Pabst Old Tankard Ale | Pabst Brewing Company

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Pabst Old Tankard AlePabst Old Tankard Ale
Very Good
202 Ratings
Pabst Old Tankard AlePabst Old Tankard Ale

Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: English Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Old Tankard is a classic American Ale that was first produced in Wisconsin in the 1930s, eventually becoming the #2 ale in America. Today, Old Tankard is brewed based on a recipe from Pabst's 1937 brewer’s log, using an authentic ale yeast with an alcohol content of 5.8% and 35 bitterness units. The top fermented brew has 2-row, imported Cara-Munich and Cara-Aroma malts with Nugget, Liberty, Willamette and Cascade hops. The result is a well-balanced, sessionable craft brew with a rich copper color, creamy head, and full body taste with notes of fruit and malt.

Brewed by City Brewing out of LaCrosse, WI

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 202 |  Reviews: 82
Photo of gvickery
4.37/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Wow. As of 11-13-2018 this beer is no longer retired. The aroma hits you as soon as you open the can, citrusy and pine. Dark amber cloudy, with a medium tan head. Taste is sweet at first followed by the bitterness of the hops and then lemon rind and pine. Finish is medium with a slight residual sweetness. Rock solid.

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Photo of BrewyStewy
4.58/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I like this ale, VERY smooth, sadly I think these ales aren't as popular as they could be because
they are not produced by a tiny brewer. I don't smoke, but I do know palates are different
for smokers and non smokers. Fortunately I can still buy all I want of this great ale for a very
low price , comes in 4/16 oz packs, but likely not for long.
Great appearance, very smooth foam.

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Photo of Moir1994CT
3.62/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I looked it up and found out this has been discontinued after i went looking for it, was a great brew but I guess the people whom buy PABST products just want normal PABST and nothing more as poor sales caused its unfortunate but inevitable discontinuation. If you ever find any leftover give it a go. A great tasting brew thats heavier than normal pabst products but not triple ipa heavy. A great balance.

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Photo of themayorkoch
3.26/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of AyatollahGold
3.96/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BeerBobber
4.11/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful caramel color with a finger and a half of a slightly off white head. Getting some decent lacing as well.

Smells of hops and sweet bread.

Taste is nice caramel flavor that does not go over the top. Some nice light yet present hop bitterness. Rich and malty on the palate.

The mouth leans towards a medium profile with a wet finish.

Overall I must say I really enjoyed this beer. It has a hop presence and some sweet caramel maltiness on the flavor yet nothing over the top and all flavors working together. The smell seems almost chewy in a malty sort of way. Is this beer seriously discontinued? I really could not find a reason to retire this fine beer after drinking it down.

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Photo of prost2hefeweizen
3.62/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of andrew8626
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of nicholas2121
4.25/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pabst Old Tankard Ale brewed by Pabst Brewing Company, with an ABV of 5.80% This Extra Special/Strong Bitter pours out a nice deep golden amber color with nice thick off white head. Really liking the copper color to this brew. There is also some nice lacing to this brew, it sticks to the side of the glass well. The smell of Pabst Old Tankard Ale , rich with sweet grians and malts. There is also a slight bitterness of hops in the smell. Between the look and smell of this brew it is really inviting. Now for the taste, it is bold with flavors, an bitter sweet. You first pick up on the nice roasted grians and malts, then a mild bitterness from the hops. This is one fine drinking brew. I will say this, it is different, but in a good way. The body of this brew is a medium to heavy. There is a lot going on in Pabst Old Tankard Ale. There is nothing overpowering about this brew, it has a real nice balance to it. The mouth feel is Bold, Rich, Clean, Smooth and Refreshing. Overall I'm giving Pabst Old Tankard Ale a solid 4.25 out of 5. I would look this brew up again givin the chance to. It is to bad that this brew is now discontinue and no longer brewed. Pabst Brewing Company, did a nice job with this brew.

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Photo of tvenne
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Metalsnota
4.14/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Bouleboubier
3.84/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

(16 oz can, purchased warm, best by 061516... poured into a nonic)

L: lots of speckle-y sediment suspended within what would appear to be an otherwise crystal-clear, medium amber-colored liquid... big, spongy-foamy cap of suds... nice contrast in color between the amber and the cool-tan foam; little threads of lacing, but it maintains a messy cap till the last drop

S: mineral essence, sea of caramel at its base, fruity English esters slowly rising out of the glass... remnants of delicately-spicy, earthy hops still linger... very familiar 'English ale' profile, but the potency has some thickness

T: pretty much an American take on a British pale ale - and kind of tastes like a UK import that's been languishing on the shelves (but anyone with experience can tell the difference b/w import/domestic)... the esters are spot-on for a British ale yeast, and the rich, dense, malt-forward recipe has bold caramel notes (but little other nuances) and a subtle sweetness that may be due to the hop bitterness having faded a good bit?... there IS some bitterness left, but it's rather dull and shows up mostly in the aftertaste

F: medium to medium-full bodied, maybe even a bit chewy on the edges... melanoidin-rich, and it certainly fulfills like a liquid bread... not sure I could slug a few of these and eat a heavy meal though... it's like imperial stout thick, but w/o the warming ethanol

O: not all that bad for almost a year old - not getting that hop-corpse flavor nor any harsh tones of oxidation with it being canned... I will certainly try this again (great price point) and a fresher can at that... why don't they brew Bass like this over here?

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Photo of Ferretferret
3.51/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is one of the few beers I neither love, nor dislike. The relatively weak malt profile of the beer doesn't do enough to hide the harsh bitterness inherent of carbonation. However, this beer is absolutely stellar at doing nothing to offend. I'm writing this review because, if there were a single beer in this entire world a person were to drink first, this would be it. This is the single most drink-able beer I know. Got a friend turning 21? Give them this.

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Photo of drh88
3.56/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of flaskman
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I purchased a 4 pack at my local store for $1.99 to take to a tasting with friends as a joke. 2 days later I looked it up on BA and was kinda shocked. Went back for more an it was gone. So.... It poured a nice amber color with a generous head. It smelled very sweet and what I would call bready. The first taste was quite a surprise. It was fresh and sweet. It had a very heavy malty taste that was balanced out by the hops. It was a very good tasting well crafted beer. After reading the history of it I was glad that I took it to the tasting. What was interesting is that most of the peole I shared it with including me were hop heads and it was their first experience with a very malty ale. Without exception all 6 of us liked it.

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Photo of BeerWithMike
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of jgunther71
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Maillard
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of generallee
3.84/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Richcraft
2.51/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

It's mildly hoppy and really sweet and malty. Lot of head and decent carbonation with a creamy head. I've only had the tall boys about six months expired. I can't drink more than one and they get real gross once warm. There's a mild cardboard flavor that hits straight away and morphs into a sickly sweet taste.

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Photo of Caveworm
4.44/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pabst Old Tankard Ale | Pabst Brewing Company. Poured from the can into a pint glass, the head of this beer is off-white and two fingers thick, with solid lacing, and a slightly hazed copper brown body.

Smells like butter biscuit malts being balanced by mild yet noticeable hops.

I taste a slightly sweet blend of the smell with a surprisingly astute use of hops.

Mouthfeel is medium with mild carbonation.

I'll give Pabst Old Tankard Ale | Pabst Brewing Company an overall 4.5 Pleasantly surprised with what the Pabst Brewing Company was able to pull off with this brew. Give it a whirl if you get the chance to.

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Photo of Bitburger
4.24/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I am surprised, good beer!

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Photo of RochefortChris
4.25/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BigGold
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had at unfortunately catered event, poured from pint can into a little clear plastic wine cup. Another Pabst historical re-creation, Old Tankard is not bad at all.

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Photo of Feel_the_Darkness
4.14/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pleasant surprise to pick a single of this up and really enjoy it, extremely affordable to boot.

Poured from the can into a mug, much like it should be. Dark, heavy amber color with an enticingly frothy head, the beer just invites you to toast loudly and often with friends. Smells of doughy, breaded malts with a surprisingly assertive hop punch, a bit more piney then one would expect. The taste is frankly fantastic, with the hops showing through just enough to undercut the strong malts, but nowhere near as overpowering as the smell would have you believe. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, and insanely easy to drink.

Overall, well done Pabst. Please, if you read any of these reviews, take the hint and market this more aggressively. This is a beer you need to keep around for a while. A macro beer done with micro qualities. Will be looking to return to this one.

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Pabst Old Tankard Ale from Pabst Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.8 out of 5 with 202 ratings