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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) - Pabst Brewing Company

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

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4,833 Ratings

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Ratings: 4,833
Reviews: 1,616
rAvg: 2.93
pDev: 25.26%
Wants: 49
Gots: 661 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,833 | Reviews: 1,616
Photo of BeerBuggy
3.24/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

This came in a twenty four ounce can. Large oversized three-finger head that dwindled to virtually nothing in a minute or so. Pale yellow virtually see through the mug clear though not with perfect clarity. Leaves small number of small streaks of lacing. Smells like yeast. Thin watery mouth feel , can see taste and feel the carbonation though relatively moderate. The sweetness comes through most. I thought I could never enjoy cheap beer again but this is not bad for the price (about $1.40 for 24 ounces).

Photo of renegadeburger
2.78/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

had this one over the weekend with friends my old buddy brought a case of these over while we watched some college football

ok where do i begin with this one haha how about the appearance

well it looked nice in color but the head disappeared in about 5 seconds and then looked rather flat

smelled of some eggs and wild grass and some fruit and esters not the typical clean lager smell

taste was ok and probably the best thing going for it i would say it was definitely too sweet and prickly but overall drinkable

the worst thing was the mouthfeel it tasted a bit syrupy and chewy and not light and refreshing

overall this is a decent beer at best in the value category but definitely not my cup of tea

Photo of JGrooveDrums
3.08/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz can into glass.

A-Poured a crisp yellow. Created a head the width of a small finger, but quickly disappeared. Lots of bubbles from high level of carbonation.

S- You can definitely smell a hint of corn in there, maybe even a little wheat. The smell is not exactly flattering but at least it smells like beer.

T- A little sweet. Can taste a the rice or corn. Not very many complex flavors, but you get what you pay for. Highly drinkable for what it's worth.

M- Smooth and crisp mouthfeel. Highly carbonated.

I would say this is my favorite beer in the "cheap beer" category. I don't really expect anyone to be buying this beer to enjoy the flavor. It's cheap, and its drinkable. Good enough.

Photo of thatruth
2.61/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz can into pint glass.

poured second half vigorously to arise a good head. pours two finger snow white head with moderate, slippery lacing. crystal clear champagne color into a sparkling pale yellow with gold tint.

smells of straw, rice, and hops. rainy forest day aroma.

not much to note on taste here. tastes like water, hops, and barley.

crisp, clean on-bringing to quick, watery finish.

heineken? fuck heineken. PABST BLUE RIBBON!

Photo of BrewtifulMind
3.13/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Haven't had one of these brews in a while, but a buddy handed one to me, and I'm not one to refuse a free beer. This was actually a lot better than I had remembered. Tastes like grains, malts, and rice. Mouthfeel is smooth, and the carbonation is good. This was ice cold so that helped out, for sure. Pretty refreshing. I'd probably go back to this one. Can't beat a 24 pack for 12 bucks.

Photo of kwc017
3.8/5  rDev +29.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hands down kills the other beers in it's price range and above. Just a great American lager. Grain, a bit of malt. Clean and refreshing. So much better than what the herd drinks. Do yourself a favor and grab a Blue Ribbon. The bottle is just freakin cool too. Cheers!

Photo of philerman
2.93/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in cans in dive bars across the nation. If you're paying more than $2 for this you better have naked or nearly naked (depending on the local laws regarding such places) flesh in front of you.

I've never started off a night with PBR so I can't comment on the appearance other than to note that the can exerts no class whatsoever. If it becomes a conversation-starter, you can at least thank your lucky stars you're not talking about the weather.

Over the years, the smell has become less and less like stale cigarette smoke as more and more states enact anti-smoking laws. By the time you're on your 10th or 20th the smell doesn't even make you nauseous.

It tastes like "beer". Like a picture in a dictionary. A cheap dictionary though.

Enough carbonation to not taste watered down and usually surprisingly drinkable, though I'd never pass up something from even the lowest rungs of microbreweries for this.

Photo of david18
3.5/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was away on a beach vacation and I guess felt the need to take a vacation from all the craft beer I'd been having. Something about PBR in a can strikes both nostalgia as well as hipness, as many gastropubs serve it with a shot chaser. I'm not going to bother going through all the characteristics, as that's kind of a waste of time. I just think that every once in a while it's an interesting change of pace.

Photo of ehammond1
2.66/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2


A clear, golden highly-carbonated beer with a quickly forming but a quickly disappearing white head. Little to no lacing down the glass.

A slight sweet aroma with some corn elements. At least nothing smells off or foul here.

A clean and crisp flavor with a touch of sweetness and some grainy corn elements throughout.

Thin to medium mouthfeel with plenty of carbonation. Crisp and clean.

It is what it is, and it isn't much.

Photo of scootny
3.18/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hey it looks and smells like beer. Pale straw gold with a decent head and lacing. smell is clean and mildly hoppy with cereal graininess and light bitter notes. Taste has is much the same with light malt and crisp dry hops in the finish. Clean crisp feel that while light and thin does not feel watery. Not a bad AAL and much better than the BMC alternatives.

Photo of necrat
3.65/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The classic. PBR in a can!

Pours a very bright yellow with a little head to it. Very clean pour to it. Smells of corn, a hint of wheat and not much else.

For a can which comes out to less than a $1 per can, and the reputation that follows a cheap beer, the taste of this beer REALLY suprised me, quite a bit. The beer has a nice clean taste to it, with a clear corn-crisp to it, and a little wheat too. And what was that I faintly detected at the end? Yes, even had a very subtle hop charecter to it! The beer is very carbonated , as can be expected. All in all, this is a VERY drinkable beer, and one even someone as choosy as me, would go out and buy. A nice , drinkable, summer beer. A really pleasant suprise for how much it costs. If you are on a budget and looking for a beer on a dime (or even not), check out PBR!

Photo of Humulus85
3.48/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thought I'd give the old standard a formal review; Pabst and I go way back. Poured from a pint can into my trusty nonic. Nice white, frothy, two finger head held on for a bit but didn't leave much lacing. Nice pretty straw color. The smell was mostly grain and a bit of sweet malt; nothing special. More taste than Miller or Bud in my opinion. A nice cereal type grain taste and slightly sweet malt followed by a subtle but present hop finish. Nicely carbonated and refreshing. If I need a case of cans for camping, fishing, or a bbq I'll definitely go Pabst.

Photo of DrewSnyc667
2.62/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

From a can into a tasting glass, not going to dirty a pint for this...

A - Pale yellow, tons of activity, pours to a 1 in fizzy head that leaves quickly, no lacing

S - pretty bland and metallic, some corn and maybe a hint of sour apple

T - Somewhat sweet on the palate, get a lot more of that apple I smelled. Corn and other adjucts kick in in the finish

M - Some what heavy and dirty

O - You get what you pay for. At 8.99/12 pack in NYC that's a steal, and something I'd still take over a lot of things

Photo of Rutager
3.32/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance. Pours a golden straw with a finger of foamy white head that doesn't last long or leave much lacing.

Smell. Light grains and corn, some spicy hops.

Taste. Sweet light grains and a little herby, grassy hops.

Mouthfeel. Light body with bubbly medium carbonation.

Overall. Not too shabby for a macro. but still pretty macro tasting.

Photo of mostpoetsdo
2.85/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

"It's a whole different beer in a bottle!"

A: Pale, translucent yellow. White head vanishes as soon as it arrives.

S: Adjunct grain, steamed rice, old banana peels. Sour.

T: Has a sweet and sour grain-like taste to it. The bottle may have made this worse. Has a taffy meets corn taste.

M: Lots of carbonation, fairly light.

O/D: What's there to say? Stick to the cans. It's a different beer in a bottle: worse.

Photo of WestValleyIPA
3.97/5  rDev +35.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a can of Hipsters Delight into my Pilsner glass. Rather aggressive pour yields a finger and a half of champagney head, straw pale gold body. Head dies quickly leaving a thin layer at the top. Lots of bubbles. Much more Pilsner-like on the nose than Budweiser or Coors. Nice grassiness, some biscuit, corn, some light generic hoppiness. Tastes light, grainy, a little bit of honey and corn. Refreshing. Mouthfeel is super bubbly, but on the creamier side of an adjunct. Reviewing for style, it's hard to beat.

Photo of smellandsip37
3.7/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The best adjunct in USA today. Beats anything from BMC. I am from the north, so I might be biased. Pours a nice pale yellow with a little sticking to the glass. I enjoy the carbonation, keeps it easy to drink. I like it in cans, its easier to transport. With a beer like this its great when you want to take some brews along and you dont have a lot of cash. I with more brewers would put more of the basic four ingredients, and hold back more of the adjuncts, like Pabst brewing does.

Photo of rickyleepotts
3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer is an instant classic. I love that it is now associated with hipsters. I was having a conversation the other day with someone, and we were trying to build the perfect hipster. I said start with glasses… with no lenses. Then add skinny jeans, a flannel shirt, and a scruffy beard. Of course one hand needs a cigarette and the other a PBR. That is why I am SO happy that everywhere I go, whether online or in the 1001 Bottles book, I find hipsters being referenced. It just solidifies my point.

I have had this beer time and time again. I was initially worried that we wouldn’t be able to find it in a bottle. I have never seen it in a bottle, only cans. And most of the time it’s “tall boy” cans. Birdy’s Bar & Grill, one of my favorite live music venues, sells it and every time I am there I have to have one. It’s just the hipster thing to do!

(Please note that I am going to try a new style of writing these reviews. I will break down what it looks like in the glass, the smell (the nose on the beer), the mouthfeel, the flavor, and the after taste. I will then recap everything with a conclusion. Notice that I started this one with an introduction? Look for that in the future as well. So… here we go.)

In the Glass: In the glass, this looks like just another lager beer. Most lager beers, especially European lager beers, all tend to look the same. They have that crisp and clean apparel to them, and sit in the glass with a weak head and obvious carbonation. Nothing stands out on this beer while it sits there waiting to be sipped.

Nose: You get a TON of carbonation on the nose, and a lot of aroma. More aroma than expected for a beer that is so cheap. This beer is actually one of, if not the cheapest beer in production today. The bottle that we bought was less than $1! We bought this at the Liquor Barn while out of town for the weekend… anyway, moving on.

The aroma on this beer is exciting. It has a lot of corn character. As it sits there and I smell it, I can’t wait to taste it. (I say that having had this beer countless times before. Every time I have had it in the past, it has been based solely on the price. This time, however, I am taking the time to appreciate it.

Flavor: It’s not bad… it has a quick trip across the palate, and then settles on the back of your tongue for a second. This beer would obviously taste better the colder it is, and will in fact get gross as it heats up. I know that from personal experience. The flavors are solid, though, and once you get past that carbonation you are settled into a warm, malty character. It’s good, and one that you could drink a lot of.

Mouthfeel: Holy carbonation… this beer is packed with it from the get go. It doesn’t stand on your tongue for a long time, and as it slides down your throat it is light enough to not stick around into the aftertaste. It’s crisp, clean, and refreshing but that carbonation is almost enough to make me leave it on the shelf.

Aftertaste: The aftertaste is solid. That corn character… the malts continue throughout. It’s not a typical lager aftertaste, and it sticks around longer than expected. It’s enough to keep me going back for more.

PBR is cheap… it’s intended for hipsters… but I will order this all day long. I would prefer this over any other domestic beer you throw at me. Well done for such a cheap crappy beer. (I say crappy in the nicest way possible, and from the reputation that this beer has been given over the years.) Bottoms up people.

Photo of TrouserSneeze
3.46/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Paid $4.49 for a 6er of ponnder cans at a Wegmans. Tired of my "old man" beer (Genesee) and couldn't resist the price. BA reviews also made me curious.

I like this beer. I'm 66, so does this make me an aging hipster?

Drink by date(?) 11/14/11; odd smell; nice carbonation (bubbles not visible) & mouthfeel; head disappears quickly w/no lacing; not sweet, but not a lot of hop bite; no alcohol taste even after many; pleasant aftertaste & finish.

Minor guilt pangs as I'm a Rochester resident and somewhat loyal Genny drinker, but "How do you keep them down on the farm after they've seen Paree?"

Photo of brokennedy120
2.64/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer has always been my standard go-to when I need the least crappy cheap-o lager for a party. It is better than the rest of the swill you can buy for this price.

Obviously, this is not the type of beer you drink to savor the flavor profile and inhale the heady smells with subtle undertones...this is a "get drunk" beer, and there is no shame in that.

So, compared to other bad adjunct lagers, its decent. Smooth taste with no nasty sticky feeling, and not overcarbonated. Smell is a little nasty though, of cheap dry grains.

Photo of startreker
1.4/5  rDev -52.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Im stunned that this beer has been getting decent reviews! I decided to give PBR a go When I was dead broke, and could afford little else. This is the only beer, I repeat, Only beer that has ever made me feel nauseated from the get go. Its also the only ever beer, that I ever poured down the sink, and felt sorry for the fish that were about to recieve it. I`d never drink it again even if I were facing poverty! Pours a pale straw color that I anticipated given that its a macro. Mouthfeel was below average. Drinkabilty simply felt horrible from the onset.

Avoid at all costs!

Photo of Gordito
3.83/5  rDev +30.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Light and clean with just enough hop flavor to give it more character than the competition. Light on malt sweetness and when cold adjunct dms flavors are almost non-existent. Cult following is justified..Especially on a hot day. This is one of my favorite beers, and one of those that is as good out of the can as on tap. Enjoy.

Photo of rdub
3.3/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the can into my new Williamsburg Alewerks pint. Clear golden and fizzy with one half inch quickly disappearing foamy head. Smell was of light grains. Taste was upscale adjunct lager. Drinkability was easy. Good for what it is - a union made macro lager.

Photo of angusdegraosta
3.4/5  rDev +16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Finally had one of these - sure, it is better than a Bud! It has average head retention for its style, nothing distinctive in the color or smell (go figure), but it's crisp, and you can actually taste some hops. Nice malt character - almost robust even. I had one on a hot day, so that must account for my impression of the mouthfeel. This is a good clean thirst quencher and a good American brew.

Photo of thebrood1987
2.95/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Definitely that typical beer smell I guess because of the adjuncts (even though that isnt true quality of beer go figure) that they put in it. I do get a slight hint of floral hop and sweet corn syrup. The best part of this beer is right when you take a sip and you get the crisp carbonation bite. The finish isnt that great though and ends like any other typical big 3 with that dry yeasty very light mouthfeel aftertaste.

As for the malts and hops goes the malt is just that corny graininess which doesnt really turn me off from beer it tastes nice if done right. They do it right here. The hops also give off a kiss of bitterness that mixes in with the carbonation bite. On hop flavor maybe a touch of grassy notes but thats it.

For the style its dead on. Its better than the big 3 but actually a step below for me when it comes to the other beer this company brews which is Ballantine...which has more of hop bite and flavor. This is their answer to the big 3 and they do it well. Definitely a pick over any of them but definitely not a Samuel Adams.

Drink this cold! not because of hiding the taste but when it warms it loses some of that bite which makes the entire beer in my opinion. At 7.99 a 12 pack its a definite solid cheap beer though.

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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
68 out of 100 based on 4,833 ratings.