of a weird combo, like an English ale meets hefe/summer cooler thing. Curious mix, I'm really not all that banged up about it, but it's tasty enough that it's already gone...

Mouthfeel - smooth, buttery and full of carbonation.

Drinkability - while well crafted, the flavor is too lemony for my liking. Still, it disappeared awfully fast.

Photo of hollywood_15063
3/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Chaney
2.6/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I had this on tap at the Pigeon Forge location.

A: Poured a crystal clear, gold color, without much head and minimal visible carbonation.

S: Absolutely nothing.... No Bavarian quality whatsoever.

T: Whoa! This had an over-the-top saaz component that wasn't very drinkable.

M: The carbonation was fine and the lacing was virtually non-existent.

O: This is one of the most uninspiring Helles I've tried in a long time.

Photo of atsprings
2.9/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into a Lucifer tulip pours a crisp pale gold with a thin diminishing off-white head. Aroma is just a trace of sweet malts. The taste is a slight amount of sweet malts and and just a hint of hops. The beer is light and crisp, but a bit on the watery side. This is one textbook mediocrity.

Photo of nrbw23
2.75/5  rDev -15.9%

Photo of PorterLambic
3.38/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Arrived at the table a dark yellow with negligible head, just a ring, really. No lace left behind.
Smell is just hops and light malt, nothing more.
Taste is malt, hops, a light yeast note, lemon. Malty aftertaste.
Medium body & effervescence. A solid helles but not a standout.

Photo of khargro2
4.5/5  rDev +37.6%

Photo of WynnO
3/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of mntlover
2.9/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very pale yellow with small white head that falls way to quick. Aroma is light some malt some grassy hops not much going on here. Taste is a little more maltier then their pilsner maybe a touch more hops also but overall just as soon have the Thunder Road not much diffrence between the two. Mouthfeel is light and drinkability is ok goes down quick and is refreshing. This brewery is making their stuff to appeal to Bud drinkers. None of their beers are very taste intensive made not to offend anyone I guess.

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Velas Helles from Smoky Mountain Brewery & Restaurant
76 out of 100 based on 74 ratings.