Frugal Joe's Ordinary Beer | Steinhaus Brewing Co.

66 Reviews
Frugal Joe's Ordinary BeerFrugal Joe's Ordinary Beer

Brewed by:
Steinhaus Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Adjunct Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.65%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Jason on 04-30-2002

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Reviews: 66 | Ratings: 73
Photo of Jimbo87
3.71/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

In US pint glass.

Clear pale yellow beer, white head made up of larger than average bubbles.

Smells of sweet grain with that tanginess I find in paler lagers.

Taste is pretty smooth, and better than nose suggests. Faint grain. Probably hoppier than Miller High life, though similar in it's grain profile, meaning it's pretty sweet. Faintest metallic note in finish. Tastes good.

Mouthfeel is right for the style. Good carbonation.

Very very drinkable, as per the style. Pretty cheap, but not as cheap as Simpler times lager. I'll have to do a blind taste test with all the cheap Trader Joe lagers. This might be my favorite.

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Photo of gpogo
3.74/5  rDev +25.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Clear light straw yellow with a white head. Fairly active carbonation. Head quickly dissipated into nothing.

A- Very little aroma, slightly sweet corn smell. No hop aroma.

T- Crisp and clean, finishing dry. Light corn sweetness, with very little bitterness. Slight carbonation sting.

M- Very light bodied with high carbonation.

D- No strong flavors, very refreshing. Very nice American Lager.

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Photo of biggred1
3.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Lemon yellow with a fine white head that leaves fine lace. Smells like biscuit malt and cornflakes. Tastes decent, not overly sweet which is nice. Not complex at all, but a great value at a nice price. Light and crisp mouthfeel that finishes dry. Better than most of this style at any price.

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Photo of mckajd03
4.07/5  rDev +37%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Another great Trader Joe's find. For the money, it's a solid, tasty lager. Sweet corn- check. Straw color- check. Extremely sessionable- check. The name really does describe the beer well. If you're expecting fireworks, get a beer with a name that eludes to more than "ordinary" or "frugal". Otherwise, this is my pick for friends that only drink Miller- a supreme alternate to the U.S. macros. Also, try TJ's Simpler Times lager- just as good with 6.2% ABV. Bla-dow.

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Photo of beveritt
3.05/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a standard pint glass. Picked this up as single at Trader Joe's. Label is simple, with definitions for each of the words in the name of the beer. Based upon a stamp on the neck, looks like it was bottled 10/7/08.

Appearance: Pours with 2 1/2 fingers of white head. This settles quickly, initially going down to a very thin, but complete coating on the top. The beer itself is a very pale yellow and completely clear. Moderate activity. No sediment in the bottle.

Smell: Slightly sweet malt, with bready and metallic aromas. Mild herbaceous hop smell.

Taste: Bland malt with slight husky grain astringency. Some sweetness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: average carbonation level. Body is decent.

Drinkability: For a light, not overwhelmingly flavored beer, which is what American Adjunct Lager is going for, this beer is spot on. Easy to drink, non-offensive. Not my style, but a good representation of the style.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
2.62/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Ended up with this bottle from cleanup for a party I was helping serve at. Purchased at Trader Joes. Pours a pale golden with almost no head. Smells sweet and a little acrid with noticeable adjuncts. There are some earthy/spicy hops in small amounts noticeable as well. Taste is light and with notes of cereal grain and light hops and a soapy finish. Slightly bigger bodied than many macro lagers, but still not much of a beer. This ones not for me, but you could do worse for the price.

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Photo of MTNboy
3.47/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- It pours pale at first it has a light yellow colored body that is also filled with a lot of carbonation. Oddly enough with all that carbonation there is no head or lace to really speak of.

Smell- It has a earthy straw/hay aroma.

Taste-It has a corny, grainy, and grassy taste with a vegetable like aftertaste.

Mouthfeel- It has thin body and if you let it sit for a minute the carbonation dies down quickly.

Drinkability- I honestly liked it I would drink it again it is very refreshing.

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Photo of ZappaCat
2.4/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

My roommate bought this and stuck it in our beer fridge. I'd never seen/heard of this or the brewery it came from before. Figured I'd crack one and give it a shot. Poured 12oz. bottle into a pint glass.

It's Bud color. Greaaaat. No head to speak of, but some light lacing. Smells very light with slight sweetness. A bit better than Bud but not really by a huge margin.

Tastes like it's trying to emulate an American macro lager, but done slightly more classy (slightly). That sweetish corn/yuck flavor definitely hangs in the back of your throat after you swallow it, much like macro lagers do.

At first I thought the label was a gimmick and this would actually be an above average beer, but it's all false modesty. I would certainly take this over most pale American macros, but at the same time, if it costs even a dollar more than 6pk of Bud bottles, I wouldn't waste my time.

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Photo of burnstar
3.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours crystal clear pale yellow with a small white head. Aroma is mild sweetness with a touch of grassy hops. Simple but no off notes. This beer definitely has more flavor than your typical macro lager. Light malt sweetness with plenty of herbal hops. A little bit of lemony citrus as well. Finishes with some lingering bitterness. Fairly balanced- definitely hoppier than average for the style. Medium bodied. Definitely very drinkable. Ordinary like it says on the bottle, but for the style it's pretty good.

 510 characters

Photo of JDV
2.82/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a pale clear yellow with no lasting head. Smell is lightly sweet malt, honey and hay like. taste is thin, but crisp, sweet and cereal like. Mild bitterness but ends sweet. Bubbly mouthfeel with no off flavors and better than expected. Drinkable.

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Photo of tgbljb
2.97/5  rDev 0%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a very pale light yellow color with modest white head. Poor retention.

Smell is light with only a touch of sweetness.

Taste is alos light, but refreshing.

Not much at the ending, with poor taste retention.

Pretty much an ordinary beer, at best.

 255 characters

Photo of botham
2.01/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle poured intoa pilsner. pours a crystal clear light straw color, with three fingers of tight white head. a standard macro in appearance.

aroma is griny, with a very subtle floral character and a touch of pale malts. simple in profile.

taste is more of the same, with an ultra clean finish and a mildly pleasant character on the palate.

mouthfeel is watery and light bodied, with no real character to call its own.

drinkability is decent. this is a standard brew as far as macro lagers go. very light bodied with minimal flavors and character. easily passed up on most occasions.

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Photo of mmmbeer
3.27/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle with some code ink-jet printed on the label. It pours pale gold, with medium carbonation and a finger of white head that barely laces the glass. Very clean aroma, with some grains, a dash of hops, and maybe a touch of corn. The flavor adds a little sweetness, green/spicy hops and a mild bitterness on top of a light, dry and tingly body that doesn't linger long. Definitely an ordinary beer, but for the style it's actually pretty good.

 451 characters

Photo of montageman
3.35/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

I recently accepted a job at Trader Joe's and have taken a liking to the beer section. Not because there is a lot of stuff I haven't tried (even though there is), but more because I can buy 1 bottle at a time and try many beers instead of buying whole 6 packs and being stuck with 5 I may not like.

Frugal Joe's sells for roughly $.90 a bottle, which is really excellent for an everyday beer. Clear, bright yellow in color with lots of bubbles and some lacing along the sides, this is a nice looking lager. The smell is interesting - I can't really place it, maybe grains? grass? Either way, it's fine by me. The taste is OK, totally balanced. Mouthfeel is harsh due to the carbonation, but as the beer warms the bubbles subside and all is good with the world. This is good stuff for $4.99/6 pack - would not be bad as a mainstay in my fridge. Recommended.

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Photo of mpyle
3.63/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma - some hop, and a vegetal character. Slight cider sweetness.

App - Very pale golden color, great clarity. Pours a reasonable head with some retention. Nice looking beer.

Flav - Initial sensation is quite sweet, though dries into a balanced to slightly bitter finish. Minimal aftertaste. A clean, simple, lawnmower lager

MF - light-medium body with moderately high carbonation. No astringency or mouthfeel problems - a light, effervescent beer as expected for the style.

D'ability - The sweetness is a bit offputting, but the flavor profile is sufficiently clean that it would be possible to down these by the six-pack. Not sure if I'd want to, but you could do worse for <$5 per six pack.

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Photo of Raymond69
2.95/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thin head, no lacing. Clear yellow .

Smell is faintly corny/grainy.

Taste is about what I'd expect from a macro. Slight sweet aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is thin, very carbonated.

This beer goes down easy enough without offending. It could replace any BMC without much trouble.

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Photo of atsprings
1.77/5  rDev -40.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Purchased at Trader Joe's by my roommate. Pours a light crisp straw yellow with a quickly diminishing head. Aroma was of pale malts and nothing else. Taste was just a small notch better than BMC, but not much. The beer was light and overly carbonated. This one was a drain pour.

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Photo of jwc215
3.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear straw yellow with a thin white head that immediately becomes a patch, then disappears.

It smells...well, like an inoffensive lager. Some sweet grain. A bit of corn. Not unpleasant for the style.

The taste is of grainy sweetness. Some corn or corn-like adjuncts. Some non-descript hops give it a refreshing dryness. Pretty bland, but not more than most macro lagers. In fact, it has more of a taste than many others of this style.

There is a certain crispness to it. It's appropriately light, but not too watery.

Well, they wanted an "ordinary" beer, and they got it. Nothing much to it, pretty bland, but inoffensive and I would most likely choose this over most BMC products.

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Photo of wagenvolks
1.77/5  rDev -40.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

The last Steinhaus brewing beer I'll ever buy from Trader Joe's. 12 oz. bottle whose contents tarnished my Unibroue tulip glass...

Poured a urine-colored yellow reminscent of Welch's grape juice. A white Gary Coleman-sized head disappeared before I could turn on the TV. Smells like champagne, not beer. Grapes, wheat, and grass make for an unappealing nose.

Taste is, well, pretty bad. Barely above the macrobrewed junk...metallic taste and mouthfeel with a hint of grape rinds. The mouthfeel is truly awful, it's overly carbonated and leaves my tongue with a curdled feel. Blech... This is the worst rating I've given a beer so far...I contemplated pouring it down the sink, and followed through about halfway into this "beer".

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Photo of bluejacket74
2.65/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a light straw gold color, with a small white head. It just smells like some grain and sweet malt, but the aroma isn't strong at all. The taste is a bit sweet, sour and bitter at the same time. It tastes a lot like grain/adjuncts and a bit of malt. It doesn't taste bad, but then it doesn't exactly taste great either. Mouthfeel is light, but not too watery. Drinkability is OK, it's not too bad to drink. I've certainly drank much worse beers. This is just an average macro lager, but then I can't expect too much for buying a single bottle of this at Trader Joe's for 67 cents.

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Photo of blackie
2.31/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

a: plain pint glass, diluted urine yellow, fizzy bone-white head

s: a teaspoon of pale grain steeped in water

m: fizzy highish carbonation, thin watery body

t: primarily water with some watery grain and watery rice, no hops, weak bitterness, weak

d: yes

not recommended, most definately should be classified as light

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Photo of daliandragon
2.9/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Picked up at Trader Joe's in cary, NC this past weekend for the unbelieveable in this day and age price of eighty two copper portraits of The Great Emancipator. This would have to be truly horrible to not be worth it..

Pours an light straw color with an abundance of uppity carbonation bubbles bouncing around but no head to speak of. Nose is grainy but nearly nonexistent.

Tastes almost like a light beer in flavor and mouthfeel but does feature a chemically sweet finish that knocks the score back a half a notch. Still, its relatively clean and satisfying and apart from the artificial sweetness pretty inoffensive too.

Drinkable in quantity or heat and the price is definitely right. Perfect for the week before payday.

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Photo of GeoffRizzo
3.42/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Great conversation label. Light golden in color, patchy full moon white head that gives way to some champagne-ish bubbles. Earthy and biscuity aroma, with some sweet malts and traces of herbal notes. Slick, grainy hops, a bit watery; an obvious lighter bodied ale. Metallic oats, bitter corn presence and a well cleansed palate. Very easy to drink, and for the style, a pretty good find!

 387 characters

Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the glass very slightly hazy golden straw with a white low yet persistent head which laced the glass.

The aroma was fruity with some light corny DMS presence and a lightly sweet malt character. The fruity character was light and slightly present as if from hops.

The flavor was light and fairly boring with enough bittering to balance and to turn a light bit of sweetness toward the dry end of the spectrum. The corn presence in the aroma was again notable in the flavor. The bittering was pretty well done and the hop flavor, while low, seemed to be Noble in character.

The finish was dry with just some light lasting bittering into the aftertaste. The body was medium with a moderate level of carbonation. Nothing off, but nothing exciting.

12 ounce bottle, $0.84 at TJ.

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Photo of malcontent
3.8/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pilsner glass, Frugal Joe's yields a clear, pale straw color accompanied with a short-lived, uneven head. The smell is grainy/malty with hints of lemon & without any unpleasantness to speak of.

Wow! This is the embodiment of every stereotypical macro brewery's advertising except it actually delivers on those promises; crisp, clean & very satisfying. I must say, for a style I usually avoid, this is pretty good! Little hops to speak of although the malt isn't overpowering by any stretch of the imagination. Nicely carbonated adding to a very drinkable body. This could be one of those all-night beers; for what it is, a pleasant surprise.

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Frugal Joe's Ordinary Beer from Steinhaus Brewing Co.
2.97 out of 5 based on 73 ratings.
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