Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #27 - Helles Blond Bock | Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

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Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #27 - Helles Blond BockHarpoon 100 Barrel Series #27 - Helles Blond Bock

Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Maibock / Helles Bock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.40%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
The 27th offering of Harpoon’s 100 Barrel Series is Helles Blond Bock. This light amber beer has a bready aroma, creamy smooth mouthfeel, and a clean, lingering sweetness at the finish.

Brewer Jaime Schier set out to create a beer with a robust body that was light in color and delicate on the palate. Jaime combined Pale Ale malt, Munich malt, and Black malt to give the beer its intense malt flavor. A German Bock yeast accentuates the malt character, yielding a slightly sweet aroma. German Noble hops add a touch of bitterness to balance the malt.

This Helles Bock recipe comprised the most malt per 120-barrel batch ever brewed at Harpoon. Enjoy it on a warm, sunny day, with a big basket of pretzels and mustard.

15 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-17-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 73 |  Reviews: 66
Reviews by edchicma:
Photo of edchicma
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an orange lemon with an initial decent head, some lacing is presnt. Smell is very malty with very nice fruit notes, understated hops. Taste is superb malt with a hnit of hoppy undertones. Mouthfeel is smooth, creamy. Deceiving for the high abv...very drinkable.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Billolick
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

32 ounce bottle/growler pour from DeCiccio's in Ardsley, NY. Pours medium amber, with a golden hue, off white fluffy, long lasting head, then leaving a finecollar and more then ample spotted lace. Dry, malty, and biscuity nose. More malt, tart apple, some lime and dry biscuits. Pleasant enough lager, fairly crisp, dry and clean. Went well with some chicken and rice and beans, but what beer wouldn't? Nothing special goung on here, just a decent lager that is quite drinkable.

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Photo of far333
4.2/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear ruddy copper with a fat 2-inch head of thickly bubbled foam.

Inviting aroma of toasted biscuit, floral and grassy notes, plus some ripe fruit.

Smooth and balanced flavor of luxurious malt, big notes of caramel and toffee, some toasted marshmallow and graham cracker. Good bitterness to round it out without a discernible hop flavor. Slight alcohol warmth into the cheeks.

Full mouthfeel, moderate carbonation, tingles the back of the tongue.

Really tasty and drinkable beer.

 500 characters

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.11/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Barrel series #27.

Pure golden amber, totally clear with tiny, fizzy bubbles and a big hisssy noise from the carbonation. A tan colored, 2" high head has quick dissipation, and is then totally gone.

Sweet, caramel and fruity malt upfront on the nose, Rye bread, cloves, musty spices, tangy and green garden veggies, pretty nice aroma.

Oooh this one is snappy, with a sweet malt bite right off. Wheat and rye seem to be a nice dry-herbal part of the malt with a hit of honey. a dry but crisp hoppy bite comes after with white pepper and slightly tangy yeast that is also pretty earthy. The earthy hop finish is very nice and mellows the malt out very well, maybe too well. The hopare dry and earthy but not at all bitter. The flavor remains clean, not cloying even after some time passes.

a nice one for summer.

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Photo of asabreed
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A bomber for around $6 at Sam's in Binghamton. Never being a huge fan of the Harpoon regular brews, I've been dying to try any and all in the 100 barrel series, and they seem to be easily available up here, so hopefully this is the first of many.

Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Lighter copper to mildly hazy golden, with lots of nice bubbles gurgling to the top. Good frothy white head leaving decent raindrops for lace and retention.

Smell: Like a just-out-of-the-over doughy cookie infused with honey. A bit of an herbal and grassy hop aroma gets in there as it warms.

Taste: Like the cookie flavors here, and with the honey too, but there's an interesting almost herbal-lemon candied zest citrus sweetness note too, which I like. An there's some leafy herbal hop notes that come in, though I wish they were a bit more present overall to curb the sweetness a bit. Not overly sweet, but the hops here would be something that could easily bump up the rating and add what seems to be a bit of balance lacking overall.

Mouthfeel: It's sweeter, so it's more medium to heavy-bodied, though the carbonation does enough to keep it away from syrupy and cloying territory, though it's closer than I'd like.

Drinkability: For the price, I don't know how you can go wrong with these, especially to try something limited and different each time. I'm sure something like a Baltic Porter or RIS would be more than around $6, but hopefully that's not the case. A good, flavorful beer in a style that I don't normally like domestically as much as I do this. Certainly worth a shot.

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Photo of emsroth
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle with gold foil cap

App: True amber with wonderful clarity. Slight head with nice lacing.

Smell: Honey and sweet pale malt. No hop aromas present.

Taste: Starts with a nice tight carbonation that leads way to a dominant honey sweetness. Dries quickly. Very herbal hops from the middle to end. Refreshing.

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Photo of Sammy
3.55/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A nice drinkable beer, nothing outstanding. Pours blonde with some white head. An aroma that would be best described as neutral. Medium plus mouthfeel, a bit of bitterness but more sweetness there. Carbonation is right there. OK, but nothing I would seek out again.

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Photo of augustgarage
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Obtained in trade from ShogoKawada (thanks!). Poured from
a 22oz, gold foil topped bomber into my Ayinger Celebrator
doppelbock glass.

Brilliantly clear, pale amber liquid with 2-fingers-receding-to-half-a-finger of creamy, persistent, soft white foam riding the surface.

Pleasant malt and toast aroma along with buttered bread
(not diacetyl though), and a sweet, almost hay-like aroma
from the hops. Some melanoidin notes surface as the beer
warms a little. Smooth, subtle, and enticing.

Light sourdough, rich yet light (Vienna?) malt, and just a
touch of bitterness to round out the flavor profile and keep the finish fairly dry though the sweetness seems to pick up after the beer warms a bit. A flavorful, clean, refreshing, and pure tasting lager - no adjunct, chemical, or off notes whatsoever.

Medium bodied, but not sticky - moderately high, steady
carbonation. Slightly warming by the second glass.

I'm tempted to rate the drinkability higher, but it is a bit heavy and slightly sweet for the style...

I never thought I liked lagers until I started tasting some of the bavarian styles, and Harpoon did a fantastic domestic rendition with this release.

 1,170 characters

Photo of hreb
3.3/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

cold 22oz bottle poured into weizen glass. Beer pours a clear orange amber with a thick white head. Aroma is of a well-balanced ale: both bitter and malty-sweet.

First sip is intensely fizzy. Then, warms up to introduce some sugars. Next up is a malt-liquor-esque cloying flavor. Finally, the hops come in to bring down the party.

It doesn't betray it's high (7.4%) alcohol content, but it's just too sweet. It's a bock lager, and it's better than it could have been. It's not one of the better Harpoon 100 barrel series, though.

 531 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Once again Harpoon delivers with their 100 Barrel series!

Helles bock can be a difficult style in that it really needs balance to remain drinkable. Quite often too much malt is used, or too much residual sweetness is left behind - or on occasion, the opposite is true and too much malt is converted into alcohol and it becomes 'hot', or at least readily evident. None of that is true here, and it's pretty much right on with a bready, but not overly sweetish malt, that's balanced by floral hop flavors and a stiff bitterness from within. It finishes dry, and quite clean, with just a hint of subtly toasty maltiness left behind, and some lingering floral hops.

On to the not so great, the body is a beautiful crystal-clear amber with an orange cast, but the head retention is limited, and it leaves only spotty lace behind.

The aroma could be a little more bready, but that's OK, it's still quite nice. It's grainy, toasty, bready, and even a touch buttery (I'm not suggesting diacetyl). And the floral hops that are there are very welcoming.

The body is a little bit lighter than perhaps it could be, but I feel it also works. It's smooth, and just a touch crisp, lending to mass drinkability.

And the alcohol never shows, even after a full glass! It's remarkably drinkable! Kudos! for a well-rounded, and well-balanced rendition of the style.

 1,351 characters

Photo of slasich
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of Gmann
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Out of a 22oz bottle. Pours a pale copper color with a short lived egg-shell colored head that dissipated into a light ring. The aroma is of bready malt, caramel, and a hint of spice. The taste is that of a bready malt, some of the doughy munich malt comes through. Some light caramel and honey sweetness; an earthy hop seems to pop up in the end to check the sweet malt. Moderate body with tingly carbonation which seems to fade that gives the brew a slight slick and sticky finish. There is a light alcohol presence as well. I appreciate the fact that this is a well balanced beer, the sweetness is kept in check, and has an almost earthy quality. The abv seems to affect the feel but nothing to deem it a flaw.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 22oz big boy (session 27) into a pint glass. Pours a hazy orange color with minimal white foam that leaves trails of lacing down the side.

Minimal smell - malty, slightly sweet, hints of honey.

Taste is well balanced. Malty, earthy, hop presence throughout. Holds up throughout the 22 oz, still good as it warms. Modestly carbonated in the mouthfeel.

Delicious brew - very drinkable. 22 oz is a tall order, especially at 7.4% ABV, but could keep going onto the next bottle.

 492 characters

Photo of BeerSox
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber into Scandinavian mug.

Clear burnt orange hue with glowing amber highlights. A one finger off-white head settles to just about nothing.

A little bit of toastiness and caramel in the background, with a bit of aromatic hops in the foreground.

Plenty of caramel with just a hint of roasted flavors. The hops add a little bit of zesty bitterness. Full bodied, very smooth.

A pretty good Bock, and the alcohol is well hidden. Very drinkable. Recommended.

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Photo of u2carew
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A) Thin, whispy head. Thin bubble lacing. Bronze in color. Transparent. Visible carbonation.
S) Bready. Caramel and toffee notes. Mellow floral hop notes just under the surface.
T) Toffee - not profound. Some spiciness. Earthy root vegetable hints, maybe celery or carrot.
M) Medium body. Syrupy, but just a hint. CO2 fizz yet fairly smooth.
D) A good beer. Refreshing. Good character in the taste.

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Photo of rtratzlaff
3.52/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden bodied beer with a thick full white head that sticks pretty well. Aromas of sweet pale Munich malts along with an herbal hop bitterness. The flavor is cereal that grain sweetness with along with noble hop character that keeps things in check. Full and lush mouthfeel along with ample carbonation. At 7.5% this one is a good drinkable helles bock and probably the best I've tasted brewed in the States.

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Photo of KickbacksSteve
3.43/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into Unibroue tulip. This bottle traveled with me to Florida from a liquor store in Delaware recently. Aroma is dominated by malts, not smelling any hops. Taste is biscuity, a bit toasty and a bit sour. Not the most pleasant taste in the world bot certainly a respectable beer. Dry finish but maybe too sour on the tongue. Glad to have experienced it but also glad it is only a one time offering from Harpoon.

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Photo of gameface23
3.51/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I want to send out a HUGE thank you to BA user 6watt for sending me a new bottle after suspecting that it was infected the first time I tried it on tap. Harpoon QA/QC/customer service is outstanding.

A: Pours a strawberry blonde color with a decent head. Some of the most active carbonation bubbles I have ever seen darted up the glass during the entire drinking session (this was deceiving - the carbonation level was not nearly as high as I thought it was going to be, which is a good thing).

S: Not very strong, but there are some sweet malts present and some floral hops. There is also a honey-like mineral aroma present.

T: Caramel malts paired nicely with floral hop bitterness. There is a definite fruitiness to it that I couldn't quite figure out, but I was leaning towards strawberry.

M: Silky and creamy.

D: I don't particularly like lagers, but this one has potential. I am really glad that I was able to try it again.

 934 characters

Photo of CHickman
3.18/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It poured gold amber in color with a small light head, and a light smell of malt and bread, but not much in the way of any strong aroma.

Tastes of malt, honey, bread, a touch of hops and has a slight roasted flavor. Very light and crisp with little carbonation that finishes bitter and sweet with a hint of spice and/or citrus (couldn't decide). The 7.4% ABV did not come through or influence the taste, which made this brew enjoyable.

Overall a good beer that was easy to drink, but it lacked the excitement of the Harpoon 100 Barrel Series and what I expected.

 566 characters

Photo of donkeyrunner
3.87/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

$4.99 @ Nikki's Providence RI

Clear, dark gold with a thin white head. Constant bubbles migrating from glass bottom to top. Weak retention at first but looked better the second time with a forced pour.

Dry, sweet biscuit aroma with a light floral mist. Pleasant and clean. Sweet poundcake malt dominates a timid floral hop spice. Again, pleasant and clean. Carbonation is a little weak.

 388 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 6/13/09 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI, served in a large tulip glass.

A: The beer is a light golden brown color, with a short white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is faint but contains light malts, honey, caramel and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is decently balanced with flavors of lager yeast, honey and caramel. There's a hearty malt character and a decent hops presence. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: A little tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, although there isn't much that really stands out about this beer it's a decent one to drink for a while.

 753 characters

Photo of ppoitras
4.02/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22oz bottle purchased as a single from Yankee Spirits, Sturbridge, MA. Gold foiled cap.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/4" off-white head over the clear light amber brew. Head is promptly down to a small layer of bubbles, with minimal lacing. Aroma is pale malt sweet slightly more than balanced. Taste is reasonably balanced through and through, with malt stronger in some spots, moderate bitterness in others. Mouthfeel is pretty smooth, and drinkability is amazingly easy. Gotta love a nice bock in Spring.

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Photo of CavePainter
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear lackluster copper. Clean and clear. Well carbonated. Descent sized head that quickly fades with a nice bit of lacing.

Smell: Sweet, bready Vienna malt with touch of graininess. Some citric hop aroma.

Taste: Smooth, sweet malt with a citric hop bitterness that asserts itself toward the end. The hop bitterness does not overwhelm and the beer finishes on the malty side.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and malty. Hop bitterness and adequate carbonation keep this beer from weighing down the tongue too much. This is right at the limit of what I would consider a light bodied beer. Refreshing.

Drinkability: You'd never guess that this beer weighs in at 7.4% ABV. Very refreshing - very drinkable - quite enjoyable.

The beauty of this beer is its simplicity. No frills, no gimmicks - just simple, well-balanced tastes.

Harpoon's 100 barrel series has wowed me. The Harpoon label tends to make pretty standard beers - good but not attention grabbing. But there 100 Barrel Series seems to have given them room to play. The result, so far as I have tasted, has always been great.

If you can get your hands on a bottle of this beer - do it.

And Harpoon - if you are listening - brew your helles bock on a regular basis. The only good lagers we tend to get are Oktoberfest. There is definitely room for this style of beer on the shelves and taps of our local brew havens.

 1,386 characters

Photo of BeerDawg1
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Aroma-not very potent smell at first/slightly hoppy and fruity

Appearance-golden blond color/1 finger head/no retention/no lacing

Flavor-light/crisp/clean/smell and taste don't really match but compliment each other nicley

Mouthfeel-Small bubble carbonation/clean/crisp/refreshing/doesn't sit on pallette long and leaves you wanting more

Drinkability-Could easily session this beer/very easy to drink/very light

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Photo of smcolw
3.55/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Decent start to the head--dies to a single layer of bubbles. The slightest of haze to an otherwise clear light amber color.

Clean malt smell with a smidge of fridge. Nearly no hop.

Rich body with a moderate level of carbonation. Not quite sweet, but it's far from dry as well. There's a touch of hop that makes it interesting. Light oiliness from the alcohol.

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Harpoon 100 Barrel Series #27 - Helles Blond Bock from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
3.8 out of 5 based on 73 ratings.
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