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XXXX Bitter - Castlemaine Perkins

Not Rated.
XXXX BitterXXXX Bitter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

63 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 63
Reviews: 27
rAvg: 2.48
pDev: 29.44%
Wants: 2
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Castlemaine Perkins visit their website

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brewdlyhooked13 on 04-08-2002

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (4) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 63 | Reviews: 27
Reviews by SargeC:
Photo of SargeC
3.73/5  rDev +50.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep gold color. Low carbonation. Frothy white head.

Smell: Hint of hops with solid malt backing.

Taste: Good malt profile, slightly biscuit with a satisfying bitterness. Floral hop finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body. Lingers in the mouth, slightly waxy.

Drinkablity: Tasty brew that is great for a session. Always makes me remember my days in Queensland.

More User Reviews:
Photo of atigerlife
1.63/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Had at the recommendation of a waiter in Brisbane. He should be fed to a crocodile.

Pours golden with a slim white head. Retention is fine. Decent amount of carbonation rising.

Aroma is unassuming.

Taste is of adjuncts. Quite offensive.

Mouthfeel is a bubbly mess. Light bodied.

Overall, don't bother with this one. It is popular, so I'm assuming that is why it was recommended...but not all things that are popular are good.

Photo of btmo
2.83/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This is one of Australia's better macros, but as is common with the style, it just isn't anything special.

It is a little hard to find outside of its home in Queensland, but it is worth looking for if you are a fan of the style.

I find it overly sweet (a consequence of Qld being the home of sugar production in Australia?), but when served cold, it is worth a try.

And just for fun, and old (Australian) joke.

"Why do Queenslanders call their favourite beer XXXX?"

"Queenslanders can't spell 'BEER'"



Photo of rastaman
1.5/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Well, this is pretty screwed up. Taste like they chucked in as much adjuncts as possible, they might have an awesome climate up there in queensland, but this beer is one good reason not to move there.

Photo of rhoadsrage
2.5/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

(Served in a tall water glass)
A- This beer has a crystal clear body of dark yellow with a big bubble supporting no head. There is a thin wispy film during the pour.
S- There is a light dry honey hint with a stronger green sulfury finish.
T- The big sulfury bite has a finish of hop bitterness with no real flavor and a slight cinnamon bite/heat without the flavor. That grows as the beer warms.
M- There is a light mouthfeel with a big cleaning fizz.
D- This beer has a sharp sulfury flavor that hides any other flavors that might be underneath.

Photo of jahsausage
3.15/5  rDev +27%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Colour is extremely pale, leads me to suspect that in great australasian fashion that the "BITTER" on the can doesn't
mean anything regarding style of the contents. Taste wise there is an initial almost creamy non-event followed by a bitter bite as it approaches the back of the mouth. For what it is - an aussie provincial beer in the same league as VB - is quite good, suppassing VB in my opinion by virtue of its stronger bitterness and lack of VB's ever so slightly dodgy taste. Judged as a beer in its own right it doesn't rate so great.

Photo of Rickus
2.6/5  rDev +4.8%

Photo of amberBob
4.5/5  rDev +81.5%

Photo of Tonyole
3.25/5  rDev +31%

Photo of amicar
3.23/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Golden- white head that quickly goes away. Very subtle spice hop smell. A little low end bitterness, very mild; would've thought it might be a touch more bitter with the name, and all. However, very smooth and thrist quenching. Clearly made not to challenge anyone, but be easy to drink.

Photo of BrazilianAussie
2/5  rDev -19.4%

Photo of Kulrak
2.02/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

Pours a deep gold color with a lot of tight white head, looks pretty decent. Deja vu, I just reviewed XXXX Gold, and the smell is exactly the same, like chemicals. The taste is bad as well, chemicals, some sweetness and an odd horrible bitterness that makes you want to pour it out. The mouthfeel isn't too bad, nice and creamy, but the taste ruins it. All in all, another horrible beer that isn't very drinkable. I'm glad I only bought the one.

Photo of UniversitateaDeBere
2.66/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Photo of tonton
3.25/5  rDev +31%

Photo of joecast
1.88/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

bitter by name, not by nature.
fizzy yellow beer appearance with thin lace head. second pour forms 1cm fine bubbly head.
sweet almost candy like aroma.
very sweet also in taste. leaning towards cloying but just shy. cutting bitterness makes an attempt to break through, but the sweetness of it is just too overwhelming. not that there is much bitterness there in the first place.
hmmm, the candy bar of the beer world? maybe
perhaps aimed at younger drinkers? probably
a good beer? most definitely not.

Photo of patre_tim
3.25/5  rDev +31%

Photo of Globetrotter
2.55/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I found this on the shelf in Moscow's largest discount grocery store chain - a place not known for a large variety of unusual or hard to get brews. Comes in a 33cl brown bottle with a yellow and red label identifying the stuff as "Export Lager." Four big red X's on the front, with a sketch of some factory buildings just above. Back label makes it clear that, while the hops are "Australian," the brew itself is from no further down under than Italy. Ingredients on the Russian import label conform to the purity law. Best before 2/11/06, I opened it on 9/3/05.

Unimpressive. Pours clear gold under a short-lived one finger fizzy white head. No lace, collar or film. There is practically no nose at all - at least not that I can discern. The mouth is quite prickly and slightly sticky. The taste is raw. The carbonation overwhelms what malt there might be, leaving rusty metal to dominate the taste buds. A touch of sweet grain emerges late in the finish, which is otherwise quite non-descript. So, in fact, is everything else about this brew. Doesn't do it for me.

Photo of aeolianshredhead
1.53/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

This is probably Queensland's most popular beer. It's been a good while since I've had it, so lets see where this one stacks up.

A- Very artificial appearance. Head is exceptionally bubbly and dies its inevitable death all too quickly. Just a piss-esque yellow.

S- Adjuncty to the max- that is to say, to the least. Corn. Nothing else at all. No malt presence, no real hops. Disappointing to say the least. To say the most, terrible.

T- One thing comes through- pride of ringwood hops. Anyone with taste buds would almost wretch at the thought. It's maybe not as bad as Carlton Cold, but still, that is no compliment. Far too bland to be pleasant.

M- Extremely watery mouthfeel and almost nothing in the way of body. Aggressive carbonation but little else. This is empty and dull.

O- Just as I remember, XXXX "Bitter" is pretty much devoid of any real beer characteristics. It is exceptionally forgettable and extremely flavourless. People need to remember that something being popular does not make it good.

Photo of istarilord
2.2/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured out a light golden color with foamy head that dissipated quickly.

Though there was a skunky smell when bottle was first opened, I did not notice it after pouring and there was only a hint of it on the palate.

The beer is fairly lacking in flavor... it's not particularly bitter and has a light citrusy taste with a bitter/sour aftertaste that turns sweet. I guess the bottle says "tough on thirst," so I should expect a light flavor.

Not too carbonated, but particularly smooth either. Goes down easily enough, but far from my first choice.

Photo of daliandragon
2.6/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Despite a fairly deep study of beer drinking, I haven't had too many Australian beers, which makes me curious when I see the bottle in the local Superstore here in Incheon, South Korea (whose foreign beer section I basically consume singlehandedly). 2300 won, not horrible but the same price as a Hoegaarden. Game on.
Castlemaine XXXX Export pours an alarmingly pale yellow, reminiscent of apple juice. Another surprise when the nose is revealed to be sweet, almost sugary. Not quite skunked, but still a strange smell to be smelling from your beer.
I tasted some hoppy bitterness in the flavor but something was missing to make this a good beer. The mouthfeel is likewise even but not real substantial, and a bit over carbonated.
This is a serviceable beer but absolutely no more.

Photo of M_C_Hampton
3.5/5  rDev +41.1%

Photo of Stavage
2.51/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

There seems to be a lot of hate towards XXXX from outsiders (non Queenslanders) and I'm not including people who cant stand macro lagers in general.

Has a nice clear golden colour in the glass. Poured with quite a large frothy head which all but vanished to a thin surface covering by the time I was ready to take my first sip.

Aroma wise nothing too strong. All that can be said is it smells like a brewery but weaker. There is another scent too that I can't quite describe, probably what most here have described as a metallic smell. It's something bound to be (is?) unpleasant to most but it's also a smell I was brought up with so I find it almost reassuring.

Now one must remember that a XXXX is a beer to be consumed ice cold like most Australian macros. As such there are no discernible subtle flavours when the beer is drunk properly. It's carbonated enough that it almost acts as a flavour overpowering most of the drink. There is a slightly hoppy taste if you concentrate hard enough but otherwise a fairly rough flavour followed by a sharp bitterness that soon fades. The bitterness has a dull metallic quality which I suppose I'm used to but seems to be highly off putting to people who have not acquired the taste (and I'll be honest in admitting its hardly a product worth getting acquired to).

Mouthfeel is highly carbonated. Wouldn't say its light bodied but it's certainly not heavy bodied. Quenches a thirst well if if you can stand to have the stuff in your mouth.

Overall this is the macro I grew up with, and it's my cheap macro of choice. Saying that I generally never have any desire to drink a cheap macro. I'm slightly disappointed in that my memory is of this beer having a far stronger bitterness and the taste in general was a lot weaker than I recall.

I still drink this when I'm drinking with the boys at the pub and I've shattered my tastebuds to the point where they couldn't honestly appreciate a better beer. And I still occasionally enjoy slamming a bottle down as refreshment on a hot day. I don't think it deserves a lot of the bad press it gets but on the same token its nothing more than a lawnmower beer.

Photo of Rickstar
3/5  rDev +21%

Photo of rjimlad
1.66/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Like most civilized people, I shun XXXX, but in the interest of science and no other alternative drink at work on a Friday afternoon, I decided to do a little review.
It pours a pale amber with a sparkly head like a soft drink that disappeared instantly leaving no lacing. Aroma is faint but smells beer-like. There are no discernible characters here except a faint boozy whiff of something associated with beer.
Flavour is less offensive than I normally expect. There's not much to complain about except the lack of flavour. It's weak and grassy with none of the underpinnings of beer character. If you have it icy cold in the manner of Oz, then it is a refreshing throw-down thirst quencher. Treat it like an alcoholic soft-drink (soda) with grass flavouring and you have XXXX. Let it warm up at your peril. DO not leave it linger in your mouth but get it down as fast as you can.

Photo of aracauna
1.78/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

I've heard that recently the beer has lost its bitterness. These were stated as complaints, but I think it may do the beer good. A bitter beer has got to have balance with a full flavor and this beer didn't balance at all. The flavor was thin and bitter and the rest of the beer was typical.

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XXXX Bitter from Castlemaine Perkins
63 out of 100 based on 63 ratings.