Top Ten Cheap Beers!
I was going to call-it my top-10 American-swill beers, but I think the point is the best bang for your buck, right? It just so happens that there was one affordable foreign beer that I just couldn't leave off the list(besides that 'foreign beer' is actually brewed in Texas now). So the rule is that I have to be able to procure at least 72 ounces(6-pack) of beer for less than 5.99(pretax). So without further-ado let's start the countdown. There are two ways to do a list like this.. the first is for people WHO DON't like the taste of beer, the other(this way) for those who do.
Let me note a quick just missed list.
Matt Brewing(Saranac) just misses the list due to price, but BARELY, and they would have had 4-5 beers on this list if the threshhold would have been 6.99 instead of 5.99. Old Tankard from G Heilman, MGD, Old Style, and budweiser just missed the list in terms of meeting all the qualifications.
Now this stuff is CHEEEAAAP! Not entirely off-putting.
9.Grain Belt Premium
If you happen to live in the region where this is available, then you don't have stoop to the Milwaukee's Best/Busch level to get a decent affordable cheap adjunct brew. August Schell brewing is capable of making some decent craft beers, so an affordable/cheap adjunct lager on the shelfs of Minnesota from the brewery is better than most of the an insipid offerings from the bigboys.
8.Miller High Life
The tough thing about High Life is that it can be pretty damn good or really bad, and that can hinge on the storage, temperature, and freshness of the beer. The beers clear bottle is a skunked-beer waiting to happen, and the beers sour-tinge is only amplified when it isn't cold or fresh. When you get a good, cold, fresh one, it can be a very poundable, refreshing brew. Know where you're buying it(turnover), and get it ice cold. There's also a nice barley taste backbone in there. Much like PBR, try to stick with the bottles, they seem to taste better imo. WIth 32 oz cans for 1.99, who's complaining? Actually the gas station up the street from me has 2-32oz cans for 3.69!!!
Coors, the banquet beer, is a nice staple for a couple of reasons. The beer has good body, and enough kick to up the ante a little on the value line. A pretty good balance of sweet and tart. Most beers on the list really are better with some salty snack, but Coors, imo, is one of the best all on its' own. In some parts of north Georgia you can find 6 packs of 16OZ's for 4.99!!
6.Grain Belt Nordeast
Grain Belt(August Schell) makes a 2nd(deserved) appearance on the list. Here's a cheap amber with a little craftiness to it. Not much, but a little. Nordeast has some floral hops and amber dark fruit notes with a metallic aftertaste, but it ain't bad.
Like High Life, go for the bottles not the cans. Less metallic and off-putting. Also the 16oz cans warm up a bit faster and you don't want any beer on this list warm, trust me. Grainy, but clean lager that has a pronounced sweetness followed by a little bit of a alcohol booziness in the finish.
Goldmine is super-cheap(4.99/6), and it's decent. It has a prominent fruitiness and almost blonde-ale-like quality, but it ain't perfect. I tend to love the first one and then get a little tired of it, but overall I think it deserves this spot because of the taste/price ratio. Fools gold, but you may not be able to tell the difference. For my CHattanooga peeps, you can procure this little gem at Whole Foods on the North Shore for about 4 bucks a 6-pack!
Miller Lite has a few things going for it. One, it's 97 freakin' calories. Two, you can taste some hops in there, I swear I think that's what they are. It's utterly poundable. A bit on the dry side, but who's nitpicking at this price. Speaking of, Bud and Miller are getting close to not qualifying at this price.
Gansett is a sour, salty, but creamy lager. It pairs fantastic with sushi, chinese/thai, bbq, or obviously, shellfish.. It's different and poundable.
1.Foster's Premium Ale
Here's why I had to rename the list. When I think of value in cheap beers - I think of a beer that tastes like beer, that drinks like beer, and that smells like beer. THIS IS IT! Foster's Premium Ale Oil Cans 'can' be had for 1.79-1.99 for 25.4oz. It's much better and smoother than HG Heilman's Old Tankard. Metallic, but has some nice dark fruit notes and detecable hops. If you wanna smell like beer all day, drink this. GREAT VALUE! The only Ale on the list. I made the distinguishment in the opening about cheap beers for people who don't like beer versus cheap beers for those who do, and this beer is the reason why... this DOES NOT taste like water. It tastes like a strong ale. If you spill a bunch of natty light on you, people may come up to you and say, is that beer you smell like? If you spill Foster Premium on you they say, "Dayum! You SMELL like beer". Ain't a bad thing.