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Anchor Steam Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

1,923 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,923
Hads: 5,474
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 182
Gots: 893 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
California Common / Steam Beer |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-08-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (26) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,923 | Hads: 5,474
Photo of phishgator
3.34/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This poured into a pint glass with a nice deep amber/copper hue. The head is fluffy white and dissapates quite quickly. The aroma is of weak grains, very faint. The taste is o little bitter in the front and in the back. There is the balance of malt and hop in the body, but they just impress. The total brew could be a decent stand by at the bar where not much else is going on. Probably the only one of this style that I've had and I could just not know what I'm looking for. (476 characters)

Photo of blackc5
3.34/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle at about 45F into a pint glass.

A - Dark amber and perfectly clear. Massive cloudlike head that takes forever to fade. Decent lacing. A beauty.

S - Very mild aromas, mostly of malt. Caramel and toast. Some hops sneak in as well.

T - Light in flavor, the lager yeast is immediately noticeable. Malty with just a touch of bitterness from the very mild, floral hops. Mostly dominated by toasty malt.

M - Medium-bodied and smooth. Good, but not outstanding.

D - Finishes easy enough, and no reason not to enjoy more than one. Yet, it is a mild beer and one that left me wanting a bit more in the flavor dept. (630 characters)

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in an imperial pint glass)

A- This beer pours a deep burnt orange with a crystal clear body and a big creamy off-white head. A strong carbonation keeps the head big and rocky.

S-The smell of pale malt with some notes of toasted malt and some noble bitter hops lurk in the background.

T- A very smooth soft pale malt taste with some soft bite of hop bitterness finish this beer. The finish is not real dry but has a bit of a long finish with some malt and hop flavor.

M-A medium mouthfeel with some fizziness but no astringency or alcohol warmth.

D- This beer does have interesting qualities of both lagers and ales and is a very smooth beer. It doesn't have quite the complexity to hold my interest. (725 characters)

Photo of mooseisloose
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Metallic copper in color with a quickly dissapating head. Smell in the bottle is kind of corny. Taste is very lager like with a little more carbonation. More malty than a lager, good carbonation and good tart finish. As a "common" beer it is very good. This is a good sessioner. Goes great with a steak. A good standby beer to keep on hand for your friends. Not exotic but different and more uncommon than common. (413 characters)

Photo of juju7
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A decently made, fairly unremarkable beer. For all the fuss made about the way this beer is made, it doesn`t really deliver anything particularly special. Nice golden copper body with a soft head that fades quickly. Pleasant but maybe characterless nose of soft fruitiness. It`s significantly more bitter than I expected. A touch metallic in the finish. Not a bad beer but nothing to get excited about. (402 characters)

Photo of hopdog
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Drank from 12oz bottle (well, not from the bottle since I poured it into a glass!).

Poured a medium and hazy orange color with an averged sized off white head. Lacing left on the glass. Aromas of caramel and sweet malts. Tastes of the same sweet malts, caramel, and I was getting some citrus.

Notes from 11/21/07 (315 characters)

Photo of treque
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Orange deep pulling his to reddish with creamy white foam very good impoundment residual and carbonation constant heavy.

S: With a slightly sweet aroma

T: Very nice taste of hops with hints of caramel with a little bitter end.

with an average body. (254 characters)

Photo of 99bottles
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I had a pint of this last night and I was a little taken aback. I've had this in a bottle before, but I decided to try it on tap (especially after trying the Anchor Steam Xmas brew--excellent!!) This beer pours a medium orange-brown and had a faint musty smell. The taste was different. Certainly not what I remembered. I sort of think I had some pulled from a really old keg, because it just felt flat, and had macro-like thinness. I know this isn't a thick beer, and I noted light citrus notes of orange or something, but again it just felt 'off'. There were very faint hops, and decent malt, but again, not what I wanted. I'll try to re-review with a well kept bottle, but as it stands, I would not order this on tap again (at least not where I got it last time) (765 characters)

Photo of whisperjet
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one pours a nice clear amber out of the bottle. Well retained finger of foamy white head that leaves good lacing. Really clean looking and bright. Nose is really malty and sweet. Some notes of corn and cereal grain. Tastes corny and light. Kind of wet, like a slightly soggy bowl of cereal; pretty underwhelming I was expecting more. Otherwise goes down smooth. Overall pretty decent. Classic looks-better-than-it-tastes bber (430 characters)

Photo of NYfold
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into Pilsner glass.

Good looking beer, although a bit clear. Burnt sienna in color with hints of orange. Off white head leaves minimal lacing. Attractive bottle design should be noted.

The smell is nice, but not strong. Hops, and traces of oatmeal.

I find the taste is crisp, refreshing, and enjoyable with an oatmeal after-kick reminiscent of wood. The Unique after taste is my favorite note.

Mouthfeel is nothing special.

Pleasant to drink, but that is expectable considering the 4.9%abv. (515 characters)

Photo of AdrenX
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I spotted a six-pack of this Californian Common while I was grocery shopping at Giant Eagle. I was really surprised to find it and have never seen it sold at my local Giant Eagle before. When grocery shopping I always stop and check to see if they have any new micro beers in stock. And to my surprise they had two six-packs left. I grabbed one and rushed home to crack one open.

This beer pours a very clear average size head, which clings to the glass nicely to form a good lace on the glass. Color is any where from copper to amber. Head retention is average and carbonation seemed just right. Has a clean malty and grainy aroma. An average bitterness with a dry aftertaste that just lingers a little. This beer goes down very easy. Nothing real exciting and nothing really wrong either.

After finishing one I was a slightly disappointed. It may have been due to all the expectation and hype I have heard about this famous beer. One consideration to take from my review is that I live in Cleveland, Ohio so this beer may not have been in the best condition. I will definitely be giving this beer another try. Everyone must try an Anchor Steam beer at least once. (1,172 characters)

Photo of falloutsnow
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

From: Piccadilly, Champaign, IL
Date: Bottled 2013-10-19 (3ON on label)
Glass: Tulip

Anchor's Steam Beer is an enjoyably mild, yet modestly flavorful beer that highlights bread-like malt sweetness and subtle hop bittering, leading to a United States counterpart to sessionable German ales. While I've had more flavorful beers in a beer of similar strength, few of them are priced as affordably as this Steam Beer, making it an easy go-to for a balanced, though malty, beer.

Pours a 1cm tall head of white-colored foam, made up of small-sized bubbles yielding a frothy appearance, with average retention of about one minute, falling to a thin ring around the perimeter of the glass. Lacing is modest, but present, with a sparse scattering of small dots clinging to the glass' walls. Body is a fairly dark golden orange color, with light bringing out brighter golden orange hues. Carbonation visible through the transparent body, low in number and activity.

Aroma is malt-forward, of bread-like pale malt and modest straw, toasted bread and pale caramel-like sweetness. Little hop presence, what is present is the result being a mildly sweet and bread-like aroma.

Overall flavor of pale malt sweetness with a bit of toasted bread and light, pale caramel-like flavor; hops are tucked into the background, contributing a bit of bitterness and slightly herbal and woodsy flavor. Front of palate tastes lightly grainy and bread-like malts with toasted and pale caramel-like sweetness. Mid-palate of pale, lightly toasted, and pale caramel-like malt sweetness at fairly low levels with a hints of herbal and woodsy hop flavor and bitterness. Back of palate experiences lightly toasted bread-like malt, pale malt sweetness, and mild herbal and woodsy hop flavor and bitterness. Aftertaste is lightly grainy and bread-like, with low herbal and woodsy hop flavor and bitterness.

Beer is medium-bodied, with carbonation of medium-low intensity, resulting in a lightly foamy (2/5) and otherwise smooth (3/5) body that's well-suited to the particular beer and style in general. Closes dry, with light stickiness clinging to the palate and lips. (2,136 characters)

Photo of packetknife
3.32/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Slightly floral on the nose. Crisp and clean. White overly pourous head. Just malty enough but not overpowering. Somewhat dry. Hints of spice on the finish.

Lingers on the tongue with somewhat of a citrus residue. Bitter/sour. In-between. Not bad though. (257 characters)

Photo of WhiteOak
3.32/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Has a light copper color with a moderate off-white head.

S- There is a simple grain aroma along with hops and a sour off-note smell.

T- Generally malt & hops flavor along with a vegetal characteristic here with some metallic notes and some sourness.

M, D- Light bodied with a medium level of carbonation. (310 characters)

Photo of rangerred
3.32/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance is a clear light copper with a one finger head that fades rather quickly.

Smells has caramel with some lightly toasted malt. Some floral hop aromas comes through as well.

The taste is quite malty and has some caramel and biscuit. A moderate bitterness comes in about halfway through with some floral hop flavor. Finishes clean and slightly sticky.

Overall a solid beer but it seemed a little thin and lacking in flavor. I have had this on tap before and it was better. Might have to revisit this sometime. (551 characters)

Photo of Popsinc
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Beautiful clear, amber pour with a small foamy head. Very appetizing.

The nose was very dull with nothing distinct standing out in my mind. There was a touch of caramel but it seemed very lightly hopped.

The mouthfeel was pleasant and smooth if not creamy.The taste was light with some maltiness to give it body. And there was a touch of caramel on the fuzzy finish with just a hint of fruitiness.....possibly apricot (again, this was minimal).

For the most part a nice drinking experience but not one that i would call memorable. (539 characters)

Photo of samie85
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes; originally 5/29/11.

A-Served in a pint glass with a robust, clear, amber color with a 1/2 finger head.

S-Fruity ale esters with caramel malt and light clean hops.

T-Crisp, fruity notes with a dry bitterness and caramel malt base.

M-Moderate carbonation with a medium body and a pretty dry feel.

D-Very drinkable and my introduction to the style; a light but complex beer. (397 characters)

Photo of BasementBer
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A great piece of American beer history. Particularly in that this label represents a regional history and a specific time period of industrial manufacturing. To their benefit, Anchor Brewing leaves the story a bit brief and general on the bottle adding to the allure of just how this beer got so cemented in the small-scale brewing milieu.

A: Thick, lasting head with tight bubbles. Consistent lacing around the glass. A light amber (though self described as being a 'deep amber') which doesn't wow me. After 15 minutes, "steam" bubbles still flowing at pace.

S: Initial smell reminds me of Budmilloors, with a slightly more hoppy-sweeter aroma. Smells like cheap beer.

T: Simple, less bitter than I would like, but a seemingly rustic beer cannot afford or be expected to change its recipe to fit modern hop-head cravings. So for this very reason, and the oft reason that this is the only true California Common that gets carried in my neck of the woods, it deserves positive reinforcement.

M: Again, simple. Nothing jumping out here, not even bitterness that speaks dry hopping or freshness. A pale lager taste that barely steps over that base light beer hurdle.

D: Heavy drink-ability in terms of putting back a true bitter beer than most where the hops stands tall and fast. However the staleness of the beer would be hard to go back to if not just looking for "beer" to drink. (1,389 characters)

Photo of ARoman
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3

12oz bottle, poured into a shaker. The aroma is a honey and grains combination with a bit of a dry, grassy herb. It's aroma is mellow overall. It pours amber and clear with white fuzzy head that has light medium lace moderate retention. The taste is a medium bitter and light, dry sweet. The texture is thin with a fizzy carbonation and light body. The taste is a light berry and honey with a pronounced grain taste, the finish is clean with a mellow, bitter citrus and a light bread touch that carries to the aftertaste. (521 characters)

Photo of Mistofminn
3.31/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ordered at the Kitty Cat club, which has a nice beer list, but I went for something I hadn't had before.

Served in the bottle, I asked for a glass. I got a Tulip glass, and poured it in. Light transparent amber color with a lively carbonation and a white head. No lacing.

The nose is not much different from any macro I've had, but there is a stronger bitterness than those and just slightly more substance.

The taste isn't anything special, a light malt backbone and a light hop bitterness. Do I detect some derivative of citrus flavor?

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I don't like over carbonated beers. This is one. I don't like the sharp Sprite-like bite in your through from too much carbonation. Drinkability is ok.

Not something I would order again, but glad I got a chance to try this legend of a beer. (828 characters)

Photo of frankiepop
3.3/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

In the book of Frankiepop, the American classic Anchor is a tad overrated. However, Frankie likes a beer with a little more sweetness and dare I say, a little more flavor. True this special lager beer is nice beer. Easy to drink, a good summer choice, and with a refreshing twist of lemony citrus twang. So it is not an American crappy lager. No, Anchor is kind of creamy, kind of foamy, and kind of smooth. It's more of a bitter beer, a nice light hoppiness that makes IPA guys smile a little.

I on the otherhand found the taste a little weak. I prefer a Tecate, a Greek Marathon, or a European lager like Carlsberg. Anchor's summer citrus quality is nice. Very west coasty. Anyway, I'm saving the rest of the six pack for July! Still above average ratings though I will stick Anchor's wonderful Porter. Blow me down. Got to admit as it warms the more I drink the more I likey....

So pair this on a hot day with some nice traditional Jazz music. I might suggest a cd by Bucky Pizzarelli called Challis in Wonderland where this guitar phenom sits in with some wonderful arrangement with a small string section performing some old great jazz pieces arranged by Challis who worked with Bix Beiderbecke. Another wise choice might be Hampton Hawes trio music. (1,258 characters)

Photo of donniecuffs
3.3/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a light amber color, decently carbonated, with a nice white head.

S: Some hint of citrus; very faint lemon/apricot, mixed with hoppiness.

T: Was looking for more citrus flavor to balance out the more-pronounced-than-expected hoppiness, but then again, this is California Common, not Pale Ale. A good representative of the style.

M: Decent carbonation; lighter body than expected.

D: If you can get past the flavor, the nicely carbonated body is such that you can certainly down a few. (498 characters)

Photo of mltobin
3.3/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at a bar in NYC.

A nice amber tone with a short head.
It had a pleasant smell, not overpowering.
The taste was clean can crisp, certainly not bitter.
A refreshing mouthfeel, no fowl aftertaste.
A higher than average drinkability, goes well with lighter dishes such as poultry and seafood. (304 characters)

Photo of deaconoflove
3.3/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Anchor Steam was my very first craft beer back in the late 70's...Baltimore's Inner Harbor, outdoor lunch...I'd never heard of any beer other than Bud, Pabst, Grain Belt, etc. So, 30 years later...I'm disappointed.
Ap. Beautiful golden amber with very little head...but great bubbles in the light.
Sm. Slight caramel and light hops and some fruit. Emphasis on the slight.
Ta. Again, light caramel, then slight red grapefruit/hops, caramel again with a tart finish, why does "tinny" come mind? (I have no idea what I was talking about!)
Mf. Significant carbonation, thin, but smooth.
Dr. Yes, it's okay, but there are much better ones out there. (10/29/11 edit. It's very good stuff. Not life changing at this point...but it was 30 years ago.) (742 characters)

Photo of mortarit
3.3/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Steam Beer you say,
Actually I like this one very much since I've gone back more of it.
Honestly, I didn't get a lot of smell coming from this pour. I have been sick this past week so that may explain some of it.

The taste has a clean, crisp liking to it that stay awile before leaving the palate. I guess you can say the caramel tint is hidden in the flavor.

I think this beer is due a better rating than what I see. This is a good session beer to have on the menu. (476 characters)

Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,923 ratings.