1. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Anchor Steam Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

4,079 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4079
Reviews: 1816
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 12.66%


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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-08-2001)
View: Beers (21) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Anchor Steam Beer Alström Bros
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 4,079 | Reviews: 1,816 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best steam beer period. Amber color with white creamy oam head. Toasty salty malt, and above average hops and carbonation which makes it drinkable and popular. Subtle citrus & carmel. candy floss aroma. Lingering aftertaste. Unique. Fills you up and can be before food and then with the meal.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2003 01:44:09 | More by Sammy
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

5/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Clear light amber color with a small off-white head. This beer has great lacing.

S - Smells of sweet malts and slightly bitter hops. A delicious overall "beer" smell.

T - Biscuit-like with slightly bitter hop finish. Kind of like a salty cracker with some citrus rind essence. Very, very good.

M - Creamy head with a crisp body. Great carbonation makes this a very easy drinking beer.

D - Very, very drinkable. This is one of my go to beers for an all around great American craft brew. I think I might have a special place in my heart for Anchor Steam because it is brewed in SF (one of my favorite cities).

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2010 05:53:57 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

3.65/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a cold bottle with a frigid, ice-crusted beer mug. Once I let both warm for about 10 minutes, I was all set to pour beer into glass. Dark amber with a heavy dose of orange. The head was eggshell white and firm. It had decent staying power and left several thick rings of lace.

The smell was of earthy hops, not a bit floral or citrusy. The flavor was of earthy hops and grain. There was a mild-moderate amount of bitterness without much hop flavor, but it was still pretty good stuff.

The finish was long and bitter and the beer dried out a bit at the very end. The mouthfeel was firm, seamless and smooth. Anchor Steam is a true American classic.

Serving type: bottle

02-16-2004 03:11:18 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.43/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I actually had not had one of these in at least five years, so when I was in the store the other day, I just had to pick one up and give it a try. I had always had fond memories of it, and this was going to be no exception. I poured the twelve ounce bottle out into a pint glass and served it right out of the fridge.

Appearance - The pour was very nice with a rich golden amber. Very clear with a shimmering light passing through it. A good amount of carbonation could be seen streaking up toward the surface. A very nice three inch high head of white foam then came over the top and settled down gracefully leaving behind copious side glass lace.

Smell - The aroma was very earthy with a good amount of hoppiness to it. Some nice hints of caramel and grass, with touches of wet hay and a nice bit of grain. Very nice and airy aroma, mixed nicely in with a touch of orange and tangerine.

Taste - The flavor was outstanding on this one. Started out with a nice light caramel malt. Not overly sweet, but rather very nicely balanced with a light grain base and a touch of some nice little bit of herbs in there. A light and balanced floral hoppiness then came over it. Really well placed with some nice orange notes. The finish was crisp and clean. Drying out very quickly and leaving you looking for another sip rather quickly.

Mouthfeel - A very nice medium bodied feel, it was a bit fuller then I thought it would be to be honest. I really enjoyed how well it was put together, with a light and airy feel to it. A good carbonation profile then followed and kept the whole thing together really quite well.

Drinkability - This had everything going for it. Low ABV, nice carbonation, good body to it. A nice light, and flavorful profile that really had a good pop to it. What more could you ask for.

Overall I thought this was outstanding. Really a great session beer and the epitome of the style. You really cannot get better then this, it really has a world of good coming out of that bottle, and there is really just no way you can go wrong wit this one in any way!

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2008 10:23:06 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

4.4/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a decent head and a little bit of lacing

Smell: Nice waft of caramel malt

Taste: Starts out just like it smells, with a nice malty profile; soon, that is overtaken by the bitter, citric hops (lemon bitterness); in the finish the malt reasserts itself along with the hops for a well-balanced taste treat

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: With so many beers to choose from, you forget to pay occasional homage to the craft brew that started it all - and this is a good one to set that standard

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2005 21:48:32 | More by brentk56
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Extremely nice clear reddish/amber colour with a white head that disapear not too quickly. I can smell some spice. Taste is bitter with some roastiness. I was little bit surprise considering the colour of the beer but I enjoyed it very much. I can't wait to try other Anchor products!

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2003 15:10:34 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

When I started homebrewing, a lot of those first pale ales carried this same twangy yeast flavor that I chalked up to that "homebrew" taste. Mixed with the medium caramel flavor and fruity esters, I taste many of those same flavors in this classy ale.

Light copper and with orange highlights, this hybrid beer carries the appearance of creaminess, bright clarity, and decorative lace. Good retention and residual pockets of foam are fueled by steady streams of carbonation throughout.

Thin caramel, medium barley grains, bread crust, slight English-like fruitiness, and hop elements of woods and grasses give a richer sweet tea herbal scent to the appetizing nose. The aromas are not as pronounced as an American Pale Ale, but it's easy to draw come comparisons.

Caramel, light toast, softly kilned grains, and bread crust also show in a medium sweet flavor, and again with the added complexity of light yeasty fruits of apples and oranges. Earthy hop flavors of bark and leaf frame the balancing flavors at mid palate, while ushering in a clean and somewhat minty bitter taste in finish.

Creamy sweetness allows the early mouthfeel to be more pronounced due to an abundance of expansive carbonation to start. As the carbonation subsides, so does the sweetness. A mid palate of developing grassy, bitter, and resiny dryness starts to take hold and leads to a crisp and grainy-dry finish that is mostly clean even with the earthy hop elements and slight astringency of grain husks.

I keep finding flavors here that remind me of both Pale Ales and German-style Vienna lagers or richer Oktoberfestbiers. Very drinkable, enjoyable, and effortless in its session-ability. The rustic charm of grassy hops, strained yeast, and somewhat clumbsy brewing practices are also what gives this hybrid beer its charm.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2005 02:24:43 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

G: Poured into a pint glass.

A: Dark and amber with a white head and good lacing.

S: Malt definitely comes through more than the hops. There is some fruitiness here, but it mostly sticks to the style that it's made famous.

T: In addition to what was in the nose, some bready flavors.

M: Good creaminess and medium body. Moderate carbonation.

D: All around, this is a great example of the style, and the definition of a good sessionable beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2009 22:46:23 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours clear amber with a moderate head that quickly dies down into a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: Pale and caramel malts are evident in the nose, along with some hints of hops.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and has a mild sweetness associated with it. There's only a small bit of bitterness from the hops. Overall, the taste is very well balanced.
M: It feels medium bodied, crisp and smooth but also a bit thin on the palate.
D: It's very easy to drink and makes for a good session beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2010 13:50:51 | More by metter98
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle purchased at Total Wine in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours an orangey-amber body with an inch of frothy, white head.

Smell: Mild caramel, bready malts with a savory spicy, peppery note and teensy weensy hint of berry fruitiness.

Taste: Lightly bready, lightly caramel-coated maltiness. Not much sweetness. Tiniest bit of fruit -- watch out or you'll miss it. Tiny touch of acidity. Spicy, peppery hops, maybe a small pinch of lemon zest, too. Medium-low bitterness. Finishes dry and quite crisp.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Paired quite well with the film Karate Kid playing in the background. A fine, drinkable brew all around that appeals to my session beer sensibilities.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2008 04:12:00 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have never tried this on tap and its been awhile since I have had this period so I figured to give it a try yesterday and review it again this time on tap.Pours a deep copper color with light to medium head,a lighter aroma is sweet with a lingering hop presence.The taste is nice and balanced of sweet caramel malt and a dry fruity finish,a very sold American beer a real cant miss selection in my mind.

Serving type: on-tap

08-10-2003 16:47:33 | More by oberon
Photo of TMoney2591
TMoney2591

Illinois

3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in an Anchor pint glass at ChurchKey.

It's been some time since Chumley's Passport thing introduced me to the Steam, so I figured I'd give it another go while CK is celebrating Fritz's wonderland of brewy goodness. It pours a clear copper-amber with a thumb of light off-white foam on top. The nose is primarily a humid melange of citrus and floral hoppy goodness, though a bit of medicinal/soapy notes stagnate in the background. Interestingly, the taste runs along these same lines, though the soap is gone, and there is an increased influence coming from the flowery and cirtusy hop elements and a very light twinge of caramel. The body is light, with active carbonation and a crsip, dry finish. It's all pretty straightforward, but nothing all that desirable. Can't fault the drinkability, though, as this guy is light and refreshing enough to warrant constant returns to the Steam room.

Serving type: on-tap

06-11-2010 06:59:13 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bright copper in color with a foamy off-white head and obvious, brisk but fine carbonation. The aroma is of a clean, rich malt and light fruitiness with some hops. A full body combined with the zesty carbonation gives a distinct mouthfeel. The flavor starts with creamy, lightly caramel malt and leads into a vast hop character of flavor and crisp bitterness as it crosses the palate. The finish is dry and lasting. The classic of the style.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2002 05:33:11 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

4.19/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

355ml bottle. A rather specific style, to be certain, and nice to find at a friend's birthday party at an above average local pool hall.

This beer pours a clear, glassy medium pale copper hue, with two fingers of puffy, densely foamy, and somewhat creamy white head, which leaves some decent iceberg profile lace around the glass as it slowly recedes.

It smells of bready, kind of biscuity grainy malt, softly tangy pome fruit, a hint of yeastiness, and earthy, leafy, faintly grassy hops. The taste is slightly biscuity, sour toasted grainy malt, tame citrus rind, lemongrass, subtle pitted fruit, and a mixed tea leaf bitterness that takes some of air out of the sails of the otherwise sassy bitter noble hops.

The carbonation is on the low side, with a hollow reminder of earlier exploits, the body a fairly solid medium weight, and duly smooth, with a not-so-subtle flirtation with creaminess. It finishes well off-dry, the kind of sourdough-like (maybe it's the San Fran on my mind) graininess parrying the lingering fruitiness well enough.

While not exactly comparable to its heady Cali brethren in the hop department, one shouldn't overlook the simple drinkability of this more reserved beer - malty, fruity, and yet duly balanced in a near-perfect old-world manner. Sure, no tastebuds will be burst here, but that's not always the aim - pleasing structure has its merits.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2009 22:03:34 | More by biboergosum
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'd had this in bottles before and thought it was just fine enough, but on first tasting it on draft, my eyes and tastebuds blew wide open, and were all the happier for it! WOW!, what a difference freshness makes!
Appearance: clear, bright amber hue, and a frothy, thick off-white head.
Aroma: soft and clean, with hints of fruit, bread, cream, nuts.
On the palate: smooth and fruity, with a small hop contingent, and very, very tasty. Body is light/ medium, texture is good, finish is long and friendly!
The fruity flavor stays on the palate for the greatest portion of this drink, and continues to reward it's consumption. With every sip, the flavor jumps aboard with zeal and vigor, fresh and ready for the task (of refreshment!). Tasty, and tangy, and, again, very giving.
A bright, beautiful hybrid beer that goes down smooth and easily, always accompanied by flavor. A great American brewing accomplishment, I always say! I'm forever glad there's always Anchor Steam around!

Serving type: on-tap

05-24-2003 02:17:12 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

3.6/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've seen this beer around quite a bit in Chicago, but I've never bothered to pick it up. A friend brought over a few bottles so I figured I'd give it a shot.

Not sure how old this bottle is - it has 8LW punched in the back.

A - Very handsome beer with a rich amber color. Tons of head and carbonation - it's hypnotic watching all the bubbles.

S - Fairly understated smell - mostly malt, with some some hoppy bitterness.

T - Tastes like it smells, but with more presence. Hits you with some malty biscuit flavor at first, but leaves you with a citrus aftertaste.

M - Creamy and just the right amount of carbonation. Goes down easy.

D - I could definitely put back a few of these on a hot summer day.

This is a solid, but largely unexceptional brew. I might pick up a sixer if it was on sale, but there are a ton of equally priced brews that I like more.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2008 00:46:51 | More by MasterSki
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright golden brown color with a medium dense white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malt and a little bit of spice, fruit and hops.

T: The taste is fruity, spicy and malty, with flavors of caramel & citrus. A strong but complimentary hops presence comes in quickly and provides a very good balance without being over-powering. Once the hops flavor fades a bit, there’s a nice bready taste that remains with a mild sweetness.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, this is good beer to stick with for an evening if you want something a lot of substance that isn’t going try to knock you over. I liked this beer and thought it was very good.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2007 00:54:36 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

4.4/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours an effervescent amber/copper with 3 fingers of sand colored head. Some lacing & head retention

S: A bit of caramel & fruittyness

T; A little fruittyness & some serious herbal hop snap up front. A little grainyness , fruittyness kicks in as this warms. Finishes dry, fruitty & quenching with a piney hop edge

MF: Medium bodied, perfect carbonation & pretty good balance

Drinks too easy, baseline for the style. Even better on draft

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2007 05:21:37 | More by russpowell
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a reddish gold color with a thin white lace head. The aroma is good. It is of sweet malts and a mild hops; very aromatic. The taste is good. It is dry and malty. It has a bit of a watery finish, but all in all it's pretty good. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a low/medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking beer; an excellent sessions ale.

Serving type: bottle

01-09-2004 02:32:56 | More by WesWes
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Anchor steam is an interesting beer. People should check this out if for no other reason that there are so few steam beers and they are a truly American addition to the beer vocabulary. Poured from a bottle into an Anchor Steam pint glass, copper in color, nice head, falls away rather quickly with steady carbonation. Aroma is a mixture of malt and a lagerish odor. beer is easy to drink and tastes wonderful. This is one of my standby beers, I order when I see it at an average bar. Its a great beer "brewed in San Fran since 1896"

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2009 02:04:10 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap at the Plano Gingerman.

The beer pours and orange-amber color with a white head. The aroma is grassy hops with some grapes and caramel malt. The flavor is toffee, grassy hops, grain and some metallic notes. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Good for the style, but this is a style I am not much of a fan of.

Serving type: on-tap

08-04-2010 05:11:27 | More by Mora2000
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Pours out an orange/amber color with a one finger head. Not much lacing.

S - Smelled malty and grassy.

T - Malt, grain and clove are the dominant flavors. Also, a citrusy kick.

M - It is crisp and light to medium-bodied.

D - A nice brew. I always enjoy picking one up but the price always seems to be a bit much for the quality.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2007 02:24:37 | More by zeff80
Photo of jlindros
jlindros

Massachusetts

3.65/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a beer that is semi readily available around here, and I got it as an extra from AgentZero, but hey, its an extra so I can't complain. In fact, I've had it before and think its a pretty good clean drinking ale, so here comes the review finally.

A: Nice frothy 2 finger head with some pot marks. Extremely brilliantly crystal clear with a very light amber color.

N: Some light toasty malts, amber ale malt aromas, and light earthy hops. Almost a slight banana aroma too, but that might be my imagination. Crisp aromas and pretty clean.

T: Pretty similar to what you would expect. Some nice toasty earthy malts, crystal malt flavors, some light caramel, earthy toasty malt flavors. The some light earthy hops that add a nice flavor. A slight malty sweetness and some very light fruity flavors.

M: Semi light, decent carbonation, crisp and refreshing.

F: Finishes semi bitter but pretty dry. Semi light but pretty crisp finishing flavors, reminiscent of a nice lager. A slight spice and some slight earthy flavors linger a bit. The nice malty flavor fades nicely but leaves the nice bitterness, which also doesn't hang out for long. Pretty crisp and refreshing.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2009 03:37:01 | More by jlindros
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer has an enticing copper color and pours with a light beige head. There is not a huge amount of aroma to it, it smells clean, malty and a bit of floral grassiness to it. A light sweet/ malty taste up front that finishes with a good bitterness. This beer is about perfect balance between the hop and the malt. Just a wonderful beer that, because of its popularity/ availability, of the gets short shrift. In my mind this is one of the great everyday drinking beers.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2003 17:12:59 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85

Pennsylvania

3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a good consistant brew. The pour is golden in color with a nice solid white head on top that beer a good lacing down the glass. The taste of this beer is pretty standard but yet has enough flavor to keep it interesting. Mostly hops and malts on the tongue. The smell is basically the same. Mouthfeel is easy going. A good social beer. I wise choice of the the main stream beers out there.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2011 05:00:53 | More by Knapp85
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 4,079 ratings.