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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) - Pabst Brewing Company

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,367 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,367
Reviews: 1,508
rAvg: 2.94
pDev: 24.83%
Wants: 30
Gots: 356 | FT: 1
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,367 | Reviews: 1,508 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of erikm25
3.65/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a golden straw color. Sits clear and faint pale yellow. Unremarkable head and minimal lacing.

S: Malt and grain aromas. Very slight hops. Compared to any other macros there is something noticeable in the aroma that sets it apart.

T: Grassy with with some cereal malts. Goes down easy and has even a minor hoppy quality with some minimal bready undertones. Nothing amazing with PBR but when compared to other macro lagers it is far superior in my opinion.

M: Light to moderate body with rather high carbonation.

D: When push comes to shove and I am short on a dime I will drink PBR first, foremost, and only. Like many others, good times over the years have been had with PBR. I plan to have a lot of great beers at my wedding and an ice chest of PBR will be there as well. It is a steal for the price and there is no reason to even consider drinking any of the other macros.

erikm25, Oct 13, 2008
Photo of electricfields
3.08/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Okay, I can't be terribly serious with a review of Pabst Blue Ribbon. I can just be honest (hence the inclusion of this disclaimer). It holds a lot of memories and sentimental value for me and for everyone else who's been involved in any music scene for about the past 10 years. So... uh... up the punx, I guess! My point is, you really can't deny the cultural impact of PBR on certain social groups, including many of the ones to which some might say I belong.

So on to the review!

A: Well, you know. Yellow with a fizzy white head. It's 50 cents a can here. Do you really expect anything else?

S: Smells corny and malty. No noticeable hoppiness or anything to speak of. For this kind of beer, that's kind of to be expected. So it's average. So there.

T: Corn, sweet bready malts, and a hint of wet dog hair. Fun fact: the older a can of Pabst gets, the more like hair it tastes! Drink 'em quick! Before that, though, it's definitely pretty tasty, considering it's 50 cents a can.

M: Feels nice, actually. Not thick, at ALL, but carbonated enough to be pleasant. I like it.

D: This is the quintessential "punk rock" beer. Also the quintessential "hipster" beer. Also the quintessential "get drunk with your dad and shoot beer cans in the woods" beer. There's a reason for that: because it's really easy to drink a lot of it, and it doesn't cost much to get a lot of it to drink. It tastes good enough to just pound one after another without giving it much thought. That said, its superior drinkability is what makes it the venerable institution that it is.

electricfields, Oct 12, 2008
Photo of Blake
2.25/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This is an okay beer. Red White and Blue can = Patriotic. But I think budweiser takes the crown for that category.

Pretty boring taste although very smooth and easy going down. Not too many hops, most beer lovers I think would not love this beer but it is better than other more common lagers.

Blake, Oct 09, 2008
Photo of itcomesnpints
2.3/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Golden, clear and OK head. No real lace.

Not much smell overall, very light hops, little bit of malt.

Slight hoppiness and that's about it.

Mouthfeel is very light, but OK. Doesn't add anything, but doesn't take much away either.

A classic beer for drunken college parties and nostalgic reunions. Great for shotgunning and beer bonging. Not so good for sipping.

itcomesnpints, Oct 08, 2008
Photo of bound4er
3.33/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Golfing last week the beer lady pulls up to our foursome. I ask her what she has - all the typical stuff is listed - MGD, Miller Lite, Bud Light, Coors Light, etc. As almost an afterthought she mentions PBR. How strange to be actually delighted over buying a macrobrew. Any how, this is one of the few macros I can drink in large quantities. The beer actually has flavor - there is a decent maltiness to it and a crispness not found in the usual suspects. This was my fathers favorite beer growing up and now I know why. Now if I could just get their horrible marketing slogan from many years ago out of my head ... "PBR-me-ASAP"

bound4er, Oct 07, 2008
Photo of BeerCon5
3.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden color with about 1 1/2 inch of quickly receding white head.

The taste is mostly corn, maybe some grain.

Corn is most notable, watery and kind of skunky.

Very light bodied and thin, very fizzy carbonation.

Easy to drink. Not bad for a cheap macro. Very easy to drink a bunch of these

BeerCon5, Oct 07, 2008
Photo of KarlHungus
3/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer pours a clear golden color. The head is two inches in height, and recedes slowly into nice lacing. The aroma is of light biscuty malt with a hint of corn. The taste is like the aroma. It is mild, pleasant, nothing complex, but likable. The mouthfeel is light bodied with a lot of carbonation. Overall, this is a nice macro lager. I still think I prefer Grain Belt Premium over PBR, but I could still drink one.

KarlHungus, Oct 06, 2008
Photo of 7beerphil
3.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had a few drafts at the local watering hole:

A: Clear plae yellow, short-lived head, decent carbonation

S: Normal adjunct smells of macros

T: Not bad, way better than Bud on draft. Some aspects of malt.

M: Not too watery, rather smooth

D: Great session beer for the draft. I would definately drink this again, especially at $1.25 a draft all day every day.

7beerphil, Oct 05, 2008
Photo of tbeck
3/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked this at the local Albertson's.

This beer was an average american macro lager. The taste beats a Bud because it is not overly sweet. It does have a slight metallic taste to it that really shows up in the aftertaste. I would not have a problem drinking these when I am performing outdoor activites.

tbeck, Oct 05, 2008
Photo of ocelot2500
3.05/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear gold color with a big head that dies down quickly.

Smells of grain and metal.

The taste is mostly of grain followed by a tiny hoppiness and maltiness. Throughout there is a metallic tinge to it.

Mouthfeel is really fizzy. A little too carbonated for my taste.

Would easily drink enough of these to get drunk off of. I could revisit my college days and slam twelve of these before I was done.

Overall, this is just a beer for the masses to get drunk off of. I easily prefer this to any other macro and I don't know why I didn't see more of this in college.

ocelot2500, Sep 29, 2008
Photo of brewmudgeon
3.6/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

head is the fluffiest and merangueiest of any macro lager i've seen, although there are of course some bubbles in there the size of your fist. persistent cap, some lace. the usual pale golden color, similar to old mil, darker than bud.
smell is of dank barley malt (almost like barley soup), some alc, maybe some rice? not detecting corn at the moment. suggestion of grassy/possibly spicy hop in very small amounts.
taste, well what it isn't is as important as what it is, especially when you want a beer you can buy cheap by the case and use in just about any situation without getting sick of it. it's not corny (e.g. old mil), not too sour (e.g. bud can be), not crazy carbonated (e.g. a lot of them). the finish is crisp and short, and the aftertaste and afterburp are neutral, barleylike, and oh so slightly bitter. pretty nice really.

brewmudgeon, Sep 24, 2008
Photo of Hoagie1973
2.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Touted by many as a "Best-of-the-Worst" type of beer. After trying it both in the bottle and the can I have to say it's a "Middle-of-the-Road-of-the-Worst" beer.

Pours a crystal clear pale yellow with a thin sudsy head that disappears in a flash, leaving no trace.

Smells like most cheap grainy macro lagers.

Flavor is very corn heavy. Weak watery malt and barely perceptible hops.

Mouthfeel is average for the style; heavy carbonation, light body.

It's not undrinkable, and can be fairly clean and refreshing when ice cold.

Hoagie1973, Sep 16, 2008
Photo of LumpyGuitar
3.9/5  rDev +32.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Heard mixed things about this, had to try it myself.

Pours a clear, golden yellow with about a finger of white bubbly head.

Smells of grain, water, light hop.

Taste is very crisp and clean, tiny bit of sweetness with a very mild hop and water finish.

Mouthfeel is superb. Very clean and fresh, the beer feels good in your mouth, especially so when chilled. Very light bodied and smooth.

Drinkability here is also very good. I've bought several 6'ers of this since, and I'll continue to use this as a go to for those situations where I just want a cold one without having to think about it. Don't write this off as your old mans swill, this is alot better than most will ever give it credit for.

LumpyGuitar, Sep 12, 2008
Photo of Greggy
3.8/5  rDev +29.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pils glass. Clear golden color with just the most minute sediment. The head is 1 finger in height, leaves some nice lacing, and has some good staying power.

S- Nice husky grains, a sweet malt component, and a slight hoppy note.

T- Starts with a very nice grainy sweetness then quickly recedes into a light finish that retains some residual sweetness.

M- Shockingly, I would like to see a touch more carbonation, but this is pretty good.

D- This is, in my opinion, one of the better macros. I will drink this again.

Greggy, Sep 10, 2008
Photo of PabstMan252
4/5  rDev +36.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an old favorite of the 70's. I continue to enjoy the aroma and look of the exceptional head piece with every pour. I know that everyone is probably laughing as they read this however this is one delicious summer brew. Once you open the beer quickly smell and enjoy the aroma as it reaches out to tease your taste buds. It is light in color with wonderful carbonation that rises from the depth of the glass as you enjoy each taste . There is no bitterness to this brew and it offers no aftertaste.
Look and enjoy before you take that first taste of the old favorite PBR!

PabstMan252, Sep 10, 2008
Photo of DmanGTR
2.42/5  rDev -17.7%
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.

DmanGTR, Sep 07, 2008
Photo of Stinkypuss
3.08/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A. 12 oz. can poured into a wine glass. Yeah, I have a sense of humor, and want to take a glimspe of this spectacle. The palest of pales with a bubbly,frothy head that recedes gradually to nothing.

S. Grains, cooked corn, hint of malt.

T. Crisp tea like hop bite flashes for an instant, complimented a semi-sweet light malt body. Fairly well balanced and unoffensive for a macro style lager.

M. Light bodied and fairly smooth. Best if served ICE cold and consumed fairly quickly.

D. This is average drinking here. But compared to most macros, this is exceptional. Selected America's Best in 1893. As far as macros are concerned, it probably still is.

Stinkypuss, Sep 05, 2008
Photo of 1759Girl
3/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Okay, okay, so I put off reviewing this because I just don't have enough hipster blood to think this is awesome... Just like I don't love The Hold Steady QUITE ENOUGH to suffer through a bottle of Budweiser and pretend it isn't horribly offensive... Only, wait a minute... after a thorough study of my drinking habits ("thorough" in the fact that I've remained coherent enough to remember what I drink on a regular basis)... I have come to a conclusion.. I drink PBR a lot more than I should, being a 'Guinness Girl' and a regular Stone and SN groupie... So what's the reasoning? For cheap american beer, its the best. Quoth my friend Tyler (and probably whatever movie he stole it from).."They don't just give Blue Ribbons to ANYONE"
Added bonus, for fair San Franciscans.... If you check out the historic pics of our city, you can see PBR signs hanging in the windows of pubs from WAYYY back. So, ya gotta love that.
appearance>Not much to look at. Lively, yellow, pours with a big head which quickly dissipates. lacy. Yep. That's an American lager.
Smells of> Cheap lager.
Taste> Decent. Tastes like The Buckshot, which makes me happy. It's watery, slightly metallic, but oh so much less offensive than others of its AmMacroLag stylings.
Mouf> EasyPeasy.
Drink> For what its worth it is an easy to drink beer. Highly recommended for game-beer when playing Beirut or FlipCup. Also highly recommended that you don't challenge my crew. And if you do, that you wager much tastier beer as the prize, because when we're not downing, we are BA snobs.:)

1759Girl, Sep 05, 2008
Photo of soupyman10
2.78/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I am of the crew that, for some random reasons, will take a PBR over a Bud, Miller, Coors (and yes, I know it's distributed by Miller, but still). It's unquestionable not good, but for some reason the annoying hipster in me will definitely drink it as a last resort (maybe it's the insanely cheap price tag). It pours a macro piss yellow color with a surprisingly nice head that actually floats on there for a good while. Nose is graininess and light skunkiness, with some sort of bland candy malt. Flavor is...subtle. Not a lot going on, besides that same malt and graininess. No aftertaste whatsoever. Body is fairly thin, but with upbeat carbonation. Overall, as I said, mediocre, but I'd drink 'em in a time of need.

soupyman10, Sep 04, 2008
Photo of jdmorgan
3.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Good ol' PBR. A faint straw color with a lacy white head.

The smell is of faint hops and a faint malt aroma. The taste is light with a carbonated malt body and a faint hop flavor and bitterness. Consistency is thin/medium and carboantion is medium.

A cheap beer, but not bad compared to other macros out there. Used to drink alot of these back in "the day". Great when they're cold on a hot day or at a family reunion.

jdmorgan, Aug 30, 2008
Photo of RedChrome
3.13/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A clear, light neon yellow colored beer, Inch high head was bright white and frothy. Only an occasional bubble or two can be seen rising slowly. Minimal lace in spots.

A stronger than style average grain presence for the style. Plastic aromas are rather pronounced. Very fleeting notes of hop leaf scents fade in and out.

A sweet flavor tasted just like a spoonful of corn flakes. A hint of barley malt, and a fleeting bitterness of hops. Imbalanced, however the flavors do have strength.

Slightly watery texture to the beer. Flavors cling a bit, but almost no carbonation effect on the tongue.

A slightly above average macro lager. Like most of it's brethren it should just be used to wash food down. A go to beer in the style. First baby step towards better beer.

RedChrome, Aug 27, 2008
Photo of srrn
3.15/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

I thought I reviewed this a long time ago, been testing it along side of other macros. I consider this the best American Macro Lager, they all can be similar and my favorites all are crisp, light and have no off tastes. This has the right carbonation, the head can actually stick around. Mouthfeel is too thin as the style always is but it does have a bit of bitterness and malt. Adjunct, shile there, is not overpowering.

srrn, Aug 27, 2008
Photo of changeup45
1.68/5  rDev -42.9%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Very light-bodied and pale. It has a very grainy aroma and taste. Really not much flavor but that was expected. Doesn't go down all that smooth either making it really a beer I'll probably stay away from. It is cheap enough so if you're strapped for cash and want a cheap drunk, be my guest.

changeup45, Aug 23, 2008
Photo of Kemmerlin
2.55/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Light golden color with a medium to light bodied head and no lacing.

S: Light citrus notes mostly like lemon peel. Light yeast and floral hop notes in the background but for the most part its smell is light.

T: Tastes almost like a poorly made vienna lager with floral hop notes and light citrus notes.

M/D: It feels harsh on the tongue and throughout the mouth. The feel hurts the drinkability and isn't the best refreshment.

Kemmerlin, Aug 23, 2008
Photo of josiahschlender
3.18/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Gotta love the 16 oz cans. I keep them around for beer-can chicken... brine the whole bird overnight, grill it on a can for an unbelievable chicken.

Poured about 2/3 of the can into a pint glass, leaving the rest to steam the chicken. Nice tall white cap that fades quickly, leaving a film and ring and --surprise-- moderate lacing. Color is light yellow-golden.

Aromas are clean, corny and sweet. Not too complex or strong, but they're definitely there, and not off-putting to me.

Flavors are not bad, as long as it's cold. Sweet grains, kinda like white bread and corn flakes. Just the tiniest bit of hops bittering at the end. Clean finish with just a bit of residual bitterness at the end. Begs another swig, it goes down easy with the crisp, light feel.

Definitely my macro of choice. Not incredible, but a refreshing summer lager. Can't beat the price, too. When you factor price into drinkability, the score goes up for me. Now I better go check on that chicken...

josiahschlender, Aug 22, 2008
Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
68 out of 100 based on 4,367 ratings.