Welcome to Cosmo's Beer Blog!

We’re a small group of friends and family scattered across the country who’ve all developed a thirst for craft and import beer. We decided that a blog would be a great venue for us to share our hobby. Here we will review beer, compare notes and challenge each other with "Beer Missions".

So welcome to our little world of discovering great tasting beer!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Mission One, Round Three: Battle of the Old Timers

Believe it or not, I had never tasted Pabst Blue Ribbon prior to this review. I have read the lore of Pabst winning a blue ribbon in 1893 but I still had my doubts. In the back of my mind I was expecting PBR to be watery, sour and unsatisfying. I was right on only one account.

Brew Details and Conditions:
Brewer: Pabst Brewing Company
Brew: Pabst Blue Ribbon
Style: American Adjunct Lager
Source: 12oz Can
Glass: English half pint
Temp: Approximately 40 deg.

Appearance: The clear yellow brew poured with a small frothy white head that dissolved quickly. So far, nothing deviated from what I had imagined.
Scent: This was my first surprise. The aroma had slight citrus notes that were mostly comprised of orange. The scent shockingly reminds me of the estery odor of a Belgian Pale Ale.
Taste: The taste begins with a very watery orange flavor that transitions nicely into a light grain taste and finishes with an almost unnoticeable bitter finish. This is not a big beer by any stretch of the imagination, yet it is a nice tasting beer.
Drinkability: The mouthfeel of this lightly carbonated brew is very watery in texture. I don't know if there's enough taste to keep my interest long term, but the light body and low alcohol content make PBR a true session beer.
Notes: Warmth brought out a little more orange scent and taste, but it didn't seem to increase the light bitter finish. Surprisingly, warmth didn't bring out much of that sour grain taste that I associate with adjuncts.

PBR reminds me of some distant, diluted cousin of a Belgian Pale Ale. I have to say that this is easily my favorite adjunct lager. I might have to pick up a six pack to enjoy while mowing the yard and to keep around for my friends whose senses are offended by stronger beers.

I give Pabst Blue Ribbon a 6 out of 10.

Mission Results: While there are plenty of other American Lagers out there, I will end my incursion into Beer Mission Number One right here. In keeping with the mission parameters, I'll summarize my experience. Personally, I liked the idea better than the actual mission. I gravitate towards ales and big beers so I found it difficult to actually get excited about sampling American Lagers.

Obviously we each like different things, so Bud's claim of superiority is just good marketing on par with declaring a film "the best movie of the summer". Still, Budweiser has enjoyed enormous success over the years and their countless fans have enjoyed their brews. I have no interest in insulting the taste or judgment of Bud fans, but for me there just isn't enough flavor to entice me. Thankfully, the brew masters from Europe and the inventive American craft brewers will make sure that I have plenty of delicious brews to choose from. And if I happen to be in some remote part of America where flavorful beer is difficult to come by, it's comforting to know that a glass of PBR can carry me over until I get back.

Eis Igian,


  1. As far as American Lagers go, I can't imagine enjoying a beer more than Sam Adams Light, but I will have give this a try.

  2. The Sam Adams Light is probably better, but I was pretty impressed for an adjunct.

  3. It looks like you and I are sharing a brain or at least taste buds - hahaha (since we both chose PBR as our winner). Anyway, I agree that PBR was not a big beer, but it was just plain nice. Interesting that we both noticed citrus at the beginning, you picked out orange and for me it was lemon. One great benefit of this beer mission is that I found a beer I like for less than a buck. Bonus!