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Haffenreffer Private Stock - Private Stock Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Haffenreffer Private StockHaffenreffer Private Stock

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
70
okay

101 Ratings
THE BROS
82
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 101
Reviews: 63
rAvg: 2.95
pDev: 25.42%
Wants: 14
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Private Stock Brewing Co. visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Malt Liquor |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-19-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Haffenreffer Private Stock Alström Bros
Ratings: 101 | Reviews: 63 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of HarryPotHead
2.25/5  rDev -23.7%

HarryPotHead, Nov 04, 2012
Photo of Dizzy242
1.75/5  rDev -40.7%

Dizzy242, Jul 10, 2012
Photo of at7000
2.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Do they still make this stuff? And perhaps more importantly, do people still drink Haffenreffer???? Okay, I'm going to cheat on this review, and proceed entirely from memory, as the last time I sampled one was in my college days, 28 years ago. I have not had one since. Although in fairness, maybe I am fit to be a proper judge, as I must have consumed dozen upon dozen cases of the stuff. I'm really curious if the modern version, tastes anything like the version from 25 years ago. The drinking age was still 18 years old in those days.
The one poster who stated- "This was the King, the Elite of malt liquors" was right. At that time, we drunk it from green bottles, often a bit skunky tasting, something like Heineken but with an alcohol kick to it. My dorm-mates and I always had cases of this stashed for parties and beer busts. And of course, the parties had predictable results- People passed out and strewn about on the floor, fights breaking out, students running through Boston naked at 5:00am and jumping into the toxic Charles River for a swim, students disappeared for days, etc. Wild stuff. Forget Mezcal con gusano, absinthe, etc... Haffenreffer will take your mind places it does not want to go, places where it should not go. When consumed in mass quantities, it feels more like magic mushroom trip than an alcohol buzz. But getting back to taste- We would freeze these things, and they would slide down easy, smooth for a malt liquor and had a dry finish even. I have not seen it for years in any stores, this might be a regional thing. I will have to hunt some down for old times sake! Remember the little symbol puzzles on the bottom of the cap??? Classic stuff.

at7000, Jul 09, 2012
Photo of MasterSki
3.45/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Reagan1984 for one of the greatest extras in recent memory. 40oz clear bottle, complete with paper bag. Shared at my birthday after pouring some out for my homies who couldn't be there.

A - White foam settles to a thick collar, wisps, and a few tiny specks of lace. Transparent straw body.

S - Corn, grains, and perhaps a touch of steamed vegetable. No obvious alcohol, making this surprisingly clean and inoffensive.

T - The taste is corn sweetness, but it manages to avoid the cloying levels that plague most malt liquors. Mostly devoid of off-flavors and alcohol, but that's to be expected at the lower ABV.

M - Surprisingly smooth medium body, pleasant moderate-to-low carbonation, and no alcohol burn. Actually pretty nice.

D - For a malt liquor that isn't made by a 'craft' brewery this is pretty good - near the pinnacle of the style actually. Some might argue that the 6.9% ABV is cheating and that this should be in the adjunct lager category, but the awesome bottle says otherwise. A must-try for lovers of malt liquor. I think we actually finished nearly all 40oz at the party after the initial splash was poured on the pavement.

MasterSki, Jun 15, 2012
Photo of RonaldTheriot
2.6/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 40 oz. green bottle, Haffenreffer Private Stock has a very thick, creamy, cream-colored head, a clear, bubbly, golden appearance, and lots of fairly thick lacing left on the glass. The aroma is a sickly-sweet grain husk smell. Taste is of sweet & sour grain husks, old bread, some hop bitterness, and it's fairly cloying and alcohilic. Mouthfeel is leaning towards medium, and Haffenreffer Private Stock finishes semi-dry, crisp, and rough. Drinkability is not particularly high with this. When I tried this from the can in 2009, when it was still owned by Pabst, it was much better. I rate this iteration 1.5 stars (ordinary).

RJT

RonaldTheriot, Jun 13, 2012
Photo of chrispoint
4/5  rDev +35.6%

chrispoint, Jun 12, 2012
Photo of Bigtimmy
3.25/5  rDev +10.2%

Bigtimmy, May 07, 2012
Photo of durkle
3.5/5  rDev +18.6%

durkle, Apr 30, 2012
Photo of JAHMUR
3/5  rDev +1.7%

JAHMUR, Apr 15, 2012
Photo of RogueTRex
2.25/5  rDev -23.7%

RogueTRex, Mar 15, 2012
Photo of gilbert
2.25/5  rDev -23.7%

gilbert, Mar 11, 2012
Photo of woosterbill
4.05/5  rDev +37.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint can into, what else, a plastic cup. Thanks to the guys at NEBCO for sharing such a rare, tickable beer.

A: Clear bright gold body under an inch of frothy white head. Ok retention, sticky lace. Looks exactly like a Malt Liquor should.

S: Simple silo: corn, grain husk, and light ethanol burn. Simple, straightforward, and to style. My nostrils are tingling but my stomach isn't turning. Success!

T: Nothing but grainy sweetness - lots of corn, some barley, and even a hint of almost-certain-non-existent rye spiciness. Booze is present but restrained. Pleasant - remarkably so for this style.

M: Lively - but not prickly - medium body. Quite creamy and pleasant for what it is.

O: What a nice surprise! An inoffensive Malt Liquor! I didn't think such a thing existed, and perhaps it's only possible due to the rather restrained ABV, but Private Stock is the real deal. I started out with a fairly small pour just to choke it down for the review, and I wound up drinking the entire can. I actually kind of liked it - it definitely has more flavor than any other cheap beer I've tried, and yet its flavors weren't all nasty off notes. Well done Haffenreffer!

Cheers!

woosterbill, Mar 05, 2012
Photo of rderedin
2.75/5  rDev -6.8%

rderedin, Feb 20, 2012
Photo of roastbeefdinner
1/5  rDev -66.1%

roastbeefdinner, Jan 17, 2012
Photo of animal69
2.5/5  rDev -15.3%

animal69, Jan 09, 2012
Photo of brokentee
2/5  rDev -32.2%

brokentee, Dec 10, 2011
Photo of Rochefort10nh
2/5  rDev -32.2%

Rochefort10nh, Dec 06, 2011
Photo of deapokid
3.5/5  rDev +18.6%

deapokid, Nov 24, 2011
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4/5  rDev +35.6%

JoeyBeerBelly, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of daliandragon
3.48/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Previously unknown tall boy can of malt liquor for a buck and change? Sure, I'll indulge. Picked up on a whim from St. James beverage.

Pours a bug fluffy head on a pure gold body. Nose is inoffensive cereals and sugar. A little sour note at the finish gives this an old world feel. Overall, relaxed and drinkable. Nice for the price.

daliandragon, Jul 06, 2011
Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.65/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 24oz can into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light yellow color, with a short white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains grain, light malts, adjuncts and a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with a strong malt sweetness even for the style. Then bready flavors of grain and adjuncts follow. The hops presence is very mild but brings some balance. The after-taste is kind of sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, considering that this beer is intended to be an inexpensive way to get drunk quickly it’s not that bad, but that’s all there is to any quality in this beer.

TheManiacalOne, Apr 13, 2011
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.6/5  rDev +22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #44 (Sep 2010):

Good ol' Green Death always came across as a respected beer among its peers. Filtered clear-golden color; crack- ling white head only leaves a thin ring of lace. Bit of sweet-cooked corn in the somewhat clean nose--yes, even malt liquors want to be smelt up. Big smoothness with a snap of crispness. Clean and on the sweet side. Some bitterness from the hops and a kiss of alcohol help to balance. Drinkable with a clean finish; a charmer compared to the rougher of its ilk.

BeerAdvocate, Jan 11, 2011
Photo of Derranged
3.23/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 24 ounce can into a 22 ounce mug. No freshness date.

A- Dark gold, thin white head.

S- Sweet grains, floral notes.

T- Sweet grains, sweet malts but watery. The flavor was not that strong. Alcohol is masked very well. Its still drinkable even as it warms in the glass, which says a lot for the style.

M- Medium bodied and highly carbonated.

D- Not bad, but 6.9 abv, be careful.

I tried this out due to the price and decent ratings it got. I have to say for the style it isn't all that bad. It won't be a regular for me but I'll drink it again. This tasted a lot like Tatra.

Derranged, Dec 06, 2010
Photo of Reagan1984
1.45/5  rDev -50.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

In an effort to officially try each style (and review) I picked up this 24oz can while shopping yesterday. Too bad they didn't have the bottles with the picture puzzle under the cap. I liked those. Been forever since I've had one of these. What I find interesting is that the ABV is only 7%. I always imagined "malt liquor to be much higher.

Pours with a 2 finger bright foamy head that immediately settles and fades. The beer is a bright clear gold/brass color with a speck of carbonation. Lacing.... um.. no

Aroma is sweet and grainy. Like boiled vegetables.

Wow, I am really surprised here. The flavor is much worse than I imagined. Sweet, mushy and of cardboard. I am honestly shocked how poor the flavor is. I think they forgot to put any hops into this beer.

A combination of sweet in your mouth with an almost powdery finish.

Good thing I bought this just for the experience. No need to do that again. Man we had no taste in college, did we?....

Reagan1984, Dec 05, 2010
Photo of woodychandler
2.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

What a fantastic weekend! I have decided to up my numbers to figures divisible by ten before recommitting to The CANQuest (TM) for which I should be committed. My local has a plethora of inexpensive 40s for sale and so I am revisiting some beers that I initially had in a CAN as further penance for my sins.

Dang! I poured a good, rocky two fingers' worth of bone-white head, then I began typing and looked away and by the time I looked back, it was gone! In the interest of equal time, it did leave a good bit of lacing in its wake. Color was a deep golden-yellow with NE-plus quality clarity (I could read my next door neighbor's Sunday comics). Nose was, well, when I initially unscrewed the cap (yeah, you read that correctly), skunky. It may or may not be attributable to the green bottle. Taking a whiff from the glass, it was less pronounced than it had been following the pour and I am willing to give it the benefit of the doubt. Would they really use Saaz hops in a cheap AML? Taste was not skunky at all, but it was sickeningly sweet. Wow! Between yesterday's malty love fest and this, I may yet develop adult-onset diabetes to go with my adult-onset asthma and my early arthritis. Great. The mouthfeel was thin-to-medium with a sugary sweetness laced with a mild hoppiness on the tongue. Phew! Man, I would rather have fusel heat than sticky sweet, but at least, it is mildly palatable. I have had some beers that could not even make that claim. Finish left me thankful that it was cold and that I was not out in the alley, drinking with my neighbors.

woodychandler, Dec 05, 2010
Haffenreffer Private Stock from Private Stock Brewing Co.
70 out of 100 based on 101 ratings.