Craft Beer Profile: German Style Munich Helles
German Style Munich Helles Beers
Golden yellow in color with a mild malty profile and moderately low hop bitterness. Brewed as a lager beer, fermented at cool temperatures, and cold-aged to develop crisp and clean flavors. Aromas of bready malt, sweet malt, and honey are common. Light to medium in body with crisp malt and mildly sweet flavors. They finish very clean with just enough smooth Noble hop bitterness to add a bit of balance.
Munich Helles beers can be a nice alternative to pilsners, which tend to have more hop aroma, hop flavor, and higher bitterness. The style is not overly popular with American craft brewers, but there are some nice beers produced. Below are some examples of craft-brewed Munich Helles beers.
Surly Brewing Hell (5.2%, 20 IBUs)
Aromas of fresh bready malt. Crisp, clean, and very easy to drink. Available year round in cans. Brewed in Brooklyn Center, MN.
Crisp and sweet with some floral hop notes from German Hallertuer Mittelfruh hops. Brewed in Tampa, Florida.
Three Floyds Gorch Fock (5.0%, 25 IBUs)
Seasonal June release. Light, crisp, and refreshing. Brewed in Munster, Indiana.
Light-bodied with a soft and sweet malty profile. Brewed with German malts and whole flower German hops in Downington, PA. Available year-round.
Rahr’s Blonde Lager (4.8%, 22 IBUs)
Lightly hopped, sweet and bready. Brewed in Fort Worth, TX. Available year-round.
Breakside Brewery Helles (4.1%)
Light and crisp with a low abv and flavors of sweet biscuity malts. Brewed in Portland, OR.
Ninkasi Brewing Helles Belles (5.1%, 22 IBUs)
Limited release brewed with 3 German malts and 2 German hop varieties. Brewed in Eugene, OR.