Andechser Spezial Hell | Klosterbrauerei Andechs

BA SCORE
86
very good
122 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Andechser Spezial HellAndechser Spezial Hell
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Klosterbrauerei Andechs
Germany
andechs.de

Style: Munich Helles Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Its clear gleaming look and firm, fine pored head goes hand in hand with its fresh and pure aroma. Malty nuances are the first impressions.

Spezial Hell is pleasantly tangy with a full, round malt body that cannot fail to fascinate. The soft flavour carries a distinctive balance of sweet accents and bitter hoppiness.

It concludes on equally soft malty nuances – a classical festival beer in the tradition of old Bavarian brewing.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-18-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
122
Reviews:
62
Avg:
3.83
pDev:
10.18%
 
 
Wants:
13
Gots:
12
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 122 |  Reviews: 62
Photo of Shandycan
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Domingo
3.48/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

While they serve the normal helles in town during the summer, this is what's typically at the Monastery.
This is a deep golden color with a pretty big fluffy head. Straight from a large wooden keg. It always amazes me how they can give you what looks like such a rush-job pour, but 2 seconds later you see that the beer is at the exact line on the glass and the head's perfect. Practice makes perfect!
Smells normal for the style. Toasted grain, mild hops, lager yeast.
The flavor's pretty much the same thing. No real booziness present, but it also lacks the hop overtones that make their helles unique. Not bad, but nothing special.
In general, the export/spezial beers can be either wonderful (Edelstoff) or boring. This one's not quite boring, but it's headed in that direction.
The normal Andechser hell is pretty damned good, and I'd honestly rather see that beer than this one. This one isn't bad, but with so many better options at the Monastery, it's at the bottom of my personal list.

EDIT: This holds true for the bottled spezial hell as well. Not bad, but a little bit "meh." In a lot of ways, I think the spezial/export style might just be a little too straightforward (boring?) with only a few exceptions. It just feels like the hops are lost in most examples and the malty sweetness seems 1-dimensional. I'd love if there were more dunkel exports, though.

EDIT 2: On my visit during 6/11 I had the opposite reaction. I definitely preferred this one to the normal hell and enjoyed it quite a bit. Maybe this time I'd had more pilsners and wasn't burt out on helles beers, but I found this to be outstanding.

 1,624 characters

Photo of clarknova
3.31/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Naerhu
3.18/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Golden body and thin pure white head. Tiny bubbles loosely rising.
Malty unexciting aroma. No hop aroma present.
Mild clean malty flavor with mild bitterness. Slightly sweet without being intrusive. Slightly spicy hoppiness, but you have to struggle to notice it.
Very mild carbonation.
Refreshing but not interesting.

 322 characters

Photo of redleg411
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of HappyHourHero
4.07/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a short dense white head that fades slowly leaving a few whisps of lace. Clear golden-wheat colored beer is full of tiny rising bubbles. Spicy hops and crisp sweet malt aromas. Lightly sweet pale malt with and earthy bite of hops come together into a tea like flavor. Crisp, with a light fizz in the mouthfeel, and nice sharp bite in the end. A biting, juicy, pils-esque beer. A rereshing beer that isn't just for hot days.

 430 characters

Photo of mytu420
3.94/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of dasenebler
4.17/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear gold, with an okay head that disappeared eventually. Unassuming appearance overall. Some woody malts in the nose, along with euro hop funk aroma.

Flavor is very good, much fuller than an average helles beer. There's a pronounced hop presence and bitter aftertaste as well. Sweeter and fuller than a pils, similar bitterness as well, but more complex I'd say. Good subtle carbonation and a smooth drink. Overall an enjoyable brew at nearly 6%; something I'd have again.

 483 characters

Photo of Sigmund
3.63/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle, bought in Germany. ABV is 5.9%. Pale golden colour, large and lingering white head. Fruity and grassy aroma, some malty sweetness too. Soft mouthfeel, moderate carbonation, moderate but decent hops well balanced with the pale malts. I am rarely "swept away" by a helles (nor by any other type of pale lagers, for that matter), not by this one either - but the Andechser Spezial is a well made and very drinkable helles, as far as helles go. Kloster Andechs is probably one of Germany’s best breweries overall.

 525 characters

Photo of Silke_Neryn
3.82/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of John
4.23/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Klosterbrauerei Andechs Bräustüberl. A visit here is indeed a special occasion worthy of the Spezial Hell. Yellow/gold colored clear brew, frothy off-white head. Malty, hints at sweetness...hopped gently. Balances back and forth between the two expertly. A refreshing and thoroughly enjoyable helles...one of the best.

 330 characters

Photo of MrDarcy
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of captaincoffee
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nose has light malted grains, but overall is quite muted. Taste is crisp and clean, light bread. Extremely easy to drink. Not a lot to say, and not any aspect that stands out, but somehow it is very enjoyable...could drink all day.

 231 characters

Photo of jonb5
4/5  rDev +4.4%

0.4 Litre, served in handled mug.

A: Very pale straw colour, clear, two finger head, kept a lid of foam
on top, also had some lacing.

S: Not overly pronounced, but a bit of subtle orangy Bavarian malt.

T: Hint of sharpness added to the south Bavarian malts, notes of orange.

M: Minimal carbonation, light body, went down OK.

O: More export than Helles, very drinkable.

 378 characters

Photo of herrburgess
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of PatandDavid
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Uh Oh, I did all 4s again...

This is another one from my Andechs stash brought back from D-land.

Clear golden color, pours just like it should with that head right at the line on my Andechs glass. Not an ounce of lace, however. Not an overwhelming smell, but typical for this type of beer. Fairly crisp drinking, a bit more body than the regular helles, it's spicey just like a typical German lager.

A very good beer, although not the most outstanding. Could have an even crisper mouthfeel, imo.

pat

 511 characters

Photo of JTuomi
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of cbnz
2.75/5  rDev -28.2%

Photo of macesq
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of Kevlee722
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of Andreji
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was fairly unimpressed by this Munchner Helles.

While on a train from Koeln to Brussels, we popped this open with a friend. The pour was rather clear and not too fizzy, golden toned. the smell was weak but rather malty, although not aiming to be too sweet. some floral hop feel could be felt, but it wasn't too elaborate.

The taste was not too impressive, but it was ok. rather weak lager feel, although fairly dense to the mouth. a very good balance between sweet and grainy, the bitterness only felt at the end and not in abundance.

I must say it's not a bad helles, even so, probably the only thing that enhanced its personality was the scenario I tasted it in- not the beer itself.

 697 characters

Photo of deac83
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of czfreeman
4.37/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at the monastery last week.
Pours out a light,golden color, light active carbonation, makes a very nice effervescent head.
Smells a bit weak, but after warming, clear dicernable biscuty malts, light bitter hoppiness, unsmoked tobacco, the high mineral content of the water here comes through in the sharp tartness of the aroma. Light musty grains, citrusy lemon aromas, finishes with a hoppy-pilsner refreshing quality.
Flavors are clean, light, and another exibition of the perfectionistic execution and restrain´ment of a well made German beer. Begins light, bitter, malty, and ends with a lightly pungent hoppiness married with a citrusy malt note. light, highly drinkable, and clean, it is easy to see why this is such a popular summer beer. the overall bittering hop quality sets the flavor apart into a clarly dicernable catergory than a Pils. Would pair great with light seafood, or grainy bread. tasted pretty good with the monastery's cheese and freshly baked pretzels.
--As an edit: after several months, this beer truly is the best of the Munich Helles. Augustiner Pulls a close second, but the Andechs holds a slightly spicer peppery edge that really puts it out on top. The sweetness is in perfect check, and now after drinking a perfectly fresh bottle made 2 days ago, Im editing the review for top place.

 1,336 characters

Photo of Skidz
4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out pale straw and sits bright light gold in the glass with a large creamy white head. Fades to a faint skim, some lacings present.

Crisp, crackery aroma with hints of caramel and diced almonds. Solid backing of grassy hops.

Tastes lightly sweet up front, maltiness portioned into saltine doses. Slightest protrusions of alcohol paired with mildly spicy, grassy hops. Finishes with a cleansing, low bitterness.

Crisp to to tongue, but immensly smooth beneath. Solid carbonation, and a light body.

Superb quality, second best helles sampled while in Germany (Augustiner on cask wins out). This bottle, brought back, conjures up many fond memories.

 664 characters

Photo of IchLiebeBier
3/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Golden; clear; effervescent; medium head

Aroma: Malty; citrusy; honey-like

Taste: Juicy with a slightly bitter start and slightly dry, bitter finish

Remarks: A little too bitter for me

Did not score A, T, S, M at that time; disregard those scores

 262 characters

Andechser Spezial Hell from Klosterbrauerei Andechs
3.83 out of 5 based on 122 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston 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.

    Learn More
  • Our Events

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

    Learn More
  • Our Magazine

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

    Learn More