Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) | Pabst Brewing Company

1,699 Reviews
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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)

Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Adjunct Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.74%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
- Pabst Blue Ribbon is brewed in the finest traditions of an American Premium Lager dating back to 1844. Brewed with a combination of 2 & 6-row malted barley, select cereal grains and American and European hops, Pabst Blue Ribbon is fermented with a proprietary lager yeast. Our unique fermentation and maturation process results in a smooth, full bodied beer with a clean, crisp finish with a fine noble hop aroma.
- ABV% 4.74
- Calories 144

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-24-2001

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Reviews: 1,699 | Ratings: 5,462
Photo of gmfessen
2.35/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Tried this on tap... not sure why. Beer was a clear yellow golden color with a one finger bubbly head. Smell is slighlty sweet of malt and corn. Beer is initially bitter but finishes with a malty crisp finish. A light mouthfeel with lots of carbonation. Drinkable like water, very light.

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Photo of Rennpferd
3.15/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. can that was about 40F in temperature into a 14oz room temperature (70F) Pilsner glass.

After pouring the beer appeared deep yellow to golden with active carbination originating from the lower quarter of the glass but not quite from the very bottom. The beverage was very clear, pale to almost white near the sides of the glass while yellow to golden near center. A whisp of a head was present right after pouring and completely disappeared within moments.

The beverage has a slight bitter smell leaning towards a mix of fresh cut grass and sweet corn.

The beverage tastes like there is a bitter cusp of spruce or pine needles that gives way to a course, highly carbinated pang of alcohol. After the carbination expends itself the beverage becomes very watery and light.

I find it easy to drink and that is why it is my cheap, working around the house turning wrenches, just finished cleaning, returned from mountain biking garage and basement beer.

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Photo of Applesauce1
2.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got the PBR on-tap at Skipper's in Athens, OH.

I've had this beer many times before, this is my first review, however.

Appearance: yellow with a thin white head; not too impressive looking
Smell: skunky cereal smell; typicaly macro smell
Taste: slight malt presence; skunky presence; I'll give them a 3 though becuase this is one of the best macro lagers I've had
Mouthfeel: light bodied, could definitely have a few in a night
Drinkability: good

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Photo of Doomcifer
2.12/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

Poured an EXTREMELY pale straw color with a soda-like head that fizzed away momentarily. Zero lacing.

Smell is of light grain and corn...maybe a tad bit of hop spiciness.

Taste is of corn, very light grains, very light weak hops. Not much to speak of. Had a weird aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is very watery and heavy on the carbonation, ala soda.

I guess it's drinkable...but why would I want to go for one of these if I can go for a rich, full of character, craft brew?

Overall, this beer is in the same boat as Budweiser. Very similiar to each other. It is what it American Macro Lager.

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Photo of BigD1972
2.74/5  rDev -9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

st: Poured from a patriotic red, White & Blue can

a: Light piss yellow

S: Typical american lager smell

T: not too bad but you pay the price the next day!!!

M: Weak...very weak!!!!

D: refreshing on a hot day...but again, pay the price on the porcelin pony the next day!!!

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Photo of scarletfire79
3.67/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pabst is an old stand by. for the price it can't be beat. it ties schlitz for my american macro number one. super smooth. it's definitly way too easy to put a bunch of these boys away. nothing spectactular. but absolutly no off flavors, smooth pure watery american goodness. pbr is where it's at when the money is tight and drinking is in order. great with spicy foods and bbq. always in my fridge for those sundays off.

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Photo of leedorham
3.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served to me in a can with a dirty glass at "The Woods" Tavern in Priest Lake, Idaho. If you're ever in Priest Lake and there's nothing else open except "The Woods" I would suggest going for a hike or kayaking or something.

Pours piss yellow with a white head and lots of pretty bubbles.

Smells like CO2 with some traces of malt sweetness.

I can really appreciate the way this beer tastes. It has very little in the way of hop flavor or any flavor at all for that matter but there is also very little about the tast not to be liked. This washed down the disgusting pizza I was eating very well and the easy-on-the-palate taste makes it an ideal session beverage. If you have to choose between PBR and any other macro. Choose PBR.

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Photo of JohnW
3.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Having heard mainly negative things about this beer, thought I should at least give it a try while in the States! Poured pale gold, fair head that lasted, though aroma very weak and pale - like the colour - and hardly inspiring. Taste is mainly thin malty and slightly sweet as distinct to some other Maco lagers, and not a lot in it to make you actively dislike it, but nothing to grab your attention either. However, it is easy to drink and thirst quenching on a hot day, so if it were the only beer available I would not refuse it, though could imagine many others I would prefer! If it were between that and Bud, think I would have the Pabst!


B'ham UK (written while in Florida Nov 2006)

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Photo of KoG
3.45/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Good ol Pabst. Seems better out of the bottle, not sure if its a carbonation difference. Straw body, with a fizzy head, same smell as the cans, bit of malt.

Light malt flavor with a hint of bitterness, corny flavor on the finish as it warms.

My favorite cheap beer, especially after a long day of work. If the "corny" aftertaste wasn't there it would be exceptional for the price.

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Photo of afinepilsner
2.88/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

40oz brown bottle

Pabst Blue Ribbon was pale golgen in color and very clear. It had a thick bubbly white head with decent retention and some spotty lacing. The aroma was sweet and grainy. The taste was about the same with a touch of hops and a dry finish. It had a medium-light body and medium carbonation. Drinkability was average. It's not to bad for a macro lager.

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Photo of MurphyMacManus
3.66/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. longneck into pint glass.

A: Pale straw/ golden with a 1-inch white head that's somewhat sticky.

S: Average macro smell: grain, a bit grassy, little in the way of hops.

T/M: mild grain, less adjunct-y than others. Bit of hops in the finish, and less watery than other macros. Refreshing.

D: Designed to be consumed in mass quantities, and very appropriate for doing so.

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Photo of thefenst
3.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Good old PBR.
Pours a very pale straw with a small white head that has some retention, impressive for a macro.
Smells like a macro, grassy and cereal adjuncts.
Tastes slightly better than most macros, grassy and crisp, almost like a watered-down draft wheat beer.
This beer is very drinkable, until you realize the next morning that you drank 10 of them the previous night.
Not bad for how cheap it is, not bad at all.

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Photo of dedrinker
2.25/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I know what the fuss is about (current hipness of retro-blue collar posturing) but I just don't know what the fuss is about. I've had this one in the 12 oz. can, the 12 oz. bottle, on draught, in a 24 oz. can, and in the 40 oz. I watch people pay three dollars a can for this in an affluent neighborhood bar that has fifteen good taps. I presume they are making their ironic social statement (though the true irony eludes them). Ok, so it's thin bodied , with a weird off-putting fruity cheap cereal flavor. The finish makes me want to drink a glass of water, and eat a handful of pretzel nuggets before switching to something better. Is there a time and place for this? Yes, but not here, not now.

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Photo of Grundle20
3.91/5  rDev +29.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

OH YEAH! 5-Star PBR! If PBR was a person I would give him/her a high-five every time I saw them.

Pale yellow with a surprisingly decent frothy white head. The beer is absolutely crystal clear.

I'm not going to lie, the beer smells like my bathroom after a Friday night, stale and wheaty with just a touch of sour. Lets just look past this aspect and think of how cheap PBR is...

Taste and Mouthfeel:
It's crisp and slightly effervescent. It tastes like wet hay. There really isn't a whole lot of substance. I really want to say it tastes like yellow, hay, and water period but again think of the price... A mear sample of PBR won't leave you with a "bad" aftertaste but after about 14 PBRs you'll be praying to make out with a smoker for more reasons then taste alone...

If you can show me a more accessible, drinkable, not necesarilly bad tasting beer than PBR then you too will get a high five. PBR stands as the absolute definition of a maintenance beer.

Bottom Line:
A beer for the long haul, even light weights find this beer in their hand no less than 10 times in an evening. Not the best macro lager I've ever had but it's a damn good one in my opinion.

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
3.39/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Very pale yellow body with about a finger of head that quickly dissipates. Smells malty with a hint of hop. Tastes Sweet and watery. Not really noticing any hops here. Reminds me in some ways of Molson Ice in its flavor. Becomes somewhat more flavorful as it warms, but still fairly watery. Very drinkable, though. And very cheap. I would say this beats anything the Big 3 make (yes, I know Miller makes it now). I’m sure it’s better on tap than from the 16 oz can I’m drinking.

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Photo of icefisherman
3.6/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 5

Every time i pop the top on one of these i cant help but think of bear hunting but on to the reveiw and the guide totally avoiding this stuff till he ran out of his bud light then we could not keep him out of our beer such is like

Looks and smells like cheap beer taste on the other hand is out of the park this is some good tasting stuff and highly drinkable for the $9-10 a 24 pack

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Photo of Bones54
2.91/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is the classic go to beer. Sure its cheap and a macro, but this is still decent stuff. It's perfect for really warm days, sitting on the beach, or when just looking to relive one of those college nights trying to drink all the beer in the world.


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Photo of Phyl21ca
1.5/5  rDev -50.2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Can: Poured a very light yellow color beer with a medium white bubbly head with average retention. Aroma of corn and adjunct is not surprisingly dominating. Taste is as bland as it can be done with no aftertaste at all (which is probably the purpose but does not provide me with any satisfaction.

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Photo of jwc215
3.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours straw yellow with a fizzy head that slowly descends to a wisp. A little lacing is left.

The smell is typical macro adjuncts with some grassiness thrown in.

Slick hops and a touch of alcohol are noticeable at first. There is also some sweet malt and subtle grass. A touch of corn is hinted at as the drink progresses. Water nearly dominates after awhile, but it's not as watery as many other macros.
It has a drying quality that cuts some of its refreshingness, but maintains some aftertaste.

For a very cheap macro, it could be much worse. I had a few of these at the pool in the heat on Sunday and found that I felt more like I was drinking beer than if I had many the big, more expensive macros. If you are in a place that allows only cans, you can do worse, especially for the price.

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Photo of mmcave
2.1/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

The color is almost clear, little to no body. Foamy head that, reminds me of the foam you'd see on a questionable lake. The color of urine when you are close to hydrated. Smell of metal, a tinge skunky, no real hops or barley character. Taste is subtle with little to no complexity. Taste of metal, mild yeast a little sour, thin no alcohol warmth. Really this is not a good beer, but out of the macros I'd rather drink it than bud or any other cheep completely quantitative beers. Maybe simply for old times sake, but likely not.

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Photo of jasonjlewis
3.41/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I didn't like this beer that much but it was tolerable as a cheap macro lager to just hang with friends and drink. It tased average. A little less induced carbonation. Smell was faint. It was crisp and easy to drink.

I wish more places served micros and imports for cheaper. My friends wanted to go to some bar and this was the best thing they had for the price IMO.

I could imagine wanting one of these after along day of work or mowing the lawn or something.

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Photo of Rudgers73
2.44/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 1 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Ok listen.

I know that when you pour this beer into a glass the head foams up and disappears before you can set the can down. And I know that it leaves a fruity, skunky aftertaste in your mouth. And when you look at the color of it you think of some crap beer like budweiser watered down by half.


When you are in college and you go to the grocery store and see a 24-pack for $11 with a $4 mail in rebate, what do you want from them?

You have to remember that this a beer coming from the makers of Colt 45, Big Bear, Stroh's, Silver Thunder Old Milwaukee, and Schmidt's.

We had a saying when I was in college. "$4 rebate? You can't afford not to drink it."

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Photo of veech
3.87/5  rDev +28.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a classic macro that has enjoyed quite a resurgence in the market at least in the southeast. While in college the only place one could find PBR was at either sketchy roadhouses or frat houses when money was low. Now it's at practically every beer bar out there. Pabst, among others, has really stepped up their marketing, and many classic macros have a much larger presence now (e.g. Miller High Life and even Schlitz). PBR is beer that brings back nostalgia as I drank it regularly in college. It has more flavor and body than most macros and is very easy drinking. I just enjoyed 3 of them for $2 each @ Gene's Haufbrau in Charleston S.C. When money's low PBR is always a decent alternative. FYI it was Pabst who originally invented the 6 pack.

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Photo of LordChesterfield
3.67/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I got PBR because I heard that it might be a decent macro brew. Well it is. It pours extremely pale with a frothy head that quickly dissipates. I can smell corn before even puting might nose near the glass, but this subsides into a flowery sweet aroma. It tastes almost as light as it looks and leaves light sweet taste on the toungue. Imminently refreshing this is with a drinkability that would embarass any other beer I can think of. And what's more? It's cheap as hell! Apparently it's a classic though I would never know. This gets a five for drinkabilty for the ease with which it is drunk and for the ease with which it is purchased.

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Photo of dustylong
3.68/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden yellow color with pretty much no head (poured from a can into a mug). Average macro lager smell to it, with a hint of corn. The taste matches the smell, a typical macro lager with a hint of corn. Has a slightly sour taste to it. Very easy to drink, with a good amount of carbonation, making it nice, light, and crisp. Feels very light in the mouth, with a lot of carbonation. Very good for a cheap beer...very good for the style...

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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
3.01 out of 5 based on 5,462 ratings.
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