Zywiec Breweries PLC (Heineken)

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Lager - European Pale
Ranked #209
Ranked #49,405
3.04 | pDev: 16.45%
Zywiec Breweries PLC (Heineken)
View: Beers
Reviews: 85 | Ratings: 193 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Redrover
Redrover from Wisconsin

2.67/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

Poured from the can into an imperial pint glass, the beer is kind of standard gold/yellow. It has a massive white head that leaves really nice lacing.

The aroma is grains a bit of apple juice.

The beer is sweet and bit grainy. crackers and bread, but the sweetness is the overwhelming facet. The can lists barley and malted barley in the ingredients. No mention of any hops and while I am sure they use them, they don't appear to use many.... As it warms it starts to be a little solvent like.

The mouth is slightly above average with some aggressive carbonation.

I kind of expected more from a beer that has a Polish dude on the can that looks like Indiana Jones.

It looks good, but it is quickly downhill from there.

Dec 18, 2020
Photo of IceChuggington
IceChuggington from Canada (AB)

3.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I found Polish beers are always a bit tougher on the feel for me. But I also chug a lot. But I didn't chug this one. That being said, it is probably the best feel I've had for a Polish beer, and upon trying it, tears formed in my eyes because no aftertaste remained. Poland is truly not yet lost. 6 Smirnoff Ices/10

Jun 19, 2020
Photo of Jesseb613

2.72/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Taste kinda like i poured it into an old coffee mug that wasnt washed .. i taste coffee every sip .. drinking straight from the can .. not bad tho.. woukdnt drink a whole case but id try it again sometime ..good for when ur grabbing random beers to test out with ur spare change lol

Oct 06, 2019
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badgerbeer1 from Wisconsin

2.79/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

I feel I was seduced by the Indiana Jones looking character on the can. I expected it to be an adventure to drink. Instead it was one of the lesser Polish beers I have drank.

May 10, 2019
Photo of metter98
metter98 from New York

3/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: The beer is clear yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high white head that died down, leaving a patch of bubbles on the surface, a narrow collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of grainy malts are present in the nose along with notes of grassy hops and hints of apples.
T: The taste follows the smell, except that the flavors of apples are a bit stronger and the hops contribute a light to moderate amount of bitterness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied, clean, and a little smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer doesn't have much in the way of any interesting aromas and flavors, but it is an honest lager that is easy to drink, has a good balance between the malts and hops, and doesn't have any "off" flavors.

Serving type: bottle

Apr 17, 2018
Photo of tigg924
tigg924 from Massachusetts

3.77/5  rDev +24%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours clear, gold in color with 1/3 inch head. Taste is grain, caramel, and a touch of grass. High carbonation, sweet, and medium-light bodied. Nice mix of a dark and light ale. I prefer other Zywiec brews, but this is solid.

Apr 16, 2018
Photo of OzmanBey
OzmanBey from Massachusetts

2.6/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This is a another pale ale that's not so pale as far as the taste is concerned though it has a bit strange hint of something underneath the malt and slight hops overall it's an enjoyable beer that you can sit and have with a friend or just alone.

Sep 24, 2017
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Jugs_McGhee from Louisiana

2.88/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Bottled nabbed at a bodega in Brooklyn, NY.

APPEARANCE: Clear pale copper body. Off-white head. Fairly frothy. ~5-7 minute head retention.

AROMA: Grain. 6-row. Mineral-forward water. Grassy hop character. Mild aromatic intensity.

TASTE: Matches the aroma, with a biteen more hop oomph than was anticipated (but which is still extremely mild overall). Grainy, a bit metallic, not too sweet. Balance isn't dialed in, but it's tolerable.

Fairly shallow for the style. Average flavour duration and intensity.

TEXTURE: Smooth, wet, unrefreshing, somewhat stale, medium-bodied, overcarbonated. Not boozy.

OVERALL: Approachable and enjoyable for what it is, but overall it's not stellar. Drinkable and pleasant, but far from world-class. I'd get it again at Polish prices.


Jul 14, 2017
Photo of tone77
tone77 from Pennsylvania

2.87/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Poured from a 16.9 oz. can. Has a golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of grains, hints of green apples. Taste is grains, light malts, hints of band-aid at the finish. Feels light in the mouth and overall, not horrible, but it's a beer I won't be buying again.

Sep 29, 2016
Photo of LiquidAmber
LiquidAmber from Washington

3.17/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a small pint glass. Pour s a medium golden amber with a thin white head that dissipates to patches with light lacing. Aroma of sweet grainy malt, and light grassy hops, a hint of lemon, slightly skunked (despite a brown bottle). Flavor follows with mildly sweet grainy malt with hints of biscuit and mild grassy hops; finishes with an odd sweetness overlaying grain and a light bitterness. Light to medium bodied. This has a classic Euro lager malt body with a little more grain and biscuit flavors than normal, which is nice, but with a strange light sweetness that is reminiscent of adjunct lagers, but almost tasted artificial. As with most beer of this style, quite drinkable and inoffensive, but the malt flavors left me wishing for more. The child in me liked the light sweetness, but it was somewhat off putting. I like the husky graininess of beers like this that are otherwise bland, so that is somewhat redeeming. Drinkable in a pinch. Fairly painless tick for this brewery.

Sep 27, 2016
Photo of gandres
gandres from Philippines

2.29/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Bottle 500 ml to wine glass
Appearance: Golden amber clear, very small off white foam that disappears quickly
Aroma: scent of malt not a lot
Taste: low bitterness, not a lot of taste, watery, abrupt finish
Palate: lively carbonation, good long finish, tart follow through
Overall: Fair beer, but not to repeat look for
Drank: 8/20/2016 11:30 pm

Aug 20, 2016
Photo of The_Snow_Bird
The_Snow_Bird from Florida

2.13/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear yellow color with a small white head on top taste stays for a little while. Has a grain smell with banana notes. Taste is of sour grains that gone bad.

Jun 05, 2016
Photo of Noelan
Noelan from Canada (ON)

2.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

500ml can from my local LCBO, served in a pint. Grabbed it because of the fascinating art on the can.

Look: Golden color with a finger and a half of white head that almost instantly dissipates. 3.5

Smell: First comes a piney grass smell, followed by earth undertones. Wasn't expecting the piney grass smell but with my second smell I actually kind of liked it. Very different. 2.75

Taste: The initial taste is exactly as described in smell, pine and grass. Followed by a sweetness that I cant describe, and finishing with a kick that almost reminds me of malt liqueur. 2.75

Feel: Almost zero carbonation. soft feel. 3.25

Would buy this again, but could not drink it regularly. The earthiness is both desirable and problematic.
Overall: 3.0

Apr 11, 2016
Photo of atr2605
atr2605 from New York

3.25/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A-pours a crystal clear straw/copper color with a white head that fades a bit quickly
S-sweet malt, cereal aroma, no hop aroma present
T-more sweet malt with the hops providing a nice balance but not lending to the flavor
M-medium bodied and crisp
O-pretty straight forward euro lager, very drinkable

Jul 30, 2015
Photo of RonaldTheriot
RonaldTheriot from Louisiana

3.25/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Tatra has a medium-to-thick white head, a clear, deep gold color, bubble streams, and a clear appearance, with moderate lacing left behind. The aroma is of very mild or faint sweet malt and grain, and the flavor is of subdued sweetness, bread, a straightforward grain mix, and low hop bitterness (use Icehouse as a point of reference). Mouthfeel is watery, and Tatra Jasne Pelne (full bright) finishes crisp and refreshing.


Jun 28, 2015
Photo of 50wolves
50wolves from Australia

2.55/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Tatra jasne pelne. Aroma - smells a tad hoppy, rather weak smelling, appearance - pours clear light coloured with carbonation that disappears quickly (drank from dimpled mug) with white head that disappears quickly. Taste - I would classify as 'piss beer', fairly flavourless with little going for it. Feel - slight astringency which is the only thing that is of any notice in this beer. Overall - I would not drink this again, it is a simple beer with no defining characteristics.

Mar 29, 2015
Photo of btheluvdoctor
btheluvdoctor from New Jersey

3.18/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I got this one as a trade from a buddy of mine. I'd say he did right by me as it was an easy drinking beer. I've seen bad reviews of this beer but IMO that's only because folks think the only drinkable beer is an IPA.

Feb 06, 2015
Photo of DaveBar
DaveBar from Canada (ON)

3.05/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Purchased at The Beer Store for just under $3.00 for a 500ml can. Served at 4deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a tiny head that is gone in seconds. Clear medium gold color

S- Not much here at all. Some malt

T- Not that bad. Has some body and substance to it. Good malt and some mild hops.

M- Has some good body to it. Surprising really

O- Not too bad. Will not buy again but it was ok.

Food Pairing

This pretty good beer went well with...... Salmon loaf.


Jan 23, 2015
Photo of Howycwap
Howycwap from Canada (ON)

4/5  rDev +31.6%

Golden orange colour, not much head less than 1 finger that dissapated within 2 or 3 minutes. Barely any lacing

If you take into account the price of this beer at LCBO (1.95 at purchase) it makes up for the lack of distinct flavors. Its more malty than hoppy and there isnt much carbonation.

Its a bit sweet on the tip and end, not overly bitter. It makes a great beer to bring to a gathering or party due to the price and drinkability of this beer. Its in the price range of the cheap stuff but far ahead of any of it.

If price did not matter I would not buy as there is better beer out there. But the price allows me to drink a beer worth drinking when on a budget, its worth your pocket change to buy something for a party.

Sep 18, 2014
Photo of Dentist666
Dentist666 from Russian Federation

2.93/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Pours clear golden with good bubbly off-white head, retention is ok, some laces are present, but all quickly dissipates. Smell is clean, malty, rather sweet. Taste is full malty, slightly chalky, bitterness is weak, definitely lack of hops. Low carbonation, the beer loses all gases before being imbibed. Dull.

Aug 07, 2014
Photo of taxandbeerguy
taxandbeerguy from Canada (ON)

3.08/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

500 ml can served cold into a pint glass. Purchased from LBCO for $1.95 CDN. Advertised as 5.5% ABV.

Appearance - Clear, rich golden color with 1.5 fingers of white head with pop-like retention time (not very long). A few bubbles rise to the top and no lacing to speak of.

Smell - Grassy aroma with a bit of a a dank earthiness. Nothing exciting but the earthiness is a bit of a different dimension.

Taste - Grassy with some artificial-like sweetness before transitioning to a dry dirt-like bitterness. For whatever reason, this works for me, despite the fact that it sounds unappealing.

Mouthfeel - Low carbonation and soft feel with light body.

Overall - Decent beer for the style and affordable. Would purchase on occasion again in the future.

Jul 26, 2014
Photo of KFBR392
KFBR392 from Illinois

2.79/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Appearance: Color is a transparent lighter orange. Almost half a finger of head on the pour which dissipated quickly and was only present on a thin layer on top while drinking. Low active carbonation for the style.

Smell: Pepper and oats come out first. Prairie grass and some buttery yeast on the body. Lingering grains are present throughout. Some airy dough rounds this one out.

Taste: Some buttery yeast mixes with some grains on the front. That quickly yields to a soapy, oaky body which doesn't seem to fit. Some metallic tones some up on the back end with more oats and doughy yeast.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is low. Soap and metallic textures linger on the palate.

Overall: Disappointed here. Definitely some off flavors popping up on the body. I would definitely pass on this and go to other Polish pale lagers.

Apr 17, 2014
Photo of BuckyBeerBeaver
BuckyBeerBeaver from Canada (ON)

3.6/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

For his first ever Polish beer, Bucky spied a 500 ml can of Tatra, produced by the Zywiec Brewery. Tatra was 5.5% alcohol by volume with a best before date of August 3, 2014 printed on the bottom of the can.

Zywiec Brewery was founded in 1852, in Zywiec, Poland, which was then a part of Austria-Hungary. It was nationalized after WWII when Poland was occupied by the Dark Empire. Today, the Heineken Group of Holland controls the operations of Zywiec's parent company with a 61% shareholding, and has modernized the brewery's production.

Tatra poured a crystal clear golden colour with a thin white head that disappeared inside one minute. This beer actually looks more like a cider...but certainly has the aroma of a beer. Sweet malts dominate the aroma, with a hint of wet dirt...the combination of which actually works well. Its taste was sweet light malts up front, with a hint of wet dirt that disappears almost instantly, and a mildly bitter finish which lingered for a few seconds. I would describe Tatra as a smooth beer, easy drinking and light bodied, though with a bit of a thin mouthfeel to it. In summary, a decent beer most notable for that unique 'wet dirt' aroma and taste (not a bad thing in this case), but not memorable enough that I would buy it again. It was interesting enough that I will try some other Polish beers though. Tatra is reasonably priced at $1.90 per 500 ml can.

Apr 14, 2014
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ from Wisconsin

2.28/5  rDev -25%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 1.75

After Germany, Poland seems to offer more varieties of imported lager on the Orange County store shelves than any other country. Some are reasonably good, and some are just no. Tatra is marketed as the "beer with character" so you can bet that my expectations will be hoping for the former. On to the beer:

Dark golden color, topped with an inch of soapy head. Some visible large bubbles run through the body of the beer. It has an okay aroma. There's a vague fruitiness, grain soaking in water, dough, and a metallic note.

A mouthfull of not much, and what there is doesn't impress me. The flavor brings a strange fruitness, a metallic edge, a taste of sharp alcohol, and a dry grain taste. The mouthfeel has a slick character and a humming of carbonation.

Tatra isn't going to be one of the first names which I conjure with Polish beer. Could be worse....could have been infected (I'm looking at you New English).

Feb 06, 2014
Photo of BlackHaddock
BlackHaddock from England

2.98/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

500ml can: now available in the UK with English writting on the can, labelled as 'TATRA Beer'.

This can was bought for me by my father from one of the many Polish shops in Boston, Lincolnshire: I drank it at his house on 10th Nov 2013.

It looked the same as almost every other Pilsner/lager we all know and love: golden, clear and bright. The usual none staying snow white head that swiftly retreats into a wisp and collar was another feature I was expecting: I wasn't disappointed either.

Slight malt/grain aroma (gets my usual 3 for a non-smelling Pilsner/lager).

Taste wise it was a refreshing blend of semi-flavours: mildly malty with an undercurrent of hop bitterness. Nothing to pontificate about and nothing to set it apart from the hundreds (or thousands) of similar lager based brews from around the world.

Mr Average in every way.

Nov 12, 2013
Tatra from Zywiec Breweries PLC (Heineken)
Beer rating: 70 out of 100 with 193 ratings