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Grain Belt Premium - August Schell Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Grain Belt PremiumGrain Belt Premium

Educational use only; do not reuse.

482 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 482
Reviews: 179
rAvg: 3.26
pDev: 18.71%
Wants: 15
Gots: 45 | 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.
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Ratings: 482 | Reviews: 179 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BigRedN
2.96/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Poured from the clear 12 oz bottle into pilsner glass. The beer is a perfectly clear golden yellow. My pour produced a fluffy white head almost two inches in height which quickly faded to a ring around the glass that left little lacing.

Smell: Scent of corny adjuncty sweetness, not much else. Classic macro lager I guess.

Taste: I bought an enclosed 12 pack of this as I was worried about skunking with the clear bottles. I don't think skunking will be an issue with this as there is nothing in the way of hops in the taste (I assume that this uses little hops or else some sort of extract like MGD). Taste is a bit sweet, taste of adjuncts (seems corny IMO).

Mouthfeel: Smooth lighter bodied beer. Decent carbonation keeps it light and lively on the tongue.

Drinkability: An easy drinking macro lager style beer. Would probably be better in summer, but its ok as a substitute for BMC for high quantity drinking. Although, at $10.99 for a 12 of bottles it is not very cost effective. I'm not dissapointed I tried it, but unless I find this for $8-9 a 12, I'll be skipping it over.

Photo of Mistofminn
3.75/5  rDev +15%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz clear bottle

A - Straw yellow color. More darker than lighter. Decent but short lived head.

S - Corn and other grains. Makes you feel right at home in the farmland of the midwest.

T - Sweet corn taste, but it is very enjoyable. Light and crisp, very refreshing.

M - Thin and watery, strong carbonation. Crisp

D - Very drinkable.

One of my favorite macros. Brewed in New Ulm so it doesn't travel far before it hits my lips. The large Premium sign in St. Paul is a landmark I smile at whenever I see it.

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

On-tap at the Blue Nile. Appears a clear, brilliant gold with no head. I think this beer is really an example of how to make the most out of adjunct beer. Yes, it tastes like corn. In fact, it tastes a lot like corn. But unlike Miller Light (another corn-y beer in my mind), Grain Belt is smooth with subtle bready malts. I mean, unless you don't like corn-flavored beer (and that's understandable), this is a great lawnmower beer. Macro beer at its best.

Photo of jjanega08
3.65/5  rDev +12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A= straw yellow color with a light bubbly head that dissipates quickly and leaves a small bubble coat on top. Decent lacing late in the drink
S= muted but it has a corn odor with a little malt, the corn is dominant however
T= light and crisp taste of corn. I use to love the flavor till someone ruined it for me by telling me it tastes like bugspray.
M= Light crisp and refreshing
D= it's the perfect beer for a day at the ball park or an outdoor bbq with friends. Drink it like you would drink a bud or miller only enjoy it a million times more.

Photo of LordofTime25
4.4/5  rDev +35%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I have had it in a can, bottle, and on tap.

Has a light amber almost straw apperance with a white foamy head that will last for a few drinks.

Smell is fruity with a hint corn.

Has a sweet fruity finish with a tangy corn taste.

Very light taste in your mouth with a full flavor.

I would drink this often. One of the beers I keep on hand. Found that women who like a casual beer like this.

Photo of TonyBaloney
3.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Grain Belt Premium on tap: what you'll get is a fairly bubbly, yellow glass of beer, with a pretty muted smell, and a nice effervescent mouthfeel, and a good grainy flavor. This is a humble beer that more than holds its own against phony craft beers like Leinenkugel, and blows macros out of the water. Perfect compliment to hot dogs on the grill on a hot summer day.

Photo of TexIndy
2.26/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Got as the Bad(ass) in The Good, The Bad and The Ugly BIF from Scoobydank - thanks! Poured from a 12oz can into a pint glass. There was a date on the bottom of the can but didn't specify if canned date or best by date. It was a clear light good color with some carb streams. No lacing. It had a finger of fizzy white head that quickly evaporated into a thin collar.

The aroma was corn, malt and a touch of sweetness in the back. Very weak aroma overall and it really faded as it warmed. The taste was decent. It goes down easy but really no flavor to it. Feels like drinking a BMC. Mouthfeel was watery.

Overall, it was a below average beer in par with the BMC's. Not one that I'd buy but glad I got to try since it's a Minnesota legend.

Photo of BeerBelcher
3.03/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not bad. Not tremendously different from other American lagers I'm familiar with, but this beer offers an exceptionally clean (probably means tasteless) taste, and a clean (but not really watery) mouthfeel. It comes in a clear bottle, but is definitely not skunky. Appearance is yellow, brilliant, and fizzy, with a think and soapy head. Not bad.

Photo of mothman
3.04/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. No freshness date.

This beer is very popular from where I live, so I figured I would give it a chance.

Pours a fizzy head that doesn't last too long. Color is a clear straw yellow.

It is definitely a light beer that doesn't pour much of a head. There really is no presence of hops. Just a big grain flavor with some corn.

Mouthfeel is crisp with a lighter bodied. Higher amount of carbonation.

Overall this beer doesn't have much going on, but it is a local favorite. It doesn't cost that much which is nice and you can drink a few without filling up.

Photo of daledeee
3.48/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had read that this was one of the better macros to try. It was a hot day so what the heck.

This beer pours clear yellow with a decent head. Not much smell except a few whiffs of grain.

Taste is smooth, sweet and a hint of hops. As with other macros grain is also predominant. Overall, this beer is pretty good with middle of the road taste.

Photo of Mardukk
2.13/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I had this from the clear bottle.

A: Looks like the typical macro straw color with no little to no head and no lacing.

S: A sweet corn type smell. Not much of a smell really

T: Hits your mouth without much fanfare...but when it hits the back of your mouth the corn/malt liquor taste makes a strong statement. A sweet metallic taste hits your tongue and leaves an unpleasant filmy sweet taste lingering.

M: Medium to light mouthfeel

D: I guess you could drink a few of these if you love malt liquor. The taste and filmy aftertaste would prevent this from being a very satisfying session beer.

The more I drink this the more it reminds me of a low alcohol malt liquor. Avoid this beer.

Photo of shroompod
3.48/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

sknpup69 picked this up for me on a trip to Minnesota.

Pours a pale yellow , small head , tiny bit of a head.

Aroma is slightly grainy , very faint.

This beer reminds me of most typical Macro's , perhaps slightly sweeter , and a small hint of hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is thin , good carbonation.

Overall an easy drinking session beer.

Photo of Mdog
2.6/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pale yellow, good carbonation but a fading head.

Smell: Sweet, corn.

Taste: A little too sweet. Corn comes through as the main flavor, really strong at first but I either got used to it or it fades as it warms up.

Drinkability: The strong corn note reminds me too much of dangerous malt liquors.

Picked up a 12 pack for cheapo beer over the 4th. Unfortunately the taste reminded me too much of malt liquor. I'll still finish the 12, but I probably won't come back to it again.

Photo of Rayek
3.7/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this at a barbecue MN. I'd never heard of it until then. Much better than I was expecting.

A: Yellowish gold color has big carbonation bubbles. Soppy white head has OK retention and maintains a nice ring around the edge of the glass. Leaves bits of lace.

S: Apple, lemon and sweet malts. Not too complex, but about right for the style.

T: More flavorful than most macros. Sweetness is mostly malty, but a fair amount of corn is there as well. Bitterness adds a light lemon flavor, but the sweet flavors dominate in the end. Finishes clean.

M: Light body with the right amount of fizz.

D: The perfect beer for a warm summer day with family. Hands down, Grain Belt is the best Adjunct Lager I've had thus far. I think I'll be stocking up on this the next time I head back east.

Photo of Oxymoron
1.73/5  rDev -46.9%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Is there a grain belt buckle? Pours a clear lemony yellow color with great clarity. Needed help with the pour but still left with a large bubbly head that quickly dissipated to nothing. No retention, no lacing, no carbonation.

The nose is limited but what aromas you could get were off. Noticeable canned corn mixed with butyric/sewer smells. Some lighter bread notes that was boarder line cereal and boarder line grainy. Feint yeast notes as well.

The taste is on par with the nose. Or well below par in this case. A almost sickly sweetness with strong notes of corn and butter. No real malt notes at all. No hop notes either to balance. To me this is more along the lines of a malt liquor than macro lager. Some minor sewage notes in the end but not as bad as the nose indicated.

The body is closer to light than moderate. Next to no carbonation and a offsetting finish leaves a filmy finish. Overall not recommended. Not recommended at all.

Photo of Greggy
3.63/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a thick fluffy bright white head that very slowly recedes leaving some nice lacing. The body is crystal clear yellow with no sediment.

S- A definite sweetness hits the nose with a light bit of hops and some maltiness. The sweetness is much like lemons and the slightest hint of clove-like banana.

T- Initially, a sweetness almost bordering what a wheat tastes like. There is a definite banana sweetness to it, and even a clove note. A bit thin when tasted from the glass, but from the bottle, straight, it fairs a bit better. The finish is mostly a little hop bite and just a bit of grassiness.

M- The mouthfeel is a little thin, but still quenches the thirst.

D- The big key, as with most macros, at least for me, is bottle vs. in the glass. For me, this beer is quite a bit better from the bottle, but even in the glass, it beats out many other macros. Because of it's thirst quenching abilities, and low ABV, it has nice drinkability.

Photo of Durge
3.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 5

This poured from the tap as a pale yellow gold lager with sparse white head and so-so lacing. I get a fairly classic weak wheat aroma but it's OK, a bit of lemony citrus overtone. More malt presence in the flavor, still very thin with a fair carbonation present. A bit of tang on the tongue. Pretty watery but really not bad tasting, OK for a refreshing guzzler. Nothing to go out of your way for. This will do nicely to wash down most anything. A good picnic beer I guess.

Photo of Buebie
3.6/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured on tap from my kegerator

Pours a transparent golden color with a 1 finger white head. The head lingers for a bit, leaving a mm of coverage on the top layer of liquid. Medium to little laceing.

Smell was a bit metalic, corn, faint cry of grain. Biscuits?

Tastes of a Minerally metalic, in a good way.
Wisp of flavor from the mashed grain and sweet malt. some hoppy flavor after the swallow.

Mouthfeel was evenly carbonated, thin and watery, but thick with sweatness.

Drinkability: Great lawnmower chugging beer.
I bought an 8 gallon keg of this for my kegerator. It lasted me and my buddies 2 months. Longer then usual. I like more hops, but it was inexpensive. $40 for 8 gallons. I'd buy another keg in a money pinch.
This is my favorite summertime chugger up at the cabin.

Photo of Offa
3.97/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an extremely nice, basic American lager and one of my absolute favourites for the type.

It is bright straw-gold with a medium white head that slowly shrinks to a thin top.

The aroma is very pleasant, clean grain and apples with hints of honey and flowers.

The taste is similar, with a definite, crisp apple/apple-peel quality along with aromatic grain, honey and flowers in the finish. It's smooth, very crisp yet flavourful, and has clean taste and feel.

Photo of emerge077
3.76/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found this at Captain Mike's in Kenosha, WI.

Pours a clear gold, with steady streams of visible carbonation. About one finger of white foam, that settles to a thin ring.

Aroma didn't grab me, it was a little bland and adjuncty. Raw grains, corn, a touch of sulfur that blows off after a minute.

Surprisingly tasty flavors of apple and bready malt, with a little honey on the back end. A dry and clean aftertaste is what sets it apart from other lawnmower beers. Carbonation is steady and even, and gives it a light feeling. The clean finish makes it palatable and easy to session, no doubt.

Photo of jokelahoma
4.18/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at Old Chicago in Eden Prarie, Minnesota.

Poured a nice, perfectly clear golden yellow, with a surprisingly large and long lasting head.

Aroma is grainy, as would be expected. It's clean on the nose, though , with no hints of corn-like DMS or nasty sweetness that can plague beers of this style. Smells pretty good to be honest.

Taste is remarkably clean, with good 6-row barley grainy flavors. Hop bittering is just sufficient to keep this from being overly sweet, but the hops make their presence known in no other way. Exactly as it should be. There's just a touch of sweetness here. This one also doesn't suffer the carbonic "bite" of an overcarbonated macro. As stated before, it's clean.

This is an American style lager, so one expects a thin mouthfeel. It comes through there, too. Not watered down, but insubstantial enough to stay out of its own way.

This is a surprising beer. If you pop a cap expecting a BMC, you'll be shocked. Real flavor exists here. Try it, and see what American lagers can be.

Photo of mnstorm99
4.18/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a staple in the summer as it is inexpensive and a great beer to have on a hot day working in the yard.
This is definately based on style, but this one really misses no marks.
Appearance is a clear dark golden color with a nice white head that sticks around.
Aroma is faint, but what to expect from a Macro style lager, bready and malty to the nose.
Flavor is good there is a touch of hops on this one that come out and play, but this one is definately a malty brew, nice light crystal flavors around a nice base malt sweetness.
Mouthfeel is good almost perfect for this style, high, but not to high levels of carbonation and thin but what did you expect with this beer. Easy drinking, good tasting macro lager? I'll have a few.

Photo of KarlHungus
4/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a clear light golden color. The head is small, and recedes quickly into a thin cap of lacing. The aroma is of caramel malt, with a nice spicy hop edge. The taste is of light biscuity malt with a faint hop spiciness. The mouthfeel is light bodied with lively carbonation. Overall, if I had to drink an adjunct lager this would be it. It has more malt and hop flavor than any other macro lager I have had, and the carbonation isn't annoyingly high.

Photo of Gehrig
2.38/5  rDev -27%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a thin finger of white head. The body is a light golden, reminding me of Miller, unfortunately. The smell actually isn't bad, with a good deal of corn sweetness emanating from the glass as well as some modest malt. Everything is so-so, until the taste. This is one of the worst tasting beers I've had in a long time. The sweet smell didn't carry over to the taste well. In fact, as the beer warms, there is a distinct sour-bitter taste that I can't help but think results in part from the clear bottle, notorious for aiding and abetting skunkiness. Ugh.

The beer flattens quickly, with too modest carbonation letting this beer down. I'm far from impressed with this, and will studiously avoid it in the future. Not worth trying, in my estimation.

Photo of reillybeer
3.99/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Clear, light amber color.

S- Fruity and moderately hoppy.

T- Lots of carbonation initially, then the fruity hops and wheaty aftertaste.

M- Perfect carbonation for me... mostly just a nice refreshing beer!

D- This is the first beer I ever tried that I liked (a few years ago, prior to advancing to the fancier stuff), so it's nostalgic for me. Aside from that, this beer is quite tasty and easy to drink, so I would say that it's extremely "drinkable" !!

Grain Belt Premium from August Schell Brewing Company
75 out of 100 based on 482 ratings.