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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) - Pabst Brewing Company

Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
69
poor

3,716 Ratings
THE BROS
83
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3716
Reviews: 1469
rAvg: 2.95
pDev: 24.41%


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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-24-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

2.5/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

355ml can, 4.9% ABV, on the patio at the Sugar Bowl. Heresy, I know - I am certainly no hipster.

This beer pours a clear, super-pale golden yellow colour (like what one's piss might look like after downing a sixer of these), with two fingers of puffy, weakly foamy, and mostly soapy dirty white head, which leaves a bit of random islet lace around the glass as it quickly abates.

It smells of slightly acrid pale grain and corn syrup for yer unintended sugar fix, which is more or less overshadowed by some funky phenols, sour apple, and fairly skunky, dead grassy hops. The taste is a very mild rice/corn pithy breakfast cereal sweetness, a watery, weed-infested stoniness, stale apple peel, and a minor amount of weakly husky, grassy hops.

The carbonation is light, but perhaps a bit too frothy at times, the body so-so, both in its weak-ass weight, as well as its expected, um, 'smoothness' - but not too bad, I guess, for the style. It finishes off-dry, some mealy sweetness and plastic astringency carrying on as ever was.

Maybe a touch better (all things being relative) than many of the other adjunct lagers that I've had from south of the border, or here, for that matter, but it may very well be time to cut, or just plain give up that God-damned ribbon already.

Serving type: can

07-02-2009 22:26:39 | More by biboergosum
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

2.17/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

I had been reading with interest the many newspaper and magazine articles relating the chic-ness that this lager enjoys within the cool and cultured set, and sought out to try one of these myself and find out if I can hang with the hipsters and quaff their brew. So I elbow-jabbed that mumbling, shaggy Bohemian-type, made off with his cold tall one, and absconded to a faraway booth in this desolate rock club, pen light in hand, to shine on my notebook as I search to divine the secrets of this mystical, magical beer.

Okay, I'm lying.
In truth, well, I'm a fraud. This is my beer. If I ever praised a beer before for it's flavor, taste, or character, well, that was bull. I don't think they should have anything to do with any beverage, especially beer. Yeah, if you ever catch me without a whole case of PBR in the fridge, I must be having a bad day.

I lie again. I sample this in the spirit of honoring that adage of not knocking it if you ain't tried it. Actually, I must have tried it at some point, but how could I remember? So, here we go...
Appearance: sickly pale yellow color, very clear, just the way beer is supposed to be, dammit! Head is bone-white, fluffy, and quite prodigious, slowly, softly setling.
Aroma: very spare, bone-dry, but not terrible. Typical plain lager-y smell, without skunk or trace of adjuncts. A bit of sweetness, too, just a bit.
Taste: wetness. Nothing. The nadir, nada. Zilch. If it exists at all, it comes and goes without saying hello. Actually, again, not BAD, per se, but not really anything, either.
Body, light as can be, texture, none, finish? F'geddaboudit!
Really, there's nothing to recommend and no pleasure to be found, if you a seeker of taste in any form.
I'll quote beer scribe Stephen Beaumont's #1 reason to drink PBR, from his webite:
"You just don't care anymore."
Time spent with this beer is time wasted indeed.
This does the opposite of what a beer should do, in that it makes me more thirsty! For a real beer!

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2003 09:47:58 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

2.3/5  rDev -22%
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.

Serving type: can

06-21-2007 00:57:19 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

3.18/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a pale gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is average. It has a crisp, pilsner malt and adjunct scent that's light and dry. The taste is decent. It has a smooth pilsner malt flavor that low on hops and clean in the finish. It's a warm weather brew, no doubt. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a low bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a highly drinkable beer. It's one of the only macro lagers I drink.

Serving type: can

05-25-2009 20:55:03 | More by WesWes
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.08/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Beer poured from a can into a pint glass. Beer is yellow and completely clear. Forms a thin white head of small bubbles and there is a lot of carbonation. No lacing.

A little sweet in the nose, smells a little of cereal grain or corn.

Medium to low body, there is a strong aftertaste, mild sweetness up front. Aftertaste negatively affects drinkability. Overall not as good as I remember.

Serving type: can

12-25-2009 21:34:30 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

2.53/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to bman1113vr for sharing this silver can of goodness.

The beer pours a very light yellow color with a white head. The aroma is not good with lots of corn and wheat. The flavor is full of adjuncts with tons of corn, rice and wheat. Overall the aroma and flavor are incredibly bland. Light mouthfeel and medium carbonation. This is a beer with nothing positive going on.

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2010 02:01:40 | More by Mora2000
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

3.23/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 16 oz can into a glass. Straw yellow color. It had a descent head, but it didn't last long. It smelled grainy and of corn. It tasted very malty. The mouthfeel was dry. It's drinkable if you're looking to get a buzz.

It was better than I expected. Somehow I had never had PBR while I was a poor/college student beer guzzler. I had to try it and see how it tasted.

Serving type: can

05-29-2006 12:25:25 | More by zeff80
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85

Pennsylvania

2.9/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

An American Classic of a beer. Although this beer doesn't have very much to offer it's still standing the tests of time. This beer is you typical American style Lager with a Fizzy white head that fades into a flat yellow liquid. The mouthfeel isn't as light as a "light" beer but but it's not even close to being heavy either. This beer keep it simple.

Serving type: on-tap

04-01-2011 02:16:02 | More by Knapp85
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

3.13/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours straw yellow with a fizzy head that slowly descends to a wisp. A little lacing is left.

The smell is typical macro adjuncts with some grassiness thrown in.

Slick hops and a touch of alcohol are noticeable at first. There is also some sweet malt and subtle grass. A touch of corn is hinted at as the drink progresses. Water nearly dominates after awhile, but it's not as watery as many other macros.
It has a drying quality that cuts some of its refreshingness, but maintains some aftertaste.

For a very cheap macro, it could be much worse. I had a few of these at the pool in the heat on Sunday and found that I felt more like I was drinking beer than if I had many the big, more expensive macros. If you are in a place that allows only cans, you can do worse, especially for the price.

Serving type: can

09-18-2006 23:23:31 | More by jwc215
Photo of BlackHaddock
BlackHaddock

United Kingdom (England)

3.53/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is an old friend from long ago and when I saw it on tap at the Burger Bar (Las Vegas) I had one for old times sake.

Not sure about other beers in this style (on tap) because I don't come across any, but this looked fine, golden, bright and clear, with a good white head on top.

No real aroma to get your nose round, hints of a hop maybe, but gets my regular score of three for a non-smelling lager/pilsner.

Refreshing and thirst quenching, just like a lager should be, ideal throat cleaner before I hit the bars heavy brews.

I enjoyed it, brought back a couple of memories of drunken sports fields and tins laying around, happy days.

Serving type: on-tap

05-25-2010 07:23:27 | More by BlackHaddock
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

3.55/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very clear yellow gold with a thin white head. Nose is grainy and smells like pee. Flavor is actually quite smooth. Slight sweet tone. Grainy kind of earthy tone. Feel has a thick carbonation that really makes me burp. Liquid feel is typical. This is an easy drinking lager IMO. For what it is, I don't think you can go wrong with it.

Serving type: can

11-01-2008 16:45:40 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

Ohio

3.03/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Yeah, at 12.50 for a 30 pack of cans it's hard to beat this for a lawnmower macroswill selection. I prefer the bottles in overall taste, but poured out of the can this one has a very smooth creamy mouthfeel. Fizzy yellow with a frothy white going on, this beer is designed for people like me. In college and broke, so as far as aroma goes it's has a cereal grain adjunct based aroma but it's actually not that bad kind of pleasant in fact. I can definitely get down with this beer, for it's taste, price, and flavor can't go wrong. Taste is sweet with some balancing hop bitterness to create one of the best shittiest beers in the world. An American classic that is designed to be drank in high capacity.

Serving type: can

04-29-2003 12:57:30 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

3.8/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

24 oz. tall-boy can,

A: Pours a typical, pale yellow lager colour, but the head is really nice and leaves some nice lacing in a pint glass.

S: Light, typical of a macro lager, but still more robust and has more substance than average, mainly of malt and corn.

T: A very good taste for a macro, a simple malt and corn flavour, with a hint of hops that's easy to drink.

M: Very good, again for a macro, medium-bodied, not over carbonated, creamy and smooth.

D: A great example of a macro lager, my favourite of the style so far, much better and tastier than BMC.

Serving type: can

10-11-2007 16:59:50 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

2.83/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

for a cheapo, i dont hate a pbr. its become the beer of choice for the indie/hipster crowd, which i guess is a turnoff, but the beer isnt awful. it pours clear and yellow and soda-like, watery for sure, but not ugly like a coors light. it smells like a can of crap beer honestly, some aluminum, some stale malt, and that patented adjunct malt stink. the flavor isnt bad, because it doesnt taste like anything. really, scarecely a trace of anything that would make this a beer, hops? no. yeast? nope. i could be drinking a carbonated water beverage here. however, its lightness lends to its drinkablility, and probably its incredibly low price. i know bars where these cost just a buck, and most of a time its no more than two bucks. its certainly a decent budget beer, but it takes about a 12er to catch a buzz. oh well, thought id chuck in my two cents on this one while im having one.

Serving type: can

09-12-2012 02:02:37 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of tempest
tempest

Pennsylvania

3.33/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

What is it about this beer. I'm not a dirty hipster and I can afford to drink better. But $1 PBR drafts come along and I can't help myself. It isn't much to look at and the smell is only sweet and grainy. But the taste is smooth with a touch of malt. As it warms the adjunct sweetness is a bit much for me, but for what it is, it aint bad. If they just put a little more hops in here we'd have a really decent beer. Alas.

Serving type: on-tap

03-06-2007 04:58:48 | More by tempest
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

2.55/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From 10/21/12 notes. Have had this many, many times, and had a few 16 oz. cans at Brother Jimmy's watching the Giants game. Poured into a pint glass to review it. Review #2300!

a - Pours a clear bright yellow color with one finger of fluffy white head and high carbonation evident.

s - Smells of grains, corn, a little sweet, cereal, biscuit malts, and bready malts. Not offensive but not much going on.

t - Tastes of grains, corn, water, wheat, bready malts, and lightly sweet. Matches the nose pretty closely; again, just not much going on.

m - Light body and moderate to high carbonation. Easy to drink for sure, though a tiny bit overcarbonated.

o - Overall not a good beer by any means; was actually surprised the overall rating was so high. I find it better than all other Miller products and better than Coors, and about on par with Bud Light, though slightly less watered down. Given the choice between this and a Bud Light I'd probably take a Bud Light, but I wouldn't really care either way. Not really sure why this is super popular with hipsters with so many better, also affordable options out there, but whatever.

Serving type: can

10-22-2012 19:25:25 | More by mdfb79
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

1.48/5  rDev -49.8%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

First had: can from some dude's cooler.

Yay! Cheap beer!

Pours a pale yellow with a foamy white head that dissipates to a fizzy layer of bubbles. Weak aroma of corn and grains, memories of pitchers and cheap dates. Tastes the same: corn, grains, watered down grass juice with the possibility of a hop sneaking in. Light mouthfeel, and goes down eeeeaaasssyyyy and ends with regret, but a still-full wallet. Should be avoided unless absolutely necessary and/or you're broke.

Serving type: can

05-24-2011 17:47:24 | More by Rifugium
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

3.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a dimple mug)

A- This beer pours a crystal clear bright yellow body with a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles. There is a egg shell colored bubbly head that last for a short bit.

S- The smell of dry sulfury pale malt has a slight green hop aroma and a faint field corn note that comes through as it warms.

T- The taste of dry raw grain is crisp with a sulfur spice note that has a slight sweetness to it similar to the taste of a good Kolsch. That soft sweetness blends to the green noble finish.

M- This beer has a light mouthfeel and a tight fizzy finish.

D- Wow I was expecting this to be a punishment to my taste buds but it was actually refreshing. The smooth light flavor had some nice balance and some interesting notes to it. I would order this in a bar if they didn't have any better beer, as opposed to just going for the gin.

Serving type: can

11-26-2007 19:58:44 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of lacqueredmouse
lacqueredmouse

Australia

3.38/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz can purchased in San Francisco. It was cheap, and I'd never tried it before. What to make of the original hipster beer.

Pours a clear and bright golden colour, with a fine head of white that feels a little weak and insubstantial. Plenty of carbonation which forms at meny different nucleation points on the glass, streaming in small-bubbled rivulets up the inside of the glass. Lace is solid, body is light, as is to be expected. Not bad all up.

Nose is clean and crisp, without any of corn and cereal adjunct aromas I was expecting. Instead, we have a light greenness, like mildly sweet clipped grass, and a touch of fruity esters, giving an almost kristalweizen banana or bubblegum character. It's all very mild, but it's quite clean, and rather refreshing.

Taste is weak, but again, exceptionally clean and light. Smooth, mild, pale grain character on the front, which wanders off and gets lost in nothingness, leaving some seltzer water on the back, a very mild bitterness and a faint tingle of carbonation. The feel is actually rather smooth, and certainly on the low end of the carbonation spectrum, which is rather pleasant.

Extremely easy to slug down, and despite the simple and somewhat lacklustre palate, it stays far from being pedestrian or offensive. Sure, it's not a great, interesting, or exciting brew, but it's actually a pretty smooth ride, and all things considered, a relatively enjoyable one.

Serving type: can

12-05-2011 07:21:47 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

2.23/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a four-fingered white head that quickly fades to a thin layer leaving some lace. Crystal clear, very pale amber color. Light carbonation and light bodied. Malty nose. Flavor is honey, very one-dimensional, hops are hidden, works as a lawn mower beer. $1.75 for a 12oz bottle from Barb's Beer Emporium Concord, NH.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2008 22:24:36 | More by jdhilt
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

3.65/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 16 oz can with a white back ground, red and blue label colour. Hey red white and blue, how American. “Established in Milwaukee 1844” stated on the front, no freshness date.

Appearance: Head foams up quite big then quickly dissipates into a wispy white lace, brilliantly clear pale golden yellow hue seems a bit inviting.

Smell: Thin sweet malt and grain, touch of strained hops in the nose. Clean aroma slight grassiness from the grain also.

Taste: Light to moderate body, nice even crispness with a somewhat effervescent carbonation. The smooth mouth feel rides on the tail of the carbonation, thin malt palate. Kiss of hops, bitterness peaks after the crispness subsides and the dryness kicks in. Trace of alcohol hit the tongue and warms the mouth and throat. Hops stick to bitterness and provide no flavour other than a faint grassiness. Some corn grit flavour in the middle, not cooked grits but rather fresh milled grits. Clean palate throughout with a great wrap-up of dryness in the finish.

Notes: This is a great premium American lager, hands down beats the big three. About the same in the bottle but obviously better on tap. A perfect change up when things get a bit tedious and want to drink a simple beer.

Serving type: can

10-12-2002 00:00:01 | More by Jason
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear light golden brew, I expected less.

Smell is slightly sour yeast and mild malt. This has a light floral aroma and a pleasant grain smell.

Taste is mildly sweet and clean, and a touch of sourness. Mild hops present. Not great but a solid beer.

Mouthfeel is surprisingly present and not bad.

Drinkable beats Budweiser any day.

Serving type: can

02-22-2004 03:47:09 | More by Zorro
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

2.53/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a light yellow color, nice carbonation, small white head, with some sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some hops, slight caramel. The taste is slightly sweet, malty, slight hop note. Light body. Not drinkable, would not buy again.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2010 02:05:45 | More by Wasatch
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

24oz tallboy can obtained as part of BIF 13 from Qarre. Thanks for the opportunity, I think...

Gave it a shot at fame by pouring it into an imperial pint glass, where it formed a 1" white head over the clear light golden/yellow brew. Head is short-lived, but lasted longer than I expected, lacing is somewhat minimal, yet still better than I expected again. Aroma is minimal, and what is present is generic "beer", the lightest of malts with balancing nondescript hops. Nothing replusive, however, and that's always noteworthy.

Taste is upfront sweet adjunct presence, with the slightest of crispness at the outset. The main observation I am presented with is "watery". Mouthfeel and drinkability are both okay for the style. Fits the 3 average for me: the only negatives are lacks of positives. Good for mowing the lawn, which I will be doing momentarily.

Serving type: can

10-09-2004 21:25:50 | More by ppoitras
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler

Pennsylvania

2.08/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Even an agressive pour resulted in barely a half a finger of rocky, bone-white head with lousy retention, ending in wisps. There was no nose to speak of. Well, maybe a light sweetness, but barely discernible. The color was beautiful deep-yellow/light-gold with NE-quality clarity. The mouthfeel was thin, watery and it had a light sweetness on the tongue. The finish was light, cottony, non-existent. I might as well not even have been drinking beer. This could have been air, it was so light as to float away. Aarrgh!

A couple of last thoughts, both allusions to movies. In "Blue Velvet", Dennis Hopper as Frank has a convo with Kyle MacLachlan. "Hey, kid, whadddya want to drink?" "Heineken, please." "Heineken?!? F**k that s**t! PABST. BLUE. RIBBON, mister!" How about neither?

In "Repo Man", Otto looks wistfully at The Circle Jerks, now reduced to lounge singers in gold lame outfits, shakes his head and says, "And to think, I used to like those guys." And to think, I used to drink PBR on Wednesday nights at the Sub Cafe in New London, Connecticut like it was going out of style.

Serving type: can

02-09-2008 00:14:58 | More by woodychandler
Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
69 out of 100 based on 3,716 ratings.