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Pabst Blue Ribbon........quality vs. quantity Question for Beer Drinkers

Let me preface my question with the fact I am NOT a beer drinker. On average I probably drink 10 beers a year and that would be after doing yard work during the summer, nothing quenches a good thirst like an ice cold beer. But that's really it, other than that I don't drink beer. Not since high school which was 25 years ago.

So the point of my post is this......I was recently at a new restaurant called Brickhouse (here in NJ) and they have a happy hour special of a can of Pabst Blue Ribon for $1.00. per can. I was so amazed by this, I haven't seen a $1.00 beer anywhere in 20+ years so as a novelty I ordered one to wash down my food once it came. I had a martini and a beer chaser. (don't judge me lol) The funny thing too about the restaurant they serve the can in a small paper bag, to hide it's identity I assume? Anyway when I tasted the Pabst I was surprised that it seemed "ok". I was expecting a rather vile, bitter or really shitty tasting beer, but it wasn't. I won't say it was the best beer I've ever had but it certainly wasn't hideous. (to my novice beer taste buds)

So my question is.....for $1.00 a can is Pabst Blue Ribbon a good deal, or is no price a good deal for that beer?

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  1. Welcome NJ to the hipster beer that is PBR. The brown bag is for extra hipster credit.

    1. $1 is a good deal. Technically. Who is going to go cheaper then that on any beer really? We used to drink dollar Schaeffers at our regular bar when I was in college which we felt was a good deal and that was in the late 80's! But as to the implications of your question, yes most craft beer drinkers would turn down a PBR even at $1 (or even at a penny Im going to guess). Doesnt mean its wrong to get it. Just dont pay $6 for it. Some people actually do that in Manhattan... But bottom line is if you like it you like it. And yes I would imagine PBR would work well as a "lawnmower beer". Im a sucker for Miller High Life myself...

      As JAB notes, PBR does have a reputation as a "hipster" beer so you probably stumbled across a place trying to take advantage of that for their happy hour. Although frankly that confuses me because all I hear lately is how hipsters have taken over (and somehow ruined) the craft beer movement (true or not this video is hilarious by the way: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/01...). Well how can it be that hipsters and craft beers are synonymous AND hipsters and PBR are synonymous at the same time? Before you spend any time trying to answer this riddle please know that I dont really care. Just thought it was strange they get double labeled like that. Perhaps the PBR/hipster trend has played out and they have gotten older and moved on to craft beer?

      Oh... and the brown bag is just tacky...

      12 Replies
      1. re: Insidious Rex

        "We used to drink dollar Schaeffers at our regular bar when I was in college which we felt was a good deal and that was in the late 80's!"

        The Palms in Ithaca?

        1. re: GWRyan

          Yes! A fellow Cornell grad? We were saddened to find out it closed relatively recently. But its cool that The Chapter House is now a beer bar.

          1. re: Insidious Rex

            Yep, class of '90! I was more of a Dunbar's guy, since it was about 10 steps from my front door senior year. Chapter House is definitely still a good place, there's also a good beer bar downtown on Aurora across from the Commons.

            1. re: GWRyan

              wow small world. I remember many Group Therapy happy hours at Dunbars... Oy.... Went back there several years ago and it looked like they hadnt washed the floor since we were students...

              When I was a junior or senior Just A Taste had just opened down off the Commons and we used to go down there and get long pours of wheat beer and think ourselves sophisticated beer people. Used to buy sixers of Saranac at the Collegetown mini mart (which is now an ATM...?) and take them back to my cobwebby basement apartment north of C-Town and think I was just on the cutting edge. Wow how things have changed. Now you can get decent beer in many of the dives and hotel bars in Ithaca. And they have a world class brewery (Ithaca Brewing) whose products I can find down here. And when I go back to town my kids now insist on eating at the Nines and getting Hot Truck.

        2. re: Insidious Rex

          The great thing about Schaeffer is that back in the day it had the most honest slogan in all of mass-market beerdom: "The One Beer to Have When You're Having More than One". (No question where they stand on the Quality/Quantity issue.)

          In my impecunious post-college days living in the Mission, the local Walgreen's had a perpetual $2.99/12 pack special on Schaeffer's. We would buy a 12 and quart bottle of Sheaf Stout. Mix a couple ounces of Sheaf with a can of Schaeffer's and you'd get a pretty decent dark beer for a little less than dirt cheap.

          Good times....

          1. re: TVHilton

            The Schaefer slogan would get a quick rise out of the PC police today.

            1. re: Jim Dorsch

              I think a variation of that slogan was used by the brewery that made Polygamy Porter.

            2. re: TVHilton

              I dunno how good those times were. I distinctly recall vomiting quite a few of those $2.99 12 packs of Schaeffer. National Bohemian, or "Nasty Boh" as well.

              1. re: monkeyrotica

                yes but think how much money you saved...

                1. re: monkeyrotica

                  Schaefer has been watery drek ever since Pabst took over the brand and made it a bargain shelf product (just as bad as what they did to their own PBR).
                  But before that both were actually pretty decent beers (in the American lager category)back in the day ...like, before the mid/late 70s).

                  Both had more flavor and character than a lot of the other mainstream brands back then. And their Bock beers weren't half bad, either.

                  Besides...ANY beer will make you vomit if you drink a 12 pack...and would be indicative of a bigger problem than the quality of the beer. LOL.

                  1. re: The Professor

                    It was Stroh that bought Schaefer in 1980-81 and turned it into a bargain brand, and S&P (aka General/Falstaff/Pearl) that did the same to Pabst a few years later in the mid-80s.

                    Both brands only came under the same ownership when S&P, by then dba as Pabst, bought the Stroh brand when the latter left the industry.

                    Used to be happy to find the original Schaefer on tap in bars that otherwise were AB and Miller dominated. A couple of years ago I walked into a bar and saw that familar 4" round lucite SCHAEFER tap handle of the 60's and 70's, and ordered one.

                    The bartender looked at me like I was nuts.

                    I pointed at the tap handle.

                    "Oh, that's just an old, obsolete tap tower we use for decoration..."

                    1. re: JessKidden

                      Wow...thanks for reminding me... I _totally_ forgot about the Stroh connection before it all fell into Pabst's hands!

            3. We used to get deep six packs of PBR at Byrne Dairy for $1.47 in the early 1970's. We called them "mind-benders". It was hard to scrape $1.47 together with loose change while in college. We still drink it today, along with more expensive brews!

              1. PBR sounds like the kind of beer I would chase a strong martini with. No shame in your martini with beer taster. Chances are the PBR was served VERY could so that you couldn't taste its defects.

                1. That's a deal.While in Vegas my nephew took us to Smasburger. My eyes lit up when I saw $1.00 Hamm's. I always have some in the fridge at my house.

                  1. PBR is a better beer (to me, of course) than Bud, Miller, Coors which are marketed better (more), and usually cost a lot more. I usually like a craft beer, but if i'm in the mood for one of these types of beers, i'll take a PBR or even a Lone Star over the more expensive BudMillCoors offerings.

                    54 Replies
                    1. re: TroyTempest

                      I find it interesting that a lot of people drink both craft and mainstream American lagers. I drink only craft (which for this discussion I include some distinctive imported beers), and I assume (incorrectly) that everyone else either drinks craft or mainstream exclusively.

                      How many here are exclusively on one side of the divide? And who straddles both sides?

                      I will admit that I once drank a bottle of Bud just to say I did, and I once consumed an entire 24oz can of Hurricane High Gravity, just to see what it would be like. For the record, I did OK with the Bud, but Hurricane was a bit difficult to finish, and I can't say I was totally lucid afterward.

                        1. re: Jim Dorsch

                          I basically think of myself as a craft beer enthusiast but under certain times and conditions I can be fine with a "non craft" beer. For example if Im at a mexican restaurant I may just order a Tecate to go with my meal. Its just habit that predates my "craft enlightenment". Feels right. Is Tecate garbage? Yes it is. Would I get Tecate to sip at home. No... But I feel stupid ordering a double IPA at some divey greasy mexican place with my chile relleno. Its not the time or place. I will also drink the occasional Miller High Life (generally Ill go through a case over the course of a summer). Its something Ill pop open when non craft friends are over that we can both share or Im barbecuing on a hot day. again it FEELS right... And its good enough. Gets rough if you let it sit too long though (read: more then 5 minutes). Otherwise Im all about good beers. Call it inconsistent. Im ok with it. I see it the same as getting the occasional desire for a big mac or McDonalds fries or something. You dont usually eat that way. But sometimes you just wake up and youve got that taste for that empty caloried junk. Doesnt mean I dont like lobster or 5 star restaurants...

                          1. re: Insidious Rex

                            I like your attitude. No need to be a slave to ideology.

                            1. re: Insidious Rex

                              I agree with most of this. I will drink craft/micro/good imports 90-95% of the time. But there are places where I will drink a PBR/Schaeffer/Miller type. On a hot summer day at the pool i would drink one fast as Rex says. Eating crabs feels like it should go with shitty mass lager. I don't want anything getting in the way of the crab.

                              If I am at a place with some ridiculous happy hour special like $1 PBR or $5 shot and PBR I might have that as well.

                              However I would rather go to a happy hour place with better beers. However I don't always get to pick the spot.

                              1. re: MVNYC

                                The place I was at had a large selection of beers and over 2 dozen on draft alone. It was just the $1. PBL that fascinated me.

                                1. re: MVNYC

                                  On the hot summer day I will have iced tea.

                                  I might have the cheap lager with crabs if that's what everyone else is drinking, but I would prefer perhaps a pale ale.

                                  I believe I would pay the freight to have a craft beer even if I could buy PBR for a buck.

                                  1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                    Sorry if I wasn't clear enough, I really meant if I had no other choices and those were just a couple of examples. In the summer as long as these beers are ICE cold they are inoffensive. As they warm they go straight to awful.

                                    1. re: MVNYC

                                      No, you were clear enough. Perhaps I was not. I would drink iced tea in the heat because alcohol is really brutal in those conditions.

                                      Regarding ice-cold, I still remember back in grad school when I generally drank Stroh's. I remember how bad it tasted if I let it get warm. I didn't know that wasn't the case with all beers (although at the time, before the advent of craft beers, it was the case with most beers on the market).

                                      1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                        Its nice to have a few beers by the pool or on the beach. I would rather have a nice Pils though in that situation.

                              2. re: Jim Dorsch

                                Rex's post below (edit: should be above) pretty much echoes what i feel. If i'm at a dive bar, I'll have a PBR even though they might have a few better beers there. It just feels right.

                                1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                  I'm not exclusively a craft beer drinker, but I will never order a B/M/C just because I don't see the point.

                                  1. re: Josh

                                    I believe we are essentially in agreement.

                                  2. re: Jim Dorsch

                                    Hurricane sounds like an old US Supermarket Favorite, Steel Reserve. I called it the "poor man's Duvel" since it was cleanly filtered, 8% alcohol, and in place of that great Duvel yeast flavor it was just junky and sweet. Yeah, and difficult to finish.

                                    1. re: Tripeler

                                      Hurricane High Gravity gets pretty good marks on Beer Advocate, and actually has color and flavor. I don't maintain the flavor is what I seek, however.

                                    2. re: Jim Dorsch

                                      I've become pretty exclusively craft, except for consuming quite a bit of Bud during summer softball games. Being quite familiar with cheap watery domestics from my college days, I've actually grown to appreciate Bud. Like most, I saw no point in paying more when I could get something similar for less, but Bud's quality control is pretty remarkable. Every beer tastes the same and is usually fresh, which I can't say for many other mass producers. An ice cold Bud on a hot summer evening outdoors is not the worst thing in the world

                                      1. re: tomjb27

                                        When I drank that bottle of Bud, I pondered it a bit, as I do with any beer, and I could appreciate it for what it was.

                                        I don't know what has changed since Inbev bought AB (they may have switched from whole hops to pellets, for example), but when I visited the brewery in St Louis, I was impressed by the steps taken to brew Budweiser.

                                        1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                          Since you guy's have brought Bud into the conversation I will add this tid bit I have noticed.

                                          When I was a "kid" late 80's Miller Genuine Draft was the big thing. Coors Light was pretty popular, but MGD was the thing and that was the "it" beer. Bud was something your dad drank and was never very popular. As the years went on, I stopped drinking beer all together, but Bud just never seemed to ever gain much traction, it was always just Bud.

                                          Fast forward to 2013 my daughter graduates high school and we have a party for her after which she is having about 10 friends sleep over for the "after party". The request is that they be allowed to drink, so with every parents permission in advance, and all car key's collected we conceded to an "after party".

                                          When asking my daughter and her boyfriend what alcohol requests they had, the only beer they wanted, Budweiser. I was like....what? Bud? Who drinks Bud.....? Apparently Bud is big with the kids again, it's the "it" beer for them. I just laughed.

                                          I will also let you know that my friend and I schooled those kids at beer pong!!!

                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                            The first case of beer I bought in college with my fake ID in 1988 was Coors Extra Gold ... I do remember MGD was the it beer as well. How times change!

                                            1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                              I remember Coors Extra Gold having some color and flavor to it. Saw a 30 pack the other day, but I wasn't about to buy 30 of them to find out if it still matches my memory.

                                              1. re: LStaff

                                                LStaff: I remember nothing special about it, other than it was on sale and in buying it. My "normal" beer in college was a $5/case [bar bottles] of Rhinelander [lager and bock] out of Rhinelander, WI. It actually had adequate taste, but the price was the bigger draw.

                                            2. re: jrvedivici

                                              I would say when I was in high school (10 years ago) Bud Light also would've been a popular choice, with probably only Natural Light being more popular due to it being less expensive. My experience from high school is that you're less concerned with taste and more concerned with what's cheap and available. Back in those days, I don't think I ever turned down a beer. Beggers can't be choosers.

                                              And jr, I will note that I would easily school you and all your dauhter's friends in pong. Around here we play for money at the bars! :)

                                              1. re: SaraAshley

                                                Interesting that a number of people mentioned different light beers as being the ones kids of their generation chose in high school/college because of the price point. Was it really cheaper then the regular stuff? For us (mid 80s to early 90s) we bought what ever was cheapest but we excluded anything light as did most of my peers. We saw them as diet beers and shunned them for their regular versions (bud for bud lite, miller high life or mgd for miller lite, coors for coors lite, etc.) which seemed to all have the same price anyway. Although we mostly drank what was considered a notch below like Natty Bo, Old Milwaukee, Milwaukees Best, Genessee, Schaefer, Silver Anniversary with the occasional splurge for a pitcher of Killians or even Sam Adams if we had enough money. And if we wanted to be really cool we'd drink Guinness. That was considered the ultimate beer of my youth. More for the drunken Irish connotations and the cache for handling something "heavy, dark and bitter" then for anything else. It was with amusement that I came to realize in many ways Guinness is anything but all that and is more in league with light beers then non light beers. :D

                                                1. re: Insidious Rex

                                                  I am a little younger but in high school in the mid 90's we drank Olde English 40's. I did grow up in NYC however

                                                    1. re: MVNYC

                                                      Yeah Im thinking that was an urban thing. Not sure. Ive heard the same thing in LA among kids. But if you were drinking OE in New York (Queens? Brooklyn?) you must have been having a few brass monkeys in there. Or were the Beasties played out by the time you hit high school?

                                                      1. re: Insidious Rex

                                                        Hahahahahahaha I was going to ask about Brass Monkey too! That was the most vile canned beverage I have ever tasted. Did they make it in 40's too? If memory serves me correct I think it was like an 8 oz can when I tried it.

                                                        1. re: Insidious Rex

                                                          We bought beer in bodegas and 40s were the cheapest. Thinking back on it they were also logical. Comes in one container and is easily portable as a lot of our drinking was in parks.

                                                          OE was my budding chowhound choice. Others preferred crazy horse, Mickeys, country club, etc...

                                                          I recall one bodega in the bronx that sold Laser Malt Liquor for 89 cents. Vile, vile liquid.

                                                          Must be an urban thing because no one I knew ever drank cans of regular beer. I eventually graduated to Lion Stout from Sri Lanka and Dragon Stout from Jamaica. The international beers were interesting for me and a huge step up taste wise. Then the whole foods beer selection close to my college made me go fully craft.

                                                          The Beasties were popular and we actively searched out brass monkey. Surprisingly hard to come by.

                                                          1. re: MVNYC

                                                            I drank quite a few King cobra 40's post college in the early 90's - 99 cent at the local rite-aid drug store. OE was payday beer - ran about two fiddy.

                                                            1. re: LStaff

                                                              I was a Haffenreffer Private Stock man myself, in my formative years. The bottle caps used to have little puzzles on the inside, which I considered a plus.

                                                              1. re: tomjb27

                                                                Were they like on the game show concentration? Country Club Malt liquor and Pearl had those, and Lone Star after they become part of the PBR family.

                                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                                    Wow, you've brought back some memories. We must be of an age, because I certainly remember the ascendency of MGD in the late 80s. At the time I was more of a Bush drinker (because it was cheap). To your point about the "uncoolness" of Bud, I can recall splurging on Michelob every now and then - Bud wasn't even in the conversation. It's funny fads change. In the early 90s, I remember ultra-cheap smaller outfits (Black Label, Shaefer) being well represented at college parties, but the reigning macro brew in my neck of the woods was Natural Light. Sometime in that era was the whole "ice" beer phenomena, which I thankfully skipped. Rolling Rock's heyday happened around that time too, perhaps more mid-90s. Around the same time my younger brother told me all the kids were now drinking Keystone, a beer I think I've never to this day even tried.

                                                    Somewhat off topic, but this got me thinking about the first domestic "craft" beer I drank often in the 90s, the beer that - imports aside - probably turned me toward craft beers as much as anything else: Pete's Wicked Ale. Does anyone else recall this beer? It seemed pretty popular and widely available in the North East during the 90s, one of the first consistent domestic alternatives to macros. Then at some point it disappeared.

                                                    1. re: tomjb27

                                                      I certainly remember Pete's Wicked Ale and I'm in NJ. I never drank it but I certainly remember the brand being popular at some point.

                                                      In reference to being of a certain age, I'm 43 (for another month).

                                                        1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                                          Trying to rub in the fact I'm older than you? Couldn't just say; "hey we're the same age"? (jk)

                                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                                            Sorry, it may me feel better to be younger than someone for once, even if it is only by a few months! :)

                                                    2. re: jrvedivici

                                                      Your mention of MGD brought back memories of the late 80's early 90's and triggered my recollection of Red Dog, which made me chuckle out loud. I found this:


                                                      1. re: lynnlato

                                                        lynn: Red Dog was brought to us by Plank Road Brewery, which also brewed a headache maker called Icehouse ... Ah, fond memories, indeed!

                                                        1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                                          Plank Road was another way to say Miller

                                                          1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                                            Jim: Thanks for the refresher ... I forgot it was the Lexus/Toyota thing!

                                                            1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                                              Oh man, I have a headache just thinking about all of the junk beer I drank back in the day. MGD and Red Dog just reminded me of George Killian's Irish Red. Ugh.

                                                              Icehouse - hahaha!

                                                              P.S. I will drink a PBR if I am in a little dirt bar and my only other choices are coors, miller or bud. I find it kinda refreshing when it's ridiculously hot outside and I'm about to eat some smoked 'cue w/ some Carolina vinegar-based slaw.

                                                    3. re: Jim Dorsch

                                                      According to research Boston Beer did a couple years ago, they found out that the majority of craftbeer drinkers are also macrolager drinkers. I would imagine craft only drinkers are a slim minority of all beer drinkers.

                                                      I drink mostly craftbeer and import lagers, but when summertime comes, I have no problem straddling the fence when it comes down to it.

                                                      1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                                        More than 80% of the beer I drink is homebrew (and it has been that way since at least the early 80s).

                                                        As far as the 'divide' with regard to store bought beer, I definitely straddle both sides. The remaining 15% of my beer consumption is divided between small brewery "craft" beers, mega brewery "crafty" beers (of which there are now quite a few of _very_ good quality), and imports.

                                                        Regarding Pabst, in the late 60s-early 70s I drank a fair amount of their bock beer (whenever it was available). Pabst Bock was, in fact, the very first sixpack of beer I ever purchased for myself when I came almost of age ;-). The second was Ballantine India Pale.

                                                        Although it wasn't a factor in my choices, it so happened that I lived less than 15 miles away from both of those breweries in NJ.

                                                        1. re: The Professor

                                                          We have found that Genesee Bock Beer is a good seasonal treat here in NYS.
                                                          Cheap and tasty!

                                                        2. re: Jim Dorsch

                                                          I can drink and enjoy everything from white whales to a PBR without any problems or hangups whatsoever. : ]

                                                        3. re: TroyTempest

                                                          And the PBR that you think is "better" was most likely brewed and packaged in a MillerCoors plant.....

                                                          1. re: zippypinhead

                                                            So, what's your point? Are you saying that everything brewed in a MillerCoors plant tastes exactly the same? If that is true, then of course given the choice between PBR and BMC, i'll take the less expensive beer.

                                                          2. re: TroyTempest

                                                            However, PBR is only a margeting company. They have no facilities and no brewers. The beer is made for them by MillerCoors. Actaully PBR also owns Lone Star (and about 20 other labels all made under the same scenario, so I doubt there is little if any variation between the actual products)

                                                            1. re: SP1

                                                              yeah, i know that. Hell, they also own the Falstaff name, and they could bring it back at some point, too. Some, including me, will say that there is very little variation between any of the mass brewed light (as opposed to lower calorie) american lagers.
                                                              But, pour a PBR, Miller, Coors and a Lone Star and there will be some differences in taste. They aren't all brewed with the same exact formula.
                                                              Not saying that any are great beers, but they do taste different from each other. Not all that different, granted.

                                                              1. re: SP1

                                                                Really? I did not know that, very interesting. Do you know for how long it's been that way? I know locally here in NJ there was an old, now demolished PBR plant in or around Newark NJ. The factory with the PBR bottle on top sat abandoned from the late 70's I would say until just a few years ago when it was demolished.


                                                                1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                  Pabst was bought by the S&P Corp. which also owned Pearl, General (Lucky Lager)and Falstaff (so, inc. Narragansett and Ballantine brands) in the mid-1980s.

                                                                  As S&P did with their other breweries, they slowly closed many of the Pabst plants, and consolidated all their brands (including many classic US brand names purchased from Stroh/Heileman collection when the former firm folded in 1999) under the Pabst Brewing Co. umbrella.

                                                                  By the turn of the century, Pabst was running only the Pearl brewery in TX and, briefly, the former Schaefer/Stroh brewery in eastern PA, and both closed soon after as Miller took over contract brewing the majority of the Pabst portfolio.

                                                                  The Newark brewery (built as a Hoffman brewery at Repeal, bought by Pabst in 1945) was closed in 1985.

                                                                  1. re: JessKidden

                                                                    Wow thank you very much for the Pabst history lesson. My grandfather is buried in the cemetery at the foot of the Newark Plant. I remember the first time I was brought to his grave we drove by the Pabst Factory and it was operational, that was in the late 70's. I was under the assumption it operated until the mid to late 90's but I was wrong.

                                                            2. So a follow up question for my esteemed brewski brothers; what exactly is a "craft" beer? Just anything from an independent brewery? Non-nationalized distributors? Thank you in advance for the education.

                                                              5 Replies
                                                              1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                would you like ketchup with that can of worms? :D

                                                                1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                  People get all up in arms on definitions, whether it is craft, micro etc. It boils down to beer not made with fillers like rice or corn that is of better quality than the Miler, Bud, Coors types which dominated the market for so long.

                                                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                    IMO it's best understood in light of what it arose as a reaction to: bland, industrial light lager. Where those are beers made with cheap ingredients and lots of adjuncts to achieve a nearly flavorless result, craft beers are made in more traditional historic styles, with better ingredients and with an end result that is very flavorful and distinctive, as opposed to bland and uniform.

                                                                    Once you go outside of the USA it becomes a bit less meaningful since other countries with a history of beer making didn't go through what we did with prohibition and the shuttering of so many breweries.

                                                                    1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                      There are many definitions, but my favorite is: beers made for flavor and distinction vs. mass appeal.

                                                                    2. I'm not much a of a beer drinker either, but I might drink one if it's super cheap (such as a buck), and I will definitely drink one of it's free, or if it's the only alcoholic beverage available. And yeah, I'd put PBR in the same class as Bud Light or Miller Light, and either of those beers at a buck would be a good deal to me. Whether you like them or not, lot's of people are paying 4 or 5 bucks for cans or bottles of both of those at other bars.

                                                                      1. Nearly without exception for me nowadays, PBR (and anything else mass-produced) = NWTC (not worth the calories). So I'll go with no price is a good deal. Total snob and willing to admit it.

                                                                        PBR was the beer I drank when I lived in Wyoming in the early '90's. I used to get a 12-pack from the drive-through liquor store and they'd give you a bonus loose 13th can. Which there was only one obvious thing to do with.

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: maple99

                                                                          Beer and snob in the same sentence ... love it!

                                                                          1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                                                            What's even more fun is to be snobby about not liking snobby wines. ;-)

                                                                        2. If PBR is good enough for Frank Booth, it is good enough for all of us! Heineken?!? [bleep] that [bleep]!!!


                                                                          19 Replies
                                                                          1. re: RB Hound

                                                                            Well, if anything, Heineken is the PBR of Europe.

                                                                            1. re: Tripeler

                                                                              As is Corona, the PBR of Mexico....

                                                                              1. re: Tripeler

                                                                                Fresh Heineken, preferably in cans or the magnum format with opaque wrapping, is a pretty decent lager and much better than PBR, IMO.

                                                                                I think I'd sooner label Estaminet, the latest fake Belgian beer foisted on the public, a European PBR.

                                                                                1. re: Josh

                                                                                  yes, Heineken in cans is tasty. For years (when I was educated about beer) the only Heineken that I ever had was the green bottle. It was never not skunked. So, i thought that was how it was supposed to taste. Same goes for Moosehead. In my college years, drinking Moosehead was really exotic.
                                                                                  Wow, haven't had one of those in 20 years. I don't see it around much anymore.

                                                                                  1. re: TroyTempest

                                                                                    I was learning about beer in the late '70s and early '80s and recall the same. We all thought imported lager beers were supposed to taste that way.

                                                                                    I'm not sure what happened to Moosehead, but outside of the Northeastern US, all the big Canadian labels are basically invisible. Molson made a lot of progress 30 years ago, and then dropped out of sight. One would think that proximity to the US would have resulted in some sales, just as it has for Mexican beers.

                                                                                    1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                                                                      I used to drink a Canadian beer, that came in a green bottle, in my youth in CT, called Bull Dog, that was my favorite. I now realize that the "flavor" was one of skunk. At the time, I guess I preferred the skunky flavor to that of no flavor at all in the beers that were regularly available. Anyone remember Bull Dog from Canada?

                                                                                      1. re: JAB

                                                                                        that skunk was definitely part of the "imported taste" back then

                                                                                        1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                                                                          I sometimes leave a green bottled lager out in the sun before chilling just for nostalgia sakes. Beck's bombers were my choice of skunky beer back in the day - every once in a while you would get one that wasn't skunked and I would just write it off as an inferior batch.

                                                                                      2. re: Jim Dorsch

                                                                                        We get Moosehead and many of the Canadian brands in Minneapolis (we also get their weather - high today might make it all the way up to 0). Luckily, we have Surly and several other fine brews to keep us warm.

                                                                                        1. re: Slightly Grey

                                                                                          I have a fond memory of a can of Surly Furious.

                                                                                      3. re: TroyTempest

                                                                                        Moosehead.....wow that's a blast from the past. I remember the name but not heard it in 25+- years?

                                                                                        1. re: TroyTempest

                                                                                          I meant to say, "for years BEFORE i was educated about beer". I hope most of you figured that out.

                                                                                      4. re: Tripeler

                                                                                        My attempt to take this thread in a David Lynch direction has failed, but I'm glad it spurned more discussion. :)

                                                                                        1. re: RB Hound

                                                                                          My guess is that movie (Blue Velvet) alone helped PBR more than any advertising could.

                                                                                          1. re: TroyTempest

                                                                                            I would say you are 100% correct!

                                                                                          2. re: RB Hound

                                                                                            Dennis Hopper, Laura Dern, and Isabella Rossellini (sp?) were great in Blue Velvet.

                                                                                            1. re: hawkeyeui93

                                                                                              Yes, they were. What a strange trippy flick

                                                                                            2. re: RB Hound

                                                                                              I wouldn't know David Lynch from Huckleberry Hound.

                                                                                        2. PBR is my cheap beer of choice. I did a full beer flight tasting once for my circle of friends, many of us are Level 4 WSET/ Master type wine geeks.

                                                                                          PBR took honours… it was comical.

                                                                                          Yes. $1.00 is a good deal, although a case should cost you less than a $1/beer.

                                                                                          1. Here's a PBR/St. Paddy's Day party in Iowa's capital city: http://dmjuice.com/st-pabst-day-party...

                                                                                            1. I noticed a can of National Bohemian for 99 cents in the singles case at my neighborhood liquor store and asked why they were pricing them so high. Never had any of the 'eastern ' beers, Natty Bo, any of the Genesse line...after Blatz and ...Lone Star (shiver), PBR is nectar of the gods. Back in the mid-west, 70-80 or so, my roommate and I would split a 12 pack of Buckhorn for 5 bucks, total. Put the whole thing in the freezer for 45 minutes 'till it starts to slush, beautiful...

                                                                                              1. There's definitely room for cheap beers. At the low end of the spectrum, I make a distinction between beer that is lacking in taste, and beer that tastes bad. A good cheap beer is merely lacking in taste. PBR falls in that category for me. It serves a dual purpose - it gives a nice buzz if you kick back a few of them in succession, and is a suitable replacement for water.

                                                                                                7 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: ozmotion

                                                                                                  For me, Steel Reserve is a really fun cheap beer. Lots of (rough) flavour and fairly high gravity, the 8% abv is a bonus. Still, it is far from one of my favourites.

                                                                                                  1. re: Tripeler

                                                                                                    try Hurricane High Gravity, gets pretty good marks on BA

                                                                                                    1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                                                                                      Good advice. I'll look for it the next time I am in the U.S.
                                                                                                      Seems to be a direct competitor for Steel Reserve.
                                                                                                      It would be fun to get three more beers similar to this one and do a comparison tasting on the five.

                                                                                                      1. re: Tripeler

                                                                                                        I remember seeing one, I think called Earthquake, that was like 12 percent. I don't think flavor was what they were aiming for.

                                                                                                        1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                                                                                          Earthquake at 12%!
                                                                                                          Wow, it would be fun to compare it with Bush Amber, also at 12%.

                                                                                                2. One thing to keep in mind is that most of the original Milwaukee beers (Pabst, Schlitz*, Blatz, etc.) are no longer brewed according to their original recipe for a number of reasons. What was once a palatable beer 40 some years ago has changed significantly. For example, the Pabst of 2014 is lower in alcohol, lighter bodied and less hoppy than a Pabst made in 1974.

                                                                                                  I would not drink a $1 can of Pabst these days simply because I would rather pay a bit more and have a good craft beer. If someone were drinking strictly with the goal of getting drunk though, I would probably tell them to go with the $1 Pabst.

                                                                                                  *A few years ago Schlitz did try to brew their regular beer (not the malt liquor version) according to their original recipe. The old timers I know that tried it said it was definitely not the same. Which makes sense because they were not using ingredients such as the original hop plants or water from the Milwaukee River.

                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                    There's no doubt that the recipes of the those 3 former Milwaukee beers - like most beers - have changed since the original breweries have all closed (all are now brewed by MillerCoors, and marketed by Pabst) but a lower alcohol content is always the case. If anything, many US "macro" brands have slightly increased in ABV over the past 50 years.

                                                                                                    In Pabst Blue Ribbon's case, in 1975 the brewery was quoted in a California newspaper as saying PBR was "3.8 ABW" which is pretty much equal to today's PBR website's "4.75 ABV".

                                                                                                    The "retro" recipe of the so-called Schlitz Gusto that Pabst re-introduced a few years back was supposedly based on the 1960s Schlitz. By the 60's Schlitz was being brewed in Brooklyn, Kansas City, Tampa and Texas as well as their home brewery in Milwaukee. So, "Milwaukee River" water (if used) was not a necessary ingredient in all Schlitz.

                                                                                                    Schlitz, like most brewers, also filtered and treated their brewing water, Schlitz ads of the 1970s noted that they "filtered and purified" their water until it is "purer than the purest springwater" using the "most sophisticated water purification system of any brewer in the world".

                                                                                                    1. re: JessKidden

                                                                                                      Reminds me of the situation with InBev brewing Bass in Baldwinsville, NY. Definitely tastes different, which might account for the massive drop in sales. Bottled Guinness and Sapporo also use the "original recipe" but since they're brewed in Canada, they taste different from their Irish/Japanese counterparts. I like how both have "IMPORTED" written on them in big letters and "From Canada" writting in much smaller ones on the back.

                                                                                                  2. Sometimes you want a flavorful drink. Sometimes you just want to get drunk on the cheap. PBR is for the latter, although most happy hours they're $3 a can, so I'm inclined to pay a buck and change more for a better tasting beer.

                                                                                                    For me, it's kinda like eating at a buffet. None of the food is particularly great. It's just there to fill you up.