Best Malt Liquor ?!

There is a beer/sandwich shop near me that sells beer by the individual bottle (an innovative idea in Pennsylvania). So, I sometimes buy a sandwich and a beer or two. Or three.

Out of curiosity I’ve bought malt liquors, most recently Joose (jungle joose to be specific). Well, it is a huge can and is 9.9% alcohol. Tastes pretty shitty, though. I’m intrigued enough to try all the different varieties.

So the one characteristic that all malt liquors seem to share is shitty taste. Is there a “good” malt liquor? I’m thinking back, all the way to Hop-n-Gator and I cannot recall one that tasted good.

In most(?) states, all malt liquor means is beer over a certain %ABV. Therefore you can find some very good “malt liquors” around, like Optimator. As for commercially produced American swill, well…

I drink Mickey’s.

Back in my college days, my friends & I would load up in a car and go out driving the backroads and get lit up. One day I bought a 40 of Schlitz. It wasn’t too bad.

Best Malt Liquor?

That’s like asking where’s the best place to get stabbed.

Beer snobs beware of the following anecdote:

One night at our home-brew club meeting, I ran a blind tasting. The club thought they were tasting home-brewed lagers. The comments were all positive for taste, appearance and aroma. Some of the samples were held up by people as fine examples of the brewer’s art.

Then I revealed what they had been tasting: Steel Reserve, Colt .45, Schlitz malt liquor, St. Ives, and Olde English 800. The reaction from the club was violent and extremely satisfying.

OE800 won, btw.

That will be on my short list!

Most of the time I buy the sandwich/beers and take them kayaking after work. Last summer I had a fish commission guy hassle me about the liquor. I pointed out that I was of legal age (I’m 51) and the lake in question had no policy against alcohol. He switched his argument to being against littering, claiming he had seen me chuck an empty.

I opened my hatch and showed him the bag of empties; one was mine, and there were several I had picked up along the way. He chuckled and told me to have a nice day.

Was there any retaliation? Such as loading up on Colt .45 and recycling it onto/into your car?

There are at least 2 of us.

If you mean best in “gettin’ drunker faster”, then go with Steel Reserve Black label.

If you mean best in “quality tasting”…you’re on your own.

I terms of taste, Steel Reserve from a can is pretty decent, if it is ice cold. Hurricane(Bud’s malt) is OK from the can, too, though I’ve never had it from the bottle.

Never get Steel Reserve in the bottle, though. It’s horrifying.

They were a bit miffed, that’s for sure. Mostly because I had made most of them show themselves as fools. They were, of course, as am I. But few of us like being confronted with the fact publically.

I was banned from running tastings indefinitely. :smiley:

Hear! Hear!


What, no Mickey’s? Were you afraid it would come in last? :smiley:
Mickey’s was always my choice for malt liquor, though I’m guessing it’s been close to 20 years since I had one.

I’ve thought about doing this kind of thing before. Steel Reserve in a can actually is not too far different from a Tsingtao beer I had in China. It was a variety you can’t find in the US, though. It was a lot darker than Steel Reserve, but had a real kick behind it.

If I just present Steel Reserve as an Asian “hard” lager, I think people might hate it less.

And it won in the 1995 Great American Beer Festival, too (the last time I could find a malt liquor category.) The results from that year were OE800, Schlitz Malt Liquor, and Laser, in that order.

In the 2007 GABF, I did find Mickey’s taking the bronze for “American Style Specialty Lager”, with Icehouse taking the gold, and Mickey’s Ice the silver.

Of course, there’s also Dogfish Head’s Liquor de Malt, which comes in its own brown paper bag, but I think that might be missing the spirit of this thread.