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Victoria Bitter (VB) - Carlton & United Breweries, Ltd.

Not Rated.
Victoria Bitter (VB)Victoria Bitter (VB)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
58
awful

260 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 260
Reviews: 135
rAvg: 2.36
pDev: 31.78%
Wants: 7
Gots: 11 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Carlton & United Breweries, Ltd. visit their website
Australia

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: dwarbi on 02-16-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 260 | Reviews: 135 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of AussieInPhilly
5/5  rDev +111.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I'm sorry folks, but this beer is the largest selling beer in a beer drinking culture. If you go to a BBQ, most of the blokes there will be drinking this stuff. As always with a CUB product, it's best to employ the "one in, one out" bottle rotation from the freezer. Ice-cold is the only way to go. There is a distinct crisp taste as it washes over your tounge that lingers long enough to satisfy, never overstaying it's welcome. It is bitter, though pleasently so. Not strong enough to offend your taste buds. Alcohol level is spot on, ensuring you'll get the buzz you're looking for, without knocking you senseless. A great social drink, and isn't that what a good beer is about? While some people are sitting at home trying to over-analyse a brew, thousands of Australians are sitting in the sun downing VB. A mass-produced beer that manages to hit the spot. It is what it is. An Iconic beverage in the land down under, may not suit everyone's taste, but very few Aussies will turn one down!
Take it easy boys and girls!

AussieInPhilly, May 05, 2005
Photo of Kodums
4.85/5  rDev +105.5%

Kodums, Sep 07, 2014
Photo of Danimal
4.83/5  rDev +104.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am a fan of VB. I have been to the land down under several times while in the Marine Corps. Any bar I went into, VB was the beer of choice.

Appearance: Medium head and clear yellow color

Smell: Light maltly smell mixed with a subtle sweet scent

Taste: In the hot Aussie sun, a VB is best served ice cold. Goes down great. And it doesn't have Bitter in the name for no reason. A full flavored beer. Great for anyday anytime drinking.

Mouthfeel: Felt great to me. In a can, bottle, or out of the tap.

Drinkability: I found it very drinkable. I prefered it over the other beers in Aussie Land. Prefer it over Carlton, Coopers and Fosters.

I don't understand all the bad reviews for Victoria Bitter. Maybe for me it was the environment or maybe the hot Aussie sun, but VB was the best beer in Australia. I remember going to the store and buying 4 cases for the weekend on Friday nights. That would usually last me from Friday night to Sunday night. With no hangover.

Danimal, Jun 20, 2008
Photo of Caseymo2
4.5/5  rDev +90.7%

Caseymo2, Jun 26, 2014
Photo of Knobs303
4/5  rDev +69.5%

Knobs303, Jul 23, 2014
Photo of Camliepa
4/5  rDev +69.5%

Camliepa, Jun 14, 2014
Photo of kfourte
4/5  rDev +69.5%

kfourte, Dec 04, 2011
Photo of Zorro
3.85/5  rDev +63.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A single that I managed to get sent to me from Woomera AB.

Pours a clear copper colored beer with a good amount of tan head on top.

Smell is quite fruity and a little bit sweet to my nose. Mildly hoped and a little floral smelling with maybe a touch of soapiness in the smell.

Mild malty flavor that has the characteristic Australian "Cracker" flavor. Dry and herbal hop flavor that is a little astringent and fruity in taste. Cracker flavor fades quickly and this in fact does dry out in the mouth quite a bit more than I thought it would. What saves this beer is the hops, seems like they are milder than they are but the drying quality they add here makes all the difference.

Mouthfeel is good.

Far more drinkable than the reviews here would suggest to me. Nothing here but a good easy drinking beer and nothing more. Call this what you want, whether it is a Bitter or a Lager it is the best Australian beer I have yet tried.

Zorro, Jul 08, 2006
Photo of OStrungT
3.83/5  rDev +62.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a clear light golden color, with a thin but fluffy white head. The head fades slowly, leaving a decent lace.

This beer smells ever so slightly spicy. It has a boiled cabbage odor that I usually detect from this style. It is not nearly as bad as most other beers of the style. The aroma is very subtle

This beer tastes ever so mildly spicy. It has a slightly sweet flavor also. Not too much to it, but as with the aroma, it is better than some Adjunct Lagers I have had.

This beer is crisp. It leaves a slightly sweet aftertaste. It is carbonated well for the style.

This beer would probably make a decent session beer. The flavor is not overwhelming, and not too bad. Also, the alcohol content is not high.

Overall: In the past, before I was into craft beer, I loved this beer. Every time I went to Australia, or Asia, I would get it. I have bar towels, T-shirts, beer glasses. I loved it. Now that I am into craft beer, I see that it is nothing special. But for the style, I still think it is a great beer. I stay away from the style, but I would definately drink this one again.

OStrungT, Apr 21, 2008
Photo of SargeC
3.8/5  rDev +61%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear yellow with moderate carbonation movement. Fizzy white head. The can presents a classic image.

Smell: Minor herbal and light malt aromas.

Taste: Interesting balance between malt and hops. Suits the climate well.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability: Not a bad Australian brew. A great example of one of the nation’s other beers.

SargeC, Oct 21, 2007
Photo of canadianbarman
3.73/5  rDev +58.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

--Came in a cool stubby bottle. No freshness date found.
--Average pour in every sense...colour, head, lacing and bubbling.
--What can I say, an average smell as well.

I am not sure what it is about this beer, but it has something that I like and could drink plenty off. It is probably personal as I spent some time in Australia as a college student, so it probably helps me remember this. It is a nice beer that is good for days of multiple beers.
Thx

canadianbarman, Jun 04, 2004
Photo of Nick09
3.6/5  rDev +52.5%

Nick09, Sep 01, 2014
Photo of MisterSub
3.53/5  rDev +49.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Now that a few years have passed and my beer tastes have changed, I think I can understand all of the bad reviews of VB.

That being said, I think they're generally over-critical. In the end for me, all the scores should be just for info and the drinkability score should weigh about 90%.

Based on that, I think VB is a decent beer.

It's appearance is nothing special nor its smell.

I don't know if it was my altered state of mind on my honeymoon, but I thought it tasted great. Maybe because it was always about 85 degrees and the beer was ice cold. Maybe because I was so happy watching an Aussie football game. Maybe because I was enjoying being on a GB Reef cruise or on the beach. Whatever it was, I thought it tasted pretty good, had a great mouthfeel and was very, very drinkable.

With that in mind, it's nothing like the microbrews and well-crafted macrobrews that I now enjoy and deserves to be put in the "C" range overall.

I view it as the MGD of Australia but a little more drinkable.

MisterSub, Apr 05, 2009
Photo of M_C_Hampton
3.5/5  rDev +48.3%

M_C_Hampton, Oct 09, 2012
Photo of jmint
3.5/5  rDev +48.3%

jmint, Mar 24, 2014
Photo of Ktmktm01
3.5/5  rDev +48.3%

Ktmktm01, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of Johnq1964
3.5/5  rDev +48.3%

Johnq1964, Aug 11, 2013
Photo of GMB
3.5/5  rDev +48.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Carlton Brewery's Victoria Bitter (VB) pours a slightly darker body than most adjunct lagers; I'd say its color approaches amber. A slightly rigorous pour produces a substantial head that sticks around longer than expected.

The nose is pleasant enough for a cheap lager. Sweet grains dominate; hops are barely detectable; a slightly metallic aroma lurks in the background.

The taste is nicer than expected. Bittering hops have been used to nice effect. The beer hangs on the palate longer than one might expect. Lightly toasted grain flavors are complemented by significant bitterness. As far as macro-brewed adjunct lagers go, this is certainly above-average. I'm impressed. The medium mouthfeel and soft carbonation complement nicely.

GMB, Jan 08, 2013
Photo of SweJon
3.5/5  rDev +48.3%

SweJon, Feb 28, 2012
Photo of Poupae
3.5/5  rDev +48.3%

Poupae, Mar 18, 2013
Photo of Qdiver
3.5/5  rDev +48.3%

Qdiver, Feb 14, 2014
Photo of thehyperduck
3.33/5  rDev +41.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 mL can picked up from the LCBO, BB date June 2012. I am simultaneously impressed and confused as to how I have managed to avoid reviewing any Aussie beer until now.

Pours a deep golden colour, similar to a glass of apple juice, topped with a fizzy, white, two-finger head that is mostly gone within a minute. A thin, creamy cap remains on the surface, reinforced by the furious stream of bubbles from the bottom of the pint. Surprisingly decent lacing on the sides. The aroma is nothing special, just the typical corny/vegetal adjunct notes interspersed with grains and hay.

Taste is mostly sweet grainy malts, a bit bready with some underlying vegetal notes from the adjunct. A twinge of bitterness in the finish, definitely more than I would expect from an average AAL. Good carbonation; a little lower than average. Flavour gets a bit funky as it warms but I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that this probably isn't the type of brew to be gradually savoured. No trouble throwing this one back.

After glancing at the aggregate score of this, I was expecting a serious stinker but after tasting it I was a little perplexed and wondered if my tongue was broken. For an adjunct lager, there is nothing seriously out of place here in my opinion. I certainly have no intention of getting this again, but that's mostly price-related. The "bitter" in the name of this brew is pretty misleading, but in the future if I were looking for a bland lager to throw back socially this would be an acceptable choice.

thehyperduck, Sep 25, 2011
Photo of jahsausage
3.25/5  rDev +37.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Its a beer that for some reason I am ashamed to like but like it I do. Its basically a watery lager with a hoppy bite but for some reason this appeals to my taste-buds. Apparently its quite popular over the tasman in aussieland but over here in new zealand drinking australian beer is somewhat frowned upon. Especially like it seeing as NZ brewery regulations in the 40s taxed beers over 1035 original gravity making the 4% beer a NZ norm. Luckily not only is VB 4.9% its cheaper than some of the slop our big NZ breweries try to sell (like tui and the lamentable export gold).

jahsausage, Aug 25, 2002
Photo of amicar
3.25/5  rDev +37.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well, it seems noody else liked this one much but me...
I have to admit I'm pretty unimpressed with most of the Aussie beers I tried, but for some reason I liked this one more than most people apparently.

Typical golden color with white head that leaves a little trace of itself. Not much to smell, but a little light herbal stuff; the taste is a litle floral and has a nice little bit of bitterness incvolved. Crisp on the tongue and easy enough to drink. I did have a few of these throughout my stay... Never wowed, but never disappointed...

amicar, Mar 29, 2005
Photo of sirksanti
3.25/5  rDev +37.7%

sirksanti, Jun 09, 2012
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Victoria Bitter (VB) from Carlton & United Breweries, Ltd.
58 out of 100 based on 260 ratings.