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Velas Helles | Smoky Mountain Brewery & Restaurant

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34 Reviews
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Velas HellesVelas Helles
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Smoky Mountain Brewery & Restaurant
Tennessee, United States
coppercellar.com

Style: Munich Helles Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-06-2003

BEER STATS
Reviews:
34
Ratings:
90
Avg:
3.22
pDev:
29.5%
 
 
Wants:
0
Gots:
6
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 90
Reviews by chiefydawg:
Photo of chiefydawg
4.28/5  rDev +32.9%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks again skully...
This seems to be the same beer as the Calhoun, which strangely has a higher average. A C+ for a GABF gold? Let's see...

Very clear yellowish-gold with thin white head. Decent carbonation to style. Some lacing. Admittedly, I poured it like a sissy; but nothing too impressive to look at. However, it is light, clear, and with white head at least.

Fragrant Graininess. Malty cereal sweetness. Underlying German hoppiness. Clean and elegant in it's light malty simplicity. Love the scent of this beer first to last sip! It is how I imagine Germany's best would be on their home turf or if the elements that be did not skunk the stuff sent to the states. Technically, it smells like a Bock yeast.

Crisp yet malty. Fresh raw pretzel dough. Some spicy, woodsy hop spiciness. Tastes hoppier than the malty smell (which keeps inviting me for another drink). Some lightly fruity honey. Malty without being sweet sticking to the breadiness. Warm sourdough biscuit center Pils with some balancing, spicy tang keeping it all in check.

Overall, this is one hell of a balanced, clean, grainy, hop-appropriated Helles. Some stickiness to the very end; but like the Pils (which I recall has a lot in common with this) it is a pleasant aftertaste. Should it cleanse the palate totally? I don't know because I have never been to a Deuschland Biergarten drinking the Bavarian greats, but I like the un-American-light-lager-residual. This would go nicely in one of my Corny kegs!

 1,487 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of markallmon
4/5  rDev +24.2%

Photo of nem2006
3.45/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Came out a clear, pale yellow with a slight head and medium carbonation visible.

The nose was sweet with floral notes. You can definitely catch the hops.

The taste was smooth and sweet. It almost tastes like a white grape juice, in my opinion. For a lighter beer I would say it was quite flavorful. I would take this over any main stream light beer any day.

 359 characters

Photo of tigg924
3.56/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap Knoxville location. Pours clear, bright yellow in color with 1/2 inch head. Taste is honey and grass. Makes for a light bodied, high carbonation, sweet lager. Refreshing and malty, I could do several on a hot day.

 228 characters

Photo of Hugh37
3/5  rDev -6.8%

Photo of elBecko
3.5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of PUbeer
4.1/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Dragon17
3.25/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of freewill35
3.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of atlbravsrno1
3.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Sunstealer
2.25/5  rDev -30.1%

Photo of GeoCait
3.75/5  rDev +16.5%

Photo of austinhensley
3.83/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Almost inch thick creamy like head. Tastes very similar to the German style beers that it is modeled after. Great lacing, looked like spider webs down the sides of the glass. Appearance was golden yellow. Didn't bother to smell it. Mouthfeel is how I believe a beer should be. Very drinkable, let's just say I had more than one. The bartender gave me a shot of Cherokee Red after I told him how bad it was when I tryed it, still tasted like shit.

 446 characters

Photo of Segelstrom
2.75/5  rDev -14.6%

Photo of LJWalker
2.98/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Photo of mikesgroove
3.2/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at the Brewgrass festival in Asheville, North Carolina. Consumed on 09/20/2008 and reviewed from notes taken at the time.

The pour was ok, a light straw colored lager was the first thing noticed. Very clear with a nice amount of carbonation. This converged into a decent sized head of white that faded nearly immediately upon forming.

The aroma was light, very light, to be honest almost non existent at times. After warming it came around a little showing some decent grain and bread like malt tones and a touch of some light earthy hops. The flavor was more of the same, with the key word here being very light in the profile especially. Decent body on top of a mostly grain profile, with more then adequate carbonation making up the bulk of this. Easy to drink I will have to admit, though the flavor was a bit too thin for me at times, it was still more then decent overall.

Overall not a bad little lager, though the subtleties were severely lacking it was still fairly decent. I would see no issue with throwing this down on a hot day, though I am sure there are much better lagers out there for sure. I am not really sure what to take away from this one as it is a hard style to really having any different in but I still feel even given that this is barely above average in any regard.

 1,312 characters

Photo of wcudwight
2.07/5  rDev -35.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Pours the color of any BMC. Might as well be Bud, Coors, Miller, PBR, or the Beast in my glass. No head, no lacing.
Smells of buttery corn
I really don't see how you could call this any other style, other than American Marco Lager. It's your pretty much run of the mill BMC beer. Taste is of corn and rice.
Very light bodied and watery.
So far this is the worst that I have tried from Smokey Mountain Brewery. It could be a lawn mower beer. But, if that's what you want why not go to the local grocery and get the cheapest Macro in cans.

 541 characters

Photo of witster18
3.73/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

this beer has really been up and down through the years... there was a lack of consistency at the Gatlinburg location, but the newer Pigeon Forge location has returned this beer to it's gold medal status. I reviewed the beer when it was down at 2.13, but it's good again.

The beer is a beautifully subtle, fruity helles lager. It has a big honey biscut and citrus nose, and the taste is pretty much the same. It has a really sweet finish which is in balance because of the fruit up front, and the detectable hops. It's a sublimely poundable lighter lager that is a perfect pairing with just about anything on their menu.

We just don't see too many good hell brews anymore. It's a tougher style to craft than most, and lagers are tough enough to begin with. From ABout 2006-2008 there was a SERIOUS decline for this beer... it was coming out boozy and sour, and they seem to have brought it back to it's former glory now, especially at the new location.

Highly recommend this. Don't expect anything crazy. It's a very subtle, light offering, that has some neat grassy, biscut, faint fruit stuff going on with that sweeter finish. Much better value at the brewery to get the "big" one's.

 1,192 characters

Photo of SixpointJMH
3.6/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad tasting brew at all here. It purs a Heineken-esque golden colour with a frothy head. The appearance wasn't what I expected and needless to say, was average at best.

The smell was slightly sweet and hoppy but had some grass notes to it as well. Again, pretty basic stuff here.

The flavour is very much in line with the smell, but more pronounced and enjoyable: hop, grass and some juiciness intermingle nicely throughout. The mouthfeel was right on with carbonation levels as they should be.

This one was fairly enjoyable, though not great, overall. Fix the appearance and smell a bit first (i.e. make them bolder) and they may be on to something here.

 670 characters

Photo of metter98
3.25/5  rDev +0.9%

Photo of Brent
3.36/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Perhaps the least personality of the beers I've had from this brewery. Very mild, with some malt caramel flavors. Hopping was modest, but the overall flavor profile was fresh and clean. Nothing wrong with this beer, it just really does not distinguish itself in any way.

 270 characters

Photo of elkinbrown
3.5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of barleyroad
2.24/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Light gold in appearance, very clear. The Smell lacks in any detectable aromas. The mouthfeel is crisp on the way in and then it is done. Taste is very uneventful and lacks any true charateristic, disappointing. Overall we have found this lacking in any real beer flavor.

 271 characters

Photo of Volsdawg10
2/5  rDev -37.9%

Photo of lwcreasy
2.76/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Decent looking- gold and bright. Not much on the nose; some malt. Lacks malt flavor, a little too hop-balanced for a Munich Helles. Vegetal and slightly astringent in the aftertaste. Somewhat refreshing and drinkable.

 217 characters

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Velas Helles from Smoky Mountain Brewery & Restaurant
3.22 out of 5 based on 90 ratings.
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