Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) | Steel Brewing Company

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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity)Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity)

Brewed by:
Steel Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Malt Liquor

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed in different abv. versions: 6.0%, 7.3%, 8.1%, & reports of a 8.9%. In a few counties/states, a 3.2% version is also available.

Added by Todd on 09-13-2001

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Reviews: 552 | Ratings: 1,193
Photo of RBorsato
3.94/5  rDev +59.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chill hazed urine yellow with a quickly dissipated white head but nice active carbonation. Decent malt aroma and flavor with just a touch of adjuncts. Nicely balanced; no hops really noticeable but it is certianly not sweet considering the ABV. Medium-full bodied and fairly clean for the style.

A costly example of the style but worth it in comparison.

Can States: "Fort Worth" & "Extra Malted Barley and Select Hops For Extra Gravity" & "Slow Brewed For a Minimum of 28 Days"

($1.49 / 24 oz. tall aluminum can)

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
2.65/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This was a total "shot in the dark". I had NO idea what to expect from this beer. I had my doubts of high quality, but i thought it might be worth the 99 cents it cost me...

Poured a clear light gold color, good clear white head at first, disapeared within a couple of minutes. Plenty of carbonation. Light body.

smells of sweetish malt(malt liqour), slight hop, grains and wheat

Taste starts off with a good amount of malt flavor, not much hop, and little flavor after a short time. Malt sweetness and grains/wheat combo dominates.

Very light on the palate, easy to drink despite it's 8.1 ABV!! I just get VERY bored with 'malt liquors', the taste seems to gradually get weaker the more you drink.

This was acceptable for 99 cents though.

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Photo of IntriqKen
2.67/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured American Lager yellow with a nice half finger head that melted very quickly to nothing although decent carbonation continued in the glass fairly aggressively.
Aroma is sweet malt and nothing nothing offensive, although nothing complex.
Taste is initially sweet malts followed with a cloying corn sweetness.
Alcohol isn't noticeable in the taste to me.
Aftertaste continues with a corn sweetness I find displeasing, however for an American malt liquor this is one of the best I've tried.
Mouthfeel is sticky from the sugars but sharp from the adequate carbonation.

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Photo of uncggop06
4.52/5  rDev +83%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a definate comparison to other malt liquors (as I've had the misfortune of having many). With that in mind, I believe this to be the king of all domestic, inexpensive, malt liquors. The look and smell are fairly average, as one would expect nothing more than straw yellow and a sour, bready smell. It is where the taste and mouthfeel come into play that brings this above the King Cobra's and Shlitz's. At 8.1% ABV, this thing is packed full of malt. So instead of having the watery, grainy taste of the other malt liquors, this has some *oomph* to it.

After a few swigs the feel of the alcohol goes away completely and all one tastes is the sour apple sweet malt. At $1.29, this runs about average to other ML's in the area, but with it's much better than average taste and definite higher alcohol, it gets the job done in a much more palatable way than good 'ole Old English 800 or King Cobra.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
2.1/5  rDev -15%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Appears a bit more golden than the typical malt with white nicely formed head dwindles down to leave behind specks of even lacing.
Aroma contains alcohol, mild citrus , malty layers of 2 row malt with corn and rice adjunct sweetness a nice mix for a high grav malt liquor. Taste is very alcoholic sweetness with creamy textured tones of malt corn and rice very tasty even after a full flight of tasting malt liquors. Mouthfeel is medium-light bodied slightly sticky with candy coated layers of malts. Drinkability...something I would definitely return to in a bind not something I'm a huge fan of on the regular.

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Photo of villainchiwwin
2.3/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

poured from can into pint glass
dull straw yellow - fizzy head disappeared in a flash. sickly lacing slid down the sides of the glass and was no more.
strange faint smell of cafeteria corn that has been steamed too long, under malt.
apple juice gone rancid as hops weakly struggle and die with tinny aluminum finish. alchohol slightly noticable with syrupy sweet finish that made me flinch.
thin prickly mouthfeel pretends to develop toward medium body before sputtering out.

"bang for your buck" affair. cheapness is only redeeming quality. terrible but has a high abv percentage.

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Photo of wke4estguy
2.1/5  rDev -15%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This is not a stellar alcohol choice. Thin foam that you could maybe call a head, disipated witin 20 seconds. No lacing to speak of. Alcohol and rice are prevalent in the taste, a little hop and a lot of alcohol in the smell. (Think frat lounge.) Watery, low viscosity gives it a decent mouthfeel but all that is ruined by the awful taste it leaves behind. I would have rated it lower but I think that it is right on for the American Malt Liquor category. Drinkable if you are planning to get drunk, and the $4.50 price tag for a twelve pack @ 6.0%ABV makes it a frat boy's dream.

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Photo of fishlegs
3.4/5  rDev +37.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Let's cut to the chase, if you are looking for an inexpensive buzz this is it. Cheap, (really cheap.. I just paid under $7 for a twelve pk).. does not taste like rotten sweet potatoes and will definitely give you a two beer buzz with over twice the punch of bud or miller lite. But if you normally have to drink 8 + beers to feel good I would say, be careful, I can predict a really bad morning after on more than 4 of these.

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Photo of jwff
3.73/5  rDev +51%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Nice thick head for a while, but I messed it up so what are you gonna do. A pale orange similar to helles lager. Strong corn smell. This is husky, dawg. The taste though... what a taste! It's hard to give "american malt liquor" a flavor but this is what I get.. except this is done especially well. I get kind of a vanilla aftertaste after a strong corn syrup body. I also notice cloves and some banana flavoring. The first malt liquor hefe? NAW dawg. A little syrupy in the mouth, but I'll be damned if I couldn't drink this all day, everyday. Maybe I do. This thing isn't too sweet. It is definitely a different beast.

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Photo of nlmartin
2.59/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer was poured from the can into a pub glass. This beer was served very cold. The beer was purchased at Krogers for $0.99.

Appearance: Nearing on a golden yellow coloration. The beer has a off white fluffy head. There is no staying power on the head. No lacing is noted on the glass.

Smell: The beer is pretty one dimensional with corny sweet grain smell.

Taste: Surprise! The beer definately has a cooked corn grain taste. The beer has an ok spicy alcohol taste. The beer has a brief hop burst. The beer has a clean finish.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: The beer is medium bodied with a clean finish. T'he carbonation makes this beer more drinkable. Strangely enough this is one very easy drinking beer. I wouldnt classify this as a beer treat by any measure. This is definately a beer I will repeat for cheap beer drinks.

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Photo of Manosbeeroffate
2.36/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Well I finally broke down and bought this for $1.99. Pours a light gold color. Smells sickly sweet but not overpowering. Taste is like fermented corn syrup, slightly grainy but mostly just corn syrup. Mouthfeel is whatever. Drinkability? Well better than the cherry wheat a while ago. It's good for a buzz, but for overall enjoyability, you can do better.

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Photo of thinkfull
3.72/5  rDev +50.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Gotta love the malt liquor. I'm going straight from the 12 oz. can, just like when I was in high school. Whoops, that was probably bad to say, but the 211 is over halfway gone, and I'm feeling it.

The appearance is, upon pouring some into a glass, decent. It looks like most other American Malts: yellow, bubbly, and with a dissapearing head. The head sticks around a little more than the average malt liquor, which I see as being Mickeys. So 211 earns it's 3.5.

The taste is pretty dang good. No, it's not a well-aged Oaked Bastard. It's a malt liquor, and it well overwhelms the competition. This is the perfect beer for hanging out, talking shit, and (in my case) playing a few tunes with your friends. Slightly sweet, somewhat alchoholic, a good bit of Squirt in the flavor. A little bit of cornbread flavor. Makes me want to listen to Pantera.

Mouthfeel is the lacking aspect of this malt. It overwhelms my pallate for quite some time, due to the stickiness of the beer. It just won't go away without drinking some water. The 211 goes down smooth enough, but afterwards feels gooey.

Highly drinkable, refreshing, good beer. No, it's not what a "sophisticated" pallate wants. I would not compare this to any "good" beer, but that's the point. Prole beer for cheep bastards. Wonderful!

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Photo of rodrot
3.32/5  rDev +34.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I picked up a can of this stuff while traveling through VA, mainly because for some reason it's not available in NC and I wanted to review it. I was pleasantly surprised by this beer. It poured a light amber color with a half inch head that went away quickly. Aroma was sweet and malty with just a hint of corn/vegetable in the nose. Taste was fruity sweet, citrusy and lemony with a light hop bitterness. I could also taste a slight grainy taste in the finish. Alcohol was noticeable but not too strong. This was a medium bodied beer and had a lot more flavor than any malt liquor I have ever had. Not a bad deal for a $1.00 24 oz can.

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Photo of aforbes10
2/5  rDev -19%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Another competitor in our Malt Liquorpalooza 2006 competition. This one beat out Lucky Number 7 11 in the first round but then faced off with Olde English and went down in a unanimous vote. Mostly the take home message with Steel reserve is that you're gonna get punched in the face with beer and its not going to feel good but its gonna knock you out. Too sweet and corny for me. definitely feel the alcohol diffusing into my mouth and tongue. a lot of bang for your buck but not a tasty treat.

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Photo of Drew966
2.42/5  rDev -2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The can says extra malted barley and select hops for extra gravity. Pours a pale yellow with a thick white head that dissipates fairly quickly. Smell is a bit fruity. Lots of adjunct in the taste, some alcohol too. Thankfully not painfully sweet in the aftertaste, kind of dry actually. Pretty drinkable for a malt liquor.

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Photo of budgood1
2.38/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

pours out of the 24oz can a dark golden colour with a relatively frothy egg shell white head. lots of lace. fruity and grainy in the far so good. pretty sweet stuff here....sugary slickness slides right down my throat. alcohol spiciness hits the tastebuds and then warms the belly. pretty much a high gravity buzz maker that is intended to get to the point quickly and cheaply. smooth mouthfeel on top of a big slick mouthfeel makes this poundable, but i think i'd only want one. there are better malt liquors out there.

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Photo of DogFood11
2.36/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

40oz bottle. About once a month I pick up something like this to keep it real.

Respectable ivory white fizz head supported by layer after layer of big bubblged carbonation. Lacing? Yep.

Corn, cooked vegetable type aroma's. Taste is similair although the cutting carbonation is welcomed and crispens up a rather adjunct brew. Sweet corn is predominent but its drinkable and the abv% is respectable to make this worth someones time.

It is what it is, a damn fine malt liquor. Probably the most drinkable I've had to date, even as it got warm I didn't get that schwill spit laden crap like some other malts.

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Photo of CaskofFlyingDog
1.53/5  rDev -38.1%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

My friends would buy this last year so I would snag one once in a while. At one point I started to enjoy it's bite.

I poured one of these into a glass last time - that was an awful idea lol. No one will do that anyway with Malt Liqour so I'll just put down in the can review (malt liqour has carbonation for a reason.)

Appearance is a golden color. Head goes away INSTANTLY. I was terrified after this. (that's the glass part.) Smell is just unpleasant - not terrible but not good at all. Taste is a corn sweet and bitter thing going on. The quicker you drink it the better flavor. It is a bit tasty. You have to be with friends to enjoy it really. It's fun. The mouthfeel is slimy and thick. That's kinda gross. Drinkability is definitley poor because the carbonation is so filling it really sits on your stomach well. It may have something to do with the 'high gravity.'

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Photo of barleyman
2.88/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I started drinking 211 because the wife bitched about how may beers i drank. I figured, well the higher the proof, the fewer would be necessary. I guess I have gotten used to it but this tastes better than bud and miller to me now. And for a man who prefers barleywines, this is a session beer. The head disappears almost immediately, leaving little lacing as it goes down. I usually drink my beer out of a straight sided pint glass I store in the freezer. What can I say, its cheap, not all that disgusting and it does the job.


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Photo of Tallboy
2.56/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I reviewed this on memory[but after 2 may be a bit cloudy] 1.Str8 from the 40.oz It tastes a hell of a lot better than it smells,Pure and simple this is the beer for getting lit up like christmas time in both the cheapest and quickest way possible.

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Photo of HardTarget
2.85/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle Inspection: Can, 8.1% abv. “respect my authoriti"!

Aroma: Fruity, some grape and apple with a hint of hop. The required by law corn and alcohol notes show up as scheduled.

Appearance: Gold glass with a finger of firm frothy foam that settles to a modest cover that leaves tide marks of thin lace.

Flavor: Fruity with a firm alcohol edge. A slight soda taste, like it’s mixed with Sprite ®
The fruit note is slightly citric, like an orange apple blend.

Mouthfeel: Medium heavy body with a mild chew. The texture is pretty syrupy.

Overall Impression: A bit firm in the alcohol taste and a bit too sweet for my tastes. I believe the sweet is trying to hide the alcohol. As a malt liquor, it’s not bad at all. All part of Pegasus's world karma whore tour. Wheee!

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Photo of tgbljb
3.35/5  rDev +35.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured a very pale amber color with large white head that was able to revived with mild swirling. Smell is minimal with only a slight sweetness. Taste is very mild, but still gives a good creamy mouthfeel. I detect virtually no alcohol except for a bit of burn in the aftertaste. The drinkability is truly scary, as I feel I could drink a lot of this beer without realizing what I was getting into. I can see my malt liquors get such a bad rap.

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Photo of KarlHungus
2.36/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 1 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This brew pours a clear pale straw color white no head. The aroma is sweet with some grassy notes underneath. The taste is very low key, and inoffensive. Well, inoffensive if you are looking for almost nothing in the flavor. If you are looking for something, it could be deemed very offensive. It does do a good job at hiding the alcohol content. Although, I don't know how, as it is certainly not being hidden by the flavor. The mouthfeel is thin with a lot of carbonation. Overall, this isn't horrible, but it isn't good either.

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Photo of UnionMade
2.51/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Savored straight from the clear 40ozer, of course.
Clear, on the paler, orangey side of gold, with a large bubbled, soda-like head with some retention. Some blobby lacing within the bottle. Nice carbonation streamers rise from the bottom. Sugary malt aroma without a trace of hops. Alcohol is readily apparent, fruity, estery sweet, though it attempts to hide behind the huge piles of corn. The first sip is the best, of course. High levels of carbonation and a nearly ice cold temperature do their part to lessen the sweetness. As they depart, however, this brew gets a little tough to down. Common problems with malt liquor, as the sweetness can be a bit much, and such a large serving tends to take a minute to drink. Artificial carbonation doesn't help either. At least you can reclose it. I'll opt for the double deuce next time. Anyways, the body is rather heavier than I'd anticipated, more towards medium, becoming more evident with the rapidly departing carbonation. Some sourness, light skunkiness (although there's hardly any hops to skunk) and sweet booze in the finish, leaving off with a corn syrup, malt extract aftertaste. Honestly, I really had to force myself to down the last inch of the bottle. This stuff can get really boozy and syrupy if you don't kill it in 15 minutes or less.
For malt liquor, it's not bad. I've never had a period of time where I drank 40's on any regular basis, but I've had my share. I still prefer Private Stock or Elephant from Denmark, if that counts, but this isn't bad. I'd rather just have a couple bottles of regular strength beer and save myself the headache, literally. I don't know what it is about malt liquor, but I always get a headache from it.

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Photo of danielharper
1.8/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Purchased, er...

Okay, the deal is that one of the guys at my local gave me a can of this to go with my other purchases. He'd just tried it, and called it "kind of sweet", and happened to have a broken four-pack, so he gave one to a regular customer. Nice customer service there, although I wish he'd had an open Samuel Smith's instead.

So let's see. Appearance is pretty negative. Dingy yellow body with a thick white foamy head that disappears almost immediately. The beer is so light it almost looks white as it's being poured, it's absolutely transparent and produces no carbonation at the bottom of the glass. Maybe I should have just reviewed from the can.

Aroma isn't promising. I'm not getting much of anything in the nose, smells like day-old Bud Light that's been left open in the refrigerator. A vaguely "beery" smell that I'm sure frat guys know all about, but no hop presence and nothing to really advance the beer. It's not outright offensive, though, so I'm not giving it the lowest possible rating.

Taste... well, tastes a lot like a standard macro lager. I'm trying to give this beer a fair shake, and I must admit that it's pretty easily drinkable (at least at the cold temperature at which I'm drinking it), but there's nothing really to recommend here. No hops to speak of, and the maltiness is pretty watered down overall. Swishing around the mouth produces a sweetness, but I'm guessing that's more due to my saliva processing the beer and breaking it down than anything actually in the brew. Not pleasant, but not patently offensive.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery, but hey, it's a malt liquor. I'll be a bit generous and give it reasonably high marks here, as it's supposed to be thin and easy to drink.

Overall drinkability is low, but not terribly low. It's probably the most godawful beer I've ever reviewed, but it's probably not a drain-pour, and I can imagine beers that would be much more difficult. Pounding these back straight from the can is probably the best way to drink it, but that would apply to Bud Light, as well.

I won't buy this, well, ever, but it isn't bad for free and I can imagine that with spicy food it might be a good palate cleanser. Basically tastes like alcoholic water.

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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) from Steel Brewing Company
2.47 out of 5 based on 1,193 ratings.
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