I poured a 24oz can into a large mug. There was no decipherable freshness date. It cost $1.81 ($0.08 per ounce).
Appearance: Clear, dark gold hue, plenty of carbonation visible. Forms a
large, white, soapy head which actually retains and laces extremely
well for a beer of this style.
Smell: Pretty typical adjunct pale lager aroma, but not nearly as offensive as most.
Taste: I don’t know what’s going on with me, but lately I’ve begun to
notice that I’m either building up a tolerance to, or actually starting
to acquire a taste for macro adjunct lagers. Most are not nearly as bad
as I remember, and some are actually more neutral-tasting than they are
bad. Case in point: Labatt Blue. Sure it’s a typical fizzy yellow lager,
but it’s actually one of the better ones (for what that’s worth).
Most beers of this type tend to have their adjuncts and other flaws
quite prominent right away. Labatt Blue is noticeably mild, though, as
it does not have any kind of astringent boiled corn or cardboard taste
to it. I actually detect a faint sweetness here at the beginning. A
short burst of bitterness at the top of the swig followed by some sweet
or toasted corn flavor on the finish. A lot of beers of this sort tend
to have metallic and other off-flavors to them, but Labatt Blue is quite
clean. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it tastes good, but I wouldn’t
describe it as bad, either.
Drinkability: For a fizzy yellow beer, Labatt Blue isn’t nearly as
spastic as some of the others of the style. It looks much more
carbonated than it feels. Sure there’s a slight vibration across the
tongue, but it goes down relatively smooth with little CO2 getting stuck
in the throat. The 5% ABV seems about right, if not a tad high, though I
could honestly see this being sessionable under appropriate
circumstances (e.g. tailgating, camping, at a sporting event).