Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) - Pabst Brewing Company

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
71
okay

1,588 Reviews
THE BROS
83
good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,588
Hads: 5,012
rAvg: 3.08
pDev: 20.45%
Wants: 55
Gots: 829 | 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: 1,588 | Hads: 5,012
Photo of biboergosum
2.5/5  rDev -18.8%
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. (1,284 characters)

Photo of mikesgroove
3.58/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok, so I was at Hooters and had to drink something, had never, and I mean that never had a PBR, so what the hell. was actually very impressed. Poured a dull, unremarkable pale golden yellow, lots of carbonation and a white fizzy head that faded immediatly. Smell was non descript and uneventful, nothing really to discuus to here. The taste was actually quite pleasent. Now dont get me wrong, it was not complex and full of flavor, but for the style it was superb. Light corn/grain taste, but mostly fizzy water. Very smooth and well carbonated and easily poundable all night long. I would have to say, hands down thi is the best Macro lager I have ever had, not that that is saying alot, but this was nnot actually that bad with some wings! (741 characters)

Photo of zeff80
3.17/5  rDev +2.9%
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. (373 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
3.03/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A: I usually just drink it from the can, but it's pale yellow with white foam.

S: The smell is not one of the finer points of PBR. It's got a slight grain smell to it and (surprisingly to some) a bit of hop character. However, it's also got a bit of a tinny/metallic twang to it.

T: A decent flavor of grain, which is a lot more than you can say for most American Light/Adjunct Lagers.

M: Very light and quite fizzy.

D: You can definitely put down a lot of them, and PBR is a lot better tasting than most beers in this style. (529 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.15/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

16 oz. pint - $2.00 at Highlands Grill in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Clear, yellowish body with a thin, very short-lived, white head.

Smell: Very faint nose -- just a few hints of sweetish grain.

Taste: Sweet light pale malts with some creamy corn hints. Slight, slight graininess. A tad watery, as expected. Faint floral hops and bitterness. Finishes dry, clean, and crisp.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied. Medium-plus carbonation.

Drinkability: Acceptable! A counter-culture classic that's super cheap and provides just a bit of flavor (without hittin' you up with foul flavors). (582 characters)

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

After drinking gallons and gallons of this on draft and in cans and bottles, I'm finally ready to give my review.

It has a nice appearance with a crystal-clear golden body and short head of creamy bright white froth that holds well and even leaves some nice lace.

The aroma, however, is not quite a shining example of the brewer's art, displaying a little bit too much yeasty sulphur, and a distinctly adjunct-laden malt sweetness. There are some very minor hops present in the background, but they're not really discernable.

It's crisp in the mouth with a medium-light body and median carbonation.

The flavor is as might be expected - "generic". The yeasty sulphur at least helps to balance the sweetness of the malt, although there is a decent amount of bitterness there. I'd call it firm. Not unlike its aroma, the flavor is also hop-challenged, and there's more sulphur in the finish than anything floral, spicy, or grassy.

It is, however, fairly cheap; and a throwback to what I used to think beer tasted like as a kid. Recommended? Not really, but you can do far worse! (1,081 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 Slatetank
3.48/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I picked a six pack up at the new Giant beer section in east york. Enjoyed from a willybecker chilled.

The color is very pale golden apropos for the style with thick white cap which holds well with tiny bead and little lace. Nose is mostly sweet with a slight hint of grain and perhaps a tinge of spice if you try to find more when swirling. The feel is good with some spice and grain sweetness with malt body farily gentle and carbonation moderately high with clean finish.

This is a very standard yet pleasant American pale lager with slight adjunct sweetness but not so overboard that it infiltrates the taste completely it has a tinge of hop to balance the grain and slight yeast tinge in the taste. The finish is very clean and a crisp experience if every I had one. This is very good for the style and the overall value is high since this is the 2nd cheapest beer available at this location yet still is worth drinking. (929 characters)

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.53/5  rDev +14.6%
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. (342 characters)

Photo of Jason
3.65/5  rDev +18.5%
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. (1,256 characters)

Photo of Rifugium
1.45/5  rDev -52.9%
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. (475 characters)

Photo of WVbeergeek
3/5  rDev -2.6%
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. (704 characters)

Photo of feloniousmonk
2.2/5  rDev -28.6%
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! (1,989 characters)

Photo of mdfb79
2.55/5  rDev -17.2%
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. (1,132 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
3.08/5  rDev 0%
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. (390 characters)

Photo of jwc215
3.13/5  rDev +1.6%
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. (802 characters)

Photo of chinchill
2.92/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

served in chilled mug

Clearly not a high quality beer. Not interesting. Not bold. But really, not too bad. I've been surprised the last couple of times I've had this on draft. No significant off-aromas or offensive taste components. IMO, PBR in a can is a different story.

PBR has a light malty aroma with no off-notes and detectable hops. Looks and tastes like a generic macro-brew. Better than the average American macro-brew for the price. (445 characters)

Photo of dbrauneis
3.14/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a can at Nag's Head Pub in Hoboken, NJ

A: Pours a crystal clear pale straw yellow in color with light to moderate amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a finger tall bright white head that slowly reduces to a thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light aromas of adjunct malts (rice and grain) with light hints of grassy hops.

T: The taste is similar to the smell, there is not as much sweetness as many of the other beers in the style. There is a light to moderate presence of adjunct malts giving the beer a rice and grainy taste along with some light grassy hops. Light bitterness that does not linger.

M: On the lighter side of medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin and crisp.

O: Easy to drink, refreshing, and very sessionable - I could put down many of these when outside on hot summer day. This beer is much better than I expected, my memory had me thinking this was going to be pretty awful but it is much better than most BMC beers. (1,107 characters)

Photo of WesWes
3.18/5  rDev +3.2%
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. (468 characters)

Photo of mothman
3.47/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured into pint glass.

Fizzy white head goes to the top of the glass then settles quickly to a very thin layer. No lace. Color is a very clear straw yellow.

Aroma: Far better than any BMC product. Grainy and flat hops. Damn, I can actually enjoy the smell of this beer.

Taste: This has to be one of the first macos that I have actually enjoyed somewhat. It just seems to hit the spot. Grainy taste, dry hops. Nothing to huge, but not something I just want to spit out.

Mouthfeel: A little crisp, but somewhat smooth. Ends with a very sticky aftertaste.

Overall, this is one macro I could keep stocked in my fridge. I never thought I could enjoy a beer this cheep, but it exceeded my expectations by far. (709 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
2.53/5  rDev -17.9%
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. (378 characters)

Photo of mdaschaf
3.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had at a BBQ over the weekend.

A: Typically, I don't bother pouring PBR into a glass when I drink it, usually straight from the can. It pours a clear yellow with a foamy white head with a little bit of retention and little lacing.

S: Not a whole lot going on, a little bit of grain, a hint of floral hops, and a slight metallic note.

T: A bit more grain on the flavor profile, some corn, and a little bit of sweetness.

M: Light to medium bodied with a good bit of carbonation.

O: A pretty solid american adjunct lager. Better than most that are readily available. (573 characters)

Photo of GClarkage
3.17/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

07/25/09- Had on tap at Windy City Pizza in San Mateo, CA.

Presentation- Via the tap into a pint glass. $2.25 every day..

Appearance- Pale golden color. Looks a bit watery. Had a solid 3/4 inch head which fades quickly. Leaves slight spots of fading lace behind.

Smell- Light notes of corn with a bready note carrying the beer.

Taste- Corn comes through, but not as much as in most macros. Heavy bready malt flavor. Hops..not really, but good flavor considering.

Mouthfeel- Pretty clean and crisp. Solid medium carbonation level.

Drinkability- Has always been my go to macro when I have one...the only one I stock on a semi-regular basis in my own home. Drinkable any day. (678 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.21/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

The beer is light golden and transparent with a half inch of pure white head. Aromas of grain, bread, corn, adjuncts. Not as sweet and off putting as the BMC highly marketed crap that is seemingly everywhere. Grainy with some cereal-like character. Clean and refreshing. Basically, exactly what you would expect from a decent adjunct lager. Ok. (344 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
2.1/5  rDev -31.8%
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. (1,089 characters)

Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
71 out of 100 based on 1,588 ratings.