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Anchor Steam Beer | Anchor Brewing Company

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
87
very good
1,996 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,996
Ratings:
5,785
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
21.82%
 
 
Wants:
208
Gots:
1,129
For Trade:
1
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: California Common / Steam Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Anchor Steam® Beer owes its deep amber color, thick, creamy head, and rich, distinctive flavor to a historic brewing process like none other.

It is a process that combines deep respect for craft brewing tradition with many decades of evolution to arrive at a unique approach: a blend of pale and caramel malts, fermentation with lager yeast at warmer ale temperatures in shallow open-air fermenters, and gentle carbonation in our cellars through an all-natural process called kräusening.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-08-2001

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,996 | Ratings: 5,785
Photo of TobiasGoth
3.45/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance
A clear and effervescent amber/light brown with traces of blood red in it. One finger off-white head. A fizzy but fast settling beer.

Smell
Loads of rich malt, then some light and elegant hops, followed by limey sensation. It’s a sweet and sour story really.

Taste
Sweet malts firstly, bitter and astringent secondly. There’s a note of orange seeds too.

Mouthfeel
A light to medium corpus, balanced and normal amount of carbon dioxide, very much a presence though. A buttery smooth liquid.

Known as a California Common, with it’s characteristic Norther Brewer hops, Anchor Steam Beer is Anchor Brewing Company’s flagship product.

I remember enjoying my very first bottle during the summer of 2002 at Fisherman’s Wharf, travelling through the state of California. There was a big old sea gull sitting next to me, watching as I drank the brew.

Many years and beers have passed ever since and although it’s never been a favorite of mine it’s a damn good lager that I enjoy occasionally.

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Photo of machalel
3.26/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Dark amber with a strong beige head that settles down to about 5mm and lingers for the whole glass. A small amount of thin lacing down the glass.

Aroma: The first thing that came to mind was pineapples and rockmelon, but this was followed by some malt and graininess.

Taste: Initially, I actually could taste pears, but this disappeared after a few sips. The rest of it was a bit citrusy (grapefruit & lemon rather than orange) and a bit sharp. Some wholemeal bread and black pepper in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation, medium body. A little sharp and 'zingy' on the middle of the tongue, but not in a bad way. Finish was a bit dry.

Drinkability: Well this was my first California Common, and I wasn't really sure what to expect. Overall, I think that it is a nice drop, one that would go with a lot of different styles of cuisine, but I'm not sure if I would buy it to savour on its own merits.

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Photo of moodenba
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Anchor Steam Beer Draft on Long Island, New York, mid-may 2016.

Very traditional amber lager style brew. There is little in the flavor to hint at the higher temperature fermentation.

My old friends and I discovered Anchor Steam in the early 70's when distribution was extended to San Diego. I seem to remember a sharp hop- or fermentation-related aftertaste that I enjoyed then. That might have been before the brewing process was "perfected", but I have good memories of that brew's character.

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Photo of bacabuck
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap in a pilsner style glass. Clear dark amber in color. Minimal head with good lacing on glass as it is drank. Smell of malted barley and hops, trace of banana. Flavors of molasses and coffee. Good mouthfeel with minimal carbonation. Definitely can drink more than a few of these without realizing it.

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Photo of jamiejohnson
4.44/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I genuinely love this beer. Super session craft brew that's smooth and super tasty. But to be honest I'm rating it so high because of the pioneer factor. I'm 55 yrs old and to anyone else who endured the fizzy 70's and 80's, especially in a rural area like where I grew up - you know what I mean. Fritz and Homebrew Charlie P saved the day and instigated the craft beer gold rush. Nowadays there's literally thousands of excellent brews out there. Thank you so much Anchor Brewing

Way back then
I drank pee
Anchor Steam
Set me free

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Photo of Kyle987
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Classic golden brown/amber color, and a good head that stuck around. Slightly hoppy, maybe with a hint of toast or nut. Also a pleasant dry bite with very slight bitterness. Aroma is very fresh and pleasant, reminds me a little of an ESB. Mouthfeel is slightly dry and full, but not heavy.

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Photo of TrippnFiasco
4.31/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Pours with one-finger, off-white head. Moderate Lacing. Gorgeous rusty/amber color liquid. Minimal head retention, but thin layer remains for quite some time.

S: Above average smell for a lager, slight hoppiness but not getting much else.

T: Initially, nice balanced hoppiness initially with a bit of a bite/mild tartness. Finishes with a nice maltiness, which has a nice roasted quality as the glass gets warmer (was initially served at proper temp though). Slight caramel flavor lingers on the palate between drinks.

M: Nice amount of carbonation (moderate) that adds to the refreshing nature of this beer. Bit of dryness on the finish, but nothing too strong.

D: Very drinkable, could easily have a few of these over the course of an afternoon.

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Photo of gatorguy
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite beers, and a classic example of the California common style. Pours a deep amber/orange color and gives a nice white two finger head that slowly fades to some excellent lacing. Smell is of yeast, citrus, and a hint of earthy wood. Hoppy character is the nose for sure. Taste follows suit with some earthy hops, malts, and some citrus. Somewhat bitter aftertaste, in a good way. Mouthfeel is a little heavy, but not too much. This is an excellent brew, and a great way to get into the California common style.

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Photo of SteveMcQueen36
4.68/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

I found this beer in Big Sur for the first time and enjoyed it at the River Inn. Near a pretty decent river. I loved it. It tasted like how perfect that environment sounds. Look it up if you don't believe me. It's worth a vacation. Anyway, This beer is rich and strong. It's a powerful beer from a powerful state. Enjoy.

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Photo of in780
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First go-round with Anchor, feel like this is long overdue. 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Here we go:

A - Deep golden yellow, with an extremely thick bright white head

S - Sweet malts, some citrus...really nice

T - Caramel, bread, toffee, all pretty light but represented. Some citrus fruit bite as well.

M - Really light without being watered down.

D - I could drink a few of these before tiring, and would be a good nightcap.

Always curious based on the high reviews, well deserved.

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Photo of JoshuaJ
4.57/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a beautiful copper with a creamy, off-white head. Head quickly dissipates, and there is virtually no lacing.

Smells like clean, carmelly malts. Herbal hops. Maybe picking up a bit of raisin.

Tastes nothing like it smells. Lemony hops hit you up front, grains take you to the finish. Very crisp and refreshing. Carbonation is high. Not a complex beer, but not every beer needs to be.

Overall drinkibility is good. It goes down easy, and I'd say it's a medium bodied brew, so it's not very heavy. A great session beer.

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Photo of uhhhaaron
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

consumed 04-19-2010, 12oz bottle into pint glass

poured a dark orange/amber color. decent 2 finger powdery head...slowly goes down but looks nice..carbonation is visible..

smells close to an amber lager...sweet malt up front..light to medium hop presence..has kind of an ocean vibe to it to me..very earthy as well...lots going on here..salt water taffy??

first sip im hit with a big but not overpowering hop presence..it quickly mellows out for other flavors to come in...salt water, bubble gum, sweetness from the malt, lemon zest, almost minty, some sort of sugar sweetness i cant yet detect, a lot going on, very complex and unique.. leaves a hoppy feeling in your mouth but not offensive, it flows so great in your mouth...also some toasty notes.
mouthfeel has i'd say a medium carbonation but it feels right..semi dry finish...

this stuff is very drinkable and sessionable as well..

a classic!

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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

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Photo of Jaypeajus
3.72/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

BA is down so I don't have any predisposition from other reviews or abv, ibu etc..dark golden/Amber pour with a soapy head two finger. Smells like a Hefeweizen but not as sweet smelling. Strawberry, cherry, although I just washed my hands in my wife's fancy soap, so these whiffs may be from that..Taste is pretty malty, not bitter. Unique for sure. Stings the tongue the carbonation does. Overall I like it. If there weren't a million other beers to try I'd do this again.

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Photo of ALEBOY
4.14/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had been reading about this beer for years and I finally got to try it.
A good session beer I hope its not the last time I try it.

Nothing outstanding to look at but backed up by an earthy aroma with hints of sharp citrus (lemon?/grapefruit?) and a slight sweetness. A light toasty flavour with a nice hop balance. Very easy drinking .

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Photo of Muddybuddy
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Honey colored beer with a good two finger head. Very clean and appealing to the eye. Head forms "islands" over a period of time but remains througout.

Aroma: Very floral and mild hops bitterness.

Taste: Brisk without being too hoppy, but definitely more than I expected. Mildly malty with a good balance to the hops. There is just a touch of biscuit to it as well. Overall it is a pleasing brew to me.

Mouthfeel: Kind of light on the tongue and slightly thin, but this is according to style and is actually quite quenching when paired with the lighter flavor of this beer.

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Photo of andythejerk
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Smells good--nice carmally aroma that really is a good indication of what I'm about to taste. Pours a big, pillowy head and there's a good stiff lacing all the way to the bottom. The taste is really very good I think--it's got a carmally hoppiness, if that makes sense, and it just feels very full and substantial in my mouth and on my tastebuds. I really liked this--good balance and fleshed out.

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Photo of riboflavin88
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottom line, this is a unique beer. It pours a nice amber color with a nice ivory head consisting of large bubbles and good carbonation. Its smell was malty and spicy with back notes of citrus. The beers' taste is smooth at first, primarily malt and smokey bread flavors. It finishes dry and the aftertaste is more malt, very bold. Mouthfeel is smooth and drinkable, crisp and easy to drink more than one. Definitely try this one!

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Photo of nerow
3.86/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a simple, unpretentious beer. It pours a clean copper color, acceptable head, moderate lacing. This beer smells earthy and slightly sweet. Some absolutley charming floral flavors with a delightful semi-sweet aftertaste. Very clean mouthfeel, very easy to drink. If not for the price (10$ for a six-pack), this would be a fantastic sessioner.

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Photo of ozzyCobblepot
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Beige, bubbly head, great carbonation. Deep pale honey body
S: Caramel malt nose, touch of slightly bitter hops
T: Barley malt dominates, citrus, dark plum, toasted & dry finish
M: Medium bodied, soft carbonation
D: A favorite of mine, tastes like no other beer I know, but still very drinkable, complex but not obscure

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Photo of sellmeagod
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Here we have a successful, unique brew. The fat bottle, the cute anchor and distinctive bottlecap, and amber look are all plusses. The extremely easy drink that still manages to hit you with spice and remind you that you're sipping a finely crafted beer not some alcoholic water. Multiple bottles don't numb the tongue to the wild work going on underneath here, but still the abv should be higher. Ahoy, steam boys!

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Photo of mmthompson33
4.32/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Such a great beer, tastes a bit like fresh greens in a backyard garden, especially if you drink it at the brewery. Sometimes it's not good, sometimes it's the best thing on earth, it just depends on your mood. A historic beer.

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Photo of Alexmc2
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Beer appears a slightly hazy orange/amber with smallish head that fades quickly but leaves good lacing. Smell is sharp and clean, but doesn't stand out. Initial taste is a pleasant bitter with sweet caramel notes at the end, very balanced. This beer is smooth, and it goes down easily. It makes a great session beer (and, as I found out, part of a decent sauce for chicken). If it wasn't so expensive around where I live it would be in my fridge all the time.

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Photo of copasetic
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly cloudy deep orange with a thin creamy head that forms a film on the surface that lasts for most of the beer. As I drink this, I realize that it's been a long time since I've enjoyed an Anchor Steam beer and wonder how this can be. The aroma is faint malt, just a little biscuity, with a hint of non-specific hops. From the first taste to the last, this is an nice middle-of-the road beer: smooth with just a little yeasty spicyness, a little hoppy but not particulary high in bitterness, and vaguely sweet and rich, but not too rich. I suppose this is homage to the idea of the California Common beer --nice qualities from both beer worlds.

I'm very happy that I decided to pick up a six pack after a long hiatus. This is an excellent beer. You can't drink just one.

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Photo of Sosh
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this last night at a german-style restaurant. I got this kind of as an appitizer. Tasty. This was my first beer from Anchor. This is just overall a great beer, really for any occasion. It went down smoothly, and had an exceptional finish. The frothy head lasted all the way down and left a nice lace throughout.

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Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,996 ratings.