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Orion Premium Draft Beer - Orion Beer Co., Ltd.

Not Rated.
Orion Premium Draft BeerOrion Premium Draft Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.

97 Reviews

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Reviews: 97
Hads: 225
rAvg: 2.94
pDev: 20.75%
Wants: 9
Gots: 36 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Orion Beer Co., Ltd. visit their website

Style | ABV
Japanese Rice Lager |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Gusler on 12-11-2002

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (11) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 97 | Hads: 225
Photo of Doppelbockulus
3.55/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Drinking this out of a coffee pot.

Very clear orange-gold with a little white head.

Smells simple and a little sweet, about like a typical American lager. I also noticed a very weak scent of pineapple.

Tastes better than I expected. The standard lager tangyness is toned down, which is good. Flavor is watery with a little bit of sweetness and very mild light hop.

Feels very refreshing and clean. The tingle is a good medium. Feels like I could consume a lot of this. (472 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
3/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was down in Baltimore this past weekend, visiting a college chum and attending the annual Brewers' Art Mid-Atlantic Holiday Gathering. I took Amtrak to Penn Station and then began walking south to The Brewers Art when I passed Aloha Liquors, a little store that never fails to have something new and unusual available, prompting me to stop in. I scored an 833-ml bomber of this, as well as some other gems that are sure to be just as good.

From the bottle: "Orion Draft Beer's clear mild taste is widely loved as an Okinawan original."

Okinawa, eh? I spent several months there in 1992 with NMCB 5 at Camp Shields and what I remember most was the stench from the pig farm down the road. Let's hope this is more pleasant.

My pour did not lack for head! I had better than two fingers' worth of dense bone-white head with great retention. Color was a sunshine-yellow with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a clean lager-sweetness to its scent. I am beginning to understand why not all adjuncts are bad - just corn. Mouthfeel was tending toward full, kind of light and fluffy on the tongue with a pleasant lager sweetness in the mouth. Finish had a real dryness to it which was both unexpected and enjoyable. I may be jaded after so many AALs in support of The CANQuest (TM), but I found this to be quite enjoyable. Now, do not misconstrue what I am saying - this was nothing to write home about, nor would it be worth seeking out, but as a "find" and at its price point, it was fully worthwhile. I would like to revisit this in a CAN, if possible. (1,544 characters)

Photo of vfgccp
2.91/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Generic lager color with a great head, and decent lace.

S - Very subtle, not much of a smell at all. Sling notes of agave nectar and lemon.

T - Definite notes of ginger. The front end has notes of a watey melon, similar to a honeydew. The middle faded to a citrus note like a lemon zest. The finish was a very dry bitterness.

M - Average lager, very light and smooth. Carbonation is very pleasant.

O - As I said, just a very generic lager, very drinkable. (463 characters)

Photo of AgentMunky
3.63/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a 6 ounce stange/cylindrical glass at Ten in Charlottesville. From notes. Reviewed 13 June 2011.

A: No head, very pale. Clear yellow with some lace. Not irredeemable.

S: Lagery grain. Light and unpleasant. Doesn't bode well.

T: Shockingly good! Light fruit (apple) and really pleasant malt. Dry/clean aftertaste.

M: Absolutely great. Clean sparkly carbonation. Dry hints of fruit.

O: In my limited experience, the best Japanese beer I've tasted. Recommended highly for the style, but otherwise not worth seeking out. (531 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.47/5  rDev +18%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Something about the aesthetics of this bottle is really appealing to me. A nice heavy bottle with a raised pattern and the silver label stick out in my mind.

Pours a crystal clear yellow with a 2 inch puffy stark white head that settles to a small cap. Random streaks and spots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of grains, rice, and some grass notes. Taste is of sweet grains, minor rice flavors, and some herbal grassy flavors on the finish. A pretty good level of carbonation with a crisp but slightly medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good rice lager coming straight from Japan. I was expecting something mediocre but I actually enjoy this one for what it is. Much better than Saporro for sure. (740 characters)

Photo of Durge
3.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served really cold at sushi place in New York City this is a very clear yellow gold with a very healthy bubbly, white head and very little of any lacing. The aroma is simple clean cereal grain, sweet bread perhaps. Subtle. The taste brings sweet rice and light wheat, a crisp cereal beverage that refreshes and goes down mighty easily. The flavor is steady and compliments the Sushi nicely. It’s light-plus bodied with a thinish but lively feel. Still it has a little chewiness for the style. Not bad at all for what it is designed to be. (540 characters)

Photo of Vdubb86
3.13/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a tulip glass

Thanks to TMoney for this part of his Blind Bounty, even if this did turn out to be an attempted "kill-shot"

This beer is pale like a cheap apple juice. At least it has a nice white head. The aroma ever since I poured it is like some type of stanky lemon and wheat. It kinda yeasty. It's smells like a person who's not bathed in awhile and tried to cover it up with some lemons. I over-exaggerate of course, but the point remains the same. Smooth flavor light lemon mixed with some sort of light lager, because the only other flavors around are malt and mostly mineral water. Could be worse I suppose. The mouthfeel is okay, meaning it's as would be expected per the style. This beer has many faults, but as Kyle said "We have had SO much worse". (772 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
3.18/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Thanks to mdfb79 for this bottle!

Reviewed blind as part of Blind BIF Round 5. It pours a clear brass topped by a finger of slightly dirty white foam. The nose comprises wheat, grass, flowers, light cardamom (sorta), and a minor bit o' pepper. The taste holds notes of wheat, light greens, light lime zest, black pepper, flowers, and some very light caramel. The body is a hefty-ish (in the loosest sense) light, with a light moderate carbonation and a finish that leans toward the crisper side of life. Overall, a decent brew, really not all that bad for a JPL. Normally these things hurt to drink: This one was just kinda bland and, you know, kinda there... (705 characters)

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours pale straw color with virtually no head. Smells slightly sweet and light, with a bit of congee like aroma. The taste is pretty clean to start, definitely with some light, clean rice flavors, and a bit of husky bitterness at the end. Not nearly as bad as I feared it might be, in fact, fairly refreshing. (309 characters)

Photo of TheMadChef10
2.08/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured a 2 finger head, a very pale golden color. I didnt get too much smell out of it, it kind of reminded me of the beer i drank in college. the taste was crisp but not really much after that. The mouthfeel was a little spicy. I would probably drink it again just to hang out just to drink. (292 characters)

Photo of crossovert
1.88/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

his was my first Japanese rice lager, it was a bit like Asahi, and it wasn't very good.

It pours a clear, pale gold.

The nose is nonexistent.

The taste is super-subdued with some "beer" flavors, mineral water, and a pinch of hop.

This beer is really just one of those out there for tickers, I have on'y seen it at a few elect places though. (345 characters)

Photo of kflorence
2.94/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

For your happy time!

A: Pours a pale straw color with a great amount of head that subsides to a nice creamy layer that lines the top of the beer. This actually looks quite beautiful.

S: Erm, the beauty is short lived it seems. This thing smells foul. Some rice and grains... alcohol... oxidation... metal? I guess there are some citrus notes in there, but they are masked.

T: Very, very simplistic in flavor. Sweet malts, rice, and hops. Very crisp and a dry finish.

M: Actually a very nice, light body and dare I say almost creamy! Still, a bit on the watery side, and oddly has a lot of hidden carbonation that kind of sneaks up on you.

D: Well, it's a beer, and it doesn't taste terrible, and it will be there for your happy time. I would probably steer clear of this one from here on out, but it was about what I expected. (831 characters)

Photo of Gobzilla
3.47/5  rDev +18%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: poured a translucent golden yellow with a half finger of bubbly head and left plenty of lacing sticking to the glass.

S: lots of various grains, citrus, and hints of spice with some sweetness from the malts; very basic.

T: the sweetness from the malts are the star of the show on the flavor with citrus, grains, and rice accents.

M: the brew was light to medium in body with a good amount of carbonation which had a sweet, grainy, citrusy, and crisp finish.

D: it was very light all around but drank really good and went good with some sashimi. Definitely a sessionable brew. (583 characters)

Photo of 1759Girl
2.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance> Golden rice lager to a tee. lacy. small head. good retention. clear with medium liveliness. Looks exactly as it should. Good job!

Smell> I am starting to doubt my predictions... yep. fermented rice, bit like a cheap sake hitting lightly and what's that that follows? alcohol.There are further notes of not really much else.

Taste> more flavorful than most of its style, and no metallic taste. Medium complexity with a crisp finish. Almost too crisp. I can't really get my head around it but there is something in the finish that doesn't sit right with me.

Mouf> seltzery, but drinkable.

Drinkablity> average. (639 characters)

Photo of Bricelyn
3.64/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is straw yellow with little hints at orange in the shadows. No head as the Japanese lady that poured it filled it right to the top so the surface tension of the beer was all that was holding in in the mug!!! It has a little head that appears from me jostling the glass and a tiny bit of film lacing

It smells like a bud to be honest grainy and almost sweet.

This brew tastes amazing I do have to warn you that I have what is known as Oki Goggles!!! It's truly the only fresh beer on island and lets be honest The Japanese could care less how they store this stuff. Its grainy almost no hops a little sticky but smooth and no skunk to speak of so it makes me happy.

It has a very light soda like carbonation it feels very smooth not gonna say perfect but with oki goggles this brew feels awesome in my mouth I sometimes just chew on it cuz it has no skunk and that is a beautiful thing

If its on Tap I am drinking it! probably a little to irresponsibly (968 characters)

Photo of Cylinsier
2.83/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

large bottle

Pours very light clear gold, white head, so-so retention.

Smells grainy and a tad sweet.

Taste follows, barley malts and a bit of rice sweetness.

Thinner with mild carbonation in the back of the mouth.

This isn't really a beer that you would drink for the beer's sake, but it does actually compliment Japanese cuisine very well. Besides that, it's just a typical rice lager, nothing more. Kirin and Sapporo are better. It may be on par with Asahi for me. Pair it with food and it gets the job done. (519 characters)

Photo of bmwats
3.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 633 ml bottle into an imperial pilsner.

A: Medium golden color. Heavy carbonation. Pours about a 3 finger, foamy, white head. Disintegrates fairly slowly, leaving a pock marked surface as it does. Light lacing remains.

S: Lightly pungent grainy nose with a hint of floral sweetness.

T: Tastes like it smells. A little baked bread graininess, with a bit of a funky pungent flavor, and a slight non distinct sweet note.

M: Light body. Very refreshing quality. A little pungent aftertaste, not much else.

D: Refreshing quality, and nothing off putting makes it an easy drink.

Atmosphere is decent. Nice full, foamy, head. Nose is pretty non-distinct. Flavor similarly, is nothing special, but not off putting either. Overall, this is a decent quaff. (764 characters)

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.15/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer review from BA Mag Oct 2007.

There seems to be a lot more lore within Japanese culture associated with the Orion star cluster compared to Greek mythology. Thankfully, this is a beer review and not a historical debate.

Fizzy foam builds up to two fingers in height then slowly dissipates to a thin crown of lace. Bright and clear and pale golden yellow. The aroma starts off with a noticeable cooked veggie smell, some hay-like graininess and herbal hop layered underneath. Watery mouthfeel with a light body, ample crispness. Malt flavor comes across this but not astringent, though perhaps a hint of barley husk. Clean with a slight hop bitterness and a tiny kernel of malt dextrin in the middle. Dry grassy finish.

Clean from the start to end, undoubtedly one of the more flavorful mass-produced lagers from Japan. A sure pick for us when next thinking of sushi. (872 characters)

Photo of srandycarter
3.48/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this at the local sushi place in bomber.

A - Straw colored, very white 1 inch head, slowly leaves with tight bubbled cling lace.

S - Light malt, light hops. Breadier than expected. The operative word is light.

T - Taste matches smell. Light and easy on all accounts.

M - Light bodied, good coating and carb.

D - Very easy to drink - - would have a few out by the pool. (377 characters)

Photo of Beejay
3.08/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Straw yellow with white head fading to just larger bubbles.

S: Skunk up in this grill. With a bit of malt in the back, no hop aroma. Hint of rice.

T: Not a lot of skunk in the flavor which is nice. This is a lot more delicate than american versions. Definitely taste the rice, quite clean and easy drinking.

M: Clean, crisp, and cool. A little highly carbonated, but that seems to style.

D: Very drinkable, but not flavorful enough to want multiple rounds. I would still order it over some american macros though, just because it is a fresh taste for me. (562 characters)

Photo of xraided81
3.25/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from a 22oz bomber at a japanese steak house.
a: crystal light, blonde effervesent appearance
s; a subtle hint of sweetness, perfume like sweet smell blends with the alcohol
t: does not have the dryness that is present in mass produced japanese lager, i am getting a hiint of sweetness, that makes this beer have ale characteristics.
overall impression, i would drink this again but i wouldnt pay for more than one of these at a steakhouse (446 characters)

Photo of Cyberkedi
2.67/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Aroma is crisp and malty, OK, but nothing special. It pours a clear straw-yellow with a fairly thick white head. Flavor is rather wan, malty and rather sweet with just a hint of hops, again nothing special but still drinkable. Texture is smooth, fizzy and just a tad on the thin side. I won't be seeking this out again, but it was worth a fair shake. (350 characters)

Photo of Bookseeb
2.74/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Appearance is a nice golden color with a fine crisp head. Smell of rice with a light earthy note. Taste of the rice with good hop having a light metallic bitter aftertaste. Mouthfeel has good body for a lager with a nice spike of carbonation. Not bad, but could use a little more balance. (288 characters)

Photo of deruiz10
3.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into a pilsner glass.

A - Two-finger head is white and frothy, retains pretty well. Pour is a clear yellowish gold.

S - Metallic, bland maltiness. Nothing stands out really.

T - Plain malts, hints of sweet honey and some meek hops. Finish is slightly biscuity and earthy.

M - Medium to light body with moderate carbonation, but crisp.

D - A refreshing beer, definitely goes well with sushi but nothing special. (429 characters)

Photo of theboozecruise
3.47/5  rDev +18%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured this one from a brown 633ml bottle (odd size...) into a German-style pilsner glass. The beer pours a clear golden color with a bubbly white head, about 3 fingers worth. A very typical lager appearance, nothing special here.

The smell is the same, just what you expect from a lager, and the adjunct rice used doesn't stand out particularly. The dominant aromas are grassy, earthy, cool smells.

The taste is better... but it's still nothing bold. Extremely crisp and refreshing, which might not be the best way to describe a beer's taste, but it works. There's nothing bad here, just nothing special.

I'm sure these rice lagers are extremely popular in Japan, their versions of BMC lagers or Euro macrolagers, but I do find this to be a little better than the American versions. (786 characters)

Orion Premium Draft Beer from Orion Beer Co., Ltd.
70 out of 100 based on 97 ratings.