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Foster's Premium Ale | Foster's Group Limited

198 Reviews
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Foster's Premium AleFoster's Premium Ale

Brewed by:
Foster's Group Limited
Australia | website

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by hustlesworth on 06-08-2008

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Reviews: 198 | Ratings: 450
Photo of joecaputi
3.06/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 1 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Coke and Pepsi color their stuff. Why do it to a decent above average ale? It's better than the ales that out there now that don't scream "we're an IPA! We're an IPA!" Ales are supposed to be beers without gimmicks. They are the dirty-water-hot-dogs of the brew world. Gennie, Ballantine's etc. This is as close as your going to get to one of those and I think that's pretty much all F's was looking to do. The marketing dept. should have stayed out of the brewery. Caramel coloring. I can't get it out of my mind. I am so sorry. I just looked for the addition of Caramel coloring wording on the can and I didn't find it. I wish to withdraw my reservation about that "look" rating I gave.

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Photo of James954
1.06/5  rDev -63.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Oil can...Horrid.
I didn't think it could be worse than the blue can, I was deadly wrong. I was eating chinese food and about 3-4 drinks into this baby and I get blood, sulphur, and a sharp and very unpleasant bitter note. Afterwards, I had a violent upchuck reflex triggered by it. Luckily, I had some Tecate to wash the taste out of my mouth.

I've had Natty Ice, OE 800, I've tasted the treachery of Natty Light and even tasted the Foster's Blue can, but THIS IS THE WORST BEER I HAVE EVER HAD!

I think I need to see a Priest to have the evil spirits excised from my soul after drinking this.

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Photo of Tuzashot
3.81/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The reviews on this beer are so mixed that it's really confusing. For anyone who rated this beer below a 3, here's my challenge . . try to find a smoother and better tasting pale ale for under $1 for a 12oz beer. I've been a home brewer for 20 years, and yes, I can brew a much better pale ale, but when I can walk into my neighborhood grocery store and buy these 25oz oil cans for 1.99 plus tax (in Missouri), I just gave up on trying to brew my own for at that price point and all the time and effort it takes to put out something as simple and thirst quenching as this. The only thing that turns me off with this brew is the artificial caramel color added. Foster's should be ashamed of themselves for adding junk like that that really doesn't contribute at all to the end taste.

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Photo of GerryPendry
3.48/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bought the Quaker State-ish oil can at Walmart. Look: Clear amber, decent head that dissipates pretty quickly but leaves a little ring. Smell: sugar, esters, (peaches maybe...?) a little malt. Taste: Light, bready, maybe a tiny bit of corn, malt, hoppy bitterness that finishes for hours, it seems. There's a trace of an odd medicinal/chemical flavor that I can't quite put my finger on. Feel: Thin to medium body, not overly carbonated (one of my common gripes about ESBs). Seriously...this hop finish is never-ending. I think it's fused to my tongue. Overall though, not half bad! I haven't had this one in over a decade, and I didn't mind it at all. Interesting aroma, if you take some time to smell for it. Very drinkable, a decent warm weather beer.

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Photo of eb003
3.14/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I see a lot of variance in the reviews. I tend to rate beers on what I call "drinkability".

This is not the best beer I've ever had, but that's not to say it's bad. I would not drink it all night long...but it goes pretty nice with a burger. The look is that of an ale...maybe a little lighter. It does say there is some caramel color added.

The smell is not very aromatic. I typically find ales to have a sweet or fruity smell, but this one smells like canned beer.

The taste is pretty decent. I'm enjoying it with a burger and a movie on Netflix.

The mouthfeel is very crips. It's not very smooth, but it's not the worst I've ever had.

Overall, it's an OK beer. It's not my favorite, but I've had plenty worse. If you catch it on sale, like I did...it's worth a buy.

If you want a high quality beer experience, you won't get it from this one. It's about average.

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Photo of AfricanPete14
2.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Had this from the classic big can.It pours a copper color with a somewhat large head which recedes quickly. Smells of bitter grain and wheat. Taste is somewhat malty at first with a smooth bitterness with a decent taste of hops with the finish. The bitterness of this beer seems almost out of place. The mouth feel is kind of thick with heavy carbonation.

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Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
3.45/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From the BIG can, it pours amber with a large fluffy head, slowly dissipating as the bubbles from the bottom vainly try to maintain it. One notices bread in the nose, very light flavor to me with very little hop flavor. Easy to drink, with a very soft mouthfeel.

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Photo of taters21
2.94/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a copper and gold with a huge head of about 3 or more fingers that dissipates quickly.
Smells strongly of apple, bready malt, and yeast.
Really sweet up front, followed by stale bread, biscuits, and a trace of hops in the background.
Mouthfeel is creamy, moderately carbonated.
Overall, not a bad budget beer compared to budweiser, miller, or coors in my opinion, but know that you're not buying high quality stuff, sapporo is better at this price point.

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Photo of RobertDBrase
3.92/5  rDev +36.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 25.4 oz. can. Nice copper color with a lot of streaming bubbles. Slightly off white rocky head.

Smell is bready with barley and malts some biscuit with just a touch of hops in the background.

Taste follows the nose with a clean balance between the malts and hops. Not too much on either side. Light mouth feel with a clean crisp finish.

Unusual as we have had this one before. And in the past the beer has been good yet this can was a real winner. Looked on the bottom and this one had a best by date of May,02 2016. I was thinking this was a fresher can than previous purchases making this one pop just a bit more. Going to have to go back to the store and check for more with this date. Good stuff!

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Photo of EricLiverpool
4.29/5  rDev +49%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I was a bit worried about this one when I saw the coloring notice on the can, but after giving it a try I'm glad I got it. Normally, if I'm in a Foster's mood, I'll grab two oil cans of lager and one special bitter (premium ale).

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
1.9/5  rDev -34%
look: 3.75 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.75

Brewed in Texas? It smells like your typical adjunct lager, only it's an ale. Lots of cereal grain appears, along side some perfume and sulfur. On the plus side, it looks damn good in a glass - sure, the caramel coloring is a fail, but the head is three fingers high with decent retention and good lacing to boot. Its flavor is very redolent of Yuengling...but worse. I get lots of cereal grain and general sweetness, though there is a slight touch of hoppiness to finish it off. This is like a crappy version of Yuengling, period. While it stops short of being outright horrid, I'd rather be drinking something good right now, so I won't be finishing this today. I think my dog will enjoy this instead!

1.9/5: Australian for bogan piss

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Photo of pkalix
2.24/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

i was gonna say 'beautiful color' until I read this guy and it's true: ***NOTE: the can states "ALE WITH CARAMEL COLOR ADDED"*** pathetic..... but I was looking for something mild cuz I aint been feeling well this week.....
couldnt even get a good pour from the can for the first couple of pours. just too bulky. novelty can size.
smells like bread and mild chiles. seriously. like a chile powder in a meatloaf or something....
taste is bland, but alright. tinny flavor on the back. mild diversion from the standard commercial flavor.
the entire experience is mediocre, but tasty if you're drinking just one on a hot day. and pretty much only the first few gulps...... it's gonna be tough finishing this 25.4 oz can...... especially with some REAL BEER waiting for me in the frig.....

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Photo of ordybill
2.96/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 25 OZ oil can into a pint glass.
Aroma- Has a moldy yeast smell not that great.
Appearance – The best part of this ale is its color. A clear orange with a large white head.
Taste- Has a faint sweet flavor with a nice dose of malt.
Palate- A medium bodied, moderately carbonated ale.
Overall- A truly average beer, I prefer Foster's Lager but even that is not an impressive brew.

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Photo of HoppyBastard
2.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Poured from a 24.5 ounce "oil can" into a Shaker pint glass, "best by" date 11-9-15.

APPEARANCE: Pours a clear copper color with one-finger off-white head, good retention, slowly dissipated until a thin, broken layer of bubbles remained, medium carbonation, there is almost no lacing on the glass. ***NOTE: the can states "ALE WITH CARAMEL COLOR ADDED"***

SMELL: sweet caramel, bread and adjunct grains

TASTE: initially sweet caramel and bread then a hop bite that is somewhat subdued for the style, there is the taste of some adjunct grains present.

PALATE: medium body and carbonation.

OVERALL: this is not a bad beer but, for the style it was not bitter enough and the adjunct grains do not work with this style, I'm guessing the caramel color was added because adjunct grains make a beer pale, I will not seek this one out again.

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Photo of FJAR
4.54/5  rDev +57.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Wow - the range of the reviews on this is interesting.

I find this to be a very good beer. Beautiful look. Pleasant smell, very good taste and feel. And, at least in my area, it is sold at a very reasonable price.

Are some of you using your mouth and nose, or using your eyes to concentrate on the name on the can?

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.01/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Oil can purchased at the Mobil up the road.
Dark golden bordering on amber with a dense rocky white head that shows moderate retention. Sweet bready biscuity flavor and aroma with a hint of earthy hops. Light toffee and mineral water flavor round this out. Pretty plain not horiibly complex but straightforward and somewhat crushable.

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Photo of pat61
3.25/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

L: Pours brilliant copper amber under a 1.5” sudsy white foam cap.
S: Not a very big nose. Fairly clean, some light grain, not very estery.
T: A somewhat dull palate with a light sweetness and traces of light fruit, a hint of citrus and large pitted fruit. A moderate bitterness.
F: Medium body and medium carbonation.
O: A beer with very little to recommend it.

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Photo of Pantalones
2.53/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Jumbo 25.4-ounce can picked up at the local Food Lion earlier tonight. What I'm guessing is a best-by date on the bottom reads "SEP2815," or September 28th, 2015.

When poured into a glass, has an orangey light-brown color reminiscent of a Yuengling Lager but with a nicer head of foam on top (though this foam does fade away rather rapidly once the shrinking starts -- half an hour after pouring, as the first glass empties out, there are only faint traces of it in a few spots on the surface.) Seems to be pretty clear. Little or no bubble activity from the bottom of the glass as far as I can tell, but the color and head are pretty nice. Can is pretty unique in size and general appearance but really lacking in information -- all I know from reading the label is the ABV, volume, Australian-ness, and that it's an ale rather than a lager. Literally no idea what to expect going into this one.

Smell is... pretty unpleasant right away. The same "hair salon" sort of weird chemical smell that I pick up from Yuengling Lager sometimes is present, along with a tiny bit of an almost sulfury smell. Beyond that there's also some sweetness and graininess. The smell becomes a lot weaker once the foam on top fades; the hair-salon funkiness still hangs around just a bit, though the sulfur vanishes. Probably the worst-smelling beer I've had so far, all things considered, though it does improve a bit after the initial offensive burst of hair-salon chemicals and sulfur (I almost want to describe it as "farty Yuengling"...) has petered out. Also, the second glass poured from the can doesn't have as much of that initial blast of smell -- what's there is still a bit funky, but better than on the initial pour.

Taste is better than the smell -- the grain and sweetness are the primary flavors -- but there's still something about it that just seems "off" in a really odd way. That "hair salon" chemical smell comes through in the flavor of the beer too, which is really bizarre considering that I didn't taste anything like that in any of the other beers I've picked up that smell in. The hair-salon thing and sweetness are strong in the initial aftertaste, but the aftertaste that lingers afterward is actually somewhat pleasant to me -- sort of reminds me of the taste in my mouth after eating bread, particularly white bread, when the starchiness of the bread has already partially been transformed to sweetness but it still has that "bready" quality to it. I think I may be getting just the tiniest traces of a leafy/herbal hop bitterness in the aftertaste, too -- though I'm not noticing this until 3/4 of the way through the 25 ounces contained in the big can. While a step up from the smell and feel, the flavor is still definitely not this beer's strong point.

Speaking of the feel -- this beer feels unusually thin for something of its color and ABV. Not quite to the extent of being watery, but uncomfortably close. I do notice that the feel is a bit nicer when you drink while more of the foam is still present -- but unfortunately this also makes that "hair salon chemical" taste and smell much more noticeable, to an extent where the improvement in mouthfeel really isn't worth it. Overall, another miss here -- a beer this color, with 5.5% ABV, should not feel as light as (or even lighter than) a Tecate. It's just bizarre.

Overall... this may just be my least-favorite out of the beers I've tried so far. I certainly won't be buying it again, though I suppose I'd be able to drink half a can or so if I was offered one for free. It *looks* pretty nice, but it's all downhill from there, as the smell, taste, and feel (...also known as "the important parts") all come with a variety of unpleasant features. If this tasted as good as it looked, I'd have a nice ale alternative to the 24-ounce Yuengling Lager mega-cans -- as is, though, I would not recommend this beer, despite how affordable it is. I'm about halfway through my second glass now, and I'm thinking I may just pour what's left down the drain rather than finishing it, which is not something I usually do!

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Photo of nucloid
4.91/5  rDev +70.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Out of all the other few beers i've had, foster's premium ale is the better of the group. goes down like water and tastes really good. If anything, my main issue is the price. Its' really expensive in my area.

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Photo of JustLikeMyDad
2.26/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Drank from a large "oil can". So I can't comment on the look.
Smell was average of what a cheaper beer would smell like, nothing special about it that I could tell.
Carbonated, but also watery. Has a strong and unpleasant aftertaste, that most ales have.

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Photo of JMS1512
3.52/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is not THAT bad. I prefer to have the "oil can" version, though I've not seen them in regular 12 oz. cans, yet. It's not the best example of and ESB, but they're great for when you just want "a beer" when you're on a budget.

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Photo of nicholas2121
4/5  rDev +38.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Foster's Premium Ale brewed by Foster's Group Limited, with an ABV of 5.50% This brew pours out a deep amber color with a nice white head. I like the color of this brew. The smell is rich with grains , malts, and sweetness. You pick up on a hit of hops at the end. Now for the taste it is bold, but rich with flavor. Foster's Premium Ale, has a nice sweetness to it. There is a lot going on in this brew. I think this is one of the better Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB). Foster's Group Limited did a nice job with this one. There is nothing overpowering in Foster's Premium Ale. This brew has a nice balance to it. The mouthfeel is nice rich and bold. I like how this brew goes down smooth. Overall I'm giving this brew a 4 out 5. I would buy this brew again.

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Photo of Bigalduncan64
3.39/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I actually am enjoying this beer. It poured a nice Amber color with a thick head that left lacing in the glass. The smell was average and the taste was better than average in my opinion. I tasted a little dirty grain hiding behind the malt and hops. Other than that, I'd gladly drink a few of these at the beach!

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Photo of Falcone
1.25/5  rDev -56.6%
look: 1.25 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1.25

Pours rather awkwardly from the "oil can" into a pint glass. Big billowing head several fingers thick that gradually fades to a thin lace. The kind of head you see with a malt liquor. Perfect macro filtered clarity and beautiful amber color is presented. Then I check the can and I see the words "Ale With Caramel Color Added." Are you kidding me?

Smells like ass. Metallic ass. And blood.
Taste follows the smell. So yeah it tastes like ass. Metallic husky grains and an unpleasant lingering bitterness. Like a bitter, dirty lemon peel. Way too carbonated, prickly mouthfeel. Bites like a malt liquor. I'd say this is closer to a malt liquor than an ESB. A very poor malt liquor at that.

I honestly didn't expect this to be even worse than the lager. Utterly putrid macro swill. Fosters, Australian for ass.

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Photo of Foyle
4/5  rDev +38.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled from 25.4 oz can in pint glass.

Appearance: pours a thick, sudsy off white head that drops slowly. Color is a clear amber with abundant carbonation.
Aroma: mild with bread being dominate, some caramel and a bit of earthy/floral hops.
Mouthfeel: medium and slick with a somewhat dry finish.
Flavor: bready malts dominate, some caramel sweetness with a definite hop presence.
Overall: had to update my review on this one. Originally I rated it very average, but after several revisits this beer has really grown on me and I could drink it everyday. A very tasty ESB at a bargain price.

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Foster's Premium Ale from Foster's Group Limited
68 out of 100 based on 198 ratings.