Review: Heineken Premium Light

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My bottle of Heineken Premium Light arrived in quite beautiful packaging, complete with product info and a nice opener. I'm a sucker for nice packaging, but as I opened the silver flight case I thought to myself, as many people do: Light Beer? What do I know about Light Beer? Other than Amstel Light, I couldn't think of a time where I've actually enjoyed sitting down to a beer that attempts to offer flavor while going easy on the alcohol, calories and carb content. But I was going to go into this with an open mind, even if I heard the purist rants of my brother-in-law in the back of my head.

(My brother-in-law, a professional brewmaster, has been making beer for over 20 years. Hello, Jim.)

I devised a very informal blind taste testing with a few friends. I told them they'd be tasting two light beers and one regular beer. We talked about Heineken's "luxury light" category, which I still don't quite understand but I believe it to be an area where people want quality and flavor and want to "socialize without sacrifice." I have yet to understand this marketing concept, I think it might have been easier to just say "Hey, we're Heineken. This is our attempt to get into the premium category with a light beer. Taste it and let us know what you think." Oh wait, I think that's what they said to me. But I digress...

As it turns out, the beers sampled (Heineken, Amstel Light, Heineken Premium Light) were all very easily identifiable, the latter through the process of elimination. The verdict? It's good. Now, you may not enjoy it if you favor giant hearty big dark beers, but I must say that I prefer my sips on the lighter side (which is why I've always been a big Hefeweizen fan). Lighter in color and body than even Amstel Light, the Premium Light has a great flavor, light body, is still very Heineken, and would pair nicely with food. Will I order it and drink it when I'm out? Absolutely. I've got an expanding waistline I'm trying to keep in check.

14 Responses to “Review: Heineken Premium Light”

  1. Anonymous santos. 

    (laughing) it has been awhile since i've seen such blatant phallic symbolism in packaging and design. it's so obvious, it's practically taunting the 'manly' men to drink it!

  2. Anonymous matt 

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  3. Anonymous matt 

    What I meant to say was oh Santos, that's nothing! Remind me to show you a certain tequila bottle I have sometime :)

  4. Anonymous melissamcgee 

    i would also like to see that tequila bottle...

  5. Anonymous L 

    Hooray! Beer!

  6. Anonymous santos. 

    (laughing morphing to gleeful cackling) ooh, you wouldn't happen to have one of those BIG bottles of asombroso, would you?

  7. Anonymous Frank 

    heineken premium light is good but with an alcohol content of 3.5%, I'll need about thirty of them. Why are they so weak? It dropped more than 2% from original heineken.

  8. Anonymous Matt 

    Frank, I actually thought the same thing but figured "Is that what light means? Light flavor AND alcohol content?"

    Maybe a shot of tequila or two before settling down with a Heineken Light? Sure works for me :)

  9. Anonymous Fireman Dan 

    Tastes Great, Less Filling. Not.
    Hey got your Heineken in my Perrier. You got your Perrier in my Heineken,
    Seriously, it tastes like Heineken, minus the the whole Buzz thing I love so much.
    I'm with Frank and Matt, they're my dawgs.

    I'll stick to the original and rub my buddha.

  10. Anonymous Simon 

    Are you sure its even 3.5%????? I'm usually in the 6-8 beers range to get me drunk. Last night me and my roommate whos probably in the same range, bought a 24 pk. Long story short, I had 16 beers and my roommate gave up after 8 and switched to martinis. I barely even got a buzz. It felt like i was drinking odouls or soda water. I'll probably never buy this beer again.

  11. Anonymous Justin 

    I'll agree, usually six to eight beers will have me feeling nice and buzzed. I can even feel a distinct head change after usually only two beers, but not after these new Heinekens. I can hardly fault Heineken, though, because this type of beer is what they were purposefully trying to create. A Bud Light doesn't do too much toward my drunkeness either, but I tend to stay away from Bud Light as well. I'll drink these new Premium Lights when I'm out on the town and need to drive home or when I'm out to eat. Whenever I'm in my dorm/apartment, I'll be sitting back, listening to my vinyl collection and sipping a Bass Ale, Newcastle Brown, Heineken Dark or a myriad of other fine, mass-produced, dark imports!

  12. Anonymous Jason 

    Justin hit the nail on the head. I enjoy a beer with my meals. Especially a good meal in a fine restaurant. What I don't like is the idea of getting a DUI/DWI for the two beers I had, at that restaurant. I think "Heine" was right on the money with this beer. It tasts incredable (compared to domestic lights), easy on the gut, and I can enjoy it while out. Now about that buzz..someone had some tequila?

  13. Anonymous Kay Kay 

    i think a light beer is supposed to be light, justin and friends it sounds like you might have a problem. if you are that desperate to get a buzz you may want to consider moving your alcoholism in the direction of scotch or just going for straight tequila shots, buying light beer is never going to satisfy that 'i have to get f'in wasted' feeling.

  14. Anonymous Chibby 

    This beer is lame. They should print the alcohol content on the packaging. I bought a 24 pack at Costco, because it was the only light beer they had. Other light beers like Miller, have about 4.2% alcohol. I was assuming it was somewhere in the 4% range, like most light beer. What's the point? One might as well drink water.

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  • I'm Matt Armendariz
  • From Los Angeles, California
  • A man with a passion for good food and a wonderful life with a dash of irreverence. Read at your own risk. Advertising director by day, wino by night. All photos on this site by Matt Armendariz.
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