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Anchor Steam Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer

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

4,754 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,754
Reviews: 1,854
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.95%
Wants: 131
Gots: 369 | FT: 1
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,754 | Reviews: 1,854 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lackenhauser
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%

Somewhat muted coppery color. Always a decent head on top. Nice, moderate amount of hop aroma. Has that certain "bite" to it. Crisp flavor with a good bit of hop bitterness. Some residual malty sweetness. Great body-very full. The full flavor somewhat lends itself to the body. Very drinkable and always enjoyable. One of the first craft beers I ever got into. Get it fresh. I have had some that has been laying around and it isnt pretty. American classic for sure.

lackenhauser, May 31, 2008
Photo of Lexluthor33
4.33/5  rDev +12.2%

Pours a light copper with a small head that settles to a thin lace.

Aroma is of grains,fruits/citrus notes and caramel malts.
The taste is of malts,caramel,fruits,hops and bitter-sweet notes.
The overall feel is dry finish with a lemon/fruit aftertaste.

Notes: It's late and I have had enough of this beer to let you know that it is not only above average,but well worth the time and money. A session beer and a delight on any day regardless of the temperature. So well balanced and nice bitter finish that goes so well with the caramel notes. Go out and try one.

Lexluthor33, May 31, 2008
Photo of avaulteriam
2.48/5  rDev -35.8%

Certainly not my style at all. Smells of some sweetness and soap? Very malty with weird lager-esque taste predominant. Similar to Kolsch styles. Contrary to some, I didn't think immediately of an ale. Definitely not the smoothest or most likable in my opinion

avaulteriam, May 29, 2008
Photo of BDIMike
3.9/5  rDev +1%

Pours a nice amber color with a thin white head that dissipates immediately.
Nice hop smell. Hints of nice caramel malts.
Taste has a very nice balance. Good roasted malt and also dry hops.
Mouthfeel is very nice and smooth with a good amount of carbonation.
Drinkability is great on this beer. The balance between the malts and hops is almost perfect and the smooth mouthfeel makes it go right down.

BDIMike, May 25, 2008
Photo of cyrenaica
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%

355ml bottle
4.9% ABV

I tried this beer on May 23, 2008 at "The Beer Bistro" in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The beer poured a translucent medium reddish-brown with a thin off-white head. The aroma was citrusy hops, and some sweetish malt. The mouthfeel was medium-bodied, and well carbonated. The flavour was very hoppy, leaving a bitterness on the tongue, as well as a little sour apple taste.

cyrenaica, May 24, 2008
Photo of bloberglawp
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%

Served in a small nonic glass, around 10 celcius.

Pours a gorgeous deep medium cooper, a generous head that retires down to a thin film that keeps around for a good while. Very little lacing, but the glass was not rinsed so this may be why there was no lacing.

Aroma of english crital malts and herbal hops, a little esters and a very slight note of sulfur. Flavor is of deep doughy and biscuity malt and tightly bittering high alfa-acid hop.

Interesting and flavorful.

bloberglawp, May 24, 2008
Photo of kzoobrew
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%

My first taste of this iconic brew from the legend that is Fitz Maytag and Anchor Brewery.

Pours a beautiful amber fluffy white head quickly diminishes. Slight lacing left.

Smell is sweet and slight citric. Smells like our basic american lager only better.

Taste of malt and lemon initially. Slight hops and spice break through.

Mouth feel is light and crisp. Carbonation is slightly lively and refreshing.

Very drinkable. Crisp clean and has some level of dimension to it.

This is your average American lager, only it does everything better than your average american lager.

kzoobrew, May 24, 2008
Photo of PatrickJR
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%

Poured from 12 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

A - Clear copper with large 2-3 finger head that lasted quite a while. Fell to decent white cap and had solid lacing.

S - Great nose on this one. Sweet, caramel/vanilla malt aroma with some fruit behind it, something like peach or golden apples. No hop presence which is surprising...

T - The semi-sweet malt starts off, but degenerates into a bland sourness. Earthy/floral hop character briefly kicks in late palate leading to a dry and mineral-like bitterness. Not a huge fan of the taste, but the malt works really well and I feel the hops ruin the taste.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. The beer has a sort of silkiness.

D - I might have a few of these, but the only memorable aspect of this beer is it's aroma. The taste isn't all that interesting, and for the price I definitely wouldn't choose this as a session beer; it's not *that* good.

PatrickJR, May 21, 2008
Photo of NCSUdo
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%

12 oz bottle

A: Deep, rich copper under a small creamy white head. Great retention, creamy through out with really nice lace. A perfect looking lager.

S: Smells of sweet malt and caramel. A little fruity.

T: Tastes of sweet caramel, some citrus hops mixed in but not a whole lot of bitterness. Toasted malt there too, slightly drying.

M/D: Medium bodied, high carbonation. Pretty drinkable. Easy to go down. Very nice beer, much better then I remembered it. Glad I picked it up again.

NCSUdo, May 12, 2008
Photo of Pauly2X
3.9/5  rDev +1%

A- Deep clear golden color, one finger head.

S- Spicy hop aroma with hints of light caramel malts.

T- Grainy leading to roasted malt in the middle with light notes of fruityness and a pleasant dry hop finish.

M- Smooth, decent carbonation.

D- Not quite as drinkable as most "light" beers, but enjoyable nevertheless.

You just gotta give it up for the true American beer!

Pauly2X, May 12, 2008
Photo of BeenJammin
4/5  rDev +3.6%

A - Pours clear amber with a nice sized head and moderate carbonation

S - Malty, fruity aroma

T - A rich, hearty beer with a nice tart, citrusy hop kick.

M - Very smooth and medium-bodied

D - I could consume this beer for countless sessions

A classic micro that is a good place to start for a newbie like myself.

BeenJammin, May 11, 2008
Photo of friesfox5
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%

A- Light red brown, mild to medium head, good lacing.
S- Malty, mild fruitiness, hoppy, earthy.
M- Slightly thin, perfect carbonation. Makes you want another one.
T- Nice hop bitterness from start to finish but not overpowering.
D- Very unique GREAT tasting beer. Isn't like many other brews. Really stands out and is a joy to drink.

I will come back to this from time to time because it is so good and so unique.

friesfox5, May 08, 2008
Photo of everetends
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%

Got this in couple of cases a bar was getting rid of because the beer wasn't selling. Poured from a bottle into a pint tumbler.

A: Poured a yellowish amber with a good amount of head. Nice presentation.

S: Malt with accents of fruit (can't tell if it is just floral hops or just plain fruit). No overwhelming typical hops smell.

T: Hops come across with grain and malt. Nice balance. Very clean and earthy.

M: Clean and crisp.

D: Easy to drink any time of year. Very tasty and worth drinking.

everetends, May 07, 2008
Photo of jayrod20
3.03/5  rDev -21.5%

Slightly cloudy, dark amber out of a stubby. A finger of head that dissipated in a flash. Smelled of subtle hops and a sweet malt -- think Pilsner at a bakery. Rotund sweet taste -- chewy and thick. Finished with a very bitter, lip-smacking citrus bite. A bit dry for my taste, and the flavors lingered about a second longer than the head.

jayrod20, May 06, 2008
Photo of rye726
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%

A nice looking copper color with a tan head. Nice candy malts and some faint hops. Taste has soem good citrus hops up front with a malty finish. Nothing special, but good for the style. Nice crisp medium body creates a nice palate. A drinkable beer, but a bit over priced out here in Colorado. I'm sure its more reasonable back in Cali. Nice job Anchor.

rye726, May 05, 2008
Photo of horshack7
3.28/5  rDev -15%

Appearance: Out of a twelve ounce bottle with the big blue anchor on it. It pours a golden amber with a lacey thick head.

Aromas: Big malt aroma real sweet. Light hop nose along with slight fuit notes.

Taste: Very crisp mouthfeel a decent amount of sweetness from the malts yet slightly hoppy. The hops taste like saaz hops but I could be wrong.

Notes: This is quite a unique style nicely drinkable as well.Cheers

horshack7, May 04, 2008
Photo of yelterdow
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%

Freshness code: 8JC. Served at just over fridge temperature in a nonic.

Appearance- An absolutely stunning beer on the eyes. Even on an easy pour, this one billows from its deep orange base and showcases as beautiful and wondrous of a head as Saison DuPont or even the greatest of Belgian Tripels. More than four fingers of soft, foamy suds adorn the glass, leaving behind sheets of sticky IPA-like lacing. Excellence in appearance.

Smell- Soft, slightly metallic hops and an old-fashioned malt nose... I can't really describe it any other way... this smells like 100 years of brewing history and integrity. Raw grains and pure ingredients abound... I've never taken a whiff of the inside of a brewing vessel, but this would be my take on it. As the beer comes to temperature, a bread-in-the-oven scent fills the nostrils.

Taste- First and foremost, the taste is grainy and clean, not complex but very distinctive. A husky, raw, earthy character is quite present, stripping this beer down to the core. Unique and like nothing I've tasted before.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Smooth and easy, this is an effortless beer from the lips to the gullet. Its raw character, leaning more on the grains and malts than hops, positions this as a stellar food beer that would pair well with steak, chicken, or even vegetarian dishes.

yelterdow, Apr 29, 2008
Photo of Larrytown
3.9/5  rDev +1%

Despite its availability, I hadn't gotten around to trying Anchor Steam before. We start off with a small head which fades quickly, but leaves some decent lacing. Nice coppery gold color. There's nothing especially striking about the nose; there are some floral scents, increasing as we near the bottom of the glass.

In the mouth, it's a bit thicker than I was expecting which is a nice surprise. This beer is very nicely balanced as the taste on the tongue alternates between the hops and the malt. There's a definite bitter note, but the taste really grew on me by the bottom of the glass.

I'll probably look elsewhere for a drink when the warm weather hits, but this strikes me as a pretty great springtime beer; it's got some hints of summer but enough body to fight through the last throes of winter.

Larrytown, Apr 27, 2008
Photo of jsprain1
3.55/5  rDev -8%

A- The appearance is a red/amber color with a 1 finger head that disappears pretty quickly. Fairly good amount of lacing too.
S-A pretty low-key scent. Kinda smells like bread.
T- The taste is similar, reminiscent of bread crust. It tastes really good, but it left a bit of an odd aftertaste, especially when it got a bit warmer.
M- Mouthfeel is what should be expected. Fairly strong carbonation, but not overly aggressive. Overall it is light weight.
O-Overall, I actually liked this beer quite a bit. Maybe didn't live up to a lot of the hype I heard, but still enjoyable.

jsprain1, Apr 27, 2008
Photo of BeanBone
4.4/5  rDev +14%

Appearance: Clear orange/amber body with a huge and off-white craggy head that leaves decent lacing

Aroma: Caramel and toasted malt ride atop more subtle hops and lemon notes

Taste: Quite bitter up front with rich toasted malt, caramel, banana, and citrus right behind - this is a full-bodied beer

Mouthfeel: Smooth with a good amount of carbonation, leaves a nice grain-like aftertaste

Drinkability: While you can't doubt the boldness of this beer, it's still wonderfully sessionable

Verdict: This beer easily earns its status as an absolute legend by being both crucial to the revival of American beer and downright delicious. We owe this beer a lot, buy some and enjoy a few pints of your history.

BeanBone, Apr 25, 2008
Photo of DrainBamage
3.63/5  rDev -6%

Pours a dark copper color with a nice lace a head. The smell has many of aromas of adjuncts, but also slightly fruity. Goes down pretty smooth and leaves a little bitter aftertaste. Taste is very malty, but bitter with a hint of apple fruitiness. Overall this is a decent beer. Not bad to have once in a while.

DrainBamage, Apr 23, 2008
Photo of saintwarrick
4/5  rDev +3.6%

One of those gateway beers you never get tired of. This beer pours a clear amber with a sudsy white head. Aroma is pretty malty with dry biscuits and a little brown sugar; also some hop fruitiness in the background. Taste resembles an English pale ale, light and malty with a great balance of hops. Bitterness is there but understated.

Classic brewery, classic style, classic beer. Always a great go-to brew.

saintwarrick, Apr 22, 2008
Photo of Slatetank
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%

I had this on tap at the Four Points Sheraton next to Round the Clock diner in North York, Pa. Served cold w/ a pils glass

A - A very light shade of bronze w/ a quick condensing head of beige that becomes a ring w/ a tight bead

S - Slightly citrus/tannic w/ green apple hint and an earthy estery combo of malt and subtle woody odors

M - A very effervescent and dry feel w/ a clean finish and nice tannic fruitiness w/ a slight grainy quality

T - Very crisp w/ rye and piney northern brewer citrus rind and spice flavor. There is a gentle rye taste w/ toasted malt flavor and a touch of sweetness w/ grapefruit in small quantities. The overall taste is dry and piney w/ a spice accent there are subtle earthy hop flavors as I taste bottle #3.

D - A fine hybrid beer - more ale like. I appreciate the historic relevance of this specimen to the American Brewing landscape. This is one I welcome to my lips w/ a great hop and malt balance. Pale ale in some repsects yet Steam beer deserves a category all its own. There is fruit and woody earthy flavor but the finish is clean and this one goes down refreshingly easy. I already mentioned I had three, but for a buck a bottle at a place that has a decent selection locally I couldn't resist. Kudos to Fritz Maytag for reviving Anchor and keeping this style alive.

Slatetank, Apr 21, 2008
Photo of hellomcfly
3.63/5  rDev -6%

A - Pours a nice looking copper with ruby and gold hues when held up to light. A fairly aggressive pour into a Corsendonk tulip produced a large, off-white head that dissipated fairly quickly with fair lacing.

S - Spicy hop, malty buscuit aroma

T - A lot like the smell. A spicy hop character hits the front of the tongue with a malty sweetness on the back that transforms into a nice bitterness that is the aftertaste.

M - Nice prickly carbonation, medium body, kind of dry

D - Nice beer that would probably make a good session beer. I think this would be good with many different kinds of food.

hellomcfly, Apr 21, 2008
Photo of CNeilP09
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%

I'm actually surprised at myself for waiting so long to review this beer, as I've always been a fan of anchor. Anyhow, the good stuff: nice copper/red hue. hefty body on the lager. good carbonation. soft fruity cereal notes on the nose. medium viscosity for a lager, a bit heavier on the palate than one would expect (on first try). a spiked dry creaminess on the finish. good beer.

CNeilP09, Apr 20, 2008
Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 4,754 ratings.