25. Labatt Blue Imported

Posted: September 16, 2009 in International beer, Lager
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Labatt Blue Imported - BOTTLELabatt Blue Imported

Canadian Flag - SMALL



Company info:
Labatt Brewing Company

[No website listed on bottle]

Bottle size sampled: 355 mL

Alcohol: 5%
Standard drinks: 1.4

Cap type: Twist

Cost: I picked this up for AU$3.70

Label info: N/A

What the label really means: N/A

The Hell-Cat review starts here

Label: Not nearly as boutique as some of the beers I have reviewed, this is one of the big players in the Canadian market and indeed North America. It’s a mass produced beer and as such not a great deal of effort has gone into the design of this label. I do like the fact it has the Canadian maple leaf on the label, but the blue and the gold really don’t do it for me. Where is the tough image of a Mounted Police officer charging at a bear? Where is the image of snow capped peaks being attacked by a wrecking ball? Where is the image of Wayne Gretzky destroying an opponents face with his fist? Come on Labatt, surely you can do better!

I give it a label rating of 3 out of 10.

AROMA: A good, strong, wheaty smell. 

Taste: GLASS -Being a mass-produced beer I really should have expected this, but I was a little taken aback when I found the beer to be quite bland. The aroma lead me to believe that this would be a good wheaty beer, and yes it’s definitely a wheaty pilsener but it’s also quite citrussy, and neither flavour is particularly dominant. It’s a mild, easy to drink beer but I really expected more, and just like my 2nd grade report card ‘there is so much potential, but very little talent’.

Labatt Blue - GLASS

I give it a beer from glass rating of 6 out of 10.

Taste: BOTTLE – Yeesh! This is not a beer to be consumed from the bottle. It loses all its taste and becomes like mildly flavoured water. Even this revelation surprises me as I totally expected it to be a head back, throw down. 


I give it a taste from bottle rating of 4.5 out of 10.

A word from the wife: “Quite delish and mellow tasting”

She gave it a taste rating of 7 out of 10.

Accompanying food: I’d love to have a few of these with something really spicy. Some hot and spicy buffalo wings and I suspect this beer would take flight.

Best season to appreciate: Definitely a Summer thirst quencher.

All-nighter beer? If you’re looking for a beer to drink all night, and don’t mind not getting much ‘oomph’ then this is it.

Other information: Being an ‘imported’ variety of Labatt Blue, this review holds no reflection on the beer sampled in Canada, from the source. Having spent much time in the US and Canada, this was once a staple draught beer of choice for me and I am sure to enjoy it once more when I return.

NEXT WEEK: Barons Black Wattle Original Ale

  1. McLean not MacLean says:

    Thanks for the lowdown on Labatts. Entertaining and informative as ever. The home brew idea has got legs I think, although it’s not something I’ve tried since some ill-advised experiments in my teens.

    Now, I realise that you don’t offer an ‘agony aunt’ service on this blog, but Hell Cat, I have something I need to get off my chest. I can only do so in the safe anonymity of this blog and in the hope that you might find it in your heart to sympathise and maybe give me guidance:

    – I can’t stop stealing beer glasses from pubs and bars –

    I’m not indiscriminate about this. I only nick glasses that have a bit of flair. But I know it’s still stealing and it’s wrong. Last night I reached a new low: I went to the cinema and stole a rather fetching glass with a funky misted/frosty Peroni motif. Worse still, I hid it in my wife’s handbag which implicated her in my shady web of deceit as well. Hell Cat, you gotta help me. Otherwise I just don’t know where this is going to end.


    • Mason Hell-Cat says:

      McLean, firstly may I say I admire your honesty and courage in admitting that this is a problem. On the other hand, stealing glasses is a great way to build up an essential collection of vessels to drink beer from.
      I’ve been to BYO restaurants and when I produce a long neck of beer (occasionally this has been Reschs DA) and ask for some glasses they have produced water tumblers. I’ve asked if they have any beer glasses and receive a blank stare. To me, this is inexcusable. Every restaurant should have beer glasses, and as you’ve pointed out, they are very easy to come by.

      Bars and pubs are offered many free items from beer companies such as glasses, bar mats, fridges, and even the very taps your beer is coming from. In turn, they secure the pubs continued business. It’s particularly noticeable in New Zealand whereby pubs will only sell (from tap) a particular companies beer (eg. Monteiths) who, for this loyalty, install the beer taps free of charge if exclusivity is assured. Now, my whole point for this long winded blab is that if these places (cinemas included) are receiving free stuff, they really aren’t going to be too concerned if that free stuff occasionally goes missing. They simply call up their beer supplier, tell them that 10 glasses have gone missing and ‘wa-la’ 10 replacements are sent in the overnight post.

      There is nothing finer than drinking a good beer, from a good beer glass. It doesn’t necessarily need to be one of those large, pretentious looking glasses, just something that can proudly display your liquid gold. Everyone should have beer glasses in the kitchen cupboard and even a couple in the fridge (space permitting). I heartily endorse your hobby McLean and don’t feel you should ever consider this as something wrong.

      Mason Hell-Cat.


      • BargeDave says:

        I have only ever stolen a handful of glasses but I’ve done McLean’s trick of stuffing them into the wife’s handbag. She tends to be very unimpressed with this. My real sin in this is to brag excitedly to our kids about my larceny, which is clearly sending the wrong signal entirely to the next generation.

        One other comment, lest my comment about the Labbatt’s be interpreted as anti-Canadian, I just want to point out that the Canadian Unibrou beers are some of the most amazing ales I’ve ever sampled and are definitely worth the $8-$10 you pay for them.


      • McLean not MacLean says:

        Thanks Hell Cat and Barge Dave. I feel a lot better about myself now that I know I’m not alone.

        Based on Hell Cat’s logic, I think I’m right in saying that me stealing beer glasses is – in fact – a win-win-win situation.

        > I win because I get a groovy beer glass (or ten) to drink out of at home.
        > The pub/bar wins, because they get a nice new glass from the beer company, at not cost to them
        > The beer companies win because they get added advertising exposure because I advertise their beer in my home – and they still retain the same brand presence in the bar/pub through the replacement arrangement.

        Wow, I’m doing a good thing for the world here. I feel all warm and fuzzy inside.


      • Sniv Whettuce says:

        I favour a glass with a low centre of gravity when I’m on the whiffle so I use an old marmalade jar.


      • Mason Hell-Cat says:

        Sniv, may that be the last this forum hears of you ‘on the whiffle’.


  2. BargeDave says:

    I couldn’t finish this one. The review was spot-on as usual. The bottle I tried had that funky taste beer gets when it’s past its use-by and I couldn’t find a ‘best before’ date so that may have been the problem. The other problem may have been that the bottle I tried was just above fridge warm, whereas it may have been less offensive after 20 minutes in the freezer. Fortunately, I had a James Squires Pilsner to refresh my palate – now that’s a quality beer. I’m really looking forward to next week’s review – the Barons Original Ale is quite unusual and distinctive and certainly worth a sample.


    • Mason Hell-Cat says:

      BD – I am planning to launch a home brew page on this site that I hope regulars and guests will contribute to with reviews of their own brews. Does this interest you at all?


      • BargeDave says:

        My home-brewing has unfortunately slowed down over the last year but your idea is exactly the sort of motivation I need to get back into it Mase. I encourage everyone to give home brewing a go, but it’s important to do a bit of research first. I would point out that home-brewing lagers/pilsners (unless you’re in a very cold climate) will not return “genuine” results, but ales and stouts are great. My other tips are to experiment with ingredients and yeast.


      • Sniv Whettuce says:

        The last time I grew my own beer I mistakenly used a packet of Sea Monkeys instead of yeast. I still drank it, of course, even after I’d realised my folly, but it was a diabolical drop. It was better than Reschs Real Bitter, though.


    • McLean not MacLean says:

      James Squire Pilsner sure is a nice drop Barge Boy. Any other pilsners that tickle your fancy? I’m always looking for new ones to try. I’m a bit of a fan of Bohemian Pilsner. Have you tried that one?


      • Mason Hell-Cat says:

        Bohemian Pilsener is excellent. I’ve only had this on tap and enjoyed every sup. Might I also suggest you try the Red Angus Pilsener, reviewed on this site (number 13) – it’s a bit of a quiet achiever.


      • BargeDave says:

        The James Squire is in my view the best lager/pilsner made in Australia. Coopers have just released a pilsner but it definitely tastes cheaper than the Squire. The other legendary pilsner which is quite widely available is the imported Weihenstephaner which comes in 500ml bottles. Yummo.


  3. Go Montreal says:

    You’ve hit the nail on the head, Hell-Cat: LB is definitely an all-nighter beer! I used to drink it in my youth in Montreal. Also to consider is LB’s stronger cousin, Labatt Blue Dry, at 6.1% alcohol.
    Re the label: check out the Wildcat range, also from Labatt – you’ll get your animal fix there! (disclaimer, this beer is only good for its label – I think they called it Wildcat cos it tastes like cat pee).


    • Mason Hell-Cat says:

      Hi Jasmine – welcome to the blog!
      I was a fan of Labatt Blue Light at one point (for us Aussies, the light refers to low-carbs, and not low-alcohol) but have never tried the Dry or Wildcat! Mark me down as interested!


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