Aecht Schlenkerla Helles Lagerbier | Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

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Aecht Schlenkerla Helles LagerbierAecht Schlenkerla Helles Lagerbier

Brewed by:
Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

Style: Munich Helles Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
“Schlenkerla Helles” is brewed with fine Bavarian aroma hops from the area around the city of Nürnberg. It's lagered in century old caves underneath the historic Schlenkerla brewery and maltings. Schlenkerla Helles is boiled in the same copper kettles and bottom fermented by the same yeast as the historic Schlenkerla Smokebeer. Its subtle smokiness without using smoke malt makes “Helles Schlenkerla Lager” a unique representative of the classic lager beer style “Bavarian Helles”.

Added by rastaman on 09-29-2003

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Reviews: 382 | Ratings: 681
Photo of Nascartailgatefa
3.51/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Purchased at Whole Foods Market NYC. Poured into a Pilsner glass - golden yellow. Nice solid head which dissapates rather quickly. Good lacing and lasting carbonation. Have to agree with previous reviewers in the doughy odor to it. Heavy malt taste initially, mouthfeel is unremarkable. Finishes with a smoked flavor, slightly bitter, not bad. A fairly drinkable beer, would probably make an excellent acoompanying beer for brats or smoked sausages.

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Photo of ordybill
3.53/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 16 OZ bottle into a pint glass at the World of Beer in Pooler, GA. The appearance is a clear golden yellow with a large white head. The aroma is grass and grains with some smokey notes. The taste is grass, grains and some bread. An average beer.

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Photo of JizackFH
3.53/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - This beer pours a nice clear golden yellow. It has a nice fluffy 2-finger white head on it. The head had good retention, and it left a nice sheet of lacing behind.

S - It smells of Pilsner malts and some sweetness up front. There is an earthiness aroma to it, and some hop character as well. Also, I am getting a tad bit of smokiness.

T - The taste is very malty, and there is some sweetness and a bit of smoke. There is an earthiness to it, as well as some notes of caramel, hops, and bread. The finish is pretty clean, it just leaves a bit of lingering bitterness behind.

M - It has a medium body and average carbonation. It goes down smooth and is quite refreshing. Good feel for the style.

O - This beer has pretty good drinkability. It has a nice flavor and goes down easy. I think this would be a nice beer to have while sitting outside on a hot day. Overall, I enjoyed it, and I would pick it up again.

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Photo of macpapi
3.55/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a .5 liter bottle.

Pours a light copper to straw-like color with a full and fluffy white head. The clarity of this brew offers a good medium for rising bubble activity throughout the glass.

Smells of smoked malt. This smokiness reminds me of bacon or treated ham. There is also a bit of straw on the nose.

Taste, like the smell, is dominated by smoked malt. There is also a bit of bitterness, just a touch, and a slight touch of bacon--though not as prominent as some of the other beers Schlenkerla brews. Finishes a bit dry.

Moderate carbonation, sharp bitterness, and a nice and full flavor define the mouthfeel.

On the whole, this beer packs a good deal of smoky flavor, and is well-balanced. It is a nice and pretty drinkable brew.

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Photo of dcmchew
3.56/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours pale golden with a white one finger head in an Austrian mug, lots of fizziness.
Grainy smell, some faint wood, smoke.
Smoked biscuity malts, lots of grain. A little too lemon zesty, aside for some nice acidic apple. Grass towards the finish, then some unwanted metallic hops.
Light body, almost watery, crisp, almost refreshing.
Never had a smoked helles before, it was interesting, although with a few off notes. I guess Schlenkerla are really great at crafting dark liquid bacon, but this helles was a bit of a let down.

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Photo of AustinBeerLvr
3.57/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Poured a half-liter bottle into a pint glass.

A: This helles has a substantial looking body, especially considering the style. Would almost be perfect, except for the lack of lacing it left on the glass.

S: Smells just like a very, nice clean helles lager with a good dose of smoke throughout. Ironically, the clean flavors blend very well with the smoke smell.

T & M: Starts off with a classic helles malt sweetness and is quickly blended with the smoke flavor, which is a little too strong in my opinion. Towards the end, the hops kick in and are nearly perfect in terms of bitterness, but the smoke flavor holds on for a bit too long. Mouthfeel is great, as the beer feels like it has plenty of body.

D: During the first several sips, the smokiness is overwhelming. However, as you sip it further, it seems to start to blend more with the beer. That said, this is my first beer from Bamberg (the inventors of "smoke beer"), so I think this is very good for a "smoke flavored helles". Not something I would normally drink, but I think this would be a great beer for any beer geek to try, as it's very interesting.

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Photo of jsanford
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at the Churchkey in Washington, D.C.

Poured a hazy gold with a soapy white head. Aromas of smoke, light, crisp malt, and some grassy hops. Taste is similar to the nose, slightly meaty smoke, crisp malt, honey, and toasted grain. Finish is long-lasing and bitter, and smacks nicely of smoke. Mouthfeel is light and crisp, very drinkable despite the advertised 6.5% ABV (BA says 4.3%, not sure which is correct). Overall a nice intro to Schlenkerla, but give me the Marzen or Urbock any day!

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Photo of eberkman
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Deep Ellum in Allston.

Presented in a tall, handled stange. Clear pale gold with a substantial white head that had decent staying power for the style.

A bacon-like smokiness in the nose blended with an otherwise typical lager combination of grassiness, tartness and bitterness.

Taste was very similar -- grassy with a bitter tinge, but with a smoked pork essence at the front and back end. Fairly clean in the middle.

Nice crisp mouthfeel, especially considering that it was coming from a tap.

Drinkability is slightly above average -- at 4.30, you can put away a bunch of these. But the novelty of the smoke gets a little old. Also a little nagging, since they're not going all out like a rauchbier.

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Photo of crnipeter
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours relatively thin yet well formed creamy white head that sets to a firm cloth atop of effervescent yellow body with good clarity. The nose is dominated by Pils malt sweetness while smoke is virtually nonexistent. Flavor is pils malt sweetness with woody smokiness and towards the dry finish mild spicy noble hops and hop bitterness show up. Light bodied with moderate carbonation and somewhat creamy sensation.

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Photo of bbeane
3.58/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not sure of the freshness of this one... gonna give it a try anyways

A- Poured into my DFH chalice... Pours a mostly crisp (has a bit of sediment in it which is why I'm questioning the freshness) golden color with a nice fluffy white head and decent retention

S- Aroma is a bit disappointing compared to the other Aecht Schlenkerla beers I've tried. Not much smoked notes, just some light floral hops

T- Starts with some floral hop flavor with some smokey notes. Finishes with a bitter bread flavor

M- Light/medium body with light carbonation

O- Eh... this one was just ok IMO. Not on the same level as their Marzen


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Photo of biegaman
3.59/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I curiously anticipate this one, thanks again harry!
Neat retro 70's looking looking 500ml bottle. Neat.
Pours an apple golden, head would form somewhat. A little cloudy. Aroma of a peaty cider. Plenty of fireplace like peat, with notes of apple and pear. The smoke takes over the in the taste department, setting it apart from other Munich Helles, giving it much more character. Really distinctive peat smoke. A lot of ripe apple in the taste. A bold malt bill too. Distinct (especially within its style) and quite filling, drinks heavier than a standard German lager. Happy to try!

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Photo of Irrigate
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Colored golden like a typical lager, and the head dissipates quickly. The smell is crisp and slightly smoky. This would be a great "gateway beer" into rauchbier like the Schlenkerla Marzen. Personally, I think the smokiness is so slight that it teases rather than fulfills. But then again, this isn't labeled a "rauchbier". Still very interesting.

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Photo of foogerd
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a- Light golden yellow clear body with a small white head.

S- Light grainy smoke, hay , light grassy hops.

T- Very drinkable tasty lightly toasted and smoked malts with a light touch of hops that lend a touch of spice.

M- Nice tickling carbonation light body.

O- Very quaffable brew.

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Photo of turkob
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

My first review! Studying for the BJCP so here goes

A: Very translucent and absolutely filled with bubbles. Pours a thick, cloudy white head that subsides slowly and looks beautiful. Golden with a hint of amber.

S: Little smell at all. A little sweet, I can pick up a hint of malt and even less noble hops, but really almost completely without aroma.

T: Very crisp. A mild but distinct malt profile with a hint of hops on the finish. Grainy but mostly sweet.

M: Finishes dry. Lots of carbonation makes the beer tingle in your mouth. Not a lot of body, but not thin either.

O: A refreshing and light beer with plenty of flavor to keep you wanting more. I'd like a little more hops on the finish, but you can definitely drink a couple of these without blinking.

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Photo of theskjoung
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It has a golden orange color and with a firm, latte-like top.
The taste is dry, and has a little bitterness from smokiness.
It smells skunky and smoky. I would say the carbonation is between low and medium.

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Photo of curasowa
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear, golden color with one finger of white head that fades to a ring.

Aroma: Typical dry, mildly husky German malt aroma with notes of rye bread, faint chocolate and smoked meat.

Taste: Dry, crisp malt upfront, then pretty astringent with some smokiness and a little chalk. Some faint herbal hops finish things off before a pretty fast finish with some lingering graininess.

The Rest: Medium bodied; A pretty tasty Helles with some additional character from the smokiness.

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Photo of FLima
3.61/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Light golden color with a thin head.
Mildly smokey aroma with floral and herbal notes.
Flavor of slightly smoked malt with its sweetness, nevertheless it is quite clean as a Lager should be. Notes of grassy hops and bread. Hints of minerals.
Light body with good carbonation.
Decent helles with an elegant smokey touch. But don’t expect bacon or any heavy ash smokness, and you will be fine.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.61/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pale gold brew with a ton of carbonation and a small, but continually replenishing, head. Thin streaks of lacing on the glass.

S - Hay and a bit of well cooked corn.

T - Slightly smoky, hay, a bit peppery, hint of paraffin, lots light malt and a hint of corn. After taste is a bit of corn, smoke, but mostly a grassy bitterness.

M - Carbonation extremely high, watery, thin, pretty refreshing.

D - Piecewise, I'm not impressed, but all together this beer is pretty nice.

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Photo of Gmann
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden straw color with a small pure white head. The aroma is of a bready/doughy malt and a nice spicy hop. The taste is of the doughy munich malt and spicy nobel hops. More of a hop profile than your typical munich helles. There is also a tin like flavor as well. The feel is moderate, nice malty chewiness, fizzy carbonation; finishes sweet and spicy. An easy drinking brew, the spicy hops neutralize the munich malt so this brew doesn't have the typical munich helles flavor. Worth a go.

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Photo of dsa7783
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

1 Pint, .09 fl oz bottle copped from Gary's in Madison for $3.29...
Sampled all of this brewery's smoked beers, so I was curious to know what their Helles Lager would taste like...
Overall, this was a typical depiction of a light, easily-drinkable style - certainly nothing above and beyond, but a pleasant drink that was crisp and fairly smooth...
Straw-colored, light-blond appearance with a very minimal foamy head that quickly dissipated and left hardly any lacing...
Faint grainy smell apparent with slight florals thrown into the mix...
Light, crisp, clear, refreshing taste - went down like water with not much going on in this department...
Drinkability was fairly good - easy to down because of the very modest 4.3% ABV...
Otherwise, a decent stab at the style...

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Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sunny yellow corn color. Hazy body. Slight natural carbonation.

Light smokiness similar to this brewery's rauchbier. Esters. Clean Pilsner hops. Noble character. Floral and grainy. Corn.

Light smoke. Crisp and clean with a sweet malt base. Corn and light fruits. Spice. chamomile. Dry finish.

Light and sweet. Good malt base with a very slight hop bitterness.

This is a nice beer. It goes well with my hamburger and fires. The flavor profile is simple but it does have that nice Aecht Shlenkarla smokey flavor. I would drink this again.

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Photo of James954
3.62/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

L: Clear golden with carbonation rising from the bottom
S: Small skunk that fades ...not much else
T: light smoke that reminds me of beef jerky, finishes with a taste that hints towards bacon bits!
F: Good carbonation but remains a little watery.

Overall: Just making a beer as unique as this is accomplishment enough. Not a favorite. But if you're looking to get a slightly smokey flavor and some unexpected notes of cured beef or pork, this is your beer!

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Photo of BogleHill
3.63/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a hazy golden color in appearance. Frothy head dissappears fast. Stagnant particles remain. The aroma is of slightly sweet smoke. The flavor is very roasty caramel with a slight smoke finish. A quite drinkable brew - I would get this again.

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Photo of scruffwhor
3.64/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Looks liek a normal helles. Golden, crisp looking yellow with one column of bubbles making its way to the top. But it doesn't smell like your normal helles. It's smoked. But smoked cyrstal and pale malts. Very lioght smokey aroma mixed with grass and pilsnert malts. Tastes like a distant smokehouse. Light mlating with an equally light smoke flavor. Very unique. One of a kind.

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Photo of tigg924
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: orange/yellow, 1/4 inch head, high carbonation, clear

Smell: pork, smoke, and grass

Taste: grass, bigger than expected hops, somewhat smoky finish

Mouthfeel: I can feel the moderate carbonation. This beer has a weakish semi-sweet start with a moderately bitter finish and medium body.

Drinkability: This is the least smoky of the Scherlenkerla offerings and only has a touch of smoke on the aftertaste. A decent lager, I could have two but would no desire for a third.

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Aecht Schlenkerla Helles Lagerbier from Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
3.97 out of 5 based on 681 ratings.
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