Harbin Lager | Harbin Brewery Group

122 Reviews
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Harbin LagerHarbin Lager

Brewed by:
Harbin Brewery Group

Style: Euro Pale Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by atigerlife on 03-20-2006

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Reviews: 122 | Ratings: 173
Photo of tone77
3.28/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a green bottle into a weizen glass. Has a pale yellow color with a 1/2 inch head. There is a slightly skunky aroma. Taste is light and dry. Not much flavor. Feels light and watery in the mouth. Drinkability is good. Overall an average beer.

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Photo of BeardedBoffin
2.93/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Beer pours a crystal clear light golden color with decent cap of white foam above it. Somewhat bready aroma, but some adjunct (rice, maybe corn) as well. Light on the palate, slightly carbonated. Malt with more adjunct in the flavor. Finishes snappy with a little bitterness. Not terrible, but could do with out the adjunct. Fairly average for the style.

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Photo of dbmcrorie
2.41/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

600ml green bottle with white cloth wrapped around the bottle and a gold string tied around the neck. The cap is covered with that damn foil. I always get little bits of it in my drink.
Poured into imperial tulip pint glass.

Poured a clear golden straw color, with a thick white head that dissipated all too quickly. No lacing or cap left.

There seems to be a tug-o-war between a skunky sea-salt aroma vs. the faint malt -- which is reminiscent of caramel apple. Very little hop presence.

Dry. Oh so dry. Very bland and low-key flavors. Mostly grain, husk, and very slight hop earthiness. Bitterness jumps quickly to the back of the tongue but disappears with a dry chalk like finish. Very watery mouthfeel.

Such an elaborate display would have one waiting in anticipation for the golden elixir within. But then, you remember, you paid less than $2 for a 600ml bottle. Don't get your hopes up.
However, due to it's watery mouthfeel, lack of complexity, and dry finish, this certainly makes a great compliment to Chinese takeout.
Best paired with extremely greasy and/or spicy entrees; including egg foo young, noodles, vegetables, and rice.

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Photo of colts9016
2.83/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass at 41 degrees.

Appearance: A pale golden yellow color. There is a monster 3 finger head that is white and creamy. There is a lot of effervescence in the beer. The clarity of the beer is brilliant. There is a lot of lacing on the glass.

Nose: A sweet like malt in the beer with some floral and citrus notes on the end. There is some spiciness in the very tail end of the beer.

Taste: A sweet like malt in the beer with some floral notes.

Overall: A carbonated mouth feel that is a little dry. The body of the beer is very light and the finish is nil. This beer is nothing special. To me it taste like a hopped up Budweiser.

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Photo of wiseguy142
3.33/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Comes in a big green bottle with some extremely Asian looking paper around it. Interesting.

Pours bright yellow with a sturdy white head. Aroma of pilsner malt. Taste is slightly sweet with most of the flavor coming from the malt, but it's very well balanced. Sort of like Miller Lite if it was good at all.. and from China. Lots of carbonation, very refreshing and easy to drink.

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Photo of MikeInIowa
4.44/5  rDev +58%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Harbin Lager is a Chinese import. Buying a sixer of Harin will not worsen the trade imbalance that the US has with China, so why not try this dandy little brew on for size. It's gorgeous!

Look: With its pale but opulent golden color and its honorable mention head and lacing, Harbin probably has an average lager appearance to it, but then appearances can be deceiving, can't they?

Nose: It has the light hint of hops the tend to invite drinker in for a sip.

Taste: I felt that this lager's taste was exceptional for the style. Robust taste of hops without residual tastes. How did they do that anyway?

Mouthfeel: Thin, without being watery.

Drink: Exceptional drinkabitity. Careful! This beer could be habit forming.

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Photo of giblet
2.6/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

poured a pale yellow into the glass. about one half inch head that settled quickly. light steady carbonation. smells of grain and a bit skunky, not bad skunky. taste is much the same. some malt body to it. nothing much to brag about. a bbq beer if it was based on limited choices. for the price and availability it wont be sought after by me.

suckem up and movem out.


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Photo of meatmallet
2.13/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Appearance: Yellow and kind of dirty lookin but clear. Very small white head disappeared quick as I could pour it.

Smell: Rice grain and malt. Not a whole lot there other than a slight skunkiness.

Taste: Barley and rice and nothing more. I really dont have anything else to add.

Mouthfeel/drinkability: Clean and kind of crisp which is all the good I can say. I dont plan on trying this again.

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Photo of aforbes10
2.53/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle from one of the sacramento BevMo!s that i picked up because it looked fancy and happened to be cheap. Pours a clean yellow brown with a soda-like white head. Head falls off to a white ring fairly quickly. Laces fast and wetly. Smells of rice, malt, ethanol, vague apple-y esters. Flavor is reasonably clean up front, with an apple tang that grows. Sour ethanol is a bit much, making the drinking experience reminiscent of a malt liquor. Thin bodied. Mot worthwhile to seek out, nor worht mentioning particularly besides the fancy and slightly odd packaging....not terrible overall, just slightly less than ok.

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Photo of Dubbercody
2.12/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Received as a present from a non-beer geek friend. I have to appreciate the attempt, even if the result was mixed.

Big fluffy head clear golden. Smells of grass, bread and rice. A bit like the opening of a rice cooker. Mostly grain flavor that drinks down easily.

Interesting beer, too bad it was stocked with the Microbrew Bombers and not the 'imports'/'Macros'.

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Photo of yelterdow
2.84/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Rich for this beer that I'm looking forward to reviewing tonight.

Served in a pilsener glass at just above fridge temperature. There's a very long code lasered onto the back of the bottle: 20060905B1710.

Appearance- Pale, clear yellow gold... a three finger heads stands atop the surface. No lacing here, just a few streams of carbonation racing upwards.

Smell- A noseful of corn or rice is all I'm getting here, with a hint of metal or ice cold chrome... sweet and creamy, and vegetal.

Taste- Flavors of metal, adjuncts of one type or another, and then the most subtle suggestion of malt and bread in the finish. The good news is that it isn't cloying, as others of the style might be. This would actually go great with sushi.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- The saving grace of this beer, I'm loving the wonderful texture. Thin and unassuming on the outset, it quickly effervesces and becomes almost perfectly suited for drinking alone or with food. I'm happy to have had the opportunity to sample this.

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Photo of aval89
2.8/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

picked one up today, had never heard of this beer before. I just pretty much grabbed it cuz of the wrapping.. when i got home I realized it was Chinese and a pale lager. When i saw the green bottle I had a good idea what this beer was gonna taste like.

Pours a golden color with a 2 finger head. Smells of malts and a bit skunky. The taste was very bland malty and a bit of rice and skunky after taste. Mouthful was very carbonated for me. The drinkability isnt all that great. Just didnt do it for me.

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Photo of ABOWMan
2.97/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Light in color with a nice 3 finger head as poured. Head was long lasting. Unfortunatley, the flavor, like most lagers is mild and non remarkable. Still, for a Chinese lager, I feel it is quite good. Clean malt flavor but mild. Very drinkable. Bbeautiful bottle is a beautiful emrald green. Almost worth saving.

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Photo of MisterClean
3.01/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From Bevmo 500ml

A - Pours light golden, 2 fingered white head, dissipates very slow.

S - Malted barley, rice, and honey.

T - Barley and rice.

M - Clean crisp, refreshing. Not a dry aftertaste. No hops though.

D Good introduction to let BMC drinkers know there are other craft beers out there. Nothing special though.

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Photo of yesyouam
1.58/5  rDev -43.8%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Harbin Beer is a very clear and sparkling light golden lager. The soft white head fades quickly. It has a funky aroma, like vegetables, melon, alcohol and rotten fruit. It has a medium-light body that's pretty smooth, with a reasonably crisp finish. It has a fusel flavor. It burns my nose. There is, perhaps, a note of citrus. It was a challenge to finish this beer. It comes in a fancy bottle, though!
(rated Nov 28, 2008)

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Photo of orangemoustache
2.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light golden straw color with a thin fizzy white cap that leaves no lacing. The nose is light grains,it smells like corn Chex cereal and Euro skunk. The flavors are a bit more doughy than the nose with some subtle malt sweetness and faint earthy hoppage. The body is extremely light with average carbonation and a crisp finish. This is extremely drinkable and with a lot more flavor than a BMC or most Chinese brews for that matter. A decent Lager that could go well with spicy food. Better than expected.

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Photo of scottoale
2.95/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 600ml. green bottle a bright yellow-gold with good clarity. A two-finger white foam head disappears in less than 90 seconds, leaving only sporatic bubbles emerging from the bottom, forming a tiny dollop on the surface.

First thing to the nose is a slight skunkiness from the green glass, followed by sweet pale malt and adjunct of corn presumably. The taste is much the same...sweet watery pale malt, less the skunk. A slight brashness of corn and alcohol with little carbonation at best do nothing to improve the drinkability of this light-med. bodied brew.

This beer is average at best. The bottle with fancy (good looking) labels and foil far exceed the contents within.

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Photo of Offa
3.84/5  rDev +36.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a fairly good, tasty lager.

Golden and slightly on the bubbly side, it has with a thin, fizzy white head that disspitaes soon to leave a permanent thin foamy ring around the glass but this lasts.

The aroma is fairly strong, pleaantly aromatic grass and nutty grain.

The taste is similar, with grassy grain, nuts. It's a little sweet with a light, brief, grassy and herbal bitterness with a hint of citrus at the end. It has a rather full feel and somewhat long, pleasant grain aftertaste. it's highly drinkable and has nothing off.

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Photo of KarlHungus
3.05/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer pours a clear pale straw color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes quickly into decent lacing. The aroma is faint bready malt, with some corn. The taste is like the aroma. It has no complexity what so ever, but it is pleasant. The mouthfeel is a little fuller than light bodied with good carbonation. Overall, this beer is pretty good for a Euro lager. I could drink it again if nothing better were available.

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Photo of jasonjlewis
2.54/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours a nice 3/4 finger head. Very pale yellow fizzy looking lager, but the head and retention are very nice for the style.

Very pale malts with a bit of rice and cereal grain. It's very hard to detect a smell, but that's typical for the style.

Flavor is like a fizzy lager, but I'll be objective for the style. No DMS on this one, just clean cereal grain with a very clean profile and a tiny bit of hops. This beer is close to water, and I might only have it on the hottest day to refresh myself. There is a lot of rice quality in this brew and it's almost a little too clean. Give me some sort of flavor. There needs to be a bit more balance as the grains are a little bit offputting in this beer.

This beer is just too boring and plain and the little flavor it hasn isn't too great. It's not a drain pour by any means, but still why bother?

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Photo of dsa7783
2.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Single bottle purchased from Super Saver in Somerville...
Apparance: Clear, see-through, light-golden hue... Minimal head... Minor lacing...
Smell: Faint, nondescript, corn and grain aroma...
Taste: Light-bodied, unassertive, bland flavor... Little going on in this department...
Light-bodied mouthfeel...
Easily drinkable, yet very unexciting...
Not recommended...

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Photo of beerthulhu
2.03/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Poured a brilliantly clear golden-orange with a rocky 1 finger high off white head that settled to a compact layering. No visible carbonation or lacing was to be seen.

S: light in nature with traces of fresh grass and wet grains.

T: The flavor was thin and worty, with a touch of sour mash. Overall was dry, rather bland with light traces of oranges and a slight flower bitterness. Some light grassiness, corn and dried rice were also noted.

M: watery, thin, with a little carbonation fizz. Nothing spectacular to behold.

D: Drinkability was slightly less then average, and macro-like. Wouldn't go out a buy a sixer of this. Wouldn't drink a second one back to back.

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Photo of jkdrummer
1.9/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Wow, wrapped in a nice cotton cloth with a gold elastic band - looked so fancy. $2.09 for 24oz -- hmmm -- something's up. Pours a nice frothy fluffy white head, better get a good look, oops, it's gone. MMM flat ricey, hay flavored beer. Where's the hops? It's not even sweet. Ugh, only half a mug to go. Awful stuff -- not recommended.

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Photo of DoubleJ
2.93/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Elegently wrapped bomber which I found at Pacific Ranch Market, and one I appropriately drank while watching the Beijing Olympics. On to the beer:

It's a soapy sud head on top this pale golden straw colored beer. The aroma has a little skunk, with some veggie and floral notes. The beer starts off sweet tasting in the mouth. It stays that way until the beer makes contact with the back of the palate. As that happens, spicy hops flavor comes out of it. In between it all comes a pinch of sulfur and alcohol. The hops linger on the back of the paalte in the aftertaste.

Well...it is better than Tsingtao, the nation's other mass-marketed beer available in the US. I do have to admit that although this beer is simply average, the outside wrap engraved with Chinese writing, then tied to the bottle like wrapping paper to a gift, gives the eye the impression it's something special.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
2.66/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear yellow color with a rapidly dissapating wite head.

Smells like an Asian Heineken, thats not good. Grassy nose, hints of peppermint, ganja and rice.

At first it tastes surprisingly smooth. Rice and peppermint with a somewhat unpleasent sticky aftertaste on the tounge. Not much beer flavor, aka barley or hops.

As far as Asian beers go, I would go for a Singha, Asahi or Tiger before this one. I will pass on buying this again.

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Harbin Lager from Harbin Brewery Group
2.81 out of 5 based on 173 ratings.
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