Helios (V Saison) | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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451 Reviews
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Helios  (V Saison)Helios  (V Saison)

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Repackaging of V Saison

Added by ClockworkOrange on 02-06-2009

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Reviews: 451 | Ratings: 1,090
Photo of kgrober
4.97/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

To my knowledge this is the first farmhouse ale I've had the pleasure to drink.

Poured into a pilsner glass, there was a nice 85/15 beer to head ratio. Wonderful graduated color, gold to burnt orange, bottom to top. Very effervescent with bubbles and particulate throughout the glass.

The smell was very aromatic with citrus, lemony notes. A hint of spice, maybe coriander and/or orange zest.

The mouthfeel was excellent rendering this brew very drinkable. I wish I had another to savor. A fantastic Summer brew, but welcome anytime I'm sure.

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Photo of mempath
4.83/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

ok, it's my birthday and i saved this for this MORNING. did my workout...now it's breakfast time :)

dang...pours like an overanxious meringue...i've NEVER seen something foam up like this...i mean, it's bionic and it made a mess (and i onlu poured it half-way with a tilt to the glass!)...looks incredible...golden sunlight with intense, continuous slow-motion receding meringue fyords...or blizzard'd snowdrifts. amazing. has a jiggle to it. and swagger. nice, vertical desert sand drift pattern lacing! and what a cool label.

nose is a fresh hoppy grass malt admixure, something akin to menthol without the bite. interesting. and complex enough.

good gracious. plenty of hops, but blended in a way i've never tasted. there's a malty backbone, but it's alien, not mammalian. the menthol-ish-ness is there, but doesn't 'seem' to be hop-related. not sure. this is complex in a new way. not a puzzle, but just a great one shot delivery of fine brewing. everything is near perfect here. crisp but silky smooth in the finish. and a lingering, mellow bite. this is oh so drinkable. session this alone or with some simple pan-asian fare. thai...sushi...

but why should i be surprised. it comes from Victory!


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Photo of Avagadro
4.74/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Helios boasts a honey hue with a thin white head, and minimal lacing. Most of the points here are lost from the noticeable chill haze.

S: Bouquet is upfront, and assures the drinker that there is plenty of Brett on the way. Lemon, orange, and wet hay are all apparent.

T: Bone dry, with the aforementioned notes of lemon, orange, and hay. The Brett. is quite apparent here.

M: Very light, with plenty of tingly carbonation, and a clean finish.

D: This is one of the best US made Saisons I've come across, avoiding the common under-attenuation pitfall. The Brett is a great touch, and really transforms this from a decent Saison, to one that is exceptional.

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Photo of JeffBob
4.65/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: light amberish, I had a lot of foam due to the fact that upon opening the bottle it can rushing out just begging to be drank....or drunk...or what ever man.

S: Hops and light citrusy goodness

T: Tangerine/lemony yeasty sweet appleish, yielding to grassy hops, then a nice sweet lemon/apple after taste that lingers. absolutely perfect for those of us that get hopped out from time to time

M: light crisp and clean

D: absolutely fantastical! fabulous beer i am so glad I happened upon it. I am definitely going to beat the southern CA heat with this beer this summer. I love this beer.

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Photo of ianmhall
4.65/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: golden with big fluffy head

S: Funky and chill inducing... loads of fruit and funk bright and complex notes of pepper, lemon and a fatty meat component

T: fruity lemon notes with a herbaceous & dry palette, yet refreshing funky with a light sour kick... there are notes of brett & i'd have to say it a beautiful strain of Belgian yeast that is doing some serious work here
M: Light, Dry, and Drinkable Slight Acidity

O: Incredibly funky fruity and refreshing... drinkable, dry, farmhouse ale that's one of the best readily available saisons at a tremendous value!

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Photo of cornsilk
4.65/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I think the name and theme of the beer very much matches its attributes.

The beer is crisp and refreshing for a rather hoppy farmhouse ale. This beer isn't the right choice for a hop fix for a major hophead, but rather it is a hoppy choice for a crisp and refreshing beer.

The label refers to the power of the sun infusing the beer with hints of cracked pepper and lemon even though those ingredients aren't added. If you pay attention to the undertones, those flavors are quite present and welcomed to the body and aroma of the beer. The purity of the beer really shines through in its body.

The front is zesty and hoppy, but not overly pungent. The aftertaste is crisp and a bit lemony. The alcohol has a nice warming effect despite the overwhelming refreshment, giving you a sense that there is truly an energy to the beer.

Quite a wonderful Summer-themed ale from Victory.

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Photo of ectomorph
4.65/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Crystal clear golden body. I left the dregs in the bomber. 2 finger thick bright white head with good retention and lacing.

S - Pepper, lemon, grassy, herbal. Some Belgian funk. Horsey, slightly sour. Super complex and VERY pleasant.

T - Wow. Moderate to high bitterness initially. Sour notes, barnyard, bread, grass. There is a nice residual sweetness, but it's also dry?

M - Belgian high carb scrubs the palate. Super dry finisher leaves a lighty tangy/sour aftertaste.

O - Until now, my favorite Saison was Hennepin, but it has just been dethroned. 22oz bomber of world class Saison @ 7.5% ABV for $3?1!?!? Unheard of....

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Photo of jjanega08
4.55/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Decided to crack my bottle bomb tonight...

A= The bottle date Dec 10 2009 opens like a normal beer! No worries at all for me. The pour is a bright yellow color with a huge head on it however that rises up to about four fingers high and lasts for a while sitting up there giving off some wonderful aroma. Great lacing.

S= Pungent for a Saison for sure. Lots of nice flowers and zest to it. I don't get much brett with this one... I've heard mixed reviews as to weather or not there is brett in here. Smelling saison. Doesn't get more spot on.

T= The taste is again wonderful. Good lemony zest to it without being sour as well as some of the black pepper flavors described on the back of the bottle. The bottle describes this beer perfectly actually which I don't find is the case too often. Really a special beer here. They got exactly what they wanted when this one came out. Really crisp and refreshing with some of the possible lingering taste that brett leaves behind but still no tall tell sign of it.

M= Effervecent. Spritzy. Floats across like a champagne.

D= Yummy beer. This was one of the two recalled batches and I didn't have a problem. No gusher or anything. Mine was pushed all the way to the back of the fridge for a while right next to the cooling unit though. Wonderful beer and I look forward to buying again.

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Photo of wmaldridge
4.52/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I really enjoyed this beer. It has all of the wild appeal that I like in these type of beers with one difference. The lemon peel/citrus notes add to this beer but still leave a bit of funkiness to it. Helios is really crisp and refreshing. The mouthfeel is a bit thin, but for this style, it seems to work really well. My overall impression is pretty good for this beer and will get a good score from me.

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Photo of philerman
4.52/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Purchased via a growler fill at Whole Foods in Plymouth Meeting, PA and poured into a flute glass. Growler had been refrigerated almost a week but no discernible damage.

A: Golden/honey brown with a pleasant amount of bubbling.

S: Flowery overall, but not overpowering. Some citrus notes as well.

T: A little bit bitter, not unpleasantly so though. Stays with you quite a bit over a slow glassful.

Overall impressions: Nice beer for a Saturday night. Not too much of an alcohol burn for something this strong. Probably my second favorite Saison.

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Photo of ThomasMetal75
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

A- Very golden, copper-esque color. Has a frothy 3 finger head in my tulip glass. The head died to a rim around the tulip, but comes back with minimal effort upon swirl. Lots of small sediment comes here with the bottle conditioning. Good looking alcohol legs and lacing.

S- EPIC!!!!!!! Very barnyard and funky in the yeast. Nice sour note like a good sasion should have. Tart like apples with a nice refreshing lemon note. Pretty grassy and fruity in the hops, but not overpowering at all.

T- NICE!!!!! Same as the smell. I'd say the Belgian beer yeast kind of funk and sour is what I get first. There is a good black pepper spice in this one. Lemony flavors are here as well. I get a nice tartness before it dries.

M- Medium for sure. Extremely crisp and refreshing. True to style, I can't say this beer is clean tasting. But that's not a knock on this beer at all. There is a bit of hop oily quality. But again, it's not hop forward.

Overall this beer has it going on! It's the best saison I've had to date! GO GET IT NOW!

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Photo of cdizinno
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Poured into a tulip from a growler purchased at Greeen's off Piney Grove in Columbia, SC

A: Clear, golden yellow. Nice white head with minimal lace.

S: Heavy spices. Some lemon and citrus with a mildly sweet malty scent.

T&M: Same taste as the smell. Starts with a zesty citrus and some malty sweetness that fades to a nice, mild hop bitterness. Medium bodied with a smoother mouth feel than the bottle.

Way better than the bottled version. This is much less sour and much more tasty to the style. Very good!

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Photo of DIM
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

edit: I upped my scores because the Brett character that develops is remarkable.

a: This was a bright, clear golden color. It poured with a massive craggy head.

s: Fresh, pungent lemon zest was what I noticed first. I also found some peppery yeast and lightly funky grains.

t: Starts off great with a huge dose of wonderful, fresh lemon and some grains. The finish is a bit too dry. It feels and tastes a bit rough.

m: This manages to be fizzy and creamy at the same time.

d: Very nice saison! A real bargain too, $35 a case!

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Photo of Seanibus
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear golden with some suspended material and a big white fluffy head and great streamers of carbonation. The aroma is light and spritzy, with a sharp phenolic edge, lots of fruit, apricot and pear and apple. The flavor is crisp and typically Victory - malty and firm and yet subtle and clean. There is pear and apricot, with clove and allspice and rosemary. Herby hops coat the tongue and give it a powerful but not overwhelming bitterness on the finish. The mouthfeel is slick and clingy.

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Photo of tlazaroff
4.48/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: BIG head on this one, nice and fluffy and pure white. As the head dissipates you can see the generous lacing it leaves behind. The color is about a shade brighter than honey, but it still has the darker center (like honey) when you look at it. I hate to use the word "urine" but it almost looks like it.. a very nice glass of urine that I want to consume.

S: Everything I love about Saison in the nose here. That traditional belgian yeastiness is present, haystack, and this one is even accompanied by a touch of floral and sweet fruit (pear, peach) as well. This smells quite nice.

T: This one is sweeter than I normally like upfront, mid palate bring this burst of fruitiness and funk that lingers well though the finish after the fruitiness dissolves into the funk. You are left with a more yeasty finish with the slightest taste of alcohol.

M: As said it leaves some alcohol burn in the finish, and it is a bit more boozy than the Saisons I am used to drinking. The carbonation is high, and the body is somewhat full - it offers a bit of stickiness on the palate.

D: At 7.5% ABV where you can actually feel the alcohol burn, this unfortunately isn't that drinkable due to that. However, the beer is defiantly above average, I really enjoy this one.

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Photo of tastybeer
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Golden color, bright white densely foamy head that leaves spotty lace behind. Aroma is a delightful surprise. Sweet, funky, mellow, lemon fruity, spicy, black and red pepper, clean soap, phenolic, yeasty. Unexpected brisk light citrus pine around the edges. Just right. Taste is juicy, yeasty, fruity, floral, with numerous other interesting qualities. Flavors are cherry, wood, yeast flavors of fruit, bubble gum, soap, even a touch licorice, and lemon. Also tart, and crisply dry through the finish. Very nice surprise. Victory always seems to know exactly what they're doing.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a bottle the other day on the recommendation of Brian, Ryan and Eric. Good call, guys!

Light golden orange, this beer turns a little yeasty on adding the yeast. There's a large white head that recedes slowly to a thin ring. Looks good so far.

The nose is just fantastic. A beautiful saison nose, there's a blend of light lemon and grassy hop character, a touch of Brett-based grassy funk, a moderate spice character with a little coriander and white pepper, some honey and a light bread note. Light floral character as well. Just fantastic. The palate is just as excellent, opening with a big, Brett character, just a fantastic, grass notes, blended very well with a light hop character, mildly German in nature, particularly on the finish. With a blend of honey and spices, this is the epitome of what a saison should be. Light and crisp on the palate, this finishes with a great drying, grassy, light hop character. Fantastic stuff, this is something I'm going to drink a LOT of this summer and after.

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Photo of jantonius
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Golden and Clear, a little to clear for a Saison...lots of bubbles

S: Spicy, Bananna Smell with slight notes of citrus

T: Nice Spice and Bananna taste

M: Very Bubbly, similiar to a champagne

D: I love this beer and can enjoy it all day, nice with a schnitzel.

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Photo of mmercede
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had two bombers from whole foods at $3 a pop. What a deal! Poured into a large snifter.

Appearance: A bright and clear golden brown color. Maybe a little darker than I'm used to with a saison. The beer poured with surprisingly minimal carbonation and and a head that faded quickly.

Smell: The beer had a strong citrus and spice smell with a light yeasty characteristic. Fresh Cut Grass, Pepper, Lemon, Biscuits, Coriander, and Belgian Yeast.

Taste: This was an amazingly complex flavor. The belgian yeast really added a lot to this bear. The most dominant flavor was a sort of fresh cut grass funkyness. I loved it. Also many citrus and spice flavors were present as well. Hops were also more present than a typical saison. I would love to see how this one ages. However, Im a little worried because of the whole exploding bottle thing.

Mouthfeel: Light and effervescent. Almost champagne like.

Drinkability. I took down two bombers no problem. It hides its alcohol with the best. It saddens me this is a summer beer because I could drink it all year long!

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Photo of GatheringBrews
4.45/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Helios pours a gorgeous golden color. Since it's bottle conditioned, that means there's yeast in the bottle still, and you can either leave that in the bottle or pour it right in. Since it's comes in a 22-ounce bottle, you can get the best of both worlds by having the first pour into a glass nice and clear and the second half a nice, hazy pour that adds some body and a bit more of the yeast characteristic.

You get a puffy, foamy, pure white head with broad bubbles, good retention and strong carbonation. It's a gorgeous beer to pour out.

The aroma is of lemon peel and black pepper, with a hint of clove as it warms.

As for taste, it's not overwhelming at all and very drinkable, with notes of citrus and tartness. Very mild hops with little bitterness, citrusy/lemony bite, and light, refreshing mouthfeel.

All in all, this is an outstanding beer and a great introduction to anyone who's never had a Belgian style ale, especially a farmhouse ale.

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Photo of TopherBreski
4.43/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Very different than any other beer I've ever had. The smell, is great!! The taste, is done what like a Hefeweizen without the wheat taste, however, slightly too much citrus for my taste. Still, excellent beer.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.42/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Enjoy by August 5 2012, so off we go!

A nice off white and foamy head, lots of large bubbles in this, kind of styrofoam looking, sits on a nice golden dark lemon body. Slightly opaque, easy to see rising carbonation. Nice looking beer here, as you drink and the head clumps all around.

Great nose on this. Slight salt, wild yeast sense and floral. Hints of mushy sour peaches, slight funk, very creamy, banana mush. Real unique nose.

Taste brings a nice saison palate. Yeasty bread, following a sharp spice of clove. Nice malt body on this, a little hint of tight fizz but not much which I like, not very gassy. Finish is even sweet fruits of apricot, orange, mixing in with a good funkyness.

This is a great enjoyable saison. Mix of interesting characters of density, brightness, fruit, funk, hint of sweet, just great.

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Photo of emmasdad
4.42/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

For some reason Victory bombers are not available in the Denver area (to my knowledge at least), even though the 750s and 6 packs are. Knowing this, I grabbed a bomber of this one in San Diego, but waited until we had left town to drink it. Huge mistake, as I loved it, and cannot get anymore.

Poured a nice golden color witha hugh fluffy white head. Great funky aromas, brett, barnyard, rose petal and hibiscus. Light to medium bodied, dangerously drinkable, tart and funky with a nice bitter finish.

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Photo of leantom
4.42/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked this one up from Total Wine a couple of days ago. I had heard good things about it, so I decided to give it a try.

A: Clear and yellow. This is kind of unique for saisons, as the bready character usually makes beers of this style hard to see through. I assume that they put an ample amount of yeast in it, though, since Belgian saisons are know to have high yeast contents. It produced a nice head when I poured it into a glass, though a little smaller than most other saisons I've had.

S: Very nice. It smells very citrusy and grassy. I also detect some hop bitterness.

T: Excellent. Lemon, grass, white pepper, clove, hops and yeast dominate the flavor. I've tried the beer both cold and warm and, unlike most other saisons, I prefer this one cold. It's quite refreshing, though it is more bitter than traditional saisons.

M: It goes down well. There isn't much carbonation relative to other saisons (see Ommegang's Hennepin), so it feels very smooth.

O: This is a good beer. While it differs with regards to other saisons, it's still nice. I would put this in the BPA category.

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Photo of ski271
4.42/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Medium-light gold with a medium-large, white, pillowy, slowly-diminishing head. The smell is wonderfully funky from the wild Belgian yeast. It's dusty with sweet malts and pungent dusty fruit aromas. Peach and lemon among others. The taste follows but with more of that barnyard funk that is an aquired taste. I've acuired it and think it's wonderful! It has a light, lingering medicinal band-aid-like funk mixed with a touch of bubblegum. Odd, yes. But it keeps me coming back for more. It has a medium-light body, soft texture and moderate-lively carbonation. This was a great find, and with its reasonable cost, this is one I definitely recommend trying.

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Helios (V Saison) from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
3.86 out of 5 based on 1,090 ratings.
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