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Iron City Beer - Pittsburgh Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Iron City BeerIron City Beer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

446 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 446
Reviews: 250
rAvg: 2.49
pDev: 27.31%
Wants: 1
Gots: 20 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pittsburgh Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: maxpower on 02-01-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 446 | Reviews: 250 | Display Reviews Only:
3.5/5  rDev +40.6%

IDABEERGUY, Jul 26, 2013
Photo of clayrock81
3.5/5  rDev +40.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Look - this is an alright beer but you have to understand Pittsburgh. It is the only city w/ an entrance (ride through the Liberty tubes before you enter the city and you'll know what I mean), but it is not pretty. Sure, it looks great w/ the rivers and bridges on a poster, but real Pittsburgh is cold, dirty and grimy. And it is a steel town. You work in a mill all day and you want a beer that just goes down smooth, fast and is cheap (I have stillmill workers in my family). Or when you want about 12 beers to tailgate for a Stillers game. In that regard, I'll always have a spot for this beer and will tell everyone to give it one try.

clayrock81, Nov 07, 2007
Photo of Dapperticus
3.5/5  rDev +40.6%

Dapperticus, Jul 04, 2012
Photo of drt72
3.5/5  rDev +40.6%

drt72, Oct 29, 2012
Photo of bigclydeoliver
3.5/5  rDev +40.6%

bigclydeoliver, Jan 26, 2013
Photo of tomgossert
3.5/5  rDev +40.6%

tomgossert, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of Shiloh
3.48/5  rDev +39.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very good session beer.....light to medium golden colour with a matching body....aroma is crisp. The taste and mouthfeel is what really got my attention.....Well balanced and clean....Not a great brew, but a very good brew, and for the money, an exellent value. I could drink gallons of this.....and probobly will....

Shiloh, Jan 09, 2003
Photo of Getinthevan
3.45/5  rDev +38.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had this when I went to Scranton, PA for the first time and for a cheap lager, this stuff was actually pretty good!

Appearance is a basic yellow with a tiny amount of head, not too shabby, but average for a typical lager.

Smell was fairly strong, but nothing to write home about. It smelled like a weaker Heineken.

Taste however I thoroughly enjoyed. There's a nice almost buttery aftertaste that follows the first sip and also has a nice sweet bite to it as well. Definitely a good beer to wet your whistle.

Mouthfeel was a bit thin, and not too overpowering. It goes down easy without any complaints, much like a light beer without the metallic aftertaste.

Drinkability is pretty good with this stuff. What it lacks in appearance and smell does a pretty good job in the aftertaste and feel in the mouth. It's a good cheap Pennsylvania lager and goes well with fish.

Getinthevan, Jun 15, 2008
Photo of righthereisay
3.4/5  rDev +36.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

I gave this beer an above average not for taste, but because I like to down these during Steeler tailgating. Sometimes a beer must be judged on something other than taste. If this was judged on taste, it would have been given an F.

Drinkability is OK because it is not too bitter, or not to tasty.

righthereisay, Jan 03, 2009
Photo of secondtooth
3.38/5  rDev +35.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A clear, pale gold complexion, with a medium head. Looks and feels a lot like it's mainstream lager cousins, as the scent and flavor are grainy, with hints of corn and honey. Light-bodied, but crisp nonetheless, with a malty adjunct feel. Not spectacular or memorable, but a solid light lager that more than holds it's own against the corporate beers.

secondtooth, Dec 19, 2010
Photo of ocelot2500
3.38/5  rDev +35.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a clear bright yellow color with a fizzy white head that leaves little lacing.

Smells of grainy sweetness with some citrus.

Tastes of the grainy malt with a layer of floral and citrus hops. Grainy malt is plenty sweet. Bitterness is low. I like it compared to BMC.

Mouthfeel is medium with a crisp amount of carbonation.

ocelot2500, Sep 04, 2010
Photo of JoeMagarac
3.35/5  rDev +34.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Writing an impartial review of this beer is probably impossible. It's a macro lager, so most of us here are mildly biased against it, however hard we may try to score it for its style. Worse yet, it's from Pittsburgh and has the name "Iron City," so it invites stereotyping of the worst kind. See the review dated 11-7-2007 below for an example: it claims that "real Pittsburgh is cold, dirty and grimy" and full of mill workers. None of that is true, at least not these days: I live a 15-minute walk from the brewery and speak from experience. But it's a myth we all want to believe: that this is a tough beer for tough people, or something like that.

All of which is to say that while I will try to review this beer impartially and to score it for its style, you should take this review - and most of the other ones on here - with a grain of salt. (Or a belt of Imperial Whiskey, if you like the myth). I poured my Arn from a 12-ounce can into a pint glass, and assume that it is fresh given my location. I had a Miller High Life recently to give me a control beer to which I could compare this.

Appearance: completely average. There's a thin head that quickly fades, and obviously artificial carbon dioxide bubbles that cling to the inside of the glass for half a minute before disappearing. No better or worse than other macro lagers.

Smell: none at all, so far as I can tell. I guess that's average too: neither good nor bad.

Taste: better than average, but not great. Has a slightly acidic tang that probably isn't hops, but is thirst quenching and would go well with food. Doesn't linger on the palate.

Mouthfeel: better than average, but not great. Watery but very and pleasantly fizzy.

Drinkability: below average, but not awful. Like most macro lagers, you can down a lot of these in one sitting. But you don't really want to. And I know from prior encounters that this beer gives the worst hangover of any macro lager I've ever had, with the exception of sub-prime beers like Carling Black Label.

JoeMagarac, Nov 28, 2007
Photo of mentor
3.35/5  rDev +34.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

12 oz ‘aluminum’ bottle obtained from John’s Grocery (Iowa City) in January 2005 and consumed that same evening. Pours a half-finger white head that very quickly settled to a ring around the glass. Crystal clear light honey color with a few streams of bubbles rising to the top. Smells mildly sweet (honey-like) with faint hop (Saaz? or perhaps that's just metal from the 'bottle) and maybe a bit of orange. Tastes weakly malt sweet with hop bitter--a bit to strong for the limited sweetness. A metalic flavor, I'm hoping is from the hops, is present from start to finish. Fruity flavors consist of cantelope (which I think is correctly called muskmelon) and a bit of peach. A sour carbonation fizz persists on my tongue after the swallow. Thin mouthfeel. This beer is much better than I expected (I was expecting macro-swill), but the fruit flavors are a bit stronger than I expect in a lager. Enjoyable, went down quick, on to the next beer for the evening.

mentor, Jan 06, 2005
Photo of wcudwight
3.33/5  rDev +33.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale crystal clear golden color with a whispy thin white1/4" head. Nice solid rim around the glass.
Smell is of corn, grains, and a mild melon aroma.
Taste is bland and simple. Heavy on the malts, faintly sweet, with a nice crisp finish.
Thin and watery in the mouth. Par for the style.
It's a very drinkable beer, but the drinkability decreases as the temp rises. I deducted a pt for that.
If this were readily available in my area it would be my lawn mower and bbq beer.
The alumi-bottle would also be great for camping or tailgaiting.
Best macro lager I've had yet.

wcudwight, Aug 10, 2006
Photo of CuriousMonk
3.33/5  rDev +33.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Usually drink this when I visit Pittsburgh. Apperance is actually good for this type of lager light golden with a half inch thick creamy,frothy white head..that actually sticks around. Aroma however is the usual sour corn mash cardboard mess!! Taste is better than the aroma..the corn is there in abundance but mt so sour and the malts actually seem nice and present.Nice semi sweet finish. Good on the palate, that is above average for style. Goes down well.Overall a nice American lager..reminds me a bit of Full Sail's Session..simple traditional American beer.

CuriousMonk, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of beeragent
3.33/5  rDev +33.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. bottle, into a pint glass. The beer poured a clear straw color, forming a 1/2 inch fluffy white head, leaving medium lacing on the glass. The aroma is very light hops, giving it a slight citrus smell. The taste is nothing great, but a little better than Bud or Miller. Not much here. A little grain and a little hop flavor. The mouthfeel is light and smooth. I could see how light drinkers would enjoy this, but this really just doesnt do anything for me.

beeragent, Jan 14, 2007
Photo of HardTarget
3.3/5  rDev +32.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Cool (literally) aluminum bottle
Aroma: Mild fruit (mostly pineapple) edge to a straightforward lager beer. No alcohol or hops noted.
Appearance: Painfully clear bright yellow glass with active carbonation streams that failed to keep the white head alive very long or leave lace.
Flavor: The pineapple flavor leaves it a bit sour, but very mild, as is the total taste. A little bit of grain and a mild adjunct flavor as well, but very subtle. The beer is a study in inoffensive flavors, almost like cafeteria food.
Mouthfeel: Thin body, good carbonation level, mild bitter pucker at the finish
Overall Impression: Easy drinking; uninspiring. I see this as a beer for the masses. I’d choose one over any BMC product, and could see some enjoying a session of this, but overall, it’s a fairly bland lager.

HardTarget, Apr 24, 2005
Photo of everetends
3.3/5  rDev +32.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz aluminum bottle I got at Four Winds in Pensecola to honor my Pens. Poured into a pint tumbler.

A: Poured the typical straw yellow, clear, with a nice white head that had no retention. Above average for a macro.

S: Actually smells like cheap clear rum, real cheap rum. That is all I am getting.

T: Taste is actually good for a macro. Mild hops, mild malt, a touch of spice. Very nice.

M: Very watery but you still have some lingering flavor. Still clean and crisp. Really goes down and refreshing.

D: Hits the spot and is very refreshing, does do the job a macro sets out to do. Better than the macro styles we have down here.

everetends, Jun 20, 2008
Photo of kkmiller76
3.25/5  rDev +30.5%

kkmiller76, May 05, 2013
Photo of Dithyramb
3.25/5  rDev +30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presented in the requisite can bottle. Strange lot numbering ink jetted on the upper area.
Pours an ultra clear yellow. Depressing amount of retention. Lacing amounted to a wisp of white around the edges that sometimes got stuck.
Aroma of grainy malt with a light amount of hops on the end.
Medium bodied, but nicely carbonated and tingly on the tongue. This one is more of a one trick poney, that is decidedly sweet and grainy in the malt areas.o tries to make its way through towards the swallow. Bitterness comes along at the end, leaving the tongue slightly dry. The slick and creamy mouthfeel leaves it slightly better than average.

Dithyramb, Aug 17, 2005
Photo of Enola
3.25/5  rDev +30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a better beer than I expected. The color is light yellow and there is ample carbonation. The smell is grainy. But the taste is more than is expected of the style. The beer does not have that grainy harshness that is typical of the style. The mouthfeel is smooth and inviting. This is a session beer is I have ever seen one. This beer is better than any macro I have had. Top of the heap in that style. Thnks to wcudwight for the bottle. This was my first aluminum bottle.

Enola, Aug 27, 2006
Photo of MunchkinDrinker
3.25/5  rDev +30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark straw, but not quite amber. Crystal clear. Fizzy white head. No lacing.

S - Biting sweet malts. Some vague hop spiciness. Some cloying corn husk. Some wine like alcohol smell oddly enough.

T/M - Thin watery feel. Clean taste. Mild malts, mild corn flavors. Nearly no hops, but the lightness of the malt and corn don't make it sweet enough to be cloying.

D - Goes down very easy. I was surprised that the taste was actually not bad for an adjunct lager. I could find myself going for another pretty easily.

MunchkinDrinker, Jun 25, 2009
Photo of MLFrank
3.25/5  rDev +30.5%

MLFrank, Jul 03, 2013
Photo of JimGlonke
3.25/5  rDev +30.5%

JimGlonke, May 01, 2012
Photo of jdmorgan
3.25/5  rDev +30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a light yellow and had a medium head. The smell had a faint hop aroma and a bit of malt too. The taste was light with a light/medium body. There is a little bit of hop flavor present here, but not a whole lot. The taste isn't too bad... there's just not a whole lot of it. The mouthfeel is light with a medium carbonation. This isn't a real heavy beer, but it doesn't have a bad taste. I consider to be pretty drinkable, and I enjoyed it (in true Pittsburgher fashion) with a Primanti Brothers sandwich! Definately worth a try... and a must when visiting the great city of Pittsburgh!

jdmorgan, Jan 16, 2007
Iron City Beer from Pittsburgh Brewing Co.
60 out of 100 based on 446 ratings.