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Monday, November 23, 2009

Six-Pack Saviors: Our experts test out the best and worst light beers on the market

by Elizabeth Sanchez

Chugging a couple of beers isn't so bad—as long as you don't overdo it and you stick with the light stuff whenever possible. But with so many brands out there, how do you separate the swill from the swell? To help you out, we recently tried many of the light beers on the market (it wasn't exactly our hardest day on the job). Check out the results to see how your favorite light brew did.


Beck's Premier Light
Calories: 64
Total carbs: 3.2 g
Alcohol content: 2.3%

Beck's Light delivers a mere 64 calories and the crisp taste you would expect from a premier brand. As for the taste, it's light and refreshing, with a brisk, natural flavor. Perfect for a hot summer day.

Corona Light
Calories: 105
Total carbs: 5 g
Alcohol content: n/a

Amazingly, it tastes as flavorful as Corona Extra. This beer's strong flavor is completely satisfying, so you'll want to savor the smooth taste by sipping, not chugging, through the night.

Yuengling Light Lager
Calories: 99
Total carbs: 8.5 g
Alcohol content: 3.6%

With its caramel color (a sign of antioxidants), this was an easy favorite among our tasters. Drink it at the bar, or order it with a thick steak or juicy burger.

Sam Adams Light
Calories: 119
Total carbs: 9.6g
Alcohol content: 4%

Great amber coloring and a rich taste that reminded some on our staff of fresh fruit-especially berries. Plus, unlike the original, Sam Light has no mouth-souring aftertaste.

Coors Light
Calories: 102
Total carbs: 5g
Alcohol content: 4.2%

Coors Light has the slightly nutty, yeasty flavor of fresh-baked bread. It's light and refreshing-like ginger ale with a bigger bite-so it's hard to drink your fill of this bar standby.

Amstel Light
Calories: 95
Total carbs: 5g
Alcohol content: 3.5%

Light beer for the guy who considers himself a connoisseur, or for beer snobs looking for a "real man's beer." A complete winner-full of zest and whole-grain taste, with no weird aftertaste.

Bud Light
Calories: 110
Total carbs: 6.6g
Alcohol content: 4.2%

Bud Light is the ideal sipping beer, meaning it tastes as good in the ninth inning as it does in the first. This stadium beer washes down dogs and chips with minimal aftertaste.


Labatt Blue Light
Calories: 108
Carbs: 7.6 g
Alcohol content: 4.0%

Takes you back to the good-old college days-but in this case, that's not such a good thing. The watery, weak flavor makes this brew perfect for a drinking game, but not for much else.

Rock Green Light
Calories: 83
Total carbs: 2.4 g
Alcohol content: 3.7%

This barely-amber brew tastes like rainwater after it's traveled through your roof gutters. Even though it's heavily carbonated, there's little real beer flavor.

Heineken Light
Calories: 99
Total carbs: 6.8 g
Alcohol content: 3.5%

This is the kind of beer you'd expect to find in your girlfriend's fridge. It tastes like a hops-flavored seltzer and has a bitter bite, but if it helps her feel like one of the guys, we're all for it.

Michelob Light
Calories: 134
Carbs: 11.7 g
Alcohol content: 4.3%

Smells like beer-drenched carpet the morning after a rager. Although the taste is mild with a slightly hoppy bite, it still seemed especially generic to our panel.