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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) | Pabst Brewing Company

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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR)
5,637 Ratings
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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Ratings: 5,637 |  Reviews: 1,743
Photo of Frozensoul327
3.15/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A very good budget beer. Smooth state, and highly drinkable. It pours out a short head that disappears in very short time. Overall i would much rather have this than a Bud or Coors. Something about this beer simply has more to offer than many others that are higher priced.

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Photo of Wildman
3.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5


Okay I couldn't resist. Betty's, which had nothing but craft beers on tap, decided to add this beer as their one macro. It was a straw color and had a very small white head. A medium amount of carbonation was present. Had a slight hop aroma, but the major aroma was of grain. The flavor was also of grain. Had a slight bit of bite to the finish. Much better beer on tap than Budweiser or Miller. Probably why Betty's picked it.

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Photo of texascarl
3.88/5  rDev +32%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I can afford 'better' beer, but why spend more? This beer is good. Not 'sort of good', it's GOOD. Recently merged with a much bigger megabrewer, advertising costs are down, better costs available and those savings are passed along to me. On the downside, I remember it tasting better when I was young and GOOD looking. Oh well, everything did.
While PBR arguably tastes better in long neck bottles or on tap, I'm reviewing the 12 oz cans here because that's what I keep around la casa most of the time. If you stop by here looking thirsty, a cold PBR is what I'm likely to hand you.

Appearance = light golden color with a medium to large foamy head that dissipates quickly. Medium carbonation.

Aroma = light. Not much to it, what there is = fruity and sweet, I don't get much hops nose here.

Taste = sweet, malt balanced pretty well with the hops. Big flavor for an inexpensive American lager, filling, a 'chewy' mouthfeel, semi-creamy. Sweet = my main impression, with some hoppy bitterness on the short finish.

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Photo of jward
2.91/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This brew looks quite appealing in a tall pilsener glass. A fluffy white head sits atop a golden, effervescent body. A sweet, grainy aroma loses its charm rather quickly. The best thing going for PBR is its crisp, clean mouthfeel and nice carbonation. As for the flavor, there is a noticeable sweetness throughout, with some faint suggestions of grassiness and cornmeal. But, if you decide to drink this brew ice cold, you really won't be missing out on a memorable beer tasting experience.

I am in agreement with other BAs that this beer, while not especially good, is certainly no worse than many common, heavily advertised mainstream lagers, American or otherwise. Why pay more, if this is what you want to drink? (Didn't a character from David Lynch's "Blue Velvet" emphasize this point about PBR in rather strong terms?) Pairs well with cheap Mexican food.

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Photo of zacharius
2.06/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

First off I am an ale man myself and usually avoid lagers like the plague but I drank quite a few last night at the bar because they were on special for 25 cents a glass. I don't know how they do it, that is cheaper than the store!

PBR pours a white head over a crystal clear pale yellow beer but unfortuntly it all goes downhill from here. This beer has a mild skunky smell but hardly any aroma at all. It's taste is nonexistent and it's body thin. It's only saving grace is that you can drink it like water. If I paid more than the 25 cents a beer I would have felt ripped off. But at that price I guess I can't complain.

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Photo of Beastdog75
3.49/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

What else can I say, but this is probably the best cheap beer around. My first memories of it came not from drinking it, but seeing the giant Pabst beer bottle on top of a factory off the Garden State Parkway in Irvington, NJ (it's still there, but no longer has the label on it). And did I mention Adam Sandler's "Cajunman" character drinks this stuff?

Anyway, on to the actual beer itself. PBR pours a clear yellow straw color. It forms a nice foamy white head that lasts for about a minute and leaves a little bit of lace. The smell is a little sweet, with mostly grain presence in the nose. A little bit of hops present, and for some reason, I could swear there is a tiny amount of chocolate smell too. The mouthfeel is much smoother than the main macrobrews, although it has a degree of wateriness and fizziness. For the flavor, this is a little sweeter than the macros. The malt probably gives it the sweetness, along with the adjuncts that are used (probably corn). There is a slight hoppy taste to the beer, which slightly reminds me of grapefruit. As it warms up, a bit of grassiness becomes noticeable. Only a hint of dryness. Quite mellow and pleasing to the palette, and very thirst quenching. Slight cracker flavor in the aftertaste, along with grains and hops. Although almost undetectable, there is a tiny amount of green apple/veggie taste from DMS. The beer finishes with no alcoholic warmth.

This was quite enjoyable for such a cheap beer. I call this a "working on the car/truck" type of beer. I think it would pair well with BBQ food or corn chips. Along with Stroh's, Pabst makes two cheap beers that are quite consumable.

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Photo of JISurfer
3.58/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pabst on tap!!!!! What more can I say, well actually a lot. This beer is really cheap and fairly good, especially for the price. Can you beat $1 a glass? I think not! Anyways, back to the good stuff! Has real light color and real light taste. You can definately tast the malt in it, but it doesn't ruin the flavor. Also nice on the tastebuds. It's definately not some beer made by monks in France, but it's worth buying, especially if your poor or in college. Like most beers, it's better on tap.

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Photo of Shiloh
3.32/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Easy drinking brew with questionable appearance....but seriously folks, there is no head on this beer, this little critter is bald. Having said that, taste is well rounded, tad malty sweetness, no lingering after taste...medium body that promotes session awareness.

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Photo of Tubesox
2.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I finally broke down and purchased my first Pabst Blue Ribbon tonight. I've been scared to death of this beer, but I faced my demons and took the challenge.... This was actually a pretty good Cheap beer for the price. I rank it up there with Miller High Life. Bottom line: If you are looking for a good cheap beer that reminds you of the good old days (high school and College), this is the beer for you.

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Photo of tang214
3.27/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Being poor lately I have had a chance to sample some of the cheaper beers. This is only an average brew and that even takes into account the price of it. It has a light straw color that leaves something to be desired but it does pour with a much better head than most poor man's beer and it thins out to leave a thin layer and leaves minimal lace. The taste is very decent with nice malty flavor. It has an aroma of corn and not much else. It has a smooth mouthfeel that goes down very easy. I barely enjoyed this beer but found it to be drinkable but there are still many other brews that I would put in my list above this one. One thing about this beer that I really did not like was the tightness in my head that it caused that appeared after I only drank like four. I don't think I will get this one again even if I am running low on funds.

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Photo of pootz
2.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I tried this great Yankee lager from 2 separate brewers in Ontario Canada. Too bad Pabst franchises the brand without too much QC of it's franchisees. The one bottle I had from Sleeman's was good . Totally representitive of the American lager style; hints of hop and gains (and rice?) highly carbonated with a head that wastes quite quickly. Certainly not overpowering in the taste department but a welcome drink on a hot day.

The other time I had this beer it was brewed by Lakeport brewes in Hamilton and the quality sucked. The taste was off. Harsh and slightly spoiled. Maybe the bar had it in the fridge too long. At any rate this second ribbon was enough to make a lesser man blow chunks.

My experience with the Sleeman's rendering was pleasant enough that I may buy a 6-pack or so in hot weather if my cashflow is a bit limp at the time.

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Photo of yen157
3.04/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Brilliant yellow color and has a white head that melts away into a fine lace. It is laden with that familliar domestic lager aroma, a bit of skunky adjuncts. Tastes husky at first, followed by a slight corn sweetness which is quickly cut by a brief grassy bitterness wich gives the beer a relatively dry finish. The only aftertaste to speak of is that of alcohol and wood. No malt flavor. Neither too bubbly nor thin, though. Not a particularly good beer, but not a bad beer either. It may replace Schmidt's as my cheap domestic lager of choice.

 547 characters

Photo of bewareOFpenguin
2.5/5  rDev -15%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

My favorite low grade beer. Can not beat the price. It does not have that over manufactured taste that most macros have. Smooth and easy going, a kegger favorite. Must be consumed in a plastic cup.

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Photo of cokes
2.48/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at a concert. It was a matter of finance.
Staw yellow bodied. Served in a plastic cup, so it was hard to actually view, though I doubt too many people give a shit as to how PBR stacks up in the appearance dept.
Nose is free of adjuncts. Free of malts and free of hops as well. Tiniest bit of unknown sweetness and maybe a hint of grain. Hard to smell anything over the potent maryjane the surrounding patrons were indulging in. (Ratdog concert...aka Bob Weir from the Dead).
The taste is, to be kind, clean. To be less than kind, virtually non-existent. Very small malt-esque sweetness. A little grassy, with impotent hops towards the finish. Scores points for being free of anything offensive.
Light bodied, but does not fall apart in the mouth. Several of these had no impact on sobriety. But much of that damage was already done.
I'll take this over most other macros.

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Photo of Jason
3.65/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 16 oz can with a white back ground, red and blue label colour. Hey red white and blue, how American. “Established in Milwaukee 1844” stated on the front, no freshness date.

Appearance: Head foams up quite big then quickly dissipates into a wispy white lace, brilliantly clear pale golden yellow hue seems a bit inviting.

Smell: Thin sweet malt and grain, touch of strained hops in the nose. Clean aroma slight grassiness from the grain also.

Taste: Light to moderate body, nice even crispness with a somewhat effervescent carbonation. The smooth mouth feel rides on the tail of the carbonation, thin malt palate. Kiss of hops, bitterness peaks after the crispness subsides and the dryness kicks in. Trace of alcohol hit the tongue and warms the mouth and throat. Hops stick to bitterness and provide no flavour other than a faint grassiness. Some corn grit flavour in the middle, not cooked grits but rather fresh milled grits. Clean palate throughout with a great wrap-up of dryness in the finish.

Notes: This is a great premium American lager, hands down beats the big three. About the same in the bottle but obviously better on tap. A perfect change up when things get a bit tedious and want to drink a simple beer.

 1,256 characters

Photo of allboutbierge
3.25/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Good ole' PBR, as reliable that old pick up truck or a good dog. PBR is my empty-wallet beer of choice as I can get a case of 16oz 'tall gentleman' for 11.50. It definetly beats any macro hog wash for alot less money. Yea man i know what you mean by cringing when people make jokes about it when they actually think Heinekein is a good beer; it bothers me too. The mouthfeel is a lil watery but the carbonation evens it out so that it is not a detriment to enjoying it. The taste is balanced, a slight hoppy grain and lightly malted. It a very drinkable beer, as it's balance, realtive lightness, and cost doesn't inhibit anyone from pounding them out.

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Photo of zerk
3.24/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours translucent light gold, with a pretty impressive white foam. The foam dissapates and leaves a lace around the glass. Smell leaves something to be desired... mostly corn adjuncts, and a tiny bit of malt. Taste is actually somewhat complex... corn, malt, a little fruity flavor... no hops to speak of. Has a thin mouthfeel, as one would expect, with high carbonation. Not a bad choice if you need a $3 six pack... and better than most American Macro Lagers.

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Photo of Murph
3.51/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours exceptionally well, is a pale yellow with a creamy white head that lasts amazingly long for the style and actually leaves some lace down the glass. The aroma is definitely the weak point of this brew. It is better than most with a slightly corn and adjunct smell but still not all that great of a smell. Taste is great for the style with its incredibly creamy and smooth sweetness/slight fruitiness? and fairly crisp mouthfeel the brew is very drinkable and an absolute pleasure compared to the other macros and even compared to a lot of cheap brew, you really can't get any better for the price, at $9 a case it is a steal.

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Photo of bditty187
3.08/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Ultra pale yellow tinge, ultra translucent with a head that reached about ¼ inch before it dissipated, soapy retention, very sporadic and spotty lace (it is not very much to look at). Sweetish nose, adjuncts would seem to be influential. Honestly, it isn’t very inviting. The taste is slightly sweet, malt is very much noticeable, vague influence of adjuncts. The mildest/lightest hops influence. The palate is decent, it can warm (to a degree) and it doesn’t have to be served ice-cold. Moderate carbonation and medium body. Very drinkable, there always seems to be a time and a place for some PBR. It is just too cheap not to drink ($3.80 for a 6-pack).

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Photo of xXTequila
3.45/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Much better than I was expecting it to be. Pours a very big fluffy head that drops down to a thin layer of whispy foam. Clear golden body just like every other American lager. Much better tasting than most macros. The grain is noticeable but not astringent, lightly sweet witha clean dry ending.
This is a great fridge stocker and you can't beat the price.

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Photo of BeerBob
2.98/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer pours a lite amber from a 12oz can with a quickly disappearing head.

Nose of hops and grain and palate of hops and malt with a bit of salt on the tongue.

At $3.39 a sixer this has to be one of the better Beer buys for a U.S.A. macro.
The first can evaporated from my glass before I knew what had happened.
PBR leaves a pleasant bitter hops aftertaste that says put more PBR in please.

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Photo of proc
2.38/5  rDev -19%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I must admit, I really wanted to dislike this beer going in, but it wasn't that bad. As a matter of fact, it was decent. Pours out to a bright golden color with a fluffly white head. Smell is somewhat funky, almost chemical, but the actual taste has some hints of caramel and a very slight hop bitterness. Seeing as Pabst brews this and Schlitz, I can see why they taste similar. I could swear they were the same beer, with very subtle differences. Am American classic? That might be stretching it. Drinkable? Yes. And no different than most American Standard lagers. Rock on PBR...

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Photo of Maestro
2.48/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

This beer is drinkable and that is about all I can say about it. I absolutely despise the mass produced garbage that is made in this country but for some reason, I can always tolerate a little PBR. Stranger things have happened.

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Photo of bmills1608
1.73/5  rDev -41.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

I don't know.... this has been reviewed a lot here and a lot seem to like it, but I just don't know. Very boring IMHO. Simple, easy, almost like your not having a beer at all. Take a big sip, swallow, and its like "Did I just take a sip of beer or was that I day dream." It is cheap for sure and when I bought it it was like 90 degrees and I had a bunch of beer sitting in the cellar that was'nt very cold and I just needed some cold damn beer so I figured $10.99, what the hell!! OK I guess, I don't know..........

 521 characters

Photo of tigerpaws
3.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Had always heard of this beer growing up but never tried one, figured it for lawnmower beer. Even though I would not choose it again if I had better choices, it wasn't as bad as I thought. Very light in color and the smell is really the only drawback. Better than most of the beers we see all the time on tv.............CHEERS

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Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) from Pabst Brewing Company
Beer rating: 2.94 out of 5 with 5,637 ratings
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