RATHER BUBBLY, crystalline clear, and almost-corn yellow, Corona Extra looks almost like a champagne gone chardonnay. Regrettably, though, it tastes like less than either and only marginally different from any standard American adjunct lager. In at least one respect this is a good thing: clear-bottled beers such as this are especially vulnerable to light damage, so one feels almost lucky for a sample that isn’t irredeemably skunked. (It defies logic that this weakness has somehow been spun into an iconic and marketable strength, but so goes the macro industry.)
Aside from taking this spin at radiation roulette, Corona is a resounding bore. Its aromas are of diluted pale malts, a little rice, and lemon water. The wavy head does have a little more durability than most adjunct lagers, but lacing is minimal and the overall mouthfeel is thin, approximating seltzer halfway to being flat. Aside from a brief citric splash the midsection is rather vacant, leaving one wondering how some peppery hops and sharper phenols in the carbonation might have elevated this to a passing grade without having to resort to the oft-foisted lime wedges. A faded finish blurs light corn graininess with a cast of medicinal alcohol that emerges as soon as the beer rises beyond glass-fogging chill. Admittedly, when un-skunked there is no single defect that makes Corona entirely unpalatable, but it also hardly ranks above well water for character and depth.
Served: 12 oz bottled March 19, 2012