Münchner Hell (Original Munich Lager)
Paulaner Brauerei

Münchner Hell (Original Munich Lager)Münchner Hell (Original Munich Lager)
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Lager - Helles
Ranked #104
Ranked #32,222
3.78 | pDev: 11.9%
Paulaner Brauerei
Very Good
Münchner Hell (Original Munich Lager)Münchner Hell (Original Munich Lager)
Notes: Known as "Munich Lager" or "Original Munich Lager" outside of Germany.

Our Original Munich Lager is a true classic with its clear and bright gold sparkling hue, crowned by a pure white head. A beer which always goes down well: mild, elegant malts, with a hint of sweetness and a soft hint of hops in the background. This Munich beer is ideal to accompany spare ribs and spicy dishes. Just try it!
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Reviews: 556 | Ratings: 1,283 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of hankp59
hankp59 from New York

4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light, refreshing, clear straw with a nice white head with lacing. Great balance for a lager with no off notes. If you want to know what a straight forward lager can be, get some.

Oct 27, 2021
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Profundobaso from New York

3.87/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look - 11.2 oz bottle, poured into a tasting glass. Golden in color, clear, and a nice two finger head with some lacing.

Smell - light malts with some grassiness. some sweetness also comes through here, though not overpowering.

Taste - plenty of rich malty flavor on taste. just a tad bit of hoppy bite towards the end, giving the beer a nice clean finish.

Feel - light bodied, medium high carbonation, and a easy drinking one at 4.9% ABV.

Overall - not especially a stand out in the category, but still a solid choice and represents the style very well.

Oct 25, 2021
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Tony787 from Canada (ON)

4.09/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I bought 2cans at the beer store in Ontario 500ml at 4.9%.
Poured a nice frothy 2finger head into glass.. nice smell
Great taste nice and smooth with a hint of sweetness good carbonation leaving a lace as you drink.
Mild bitterness
Overall very easy drinking and enjoyable beer to drink from Germany
Would definitely buy it again.

Oct 12, 2021
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StephenLovett from California

4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Crystal clear golden straw color topped by a bright white head of small bubbles that dissipates fairly quickly. This is a very drinkable beer, what Bud/Miller/Coors could have been in an alternate universe. Light malt flavor, lightly carbonated, will a very well balanced hop and malt profile for a good choice as an everyday brew. It has a more noble hop grassy-floral hop profile with some mild sweetness that is apparent on the finish that doesn't overwhelm the well balanced paler malt base. There is a slight coriander and honey taste, but the primary flavors are the malt followed by a slightly bitter hop finish.

Sep 12, 2021
Photo of LanceBiggums

4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice clear straw colour with a foamy white head of big bubbles. Smell is light biscuit malt and a hint of grassy floral hops. Taste is reversed: malts are much subtler, grassy floral hops more prominent, especially on the dryish finish. Feel is light, clean, and smooth. A good light lager - not the best, but very drinkable.

Aug 29, 2021
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German-Helles from Wisconsin

4.74/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

This is a 16oz. can poured into my 20oz. weizen glass. This is picture perfect! The glass is full to the top, the top being two fingers of pure white fluff. The head slowly recedes to a half inch while clinging heavily to the glass. The color is straw, clear, with beautiful heavy carbonation sparkling in the glass.
The aroma is noticeable from a distance, sweet malty biscuits.
The flavor follows the nose, sweet bread flavored malts. very fresh tasting. This is not overly sweet and the hop presence is very subtle, light spices, cutting the sweetness perfectly.
The feel is a pleasant creamy smooth texture.
This is very good, refreshing and tasty! I think I'll sample another!

Jul 17, 2021
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BerkeleyBeerSleuth from California

4.19/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful carbonated golden body with soapy white head. Aroma is floral and herbal with just a hint of fruit and grass. Cracker bread malt and grassy flavors. A little bitterness. Finishes dry and clean. A great beer.

Jun 23, 2021
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Mark-Leggett from Missouri

3.78/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle. Very light in color with a thin white head and some lacing. Smells of biscuit, a hint of sweet and some floral. Taste is similar to the smell, bready with hints of fruit and floral. Very easy to drink and refreshing.

May 16, 2021
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Singlefinpin from North Carolina

4.08/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drinking this at home.
Drink by date 12/21 today 5/6/21
Poured from a 11.2 ounce bottle into a pint glass.
Looks a nice white foamy head that dropped to a thick cap.
Smells lightly biscuity, floral.
Taste follows the nose nicely with enough spiciness to keep my interest.
Mouth feel is medium for the style with a nice creamy finish.
Overall a very nice Lager that I would definitely drink again.

May 07, 2021
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MNJR from Illinois

4.19/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful German lager, light and delicate with floral, lemon and honey flavors, some slight fruity tang - pear, apple - immaculate carbonation, excellently refreshing. Everything about this beer is good. If you are lager fan this is most assuredly something you will really appreciate.

Apr 03, 2021
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DrBeergood from Ohio

4.3/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L: Pure gold. Clear. Lovely carbonation stream.

S: Buttery biscuity malts with a hint a woodiness and grass.

T: Really nice. Munich kilned 2row barley. Mild Tettnang/Hallertau) hops work so well with the malts, that they're nearly undetectable as independent ingredients. It's a solid beer, with good ingredients, done well.

F: Refreshing, invites you for another sip.

O: Perhaps the best lager I've had the privilege of sampling. If you asked me for a Fucking Beer, I might slide this one down the bar.

Mar 12, 2021
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fptan from Tennessee

4.24/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From Pint Can:
Appearance: gold-yellow, very clear, little to no head.
Aroma: Mostly pils malt smells, bready/cracker-like. Little perceptible hop character in the aroma. I might be getting a faint smell of noble hops, but fleeting.
Flavor: Malty sweet. Medium bitterness and some noble hop flavor at the end, but this beer is dominated by malt. Bread like flavors, refined malt flavor that is not cloying, but bold. Bready/cracker flavors and maybe a touch of sulfur retronasally. Maybe a slight apple flavor, but hard to latch onto. Clean fermentation, overall, though.
Mouthfeel: Thin, well-attenuated. Highly carbonated, leading to a a clearing of the flavors and another drink.
Overall: Classic example of a Munich Helles. I prefer the can as the bottles have some staling characteristics. This beer is great and always the one I recommend for a Helles.

Mar 01, 2021
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TonyLema1 from South Carolina

4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: beautiful crystal clear, gold, nice fluffy white head
S: faint breadiness, some grain, true to style
T: beady, some sweetnesses
F: crisp on the palate, clean finish
O: perfect representation of the style

Feb 19, 2021
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jonphisher from New Jersey

3.87/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful crystal clear light cold with a perfect white head.

Smell is crispy bread, also has a little floral note to it and sweetness.

Taste is same crispy bread and subtle honey without the sweetness.

Mouthfeel is light but in no way watery. It has a noticeable full feel to it but drinks so light and easy. Carbonation is perfect, gives it a smooth drinking sensation as soon as it hits the tongue. Dry finish that immediately tells you to take another sip.

Feb 11, 2021
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BPVandenbroek from Canada (AB)

3.8/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Paulaner Munchner Hell pours into my glass crystal clear, and a pale, straw colored amber. The head it throws is cloudy, bone white, and lasting.
Munchner Hell’s aroma is dominated by clean aromas of pale malt. It’s a combination of fresh baked bread and soda crackers. The aroma builds slightly towards the center, giving me at first sweetness, followed by hints of Granny Smith apples. This transition gives me a brief moment where the nose reminds me of a well crafted lager before moving towards a short, clipped finish. In that finish I find a brief presence of earthiness which moves quickly into a hop aroma reminding me of fresh cut grass.
On the tongue, Munchner Hell is smooth and rounded, with a very gentle presence of CO2. Flavors follow the nose closely, giving me perhaps more soda cracker than fresh baked bread. Hints of grain come in at this point, just enough to lend support to other malt flavors. Grainy, biscuit malt flavors move to a small dose of sweetness in the center Malt flavors move effortlessly into a gentle hop finish, giving a brief, peppery bitterness before fading quickly into the background.
Paulaner Munchner Hell Is smooth, rounded, and refreshing which is something one might look for in a good quality lager. At the same time, it’s dominated by flavors and aromas of malt. Those flavors of malt are present, but don’t dominate enough to overpower the senses. All of this makes this Munchner Helles a very decent example of the style, while being accessible enough to be enjoyed by those who enjoy more “traditional” European lagers.

Feb 04, 2021
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Jugs_McGhee from Texas

3.17/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

4 pack of 16 fl oz pull-tab cans ran me $6.99 USD plus tax at a beer store in New Orleans, LA. Canned 11/18/20 and delivered a few days ago...this is about as fresh as German beer gets stateside, sadly.

"Original Munich Lager." 4.9% ABV.

HEAD: Frothy and white. ~8cm. ~8 minute retention.

BODY: Clear; obviously filtered. Yellow-gold in colour. Vibrant and enticing with excellent clarity. Bereft of visible yeast/lees (true to style).

Appears well carbonated. Looks as a helles lager should.

AROMA: Honey, crisp Munich malt, a hint of sweet breadiness (from both malts and yeast), faint grassy & floral hop aromatics, subdued cereal grains (think Honey nut cheerios).

Aromatic intensity is moderate for the style. Promises a crisp clean drinking lager with a neatly dialed in sweetness.

TASTE & TEXTURE: Honeyed sweetness, crisp clean Munich malts, subdued floral hop flavour, soft water.

Adequately hopped for the style to keep it balanced, but the clean maltiness is the star of the show. Very approachable and easy to drink despite its crisp carbonation.

Quite refreshing. Smooth, wet, light to medium-bodied, approachable. Not astringent, harsh, scratchy, oily, or otherwise problematic.

Lacks any off-flavours or overt faults.

I confess I've had helles lagerbiere with better depth of flavour and more complexity/delicacy to them (e.g. Andechs', Augustiner's, and hell even Bierstadt Lagerhaus') and that makes this seem comparatively pedestrian as a result - as clean drinking and enjoyable as it is. There's no doubting it's a solid traditional effort, but it does feel a bit simplistic and neutral-flavoured in comparison to the best expressions of the style out there.

Minerality is low. Doesn't scream Noble hop varietal flavour (it's not grassy or spicy).

It could better showcase Hallertau Mittelfruh hops in my opinion, and it isn't as soft in terms of water hardness as I'd expect a helles lager with this amount of pilsner malts to be.

OVERALL: A likeable easy drinking helles lager that ticks the boxes of the traditional style with ease, but fails to best its competition from both Germany and (to a far lesser degree) the U.S.A. Paulaner is a brand that increasingly feels corporatized to its detriment, and the scaling up of their New York operations and imports doesn't seem to be helping in terms of freshness.

This is a fine helles for what it is, but it's a hell of a lot cheaper in Germany and it's tough to justify shelling out for it here when Augustiner also distributes here (albeit at a much higher price point). Still, for those Americans buying helles lagers stateside, Augustiner's higher price point is easily justified if you've got to scratch your helles itch, and those lucky enough to live in beer markets like Denver, CO or Austin, TX would be better served paying less to get better expressions of the style from Bierstadt Lagerhaus and/or Live Oak Brewing, respectively.

Not a beer I'd seek out or recommend to others, but I'll enjoy working my way through the 4-pack. I could certainly quaff this by the litre on the right occasion even if its highish carbonation would give me the hiccups...


Feb 03, 2021
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detgfrsh from Texas

3.92/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a glass bottle. Golden color with a half inch of white foam. Smells of straw. Light body. Lightly toasted malts with some malty sweetness and grassy hops on the finish. Very nice

Jan 31, 2021
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Foyle from North Carolina

4.17/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 330ml bottle into pint glass. A thin white head falls quickly with mild lacing. Color is light gold with moderate carbonation. Aroma of grain husks, grassy hops. Mouthfeel is light with a dry finish. Flavor is mild combination of lightly toasted barley, cracker, a hint of lemon, grassy hops. Overall: excellent.

Jan 14, 2021
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Urk1127 from New Jersey

3.51/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Hold in color. Foam layer thin on top. Smells of sweet doughy malts. Vinous hop character. White grape. Taste is herbal hop up front followed by raw white dough. White bread. Almost a Pinot Grigio character in the vinous “white grape juice” like hop flavors and honey type malt. Finish is subtlety dry very full bodied. Big but easy going. Low side of medium carbonation. I’d call it “chubby”.

Overall perfectly balanced and non offensive.

Dec 31, 2020
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TheRatCage from Connecticut

3.42/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Look: Transparent, gold color. A little bit of lacing.
Smell: Very sweet. Light bread or grain.
Taste: Sweet again, roasted malt, barley.
Feel: Light-Medium to Medium-bodied with a crisp finish.
Overall: A little light for my liking but enjoyable.

Dec 15, 2020
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secondtooth from Indiana

3.5/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

APPEARANCE: Clean golden, with a nice head of quickly-dissipating off-white suds. Little to no lace.

AROMA: Toasty malts, sweet honey and toast.

TASTE: Richly malty, and sweet. Decent if unremarkable.

Nov 29, 2020
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mikeinportc from New York

3.87/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Translucent yellow, with one finger of white head.

Smell is semi-sweet toasted grain, fresh dry straw, floral hops (goldenrod+bedstraw) , a touch of honey, and a slight musty smell when the head fades.

Taste is more-or less same as aroma, plus light, pleasant bitterness near finish, & lingering.

Feel is light , with moderate, semi-soft carbonation tingle. Drying finish , that leaves the terminal 1/4 of the tongue feeling lightly sand-blasted, & semi-numb. (In a good way. ;) )

Overall, though nothing "wow" , it is pleasant and enjoyable.

Nov 08, 2020
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elnachooo from Spain

2.9/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

De cuerpo ligero y carbonatación media, la cerveza tiene un dedo de espuma de baja retención. Aroma a malta. Sabor ligeramente dulce con un leve amargor.

Oct 12, 2020
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JRybacki from Pennsylvania

3.99/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 16oz can. Good two finger head, frothy and thick. Dissipated within a couple of minutes with some decent lacing on the glass. Nice light golden color. Faint bready aroma. Silky smooth and rich mouth feel on every drink. Overall a very satisfying beer- the mouth feel while drinking this beer is worth it.

Sep 27, 2020
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JoeMurphy from Tennessee

4.69/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance: Golden, clear; white head that is frothy and reduces to a ring of foam; leaves some spotty lacing.

Aroma: Rich white bread, like Wonder Bread; bread crust; some grassiness from the hops. Fairly faint yet lovely.

Taste: surprisingly mute overall; general grain flavor; unsalted soda cracker; some grassiness; mild hop bitterness; sourdough tanginess.

Mouthfeel/Finish: light-medium, crisp, clean, dry, refreshing.

Aug 28, 2020
Münchner Hell (Original Munich Lager) from Paulaner Brauerei
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 1283 ratings