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The Best and Shitty Beers

As a college student, sometimes we can’t afford to spend too much money on certain things, you may reach for the generic coffee when you’re at Walmart, you may go to Taco Bell for the $5 box, the list goes on and on. As a senior who has drunk lots of different cheap beers over the years, I have decided to make a list of the best and worst cheap beers out there. 

A couple of rules that I followed for this list; the beer needs to be cheap (under 25 dollars for a 30 rack). Secondly, this is a list for beers, no White Claws, Naturdays, and Mike’s Hard Drinks, will be on the list, that’s a list for a different day. Lastly, I didn’t put beers like Bud Light, Corona or Dos Equis because while they are ‘cheap’, they don’t fit the aesthetic of cheap, grimy beers. If there’s a beer that’s not on the list that you think should be on this list, I’ll try to update my list if you Venmo me,( maumau43 😉 Also, we’re still in a pandemic so don’t be an idiot and have a party trying this list and also, drink responsibly. A trip on the ‘WooWoo Wagon’ is very expensive due to lack of accessible healthcare in America and if you’re reading this list, you’re trying to save money not spend it.  


Red Dog- Everyone remembers their first Red Dog, it’s one of the cheapest beers on our list, and for good reason. One of the major reasons it’s so low on our list is mainly because of inconsistent taste. Some have described the tasty as fruity and bad while others flat out say it’s horrible and..well…bad. If you’re looking for something for your weekend, please don’t get Red Dog, it’s not worth it


Hamm’s- just no. like no. If it’s a choice between this or Red Dog, just stay sober for the night and order a pizza.


Milwaukee’s Best- It’s not the best as the title claims, not even freezing this beer can save it. However, it’s so bad that it makes it somewhat good? But like your high school ex who cheated on you with Becky or Chad (or both), you can do better. 


Busch- Busssscccchhhh, the beer that almost everyone from the Midwest likes for some reason. Maybe being from being a Puerto Rican from Texas, my tastebuds didn’t adjust to the taste but it’s not good, I know that I probably pissed off every football nerd in the Midwest that yells at their T.V every time Aaron Rodgers gets sacked and says that they can ‘make that pass in their sleep’ but it tastes like absolute dog water. I understand that I probably need to try it again so please venmo me. 


Keystone Light- If you need a beer to do the job of getting you lit, Keystone Light does the job but that’s it. It’s not a bad beer, it’s actually somewhat drinkable. but that’s it, it’s not bad nor good, no iconic taste or anything. If you just want to drink for cheap, this is your beer. I do recommend drinking this beer cold as drinking this warm will make you think about your life choices and that’s the last thing you want when you’re drinking a ‘stone.   


Rolling Rock- While doing some research on this, I stumbled upon an article by Nick Hines titled ‘11 Cheap American Beers Ranked From Awful to Drinkable’ and the way he talks about Rolling Rock is the best way I have ever heard this beer been described, “Rolling Rock is high school reincarnated for me. It tastes of angst and raging hormones”, sometimes, you want that but most of the time, trust me, you don’t but when you do, this is a good beer to drink with Sum 41 playing in the background. 


Natural Light- Natty Light is an iconic beer to me, I feel like that everyone has had Natty Light, and just like the band U2, no one wants to say it’s their favorite beer and will dismiss it but when offered, they will drink it without any hesitance. It’s slightly too bread-like to me and sometimes a bit on the watery side but if you gave me one, I will happily shotgun that with you. (Their seltzer is a godsend btw)  


Miller High Life- titled ‘The champagne of Beers’, this is actually a good cheap beer. Most cheap beers can have an inconsistent taste to them but with Miller, 9/10 times, you know what you’re getting. Smooth, light, and one of the better-shotgunning beers in the market, the only negative about this beer is that aftertaste can be wicked sometimes but when you’re having fun with your friends who undoubtedly only play smash because it’s “the best fighting game in the world”, or who smashes beer cans on their head (there’s no in-between), who cares? 


Old Milwaukee- I might be biased but I think Old Milwaukee is one of the best cheap beers out there, it’s a smooth beer that while sometimes, it has a bit of a slightly metallic acid taste to it, you won’t be called a high schooler for buying it at your local liquor store because the main audience of this beer is 50-year-olds who work on their bikes all the time but never ride them or college students that drink to feel something…anything… , either way, it’s a good beer. P.S, this is a great shower beer too so if you wanted to soap down and drink up, here’s the beer for you. I also have a feeling that philosophy professors drink this beer when grading papers, I just get that vibe. 


PBR- The top of our list, PBR is a beer that is synonymous with indie hipsters that blast Mac DeMarco while smoking cigs outside some random porch at 1:30am contemplating life and wondering about our place in the stars. It’s a bit on the heavier side for me but who cares? This is an amazingly cheap beer that can get away with hanging out with the big boys and the IPAs at a local microbrewery. You will fit in at any Beloit College/C-Haus event, just remember when you drink this beer, that you are a real, raw, perfect indie hipster solely because you have all of the Arctic Monkeys b-sides playing on your suitcase record player and you know that Tame Impala isn’t a band, it’s just one guy.   

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