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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.

3,708 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3708
Reviews: 1468
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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Ratings: 3,708 | Reviews: 1,468 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of IXCII


3.98/5  rDev +34.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pabst is my stand-by cheap beer. It's truly the water of beers. Light, crisp, and refreshing and doesn't carry any of the "piss" aroma of the competition.

It's better than Natty, it's better than Stella, it's better than Bud Light, it's even better than Bud Light Lime!

A tall can of PBR is the true champagne of beers!

Serving type: on-tap

02-23-2013 07:50:24 | More by IXCII
Photo of pgroove

New York

4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

No matter how hard you try, you just can't hate on PBR. It is what it is: the cheapest of cheap, the pissiest of piss, the rawest of the raw.

Like most others on the site, I consider myself to be a beer snob, but I give my respects to PBRs. Where it can be found, it is dirt cheap and consistently smooth. Unlike other pisswater ales, you won't wake up with a raging headache and a case of the cho.

Don't hate the playa, hate the game. Pabst ain't no joke and it ain't no lie neither. Better recognize.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2005 02:37:19 | More by pgroove
Photo of naterock


4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've read some of the reviews and couldn't agree more with most of them. I started out drinking PBR because it was the only beer I could afford while paying an older person to buy it for me (what don't look at me like that, we all did it). I went back to PBR a few weeks ago after a four year long sabatical. I have to say, it's the most drinkable macro(cheap beer) that I've ever drank. and yes, it's better drank through a beer-bong. "tastes so good, when it touches your lips it's so good."-Frank

Serving type: can

04-09-2008 01:25:46 | More by naterock
Photo of Bockrules

New Mexico

4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served From a bottle into a pilsner glass.

A- Pours a small, third inch head that dissipates quickly. Very light and transparent gold. Leaves a bit of lacing down the glass.

S - Smell of grain and hops hits the nose. Certainly, not as impressive as a good micro, but much better than a lot of the macros out there. Seems quite inviting.

T- Pretty solid. Has a good balance of grain and hops in the body and finishes pretty dry. Leaves a little bit of oily residue on the back of the tongue.

M - Very well carbonated, but also surprisingly full unlike many other macros.

D - This is my favorite macro and is a very versatile beer. You can serve it very cold to quench your thirst when working in the yard or on cars. OR it can be served slightly warmer and more hop and grain tastes comes through. This is a great beer when you just feel like having something simple and tasty.

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2008 05:11:40 | More by Bockrules
Photo of mrsoul12


4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's not going to win any RB awards anytime soon but, dollar-for-dollar, it stacks up pretty favorably to its immediate competition (aka American macros and other pale lagers). Aroma is weak, but slightly sweet and grainy. Flavor is very smooth and dominated with sweet malt flavor. Nothing too strong or complex but is far superior to the Bud, Coors, etc. products out there. If you can't afford the good stuff, you could certainly do worse than PBR.

Serving type: can

07-30-2008 11:43:42 | More by mrsoul12
Photo of PabstMan252


4/5  rDev +35.6%
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!

Serving type: can

09-09-2008 23:35:58 | More by PabstMan252
Photo of dude


4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

As a 36 year old mom jean wearing non-hipster I cannot explain my fondness for this brew. Is it the centuries old award for which this beer is named? Is it the "its not Bud" factor? Is it the dirt cheap price? All possible. On tap is my preferred method of consuming mass quantities of this classic. Its slightly sweeter tasting this way and has no unpleasant vegetal flavor that is common to the canned version. After 1-2 $2 pints of this bad boy the drinkability is off the charts!

Serving type: on-tap

11-21-2009 19:30:40 | More by dude
Photo of mrpoizun

South Dakota

4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've been drinking PBR since I've been drinking beer. I've drank it from tin cans, aluminum cans, glass longneck bottles, and kegs. The only one I can't recommend is the tin cans, and they don't make those anymore anyway.

Where I grew up in the midwest, PBR was available everywhere. Every place that sold beer had six and twelve-packs of PBR cans, and every bar had it in kegs and/or bottles and/or cans. I drank many a pitcher of Pabst with friends over the years, and one of its best qualities is that it has always tasted the same. A nice strong, grainy American lager flavor. That flavor has virutally disappeared from American beers; replaced by the watered-down taste of the various versions of Budweiser, along with every light beer. Schlitz (owned by PBR) has recently come out with what is supposed to be its 60's formula at a much higher price, but you can still get the old formula Pabst for the regular price. It has never changed, and it's probably the best remaining example of a premium American beer.

I prefer bottled beer myself, and seldom bother with a glass. When you open a bottle of Pabst you are rewarded with a grainy, alcoholic aroma, not in any way overpowering, though. The taste that follows is clean and sharp, again with a grainy flavor that always occurs in a good American-style lager.
I judge this beer as an American lager. I prefer Bocks myself, but you can't really compare Bocks to lagers or to wheat beers, and so on. And as an American lager, Pabst Blue Ribbon is as good as any.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2009 17:44:41 | More by mrpoizun
Photo of sonofabeach


4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is good cheap beer if you like hoppy bitterness flavor. This is like a very watered down Sierra Nevada Pale Ale to me.

The people that hate PBR, also hate bitter hop flavors. They are used to a mostly malt flavor like most beers in this class have.

I think it's great stuff for the price.

This beer is usually great. I did another review when it was good.

"I have since purchsed 2 cases of PBR with freshness dates of June. They both taste like hell. The color is orange instead of yellow.

I hope they fix this. If this is what PBR has become, our love affair is over."

Serving type: can

03-28-2010 22:46:48 | More by sonofabeach
Photo of Lukafer


4/5  rDev +35.6%
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.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2010 05:57:22 | More by Lukafer
Photo of JeffBob


4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A I have no idea never seen it out side the can

S like cheap a** beer

T reminds me of the river on a hot summers day 110 F in
Socal at the river when I was just ** years old before I
knew what real beer tasted like but still when at the
river it has to be Pabst. I think every American will
stand with me behind this and most likely has the same
memories of this legendary crappy cheap beer!

M this is a a drink all day all night for days straight
beer ( at the river)

D please see mouth feel for description

side note: I know a guy who inherited a stand up bass for
a rockabilly band had a hole in the side of it and glues a
cut Pabst blue ribbon can to fill the hole kick ARSE MAN!
However I wont not even think about drinking this beer if
it was not a comfort food form memories long ago.

Serving type: can

Serving type: can

12-10-2010 20:34:47 | More by JeffBob
Photo of JoLight


4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light golden in appearance, with s stark white and soapy head that doesn't retain.

The aroma is sweet. There's some generalized grains, a little barley malt, but mostly just grains, and some grassy/floral/earthy type of hops. There is a sweetness, like a corn syrup type deal.

As for the taste, you get the hop bite, then comes the carbonation bite, then some general grain flavors, and then it ends very smooth, with a nice white breadiness from the barley malt. The aftertaste is almost non-existent. A little watery.

The mouthfeel is carbonated, thin and watery; it finishes dry, crisp, refreshing, and not filling.

Serving type: can

06-04-2011 00:34:27 | More by JoLight
Photo of neliam24

New York

4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is hands down the most underrated and unappreciated beer in American history. In most places you can purchase a 30 pack of Pabst Blue Ribbon for about the same price as a 30 pack of keystone light. And not only does it taste better than cheap college party beers, it tastes much better than many of its fellow American Lagers. I personally think that this beer blows Budweiser out of the water, and at about half the price, I'm not sure how you could argue that.

Serving type: can

06-14-2011 19:30:25 | More by neliam24
Photo of Cavanaghty


4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I find of all the "American Shit Beers" this one is the best and most enjoyable. I poured from a can into a pint glass.

Appearance: Clear Yellow in color with a overwhelming and over flowing white head. Spotty lacing left on the glass.

Smell: Sweet smelling, and some smell of alcohol. But I could smell some grains like rice and wheat maybe?

Mouthfeel/Taste: Very smooth and light bodied. Taste sweet with hits of rice and other cereal grains. Hint of bitterness on the after taste and leaves a sweetness, but a sugary sweetness.

Overall: It is an enjoyable beer on a summer day while doing some yard work or something. I would certainly drink this over others like Bud, Miller or Coors.

Serving type: can

08-03-2012 16:25:55 | More by Cavanaghty
Photo of BeerWithMike


4/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampling right now on 2/17/14. Of course had this one in the past just a couple of times but never did a review on it.. Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured into a pilsner flute glass.

Pours a pale golden yellow in color with a 1-finger white head that settles down to just a small layer on top. A good amount f lacing is seen actually. Lots of tiny bubbles but good carbonation. The aroma is of sweet corn and grains. the taste is about the same with no bitter aftertaste. Actually this isn't bad and so much better than regular of Bud. A old beer that has been around a while also. Overall, I like it.

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2014 00:43:00 | More by BeerWithMike
Photo of HardcoreKeith


4.03/5  rDev +36.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 16 oz, tall boy can. As far as appearance, the can is a lovely design with a quip about being named America's beer of 1874 or something similar. I was unable to acquire much smell from the can. However, taste was excellent!!! for a macro lager, and I was really quite surprised. This went down wonderfully and was the best sixteen ounces of macro beer I've ever quaffed. There's no detectable hop (as per style), but a pleasant malt flavor and smooth finish. With these going for a measly two bucks at Underground Bluz, it's one I'll certainly repeat in the future.

Serving type: can

01-29-2008 02:44:32 | More by HardcoreKeith
Photo of rvonhagen


4.03/5  rDev +36.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Red blooded American beer available at most establishments for a great price. Does not disappoint if I am not in the mood for a draft Chimay at the Stumbling Monk in Seattle. I have a warm place in my heart for union brewed Milwaukee beer that is refreshing, tasty, and reasonably priced. It shouldn't be reviewed in comparison with the many incredible micro-brews that our country produces. It deserves to be compared with the macro-brews that most Americans still purchase. It is vastly better than most with Miller High Life being the only near equal. Considering the present state of our economy, it is one of the best beers for the money if you enjoy drinking frequently. For that reason alone, it deserves respect.

Serving type: on-tap

03-12-2011 11:11:17 | More by rvonhagen
Photo of ShakeDown1979


4.03/5  rDev +36.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I bought this beer because it was cheap. With that out of the way, IMO, PBR turned out to not only to be THE best cheap beer I have had but just as good as beers twice the price!

Awesome on a hot summer day. Goes well with a lot of foods as well because it is not overpowering in taste. Not terribly aromatic (can definitely smell the adjuncts) as long as it is not expired (the 30 pack cans are usually past the expiration dates - in Feb. I saw 30 packs at Walmart with best before dates from Nov. of the previous year), smells fine

No after taste at all. Well balanced. Only problem is that one is never enough.

Serving type: can

03-28-2012 15:39:30 | More by ShakeDown1979
Photo of BrownAleMale


4.03/5  rDev +36.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Mostly drank in a can.

Appearance- Golden yellow with white foamy head

Smell- Lots of grain, some wheat and a slight bitter hops smell

Taste- Grainy with a nice mellow hop balance

Mouthfeel- Very light with great carbonation that makes this the best tasting and drinkable Macro beer.

Overall- As stated about the grain flavor and and lightness mixed with perfect carbonation makes for a solid Macro beer.

Serving type: can

09-05-2012 17:38:13 | More by BrownAleMale
Photo of steeler

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev +37.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Once again the Sleeman version of the beer, i wish i could get the real McCoy tho, onto the review!

Apperance - Light yellow colour, not very appealing.

Smell - No off smells, hints of metallic, smells fresh. A hint, HINT of hops.

Taste - Very smooth, little hop prescence, carbonated. Crisp finish.

Mouthfeel - Velvety smooth, full.

Drinkability - Through the roof. Honestly this beer is very poundable. Very easy to suck 12 back. Nuff said.

Hands down, for a buck a beer in Ontario, this is the ultimate buck a beer, and my favorite discount macro. Whether it be out of a can or a bottle it simply is, the best cheap beer you can get! Give this one a try, don't listen to the fools.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2008 05:46:47 | More by steeler
Photo of MNJR


4.05/5  rDev +37.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

PBR has consistently tasted good over the years while others in the category (cheap beer) have often succumbed to plummeting quality standards. PBR has always been there and hopefully will always be there. It suffers a bit if it's not cold enough. But, nice and cold it delivers. PBR has a rich golden color. The flavor is full, grainy and lightly sweet. It smells like beer; as in regular beer with nothing special about the smell, but nothing bad. Carbonation and mouth feel are superb. One note: it is also almost always better on tap. In fact, it can be downright delicious on tap if you get lucky and it's fresh, and not sitting in the keg for a month at a bar that doesn't pour much of it.

To sum it up, sometimes you've been drinking boutique micro beers or more expensive beers and you just have to crack open a PBR to remind yourself what it's all about: an unpretentious, solid tasting beer that doesn't hurt your wallet, over-delivers on quality and leaves you 100% happy with your investment.

Long live PBR!

Serving type: can

10-08-2009 22:49:05 | More by MNJR
Photo of Avagadro

New Jersey

4.05/5  rDev +37.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A: Straw in color with moderate lacing and little in the way of head. These are all common amongst this style, but the PBR pulls it off a touch better.

S: Nose is well presented, suggesting corn flakes and cream of wheat.

T: Dry, yet, packed with a healthy dose of American Adjunct Lager goodness. The corn, which can quickly become cloying, is used in just the right proportion, giving a delicious cereal wholesomeness.

M: Light, clean, and well carbonated. Perfect for anything from soothing a dry throat, to washing down a plate of wings, and anything in between.

D: This is my stand-by when it comes to cheap beer. As much as I like RIS's and Barleywines, this beer is perfect when I want something light, but don't want to pay for the good (German) stuff.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2011 03:36:17 | More by Avagadro
Photo of botham


4.08/5  rDev +38.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz can poured into a pilsener glass. pours a pale straw color with two fingers of tight white head that remain for a couple minutes. nothing special here, just a standard macro lager.

aroma is lightly malty, with a semi sweet quality. a light floral character is present as well, along with a distant hint of citrus.

taste is lightly malty, with pale malts showing. a soft floral base gives the brew balance, while working with the semi sweet character from the malts to produce a solid macro lager. this one has character and smoothness, along with a crisp and clean finish.

mouthfeel is light bodied, with a thin mouthfeel and soft CO2 on the palate. finishes crisp and clean, with little aftertaste.

drinkability is good. this is a solid macro, with clean flavors, and character despite its thinness. one of the better macro lagers out there. cheers!

Serving type: can

05-15-2008 02:16:46 | More by botham
Photo of RTL44


4.08/5  rDev +38.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The last time I drank PBR, I was in high school and i puked.

Since that time, I regarded PBR as one of the worst beers ever made. Pabst, Blatz, Top Hat, Iron City, Cook's, Shaeffer, etc.

More recently, a friend of mine came over withe his "beloved" PBR and left a couple in the fridge.

Despite being offered, I refused (many times).

Over the course of the next several days, I ran out of beer, and had no choice but to drink the PBR left over in my fridge.

I was SHOCKED by its decent flavor, mouthfeel, and drinkability.

As much as I consider myself a beer connoisseur, this really threw me for a loop.

I don't understand it, but PBR is now one of my favorite beers. The fact that it is about $6/$7 for a 12 pack makes it even more remarkable.

FWIW, I did buy a 6-pack in bottles and it was not nearly as good as it was in the cans. My whole world is now completely upside-down.

UPDATE: I do still love PBR, but I found something out about it that makes it even better! As the economy has tanked and beer prices have skyrocketed, I experimented with mixing some of my favorite beers with cheaper beers to make it go further. I know that sounds pathetic, but hear me out. PBR is the PERFECT mixer. I have tried almost every cheap beer to use as a mixer and they ALL detract from the flavor - EXCEPT for PBR. I even hesitate to mention this because this information is worth a lot of money in my opinion. I am serious. As I write this, I am having a Sierra Nevada Flipside Rde IPA mixed 1:1 with a PBR and it is delicious! I do this with Dogfish Head, Great Lakes, Sierra Nevada, and many other IPA's, Pale Ale's, etc. It is an AWESOME discovery!

Serving type: can

07-14-2008 06:05:20 | More by RTL44
Photo of Macdoyal


4.08/5  rDev +38.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5


Appearance: Maybe it's the bottle or maybe i'm just thirstier then usual but this looks a little better then last time. Then again I have been practicing my pour so that might of helped with the nice head.

Smell: I think it's just lacking any tin smell from last time. It smells lightly hoppy and very nice.

Taste: Again I think i prefer this bottle. Stays colder hence more refreshing longer. I sense the right about of hops with a nice impression of sweetness. It's very good.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is excellent and refreshing. It doesn't stick in your mouth and ends clean. I like it.

Drinkability: I can drink this refreshing beer any time. It's great with BBQ and grilled food. It's carbonation it great for celebrating events because it's a champagne of beer ... oh wait i think thats taken.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2009 04:12:13 | More by Macdoyal
Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
69 out of 100 based on 3,708 ratings.