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San Miguel Pale Pilsen - San Miguel Brewery Inc.

San Miguel Pale PilsenSan Miguel Pale Pilsen

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

145 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 145
Reviews: 76
rAvg: 2.67
pDev: 22.85%

Brewed by:
San Miguel Brewery Inc. visit their website

Style | ABV
German Pilsener |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: rastaman on 08-09-2002)
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Ratings: 145 | Reviews: 76 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BucBasil

South Carolina

2.84/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Drank in a hotel room in Macau after a hot day walking around.

A: A typical beery gold color topped with a thin wisp of fizzy white foam that died down immediately.

S: Grainy with slight bread notes and a bit of sweetness.

T: Pretty much same as the smell. Very typical beer.

Refreshing but nothing special. Nice on a hot day but not something worth seeking out for the sake of it.

Serving type: can

04-14-2014 15:31:33 | More by BucBasil
Photo of mndlssphlsphr


1.66/5  rDev -37.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

This is a pale yellow clear liquid of some sort. It as no special color. No special smell. It comes from the islands. Taste is of a cheap massed produced copy-paste beer. There is nothing ere. Nothing different. Hints of canned corn and no hops. I do not see anything going anywhere wit this, the name is deceiving as it is for marketing and that is all.

Serving type: can

01-24-2013 05:29:56 | More by mndlssphlsphr
Photo of Jayli


2.53/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Consumed 2/22 in Makati City
Poured in to a stange

A: This beer pours a light golden color with a one inch of bubbly head that recedes quickly. Not much lacing to speak of.

S: Nose is grain, grass, and light malts.

T: Taste is predominantly grain and grass in the forefront. A bit of breadiness before moving in to a light malt finish.

M: Lighter side of medium body, medium carbonation, light crisp feel.

O: Goes does alright, mediocre tasting, not filling, light kick, ok representation of style. My second beer here in PHP and this was a drastic improvement on the first!

Serving type: can

04-24-2012 18:53:01 | More by Jayli
Photo of Mdog


2.08/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: Yellow, ok head that fades out quickly.

Smell: Not much, a little corn.

Taste: Some mild sweetness, then a vegetal bitterness.

Drinkability: If it was an adjunct lager it would be barely passable, as a pilsner it doesn't cut it.

Beer review #2 from Hong Kong. Not too impressed with this, I thought it was another adjunct lager, but if it's supposed to be a pilsner it misses the mark.

Serving type: can

06-13-2011 13:10:32 | More by Mdog
Photo of Metalmonk

North Carolina

3.05/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Wow, a pull tab? Cool! I'm not ancient, but old enough to remember having to avoid those damn things on the beach unless you wanted your feet sliced to shreds. But still: cool! And thanks to msubulldog25 for this rarity.

Pull tab pulled, and the pour results in a snow-white head that starts out thick then minimizes and stays for the duration at a quarter-inch. Pale lemon-juice yellow color, and super clear.

Suspiciously sugary and corny smells, although that grainy and sweet essence of a decent German pils comes through a little. A bit doughy, some steamed veggie character...all in all, not bad, but not super-impressive either.

Flavor is no surprise, and no world-class medal winner. But it's not a total failure either. Watery grains, watery honey, a touch of lemon, boiled veggies, faint sulphur, and Corn Pops cereal sweetness all intermingled. There's very little depth, and maybe no depth, if such a thing can be measured. But far from atrocious.

Texturally this kind of turned me off. Too watery, lacking the prickle and roundness of a good pils. Not a disaster, but with a flavor that could use an assist, the mouthfeel doesn't pull through.

Expected worse, but there are enough traits here that make it a better option than your typical U.S. corporate piss-lager. Of course, it's not much of an option when you can't get your hands on it, not to mention that lots of U.S. craft brewers are offering kick-ass pilsners, both traditional and imperialized. Better yet, travel to Germany or Czech Republic and experience the real deal...

Serving type: can

07-22-2010 21:11:36 | More by Metalmonk
Photo of msubulldog25


2.55/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

330mL gold can, complete with pull tab (geez, haven't seen one of those in, like, twenty years...). Best before date: 22/04/11. My buddy brought back a 4-pack for me when he returned from his trip back home to Hong Kong. 谢谢, Peter!

This was brewed by San Miguel Brewery, Hong Kong Ltd.

A: Poured to a tall/tapered pilsner glass, it's crystal-clear and straw-golden. Shows off plenty of carbonation, some of the fattest bubbles I've seen. Starts with a sudsy topping, a finger or so of crackling whiteness. Dwindles to a barely-covering film, leaves patchy flakes of lace.

S: Fairly strong aroma, but one of old bread, kinda processed and starchy...I remember a similar scent when I worked at a pizza joint years ago and the lumps of cold dough smelled very much like this in the cooler. Otherwise, a grassy/floral sweetness, big and 'creamed corn'-like, sugared cereal.

T: Quite sweet when compared to a typical German Pilsner, lots of honey and sweet roll. Buttered biscuit, slight vegetable green-ness, mineral and a little tinny. Barely a trace of anything remotely hoppy/bitter. Kind of a mess.

M: Texture is slick and oily after a crispness that disappears almost instantly. Body is light. Weird gumminess, a lasting starchiness that eventually envelops what had been a decent drying finish. Gassy burps, where did those come from?

D: Not off-putting, just not all that appealing either. A mass-produced 'PREMIUM BEER' ('expertly brewed from the finest ingredients') that has a mushy feel and flavor. I'm guessing this could make a decent pairing with a cuisine that's spicy and local; by itself, it's a 'pass'.

Serving type: can

06-01-2010 01:40:06 | More by msubulldog25
Photo of DrJay


3.28/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very clear and light gold with a fluffy white head. Good retention compared to many of the light lagers I tried in asia, with some spotty lacing. The aroma was malty sweet, some maize and cereal grains, with a hint of fruit. Bitterness was on the light side and it had a mild malt sweetness, light fruitiness, some maize and spicy hops. Light bodied with plenty of carbonation. It started crisp, then ended with a more creamy finish. Some dryness. Refreshing and clean, really quite drinkable in the tropical heat and humidity.

Serving type: can

09-06-2008 02:24:35 | More by DrJay
Photo of aschbren


2.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A friend of mine gave me the rare opportunity to try a southeast Asian beer. She brought back a 330 mL can of San Miguel Pale Pilsen for me to try.

The San Miguel brewery has been around since 1890 and was once considered a world-class brewing operation. Now, however, it seems to have floundered in trying to settle for the bottom line. It's easily the largest brewery in the Phillipines and is said to have a 90+% market share in many southeast Asian countries. It also brews two truly abominable brews under liscense: Miller Genuine Draft and Löwenbräu.

To say that I had high expectations for this particular macro would be a lie. Nevertheless, I thought I'd give it a chance.

Pleasant aromas filled the room the moment I cracked open the seemingly quaint 330 mL narrow-mouth can. Upon further investigation, the first aroma I picked up was decidedly metallic. I associated the aroma with brass. Beneath the metal, there was a generic citrus aroma that stymied all of my efforts to provide a more exact description. As the beer warmed up, a pleasant hint of mushroom started showing up.

As I poured the beer into a glass, a large head was raised. It dissipated almost completely within three minutes of pouring. The color was very pale, lighter than Mountain Dew when held up to a nearby lamp. Plenty of carbonation graced the beer, although it seemed to express itself with unusually large bubbles instead of a melange of smaller ones.

The flavor seemed light for a beer of 5% strength, and lacked a lot of qualities that I expect and enjoy in this style. Make no mistake about it: this beer is brewed in the international pils style, not the Czech-German pils tradition.

There's a light malty pils flavor that seems to run the gamut of the tongue and then stop on a time. I was impressed by this finesse and control. Many smashmouth brews have macho flavor experiences that could only dream of exacting such a precise blow.

On the other hand, the pils style ought to be well hoped. It should have a crisp flavor brought on by the bitterness of hops and elaborated by perfuming hops. This beer, however, has no detectable hopping. It pretty much only plays its generic malt flavor, except for the occasional hint of mushroom or cranberry as the beer warms. The aftertaste is really where the good flavors are. There's a complex malty aftertaste that makes you want to sip it, which is difficult given the beer's quaffability.

If the ingredients list is to be trusted, this beer might actually have been brewed in the Reinheitsgebot tradition. It lists only malt, cereals, and hops. Upon examing their website, however, I doubt that the beer meets that standard of purity. Practically all brewers that adhere to the Reinheitsgebot boast about it online. That San Miguel makes no mention of the issue is evidence enough for me.

For all of its faults, this beer is extremely well balanced. The taste and the aftertaste are like sitting on a swing on a nice summer day. The direct malty flavor is elaborated upon by the complex malty aftertaste.

I'm not so sure that I'd put money down to buy this beer myself, but it was an intereting and educational experience.

Serving type: can

03-31-2006 08:40:24 | More by aschbren
Photo of jimbotrost


3.05/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Purchased for the can collection at the LCBO in Sarnia, Ontario. Pours a clear straw color with a large foamy head, nice. Nose is neutral except for some light grass notes. Flavor is minmal, shows some grassy light malt flavor, mouthfeel is dry and crisp, very drinkable beer with little flavor. More of an American Pilsner as opposed to a German Pilsner.

Serving type: can

06-18-2005 16:48:46 | More by jimbotrost
Photo of TerryW

Ontario (Canada)

2.03/5  rDev -24%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pale, pale golden yellow with a moderately sized, coarse white head. Settles to a ring, no real lace.

Bitter and flat in character. Has a medicinal alcohol taste and smell to it. Comes across as artifical somehow. Nothing lingers, nothing sticks to the palate. Pretty much hop(e)less.

Not recognizable as a pilsener.

Pass on it.

Serving type: can

02-03-2004 22:12:20 | More by TerryW
Photo of mwrseeley

Ontario (Canada)

2.68/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

How corny! A typical malty beer that could use a greater infusion of hops.

San Miguel has a run-of-the-mill golden colour, a small head that managed to cling to life for the duration of the drink, and sufficient lace.

The aroma is all malt. If the brewery wants to advertise this beer as a pilsener the least they could have done was give it more of a hoppy character on the nose.

The taste is gently sweet with a minor hops finish. I detected the smell of alcohol on both the nose and in the taste.

On the palate, San Miguel features a light to medium body, lively carbonation and a dry, almost thin, feel.

Probably nice to have (considering the domestic price) if you were on vacation on a safe, terrorist-free beach in the Phillipines.

Standard stuff.

Serving type: can

12-29-2003 05:28:57 | More by mwrseeley
Photo of Shiloh

Ontario (Canada)

2.55/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

As a fan of the pilsner style this was very disappointing.
Colour was nice in a very bright yet thin gold. Head was acceptable when poured but quicly left leaving a broad island lace.
Carbonation extremly light.
The body was light and left you wanting more substance.
Taste was evenly balanced but weak on both sides....not impressive but one time drinkable.

Serving type: can

07-21-2003 23:27:51 | More by Shiloh
Photo of canadianbarman

Alberta (Canada)

3.7/5  rDev +38.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was my first foray into a Philippine beer. It poured a light straw like color and had no flash at all. The taste was slightly pleasing but nothing to rave about. It basically just had that standard taste. I thought it was not really a pilsner but I am still a rookie! It went down very smooth and I would drink it again, and even again!!

Serving type: can

04-25-2003 19:17:15 | More by canadianbarman
Photo of DrDemento456


2.76/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Weee! So this was a dollar find at my local Beermuda. On top of that I kind of hate pilsners! On top of that the rating is shit! Good thing I am drunk!

A - Well damn no carbonation just a mild lace ring that settles to nothing. Color is on par with a yellow pee color maybe a touch darker.
S - Smell is not too offensive mild corn adjacent and some sweeter malts. No real skunk so I can't see why the low rating unless it tastes like ass.
T - Well it has the corn, then goes slightly sour, then fades to watery nothing BUT it doesn't have any hard water taste or skunk so in a way the WORST German Pilsner is still better than most American swill. Not that I would drink it again but I would prefer this over Bud or Miller.
M - Light to medium it DOES have some body and mild flavor.

Overall for a dollar I have had worse but for a low tier German Pilsner it was not too hard to swallow.

Serving type: bottle

04-11-2014 06:03:22 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of JuicesFlowing


2.03/5  rDev -24%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

Look: Crystal clear golden body holds a white fizzy head with rapid recession. A wisp of film with no lacing.

Aroma: Corn, sour veggies, a trace of grains, metallic ending.

Taste: Corn or whatever adjuncts were used, slight sour body (again with a sour cooked veggies), and a metallic finish.

Mouthfeel: Dry, unpleasant aftertaste.

Overall: Really harsh.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2014 02:27:06 | More by JuicesFlowing
Photo of MarkoNm


1.98/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2

Very happy when I saw this one in a shop, but was slightly disapointed.
Nothing wrong with the appearance - clear and golden with medium white head which quickly settles down. The aroma is very mild, only a bit of hops and dusty grains. The taste is nothing special - not bitter nor sweet, quite hoppy and almost too grainy. Also lacks a bit of bubbles to make it more refreshing. All in all, not very pleasant.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2013 17:11:10 | More by MarkoNm
Photo of DenisKolkin

Ontario (Canada)

2.63/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

355 ml bottle purchased at LCBO in the singles bin for $2 CDN. Served cold and poured into a pint glass.

Appearance - Pale golden colored beer pours 1.5 fingers of white head that dissipate quickly. Crystal clear and very few bubbles are present upon pouring. Soapy collar is left around brim of beer for a while.

Smell - A bit skunky, even with brown bottle. Feels almost as if corn and sweetness have been added to this mixture that seems unnatural. Slight vegetative scents.

Taste - Mild sweetness up front but doesn't linger, but transitions to a caramel corn sweetness. Also slightly vegetative and a bit of sour bitterness at the end. It's worth noting that none of the flavors really last for any significant duration.

Mouthfeel - Light body and quite smooth and somewhat full feeling given the lack of bubbles (carbonation) up front and the thinness in the scents and flavor. Despite this apparent fullness, the beer is still moderately thin and mediocre.

Overall - As far as pilseners go, this one's near the bottom of the barrel, but still something drinkable if you're thirsty. Wouldn't repeat and the artificial sweetness is more reminiscent of AAL's

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2013 03:22:36 | More by DenisKolkin
Photo of BlurryVisi0n

New York

2.69/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Served in a pint glass.

Appearance: Straight gold, very clear with heavy bubbles on the body (very heavy). The head was a little thing coming off white rising to maybe 1/3".

Smell: Sour hop scent almost wet hopped. It's pleasant but nothing new that will amaze you....scent comes and goes.

Taste: Wet hop feel that is straight light bitterness. A slight creaminess to it like a marzen, might feel a tad corn feel to it.

Mouth: heavy carbonation with slightly dry feel, coming off very smooth.

Overall: Not a bad beer, best enjoyed with a meal than to have alone because it's a very one dimensional brew. Most pilseners are, so I shouldn't be arguing. Hot weather with this and some good grub makes this much more enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2013 17:36:16 | More by BlurryVisi0n
Photo of soju6


2.88/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

A: Pours a clear golden color with abillowing head that fades to bits of lacing.

S: Aroma of malt sweetness, bit of citrus with some grain.

T: Taste has a bit of a hops nip with amild malt sweetness and grain. Mild bitterness and a clean finish.

F: Light body, crisp smooth and refrshing.

O: Perfect beer for the hot humid weather in Manila.

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2013 01:35:55 | More by soju6
Photo of TheMarkE


3.21/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Clear gold with thick foam and good lacing.

Smell: Grain.

Taste: Sweet and grainy. Corn and other light malts.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied, crisp, not much of an aftertaste.

The Verdict: Drinkable. An easy drinking but forgettable beer that’s a slight step above the average macrobrew.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2013 22:47:39 | More by TheMarkE
Photo of tbeckett

Ontario (Canada)

2.65/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

Had a bottle of this at a bar in Ho Chi Minh served by the nice beer girl in a tiny San Miguel dress. From notes.

A - Poured slightly darker than gold. Bright with a one finger white head that left spotty lace and a film of retention.

S - A little corny with sweet grain. Feel like I've written that far too often lately. Pretty typical Asian lager.

T - Not bad. Sweet grain and lot's of light sweet malt. A touch of corn, but nothing too bad.

M - Good carbonation, a light body, and a sweet clean finish. Smooth.

O/D - Not terrible. Standard and acceptable. Fairly smooth flavour made this go down well, but I certainly didn't think too highly of it.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2013 13:16:49 | More by tbeckett
Photo of SometimesIfart


2.08/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A - Pours a very murky yellow with a masive white head. Left a decent amount of lacing.

S - Lots and lots ot grains and skunk. And that's about it.

T - Loads of grain up front, along with some skunk and unrippened apple, along with a tart sweet finish.

M - Medium bodied with heavy carbonation.

O - Overall, it was just another German Pilsner.

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2013 06:39:12 | More by SometimesIfart
Photo of Fatehunter


1.88/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A thin head on a clear, bright golden colored body.
The aroma is non-existent; the mildest grain.
The taste is mildly bitter and then watery middle to end.
A crisp texture, high carbonation and light body.
A lot going against this beer: smell, no taste and high carbonation coming up at the top of the list.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2013 07:02:37 | More by Fatehunter
Photo of Minkybut


2.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured this beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. I was very hopeful of this beer as I had one 20 years ago ant thought it was so good. Must not have been the same product!! This beer did pour a nice head. However the taste was terrible, a sour taste and smell was all up in this beer. Bready, yeasty yuk. I wish I know which San Migues I had way back, it seemed it was in a dark colored label. The beer was a very clean rice beer, very neutral but refreshing. NOT THIS BEER>

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2012 23:24:49 | More by Minkybut
Photo of jsisko01


4/5  rDev +49.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a clear, golden color with an inch thick, creamy white head. Has a nice lacing.

Smell - Sweet, grainy, and malty.

Taste - Very bready and malty, light pale malts, and grains.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

Overall - This is a pretty good, crisp beer to drink on.

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2012 02:54:52 | More by jsisko01
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San Miguel Pale Pilsen from San Miguel Brewery Inc.
64 out of 100 based on 145 ratings.