Budweiser American Ale
Truth be told, I bought this primarily because I needed a case of bottles, and also because the ads had me curious.
At my local distributor, Sierra Nevada was $31, Saranac was $25, and the American Ale $22 per case. From experience, I know Saranac is a thoroughly average brew, and considering Bud American Ale comes in some pretty cool looking bottles, which was my ultimate goal anyway, I went AA (yes, they are pry-off).
After a few hours chill time, I took one out and let the bottle stand for a few minutes, to let it warm just a bit. Popping the top, I got a hint of malt and hops aroma. Certainly nothing like a 90 minute IPA, but aromas were present that I would've never expected from a Bud.
Color was a deep reddish amber -- again, something I wouldn't expect from Bud. Head was nice, and stuck around for a while. Lacing was also present.
The taste isn't bad. Certainly enjoyable and appropriate for an American Ale. Very smooth, limited caramel sweetness, a slight hoppy bitterness toward the end, and some Cascades in the nose if you're really looking for it. Mundane compared to top shelf brews, but far and away better than any standard BMC crapola. In terms of overall quality, I'd rank it slightly above the standard offerings from Wild Goose, Yuengling, and similar macro-micros. It won't win any awards, but it's really not bad, especially if you're looking for some nifty bottles. I also think it'd be great for parties and BBQs -- decent price, decent flavor, and it won't turn off regular BMC drinkers.
Would I buy it again? If I was having a gathering, yes. But would I buy it for a personal sip-on brew? Probably not, unless I was really hurting for cash, or wanted some bottles. In fact, these bottles are so cool I'm almost tempted to buy a few cases just for that reason. As an added plus, the labels practically peel themselves off.
In the end, I'd prefer more by way of hop bitterness and nose, but as it stands American Ale is pretty hard to beat in the ≈$20/24 price segment.Overall Rating: B-
EDIT: I should note that I'm not getting any of the adjunct-funk that some people claim to be tasting. I think the American Ale gets an unfair pounding solely because it's got "Budweiser" stamped on the bottle. If this had a "boutique brand" label on it, I'd bet money people would be singing the praises.
As I said in the review, it's not a bad brew at all, especially when one considers the price and the benefit of cool bottles. I don't feel let down sipping on this. It doesn't blow my mind like 90 minute IPA, but for what it is (ie: a lower-priced, entry level beer), it's quite good.