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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.

1,638 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,638
Hads: 5,207
Avg: 3.01
pDev: 44.19%
Wants: 62
Gots: 1,008 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company
California, United States | website

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: 1,638 | Hads: 5,207
Photo of Ag-Hag
2.5/5  rDev -16.9%

PBR was my first swill!

My dad would give me a "sip" from his stubby PBR bottle back in the 60's, and we had a Pabst brewery right in our town. (Whoo-hoo, when they were malting that barley, LOOK OUT. Stunk to high-heaven and there was nowhere to hide.)

Fast forward to 2014 and PBR has enjoyed a revival of sorts with the "hippster" crowd who want a cheap beer that isn't your Bud/Miller/Coors offering. Sadly, it's really only a fraction of what it used to taste like, as it has the same flavor profile but much less strength. It's kind of a PBR "near beer."

It's not bad, but I can't really ever buy this these days - not with Yeungling sitting right next to it, (Are you crazy?) PBR has to take a down-market seat next to the Busch Ice and Milwaukee's Best. In it's day, it had a solid seat next to Hamms, Falstaff, and Schlitz. (At least it hasn't suffered the fate of those labels.)

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Photo of jpinkard
2.5/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Well, It's PBR and up North it has quite the cult following, and being from up north i've had my fair share of PBR

A: Typical Mass produced American Lager, Clear yellowish color, head dissipates faster then a blink of an eye

S: Old Hops, a little sweet maybe...

T: Well, for a Mass produced, I mean you know what your drinking when you get it, I don't mind a PBR. Out in the woods, ice fishing, a PBR sits quite well

M: Water when room tempature, overly carbonated when cold

D: Depends on the situation, if your going out to camp or hitting up a college party PBR is my choice over any Mass produced, might be the cultish thing but, it does the job I suppose. If your a poor college kid. get a 24 oz Sam Adams and some PBR and your set eh?

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Photo of allergictomacros
2.5/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Pours a clear gold. Weak white head.

S - Vegetal and somewhat lemony. I think I detect some malt.

T - Kind of a light but coarse bitterness. Malt is light as well, but with a hint of grain.

M - Astringent. Fizzy.

D - Basically astringent bitter water. Overall, substandard macro. Bitterer than the average, but without any flavour.

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Photo of cokes
2.48/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at a concert. It was a matter of finance.
Staw yellow bodied. Served in a plastic cup, so it was hard to actually view, though I doubt too many people give a shit as to how PBR stacks up in the appearance dept.
Nose is free of adjuncts. Free of malts and free of hops as well. Tiniest bit of unknown sweetness and maybe a hint of grain. Hard to smell anything over the potent maryjane the surrounding patrons were indulging in. (Ratdog concert...aka Bob Weir from the Dead).
The taste is, to be kind, clean. To be less than kind, virtually non-existent. Very small malt-esque sweetness. A little grassy, with impotent hops towards the finish. Scores points for being free of anything offensive.
Light bodied, but does not fall apart in the mouth. Several of these had no impact on sobriety. But much of that damage was already done.
I'll take this over most other macros.

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Photo of Erdinger2003
2.48/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Apperance isn't impressive in any respect. The head is all but dissapered and the lacing almost dissapears right away. The color is the clear yellowish color you would find in many macros.

I can barely smell anything, but I do smell a little something without malts and no hops, but a funny off flavor is in the smell.

Taste isn't horrible for a macro, it doesn't leave a crap taste in your mouth and the nose isn't crappy tasting.

Mouthfeel reminds me of ice water even though it was warmed. Not impressive, but not off-putting.

I will keep this one as my session beer.

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Photo of Wisconsinality
2.48/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- poured a light golden color from a can, pretty heady but receded rather quickly.
S- not much to the nose on this one, maybe some hops but that is about the extent of it
T- a very non offending beer, you can taste a little hops and basicaly nothing else, maybe water haha.
M- very thin with a fair amount of carbonation. This beer is made to be drank at large quantities.
D- again this is made for mass consumption and that is about all, it is a better than most mass produced beers but is still lacking. Enjoy though if you are a hipster

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Photo of rkhaze
2.48/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a pale straw color with a small white head.
Smells like grainy sweet corn syrup and surpisingly, a whiff of hops.
Grainy sweet flavor, but more in an adjunct way. There was a hop bitterness, albeit a mild one. Finishes crisp and tangy.
Light bodied with a thin, pallid mouthfeel. The carbonation level wasn't bad.
The light, crisp finish leads to decent drinkibility in the right circumstances, i.e. real hot weather and not a lot of beer choices.
This is actually the first PBR I've ever had. Can't say whether I like it better than the big three or not because I haven't had them in eons and don't really remember what they taste like. Maybe one day I'll try them all again just for kicks...but probably not!

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Photo of JohnnyDuvel
2.48/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I don't find anything here that would rate this any better than Bud or Coors. Typical macro-adjunct sweetness, thin and watery. Actually, both Coors and Bud have a more distinctive taste. I would still rank Miller high life as the best of the macros. After two of these, I could feel a headache brewing, and I felt bloated. On to something else, right now!

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Photo of Converge
2.48/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

355ml can poured into a 16oz Pint glass.

A - Just under two fingers of fizzy, off-white head that fizzles down to a respectable cap. Light, transparent golden yellow in color. Surprise!

S - Light adjunct grains. Slight sweetness, kind of like honey-nut cheerios to be honest. Not much else. Maybe burnt toast.

T - I have almost nothing to write here. Extremely mild malt. Some thin tasting grains. Water, and lots of it. Unoffensive at least.

M - Grossly over-carbonated with a slightly thicker feeling mouthfeel than expected. Still pretty thin though.

D - Not quite as bad as I remember it being (out of a can), but still rather unpleasant. I guess if I had to pick up a 12-pack of something to drink in one night this might not be last on my list...

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Photo of Maestro
2.48/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

This beer is drinkable and that is about all I can say about it. I absolutely despise the mass produced garbage that is made in this country but for some reason, I can always tolerate a little PBR. Stranger things have happened.

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Photo of falcn5
2.47/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This beats the Big Three hands-down. To the casual eye, it appears to be just another BMC - light, fizzy, a pale yellow with barely any white head. Taste is where this beer can shine (in comparison to its brethren, of course). Served from a keg, into a pitcher, then into shot glasses for a good old-fashioned power hour, this beer has a refreshing zing in the mouth. The only part that tripped me up was a barely-noticed chalky sensation. On every 10th shot or so the beer had a hint of blackboard eraser.
An admirable beer for the purpose, I believe this is the best of the American "drink while enjoying other activities" beers.

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Photo of flexabull
2.46/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a crystal clear yellow color with a nice large white head.

Aromas are funky, kind of sweet and corn like.

Taste is dry and crisp. There is an underlying sweet maltiness, with some corn like flavors. Finish is flat and uninteresting. Not bad, but not good either.

Mouthfeel is actually ok. Pretty decent full feeling in the mouth for such a lean beer.

Drinkability is so so. I am not against the idea of Macro Lagers, some I don't mind drinking. This is one that I would probably pass on again. Not as clean and refreshing as some of the others in the style.

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Photo of BubblyTime
2.46/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Reviewing solely on taste, not value, since I've never personally bought PBR.
PBR isn't terrible, but it's agreeably bland and tasteless. Like an economy towel you buy at a department store or an aging housewife with no hobbies.
Not interesting, and nothing special. I'd pick it up at the right dive bar over other light / stock beers any day of the week, but I also would normally be drinking something better.

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Photo of DmanGTR
2.46/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

My first beer in Philadelphia was.... a PBR?!
Went to my friend's place to help him move in and when we were done, he hands me a can of PBR... never seen it, never heard of it. Poured a transparent straw yellow with a bubbly 2" white head that didn't die immediately. Cool. Smelled of corn, some amber malts, and a tiny dab of hops. Cooked veggies and sulfur? Hmm... I took a small sip. Eh, why does this taste like a Blue Light or a Coors Light to me? I didn't particularly enjoy the rest of it but it definitely does the job quenching your thirst. Heck, with a cheap 30 pack maybe it'll be some good pong beer.

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Photo of beergeek279
2.46/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in the 16 oz. pounder can into a pint glass. The color is golden, with a head that shows more retention than I was expecting. The smell is an almost sickly malt sweetness. The taste is somewhat sweet, with actual hops in there, and a bit of adjuncting taste as it warms. Mouthfeel is average. As for drinkability, well, the last time I had a few in a row, the sweetness became far too cloying.

Well, it's certainly no Westy 12, but served ice cold, PBR is certainly a better choice than any of the 3 major macros, and is a far better deal at 10 dollars for a case of pounders (probably since they don't have a multi-billion dollar ad budget). Though I'm certainly not going to toss away my craft beer for this, I'd certainly drink this over BudMilCo anytime.

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Photo of EagleTalon
2.45/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

PBR (Oklahoma 3.2% ABW maximum) Pours to a quickly fading white head that forms a thin layer of foam that stays. Color is the typical pale American color. Flavor is much weaker than the full strength version (which is sold in liquor stores in OK). From the can there is a metallic harshness in the mouthfeel that ruins the experience. The "low point" version is very weak. I drank several in one night and barely got a buzz. For $4.99 / 12 pack, what do you expect? Beer is expensive in Oklahoma because of high excise taxes, btw.

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Photo of Cresant
2.45/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured this 12 oz. brown bottle into a pint glass but I felt like I should be drinking it straight from the bottle, that's what's appropriate for the style right? The body was a clear, light yellow. The fizzy white head evaporated quickly, leaving a ring of foam around the top. There were active random bubbles rising throughout the drink.

Smell was mildly vegetal. Ever so slightly chemical. Not really much smell at all.

Taste was not really of malts nor of hops. Lightly organic, but more texture than flavor. It was quenching with a light, muted bitterness in the quick finish.

Mouthfeel was thin to medium in body with high carbonation. Appropriate to style and non-offensive.

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Photo of VictorEHuskie
2.45/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

This is yet another kegger beer. Perfect for getting hammered and little else. A beer pong staple. Goes good with pizza too. It is good for a really cheap beer. I have to give it that. For what it is I guess I can't complain. It tops the light beers but still is far from good in my book.

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Photo of BayernMunchen3113
2.45/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Compared to the BMC family, I would buy this over any of them if I was looking for a session beer. Actually has some taste and body to it, but not much.

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Photo of dukeandduke
2.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

4/16/15 (Can) - Light pour, no carbonation, head or aroma. Very thin texture and minimal taste. Smooth going down. Not very good, even at low price point.

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Photo of Rudgers73
2.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 1 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Ok listen.

I know that when you pour this beer into a glass the head foams up and disappears before you can set the can down. And I know that it leaves a fruity, skunky aftertaste in your mouth. And when you look at the color of it you think of some crap beer like budweiser watered down by half.


When you are in college and you go to the grocery store and see a 24-pack for $11 with a $4 mail in rebate, what do you want from them?

You have to remember that this a beer coming from the makers of Colt 45, Big Bear, Stroh's, Silver Thunder Old Milwaukee, and Schmidt's.

We had a saying when I was in college. "$4 rebate? You can't afford not to drink it."

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Photo of Doctor_Bogenbroom
2.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

"Heineken! F**k that sh*t! Pabst! Blue! Ribbon!"

Yeah, I sometimes like to drink the beer of Frank Booth. It's nice to see that it's gaining in popularity again. It's cheap. It's not good beer. In fact, it is really bad beer. But it's cheap. And there's a pop culture cult thing going on with it, hence the Blue Velvet reference. You get about halfway through the can and it starts to change. Suddenly it's not half bad! I really kinda like this stuff! And a friend nearby says, "That's because your taste buds are desensitized. Keep drinking, buddy."

And I do.

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Photo of Jables
2.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 1 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

The choice beer of my roommate's surprise birthday party, not my choice

The appearance is clear with slight yellow tint. Head is substantial and white but dissipates pretty quickly

Aroma is grainy with adjuncts all over the nose.

The flavor is malty and corny with no real detectable hops. Not impressive but the adjuncts in this one are not really offensive, it was actually surprising.

The fact that its not overwhelmingly corny/ricey *which is what I expected* makes the drinkability slightly above average.

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Photo of Ike_Potter
2.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I was actually surprised at how much I disliked this beer. I tasted it in a blind taste test and it was in the bottom three of the 6 we tasted. Decent stereotypical beer smell, but the appearance looked peculiar. The foam was splotchy and not uniform, the taste was funky. I almost think it was merely a bad bottle or just really old. May have to try it again sometime, but for now not very good.

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Photo of anon
2.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Look and nose are that of most other common adjunct lagers out there. That all-too-known piss gold with a very light grain scent. One thing Pabst has going for it, although this beer still being quite watery and lacking any real body and bite, is the fact that the grain and corn are picked up a little more here, making it a little more tolerable than the other mass-market adjunct lagers out there but at an even more reasonable price.

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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
70 out of 100 based on 1,638 ratings.