Tsingtao | Tsingtao Brewery Co., Ltd.

588 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Tsingtao Brewery Co., Ltd.

Style: American Adjunct Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-20-2001

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Reviews: 588 | Ratings: 1,699
Photo of utahbeerdude
4.69/5  rDev +68.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I am not sure that I am reviewing the same beer as some of the other reviewers, but here goes...

Visual: Light, clear gold; creamy head that diminishes rather quickly.
Aroma: Nice spicy hop aroma at first, strength fades somewhat quickly, but nice spicy aroma persists. Not the typical pils/light-lager aroma.
Flavor: Initial bitterness with some hops flavor, becomes less bitter in middle, then more in finish, which remains in aftertaste. This beer is exceptionally clean.
Mouthfeel: Carbonation seems appropriate for a pils – a bit of a bite to it, but it doesn't dominate. Not as strong as Birra Moretti, e.g.
Overall: A great balance of hops (aroma, flavor, and bitterness) against maltiness and carbonation. At present this is my favorite pils/light-lager; I would place it in the German Pils category.

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Photo of YumaLaowai
4.58/5  rDev +64.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I love This drink. I lived in China and my go to drink was Harbin Snow but being back in the states for about a year now it's hard for me to remember my comparison.
Very hard beer, just how I like it. Doesn't need salt but it definitely gives it that extra kick

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Photo of Graham_D_Dillon
4.5/5  rDev +61.3%

I've had this twice. In a Japanese restaurant and at the time, I thought it was pretty skunky but the one I'm drinking now is perfect. A perfect amount of skunk but the beer is very mild. Would defiantly get again if I'm at an oriental restaurant.

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Photo of Eisen
4.42/5  rDev +58.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Keep in mind the taste score of 5 is due to its category and its price, if it was anything else it would soundally fail.

Drinking this straight from the source, or pretty close to it. I do have to say I think it is real funny that most chinese poar your beer into either a wiskey/Old Fashond glass or a High-ball glass. THere is no head, nor any much of anything. But the taste is 40 times better than Budwiser and it has never mad me sick, unlike budwiser. And although I paid a full 90 cents USD for my pint, I have to say it was worth it. This beer is the best Chinese beer that I have incountered; I will post if there is any better local beer. For the price and whithin the catagory, TsingTao (Qing Dao) is the best beer you can get, and I would recan In the US it still beats most American shit y lagers.

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Photo of likethetaste
4.35/5  rDev +55.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I got this with a variety pack from World Market. I was surprised by this because I did not have high hopes for it having experienced other chinese beers. But i must say this was very good. Poured a nice golden yellow color with really nice bread like smell. This was a very nice and crisp beer that was very refreshing. I would love to get this all the time. Great to eat with asian food!

If you are comparing this like you should to other Macro lagers, this is by far one of the best.

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Photo of reddragon13
4.34/5  rDev +55.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

delicious, easy-to-drink lager that is not arrogant, pretentious, or hangover-on-the-first-sip inducing. This is China's top beer, and realistically, the only good beer coming out of China today. Multiple flavors = red label, green label, more. Tastes better on draft in mainland - the bottles travel ok to America.

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Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
4.22/5  rDev +51.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served cold into a room temperature glass at a Chinese buffet restaurant.

Appearance: Golden color, crystal clear, with fluffy white head that dissipates quickly without any lacing.

Nose: Refreshingly hoppy with grassy barley hint.

Taste: Crisp, the slightest maltiness, sweet.

Feel: Light body, solid bittering, clean aftertaste.

Overall: My favorite pilsner. Distinctly crisp, clean, fresh and hoppy, with none of the soapy flavor or yeasty smell of macro lagers. It's a great lunch-time beer. It beats anything else in the category than I can think of, and the bad reviews of this enjoyable beer simply don't make any sense.

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Photo of Offa
4.17/5  rDev +49.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a good, tasty lager, clean flavourful and with some character.

Golden, slightly on the darkish side, it has a large white head shrinking slowly to a small, lasting ring and it leaves a hint of lace.

The aroma is overall standard for the type but stronger and more characterful than most. It has malty grain with flowery herbal hops.

The taste is grain with a hint of bread and apple, slightly sweet, with definite herbal hoppy bitterness, plus a fairly long, nice aftertaste. It's very clean and has a rather full, warm body.

This is far more tasty and interesting than Tsingtao Pure Draft, so do not get these confused.

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Photo of billybob
4.1/5  rDev +47%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

nice clear light golden color with a large white head that held to a quarter inch then to a ring on the glass with some lacing. light aromas of malt and yeast. taste of sweet malt and yeast with a grainy slight hop finish. medium body, crisp, lots of carbonation, slightly different from the run of the mill macro lager pretty enjoyable beer. good for summer fare.

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Photo of BeerBob
4.07/5  rDev +45.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tsingtao beer pours a bright clear golden amber from a dark green glass bottle with a pry off cap. Head went to over two fingers before settling down to a full ring of foam with small islands. Streamers of carbonation are welling up from the bottom of my 16oz beer glass for a picture perfect pour.

Nose is of grain and just a touch of husk with some yeasty sulfur. Palate is a crisp, refreshing and distinctly German lager, with toasted barley malts that are well bittered and done to perfection.

Tsingtao can take its place among the worlds best German beers in this class. Tsingtao beer is a great German beer that just happens to have been brewed in China

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Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +43.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Brilliant straw with a quickly dissipating 2” white foam cap.
S: Grainy nose with an earthy background and a slight hint of skunk.
T: Grain with traces of apples and adjuncts. Slightly sweet beginning with a dry finish.
F: Clean, crisp, light bodied, effervescent.
O: A standard Chinese restaurant beer.

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Photo of catalinacapri
4/5  rDev +43.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is my first post here on beer advocate, so I apologize if I screw it up.

I will start by saying that overall, I'm not really a big fan of the "Skunky" smell and flavor that you typically get from beers in green bottles. That said, I'm living in China, so if I wan't a bottled beer, green it usually is!

Anyway, my friend recently posted a story about of her tour of the Tsingtao brewery over on her website (www.tongatime.com), and reading it reminded me of the flat out excellent flavor of this stuff when served on tap when I was in Qingdao. I don't entirely undertand all the details of this, but when you drink it on tap in Qingdao, it seems to come two different ways. The more common is the typical pilsner-lager stuff like you buy in stores, but better than the bottles in my opinion due to the distinctly missing skunk smell. If you buy the stuff in cans, it basically tastes the same to me. Not bad, but really not much going on here. Sort of like a Budweiser, if you ask me. The other way I had it on tap in a few places in Quingdao however, was some sort of unfiltered version, and oh boy, that was a pleasant surprise!!

While I anticipated (gladly) the aforementioned "lack of skunk" what I wasn't expecting was the really really nice floral hoppiness it had. It caught me off guard in such a nice way. Crisp and cold and filled my sinuses with all sorts of nice aroma. Closest thing I could compare it's taste to would probably be a Sam Adams Boston Lager. Appearance-wise, it is an attractive pale golden-yellow, mildly cloudy beer. If feels nice and smooth going down, and I found it quite easy to drink a large quantity rather quickly!

After leaving Qingdao (I live in a different Chinese city), I thought "Hot Damn, I'm gonna find this stuff in a can and be a happy Laowai!!" Sadly, this quest has thus far been unfruitful. I've found numerous different Tsingtao varieties in cans and bottles on the shelves in local stores here, but none of them that I've sampled so far have the awesome hoppiness of that cold draft stuff available near the brewery.

Amongst the ones I've tried have been the standard green label stuff, one in a white/silver can labeled "Pure Draft", a gold colored can (can't remember the name on it at the moment), and also a green bottle one labeled "Augenter" (can't find that one in a can anywhere). So far, no heavenly hoppiness!!!

If anyone knows where to get this unfiltered nectar in a can, please let me know!!! Until then, I'll have to wait until I make it over to Qingdao again and get some on tap!

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Photo of rickyleepotts
4/5  rDev +43.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer smells a lot like a lager… hence that it's an American Adjunct Lager. Not sure what the adjunct means, but hey… it smells good. I am sitting here with some buddies, and a guy just took a whiff… he said it smells like "rotten lemons". Um, rotten lemons? Has he ever been in a room with a rotten lemon? Not sure where he gets that from, but hey… this guy likes to hang out with rotten fruit I guess!

Anyway, I think this beer smells incredible. It does have a small hint of citrus. But I wouldn't call it rotten. Look… he made me mad. Now all I can think about is a dirty rotten lemon! Let's see if it tastes better than it smells. I hope. It's VERY clear, so I hope there is some carbonation in there.

There is… and there is some insane sour coming at me here. When I see a beer that is in a language that I can't pronounce, I want to grab some sushi and hang out on the patio. But I feel like I have had this bar before. At any rate, it tastes a lot better than it smells. That sour… right off the bat. I like that. And it sticks around for a little bit too.

This beer is crisp, would be great on the porch watching the sun go down. This has to be the Chinese Budweiser. At any rate, it's good. Maybe one day when I visit China I can drink one with the natives. Yummy! Bottoms up people.

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Photo of beertaster13
3.98/5  rDev +42.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have searched far and wide and have finally found a lager I truly enjoy. Pours a golden yellow with a white foam cream head that is quite impressive. Lacing is thick and foamy. The smell is of grain with slight skunk. Hints of earth and slight malt. The taste is smooth and sweet. The grains have a sweetness to them that is quite unusual. Almost caramel grains. Slight bready taste, the sweetness is creamy and refreshing but still light and lager like. Cleans the palate well. The most drinkable lager out there. Goes great with Chinese food, great cooking beer as well.

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Photo of Jimbo87
3.98/5  rDev +42.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks as it should.

Smells skunky, smells an import adjunct lager.

Tastes good. It definitely tastes like an adjunct lager. But like an imported one. At least I associate this smell with imported adjunct lager. I want to know what it is. I've heard stuff about light destroying oils and such, changing the chemistry of the beer. I don't know. But I don't mind this taste at all.

feels like it should.

went through it very quickly. much better than the red oval. If this stuff were as cheap as it should be, I'd drink it. As it is, I'll unfortunately probably never drink it again. nice brew

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Photo of Exner83
3.95/5  rDev +41.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow. I'm surprised. I really like this beer.

Pretty delicate to the nose - light and lovely. The taste is where it's at... like a spiffy malt liquor. It really is an addictive balance of dextrin sweetness and subtle, floral hops. Finishes semi-dry. Crispy clean, so just keep swiggin'!

The carbonation holds up, and--my, my!--it even tastes great warm! How many macros hang in there at room temperature? Very drinkable.

If I drank this with some mushi pork, I'd be a happy man. Repeat buy!

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Photo of Beer_Rabbit66
3.94/5  rDev +41.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Crisp taste, nice and refreshing.
Upon pouring the head doesn't stay to long, carbonation is alright though.
Taste is light and smooth with a fruity and nutty aroma, very special. Perfect with Chinese cuisine.
Goes down nicely with a smooth aftertaste.
Overall a nice Asian beer.

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Photo of MikeInIowa
3.94/5  rDev +41.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: Pale golden and transparent without much in the way of suds or lacing.

Nose: Grainy aromas predominate over any other ingredients that are utilized.

Taste: This is where I was pleasantly surprised. It is my fault for assuming that there would be the rice-like taste associated with adjunct lagers. I was wrong. Although a grain-like taste does permeate, it is quite pleasing nonetheless. The beer finishes cleanly without any bitterness in the aftertaste.

Mouth: A thin mouthfeel.

Drink: A nicely drinkable beer to be sure. Probably goes well with most dishes at your favorite Asian restaurant.

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Photo of eschbach
3.92/5  rDev +40.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 ounce green bottle. It has a fairly basic label.

Look: It's a faint yellowish color. It has a decent head that vanishes really fast.

Smell: It has a very sweet smell. I have never smelled a lager this sweet. It has faint grain and hops aromas also. But the smell is sweet overall.

Taste: It tastes very unique. There is a major sweet flavor that is almost like honey. It has a slight malty taste. It leaves a bitter hops flavor in the mouth after a good swig. there is also a faint floral flavor I cannot describe.

Drink: It has a slightly creamy feeling in the mouth. It is a very smooth beer to drink. It goes down with ease.

Notes: It has it's own unique taste unlike any other macro adjunct lager, and this beer stands out from it's competition. Not to mention it is affordable and very easy to drink. I'd say buy this beer if you like a nice smooth lager.

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Photo of Baileyuk
3.91/5  rDev +40.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I ordered this beer after someone else in the party got one and I was amazed with the level of aroma for a chinese macro.

It looked like your typical macro,with a better head and look of carbonation.

The smell had a lot of barley aroma along with some good hop smell. It later turned out that the hop taste was mild although present. The barley was a surprisingly good taste.

Carbonation was great and if I was going to drink an "American Macro Lager" this one would be near the top of the list.

Good beer where you least expect it!

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Photo of kneeland
3.9/5  rDev +39.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A darn good green bottled beer, and tastes like a green bottled beer. I compared it to Becks or Heineken immediately. It's nice and light, but still keeps a grainy flavor. Not much for head though, almost poured more like a soda. I would like to find this in my grocery store or get a keg of it for home.

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Photo of StoutyMcStouters
3.86/5  rDev +38.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A tasty beer for a good price, very light, goes well with comfort foods, really nice if you want to change it up a bit, best served cool in a pint glass.

It has an extremely light floral aroma and a sweet flowery, fruit cocktail kinda taste to it. This beer is very easy to drink and has a high amount of carbonation which works to its advantage. Its smooth on the tongue but nothing amazing.

The beer really lacks in the looks department, this is probably the lightest colored beer I have ever seen. It keeps no head, and has no lacing. Not very appealing to the eyes, but please dont judge this book by its cover!

This beer is quickly becoming one of my everyday beers, since I have started drinking it, many of my pals have started to like it also, replacing some of their everyday beers too! My co-worker and I joked about it being the only thing of quality coming from China.

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Photo of steeler
3.85/5  rDev +38%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

I picked up this beer on sale from the LCBO. Pours out a light yellow color, with no head or lacing at all. Looks decent for what it is. Smells like all other macros do, but i will give it a 3 for no skunky smells like many imports have. This has a decent taste, goes down like water, with a touch of bitterness, but not much else. For a light lager, it has a lot more taste than most of its more popular counter parts (coors light/bud light etc). Decent. Also has a much better mouthfeel than most other light beers, nice and full with good carbonation. I gave this a perfect score for drinkability, because since it goes down so easily, you could easily drink this all night. Goes well with spicy food. Highly recommended!

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Photo of palliko
3.85/5  rDev +38%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This and Sapporo are my favorite Asian imports. Appearance is a clear light gold, minimum foam and short lived lace. The aroma contains some grain and floral hops. Initial taste is mild:
Composed of sweet grassy notes, some malt, a hint of skunky sulphur, bitter hops and bread. Medium body, light carbonation – seems to be designed to compliment Chinese Food, and I usually order one when at a Chinese Restaurant.

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Photo of DypsoBubble
3.84/5  rDev +37.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Tsingtao ('Qingdao' in mainland pinyin) is a result of Qingdao being occupied by the Germans when the West just couldn't help itself when chopping up China. An underestimated German style lager which is light and quite strong and is perfect to match Chinese food, particularly Sichuan cuisine. Goes so well with those hot red chillis and peppercorns. Bitter tastes are not that common to the mainland Chinese palate and Tsingtao just used to sell in HK but has become popular throughout China and now the world. Chinese craft beer will bring a lot to the table and there are more happy people drinking Tsingtao this evening in China than live in your city ;-)

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Tsingtao from Tsingtao Brewery Co., Ltd.
2.79 out of 5 based on 1,699 ratings.
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