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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) | Steel Brewing Company

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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity)Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity)
1,231 Ratings
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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Ratings: 1,231 |  Reviews: 569
Photo of southernmagnus
3.38/5  rDev +42%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cheap and potent.

Definitley on the sweet-side. Occasionally feels like melted caramel in my mouth.

As a kid who grew up on Old English and Schlitz, this is a considerable step above.

Holy Moly this stuff, for the price/category, is drinkable.

Some times you want to get plastered for cheap, and this'll do it better than anything else out there.

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Photo of samie85
3.33/5  rDev +39.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours a very pale golden color with a two finger, very white head that dissipates just as quickly as it occurs.

S-A mild, piny hop nose with some sweet grains.

T-Sweet grains upfront with some corn and some sweet green apple notes on the finish with a slight drying note.

M-Pretty smooth and light but prickly carbonation with a slightly drying mouthfeel.

D-Pretty easy drinking for 8%. It drinks like a hoppier version of Miller High Life, which isn't a bad thing for a malt liquor.

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Photo of buschbeer
2.69/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured into a pint glass to one inch of white head. It is gold in color. The aroma is grainy sweet with alcohol. The taste is sweet with alcohol. The mouthfell is thin. This is a rough beer to drink. The ABV is great for getting ripped, but other than that it's worthless. Don't get me wrong. Every now and then you just need to get lit!

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Photo of FreshHawk
2.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A - Light, clear amber color with an average sized, foamy white head. Disappears fast with almost no lace left.

S - Fair amount of grain and a touch of fruitiness, especially apple. Fair amount of sulfur aroma and some urine like aroma. Maybe a touch of hops. Not great.

T - Similar to the nose. Plenty of grainy and alcohol flavors. Also a pretty strong apple flavor. Faint corny sweetness as well. Taste like a high alcohol mix of a poor lager and a poor cider. Some sulfur flavors present. Touch of mineral taste on the finish.

M - Between light and medium body, that is closer to light. Pretty carbonated. A bit of a thin and watery feel but somewhat crisp.

D - Limited drinkability with not that great of flavor and a high, noticeable ABV.

Notes: About what I expected from this. It's primary function is a cheap way to get alcohol in your system. For what it is, it doesn't taste horrible and gets the job done.

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Photo of StoneBrewFanatic
2.56/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours a very light straw color into my pint glass, decent head that dissipates very quickly and leaves behind little to no lace. Lots of carbonation happening here.

S - Sweet malts, grain, alcohol.

T - On the sweet side, nice malts and grain, there is a little bit of citrus I am getting as well.

M - Pretty lite in body with lots of carbonation, a little too much I would say. Has a nice warmth to it.

D - Drank this one back in the day and decided to give it a whirl while I was kinda broke at only $1.20 for a 24oz. can who can really complain? Anyway, for what it is, it's a pretty good beer.

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Photo of AleWatcher
3.34/5  rDev +40.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I drank this the night of my "shit-beer showdown," but I didn't review it because I was already in the hot tub... Had to buy another can...
Poured into pint glass.

The first thing I must say is this: upon cracking open the can, the smell of urine filled my kitchen. Not regular urine, but rather the urine of some one that eats a ton of green vegetables. Leafy-broccoli-pea smell goes away after a few rough sips and a light malty sweetness comes through with a hint of grassy and lemony bright hops-- the malts and hops are both faint, when compared to most craft beer, but are stronger than your average BMC adjunct lager.

The beer looks a little darker than other "swill," but is certainly in the gold family of colors. A 2 finger white head became a wispy cloud of micro-bubbles very quickly-- left very little lacing. On a second pour, the retention is much better.

The taste has a slight sweetness followed up by a light hoppiness-- lemon, grass, and even a noble spice note? A relatively clean finish offers a hint of some fruity esters and a warming kiss of alcohol. Hard to hide 8% in a beer this light on ingredients. It actually works. The beer isn't undrinkable at all-- quite the contrary now that the original aroma I detected is completely gone! If I'm in the mood to get a little buzz, I can do it with a $12 bomber of Dreadnaught or a $1.79 can of Reserve... I reckon I'll pick the Dreadnaught far more often than not-- since I rarely drink "just to get fucked up" anymore (having kids changes that pretty quickly).

The beer is medium bodied with enough carbonation. Drinks pretty well for the pricetag and stigma it carries.

Bottom line-- I'd take this over Miller or Coors any day!

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Photo of mikesgroove
1.68/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

So, he decides to bring back two Malts with him as well, eesh. My journey into the bottom of the barrel continues. We did a side by side with this and Colt 45. Consumed on 08/09/2010.

The initial pour brings back memories of long forgotten teenage years. A urine colored pour with a minimal head graces our presence. A light bit of carbonation could be seen streaming up from the bottom of the glass, but it quickly evaporates as soon as it gets there. Aroma is wet hay, corn, grains, light alcohol, and just a rank smell. Not really one to write home about. As I take the first sip it is harsh, the flavor is just not appetizing in anyway, but amazingly as I finished it off I was left with the impression it was not terrible. An odd thing and mostly due to the abv I am sure. Light corn syrup mixes with hay, light bready notes and a hint of alcohol left on the tongue long after it is finished.

Overall I think I will pass, though I will admit it was better then the colt 45, but that was not saying very much. I think I am going to have more fun reviewing the things from the "bottom" then from the top, lol.

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Photo of jnheinz
3.7/5  rDev +55.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's a 40.. what ya gonna do.

My experiences have been Olde English and Colt 45.. This blows them out of the water. It has a good taste that goes down good. Served cold out of the refridgerator in a brown bag...Only way to drink a 40.

It's $2.49/40oz here. Take one home, and let it lift you. It won't make your stomach gurgle like other crap 40's.

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Photo of uhhhaaron
2.56/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

consumed 02-10-2009, 24oz can into pint glass.

appearance: pours a golden color, a shade bit darker than piss. minimal head with ok lacing. bubbles rushing up.

smell: sweet grain/malts & cooked veggies, followed by a metallic odor, then a strong booze note.

taste: sweetness upfront, grainy notes, semi-metallic taste, then the warm boozy finish. the strong alcohol taste slowly fades as you drink more. it has a surprisingly smooth finish.

mouthfeel: light to medium bodied with medium carbonation. sits sort of warm in the mouth.

drinkability: it can go either way.. i found it not so bad to drink. i wouldn't session this beer though.

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Photo of RomaniIteDomum
2.92/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This was also part of my malt liquor tasting.

Pours yellow with a light white head and some lacing.

Smells decent. Muted on the urine aspects of some of our other entrants that evening. Smells more of fresh corn than pee.

Tastes fairly tame. Sweet corn, some light pee, and a touch of booze. Still pretty decent.

The feel is on the lighter side per style, but the body is still decent.

Pretty damn drinkable. Goes down smooth and remails fairly non-offensive. Tied for second place.

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Photo of jsprain1
3.02/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- A golden brew with a large amount of carbonation bubbles and very little head retention or lacing.
S- The smell is light grain, with just a hint of what seems like a varient of hop oil.
T- The taste is initially grainy, followed by a faint hint of hop, a good bit of alcohol warmth, and just the slightest hint of corn. Somewhat sweet throughout.
M- Full bodied for a malt liquor. Crisp carbonation.
D- As far as malt liquors go, this isn't a bad choice. Vastly superior to the majority of macro swill.

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Photo of ptykozoon
2.11/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Steel as my 1st review because it is the first strong beer I ever had, and in some unforeseen way introduced me to Chimay and so on and so forth. However I refuse to buy another can of this, so I'm going off of memory here.

Appearance is a light crisp yellow. There is a decent amount of a fluffy white head, however it dissipates fast.

Smell is alcohol, that and a musky funk that is similar to urinal deposits.

Taste is strong, carbonated and bitter, every bit of that 8.1 percent alcohol slays the tongue and does not relent. Not too many other flavors in this beer, maybe a sourness, perhaps apple, lots of sugar but for the most part it just tastes like a watered down liquor with carbonation.

Mouthfeel is very very smooth and dense, but at the same time it tastes watery, and the bite from the alcohol makes it...

...not a very good drinkable beer. Drinkability is poor, however extra points because we are talking about THE KING of bum beers. So it does have its place as a session brew.

Highly recommended if you are 15/alleyway dweller/masochistic.

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Photo of comfortablynumb1
2.33/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Been a while since I had one of these, so I decided to give it a run....

Poured from a 40oz into a canada pint glass (drank the rest of the 40 out of the bottle, as it felt kinda weird pouring a 40 into a pint glass)....

A - Pours a golden/amber color with a three finger white foam that dissipates real fast.

S - The only real smell I get from this is alcohol. Not too enticing....

T - Tastes like every other macro lager out there with a sweet finish. The alcohol is not as apparent as it was in the smell....

M - Light bodied. Tastes watered down....

D - Definitely not something I would buy for the taste, but it does get the job done if you want to catch a fast buzz. You pretty much get what you pay for here. I probably won't be buying this one again because for some reason it gets me angry if I drink to much of it. All in all, pretty good drinkability for someone on a budget and looking to catch a buzz....


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Photo of jporf911
2.78/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Imbibed straight from the typical 40oz bottle.

Appearance- Through the clear bottle, it looks like a transparent medium dull yellow. Upon opening, there is a slight bit of foam that returns each time a drink is taken but quickly fades. There is no lacing to speak of.

Smell- The slight hints of corn and malt that are dominated by the acidic traditional "fuel" smell of malt liquor.

Taste- The taste is primarily composed of corn, yeast-heavy bread, and slightly sweet alcohol.

Mouthfeel- It feels crisp but not particularly refreshing. Steel Reserve is medium-bodied with considerable carbonation.

Drinkability- Contrary to widespread opinion (much of which seems to be held by people who have not actually tried this beer and instead rely on secondhand accounts), Steel Reserve is one of the better examples of malt liquor. Just be sure to finish the 40oz fairly quickly because it does exhibit the unsavory quality of becoming rather nasty as it warms up.

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Photo of irishevans
3.07/5  rDev +29%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

the standard "40", not poured into a glass, as that is blaphasphomy for malt liquor. reviewed as for the style, as we all know malt liqua is NO BA's first choice/favorite.

A- Transparent straw/gold in color, with a bit of actual white foam, that goes away FAST, but as you hit the bottle it foams up a bit only to disappear again. and no lace.

N- Lots of light malt notes, and a bit of an almost "premix" 2-stroke fuel smell that malt liqua' tends to have, but not too offensive (as malt liquor goes anyway). little bit of corn in there too.

T- Crisp, and corny, not as in a bad romantic comedy, but as in tasting much like corn. no real hop bite, though the bottle does say they use "select hops" to brew it, if anything they only show on the mouthfeel.

M- lightly crisp, rather "wet" if you will, and lacking any kind of bite at all. standard for the style.

D- dangerous for being 8.1%, as malt liquor, keep the shakes away fluid goes not too bad a choice, but I would obviously rather be drinking something better, like an actual ale with some flavor.

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Photo of JMad
1.9/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured a 24oz can into a glass mug, Malt liquor, mmm, gross, Not much explainig on this one.

The beer looked good with a 2 finger head and nice gold, straw color. The head disappeared quickly.

The glass smelled sweet and boozy. The alcohol smell overpowered any other scent.

It tasted like alcohol, alittle sweet.

The mouthfeel wasn't anything special.

You can drink this stuff, but now I remember why I haven't touched this beer since I was in high school.

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Photo of BabyBastard
2.36/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Tall boy can poured into my goblet, appears a good looking pale yellow, slightly amber in color as it's poured, mellows out into straw color with a decent sized white foamy head that retreats fairly quickly.

Smells hotly of alcohol, as this is the 8.1%er. Bread like and seems sort of yeasty to me for some reason. Other than the overpowering alcohol nose, it is difficult to decipher the other nuances of this brews scent.

Taste is not impressive, at first it has this strange metallic twinge that I've never experienced anywhere else. Not sure if this could be due to the canned format, but it is unpleasant. Corn and alcohol are the only other characteristics I can use to describe this malt liquor. Not even the temperature of this brew can mask the bad taste.

Feel is very watery and hot, despite the cold serving temperature. Carbonation is passable, but there really is not too much else going for this brew. Drinkability scores low due to the horrible flavor and that high alcohol content does not remedy the situation. Though if you have more than one of these, you may not remember how horrible this tastes.

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Photo of Spica66
2.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A: Medium golden-amber, low carbonation, not much head.

S: Smells like bread and alcohol.

T: Very flat tasting. Sickly sweet finish. I don not like it at all.

M: Correct for a malt liquor.

D: Really poor. No hops, no beer flavor (I guess that is why they call it malt liquor).

I would NEVER buy this again!

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Photo of BobJustBob
1.71/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Poured from a 12 Oz can into a Globe Goblet.

I'll start with the positives. Steel Reserve has an appealing medium golden-amber color and a pleasant bready bouquet.
I just wish it tasted like it smelled or looked.
Biscuity, would be a pleasant way to describe the flavor. Kind of like those cheap Marie biscuits imported from Mexico that inhabit the budget cookie aisle in Walgreen's. It tastes like buckets of high-fructose corn sweetener has been dumped into the Beer. I've always liked sweet brews along the lines of Scotch Ale, but Steel Reserve lacks any character other than the intense and very obvious artificially sweetened flavor. "Nasty" would be an improvement.
Hops are listed on the can as an ingredient, but I can't taste any.
The can also says amusingly: "We use nearly twice the ingredients of many normal Lagers & brew for over twice as long as many quality Beers"
So, Miller admits this is an abnormal lager and distances itself from quality brews.
I'll give them credit for truth in advertising.
This one is as bad as it gets.

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Photo of kingcrowing
2.77/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz can poured into a 33cl Celebrator glass.

Pours a very clear yellow color, clearly a macro lager, very thin white head with a tinge of lacing but light.

Taste isn't too bad it's similar to Stella in the malt, basically no hops, the booze and corn Totally dominate. Really it's not too bad for what it is.

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Photo of Blakaeris
3.89/5  rDev +63.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark yellow with a thin fizzy head.

Aroma is pale malt with a touch of lemon and crisp hop.

Taste is similar to the nose. Pale grainy malt, with a hint of cracker. Finishes dry and crisp with some light citrus and a bit of a musty quality.

Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied.

Not something I would normally drink, but based on the style I have to admit it is pretty good. There is a surprising amount of flavor to this one. Better than you would expect.

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Photo of bashiba
3.73/5  rDev +56.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured deep dark yellow with lots of carbonation bubbles and a fizzy white head.

The smell was very sweet and corny.

The flavor is surprisingly mild with a hint of banana and clove, slightly sweet but not overly. Very fruity, with an almost German quality. No hops to speak of, but that was expected.

The mouthfeel is thick and oily for a yellow beer with nice carbonation.

Easily one of the better Bargain beers out there, Maybe the best Malt Liquor I have come across, and easily as good as many of the main stream American Macro Lagers.

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Photo of SimpleBeerLover
2.65/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: 16 oz silver colored can. Poured a little out to observe color. Very clear and remarkably fizzy.

Smell: Extremely faint malt and hops aromas.

Taste: Very little initial taste, although maltiness sticks around in your mouth for a little while.

Mouthfeel: Almost non-existent except for fizziness and some crispness. Feels very "thin".

Drinkability: Thoroughly unoffensive at the cost of being thoroughly unremarkable in almost every respect. Easy to drink, sure, but the list of reasons why you would is a short one.

Conclusion: Not a beer I would pick up for myself at the store or serve to my friends, but if you're at a party, it's not a bad pick. The crispness is very refreshing if its hot out. Not my taste but also far from horrible.

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Photo of MadTown1000
3.54/5  rDev +48.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours into a pint glass with foam, foam, foam. Probably 2/3 of the glass is foam, and it sticks. The beer itself it a medium straw, a bit darker than expected. Actually pretty nice looking.

Smell is almost nonexistent.

Taste is very malty. I wouldn't have guessed it was 8.1% alcohol unless I saw it on the can. A substantial amount of sweetness forward, it it lingers for a good long time.

Drinkability suffers only because at that ABV, you'd be dumb to drink too much too fast. Although I suppose that is the point under the right circumstances, isn't it?

This can't be right... did I just admit to LIKING Steel Reserve? Official malt liquor of the the more sophisticated homeless person? Taste is a mysterious thing sometimes.

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Photo of rootbeerman
2.52/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

im re-reviewing for the fact that i simple need 24oz cans for and engineering project. poured into Duvel tulip.

A: pours straw yellow, with a half finger white head, no lace.
S: cooked sweet corn, light roast malt, a very slight hint of hop earthiness.
T: isn't bad but isn't great either. more of the sweet corn/ light malt. hops are only lightly bitter and lightly earthy. a slight yeasty sour dough quality. alcohol is not noticable, can says 8.1%
M: crisp yet slick and seems to linger in mouth
D: easy when cold, harder as it warms, typical for the style.

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Steel Reserve 211 (High Gravity) from Steel Brewing Company
Beer rating: 2.38 out of 5 with 1,231 ratings
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