Pilsen Callao - Union De Cervecerias Peruanas Backus y Johnston

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Pilsen CallaoPilsen Callao

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38 Ratings
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Ratings: 38
Reviews: 30
rAvg: 2.85
pDev: 20.7%
Wants: 3
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Union De Cervecerias Peruanas Backus y Johnston visit their website

Style | ABV
German Pilsener |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Dogbrick on 08-16-2002

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 38 | Reviews: 30
Reviews by matjack85:
More User Reviews:
Photo of hreb
3.19/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle served cold at the Machu Picchu restaurant in Union Square, Somerville, MA. This beverage accompanies my cau cau (tripe) meal along with some tasty (and acidic) ceviche.

Beer pours pale yellow with big bubbles and almost no head. Not much color, not much aroma either. Taste is crisp and refreshing and fizzy, but not unacceptably so. Hop bitterness is pleasant but not complex. Malt flavor is marginal. Better than I expected for a South American lager. Watery consistency without any lacing.

This is a refreshing and inoffensive beer with a crisp taste that gives it points for drinkability. But not particularly noteworthy for any reason besides being from Peru. I'm not at all disappointed, I'd even consider this a good summer beer for regular drinking if I could find it cheaper than the local microbrew lager, etc..

Photo of mlockman
2.5/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Only drank if somebody else was buying and I had no other choice.

Photo of kenito799
2.23/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle poured into a tall glass at Pio Pio, Jackson Heights, Queens.

Unassuming standard macrolager look and smell..malt, hint of skunk. Wet and cld, but not really crisp and refreshing...a bit of heavy slick almost sweet taste. It is light, it is not a beer worth going back to if there are other choices.

Photo of jackndan
3.68/5  rDev +29.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Callo Pilsen, from Peru. A decent and slightly unusual example of a Pils beer. Nice big head, with good retention. Strong bread/malt aroma. Very pronounced malt/rye bread flavors throughout, with a sweet and smooth aftertaste. This is actually pretty good and I’d recommend it next time you are eating anything from south of the border.

Photo of bditty187
3.33/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Clear, sickly pale gold in hue, there is a fair amount of animation racing towards the bubbly white head. At the apex the head was a solid two and half fingers in height. The retention was good, after a moment it started to fade in size, before long it was a small, tight cap that lasted awhile. The subsequent lacing was unorganized and spotty but it did leave lace. The nose was clean and void of any off-putting aromas, thankfully. There is some sweetness that unfortunately reminds me of dozens of lousy Pale Lagers. Behind the sweetness there are faint suggestions of spice, from the hops I hope, with some lemon hints and flowers. The bouquet is inoffensive but not quite inviting. Still, I am not fearful to take a sip. The palate is easy drinking but tasty. Yes, I said tasty. Of course it is tasty for what it is… a Pale Lager from Peru. In other words, expectations were low. Still, there is a good bite of hops and it is ideally crisp. Acidic finish. Flowery. The bitterness is moderate but it is strong enough to cut the sweetness until the aftertaste, here the beer becomes tacky in the mouth. This is more of a knock on drinkability and not taste. The more I sipped the more I realized that this is boring, okay, maybe simplistic is a fairer characterization. At least it is not offensive. Very clean and refreshing, both are qualities typical of a lager. Medium in body with moderate but stiff carbonation, fitting for the style, overall the mouthfeel is good. If you want a beer from Peru, Pilsen Callao is your beer. It is potable and I have no problem drinking and liking my glass. I purchased a single 12-ounce bottle in Omaha for a $1.70, the experiment paid off this time.

Photo of Gusler
3/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A crystal clear gold color with a bright white frothy head that is massive in size, the lace is a white curtain draped upon the glass. Nose is crisp and clean as a lager should be, pleasant as noses go, start is quite sweet, nice malt profile, and the top light to middling in its feel to the palate. Finish has a biting acidity, the hops present and mellow in their spiciness, very dry aftertaste. In all fairness, one of the better lagers I’ve tasted in a while, quite a little thirst quencher and would be a great “lawnmower beer”.

Photo of plaid75
3.52/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a light straw hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a soft doughy malt and a spirited noble hop.

The taste consisted of a suprisingly robust grainy malt and grassy, yet spicy, noble hop. There was a good biscuity finish.

The mouthfeel was a bit on the lighter side for the style.

Overall a suprisingly authentic pils. Certainly the best Latin American beer I have had to date.

Photo of megahurts4
1.5/5  rDev -47.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Pilsen Callao is a mediocre, ordinary pilsner. It is not very refined or great tasting.

It reminded me of what Tecate is to other Mexican beers. All I could taste is barley flavored water that was slightly gritty. This was hands down my least favorite of my Peru trip.

Photo of daliandragon
2.83/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This review conducted from year old notes from my traveling journal.

Another common beer in the Lima supermarket where I shopped for groceries in that congested mess that is Miraflores. Less available than Cristal or Cusquenena in most of the country.

Not much to see or smell: light color and corny nose with nothing to recommend. Flavor starts sour and adjuncty but does contain noble hops. It is like it heard what a pilsner tastes like and is doing its best imitation. Finish is also passable. Superior to cousin Cristal, I could drink several at a time without hating life, not always the case with Peruvian lager.

Photo of roblowther
1.65/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I try to be objective. I fail. It looks like fizzy pale lemonade with almost no color whatsoever. It has a thin white head, and small bubbles that drag it over the line of abyssmal. It has no smell at all, unless sour is a smell. It tastes slightly sour, and slightly acidic. If that's possible for a beverage devoid of taste. It has more body than you'd think, with decent carbonation. You can drink it if its really cold and you're really thirsty and in Peru looking to appear local. Otherwise, run. Run fast.

Photo of kguyty
3.35/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A pretty good beer. This is the first beer that I have had from Peru. It is a decent beer, nothing fancy, but it gets the job done. It pours a nice golden color with a decent head that disappears quickly. Good carbonation and a crisp taste make this beer easy to drink.

Photo of biercircus
2.83/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I had this at a Peruvian restaurant, El Pollo Inka, near Los Angeles. The beer was decent, not amazing, but definitely drinkable. It went well with the rotisserie chicken I had.

A- golden yellow, a few bubbles, not much of a head.

S- faint hops and citrusy smell

T- some depth with a little bit of hops, a little sweet, but mostly dry finish

M- light, refreshing, crisp

D- good South American pilsener. definitely better than a Corona. Didn't need a lime to cover weaknesses in flavor.

Photo of RBorsato
3.18/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear straw color with a decent white head and nice active carbonation. Standard macro-like adjunct aromas and flavor. Has some redeeming light malt and light fruit character. Light bodied, crisp and clean lawnmower beer with a dry adjunct finish.

This is as much a Pilsner and Miller is ... Not bad to try and to check Peru off my list...

Per Label: "Desde 1863"

Per 6-pack Carrier: 5% ABV

Best Before: 07/18/07
Tasted: 10/28/06

($4.99 / 6-pack)

Photo of elguru
1.9/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Look, smell, taste like a cheap beer, it leaves you with stomach pain after a while.
I rather recommend drinking water instead of this.

Photo of garymuchow
3.42/5  rDev +20%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I guess this should be #29 in countries categories. Not high expectations. Twist cap.
Definitely fresh German hops aroma with classic sweet and sour combination and light backing of malt. Typical and not bad.
Slightly cloudy for style, otherwise gold color, rather bright white head that was smallish for style and settles rather quickly.
Flavor is somewhat flat, lacking crisp, bright, snappy flavor qualities I like in German pils. Nicely balanced hop/malt flavors with the former stronger. Not particularly bitter, in fact pushes more sweet (expect for the sourness). A kinda' brief finish. Somewhat heavy sourness up front.
Appropriately thin body with decent smoothness and easy drinking quality. Carbonation is about right.
This is alright. I'm not greatly dissappointed and it's certainly better than many foreign (non-traditional beer brewing countries) beers I've sampled. In a hot climate and if this is cold enough, this might hit the spot just fine.

Photo of janubio
2.2/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

330 ml bottle. Very pale colour, it looks like water when pouring. Good head with many bubbles that doesn´t hold much. No lacing.

Smell: Fresh grass only, and even faintly.

Taste: Taste you said? Water.

In the mouth is just something fresh and clean, some bitterness, that's all. Drinkability I guess it's good when it's very hot and you haven't a real decent beer near you.

Photo of grover37
2.25/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Clear, yellow with a finger of head reducing to nearly nothing. Slightly malty and bready with some earthy hops. Tastes almost exactly like Heineken. Somewhat smooth finish and medium carbonation, not overly fizzy though. I could easily drink a ton of these, but I'm not so sure I'd want to.

Photo of wordemupg
2.57/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

310ml bottle into wine glass 1/8/11

A pale golden yellow with enough bubbles to feed a finger of frothy foam that quickly falls to a thin film leaving a few thick distinct rings of lace

S not much really some skunky lemon maybe? faint regardless

T not far from the smell but with some faint grassy hops and the lemons not skunky, oh wait a minute the skunk comes out on the finish

M I think the tap water here has more body, not as much carbonation as I could see and the aftertaste leaves something to be desired

O looks great but tastes a little light struck, considering its a 3$ 6pack I'll cope

just another basic bottle form Peru, not the best one I've had though but I'd see this being a little better if the bottle wasn't green and the brew wasn't light struck

Photo of DoubleJ
3.08/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

330 ml bottle consumed inside Jose Chavez Intl. Airport: Lima, Peru. On to the beer:

Pale and straw yellow is the color here, a decent but shallow head sits on top of it all. Not a lot of firepower in the nose...ít smell's adjuncty, although I must admit it isn't terribly offensive. A mild taste hits and soaks inside my mouth. There's some grain, mild pale malt, a tad of husk in the back. Good and refreshing crispness in the mouth, which provided some balance to the flavor.

Not special about this lager, but it hit the spot after an 8 hour flight from Los Angeles to Lima. Cost me $2.70 US inside Lima's airport, not a bad value for an airport.

Photo of zerk
2.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Went to a local Peruvian restaurant the other night, and came across this one. Pours a clear light gold with a thin white head that leaves some light lacing. Aroma is a nice breadlike malt presence. Flavor is also malty, beginning sweet then becoming slightly dry... all in all the flavor is a bit too subdued. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation. This is not a bad beer, and is pretty good when compared with other tropical lagers... still it's a little lacking in flavor.

Photo of schrist275
2.91/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

hmm.. head developed on bottle after opening and before i could pour it. color comes out to be a very nice pils yellow.. maybe even darker than the average by a hair. head came and went in the time it took to write and read the above.. left little lace, carbonation is average, look is average, head is sub par, smell rides in as almost a skunky rotting flower.. little heavy on the skunk..(no date on bottle) taste is light pils with no aftertase carry thru.. just a nose tease follow up. a fair beer.

Photo of Vancer
3.06/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

All things considered, this was a decent brew to quaff – it’d make a good summer session or lawnmower beer, but the import costs would prohibit that a bit.

Crystal clear sunshine yellow with a fizzy white head – which did leave lil’ spot laces all the way down the glass. Aroma was rough – lots of veggies, corn, and euro skunk, had to let this thing air our for a few minutes. But the taste had some sweet malts, balanced with some decent hop bitterings.

Not much going on, but affably enjoyable.

Photo of ATLbeerDog
2.05/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a clear pale with a small almost non existent head. Smells of corn and malt. First sip tastes of malt and corn with a mild hop presence. Very light bodied and typical of beers from Latin America. Not too bad when I compare it to all the others I have had from Lima.

Photo of Drew966
3/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pilsen Callao pours a light golden color with a white head from a brown twelve ounce bottle. Decent aroma, malty and a bit of hops. Very light bodied, crisp flavor, nicely balanced hops and malt. No off flavors, easy to drink, a pleasant surprise. Definitely worth a try.

Photo of scruffwhor
3.4/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance- Pours a light head with perhaps, maybe close to good retention. But not really. Color is a bright, effervesant yellow. Lots of good lacing in this brew.

Smell- Natural frsh cut grass and hay. Some light hop bitterness mixed with light malting as well.

Taste- A light and well balanced malt and hop brew. Hints of nature abound all over the mouth with this brew.

Mouthfeel- very crisp, soooo crisp one could even call it tart.

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Pilsen Callao from Union De Cervecerias Peruanas Backus y Johnston
70 out of 100 based on 38 ratings.