Caribbean Lager
Banks (Barbados) Breweries Limited

Caribbean LagerCaribbean Lager
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American Adjunct Lager
Ranked #162
Ranked #47,455
2.87 | pDev: 20.91%
Banks (Barbados) Breweries Limited
Caribbean LagerCaribbean Lager
Notes: Formerly Banks Beer. This is the legendary Caribbean beer, made in Guyana since 1955, Barbados since 1961 and celebrated across the region.

17 IBU
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Reviews: 103 | Ratings: 223
Photo of VoxRationis
3.71/5  rDev +29.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Decanted from an 11.2 oz (330 ml) brown bottle into a nonic pint glass; bottle 04/20/19.
A: Pours a nearly crystal clear, golden color with a less than one finger, white head, rim retention, and limited, fairly soapy lacing.
S: Aroma of bakery bread crust and honey suckle.
T: Semidry. Flavors of bread (think pumpernickel), unrefined grains, and a spices (pepper, even tabasco). Bitterness strong for an AAL, but it does work.
M: Light to medium bodied with low to moderate effervescence.
O: I enjoyed this one. For something coming out of Barbados, kudos for the brown bottle, I thought it drank well and I can definitely see it complementing spicy Caribbean food.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.19/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Gold in color with a fingernail of off white around the rim. The aroma is of corn. I taste corn and faint German grassy hops. The mouth is light and easygoing.

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Photo of Nass
3.35/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

There is a best by date on the bottle & it's in yellow print, Banks is a smart brewery. On to the review, this beer pours a white head with a dark yellow / light orange sort of color. I'm tasting some grains, malts, baked biscuit, some crisp, & faint hops, grass, This sure is a pleasant tasting lager. Cheers! B-

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Photo of EMH73
3.01/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Given to me from a co-worker from Barbados. Surprisingly good for an AAL. No off putting smells or flavors. Light grainy malts, corn and the slightest hop presence. Light bodied, light to medium carbonation, watery mouth feel. I imagine this would be so much better sitting on the beach in Barbados.

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Photo of sholland119
3.5/5  rDev +22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

As Caribbean adjunct lagers so, this one is pretty good. Was it mind blowing? Would I seek it out? No and no. Did I enjoy the pleasant light grainy malt character and slightly sweet finish while sitting on the beach in Barbados in late winter? Yes and yes and yes. Well made, totally drinkable.

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Photo of DoctorZombies
3.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thick white foam on pale gold (4) pour; decent head and cap retention with aggressive pour; spotty lace at best. Corn bread and biscuits aroma. DMS and slightly sweet. Lite, watery feel; moderate carbonation. Ok lager, the locals say, "drinks like water." True enough.

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Photo of captaincoffee
3.77/5  rDev +31.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Honestly, as an AAL, this is a surprisingly decent beer. Pours straw color, with a quickly dissipating head that leaves specks of lacing. Nose is grains all the way with some weak hops way in the back. Taste is clean AAL...grains with no noticeable off-flavors. Overall, this is a fine, clean, easy-drinking lawnmower beer that beats BMC options.

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Photo of Malt_Man
3.12/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served cold from 330ml bottle into Brooklyn American pint glass.

L) Very very pale peach-yellow colour, clear, a few bubbles and a thin but stable white head. The extremely pale colour is not appetising.

S) Not a lot, a bit of a pissy lager smell. This is going downhill rapidly.

T) Not a lot again, but certainly nothing nasty there. A bit of stale watery malt. No bitterness whatsoever.

F) Very fizzy and light. Guzzling this when cold is a real thirst quencher.

O) Heady Topper it aint, but this is a simple, refreshing lager that is a real thirst quencher on a first day, so drink it in the right circumstances and you will enjoy it.

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Photo of schoolboy
3.52/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had a few Banks while on a catamaran in Barbados. It doesn't get better than that - too bad there wasn't any other beer on the lovely Calabaza II boat.

The beer is typical in appearance and aroma. The taste is sweet, easy drinking and inoffensive.

I think I had three (I was drinking run punches too). They are pretty enjoyable.

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Photo of TX-Badger
3/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear yellow golden color with white head. Cereal grains mostly on the nose; follows onto the palate. Light bodied. Finishes pretty clean and crisp.

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Photo of Boughner33
2.8/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

This is okay beer and will not offend. Also, the smaller size lets you convince yourself that you have not had as many as you really have. " sure honey, I had 18 beers, but that is only like 6 regular draft. Yeah, that's the ticket!"

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Photo of 4thelvofbeer
5/5  rDev +74.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer has such a low ranking because people are ranking it against top notch beers that are not in its class...either that or it's just people that really don't know what they are talking about when it comes to beer (the more likely reason). If this beer was ranked in its category as appropriate for the style of beer it is.... It is actually really good. Look at the other beer examples this is being compared to. This is much better than the piss listed as other comparable examples.

Really nice smooth taste for what is being called an "American Adjunct Lager". Compared with garbage like coors and bud and other things in this class, this beer is really good. Clean, smooth taste and flavor....I would love to be drinking it on the beach where it was brewed in Barbados!, but I'll settle for drinking it right here. Thanks to my dad for bringing a bottle back for me.... Really nice beer.

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Photo of SmashPants
2.84/5  rDev -1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Format: a standard brown 355mL bottle with a really tacky and cheap-looking macro label depicting a schooner sailboat.

Appearance: a crystal clear amber yellow in colour with big carbonation. A fluffy white head froths away to a thin film almost immediately.

Aroma: smells pretty much like most of your standard American Adjunct Lagers - grain, adjuncts and not much else.

Taste: standard cheap macro grains with an adjunct fug. Corn syrup by the taste. Not great, but still drinkable.

Aftertaste: this is another one to be consumed in a hot climate - the flavour drops quickly for easy chugging.

Mouth feel: mouth feel is fine - light in body with a higher carbonation for refreshment.

Overall: just another macro adjunct lager, and not a particularly memorable one. Probably best left as a local throw-down when abroad.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.54/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased at Beers of the World in Rochester, NY.

Pours a golden, pissy looking yellow, like any standard adjunct lager. There's a small quarter inch head, and a little bit of lacing.

Smells like not a whole lot, some grain, some sweetness, a bit of lager yeast, and some fruitiness.

This was much better than I thought it would be- I honestly thought it would be horrid. It's light, it's refreshing, there's no off-flavors, and there's even a bit of fruitiness that seems tropical to me. It could be my imagination, of course. There's some slight bitterness on the finish.

This is light, crisp, and refreshing in the mouthfeel- with a moderate level of carbonation, and a fairly light body.

This didn't suck, really, at all- it's a no frills, simple, and easy lager.

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Photo of BeerDrinkersWorldTour
3.89/5  rDev +35.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pale yellow amber colouration with heavy streaming CO2 of large bubbles that form a rocky 2 finger head that has average retention dying to a lace cover a and leaving very little evidence of itself in the glass,

Smell - Pronounced malt aroma which is bready and has a light element of hop with light alcohol tones that are not what you would describe as solvent.

Taste - Great malt front with a rolling mild bitter hop that has a pretty good lingering after taste. Pretty on point for the style and better than most!

MF - Pretty decent body and good linger with a drying finish.

Overall - For the style this beer is on point and even has more flavour than what you may expect. I have to be honest here and say that i feel a good few of the reviews on the site here are falling into the age old BA tradition of slating American Adjuncts rather than reviewing them based on the what they are and what they are trying to be... This beer is a good one for a session and a strong example of its style.

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Photo of MrCharlieMops
2.75/5  rDev -4.2%

Appearance: Thick foamy white head which quickly fizzed away and leaves little lacing on the glass. Pale, golden, straw colour with visible carbonation.
Aroma: Grainy, malty and watery.
Taste: Biscuity, and malty with a light mouthfeel and a blast of carbonation that attacks the tongue. Leaves a sweet, malt/cereal taste in the mouth.
Overall: A very refreshing, light lager, great for hot days with no trace of hops, better than corona, however, still prefer a budweiser to this.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4/5  rDev +39.4%

Banks Caribbean Lager has a thick, white, rather quickly dissipating head, a mostly clear (some roiling white specs cause haze), straw, bubbly appearance, and minimal lacing. The aroma is of a full nose of barley malt, biscuit, sweetness, and grassy hops. Taste is of those elements (think Grolsch), with a small amount of paper in the mix. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Banks Caribbean Lager finishes crisp, refreshing, and highly drinkable.


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Photo of JasonEdelson
2.56/5  rDev -10.8%

Sometimes, when you're feeling beaten down from a long day of baking in the sun, swimming in the bluest waters, and relaxing with a good read, nothing refreshes your smile like the local lager, as you listen to the sea breeze and soka music playing in the background.

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Photo of woodychandler
2.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

I am now committed to reducing, if not eradicating, my backlog of bottles. This one was part of a local, in-person trade with tone77.

From the bottle: "'This is the legendary Caribbean beer, brewed under sunshine and blue skies and celebrated across the region!'"

I was kind of anxious to get started with this one, so I used a heavy-handed pour, resulting in a pseudo-cascade. Settling, it turned into three dense, rocky fingers of bone-white head with good retention. Color was a sunshine yellow (SRM = > 2, < 4) with NE-quality clarity. Once again, it was a beer which resembled a slice of lemon meringue pie. Nose smelled of corn, silage, all of the descriptors with which I became very familiar in the early stages of The CANQuest (TM). Not all adjuncts are bad, but corn is evil! Mouthfeel was medium. Taste was actually kind of kind of muted, making it more drinkable than some that I have imbibed. Finish was semi-sweet, pretty middle-of-the-road for the style.

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Photo of flagmantho
2.61/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass. This bottle is billed as "Banks Caribbean Lager", but seems to be the same as regular Banks Beer.

Appearance: pale golden hue with no haze and lots of effervescence. Head poured a full finger of pillowy white foam, which is subsiding relatively quickly. Not bad for the style.

Smell: light aroma of wet grain. Not terrible, not particularly enticing. It's fine for what it is, mostly.

Taste: lightly malty with plenty of that wet grain. There is some bitterness here, but I am hard-pressed to say that's a good thing. This beer is not totally disgusting, but it's really not great -- not even for the style.

Mouthfeel: very light body with tons of carbonation. Good enough for the style.

Overall: egh. There are decent adjunct lagers out there. This is not one of them.

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Photo of DaveBar
3.34/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Purchased as a single at the LCBO served at 5deg C in a draught glass

A- Pretty good. Opens well pouring a good white head that dissipates pretty fast

S- Not a lot there.

T- Nice light beer. Light on the tongue with an almost Sphagnum flavor. Great summer beer, guess that's why it's brewed in Barbados!

M- Ok. Just like a North American beer

O- Very good. In Barbados it's $7.00 Barbados (around $3.50 CAD) for a 6 pack of 300ml bottles. Here.... $14.00 for a 6pk!

Food Pairing

Any nice southern Caribbean dish... Try goat curry in a double


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Photo of ChristopherWIU-UTPA
2.46/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

I hand Banks Beer while visiting Belize in 2013, it was okay pale lager, but not stick out from its various competitors. It pours light and golden, with light head that soon dissipates, and has an average carbonation content. It has little edge when drinking, but has a pleasant sweet taste with hints of malt and grains. Average aftertaste, not filling, and easy to consume in large amounts.

You can get Banks beer in Punta Gorda, belize fairly easy.

Belize March, 2013

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Photo of RblWthACoz
2.97/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a yellow straw hue with minimal haze. White head. Nothing on the nose. Flavor is kind of grassy and earthy. Almost like a soil/mud thing. Yeasty edge on the end. Decent at first but gets a bit thick in the end, which detracts from the overall experience.

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Photo of CHickman
2.65/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Pours crystal clear gold color with a 1 finger foamy snow while colored head that was full of little bubbles and faded average speed, leaving decent spotty lacing.

Smells of corn, grains, vegetables, caramel or malty sweetness and the typical funky husk found in most lagers. Not much else to say except it was as dull as can be sniffed.

Tastes like it smells, with corn, grains, vegetables, light caramel, malty sweetness, light citrus hops, herbs, some funk, husk and biscuit. Flavor was not awful, but just so boring that I guess the true way to appreciate this would be to drink it in Barbados on a beach.

Mouthfeel is light, crisp and almost watery, with mild carbonation, a light body and a slight hop bitterness before it trails off grainy with a slightly metallic taste. Easy to drink if you’re not looking for flavor and the low ABV would make this a nice beach beer; not a beer I’d have again unless I was in Barbados and hopefully on a nude beach, and while it was not terrible it was just so basic and boring that I feel like bashing it (more) would be pointless since it is an American Adjunct Lager style beer.

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Photo of Cylinsier
2.74/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75


Pours a clear light golden with a white sudsy head that dissipates to nothing.

Smells of coppery lager malts and sugar.

Tastes of coppery malts, cane sugar, and crisp dry hops.

Thin body with a light carbonation on the tongue.

Standard American style adjunct lager, predictable flavor. Works out okay in hot weather as you want something you can pound ice cold, but it's pretty unimpressive. Maybe slightly better than our American offerings in this category. Maybe not.

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Caribbean Lager from Banks (Barbados) Breweries Limited
Beer rating: 67 out of 100 with 223 ratings