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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) - Steel Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity)Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,023 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,023
Reviews: 498
rAvg: 2.35
pDev: 37.02%
Wants: 8
Gots: 90 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Steel Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Malt Liquor |  8.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 09-13-2001

Brewed in different abv. versions: 6.0%, 7.3%, 8.1%, & reports of a 8.9%
View: Beers (6) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) Alström Bros
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Ratings: 1,023 | Reviews: 498 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
2.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of spycow
2.25/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of djrn2
1.25/5  rDev -46.8%

Photo of nmann08
3/5  rDev +27.7%

Photo of metter98
2.48/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: The beer is crystal clear yellow in color and has a moderate amount of carbonation. It poured with a finger high white head that died down rather quickly, leaving a patch of bubbles in the center of the glass and a collar around the edge.
S: Light aromas of fusel alcohol are present in the nose along with some notes of corn adjuncts.
T: The taste starts off with flavors of cooked corn and non-descript malts, which transitions to notes of fusel alcohol, the latter of which lingers through the finish. No sweetness is perceptible.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I picked up some aromas of fusel alcohol in the smell, but these are completely masked if you drink the beer straight out of the "steel" can, and then the only thing that is somewhat detracting are the flavors of fusel alcohol that linger into the finish. The adjunct malts didn't seem to overpower the taste, but I wasn't keen on the fusel alcohol in the taste.

Photo of kylehay2004
2.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of BEERchitect
2.51/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Yes, ladies and Gentlemen I have reached the bottom of the barrel!

the beer pours with a heavy carbonation jostled in a turbulant and somewhat fizzy fashion. Though not particularly clear, the strong straw beer holds a fine head and laces. An ok look.

Aromas of apples and apple cider vinegar reach the nose just before a mix of grains and malt. A lot of fruitiness comes from the yeast along with some fresh bread, yeast notes. Dare I say that there is a nice floral note tucked away in there?

Flavors again take an acidic vinegary, apple-ey lead and kinda kills the initial impression of the beer. But later comes that grain-malt taste that begins to favor the grains. Sweetness does rub out the graininess but it doesn't resemble maltiness. Given the 8.1%, the beer hides the alcohol flavor well.

The body is a bit heavy and sweet for any straw colored lager, and may become a bit oily on the palate. Again graininess adds to the astringency; as do the cidery notes. Not crazy about the mouthfeel.

To be macro-swill and a beer whose sole purpose is to get you drunk, it's really not totally apauling. It's kinda in the mix with most other mass-produced lagers. Average at best, but I knock off a few points for the cidery and grainy characteristics.

I'm sure my Beer Karma will take a hit for admitting drinking this.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.12/5  rDev +32.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Today is a good day for Malt Likkapalooza III, another in my series of head-to-head matchups that pit the mongrels of the beer world, malt liquors, against one another in a fight to the very death (hopefully, not mine). Today's bout will be between this can of Steel Reserve 211 and a can of Nighthawk Premium Malt Liquor. Both are brewed in Wisconsin. What is it with those Badgers and their malt liquor?

Lightly dusted gold that sparkles in the bright blast of morning sun slanting through my front window. For all intents and purposes, the color is identical to the color of Nighthawk; they might as well be the same beer. The heads are virtually identical as well. The color is dingy white and looks like year-old newspaper. The texture is both soft and mealy, which doesn't promote persistence or lace. Not good.

The noses are scarily similar as well. This one is more subdued and is a trifle more grainy. Nighthawk's is more aromatic, sweeter and fruitier. I prefer the latter, but I haven't yet decided whether it's enough of a difference to deserve a higher score.

This beer is clearly the beast in this competition. It's noticeably stronger and more alcoholic on the palate. If SR's ABV is 8.1%, NH's must be closer to 5-6%. This product is for those who want a high alcohol content and don't mind that it's a major part of the flavor profile. It tastes like corn macerated in vodka. Not grain alcohol and not Stolichnaya, but something in between.

The mouthfeel is firm. Not full, thick or supple, but firm. Like the butt end of a machine pistol. It is, perhaps, the best malt liquor mouthfeel going as far as I'm concerned. I don't have much to say about the carbonation. At least it continues to be present and continues to attempt to lighten the load.

Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) is the clear winner of Malt Likkapalooza III, the most lopsided competition yet. Its uncompromising nature won't be to everyone's liking, but if you're going to brew a malt liquor then, dammit, brew a malt liquor that you can be proud of. When it comes to beer of this style, erring on the side of 'too much' is infinitely preferable to erring on the side of 'too little'. Therein lies the difference between these beers and the difference between their scores.

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
1.75/5  rDev -25.5%

Photo of mikesgroove
1.68/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

So, he decides to bring back two Malts with him as well, eesh. My journey into the bottom of the barrel continues. We did a side by side with this and Colt 45. Consumed on 08/09/2010.

The initial pour brings back memories of long forgotten teenage years. A urine colored pour with a minimal head graces our presence. A light bit of carbonation could be seen streaming up from the bottom of the glass, but it quickly evaporates as soon as it gets there. Aroma is wet hay, corn, grains, light alcohol, and just a rank smell. Not really one to write home about. As I take the first sip it is harsh, the flavor is just not appetizing in anyway, but amazingly as I finished it off I was left with the impression it was not terrible. An odd thing and mostly due to the abv I am sure. Light corn syrup mixes with hay, light bready notes and a hint of alcohol left on the tongue long after it is finished.

Overall I think I will pass, though I will admit it was better then the colt 45, but that was not saying very much. I think I am going to have more fun reviewing the things from the "bottom" then from the top, lol.

Photo of womencantsail
1.95/5  rDev -17%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

My roommate just came home with a couple 40s of this. I haven't had it in so long, and I just felt compelled to try a bit and write a review.

A: The beer is a light golden color with a very fluffy white head. There are tons of bubbles.

S: Corn and grain sweetness, along with some alcohol. No hops, no surprise.

T: Very sweet, but also some off flavors. Corn syrup, decaying grains, and pennies. There is a definite heat from the alcohol on the finish.

M: Very light bodied and very effervescent.

D: If it's cold enough, you can take it down quickly. And I recommend doing so.

Photo of StonedTrippin
1.98/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

this is on the edge of not being drinkable. a friend brought this over a few months ago and joked, what do you get the guy who has tried everything? well, he brought a steel reserve, and its been taking up space on the bottom shelf of the fridge ever since. last night it came out. piss yellow in color, with soda carbonation not amounting to much head at all. it smells like the can, but also that extract based density of rot gut that is sure to come. the flavor agrees, but for just a second on the front end its palatable, light, and refreshing, almost like a natural light or some other low budget beer that's just ahead of the pack. its short lived though, as the alcohol comes out, the weight sets in, and the can starts to warm up. after a few swigs, its downright repulsive, turning the stomach and taunting a hangover already. there is little or no room for this in the beer world, and thank goodness its not taking up room in my fridge any longer. yuck.

Photo of largadeer
3.31/5  rDev +40.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Celebrating review 570 with something special. 24 oz can straight from my freezer for optimal temperature, i.e. near freezing. Pours a crystal clear pale yellow, not much color for an 8% beer. Head retention is surprisingly decent, rising to fair height and retaining for a few minutes.

Smell: Not much aroma. A bit of malty sweetness I guess, but there's nothing beyond that.

Taste & mouthfeel: Pleasantly crisp and light with a moderate malt/adjunct sweetness. Fairly clean for a malt liquor, there's a hint of cooked corn, but it's faint. No real noticeable alcohol, at colder temperatures at least; I've got no desire to try this warm. Overall, this doesn't really have much flavor, bad or good. The finish is clean - no bittering hops as far as I can tell, nor any strong residual sugars. Not a bad little brew for 99 cents, I can understand why it's favored by drunks and the homeless. For half the price of your average micro six pack you can do some serious liver damage.

Photo of emerge077
2.95/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A budget buy, let's see if this is as bad as I remember... on public access they aired this hilarious episode of a "talk show", it was a couple of old guys demystifying the evil "coded symbols" you find on various malt liquors. Of course you have a slew of dangerous animals to be superstitious about (cobras, jaguars, wild cats, all pretty self-explanatory), but Steel Reserve? Where's the hidden meaning there fellas? The "211" sign is the medieval symbol for steel, but they went another route, claiming it had criminal meaning.

Here's an excerpt from the age old tome "A Story without Heroes: The Cautionary Tale of Malt Liquor"...

"LeeRoy Jordan, Jr., a health professional and independent consultant, was one of many who noted that 211 was the California penal code for robbery, and he added that the alphanumeric gang code translation of 211, based on the 2nd and 11th letters of the alphabet, was "Blood Killer." And there you have it: another malt liquor brand promoting gangsterism and violence."

Can says "JUN042012" so at least it's in code.
Skip those clear bottles.

Ultra pale gold, not much in the way of visible carbonation. A finger of whitey white foam, that settles briefly and leaves some irrregular lacing and a thin veil of broken skim on the surface.

Nondescript aroma of apple, wet grain husks, and sweet alcohol. Honestly it's pretty inoffensive.

Fruity flavor, some harsh alcohol astringency, cereal grains in the finish. The fruitiness isn't your typical apple juice box, it has some pear or similar sweetness to it that's actually not terrible, and a welcome change from typical swill, which this is too don't get me wrong. Feels like a medium bodied malt liquor, it gets a little boozy when it warms up, so don't let that happen. Leave the 40 in the fridge if you have to. Slight stickiness, there is a fair amount of sweetness but the alcohol tends to dry it out quickly. Pretty drinkable actually, which goes a long way in the malt liquor category.

Overall this isn't terrible, middle of the road compared to the bottom of the barrel malt liquors... Earthquake, Jaguar, Evil Eye, etc.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.33/5  rDev +41.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a crystal clear yellow-gold with a densely creamy bright-white head that holds surprisingly well. It eventually drops, but keeps a thin surface covering and leaves some minor lace. The nose expresses a sweet malt with some clear alcohol and a touch of fruitiness, but otherwise it's quite clean. It's full bodied with a fine carbonation that's lightly effervescent and gently caresses the tongue. Crisp yet smooth. The flavor offers clean, sweet adjunct-laden malt with a clear note of alcohol and an underlying bitterness. It finishes drying with some lingering sweet malt. It's cleaner than many malt liquors (and may be fermented a bit cooler), but other than that there's not much going on here. Still, it's not a bad choice within the style.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
1.73/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a mug glass.

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

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

T: The taste is sweet and a little boozy up front with flavors of grain & adjuncts. There's a very mild hops presence that isn't enough to mask the alcohol, since there's no much other substance to the beer. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Very crisp but not very smooth, light body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Not very flavorful at all, goes down ok, not filling at all, strong kick, it's a decent representation of its style for whatever that might be worth. There are definitely better high-octane beers out there that you can put away quickly, if that's what you're going for.

Photo of Jason
3.66/5  rDev +55.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 24 oz sliver can with eye catching fonts and "buy me" wording.

Appearance: Crystal clear light amber golden in colour with a minimal lace formed by a champagne like carbonation.

Smell: Light malt aroma with a faint acidic and noticeable alcoholic nose to follow.

Taste: Medium to full body with a definite crisp carbonation. On the sweet side. Clean slightly stripped malty palate, strong spicy alcohol presence with a trace acidic hoppy twang. Little bit of cooked corn flavour and sweet dextrin from the residual sugar. After taste is very clean with just remnants of the spicy warming alcohol.

Notes: One of the most drinkable malt liquors I have tasted, one of the more alcoholic ones I have run into also. Even when it warms up a bit it does not get ghastly like other malt liquors do.

Photo of WVbeergeek
2.1/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Appears a bit more golden than the typical malt with white nicely formed head dwindles down to leave behind specks of even lacing.
Aroma contains alcohol, mild citrus , malty layers of 2 row malt with corn and rice adjunct sweetness a nice mix for a high grav malt liquor. Taste is very alcoholic sweetness with creamy textured tones of malt corn and rice very tasty even after a full flight of tasting malt liquors. Mouthfeel is medium-light bodied slightly sticky with candy coated layers of malts. Drinkability...something I would definitely return to in a bind not something I'm a huge fan of on the regular.

Photo of Slatetank
2.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of XmnwildX12
1.5/5  rDev -36.2%

Photo of DrunkinYogi
3.75/5  rDev +59.6%

Photo of drabmuh
3.18/5  rDev +35.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Labeled with a date, "Best before Oct3111" Phew....this beer is still good. At the time of this review, this beer is the most reviewed Malt Liquor on Beeradvocate, also the #19 top American Malt Liquor on the best of Malt Liquor list also #83 on the "Bottom of the Barrel" list...this is what I call a "super tick."

Beer served out of a clear bottle into a Golden Pheasant (ZlatyBazant) glass. Beer is yellow and clear with strong carbonation, a thin head of small white bubbles, no lacing, but the head has some retention, looks like beer.

Aroma is mildly sweet, mildly alcoholic, mildly corn....ummmm...OK, not the worst Malt Liquor I've smelled, perhaps a slight bitterness....what the hell is this going to taste like.

OK, so I've been away from "Bad Beer Thursdays" for a few months but I have to say....I'm glad I didn't get the 40 ounce, instead I opted for the 22 FL oz. Beer is super sweet up front, corny and dry on the finish, almost nothing in between, there is an almost plastic like flavor, artificial, fake, in the middle that carries the beer through. Completely uninteresting. I suppose drinkable if I wanted to get crunked, but otherwise a total avoid.

Photo of oriolesfan4
2.25/5  rDev -4.3%

Photo of jwc215
3.18/5  rDev +35.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

24 oz. can:

Pours clear straw yellow with a large white head that settles to a thin cover, becoming a patch.

The smell is of light sweetness with a touch of alcohol. Pretty clean.

The taste is of mild, sweet grain, raw alcohol, with a vague hop bitterness that is just enough to take an edge off of the sweetness.

Leaning "thick", but yet crisp and smooth.

Drinkability not bad. I don't know that I could/would do a true "40", but I would put the drinkability at "above average" for style, but still harsh. Within cost/style it has a balance and smoothness.

Photo of kojevergas
2.54/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

8.10% according to my can. I got interested in reviewing this after having Full Sail's malt liquor last night. 24 fl oz aluminum can served into a Uinta pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are average relative to the style. Best before July 29th, 2013 according to the bottom of the can.

Served very cold and allowed to warm slightly over the course of consumption. Side-poured with lessened vigor as overcarbonation is anticipated. Cost was $1.79 at the grocery store.

A: Pours a four finger beige colour head of slight cream, decent froth, nice thickness, and good retention for the high ABV (~4 minutes). Body colour is a pale yellow-copper. Clear and translucent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Somewhat dull in terms of vibrance. Typical of the style.

Sm: Corn adjunct, clean barley, light floral hops, and stale malts. Clean and crisp, if off putting. A mild strength aroma.

T: Heavy corn adjunct with some off-putting artificial sugary sweetness. Bland pale malts. Clean barley. Light bland floral hops - strictly a preservative here. Emphasis is on ersatz corn and the malty build. Fairly balanced for what it is. I don't think it's as boozy as many others have noted. Caramel malt - a highlight here.

Mf: Crisp and clean. Light, smooth, and wet. Artificially smooth, with a bit of unwelcome syrupy character. Overcarbonated and biting. A bit buttery.

Dr: A great choice for getting sloshed, but an unappealing beer all around. Still, it may be one of the best choices at its price point if you're looking to get knackered. And it tastes better than most adjunct lagers. At least, it tasted different in a blind taste test I did with friends. I'll be pairing what's left of this with some pizza shortly and I think that's one of its best uses. Hides its ABV decently.

Low C-

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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) from Steel Brewing Company
57 out of 100 based on 1,023 ratings.