Thursday, December 30, 2010

Top 10 Worst Beers of 2010

Hell yes! Time for "The Critic's Revenge!!" Unlike most other beertubers out there, here on Chad'z Beer Reviews we're not afraid to review bad beers. I truly believe every beer deserves a fair review no matter what its reputation may be. Plus, reviewing bad beers usually makes for FUNNY videos and here at Chad'z Beer Reviews we want to not only be informative, but entertaining as well. The same rules apply for a beer to make this list as apply to the "Best of" list.

Let me just clarify that this is NOT meant to be "The Worst Beers Ever Made". I'm also NOT arguing that there is a factual superiority between these beers in objective or artistic "quality". I don't caught up in those arbitrary, masturbatory debates. If you want such philosophical arguments, I suggest you check out the more pretentious, snobbish beer critics out there. This list is just my PERSONAL PREFERENCE. Everyone has a different sense of taste and, to me, these are the beers that taste the worst.

It had to have been reviewed on Chad'z Beer Reviews during 2010.
It had to my first time reviewing it, re-reviews don't count.
If it was a vintage, it counts as a new beer, since a beer can change greatly from year to year as it ages.
An annual release whose recipe changes from year-to-year counts as a new beer.
Beers I only wrote text reviews of weren't eligible.
This list was NOT limited to beers released in 2010. Many of these beers have been around for years - I just haven't reviewed them until 2010.

NOTE: Many of these clips are taken from reviews with a guest reviewer. For each beer, I tried to narrow down the best 50-70 seconds of ME explaining why I graded them the way I did. So if it looks like I'm cutting off the guest reviewer or censoring them - I'm not. There's just no way to get in both my thoughts and the guest's thoughts in without making this a long, 20+ minute video.

#10 Olde English 800

I was genuinely surprised by the taste of Olde English 800 after my first swig. I was expecting a flavor that would repulse me or at least turn me off, but the actual taste was rather neutral. It’s noticeably thin and watery with an overtly grainy taste. The slightly skunky smell from the aroma was equally present in the palate which gave the beer a fairly sour taste.

What also surprised me was just how clean this brew finished. Malt liquors get their name from the fact they use next to no hops so there is no bittering agent. That’s certainly true here as OE800 was not "bitter" in the way you might associate a macro lager like Coors, Miller or Bud. Not that there was much to appreciate here. The mélange of corn, rice, and who-knows-what-else was tolerable and neutral-tasting in the way a Bud Light might be.

As the beer warmed, it began to taste more metallic and just plain dirty. I’m glad I finished mine when I did, because it was beginning to cross the line from mediocre to bad.

This beer caught my eye when I was browsing the local liquor store in Key West. It's a Belgian-style pale ale kind of like Duvel. But would it be as good? I also get to use another new beer glass I bought while down here (yeah I know it's not exactly the "correct" glass for this style, but it gets the job done).

NOTE: I didn't write a text review of this.

#8 Molson Ice

It’s funny that this beer tastes exactly how it smells, in that there really is no true taste other than water and alcohol. Usually, cheap mass-market adjunct lagers of this type at least have some flavor of corn, but Molson Ice is almost flavorless. It’s quite ironic that an “ice” beer, which has less water than a regular, has such a watered-down taste. It’s definitely drinkable, but there’s no appeal.

And as is the case with not only mass-market lagers, but especially with ice lagers, if they are allowed to warm even remotely the taste begins to sour and the acetaldehyde becomes abundantly clear. That’s why when beers of this type are served at parties and sporting events people drink them quickly. This beer compliments hot wings, salty snack foods and pizza quite well, but only due to its inherently cold, neutral taste.

Starts out very neutral with almost no taste at all. Obviously, very watery and bland with perhaps a touch of corn sweetness found in adjunct macro light lagers like this. As it warms it becomes more and more sour with a metallic finish. It eventually becomes undrinkable (so drink it fast!). Hey for only $1 it wasn’t much of a gamble but I definitely wouldn’t buy it again. Stick with Genny Cream Ale.


#6 Magic Hat "Odd Notion" - Winter 2009: American Sour Ale

It’s amazing how quickly the taste buds and the brain communicate with each other. Upon my first swig of American Sour Ale I tasted a rather sweet, fairly malty beer not unlike a brown ale. I got a light caramel sweetness and a slight hop crispness. But as the beer finishes the palate changes completely into something extremely sour, bitter and dry.

As I said, I have no frame of reference, but I do know what I like and this taste sure isn’t it. Much like the scent, the aftertaste hints at something gone bad. I would compare it to a serving of milk a day or two after the expiration date. There is something of a trace amount of candy-like tartness underneath this dry, bitter “sour” flavor, but it’s not strong enough to appreciate (imagine a no-name-brand knockoff of “Sour Patch Kids”).

Not that this beer is completely repulsive since I did genuinely enjoy the flavors at the front of the palate, but they’re not enough to save the beer from itself. If anything, I don’t think “American Sour Ale” is quite sour enough. Perhaps a more overtly sour palate would be more appreciable as the attempt here seems to be rather half-assed which would account for the dry composition and lingering aftertaste.

Upon the first sip the cherry taste is evident. Beers with gimmicky tastes tend to be overwhelming in whatever niche they’re marketed for, but Sam Adams Cherry Wheat is fairly subtle in taste. After a few more swigs you don’t notice the cherry taste as much, mostly as an aftertaste. This brew drinks like any run-of-the-mill ale as it’s quite smooth, but has no real bite to it. Novice drinkers will like this, but snobs might see it as a total gimmick. Why drink a cherry beer when higher quality ale is available?

As part of a Sam Adams mix pack, Cherry Wheat is a tolerable inclusion and certainly not the worst beer in the lineup, but is far from the best. It’s a beer that’s caught between a rock and a hard place in that it’s rather weak as a beer but much too strong to be a “foo-foo” drink. Personally, I find it a nice change of pace but I’m in no rush for more.

Peter from joins me to review a beer from his country - Denmark - Carlsberg Elephant beer. The Carlsberg brand is the Budweiser of Denmark and we would've reviewed something better, however, due to the circumstances at the time it was the only beer we both knew we could get on short notice. We definitely want to try this again in the future with a higher quality beer.

NOTE: I didn't write a text review of this beer.

#3 Murphy's Irish Red Ale

Most American beer drinkers have encountered skunky European pale lagers and pilsners in their life. Heineken, Stella Artois, Carlsberg, Czechvar and other beers of these styles all tend to smell and taste skunky, oily, grainy and sour. Upon my first swig, I was shocked that Murphy’s Red Ale not only tasted like one of those beers, but it was actually worse!

The initial mouthfeel has a noticeably thin, watery body with a slightly creamy texture (which I actually liked). As it finishes, the aforementioned repulsive flavors make themselves known. It’s funny how a beer can actually taste skunky in addition to smelling skunky. There’s also something of a metallic and oily coating which I could best describe as sucking on a handful of wet pennies.

The only thing keeping the beer from being completely undrinkable is the fact all these flavors are relatively mild since the palate is so watery. If drank cold enough, this beer is at least tolerable, but once it begins to warm it’s fatiguing.

It tastes exactly what a 75-cent can of convenience store-brand beer should taste like. It’s basically wet straw, steel wool and water. Taste is tolerable at first, but becomes more sour towards the bottom. This beer must be drank ice cold because it tastes like dirty dishwater otherwise.

It’s craptastic. This is the kind of beer the cheapest of the cheapskates buy (and the homeless). There are worse out there, but this is generic bad beer. Why bother? 

This may be the worst thing I have ever intentionally put in my mouth. The best way to describe it would be puke in a can. It literally tastes like vomit mixed with ocean water. I could only drink about 6 of the 24oz and had to dump it. It left me feeling queasy. Just THINKING about it makes me nauseous. Ugh.

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