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King Cobra Premium Malt Liquor | Anheuser-Busch

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King Cobra Premium Malt LiquorKing Cobra Premium Malt Liquor
531 Ratings
King Cobra Premium Malt LiquorKing Cobra Premium Malt Liquor

Brewed by:
Missouri, United States

Style: American Malt Liquor

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
King Cobra is an American malt liquor with a robust and full-bodied, smooth, clean taste.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-18-2002

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 531 |  Reviews: 188
Photo of OzmanBey
5/5  rDev +142.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of BucannonXC5
2.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.75

Type: 25-oz. can
Glass: Clear 15.25-oz. pilsner
From: 5 Star Market & Liquor in La Mesa, Calif..
Price: $1.49
Purchased: Sept. 12, 2017
Consumed: Sept. 12, 2017
Reviewed as: American Malt Liquor
Misc.: Bottom of can read, “17229” - assuming canned on Aug. 17, 2017, but that appears too good to be true

Recently was dared to review a King Cobra. Actually did not know that Malt Liquor was reviewable on Beer Advocate. Once I looked it up and saw I was, had to go with it. Once I saw that there were seven (seven!) other Malt Liquors at the next-door market, made it a point to review one each Tuesday until I run out. Typically am against all the big boy beers, but I am breaking that rule for this challenge. Looking at King Cobra, it was the 28th-worst beer on Beer Advocate at the time of purchase. This was going to be awful.

Poured a straw-to-pale clear color with three fingers of rocky white head. Lots of fast-moving bubbles coming up from the bottom of the glass. Excellent uneven foamy lacing. Almost perfect foamy retention. (Sight - 4.50)

Smelled light grain up front, which was immediately swallowed up by buttery creamy corn. It was almost like it was building to something (neither good nor bad) but decided to just stop instead. Also sweet syrupy malts, scrambled eggs, lingering fart, hints of honey and a touch of sweet caramel. Without looking, would think this would be a lager of some sort, probably American Adjunct Lager. Much better on the nose as it went down. Had me looking forward to trying it. (Smell - 2.75)

Was not digging the taste early on. First thought it was so damn light, crazy considering it compared to an AAL. Then got a weird creamy corn, sweet syrupy taste that had me shaking my head and scrunching my mouth. It’s almost like they forgot to add flavor to this. Still got scrambled eggs, wet fart, corn adjunct, light grain, hints of green apple and earthy grass. Kind of a mess really, every sip. Very unbalanced. Does not taste 6 pct. ABV at all, just like a typical AAL. (Taste - 1.75)

Light body. Thin texture. Average carbonation. Abrupt finish. This got terrible as it warmed. Wow. Actually almost dry-heaved. (Feel - 1.00)

Well, had to start somewhere with the Malt Liquors. Would not recommend to anyone, including the homeless or poor. (Overall - 1.75)

2.08 | 51 | D

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Photo of Kmantie
4.68/5  rDev +127.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of UCLABrewN84
1.86/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Photo of Tacos_N_Mayhem
3.14/5  rDev +52.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of TheDominic
2.86/5  rDev +38.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

If I was rating the can version it'd gotten a 1 on everything, but I have to admit I kind of like the 40 oz bottles. I don't know what they do to the cans but the 40's aren't half bad. It kind of burns a little more than some beers but I don't mind it much. This is one of my favorite cheaper beers.

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Photo of IBUBrew
1.69/5  rDev -18%
look: 1.75 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 1.75

Photo of whalers90
5/5  rDev +142.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

after watching this how can you not give a 5* rating???

120 characters

Photo of jzlyo
2.2/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Aroma is malts, corn and a hint of fruit and alcohol. The flavor is sweet corn/malts, mild fruit, rather bland in the middle and an alcoholic finish.

 150 characters

Photo of Acat114
2.94/5  rDev +42.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Photo of robebo44
2.79/5  rDev +35.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Photo of 94rocker1
1.87/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Photo of Whey2Hoppy
3.02/5  rDev +46.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.07/5  rDev +49%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Photo of jmills3
2.43/5  rDev +18%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Photo of kojevergas
2.07/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

25 fl oz can purchased at an embarrassingly downtrodden Brooklyn, NY bodega.

6% ABV. "Smooth taste." (So all you lovers of coarse tasting beer should keep away).

Pours a soft frothy head of ~2 fingers thickness.

Aroma brings notes of creamed corn, DMS, and muted generic malt sweetness.

Taste is surprisingly inoffensive, though there is some sharpness to the texture in terms of overcarbonation. Not so much imbalanced as unbalanced, King Cobra suffers from high sweetness throughout and an inadequate hop profile to compensate.

Medium-bodied and thick for a beer so relatively flavour-bereft. Smooth and wet.

Overall, it's mediocre at best and while its ABV isn't as noticeable as it could be, this isn't a brew I'd revisit voluntarily.


03/24/17: 25 fl oz aluminum can 2nd impression:


07/12/17 impression:

Ended up with a can for a $1.25 as part of a wrap party and figured I'd give this another fair shake.

Aroma yields syrupy malts, high sweetness, and obvious corn adjunct. Not grainy or cereal-emphatic, which would actually be preferable, but also not watery (which could or could not be worse depending on how syrupy this actually ends up being). Aroma suggests an off-puttingly thick brew with off-puttingly high (and borderline medicinal) sweetness. Aromatic intensity is average. No hop aromatics, no yeast aromatics. Lager yeast is indicated given the lack of esters.

High sweetness. Syrupy feel. Plagued by a metallic off-flavour. Imbalanced (or perhaps more accurately, unbalanced). Mineral water. I suspect lager yeast was used, but it isn't a clean or crisp brew. Smooth, wet, lumpy, thick, and overly hefty for a beer this shallow and simple. Corn adjunct is obvious. I'd like more of a grainy taste, and it'd be better watery. Poorly built across the board, but to give credit where it's due, this isn't boozy like many expressions of the style.

It's $1.25 per 25oz can in Brooklyn, and I suppose at that price it's a passable brew for students and boozers. But there are better beers at lower prices per ounce and this leaves a lot to be desired. The kind of brew I associate with frat boys, hazy double vision nights ending in vomit, and aluminum trash can fires in alleyways. Far from the worst out there, but this puts the bar scarcely above the ground.


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Photo of Schlitz74
1.31/5  rDev -36.4%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

This malt liquor is just plain bad, avoid this unless you're broke.

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Photo of k47k
2.83/5  rDev +37.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Photo of rodbeermunch
1.77/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.75

You get that macro lager malt liquor dense urine appearance from this one, can't hold a loose bubble head. Aroma was industrial old beer, alcohol, solvent.

Some lager like yeast fruity corn sweetness comes in first on the taste, paired with a substantial alcohol presence. There isn't the barley backbone to hold this up to the corn syrup + alcohol combination on this one. Certainly the colder the beer the better on this one.

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Photo of Jeremiah_Nelson
1.5/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Photo of dbrauneis
2.38/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a crystal clear medium yellow in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass and moderate pale golden yellow highlights. The beer has a finger tall sudsy foamy bright white head that reduces to a large patch of mottled thin film covering the entire surface of the beer with a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of cereal grain malts and corn adjuncts with a light amount of sweetness. Hints of grassy hops.

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of cereal grain malts with a light to moderate amount of corn adjuncts and a slightly heavier than light amount of sweetness. That is followed by a light hint of grassy hops and light to moderate amounts of fusel alcohol. Moderate amounts of harsh bitterness in the finish which luckily does not linger for too long.

M: Just shy of medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Crisp initially with a slightly slick finish.

O: Overall not as sweet as some of the others in the style but still with a pronounced fusel alcohol presence and a slightly harsh bitterness. Easy enough to drink but not sure that I would consider this one real enjoyable. Tolerable with my pepperoni pizza (after doing my review) but I think I will skip picking this one up again - I have not had one of these since I lived in the projects in college in the mid-1990s.

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Photo of wejohnsn
2.75/5  rDev +33.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Photo of dag1991
1/5  rDev -51.5%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Photo of leap89
2.63/5  rDev +27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I drank it straight from a 40oz bottle. Didn't bother to pour it into a glass.

Smells of corn, cooked vegetables and a little malt sweetness.

Light and bubbly, and tastes like almost nothing. Not necessarily a bad thing. What little flavor there is isn't bad. Pretty standard “cheap beer' flavor. Corn, cooked vegetables, a little sweetness, and just a hint of grain and alcohol. Very inoffensive.

A perfectly acceptable malt liquor. Cheap and easy to drink. It doesn't even taste too bad when it warms up.

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Photo of Hans14
3.04/5  rDev +47.6%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

My mom loves this beer. Its strange but I believe my brother put her on it. Personally I've had much worse ML,s.

Look: straw pale gold.

Smell: corn grains slight malt but similar to a Light AAL.

Taste: Normal for malt liquor a bit more watery than an O.E.

Feel: Decent carbonation goes down smooth not much after taste.

Overall i enjoy these Its in my top 5 for M.L.

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King Cobra Premium Malt Liquor from Anheuser-Busch
Beer rating: 2.06 out of 5 with 531 ratings
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