Hell | Aktienbrauerei Kaufbeuren AG

very good
59 Ratings

Brewed by:
Aktienbrauerei Kaufbeuren AG

Style: Munich Helles Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-18-2002

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 59
Photo of Lingenbrau
4.24/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a slightly particle filled straw to hold with a big fluffy white head that laces well. Smells of sweet wonderful fresh baked biscuits, which follows well into the flavor. No noticeable hops, except for the slightest bit of earthiness on the end. So light and crisp and easy to drink. I would take this any day over an American blond as an all day drinker. Prost!

 373 characters

Photo of johnaitchison
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Classic Helles. Pours straw-light gold in color with a fairly dense white head of small bubbles. Clean smell of crackery pilsner malt. Crackery describes the flavor also. This is malt dominated beer with hops just along for the ride. Slightly thin on the body; the finish is abrupt. Nice Munich carbonate mineral character. It clearly stands out as a German, not American made beer. It would be even better if the malt flavor lasted a bit longer.

 454 characters

Photo of smakawhat
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a Libbey style pilsner glass. Best before April 14th 2016.

Dull green to yellow body, and fairly clody body color. Head creation is rather tiny, about a finger of basic white, but manages a simple crown and thin puck with a good white collar.

Aroma hits great classic lager notes. Herbal hop and dense bready white dough like malts hit the nose real big. Slight sticky yeast quality giving some good bakery qualities, but also even a small tinge of clove like phenols, which is interesting on such a lighter lager. Great stuff so far on the bouquet.

Palate hits a real balanced and wonderful note. Spicy front with hints of slight brown spices, then with a great thick and chewy malt quality. Lighter classic body hits with bakery thick and doughy notes which makes for a solid helles impression. Bigger malt presence with a good filling chewy body. Tight carbonation even gets into a fruity quality in flavor almost like a slight mimosa flavor. Clean finish, subtley down on crispness but not spicy character, and easy light popping drinkability.

A real impressive helles, with a real neat lingering fruit component after some time, and bigger malt presence than your average bear.

 1,224 characters

Photo of Alpha309
3.87/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a pint glass

Pours a nice straw to gold color. Almost no head and what is there dissipates quickly. A few small clusters of bubbles around the edges.

Sugary on the nose. A slight undertone of earthiness.

Strong malt backbone. Just a touch of peppery hop flavor with a bit of earth undertones.

Good carbonation in the mouth. A fuller body than most lagers. Has a slight heft.

 413 characters

Photo of Fatehunter
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours two fingers of head on a clear golden body.
The aroma is a nice dry grain and metallic smell.
The taste smooth dry bitterness with a touch of sweetness. Good balance.
The texture is crisp.
An enjoyable hells.

 214 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before 4/14/16.

Pours a clear gold with a foamy tan head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. A foamy lattice of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of grain, earth, grass, and fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with grain, grass, and fruit flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty, refreshing, and very easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle.

 538 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Wet, Snappy, Clean, Coventional

Extremely crisp, lots of fresh dry grain on the palate. Very light hoppiness does bring enough bitterness to keep things balanced though the malt is on top. Hits all of the bells and whistles, big time drinkability yet with enough flavor to keep it interesting.

STYLE: Munich Helles | ABV: 5.0% | AVAILABILITY: Year-round

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine issue #92 (Sep 2014)

 413 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.74/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Celebrator pokal. Pours a light straw amber with a half finger white head that dissipated to a thick cap with light lacing. Aroma of light biscuit and bready malt, mild citrus and light grassy hops. Flavor follows, dominated by biscuit malt and light grassy hops with hints of citrus grains. Light bodied with active carbonation. The dry wheat and biscuit malt flavor is nice and lightly supported by other gentle flavors, but nothing really stands out in this lager. Pleasant and easy to drink, but nothing to make me rush out to get it again.

 558 characters

Photo of flagmantho
3.74/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 500mL bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: light straw hue with no haze and a lazy effervescence. Head poured a relatively thin finger of white foam and leaves a little lace on the glass as it dissipates. Not especially interesting, but OK for the style.

Smell: lightly grainy aroma with a little dash of noble hops. There's just a tiny hint of plastic to this one; otherwise it's a pretty classic aroma for the style.

Taste: nicely malty with a moderate sweetness and a pretty good dose of noble hops. Bitterness is quite spot-on for the style. A pretty tasty beer.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good carbonation and a surprisingly good creaminess. I like it quite a lot.

Overall: a very drinkable beer indeed. Definitely something I could see myself quaffing heartily on a hot summer day.

 820 characters

3.15/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

On-tap. Lager glass. Enjoyed on apr´13. Pale straw color, crystal clear appearance. White froth creates a close crown showing fairly good retention. Subtle malt grain flavor yields to a clean bitterness. Sparkling sensation. Very light body. High carbonation. Watery texture. Dry bitter finish. Very easy drinkability.

 319 characters

Photo of John_M
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Saw this on tap at the Apex today, and just figured I couldn't say no.

The beer pours the expected solid gold color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is attractive, showcasing honey, sourdough bread dough, and a hint of sandlewood. The flavor profile replicates the nose, except there's something of a marshmellow flavor as well that is quite attractive. Mouthfeel is where this beer really shines, and makes one understand why some folks are such lager fans. This beer has something of a buttery, light creamy mouthfeel, with a long, rich, yet dry finish. The balance in this beer is amazing, with everything seemingly in the right preportion. Drinkability is amazing... I could easily drink this beer all day and all night.

I can see where one might long for something more exciting after a while with this beer, but otherwise, this beer is so easy to drink, its just mind boggling. Yumm...

 906 characters

Photo of HopHead84
4.38/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Thanks Chris!

A: Pellucid yellow gold with a soapy two finger head that recedes after a minute.

S: Malt character is lightly grainy with no sweetness. Lager yeast imparts a subtle green apple character and a little DMS. Hops are floral and grassy with a dash of spiciness.

T: Lightly bitter with a slightly grassy and spicy hop profile. Malt imparts just a little sweetness, it's mostly dry with grainy and crackery notes. The crisp finish displays a touch of sweetness with a light yet insistent bitterness.

M: Upper moderate carbonation, dry and crisp.

Overall: Though the ABV is far too high to be a Helles proper, this is still a very good and very refreshing Lager. I'm struggling to resist the urge to quaff this one.

 739 characters

Photo of largadeer
4.48/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at Gourmet Haus Staudt. Aktien's helles lager rests in the glass a slightly hazy shade of pale gold. It's initially topped by two fingers of frothy foam, but that settles in time to a thin cap that leaves scattered webs of lacing clinging to the glass.

The nose is delicate and mild. I catch whiffs of clean pale malt, light grassy hops, ripe lemon. There's a faint vegetal character as well.

It's remarkably clean and balanced in flavor. Dry crackery malts appear first, followed by a mild zesty hop note and a hint of honey-like sweetness. It's light and crisp, dry on the whole, exceptionally clean and refreshing. It finishes on a dry note, only mildly bitter. At the risk of abusing the word "clean", this really is a wonderfully balanced and crisp lager. This is the sort of beer you could drink all night and not get sick of. In fact, I think I'll do that.

 873 characters

Photo of womencantsail
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Dyan for this one.

A: The pour is a crystal clear golden color with a fluffy white head on top.

S: A crisp lager nose with notes of sweet malt and spicy and earthy hops. Not terribly complex, but nice.

T: A really nice clean lager with some pleasant sweetness with perhaps a touch of fruity tartness (apples and lemons?). The hops are floral with just a mild bitterness.

M: Fairly light on the tongue as you might expect from a lager, but not watery at all.

D: Not usually my favorite style, but this one is really nicely done. Good clean flavors and a really refreshing beer.

 591 characters

Photo of Offa
4.57/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is an excellent helles.

Golden, it has an airy-bubbly, medium white head that shrinks steadily to a foamy ring and leaves a hint of lace.

The aroma is a full, pleasant, soft and sweet helles. It has grain and very flowery, herbal hops.

The taste is full-bodied grain, strong green apple, and light, airy, but very fitm, persistent herb. It has nice light sweetness and bitterness, with a firm, complex apple-herbal finish. It goes extremely well with food, which actually accents its flavours.

 503 characters

Photo of DefenCorps
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

What a beer! The one bottle I drank at Max's this weekend turned out to be an absolute winner.

Brilliant clear light yellow with a dense white head with great retention. Very clean on the nose with a mild hop character and an incredibly fresh lemon character, along with a biscuit/cracker-like character. The palate is excellent, opening clean with a mild bitterness with a blend of earthy and lemony hops. Mild malt presence is noted, with some sugar and bread. Restrained and beautiful, this is a fantastic beer. The mouthfeel is phenomenal - silky smooth and yet crisp, moderately carbonated. The finish is outrageous, long lasting with a mild bitterness, a touch of malt and just brilliant. Through the roof, I just might have to drive back to Max's for more of this.

 772 characters

Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.42/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a .5L bottle to a pin glass the liquid is pale gold with very nice carbonation. The head is a good 3 fingers off white and leaves nice lace.

The smell is like a fresh nut bread.

The taste follows fresh nutty malt with loads of doughy bread.

The mouthfeel is a bit thinner then medium and the carbonation is very good.

The drinkability is very good a very nice example of a great brew style. Prosit Und Zum Wohl. MK

 431 characters

Photo of DogFood11
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Nice fresh version of this Munich Helles Lager. Poured into a pilsner glass it has an easily managed solid finger of tight head. Fine carbonation and a cascading effect after each pull. Light yellow in the same shade as most macro lagers.

First impression was that this struck a nice balance between bready and slight toasted malts. It combined once again rather even with a zippy and dry hop presence. Slightly sweetend corny grain lays down nicely towards the finish.

A wonderful representation and interesting to the last pull. Very approachable and easy on the palate. Nice to see some lighter german lagers arriving fresh and well taken care of.

 657 characters

Photo of jaluria
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a clear, pale-golden color with a frothy, thick head. The head was a soft white color and once it dissipated, it left behind a touch of lacing. A high level of carbonation could be detected. Aromas of subtle (floral) hops, juicy white grapes, citrus, yeast, and grass. The taste had more malt flavors than the nose would have indicated. Nice fruity undertones with a hoppy finish. Soft and mild with a slick texture. Overall, this is a crisp and very refreshing beer with nice flavors and a smooth finish.

 512 characters

Photo of BigJTrucker
3.66/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My wife chose this for me. 1pt 0.9 oz bottle , Bier Stein, Eugene, OR. Light yellow, Decent head. Very highly carbonated. 10 minutes after pouring, bubbles still rise fairly steadily. Smells like one would expect this type of beer to smell, not unpleasent, but nothing amazing either. Doesnt assault the palate with a barage of flavor. Very easy to drink. Wouldn't mind having this again at another time.

 404 characters

Photo of Atlas1
3.29/5  rDev -15%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The Aktien Hell pours a pretty golden color from the bottle. You can practically see right through it. A decent frothy one-finger head forms but soon dissipates. It does, however, leave a noticeable lace down the glass. The aroma is sweet and buttery; very floral with, perhaps, hints of lavender. I am not at all a lavender fan, but this smells quite nice to me. The taste, however, leaves a little to be desired I'm afraid. Some butter here, and some lemon, and a very discernable alcohol flavor which detracts from the whole beer. I think this may be an older beer, simply because I believe this would be a tastier beer when fresh. I may be wrong here, but I'm willing to give it the benefit of the doubt. Mouthfeel is sturdy. Overall, I'm a bit disappointed here in the Hell, but I'm also going to give it another try to see if I get a different perspective with perhaps a fresher bottle. We'll have to wait and see. Until then, this gets a rather mediocre review.

 968 characters

Photo of AChamberlain
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

.5l bottle from the Park Slope Fod Coop. $2.05.

A: Golden with a half inch head that stuck around for a while.
S: Bready. Malty.
T: Bready, but a little too much alcohol flavor for my taste.
MF: Medium bodied. Smooth and luscious.
D: Superrrr drinkable. Enjoy!

 267 characters

Photo of Imbiber
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 500ml bottle stamped "02 04", so I'm guessing it may have been brewed 2 years ago (though it tastes fresh enough).

Colour is hazy pale gold with very little head, below average carbonation. The aroma is hoppy and grassy. Taste is balanced but not too assertive with malt and hops. The mildly hoppy aftertaste is pleasant. Basically refreshing and an easy-to-drink brew; a good thirst quencher.

 403 characters

Photo of Rezzin
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - It's been a while since I've had a lager and I forgot just how bright and clear these beers can be. Looks like a great summer time beer. Thin head doesn't stay around long.

S - Grainy and somewhat fruity with some citrus notes. Smells a little hoppy too.

T - Wow, this was good! This is my first beer of this style and I really like it. Clean and refreshing taste. Mostly grainy with some maltiness (just a tad) and nice fresh hop bite to it. The finish seems a little sweet with a tiny citrus aftertaste.

M - Clean and crisp. Refreshing - ahhh... I should be drinking more of this stuff. This stuff goes down easy - before you know it it's gone. Well carbonated.

D - I could have several of these without even thinking. Time to look for 6 packs if they sell them.

I found this at a local liquor store and plan on picking up a few more. I recommend this one - it's good.

 880 characters

Photo of Dukeofearl
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle bought at this great little German deli/sausage/meat/grocery specialty store in Calimesa, CA that I just discovered. OK, I just love the name- artwork showing a quaint German town surrounded by a field, and the name "Hell" in Gothic letters right above it. And I thought the Belgians had a sense of humor in naming their beers!

Pours a pale lager yellow with a decent, but not huge and frothy white head that is fed by carbonation of large soda pop-like bubbles from the side and bottom of my half-liter "Buble Bier" mug.

Aroma is fresh and clean, slightly sweet, very grainy with a slight sharpness that screams nice hop profile! I can't clamin that this is the best Helles I have ever smelled, but it's pretty good. Balance is very nice.

Flavor is a very nice follow-through of the aroma profile, with the hop bite in the finish being slightly stronger than what I expected from the aroma. But very tasty. Grain is dominant in the beginning, transitioning to the hops later in the swallow.

Mouthfeel is cleand and pleasant, but just slighty watery. This, however, helps drinkability, because this seems to be made to just slide down the throat, which is what is happening while watching the NFL this day.

 1,232 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Hell from Aktienbrauerei Kaufbeuren AG
3.87 out of 5 based on 59 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.