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Beer Review:
Peroni Nastro Azzurro
Rome, Italy
By: George Zhen

January 2, 2005

(Naples, Italy) - Arriving in Italy, I was a bit suspect about the beer prospects. Having less-than-exciting encounters with brews that rim the Mediterranean Ocean, the light lager that is Peroni Nastro Azzurro brought with it little hope.

The green bottle that Nastro Azzurro arrives in showcases a beer so light in color that one could read the newspaper through it. Upon opening, the brew belches forth the skunky smell of lager made from turd. Just putrid, like a water treatment plant or an algae basin.

Immediately, all hopes of a pleasant beer experience are erased, replaced with the unpleasant memories of Native Lager and/or Estrella Galacia. It seems that Nastro Azzurro translates into "Nasty Ass Beer."

Nastro Azzurro pours like water and has the head to match. While examining the light, golden color, I watched as a few desperate bubbles raced their way to the top in hopes of escape. No lacing, webbing, or resonance of any kind were left behind as this brew was hopelessly consumed.

How to describe the taste: There is none. But unlike the taste-lacking Sagres or Kronenbourg 1664, there is nothing redeemingly drinkable about this lack of character. In fact, the AFTERtaste of bad lager does its best to warn you to not take another sip. This reviewer, however, is committed to the task, and downed his share in order to deliver this review.

At 4.7% ABV, Nastro Azzurro is rather pedestrian in the punch department. One would have to drink a whole bunch of these in order to get buzzed, and it's hard to imagine someone with that kind of fortitude. I had 3, and I can't say I felt anything special.

I'm not giving up on Italian beer as of yet, but the fact is Peroni Nastro Azzurro is not a great representative for a country with such a reputation for great cuisine. Perhaps Nastro Azzurro is better closer to the brewery, or perhaps it wouldn't spoil if they packaged it in something darker to help protect it from the light. As we sampled it, it ranked among the worst beers we have had, and we won't be subjecting ourselves to this kind of torture anytime soon. The advice here is that you shouldn't either.

Beer Tasting Scorecard
Peroni Nastro Azzurro
Attribute Score
Head 0
Color 1
Taste 0
Flavor 0
Effect 1
Overall Score 0.4

For more information on Peroni Nastro Azzurro, visit their website at

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