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Tusker Premium Lager - East African Breweries Ltd (Kenya Breweries)

Not Rated.
Tusker Premium LagerTusker Premium Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.

362 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 362
Hads: 656
Avg: 3.01
pDev: 26.25%
Wants: 15
Gots: 59 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
East African Breweries Ltd (Kenya Breweries) visit their website

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 06-18-2002

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (12) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Tusker Premium Lager Alström Bros
Reviews: 362 | Hads: 656
Photo of BrewChatKen
2.75/5  rDev -8.6%

Aroma was grainy, biscuit, rice/corn, smells bland and very much like an adjunct lager. There was a very slight earthy hop character and it took on a slight tang as it warmed. It poured a pale golden color with a big white head and it had a body that surprised me, I was expecting water and got something light to medium with a moderate carbonation level. Taste was BORING! That blandness really carried through to the palate. Grainy, biscuit from the malt, subtle earthy hop, but mostly a whole lotta nothin. It's just not a good beer, if this is the style I'm going for I might as well be handed a Bud Light.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
2.75/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a light straw color. The head is a frothy one finger white shade. Both retention and lacing are surprisingly good, given what it is.

S: Not much of anything here. A touch of non-offensive cereal grains, and maybe some crackery malt to go along with it.

T: Starts with lime notes, and finishes with some cereal grain. This is very simple - to a fault, definitely - yet I can still find a modicum of enjoyment to this. Which is more than I can say about many macro lagers.

M: Really light and crisp, as it should be. Both sweetness and carbonation is high, but not overdone, making this a good hot weather drink.

O: Not very interesting, to be sure, but as far as macro lagers go, this one is actually kind of good. Import prices kill any chance of me buying this again in 'Merica, though.

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Photo of microbrewlover
2.75/5  rDev -8.6%

This brew pours with a large three finger fluffy white head which takes some time to dissipate. There is light lacing left on the glass; strong carbonation. The beer is a yellow /orange and when held up to the light a lot of sediment (yeast)? can be seen.

The smell is crisp, clean and tangy, maybe some orange and/or lemon zest in there.

The taste follows the nose with a clean, crisp lager taste followed by some lemon peel and orange. The finish is a little dry.

Overall there is nothing amazing going on with this lager, it is not the worst adjunct lager I have tasted but it is not the best either. I would drink it again but I will not go looking for it.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
2.73/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This is an exception to my rule that brew is best closer to home. The only reason (I believe) that Tusker has become so popular is because there are so many tourists in Kenya and it is a novelty to drink an African beer with that oh-so-African elephant on the label. This one is basically plain old beer and is a VERY far cry from the Malt Lager by Tusker, which I think is supremely better and shows more attention to craft. All of this brews qualities are the standard mass produced ones. The end.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
2.73/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured a clear light gold with a big foamy head that did not last. Minimal lacing.

Light scented with sweet grain.

Light watery flavors of cereal, light sweet grain, some grassy elements, and a little bitter bite. No skunk, nothing offensive, but rather weak.

Light in body and decently carbonated. Refreshing thirst quencher, but that is all. I can see where this would be a choice in 120 degree heat. Overall, not horrific, and no real off-weird flavors -- just not alot going on either. Cool to try, but not worth seeking.

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Photo of dbrauneis
2.71/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a crystal clear very pale yellow with a finger tall bright white head that is fizzy like soda. The head dissipates rather quickly but does leave some lacing on the glass. There is a fair amount of visible carbonation.

S: Very little smell at all to this beer - what I can detect is slightly crisp with the predominant smell being of corn and grain. In addition to that there is a slight hint of a metallic smell which is interesting since this is not from a can.

T: Upfront the taste is mostly corn and grain with the slightest hint of malts. The aftertaste has hints of lemon. Overall the taste is kind of watery and there is not a lot of flavor.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly crisp.

O: Very easy to drink and quite sessionable due to the light flavors, smell, and ABV. But honestly, I'm not sure that I would really want to drink many of these or have it again... I prefer a little more flavor and something a little more interesting.

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Photo of tgorgz
2.71/5  rDev -10%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured this into a pilsner glass, as it was all I had in the house at the moment.

A: A golden, straw-like colour. Looks like a standard lager. Less carbonation than I expected, however.

S: Smells quite good, actually. A little sweet, with a touch of hops at the end of the nose. I was surprised actually, considering it was shipped from Africa.

T: I'm not going to lie, I was a little disappointed. Maybe it was the green in the bottle, but I may have had something a little skunky. It was flat- the carbonation in the glass didn't transfer onto my palate. I was also thrown off- I couldn't taste any of the malt, and the hops were overpowering a in a lager.

M: Not pleasant to drink, but not unpleasant. I'd have a couple of these, but it would only be if I were planning on having some food with it.

O: Overall, I wasn't entirely impressed- but not turned off. This is actually the first African beer I've ever had, so I'm looking forward to exploring other flavours and styles.

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Photo of magictrokini
2.7/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

First African beer I've ever tried. Pours clear gold with an average white head. Pale malt and mineral water aroma. Thin, but has a pleasant light and sweet taste. Really good on a hot day, no real shock as it is from Kenya. Not going to get again, but worth trying.

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Photo of Libeertarian
2.7/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Mostly clear, but not as much as others of this style. Golden straw colored with white foamy head of low retention, but filming and lacing. Smell is grainy and incredibly sweet from malt and adjunct, not so much esters/alcohol. A strong rice and barley taste, mildly sweet, followed by small hop bite, but mellows back down with grainy retro-olfaction. Thin, a little less than smooth, highly carbonated, crisp and refreshing. Fairly distinct from other Adjunct and Pale Lagers, making less of an attempt to mask adjuncts.

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Photo of Onslow
2.7/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

got from the LS ... pours with a great big healthy head ... lacing is quite supreme, good start here ... has some corn and a hop smell similar to saaz ... some sweetness in the chewer ... is a very refreshing lager beer, also has a low to medium crispness ... not bad stuff, i can see drinking this in Nairobi...

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Photo of beergeek279
2.7/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in the 500 mL bottle, into a pint glass. The color is straw yellow, with a decent white head. The smell is a pale malt with a bit of hoppiness. The taste is a slightly adjuncted pale malt with a bit of hoppiness to it. Mouthfeel is average. As for drinkability, for what it is I could have a couple.

I realize that 90% of national beers are going to be pale lagers. I have to say that this is amongst the better ones I've had in that national pale lager category. Not that this is something I'd rush out to find, but the Kenyans should be proud of a better-than-average national beer.

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Photo of Cummins9110
2.69/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - light goldish
S- malty, like malt liquor
T - tast like a malt liquor, not like King Cobra cheap malt liqor, more like a German style malt liqour (there is a differnce)
M- smooth crisp finish
D- not my style of beer, but i have had them and they are slightly appealing
Kinda cool to say you have drink a beer made in Kenya but its not $2.99 worth of beer, domestic brewery's make way better lagers for a lot cheaper, mainly paying for importing price

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Photo of artoolemomo
2.69/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Appearance- Pours up a good amount of head which really has no retention at all. The head is a pure cotton white while the body is a clear pale straw that appears as a mix of pale straw and weak lemon when held up to the light. A speck or two of lacing.

Nose- Fairly boring, typical AAL aroma. I get sour grain from the glass while the bottle shows some cornflakes, grain, and a hint of sweet malt. Swirling does little to coax anymore scents- most likely because there aren't any.

Taste- Pretty much as boring as the nose and reflective of it as well. Sour grain, cornflakes, cereal, and a hint of sweet malt (maybe even a little bit of white grape). A very slightly bitter finish that has some earthiness, perhaps even a tinge of woodiness. Not as watery as a lot of AALs but pretty much as boring. The most positive aspect of this beer is there aren't really any off flavors.

Mouthfeel- Light bodied with light carbonation. A little bit of a dry finish. It maybe could use a little more carbonation.

Drinkability- Very sessionable but the real question is why would you want to? And at 2.50 a bottle, just go and grab a PBR already.

Overall- Very mediocre to almost poor. We've all had this beer before and it's pretty much the reason why many of us are so obsessive about craft beer- we want a beer that tastes like something. This doesn't. You can pass on it.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
2.69/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Presentation: 500ml, tall thin brown glass bottle. Crown cap is color and design coordinated. An Elephants head sits inside a yellow oval which is in turn inside a white one set against a black label. Gold, black and yellow V-shaped neck label completes the presentation. Front label has the inkjet code “Mfg 31 May 05 Exp 31 May 06”, guess this one is a bit past its prime maybe!? Listed as 4.2% v/v Grav: 1037° - 1039°. My bottle is labeled as “Tusker Finest Quality Lager”.

Appearance: Sad flaccid pathetic looks, the fizzling white head disappears rapidly to a thin halo like edge, the surface reflects the lightly hazed milky golden pong beneath.

Nose: Sweet malts, some whiff of that awful pink colored bubble gum that is directed at kids and a gentle floral character which often merges into bubble gum aromas actually.

Taste: Light grain and a sweet hoppy nature. Some flowery tingles here and there. A very low tasting affair that seems one-dimensional and a little boring.

Mouthfeel: Thin, but not in a bad way, the texture is in line with the low key taste profile but it never seems to bolster it. The finish has a good balance though.

Drinkability: I can take it or leave it. Hmm, this is another one of those famous local brews that obviously dominates a local market, and has a rather mythical status, but on closer inspection really fails to live up to anything other than a very average beer that has a bigger personality profile that it deserves.

Overall: KenYa beer?!? Nah! More of a KeenNO beer – this is a “I am not so Keen” on this beer actually. I always wanted to give it a whirl though, well that’s my curiosity well and truly put down, I have no plans to head out to Kenya that’s for sure.

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Photo of chickenm
2.68/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very pale golden color with a thin white head that quickly disappears. Aroma of grass and sour apples, I did not like. Light flavor, the taste has a little sweet malt and lemon, and some more of that sour apple. Body is quite thin, typical for a lager. Not completely undrinkable, but not something I'd buy again.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.68/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a Budweiser pokal.

On the occasion of my 200th review, I've opted for my first African brew. Hailing from the southern portion of the Horn, Tusker looks Droopy-esque, all sad and unappealing with its run-of-the-mill sallow color and foamy white head. Frankly, if I saw an elephant looking like this, I'd be afeared of cathcing some new-fangled Elephant Flu. The high compliments don't end there, as the smell, though intriguing, is generally off-puttingly sour. Now, I'm not tslking gueuze or Flanders red here, but just a subtle, faint funk. The rest of the smell is very ho-hum: rice, corn, wheat, oh my...how boring and AAL of it. Which reminds me: why do so many non-American countries seemingly exclusively brew up AALs? I guess it's efficient and cheap and whatnot, but still... What would be nice would be a new and different take on the AAL, but no, it's all the same old song here, just with a different label from where it's from (the Temps didn't like that version of the song): corn syrup, rice cake, and vague wheat somber the proceedings the way the Big 3 have for decades. A slight tin flavor makes things extra disappointing. Apparently in keeping with tradition, the light body, moderate carbonation, and watery feel are all maintained in accordance with the BMC Neutrality Laws. At least you can just pound it down, right? All the better to get to your next brew.

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Photo of TripelJ
2.68/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Took a stab at this one as it was something new at my local pub. I wish I had started with this one, its subtle yet refreshing. Very active carbonation that started with an F4 classification, and gradually moved its way down. Light in color, mouthfeel, and character. Somewhat pungent nose and aftertaste that is bothering me a little bit, but overall, this exceeds my expecations as my first 'african beer'.

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Photo of WesWes
2.67/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The beer pours an almost clear pale gold color with a thin white head that fades to lacing. The aroma is weak and almost non-existant. What little there was smelled of pale malts and little else. The taste is less than average. It is quite watery and bitter. It has little malt flavor, but does go down smooth. The mouthfeel is lacking. I feel like one of those dudes in the Miller Lite commercials; "I can't taste my beer!!!!" It is a low bodied beer with decent carbonation. This beer sucks. It's one and done for me.

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Photo of ThatWineGuy
2.66/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Alcohol was 4.2% with an Exp date of Feb. 08. Light straw / yellow shade of clear. A frothy white head on pouring but it settled quickly. Some decent lacing looked promising. Gentle carbonation. Mild grass or daisies on the nose, very feint, almost unnoticeable. Taste has a hint of hops but then a bit sweet on the finish. Bitterness is fleeting. Mouthfeel started out smooth but turned a bit syrupy, very light body. This beer is pleasant enough but not a taste sensation by a long shot, a bit boring; did not live up to its label. Then again, it might be a crossover beer for macro drinkers in north america who want to pretend they're on safari.

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Photo of Cresant
2.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured this 12 oz. brown bottle into a pilsner glass. Bottled on June 22 2006. Body was clear, pale yellow. One finger of head faded but left sporadic lacing down the entire glass.

Smelled like soyburgers(?!?). Corn on the cob sweet. Pleasantly sour.

Tasted tart. Corn syrup sweetness. Interesting grain/malt flavor. Corn husks.

Mouthfeel was smooth with a slightly raspy finish. Medium body. I'm glad I tried it but I probably wont have it again.

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Photo of RBorsato
2.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Clear light straw yellow color with a moderate white head. Light malt aroma and a very light hop aroma (Hallertau and Styrians from what I understand). Very light flavor and almost devoid of taste. Light and very thin with a crisp dry finish.

Not a bad hangover beer for the first New Year's Day football game.

[16.9 oz/500ml bottle] Label states: Gravity 1037-1039

Best before: June, '03
Tasted: 01/01/03

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Photo of alexskovan
2.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured pale golden with a fluffy white head that dropped quickly. Subtle, pleasant creamy aroma. Taste is unremarkable American macro, better than a lot of our stuff, but certainly not worth the imported price tag.

I'm always a sucker for these brews from countries that have no brewing tradition. What you get is generally this sort of beer -- boring American macro.

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Photo of Knapp85
2.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This poured just like any other lager would, a yellowish gold with a good head at first that faded quickly. The aroma had some hints of citrus to me. Not really sure where that was coming from but it sparked my interest. The taste was basically like most lagers out there. This brew wasn't too bad but it wasn't anything overly special either.

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Photo of WilliamPhilaPa
2.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

bb date- 3/2003
Pours a yellowish pale straw color, with a slightly chunky, small white head. On the nose there is a slight oily herbal hop aroma. On the palate, there is a slight graininess, hops, weird chewy mouthfeel almost oily, bread malt character. This is an ok lager, but nothing I’ll ever buy again.

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Photo of Greywulfken
2.64/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Weak beer, but not the worst of the bunch. All countries suffer from adjunct lager syndrome apparently. This was a little lighter and crisper than some American BMC beers.

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Tusker Premium Lager from East African Breweries Ltd (Kenya Breweries)
70 out of 100 based on 362 ratings.