Is Olde English Truly The Worst Beer?

While Budweiser may be going to desperate lengths to remind beer drinkers it exists, it can rest easy in the fact that it’s not the world’s worst beer — at least according to a poll on RateBeer.com.

That label goes to the 3.2% ABW version of Olde English 800, which scored a .96 out of 5 on the site. The standard version of O.E. fared somewhat better; its 1.35 score was enough to merit a ranking of 41st worst beer in the world.

Taking second place on the craptastic list was another malt liquor that’s a favorite of penny-pinching teenagers, Natural Ice with a score of 1.03. That beverage’s non-malt counterpart, Natural Light, had an identical score but must have lost a tie-breaker to end up in third place.

Here is the full top 10:
1. Olde English 800 3.2 (0.96)
2. Natural Ice (1.03)
3. Natural Light (1.03)
4. Milwaukees Best (1.05)
5. Michelob Ultra (1.06)
6. Sleeman Clear (1.08)
7. Budweiser Select 55 (1.09)
8. Coors Aspen Edge (1.11)
9. Bud Light Chelada (1.13)
10. Busch Ice (1.13)

Check out the entire rankings at RateBeer.com

Comments

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  1. Smiley Massacre says:

    It may be the worst beer, but it’s a great furniture polish!

  2. axiomatic says:

    11. Urine
    12. Unlabeled Military Base 3.2 beer

  3. travel_nut says:

    I saw a guy buying Natural Ice at the gas station today on my lunch hour, and I just thought “Really? REALLY? You can’t do any better than that?”

    • apd09 says:

      You used to be able to go to the store with 10 bucks buy a 6 pack of Natty Ice and a Pack of GPC Smokes then walk out with 3 bucks in change.

      Some people drink crap like that because it is cheap. It’s like why alcoholics drink no name liquor, spend 13 on a half gallon of Popov or 30 on a half gallon of Absolute.

      (cost+quantity)

    • rpm773 says:

      Bad beer tastes like college. It’s not always so bad.

    • craptastico says:

      maybe the guy likes Natty Ice. I graduated college over ten years ago but i’d take a Natty Ice over a Guinness any day. never outgrew my college taste in beer.

    • xnihilx says:

      I only buy for beer brats and it’s great for that.

  4. slim150 says:

    what is up with those “Ice” beers? They all taste gross. Is it made for a certain demographic?

    • Kopiok says:

      Fraternities.

      • apd09 says:

        nope, you’re wrong there. If a keg of Natty Ice is 35 and Natty Lite is 33, they are buying the Natty Lite. Trust me, I know.

        • fatediesel says:

          I always drank Bud Ice when I was a minor because it was cheap and I could get drunk off a 6 pack. I tried drinking it a couple years ago and it is just awful, I have no idea how I was able to drink it when I was 17.

    • Grungo says:

      Yes, people who want cheap and highly alcoholic beer. “Ice” beers all generally have a higher ABV.

    • stormbird says:

      I was an underage drinker when they came out with that stuff in the late 80s. The ice process was supposed to filter out… something, but we figured out very quickly that what it was doing was slightly raising the alcohol percentage. My theory is that light beer had been out for a while and this was seen as a new way to pull in some new drinkers.

      I need to go rinse my mouth out with Guinness.

    • rdldr1 says:

      Ice = higher alcohol content. Basically, the ice is skimmed off of beer that is just hitting the freezing point. This means less water, more delish alcohol left behind.

    • formatc says:

      Not all “ice” beers are bad. Try Aventinus Eisbock.

  5. nova3930 says:

    I can’t believe Milwaukees Beast is only 4th on the list.

    That crap was always a guaranteed invitation to sitting on the porcelain throne for an extended period the next day. In college, it also never failed that some a$$hole would bring a case of the Beast to a party and proceed to drink all the good beer (Guiness, Fat Tire, Dead Guy, etc)….

    • kc2idf says:

      I have often joked about how bad Milwaukee’s worst must be . . .

    • mirrorball says:

      This beer is responsible for the worst hangover I ever had. Haven’t touched it since.

    • varro says:

      College kids have money for Dead Guy?

      (Frat parties at UChicago, early 90s – $2-3 for all the Busch, Black Label, Beast, or Meister Brau you could drink…)

  6. Gruppa says:

    Olde English 800, that’s my brand.
    I’ll take it in a bottle, 40, quart or can.

  7. teke367 says:

    Ah, Milwaukee’s Best, or Beast, reminds me of college. If only because a keg cost $35 (for comparison’s sake, the next cheapest, Bud, was $65 a keg).

    But we always considered MB to be better than Red Dog or Miller High Life. And I know PBR is big with the hipster crowd, but in all honesty, that beer is horrible.

    • Smiley Massacre says:

      Yeah, when I went to a concert this past Saturday, they were serving PBR, and I though “WTF?”. Never had it, so I double-fisted it. Hey, that was some good water!

      I’ll just stick with my wheat ales from now on. ;)

    • econobiker says:

      I went with Schlitz and then pre-cool PBR back in college in the early 1990s. These choices kept the moochers away…

    • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

      PBR is in with the hipster crowd, really?

      It’s not horrible but it’s definitely not good beer, we used to drink PBR, as well as Iron City, Blatz, and Schlitz when I was in the Army. It was just a conduit for getting drunk and taste didn’t really matter.

      The only place I’ve ever seen PBR locally is at the VFW and we’re not exactly hipsters there :-)

      • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

        These are all OK beers that are fairly cheap, or as some friends and I have dubbed them, “lawn-chair beers”. Cans are highly preferred over bottles, but not required.

        Toss me another from the cooler, man.

    • ZippoGuaillo says:

      Oh yes it is definitely in the hipster crowd. There’s a bar in the hipster area of Seattle where the signature drink (the drink you’ll see 70% of the patrons drinking on any given night) is, you guessed it, PBR. A 40oz bottle that they serve to you in a paper bag. Classy place

    • skapig says:

      Yep. PBR is huge with the hipster crowd in big cities like Philadelphia. It’s always the cheapest option (although you won’t always see it displayed too prominently for this reason) and a tolerable drink. Hipsters will go for it even if some place has weird pricing placing it on par with better options. For me, it’s always a good option if I’m feeling cheap or I’ve already had some good stuff and no longer care.

  8. scratchie says:

    The absence of IC Light from this list invites skepticism.

    • LexLuber says:

      Aw, I like IC Light.

    • brinks says:

      Damn.

      I threw up so many times in college drinking IC Light that I still gag thinking about it. I really don’t think I overindulged that much…it was just so damn disgusting it induced vomiting.

  9. econobiker says:

    Old English is champagne compared to the pre-CHI-CHI and yuppified Yeungling brewery which brewed Stegmaier and Old German beers- both retailed at $5.99 a case back in the late ’80s in NJ.

    Or the true generics such as Home Liquor chain in NJ which had Home Brand Pilsner Beer (Regular and Light) at $5.99 case cans and $4.99 case bottles (bottle case had no six pack carriers or even labels on the bottles)…

    • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

      Is Old German not around any more? I could have sworn I saw it at a distributor up in PA awhile back.

      • varro says:

        Old German is still around, and has even made it out to Portland and become a hipster drink.

        Awful. Probably the only beer I’ve found undrinkable that isn’t a malt liquor, ultralight, or Coors Light.

    • hosehead says:

      Stegmaier! I have a 16 oz. bottle from 1995 in my sister’s fridge. It was $11 case for twenty-four 16 oz. bottles, and you got a $1 refund if you brought back the bottles.

    • pot_roast says:

      Old E makes me gag, but I like Yuengling. Go figure.

  10. stevenpdx says:

    When I was n college, we drank generic beer. Beer beer, we called it. It was in a white can with BEER printed in black. Just like all of the other generic products of the 80s. it was nasty, but it was cheap and did the job.

    • RandomHookup says:

      It also had a LIGHT BEER version. I think both, at least in my region, were made by Pearl.

    • Villnius says:

      Those “BEER” cans are real and actually contained beer? I had never seen that stuff at the beer store, and it just seemed so ridiculous when I saw them in movies, so I figured they were just movie props.

      • Putaro says:

        Generics were real popular back in the mid 80’s and Ralph’s supermarket in Southern California had “Beer”. We used to drink Lucky Lager when we were feeling cheap in college. A 12 pack each. Ugh…I can still remember the hangover.

    • mharris127 says:

      I remember seeing the white can with “BEER” on it. I never tried it, but I only saw it on the shelves for a few weeks in the late 70″s. The “cheap” beer as of 2006 (when I quit drinking) is Meister Brau of all things, less than $3 a six pack in cans. There was a brand of beer (I forget what brand) that mixed the leftover beers out of the brewing plant each day, poured them into bottles and sold it for about 25 cents a can in local bars (this is in the mid to late 60’s). I think a six pack of that brand was about 75 cents in the store.

  11. Anonymously says:

    Woohoo, Old Mil doesn’t show up until the 30’s.

    • Murph1908 says:

      Old Mil isn’t all that bad. We drank the shit out of it in college. Certainly better than the others at that price point.

  12. BrianneG says:

    Yay! PBR didn’t make the list.

  13. minneapolisite says:

    http://www.97bottles.com begs to differ:

    Beers that won the prestigious “Skunky” badge:
    Milwaukee’s Best Light
    Natural Light
    Coors Light
    Budweiser & Clamato
    Keystone Light

    Reference: http://97bottles.com/beer/_skunky/

    • LordTwinkie says:

      budweiser clamato is the absolutely worst beer i’ve ever had. it is beyond foul, BEYOND, my god no sane person can even swallow a single sip of that crap, and most people would not be able go beyond the smell. I have no idea how this crap is still on the shelves, i heard that there is a devout group of people who drink that horrible horrible stuff for breakfast.

  14. rpm773 says:

    Is that Colt 45 Ice at #50? I didn’t think they still made that. I haven’t had a 40 of that in like 15 years.

    Along those lines, a buddy and mine ran into Phat Boy Malt Liquor circa 1998. It advertised that it contained gensing. It was awful, even by our standards.

  15. Michaela says:

    My grandfather drinks Milwaukee’s Best.

    I guess now I understand why people never ask him to bring the booze to parties. As someone who doesn’t drink, I never realized it was a “bad” beer.

  16. sonohuey says:

    Wow,

    Here are two from my college days that more than deserved to be in the top ten: Olympia and Genesee Cream Ale.

    I would drink Natural Ice and Natural Light before I would touch Olympia or Genny Cream Ale. There is a reason why we could buy a case of Olympia for $6.

    • kc2idf says:

      I’ve lived in Rochester. I’ve seen the Genessee river. I don’t want to drink anything named after it.

    • BurtReynolds says:

      Come on. Genny Cream wasn’t that bad. In fact my roommate and I preferred it to Busch, Natty, or Beast.

      If you have Genny Cream, then I wonder if you have ever experienced the delight of Golden Anniversary?

    • Powerlurker says:

      The Genesee Brewery has really been trying to promote a more upscale image for itself outside of its home territory lately. If you buy Genny Cream down here in Texas, they only sell it in glass bottles for >$7 for a six pack (i.e. the same as the now increased prices for their Dundee brews).

  17. robocop is bleeding says:

    I am surprised Bud Light Chelada is only #9. That stuff was a clamato nightmare. I bet a friend 5 bucks he couldn’t finish a bottle and he just handed the fin over without even opening it, it just looked so gross.

  18. AI says:

    Oh please, I’ve drank most of those, and while they’re not very good, only the Olde English 800 is something I’d count as ‘vile’.

    However I’ve drank something much, much more vile than OE 800. It’s called TNT. In Canada, it’s impossible to find any beer that sells for less than a buck a can………..except for TNT, where I’ve often seen 15 packs ‘sell’ for $9.99 (and I say ‘sell’ because nobody buys them even at that price).

    http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/473/7983

  19. GuidedByLemons says:

    Personally I think Natty Light is even worse, but I won’t quibble over a few hundredths of a rating point ;-)

  20. aloria says:

    Olde English filled my mind and I came up with a funky rhyme.

    MAMA SAID KNOCK YOU OUT.

  21. brianisthegreatest says:

    Steel Reserve isn’t on that list. Clearly they weren’t trying to identify the worst beer, as that would automatically catapult itself to the top.

    • danmac says:

      Totally true…in college, I would always get a 6-pack of good beer, then switch to crappy cheap beer as I got my buzz on. Sometimes that cheap beer would be whatever was available. Steel Reserve is the only beer I’ve ever been unable to drink when I was already drunk.

    • LincolnK says:

      a friend and I each picked up a 24oz can of that on a challenge to each other. we started completely sober. he got through half the can and threw up.

  22. El_Fez says:

    Is Olde English Truly The Worst Beer? Yes, but that’s like asking “Which would you rather have? AIDS or syphilis.”

    All beer tastes like crap. Period, full stop.

  23. Bernardo says:

    I dont care what people say I love the taste of that stuff. The fact that I only get it int eh 40oz is just fun whenever I do get it. I dislike food/ beer/ wine / whatever snoobs who feel the need to put things down. If it really was “the worst” it wouldnt have been around for so long.

  24. crabbygeek says:

    Where is Old Style… that’s some bad beer…

    • Murph1908 says:

      I’ll drink an Old Style over a Bud any day of the week, when enjoying a game at Wrigley.

      I’ll buy a six pack to soak my brats in too.

      But I’ll buy better beer to consume at home.

  25. ZenMasterKel says:

    Ultra got #5! Really?!? It’s not the greatest, but I think the sheer amount of consumers who purchase it would disagree that it even belongs on this list

    • RxDude says:

      Sales != quality. The voters at ratebeer.com tend to appreciate good beer, even if they have differing opinions of what makes a good beer. The apparently agree, however, that these 10 are crap.

  26. mrhappydude says:

    minhas
    http://minhasbrewery.com/index.html

    only good thing: $10 per case in Omaha!

    worst beer ever

    • RonDiaz says:

      I just commented the same thing. It is so awful and I have drank all these bad beers. Yes they are bad but this was the first beer I have ever found undrinkable. One sip and the other 22 cans sit. I managed to pawn one off on another sucker this summer.

      Minhas is easily the worlds worst “beer”.

    • PhineasNanerpuss says:

      Mountain Creek, made by Minhas and just as foul/awesome/cheap

  27. Master Medic: Now with more Haldol says:

    Kinda subjective, because I think the worst beer is a glass of that brown dirt, marketed as Guiness.

    • mrhappydude says:

      i’ll second that, that’s the beer you drink with a fork!

      • tmac40 says:

        People who say things like this have probably either never tried or taken one sip of Guiness years ago. It is not a heavy beer, in fact it is very light. There are less calories in a Guiness than in a Budweiser.

    • Shouty D says:

      Yeah! It has a taste to it! Screw that! I’ll stick to my low alcohol American piss water, thank you very much!

    • Johnny Longtorso says:

      I think a better description is that it’s like drinking a fermented loaf of bread.

    • colorisnteverything says:

      This is only because you can’t handle the taste of REAL beer. Drinking with me would make you look like a little girl. And I am a very small woman who likes her beer dark.

    • wrbwrx says:

      agreed. I can taste the Fish that they use in processing that overmarketed, overhyped beer called guiness.

  28. Joewithay says:

    I prefer the Champagne of Beers

  29. Jedana says:

    My husband says that in the early 90’s (around 93), he could get a 40 of a beer called Circus Beer, for around .84. It was the beer of choice for our local homeless guys…

  30. Big Mama Pain says:

    Should light beers even be in the same category as the rest of the beers? Of course they are inferior to regular beer. And how come Golden Anniversary Beer didn’t make this list?

  31. Geosama says:

    Heineken should be #2

    • ARP says:

      I was hoping I wasn’t the only one. I don’t get it- tastes as close to skunky as you can get without involving and actual skunk.

    • Zowzers says:

      That skinniness you taste isn’t from the brewing process, its from shipping and storage. Try it closer to the brewery and Heineken is a whole different beer.

  32. DWMILLER says:

    Ballentine (spelling? wasn’t really sober) is the worst. $5 a case in 1991-1992. We bought two cases. Man I think I had that hangover for a week.

  33. stormbird says:

    There is a beer the combines clam, tomato juice and Budweiser? Huh, so I guess the whole Satan thing is true. What we need is an old priest and a young priest and a case of Guinness.

  34. thanq says:

    According to another site, Bud Light is worst: http://beeradvocate.com/lists/bottom

  35. bigdirty says:

    I’m surprised that no one has even mentioned the presence of Chilaeda on the list. I can’t even fathom buying it, let alone drinking Bud/Bud Light with Clamato in it. Just what I want, watery beer infused with tomatoes and clam broth. Yum.

    I always get a kick when the ad runs along the sidelines of Red Bull Games, always someone within earshot asks what the hell is that, usually followed up with “Why?”

  36. Zowzers says:

    apples vs oranges compairson. Comparing beers of different styles is just going to show personal preference. For example comparing a stout to a bohemian pilsner isn’t going to prove much beyond what each person prefers.

  37. TheMonkeyKing says:

    Viper Beer…the beer with a bite (actually it was beer that wasn’t good enough to be called Black Label beer)

  38. RonDiaz says:

    3.2 anythign is awful for sure but Minhas beer is the worst thing ever created.

  39. redd77 says:

    If you can find it give Mountain Crest (in Canada)/Mountain Creek (in the U.S.) a try. Truly the most awful beer I have ever had. I’ll stick with my Blatz.

  40. crugg says:

    Does this Olde E include the other more higher alcoholic version we have on the west coast (7.5% ABV) or the east coast (5.9% ABV), or just the pussy Oklahoma version?

  41. RandomHookup says:

    I think the absolute worst beer I ever had was some microbrew that involved jalapenos. Bad brewmaster.

    For mainstream beers, this list covers the important players.

  42. packcamera says:

    How the ‘eff did Meister Braü not make the list????

    http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/105/1366

    I drank gallons of it weekly during art school; “Mister Bro” offered twice the farts for half the price…

    On special occasions we would posh things up with 40oz bottles of the slightly less wretched Ballantine’s. I remember a great coup was finding a place in New Hampshire that sold Ballantine’s in tall boys with pull tabs. Ah, misspent youth…

    • webweazel says:

      Old Milwaukee and Meister Brau was the same cheap stuff we drank as poor youngsters. I thought Old Mil was slightly better than Meister. Are they still being made?
      No, I think the worst beer ever made is Pabst. It that still around?
      *gag*

  43. Willnet says:

    I disagree entirely. Being a poor man in the army some of these beers were quite enjoyable and some were not. o-e and colt are pretty damn good when cold and poured into a glass cup. 2,3,4,10 are no good. 5 and 7 are quite good too. 6,8,9 I have no idea. If these beers are so discusting then wtf am I supposed to drink?? I do not want to spend 8$ for a 6 pack. Granted some shiner or shiner blond + others are good.But Ill stick to my 7.49$ for a 12 pack of 12oz. bottles of miller high life at HEB.

  44. JulesNoctambule says:

    No Hamms? I’ve only smelled the stuff, but that was all I needed to know that drinking it could only end in pain.

  45. hammond egger says:
  46. tackhouse1 says:
  47. Nisun says:

    Olde E is about as bad is as you can get…

    • brinks says:

      I was always told that was Steel Reserve. Since I can tolerate it, I’m really curious. Going to have to go pick some up tonight.

  48. INsano says:

    How did Olde English get rated worse than *any* of those beers? Unlike the others, it can actually intoxicate you if you drink it. It’s in a completely different category than those lightweights, though I’m not going to fawn over it’s taste too much or anything, but if we’re comparing crap, it at least deserves better than that list for company.

  49. Chaosium says:

    Steel Reserve, IMO.

  50. Wireless Joe says:

    Schlitz. No Schlitz ? Blatz. No Blatz ? Improvise.

  51. ben_marko says:

    I’m surprised Keystone or Busch didn’t make this list! They are truly awful…

  52. zjgz says:

    Olde English 800 cuz’ that’s my brand
    Take it in a bottle, 40, quart, or can
    Drink it like a mad man, yes I do
    Fuck the police and the 5-0 too.

    -Eric “Eazy-E” Wright

  53. Burzmali says:

    No Lost Lake? No Pig’s Eye? I call foul.

  54. brinks says:

    I’m still scrolling through the comments, but why have I not seen a mention of Steel Reserve yet?

  55. Skid Malfoy says:

    pfft, I used to drink 2-3 40 ouncers of Olde E every night. They were just fine. Now Schaeffer, that’s just horrible!

    Favorite line from a NYC bartender:
    Customer: Do you have Budweiser?
    Barkeep: We have water.