Scratch Beer 69 - 2012 (More Helles, Less Bock) | Tröegs Brewing Company

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Scratch Beer 69 - 2012 (More Helles, Less Bock)Scratch Beer 69 - 2012 (More Helles, Less Bock)
Very Good
49 Ratings
Scratch Beer 69 - 2012 (More Helles, Less Bock)Scratch Beer 69 - 2012 (More Helles, Less Bock)

Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Maibock / Helles Bock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
More Helles, Less Bock is an easy-drinking lager that blurs the lines between Helles, Bock and Maibock styles. At 5.6% ABV, 21 IBU, and light straw color, Scratch #69 portrays itself as a Helles; but inside the glass lurks a more complex beer reminiscent of the Bock style. Aromatic toasted chestnuts and hints of honeysuckle flower present themselves before the first sip. After tasting More Helles, Less Bock you will immediately want more. The floor-malted barley gives an earthy flavor that pairs with the hints of bitterness from Tradition. The finish is sweet and malty, yet still refreshing; a light filtration adds bread notes at the end.

Added by orangesol on 06-08-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50  | next → last
Ratings: 49 |  Reviews: 23
Photo of CheapBeerBuzz
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

Photo of JohneHoodlum
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of JZ77
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of drabmuh
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

At the time of this review, this is #25 on the "Top Beers Maibock / Helles Bock" list on A very nice beer from Troegs, a refreshing break from the endless parade of shitty IPAs the scratch beers have been lately.

Beer is yellowish and light in color, clear with nice steady moderate carbonation, white head, nice retention, looks good.

Aroma is clean, yeasty, mildly sweet.

A nice wet beer start to finish, quencing, nice yeast body, not as bready as you'd expect but a stand up solid lager, I'd have it again for sure.

 540 characters

Photo of lobos62
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of ThePorterSorter
4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a clear sunset orange with no cloudiness or lacing. A thin halo of white head reminds you that there was a fluffy white head at pouring, one which fell flat shortly after. The nose is pure grain and sweetness, something I wish I smelled in every lager. Strangely I get notes of a turkey dinner, fresh cornbread, and a light fruitiness. The taste is very similar, boasting a rich malt profile with suckling sweetness and a touch of bitterness to help bring balance. There is nothing fancy about the hop profile, just some alpha acids on the back end along with a lingering grain sweetness. The body is relatively light and the beer is quite drinkable. I'd love this beer on tap and would likely try it again.

 722 characters

Photo of nmann08
3/5  rDev -22.3%

Photo of confer
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a delicious Maibock.
Solid Gold in color with no head . Fizzy at first but then settles down quickly.
Sweet caramel smell.
Sweet taste and small hop bitterness all at the same time.
A bit on the thick side once the beer settles.
Overall a very good beer. I think they hit the style on the nose.

 302 characters

Photo of FosterJM
3.97/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1396th Review on BA
Bottle to Bock glass

Thanks to my RS guys Drknbeer & Stormking47 for this gift.

App- Golden, golden in color with lots of bubbles in the glass. A nice soft white two finger head that faded quickly. No real cling or lace.

Smell- A lot going on it this glass. A bit of bready malts, but yet herbal and somewhat of a yeasty quality with a bit of toast behind the nose.

Taste- I was thinking this was going to be a baby Vitus. Had no idea it was a Helles type. After having Hangar24's Helles for fathers day, I just didnt like the style. This was very good. Grassy, cracker and a bit of malt with a floral note.

Mouth- A fairly medium body with a good medium (light) carbonation. A good amount of bubbles and still crisp and clean.

Drink- Not a fan of the style per se, but this beer was might tasty. I could put back a few more.

 856 characters

Photo of stephenjmoore
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Crystal clear golden body with a thin white head of bubbles on the top.

S- Some pale malt aroma with a hint of bread and some fresh grass.

T- Malt comes through along with some favors of toast, citrus and a slight hop note.

M- Crisp and clean, good carbonation.

O- Good take on a helles bock. Crisp and clean with some interesting flavors.

 346 characters

Photo of TimoP
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of Ecolello87
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

3.55/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle to pint glass
$4.50 for the single
Sampled 28JUN12

[A] A semi-aggressive pour produces a 1 finger high off-white head, modestly compact and foamy, with larger bubbles breaking the head down as they pop. Retention is just above average. The body is exceptionally clear, light golden orange in color. A modest amount of bubbles rise sluggishly to the top to support the bubbly collar. No lacing.

[S] Strong yeast profile and even stronger grainy malts strike the nose. Doughy bread. Light toast and low melanoidins. Clean floral/spicy hops. (The honeysuckle notes described on Troeg’s website are noticeable now that the seed has been planted.) More alcohol as it warms. Semi estery.

[T] Very full flavored. Spicy, peppery hops give way to the sturdy malt foundation. Mild sweet corn (DMS). It’s hard to believe the ABV is only 5.6% as it is listed here. That is not to say that the alcohol is *highly* apparent – just that the combination of imposing flavors and chewy mouthfeel make you scratch your head a bit.

[M] Thick, slick and kind surprisingly chewy upfront. Mid palate through the end, the fine tingling carbonation sets in and continues to work the tongue for several seconds after the swallow. Moderate effervescence overall. Medium-dry finish.

[O] As advertised. More Helles in appearance; more traditional Bock in aroma and flavor (minus dark malt character) but definitely a hybrid between the two.

 1,434 characters

Photo of ryser2k
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of StarryNight74
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of stakem
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a matching Troegs branded pint glass. The brew appears a clear, light golden yellow color with a finger of white head. When held to the light, the brew initially looks to have polished clarity but a closer inspection reveals some fine particulate stuck in suspension. Rising bubbles of carbonation maintain a thin film across the top and as the cap fades it leaves a bit of webby lacing.

The aroma is sweet with a fresh biscuit-like grain appeal. The grainy quality never gets a chance to linger in the nose because a quick snap of herbal hops comes into play with almost a grassy to citrus aspect. There is a mild sulfur note thrown in there as well which rounds everything out.

The taste comes right out the gate with the biscuit-like grain aspect that was found in the nose. It lingers a while on the tongue with a bit of buttery diacetyl. Before the buttery quality has any time to stick, a mild fruity and floral quality comes in that mixes with some fresh hoppiness that provides a contrasting mild herbal bitterness. The aftertaste somewhat hints towards alcohol but the residual fresh grainy quality and hops dissolve that and really blend together nicely.

This is a medium bodied brew with a moderate level of carbonation that is just tight and crisp. It is very snappy, and clean in the mouth. I could effortlessly drink glass after glass of this. One of the best lagers that Troegs has released to date that I have had the privilege to try. My only gripe is the label text is a bit misleading to this scratch brew. Simply having "bock" listed on the label is a bit misleading. Someone looking for a typical bock might be upset. But for a helles/maibock that holds a description of less than bock, it is a fantastic interpretation. I need to get more of this! My only gripe is it has just a bit too much residual sweetness for me that hinders the drinkability and overall rating for me from being perfect 5's.

 1,946 characters

Photo of thain709
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a golden yellow body with carbonation bubbles racing towards the top to create a fluffy white head...the head stood two fingers tall and falls to full ring that leaves some decent lacing

S - Toasted malt with some cereal and bread notes...lots of sweet malt notes...sticky caramel...some of the sweeter notes are coming from a few floral hops

T - Here is where this one loses it for me...the sweeter side really comes through to the point of almost being cloying...there is a lot of sticky caramel and sweet fruit...there is a nice toasted backbone that cuts through the sweetness a bit...the floral hops are kept at a minimum and show up towards the end

M - Medium bodied...sticky, nicely toasted, earthy finish

O - I really enjoyed the Helles they did for #64 but the Bock part really imparted a lot of sweet notes that were off putting for me

 859 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at Troegs, reviewed this before 70, but adding now from notes -served chilled in a stange at the tasting room in Hershey.

The color is golden, clear brilliant shade -a bright (helles)appearance with thick white cream with tiny bead and visible carbonation with excellent retention. Smell is very malty with some toasted pilsner malt aroma with subtle tinge of floral hops and light yeast ester which adds a bready element to the nose. The feel is very good, moderately full with bready and creamy yeast with subtle spice of hop and mostly dry body with moderately high caronation and finish is sem-sweet w/ slight tinge of bitter and mild toast/mineral in the background.

The helles is nicely balanced with some semihigh pils malt flavor with some herbal elements of hops which compliment the flavor well with mild yeast taste whichis dry and adds to the cracker-like malt wth spicy hints of hops and toast which trade off with mild alcohol in the final sips. The slight caramel element gives body and helps reinforce the bock part of the flavor with grainy grassy flavors in the finish.
Overall this is a great blend of both -blurring the lines of each style if you wanted a stronger helles or more drinkable bock this should fit the bill.

 1,263 characters

Photo of TheNightwatchman
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of akorsak
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In a stange at the brewery. Two glasses in, I was in love.

A: The helles bock sure is light, a robust golden straw color that I can clearly see through. A steady stream of bubbles makes the long trek from the bottom of the glass to the top - all in support of a half finger of white head. Lacing follows in a predictable layered pattern.

S: The nose is bready with plenty of sweeter notes running around. Nuts and breads, a bit of toast, lead to sweeter floral aromas with a fruity finish. The malty side is dominant, but the hops and yeast manage to sneak a few pops in. Very robust without being to strong.

T: Plenty light but the lager sure has a great feel. The toasted breads are strong, biscuit and caramel along with some nuts. Hops follow with an earthy feel - almost like noble but with more citrus than herbs - and accompany the malts nicely. The lager has just a bit of fruitiness running around mid sip, light enough to be noticed but not so strong as to change the nature of the bock. The result is dangerously drinkable, a four star untappd call at that point. The finish brings more breadiness to the surface before riding off into the sunset.

M: Two stanges in and I was wishing that I brought along a growler. The lightness, flavorful without being too strong, hit the right notes for me. This one should have been part of the PBW to do.

 1,358 characters

Photo of hockenbeer
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of Bdel34
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

Photo of Kegatron
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ the brewery on 6/7/12. Served in a stange.

Pours a clear gold, topped with a rich ½ finger of bright-white frothy head. This stays robust, leaving back some thick spotty lacing behind. The aroma smells leafy, spicy, and citric, with maybe a touch of mineral notes as well. The malts and to a lesser degree, the ABV give a push up from the underneath, with sweetness and light warms propping those hops up nicely.

The taste definitely has a bit of a Bock-like thickness to it with sweet notes of honey and buttered toast. The hops here are actually fairly aggressive as well, with a bitter spiciness that spreads out and then green citrus character that works well with the malts. The finish on this is very dry with lingering notes of spice and bitter earth. The mouthfeel is medium, maybe just a touch fuller, with a silky smooth crispness to it that just prickles the tongue a bit as it glides along. There is a little beefiness to this along the back but that Helles side definitely brings it home in the overall feel department with a crisp and drinkable presence.

I liked this, as it definitely delivered what was promised here, with a bit of a sweet and beefy Bock character to it but then in the end the overall crisp and refreshing hop presence of a Helles wins out. This was really tasty and unique and I appreciate the experimentation here. This beer is what the Scratch series is all about IMO.

 1,421 characters

Photo of orangesol
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at the brewery.

A - Pours clear golden yellow with a nice one and a half finger tall white head leaving thin rings of sticky lace down most of the glass.

S - Smells of mildly toasted grain, caramel, herbal hops, toasted nuts and some light fruitiness. A flowery note creeps in as it warms up. Nothing too over the top, just a solid nose.

T - Starts off with the toasted grains quickly giving way to hints of caramel sweetness, herbal noble hops and some freshly toasted nuts. Finish is a little chewy with some caramel malt sweetness, lingering on the palate for a little while after consumption.

M - Light body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Crisp, chewy feel just like 64 but with a bit of extra sweetness. It took me a few extra sips to finish this one, still very easy to drink however.

O - Fairly similar to Scratch 64, maybe with a bit more sweetness this time. They have really been making some great German beers recently and this one is no exception. I will get my fill while it is around.

 1,024 characters

firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50  | next → last
Scratch Beer 69 - 2012 (More Helles, Less Bock) from Tröegs Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.86 out of 5 with 49 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

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