1. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $14.99 (US/print only). Offer ends April 30. Subscribe now! (Because great beer deserves great stories AND readers.)

Grain Belt Premium - August Schell Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Grain Belt PremiumGrain Belt Premium

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
75
okay

491 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 491
Reviews: 183
rAvg: 3.26
pDev: 18.71%
Wants: 16
Gots: 51 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
August Schell Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TastyTaste on 07-04-2003

Although the Grain Belt Premium recipe has changed hands over the years, one thing has remained the same–its legendary unique taste. And now that Premium is in the capable hands of a brewery with an even longer tradition than Grain Belt–the August Schell Brewery–may you rest assured that the flavor and heritage of Premium will live on forever.
View: Beers (39) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view more.
Ratings: 491 | Reviews: 183
Photo of pat61
3.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Brilliantly clear straw to yellow, off-white quickly dissipating head leaves some delicate lacing.
S: grainy, no hops, a little apple, some corn sweetness, no appreciable malt aroma.
T: Tastes thin, grainy with corn-grain sweetness, no hops, and slight apple, faintly malty. Low hops make it lean to the malt, a light white bread or white flour tortilla after taste.
F: less highly carbonated than some, no carbonation bight, smooth, a little slickness on the tongue, refreshing and dull.
O: bland, low flavor, lower carbonation makes it less interesting than better standard American lagers.

Photo of SenorElRaz
2.93/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

This is a good cheap beer. It has a very unique taste, which some love but I admittedly don't. Still, looks great and goes down smooth. It also gets points for being brewed in my home state of MN.

Photo of GuyfromGB
4.32/5  rDev +32.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a classic beer, with rich flavor, and an unpretentious reputation originating in Northeast Minneapolis. I rate it so highly based on its simplicity, full flavor, and also quite if bit of nostalgia.

Photo of cambabeer
2.78/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Smells fruity, kinda like bananas.

Photo of Jim_Benz
3.18/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is what I drank before before the craft beer explosion. Well, this and Summit Pale Ale. It's got a whole lot more flavor than Bud, which isn't saying much, and I still buy it for making beer brats--then save the leftovers for guests who don't appreciate the "good stuff." Overall? It's okay. But if I want to really enjoy a lager, I'll pick up some Brooklyn.

Photo of Goodspeed83
3.34/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

As a Minnesotan, this is what I "grew up" with, as far as my early beer-drinking days went. It's better than your typical American lager, and is sometimes what I'll buy when I need a break from my beloved stouts and other heavier beers, especially in the summer. Is it a world-class beer? No, but it's a quality, easy-drinking beer that's a good value. It's like a friend you occasionally hook up with, but don't feel awkward or ashamed about afterwards.

Photo of CraigP83
4.15/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is my fallback when not drinking craft brews. It doesnt taste like water like most macrobrews, easy drinking when you plan on having more than one. I also like that it is brewed in my home state of MN.

Photo of libgotti
5/5  rDev +53.4%

This is my go-to, favorite beer. Same for my grandfather and his grandfathers. Goes down smooth and easy, and tastes soo good. Beats Bud Light, Coors light, etc. for me on every level.

Photo of G_Mad
2.25/5  rDev -31%

watery, very little taste.

Photo of MNmike2012
5/5  rDev +53.4%

True American original

Photo of jhartley
2.99/5  rDev -8.3%

Poured from a 16 oz. can into a stange style glass.
Very pale yellow color, almost a washed out gold. 1 finger fluffy white head, left a decent amount of lacing left in the glass.
Smells of stale wet cardboard, corn and an underlying almost white wine smell.
Taste isn't terrible, it's just not good at all. A step above Coors Light, but a small step at that.
Super thin mouth feel, almost like water: no after taste at all, what is there is unappetizing.
Yeah this is just not good, unless you want to dump a macro-lager down your throat.
Not gonna finish this one, although I did drink more of this than their Nordeast.
Drain pour.

Photo of Oakenshield53
3.5/5  rDev +7.4%

OK, by rights this is a 3, but I'm giving it another .5 because - hey, Grain Belt.

Crisp, clean - a good summer adjunct lager, but then there's the sweet kick at the finish. The much superior Grain Belt Nordeast has this as well, but Premium's is noticeable and a little surprising if you haven't had one before.

Going by appearances, you're ready for some Blatz, right on - just something to knock the dust down a little while you finish hanging that garage door, but then - there it is. A little bit like the after-taste of Corn Flakes, including the sugar.

That might not be everyone's idea of a good time, but I always have some Grain Belt standing by.

Photo of Foyle
4.5/5  rDev +38%

Poured from 12oz bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: pours a 2" sudsy white head that slowly falls with plenty of lacing left behind. Color is clear light golden with plenty of streaming carbonation.

Aroma: nice aroma of light barley, a bit of corn, some grassy hops.

Mouthfeel: light and crisp, slightly sticky, with a pleasant and refreshing finish.

Flavor: yeasty white bread, some corn sweetness, a bit of hop bite for balance.

Overall: well balanced and outstanding in the adjunct lager style. Perhaps the best I have had thus far.

Photo of Alextricity
2.77/5  rDev -15%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Grain Belt... because it's like being smacked in the face by a belt of corn syrup! (Or something to that effect...)

Seriously, man. This is a very sweet beer. Pretty thin, and one note -- corn. It tastes like creamed corn or something and that's about it. I'd liken it to Old Style in a way, but something about it (likely just misconstrued memory or a thing to that effect) makes this almost off-putting. I can see this being popular with people who like adjunct lagers that are on the sweeter side, but it's not for me. On the plus side, it's not skunky or metallic or anything like that, which is always a good thing. It's a better-than-average AAL, but it's still very "meh."

In short: You get what you pay for.

Photo of flagbearer
3.83/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

had one of these a few years back and still wish I could find it again. I will admit, I'm a fan of a number of AALs after all, that's what over 90% of beer drinkers probably start on. If they tell you different, they're probably lying. It bothers me, like I said in a forum, that these beer snobs rate all AALs low just because its not some overly
hopped crap. there's a ton of AALs, especially grain belt, that are (in my opinion) better than most craft beers. anyway, overall a great beer and staple of the Midwest.

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.6/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Ah, I love a good Schell beer. Grain Belt is no exception. I haven't had this one for awhile so I'll review it with a fresh mind (and palate).

Appearance - as always, in bottle. I almost never pour. Average rating at 3.0.

Smell - cracking the cap...buttered and very lightly sugared popcorn; deep sweet smelling grain husks, fresh corn, salted and sweet malts. A lot like High Life. Enough smelling, I want to dive in.

Taste - Fantastic. Nice and sweet with a bit of bite that dissolves into a musty grain flavor. Very low bitterness but it's there. A hint of sour chemical at the end that I wish wasn't there so it gets docked half a point. A very easy drinker.

Mouthfeel - Carbonated right from the get go but still smooth.

Overall - This beer is a clear winner. It's got the right flavor in the right areas and keeps it simple. This beer is like High Life but better. Grain Belt is a beer I would recommend to friends for almost any occasion. The friendly beer!

Photo of mjryan
3.67/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Not going to lie, I'm a homer and this is the home town beer. Well, GBP and EPA are THE home town beers, but this is the original. It's a corny lager, not my favourite, but probably my second favourite. It's sort of sweet, which is my only complaint, but it's a nice sweetness. We like sweet here. Give me a Jucy Lucy and a Premo and some fries and I'm in fucking heaven. GBP is liquid history, a regional brand that somehow didn't get sucked into the multinational brewing conglomeration, a fucking time capsule. Your grandfather drank this beer. And so do his grand kids. I'm grateful for that and I'm proud that Pennsylvania and Minnesota somehow managed to keep the wolves at bay and retain their regional brewers (Schells in Mn's case, who keep the GB torch alight). A far from useful, but from the heart drunken review. You are welcome.

Photo of Kww900l
5/5  rDev +53.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

What can I say. This is the greatest beer in the world for the price. Where else can you get a case of tasty suds for so little. I know you beer snobs will turn your noses up at this awesome Midwest treat that's been passed from father to son for over a hundred years. Clean,smooth and sweet. I love it goes great at the ball game,deer camp,or avoiding the wife. Take my recomendation and pick up a six pack of this you won't regret it. All hail to the big friendly!

Photo of OMBeer
3.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

After trying several local beers, this was one of only a few craft, local brews on the menu. First one went down very fast and I enjoyed the second. Very lite, or pale in color, not very appealing by appearance. Smell was slightly malty with a touch of grain scent.
Enjoyed this beer and would definitely purchase as a workhorse in the fridge if I lived local. See why it is very populer in the college town of Eau Claire.

Photo of workingclassbrew
3.31/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Grainbelt what can I say? Actually a lot. The 1st time I bought GB was when buddies of mine, and myself took 5 cases of Blatz returnables and changed them in, no Blatz, but I saw a familiar emblem that brought back a childhood memory from tavern stools in my moms hometown. It was the GB diamond label.

Cracked open a 16oz can ( " The Big Friendly" ), into a mug, hazy yellow, yes hazy, I usually buy GB bottles, and its clear as glass, whats with this?

Smell, sweet grass a little skunky.

GB has a taste that separates itself from big brand American macros. HighLife does this too. Sweet, but not over the top, slightly sour which sounds disgusting to me, but with the slight hop finish in the end it goes well. Easy drinking, light on all points malt, hops, sweetness, and carbonation.

This is my "Up North" brew, in the taverns as well as the cabin. I love seeing the old Grain Belt signs in the small towns in north western Wisconsin, and Minnesota. Its great to see the neon Premium signs, and places still serving it on tap. The name Grain Belt, how working class, no nonsense can you get? Love it!

Photo of mcrow24
3.18/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Solid, Commercial style beer.

A: Light golden, very clear....very much the standard looking American Adjunct Lager.

S: Very light aroma of grains, corn and sweatness.

T: again, light flavor but sweet, grainy flavors. Malty but crisp.

M: watery feel in mouth but bubbly and a slight bitter bite in the back of the mouth for an after taste.

Overall:
Well, this is a commercial beer that Schell's bought out some years ago so it is no suprise that it is a lot like other commercial American Lagers. However, I think this one is a cut above and makes for a great brew on hot day.

Photo of zeledonia
3.7/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Can has 020814 on the bottom. Guessing that's best by 8 February 2014. Tasted 3 February 2014.

Pours very pale golden yellow. Crystal clear, with a thin column of bubbles rising. Half-finger of white head, okay retention and lacing. Fine, for an adjunct lager.

Smell is thin, lightly sweet. Lager yeast busting through. Light and clean. Pretty good.

Taste is pretty good (again, for an adjunct lager). It's moderately sweet, a clean golden sweet. Could use a bit more crisp, and a bit more bite, but it's well balanced and smooth. One of the better adjunct lagers I've had.

Feel is really nice. Light-bodied, carbonation right where I want it, though it drops off a second before I want it to. A little expansive, like a bubble inflating just a touch in my mouth.

A flavorful, clean, crisp lager. I wanted to dislike it, but I don't. Sweetness is almost too much, but it backs off right when I want it to. It's close to being really really good, with a few little things not quite measuring up. But overall, I dig it.

Photo of DrCDPriest
3.17/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Not a bad beer for a traditional American beer by a great company with a low price-point. Usually I would rant and rave over anything from August Schell Brewing, great history, great people, great location, wonderful products. And I use to love Grain Belt before it sold to ASB.

The Grain Belt Premium has a nice, although very pale yellow, color, more like corm than other grains, good aroma, smells like dad's Miller Highlife 40 years ago, taste has a bit more of a sour than bitter flavor, starts sour/bitter but has a good semi-sweet grainy follow through, hint of corn maybe (?), highly carbonated, bubbles like a ginger ale, still, great beer with pizza, nachos, or hanging out at a local bar watching the Super Bowl.

At home I pour a 12 0z bottle into a pint glass, out, draft is usually pretty tasty.

Photo of evanackerman
3.11/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Beer pours yellow with fizzy foam head - quickly receding to nothing. appearance is average for the style, reminds me of High Life. Aroma is a surprise, there is the typical grain/corn thing from adjunct lagers but there is also a very apparent floral hop aroma that is above average for the style, nothing crazy, but better than most.

Taste is unremarkable - on par for style, mostly standard adjunct flavors, tastes like corn as opposed to rice, again kind of similar to High Life. Thin mouthfeel but appropriate for the style.

Overall, clean, crisp, refreshing, cheap (got a 12 pack of tall boys for $12), a bit above-average for the style. It is what it is and hits the spot after too many IPAs or Imperial Stouts, it helps to cleanse the palate.

Photo of davey101
3.27/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

12 oz can into a pint glass. Thanks Bennett! This one pours a crystal clear yellow with a finger of awkward white foam. Excellent lacing and retention. Smell is cereal grains, sweet corn, and some chemical smelling fruit. Not a great aroma. Taste is spot on though. Great balance between the grainy malts and sweet corn with an underlying hop fruitiness. Clean and crisp this drinks very easily with no real aftertaste of any kind. Not overly carbonated or too thin. Just a damn solid adjunct lager.

to view more.
Grain Belt Premium from August Schell Brewing Company
75 out of 100 based on 491 ratings.