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The Beer Belly: Be The Beer!
Pabst Can

Pabst Blue Ribbon: Blue Velvet

4.04 average, 838 votes
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by Rob Lieblein
2008 November 3

Modern Day Pabst

“Heineken?!?! Fuck that shit! … PABST BLUE RIBBON!!!” – A manic Dennis Hopper as Frank Booth in the film “Blue Velvet.”

When I first decided to do a write-up on Pabst Blue Ribbon, I anticipated Belly readers would question my judgement. “But Rob,” they’d say, “isn’t PBR the kind of unmitigated swill you said the Beer Belly would steer clear of?” In a word, the answer is “yes.” In several words, the answer is “yes and no.” Here’s what I mean…

On the main page of the Beer Belly, I admit that I may have seemed a little flippant with regard to lower-end domestic brews. This is not because I’m a beer snob, though (remember, if you like it, it’s good). Rather, I felt that you don’t need me to shed any light on the high and low points of the Bud-Coors-Millers of the world. Those are the brews our dads drank—and therefore we did too—when we were well under the drinking age. Instead, my aim has been to provide you with some humble advice on lesser-known beers that work well with Belly recipes.

So where does PBR fit into this discussion?

Yes, PBR does fall into the “piss” category. And yet, there’s a certain retro-coolness to be found in those all-American aluminum cans. PBR (in tall boys) was the official beer sold in the stands at Shea Stadium when the Jets still played there. PBR filled my cooler on many a camping trip in my college days–where breakfast, lunch and dinner were all “grill meals.” Several cases of PBR accompanied two friends and me on a road trip to Boston to visit my buddy Chuck. We arrived at his place late morning, while he was still in class, and by the time he returned home (mid-afternoon) we had already killed one case. Two days later his kitchen table was stacked with empties that we used like Lego blocks to create a beautiful tower that reached the ceiling.

Most important, PBR was (and is) cheap. And never let anyone tell you life is too short to drink cheap beer.

But, who drinks PBR nowadays? Who even knows where to find it? Imagine how cool you’ll be, and how much money can save for that dream grill you’ve longed for, as you suck down a few cans in your yard deciding what to have for dinner. The neighbors will gawk with envy as they sip on their warm, flat, Coors Lights.

PBR stands out from most swill in that it actually has flavor—somewhat bitter, yet with a clean light aftertaste. Its high carbonation level also contributes to its crispness. It’s the kind of beer that never, ever fills you up, and this makes it an ideal choice for pre- and post-meal guzzling. To get maximum enjoyment from PBR, make sure you follow the “rule of the C’s” below:

PBR must be Cold – icy cold, in fact. As it warms, PBR molecules tend to bond with ambient urine molecules in the atmosphere, making it taste like Brooklyn Pilsner (see Mike Best’s review).

PBR must be in Cans – aluminum is actually an important component of PBR’s flavor. Furthermore, it’s imperative that you crush each can against your forehead when it’s finished. This makes it easier to toss into the neighbor’s yard, and nobody has to worry about broken glass injuries.

PBR should be purchased by the Case – volume discounts, my Cheap friends. Keep several cases on hand, and make “Blue Velvet” your house brew. It’ll make you appreciate the other beers even more.

PABST BLUE RIBBON FACTS
From PabstBlueRibbon.com

  • Pabst started tying blue silk ribbons to the bottlenecks of its “Select” beer by hand in 1882. Customers called it “that blue ribbon beer,” so the name was changed.
  • During World War II, Pabst Blue Ribbon beer cans were painted olive drab at the factory for military use. All of the canned beer was for the military. Pabst Blue Ribbon beer was not sold to civilians in cans during the war because of tin rationing.
  • After a steady decline in sales since the 1970s, website BriansBelly.com makes PBR one of their first beer reviews in 1999. Since then, Pabst sales have risen achieving a 5 percent increase in 2002 and 15 percent in 2003. In Nashville, sales shot up 99 percent in 2003.
Belly Laughs
Brian's Belly Model 100Classic Pabst Blue Ribbon Commercials
Check out these two classic Pabst Blue Ribbon commercials from the 50′s. They’ll have you singing the jingle all the way to the beer distributor.
There are 794 archived comments… View All
51 Comments from the Chuckle Patch leave one →
2008 November 8
B. Drinker permalink

I’ve been drinking PBR a lot more since Budweiser was purchased.

2008 November 12
Smokey permalink

Pabst is back baby!

2008 November 16

I’ve been drinking this beer for over 35 years, and since N Bev taling over, Bud and you are the next #1 beer in the UAS, why does it cost so much? And hard to find?
I live in Dupo Il 62240, and it cost about $15 a case. I
m not rich, so instead of able to drink my choice, I have to buy what I can afford. Milwakee Best beer, which ain’t bad, but like everything else you have to adjust to your wallet!!
When N Bev does take over this could bring your beer up to number !, if you want, as I see it!!

Use to be a customer!!
Al Merkel

2008 November 21
Ron permalink

No comment, just a question. Why are there cards in the inside of the
bottle caps. I like your beer very much but just wondered what the
cards are for. Thank you

2009 January 1

I once thought the same about PBR but I have discovered Stroh’s to be the best American adjunct lager. If you can find it in your area give that a try.

2009 January 16
Sane permalink

I’d rather suck the sweat off a dead man’s balls than drink PBR!!!

2009 January 20

HEY SANE!! You skirt wearing homo! Since when did you care if “the man” was dead or not? You suck balls daily. Geez, your panties must have a run in them… you’re such a biaaatch.

2009 March 28
rca permalink

PBR is the kinda tinnish beer that ain’t half bad if you consider the price. If you can get it just after it’s brewed, it’s comparible to Bud. It’s all just advertizing anyway, ’cause both PBR and Bud really aren’t great beers.

2009 March 29
Gus permalink

The best beer in the world is the one you like. PBR drinkers don’t seem to mind what people think. We have an attitude. You’ll see an example of it in “Gran Torino”. Another PBR please.

2009 April 1
King Dave permalink

Hey Al Merkel… NBev doesn’t own Pabst! Pabst Blue Ribbon is brewed for Pabst under contract by the Miller Coors Brewing Co. and distributed by company owned and independent distributing companies. Now as to the price of PBR in your area that is set by the distributor and the retailer where you purchase the beer.

2009 April 15
Jon permalink

I love PBR!! I just got me a PBR t-shirt a few weeks ago at http://www.boozingear.com

2009 April 25
rogerscottq permalink

Four questions: where is PBR currently brewed?

And where it is brewed, do they fluorinate their water?

Do the breweries guard against heavy-metals
getting into their product?

Is it common for drinking PBR to cause the
runs?

2009 May 8
Marine Tech Diver permalink

if you cant or wont drink PBR and or take a good plug of straight chewing tobacco youre a pussy grow some balls and man up… drink it up i can get pbr for 11 bucks a 12 pack usually 13 to 15 for a 24 pack at cvs ralphs has prices at 13 bucks atleast once a month my favoriate americn beer much better taste than bud9rather drink santa barbara harbor water and i would get more fucked up off harbor water than bud. coors original aint bad

2009 May 8
Marine Tech Diver permalink

heh drinking a lot of booze always results in the runs or as i like to call it “AIDS” Alcohol Induced Drippy/Droopy shits whatever you prefer to call them
trust me im a drunkard barfly. my liver is bored and i have two kidneys!

2009 July 13

[...] for everyone too this past Saturday night at Club Firestone in Orlando, where the bar ran out of Pabst Blue Ribbon beer and Hank III performed with all three of his bands for nearly three hours in all. There was [...]

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2009 July 19
Thomas permalink

For rogerscottq

PBR is contract-brewed by Miller. The water comes from Lake Michigan, is very well treated, and there is no added fluoride.

As for the runs, that’s you, not the beer.

2009 July 25
Shane permalink

I decided to try a PBR a couple of months ago. It was AWFUL! As far as domestic beers…i’ll take a Budweiser or a Miller Genuine Draft over PBR any day!

2009 July 25
Mikie permalink

Been reading up on Pabst Blue Ribbon,I find it to be a very good tasting beer.I’m 43 years of age.Been drinking the Bud/light beer for years.I am not embarrassed to bring my P. B. R To any party that I’ll attend this summer + the price reasonable here in Massachusett

2009 July 30
Rich permalink

For those of you that think Bud is a better Brew, LoL, shame on you..PBR is a very good Lager.. A Gold Medal winner in it’s respected catagory… PBR actually has Taste, unlike Bud..

2009 August 21

Who needs extenz when you can get some PBR. Don’t come to a party bringing the same beer as everyone else, grow a set and bring some real beer,,,,,, PBR. Chicks dig it……

2009 August 25
Max Etchason permalink

I am an American warrior. I spent a year and eight days on the

Viet Nam/Cambodian border. I love Jesus, my family, and The United

States of America. I am the “real deal”.

I drink PBR beer from bottles only. Thank You for a refreshing

beer at a fair price.

2009 August 25
Jeff permalink

I’m sure I’m one of many who never stopped drinking Pabst. Whether out of fashion or in (still hard to believe), Pabst Blue Ribbon is a great beer. Long wave the red, white, and blue.

2009 August 27
Eye permalink

It’s good stuff. I had one last night. The aftertaste isn’t good but I found that if it sits for a bit you don’t get that and it’s a lot better. Btw, Olympia (if you can find it, they do still sell it) just like Pabst except it’s a little bit more watered down. Pabst is better, though.

2009 August 27
Eye permalink

Oh, a 12 pack here is like $7.49 (Wal Mart) or $7.30 (local supermarket). 24 Pack is $13.50 I believe. I always buy 12 packs because I go to Wal Mart quit a bit and always feel uncomfortable buying 24 pks.

2009 August 30
bruce permalink

piss beer? its an award winning beer, won a gold medal in 2006 even.

2009 August 31

Pabst Blue Ribbon is quite possibly the best beer to pour past my pallet. Yeah it tastes like whiskey and water but I like it. If Bud Coors Miller had any nuts they would still be American owned and operated. All you beer snob chowder heads can bash me all you want. I like Pabst and it has quite a following, If you dont like it dont drink it more for me…

2009 September 3
Bill permalink

Blue Velvet is my all time favorite movie, and it is the primary reason why I drink Pabst Blue Ribbon. Pabst is as much the drink of us starving artists, hipster posers, and supposed elites because of this movie as it is of red necks and joe sixpacks.

2009 September 21
Snake permalink

Back cover of the Allman Brother’s Live at Fillmore East. I’ve been drinking PBR tall boys since I bought that album.

2009 September 25
Big Bill H permalink

Pabst supported the military as did Bud and Miller for many years. Since I’m now retired I don’t know if they still do or not. I grew up in Milwaukee, went to grade school where I could spit to the Miller brewery. Schlitz, Pabst, Miller and a lot of others were all home town brew that I always drank when available all during my 22 years of Naval service. I still drink them now when I can find them. They were all made here in the USA and owned by Americans. Now? Now too much of what we had has gone to shit and owned by foreign companies. How much of America is now owned by others? Guess I’m too old, doesn’t seem that anyone of the younger generations care. PBR was good beer, good American beer! Something SOME of you wouldn’t know if it came up and hit you upside the head.

2009 October 6
Ol' Mac permalink

God Bless Ya, Big Bill H ! I did only 20 years in the US Navy (you got me beat by 2), and I grew up in South Carolina, far from any brewery. But I DID grow up on America’s finest beer, Pabst Blue Ribbon ! As a matter of fact, I just enjoyed 3 draft PBRs tonite with a superb half-pound medium-rare cheeseburger at Carolina Ale House in downtown Columbia, SC. Long live Pabst Blue Ribbon, the Carolina Gamecocks, and the US Navy !

2009 October 21
JSin permalink

I have been drinking PBR for coming on 20 yrs now. Started when I was pushing ink, through construction and into culinary school. I also drink real Micro brews

What i love and have loved about PBR is it’s clean and slightly bitter flavor. As far as lagers go this a very decent one. On a couple of tasting I have done lined up against other macro brews like Buttwiper and MGD, imports like Heineken and Sapporo and a couple of micro craft brewed lagers, the Micros and PBR came in tops every time I have done this. Bottom of the barrel Buttwiper every time.

The price is a bonus the reality is a day to day lager that won’t break the bank my dollars go to the Blue Ribbon.

JSin

2009 October 24
mariana hernanez permalink

bush rules!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2009 November 16

Papst Blue Ribbon was the first beer I ever drank, March 1975. A 7 ounce bottle packed 48 to a case. I was 15, today 35 years later typing this drinking a cold 12 ounce bottle of PBR. I went into buy a 12 pack of Bud, not American anymore, instead got PBR not a bad choice. I believe its an American choice, like saying “we can bring lots of things back…Like jobs and PBR, to our America. Drink up enjoy.

2009 November 18
Richie permalink

drinking a PBR as i type, decided to punch PBR in my computer and came up with this, Cool stuff! a forum for beer drinking. who knew? I like and drink many different beers. But I will say PBR rates high in drinkability and affordability. Besides anything I can drink a dozen or so of and not swear off must be allright…

2010 February 24
tj mcmahon permalink

come to weirs beach nh pbr on tap best beer best price #1 place to go CG

2010 February 25

[...] (for those of you NOT from the Hoosier state, that’s Ft. Wayne), I’ve got a 30 pack of PBR and am working on my second PWT Special-Pure White Trash-for those that haven’t asked for [...]

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2010 April 22

PBR loves America… I love America… I love PBR

Any Questions?

2010 May 26
dad permalink

Max Etchason is a fag. PBR is good.

2010 July 21
junebug permalink

PBR me ASAP!

2010 August 10

Love PBR!!! Here are ten reasons I absolutely love Pabst!
http://drinkphilly.com/index.php/drinks/artprofile/130

2010 September 29
Loud Noises permalink

PBR used to be cheap. Then all of these hipsters with Mr.Pringles mustaches and skinny jeans started drinking the hell out of it.
So, what has happened because of these said hipsters?
The price of a 12 pack has gone up from about 6 bucks, to 12 bucks. They have huge fancy displays for it at WHOLE FOODS. Seriously, whole foods.

All of the sudden it is cool to pay high quality prices for very low quality beer. Pabst won a blue ribbon in 1893, at a fair in Chicago. A fair. Where they judge a goat’s utters, and how much a pumpkin weighs, and who has more than 5 teeth.

I really do not understand the appeal of this beer. PBR, it does not taste that good, which can be said for most domestic beer. Of course, I never was the kind of person who would drink a certain drink because it was “cool.” I always thought for myself and would drink certain drinks because they tasted good.

If you like the taste of PBR, then drink it an enjoy it. If you are drinking it, because you want to fit in with people who think PBR is so boss. Please, start thinking for yourself. People respect that.

2011 March 8
samantha permalink

blame it on the PBR.

2011 March 24

I created two artworks celebrating PBR:

Share some HOPE with friends and enjoy the PROGRESS.

2011 August 13
chris permalink

Y’all get over it. The hipsters found out cheap shitty beer actually tastes alright. PBR is an institution and should be revered. Fuck it, skinny jeens and stupid mustaches will not be popular in five years, but I will still be drinking PBR.

Chris

2011 September 23
paul permalink

I’m from Milwaukee area (Harley country)
I was weened on PBR in the 70′s
When they moved out of Milwaukee I was sooooo disapointed that I stopped drinking it.
I understand it’s again made locally so they have me back!
PBR in a can is by far the best mass produced domestic beer!
My 21 Y.O. son says alot of kids his age drink it. (Who would have thunk?)
Miller High Life a distant second.
BUD SUCKS.
As long as PBR is brewed in WI I’m a loyal customer.
I can honestly say PBR is the only beer I can drink exccesively and still feel great next day.
Don’t change a thing PBR
Pabst and Harley Davidson, Wisconsin classics!!!

2012 March 30

David Lynch, the director of the classic flick “Blue Velvet” invites you to enjoy a Pabst Blue Ribbon!

2012 July 13

[...] Brian’s Belly | Pabst Blue Ribbon: Blue VelvetNov 3, 2008 … Check out these two classic Pabst Blue Ribbon commercials from the 50′s. They’ll have you singing the jingle all the way to the beer … [...]

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2013 April 17
Greg permalink

I was a Bud drinker for over twenty years. During that time there was NO other beer for me. As the cost of Bud continued to rise, I thought that I would find a less expensive beer. I tried many but settled with PBR. After a couple of years of drinking Pabst I tried a Bud and could barely finish it. PBR is the beer for me.

2013 August 14
Daniel permalink

sittin here drinkin a PBR. I have switched to this beer for the taste and price. It’s got a nice corn taste kind of like whiskey but isn’t rough on your stomach like Busch.
I drank craft beers, amber lagers, etc over the past few months and this is a nice simple beer that hits the spot after a long day. It’s better than Bud and my choice as a mainstay. To all Vets who posted thank you for serving and lets keep supporting a good ol American beer. Cheers.

2013 October 12
Greg permalink

I grew up with my neighbor friends dad drinking the heck out of PBR when I was growing up. We use to take a few when we were kids and I just thought that is what real beer should taste like. Well after about 40 years and about 100 different styles and tastes of beer I have decided I must have had a good taste for great beer. To be honest PBR is definitely the best beer for me taste wise, and the way you feel the next day. I never have a headache or feel as if I drank a 12 pack of some of the finest beers out there on the market today. The price is great but that’s not my reasoning… It’s the best tasting beer in my eyes and the next day just seems like a average day after 7 or 8 delicious PBR’S. don’t worry about your buddies making fun of you and saying ( OMG.. That shit is gross) get some balls and let them know this shit is great stuff. That is only if you feel like I do. I could buy any beer I want but I choose PBR…

2013 November 27

magnificent submit, very informative. I wonder why the opposite specialists of this sector don’t
understand this. You must proceed your writing. I am confident,
you have a great readers’ base already!

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