Piels | Pabst Brewing Company

32 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Adjunct Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No longer brewed/owned by Pabst.

Added by brewdlyhooked13 on 08-04-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 32 | Ratings: 87
Photo of KACK1533
2.64/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

There comes a time in every mans life when he must question the choices he has made. I made the choice to buy Piels. I was told that this was a great beer by my friend, Bill. Bill had come from Long Island, and thus he was used to beer like this and Rheingold. He told me to try it because "I just might like it." Upon pouring, it was a pale straw. The head was fleeting. Taste was corny and sweet. Might have it again.

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Photo of mwelch17
3.18/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

For the price, this beer actually isn't too bad. At the price point, I think it is better than Keystone or Natural Ice. Smell was a little off putting at first, but it's pretty drinkable. If it didn't have a subtle sweet taste I probably would have rated it higher. It was 3.99 for a 12 pack, so to me, this is worth it.

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Photo of kjrod20
1/5  rDev -61.5%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I've had a lot of the BMC and their offspring, but this is by far the worst beer I've ever had. Makes sense considering it was $5 for a 12 pack. Maybe what I had was sitting on a shelf for too long, but it was foul, which is weird because regular PBR is actually serviceable for a cheap buy.

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Photo of jifigz
3.37/5  rDev +29.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Can poured into a pint glass

The beer is a crystal clear light and fizzy yellow color with a head that lingers for a short time. Pretty standard American adjunct lager appearance. The aroma is slight hoppiness with some sweet cereal grain smells, but mostly nothing. The flavor is crisp and clean and very, very light. There is just a touch of bitterness riding the end of this one and the initial flavor is mildly sweet. The MF is crisp and carbonated and and extremely light and spritzy.

This beer doesn't taste like much, but it is really non-offensive. The flavors that are there are very easy to palate and for the price I think that this is a pretty solid adjunct lager. I would much rather have this than a more expensive American adjunct.

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Photo of mnrider
2.72/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can. An old school brew.

A: Pours a clear weak yellow with a large paper white head. Low carbonation with no retention and no lacing.

S: Sweet cereal, malts and other weak grains.

T/M: More carbonation in taste than I expected. Very creamy. Other than that not much going on. Well balanced, but weak on taste and body.

D: Tastes better left in the can. A good cheap beer to have around, but nothing more.


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Photo of Bouleboubier
3.68/5  rDev +41.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In the days of my youth, I was told what it means to drink shit beer. While I never had this until now, my father and people his age often reminisce fondly about this and other crap lagers from their salad days. I've been trying to review (shit) beers of my youth at various milestones in my reviewing - this being my 250th review. Wow for me! As much as we rail on such beers, they hold a special significance for a lot of us, and some are still enjoyable for what they are and despite many having moved on up to "better" beer. Eh.

This has to be one of the, if not THE, least offensive adjunct lagers I've had. Wow, is this not bad! Poured this into my tall Euro (Unibroue) pint and what a swell match. A white, very compact head poofs up tall - cloud-cottony - slow to dissipate and leaves nice sticky, webby lacing. Color shows an ultra diluted pale yellow gold, extremely crystal clear filtering. Foam retention through is great.

Nothing harsh or off-putting with the smell. Overall musty grainy and lightly floral spicy and maybe some faint hops. No real vegetable qualities. Pretty nice altogether.

There's a surprising solid malt presence, light-moderate - a pleasant foundation on which sits some subtle sweet corn flavors and light bitterness. Barely detectable is a slight yeasty funk and veg presence in the way back of the finish. Could be imagining/overemphasizing that. Light, lingering corn sweetness on the tongue.

As far as feel, I'll tell you what it's not: thin, crisp, fizzy, or bitey. Decent malt density, likely due to the light carbonation, and a moderately dry finish.

Didn't find this "thirst-quenching" nor "refreshing", but it's pretty excellently drinkable. To my surprise, I find nothing negative about this here Piels and I highly recommend it if you have no choice but to snag some cheap beer in a pinch.

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Photo of JunkYardJake
1.58/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

12oz can into pint glass.
Wow. As I pour this into the glass, the smell of cereal adjuncts is hitting me hard. Now, at $4 a sixer, my expectations are pretty low. But not low enough. Even at that price, and keeping style in mind, this is a terrible beer. Clear and watery in color, off-putting corn smell, and a palate with plenty of off flavors. All that being said, it's still beer. And at such a low price, it has it's place. Beer pong anyone?

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Photo of SickGnar
2.9/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Very, very pale straw hue with a few streams of rising bubbles. A small white cap o' foam that falls fast and leaves next to no lacing.

S: Faint generic hops, grainy & faint light malts that lean toward sweet. Clean and shy adjunct lager nose.

T: Fairly balanced for what it is (i.e. some noticeable hop character). Plainly adjunct and light malt base that is grainy sweet but not too overly corny and not much in the cooked veggy dept. Reasonable bitterness to balance with a pleasant grassy, herbal and earthy hop character.

M: Medium body and carbonation with barest light sweet stickiness. Pleasant - pretty good mouthfeel actually.

D: This ain't bad at all actually. Stand up pretty well against the usually BMC suspects. Actually drinks a tad better than it looks and smells.

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Photo of cpolking
3.64/5  rDev +40%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a pale and light golden in color with a half-inch head that dissipates rather quickly. The aroma is stronger than your average cheap American adjunct lager, with more grain, lager and hop bitterness than generally found in this style. I do detect a slight metallic or soapy character in the aroma which is the one negative so far.

The flavor follows the aroma but without the negative. This has a decent amount of grain, a light touch of lager "funk" and some nice hop bitterness without any of the sour, metallic, apple notes that are the downfall of too many beers of this type. It has a nice mouth feel, managing to be fizzy on the tongue and smooth at the same time. This is near the top for its category.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.5/5  rDev +34.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Piels Draft Style Beer has a thick, white head and a very clear, straw appearance. It's quite bubbly, which should appeal to those who appreciate a highly carbonated beer. The aroma and taste are stereotypical American style lager. Mouth-feel is light and watery. This beer finishes crisp and satisfying. Overall, I really liked Piels, but that is to be expected, considering this is a favorite style of mine. I drank this poured from a 16 oz. can. I bought it in Trevose, Penn. It is not sold in Louisiana.


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Photo of Clydesdale
3/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours with a standard adjunct lager appearance of bright, pale yellow. Very active visible carbonation. The white head bubbles up fairly tall initially, with a fluffy, foamy texture. Retention is nothing special, and the head leaves only irregular lacing.

S: A grainy, lightly sweet aroma. Some cooked vegetable/corn notes, but nothing offensive. A touch of lemony/herbal hop aroma is also detectable.

T: Husky graininess up front, with a mild malty sweetness. Minor corn and vegetal notes are accompanied by a general hop bitterness that provides some herbal and lemon flavors.

M: Medium-light bodied. Carbonation is slightly perky for the style, lending a bit of crispness. Slightly watery.

D: You pretty much know what you're getting with a beer like Piels. I saw this in Pennsylvania, sitting by itself on the shelf as if it were in time-out. It's not a terrible beer, and it drinks reasonably well.

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Photo of jwc215
2.73/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Best by May 03 10 stamped on bottom:

Pours straw yellow with a decent white head that soon goes the way of a typical macro lager.

The smell is of mild cooked veggies, buttered popcorn and some husk. Mild.

The taste is sweet - buttered popcorn, some husk, some cooked veggies. Some sweetness lingers along with a club-soda-ish tingle in the finish.

It is fizzy, though not much more than typical for style. It has a certain slickness.

Drinks better than expected... Not a bad choice for a cheap, very cheap beer - It was about $3 a six-pack. It's better than some BMC products. It's okay for a "chugging beer"/"lawn-mower" beer. Easy to "knock back".

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Photo of Pinto21
3.47/5  rDev +33.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed to style!

Pours a clear yellow. Very pale. Finger of white head that fades quick. no lace.

There actually is a smell as i poured! touch of crisp hops, mostly cereal.

Taste is mostly cereal. finish with some crisp hops. Must use rice, can't detect corn.

Mouth is crisp and clean with good carb. Very Very drinkable. more so than most adjuncts.

This is the best non-brewpub adjunct i've had. Clean crisp and free of any defects. If the hops where kicked up on this I would seriously drink it more often. I find it better than any Adjunct bud miller or coors i've had, even better than PBR.

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Photo of tone77
2.67/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 16 oz. can. Has a very pale yellow color with a small head. Not much carbonation. Very mild aroma, some hints of corn. Taste is crisp but flavorless for the most part. Feels watery in the mouth. O.k., the drinkability is pretty good, alright for beer games I suppose. Overall there is not much going for this beer.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.29/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From the 355 ml can marked SEP2809-E05070942. Sampled on September 29, 2009...one day after the marked date on the can. The pour is a straw yellow with active carbonation building to a half-inch or so white, fizzy head. The head lasts awhile and it leaves a thin shear of lacing on the pilsener glass. Sweet malts are the first aroma I whiff followed by a little grass and light hops. The mouthfeel is watery to medium, which is to be expected from a macro adjuct lager. Grains and a little background of cool hops enhance the tasting sensation. Overall, a cool, clean lawnmower beer that you could pound down quickly. I could not get over the freshness factor for a macro like this and that was delightful. It was $3.33 for the six-pack and you could pay for it with pocket change. I found myself to be more impressed than previous reviewers.

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Photo of woodychandler
2.34/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I CAN't believe that I have not reviewed this one previously. CAN you?

Ah, to have been alive during the Bert & Harry Piel era. They were a couple of cartoon spokespersons for the brand who were voiced by the comedy team of Bob & Ray. The marketing was highly successful in selling the beer for a time, until people realized that the advertising was better than the product. Whoops!

Today, I got a finger of bone-white head with poor retention, like it could not wait to fall into wisps. The color was a sunshine-yellow with NE-quality clarity. Nose smelt of corn, cereal, adjunct ingredients. I do not get as wound up as some, but this was striking. Mouthfeel was light and airy with a very mild lager sweetness on the tongue. Finish was equally unobtrusive. It was not a bad beer, but it was more a case of "Why bother?"

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Photo of TheTrevor
2.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer poured a very light watery-looking yellow with a big head that quickly fell. The scent is sweet malt with some corn. The taste is surprisingly weak, with a bit of sweetness that's followed by what might be hops. The watery texture, fairly high carbonation, and weak taste to make for a pretty crisp mouthfeel. Nothing to write home about on any account, but I imagine it might be fairly easy to put a six-pack or so of this down without even noticing.

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Photo of matty
3.35/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very pale yellow colored beer with a rapidly fading head.Aroma is your basic macro smell.Taste is fresh and very smooth.This beer brings back memories of high school and college when we would steal this stuff from our dads' refrigerators.Still smooth and refreshing and nice to come back to although I have to admit I do have the urge to play quarters.

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Photo of JoKo
3.58/5  rDev +37.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured out of a can into my standard mug. This beer is clear, light straw yellow color with minimum head, typical American pale lager in appearance. This beer is very clean to the nose. It has some malts and hops present. The finish on this one is very smooth. The drinkability is very good, if I wanted to I could have many more of these. Good for hot weather and being outdoors.

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Photo of plaid75
2.63/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured a faint straw hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a faint grain with elements of boiled corn.

The taste was very subtle and consisted of a slightly sweet corn and light husky grain. Some utilitarian hops kept the sweetness somewhat in check.

The mouthfeel was thin.

Overall a very light beer even for a macro. Easy enough to drink however.

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Photo of KevinB
3.79/5  rDev +45.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This one is a local classic, good ol' Bert and Harry! A former NY regional now just another label in the Pabst Brewery stable.Maybe it's the hint of summertime approaching or just pure nostalgia, but I like this beer and have gotten others to enjoy it for what it is.Serving type has to be an ice cold Can or a freezing mug. The appearance is a pleasant yellow, smell is not strong, is non offensive, nothing too discernable to pick out. Taste is pretty much non existent, a little wheat and corn flavor, mouthfeel is light and crisp, drinkabilty is high, very refreshing.
I'm judging this beer in it's weight class, it's a nice refreshing cheap beer to drink for activities during the summer season, backyard bbqs,fishing, concerts in the park,etc. Worth a try for 4 bucks a 12 pack.

"Fresh poured flavor , all the way down"

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Photo of Koolbreeze2
2.1/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

"Bert and Harry are so fine, selling six for ninty nine." If you remember that, then you know Piels. Six beers for a buck-you could not go wrong.

Appearence-not bad.

Smell-not alot.

Taste-Not a heavy beer, not a light beer. Has its own unique taste. Its a Piels.


Drinkability-I drank alot of these in my younger years. I mean alot . Can't knock it. It is drinkable but just not my choice of beer at the present time. It served its purpose so I have some loyality to Bert and Harry.

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Photo of tgbljb
2.35/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a very light yellow color with white puffy head that quickly disappeared. Smell is very slight and maybe a bit sweet. Taste continues with the sweet texture and no hop or malt taste. Leaves a wet feeling in the mouth and not much else. Why bother to drink it?

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Photo of riversider76
2.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Back in the day this was one of theee beers! I just had to try it. Not available around hear in 12oz bottles. Color was darker than I expected. Taste,well I've had worse. I hear from some of the old timers it was much better years ago when it was brewed by Piels in New York. Would'nt be a beer of choice,but worth a try.

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Photo of CBFanWish
1.86/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

One of those beers everyone grew up with. I did at least. There is still a six pack in my dads fridge from time to time. As a matter of fact, I looted this one from him.
Piss clear yellow. I'm not talking the dehydrated dark yellow. I'm talking ultrahydrated urine here. It has a thick white head that made up for the points that the colour killed off. The smell was strong of adjuncts. Grainy, corny, and everything else that shouldn't be in beer. The taste was alos strong of adjuncts. Corn was the big one. There was a slight hint of hops lingering, but nothing to brag about. But hey, at least they're not saying they're something they're not.

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Piels from Pabst Brewing Company
2.6 out of 5 based on 87 ratings.
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