The 25 Worst Beers in the World

by: Esteban On  Wednesday, January 30, 2013
Tags:  Alcohol   Beer   Booze   Drink  

worst beers in the world

There are lots of lists out there that focus on the best beers in the world. And while those are often informative, the fact is that there are hundreds of delicious brews out there worthy of your consumption, and it really doesn’t matter all that much if a beer is the best. It therefore seems more useful to me to know which beers I ought to avoid at all costs. That’s why I put together this list.

The source material? Well, you’ll be relieved to know I didn’t go out and sample every one of the worst beers in the world. (I’ll do a lot of things for money, but not that.) Instead, I started with the 25 worst beers over at RateBeer.com and the 25 worst beers over at BeerAdvocate.com. These are the two main user-driven beer-rating sites on the English-speaking interwebs, and they both use the same basic method for ranking user ratings (though the actual equations are different).

So I took the rankings from the two sites and averaged them together. (Thus, if I beer was ranked #2 on RateBeer.com and #4 on BeerAdvocate.com it got a score of 3.) If a beer was on the top 25 on one list but didn’t crack the top 50 of the other it was automatically disqualified. Then, if there was a tie between beers (and there were), the beer on which the two lists were closer together was ranked higher (i.e. worse). Why? Because what we’re looking for here is a consensus—the most amount of people who agree that a particular beer really, really sucks. My method isn’t scientific (so chill out, math people), but it gives us a rough idea.

Anyway, the result is a list of the worst beers your hard-earned money can (but should never) buy. For each entry we’ll have where the beer ranks on RateBeer.com (RB) and BeerAdvocate.com (BA), just so you get an idea of the variation in opinion.

Ready to go? Cool. Let’s hit it.

 

25. Hurricane High Gravity Lager

25 hurricane high gravity later

RB Rank: 21

BA Rank: 42

What is “high gravity” beer? Basically, it’s beer that is denser than regular beer relative to water. Quality HG beers are thicker and often intended to be good sipping beverages. Low quality malt liquor HG beers are just intended to have more alcohol and be cheap. (I’ll let you guess what AB is going for with Hurricane, here.)

 

24. Rock Green Light

24 rock green light - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 37

BA Rank: 26

Rolling Rock is light enough already. Making it even lighter results in a beer that is among the worst in the world.

 

23. Milwaukee's Best Ice

23 milwaukee's best ice - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 20

BA Rank: 38

Any time you see the word “ice” appended to the back of a beer name you know you’re in trouble. Basically these brews borrow a method used in Germany to produce Eisbock beers, in which they partially freeze a doppelbock and remove the ice to make a more concentrated, alcoholic, and flavorful beer. Unfortunately, when the method is used on crappy American adjust-laden pale lagers, the alcohol content gets higher but the flavor gets worse.

 

22. Beer 30 Light

22 beer 30 light - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 25

BA Rank: 31

Who would have thought a beer with that clever name (which suggests it’s always appropriate to have a cold one, no matter the time or place) would be so terrible?

 

21. Budweiser Chelada

21 budweier chelada - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 18

BA Rank: 33

Beer-based mixed drinks have long been popular in Mexico, where they are called “Micheladas.” The original Michelada is just beer, lime juice, and salt, but over time it’s evolved and any number of juices and sauces have been added. For example, there’s the Cubana, which has beer, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, chile, and salt. And there’s the Clamato, which has beer, clam juice, and tomato juice.

Now, the Clamato version doesn’t sound appealing to even with premium ingredients. But the Budweiser version sounds absolutely dreadful.

 

20. Coors Light

20 coors light - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 29

BA Rank: 22

I find it very hard to believe that Bud Chelada is not worse than Coors Light. I mean, I’m not a fan of the silver bullet, but I would probably drink it if it were the only beer left on earth. I’m not sure I could say that for Bud Chelada. But you know, who am I to contradict the masses?

 

19. Keystone Ice

19 keystone ice - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 32

BA Rank: 10

See, when you see “Ice” in the title, it’s probably a bad thing.

 

18. Bud Ice

18 bud ice - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 24

BA Rank: 18

Um, ditto what I just said for #19.

 

17. Keystone Premium

17 keystone premium - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 16

BA Rank: 25

Interestingly, appending a beer name with “Premium” is also a very bad sign. If a beer really is premium, they probably aren’t going to have to tell you that. You’ll already know. So if someone says it’s premium, 95% of the time it’s just a marketing ploy and there aint nothing premium about it.

 

16. Busch Beer

16 busch beer - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 17

BA Rank: 20

Oh, Busch beer. It looks so cool and refreshing in those old commercials where somebody would literally pull a six pack of cans out of a clear mountain stream. But of course the beer originated in St. Louis, where there are no mountains. So this one is a fraud any way you look at it.

 

15. Corona Light

15 corona light - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 28

BA Rank: 7

Yeah, because the regular Corona is just too bold for me.

 

14. Sleeman Clear

14 sleeman clear - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 5

BA Rank: 24

Whoever came up with this beer name must surely be out of work right now. This sounds more like an anti-acne ointment than a beer.

Incidentally, this beer and the previous entry, Corona Light, are the only entries on the list that aren’t American. Corona Light is Mexican, obviously, and Sleeman Clear is Canadian.

 

13. MGD Light 64

13 mgd light 64 - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 13

BA Rank: 16

This new trend of putting the calories in the name of the beer is hilarious. It’s like a little arms race among major brewers, only the goal is to see how low they can go. I wonder if anyone will ever just be like, “f–k it, here’s a 0 calorie beer-like beverage. It tastes like garbage, but you all will drink anything.”

12. Olde English 800

12 olde english 800 malt liquor - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 1

BA Rank: 27

Here’s another one that’s a little dubious. I find it hard to believe that Olde English is better than some of the brews that follow. Then again, I also doubt it is the worst beer in the world (as per the RB rank). But whatever my feelings, the numbers don’t allow me to rank it any higher than 12. So here we are. (And frankly, being the 12th worst beer in the world is still really bad.)

 

11. Keystone Light

11 keystone light - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 14

BA Rank: 9

Much like Corona, the original Keystone just proved way to bold and flavorful, so they had to tone it down a bit.

 

10. Milwaukee's Best Light

10 milwaukee's best - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 10

BA Rank: 13

Ditto what I just said about Keystone Light. I mean, have you ever had “The Beast”? It’s terrible. I can only imagine what the light version tastes like.

 

9. Bud Light

9 bud light - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 12

BA Rank: 11

As much as I dislike Bud Light (if someone leaves it in my fridge I use it to wash the dog poop off my shoes), I suspect I’d pick this over Olde English any day of the week. But, again, “the people” have spoken.

If I had to guess, I say people base their ratings reflect what they perceive the intention of the manufacturers to be. Thus, since it almost seems like Miller is trying to make Olde Milwaukee hilariously bad, they go easier on it. Meanwhile, since AB tries to pass Bud Light off as a legitimate beer, people take them to task when rating the beer. So in the end, it’s like someone asking, what’s better–Bug Light or motor oil? The obvious answer is Bud Light, but no one ever expected you to like motor oil.

 

8. Busch Light

8 busch light - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 11

BA Rank: 12

Did you know that the best way to get snails out of your garden is to place cups of beer in your flower bed? The snails are attracted to the suds, but they can’t get out of the cup and just drown.

Well, I don’t think this trick would work if you used Busch Light.

 

7. Milwaukee's Best Premium

7 milwaukee's best premium - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 4

BA Rank: 17

See, when they say “Premium,” they actually mean worse. Very tricky.

 

6. Busch Ice

6 busch ice - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 7

BA Rank: 14

Poor Busch Beer. Whatever the version, people just do not like it.

 

5. Bud Light Chelada

5 bud light chelada - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 9

BA Rank: 3

You know what’s worse than Budweiser Chelada? Bud Light Chelada. (You would think watered down nastiness would be preferred to full flavor nastiness, but apparently not.

 

4. Michelob Ultra

4 michelob ultra - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 6

BA Rank: 6

I agree that this is simply a ridiculous beer that should not exist. But I’m not sure I would put it at #4. Nevertheless, there was a strong consensus on this one that I could not ignore.

 

3. Budweiser Select 55

3 budweiser select 55 - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 8

BA Rank: 1

Bud Select is a remarkably flavorless beer. I can’t even imagine what this “light” version would taste like.

 

2. Natural Ice

2 natural ice - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 3

BA Rank: 5

Coming in at #2 is Natty Ice. As you can see, there was a strong consensus that this is simply a very, very bad beer.

So who is the #1 worst beer in the world? How about Natty Ice’s cousin…

 

1. Natural Light

1 natural natty light - worst beers in the world

RB Rank: 2

BA Rank: 2

Natty Light. I’m always amazed that Anheuser-Busch would even want their name associated with this product by placing their logo on the label. I mean, they obviously have a lot of other products on this list, but Natty Light almost makes Michelob Ultra seem good. And that’s hard to do.

Anyway, there was a very strong consensus on this beer. The users of RateBeer.com and BeerAdvocate.com both ranked this as the second worst beer in the world, and that was enough to get Natty Light the top spot on my list.

 

If you love beer and you don’t regularly visit either RateBeer.com or BeerAdvocate.com, you’re missing out. Personally I prefer BeerAdvocate, but either one is a good place to figure out which beers are worth trying and which ought to be avoided.

 





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