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Anchor Steam Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,924 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,924
Hads: 5,472
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.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,924 | Hads: 5,472
Photo of RaulMondesi
3.67/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle says: 3L9. So if Raul can compute his shiz, this thang is about 6 months old. Although Raul digresses, he can move on.

Light like my baby mama in a corset, and a bit sweet like my baby mama's mama when she cooks Raul cookies for Columbus Day.

Make Raul want to set sail in search for new lands? Anchor does not. But take a lil hottie down to my docked Santa Maria and tip a few back? Yes, yes Raul would.

Peace! (421 characters)

Photo of Wobbly
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%

Very good and drinkable beer. Great session beer. While I prefer Anchor's Liberty Ale and their Porter, this is still a very good example of an interesting historical aberration. (179 characters)

Photo of TJ_B
3.4/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I am not a lager person in general and so It's not entirely fair for me to review this beer, but oh well. The beer has excellent dark amber color and has an excellent aroma. It is a somewhat thick lager so the mouth feel wasn't what I expected. I really don't like wheat beers and the taste, again it's a lager so maybe it's not ideal that I delve into this, was very wheat-like. The beer starts off decent, but through the heavy mouthfeel and thick grain taste I normally call it good after one. Most anyone else reviewing this beer raved about it so it's probably just me, but this isn't a "go to" beer for me, but I'll drink it if it's this or commercial beers available. (674 characters)

Photo of Huffs
3.81/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a sam adams glass, a nice, off white, head developed with mild retention and lacing. Appearance was clear with a golden / orange color. Nice fruity aroma with spice notes. Tasted hoppy and light up front with floral and fruity notes, light caramel on the back. Medium mouthfeel with a light, dry aftertaste. (319 characters)

Photo of MistahBeah
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a crystal clear amber with some mild carbonation. Fluffy cream white head. Thick retention around the rim. Some sudsy lacing

Smells of grains, yeast, some semi-sweet fruits. Bready. Floral and grassy hops. Metallic

Taste is very bready. Fresh white bread so thick you can chew it. Caramel malts then spicy grains and yeast to balance. Hops presence is of wet grass. Some metallic notes here as well

Feels creamy and smooth. Dry. Full

Overall an interesting beer. Not usually one for lagers but I'll give everything a shot. Would get again if the mood struck me (570 characters)

Photo of Mojo
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle -> Dogfish Head Glass

A - medium gold pour with a dense two finger off white head, great retention, and an average amount of lacing left behind.

S - nose is pine, fruit, and spicy hops.

T - fairly dry taste, a little yeasty with some metallic notes, and a spicy hop finish

M - good carbonation with a bit of an aftertaste

O - classic beer, okay but I don't consider it a treat. (401 characters)

Photo of spoony
3.76/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

From a 355 ml bottle (code says 3G9) into a nonic glass.

A-A normal pour produces about two fingers of dense, off-white foam. Retention is decent and little flowers of head remain on the top of the beer for more than two minutes. Not much lacing left on the glass, however. There are a few chunky bubbles visible in the mostly-clear orange/tawny liquid.

S-The smell is a bit earthy with mildly sharp, grassy hops and bread-crust and cracker flavors verging into semi-caramel and fruit. The aroma is nothing special, but not bad for the style.

T-The taste is a bit grainy and the light-caramel malts carry through from the nose to the palate. There is also a bit of light fruit sweetness. Hops are mild, and of the grassy, earthy variety.

M-The brew is wonderfully drinkable. Heft is light to moderate with crisp, bubbly, chunky carbonation that never feels fizzy or soda-like.

O-I'm glad I finally got around to reviewing this classic. It is lighter and more quaffable than I remember, but a a great example of this style nonetheless. At times, it reminded me of an English mild and other times of a German Pilsner. The whole package is a bit rustic, but the easy drinking nature of this brew would make a great session/football watching beer. (1,248 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
3.1/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours into tulip from bottle a beautiful clear copper with small white head. Aroma of sweet mild malt, pears, some florals. Flavor is admittedly mild but definitely session able. Medium light mouthfeel with medium carbonation. Sweet malts and light fruits with a slightly unpleasant finish. Finally tried this and it is not too bad. Better sessionable brews though. (365 characters)

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.87/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a nice amber-copper color with a big billowy just off white head. The head has a fantastic level of retention, very slowly fading over about a 5-10 min time period to leave a light level of streaky lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is mainly a mix of some more grainy smells mixed with a caramel sweetness. Along with these aromas there are some lighter hop smells of an earthy nature and a bit of grass.

Taste – The taste begins with a dry bready and grainy flavor with a bit of an earthy taste. There is a light caramel sweetness throughout the taste that is most intense at the beginning (although still very light) which almost disappears toward the end of the taste. While the taste has a hop bit at the start with the earthy tastes, more hop of a grassy and light citrus nature come to the tongue bittering the taste as it moves on. Some woody flavors come to the tongue more toward the end of the taste, with the combination of flavors leaving a rather dry, malty and decently bitter flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average side in terms of thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is average to just above average. Both the moderate body and carbonation are rather good for the mix of dry and bitter flavors, making it a good easier drinking brew.

Overall – A nice dry tasting steam beer that is very easy to drink. A good go too for something on the lighter side. (1,525 characters)

Photo of beyah
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 12 oz. bottle into a Belgian goblet.

A- Deep copper color, head lasted only a few minutes with a little lacing.

S-Has a smell reminiscent of east coast ales of old.

T- Bittering Hops show right out front and followed by some malt sweetness, but somehow finishes dry.

M- Has a smooth mouthfeel, carbonation does not get in the way.

Overall- Good beer for watching a ballgame, with lots of hop and malt character. Best with strong flavor foods. (458 characters)

Photo of Ac2013
3.4/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass from the bottle. Small, quickly receding head soon left after the pour. Initial smell is complex, but the combination of hops and floral tones makes it pleasant. The taste is sharp, but I think it lacks a full flavor. It is still very good though. A very sessionable beer as the palate is clean after drinking. A historic brew and certainly worth the try. (380 characters)

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

A - poured a brilliant clear golden color with orange to amber highlights. Light 1/3 finger head didn't last long, no lacing whatsoever.

S - aroma is a soapy corny malt sweetness with slight alcohol.

T - taste is a surprisingly more complex for what I was expecting, at least more than what I got from the nose. Very light and crisp much like a generic AAL, but with a almost British character reminiscent of something from Samuel smith but much fresher, a very biscuity, nutty, caramel malt character with buttery diacetyl overtones. Low to no hop flavor but a balanced bitter finish that ends dry and refreshing.

M - light, light carbonation, dry finish.

O - this was enjoyable, reminded me of yuengling but with a very British flavor. Has a very bright, crisp, and refreshing flavor profile. Great refreshing beer, simple and straightforward but still very interesting. (880 characters)

Photo of fabiansoliz
3.55/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This is the beer of choice when visiting San Francisco. It's somewhat of a dark beer but without a very heavy flavor. It's not a light beer and after only a few rounds the beer tends to give me that intoxicted affect.

I also had this in the bottle and didn't notice any differences. It definately has a signature taste. There is also a light lager version that I tried and it's probably what I would switch to when I'm ready to keep drinking. (443 characters)

Photo of nanandtomfitz
3.94/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

after drinking lots of this in college, got away from it for several years and had again for the first time in recent memory at a backyard BBQ. Maybe some nostalgia involved but really enjoyed having this again!

nice light copper color

smell - good malt, not too complex

taste very even and smooth; mostly one note

feels rich and well carbonated but still good for regular drinking, don't need to sip

very enjoyable overall, maybe not enough here to be a destination beer but a great companion to a meal or for an afternoon break from the golf course, etc. (562 characters)

Photo of DryHoppedStout
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from an ISB into a mug. The appearance of this beer is a light amber with a 1 finger head after a settled pour. Upon drinking the beer revealed a modest amount of lacing. Picking up a strong lager smell from the beer. The taste was earthy with a slightly bitter finish, very pleasing. Mouthfeel is smooth and light with a hint of carbonation.

I forgot how good this beer is, great way to end the summer and bring in the fall. (433 characters)

Photo of Celtics17
4.14/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The aroma has a slight banana smell to it. The taste has a bit of banana bread elements to it. It's not strong at all though. It's very bready. The after taste is actually bitter. This beer is hoppy, more than I remember it to be. You can also taste a slight caramel malt after a few more sips. Amber color with a slight touch of clarity. One finger of head perhaps a touch less. Moderate lacing.

This is an Ale, with a touch of lager behind it. (446 characters)

Photo of mntlover
3.84/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear really light amber color with a nice big frothy white head.

Aroma is malty some light caramel notes and earthy hints some light grassy hop notes.

Taste is like the smell a nice malt base with caramel notes, Some good earthy notes that lead to grassy hops for a finish. Nice lighter easy drinking favorable brew.

Mouthfeel is nice medium body with fairly peppy carbonation that suits this brew perfectly. Mouthfeel and carbonation defiantly aide the flavor on this one.

Overall for the style it is a great beer maybe should hit all fours easy drinking and favorable. Not something i would consume normally but would be a good session brew. (657 characters)

Photo of dwren89
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: amber gold with thick moussey white head and great clarity

Aroma: Northern brewer hop showcase, with woodsy and minty aroma and a clean lager like bready malt aroma

Taste: very much like aroma but with a beautiful malty finish that is very bready with a slight toast to it. Very nice, rustic and woodsy flavor with hint of mint and a great bready malt character holding it all together.

Mouthfeel: very hybrid between the cleanliness of a lager and the range of an ale. Medium carbonation, smooth and refreshing

Overall: Delicious. An american classic that is a hybrid between an ale and lager, the unique brewing process (which is worth looking up for those who don't know what a Steam Beer is!!) gives the pleasing versatility of this beer. The northern brewer hops mix perfectly to give the woodsy, minty, and overall rustic hop flavor. A must try that can easily become an old standby, especially for cool fall nights. (939 characters)

Photo of mikefuski17
3.37/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Second go with Anchor Steam.

A. The appearance is a golden amber, more on the darker side. There was a minimal head and dissipated quickly. Not cloudy or sedimenty.

S. The aroma was very light and was rather difficult for me to pick anything out. The only smell that could be picked out were the malts, but again it was so light, I couldn't get a full appreciation for it.

T. Like the smell, the taste is also very light. It is very light and crisp. The maltiness is quietly followed by the hops.

M. It has a slight and quick feel of carbonation initially then disappears within a blink. Again it feels light bodied and smooth.

O. I think this is a great summer beer due to the lightness of it all around. It tastes great and is an excellent beer to sit and relax with. (779 characters)

Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A true classic. I have had this one many times and find it to be a nice refreshing summer beer with more character than a macro lager and enough complexity to keep things from getting too dull over the course of a session. Pours a deep amber on the SRM scale and leaves a nice rich foam if you pour the beer correctly (although with this one I often dispense with the glass). Aroma is a sweet and spicy combo of bready spicy yeast and herbal notes with some sweet malt. Taste is where the magic is, sourdough yeast, cleansing spice like white pepper, some banana and vanilla esters... A nice sour tang with a decent biscuity crystal malt lingering sweetness on the palate. Drinkable but not dull. Might underwhelm those who love hop bombs as the Northern Brewer are there to provide grassiness and a bitter foil rather than complex hop aroma but keep an open mind. There is enough ale character in this hybrid style to keep one engaged. (936 characters)

Photo of archyquaffer
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Served from the bomber into an 8 ounce sampler. A moderate pour produces a short creamy white head that settles down into thin lacing sticking to the sides. The beer is a beautiful copper color with yellowish highlights and is quite effervescent.

I smell lots of sweet malt with some mild floral hops. The taste is a malt treat, with undertones of caramel, with just enough bitterness from the hops to balance. The finish is crisp with a lingering bitter-sweetness.

This true classic is very flavorful and refreshing, and quite reasonable priced as well. (556 characters)

Photo of Haydn-Juby
3.69/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served to a pilsener glass.

A: Amber color with a slight touch of clarity. One finger of head perhaps a touch less. Moderate lacing.

S: Sweet malts some hops.

T: A nice caramel malt profile is present. Some what sweet initially but is backed by some nice subtle hops. Fairly clean in terms of esters and phenols but still some very slight fruitiness comes through which is somewhat unique in terms of what is typical in lagers.

M: Crisp and clean. Very refreshing.

O: Great beer and uniquely its own. Would be great with some grilled chicken or other light BBQ food. (571 characters)

Photo of FLima
3.82/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Amber color with an off-white head with good retention.
Malty aroma with hints of condiments, pine and caramel.
Unique flavor, predominant taste of peppery yeast, apple juice and biscuit malt. Notes of earthy hops and honey, with hints of lemon, minerals and salt. Not really sweet. Dry with an elegant bitterness aftertaste.
Light body with low carbonation.
Initially, it seemed not to be a big deal, but then it kind of grew on me for its unique taste. Though it resembles some British bitters. I could have drunk a few, very drinkable. Definitely worth it a try. I round it up given its historic twist. (605 characters)

Photo of vette2006c5r
3.57/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Anchor Steam pours a darker clear amber color with a nice large lacing head. There is a weak aroma, but has bitter and floral notes. The taste is a bit bitter, and has long drawn out floral notes. A bit watery, but nice flavors, easy to drink. Overall a solid beer. (265 characters)

Photo of williamjbauer
3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled served in a pint glass

A - Clear dark amber with 1.5 off white head with minimal lacing and moderate head retention.

S - A little citrus hops with some peatiness.

T - Dry, peat, and bitter. Dry finish. Nothing super standout.

O - A decently refreshing beer but nothing too exciting.

7/23 revisited. Have a new appreciation for this brew, great creamy, biscuit, nutty malt flavors, crisp and refreshing. (416 characters)

Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,924 ratings.