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Grain Belt Premium - August Schell Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Grain Belt PremiumGrain Belt Premium

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

439 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 439
Reviews: 173
rAvg: 3.26
pDev: 18.4%
Wants: 11
Gots: 26 | FT: 1
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:
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.

(Beer added by: TastyTaste on 07-04-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 439 | Reviews: 173 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Redrover
3.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I had this one at the Thunderbird Resort’s bar in International Falls. Seemed like an appropriate setting to me. 12 oz clear glass bottle with a cool retro label. I did not check for freshness dating..

Beer pours a light gold with a decent but quickly collapsing head. Just a touch of lacing on the sides of the glass.

Not much in the way of smell. I picked up some grain and a little sweet smell.

The taste is on the sweeter side of the spectrum. I’m not sure if its from the malts or the “grains” but it was enjoyable in a simple non-complex way. I did not notice hardly any hops. I’m not sure, but I would guess the IBU rating on this beer is no more than 8 or 9.

The mouthfeel was a little thin, but I liked how there was a little creaminess. Drinkability is decent and I had several at one sitting. It was very easy to pair with the walleye I had for dinner. This is another solid regional lager from the Midwest and I would compare it favorably to Point, Lenies, etc

Redrover, Jun 16, 2004
Photo of garymuchow
3.45/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

See disclaimer by Zap.
I'll admit a fondness for this based on history and parochialism. That could also be taken into consideration when reviewing this review.
Having said that, this is a very attractive looking beer. Clear gold. Big full white head that has good stamina and lots of white lacing as drink. As good for appearance as an Am. lager can be.
In both aroma and taste the corn adjuncts become eversomore present as it warms, therefore I encourage drinking whilst cold. Otherwise aroma is light and fresh even slightly fruity. Taste is mild malt, but not much else. No hop presence in flavor and only slight bitterness.
Feel is that of a very easy drinker. Mild to moderate carbonation for style. And it has a soft fluffy feel.
I like it for what it is. Especially good for cold summer thirst quencher.

garymuchow, May 01, 2004
Photo of TeamSeinfeld
3.52/5  rDev +8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Grain Belt Premium has a lot of history in the twin cities, too bad it is not made here anymore. Schell's took over but they still do a good job. The old Premium had one of the most distinctive tastes ever, very very sweet. It was great out of a bottle but when out of a can it tasted like the can. I've only had the new premium out of a bottle and it is much more watered down. Even with the new watered down taste, this beer is not a mass consumption beer even though countless of us students at the U of M think it will be. Take my advice don't get plowed off it or you will spend the night in the bathroom.

TeamSeinfeld, Apr 20, 2004
Photo of Tballz420
3/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This brew is a pale gold color, small white head on top. The scent is sweet malt. The taste of this brew is on the malty side, sweet taste, corny. Not a great brew by any means, but if youre going for a macro style beer with some decent flavor, this could be a good one to try. Comprable to high life.

Tballz420, Apr 05, 2004
Photo of grynder33
1.95/5  rDev -40.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Clear light gold color, small head, terrible old corn aroma, very light corn taste, just a touch of malt sweetness. I guess you can tell its not a light, but I would take any Miller product over this. The third worst beer I've ever tasted. From the past reviews I'll assume its better when its fresher.

grynder33, Apr 04, 2004
Photo of JeffreyG
3.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Well, this is a beer that certainly has some history in the twin cities. I'm glad that Schell's was able to purchase the brand, keeping it in the state. I also beleive they have improved the quality of Premium. It seems much more consistent, and while it remains an adjunct beer I beleive the former brewer was using even more than the classic recipie called for. Schell's commitment to excellence certainly shows. All in all, this isn't a beer that would win a lot of fans on this site, but it stands up favorably to similar american pale lagers. If you beleive in supporting a local brewery this is a fine choice. It is what it is.

JeffreyG, Feb 23, 2004
Photo of bditty187
2.55/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Clear yellow hue, sad in color really, there was no animation, the head was white, the height never reached a fourth of a finger before it faded to a soapy collar before disappearing entirely. No subsequent lace either. The nose had minimal potency, slightly sweet, not so much from malt but from adjuncts. It is not really worth smelling. I was surprised at how bad the palate was, awfully sweet, like cream corn, slightly grainy, like cereal and as a whole it is borderline unpleasant. I’d say the sweetness is almost cloying. This has the taste of a cheap American industrial lager and it makes no point to pretend otherwise. There is no malt influence, no hops bitterness or flavor either. In fact some hops would have been a welcomed addition to cut the sweetness. But that is not what this beer is about. There are minimal flavors that are favorable. Medium-light body, firm carbonation, overall it has a good mouthfeel, but I had a difficult time getting past the taste. One (clear) bottle was enough for me, I’m glad I tried it, I’m glad I reviewed it, I’m glad I didn’t buy a six-pack to do so. Otherwise there would have been five beers poured down the drain. Not recommended, as this is a poor example of the style.

bditty187, Jan 19, 2004
Photo of jwilli7122
2.68/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

This is about the clearest beer i've ever seen. Smells sweet but like alchohol. Taste's pretty sweet...slightly fruity/citrusy- and sometimes it can taste like somebody spiked it with a pinch of vodka or something. It's not all that unpleasant though, and it doesn't seem potent at all. dont let it get flat, it needs some fiz.

I actually liked this much better when I had it out of a can (or maybe that was the "old" grainbelt?) It also seemed to work better in the summertime. In any case it's OK for the price.

jwilli7122, Dec 20, 2003
Photo of TastyTaste
4.13/5  rDev +26.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Minnesota Brewing Company version was a beer that i drank gallons of, so when that stock ran out, I got this. (You can tell the difference by the bottle caps, the MBC had an "M" surounded by stylized hops and grain, the new one is the classic Grain Belt Logo). The beer has definitely changed since I last had it. It is more balanced, and less sweet than it's predecessor. It still has it's crystal clear gold color, and small white head. My favorite beer of the low cost, American lager sub-category.

TastyTaste, Dec 09, 2003
Photo of Stubbie1
2.88/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Crystal clear like apple juice is the color of this brew. A thick white head did meet the top of my glad but it rapidly faded away to nothing. A sweet aroma to this brew. Malt comes to mind, maybe corn and wheat? The taste is a dead match. Nothing to overpowering but nothing to rave about. It is a decent brew that works well with food. Good to clean the palate but leave the taste buds for the desert beer.

Stubbie1, Dec 08, 2003
Photo of moulefrite
2/5  rDev -38.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Comes in a clear bottle that showcases its extremely pale staw color. In fact, I can see right through the darn thing! More like an Italian chardonnay in color than a beer. Sports a modest white head throughout-to its one credit I guess?! Aromas hint straight off of adjunct-lots of corn here folks! The beer actually tastes like a can of "light" cream corn-if there is such a thing. The mouth feel is redolent of water, and as the beer warms in the glass it loses its carbonation with the quickness of a cat, and actually, almost passes for water! Grain belt finishes with a lingering "frito corn chip" flavor! If you like em corny and flat this one is for you brave drinker!!

moulefrite, Oct 03, 2003
Photo of DrunkMcDermott
1.85/5  rDev -43.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Draft, Minneapolis. Had this after washing the taste of a Labatt's Blue out of my mouth, but it was only a slight improvement. Since this really is my father's beer (that and Hamm's), and because it has such a generic name, it's a little hard to approach without preconceptions. What I find is the usual pale American Standard color, not much head. I did get a hint of lager yeast taste, but not too much else. When we had to leave, I didn't really want to stay and finish this. Schell's keeps this going because of nostalgia and name recognition as this area's standard cheap beer, but they'd really do well to push more of their own brand.

DrunkMcDermott, Aug 04, 2003
Photo of ADR
2.68/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

In order to better evaluate how Schell is brewing the Grain Belt formula, and to give a lighter Lager its due, I poured this side by side with the new Pig's Eye Pilsner -- another brand re-born...

Clear pale straw, decent head of short duration, but a left over ring laces the glass. Slighly metallic but sweet aroma, light corn syrup malt indications. The taste is similar, fairly corn husk in nature. Decent body, sturdier than Pig's Eye, but with flavor demonstrating less fruit. Slighly less carbonated late in the profile than the Minnesota Brewing version to my tongue. Hops are a little disappointing and sort of Miller High Life typical. A decent macro for those who like to support local economies but won't stray from American Lager. Thanks to Schell for preserving the brand, it meets a need...

ADR, Jul 24, 2003
Photo of ZAP
3.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Disclaimer:ratings are for this style, not in comparison to say Stone Arrogant Bastard...

Don't drink this out of the can...I had one while working on the boat and had flashbacks to my boxing days and a mouthguard full of blood...very metallic out of the can...

Poured this one into a glass to rate and it is very impressive looking....clean and clear looking light gold in color...big ol frothy one inch white head that laces the glass nicely as you drink...

Nose is typical macro but with just a tad more maltyness...also a real faint perfumy hop note....

Taste is enjoyable and I would compare it to Miller High Life...leans on the malty side but it does have a very subtle hop presence that is kind of cool for this style....

Body is mediumish for this style....definitely not watery....

I rate drinkability high because this is pretty tasty for the style, has a little character in the body....and overall is better than most macros...

Schells may have made this a better beer...just don't drink it out of the can...

ZAP, Jul 04, 2003
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Grain Belt Premium from August Schell Brewing Company
75 out of 100 based on 439 ratings.