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German-Style Heller Bock/Maibock

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Location: European
Category: Lager
BJCP Comparable Category: 4C - Helles Bock

Style Description

This is the description of how the German-Style Heller Bock/Maibock style of beer should taste, feel and look. However, there may be perfectly fine beers in this style that fall outside of these ranges and descriptions. This information is just to show the most commonly accepted ranges for the German-Style Heller Bock/Maibock beer style.

  • Color: Pale to light amber. The German word “helle” means light-colored, thus Heller Bock is a pale beer.
  • Body: Medium to full
  • Malt Flavors & Aromas: Light toasty and/or bready aroma and flavor is often present. Roast or heavy toast/caramel malt aromas and flavors should not be present.
  • Hop Flavors & Aromas: Low to medium-low, derived from noble-type hops.
  • IBUs/Bitterness: Low to medium-low
  • Fermentation Characteristics: Fruity esters, if present, should be low. Diacetyl should not be present.
  • Common Ingredients: Base of pilsner and/or vienna malt with some Munich malt to add character (although much less than in a traditional bock). No non-malt adjuncts. Saazer-type hops. Clean lager yeast. Decoction mash is typical, but boiling is less than in Dunkles Bock to restrain color development.
  • Commercial Examples: Altenmünster Maibock, Ayinger Maibock, Capital Maibock, Blind Tiger Maibock, Einbecker Mai-Urbock, Hacker-Pschorr Hubertus Bock, Mahr’s Bock

Brewing Properties of German-Style Heller Bock/Maibock

These are the functional brewing properties of German-Style Heller Bock/Maibock beers, as descided by the Brewers Association. These guidelines reflect, as accurately as possible, the historical significance, authenticity or a common profile in the current commercial beer market.

The alcohol by volume is shows the amount of alcohol this style of beer should have.
6.3 - 8.1%
The International Bittering Units (IBU) scale is used to approximately quantify the actual (not perceived) bitterness of beer.
20 - 38 IBUs
SRM is a scale for measuring the color intensity of a beer. Low SRM grains impart a pale straw color while higher values mean it will add a darker color to the wort. Learn more »
4 - 9 SRM
(8 - 18 EBC)
Original Gravity
Original Gravity (OG) is a measure of the sugar content in the wort before alcoholic fermentation has started to produce the beer.
1.066 - 1.074
Final Gravity
The Final Gravity (FG) is how much sugar is left over in the beer when fermentation is complete.
1.012 - 1.020

If you see an error in our data, please let us know!

Based on Brewers Association 2020 Beer Style Guidelines with changes. Used with permission of Brewers Association.