1. The BeerAdvocate Store is back! Pre-order your stuff now. Items begin shipping Dec 15. Christmas deadline = Dec 18 @ 5pm EST.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Budweiser Budvar - Budějovický Budvar, n.p.

Not Rated.
Budweiser BudvarBudweiser Budvar

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,273 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,273
Reviews: 752
rAvg: 3.61
pDev: 15.24%
Wants: 33
Gots: 60 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Budějovický Budvar, n.p. visit their website
Czech Republic

Style | ABV
Czech Pilsener |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Exported to the US as Czechvar.

(Beer added by: Todd on 10-19-2002)
View: Beers (10) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Budweiser Budvar Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,273 | Reviews: 752 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jwhawkins81
3.85/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma - Awesome level of aromatic hops is pretty much all I can muster. That and I'm horrible at describing aroma.

Appearance - Beautiful yellow color with a steady cascade of carbonation. Pour created a thin white head that didn't dissipate very quickly.

Taste - Crisp dry with a reasonable amount of hop bitterness. I tasted this at two different temperatures and the warmer one closer to 55 degrees had a heavy bitterness that was more of a "thud" on the palate and also had a distinctive level of sweetness. The cooler one closer to 40 was a lot smother without the sweetness of the warmer beer. Unsurprisingly this beer is better cold.

Notes - Good mouthfeel, which for me is just a good level of carbonation.

Photo of barleywort
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Serving: 500mL bottle poured into a pint glass.

Appearance - Poured golden yellow (though darken than expected) with visible carbonation and surprisingly voluminous head that dissipated quickly. Minimal to no lacing.

Smell: Not much in the aroma. Minimal hop notes and grainy smell. Hints of the alcohol underneath.

Taste: sweat grain giving way to a mildly astringent alcohol taste that didn't linger. Hops were present, but difficult to discern. Not overly bitter, and no lingering taste except hints of alternating grain and alcohol.

Mouthfeel: This is where I was most surprised. It was crisp, but not overly carbonated and didn't have near as dry a finish as I would expect. Actually quite the opposite; it was neither thin nor light, even though it appeared quite carbonated.

Drinkability: Quite a tasty beer and defied my expectations of it, based on similar beers in the style. I don't know that I would be drinking it all night long, but it sure beats the mass-produced American lager that misappropriated its namesake.

Photo of MrHadack
3.83/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this beer on tap when traveling in Germany a few years back. As a relative beer novice back then I had little to no knowledge of it. It remains one of my personal favorites, and thus a good candidate for my first BA review.

Served from the tap into a Budvar tulip glass (which I was given by the bartender as a souvenir, probably from ordering so many!)

(A): Bright, clean and clear golden color. String of bubbles rising to a thin pure white head.

(S): Floral notes, crisp scent. The word "clean" comes to mind. Nothing overly intriguing in the bouquet.

(T): Much more going on here than I expected. Spiciness from the hops that lingers throughout, a flavor that reminds me of a scone: dry and bread-like with a barely detectable sweetness. Finishes clean.

(M): A fuller feel than the color would have you believe. More carbonation than I care for, usually. Overall perfectly fine for the style but nothing to really speak about.

(D): I could drink this beer all night long. As I said, it is one of my favorites, especially on tap in Europe. The flavor finishes well and doesn't linger and it isn't too filling or potent. A great session beer in my mind.

Note: I occasionally find the USA bottled version "Czechvar" around my area and I do drink it. It's a bit different to me, or at least I think it is. I think anything tastes better in its native region, but that could be psychological. ;)

Photo of trbergman
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

330mL bottle poured into a shaker pint. Reviewing the American "Czechvar" label.

A - Golden-straw with active bubbling and a thin, bone-white head.

S - Cereal grain, doughy, herbal and floral hoppiness.

T - Bready, doughy malt with some grainy astringency, but also a hint of sweetness. Moderate to heavy hop bitterness for the style, with noble hop spiciness. Finishes dry, with lingering bitterness.

M - To call the body light would be inaccurate, but not far off the mark. Very crisp, although as noted above, a tad astringent.

D - Despite some imperfections, this is a decent beer. I wouldn't chose it over Pilsner Urquell, much less some of the better American craft pilsners, but definitely worth drinking if offered.

Photo of danetrain0101
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The appearance is of a very golden liquid with little to no head.

The smell was very skunky, almost as if I got sprayed in the face by a skunk. Never had a beer this skunky before. I grabbed this from the back of the bottles but I guess the light took its toll. Some hints of lemon, malt and a slight smell of hops.

Taste is very crisp and refreshing. Some skunkiness as well as some slight bitter notes. Malt can be tasted.

Very nice and drinkable. I wish the american Bud was this good!

Photo of lstokes
3.18/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bought two half-liter bottles at my local supermarket in Berlin, best before December 2010. It looks nice--I love visible carbonation and this has a lot of it against the dark gold, but the head disappears quickly.

Otherwise it's very average. The smell is lemony, the taste is caramel and lemon with a grain finish, the hops are present but not doing much, so it's a bit too sweet overall, it's creamy and drinkable but not complex in the least.

Photo of ClavisAurea
3.73/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

two 12oz bottles in a .5L Schneider Weisse glass.

Appearance: dark gold, very effervescent, pure white head dissipated quickly

Nose: caramel, malts, spicy hops in the end

Taste: caramel, sweet malty beginning and middle that lends way to a spicy hops finish, very balanced

Mouthfeel: clean and refreshing, water of the gods

Drinkablity: I can easily drink a six pack of this in one night. It pairs well with light fare like lime chicken and sandwiches

Photo of Buebie
1.78/5  rDev -50.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Picked up this green 12oz bottle as a x-mas gift.

Off the pour the aroma of skunk is potent, not welcoming at all. Color is a golden transparent yellow, producing a 1'' white head, quick to dissipate, leaving a thin collar.

Aroma is of the spraying skunk found in the woods. Unfortunately I do not have any tomato sauce to line my nostrils with.

Taste is also laced with this peculiar unpleasant skunk taste. Mixing with mild grains and bready yeast.
Mouthfeel is thin and watery full of biting carbonation.

No pleasant.

Photo of czfreeman
3.8/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up this today out of pure curiosity. I've read about the original Bud for years, now finally decided to pick one up.
Poured from a green 0.5 l bottle, gold foil opens with a nice hiss. Lazy bubbles immediately rising in the bottle.
Pours a light amber tone of malt, bit of an orange-yellow tint. medium high carbonation, but the head is really nice. Light foamy froth actively bubbling away around the rim of my glass. Already gives the AB version a solid kick in the ass.
Aromatics are of light malt, a clean grassy freshness, crisp Czech hoppiness, biscuits, overall well carbonated, and very fresh.
The finish is crisp, clean, with a light citrus-grassy- hop finish. This brew definatley recalls the great Urquell, and delivers nearly the same satisfyingly full-flavored, yet light drink. I think Urquell is a bit dryer, but thats just opinion.
This really is the polar opposite of the AB Bud. NOthing complex, intruiging or mind blowing here, bt nonetheless well made, quality, and well executed.
I must say, after drinking primarily Munich Helles the last month, I lean a bit more in the favor of the Helles for it's higher level of malty-mineral complexity, but this is really a decent brew. I will buy this again

Photo of ThomasMetal75
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Looks like a standard, golden-yellow Czech Lager. The beer has a very attractive looking carbonation when pored into my Stella Artois glass. The head to the beer is the consistency of soapy bathwater that dissipates quickly.

S- Lots of malty-biscuit type smells. The hop presence is easily detected, but does not overpower the nose at all. Smells well balanced with the beer's ingredients.

T- Biscuit is the main flavor, along with that malty-hop bite to it. The combination of the malt and the hop of the beer creates a slight spice. The aftertaste is super clean!

M- This beer is heavier than a traditional macro lager like Budweiser that is modeled after the Czechvar. The feel in the mouth is very velvety. When swalloed, the beer is almost creamy going down.

D- This would be an excellent beer in the spring or summertime. Very refreshing. Personally, I would chose something like a witber over Czech Pilsners on a warm day, but this would do great as an alternative nonetheless.

Photo of bobsy
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've been batting around the idea that pilseners are misunderstood, and that I don't have a great understanding of them myself, so consider this my education. Over the next month or so I'll be matching up a pair of pilseners to see what I can learn and to see whether I can get a new appreciation for the style. First up, the original pils and the original bud.

Pours a light yellow, with a large frothy pils head, which eventually dies down to nada, but does leave a few spots on the way. It has the wonderful clarity of a classic pils, but would look more attractive with a slightly deeper hue. Its certainly a decent looker, but not a match for Urquell in this category.

The aroma is where Budvar really begins to deviate from its ever so slightly older compatriot. Whereas Urquell had wonderful balance between hops and malts, Budvar is definitely heavier on the saaz. Its also heavier on the less desirable aspects of the hop, and while the bottle still seems relatively fresh for an import there is always the doubt that due to the green glass, long journey and light a small seed of skunk is about to germinate. I'm guessing this is okay though, and the best before is still over 7 months away. Really, the fact of the matter is that the saaz has a far more grassy and herbal overtone than floral, and this treads a fine line between hoppy and relative of hoppy. Beyond the saaz there's a nice lemon hit and a faint whisper of pale malt.

Here's where things get confusing, though. While Budvar had a far more prominent saaz aroma, it had far less bitterness than the Urquell. Indeed, the hop character comes through more at the roof of the palate, bringing a large grassy and herbal component to the flavour.I'd actually go so far as to say that the flavour is more balanced than Urquell, though its not a flavour I dig as much. After the hops hit, they tail off into sweet biscuity malt before reasserting themselves in a dry finish. Very light body, but well-suited to the style. Average carbonation.

This is certainly an easy drinking pilsener, but I'd hesitate to put it in the same class as Urquell. The green bottle certainly raises a concern for freshness, but even with what I believe is a reasonably fresh sample, it seems to lack the vibrancy and finesse of the other brew. Side-by-side this seems more work-a-day, but that doesn't stop it from being a refreshing option when the sun is blazing down.

Photo of rednrag
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Been wanting to try this beer for years, I guess like everyone I was intrigued by the Anheuser-Busch controversy. Plus, I really like European lagers. I personally think Urquell is a beautiful beer (the only other Czech beer I've had). This also is a pretty dam fine lager. Probably not as good as Urquell, but still pretty good. If you're a fan of Euro lagers like I am, you will like this one.

Photo of Naugled
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Has a nice sharp carbonation, a quick white head, and a crystal clear yellow straw body.

Mostly sweetness in the nose, corn and skunk.

Good malt hop balance, some sweetness but balanced very well.

Medium body not real rich but nice.

Very drinkable, good session beer.

Photo of Kegatron
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz green bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a abosolute crystal clear gold, with 2+ fingers of brite-white foamy head. Retains with a bit of a thin fizzy look, leaving a moderate amount of foamy spotty lacing behind. The aroma is floral and spicy up front, with a sharp pang of citrus and toasted biscuits in the back. This has a bit of a sticky feel here in the nose.

The taste matches the aroma, with an initial spicy bitterness that is balanced by a fairly strong sweetness from those bready feeling malts. There is some leftover bitterness in the finish, with a dryness that lingers for a bit in the mouth. The mouthfeel is lighter-medium bodied, with a sharp crispness that prickles the mouth, yet this still remains nice and smooth. Easy drinking stuff here.

I didn't mind this at all. Moderately flavored with a crisp and thirst quenching nature about it, I could down a couple of these in a sitting no problem.

Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.58/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On draught at Kickoff in Waterloo.

Poured into a Czechvar tulip glass. Deep golden, a thin white head that stuck around for most of the session. Some lacing.

Smell is typical for the style: light hops, grass and grain, a bit of sweetness at the back.

Taste is fairly good, crisp and refreshing. Hard to say a whole lot, other than a better-than-average pilsner flavour.

Mouthfeel is well carbonated, not too thin.

Still not my favorite, but a nice, easy drinking pilsner. Usually fairly cheap at the LCBO, I say go for it!

Photo of bret27
3.63/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From green bottle. Within freshness date.

A:Golden yellow to orange, clear, white fluffy head

S: grain, light caramel, herbal refreshing saaz-like hop aroma, faint little skunk

T: Grainy and grassy, little sweet. Slightly bitter finish and little bite.

M/D: wnl for style.

Overall: Not as clean as pilsner urquell. Has more of a bite and grassy taste. Freshness presumably not an issue.

Photo of seanbhudson
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.5 ounce bottle with expiration date of 5/7/2010. Label says Czechvar. Pours a clear gold color with a small white head. No noticeable lacing.
Light aroma of herbal hops and hint of lemon.
"Pilsener" like flavor. A little wheatgrass, malt, crackers, mineral and light spiciness.
Medium body with lightly crisp mouthfeel. Lively carbonation.
Easy drinking beer but has enough flavor to make it interesting. Definitely better than Budweiser.
NOTES: BBCSD-0910-Sean, BJCP-Bohemian Pilsener

Photo of cfrancis
3.7/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

For a Pilsner, this really is the icing. The original and what most others are held against in comparison purposes. Aroma is of malt and hop. Pours a clear golden colour with a thin white head. Taste is great. Malt and hop in the taste with a little bitter aftertaste is just wonderful. This brings be back to Prague where I downed quite a number of these pints. Hopefully will get back there again, this time to visit the brewery.

Photo of cratez
3.98/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml green bottle at The Only on King in London, ON. Pours a dark golden hue with a thin ring of bubbly white head. Some speckles of lacing cling to the pokal. Smell and taste are sweet and wheaty pils malt, fresh cereal grains, grassy Saaz hops, and lemon. More wheaty-grainy flavours in the semi-dry aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium, crisp and refreshing with lots of peppery bite from the hops. Not much to this one: just a lovely, well-crafted pils. I could drink this by the gallon.

Photo of chiapete
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brought back to the states by a friend .
Poured a light gold in color. Had a thick had that faded rather quickly. Lots of carb bubbles on first pour . left a thin streaky coat of lace down the side.

first smell was clean , citrus hop aroma.

Hop bitterness in the front ,with the malt coming through the back to leave a nice sweet taste on the tongue.

Easy drinking , with a slightly thin , watery mouth feel. a good beer. Good over all balance.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from an 11.2oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

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

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

T: The taste is bready with flavors of lager yeast and adjuncts along with an adjunct & light malt sweetness. The hops presence is very mild for the style but creates a little bit of balance. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, light-to-medium body, medium-to-heavy carbonation, finish is clean.

D: A little tasty, goes down quite easily, not too filling, mild kick, decent representation of style, it seems like just a slight upgrade from a typical fizzy yellow beer but overall it's not a bad beer.

Photo of ruckus232
3.85/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 Ounce green bottle poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Clear light yellow in color with nice white head and a good amount of lacing.

Smell: Earthy spiciness with a slight bread smell in the background

Taste: Slight sweetness that fades quickly into a nice hoppy bitterness. Very nice pilsner flavor.

Photo of joel77
3.58/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a vigorous, thin head. Even gold in colour. No lacing to speak of. Appears almost flat.

Good balance between malt and hops on the nose.

I can taste the allusion to the big brewery product of my high school days (bitter beans anyone?), but it's only an initial illusion at that - there's a lot more here. The bitterness gives way to some sweetness. Positively sweet. The malt comes through more towards the end and leaves me with an even, balanced mouthfeel. The carbonation is hidden here by the look but it's there and it's pleasant.

I could do a couple bottles of this stuff, it's not heavy. Very quenching and would be a good patio quaff. Leaves me wanting more.

Photo of waldoiverson
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into US Pint

A: crystal clear, bright yellow, nice effervescence

S: light and acidic but you can smell the hops

T: hits with a dose of bitterness, then it gets sweet. the lasting flavor is quite bitter which is surprising based on the color and style

M: dry but sharp from the carbonation

D: not bad, i like that i can actually taste some hops in this beer

Photo of PEIBeerGuy
3.43/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Very bright and clear, the head forms thick and fast, but disappears pretty quickly, leaving nearly no traces of itself on the glass.

It smells pretty good! Much like many other similar beers.

The taste is fine. I prefer it to many similar ones, although it may not be my favourite. A bit fruity.

It feels fine in the mouth... a bit over-carbonated, perhaps.

As for drinkability, it's fine. It'd be easy to put a couple of these down if they were handy.

Budweiser Budvar from Budějovický Budvar, n.p.
82 out of 100 based on 1,273 ratings.