1. Extreme Beer Fest tickets go on sale Sat, Sep 27 @ Noon EDT.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Modelo Especial - Grupo Modelo S.A. de C.V.

Not Rated.
Modelo EspecialModelo Especial

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,585 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,585
Reviews: 485
rAvg: 2.79
pDev: 22.58%
Wants: 14
Gots: 122 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Grupo Modelo S.A. de C.V. visit their website

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-22-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Modelo Especial Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,585 | Reviews: 485 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DoubleJ
3.08/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The second of six entries in the Unorganized Invitational, this is one of the few major brand Mexican beers I haven't sampled yet. Cross this off the list, as tonight I am going to try this out:

Don't let the clear bottle from the brewery that brought you Corona fool you, this Mexi-brew actaully holds some flavor and little skunk. Anyways, I poured it into a glass and got a clear golden body with a thin head that faded. Mild skunk hits the nose at first, but it paves way for a surprising spicy hop scent. The taste was rewarding, but at times was tough. The hops and corn flavors battled for supremecy, but in the end, the hops won. Not much in the malt department. It got better when I stopped thinking about the corn and started to focus on it as a refreshment.

I thought this would just be another bland Mexi-brew, but it turned out to be quite a surprise. It's better than my overall score will indicate as long as you ignore the corn flavors. That said, this won't be enough to give it first prize in this invite. We got more brews coming later...

DoubleJ, May 18, 2007
Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.8/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. can into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color with a short white head that fades very quickly and leaves a very little lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of light malts and adjuncts, maybe a little bit of apple which seemed a bit odd for the style. It seemed to be sweet & sour.

T: The taste is maltier than most macros but doesn’t taste as sweet as it smells, with flavors of corn and other adjuncts along with a little bit of hops. The after-taste is bready and slightly sweet.

M: A little smooth and not very crisp, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Although it’s better than Corona, it’s not very tasty, goes down ok, not filling at all. It’s a decent macro, but nothing exciting.

TheManiacalOne, May 10, 2007
Photo of Cyberkedi
2.05/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance is typical lager yellow. Aroma is malty and rather weak. Taste is weak, malty, and rather bitter; its flavor is more like that of a "lite" beer than a regular lager. Smooth but watery, it is barely drinkable and quite forgettable. Maybe the can affected it some - I have found that beers taste best on-tap, while bottles come second and cans are the worst.

Cyberkedi, May 08, 2007
Photo of scottoale
3.15/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From the big 24oz. white aluminum can, poured into my jumbo chalice (for fun), was a bright golden elixer with a finger of snow-white foam. The head didn't diminish as quickly as I thought, good sized bubbles coming up from all over the bottom helped keep it alive.

Sweet and malty...very dough like malty, is all that came to my nose.

The taste wasn't bad, a little sweetness of pale malt and corn adjunct, without that lingering sweetness that cloys. Hops were not really noticable, yet the brew was fairly well balanced.

A medium-light body with a little fizz to it...this would be an ok hot weather thirst quencher while doing yardwork, type of beer.

scottoale, May 01, 2007
Photo of MrMcGibblets
2.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

man, i used to love this shit before i knew what good beer was. compared to other macros, it actually is good. a little deeper in color than most macro lagers, and the buttery diacetyl and corn adjunct aromas used to appeal to me. fizzy head. some malt (not much) flavor up front with a tiny bit of malt sweetness. balanced more by the force carbonation than hops. can't notice any hops in this, actually. but somehow drinkable on a hot day, at least in the past.

MrMcGibblets, Apr 24, 2007
Photo of BEERchitect
2.8/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Eeh, it's beer... I guess. Not a lot here to brag about, other than it is what is expected from South-of-the-boarder beers. Thirst quenching, carbonated, lightly flavored, and low on the quality. This beer contributes a pungent hop aroma that showm mostly earthiness, but also skunkiness. Tastes are a mix of pilsner malts and corn. The beer fades quickly, just before becomming oily and sweet-heavy late. Sub-par on many fronts.

BEERchitect, Apr 16, 2007
Photo of MrHungryMonkey
2.8/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Yellow, almost golden, 4-7 SRM. Clear. Mild carbonation. Decent head, poor retention/lace.

Toasty white bread, mildly sweet. Mild floral hoppage.

Thin-medium bodied. Grainy toasted bread with metallic edge. Essence of cooked vegetables. Warm bitterness, but doesn’t feel like its from the hops. In fact I can’t really detect any hop flavors. Decent carbonation. Finishes clean.

Not good, not horrible. Another mass produced Mexican-themed beer. Impressive carbonation and head for a Macro. Taste is just so-so; however it is much better with lime. I suggest key limes. Is it below average for Macro Lagers? I don’t know. It is a below average beer, for sure. Nothing especial about it, Negra is way better.

MrHungryMonkey, Mar 25, 2007
Photo of tempest
3.3/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not half bad for a macro lager. This hangs with the best of the macros, PBR comes to mind, with mellow sweet flavor and light barley finish. That finish that actually tastes like grains in a good way is what surprised me and kept me from writing this off. Pair with food or a hot day.

tempest, Mar 21, 2007
Photo of mithrascruor
2.03/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz. can... out of the can... mostly. And the can looks very "retro."

Appearance: Pale gold, clear. Basically no head but a bit of fizz.

Smell: Corn and metallic "aromas."

Taste: Malty nothingness.

Mouthfeel: Fizzy water. Relatively smooth, at least.

Drinkability: Easy to down, hard to believe it has alcohol, hard to really want another.

Lame Mexican lager. Better than some, but not others. Very little to say about it: an incredibly boring beer, but nothing outright bad about it. Probably works fine to wash down some tacos on a beach, but otherwise...

Oh, and why is this so expensive?

mithrascruor, Mar 03, 2007
Photo of Vancer
2.48/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

This stuff was tolerable, but it sorely needed a beach and bikinis around it to enhance it to drinkable session status.

Look at the pour; crystal clear straw yellow (maybe a tint of amber in there), and it took a hard pour to generate a lil’ white head.

Gentle hints of cooked veggies in the aroma, if you try hard enough. And the taste really shows up with a corn dog in the can.

Well, this is better than Crapona, don’t even need a lime. But defiantly needs some environmental enhancements.

Vancer, Mar 02, 2007
Photo of SetarconeX
2.28/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark golden color. Fizzy. Actually doesn't look half bad. Crystal clear.

Smell: Oh wow. Just...wow. I can't remember the last time I had a beer skunked this bad. I almost wish I'd sprung for the cans. Inexpensive beer in clear bottles is definitely a bad idea.

Taste: Has almost none. This is water with a dash of malt. Still, I've had worse, so it nets a couple points here just for not actually tasting bad.

Mouthfeel and drinkability: Feels and drinks like water. Depending on where you buy it, it might also be cheaper than water.

This being the beer Brosnan drank in The Matador, I really wanted to like it. I don't. It's really some dreadful swill.

SetarconeX, Feb 20, 2007
Photo of goochpunch
3.35/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a brassy gold body and a thin head that I had to really force. Smells of some bready pale malts, graininess, little sulphur, and some mild hops. Flavor is very similar with the malt overtaking the grain, however. Finish has a bit of herbal hop flavor and a bit of bitterness. Only complaint is this kind of washes off the palate real quick. Mouthfeel is a bit watery to support the flavors but the carbonation is decent. I used to drink this quite often and I still like it.

goochpunch, Feb 14, 2007
Photo of pmcadamis
2.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Big ass 24ozer picked up at a gas station for a buck. God bless the big-ass-cheapo-single-serving-gas-staion-can. This particular can is....very cheesy looking. It looks like those pull top cans from the '70's

A - This is a cider-like shade of amber gold. A darker shade of gold than most pale yellow macro lagers. A thin head of white foam reduces to a sudsy haze after a minute or two and some unattractive soapy lacing is left on the glass.

S - Corn and can. I can really smell the aluminium in this one.

M - This is really sweet and malty with a good deal of hop flavors for a macro lager. This is a really nicely balanced macaro lager that actually tastes like beer. There are those naggin hints of corn and aluminium that remind me that this is a cheapo canned beer, but there are some really impressive flavors going on here.

M - Wet and quenching. I drank this extremely cold, and it really hit the spot. This is fuller and more firm in the mouth than other macros, and also has much more of a hoppy dryness at the finish. I'm really quite impressed with this one!

D - Excellent. For a day on the beach in Mexico, this is as good as it gets. Beats Corona or BMC any day. This has more "real beer" qualities than most macros, and for the money this one is a real straight shooter.

pmcadamis, Feb 05, 2007
Photo of rowew
3.2/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz classic Modelo bottle - short bottle with foil on the neck and cap. Date code on the bottle, with code being the key word.

Appearance: Pale yellow and clear, thin head that fades quickly. Nothing visually to distinguish this from any other macro lager.

Smell: Got a whiff of skunked aroma as soon as I poured. Less noticable in the glass. A bit of malt, a hint of skunk - very subdued.

Taste: Slightly sweet malty flavor, just a tiny hint of a hoppy finish.

Overall impression: Highly drinkable - not overly exciting. I would probably take this over a Corona given the choice, and wouldn't be above dropping a lime in it.

rowew, Feb 02, 2007
Photo of lehows
3.35/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a transparent yellow color with a small head, no lacing to speak of. Faint aromas of corn, some skunk, light alcohol. Taste is much the same. This is usually what I order at Mexican restaurants, thirst quenching, simple, and better than most of the Mexi macros. It's good with or without a lime.

lehows, Jan 25, 2007
Photo of kimcgolf
2.25/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A very light beer with little flavor or aroma. I had this with a slice of lime, while eating spicy Mexican food. It was thirst-quenching, and helped put out the fire, but not much beyond that. A typical Mexican beer...best enjoyed very cold with lime or lemon.

kimcgolf, Jan 05, 2007
Photo of Drew966
2.75/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Modelo Especial pours a typical lager yellow with very little head from a clear twelve ounce bottle. The aroma is sweet and corn like. On the plus side, I would have to say that even though this was in a clear bottle I don't think it's skunked. On the other hand its just kind of decent Mexican beer, better than most, but not aiming real high in the first place. Corn is the predominant taste. Drinkable, no lime required. Colder the better.

Drew966, Dec 20, 2006
Photo of jasonpeckins32
3.43/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a golden, almost bronze color, not much surprise with the clear glass bottle it comes in. The nose is simple and plain, a bit of skunkiness, but not bad or overwhelming at all. The taste is great when compared to other macro lagers. This is much better than a budweiser. Creamy mouthfeel, not heavy but definitly not a light beer either. Not a bad choice when the selection is limited.

jasonpeckins32, Nov 04, 2006
Photo of TechMyst
1.85/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

FRESH: probably
PURCHASED @: Dos Reales Restaurant
HEAD: none
LACE: none
COLOR: pale yellow
AROMA: lager
PALATE: none
TASTE: lager w/ corn adjunct
COMMENTS: slight tequila aftertaste

TechMyst, Nov 03, 2006
Photo of BeerBelcher
1.7/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

I've consumed enough beer at Mexican restaurants to have had this beer before, but I'd never really thought about what it tasted like and actually thought to compare to...other beers.

Appearance is slightly darker than most mainstream American lagers. There is little to no head and no lacing of any kind. Nothing about this particular example of this beer indicates that anything special went into this beer (this is from a can). Smell is practically non-existent. Taste is very much of corn, and is rather sweet, like Coors Light. The next time I have Mexican food, I suspect I'll save myself a few $$'s and drink something domestic instead...it won't be missed.

BeerBelcher, Oct 25, 2006
Photo of CU570M
2.7/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thin head that is gone in about 2 seconds and had no lacing at all. The beer was pale yellow or golden. Reminded me a little of Corona, but i would say overall tasted better. Smell had hints of corn in it. Going on with the smell there was a taste of corn, but i also felt a little after taste of vanilla. Mouthfeel was thin, but i liked it because the carbonation was minimal and slid down my throat without my throat wanting to gag. I think like Corona this is good on a hot summer day, but was a little light for my taste.

CU570M, Oct 17, 2006
Photo of Stimack
3.23/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Brew poured yellow with a gold tint to it. Had a white head that breaks down quickly leaving a faint layer of foam at the top of the glass, with no lacing. The aroma of this brew was of grain along with a slight skunk smell. Probably due to the clear bottle that Modelo uses for this one? It is not a bad tasting brew, but not overly that great either. The skunky aroma gets muted a bit once you take a sip. Taste is of corn and a very faint hop taste at the end, but this might be a wish that actual. Brew did have quite a bit of carbonation, and was quite light feel. This brew was not great but not horrible (could that be the 90+ degrees out) either, I probably would not go looking for this brew here in the states but was a OK offering while in Mexico.

Stimack, Oct 15, 2006
Photo of rodrot
2.48/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured a brilliant gold color with a large head that faded rather quickly. Aroma was fruity with a slight hint of cereal grains and malt in the nose. Taste was kind of boring really. Some malty sweetness along with a good bit of corn and adjunts mixed in the taste. Hop bitterness was almost nil, which I guess is expected for this style of beer. Mouthfeel was very light in the palate and made this beer seem just a step above water in my opinion. I enjoyed the Negra Modelo that I had after this much more.

rodrot, Oct 08, 2006
Photo of afinepilsner
2.85/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz clear bottle

Modelo Especial was golden in color and clear with a white head. The head did not last long, but did leave a litttle lacing. The aroma was light malt with a hint of skunk. The taste was crisp with a little malt and slightly grainy with a dry finish. The mouthfeel was thin with plenty of carbonation. The drinkabilty was average. It's not all that special, but is one of the better mexican macro lagers.

afinepilsner, Oct 07, 2006
Photo of daliandragon
2.63/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked up a twelver of these at Food Lion yesterday and drank half of them before dinner to help me forget about a long week at work. Figured since Modelo helped me out I could at least honor it with a formal review although the outcome is already pretty much predetermined. Close to golden color, snow white head that pulls an instant disappearing act, and much carbonation. Nose is sweet and loaded with adjuncts. Par for the course really.

Taste is grainy with corn flavors but goes down pretty smooth. Nothing complicated here, but decent in a pinch, especially in warm weather. Goes well wiith Andy Capp's Hot Fries and yelling at the tv (Hardball was on).

daliandragon, Sep 17, 2006
Modelo Especial from Grupo Modelo S.A. de C.V.
66 out of 100 based on 1,585 ratings.