Get to know Ruekeller: Helles
March 25, 2023
If there’s one beer our Bruers grab more than any other after a long day making incredible beer, it’s Ruekeller: Helles. This classic German-style lager that is a nod to the traditional helles style, but with our own unique twist.
Chances are, you already know and love this beer as much as we do; its 10,000 check-ins on Untappd tell us you do! Let’s get into what it is that makes this beer so good.
Carbonation, the Traditional Way
One of the unique aspects of Ruekeller: Helles is the use of krausening and spunding during the fermentation process. For the non-beer-history-nerds out there, krausening is the traditional German method of adding actively fermenting wort (unfermented beer) to the fermented beer, which helps to naturally carbonate the beer and results in a lively and effervescent mouthfeel. Spunding is the practice of capping the fermenting beer at a specific gravity to naturally carbonate the beer in the bottle or keg. These methods require careful monitoring of the fermentation process to ensure that the beer maintains a refined carbonation, but together, they yield the perfectly-carbonated, ultra-drinkable lager we love.
Our Bruers take pride in producing beers that not only taste great, but also look great. Clarity is an essential part of the drinking experience— that's why we employ an extended lagering time, allowing it to clarify naturally over time. While many other lagers on the market may appear slightly cloudy or hazy, Ruekeller: Helles boasts a crystal-clear appearance that showcases the beer's pale golden hue. This clarity not only looks great, but it also allows you to appreciate the delicate flavors and aromas of the beer with every sip.
Our dedication to using these traditional techniques sets Ruekeller: Helles apart from other lagers on the market. Our unique combination of krausening, spunding, and traditional lagering means we’re able to create a beer that is true to the traditional German helles style, while still infusing it with our own unique character.
A Trip to Germany via Water… Treatment
Water treatment is another crucial aspect of the brewing process for any beer, but we take it to another level for Ruekeller: Helles. After all, beer is 90 to 95% water, so the quality of the water can have a big impact on the flavor and character of the final product. We take great care in treating our water to ensure that it mimics the mineral content of German water. This allows us to craft a beer that is incredibly balanced and nuanced, with a subtle sweetness that is complemented by a slight bitterness.
How to Enjoy Helles (Hint: It's Easy!)
Now comes the fun part: tasting this beer we just made! When it comes to sensory notes, Ruekeller: Helles is a delight for the senses. It boasts a bright and clear appearance, with a straw yellow color and a white frothy head that lingers. (For the brewers out there, it’s a textbook 3.5 on the SRM beer color scale.) The aroma is delicate and floral, with notes of honey and biscuit; on the palate, the beer is light, crisp, and subtly sweet, balanced by a slight bitterness. The mouthfeel is lively and effervescent, with a refreshing finish that leaves you wanting more.
Have you ever wondered why we serve Ruekeller: Helles in that one specific glass? It’s not just a matter of aesthetics (though it is an undeniably beautiful glass!) but rather helps enhance your drinking experience. The tall, thin shape of the glass serves two main functions: it allows the carbonation in the beer to rise to the top, which helps to release the aroma and flavors of the beer. Additionally, it helps to concentrate the aroma, making it easier to appreciate the delicate and nuanced notes of the beer. Grab a Ruekeller glass, pour a fresh can, and re-read the sensory notes above with your improved sensory experience.
This versatile beer can be enjoyed on its own or paired with a variety of foods. Its light and refreshing character makes it a great accompaniment to seafood, chicken, or salads. It also pairs well with spicy dishes, as the slight sweetness helps to balance out the heat. If you're looking for a beer to enjoy on a warm summer day or to accompany your favorite meal, you’ve found it.
We could go on and on about this beer— and if you catch any of our Bruers at the Tasting room, they probably will— but to tie a bow on this post, Ruekeller: Helles is an iconic Bruery beer because of its traditional approaches to production in combination with the innovative ways we craft this fan-favorite lager. Whether you're a fan of traditional German-style lagers or you're simply looking for a new beer to try, Ruekeller: Helles is an excellent choice. So, next time you're in the mood for a cold, crisp lager with a uniquely traditional twist, grab a can of Ruekeller: Helles and experience the perfect balance of sweetness and bitterness in every sip. Prost!