Bavarian Benchmark

Munich-style Helles Lager

A light golden colored Munich Helles with doughy yeast esters and soft grain aromatics. Refreshing and clean, prominent flavors of lightly kilned pilsen malt lead into a slightly bitter finish with some pleasant grassy notes from the traditional German hops used in brewing this beer.

  • ABV: 5.3%
  • IBU: 20
  • ABW: 0%
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Origin Story

What can I say, I love German lagers, and we just got in some great German hops (Tettnang and Hallertau), so why not make one of the staple beers of Munich. Now we just need some 1 Liter steins and it's a party! -Ryan Hale . Basically, what Ryan is trying to say is that he decide to make another traditional German style Helles, similar to the wonderfully successful Thrist Mutilator, which was our first take on this style. The word Helles literally means "pale". Helles lagers, sometimes referred to as Munich Helles Lagers after the city where the style originated, are light golden colored beers brewed with an emphasis on clean, bready, malt flavors and slightly floral hop aromas with a light bitterness. Before the turn of the 20th century, most Germans considered dark beers to be the only true Bavarian lagers. Ironically enough, most Bavarian beer drinkers probably wouldn't have even known what color their beer was, because most beers were served out of ceramic steins. Thanks to the sweeping popularity (and cost efficiency) of the beer glass, this new ability to see your beer allowed these lighter-colored beer styles to appear more appetizing through there purer appeal. Prior to 1841 the lightest lager beers offered in Germany were Dunkels, which were typically brown in color. It was around this time, that breweries like Spaten started to hesitantly introduce their marzenbiers to the Munich market, these were lighter than Dunkels with an amber color, and ultimately became the foundation for their Oktoberfest beer. It wasn't until 1894 that Spaten introduced a much lighter lager, a true Helles Lagerbier, that received great praise by the Munich natives who were allowed the first tastes. By November of 1895, the largest breweries form the Association of Munich Breweries were in an uproar over the growing popularity of helles beers, with many claiming to have no intention of brewing these new "pale lagers" in attempts to preserve the local market for Dunkel. However, most began to recognize that pale beers were the beers of the future, and eventually all began to create their own versions of this new successful style. Today, helles and pilsner are roughly equal in popularity in Bavaria, but in the rest of Germany the style is pretty much non-existent.


Hallertau, Tettnang

Nutritional Information

  • Calories: 150

Available In

  • 1/2 Keg
  • 1/4 Keg
  • 1/6 Keg
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