Grandma had GOOD TASTE and China proves it!

When my Grandma Anna, born 1896, was asked what kept her going so strong, she always had one answer: Pabst Blue Ribbon. She drank Pabst Blue Ribbon over ice. It kept her going until she was 96 years old. I don’t think she ever drank more than two in one night. Well, maybe once or twice, but that’s another long story.

Most of beer and wine drinkers are semi-snobs. We know what we like and we’re going to tell you about it. Pabst Blue Ribbon has “made themselves over” more than any branded product in history. They are a genius of staying alive with a beer that tastes like pee. (Yes, George even worse than Bud)

PBR was first introduced in 1882. They are survivors. The first print ad I can find was in 1900 when folks were into elixirs and extracts. Over the counter cocaine, morphine and alcohol worked wonders on your body, but mainly they were working on your brain. If you had indigestion they had the cure and here it is:
Pabst Extract
In 1913, PBR changed their image again. Notice the suited guys with the nice small glasses. This isn’t like the Bud image of grabbing a long-neck and chugging it down while hoping Jimmy Johnson crashes on the next corner. No sir, Pabst had become a “Beer of Quality.”
Pabst 2

After surviving prohibition PBR re-made themselves again. In 1936 PBR was introduced in the innovative “Tapacan.” A new way to drink beer and learn how to beer-can bowl too.
Pabst 3

Pabst decided to take on a racist tone in 1938 and show what the rich people with servants were drinking. Of  course we had to make sure our servant had that nice genteel slang. Don’t ax me why they did that.
Pabst 4

In 1940 men did wear suits and ties to a baseball game, but PBR wanted you to know they loved drinking beer while watching the Cubs lose another game. Bottle or can, you would feel like a winner even though you’re team wasn’t. (and still isn’t)
Pabst 5
That same year, 1940, Pabst did another innovative ad. This one for the ladies who also could enjoy a PBR. Another ad in color. Three decades later Pepsi did a similar blindfold taste test.
Pabst 6

It was 1942, the war was looming. Not enough rich guys to drink beer so Pabst went after the tired, the poor, the hungry. Middle of the road folks could also now drink PBR. And, way before the Colonel, we discover that Pabst has 33 secret ingredients.
Pabst 7

Celebrity endorsements and cool looking tennis geeks started advertising PBR in 1945. These 33 unique beer flavors (I didn’t realize pee had more than one flavor) could now be enjoyed by all.
Pabst 8

In 1947 Pabst allowed white servants to get a say-so. And this one knows good beer, too.
Pabst 9

At the close of the ‘50s, PBR returned to the middle-class folks and captured a fisherman showing off his best catch of the day. Of course it’s PBR in a can that now tastes like catfish-pee.
Pabst 10

 OMG, if Gregory Peck and Bob Hope drink PBR then I must be wrong.
Pabst 11


Pabst 12

Those wonderful ‘50s, when woman dressed up to go to the grocery store. Lord know if they are going to supply the party favors, they better buy PBR.  If you can read the small print I think today’s woman would be insulted by the line that says Pabst is perfect for bedtime. He-he-he.
Pabst 13


1963   Pabst broke color barriers with this ad showing us that light-skinned African-Americans actually drink Pabst too. And this was near the end of print-ads for beer. They switched to TV so we could see men drinking PBR while riding bulls, hitting home runs, racing cars, bowling, getting tackled,  dunking and sitting around drinking beer and laughing uncontrollably.
Pabst 14



PBR has moved to China, designed a spectacular bottle and used the fact that Chinese people are enamored with ribbons. The advertising advises one to drink this incredible beer (which now tastes like Shar Pei pee) out of a champagne flute.

This beer in this bottle in China sells for (drum-roll please) $44. (My grandma knew damn good beer)
Pabst Blue Ribbon

About bakoheat

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4 Responses to Grandma had GOOD TASTE and China proves it!

  1. Robert D. Levinson says:

    I always loved the Hamm’s beer commercials with animated bears fishing in the “land of sky blue waters.” Try to get that song out of your head. Is Hamm’s defunct?

    • bakoheat says:

      I loved that song. The bear was cool. They were heavy advertisers on WGN hosting the Sox and Cubs. Hamms hasn’t had made beer for years, but they sold the name to Miller/Coors and they produce a small amount of Hamms for the Midwest consumers. Three early TV beer commercials that have stuck with me are the Hamms bear (from the land of sky blue waters comes a beer refreshing). PBE with their iconic “Whadda you have?” and the Carlings Black Label beer song.

  2. Diane Frey says:

    Hey Mabel – Black Label. I drank a few of those in my younger day.

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