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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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4,804 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,804
Reviews: 1,597
rAvg: 2.93
pDev: 25.26%
Wants: 44
Gots: 616 | 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: 4,804 | Reviews: 1,597 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Kromes
2.95/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear pale straw color with what eventually becomes a thin line of soapy bubbles on top.

S: Smells OK.... Some sort of sweet grain aroma and a slight skunk hop aroma.

T: Surprised by the taste...not all that bad. It is sweet and has a bite to it, but the taste isn't horrible. Some sort of sweet starchy flavor with a decent enough hop flavor to round it out.

M: pretty smooth. Good carbonation. Finish is virtually invisible....no bad aftertaste. The only part I don't like is that it leaves a gross syrupy sweet film on everything that it touches.

D: Well, the flavor is ok, it is light and not too expensive. Wouldn't seek it out, but definitely can roll with the PBR.

Photo of StoutyMcStouters
3.26/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

What can I say? I LOVE PBR!

A beer this cheap should not be this tasty. Pretty much better than most anything else out there for the same price.

Doesnt really keep any head, no lacing.

This beer has almost no smell to it, just the lightest touch of grains.

The taste department is where PBR delivers. Nice bit of sweet malt and a teeny tiny bit of hops/alcohol taste breaking through, far more flavorful than its competitors.

Great for a hot summer day or taking the edge off after work. This has always been and may always be my favorite cheap beer.

Photo of Evocatus
2.66/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Pours a straw pale yellow with a foamy white head. Aroma was feint, but I could get some watered-down malts. Not much taste, just thin malts and an odd taste I can't really describe. Thin, watery, not too carbonated. I guess it's drinkable since it's mostly like water. The bad taste isn't really apparent seeing how thin it is. I can see why party-goers like it, but if the purpose is to get drunk, just get cheap liquor, it'll do the job faster and in less volume so you don't feel bloated.

Photo of ohndray
2.91/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Very comparable to most BIG brewers in every way. BUT... I prefer this beer to any big brewer on taste, price, AND quality. Not every beer can be top notch. But when I'm on a budget and want to get a six pack in... this is my go to beer.

Don't get me wrong.. I enjoy a good IPA. But this is, in my opinion, the best of the worst.

Drinkability is excellent. An ice chest full of these is heaven to me with good company.

Photo of beersensei305
3.65/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've had this lager in a can, bottle, and off of a tap. It pours a pale yellow with a big head that disaptes quickly and leaves some light lacing. The smell is a sweet malt and grain with a slight hint of hops. This lager tastes light and clean. Has a smooth mouthfeel and quick refreshing. This lager beats out any of the big three in taste and it works well for those on a budget.

Photo of Derranged
1.85/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Had this a few times.

A- Straw pale yellow

S- A little like vomit, and something else I cant describe.

T- Metallic, bitter, sour, pretty much the same as Budweiser, only the flavor is stronger. It left a sour film on my gums.

M- thin and very carbonated

D- I did manage to drink 10 of these one night. I was on a budget, and I was stuck with this, until we got to the bar. Never again.

No offense to anyone who likes it, but this beer is just nauseating, worse than Budweiser. Overrated for sure, I just can't understand how so many people on this rate it as high as they do. Oh well, its not the end of the world.

Photo of xnicknj
2.59/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A - Clear golden yellow with a fading think head which leaves plenty of spotty lacing around the glass.

S - Steely and grassy with fading hops

T - Somewhat bitter hops with grassy tendencies. Run-of-the-mill malt attempts to break through, leading to a steely, citrus zest finish.

M - Medium body, although most of the beer tasted like the inside of a can.

D - Smoother than most beers of the same style.

PBR is my favorite adjunct lager. End.

Photo of secondtooth
3.19/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The classic, quintessential American adjunct lager pours an unimpressive, pale golden, with a sweet and malty grain (corn) scent. The taste is sweet and simple, with little evidence of hops or complexity. It's a no-frills lager that isn't arty or crafty, but provides easy (and cheap) refreshment on a hot day. PBR scores points for remaining independent (of the big beer monopolies) and fully American-owned. Hipsters and cheapsters alike can enjoy this one. When I'm on a tight budget, and a good craft brew isn't in the cards, this is my go-to cheap beer.

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

Its one of those beers that some people hate and some people love. I'm really in the middle on this one and I can't really choose either way. If I have to drink it I will only drink it cold. If it warms too much it tastes like piss. Some people despise it, but I think they are truly missing the point of it -- its meant to taste the way that it does because it is the 'blue collar' beer. Its not supposed to be the BA beer or the 'rich guys' beer. It is a simple brew and if you don't like it, don't drink it. If you do, then cheers!
Pours a clear yellow color with a two finger white head and a little lacing. Smells of corn, grain, and some sweet malts. Has a pretty good malt character to the taste as well as the slightest undertone of hops. Mouthfeel is fairly thin but the carbonation backs it up and adds a certain smoothness. Drinkability is average.
Bottom line: A pretty cheap average beer.

Photo of irishevans
4.15/5  rDev +41.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I can't believe I haven't reviewed this one before. of all the Piss-water lagers on the planet, this one I actually enjoy, though it's only when the budget is SUPER tight or in social situations where the object is simply to get drunk and (insert appropriate activity)...
Mind you this review is, as instructed, based on the style.

A- transparent gold color with good 2 finger white foamy head, that slowly creeps down to a film.

N- light grain, bit of malt and the faintest bit of hops in the background,

T- mostly follows nose with a nice malt profile that is kind of bitter/sour, and there is a bit more hop flavor than the nose would lead you to believe, it mostly shows up on the finish.

M- thin, but not as thin as water, with a nice smooth malty charter, and a lovely carbonation bite at the end. tricks you into thinking that it's going to finish dry, but is actually rather refreshing, like the style should be.

D- Wonderful example of it's style, my "I'm Broke" fall back/after work at crossroads(anc,ak)/ partying with the fairview/valley/spenard crew brew of choice for YEARS. when it's all about being social on a tight budget this is it.

Photo of JohnRossKirby
3.25/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Thin, one-finger head that dissipates quickly. Extremely transparent, light yellow color. Pretty standard for this style.

Not much of a scent, but some earthy tones are present.

Taste is light, grainy, and slightly sweet, with no discernible aftertaste.

Very crisp, refreshing mouthfeel.

I find the drinkability of PBR to be outstanding. It's nothing special in terms of looks, smell, or taste, but it goes down smooth and is light enough that I could easily drink half a case, if for some reason I chose to do so.

This is my go-to cheap beer. I much prefer it over Budweiser, Miller, Coors, or pretty much any other AAL, with the exception of Hamm's and Schlitz.

2.8/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz can into pint glass: from notes
A: A thin white head dissipates into nothingness, light carbonation present. Body is a light yellow that is ultra clear.
S: A light hint of corn, with a lighter hint of the American Lager.
T/M: A crisp bite that expresses both desirable aspect that those that are not. A positive burst of carbonation, make subtle characteristic come out while pair with food, such as pizza ( don't get too fancy here) while a bit too light to drink alone. Low on overall taste. Both underlining malt and classic lager expressions. Don't even mention lingering taste, there is none to be found.
D: Yes it is drinkable, but enjoyable, ehh well not if you are looking for flavor in your drinkablity. For those going to the brew to put a mass quantity away, this is the beer, taste like nothing after two, it comes in a 30 pack for a reason.

Photo of brewerburgundy
3.75/5  rDev +28%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, pilsener glass, dated 10/25/10.

Pale straw with a glorified AAL flash in the pan head. In all honesty, the head is better than some others in the style.

Soap, minerals, grassy hops.

Minimally sweet corn or Pilsener malt, grass, a slight white pepperiness, and saltine. To me, PBR has a hop edge that no other macro lagers I've had, have.

We all know what average for the style is; fizzy, thin, but redeemingly refreshing at the right times.

Sure, better than most other AAL in my mind, so golf, beer pong is usually when I'll suck this one down.

Photo of ruckus232
3.5/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 Ounce Silver/White can poured into a mug

Appearance: Yellow in color with maybe a fingers worth of white head.

Smell: Corn smell with a slight bitter earthy smell.

Taste: Honestly better then expected. A little bitterness upfront with the a more flavorful taste then most adjuncts. There is a little bit of a metallic taste at the end.

Photo of birdyone
3.27/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Nothin' like a "Peebr." Haven't decided if that's good or bad.

Looks- Pale/yellow/clear. Let's face it, it looks the same going in as it does coming out.

Smell- Smells like beer.

Taste- I have to admit though, it's pretty good. For a 1 dollar draft. The cans you really can't beat for price. It far surpasses the other beers I have drank in the same price range.

Mouthfeel- Not bad, but not a beer I let linger on my taste buds.

Drinkabilty- Great. Cost wise, you can drink a lot of it. Filling wise, you can drink a lot of it. But it has it's place; ball games, camping trips, bon fires.

I'm giving this beer higher marks based on the price. Compared to others in this price range it really isn't bad at all. And who hasn't had an experience with PBR that wasn't a good time?

Photo of Richter35
3.55/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

In my quest to find a beer that was both delicious and affordable, overwhelmingly positive reviews convinced me to try it. I'm sitting down a few months later now to review it.

Appearance is extremely clear. Not a lot of bubbles, lacing, or head. Yellow/straw coloured. Served in a pint glass.

Smell is not so typical of a cheap beer. Not overly sweet or harshly bitter. Fresh and bready with a sour twist.

Yum! Taste is fantastic and instills visions of hot, sunny days and BBQs with friends. Nothing special, but a sweet malt profile combined with a reserved hop bitterness blend perfectly to hide it's truly adjunct nature.

Mouthfeel is o.k. and suffers from that kind of syrupy feel that most cheaper beers do. Still, not too bad and is otherwise very smooth.

Drinkability is excellent. It's better cold.

Not similar to what I would usually hail as a good beer, it is decidedly different enough from it's bland competition to be respected.

Photo of Star80
2.38/5  rDev -18.8%
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!!!" :-)

Photo of Kaiser81
2.95/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

12 oz can poured into a snifter glass. I can't believe I'm giving PBR this much props, or respect, or whatever...snifter glass. Ha.

OK, onto the beer.

A - Clear straw color with about a finger width of head. It settles fairly quickly and lives some spot lacing at first, but not much after a few minutes.

S - Corn, grains, maybe some light fruits you would get out of a chardonnay.

T - Corn and grains dominate the flavors. There's a bit of an off aftertaste, maybe from the alcohol, but doesn't have much of an alcohol bite to it. Overall, it's pretty bland flavorless.

M - Slick and medium to light body with light carbonation. Fairly nicely done, actually.

D - Great for cooking, but not for me...though I think it's just a bit better than bud miller coors.

Photo of Canibacea
3.93/5  rDev +34.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Good ole PBR

a good staple. Good for sharing, and never leaves you feeling cheaped out.

Taste is balanced, and slightly on thebitter side for some macros. although corn might be present, there is a malt presence as well, and the hops leave a good solid bittering, as well as a slight grassy skunkyness that works for the beer, strong hints of (Banana)

Drinkability is out of this world. I could sip or chug 12 in a night easy, as long as I eat a good meal and stay hydrated. Good for having drinking competitions which you beer snobs out there might not be familiar with.

I could go on but I'm sure most of you have had PBR before.


Photo of kwjd
2.7/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale yellow with some head, but no lacing. Smells mildly of hops (though I was straining to smell them) with some grainy malt. Nothing really stands out from the flavour, but cleaner than many other macro lagers. Carbonation is a bit prickly.

Photo of IPAescotch
3.44/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Smells of corn, typical adjucnt lager

Tastes pretty much typical as well, watery and corny.

The mouthfeel is surprisingly appealing, like a really shitty stout, but honestly kicks the shit out of a guinness. Almost milky, very filling for an adjucnt

And of course it's drinkable, still light beer.

Photo of flagmantho
2.88/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 16oz pounder into a Pilsner glass. I've had plenty of PBR in my day, I'm glad I've finally gotten 'round to reviewing it.

Appearance: very light, pale golden hue with lots of effervescence and three fingers of fluffy white head. Not great, but middle of the road for the style.

Smell: your basic wet grain aroma. It is pretty light though, which isn't such a bad thing, and it is not terribly offensive as beers like this tend to be.

Taste: extremely light flavor, but again, not much to be offended by. There's slightly more malt than grain flavor, and there does appear to be a little bit of an earthy hop bitterness toward the end. It's light, but I feel like it's there. You could do a hell of a lot worse.

Mouthfeel: very light, watery body with not much to recommend it. Carbonation seems low and there's nothing interesting going on in the sensation area. Easily the worst part about this beer.

Drinkability: not half bad for an adjunct lager without a lot of flavor. I'm actually finding this beer rather refreshing; I'm sure I'll have still more tailgating tomorrow.

I know it's not advocacy to consider "cold" a good flavor in a beer, but it seems to go well with the one and only PBR.

Photo of Sudsy89
3.2/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

16oz. can, chilled. Has nice old-school lettering and patriotic colors.

Pours a pale yellow, has a three-finger white head that quickly dissipates. Seems to have a medium level of carbonation. Mouthfeel is thin, typical of a lager. Smells a bit grassy, maybe a bit of corn. Taste is average, but better than most American macro lagers, wasn't too much of an "adjunct" flavor or skunky aroma to it.
Not much bitterness to it, but a slight sweetness, has nothing offensive to my palate.
I'd say PBR is just as drinkable as other macro lagers, it's light and would be refreshing by itself or with some pub grub. That being said,
I would rate this as a better alternative to BMC, but it's not a beer I'd choose first.

Photo of benclimbs
3.45/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from a can - the classic american good cheap lager.

pours yellow and fizzy and pretty unimpressive into a pint glass.

smell is a little nutty, grainy with a light essence of fruit - of course its pretty subtle.

taste is grainy, kind of corn-like lager character, but has this very pleasant nice sweetness to it, a round good taste with no nasty finish - just a very clean, easy drinking beer.

its drinkability is very high - could drink a lot of this beer, and have whilst out in the sun, it isn't complex but totally lacks the bad character of pretty much all other american adjunct lagers.

my favorite cheap american mainstream beer without a doubt.

Photo of Lukafer
3.96/5  rDev +35.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

100th Review! I know most people save a special or rare beer to review for their milestone reviews, such as 100th, 200th, etc... Well that's exactly what I did. This beer isn't rare but it's definitely special, at least to me. This site is not just CRAFT Beeradvocate, it is Beeradvocate, and by advocating beer I cannot forgot about all the good times, bad times, times in general that me and PBR have shared. Sorry, getting too mushy, on to the review!

Appearance is a 12 oz. bottle that is dated Dec0610 and has an awesome blue ribbon on the label, poured straight into my mouth. Smells like a little grain, but mostly a touch of alcohol, I've never really concentrated on smelling this beer before, it doesn't have much of one. Taste is grainy at first, hints of green apple with a slight bittering hop finish. Mouthfeel is very crisp, a lot of carbonation and drinkability is out of this world, at least for me, I've drank 12 in a sitting before (when I was younger) and still wanted more. A true American classic.

Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
68 out of 100 based on 4,804 ratings.