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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) - Steel Brewing Company

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

961 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 961
Reviews: 483
rAvg: 2.36
pDev: 37.29%
Wants: 7
Gots: 55 | 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:
Brewed in different abv. versions: 6.0%, 7.3%, 8.1%, & reports of a 8.9%

(Beer added by: Todd on 09-13-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) Alström Bros
Ratings: 961 | Reviews: 483 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of wheatyweiss
2.53/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a medium straw with active carbonation climbing the glass. Thick head sticks around and leaves heavy lace all around the glass. Looks good.

Aroma is of metallic grain. Copper and blood. Corn syrup and sugar.

Flavor is of sweet corn syrup. grains are sweet and the DMS overpowers everything. Adjuncts rule with cloying sweetness. A harsh booze bite on the end. Damn near undrinkable as it warms. Metal and oversteeped grain. Cloyingly sweet. The flavor is not the worst it can be given the ABV and how it was born. I'm getting more grain and a caramel flavor later.

Mouthfeel is thin and dry, which is strange given the cloying sweet taste.

wheatyweiss, Aug 12, 2008
Photo of mrhiccups
1.18/5  rDev -50%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Actually paid two bucks for this stuff!
For getting a big buzz on the cheap (if your stomach can stand it) get some Steel Reserve! To describe the taste as objectively as possible, I would say that it is reminiscent of castor oil and liniment. The texture of the beer in the mouth is as of used motor oil, greasy and clammy. Embalming fluid probably has less alcohol than this stuff! Not for the faint of heart, this stuff.

mrhiccups, Aug 12, 2008
Photo of Bobo77
1.27/5  rDev -46.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

I picked this up as a joke recently and had my friends laughing hysterically because I was taking notes.

Silver 24 oz tallboy can with the message, "Extra Malted Barley and Select Hops for Extra Gravity" and "Slow brewed for exceptional smooth flavor." We shall see about that. Also had written on it, "8.1% ABV."

Poured into my mug a golden tan body, so we are off to a pretty good start. But then the head disappeared very quickly.

Scent was lemony mixed with medicine and a chemical smell that I can't quite put my finger on. It sort of reminded me of the lemon scented dishwasher detergent under my sink.

A vaguely creamy mouthfeel that starts out ok but then the taste hits and it tastes just like it smells. The mouthfeel then becomes this thick, creamy, lemony, chemical that overpowers. Harsh aftertaste, sort of like Milwaukee's Best but with the corn turned up to 11 and intentionally excessive amounts of alcohol.

Im getting a buzz after only 5 or has it been 6 sips. I pour a little more into my mug. This is so revolting to me that I am going to have to resort to chugging to get the pain and suffering over with. I was going to review more beers today but after the Steel Reserve and its cough syrupy character my tastebuds are annihilated.

I want to appologize for bashing this beer. It had been probably 8 years since I last drank this stuff and I was thinking that since my taste in beer has matured over the years I would now be able to appreciate even this beer as long as I kept the style in mind. I do like strong beers, Double Bocks, Smoked Porters, and Barleywines, but this didn't work for me; I'm just not into this style anymore. This beer brought to mind times long gone by of when I sat with my crusty punk friends in old dilapitated houses drinking this or Camo or Magnum and being very disrespectful to beer. This is why I didn't like beer until I was 25, because this was all I was ever exposed to. I even had a hangover the following day, and I only get those on New Years and the day after my birthday. Beer almost never gives me a hangover and to get one from just one 24oz can.

Bobo77, Aug 10, 2008
Photo of GustoMan
1.48/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

I tried this "beer" after seeing someone I know pouring these down like water. So I figured I should at least try one. I did and was not very impressed by the taste, mouthfeel or color. It tastes to me like someone stopped the brewing process before it was finished and decided that it was enough. Somewhat watery and not very satisfying. I believe they were just after a low cost high alcohol brew. They did achieve that.
I would not recommend this beer as even any Malt Liquor that I have tried surpassed this brew.
Some people obviously like this stuff, but I will pass on this one. There are so many good beers in this world, so why waste time on the beers like this one.

GustoMan, Aug 02, 2008
Photo of NoahSYGG
1.25/5  rDev -47%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

This is a one of a kind beer. The color was a dull golden. The smell was skunky. I got it from a 24 oz can. The taste was malty and tasted like alcohol. The mouthfeel was thick and syurpy. I was not a big fan, I prefer a colt 45 if I want malt liquor.

NoahSYGG, Jul 30, 2008
Photo of kinger
1.48/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

I've had a few of these out of the 12 ounce bottle a couple of years ago at my uncle's house. I remembered that they were rather decent and that I got one heck of a quick buzz going. Tonight I wasy a 24 ounce silver can at my grocer's freezer for a buck so why not pick one up (I considered picking up more than one, but they aren't going anywhere so why waste the money) I said to myself. Pours a dirty yellow, light copper color with a frothy head that soon dwindles down. no lacing and minimal carbonation which I assume is due to a high alcohol content. I take a wiff and bam it hits me this is malt liquor in disguise, packaged as a strong lager. Well now I know that what has to be done is to start swillin' quickly and forget about it. Bad on the palate, and the flavor is typical of malt liquor. Overall this is not a good beer in any sense, and I suggest you walk on home boy.

kinger, Jul 30, 2008
Photo of charliedango
2.98/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

While I don't have a lot of experience with malt liquors, I'd have to say this surprised me. For having an 8.1% alcohol by volume rating I was surprised at how subtle it was. Unlike a lot of Ice brewed beers I've tried that have tasted thin and metallic, this beer had more flavor and heartiness to it. The smell was what threw me off as it reeks of high alcohol content. Overall I wouldn't drink this beer often, but it's not a beer I would refuse to drink.

charliedango, Jun 28, 2008
Photo of MrHungryMonkey
2.93/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Mild sweet-smelling malt aromas with some fruit (creamy like banana, but brighter like apricot or pear).

Pale-medium gold color, good clarity, moderate head with poor retention.

Sticky malt character comes right out, then I find a subtly teasing alcohol heat that reminds me of a cocktail. Sweet alcohol in mid-palate and finish. Toasty malt, dry demeanor. Hint of hop mostly through tartness.

Medium-to-medium-thick body. Mild carbonation. Alcohol dryness.

The Verdict:
There's a good bit of malt and hop flavor here for a beer that's designed to be alcoholic first and drinkable second (I assume... why else would people buy it?). It's not bad when it's cool, as it warms it gets increasingly hard to stomach. For a malt liquor, I expected much, much worse.

The can looks awesome. Kudos to he who designed the label - truly first class. I'd buy anything that looks this aesthetic at least once.

MrHungryMonkey, Jun 23, 2008
Photo of demitriustown
1.4/5  rDev -40.7%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

You only drink this malt liqour to do one thing get messed up really quick. Great when you want a good buzz without alot of cash. It does taste horrible though, but I have to admit I like the STEEL once in a while. Used to be a staple when I wanted a quick buzz in college. Now it's rather disgusting.

demitriustown, Jun 21, 2008
Photo of DmanGTR
1.33/5  rDev -43.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

I tried to kiss you but you sliced my tongue in half with your metal. I tried to hold you but you ran so thin through my fingers. As we began our first dance you brought forth your wrath and smote me across my face, whispering "you shall fall." In desperate straits I strangled you face down on the kitchen table, wrestled your convulsing body to the sink, and washed away your wretched soul with tears of joy. I hope you perish and woe betide those who walk with your kin.

DmanGTR, Jun 01, 2008
Photo of happygnome
2.03/5  rDev -14%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

a: pours a yellow orange color with about a half inch of head that dissapears quick with no lacing a good aount of carbonation is rising from the bottom of the glass to the top
s: corn malts alcohol little to no hops
t: corn malts and alcohol
m: light to medium bodied beer with a lot of carbonatoin

overall, not a good brew i wouldnt recommend

happygnome, May 20, 2008
Photo of Strix
3.45/5  rDev +46.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

pale yellow, quickly fading head

smells of sweet grains and corn

taste is surprisingly good for me. clean and crisp, with barley and a kiss of hops. Really, this is not bad.

mouthfeel somewhat weak.

washed down food quite well. Not bad for a cheap beer.

Strix, May 15, 2008
Photo of aerozeppl
2.63/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: One shade darker than golden. Minimal white head with no lacing. Better than most malt liquors.

S: Pure corn. Not good.

T: Very sweet. Corn again. Not good.

M: Med body. Super light. Damn this is dry.

D: After a bunch of beers not that bad. Nothing I would seek out though.

aerozeppl, May 10, 2008
Photo of rye726
1.33/5  rDev -43.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

This stuff is really cheap and obviously has some kind consumer market. This golden colored jewel has a beautifull white head for about a second. The smell is hard to take. Bitter, stale and harsh. The taste is not much better. A thick syrupy body with lots of carbonation makes this pretty rough. Not advised.

rye726, May 05, 2008
Photo of 1099
2.88/5  rDev +22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I dont do many malt liquors, but if I had to (or wanted to), I'd be reaching for this one first and foremost....

This hi strength brew pours a nice copper hued gold color. It has a massive head which seemed to stick around longer than i'd figured it would...not bad

The smell is very sweet: malts, and a lot of alcohol. Not very inviting.

The taste is actually pretty nice. Lots of malt, maybe a hint of a hop, and lots of alcohol. Everything balances out fairly nicely when its ice cold.

The mouthfeel is pretty thick for the style. Its almost thick enough to chew on.

Drinkability is just average...because of its high alcohol content (8.1%), it will only take a few cans to floor you...I know it did me.

All in all, for the style, this is pretty good. When I need a high strength brew, the reserve is my choice!


1099, Apr 26, 2008
Photo of Offa
3/5  rDev +27.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is deep gold with a thin white head thinning quickly to a cloudy ring.

The aroma is winey with sweet fruit and meat, somewhat similar to some blond doppelbocks and less rich wee heavies I've had.

The taste is similar, very alcoholic and winey, a bit sweet, malty, and meaty. It's strong and a tad harsh but has definite, full, musky, fruity flavours with a hint of sweet grain. It's somewhat interesting, and has a sweet, pungent alcoholic quality, bite, and warmth. It has medium body and a slightly thick, oily palate.

Offa, Apr 23, 2008
Photo of jadpsu
2.58/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I bought based on nothing else but price. It was cheap, $1.00 for a 24 oz. can. Always interested in finding a decent inexpensive beer. So my expectations were low and the beer actually did better than my expectations, but not by much. In other words while it was not very good, it wasn't terrible either.

Poured a clear golden yellow with a decent head. Had a clean aroma with slight wiffs of graininess/grassiness. Nothing offensive al all.
Taste has some malty grain along with alcohol taste that comes through. It was cold and the taste was pretty much comparable to several of the macro american lagers, meaning serve it cold on a hot day and actually can hit the spot.

But not as

jadpsu, Apr 21, 2008
Photo of bobbinalong
2.83/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This one is only to be purchased in cans. The clear glass bottles quickly destroy it's few tasteful attributes. As others have stated I've had pretty good ones and pretty bad ones, probably directly related to how old it is. I've had a few that I could actually taste hops in but they are very rare.

During my years of being a low budget guy I found this to be the most drinkable of malt liquors and I still consume it on a regular basis. It actually makes a nice contrast to thicker quality beers and reminds you of why you spend what you do to get the good stuff.

One trick for improving the taste if you should choose to pour this in a glass is to squeeze in a slice of lime. Makes it more refreshing on a hot summer day

bobbinalong, Apr 17, 2008
Photo of giblet
2.6/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

poured decent into my glass, good head and carbonation. grain aroma with a hint of metalic. bitey taste of grain and carbonation. ok for a thirst quencher and a beer to catch a buzz on. 8.1% abv helps that cuz i would not drink four or six to do it.

suckem up and movem out.


giblet, Apr 17, 2008
Photo of tab021
3.18/5  rDev +34.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

For such a special event of beer tasting, I pulled out the ol' Nintendo to make sure I had a good time with this fortified malt...

A: light gold with a head that vanishes into a of bubbles by the time you could shove a cartridge in.

S: Malt and alcohol. remember how you thought beer smelled when you were like 3? this is that smell

T: A very simple mid sweetness with a small bitterness that is not exactly great, but its definitely tolerable.

F: Light carbonation and easy to drink

D: In the event I ever wanna get hammered without investing more than a few dollars, this is definitely the drink to accomplish that. But thats really all it is here for. Not so much the enjoyment of a true beer, but simply to get trashed.

*after completing all 8 levels in Super Mario I stand up only to find how hard this baby hits. I wobble, stare for a minute, then promptly sit down, and plug in Super Mario 2

tab021, Apr 13, 2008
Photo of turbine2475
1.38/5  rDev -41.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I can't explain why I drank this last night but I needed this to transend a barrier!!!! Had 666 as my review score and couldn't hang with that but this brew truely sucks!!! So I hope you guys don't succumb to the massive hangover Because ./5 is much cheaper, much better, and a lot easier on the body!!!

turbine2475, Mar 16, 2008
Photo of soupyman10
1.43/5  rDev -39.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Got this beauty in a 40 oz for $2. Truly one of the finest beverages I've ever seen, smelt or tasted. Poured a delightful straw color with tons of tiny little bubbles. Thankfully, no head was in view. Nose was an aromatic acidic sweetness and grain. Taste was likewise, although the deliciously biting mouthfeel basically made the taste non-existent. This was so good I even almost finished one.

soupyman10, Feb 19, 2008
Photo of altgeeky1
2.35/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Can opens... but the pop is from the pulltab. I expected some report from the CO2. Looking at the can, there's absolutely no way to know how old it is. Poured into a pilsner glass, golden-yellow but I get absolutely no head.. just weak lacing. Carbonation levels are among the lowest I've ever seen.
Smells like homebrew bottling sugar.. .all corn, and I couldn't smell any hops at all. Tastes interesting actually - at first no taste at all, as the carbonation breaks into very fine bubbles. This is followed by a ton of sweet unfermented sugars (corn) at the front of the mouth, yet follows very dry in the mouth and finishes with a light alcohol burn in the mouth. Like Hurricane, this is a half step up for the style. Mouthfeel is thick watery sugar, and while it's not a quality brew it's escapes that cidery burn taste that I usually detect in a shitty American corn beer (I think I'd prefer this to Bud). Drinkability..? Hmm. The style is meant to be drunk from a paper bag, alongside a spliff or blunt -- I have neither. But it's drinkable especially if you remind yourself that afterwards, you can chase with a good pils or Anchor.

altgeeky1, Feb 08, 2008
Photo of GlockAmore
3.58/5  rDev +51.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

The biggest problem with Steel Reserve 211 is inconsistency. The flavors and appearance I note here are for a "good" one. I've found several "bad" ones that were a far cry from what the brewers intended. I don't know if it's the clear glass bottle, or poor quality control, all I know for sure is-occasionally I get one that's awful.

Appearance is deep gold, a bit richer than most mass produced beers. Taste is rich, malty sweetness with just a kiss of hop and an alcohol finish. I rather like its balance. Head is pure white with fine bubbles that dissipates quickly, leaves little lacing. Mouth feel is bit thin for the robust flavors of this brew, but then, for 99 cents a bomber(!) you could do worse.

GlockAmore, Feb 07, 2008
Photo of Deadstar
2.58/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served out of a 24oz. into a glass. (Was this a bad idea? If I have a malt liquor it's usually straight from the bottle or can hehe)

Look: Holding the drink up to a light, it looks to be a light gold. A fair amount of carbonation rising up to the surface; after the pour a two finger head dissipated into a thin layer of bubbles.

Smell: Malty and sweet, some alcohol too.

Taste: I can definitely taste the alcohol in this, it seems to hit at the beginning and also at the end. This drink is also somewhat sweet and that rolls in at the middle. Not too bad.

Feel: Light carbonation on the tongue, goes down pretty easy.

Drinkability: I can have something like this every once in a while, but not much more than that.

Overall, I can't really say that I like it a lot but I think that it's definitely above some of the other malt liquors I've had. Not too bad.

edit - I feel my C- might be a little low, so give it a shot if you've never had it. It's really not all that bad and does in a pinch. (for me)

Deadstar, Feb 05, 2008
Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) from Steel Brewing Company
57 out of 100 based on 961 ratings.