Old Style | Pabst Brewing Company

203 Reviews
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Old StyleOld Style

Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Adjunct Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.64%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally called Golden Leaf Lager in the 1890’s, Old Style first appeared in local stores in 1902 and quickly became one of the region’s most widely enjoyed beers. It’s heritage and popularity are proudly displayed throughout Wisconsin and Illinois — one can’t go far without seeing a historically protected Old Style sign hanging on the side of a barn or in a tavern window.

Old Style first crossed state lines into Illinois to capitalize nationwide bottlers strike and subsequent product rationing by the competition. It wasn’t long before Old Style became Chicago’s beer – served from the North Side to the South Side and everywhere in between. Being accepted as a true local, Old Style began sponsoring the Chicago Cubs in 1950. With Old Style still being served at Wrigley Field today, the partnership is one of longest standing in the country.

In 2009, Old Style revived the centuries-old German brewing tradition called “Kraeusening.” This double fermentation process increases carbonation and richness, ultimately leading to a better tasting beer that has since been won medals at the Great American Beer Festival and World Beer Cup.

Added by brewdlyhooked13 on 09-11-2001

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Reviews: 203 | Ratings: 684
Photo of Arsenal11
1.18/5  rDev -60.5%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Thought I would give this a try bscause I like PBR, big mistake this stuff is undrinkable I couldnt even make one bottle. Those saying this beer has no off flavors, I am not sure what they didnt taste bc this beer tastes like stale moldy corn and urine it is one of the most unpleasant beers I have ever tasted.

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Photo of jp32
1.35/5  rDev -54.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Served on-tap in a large mug a local bar the other night. The appearance was watery and thin. Very sparse carbonation, and almost no head at all. Any scents were minimal, and very much alike any other macro lager. The taste was bland and crappy. Not much to really brag about. It did lack a bready aftertaste that I notice in most american macro lagers, which might have been its only upside in the taste department. The mouthfeel was thin, watery, and entirely too flat. Drinkability is okay, just not very desired. I suppose for the price, this beer does the trick, but its difficult to find many ways to compliment this one.

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Photo of Dave412
1.47/5  rDev -50.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I was back in Chicago last week. A friend brought over and left some Old Style bottles in the fridge. Thought it would be as good of a time as ever to maybe review this brew, as I was never planning on paying for one any time soon. Having lived in the city for four years in the past, I was well familiar with Old Style.
Always dreaded showing up to parties and finding out that the keg was Old Style that night, and I would cringe whenever a buddy would come back from a beer run with this stuff.

Pours a fair amount of foam that quickly fades away. Some grain and miscellaneous smells on the nose. Nothing much. Taste is even more lacking. Compared to other cheap beers of this style, Old Style does have some distinctive qualities to it, but not in a good way (cant quite put my finger on exactly what it is). Back in college I drank my fair share of "cheap" American "macro" beers, and many were much more drinkable than this. I would pick just about anything over this.

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Photo of BeerDreadz
1.75/5  rDev -41.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

12onz Brown bottle bring from Chicago,illinois

The appearance just the regular macro yellow color with tiny head that goes away,neither the smell grain and some hops.In the taste there's a light lager ,some maltiness very soft,water, does'nt feel bad in the mouth but there's no party neither. I would have another macro if i have to choice between then. I have seen cheaper beer taste better.

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Photo of thydarkprevails
1.78/5  rDev -40.5%
look: 1 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

one of my favorite local brews, old style is most easily compared to pabst, old milwaukee, and maybe lacrosse. this is my number one beer if i need something on a very hot summer day, with time to kill, and a burger on the grill. the big appeal, besides it's new found yuppie following, it cost. like said beers above, it is easy to obtain a 30 pack for 10-11 dollers, or if you budget, you can get a 15 pack for 6-7 dollers, now that's savings...overall, this is one of chicago's, "old man beers", yet one of the better ones out here.

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Photo of bort11
1.85/5  rDev -38.1%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I thought it was fitting to drink a classic Old Man beer on Memorial Day. Traditionally this is to be drank straight from the can, but for reviewing purposes I used a glass.

12 oz can poured into a pilsener glass. Thin head that quickly dissipates. No lacing. Color is a crystal clear straw yellow. A few lazy bubbles drift to the top.

Smell has a distinct sweet corn aroma Slight hint of hops. Taste is very grainy and sweet with a mild pepper kick in the finish.

Mouthfeel is slick and oily. Harsh carbonation stings the mouth. This was good for only the novelty. Has not dethroned my favorite macro, Hamm's

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Photo of hardy008
1.85/5  rDev -38.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance - Pours a clear pale yellow, little to no head and no lace.

Smell - Corn, no other smell present.

Taste - Bland, some sweetness with corn.

Mouthfeel - Thin and watery. High carbonation.

Drinkability - Not a favorite of mine. Not much taste and no character.

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Photo of xav33
1.87/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 3

Heileman's Old Style
24 oz can
Recent brewing, new styled 10/06
Medium 1oz pour in a shot glass, then slugged down from the can.

Poured light straw with a fizzy quickly diminishing white head.

Smelt of sweet corn.

Taste was upfront moderate sweet corn and white bread followed by a light perfumey hops and bitter hay with a light sweet gelatin and grainy average length finish. Mouthfeel was light bodied, watery, fizzy, with a light metallic feel.

Overall, an ok pale lager, but the light taste and metallic feel holds it back.

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Photo of SSJPhatMatt
1.88/5  rDev -37.1%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

this beer is anything but intricate, aromatic, and complex. Friends, this is simply beer. It pours from a cheap, 20 oz. can into my beer mug. It is highly carbonated and therefore boasts an enormous head, if you want it to. But this head fades within a minute or so, leaves almost no lacing at all (since there isn't much in this beer). It barely embodies the yellow hue of a light lager, and is crystal clear. It smells faintly (and by faintly I mean, "I'm so used to smelling beers that actually have an aroma, that I can't be sure my brain didn't just fabricate the faint malt aroma all on its own) of malt.

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Photo of granger10
1.9/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

This is just not a good beer at all. It also gives me the runs the morning after I drink it. But it is good for drinking games because it goes down easy and doesn't have quite as strong of an adjunct taste as other macros. I read this beer was only 3.2% abv and I was wondering if that was true because I can't find anywhere that says how strong it is. I know it tastes watery but 3.2% is ridiculous!

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Photo of DrunkMcDermott
1.94/5  rDev -35.1%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I got a sixer to compare it to LaCrosse Lager, which is now being microbrewed in the original Old Style brewery. Even without a comparison, I could tell this was the loser. Corny taste among other adjuncts at work. Although there is... wait a minute... a hint of hops and yeasty lager taste poking through at the end. So not totally beyond redemption. But still, pale straw color, fizzy like soda pop. Why bother?

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Photo of libbekat
1.95/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

My husband insisted I try one of these while in Chicago attending a Cubs game. The game didn't strat for an hour so we were having drinks at a bar across the street. I drank a Guinness while he sipped a PBR. He ordered the Old Style for me while I went to the restroom. He is sneaky like that.
Let me say....I was one of the only people in the bar not already drinking a Old Style.
It had little flavor at all, not even a warm summer beer day. You know the type, the beer you could drink if it was really HOT outside.
The color is a pale straw, very little carbonation. It tested worse after I swallowed. I drank half the bottle, trying to give it a fair shot. I eventually just ordered a new drink.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
1.99/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

12 oz can in a pilsner glass. May0310 printed on the bottom. No info.

I got this can from my friend Damon after sharing a bottle of Inferno Ale with him. His response to my "thank you" was, "Seriously? This is the worst trade you've ever done." He's right.

A - The tall pour into the pilsner glass lets off a tall white head of about three fingers. Loosely packed but retained pretty well, the head leaves some serious lace on the glass. Like a typical adjunct the beer is a clear light pale yellow.

S - Plain husky straw and corn graininess with minimal malt presence and no hops at all. Yep, a typical adjunct lager aroma.

T - Water, grainy pale malts barely even make an appearance through the dry straw and lame corn.

M - Thin and almost completely watered down, Old Style is bland, over-carbonated, and slick on the palate.

D - The only excuse to ever consume Old Style is when you must, with no exceptions, have a beer at a Chicago Cubs game. Sure, But is available but who would chose that?

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Photo of JamesS
1.99/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours out the standard American big company pilsner color, with the added detriment that it smells skunked, even when it's fresh. Goes down a bit harsh, from too much carbonation. Tasted like an old pilsner that's been left outside for most of the day. Of course when you're at Wrigley, it's a wonderful thing and drinking it brings back some good baseball memories, but that's the only positive thing it really has going for it.

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Photo of brdc
2/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

One of the few options at a baseball game, served in an inappropriate plastic cup, but it shows a nice looking golden body and a decent white head.
Aroma is bready, with a hint of alcohol, but not a lot more.
Taste is very limited, and hard to describe. Think Budweiser with less water. I poured mine down the drain after half the cup.

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Photo of TX-Badger
2/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a light golden color with white head. Cereal grains on the nose; follows onto the palate. Light bodied. Finishes with more cereal grains. One dimensional.

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Photo of happygnome
2.03/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

a: a typical macro pale golden color with big inch and half of head that dissapears fast leaving very little lacing
s: grainy, but not sweet, hints of hops overall smell is very faint
t: malty adjuncty but well served real cold any bad taste is really muted
m: medium bodied ample carbonation

overall, this is a cheap beer and should be treated as such, i can see having a few of these around for hot days fishing, and after ive had a couple

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Photo of scaliasux
2.05/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - Light clear yellow. Soapy head that quickly fades. Leaves a hint of lacing. Fizziness is not excessive. Pretty standard macro.

Smell - Standard adjunct smell. Just a notch stronger odor than most macros - i.e., it actually has a scent, but just barely.

Taste - Quite sweet in an adjuncty kind of way. Exactly the same as a dozen other macros. Not among the overtly offensive ones, though. Dryyyy finish.

Mouthfeel - Watery and fizzy. Stinging carbonation.

Drinkability - Can you drink it? Yes. Do you want to? Maybe, depends on the event and your finances. You could put this beer in a dozen different cheap beer cans and vice versa and no one would notice... Wait a minute, what other beers does G. Heileman make...

This beer also loses 1/2 point in drinkability (which will later be transferred to City Lager) for leaving the city of La Crosse and, therefore, causing substantial economic dislocation and bringing about the (temporary) loss of the world's largest 6-pack. Boo to you Old Style.

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Photo of chicagoabbot
2.08/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle, straight out of the bottle, handed to me by a friend at The Continental at about 4:30 in the morning. Don't pour this in a glass, it's a waste of water to wash the glass after...this beer doesn't deserve it. Tons of corn flavor, some hop flavor. Better than Budweiser and Miller and Coors (the worst of tasting of all beers). Went down pretty easy anyway and quenched my thirst.

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Photo of berserker256
2.15/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I think many of the beers brewed at the Heileman's Brewery are quite alike. Old Style is no exception. Light gold appearance. White head that fizzes away quickly. Smells like corn, rice, hay, and metal. Tastes similar to the sub-average Black Label I just drank but just a little bit better. A little more malty, I guess. A little less watery. I just picked up a 12 pack of cans of both of these beers for $6.49 each so I won't bitch about how mediocre they are. I'll just save them in my basement friends for when my scumbag friends want to mooch a beer off of me. They'll have their choice of Black Label or Old Style.

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Photo of Tballz420
2.18/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This beer was given to me by my roommate, who is from chicago. He tells me that this is the beer of wrigley field, and thats why theres a special place for it in his heart. Not being a chicagoinian, i dont have that feeling, and without it, i cannot recommend this beer to you. Its a standard pale lager, not much flavor besides the water, only real purpose is a nice buzz. So if thats whats youre after, this is for you

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Photo of Bighuge
2.23/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

It's the color of cider. Fizzy white head. Carbonation bubbles rise quickly. Aroma is faintly sweet and corny. A little grainy, but nothing that's hardly even noticeable. Pretty fizzy in the mouth. Body is about medium or so. Not bad for a macro. The taste is just plain ass bland. Not a lot about it. Sweetness is really subdued. Dry, grainy notes are barely perceptible. And the aftertaste, what there is of it, is none too pleasing. I've had better macoswill in my day.

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Photo of WestmontStorm
2.29/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 1.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I was raised on the Southside of Chicago. In high school, in the 80s, this was THE brew. I didn't know any better and I loved it. Nothing tastier on a hot summer day than one of those ice cold little round bottles. Dare to dream. Now I'm old and can afford better beer and I buy better beer. Every now and then I have an Old Style and I'm young and stupid again.

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Photo of biggmike
2.3/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

No real distinguishing characteristic, in fact, no real taste. Typical American pale lager. Made for getting drunk definitely not for savoring. Had this in LaCrosse, WI, where it used to be made. Appearance, aroma, and taste is typical of the American macro-lager syle. Had a bit more of a sweet taste, however.

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Photo of BierFan
2.31/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a 24 ounce can into a pint glass.

Appearance: White head sitting on top of a clear yellow body. Carbonation looks pretty good.

Smell: The smell is barely there. Real disappointing. I'd rather have a nose full of adjuncts than no smell at all.

Taste: Fizzy water and adjuncts(corn). Tiny amount of hop bitterness in the finish. Nothing going on in that 24 ounce can that will make BA's salivate, it's just another cheap adjunct lager. Even among other adjunct lagers this is a subpar offering.

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Old Style from Pabst Brewing Company
2.99 out of 5 based on 684 ratings.
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