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Rainier Lager | Pabst Brewing Company

75 Reviews
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Rainier LagerRainier Lager

Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: American Adjunct Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Rainier beer brings together nature’s bounty from the great Northwest. Pure spring waters combine with golden barley and verdant hops to produce a beer rich in taste and texture. Fermented slowly with a pedigree yeast culture under tightly controlled conditions, Rainier comes forth with a satisfying malty flavor over a slightly fruity background, spiced with Chinook, Mt. Hood, and Willamette hop notes.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-05-2003

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Reviews: 75 | Ratings: 241
Photo of MrNuggets
1/5  rDev -64.7%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

The head was big at first, but turned to nothing very fast. it really doesn't get any more tasteless than this. the smells is up to par with your average marco, but there is amost no taste. Hard to call it bad, just bland. Drinkable? Well yeah, but why drink this when i could have a glass of water.

 299 characters

Photo of misterscooter
1.05/5  rDev -62.9%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Probably the worst beer I've ever had flow over these gums. There wasn't one redeeming thing about this beer. The least they could do is reduce the amount of taste because at least some of the other fairly big (bad) breweries are easy to put away. This looks bad, smells bad, feels bad, and tastes worse.

 304 characters

Photo of RoyalT
1.11/5  rDev -60.8%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Appearance – Light yellow in color with a JB head.

Smell – The grain and cheap sweetness are there, as I suspected, but there’s something else in this can. It’s not skunk. It’s something more sinister. Whatever it is, it is big. This aroma lit up half my house. I think the best way to describe it is straight horse sweat. If you’ve every smelled a horse after he/she has had a good workout, this was it.

Taste – The grainy horse gallops out in the taste as well. There’s a hint of orange sweetness here, as is Pabst tradition, but it’s kind of hard to enjoy when you’re licking horse hair out of your rice.

Mouthfeel – The cheap carbonation was annoying. The word “light” doesn’t even begin to describe how close to water this felt in the mouth.

Drinkability – I could probably use this as a chaser after beer-bonging a case of HOTDs, but other than that it’s not fit for consumption.

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Photo of njmoons
1.7/5  rDev -39.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Back in my college days out west, we used to get kegs of Rainer Beer, for house parties etceteras. It was on tap at all the local bars, and cheap at the market.

In all that time I can honestly say I never enjoyed a single one.

Pale adjunct lager with almost no malt taste, and a terrible finish that made me think they must not ferment at lager temperatures.

There are worse beers, but not many.

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Photo of mentor
1.78/5  rDev -37.1%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Can provided amid a bunch of stuff given to me for volunteering at 2005 GABF. Uhm, thanks guys, I really appreciate the opportunity. Stamp on the bottom of the can reads 12195 B41029. "Mountain Fresh Taste" by " Rainier Brewing Co., Milwaukee, WI" and brewed in Texas. They've pretty much got the US triangulated with this one.

Pours a one finger white soda pop head, yet it does have some stickiness. This beer is light in color. Wow, about the least color I've ever seen. Clear and dull very very pale straw colored. Smells weakly of wet cardboard and a hint of malt sweet that can be found with some searching. The absence of aroma is amazing. Tastes mostly of acrid carbonation with a malt sweet way below. Some floral hop flitters on the border of detection in the aftertaste, but the flavor is too weak for me to get an idea of which hop. If I had to guess, I'd say tettnanger. Thin body and highly carbonated. The carbonation burn is definitely the most distinct characteristic of this beer. Not much to this beer. Not an afront, just nothing to it.

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Photo of jdhilt
1.81/5  rDev -36%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Served as a 12oz bottle ($2.50) at The Derby Steakhouse & Casino Butte, Mt. Pours with four-finger white head that goes slowly leaving some lace. Pale amber color. Very light carbonation and light bodied. Starts with a bland hoppy corn flavor, finish is insipid, good lawn mower beer.

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Photo of wordemupg
2.09/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

355ml can poured into pint glass 14/10/11

A very pale straw yellow with lots of bubbles that feed a short lived thumbs width of foam that leaves no lace

S not much really some sweet grains

T I'd complain about the flavor but there would be nothing to complain about, some soggy rice cakes and hay maybe, quite faint for sure

M watery and over-carbonated, I'd say it had a clean aftertaste but that would imply flavor of some kind to begin with

O there's just nothing going on here, it's a lawnmower thirst quencher and nothing more

this is cheap beer good for one thing

 577 characters

Photo of evergreen_machine
2.24/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Tasted in an East Coast/West Coast Narraganset vs. Rainier taste off.

Pours a clear straw color with a thin white head that vanishes completely, no lacing.
No discernable smell.
Light hops taste predominates over the malt body, somewhat off-tasting.
Mouthfeel is light and pleasing, the carbon dioxide effectively cleanses the pallet.

 335 characters

Photo of ELN
2.26/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

They put this back on the shelf in about late 2007. I started buying it because I wasn't sure how long it would stick around. Now that it's been 3 years it seems so standard. It is better tasting than Pabst who also makes this beer. Not that bad warm. Pretty tasteless cold. I pick up 18 packs every now and then for $11.47. Since Pabst makes this it's usually the same price as Pabst but sometimes it's a dollar more. It's okay. Once you get over the regional love it's kind of boring. I like beer in cans and cheap beer though and there are only so many at my local Wal Mart or Winco where I generally do my grocery shopping. I'm sure it looks yellow in a glass. I always drink out of the can though. Smell is oretty light, mouthfeel is watery. Drinkability is alright. C-... cheap but ok

There's a video on YouTube of Kurt and Krist of Nirvana in Aberdeen buying this beer and the rest of the video is them practicing at Krist's mom's house which is kind of cool and special.

One time I was buying some of this late on a Friday night and an older dude like mid-30's saw me buying it and said he didn't know they made it anymore. He said he used to buy Lucky Lager which was the cheapest beer when he was younger. I wish I could try Lucky. They used to make it here in Vancouver, Washington according to Wikipedia. :(

I don't know of any other beers being made in my town ever.

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Photo of velosuds
2.28/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

My son brought a few 12 oz. cans home from a bender last weekend. Been a long time, probably more than 30 years, since I last had this beer. Just loved the old TV commercials from when this was brewed just south of downtown Seattle, especially the motorcycle ad where the shifting of gears corresponded with the three syllables of Rai-neer beer. Enjoyed this much more in my youth when I didn't respect beer, or myself, than I do now.

A-Pours a clear, pale golden hue with a two finger bright white foamy head that slowly recedes into a scant lacing.

S-Grainy malt, corn, slight grassiness, and sake.

T-Revolting actually. Tastes like what I remember from the last time a dog's drool met my lips. Bitter and bland with a nasty, adjunct lager aftertaste.

M-Extremely thin, almost watery, but the bad aftertaste lets you know it is not water.

O-Not worth drinking again, and not nearly as good as I remembered it from my youth. But, how many things are? I loved Quisp cereal as a kid, but it was not nearly as good when it was reintroduced. Rainier lager was a better choice 30 years ago than Olympia or Hamms. Very glad there has been a micro-brew Renaissance the last 20 years.

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
2.4/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 4

Rainier and PBR are basically the only macros i buy, and only when I am really poor (now). This brew pours a clear yellow piss color with white head that lingers for about a minute. Smells of grain and some corn. Taste is watery and grainy with some slight crispness on the finish. grains linger in the aftertaste. mouthfeel is ridiculously thin, very light feeling. Drinkability is good, because it tastes and goes down like water. It usually takes me about 12 of these babies to get buzzin hard. Obviously there are about 780,459,997,748,097 beers I would prefer to be drinking, but i will take this one time Seattle staple over Budmilloors.

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Photo of biboergosum
2.41/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

355ml can, the Canadian version distributed by Stroh, and 5% ABV. Just saw a fair bit of Mt. Rainier as it looms over the greater Seattle area last month, and it is a holiday weekend, so time for some cabin-worthy bevies.

This beer pours a clear, very pale golden straw colour, with a multitude of thinly puffy, foamy, and fizzy dirty white head, which settles more slowly than expected, leaving some splotchy lace around the glass.

It smells quite metallic and skunky, with some sweet corn graininess and fusel alcohols lurking below. The taste is thankfully mostly removed from the aspects of the nose, for better or for worse - this is one neutrally flavoured beer - with some very light, and difficult to typify adjunct malt, and a slight drying character - perhaps the full complement of alcohol asserting itself - it sure ain't the hops, baby.

The carbonation is quite sedate, just a meek frothiness abounding, the body a certifiable light weight, and smooth, but rather cloying, even though the sugar quotient remains fairly low. It finishes off-dry, bland, and yet pretty clean.

If you don't take a big whiff of this, you too can enjoy its cheap, more or less inoffensive, and easy 'drinkability'! Uh huh. Very much like tainted river water flowing down from the titular peak, you don't know until you taste it, and even then, cognitive dissonance can screw you over, i.e. this offering no longer has anything whatsoever to do with the Pacific Northwest's outdoor splendour.

 1,487 characters

Photo of stevoj
2.41/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

These ratings are all over the board. Understand that this is not a craft beer, its a mass market lager, it is what it is. Sweet grain dominates the taste, aroma is corn, decent pour with small airy head, very pale golden body with lazy carbonation. Not much of a finish, sort of evaporates. NW cheap lager, nuff said

 317 characters

Photo of Reidrover
2.43/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Ok bought at the local cheapo canned food warehouse 99 cents for a 24 oz can..nice enough can..Mt Rainier all in silvers and white
The appearance is not great just above average for a macro..least its golden ( pale) in colour..and has a small white head.
Smell is sort of weird..like rainwater..and some chemicals..hard to place.
I have to say the taste ain't all that bad really for a cheap macro..sort of Like Miller High Life but a little less sweet.. a lot of corn..but I believe i taste a ghost of some hops in the end.
Mouthfeel is not so hot..too carbonated and watery.
Overall not a good beer but ok if you want a cheap beer to wash down the dust after some strenuous physical work.

 696 characters

Photo of Zorro
2.44/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Clear yellow colored beer with a small white colored head.

Smells mildly sweet and floral.

Starts out dry with a mineral water flavor and a slight bitterness. Slight sour taste.

Mouthfeel is watery.

Overall just a pale yellow American macro brew.

 251 characters

Photo of woemad
2.47/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12-pk of 12oz cans picked up for $7.99 at a Rosauer’s in Browne’s Addition about 10 minutes walk from my apartment. Yeah, I’m slummin’ it old school. This beer was a Northwest staple but now it’s contract brewed for the current owners of the name in Irwindale, California, many hundreds of miles from the Rainier Brewery, a true Seattle landmark, which is now home to Tully’s Coffee. I’m still pissed they took the famed giant “R” down that once greeted drivers on I-5.

Pale clear straw color. Moderate white head that dropped at high speed, yet left a small ring of foam that endured for the duration of this beer’s time in my Boundary Bay pint glass (which will probably have to go into counseling).

The smell is of sweet malt, corn (inevitable with this style of beer) and a crude, earthy, grainy scent. Not skunky at all, however, which already puts it ahead of many of it’s style-mates.

The taste of this, like the smell, is a cut above the BMC crowd. Just not a whole lot above. It's a pleasant yet unremarkable malty, corny beer that isn't bad but isn't good either. It just tastes like what most people think beer is supposed to taste like. There is a slight dry note at the end that can make one think of hops if one tries really hard.

The mouthfeel is again typical for the style. Moderate carbonation with a somewhat watery mouthfeel. I've certainly had much more water ("Paging messrs Keystone and Tsingtao...") than this.

If you are looking for a cheap warm weather beer or something to mindlessly consume while watching a game, you could do a lot worse than this, even if it is essentially a corpse of a one-time regional staple.

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Photo of mrkc
2.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It took me a few seconds to figure out what the beer aspired to be: a) cheap and b) easily drunk. It excels at both of these. The taste is watery, and inoffensive. There's a slight bite to the after taste, but nothing that remains for anymore than the most fleeting of instants. The beer is clear, straw coloured, and carries a high head long after its been poured. While I consider this above others that attempt the same qualities, such as `Miller Light,` neither its watery flavour nor its nondescript mouthfeel are much to brag about. It is definitely better when cold, so to lightly numb the mouth and prevent you from picking up on the corn taste.

Skip this, and try other macros.

 687 characters

Photo of RJLarse
2.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer has a pale yellow color and is clear. Well carbonated and fizzy.

Smell and is generally unremarkable. Perfect for drinking from a can or bottle.

The taste is light, watery, unremarkable. Perfect for drinking from a can or bottle, especially if you are thirsty.

I have had a lot of this beer in my younger past, when it was brewed in Seattle. It's avergage, not a quality beer.

 394 characters

Photo of blackc5
2.58/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Meh. Overall this is a pretty meh beer at this point. Never drank the 'original' so hopefully this is not representative of what it once was.

Overall, it seemed to be a pretty typical higher-end BMC-like product with no exceptional qualities worthy of note. Completely predictable in taste and watery body. I guess on a bright note, it did have a bit of lemony hops and decent head retention.

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Photo of ReebShorts
2.62/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is the first beer I can remember paying for. Bought a case of this for $10 when I was around 14 (mom found em before I could drink em though...).

Appearance is not bad for a macro-lager, 1/2 inch soapy white head faded but left a full layer accros the top. Clear yellow in apperance, plenty of carbonation bubbling to the surface.

Smell is like molded bread and wet grass.. or something like that. slight hopiness in the aroma.

To me this is better than some of the more popular macro swill out there, even the self-proclaimed "king". It's easy to drink, maybe a bit watered down, but easily sessionable. Also I noticed it was better in a glass than straight from the bottle, maybe this one just needs to breathe a bit. Oh yeah, don't let it get warm.

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Photo of beertaster13
2.63/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

You have to live in the Seattle area to really get a feel for Rainier. Rainier was the beer that all dads drank. It was locally owned and brewed, when they were taken over by Pabst in was heartbraking. Rainier pours a nice gold yellow with minimul head. The smell is of grain and hops. Taste is fresh and a hop blast with a little sweet tingle. Very crisp and fresh in the mouth. This is one of those macros that I keep around for a nice summer day.

 449 characters

Photo of EgadBananas
2.64/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to woodychandler for the CAN!

Clear, yellow, bright white head that goes in an instant. Pretty typical.

Crisp, cold, wet grains and dried corn.

Slight corny sweetness, hints of malts and some aluminum aftertastes.

crisp, light in body, not much substance, and pretty plain overall.

Naturally, easily chuggable, but not something to search for.

 355 characters

Photo of utopiajane
2.74/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours pale and with exceptional clarity. A fate white head that falls fast and leaves a bit of lace. Nose is just a hint of sweetness. That's it. Really no nose. The taste is very close to water. It had a bit of cereal grain in it and a touch of sweetness but it's very thin and even though it uses three varieties of hops, there's no grass and no taste form hops. It finishes dry and with no aftertaste. The carbonation does not bite until the finish.

 452 characters

Photo of DCon
2.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bought a 16 OZ. ONE PINT can of this from The Trap Bar & Grill in Alta, WY for $3. Poured from the White labeled can w/ Red/Gold writing into a 16oz Pint Glass. Has APR 09 12 on the bottom of the can.

Aroma- A good amount of malt and grain hang out in this one. Nothing else happening... Average for the style.

Appearance- Pours a 3 finger, bubbly head that has average retention. A golden, clear colored body is in here. Leaves barely suds behind.

Flavor- A crisp, nicely malty flavor starts this one out. Then without warning, an overpowering grain taste stirs up commotion. Not very favorable and has no hops or bitterness (of course).

Mouthfeel- Light Bodied, Medium-High Carbonation, Smooth, but then finishes a bit rough with a slight carbonic bite on the palate.

Overall Impression- After coming off the slopes, refreshing but would rather go for a PBR or better yet one of the Grand Teton brews on-tap. I have NEVER seen this brew before, so sought it out and didn't mind. Put down 3 more after this first one (can't be that bad of an adjunct!).

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Photo of appenzeller
2.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Figured I should give this a try after a decade of living in the Pacific Northwest. Since I'm not a native, however, I have no nostalgic emotional attachment whatsoever to this brew, so I'll call it like I see it.

Pours light yellow, modest white head that dissipates quickly. Aroma is slightly sweet and malty, surprisingly pleasing. So far so good.

Taste is bland, some nice malts but not very perceptible. Fair bitterness and balance. Sort of an unpleasant metallic aftertaste, goes down watery.

I expected this one might get the old "flunkeroo" but honestly, it's not that bad. Far better than some of the cheap midwestern swill I quaffed in college. If I were sentenced to drink macrobeer this might not be a bad choice.

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Rainier Lager from Pabst Brewing Company
68 out of 100 based on 75 ratings.
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