Keller Helles | Brooklyn Brewery

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Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States

Style: German Kellerbier / Zwickelbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 27 | Ratings: 29
Photo of WCBCFrank
4.14/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted at the brewery - 2008.

Brooklyn Keller Helles pours a golden straw-yellow color, some cloudy white head in the courtesy cups they give you at the brewery.

It was a bloody hot that day in Brooklyn and this was the just the right beer for the right occasion. The brew has a totally refreshing bitterness with some pilsner malt smoothness - not too light to underwhelm the palate. The flavor this beer had really knocked our socks off, no one expected this to be as good as it was - complex shifting flavors of hoppy, malty, bubbly citrus and sweet.

Personally: I really hope they bottle this brew.

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Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at Delaney's Tap Room in New Haven, Conn.

A: Poured a golden, straw yellow with great clarity which developed a thin cap of sudsy white foam leaving little lacing.

S: Smells of soft, toasted grain with a thin, crisp herbal bitterness and a hint of spices.

T: Taste is very mild, but developed and interesting. A crisp blend of lightly toasted bread malts combines with a bit of spice and white pepper before a slight citrus flavor is washed away with a quick snap of herbal hop bitterness. Just a great, light, drinkably balanced brew.

M: Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied, crisp at first, yet creamier at mid palate and not filling at all.

D: So smooth and drinkable, with a very sessionable ABV and a mass-friendly flavor make this brew a great drinker. People of all tastes will find something to like with this keller.

A great session beer, very drinkable, slightly sweet and all around satisfying. A must-try for a lighter lager with a bunch of character to it.

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Photo of gregc
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Spuyten Duyvil

Beer pours a light golden color, looks like your typical pilsner.
Smells like yeasty fresh baked bread, some citrus and grass.
Taste is wonderful, yeasty goodness, citrus and some hops.

Nice refreshing summer beer, enjoyable in this 90 degree heat.

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Photo of pwoods
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

20oz. imperial pint from the Dilly Deli. Review via notes

A: Light straw. Decent head,some retention and lacing.

S: Lightly sweet, a bit grainy. Has a subtle dampness... not funk but more cellar like.

T/M: More from the nose. Floral hops come out a bit. The dampness(or whatever) adds depth and makes this brew very interesting. Body is light and crisp with good carbonation. Finishes rather dry

D: Tasty and interesting brew. Very sessionable.

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Photo of SIRIUS2
4.24/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Brooklyn tulip style glass at Tyler's Tap Room (Apex)

When they presented this brew to me, I wasn't sure it was mine. It was a very bright golden color with just perhaps a bit of haze. Nice white fluffy head of at least two fingers topped this brew. Great lacing. I can't imagine a better looking specimen for the style.

Aromas were subtle, mostly a fruity floral aromatic but with some underlying pale malt. Nice but not the most attractive attribute to this brew.

What made my first pull interesting wasn't a flavor intensity, but rather the how the subtle complexities of the beer unfolded over my tongue in a period of several seconds. Initial malts give way to a slightly juicy citrus center and then finishes clean and mostly dry. Carbonation was light, but perfectly matched the textures of the beer. Very nice.

I very much enjoyed this and found it highly drinkable. I was a little taken back by the presentation at first as it looked like something more upscale than I expected but I have to say, I think I could drink these all day long. Definitely recommended!

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Draft at the Dilly Deli.
Pours a very light gold in color with a nice two inch head. Crystal clear. Smell is lager yeast and a bit of hops. Taste is the same as the smell. Decent amount of hopping. Very crisp and refreshing. Very, very easy to drink. Great session beer for the summer.

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Photo of Proteus93
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pale yellow with a spot of haziness. A nice, finger-five rich head. Nice retention, great sticky lacing.

S: Soft floral aromas, along with subtle pale malts. Quite a straight forward, but nice smelling brew.

T + M: Pleasant malts have a light flavour, but the body and taste are well-defined and tastefully made. A touch of citrus lemon splashed in for good measure. Finishes semi-dry.

D: A great, easily accessible drink - a nice summer selection, certainly a great session brew. For the days when keeping things simple is in order.

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Photo of atsprings
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at The Raleigh Times. Served a bubbly crisp straw yellow with a thin head. Aroma was some sweet fruits and sweet malts. The taste was an abundance of sweet malts in the initial that switches to bitter fruit in the finish. The beer is light with decent carbonation. This makes for a very enjoyable summer brew.

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Photo of HopDerek
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Drafting Room, Exton 7/25/08

Poured a clear light golden yellow with 2 fingers of fluffy bright white head. Good retention left spotty lacing. Smells of lemon, oranges, pale malts, floral hops, and a touch of yeast. Taste starts out fruity with notes of lemon, oranges, and apricot. Pale grainy malt and biscuit flavors come next along with some honey notes and a hint of yeast. Finishes crisp with a flowery hop presence. Medium in body with good carbonation. Fruity and sweet with a nice crispness in the finish. Refreshing and easy to drink, a good different kind of Summer time sessionable.

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Photo of Lexluthor33
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours sunlight golden with a small,decent head and tight lace. The aroma is citrus and light hops,not much else.
The taste is citrus hints,light hops and some background malts.
The overall feel is crisp,smooth with medium carbonation. A good balance with light body and this has the drinkability of a good summer beer.

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Photo of cvstrickland
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Draft offering arrives in a shaker pint glass sporting a sunny golden body with a touch of haze and a soft white finger of foam that recedes quickly leaving a bit of lacing on the glass.

Smell is dry and malty with a spicy hop note.

Taste is crisply dry and bitter with just enough maltiness to keep the solid grassy bitterness from being the only thing I taste.

Crisp, dry, and wonderfully drinkable.

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Photo of CrellMoset
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Beer Run, Charlottesville, VA. Served in a traditional pint glass.

Appearance: Slow, medium carbonation in a filtered, straw-gold body. Thin white head that fades quickly. Not much lacing.

Aroma: Grainy malt, grassy, spicy hops, a few light fruit esters - grape and sweet cherries. Mild.

Taste: More spicy, floral hops, lots of simple, sweet grainy malt (pilsner-esque), those same light, sweet fruits. Very interesting.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied but with medium-thickness, even bubbles - very nice.

Drinkability: My first instance of the style, and thankful I tried - it's very easygoing and interesting (a hopped up, grassier, fruitier pilsner), and at 5.0% abv, it's extraordinarily sessionable.

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Photo of BeerFan
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I just kicked a sixtel of this. Was on tap in my basement. Poured a ever so slighty cloudy golden yellow. Being unfiltered, I was expecting (and hoping) it to be a little more cloudy. Cereal malty aroma which is expected from a Helles. Touch of floral hops gives some nice balance. Excellent drinkability for this 5% beer. Goes down very easy on some warmer days. While I did kick the keg before sharing it with many friends, it would make a good cross-over beer for the macro-drinkers.

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Photo of auxiliary
3.2/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

appearance - Straw yellow and a nice white head with some lace. Looks like a macro lager beer.

smell - Smells of sweet malt and grains.

taste - Sweet malt and corn here with some bitterness from the hops, not a lot though.

mouthfeel - Medium-light body.

drinkability - It was a refreshing beer, kinda light, wasn't impressed on the style. This is only on tap.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had a sample of this at a bar when "someone" brought it in for someone else to try. I am very glad I will have a chance to drink more and really dwell on it now.

Pours a slightly foggy gold with a frothy white head. Nose is earthy with an almost grassy thing to it. Very crisp. Flavor is excellent. So well balanced with sweet tones. Not overly complex, but just supremely smooth. Very minor earth characteristics on the back side. Feel has a full carbonation and the liquid is nice too. This is an exceptional brew in all senses. Drinkability is very high as you could go on this all day. Especially during the hot summer ones. I'd love to just sit at a table of friends and relax with this while feeling the vibe on some slow jazz while I give a "you're number one" salute to the rest of the world. Excellent and worth seeking out. Too bad this will vanish soon. It really should be in regular rotation.

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Photo of Nickls
3.36/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at d.b.a.

A - Really nice light golden color, thin but nice head

S - Not much to report on, a bit fruity or citrusy at times

T - Light citrus notes, small hops, and an OK malt presence. Didn't knock me out

M - Refreshing over the palate, spritzy carbonation was actually nice

D - I could definitely do more than one of these b/c it's a pretty balanced beer, even though it's a bit middle-of-the road.

Much respect to Brooklyn Brewery for taking on this style that is not something that I run across to often in the U.S., but nothing that really knocked me out.

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Photo of chemmie
2.81/5  rDev -27%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

It looks, tastes and drinks like a skunky bottle of Euro-pilsner on steroids.

Pours a clear yellow with a nice head.
Taste is a little skunky, it reminds me a lot of a the typical European pilsner out of a green bottle. Honestly, I don't really like it.

10 minutes later, it's leaving a sour taste in my mouth.

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Photo of DefenCorps
2.71/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

On tap at Max's

A: Pale yellow with lots of carbonation and a dense, white head

S: Smells light with a combination of hops, bugglegum and (oh no!) butter. I dislike the butter in the brew :-(

T: Quite terrible with corn, butter and a mild sweetness.

M: Good carbonation, nice finish but tastes quite bad

D: One and done (barely)

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Photo of Brianmerrilyn
3.62/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into pint glass at David Copperfields. I had read a few reviews on this site about the Keller Helles and was intriguied. This was my first tasting of the style.

A: Bright golden with heady frothy 2 finger head. Excellent lacing and retention.

S: Not much, bready and minor hops

T: Bland to be completely honest. Crackers and minor hops fromwhat I can detect.

M: Tight and tangy,heavy carbonation.

D: Nothing wrong with it, but I'm not a fan of the style at first quaf.

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Photo of roan22
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer was on tap at Capones Restaurant. It was 95 degrees outside and I had just gotten off a shift at Starbucks down the street. This beer must have been made exactly for this situation.

Practically an ale in taste, but it does appear to be like a pilsner/lager...looks clear, light and golden...but more importantly is the nice hoppy bitterness of this beer. It really surprised me and soothed my post-work bad mood.

Very professional, high quality hop choices and lager brewing ability evident here. This is my favorite beer Brooklyn has ever made. It was awesome as part of a sampler flight, as it balanced out the ultra hoppy choices I had picked. Then I went back to Capones and had some more two days later. Cheers.

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Photo of toddhett
4.11/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark golden color. Little head, and I don't see the lacing that others have mentioned.

S - Fairly muted but somewhat sweet. Perhaps a little fruity (not citrus).

T - Bread. Lots of bread. Good amount of sweet malt.

M - Thicker than I thought it would be, but the thickness was in perfect harmony with the malty flavor.

D - This is a great beer that should stand up to a bar-b-que but is also wonderful on its own.

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Photo of albern
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap at the Craft Beer Festival in Boston. It was the only Brooklyn I tried, purposely seeking it out because it is quite difficult to find. The beer is quite pale in color with a fairly soapy and very white head. The beer uses Hallertau hops and has that grassy, crisp pilsner aroma. The taste was a tad grassy and very dry in the finish. I will seek this beer out to do a more in depth review in a more contemplative setting, but my initial take on the beer is that it is quite good.

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Photo of DaveFL1976
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was anxious to give this beer a go. After sending my taste buds swimming in insanely hoppy and intensely malty beers over the past few weeks, it's nice to find a flavorful beer that's sessionable.

It pours a straw color with a slight yeast haze. Being unfiltered and unpasturized, it might actually be a chill haze. The head is bright white and fluffy and hangs around a good bit.

The nose is floral but a bit bready; less sharp than a pilsner, but quite nice. The taste, floral up front, then a bit of grainy scratchyness. The end of the palate is sharp but sweet. This is a real thirst quencher. Highly drinkable...flavorful without being over the top.
this beer makes me wish I was at a picnic flipping burgers on the grill.

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Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brooklyn Brewmaster's Reserve - Keller Helles

A: snifter. pours a wonderful clear, straw yellow color with a nice frothy white head on top. Outstanding lacing and head retention.

S: some sweet aromas from the malts. It has a fresh cut hay hint and also some corn aromas.

T: nice smooth taste, mostly corn malt flavors. some light bittering hops. a great sweetness that is subtle takes over the finish.

M: very clean and crisp, medium to high carbonation. low to medium body.

D: this is a great anytime beer. not a huge fan of the style but this one is spot on. Very good. This will be my "go to" beer for as long as it is available. Very refreshing.

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Photo of AgingWarrior
3.59/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a tulip glass, nice light golden color with a thin white head. Smells like citrus and hops, quite pleasant to the nose. Very light on the palate, crisp and quite drinkable. Medium body and lightly carbonated. I drank this brew right after work at the suggestion of the local distributor who had just tapped the keg. A pretty good drink indeed.

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Keller Helles from Brooklyn Brewery
Beer rating: 3.85 out of 5 with 29 ratings