Black Label Beer | Pabst Brewing Company

59 Reviews
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Black Label BeerBlack Label Beer

Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Adjunct Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-23-2001

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Reviews: 59 | Ratings: 158
Photo of daliandragon
2.52/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

So I just moved to Maryland from North Carolina four days ago and while I am still pleased about most aspects of the move, the beer situation is dire. They don't sell beer in supermarkets, so you have to go to specialty beer/wine places that have limited selection and inflated prices. The first one I entered the other day was scaring me pricewise so I went (relatively) cheap and came home with a twelver of this unknown entity.

Pours super light colored, with very aggressive carbonation and a thin cap. Nose is light sweet malt. Inoffensive but uninspiring. Taste is a little corny but it's not significantly worse than standbys like PBR or Natty Boh. Aftertaste is reasonably clean. Again, you can't judge this against craft brew, but against the Stroh's and Keystones of the world, it's at least in the middle of the pack.

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Photo of ordybill
3.48/5  rDev +42.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 OZ can into a pint glass. The appearance is a clear golden yellow with a small white head. The aroma is grain and some sweet malt? The taste is smooth but lacks a lot of flavor. An average beer.

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Photo of nicholas2121
4.19/5  rDev +71.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Black Label Beer - Pabst Brewing Company with an ABV of 4.0% This brew pours out a nice golden amber color with a nice white head. The smell of Black Label Beer, is rich with grains and malts. You also pick up a hit of hops in the smell of this brew. Black Label Beer has the look and smell of most American Adjunct Lagers on the market. Now I',m not saying that is a bad thing. The taste is bold with flavors. You pick up on grins and malts in this taste of this brew. There is a nice smooth sweetness to this brew. The sweetness to this brew, it is not to bad but it is there. This is a easy drinking brew. This brew would go nice on a hot summer day. Black Label Beer , has a nice balance to it, there is nothing overpowering about this brew. I like how this brew is so smooth. The mouthfeel of Black Label Beer is rich, smooth clean and refreshing. Overall I'm giving Black Label Beer a 4.25 out of 5. I would buy this brew again. Pabst Brewing Company did a nice job with this brew.

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Photo of deebo
3.18/5  rDev +30.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Straight up monster crushing with this beer. Best drank out of s box of longneck returnables for a maximum of $7 this beer will make your dreams come true with its balance of moderate fizziness balanced with easy drinking malt and a kiss of earthy hops. Keep reaching for the stars.

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Photo of yuenglingfan101
1/5  rDev -59%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

cheap beer for cheap drinking and getting drunk cheaply. had to drink it to say that i drank another iconic american lager beer. nothing fancy at all....

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Photo of EHopkinsi
3/5  rDev +23%

Average at best, in reality. But throw a kennel of labs in the cooler in the back of your bro's full size Chevy Blazer and hit the Cascades with it, and it picks up some sentimental points...

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Photo of Bumdisc
4.3/5  rDev +76.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I love this beer. I hear so many say this beer is bad but when asked when is the last time you tried it they say years ago or they heard it was bad. I love the look, taste and finish. Some what easy to find. This is my beer of choice. I think a true classic.

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Photo of alabencki
3.65/5  rDev +49.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Taking the style of this beer into consideration (American Adjunct Lager in this case), I try not to judge a beer on its style, but rather how does it compare to others of the same style, and how I would rank it accordingly. I fear too many give their reviews on their bias on how they feel about the style, I try my best to not do that.

Poured into a Pilsner glass giving me a three and a half finger wide head of bubbly white foam, similar to a soapy appearance. The color is pale straw, true to its style. The smell seemed typical of this style; grainy and sweet with a pungent smell of corn added for adjunct (boosts alcohol and shortens brewing time) with faint malts and fainter hops (typical to the style). Taste matches scent profile very well. Grains and sweetness are the first things tasted, followed by flavors from the malts and adjunct off-flavors, and finishing with very faint hop bitterness.

All in all, this is a very excellent example of the A.A.L. style. It has good flavor and balance, crisp mouthfeel, and good finish. Not the best example of the style, but pretty good.

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Photo of LWG1970
3.2/5  rDev +31.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Found this at Jungle Jim's in Cincinnati, Remember this from College.

Poured into a Pilsner glass, Head fades Quick, Light amber in color. Smells like Corn and Citrus, NOT a Bad taste as long as it's COLD. It does taste a lot like PABST, A good Go-to summer beer as it's cheap and not offensive. A bit HARD to find around here and it will not be something I go LOOKING for.

I would buy it OVER Budweiser or Coors anyday.

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Photo of Blueribbon666
3/5  rDev +23%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes. Enjoyed many times over the years reviewed here for the first time. Poured into dimpled glass mug fro reviewing. Typical AAL straw yellow coloring with that familiar funky smelling corn sweet flatness pours a fluffy head of about a half an inch to an inch in size. Not as sweet as the smell, a bit funky a bit of a watery finish with a bland attempt by some hops. Overall, I'll have this every now and again as it is brewed by whomever is currently brewing the Pabst line up (Miller contract) of old man cast off beers of yore. Really is like PBR's lesser cousin as it's not as sweet and goes down ok as a session beer, but I've found comes back to haunt and hang around the next day, which keeps me away from the beer that was once brewed here in Cleveland until 1971 by the Carling Brewing Company.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
2.7/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A-Light yellow color. Head grows with the pour then dies shortly after.

S-Pretty bland and skunky like most. Very light, only thing to speak of is the metallic smell, a light grain and some sweetness.

T-Nothing too different to Pabst. I like normal PBR better but for what it is I have had worse. All in all its nothing I would really ever care to buy in my entire life, but there is some worse macro junk out there I think.

M-Yeah, you know.

O/D-Less drinkable than the super-watery beers because the taste here gets quite boring and a bit nasty after a few. I prefer PBR to several macro brews and this one is like a slightly uglier twin. Could be worse, but not much worse.

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Photo of tone77
3.12/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a very pale yellow color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of malts and corn. Taste is crisp, mild, malts and corn, very easy drinking. Feels light in the mouth and overall, nothing special, but not bad at this price point.

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Photo of cpolking
2.77/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This beer pours a very light and pale gold in color with a quarter-inch head that rapidly disappears but does surprisingly leave a bit of light lacing down the glass. The aroma is of light, fresh grain, a bit metallic, a touch of lager "funk", a touch of sweet and tart apple and just a hint of hops. The taste is of light grain and lager, and a barely detectable hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is highly and finely carbonated, but a bit watery just the same. Very light. It does have a pleasing aftertaste.

I have based my ratings on beers of this style (American Adjunct Lager), I am not comparing it to all beers in existence.

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Photo of mnrider
2.22/5  rDev -9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12. oz Can

A: Pours the clearest yellow I've ever seen. Plenty of carbonation with a large white head, which does not last long.

S: Watery with cereal grains.

T/M: Bubbly and crisp, but watered down. Mostly grains with a weak balance of hops and malts. Clean aftertaste.

D: Not that great of a brew. For the price It's good for games and maybe even to just have around.


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Photo of keeganfrank
1.58/5  rDev -35.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Has that wispy head and light golden color that are typical of this style. Smells like sweet corn and bread. Taste starts out as sweet adjuncts but sours as the beer warms. Mouthfeel and drinkability are nothing to write home about-CBL is pretty weak.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
2.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I see multiple/duplicate entries for this beer, but figuring that this is, indeed, brewed by the folks at PBR I thought I'd review under this entry.
This beer is, well, average. Nothing about craft beer lives in here. The point of this beer is that it is cheap. One is going to keep lots of this around for football watching. I found a twelve pack for $5 and I'm pretty happy with my purchase. This is pretty identical to PBR. Unremarkable and easy to drink if you don't mind fizzy, yellow beer.

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Photo of hardy008
1.85/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Pale color, thin white head with poor retention. The smell has some sweet grain, a small amount of hops, and metal. The taste is much the same as the aroma. The metallic taste is off putting. Light bodied, with too much carbonation. Not very exciting. I will pass on this in the future.

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Photo of Arenbeer
3.34/5  rDev +36.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Poured out of a 40oz into a Pint Glass

A- Crystal clear light yellow tint with a pearl white two finger head. Couldn't believe the lack of color in this beer.

S- Not much to it, sweet grainy smell with slight hops.

T- Once again not to much there, just a sweet malty, grainy taste with a slight hops backround which is suprising. Was kind of pumped to actually taste hops in a malt liquor. Definitely IMO the best tasting 40 beer.

M- Excellent mouthfeel. Real light and smooth with a decent amount of carbonation, enough to tickle the throat as it goes down. Nor does it leave the mouth dry by any means.

Overall if your looking for a good 40 and something to just relax with, i'd recommend this beer over all the others. No foul alcohol taste or trouble getting this one down, it's actually worth getting every now and then when you don't have much to spend.

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Photo of woodychandler
2.02/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

I CAN't believe that I have not reviewed this before now.

This was the first beer that I ever tried and that was at the tender age of ~ 5 y/o. My late Pops, who rarely drank, had some buddies from work over and I was given an open can to take a sip or two. I remember really liking its bitterness and then inadvertently spilling the remainder onto the carpet. That was then.

Now, it got two fingers' worth of rocky, bone-white head with lousy retention. Color was a straw-yellow with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a faint lager-like sweetness, but it was barely discernible. Mouthfeel was thin with a light lager sweetness on the tongue. Finish was light, airy, ethereal. I need more from a beer.

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Photo of ThickestHead
2.2/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

No need to bother with the details on this macro-brew. Let's just say that drinking it is more of a chore than a pleasure, sure it tastes relatively better than other similar cheap beers but with an ABV of 4.0 you get disgusted with the stuff before you even get buzzed enough to forget how bad it is. Personally, I use this beer to cook with and it adds enough flavor to the food but it doesn't overwhelm and take over a dish.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.4/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. can into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light straw yellow color with a thin white head that fades very quickly and leaves very little lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of light malts, pungent adjuncts and a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste is mostly adjunct & light malt sweetness with bready flavors of grain and barley. There's a very mild hops presence. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: A little smooth and a little crisp, very light body, high carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Not very flavorful, goes down easily because there's hardly anything to it, not filling at all, very mild kick, this one is as drinkable as any fizzy yellow beer and it's low price helps it find a market niche, but I wouldn't want to drink it if I had much else to choose from.

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Photo of Mistofminn
3.29/5  rDev +34.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Found one of these in my friends fridge recently. Was shocked to say the least. This is one of those people who wouldn't be caught dead drinking from a can. He quickly backtracked and explained "it's my go-to beer pong beer." That I can attest to.

If you like cheap and drinkable beer that still has some sort of taste and substance, this is definitely for you. While it has the characteristics of macro lager written all over it, it just has that little extra quality that makes you say "hey this isn't half bad." Definitely its best and most prominent quality is the drinkability. It better be smooth and easy drinking if its going to be someones "beer pong beer."

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Photo of puboflyons
2.81/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from 12 fl. oz. can no. B82-82355C. It pours a pale yellow with bubbly carbonation that keeps trickling up the side of the pint glass. I note an aroma of grass, corn, and maybe some hops. Watered down on the mouth. The taste is somewhat metallic. I don't rate it quite as bad as other BA raters.

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Photo of neenerzig
3.38/5  rDev +38.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this because it was really cheap at a bar I was at recently, being $2.00 a can. Poured out of a 12 oz can into a pint glass. this beer is a very clear light to medium gold color. Head is a good 1/4 inch when poured, before settling to a nice surface coating about 5 minutes later. I was surprised at the very decent surface layer that I had from a beer of this caliber. Pretty decent lacing too. Smells of somewhat sweet malt and some grain of corn, as is typically found in these types of beers, were present. The taste pretty much followed suite. Somewhat sweet and malty flavors along with the aforementioned corn or grain flavor. No discernible hops whatsoever. The taste is certainly somewhat bland and uninteresting, but also not offensively shitty and bad like many other cheap macro lagers are taste wise. The first thing I thought of when I started sipping beer is that it reminded me a lot of PBR, only for me to find out when I logged on here to write my review that this beer is brewed by Pabst. This beer is pretty much like a clone of PBR, at least to this palate. I doubt that I, or most of you guys could tell the difference in a blind taste test. The price is comparable to PBR too. It has a somewhat crisp and smooth light to medium bodied mouthfeel with moderate to heavy carbonation. Easy to drink, partially because this is like drinking seltzer water more than beer, which is never a good thing when it comes to beer. I have to admit though, I don't really see a reason why this beer even has a need to exist as long as PBR is around.


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Photo of chilidog
2.55/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Not much to say on thisone other than this is a good get ya by brew.

Not much on appearance, clear yellow straw, even looks alittle thin. Head is white and does maintain allittle after the pour. It will fade with no real lace.

Aroma is faint, grain or corn like with a grass undertone.

Taste is watered grassy grain. Slightly sweet but no real hop or malt to speak of.

The mouth is thin, light bodied and a slight tartness as it dries.

Drinkability, sure till your next better beer. That said, the value and the old name plate drew me to pick up this 12-pk. for 4.99. Its better cold, but lacks in every area.

I'll use soom for cooking.

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Black Label Beer from Pabst Brewing Company
2.44 out of 5 based on 158 ratings.
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