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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) - Pabst Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,600 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,600
Hads: 5,050
rAvg: 3.08
pDev: 20.45%
Wants: 55
Gots: 884 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.74% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-24-2001

- Pabst Blue Ribbon is brewed in the finest traditions of an American Premium Lager dating back to 1844. Brewed with a combination of 2 & 6-row malted barley, select cereal grains and American and European hops, Pabst Blue Ribbon is fermented with a proprietary lager yeast. Our unique fermentation and maturation process results in a smooth, full bodied beer with a clean, crisp finish with a fine noble hop aroma.
- ABV% 4.74
- Calories 144
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,600 | Hads: 5,050
Photo of OneDropSoup
2.4/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This was a leftover from a game of Texas Hold 'Em. What the heck?

Poured from a can into a pint glass, a clear, light yellow with a huge head that drops to about a finger, with big, loose bubbles and lots o' fizz. The most see-through beer I've reviewed so far.

Smell is a mix of sweet grains & basement, the kind of dank smell I remember beer smelling like when I was a kid. A little hoppy, a little grassy, mostly like sweet corn.

Tastes better than it smells, but that's not saying much: like corn flakes with a lot of sugar & a crisp snap from whatever hops are in here. And a slight vegetable taste, hmmm.

Mouthfeel is actually not terrible, some bite and tingle, but sort of watery otherwise. Aftertaste is like cheap bubblegum, eh. Goes down fast & easy, but every evening I've spent drinking PBR leaves me feeling like I've sucked on change.

In conclusion, it is what it is. For a totally utilitarian beer, you could do worse, & I'll have it as a last resort. But is that really the point? (1,003 characters)

Photo of djbow
2.4/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Clear, light golden with a thin white head that forms an dissipates quickly. Active bubbles abound

S: Light cooked grains and a trace of malt sweetness.

T: Corn, malt, and almost no hops.

M: Thin, watery, medium carbonation.

O: This is not a beer I would choose to drink. However, it is better that Bud, MGD, "Beast" and Miller. (336 characters)

Photo of Rhynes2
2.4/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Nothing much to say about this brew. A very standard beer. Light flavor and light color. Not much of a head to speak of either. Being cheap is probably the best quality of this beer. If you're looking for quality, look elsewhere. Not bad for parties though. (257 characters)

Photo of sarient
2.39/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

I hate this beer, hands down! It did make Milwaukee brew city though, which is why I'm reviewing it. This beer deserves credit for its historical stature, and that's it. Taste wise, this light, watered down, canned, elderly brew has lost it over the years and is now only acceptable to MKE natives, college kids, and homeless people. No go! 1.6/5

How Many?: pshhh, I recommend none and have something good, but this a drink all night around a fire beer, don't try to impress a lady by buying her this, unless you're in the boondocks. (534 characters)

Photo of Koolbreeze2
2.38/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

My fathers beer. Better than Bud and has a great look in your hand. Had my first one probably 45 years ago.

Smell-very little.

Taste-hits the spot on a hot day. Crisp, clean, bubbly. Thats about it.

Mouthfeel-not bad

Drinkability-I have to have one every once in awhile , especially during a Red Sox game while eating peanuts. Not cashews, peanuts. Or State Line potato chips. Then it works. It more of a ceremonial beer than a regular drinker. (456 characters)

Photo of ndekke39
2.38/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Drank this from a 12 oz. can, poured into a pint glass. Pours a clear, pale yellow with a foamy white head that dissipates almost immediately. Can barely smell anything. Taste begins alright, centers around the malt, but then it drops out altogether. No aftertaste. Mouthfeel is a tad fizzy, but not much else. Easily drinkable, not altogether bad, but there's just nothing much to it. (385 characters)

Photo of StoutishDan
2.38/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Either I can approach this beer knowing it's a dreaded American Adjunct with little to no flavor, bright carbonation and piss like appearance, and then rate it in comparison to the other Adjuncts or I could approach it as a true craft beer drinker and treat this like I would any other brewery that claims to craft its beers. Hmm.

A - Much like Bud, Miller, Coors PBR is super light and gives you a glimpse at what your palate is about to experience. PBR is a little darker...hinting that there might be at least a little more flavor to come. Still awfully light looking. A little like vitaminized urine.

S - I'm getting stale grains...slight tart yet faint aroma of the hops. It smells like bad breath, but that - since I expect this - is not too big of a deal. Am I really saying that?

T - The taste it bright with carbonation. Sweet with those stale grains and hops finding their way in my palate. You could definitely down 4 or 5 of these and press on with vigor as if you hadn't drank a single one. Not much if any alcohol taste. There is more taste than the Big Three, so if PBR was offered among the other adjuncts at a gathering, PBR would be my choice. But that is not saying much.

O - On a rating scale from 0-100 and considering PBR's competition I give it an 81. In comparison to other beers I've had and the overall taste of this beer as it stands on its own I give it a 65.

If I want a cheap beer that has a little bit of flavor (rare this is ever my desire) and there is nothing else except the big three, I would choose PBR. If this was the only beer available to me, I would be very sad, but I would drink it. (1,631 characters)

Photo of olimpia84
2.38/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Had this straight from a tall boy can. Somebody else at the bar section was pouring it in clear plastic cups so from what I could tell this beer had the typical adjunct lager clear yellow body with a bit more composition that others in its style. Smell was a bit mute probably because I was trying to take notes straight from the can. Grains and corns are predominant as expected although this beer does a better job than others in its style.
Overall, I guess it's a decent lager that's clean and refreshing. (509 characters)

Photo of proc
2.38/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I must admit, I really wanted to dislike this beer going in, but it wasn't that bad. As a matter of fact, it was decent. Pours out to a bright golden color with a fluffly white head. Smell is somewhat funky, almost chemical, but the actual taste has some hints of caramel and a very slight hop bitterness. Seeing as Pabst brews this and Schlitz, I can see why they taste similar. I could swear they were the same beer, with very subtle differences. Am American classic? That might be stretching it. Drinkable? Yes. And no different than most American Standard lagers. Rock on PBR... (582 characters)

Photo of Star80
2.38/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Beer pours a pale straw yellow, you know, you've seen it a thousand times. Then again, most macro beer drinkers drink from a bottle or a can, so, maybe you haven't. Ok, pours the color of a mid-afternoon pee, if you actually had to pee, and weren't necessarily dehydrated. Minor foam at the top, wouldn't call it a head. Actually smells a bit alcoholic in the nose, for second it almost smelled faintly of Jim Beam, but couldn't be, or was it from all the corn adjuncts? Let's put it this way, doesn't smell like much of anything, but what it does smell like, isn't necessarily great, more like stale grains if anything. The taste is mildly bitter from the sodium of the carbonation of the beer, in a club soda sort of way, not really like beer. I wouldn't ever call it awful cause it is far from offensive, just, not there. I would dare to say Budweiser is actually a notch above this, cause at least I can taste some green snap from a fresh Bud, from the hop profile, that cleans the tongue whereas this just does nothing! However, in all of its marginality, it is a good compromise between the overly stale breadiness of a MGD, and the annoying green apple snap of a Bud, it does neither. It's kinda like a dull friend who is willing to join ya! My beer does have some sort of date code, I've been seeing around town, NOV 10. So, I *guess* it is fresh, but I would never know. Mouthfeel is thin and watery of course, yet the drinkability is there. Hey, at $1.40 a 24 ounce can, you could make worse choices. But at least I didn't pay $3.50 for a skunked import that has been pasteurized. As the late great Dennis Hopper once said, "Heineken!? F*ck that sh*t! Pabst Blue Ribbon!!!" :-) (1,687 characters)

Photo of BeerLover99
2.38/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - bright yellow, big head that disappears quickly.

S - too much corn not enough barley and almost zero hops.

T - Very weak watered down lager taste, big corn and grain taste, rather sweet, typical of BMC style beers.

M - If I wanted to pound a 6 pack or case, this would be decent choice, low carbonation, basically flavored corn water.

D - I would NEVER buy this again, there are way too many good lighter craft beers to bother with this college beer. (461 characters)

Photo of Bookseeb
2.38/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance is of light golden color and crisp head. Smell has a corny adjunct graininess to it. Taste of crisp lightly metallic adjunct with a clean dry finish. Mouthfeel is light having good body and carbonation. Not one of the smoothest lagers I've had, but not bad. (268 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
2.36/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - Pours a crystal clear, pale yellow with a white, finger width head. Retention is poor and produces a thin, semi-sticky lacing.

Smell - Ahh, the sweet smell of american lager. Sweet grainy malts and a grassy hop.

Taste - Tastes of corn and barley. Sweet, with only faint notes of grassy hop to give it a touch of balance. Finishes somewhat dry.

Mouthfeel - Light in body, with an expected lifeless, fizzy carbonation.

Overall - I don't understand the revival this beer has had, especially amongst the hipster crowd. It's no better or different than any other dirt cheap american lager. In fact I taste no difference between this and Natural Light.... just another reason to hate the hipster movement. (717 characters)

Photo of GreenWBush
2.36/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

24 oz. can.

Into my pimp-cup this 'classic' goes. I'm currently running dry on funds at the end of the semester so i'll have to settle. This comes with decent recommendations here at BA.

This pours out a macro piss-yellow with an impressive head. Lacing on a macro! OMG! The lacing is in fact quite intricate and looks like a stamp left from a bunch of golf balls. Not bad at all!

The smell isn't too bad either, somewhere in between real beer and mass produced swill. I get a light twinge of metallic hops on the nose as well as a little bit of sweet malt. More than anything is the adjuncty metallic smell again. Again, impressive for its status.

The taste is rather unobtrusive. The first rush is all macro crap, but then your tastebuds are relieved to taste something somewhat "Beery". There's a nice hit of maltiness on the end as well as a slight prick of hops. The aftertaste is a little robotic and unpleasant, but altogether this is one better than mediocre macro! There is no mouthfeel to speak of: were talking about wetter than water here.

Drinkability is decent. You could probably wolf down a whole bunch, but would that really gain you anything? I wish I had an idea of ABV.

Really not too bad at all. This is one I would've avoided were it not for the forgiving BA crowd. If I had to dumb down my beer choices due to budget, this is most likely what i'd reach for. (1,399 characters)

Photo of bamadog
2.36/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ummm.... Thanks to beerman207 for sharing this with me. Something that I haven't drank since my college days and while it brought back a lot of fun memories, it was definitely not the most quality beer drinking experience I've ever had.

Appearance: Color was very pale light yellow and reminded me of something... What could it be? It attempted to sustain a head but there wasn't much chance of that. Moderate carbonation is present and an oily residue kind of hangs around on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Mmmm... Is that skunk I smell? Yep. I think I smell corn too... sigh...

Taste: Yep, I would say corn.

Mouthfeel: Pretty lively actually. Carbonation is very present and this might be the best part about the beer.

Drinkability: In reality, while I may have had a rough bottle, and it there's truly nothing that strikes me as remotely remarkable about it, it would be easy to drink quite a few of these in a session because it is so light and easy (take that for what it is) to drink. (996 characters)

Photo of captaincoffee
2.36/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

This is the beer that defines two terms for me...high school and vomit. As an adjunct lager, there is really not much to say in terms of nose, taste, and mouthfeel. It is crap beer, but to me, this one is a little crappier than others. That could be the high school experiences I associate with it, but it is what it is. (321 characters)

Photo of Gmann
2.35/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Poured a clear straw color, a bit yellow, had a decent whispy white head that dissipated as I poured it and left no lacing. The smell is of corn, grainy, a bit of sulfer. The taste is better, it has a some sweet malt notes to it, not too artficially sweet like other macros. The mouthfeel is watery, nicely carbonated. Another good cooler beer and this doesn't have that ick taste that other macros have which makes it quite drinkable. (435 characters)

Photo of Lahoi
2.35/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

It is what it is: a cheap AAL. But for what it is, it ain't too bad. Most recently I got a half case for $7.00. What was I supposed to expect for that price? A trip through Belgium? A tour of a medieval monastic brewery? This is a good beer to drink when hot, tired, and in need of a refreshment. Or a go-to once you've had a couple of high end, high ABV classics and the taste buds are less than stellar. (405 characters)

Photo of gmfessen
2.35/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Tried this on tap... not sure why. Beer was a clear yellow golden color with a one finger bubbly head. Smell is slighlty sweet of malt and corn. Beer is initially bitter but finishes with a malty crisp finish. A light mouthfeel with lots of carbonation. Drinkable like water, very light. (287 characters)

Photo of palffyfan
2.34/5  rDev -24%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - Pale yellow with a good deal of carbonation and a soapy head.

Smell - Smells like my Dove soap. Very processed, not what a beer should smell like.

Taste - Watered down, no taste in particular, but manageable (for a macro) because there's no offending taste.

Drinkability - Below average drinkability. There are better macros out there, but it's drinkable when it comes to macros. (401 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.33/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 16oz. can into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep yellow color with a short white head that fades quickly and leaves a decent lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of light malts, corn, grain and a touch of hops.

T: The taste doesn’t seem to have much to it and contains mostly grain and corn. It has the usual macro sweetness but it’s very faint. The malt character is thin and there’s very little hops presence.

M: Smooth and a little crisp, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, not too filling, it’s all right for an inexpensive beer but there are certainly much better beers out there even within the style. (705 characters)

Photo of NiceTaps
2.33/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz can in a pilsner glass for the purpose of this review.

A- Ultra-light straw color, very pale and clean. A bright white colored head makes a very brief appearance before fading quickly to a barely there film. No lacing. It looked ok for a second or two.

S- Kinda sweet corn, kinda stale malt. Not much.

T- Taste? There was taste?

M- Plenty of fizzy carbonation. The feel is not good at all, but not as bad as I had expected.

O- I've had this on tap and from cans a few times before this review. I searched for some goodness in it to match up to its publicity. Nothing doing. It's awful. (595 characters)

Photo of gkunkle
2.33/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours a pale yellow color with a white head that quickly recedes to a ring around the glass. Smells of weak malts and alcohol. Taste is very easy going, balanced between a touch of hops and a touch of malt with a little bit of corn thrown in there. It is pretty refreshing and has a clean finish. Has a thin mouthfeel with medium carbonation. Overall, its a fine party beer, but not something I'll choose to drink for taste.

EDIT: Still not sure why this is the official drink of hipsters... (492 characters)

Photo of Newrad2
2.32/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2013 Pabst Blue Ribbon - Reviewed 2/17/2013

Unheard of to the my branch of the hipster nation, this format of PBR (40oz bottle) flows freely in the mythical land of "Richmonde".

Pabst Blue Ribbon, first brewed in 1844, dominated the beer market for almost a century. Its appeal to the blue collar workers of this great nation made it a household name for generations of true Americans. After hitting a slump in the 80's and 90's, the brand was revived by skinny men in tight shorts who date white women with dreadlocks. Today, Blue Ribbon is one of the most recognizable and most accessible names in the cheap beer industry.

When approaching a 40oz bottle of beer, a connoisseur will grade the vessel based of the 3 C's: Color, Connectivity, and Completeness. The classic Blue Ribbon label beautifully adorns the 40. While the color palate may be unimaginative, I can never give the Red, White, and Blue any thing less than a perfect score. Color: 10/10- would 'merica again. The label is well connected to the bottle with the same glue that holds american families together. The left-hand side of the obverse label is a bit ragged with a 1/4 inch separation on the bottom corner. Connectivity: 7.5/10 well adjusted and firm on the right, loose and ragged on the left side. Thanks Obama. This particular 40 is a shining example of a complete label. With just a few tears on the leftern edge, I do believe that this label is quite nearly complete. Completeness: 9/10. The dark brown bottle hides what may lie inside. Does a pale cheap beer reside within, or is it the spirit of irony that drives the hipsters to achieve their goals?

The bottle cap releases with a defining "crack," releasing the sweet odors trapped within. A Sweet floral aroma greets the tasteful drinker inviting another whiff. Astringent notes clear the sinuses and prepare you to imbibe. Take a sniff, smells life old stock freedom.

PBR's unparalleled flavor is perfectly preambled by its scent. Light and flavorful, notable bittering hops compliment the adjunct malts. Notes of floral hops, cream, roastiness, bread, and just a hint of barnyard cat seductively beckon for closer analysis. This beer is the pinnacle of hipster indulgence, and for good reason.

PBR is light and crisp on the tongue, very similar to a fresh craft brew-- after being digested and peed out by Dennis Hopper on the set of Blue Velvet. Does that sound like an enjoyable evening? You be the judge. PBR is not light enough to be confused for a light beer, but not heavy enough to overpower any meal that you might enjoy with it.

All kidding aside, Pabst Blue ribbon is a great american lager. Enjoy with a rib-eye steak with garlic whipped potatoes, or with waffle house hash browns (smothered and covered) and an American Spirit cigarette. Beware, the sound of a PBR cracking summons hipsters from miles around, but will also earn you the respect of any man over 60 who has ever worked in a steel factory. And Clint Eastwoood. So grab yourself a PBR, and don’t look back. You may be listening to vinyl records on your portable turntable at a Starbucks in a few months, but then again, you might just be taking in a part of American history. Enjoy. (3,254 characters)

Photo of alexgash
2.32/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Time to start hitting into the leftovers from the party we threw last friday. I remember seeing crushed Pabst Blue Ribbon cans at a 17000 foot pass in Tibet. In fact, PBR was definitely the most popular American beer in China (when I was there last summer). Anyways, poured a wispy straw color with a thin, cobweb-y head. Smelled of chex cereal, kinda sweet, with metallic hops. Stronger aromas than expected (not necessarily a good thing). Taste is, not surprisingly, of sweet cereal malts (maybe I should start drinking this for breakfast), fading unspectacularly into a rusty, mildly bitter finish. Not as watery as some macros, and pretty smooth going down, especially good for celebrating the installation of a new transmission on your camaro or 79 ford truck. (765 characters)

Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
71 out of 100 based on 1,600 ratings.