Review: Narragansett Lager

Review of Narragansett Lager from Narragansett Beer Co. in Providence, RI.

Beer Type: Lager  ABV: 5.0%  IBUs: 12  Tried from can.

Their Description: “We brew our lager with six row malt, secret blend of Pacific Northwest hops, corn from Iowa, our lager strain (the same one the brewery has depended on since just after Prohibition), and the purest water from Lakes Ontario and Hemlock. This beer is brewed just right for drinking—crisp and refreshing. It’s got more flavor than other premium lagers, yet it’s one of the most drinkable beers in the world.”

The Reality: They got one thing right, it does have more flavor than I was expecting (it’s doesn’t taste watered down). The color is a clear deep golden and it pours with a really light head that dissipates in 15-20 seconds. The main taste is malt with notes of malt that has started to go bad. Can malt go bad? Once the forward upfront flavor subsides, the finish is like sucking water out of a wet wood chip. The aftertaste has faint notes of diet iced tea and tin, and it overstays its welcome by about 8 seconds with each sip. The flavors get exaggerated the warmer the beer gets.

Final Verdict: All that being said, when faced with a sea of bad choices sloshing around in an ice cooler at some family cook-out or fishing trip, you could do worse. This isn’t some barely-more-than-water light beer or green bottled mouth repellent, so at least it has that going for it. Some people describe Narragansett Lager as the Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR) of the Northeast, because of it’s odd cult following in that area, but if I got offered a cold can of either, I’d take the PBR.