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July 22, 2008

I don't drink Natty Boh

There, I said it.

Wanna know why? I'll tell ya why ...

natty bohIt's not good beer. That's why. It's cheap and it tastes cheap and I don't care that it used to be brewed here. It's not anymore. So I'm not supporting a local brewery if I did drink it either.

The only reason I'd drink a Boh is if I was hard up for cash or if a friend bought one for me at a bar.

I don't buy into the whole hipster "it's cool to drink Boh" mentality either.

I'd like to think I haven't done stuff because "it's cool to do it" since middle school.

And as far as cheap beers go, there are other cheap beers out there that taste better than Boh.

So there, I said it. And I'll stand behind it.

Props to Gutter Magazine (the new issue is out now) for calling out Boh too.

(Photo by Amy Davis/Sun photographer) 

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 9:41 AM | | Comments (21)
Categories: Random stuff


Natty Boh is barely beer. It tastes like rain water that was collected in old tin cans...The whole hip trend is all about doing stuff that makes you miserable. Listening to music you hate, going to shows in places that are unbearably hot, riding bikes that have no gears...drinking Boh goes along with that.

I couldn't disagree more. Boh is no worse than Bud/Miller/Coors, which are also barely beer. Now, I will admit that I don't drink a whole lot of Natty Boh, but when it's 98 degrees outside and I want a nice cold one, I will reach for a Boh before I reach for any of those other brands.

It's no different that being in Chicago and drinking Old Style, Texas and drinking Shiner, Pittsburgh and drinking Iron City, and the many other cities that have a beer associated with them.

Now...if we want to go crazy...let's break out the Boh Ice!

I can understand someone who is not from here not drinking Boh, but for those who grew up here, its pretty ingrained in us to drink and (at least profess) love for Boh even if it kind of sucks.

The better question is whether the loyalty is still owed to the label. After all, National breweries are gone and Natty Boh has not been brewed here for quite a long time. I don't understand why none of the microbreweries here have tried to license the images to promote a true local beer.

Boh actually isn't quite as bad as it was back in the mid 1980s (before it became hip). But even then it was still a little bit better than National Premium (still being made at that time). I remember trying to drink a can of NP with my dad circa 1985 and we just couldn't do it. Down the drain it went. Made me wonder what it tasted like when it was supposedly a decent beer back in the day. I'll take the Mr. Boh icon any day but I wouldn't drink what's in those cans even if they gave it away.

the fact is that it was a great tasting beer WHEN IT USED BALTIMORE TAP WATER!! It's now brewed in Pennsyltucky or somewhere and tastes like rusty swill...i think the only reason they still brew it is for the suckers in Mobtown that think it looks good in their hand.

So Don, what you're saying is, "Boh in hand = hole in brain."

actually, back in the early 70's national premium was not bad at all. had good body and tasted like a premium beer (while nat boh was always a cheaper varity and i agree with esh about cities local breweries, back then, boh fit in.)

I agree with you Boh is not good beer.

As for Gutter I might consider reading it if it wasn't all flash.

That's my boy.

Hear hear, if you want to taste the old style, grab a McHenry, I hear they use the old recipe, even with Bmore tap water.

We've got too many great local beers to mess with the imposter.


Yeah,Sam,Boh is like a boozer's status symbol...

Even though I am much too young to remember the beer being brewed here, I remember my grandfather drinking the stuff. Add to that some of the various Boh memorabilia he has and I have from him, then the nostalgic connection becomes all too obvious. Lately, though, there is the "It's trendy to drink Boh." Sometimes, though, it is entertainment to remind yourself how bad beer can be.

If you're not from Baltimore--even if you are trying to be a pathetic hipster--it's pretty clear why you would not drink it. The beer is just as bad as the watered down swill that is Coors, Miller Lite, or Bud Light, but the former are known commodities. They are bad commodities, but well-known.

As others said, though, if you want to really know how it tasted when it was good, then buy McHenry. A perfectly enjoyable beer that is harder to find on tap these days, by the way. (My kingdom for the answer to that conundrum.)

A friend of mine swears up and down that Boh out of the can tastes like celery. I don't so much agree but I do feel as though Boh out of the can tastes like metal, or water metal, which would make it mercury, which can lead to insanity if ingested.

Out of the BOTTLE it's a bit better, and it has those nifty puzzles. But the only reason anyone gives a rip about it is because of the stupid Boh Guy, or drink it to adhere to all of the lifestyle choices illustrated by Alf Fan.

Fab Five Friday: Cheap beers. Caveat: we know they suck, but drink them anyway.

So this is some sort of uber-hipster thing?

Boh is the local, blue collar affordable beer --- thus looked down upon by those who can afford better --- thus picked up by the hipsters so they can look down upon the yuppies --- thus derided by the uber-hipster because its now seen as hipsters trying too hard.

Yay, uber-hipsters!

Did I get that about right?

I need a drink. Oh, look at this, a nice cold Boh!

The old Boh had a hige place in my family. It was the number 1 beer the blue collar patrons requested at my grandparents' bar. People here saw it as a symbol of beer for the working class, brewed by the working class. You could walk to what is now American Harry's, throw down a few quarters and walk back to your stoop with a few pitchers of Boh. My grandfather was buried with a can saved from one of the last cases brewed here.

But drinking Boh not brewed here reminds me of people who shell out hundreds of bucks for a throw-back jersey. Unless it was your grandfather's from his days of cheering on Brooks in action, you are just trying too hard.

I agree with the previous posters that McHenry is more true to the old Boh than anything else. And I'm down with supporting the local brew.

I admit to having some Boh memorabila, but that is more of an omage to my family than a jump on the hipster, throw-back bandwagon.

now that Bud is Belgian - Clipper City brews all the way. McHenry and BaltoMarzHon.

I drink it because it's cheap. No, it's not great (Is miller, bud or coors? what cheap beer is?), but if I want to knock back 16 beers, I'm not always going to be drinking McHenry, Yeungling or Newcastle. I can't afford that 7 days a week! Those worrying about being associated with hipsters are as bad as the hipsters themselves.

If you don't like Boh you shouldn't live in Baltimore, you're probably a communist, and you probably can't see the floor because your nose it pointing towards the sky...

Boh Baby!

I'm confushed: Gutter makes fun of uber-hipsters? Who will read it or be profiled in it if they keep that up?

yeah, i could care less about the hipster aspect, as i have a rare medical condition that won't let me drink [urine] water for long periods of time. i said [urine] water because i probably can't write [yellow snow].

although i do admire the conviction of all the people i see with Boh tattoos.

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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