Coors Banquet

By on October 9, 2008 @ 7 AM (40 Comments)

For our recently fallen beer comrade Jerry Reed, who passed away on August 31, 2008, Father and Son Beer Love decided to devote a Thursday night review to the beer that Snowman and the Bandit worked so hard to deliver to the fine folks in Atlanta. This one’s for you, Snowman.

Coors Banquet, which also goes by Coors Original or just Coors, has been produced since 1873 in Golden, Colorado. It’s now owned and operated by the MillerCoors company. Surprisingly, Coors Banquet only has about 1.5% of the domestic beer market (Coors Light is around 15.5% of the market and Bud Light is by far the most popular domestic beer with about 34.9% of the market). You probably already know the story of Adolph Coors and probably wonder a little bit as you read this sentence why a strong, solid name Adolph isn’t that common any more. By this sentence you’ve probably realized why the name Adolph isn’t so common any more. We’ll leave it at that.

For our review we procured 24 oz (1 pint 8 oz) cans from the convenience store (Son Beer Love’s was even served up in a brown bag!) for $1.69 each. These are “cold activated” cans with a frost brew liner in them. The mountains on the can turn blue when the taste is completely obscured by cold. Only then is it safe to drink. Just kidding of course!

Coors Banquet weighs in with a 5% ABV and our beer temperature was 34.2 F, which was cold enough to activate the mountains on the can, which oddly, even when the can was empty, remained blue. We used a tall weizen glass for the pour which gave us an average 2″ fizzy white head that dissipated quickly and left a fair amount of head lacing in the glass. There was a lively amount of carbonation and the body was a clear sparkling yellow color.

There are just a few aromas we could note – grain and corn primarily. The corn smell is a little off-putting at first, but we think it just caught us a little of guard. As it warms we got some lemon and some light alcohol in the smell as well. On the taste side we got a mild lemon in the initial taste and the corn came in with the aftertaste. The initial flavor notes were a light sweet and the finish flavor was a very light sweet and a light bitter. The finish length was quite short and the mouthfeel was watery. The tongue hit was on the front of the tongue and there was virtually no body lacing in the glass. On the patented malt to hop scale it came in just about balanced. Not too malty, not too hoppy, not too much of anything.

For our bottom line notes we got a yes to drinkable and a yes to repeatable. We got a no to harmony, no to memorable, no to wow factor and no to buy again. We were on the fence with balance and can only say it had some – it’s super thin malts, but equally thin hops – so we guess that balances?

It doesn’t rub you the wrong way – it’s like a big glass of cold. We can say this – it smells like beer. Like it really smells like beer in the most common sense of the word – like the people on television who drink beer out of a can that has the word “beer” on the outside of it. It smells like that.

On a hunch, we took a swig out of the can and you know what – we think it tastes better out of the can than in the glass. Out of the can you get a nice little metallic profile that “works” with it. Plus, it just feels so right drinking this out of the can, the way you just know it was meant to be consumed. The way all those thirsty people in Atlanta no doubt drank it when it was delivered to them by Snowman and the Bandit.

It was a little bit of a surprising review for us. We felt pretty sure this would be one of our lowest ratings, but overall it wasn’t bad enough to pour out. The taste is somewhat like a slightly bitter flavored water. There’s more bitter in the finish of the beer than in a glass of water but not much. We actually did a blind taste test against the glass of water we normally have when we rate beers and the results, though not inconclusive, were quite closer than you would think.

It’s odd, we know, to rate something that doesn’t have much of anything to it with something higher than a zero, but would you rate a glass of water a zero? Something almost has to be overdone in the wrong direction to rate a zero. This isn’t enjoyable, per se, but it’s also not not enjoyable, if you catch our drift. Maybe the water from the Rocky Mountains makes a difference. Our final advice if you have to drink it – drink it cold, drink it quick and drink it out of the can.

And let’s remember, this one was for Jerry Reed, who’s up in heaven running his eighteen wheeler over motorcycles and feeding Fred all the hamburgers he wants. East Bound and Down, good buddy.

Coors Banquet Rating: 2 out of 10 (?)

40 Comments (Add Your Comments)

  1. The man with 33 fingers says:

    You have to give it some points just for the 5%..

  2. The man with no name says:

    I agree wholeheartedly that Coors Banquet was made to be drunk out of the can itself- bottles and glasses just will not suffice. While it certainly may not be the “best” beer in the world, it is nonetheless my beer of choice; and I will continue to purchase this legendary beer that everyone else seemingly ignores as the black sheep of beer, until the production of Coors Banquet is stifled altogether.

  3. Pepper says:

    This became my beer of choice, not too long after I began drinking. I like its taste. A beer I stay away from is Natural Ice, which tastes really nasty.

  4. PanhandleWilly says:

    You guys are a bunch of pinkie waving beer snobs. In fact after forty years of drinking beers from around the world and here in the States, I always come back to Coors Banquet. It is the best mass produced beer in the USA…hands down…end of statement. My German friends living in America agree. They drink German beers in 3 seasons…but when it gets really hot outside and German beers are just too heavy, they can only drink one American beer…Coors Banquet…because it tastes the most like a German beer. You guys read too many of your own press releases.

  5. John says:

    PanhandleWilly – Cheers to you brother! The whole point of this beer blog is to stand up for the beers we believe in, good to see you following our lead!

  6. ndirish says:

    Coors banquet is hands down the best American beer from the big companys and I have personaly converted at least 5 of my former Bud man friends to attend a Banquet every night. Long live the legend.

  7. El Genio says:

    Hands down, the best commercial beers in the U.S. are Miller JD and Coors Banquet. Your review makes wonder if you didn’t get a can of Coors Banquet that had been exposed to heat or extreme cold along the way to your store. Your experience ain’t mine fella! Ya falla?

  8. John says:

    Sorry El Genio – two cans in two separate states. Rocky Mountains cold. Epic fail.

  9. 9mikee says:

    Coors Banquet Beer is on my list of ol’trust worthys. If I am light in the wallet I can turn to the mountains for a beer less than $6.

    I enjoy this beer after I mow the yard, it goes down fast and quenches my thirst.

    I give it a 5 out of 10.

  10. Male Silverback says:

    I enjoy Coors for the following reasons:

    Best on a hot day after mowing the yard

    Well rthat about does it. I will always refer to Coors Banquet as my fav.

    4 out of 10 for me.

  11. Broc Haggard says:

    Banquet is my favorite beer. It’s refreshing taste gives me the stoke I need to perform the gnarly maneuvers on my skateboard daily. It is also good for when your nose is running.

  12. G G says:

    I came up with a new name for Coors Banquet aka Recession Beer
    $1.19 for 24oz can at shop rite cann’t be beat

    I happened to find this beer completely by accident I alwas looked down on coors and bud as cheep utilitarian beers.

  13. K.J. says:

    I really like Coors Banquet beer! It is our beer of choice when we’re working on a car out in the garage or relaxing on the deck after a bar-b-que or swim in the pool. My 92-year old neighbor is a Coors man also. We sit on his porch on Sunday afternoons and sip Coors while we watch traffic go by. Coors Banquet has a firm yet not overpowering taste. It’s priced right and is not a glamour beer nor does it pretend to be. I give it an 8/10.

  14. Joe Harrington says:

    My beer of choice!!! Nothing like Coors’ smooth refreshing taste for when your tired and thirsty.

  15. Stevo Hillen says:

    I discovered this fine gem when I went over the U.S. border from Canada. You see we only get Coors light. I was at a grocery store and came across a golden case of Coors that said Banquet. So I took a chance and bought it, since beers are so expensive in Canada, I couldn’t go wrong with paying $17 for a 24 of cans, That would cost $40 in Canada. When I returned from my trip to your land of plenty, I popped one of these cans open, I was an instant fan. Only americans know how to make a 5% alc beer taste so smooth. This beer is so refreshing and blended with just enough taste and just a little fizz to make this a perfect drink for just the gal or guy whos proud to be a North American. This an easy, enjoyable fun to drink,and dangerous “cause they go down so easily”!! A lot of Canadians haven’t even heard of this Coors Banquet just Coors Light. I hope that they sell this in Canada soon. I don’t have my passport anymore and rely on my friends to get it for me, Iam having one now outta the can. Thanks Coors, Thank-you America for making a product made in the U.S.A. and soo great.

  16. w says:

    The important point is do they still brew it with Rocky Mtn. spring water, or just fill terd water (you know, people do shit in the water they put in your beer bottle–unless it’s Coors, that is–at least that used to be the case, and good reason for smuggling it past federal inspectors.)

  17. Mr. Shawn says:

    Many have said it here, and I’ll say it too… put a few cans on ice, cut the lawn, and then sit in the shade and drink a few. You will soon appreciate the true beauty of this American classic. Works on fishing and camping trips, too.

  18. Roy the Polack says:

    I have converted a couple of beer loving friends to Coors goldies, as we call’em, and from time to time we will defect to Coors Light or Bud Lite from my kegorator. But in my 30 plus years of beering it up I will gladly defend Coors Banquet as probably the best American beer. Wish I could get a keg of it in Michigan without so much run around.

  19. Back in the early 1970’s, would come from northern wisconsin to san diego, fill the trunk with coors, for myself and our local priest, some smoke, and 2300 miles back home. It has always been hard to get Banquet up here, till the early 90’s. Glad it finally made it across the mississippi. When purchasing up here, I always look at the date, on the container. Thanks again Mr. Coors for such a wonderful tasting beer. Its been 40 good years with you. Thanks

  20. Stevo Hillen says:

    The happy Canadian here,

    I just talked to Molson Coors in Toronto and was told that they had tested Coors Banquet in test areas in Canada and the beer did not sell well….Miller/Coors is who produces it.

    I think that they should have had better publicity of this, cause I never heard of It ever being sold here, and anybody that I know who has ever tried this beer loves it…….I will just have to go over the border and buy it myself My wife’s uncle just brought me a case from Detroit, near where he lives and I can’t get enough of it. Only four cans left.

    Rolling Rock has just been introduced into our market and it is selling very well. I like Coors Banquet better. Maybe I can get a job at Coors Canada and get it here lol

  21. Its the kind of beer tht regular people like me drink. It doesn’t taste like Jack Daniels and coke cola or straight jack. It tastes great!

  22. Just drank a 12 pqk O bottles still thinking its great!

  23. Joe from Boston says:

    i gotta say, this is probably the BEST mass produced American macro beer! And this is coming from someone from Boston who has many great beers at his disposal (Harpoon, Sam Adams, etc) It has a great taste that doesn’t overpower, as well as having just enough hops. I’m a hops lover and i can drink Harpoon IPAs like theyre going outta style! However, something about drinking a cold one of these bad boys just makes me feel more American for some reason! My beers of choice are Narragansett, Harpoon IPA and seasonals, and the original American Coors Golden Banquet Beer! I think of Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, John Wayne, American GI’s clamoring for it overseas in WWII, and football/baseball games!
    Like I said, something about this beer just makes you feel more American! And being the greatest country on earth, that’s not such a bad thing!

  24. Blake says:

    I love a great microbrew, but Coors has a special place in my heart. It reminds me of old friends. I’ve had a hard time finding it in cans here in San Diego. Last night, while walking home from work, I found some at a convenience store and took a 12 pack of cans home. Just finished number three for tonight.

    For years when waxing the car, I always had some Coors in the cooler.

    Funny thing is, I can’t choke down Coors light but love the original.

    It’s not my everyday beer, but now and again I have to seek some out.

  25. IHL from the Central Valley says:

    I agree with panhandlewillie….This beer is my favorite even after drinking and testing all other beers with all their bells and whistles, Coors banquet is the beer we always go back too. I have to also reinforce what Panhandlewillie pointed out; on a hot summer day and believe me living in the central valley of California I know what hot is averaging 100 plus degrees for more than 50 days during the summer, its the beer that the human body craves.

  26. Mike Kuznear says:

    I love Coors Banquet beer,its my favorite brew.When i tell my friends i love the banquet beer they look at me like i have 2 heads and believe in Bigfoot! Just kidding Bigfoot believers.Just bought a case tonight at my local Food Lion for the unheard of price of only 14.99.Thank you to all the great people of Golden Colorado who produce my favorite beer.

  27. Dean says:

    Coors Banquet beer is coming to Alberta, Canada in mid July 2013 ! It’s about time ! For those of you that like Coors Light, the old Banquets are by far a much smoother beer, you will not be disapointed. I hope Molson Coors markets this beer hard because this will be a huge success ! Awesome beer !

  28. BudSucks says:

    I drank Coors back in the 1980’s in Missouri cause is was inexpensive and better than anything by A-B; I then started to drink ales almost exclusively. Still love the hoppy ales but have started to drink Coors Banquest again because it is a nice clean beer. Bud always gave me a headache…

  29. SoCalLiving says:

    Coors Banquet is what being American is about. Mowing the lawn, surfing some 6 footers, couple sets on the bench press, Coors delivers. Mexican food, burgers, Chinese, Thai, BBQ, Coors banquet never fails. Right amount of taste while still going down easy and leaving room for many more.

  30. Stevo Hillen says:

    Just found out Coors Banquet is coming to Ontario after all. Way more expensive but worth it!!!! A gentleman on Facebook started a petition and it worked. Thanks Coors.

  31. codyf says:

    Taste like cheap
    Massive hangover after a small amout
    all in all i have drank this beer a few times purchasing it from a number of locations taste is always the same i will drink it only if i was going to die. But the hole 2 people i know that really drink it are in there thirties and live in ther parents basement. I have far too much respect for my taste bud to drink this. If i have to drink it ice cold and guzzle it fast then is that real enjoyable. Also cheap people are easily impressed buy cheap stuff but remember you get what you pay for.

  32. Andrew m says:

    I’ve been drinking Coors Banquet for about 25 years now. It is the best American mass-produced beer available. I’ve tried them all, Coors Banquet in bottles is great,,, a little sweet, drinkable throughout as it warms, it is still nice unlike some others like Bud, or MGD. I like MGD too, but only cold. In any one year, I probably drink 50 different beers. It is still one of my favourites. I’m so happy they are importing it into Canada now.

  33. Michael says:

    Long ago (like early 70s) I liked coors but then got a taste for Loenbrau and other stronger tasting brews. When I went back to try Coors banquet beer in the mid 80s by the time I finished my first beer in the bar I had a headache. Thinking it was by chance I kept trying my old favorite but with the same results. When visiting my brother inlaw in Pueblo about 1986 we went to a bar and when everyone else was ordering Coors I and a stranger next to me ordered Bud’s. I told him how I couldn’t drink Coors banquet because it gave me a headache but Coors light didn’t and he said he worked at the brewery for over ten years and that the reason for my headache was that it was green beer because of increased demand on the Golden brewery. No other beer gives me a headache so I believe he must be right.

  34. Mike McGlaughlin says:

    Coors original is by far the greatest beer
    In the world!Consistently awesome beer after beer!
    I am a homebrewer I grow my own hops I even grow and malt my own barley I am learning how to cultivate my own yeast I brew and drink my own brew which is fresh and go to beer for every day drinking is coors banquet I love it!so clean ,so refreshing ,lots of great drinking memories with that magical beer the way things are going with these sophisticated complex douchebag Ipas is just plain stupid. Coors is a Real Mans beer it’s simple !
    Gets the job done!its the Ernest Hemingway of Beers!
    Keep the golden elixir flowing!

  35. Ol' Shep says:

    Just cracked a cold Coors Banquet and brought back all the happy memories of a big road trip to Montana 34 years ago. Delighted that it’s being sold here in Alberta and hopeful that it will hold or grow its place in the market here.

  36. Rinkydink says:

    I honestly think it really is the water. Something about that Rocky Mountain water . . . I think Adolph took one sip of the water in Golden, Colorado and said, “This water is meant for a brew.”

  37. broger says:

    Dear codyf, You are a total idiot. Only three people on earth get a headache from drinking Coors Banquet. And please, please learn how to spell WHOLE!

  38. WildBill says:

    Probably the most underrated American beer. They only keep two or three cases on hand per week at my local liquor store. Just me and one other person is the only one who buys it. Such a shame.

  39. PeaceShalom says:

    This is the best beer for drinking one down after another after another. Keep drinking them all night long and won’t get tired of it. Can’t say the same for other beers. The taste is good, smooth, crisp, with clean aftertaste. Interesting how a few people commented this gives them hangovers. In my experience this is one of the few beers I have drunk tons of and not gotten a hangover from. I like these in the stubby bottles the best, but they are often sold out!

  40. Mango says:

    Just cracked my first can of this in, oh, 30 years, and the first thing I tasted was acetone. Not pleasant.

    Moral of the story: Don’t indulge in an impulsive nostalgia purchase after 30 years of drinking increasingly better beers just because the six-pack is the cheapest thing at Whole Foods

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