Heineken Lager Beer
Heineken Nederland B.V.

Heineken Lager BeerHeineken Lager Beer
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Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
Lager - European Pale
Ranked #513
ABV:
5%
Score:
64
Ranked #50,886
Avg:
2.74 | pDev: 25.91%
Reviews:
1,533
Ratings:
5,588
From:
Heineken Nederland B.V.
 
Netherlands
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  61
Gots
  1,679
SCORE
64
Poor
Heineken Lager BeerHeineken Lager Beer
Notes: Also known as Heineken Pilsener

Made with 3 ingredients, and they're all natural: Barley, Hops and water.

Yeast is an important part of the brewing process, but it's not an ingredient! Our natural A-Yeast produces a fruity flavor that is key in making the Heineken you know and love, and is filtered out after fermentation.
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Reviews: 1,533 | Ratings: 5,588 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of WaterBoar
WaterBoar from Pennsylvania

3.31/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

It smells weird. It is crisp, it is clean but it smells weird. I like it but I only get this if there are no other options. They are popular during the holidays in America, their advertisement making fun of ENRON was hilarious.

Sep 18, 2021
Photo of Pipeknight81
Pipeknight81

4.01/5  rDev +46.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A friend of mine introduced me to Heineken. Whenever I was overseas, this was my go to beer. Tastes great right out of the freezer, after 15 minutes. I've learned now to keep these in the box, to minimize the skunky flavor.

Aug 02, 2021
Photo of BPVandenbroek
BPVandenbroek from Canada (AB)

2.59/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Heineken is one of the palest, straw colored lagers I've ever seen. The head is packed, bone white, and surprisingly lasting.

The first thing I smell are the usual pale, grainy, biscuit malts found in most even half decent lagers. Hints of ripe corn sweetness come out in the center. The finish gives a faint whiff of hops in the form of fresh cut grass.

At first blush, Heineken is smooth, crisp, and refreshing. Mouthfeel has a roundness I find pleasant in a good lager. Ripe, sweet corn combines with something that strikes me as a sort of bread or rice pudding sweetness. The finish dries out a little before leaving me wit just a hint of leafy, grassy hops.

Heineken really is a decent enough lager in its own right. My only complaints are it has the corn and rice adjunct flavors you'd expect in mainstream lagers. Also, the flavors and aromas seem kind of straightforward as though the brewery is trying to play it safe in the manufacture of this lager.

May 24, 2021
Photo of lagrluvr
lagrluvr

4/5  rDev +46%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

looks crystal clear pale straw, we've all seen it. foamy white head fades off.
Smells very apple-ish , like a green sliced fresh apple, faint barley.
Taste is not quite as sweet as the apple smell, but close, and crisp like a green apple. There is no corn in this beer, thank goodness.
For its global reach, and the 3 pack of pint cans for under $5, It's a damn good beer for many occasions, or a regular old afternoon.

May 20, 2021
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md3kcn from Ohio

2.15/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 1.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Found unopened when walking down a river while out camping. Couldn't find anyone nearby, so I decided to drink it. Poured into a mess kit cup.

L - Pours a very clear pale gold with a one-finger off-white/pearl head. Head disappears very quickly.
S - Miscellaneous cereal grains, some sort of tartness, and a bit of a fruit I can't really pin down. Perhaps unripe citron? A little bit of a toasted white bread in there, as well.
T - Grass, stale saltines, and biscuit. A faint - almost diluted - floral note is present. Not much else, other than a not-too-overwhelming sweetness. Even though this was a bottle of the stuff, it tastes like someone dropped a nickel into it.
F - Refreshing, very carbonated, and light. Not like a light beer sort of "light", but more watery than beer-y. Crisp, too.
O - If La Croix ever got into the beer business, this would be their flagship brew. It isn't terrible, but it isn't really great, either. Pretty good for a free beer, but not much else. I would imagine this would pair very well with canned sardines (King Oscar's, for sure) and onions. I've had this before, but I've never in my life had to ever buy it to have it. I'll continue this trend by saying I wouldn't buy it, but I wouldn't mind finding it alongside a river again.

May 18, 2021
Photo of Sigmund
Sigmund from Norway

2.75/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

I used to appreciate its crisp citrus perfumed aroma, often accompanied by a fresh seafood meal - but alas, I grew tired of it. I'm not the only one. It once was a half-decent local brand in the Netherlands, but those days are gone - its position as international swill is firm. However, the beer is not undrinkable, and I won't turn down a fresh glass from tap on a sunny day.

Apr 23, 2021
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BloodSoakedAleMug from New York

2.44/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Look: Pours a fizzy, golden yellow color with a one finger satin white head of foam. Minimal lacing.

Aroma: Sweet corn and mild sour apple. There's a bit of complexity to the malt bill, mostly notes of caramel and toasted bread trying to come through on the nose, but it gets stifled by the aforementioned aromas of sweet corn and sour apple.

Taste: Fairly generic and non-descript flavors of; you guessed it, sweet corn and apples. There's a small floral, bitter, grassy hop note to it, attempting to round out the initial flavors. The sugar content is somewhat abrasive and kind of dominates the entire experience.

Feel: Mid-heavy body (for a lager). High carbonation. The beer feels very syrupy sweet on the palate, and if not for the high carbonation to sort of lighten it up, it would feel extremely heavy bodied.

Overall: I feel bad giving this such low marks, but it had to be done. I'd really like to rate this higher, but I would be being dishonest. For what it's worth I've certainly had much worse. My main problem with this beer is how sweet and heavy bodied it is, despite being fairly well carbonated. Still; I'd drink it in a pinch and I do find myself buying a case every now and again.

Mar 07, 2021
Photo of lebynthos
lebynthos from China

2.38/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

Heineken is fine. It’s that category of beer that depends entirely on what you drink around it. Drink it alone and it had a degree of maltiness, but drink it after any remotely flavourful beer and it disappears. I’m reviewing this as my fourth beer and it definitely disappears. Look and taste are in the middle as it is certainly average - there is nothing to dislike here - and mouthfeel provides a little structure based on the carbonation.

I didn’t check the can but I presume this is brewed locally in China based on its prevalence here. This is a standard China fallback beer; the McDonalds of Beers - get it when you need a benchmark of flavour and quality, no matter your expectations.

Feb 23, 2021
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LeBron_James from Canada (ON)

2.27/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 2

Reviewing the high school beers again.
Looks pretty standard. Very clear yellow with little head that is symmetrical which is usually a bad sign and 0 lacing.
Smells actually like malt!! Significantly better aromatics than any of the other high big beer "lager" adjuncts so hey that's not too bad. However, the malt is suuuuper diluted. Very sparse and there might be a little bit in the way of grassy tones but there is very very little going on here. Faintly bready diluted malt character.
The taste on this beer is pretty bad. Skunky malt. The "crisp pop" of this beer is pretty insignificant when compared to any decent IPA or really any hoppy beer. Maybe some earthy tones but not really. Very watery.
The mouthfeel is oddly high carbonation with no thickness. Very weird and fizzy.

Overall this beer is actually not the worst in the world if you live in a swamp in the middle of nowhere and don't have access to anything creative from the craft world. It's better than the other cheap mass produced beers but that's not saying a whole lot. On par with pabst, better than budweiser, worse than grolsch.

Feb 22, 2021
Photo of LongIslandBrews
LongIslandBrews from New York

3.98/5  rDev +45.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I don’t know why this brew gets so much hate here. The taste of your Heineken depends on whether that case is skunked or not. If skunked, it sucks. If fresh, this is a crisp, tasty, enjoyable beer that you can easily throw back several of. I’ve heard the skunkiness comes from the green bottles which let in more light than brown ones. Whatever, I’m gonna keep enjoying my ice cold Heinekens.

Jan 08, 2021
Photo of 1009
1009 from Massachusetts

2.72/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The classic, go to, staple of the Euro lager field. It’s the only beer your uncle will drink. It’s the “premium” beer your dad drinks instead of Bud. Definitely sweet. Certainly skunked. Drinkable for sure and you can see why Dad thinks it’s quality compared to the domestics, but these days there’s better options.

Dec 27, 2020
Photo of PrinceAltoid
PrinceAltoid from Illinois

2.13/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 1.5

Re-reviewing on 1/5/21 after originally giving it a 3.67 (5/3/3.5/4.5/4) on 12/23/20

I honestly don't know what got me with the flavor of Heineken when I first tried it. It may have had a lot to do with the fact that it was something new, something I'd never tried before, but it was also popular. I don't know. But it tastes a lot different now, a bit less than 2 weeks later.

Truth be told, I don't really like Heineken. It still looks and feels fine, and I still enjoy the bubbles quite a bit. However, for a 5% abv lager with 142 calories, not only can I come up with a dozen better brews that I would enjoy more with around the same alcoholic content and less calories, but I also can't justify the price being around $1 per can. The main issue with it comes afterwards: the odd, unfitting sweetness that tops off each sip both at the very end and slightly after as an aftertaste. It reminds me way too much of Bud Light, which to me is close to undrinkable unless I'm already drunk (or at a party).

I do thoroughly believe the people who say that it's better in Holland though; heck, a somewhat close friend of mine is from a rural area in Germany and says Heineken is far and beyond one of the best beers he can get in his town. I think the big thing for me though, as much as certain brews might be better in their own home country than imported, I actually still enjoy a lot of them imported (Guinness is a good example). Heineken though, I can't say I like it all that much beyond the first maybe second and a half after pouring it into my mouth. It has a somewhat nice flavor at that point and is very bubbly, but the moment my tongue soaks it up and I begin to swallow is when it all goes downhill.

I'd love to try Heineken locally (or at least in Europe in general), but as far as it goes here in America, I'm gonna be skipping the Heineken from now on. Really disappointed as well, as I thought I'd found my new favorite "cheap and you can get it anywhere" beer when I first tried it. Sad times.

Dec 23, 2020
Photo of Troy-Hawaii
Troy-Hawaii from Hawaii

2.75/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Bought a 12-pak bottles $13.99 Longs Drugs
Smell of wheat
Clear golden color
High carbonation
Light-medium mouthfeel
Taste of malt, wheat
Overall a good beer for session drinking with friends and family when who you are drinking with is more important than the beer. In lots of bars it is considered a premium beer and is better than most macrobrews.

Dec 12, 2020
Photo of JohnniEMc
JohnniEMc from Pennsylvania

3.31/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

From a green 12 oz. bottle it came. Yes, with that familiar smell that is often described as "skunky". The color is a bright and translucent light amber. There's no appreciable head nor glass lace. It drinks thinly sweet, thinly hoppy and thinly bodied. After years of drinking this, it remains consistent. Something to go to when nothing better is available.

Dec 12, 2020
Photo of YeeCop
YeeCop from Alabama

4.1/5  rDev +49.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Alright, I'll write a decent review for once.
Look: Poured in a stein glass, with a thick foamy head that eventually recedes to a decent little line.. Light yellow color.
Smell: I don't know, I usually dive right in. Who has time to smell it? It smells like straws and hops, I guess.
Taste: Quintessential characteristics of a European style mass produced lager - malts, hops, a savory beer.
Feel: Smooth palate, no harshness to it at all.
Overall: Heineken boasts that you can find this beer just about anywhere globally, and what other beer out there deserves that kind of outreach? You IPA loving manchildren can sneer at this beer all you want. I'm gonna eat a medium cheeseburger or pepperoni and jalapeno pizza with this by my side, and love every minute of it. This is a fine easy drinking lager, obviously I've had better beers like German pilsners that were brewed in some dude's basement that adhered religiously to the German Purity Laws of 1516, but this is the standard European lager.

Nov 13, 2020
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IPAs_for_days_13 from Texas

2.79/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Pours a transparent yellow with a huge frothy head that dissipates quickly. Heavy notes of straw, & hay, accompanied by some bready aromas as well. Taste follows the nose. High carbonation with a thin thin feel, but it goes down easily & is refreshing. Not a bad beer, you can find these anywhere so that is about the best thing about it.

Oct 31, 2020
Photo of RyanPollie
RyanPollie from California

4.75/5  rDev +73.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is a review of a Heineken Draft poured in Amsterdam. The bottles and cans exported to USA are shite. In Holland, this beer is far less carbonated, a thicker pour and richer amber color.

Oct 21, 2020
Photo of TheBricenator
TheBricenator from Oregon

3.29/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Look: Clear pale yellow with a vigorous and quickly setting head that is leaving decent lacing as it recedes
Aroma: Cracker-like malt, some wet straw, and light floral notes though it was tough to get much at all
Taste: There we go. Floral notes and a little wet straw start things off along with a base of bready malt that is there but not very noticeable. Super clean and crisp on the finish
Mouthfeel: Light, high carbonation, decently full – not really what I would call watery, and clean and crisp throughout
Overall: You could do a lot worse for an easy-drinking, crisp lager that I could quaff all day. Not huge in the flavor or aroma department but it was expected as that comes with the territory of the style. Surprisingly I’ve never had this out of the can and I wasn’t getting any light-struck (skunk) from it at all as I’m usually quite sensitive to it and have detected it easily in bottles in the past. It’s Heineken

Oct 13, 2020
Photo of aBosslyElephant
aBosslyElephant from Florida

2.62/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

L- Crystal clear yellow with lots of carbonation
S- Heavy malt smell, very american lager smelling
T- Very inoffensive, light malt but besides that nothing special
O- Fine beer to drink with friends, sip on the beach, or chug in a couple seconds

Oct 02, 2020
Photo of Easki
Easki from Texas

4.5/5  rDev +64.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

24 oz out the freezer after about 15 minutes. The 24 oz'ers have a way different taste than the 12 oz bottles or cans. I love the skunk. It's that nice skunky bite that does it, but it's gotta be cold! Perfect carbonation that adds to the bite resulting in a very refreshing pour. Real good!

Sep 30, 2020
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Kenny_Gage2 from Missouri

3.58/5  rDev +30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz Bottle into a Nonic Glass:

L: Pored a golden lager color with a thick/bubbly 1 finger head that dissipated pretty quickly. Very little to no lacing. Good amount of carbonation.

S: Upon pouring you can smell a slightly skunky aroma (as expected with green bottled beers), as well as the aromas of Barley & Hops.

T: The taste of this beer is on point with the smell with a grainy leaning flavor, crisp, and tasty like a lager should be.

F: Light bodied, smooth and easy drinking with a decent amount of carbonation, and a watery, yet dry sort of finish that has a lingering taste.

O: A good beer that is available almost everywhere. This is my first, but will be drinking again.

Sep 13, 2020
Photo of Yaroslav
Yaroslav from New York

1.5/5  rDev -45.3%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

The power of big business and marketing! There are people that believe they are drinking something really special. The good stuff!

Not worth the calories. No payoff of anything notable or enjoyable about drinking Heineken. The only apparent quality is green bottled skunk funk. There is an awareness of missed opportunity and regret; I could be drinking something good even within this style which I find rather boring.

It goes without saying that I never order or think about buying this mundane brew. Sometimes I am given one. I keep it around for people who just don't care or know that there are far better beers out there.

I was cleaning my balcony and discovered a long forgotten Heineken that a neighbor gave me earlier in the summer. Normally an un-opened bottle of beer floating in the slimy water in the cooler would be a happy discovery. Get it cold and crack it open! That is if it were not a Heineken. Suppose I can clean it up and give it back to my neighbor as a small gesture of good neighborliness . Probably the most impressive thing about this brew is that the label remains. Again, great marketing.

Sep 07, 2020
Photo of Hamme
Hamme from Netherlands

4.8/5  rDev +75.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Where Belgian lagers tent to be a bit watery and some Germans too, Heineken has a strong taste which is reminiscent of the exquisite pints like the Czech Urquel and German Jever, that coincidentally both also come in a green bottle. The green color adds to the resemblance of the taste . I would even go as far as to call Heineken a Czech style of beer, which naturally is a good thing.

Despite the negative reviews, Heineken is one of the best lagers in the world. It's right up there with Pilsner Urquell!

I do think it is overpriced tho, so i only buy it when it's on sale.

Aug 22, 2020
Photo of BelgianHops
BelgianHops from Belgium

1.51/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 2

One of the worst lagers in Europe. Thin body, no smell, tastes like water. I absolutely dislike everything about it. Go ahead and buy a belgian lager. Stella, Jupiler, they will do.

Aug 13, 2020
Photo of Singlefinpin
Singlefinpin from North Carolina

2.98/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Bought this at a grocery store. 12 pack $13 + tax. Cans.
Poured from a can into a pint glass.
Appears golden yellow with a white foamy head that dropped quickly.
Smells lightly bready, grassy, lightly floral.
Taste follows the nose, maybe a little corn?
Mouth feel is medium light for the style.
Overall, not bad for the price. I think the cans might help with skunking.
I would definitely buy this again, on sale.

Jul 21, 2020
Heineken Lager Beer from Heineken Nederland B.V.
Beer rating: 64 out of 100 with 5588 ratings