Tasting Notes and Review of Corona Extra

The lime may be the best part of this Mexican lager

Corona Extra
Christopher.Michel/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

Corona is one of the best-known names in today's beer world and Corona Extra is the flagship of the brand. It is #1 on the list of best-selling imports on the U.S. market and while many drinkers love its refreshing taste, it is definitely not a favorite among serious beer drinkers.

Corona has been brewed in Mexico since 1925. The brand made its United States debut in 1981 and, through clever marketing, it quickly became a favorite beer among American drinkers. 

What's up with the Lime?

If you have ever ordered a bottle of Corona, then you undoubtedly know that it is served with a lime wedge stuffed in the neck. Why is that? No one knows and that is the crazy part.

As is customary in the bar scene, there are a number of rumors about why the lime became necessary to drink a Corona. Some say that it was a bartender's challenge to start a new trend while conspiracy theorists spread the story that it was to first added to disinfect the rim.

Still, others believe that it was a very well planned marketing ploy. Everyone can admit that Corona is great at marketing. They have an image and they portray that everywhere they can. It is a perfect example of Branding 101 and Corona is just as good at it as Budweiser and Jack Daniels. Whether a genius marketing executive added the lime or not, we may never know.

Yet another theory that is jokingly passed around by beer geeks is that the lime is necessary to disguise Corona's lack of flavor. It does not help that this lager comes in a clear bottle and is associated with lazy days on a sunny beach. These two factors - clear and sun - can quickly lead to skunked beer and, in this case, a lime probably is necessary.

No matter how it came about, here is what American drinkers should know: if you order a Corona, it will come with a lime. Bartenders should also assume that every patron who orders a Corona is going to expect a lime wedge.

The Review of Corona Extra

Despite being widely available and, according to their website, the world's fifth best-selling brand, Corona has managed to maintain an image as the alternative to the usual.

It's hard to say why exactly. Though the bartenders' custom of shoving a lime wedge in a bottle before handing it to the customer might have something to do with it. If you are used to light or flavorless American lager and suddenly you are faced with limeade disguised as beer, then you might think it pretty exotic.

I did this tasting without the fruit.

Tasting Notes

In every way, Corona is a typical American lager. It pours with a pale straw color and is very clear with a medium white head. The nose is subtle with the barest suggestion of hops.

Its flavor is equally subtle with just a bit of sweetness. There is an appreciable lager smack at the end with some lingering hops.

About Corona Extra

  • American-style pale lager. 
  • Refreshing, but so is water. Subtle nose, subtle flavor, no character
  • Brewed by Grupo Modelo of Mexico
  • Imported by Crown Imports of Chicago, Illinois
  • 4.6% ABV
  • Visit Their Website