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Author Topic: Budweiser American Ale - Actually good  (Read 1777 times)
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Tebunker
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« on: October 01, 2008, 09:36:54 PM »

So for the last couple of weeks I've been hearing ads for Anheuser Busch's new Budweiser American Ale, and it wasn't until today that I finally saw some on the shelf. I felt compelled to try it out for some odd reason, and I am glad to report that it is fairly tasty.

Whenever I try out a new beer I usually take a couple of big whiffs. Yeah I know it sounds snooty, but stinky beer generally tastes bad. So I was pleasantly surprised to smell that familiar malty-ness in the American Ale. In fact it smelled oddly similar to some of my favorite beers.

On first taste you will notice the caramel malts and the general darkness of the beer. This is definitely unlike anything in the Budweiser family. I would've expected it in the Michelob line, but not the Bud line. The full drink is smooth, not overly beery, and you can tell that ABB (Anheuser Busch Brewing) when out of their way to make this beer a craft style beer.

If I could draw comparisons I would start with Samuel Adam's Boston Ale, not the Boston Lager which is foul, but the Ale which is one of my favorite beers. Obviously since this is an Ale style they will be similar. Also, I would recommend Bell's Amber Ale and North Coast's Red Seal. Both are American style Amber Ales, and you can tell ABB drew on these styles and similar beers.

Now the last thing that might stick for some was the mass market price. $6.69 for a six pack for a beer style that I generally pay $8 a sixer for with very little quality drop off. Granted I will still support my Bell's and North Coast favorites, but it is nice to have a mass market alternative if I can't afford the micro-brew or it's out of stock.
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Lee
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« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2008, 10:31:37 PM »

I strongly disagree. While it is drinkable compared to the rest of the stuff they call beer, it is still quite weak flavored and has this Budweiser like after taste that I didn't like it all (maybe from the rice?). It tastes like a water downed amber to me. I would buy it only if my choices were it or Bud. For that price ($7 here) I expect a lot more from a beer.
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Tebunker
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« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2008, 11:48:34 PM »

Quote from: Lee on October 01, 2008, 10:31:37 PM

I strongly disagree. While it is drinkable compared to the rest of the stuff they call beer, it is still quite weak flavored and has this Budweiser like after taste that I didn't like it all (maybe from the rice?). It tastes like a water downed amber to me. I would buy it only if my choices were it or Bud. For that price ($7 here) I expect a lot more from a beer.

I guess you could describe it as weak flavored, but I think it's one of it's strengths, it's as close to mass market taste a "small batch" could be.

I'd love to know what you think of their Michelob line of "small batches", I bought that sampler today too, and we've enjoyed the cross section of beers so far. The Irish Red is pretty much the same red ABB released as I think "Kilmarney" a couple years ago. The Pale Ale is a standard Pale ale with solid taste nothing special. The Marzen is a respectable Octoberfest style, it's not heavy, and it's more in line with Harvest Moon. I haven't tried the Porter, but I suspect it fills the standard well. Got the 12 pack for $10 which is a great deal for what you get.
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Lee
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« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2008, 12:39:02 AM »

I quite liked the Michelob pack. I don't know if any of them stand up to a good import or micro, but I enjoyed them. The porter was quite tasty and probably my favorite of the 4. I wouldn't hesitate to buy any of the beers if I couldn't find one my ole standards.
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Sarkus
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« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2008, 12:49:51 AM »

I would agree that it has a weak taste, but that's not necessarily bad.  I don't know what Lee is talking about with the "Budweiser type after taste" but that's obviously something that is going to vary by taste and preferences.  I still haven't seen it on the shelf locally to me so I don't know how they are going to price it, but if it's consistently $7 or less a six pack I could see drinking it fairly often as it would be near the top of my list of cheap beer.

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« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2008, 01:24:17 AM »

I'd like to try it someday and make up my own mind. If I get a chance to try one without paying for it, that is. Haven't had a Bud since I was 16, so I don't know what that aftertaste might be.

My packie is having a beer tasting on Nov 1 with seven tables and 50+ beers. Maybe that will be my chance, although it's very unlikely that A-B would be invited to join all the microbrewers.
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mori
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« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2008, 01:54:25 AM »

I am drinking one right now. A decent amber/red ale but nothing great. Definate Cascade hop aroma and flavor. Bitterness is relatively low but I did not really expect too much from an A-B beer. I bought it for $6.99 which is a good price and worth a shot at that price. But I will not buy it regularly. I would rather give my money to a local brewery than A-B and InBev. Fat Tire and Bell's Amber Ale are two of similar style but the Bell's is 2x the beer.
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th'FOOL
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« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2008, 01:56:28 AM »

sorry, sounds a little wannabe.  I'm about to crack open the new Saint Arnold's Divine Reserve No. 7 that I just picked up three sixers of today (gotta get it when you find it cause they don't last long...):

Quote
Reserve No. 7:   Weizenbock
Cases Made:   1,245
Kegs Made:   18 half-barrel kegs, 1 slim keg
Date Brewed:   July 24, 2008
Date Bottled:   September 5, 2008
Original Gravity:   1.075
Final Gravity:   1.019
Alcohol:   8.4% ABV
Description:

This is a dark, slightly chocolatey weizenbock with an undercurrent of bananas and cloves. There is a slight spiciness from the hops and a balanced malt that hides the strength of the beer. It was brewed with Dark Wheat, Light Wheat, Chocolate Wheat, Pilsner, Munich, Special B and Chocolate malts and Northern Brewer hops. We used a traditional Bavarian hefeweizen yeast which gives the beer its distinctive clove and banana character. It is unfiltered. Enjoy at 45F or warmer. We are curious to see how this beer will age.

No. 6 was heavenly.  
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« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2008, 02:01:37 AM »

Quote from: th'FOOL on October 02, 2008, 01:56:28 AM

sorry, sounds a little wannabe.  I'm about to crack open the new Saint Arnold's Divine Reserve No. 7 that I just picked up three sixers of today (gotta get it when you find it cause they don't last long...):

Quote
Reserve No. 7:   Weizenbock
Cases Made:   1,245
Kegs Made:   18 half-barrel kegs, 1 slim keg
Date Brewed:   July 24, 2008
Date Bottled:   September 5, 2008
Original Gravity:   1.075
Final Gravity:   1.019
Alcohol:   8.4% ABV
Description:

This is a dark, slightly chocolatey weizenbock with an undercurrent of bananas and cloves. There is a slight spiciness from the hops and a balanced malt that hides the strength of the beer. It was brewed with Dark Wheat, Light Wheat, Chocolate Wheat, Pilsner, Munich, Special B and Chocolate malts and Northern Brewer hops. We used a traditional Bavarian hefeweizen yeast which gives the beer its distinctive clove and banana character. It is unfiltered. Enjoy at 45F or warmer. We are curious to see how this beer will age.

No. 6 was heavenly.  


Comparing apples to oranges aren't we? Like comparing Dark Lord to Sam Adams Boston Lager.
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th'FOOL
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« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2008, 02:22:48 AM »

Wasn't comparing, just bragging about my new acquisition slywink
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Mike Dunn
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« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2008, 04:20:20 PM »

Budweiser isn't American anymore Truthiness!
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2008, 04:34:39 PM »

Quote from: SkyLander on October 02, 2008, 04:20:20 PM

Budweiser isn't American anymore Truthiness!

Yes they are.
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Alefroth
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« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2008, 08:13:18 PM »

Quote from: Lee on October 01, 2008, 10:31:37 PM

I strongly disagree. While it is drinkable compared to the rest of the stuff they call beer, it is still quite weak flavored and has this Budweiser like after taste that I didn't like it all (maybe from the rice?). It tastes like a water downed amber to me. I would buy it only if my choices were it or Bud. For that price ($7 here) I expect a lot more from a beer.

I'd be surprised if it contained rice or corn. Have you seen an ingredient list?

Ale
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2008, 08:21:51 PM »

No, but you can go watch the videos of them making it.
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Lee
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« Reply #14 on: October 02, 2008, 08:23:39 PM »

Quote from: Alefroth on October 02, 2008, 08:13:18 PM

Quote from: Lee on October 01, 2008, 10:31:37 PM

I strongly disagree. While it is drinkable compared to the rest of the stuff they call beer, it is still quite weak flavored and has this Budweiser like after taste that I didn't like it all (maybe from the rice?). It tastes like a water downed amber to me. I would buy it only if my choices were it or Bud. For that price ($7 here) I expect a lot more from a beer.

I'd be surprised if it contained rice or corn. Have you seen an ingredient list?

Ale

No, but Budweiser uses rice in their other beers, why would this be different? It has a similar taste to Bud I think.
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #15 on: October 02, 2008, 08:25:06 PM »

The milling video states that it's an "all-malt brew."
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Lee
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« Reply #16 on: October 02, 2008, 08:44:10 PM »

Quote from: Isgrimnur on October 02, 2008, 08:25:06 PM

The milling video states that it's an "all-malt brew."

Rice-malt. smile

I can't find anything that says it has rice or doesn't. I do think it has a similar finish to Bud Lager, but that is either just me, or something else they do in the process.
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Isgrimnur
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« Reply #17 on: October 02, 2008, 08:53:38 PM »

My beer-fu is weak.  I cede the stage. 
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Lee
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« Reply #18 on: October 02, 2008, 09:11:36 PM »

Quote from: Isgrimnur on October 02, 2008, 08:53:38 PM

My beer-fu is weak.  I cede the stage. 

I am sure you are right, there isn't any rice in it. All-malt would assume the malt=barley.

One thing about American Ale, I would highly recommend it to my Bud friends. Gets them down the road to beers with a bit more flavor and eventually you could turn them on to some of the good stuff. It's a good gateway beer.
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mori
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« Reply #19 on: October 02, 2008, 09:32:44 PM »

Rice adds no flavor to the beer. It is used to lighten the body and dryness to the beer. It gives the so-called "crispness" that Bud has marketed to us for generations.
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Alefroth
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« Reply #20 on: October 02, 2008, 09:53:06 PM »

Quote from: Lee on October 02, 2008, 08:23:39 PM

Quote from: Alefroth on October 02, 2008, 08:13:18 PM

Quote from: Lee on October 01, 2008, 10:31:37 PM

I strongly disagree. While it is drinkable compared to the rest of the stuff they call beer, it is still quite weak flavored and has this Budweiser like after taste that I didn't like it all (maybe from the rice?). It tastes like a water downed amber to me. I would buy it only if my choices were it or Bud. For that price ($7 here) I expect a lot more from a beer.

I'd be surprised if it contained rice or corn. Have you seen an ingredient list?



Ale

No, but Budweiser uses rice in their other beers, why would this be different? It has a similar taste to Bud I think.

Because this is a different kind of beer? The whole point is to mimic a craft brew, isn't it?

I wonder if they are 'aging' it on beechwood, and if that might give it a distinctive Bud taste.

Ale
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« Reply #21 on: October 02, 2008, 09:57:38 PM »

Quote from: mori on October 02, 2008, 09:32:44 PM

Rice adds no flavor to the beer. It is used to lighten the body and dryness to the beer. It gives the so-called "crispness" that Bud has marketed to us for generations.

While technically rice may contribute no flavor of it's own, you can't say brewing with it doesn't influence the flavor of the beer. You could use plain white sugar as an adjunct, and while you wouldn't be able to taste the sugar, the flavor would be noticeably different.

Another reason rice is popular in American lagers is that it is cheaper than barley malt.

Ale
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Lee
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« Reply #22 on: October 02, 2008, 10:03:07 PM »

Quote from: Alefroth on October 02, 2008, 09:57:38 PM

Another reason rice is popular in American lagers is that it is cheaper than barley malt.

Do all the big guys use it? I always thought it was a Bud thing.

Speaking of AB, how is ShockTop? I have never tried it.
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Alefroth
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« Reply #23 on: October 02, 2008, 10:09:09 PM »

Quote from: Lee on October 02, 2008, 10:03:07 PM

Quote from: Alefroth on October 02, 2008, 09:57:38 PM

Another reason rice is popular in American lagers is that it is cheaper than barley malt.

Do all the big guys use it? I always thought it was a Bud thing.

Speaking of AB, how is ShockTop? I have never tried it.

I think some of them do, and some also use corn in the form of starch or syrup (especially malt liquors).

I didn't know Shock Top was AB. That's the orangey wheat or belgian-style one, isn't it? I smelled one someone was drinking out of a bottle and it didn't smell very good.

Ale
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mori
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« Reply #24 on: October 02, 2008, 10:10:23 PM »

Corn and rice are the most common adjuncts used to make the American macro-lager regardless of brewery. These unmalted grains allow the brewers make a more inexpensive and lighter beer than using 100% barley malt.
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mori
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« Reply #25 on: October 02, 2008, 10:13:39 PM »

Quote from: Alefroth on October 02, 2008, 09:57:38 PM

Quote from: mori on October 02, 2008, 09:32:44 PM

Rice adds no flavor to the beer. It is used to lighten the body and dryness to the beer. It gives the so-called "crispness" that Bud has marketed to us for generations.

While technically rice may contribute no flavor of it's own, you can't say brewing with it doesn't influence the flavor of the beer. You could use plain white sugar as an adjunct, and while you wouldn't be able to taste the sugar, the flavor would be noticeably different.

Another reason rice is popular in American lagers is that it is cheaper than barley malt.

Ale

It does influence the flavor but there is no "rice" flavor.
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Tebunker
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« Reply #26 on: October 02, 2008, 11:27:07 PM »

Quote from: Lee on October 02, 2008, 09:11:36 PM

Quote from: Isgrimnur on October 02, 2008, 08:53:38 PM

My beer-fu is weak.  I cede the stage. 

I am sure you are right, there isn't any rice in it. All-malt would assume the malt=barley.

One thing about American Ale, I would highly recommend it to my Bud friends. Gets them down the road to beers with a bit more flavor and eventually you could turn them on to some of the good stuff. It's a good gateway beer.

Here, you said what I wanted to say, it's a gateway beer. You can take your friends who like Miller Lite or Bud Lite or some other cheap get drunk kind of beer, hand them an American Ale and they won't freak out on it. You can then slowly proceed to give them tastier and tastier beers.

I am glad to see someone else, Mori, appreciates Bell's Amber. I bought one on a lark at my local Total Wine and Beer, and fell in love. If you like it definitely find a Northcoast Red Seal, I think you will be very happy with that as well. Shoot, I'd stand behind any Northcoast beer, I love them as much as I love Bell's.

Lee, I tried Shocktop last summer and I wasn't super impressed. I am not a big Heffe or Wheat style fan. I can stomach Blue Moon and some of the other Belgian Whites but for the most part I don't like that style. My wife, however, liked it, but she drinks all kinds of weird ass heffes and Wheat ales with their fruity and floral notes...

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« Reply #27 on: October 03, 2008, 02:17:50 AM »

Quote from: Tebunker on October 02, 2008, 11:27:07 PM

Quote from: Lee on October 02, 2008, 09:11:36 PM

Quote from: Isgrimnur on October 02, 2008, 08:53:38 PM

My beer-fu is weak.  I cede the stage. 

I am sure you are right, there isn't any rice in it. All-malt would assume the malt=barley.

One thing about American Ale, I would highly recommend it to my Bud friends. Gets them down the road to beers with a bit more flavor and eventually you could turn them on to some of the good stuff. It's a good gateway beer.

Here, you said what I wanted to say, it's a gateway beer. You can take your friends who like Miller Lite or Bud Lite or some other cheap get drunk kind of beer, hand them an American Ale and they won't freak out on it. You can then slowly proceed to give them tastier and tastier beers.

I am glad to see someone else, Mori, appreciates Bell's Amber. I bought one on a lark at my local Total Wine and Beer, and fell in love. If you like it definitely find a Northcoast Red Seal, I think you will be very happy with that as well. Shoot, I'd stand behind any Northcoast beer, I love them as much as I love Bell's.

Lee, I tried Shocktop last summer and I wasn't super impressed. I am not a big Heffe or Wheat style fan. I can stomach Blue Moon and some of the other Belgian Whites but for the most part I don't like that style. My wife, however, liked it, but she drinks all kinds of weird ass heffes and Wheat ales with their fruity and floral notes...



I love Bell's Amber Ale. It is my favorite Bell's beer and in my top 5. The only problem is that it is $9.99 a 6-pack here. I drink a lot more Bell's Two Hearted Ale because I can get it cheaper and it is more widely available.

I enjoy Old Rasputin but the Northcoast ACME brand beer has been a bit underwhelming. Have not had the Red Seal.
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« Reply #28 on: October 05, 2008, 04:17:23 AM »

Our Walmart had it a couple weeks back but it was $11 then. This week it was $6 so I picked up a 6 pack. Haven't tried it yet because I cant drink it and take pain meds. If I get a break on them Ill toss one down and see if it helps my latest stone.
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