Hamm's Special Light | Hamm's Brewing Co.

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Hamm's Special LightHamm's Special Light
106 Ratings
Hamm's Special LightHamm's Special Light

Brewed by:
Hamm's Brewing Co.
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Light Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 3.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-20-2004

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Ratings: 106 |  Reviews: 39
Reviews by StevenH:
Photo of StevenH
2/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

More User Reviews:
Photo of mikesaffert
3.19/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hamm's Special Light is a bit generous with the name "special", but for a light beer it more than gets the job done. I'd pick this over the BMC* lights any day, especially if you're looking for value in quantity as you can grab a 30 of this for as low as $13 and change.

Does it stand up to complex and flavorful craft beers? Of course not, and it's not supposed to. But to be a crisp, refreshing and easy to drink light lager with no offensive character, it's a win.

*I'm fully aware that MillerCoors has owned this since 1999.

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Photo of ZAP
3.8/5  rDev +45.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

L-Light golden color..light white head

S-Corn aroma...relatively assertive scent for this style. A bit of lemon like hop notes as well.

T-Light cornbread like flavor...even lighter splash of lemons with a bit of dryness on the finish. Pretty flavorful for a light lager.

F-Light bodied but not thin...ample carbonation but not too jazzed up.

O-This is a pretty solid Adjunct Light Lager. Nothing off, not too thin, carries just enough flavor to keep it interesting.

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Photo of Jtmitch416
3.3/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I must admit, this is biased!

This beer is average in every aspect but one. Nostalgia!

I last had Hamm's with my grandfather in the 80's! There is something to be said for a beer that has lasted sooo long. I am 56 yrs old and not much is left from back then. I am tipping a glass to my grandfather's memory!

It is definitely a good beer for the reason I stated.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
2.6/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Hamm's Special Light
12 oz. can, AUG 1312 (not sure how old it is, but as this is July 9th we're getting real close to the "best by" date)

As expected, the bright white head dropped almost immediately to a standard collar; and only minor spots and splashes of lace were left behind. The body was a light straw-gold when held to the light, and crystal clear.

The aroma was of the generic "beer" type. There's clearly malt to it (and adjunct), and there's clearly hops in it, but nothing really stands out and the two components basically act as one. It's a fairly mild aroma, but it's also quite clean (no sulphur or esters) which is

The flavor was also very generic, and it's fairly mild (which I guess is at least part of what you're looking for in a light beer), yet it's superbly balanced between its hops and its malt - and dare I say it, it's got a little more hop character to it than several of the big name brands. Also, just as in the aroma, it's very clean.

Overall, it's a clean, surprisingly well-hopped light lager that's refreshing. A good, inexpensive mainstream light beer.

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Photo of michiganminer
3.88/5  rDev +48.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

THis is a good light beer for the money. I can get Hamms and Hamms Special light as low as $11 a 30 and $5 a 12. For that money you can't expect much and you will be impressed with this beer for the low asking price. I enjoyed this one for a light beer.

Note: I review for the style. I refuse to let my prejudices slant any review. Nothing worse than the typical beer snob reviewing an AAL, same for your AAL drinker reviewing a craft brew.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
2.91/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer isn't bad, and can be had for $12/30 pack. I'm gonna give it a good thorough run-through, though.

Appearance : fluffy, foamy, almost river-foam head. Stark white. Body is very pale, like water with a slight golden tint. The head sticks around for a bit.

Aroma : From strongest to weakest - urine, hay, cooked rice, corn.

Flavor/mouthfeel : crisp and clean with a light malt flavor. The malts are primarily barley and rice with a nip of cooked corn. The finish is dry with a slight hopped character. It's very easy drinking, and finishes clean.

Overall : To compare this with any type of craft or beer of stature is silly. What this is, is a crisp, clean, light lager with minimal calories and can be bought with a jar of quarters. This is what I reach for when I'm not thinking about beer, I just want one. I will buy this again. Compared to High Life Light, this has less flavor but is less offending and cleaner overall.

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Photo of KarlHungus
4.11/5  rDev +57.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a clear pale gold color. With a big, frothy head that recedes somewhat quickly into sparse lacing. For the style this beer is quite colorful. The aroma is corny, and bready. For the style the aroma is quite strong, and surprisingly pleasant. The taste is more corn forward than the aroma, but there is still some breadiness in the background. Again, it is quite flavorful for a Light Lager. The mouthfeel is on the fuller side of light bodied with a velvety texture, and appropriately high carbonation. Although it is lighter bodied it is still fuller than any other light Lager I've tasted. Overall, this beer is excellent when reviewed to style, and nice when thought of as a beer in general. I'd drink it again on a hot day without reservation.

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Photo of PapasmurphWI
4.01/5  rDev +53.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

L - Poured into a basic-ass kitchen tumbler with three pinches of kosher table salt. Immediately, a development of eggshell off-white macro-head cultivated to the size of one and two-thirds finger-length. The pinches of salt absolutely created a dramatic increase in lacing and consistent retention in a beautiful golden cascade of cheap beer wonderfulness.

S - That one sock I had from freshman year of college (which was only used twice to clean up the puke of my white-privileged dorm mate)

T- A flowery garden that lies on the side of the mountain in the land of the sky blue water. Altogether, it reminds me of every Prince song I've ever heard in one masterful symphony of exquisite cheap beer palate.

F- Makes me feel super hamm'sered. Makes me feel super hamm'd up.

O - Just a great beer. Versatile in all respects. Drink it while you read this. Drink it while you mow the lawn. Drink it while your wife isa bitchin'. Doesn't matter what the task, Hamm's Specy got you.

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Photo of patpozzi
4.34/5  rDev +66.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

L: "looks like a cleaning product"
s: "completely odorless"
t: has fruity undertones. surprisingly complex for the price point. adding an orange greatly increase the drinkability
f: feels like I can jump through a ceiling
overall: compared to the competition, it is surprisingly complex. it's not quite an explosion of flavor but it does provide for an interesting drinking experience

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Photo of Tucquan
2.98/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Had this on 2018-05-30 in Columbia, PA from a 12oz can. Trying my best to rate this to style, which is a Light American Adjunct Lager.

A - Very clear straw-gold with a 1-finger white head that drops quickly

S - Corn, light grass, white grape.

T - Lots of white bread, corn, some grassy spice and mild fruit sweetness. There's even a bit of mild bitterness in the aftertaste.

M - Light body and medium carbonation. Quaffable and refreshing.

O - Similar to regular Hamm's, just dialed back a bit. I liked it better than expected.

Notes: On 2018-05-30 I had the Hamm's Special Light side-by-side with Straub American Light. Both are the same color. The Straub had a larger head and much better lacing. The Hamm's has a sweeter aroma, with more corn in the flavor. The Straub has a little more complexity in the malt flavor, perhaps due to the use of 20% barley, and is a little on the sourdough side. Both are reasonably priced here in PA although the Hamm's cost is half the price at $.50 per can vs $1.00 per can for the Straub.

Notes: On 2018-05-30 I had the Hamm's Special Light side-by-side with Hamm's "American Classic" (also just called Hamm's). Both had the same clarity and color. The American Classic initially had a larger head. Aromas are very similar; just a little bit stronger in the American Classic. On the other hand, the flavor and feel of the American Classic is richer, fuller and more satisfying. The Special Light is 3.8% and 110 calories vs the American Classic at 4.7% and 142 calories. Both beers are the same price per can so I think it is worth consuming the extra calories per beer in order to get the superior feel and flavor.

 1,681 characters

Photo of Chaz
3.14/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This one pours a brilliant pale straw in color, in fact it's among the most 'colorless' beers I've ever had. Head is white, voluminous, and the consistency of whipped cream and subsides rather quickly, leaving the barest ring of lace around the glass. This looks to be highly-carbonated at a casual glance, and I'm glad I'm not drinking it from a can! Nose is lightly sweet and smells of corn and pale malts, no noticeable hop presence. On first sip there's not much here, but there's actually more of a biscuit-y malt character than I'd imagined and that's worth something. Not much in the way of body -this one is the epitome of thin- and thankfully some of the fizz dissipates with decanting. Thankfully there's also not much of an aftertaste here, and it makes for a fairly dry (certainly less sweet than Hamm's original recipe) finish and clean taste. Altogether this is very drinkable for the style. I've had worse light beers to be honest, and this one at least has a familiar taste: I'm pegging it as Stroh's Light. After all, did Hamm's even brew a light beer backing the day?

Served chilled, in a chalice.

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Photo of DuaneTitus
4/5  rDev +53.3%

doesn't have that awful bud light taste.isay a big YES to this brew

67 characters

Photo of magictrokini
1.95/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A "D"? Seriously? Pours clear yellow with a foamy white head. Aroma is stale grain and malt, and metal. Taste is grass clippings, dirt, and corny sugar water.

From the land of sky-blue waters...comes this incredibly bad beer. This stuff can't even make the cut at a fraternity party. The two reasons I gave it an D-: (1) Its "light" so there's less of the flavor of ass, and (2) its still better than Olympia.

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Photo of richkrull
2.5/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Another mystery beer machine pick. Most people cringe when they pull this one, but it's not that bad. Not great but the price is right.

A - Very pale yellow color. Decent amount of head.

S - Not very good. Smells kind of skunky.

T - OK, not going to win any awards.

M - Leaves quite a bit to be desired.

D - Definitely could be better.

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Photo of Mtooman
2.75/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of tdm168
2.55/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Photo of secondtooth
3.05/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pale piss-yellow, but with a solid head of white foam. Big, loopy lace, even.

Nose is barley and rice adjuncts. I also get an odd aroma of cream corn somehow.

Taste is mild, faint, and corny. But as awful as that sounds, this one is quite smooth and inoffensive. As with the regular Hamm's, this one drinks much better than the more mainstream macro counterparts. Not bad.

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Photo of Mpenders
1.75/5  rDev -33%

Photo of BigAl18
2.18/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Photo of Hammpion324
3.45/5  rDev +32.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.75

This is the kind of beer that just makes you want to crank up some molly hatchet and break the lawn tractor out. By the time your done cutting the lawn you have already thrown down half a thirty rack. This beer smells like freedom and pours red white and blue just like the can.

 279 characters

Photo of Eaglefan344
2.5/5  rDev -4.2%

Photo of trevorpost
2/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Photo of mac10thmtn
3/5  rDev +14.9%

Photo of tone77
2.32/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to cpolking for sending this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a pale yellow color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some notes of corn. Taste is very mild, some hints of grain, not much flavor at all. Feels light in the mouth and overall is a very mild beer.

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Hamm's Special Light from Hamm's Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 2.61 out of 5 with 106 ratings