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Brew Masters Private Reserve - Anheuser-Busch

Not Rated.
Brew Masters Private ReserveBrew Masters Private Reserve

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

115 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 115
Reviews: 104
rAvg: 3.51
pDev: 16.24%
Wants: 5
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Anheuser-Busch visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Lager |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Decades ago, Budweiser brewmasters started a tradition. During the holidays, they'd collect the purest liquid from the brewing kettles; pre-sparged, first wort. This first stock - unusually smooth and rich despite its robust alcohol - was reserved for A-B friends and family, until now. Note from the brewers: this an all-malt beer; NO rice or corn. Imported hops. 20 Plato. It's also a completely different recipe than Budweiser.

(Beer added by: yen157 on 11-13-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 115 | Reviews: 104 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jcdiflorio
2.7/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Served into a pub glass from a 46oz. brown bottle with a swing top

Clear,golden 2" thick,fluffy white head,good retention with spotty lacing.

Intense sweet carmell nose,burnt aromas,some metallic smells,fruitty with an apple scent. Slightly grassy not much hop aromas

Intense carmell flavors,boozy,sour and tart some fruitiness.Metallic tastes.some grassy tastes,no real hop tastes.Leaves a sour carmelly taste on the palate. Too malty no real hop bitterness,very lobsided balance.

Very creamy mouthfeel,nitro like. Seemed to have drinkability at first,the more you drink the more the carmell/alcohol overpowers your palate. Had a hard time finishing 16 oz of this beer

jcdiflorio, Feb 04, 2007
Photo of PeatReek
2.75/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

[EBF review series continues (from notes!)...]

OK, notwithstanding the proviso in the style description that this is an "all-malt" beer without any corn or rice, it basically tasted like a thicker Budweiser with some aroma hops tossed in. It was certainly thicker and maltier than the commercial product, but still had a certain bluntness that makes commercial Bud so unappealing. The late (dry?) hop addition did make a nice contribution however, adding a prominent spicy hop aroma and flavor. Probably still wouldn't buy it if I saw it on a supermarket shelf.

PeatReek, Feb 23, 2006
Photo of BigRedN
2.78/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Poured from the 750 oz swing-top into a tulip glass. The beer is a dark golden. A vigorous pour yields a big 2 inch head that eventually settles to a good cover with some lacing. In typical AB fashion, this one is perfectly clear.

Smell: I get a bit of a dread from the aroma of this beer. It smells sweet. Sweet malts and something giving it a sweet corn like smell. While I am pretty sure that this does not have anything corn related in it, but that is what I smell.

Taste: As I feared, this is a sweet beer. Good maltyness to it. I should not be totally disappointed that this had absolutely no bitternes to it as it is classified as an All Malt Lager, but I am never-the-less let down a bit.

Mouthfeel: Lighter in body, doesn't make it to medium body for me. Light carbonation, no aftertastes.

Drinkability: It was a bit of a chore to finish off the bottle. A bit too sweet for my tastes. With the beer's sweetness and high ABV, this one is more like an American Malt Liquor lager, than an all malt lager. Will I buy another? Not this year, but perhaps I may give the 2007 version a try, if the price is right.

BigRedN, Jan 01, 2007
Photo of Minkybut
2.78/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pored beer from its growler into a tumbler at 50 degrees. Beer had a wonderful golden straw color and a nice head with sticky lacing that went the whole way down the glass. Smell was kind of a bready regular bud smell. Taste was at first interesting and tasty. But the more I drank the less I liked it. It was very sweet to me, overly in my opinion and kind of tasted like a thickend bud with honey dumped in it. Will not buy again

Minkybut, Dec 24, 2006
Photo of scruffwhor
2.78/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This one quart 14.5 oz bottle was given to me as an x-mas present.
I must note the bottle itself looks very nice and eye catching.

Appearance- Pours a quick fading bright white head. No film left on the beers surface or the inside of the glass. The color was a clear, medium amber to tan color mixed with some sparse lacing.

Smell- Reminds me of the bronze rods we sell at work, mixed with some America rye bread and alcohol.

Taste- Starts out a smooth barley, but then bakes itself into a kaiser roll bread and water flavor. You are then subjected to a hint of metal and alcohol. The alcohol is not repelling, but more than I wanted. But at the same time, not surprised I could taste it so well.

Mouthfeel- The palate is warmed with the alcohol flavor. Their is the easily recognizable macro carbonation that would be more refreshing if not for the taste.

scruffwhor, Feb 28, 2006
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
2.8/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Appearance - a slghtly hazed pour with a honey/straw color. A brief build-up of head reduces to a stray swirl of bubbles within a minute.

Aroma - strong grain with a cereal bend, heavy aroma of something tropical but not hops. Coconut? Has a malt liquor nose.

Taste - sweet, grainy, Budweiser cereal flavor, basically a Bud on 'roids. The alcohol is kinda out there on its own without much to enhance. Hmm, an Imperial American Macro Lager. Not very pleasant to me, about as much as any malt liquor. The swallow has the briefest bit of bite, then this aftertaste that is wet, grainy, bleh.

Mouthfeel - moderate to slightly thin body, decent carbonation even after popping and resealing a few times.

Drinkability - to each their own, I didn't like this one. Props to A-B for hitting the bigger beer scene, but this just tastes like amplified rice to me.

brewdlyhooked13, Sep 06, 2007
Photo of bigbubba
2.83/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

It looks like regular Bud, with a bit more head, and a bit of lacing. While popping the top there was a cheap beer smell, once poured it had almost no aroma. The taste is definitely better than Bud. It is more like Bud Ice if I remember my college days. Definitely a step up from a macro beer, but for the price I could have had 6 bottles or a couple bombers of a really good beer.

bigbubba, Dec 06, 2005
Photo of BEERchitect
2.9/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Release 2006:
I seemed to enjoy this years brew better than last years. This brew tasted just like classic Budweizer, but heavier, sweeter, and more alcoholic. Still with the heavy emphasis on rice and adjuncts that I find distracting. The beer would be better with a focus on the adjunct / malt balance, but...ooh well. The beer starts off with a malt-liquor sweetness, graininess, vegitol, and bite, but not all that bad. However, the beer wears on me quickly, leaving more vegitol and grain qualities than malt or hops. I'll probably keep buying this beer every year, and criticizing it as well.

Release 2005:
I appreciate Anheuser Busch for releasing this crafty brew to the public. However, I still do not prefer it. The color is a charming dark straw color with a viscous, oily texture. Carbonation is right on target, as opposed to many of their other products. This one smells typical of cereal based lagers. It picks up on a noticable grain and vegetable aroma with light hints of noble hops, bread, and alcohol. Tastes similar of a grainy, corn-like flavor that becomes a bit distracting. There are some nausiating flavors that remind me of baking soda. The body is, as promised, heavy and creamy for a lager. High marks on smoothness and roundness. Finishes bodly viscous with a grain and cereal sweetness that mellows into the aftertaste. I'm glad that I tried this, but it's probably the last one I'll drink for a while.

BEERchitect, Nov 26, 2005
Photo of mightymalt97
2.95/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

If this is to be a"holiday brew" from AB then they missed the mark.
It is a souped up version Budweiser. It has great color, big time grainy sweetness but not in the way of hops . A bit of a dissapoinment I expected something like their Christmas beer from 1995. But as usual they have to go with the tatse that fits the masses of uneducated beer drinks.

mightymalt97, Nov 20, 2005
Photo of HardTarget
3.03/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle Inspection: Brew Masters Private Reserve 2005 By Budweiser; 1 quart 14.5 fluid ounces black as night dark brown glass bottle with a plastic plug swing top. Many thanks to Pegasus for providing the sample.

Aroma: Very mild, almost non-existent nose. What I got was sweet, but that’s really all.

Appearance: Slightly more golden than average macro-lagers, fine carbonation bubbles gave a nice Champaign appearance. Good half finger of head, but no lace.

Flavor: Slight corn and apple notes in a clean lager flavor. Alcohol peeks through fairly prominently.

Mouthfeel: Creamy texture, very nice thickness and good firm carbonation level. The highlight of the beer in my opinion.

Overall Impression: Not bad, but not great. The alcohol is the most noted taste. As a malt liquor it’s not bad, but it’s no celebration in my book.

HardTarget, Dec 11, 2005
Photo of adammills
3.05/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer poured a nice golden color into my pint glass. Very clear, slight carbonation rising, a nice healthy head that sticks around. Both in smell and taste it is sweet and bready with some honey like sweetness. I drank this beer at 42* and 55* hoping that I would find a good temp to drink this beer at. I am a little disapointed in this beer. It smells like a thicker, sweet, bud. Very sweet. Little to no hop aroma or flavor...Man, I really wanted to like this and not review like a beer snob, but I cant do it. It is not bad, nor is it good. The alcohol in it is well masked, and it is not an overall terrible offering from Budweiser, a real step up from their main product line, but I will not be buying this again.

adammills, Dec 27, 2006
Photo of GWaters
3.05/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle is from 2006.

This is not the Dopplebock

I am not a beer snob. This means I wil try all kinds of beer, and last winter I saw this odd Budweiser bottle for sale. It said "Brewmaster" and "Private Reserve" so I had to try it. For the money, I wouldn't buy it again. I could stick to 12 oz Bud, and not miss this at all. It was worth the try though, and the bottle is being used for my own Homebrew now.

Pour: Lager clear medium golden in color, with a moderate white head, abundant lace. Fair carbonation

Smell: Very sweet, malty smell. No real hop scent to speak of.

Taste: Moderate alcohol presence, caramel, honey, and malt. Not incredibly complex, but it is a clean taste.

Mouth feel: Very wet, easy to palate. Pleasant.

Drinkability: Slightly better than the typical Budweiser lager. I could drink a few of these on a hot day.

Serving type: 1 Quart 14.5 oz black champagne type flip top bottle

GWaters, Feb 16, 2009
Photo of granger10
3.1/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear golden color with copper tinges throughout. Nice foamy white head reduces to a thin lacing above the liquid. Aroma has notes of grain malts and a clean yeasty note. I'm getting a bit of citric flavors in there and maybe a bit of honey. Flavor is similar to Budweiser but just more intense and full bodied with malts. And it doesn't leave you with that rice taste on the finish. Really thick in body but more effervescent than I thought. No adjunct flavor in there and really clean. But after a glass I became rather bored with the offering and the beer itself doesn't have any truly appealing qualities. Not really sessionable but not a sipper either, it kind of lies in some gray zone of beerdom. Decent but nothing great.

granger10, Dec 17, 2005
Photo of BeerBob
3.1/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Brew Masters Private Reserve 2005 By Budweiser pours a clear dark golden amber from a 1 quart 14.5 fluid ounces black as night dark brown glass bottle with a plastic plug swing top.

Head went to over two fingers before turning rocky and then disappearing to a smooth glassy surface, no foam, no lace... no nothing.

Nose is a pleasant bitter hops, some grain husk, and just a whiff or two of alcohol. Palate is a hops bitter at first, then migrates to a sweet adjunct, followed by the bight of carbonation.

Aftertaste is a persistent, sticky, and drying bitter.


12/09/2005

Bottle number two, Some lace, with a well defined ring. Palate is a nice smooth hops bitter, with a lesser adjunct, and with a well balanced bitter.

Nice... Brew Masters Private Reserve 2005 By Budweiser, delivers!

BeerBob, Nov 26, 2005
Photo of ypsifly
3.2/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Big ass flip top bottle poured into an imperial pint glass.

Clear gold with lots of carbonation that supports a tall white head. Decent retention with some lace.

Smells grainy with some generic sweet malts, corn, and ghostly hops.

The taste follows along the same lines as the nose, but the sweets are kicked up a hair. The hops register in the finish, but there is nowhere near enough of them. On the up side, the alcohol doesn't register, and it does have a decent mouthfeel. Some dextrins, but not bad at all.

I paid $13.99 for some "high brow" malt liquor. Won't happen again...but hey...its no Steel Reserve or any of that shit.

ypsifly, Dec 07, 2005
Photo of BrewMaster
3.2/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Big fluffy head with excellent retention in the sniffer glass. Golden orange in color with visible light carbonation.

Smell: Earthy hop nose with a thin malty scent.

Taste: Crisp and thin malt profile, alcohol is sharp and noticable. Earthy and sandy malt with drips of toffee and a bitter hop ending.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and more full than most lagers. Nice texture.

Drinkability: Quaffable but does not stand out from other beers. The sharp alcohol flavor is a bit much.

BrewMaster, Dec 27, 2005
Photo of Erniek
3.2/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was at first sip a bit impressed but as I continued sipping it became apparent to me that this was more like a souped up buddy. I kind of smelled vegetables in the nose and some sweetness but not much else. Mouthfeel was nice and it did go down smoothly but the alcohol was not balanced with flavor very well. Seems oily on finish. I don't think I would buy this again without any improvement.

Erniek, Jan 23, 2007
Photo of mynie
3.23/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Very filtered, is all I can say. Very dark, yes, but very filtered. And almost no head.

Smells pretty nice. Deep molasses grain, a little bit of alcohol, and a light, dry hop hint. A lot like Dogfish Head's malt liquor, only without the fruit complexities.

Taste is a total letdown. The molasses is huge, overpowering almost, and it leaves no room for any sort of complexities. It's not bad, but all of the promise of the smell is nowhere to be found.

This is a bit overpriced for a beer that's merely decent. It's not that I can't behid macros, or anything, and I'm not just giving this a MOR score because it's made be AB. It's just not that good.

mynie, Dec 24, 2006
Photo of MrVonzipper
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%

MrVonzipper, Jun 03, 2012
Photo of DogFood11
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The cream of the crop according to the label. This is the top of the barrel. I had to give this huge magnum bottle a try even if it is a pretty penny. Highly filtered golden color, although this is quite a few shades darker than a typical bud.

Head forms quite a fizzy layer but fades to a thin lace in no time. Tons of carbonation in all sizes. Malted taste adds a nice twist to this brew that I've never noticed before. Grain and rice are still evident and there is a large fruity backbone. Some sweetness, maybe its just plain ol' sugar but it does have a touch of a candied background. Finishes very clean. All spice on the backside of every swig.

Notes: I liked it. It is basically the grand cru of budweiser. I'd be a happy employee if I could get this often.

DogFood11, Jan 06, 2006
Photo of ejimhof
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%

ejimhof, Oct 05, 2013
Photo of taez555
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

1 quart 14.5 fluid ounces, are you kidding? That's 46.5 ounces? At 8.5% alcohol, that's some serious beer. To start with, love the box it comes in, not to mention the cool swing-top bottle. Definitely a cool presentation.

This beer poured a bright orange/yellow body with a decent white head.

Nose is rather subdued for such a big beer. Sort of a mild sugary caramel and candy like malt. There's a slight sting from the bigger alcohol but for the most part very mellow.

Taste is light to medium bodied. MIld fresh malt, very light caramel and sweet dough flavors dominate. A very mild bitterness gives this beer just enough balance without ever showing a true "bitter" quality. A little bit of sting from the alcohol as well as some nice warming touches. The finish is what really says "budweiser", I'm not sure how else to describe it as if it's a cop out, but it has this strong lingering macro taste in the finish that lingers for some time.

Honestly I'm amazed someone made a beer this big without making it BIG. Light body and little flavor outside of your typical bud. I really wanted to like this beer, I didn't even mind the $13 price tag, but really it's just a novelty that seems intended for Bud drinkers who want something fancy to drink around the holidays and not a beer for the Craft brew market.

taez555, Apr 06, 2006
Photo of tadmuchowski
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%

tadmuchowski, Jun 21, 2013
Photo of jeremiahjsmith
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - deep gold color with a gleaming white head marked by very fine carbonation

S - syrupy with an inviting honey character and faint whiff of alcohol

T - tangy, a bit heavily sweet with a slight unidentified mustiness and almost no hops bitterness, finish is not clean and not entirely pleasant. No heat from the alcohol - unexpected based on the aroma.

M - substantial, coats and lingers, somewhat overstaying its welcome in my mouth

D - pretty dang good considering ABV. A little bit of an off flavor, but overall excellent in terms of drinkability, which I believe is a strength of the producer ...

jeremiahjsmith, Mar 02, 2007
Photo of dedrinker
3.28/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured deep golden with little head. Smelled sweet malts. Tasted sweet malts with a certain little candy-corn like sweetness that I get from aged dark Belgian ales. Then nothing. Over. The brief malt attack is good, but I found it a little cloying for my tastes, and it lacked a certain depth I would expect from such a beer. Not bad though, just not for me. Considering that this was supposedly a secret tradition for the privileged few each year, I would feel a little cheated to know that this was as good as A-B could get.

dedrinker, Jan 21, 2007
Brew Masters Private Reserve from Anheuser-Busch
80 out of 100 based on 115 ratings.