Brewed by Brauerei Heller
Style: Dortmunder/Helles
Bamberg, Germany
Serve in Lager glass


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 1017   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.41/5   IBU: 30   EST. CALORIES: 129   ABV: 4.3%
“Schlenkerla Helles” is brewed with fine Bavarian aroma hops from the area around the city of Nürnberg. It’s lagered in century old caves underneath the historic Schlenkerla brewery and maltings. Schlenkerla Helles is boiled in the same copper kettles and bottom fermented by the same yeast as the historic Schlenkerla Smokebeer. Its subtle smokiness without using smoke malt makes “Helles Schlenkerla Lager” a unique representative of the classic lager beer style “Bavarian Helles”. Editor’s note: Since this is not intended as a smoked beer, and is not billed as such, it has been classed here as a Helles, despite some samples having residual smoke character.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
LilBeerDoctor (3735) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 21, 2008
Bottle. Pours a clear golden yellow with hardly any head. Aroma is a bit skunky (which faded only slightly as the beer warmed) with some sweet malt notes. Flavor of more sweet malts (bready), some light fruits as the beer warms. I was surprised to learn this is classified as a "smoked", I guess I would say there are some smoky notes in this beer, but only if you look hard enough for them. Just ok.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
fredandboboflo (1570) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 20, 2008
Bottle. Aroma of pale malts and smoke. Flavor mostly keeps the smoke in the background, restraining it to generalized earthiness, with the malt opening up into a nice, sweet breadiness, at times lightly fruity. This bready malt, definitely the highlight of the beer for me, also dominates whatever hop presence there is. Nice beer, nothing terribly remarkable.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 11/20
idbowman82 (62) - Painesville, Ohio, USA - MAY 16, 2008
Not too bad, but relatively unexciting. The aroma is definitively smoky and peat-y, as is the aroma, but you have to work to find it. Great mouthfeel though.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
PilsnerPeter (3045) - Flushing, New York, USA - MAY 16, 2008
Bottle: Slight haze to the golden pour with a thin bubbly white head. The nose has mild smoke, but it’s there. Some doughy, damp German malts and a very mild hop character. Has some wood and earthy as well. Great creamy mouth feel, especially for the low ABV. Nice bready malts give it sufficient body. The smoke is apparent, less so when compared to their other offerings. It leans toward woody and earthy, and it’s nicely balanced by a mild Euro-hop bite in the finish. Pretty solid, just needs more Smoke!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
FunkyBrewster (1518) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 11, 2008
UPDATED: SEP 2, 2011 Smoked ham and hop aroma is not very strong but pleasant. Deep golden color with a medium/small head. The start tasted like most German pilsners, crisp and clean, medium bodied.More smoked ham flavors arose in the finish with very little or no bitterness.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
RomanW70 (296) - Providence, Rhode Island, USA - MAY 10, 2008
Pours very pale gold with a frothy white head. Aroma of yeast, smoke, and spice. Light, highly carbonated body. Initial taste is crisp and clean, pilsner like hops.....lagerlike. Finish is nicely (and not overwhlelmingly) smoked which definitely elevates this otherwise unexciting beer. Not my favorite of the Aecht Schlenkerla line, but a clean, crisp, refreshing beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
17thfloor (2443) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 10, 2008
UPDATED: JUL 26, 2011 Pours golden with a small white froth. Light ham aroma, some smoke, and skunky German hops, sweet smelling. Taste is much the same: salted ham, grassy, lightly smokey. Nice bubbly light body, fine carbonation, glassy. Seems like more of a pils than a helles. A nice easy drinking accidentally smoked beer =)!..... [rerate 2011 after many many bottles... more beer needs to be like this seriously, amazingly bready with a beautiful hop bouquet]

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
BlackDonald (1126) - Gulf Shores, Alabama, USA - MAY 6, 2008
I thought this was a decent beer overall. You get just a hint of the smokiness in the nose, but more herbal hoppiness, and a hint of ffresh cut grass. The flavor is got a nice malt profile, a bit of honey sweetness, but very biscuity. The smokiness lingers giving it a nice bitterness in the finish. Enjoyable and uniquely different.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 11/20
mmather (179) - Colorado, USA - APR 27, 2008
From a 500 ml bottle. Nice hint of smoke in a well executed helles bier. Loved the combo, but the helles bier as a base was a bit lacking. My least favorite of the Schlenkerla line (but I still would get one from time to time despite the price).

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
aubreya (676) - Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA - APR 22, 2008
The color was very light golden. The head was creamy, thin, and white. The aroma was very light grape. The flavor was smokey. The palate was lively. The finish was abrupt.

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