Prima Pils | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

5,240 Ratings
Prima PilsPrima Pils

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: German Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
ca. 44 IBU

Added by Todd on 07-27-2001

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Ratings: 5,240 |  Reviews: 2,106
Photo of mzrebiec
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Let me start by saying that I do not enjoy the Pilsner style.

That being said, this is delicious. Prima Pils pours a light golden color with an average head that sticks around for a bit and laces nicely on the pilsner glass. The flavors are crisp and consist of citrus and pine. The hops are obviously dominant in the flavors although a bit of light malt comes through. Definitely a great pilsner to enjoy on a hot summer day. This is up there with Voodoo's Pilzilla and Oskar Blues Little Yella Pils. (The 2 other pilsners that I can actually drink and enjoy.)

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Photo of tr4nc3d
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12fl oz bottle poured into my pint glass due to not having a pilsner glass

The appearance was that of a pale clear looking color as you could get with a one inch white head. Average head retention with minimal lacing.

The aroma was of noble hops with the likes of Saaz? Along with this I get pale malt and earthy herbal smell. Some sort of grains also play a role which I can not just put my finger on.

The taste was that of slight sweet upfront with hops. Alongside some pale malt and slight caramel maybe?

Mouthfeel is light bodied and very crisp and refreshing.

Overall this is a great example of a pilsener and this beer actually taste quite like Sam Adams-Noble Pils, except this being slightly better.

Sorry for the lame review as I have the hardest time reviewing Pilseners due to there subtle but great flavors.

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Photo of ThreeDimesDown
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy lemon yellow with a two-finger thick, white head that retains for a bit before dissipating to a thin skin. Average lacing.

Nicely balanced aromas of grass, floral, pine, light citrus and bready malts.

The taste follows the aroma, well balanced with lemon sweetness, grassy earthiness, bready malts, and bittering hops.

Mouthfeel is light, refreshing and crisp with a slight dry finish.

Very well put together pilsner, with an added dimension from the amount of hops. Really enjoyed this beer and will be seeking it out in the future.

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Photo of ambluhm
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The appearance of this beer looks simply put...appetizing. Pours golden yellow and clear, with a slight haze from the cold beer.

The nose is complex with several notes distinguishable. Earthy notes from the hops and fresh bready malts come through.

The mouth is crisp and mostly dry with a hint of sweetness at the very last moment. Definitely has a good malty body for a pils. The bitterness from the hops is present, but the malts carry this one.

Overall, this is a style of beer that I can get down with. A well-focused and 'roided' up pilsner. Definitely something I would take home again and again.

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Photo of beergod1
4.02/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle. Pours a clear, light-yellow amber with a white head.The first sip worried me, I thought it was a little a "typical Pilsner", but after only a second, the hops introduced them self. This is a very fine example of the pilsner style. Smell of Pilsner hops are prevalent with grass and some scent of lemon. Taste is grassy hops and lemon. Mouthfeel is very crisp, clean and refreshing with some carbonation and a slight malt finish, thanx again Victory for the German malt. Very good beer for a summer day, especially after working in the yard. Or for fishing for Cat's at Midnight.

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Photo of Pittsburgh
3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at a local restaurant while watching the US open, took some notes, I was alone, waiting for my wife. Good golden color looked like mountain dew almost, good carbonation as well, looks like a solid Pilsener. Lives up to the hype as far as hops go, wow, very hoppy, basically all hops. Very dry and bitter as well, in a good way true to the style. Also getting a hint of lemon flavor. Very drinkable, goes down easy, great for a warm summer day. Tastes light, but has a big flavor as well.

This beer has very big bite, bitterness, dryness, and hops. Solid beer. Flavor explodes in your mouth in a huge hop bomb.

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Photo of GRPunk
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle stamped with an "enjoy by" date of Sept. 8, 2010 poured into a pilsener glass.

A- A moderate pour created a 2-finger, foamy white head that drops to about 1-finger pretty quickly and maintains itself as a thick film throughout. The body is a clean, golden-yellow. There was a ton of carbonation during the pour that moderates as it settles. A bunch of sticky rings were left on the glass.

S- Classic pils. Sweet, cereal/bready malt combined with grassy, herbal/spicy hops.

T- I thought it was really well balanced. Plenty of doughy/grainy malts in the background with a good dose of hops that came off as grapefruity, spicy, and grassy at different points. There was some berry-like sweetness through the middle. The hops come through in the end to clean up the finish. My wife thought it was "too hoppy."

M- Moderate carbonation. Slight, spicy tingle. Clean throughout with a dry finish.

D- Great American example of the style. Freshness gives it a leg up on the import competition. I was glad to finally find a bottle well within its freshness date. It's a great summer drinker and something I'd come back to when I'm in the lager state of mind.

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Photo of tjd112
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation - Poured into generic Pokal

Appearance - Poured a hazy yellow color with light white finger head that has good retention. Lacing is outstanding

Smell/Taste - Hops and lemons, a very floral aroma leading to a very citrusy body

Mouthfeel - Light, crisp, and refreshing

Drinkability/Overall - Love it, very sessionable, and good choice with Indian food.

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Photo of happy4hoppybeer
4.6/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A= a light golden yellow with decent head and leaves behind sticky lacing, which lingers on glass for a good while.

S= Grassy, hops smell with some citrus.

T= Good light dry hop bite with light malts backing up. Decent carbonation level. Way more flavorful than the usual pilsener/lager style.

B= light to medium in body.

Very refreshing, light but yet very tasty hops coming on. Definetley more kick than the usual summer/lawnmower beer. A true European style pilsener, the classic traditional style.

Very very good. A solid brew. The best pilsener I've had yet, and I love the style. Perfect for hot summer days.

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Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.65/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: poured into a fluted pils glass. light straw color, slight chill haze, nice dense, lasting snow white head and lacing.
S: doughy malt and spicy, grassy, earthy noble hops.
T: light/medium sweet doughy malts are almost offset by the spicy, smooth hop bitterness. finishes almost crisp with just a hint of lingering sweetness. would have liked it just a bit drier/more attenuated.
M: almost medium body, a bit slick from the lingering residual sugars.
D: a full-flavored example of the style.

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Photo of ReDave
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very hazy light pale yellow gold
Pretty white foam, simmers down to a fine ring, no lacing

Even though the "best by" date was May 16,2010,
it seemed to have some nice grassy pils aroma.
some malt perhaps?

Taste much like it smelled, with a nice hop bite. Very clean finish! Good stuff!

Nice crisp medium body.

This beer makes me wonder what:
a. what this tastes like very fresh, and
b. what a fresh real European pilsner is like.

Would def get again!

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Photo of pootz
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Pours a pale gold lager in the pilsner flute with a nice tight-pored 2 finger cap. Good retention and lacing. Moderate carbonation.

Aroma is floral with some fresh cereal and grassiness. Fresh and pungent to the nose.

Soft mineral salts palate. Up front biscuity malts and spicey-piney hops fight for balance then this dries out and lightly bitters in the crisp quenching finish.

Hoppy rendition of a German Pils. Artfully executed and properly presented. A dynamite Pilsner, pretty much sex in a bottle.

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Photo of velkyal
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I like to use a variation on the Cyclops system used in the UK.

Sight - straw coloured, decent head which vanishes relatively quickly

Smell - grass and flowers

Taste - good hoppy bite up front, backed up by a grainy malt body, crisp

Sweet - 2/5
Bitter - 3/5

A nice, refreshing lager, the hoppy bite was particularly welcome, definitely something I would drink many times again.

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Photo of MurphyMacManus
4.4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle into pint glass.

A: fizzy yellow beer. Bright yellow (is that technically called "straw"?) and clear, with a white head that is initially big and thick and fades to impressive lace.

S: Pepper and lemon zest. And maybe fresh herbs.

T/M: Spicy/herbal/citrus-like bitterness from the beginning. Bitterness lingers after a mostly dry finish. There is some pale malt flavor, but I had to look for it. Hop bitterness is definitely the main event.

D: This would work as a session beer.

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Photo of boss302
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Victory Prima Pils, 12 oz bottle, best by date of 8 Sep 2010. German Pils.

A This beer was crystal clear, light golden. There was not much head. I poured this beer staight into the glass to try to develop some head, but it just didn't happen. What head there was lasted until about half glass where it was almost gone. Aside from a lack of head, it is a nice looking beer.

S There was a little light struck aroma at first, but faded with time. I was surprised to find very little hop aroma, not at all flowery as you might expect. It did have a good malt aroma. I scored this low due to the lack-o-hop.

T Malty with a nice hop flavor and bite. A little piney from the hops. Some diacetyl in the aftertaste, but minimal. The hops really stand out in the aftertaste, very nice.

M Light to Medium body, carbonation is high and seems right for a German pils.

O This is a good beer and I will definitely be having more. I have tried this beer on tap, but unfortunately the tap line was contaminated with a previous root beer selection, so a true comparison could not be made. I am looking forward to trying this on tap in the future.

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Photo of TommyW
4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- Clear, gold body with a medium white head that clings a tiny bit.

S- A bit of grassy maltwith some floral and slight pine notes from the hops.

T- Buttery/grassy malts with some piney/floral European style hops. Leaves a light lingering bitterness.

M- Crisp with an aggressive carbonation; medium body.

D- Very crisp, nice-drinking pilsner.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a very pale, almost transparently pale yellow, champagney in character really, with a beautiful snowy head, dense and retaining beautifully but leaving some dense splodges of lace around. Slow bead trail up the glass, looks like a pretty awesome quaffing lager.

Nose is a sponge-cakey malt affair with a nice crisp, dry bitterness coming through as well. Some light sweetness and fruitiness blends with the bitters, hints of gooseberry, lemon and maybe some passionfruit on there. Bitterness is crisp, slightly metallic. A pleasant lager smell indeed.

Taste is funny, actually. Very rich and astringent throughout, with an odd, heavy maltiness playing prominently as well. Slight fruity sparkle on the front, a hint of green grape skin and lemon, then oddly sweet with a pancake batter maltiness and a hint of currants or something as well. Bitterness is metallic and alkaline throughout, noticeable mostly on the back with its astringency not cleaning up as well as it could, but not being overly strong, just most noticeable on the back. An interesting drop that I think suffers from lack of substance on the front, leaving it unprotected and unbalanced on the bitter finish.

Not bad feel though actually. Noticeable texture and malty body with a smooth feel, not sticky and no trace of carb sizzle. Some sizzle would be expected from a lager but I'm not very disappointed to find it missing.

A decent sipper but lacks a bit of cleanliness on the back.

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Photo of KTCamm
4.01/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a beautiful golden yellow with 1 finger white foam that dissolves leaving a faint layer of white. Some lacing.

Smell is a light malt, with light hop spice.

Well hopped clean taste with a bitter finish. Creamy in the mouthfeel.

Quite tasty, maybe a bit high on the hop, for a bitter finish. But a damn good german pils.

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3.55/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a 3 oz sampling glass.

A: A deep golden/copper hue, darker than I was expecting. Short head retention.

S: The aroma was a powerful PILS, compared to other more balanced out PILS.

T: The full bodied taste was nice while drinking a handful of light summer ales. Although there was something not quite right with the overall taste. A bit too over powering for a PILS, most people found this least enjoyable, but I felt that it was a bit over done for the style. But hops were present. . > good thing.

M: A great mouthfeel for a PILS, much better that a light yellow lagerish PILS

D: Good beer for a summer tasting, by adding a nice contrast to the lighter beers we had sampled. Good beer, but not one I would buy a six pack of, maybe a single for a tasting.

Notes: Sampled at a beer tasting at Bliss in Wauconda, IL. Compared to many of the other summer beer we had tasted, this one was the most potent and full bodied.

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Photo of HURTemHIZZY
3.99/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear straw color with visible carbonation. The pour produces a half finger white head that is really lacking in density. The head dissipates to absolutely nothing in about a minute and leaves no lacing down the glass. Nice color and clarity, but really awful head quality retention and lacing.

Smells of faint noble hops and a bit of german malts. Faint aroma, but nothing off putting at all.

Taste was reaaaally off putting at first, but it grew on me as I made my way through the glass. I have since changed my rating from a 2, to a 3, to a 3.5, and have finally settled on 4.5 as my final rating. The presence of the hops is truly delicious and leaves me thirsting for more. The little bit of malt that is present is only slightly noticeable towards the end of the flavor.

Great level of carbonation, with a light yet somehow sticky mouthfeel that goes great with the brew. Quite drinkable on a hot day.

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Photo of aquaphiliac
3.94/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Got a sixer of this for $9.99 + tax.

A: Not a particularly impressive display in my glass; pours a golden yellow with a good sized head.

S: Great smell; hops and more hops i guess. Definitely a strong suit of this beer's appeal.

T: Tastes thin at first and was kinda disappointing but then I started keeping the sip in my mouth longer and I could definitely taste the lovely bitterness. Doesn't have a bold taste, but definitely satisfying.

M: Feels light in the mouth. For the style, that's great but ideally I would love a fuller feel. Still, quite enjoyable and pleasant till the hops hit you.

D: Easy to drink for sure. 5.3% abv makes it easy to put away 3 without thinking twice.

Wasn't wowed for the price, but a solid beer.

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Photo of appenzeller
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

At the outset, I'm a big pilsner fan, my favorite style.

Appearance: off the mark for a true pilsner. Pours a thin head with minimal lacing, the beer lacks clarity and has closer to the opaqueness of a weissbier, a real no-no for pilsners.

Smell: Good, floral aroma of Saaz hops but overpowering.

Taste/Mouthfeel: This beer has a good taste, I love hops and heaven knows there's plenty of it here--the quality of the hops is evident, too. Tastes strongly of bitter citrus, refreshing and light. No maltiness evident. I could drink this anytime, for sure, but it lacks the complexity, balance and subtleties of the world's great pilsners. This is a standard American take--good tasting, but focusing on aggressiveness and overpowering taste over refinement. That's off the mark for a pilsner.

I rate this beer well, it's a nice brew. It's just not really a pilsner--Victory should market it differently. For contrast, Trumer is another American brew that fits the style better. But this is still a beer I wouldn't turn down, a real nice brew and it's too bad this is tough to find here on the West Coast.

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Photo of Adamdc
4.36/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into pilsner glass

A: Beautiful! Crystal clear yellow body topped off by one inch of white creamy foam. Glad I grabbed the pilsner glass!

S: Noble hops are. very evident. Grassy, earthy, lemony aroma.

T: Taste follows aroma. Lemony and grassy with slight metallic tinge to it. Dry and slightly bitter finish.

M: Pretty light on the tongue with a nice dry finish.

D: I'm sitting outside grilling some burgers and I wish I had 5 more of these. Very drinkable.

I've been drinking Prima Pils for quite a while and figured it was time to review it. Great brew! Thanks Victory!

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Photo of y2jrock60
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Creamy bright white head that laces nicely. Very clear yellow with nice carbonation. It just looks refreshing.

S- A very noticeable noble hop aroma.

T- Delicious. Up front punch of powerful noble hops. The bitterness fades nicely. The most flavorful pilsner I've had.

M- Light bodied but it has a nice kick and carbonation level.

D- Highly drinkable. This is probably my favorite summer beer. There's nothing like drinking Prima Pils on a hot summer day or night outside, its awesome.

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Photo of blackc5
3.63/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ok, first to preface that I have never been a Pilsener fan. But figured, I would try one of the best out there and see if it changed my opinion. It was surely a good beer, considerably better than I recall Trumer or St Pauli, but I cant say it is a style I would go back to often or purposefully.

Overall, I was disappointed most in the smell, which for me at least, was fairly underwhelming. Flavor-wise though it was surely a vast improvement. You can tell these are quality ingredients, and I enjoyed the earthy and lemon zesty hops. Mouthfeel was also quite a bit more substantial, and still clean, dry and crisp.

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Prima Pils from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
4.06 out of 5 based on 5,240 ratings.
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