Heineken Premium Light

Heineken LightTonight, as promised, I drank the Heineken Premium Light from the press kit I was sent, and I am writing up the review. The premise, of course, is that this is a low-carb beer (with only 99 calories) that still maintains the full taste and smoothness of a "regular" beer.

Let’s cover it all. I like the bottle and labeling; less is more in this case. The labels are transparent stick-ons, so while not painted onto the bottle, still look good. The bottle itself seems taller and thinner than a regular Heineken bottle, but I’m comparing from memory so might be off. Good packaging, it’ll catch the consumer’s eye.

Appearance: Crystal clear in the glass. Pale yellow with a tinge of gold, and a fizzy white head on the top.

Smell: A little corn, a bit grassy. Has that crisp-bitter aroma I associate with the Euro light lager. No skunkiness (hey, I worry, the bottle was green).

Taste: Crisp and a little bitter (like the smell). The bitterness has that almost-steely quality to it that I also noticed in the Skinny Dip I had a week or so ago; perhaps it’s a characteristic of these newer low carb beers? Hops are muted. It’s richer and better than an American light lager, that’s for sure.

Mouthfeel: Very thin, a little watery. Carbonation is a bit high—it comes off as sparkly or prickly in the mouth.

Overall, it’s not bad, but I think you need to be into the light/low-carb beer scene to really get into it. If you like Heineken, or Euro light lagers, you’ll like this. Personally, I’ll drink it, if offered, but I likely wouldn’t be buying it for myself. But that’s not a slam against Heineken; I wasn’t overly impressed enough with Skinny Dip to buy that again, either.

Finally, I’ll post the press release that came with the press kit as well, sometime this weekend.


  1. "Watery" hits the nail on the head – it looks, smells, and tastes like tap water has been added to a bottle of its big brother.

    No indication on the label of its strength – any ideas?

  2. Overall, I’m not too surprised with the taste of this brew. What can you expect from Heineken’s economic-slide other than, more or less, an "American-styled light lager" in the traditional green bottle? I kid, I kid! It’s not THAT bad, but it’s also not too good a brew either. It’s a little too watery, a little too light on the hops, and has what seems to be VERY low alcoholic content (not a terribly bad thing if the taste wasn’t so lacking.) In fact, it is very reminiscent of an American light lager which, by the way, should bode well for Heineken’s success in the US.

  3. Yes, an answer please someone: "No indication on the label of its strength – any ideas?"

  4. I had never seen any advertising for Heineken Light when I first came across it last week. I still haven’t. But I purchased a six-pack, because I do like regular Heineken on occasion. It was certainly light, and seemed palatable and refreshing. Today, however, I purchased a 12er on sale at a different store, and am disappointed. Perhaps it wasn’t refrigerated properly during transport, or maybe it was old and stale… but the taste of this batch reminds me of some nasty domestic so-called "premium" beer from a can… maybe even Bud. Yuck.

    My perceptions were not colored by marketing, since I had not been exposed to any. I don’t agree with those who say it’s just a watered-down version of the real Heineken; to me, it is qualitatively different.

    Thanks for your invaluable service!

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