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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.

260 Ratings
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

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 btmo
2.1/5  rDev -11%
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 +27.1%
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 +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 Mandrake
2.68/5  rDev +13.6%
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 +19.9%
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 +16.5%
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 +28.4%
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 -30.9%
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 -34.3%
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 -32.2%
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 +13.6%
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 -0.4%
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
Photo of jarmby1711
1.68/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

In some ways VB is unique.
It certainly isnt Bitter , in fact it is more sweet than anything else.It has a Kiwifruit aroma but not in the taste.
It is so poular you have to drink it when offered.
It has a mouthfeel of a beer you have been drinking all day , but right from the start it is like this.
It is dark in colour and the head doesnt want to hang around.
The adverisers and marketers have done a great job on making this an iconoclastic drink.
Label 1/10

jarmby1711, Jun 20, 2005
Photo of BDTyre
3/5  rDev +27.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Okay...not great. Despite the name "bitter" it really does feel like and taste like a lager.

Gold colour with fluffy white head. Not much of a lager smell; almost a vinegar hint to it. Since this was from a can, I pick up a noticebly can taste to it, and this taints it somewhat. Otherwise, decent taste, better than some of the adjunct lagers I've had. Not much malts, okay hops.

Drinkable, but I've had better.

BDTyre, Jun 08, 2005
Photo of Toddv29424
3.13/5  rDev +32.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a traditional golden color with little or no head. Very little smell, but what you can get is of apples like a light cider. The best way to describe the taste is as if you mixed a lager and cider together. It has a little bitterness to it that comes from the hops used. The aftertaste is slightly dry and fruity, like apples. Great for a lot of drinking.

Toddv29424, May 11, 2005
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 06, 2005
Photo of canucklehead
2.85/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I just got home from a job interview in 24 degree heat and was dying for a beer . I just grabbed a can of VB cause it was new to BC seemed to be the refresher after a hot suit and tough questions. Well, it doesn't suck but the beer seems to be a sweeter ,rougher version of my beloved PBR. I can see myself in the middle of nowhere in Australia drinking a cold can cause there is little elso to choose from. In Vancouver I think this might be my only time trying this beer.

canucklehead, Apr 28, 2005
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 BeerNutta
2.95/5  rDev +25%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Vicotria Bitter, what can i say. I must drink this more than any other beer. But this is because i live in victoria and its cheap canon fodder.

If you are looking for a cheap beer, that neither impresses or dissapoints.

MUST be cold. Only a fool would drink this drink otherwise.

Appearance: Yellow to dark yellow.

Smell: Hoppy smell, which dissapears real fast after a few minutes out of bottle.

Taste: Bland with a chemical hop bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Swallow fast. Holding VB in your mouth for too long is not recommended.

Drinkability: What can i say, its damn cheap. Better than other cheap australian beers. Its the beer you have at BBQ's when people want to drink beer and you are short of cash.

BeerNutta, Feb 17, 2005
Photo of cypressbob
2.88/5  rDev +22%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

375ml bottle

Pours with a light yellow body, slightly creamy white head, fair retention and some lacing

Smell, slight hint of corn and grain, kinda musky

Taste, quite crisp and some hop bitterness in the background but very very vague. Almost like a light ale in some respects

Pretty average lager

cypressbob, Jan 26, 2005
Photo of lacqueredmouse
1.05/5  rDev -55.5%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Deep golden yellow. Decent frothy head. Looks quite carbonated.

Very strong nose. Quite potent - smells of off vegetable matter, with a hit of ammonia.

Musty, damp unpleasant flavours. Very flat and uninspiring. Wow. Could there be a more unpleasant beer? It's like drinking expensive pond water or something. There's very little there except the late bitter chemical inspired hit.

A very unpleasant beer this one. I'm saying that because this is a very poor beer (probably the worst I've ever tasted), not because I have something against so-called "standard" beers, or the macrobreweries.

Stay well clear.

lacqueredmouse, Jan 15, 2005
Photo of Andreji
2.73/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Well, the VB was rather a disappointing brew as I expected it to be rather, uh, more hoppy- bitter thus. The nose is rather malty, and the translucidness and small carbonation aren't all that appealing. the taste, rather the major disappointment, is overwhelmed by its poorly hidden alcohol that spoils the mouthfeel as well. It's also sweeter than bitter, which plays a very, very small role just at the end.

Andreji, Jun 24, 2004
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.

canadianbarman, Jun 04, 2004
Photo of anders36
2.2/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer has a yellow-golden colour. The head is big and white when poured into the glass, but the head disappears quickly. It has a discrete smell, with hints of hops. The taste is light and a bit fruity with some hints of bitterness. Some tastes of hops too. Some of my friends love this beer, but it is not a beer for me.

anders36, Apr 09, 2004
Photo of ComradeCanadia
3.13/5  rDev +32.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Total meh. Big head that -vanished- immediately. Generic straw yellow lager appearance. Nothing impressive at all.

Smell: Um, a bit of malt? There's hops too... very generic, nonexistant smell.

Taste: I liked this stuff at first, but as I tasted it more and more, all I began to taste was crappy adjuncts and the signs of a mass produced, crappy beer. I'll still say this would be a GOOD hot day beer, but as it stands, it isn't bad. I prefer this to Molson Canadian.

Mouthfeel: Not too light or watery, pretty much exactly what I like in a lager. Decent carbonation, and a very dry finish without much aftertaste aside from a lingering bitterness.

Drinkability: As I said before, I could drink gallons of this stuff. Good for a hot summer day, or a night of drinking at a bar or the such. Goes down easy, nice and light on the tounge.. and yeah. Exactly what I like in a beer's drinkability.

Notes: Hehe, this is what I get for knowing little about beer. I had no idea VB was basically Australian Budweiser, and I feel sort of ripped off. If this was cheap, I'd buy it regularly for when I need cheap beer... but it's not, so I won't.

ComradeCanadia, Dec 04, 2003
Victoria Bitter (VB) from Carlton & United Breweries, Ltd.
58 out of 100 based on 260 ratings.