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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
59
awful

273 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 273
Reviews: 136
rAvg: 2.38
pDev: 32.35%
Wants: 8
Gots: 15 | 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: 273 | Reviews: 136 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CrazyMike
2/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Appearance is a pale golden yellow with decent head, smell sets of warning signals, very light and metallic. A hint of malt though.

Taste is very bitter and sour. Malt and lime is evident. Body is light and highly carbonated. After taste is extremely bitter and almost spicy.

Definitely not the greatest beer, the unbalanced mixture of tastes makes this mediocre at best.

CrazyMike, Feb 23, 2008
Photo of soupyman10
1.73/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Had this one way too often during my Peace Corps time in Tonga, where the beer options were fairly limited. Poured a light yellow piss color, very bubbly, no head. Probably best to just leave it in the bottle. Nose was skunky garbage, and they taste followed in kind. Really bitter, almost cloying, macro-lager standard crap. Feel was thin. Overall, bad, even when there's nothing else to drink.

soupyman10, Feb 06, 2008
Photo of jspruit
2.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Bought this at O'Neills off-license here in Dublin and drank it on Australia Day, January 26th.

No pour as I drank it out of the 375ml bottle-I can't imagine that I missed much there though to be honest.

Doesn't really smell of much-a bit metallic, certainly not hoppy or malty or bitter at all.

Some carbonation and golden in color. Tastes mostly like any generic lager, American or Australian or European, and a bit of chemicals.

Mouthfeel is light, and goes down easy with little resistance. Not much of an aftertaste really. I could see how you could pound these all day, but I dont think that I'll be doing that anytime soon. I suppose that it is the equivalent of a lawnnmower beer in the states, perhaps something you drink ice cold on a hot summer day.

jspruit, Jan 28, 2008
Photo of THEMGG
1.05/5  rDev -55.9%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

A - This beer has golden, clear colour which is unfortunately deceptive to the flavour that lies beneath

S - The initial smell of Vic Bitter is like one of those stenches that you wake up with on your clothes after a big night on the lagers and realise you are lying in a pile of your own vomit and feces. A bitter metallic sting that digs into the nose with sharp claws. This is pub floor in a can.

T - After the horrifying initial smell, one is not really looking forward to sampling its taste, but if you force yourself, you will be rewarded with one of the worst tastes you can possibly pour into your mouth. Anyone with functioning tastebuds will recoil with disgust.

This beer is an insult to all living creatures.

Forget going within a 10m radius of this beer if it happens to rise above frozen temperature, this foul swill should tipped into a volcano.

M - Like licking a rusty bucket of nails. A sharp, disgusting mercury like feel pervades the pallet. The sickly flavour hangs on the tongue like burnt solder.

I curse this beer.

D - Hahahahahaha. After one sip of this swill, you will be tightening the rope for whoever handed it to you.

This is one the worst beers known to man (and the biggest seller in Australia, hahahhahhaa).

THEMGG, Nov 09, 2007
Photo of SargeC
3.8/5  rDev +59.7%
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 LittleCreature
1.88/5  rDev -21%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance - 2.5
Don't be fooled by the name - this is a lager, not a bitter! Pours a finger of fluffy, bubbly, barely off-white head that reduces quickly to a thin layer. The colour is a pale yellow that has a tinge of brown and looks to be highly carbonated.

Smell - 2.0
Remarkable, this smells entirely like beer! No skunk, which is good, but otherwise the aromas are limited to a slight malt/sugar sweetness, stale grains and a weak hoppy bitterness.

Taste - 1.5
Quite a strong flavour, with a lot more character than most macro lagers. Unfortunately, it isn't a great flavour by any means, starting with weak grains, stale bread, a slight sourness and ending quite dry with moderate hop bitterness. There is also a strong metallic taste that is prevalent throughout, especially in the finish. God this is awful.

Mouthfeel - 2.5
Hard to judge this against the terrible taste. Light to moderately weighted in the mouth with moderate carbonation. Still doesn't help it to go down easily.

Drinkability - 2.0
I have chugged back many of these in the past, as many at 18 in one day on one occasion (so it is sessionable for some). My tastebuds and liver now shudder at the thought of this, and I am struggling to get through one.

OVERALL - 2.05
This has always been one of my favourite beers for making shandys with, due to its strong flavour, which is improved by adding lemonade. However, on its own, this is currently the lowest score I have ever given a beer. I was actually a bit thirsty when I started it, but it was still hard to drink. I used to like this, it was once my session beer of choice, however hard it is to believe now. It's cheap, so if you like it, go ahead, just know that there is a whole world of beers out there that taste a WHOLE lot better.

LittleCreature, Oct 09, 2007
Photo of hunteraw
2.55/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Had a bottle of this at Devil's Advocate in Wan Chai.

Appearance was yellow and fizzy, one-finger white head but with little retention and no lacing. Smell was light and unremarkable. Not surprised to see now that it's in fact a lager and not a bitter at all. Taste was along the same lines - lager, very light bitterness. Not horrible, but below average. Mouthfeel is light and fizzy, drinkability is below average - we were ready to switch bars. The "bitter" style is misleading enough already with breweries calling lagers "bitters."

hunteraw, Aug 01, 2007
Photo of brendan13
1.68/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

A - Pale straw colour with lively carbonation and a small 1cm head. Unfortunantly I know this will be the highest rating.
S - Some faint fruit smells. Not much else going on.
T - The famous CUB lager metallic taste. Very slight sweet malt.
M - Like a crap beer flavoured water.
D - If you want to drink as cheaply as possible then this is your answer. Marketing is a wonderful thing:)

brendan13, Jun 10, 2007
Photo of rjimlad
1.18/5  rDev -50.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

I hate this beer with a passion but maybe its just me so I thought I'd give it the benefit of the doubt. This poured nearly flat into my trusty schooner glass and left little lacing. The inital aroma/stink is revolting. It's kinda like the smell of the carpet in front of the main bar in a country pub. Stale with hints of urine. It' s mercifully weak though but it gets worse with drinking. There's a metallic bland bitterness that's not there long so you're left with a glass of weak flavourless bitter water with moderate carbonation. There are Australians who think this is the best beer on Earth and won't drink anything else. There is something wrong with them. I know the rules state we should give negative reviews without being insulting so I'll stop now. This is swill.

rjimlad, Apr 05, 2007
Photo of Daredevil
2.9/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I never understood why Ozzies label some of their bottom-fermented lagers as "bitter" which is clearly reserved for topfermented brews ... but anyway ... VB has a lovely golden colour, a less pleasant nose and a herb character ... all in all a good blue collar lager ....

better than Foster's Lager (brewed in the same group), but then again that wouldn't be to difficult, would it?

Daredevil, Mar 19, 2007
Photo of Shadman
2.95/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

not sure if I'm reviewing the same brew as everyone else here as the VB I purchased in Canada is a very pale amber(no hint of orange or any other color). Left a nice white 1 finger head that refused to go and great lacing.

Smell of grainy malt and some sweetness.

Tasted quite balanced between malt and hop with a decided citrus(lime) taste towards the back end. Quite a dry aftertaste as well.

Felt fairly creamy and smooth compared to most macro lagers.

Beats the bejesus out of most macros I've tried and even some so called premium/import brands.

note: Awfully pricey stuff $16.79 for 6 stubbies

Shadman, Mar 15, 2007
Photo of lberkelmans
2/5  rDev -16%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I'm Australian. The dirty little secret of Australian beer is that they all taste the same, and they aren't that great. It took me a few months in the US to figure this out.
VB is pretty much the same as all the other largers you get there. It's light. Not much flavour. Fizzy. However, I did grow up with it, so it does tug at my heart strings, and the advertising firm deserves an oscar for their new radio adverts.
Fortunately the beer market back home is changing a bit, but compared to what is available in the US, we are light-years behind.

lberkelmans, Jan 14, 2007
Photo of TheBierBand
2.78/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The first beer I tried in OZ... I walked up to the bartender and said I'd like a Foster's mate (in my best Aussie accent). He looked at me and smiled and said...."Ah... you must be a YANK. Foster's is piss! Here try this one." and he poured me a VB.

I was not too impressed. It was average on all counts. Maybe the bartender was trying to break me in easily, knowing I was a yank and probably used to the mass produced American offerings.

The color was a filtered amber color not too deep. The bartender was a professional as he gave the pour a perfect 1" head which slowly dissipated.

The smell had a hint of bitterness and the taste confirmed it. Somewhat sweet finish.

I quickly tried some other brews and settled on Toohey's OLD as my beer of choice in OZ.

TheBierBand, Oct 11, 2006
Photo of btmo
2.1/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Yet another macro. Nothing special, nothing overly offensive. Just another hot day beer, if serve cold.

VB is another triumph of marketing over taste - it is available everywhere, but apart from the green label, there isn't a damn thing to distinguish this from every other CUB offering.

Roll the dice - it won't make any difference which one you choose.

btmo, Sep 01, 2006
Photo of joedon
3/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer might be considered the Australian analog of Miller (Toohey's would be their Bud). You find it everywhere beer is served; on tap or in the stubby bottles.

That said, it's actually several steps up from any of the BMC macros. Nice white head on a golden beer. Faint but pleasant hoppy aroma.

Tastes of hay and some malt with decent bitterness (fuggles?). Not at all unpleasant and goes well with the Aussie food.

joedon, Aug 17, 2006
Photo of Zorro
3.85/5  rDev +61.8%
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 Mandrake
2.68/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a medium copper with a fairly thick white head that lasts a few minutes before dissipating into nothingness and leaving no lacing. Smells grainy and sickly sweet, the malts way out of balance and the adjuncts obvious. Taste is more of the same. Some caramel in the malts is the only discernable element of any interest. Mouthfeel is rather thin and watery, but not terrible, and drinkability is pretty much standard. Not too bad really, given that my expectations were geared low for an Australian lager.

Mandrake, Jun 16, 2006
Photo of PuckLSHS
2.83/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

For an Australian Lager, I can't help but say that this one didn't make me curse the day I opened it.

Had this one in the can after a friend of mine passed me one at an event. I kept complaining about Australian beers being horrible and I dared the person to find me a lager that I didn't completely hate. This one made the cut even though a lot of other people didn't really like it at all.

Poured with a standard gold color that you would see out of a normal lager. Nice big foamy off-white head that left about a 2-finger head on the glass. The head dissipated a lot slower than expected and left a remarkably nice lacing on the glass.

Smell and taste were very normal. Sour grains and a little hop in the finish. I did not get the metallic taste that I was expecting, but was quite surprised. Maybe I was being nice, but I couldn't believe I was actually enjoying a macro lager.

The mouthfeel was quite nice. A little heavier than the normal macro lager and rather smooth for its kind.

You know, I wouldn't look an Australian gift horse in the mouth if this was offered to me. For a nice summer day, this would actually be quite nice. Too bad it can't be bought in the states.

PuckLSHS, May 15, 2006
Photo of orbitalr0x
2.75/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This is a big 800ml bottle lugged back directly from Australia by my friend Liam. It pours into my glass a clear radiant golden orange color with a sparse light bubbly white head on top. The color stands out more than most macro lagers, gotta give it that much. Aroma is a mix of sweet corn and grains, a touch skunky with some fruity tones as well. Skunked herbal hop in the background. Eh...not much really going for it in the aroma department unfortunately.

First sip brings sweet grains and creamed corn upfront. It's a bit toasted with a light fruitiness as well. Plenty of grassy, herbal hops on the way down that remain a bit skunky tasting as well. Finishes clean and smooth without much aftertaste. This really isn't bad for what it is.

Mouthfeel is light with fast paced carbonation. Doesn't really have much in the way of body, though it is refreshing. Overall, this really fails to grab my attention and it's not something I'd go back to considering all the other beers that are available to me.

orbitalr0x, Apr 20, 2006
Photo of Franchise
3.03/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is from the "Beers down under" 6 pack from Australia. This offering IMO is the best of the 6 pack poured a golden yellow with a soft white head. The aroma is fresh, somewhat floural, a malty caramel presence is faint. The taste is sweet, more of a mashmallow sugary presence then the nose let on. There is a decent hop bitterness for balance, the mouthfeel is syrupy that surprisingly coats the throat with a bit of bitter grapefruit honey sweetness in the finish.

Franchise, Mar 27, 2006
Photo of Noxious26
1.63/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

375ml can poured in a pint glass. Best before date printed on the bottom of the can (08Jun06).

Clear, golden colour with several carbonation streams. Big foamy off-white head is over 1.5 inches on the pour, but slowly reduces to a thin cap leaving thick impressive lacing. The thin cap stays around right to the bottom and continues to leave nice intricate lacing. Very impressive appearance for a macro lager.

Aroma of sour grains, adjuncts and some metallic notes. Definitely not as positive as the appearance.

Tastes like an adjunct parade in my mouth! Chemicals, adjuncts and a light sweetness off the start. Chemicals fade through the middle to reveal a lightly sweet corn finish. Aftertaste is off-vegetable and a little reminiscent of the aroma of rotten vegetables. Kinda makes you want to have another swig just to get the aftertaste out of your mouth.

Thin-medium mouthfeel. Not as watery as most macros and not as fizzy either. Actually feels a little syrupy through the middle.

This is a real disappointment. When I bought this from the beer store, I hadn't researched it on BA and thought it might actually be a decent imported bitter. Oh how wrong I was. Just a macro wrapped up in bitters clothing. The only good thing is it's appearance. Just about everything you could ask for in a macro lager except perhaps a bit bigger head from mid-glass on. The strange thing is that this beer really doesn't taste bitter at all. You'd think they'd atleast want some kind of hop bitter finish to substantiate their name. Whatever, I'll never buy it again.

Noxious26, Mar 26, 2006
Photo of Kulrak
1.55/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

This beer pours a golden color with a lot of white fluffy head that takes a while to go away. Too bad it smells like ass. That literally was the first thing I thought of when I smelled it. The taste is very chemical, not much in the way of malt or hops or even yeast. I don't know what they make this crap out of, but I don't know how they can get away with calling it beer. The mouthfeel is very thin and watery. As for drinkability, I'm seriously considering pouring the rest of this out.

Kulrak, Mar 16, 2006
Photo of mickyb
1.6/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Like most of the CUB beers this one is weak on the palette, has a chemical aftertaste, and runs through you the next day if you over indulge (how that is possible I am not sure).

There is no real aroma to this beer, although it smells slightly stale to me, with a hint of chemical.
The only way to really stomache this is to chill it right down and attempt to remove the slightly metallic taste.
Not one of Australia's better beers.

mickyb, Feb 01, 2006
Photo of DaveFL1976
2.68/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

VB in the bottle, of course.
No self-respecting bloke gets VB on tap, since Carlton Draught is always right next to it on the tap handles. True, it's the same beer, but let's not get too technical.

VB pours a straw yellow with a loose white head and lots of bubbles. Smell is sweet and corney. I sure can't make out any hops in this aroma. Taste is your typical macrolager with that patented metallic aftertaste that Carlton United is able to do. Not the greatest taste, that's for sure. Mouthfeel isn't bad at all actually. It's just a shame that there's nota good taste to go along with it.

I have no idea why it's called "Bitter"

DaveFL1976, Dec 14, 2005
Photo of sulldaddy
2.35/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Well I tried this one as a guage of mass produced beers in Aussieland.
The beer is cold and I am using a standard drinking glass.
The beer pours a clear yellow color with a fizzy bleached white head that fades very quickly to a sparse edge layer. Aroma is some husky malt and general sweetness, maybe a bit of citrus fruit (orange). I take a sip and it reveals a clean crisp, but lite body and very fine tingly carbonation. Flavor is clean if uninspiring with grainy malt and a bit of caramel, but mostly sugary sweetness. The sweetness is why most folks down under must like this one. For me it makes it a little tougher to drink. It would be okay after cutting the lawn or baking in the sun on the beach all day, but not an everyday beer for me. Had to try it though.

sulldaddy, Dec 05, 2005
Victoria Bitter (VB) from Carlton & United Breweries, Ltd.
59 out of 100 based on 273 ratings.