You’ll soon be able to buy Pabst Blue Ribbon whiskey

It took some journalistic sleuthing, but word is spreading that Pabst Blue Ribbon will start selling its own whiskey this summer. Hang on, I think I feel my inner 25-year-old stirring — she’s psyched and texting all her friends on her flip phone.

Pabst has yet to officially announce the new product’s launch, but a couple of nosy reporters discovered the plans for the new spirit. The first clue came from the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau. Manufacturers must submit new product labels to the Bureau in advance; once approved, the labels are publicly available.

Michigan publication MiBiz spotted the whiskey’s approved filing last week, noting the label was submitted by New Holland Brewing, a Michigan-based brewery and distillery. (Pabst Brewing Company headquarters are in Los Angeles.) Asked for details, New Holland’s president Brett VanderKamp punted to Pabst officials.

Pabst blue ribbon photo
Getty Images | Drew Angerer

The Pabst people were coy with MiBiz, but Food and Wine found a spokesperson to confirm that the rumors were true: PBR’s first whiskey, distilled by New Holland, is on its way.

The whiskey is apparently made mostly from corn and malted barley. There’s nothing unusual about that. What is unusual is the cheeky line on the label that says “aged five seconds.”

The PBR whiskey will be what’s called “white” or “white dog” whiskey — it’s clear in color. By definition, whiskey should age in oak barrels, but no standard applies for how long it needs to age. Five seconds is technically enough time to call this a whiskey.


The finished product clocks in at 40 percent alcohol by volume or 80 proof. That’s pretty standard for booze.

Obviously, a beer and a shot of whiskey is an iconic duo. Maybe Pabst will create its own suite of hangover remedies next: Pabst-branded electrolyte drinks and Pabst ibuprofen to chase away the punishments of drinking too much PBR beer and, soon, PBR whiskey.

PBR photo
Flickr | Sean Davis

Are you excited to try the new PBR whiskey?