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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

5,055 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,055
Reviews: 1,876
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.95%
Wants: 138
Gots: 485 | 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)
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Ratings: 5,055 | Reviews: 1,876 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of AdmiralDiaz
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle to pint glass.

A: Pours a bold copper color with a two finger off-white head that has pretty good retention and becomes a bit chunky after it begins to dissipate. There's a bit of lacing to be found but nothing special.

S: Strong scent, smells like sour malts with noticeable hops and a bit of fruit.

T: Odd malt flavor, with a bit of grapefruit and a bitter hop finish.

M: Good amount of carbonation makes this a very crisp beer that's still a bit on the thick side.

D: Pretty drinkable beer, it's quite pretty inexpensive which makes it even easier to drink a few.

Photo of Jayli
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a nice amber/orange color with about an inch of white bubbly head. Head fades relatively quickly but leaves thin lacing on the glass. Scents of citrus fruit seem to blend very well with the hops and malt. The taste is equally as balanced as the aroma. Initial taste was of sweet malt, followed by some citrus, finished off by a nice bitterness of hops. Lighter bodied beer that I could definitely sit with for a session!

Photo of washburnkid
4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful amber color with one finger frothy head that retains and leaves sticky lace throughout glass. Some malty notes but citrusy, crisp aromas are more pleasing to the nose. Taste is creamier than expected; balanced with grains, and citrus hops left behind. Medium body, carbonated well. This smooth beer is easy to drink and leaves a pleasant hop dryness on the tongue. I would have a lot with pizza. I would have a lot by itself. I really love this beer.

Photo of matty
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Amber colored beer with a big head that slowly fades to half an inch.Aroma is very weak.Taste is grapefruit and some other weak citrusy blend.I honestly don't know what to say about this beer.Overall it's slightly above average but there's nothing there that makes you want to come back for more.

Photo of PatronWizard
3.08/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Sixer to the head.

Pours almost clear amber copper. Decent white head settling at a moderate pace.

Smell of slightly sour malt. Yep.

Taste of slightly sour malt; grainy - like cereal. Neither good nor bad.

Pretty damn rude with the carbonation - rakes the throat.

What can I say? I'm uninspired.

Overall: uninspiring

Photo of u2carew
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(A) Bronze in color. Clear and transparent.
(S) Slight aroma of yeast and roasted barley.
(T) Light on the front end. Mildly dry and sweet flavors with a gentle bitterness in the aftertaste. After multiple sips the flavors of this brew come to the forefront.
(M) Mellow bubbly-ness and medium body.
(D) A good drinkability. Becomes easy and more pleasant to drink after a few sips.

Photo of sonicdescent
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle to SA Sensory glass.

Appearance is a copper color with medium head, good retention and lacing. Carbonation looks high and pretty.

Smell is oddly weak, I get a light fruity scent, too light to pinpoint. This gets a bit better as the drink warms, but never shows any strong characteristics.

Taste is interesting with a (very light) minty hop flavor. Hops become more pronounced in the aftertaste, but by no means is this a hop bomb. Very balanced.

Mouthfeel is good with a medium body and carbonation.

I'd absolutely buy this again, this is a great session beer.

Photo of thekanna
3.4/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear copper with huge, white frothy head that remains. Leaves a coat of lace on my glass.

Smell: Yeasty and warm horse-trough like. Slight notes of sweetness, but this is overcome by a macro lager-type sour cooked vegetable smell.

Taste: Interesting. Bready malts go down smoothly to reveal a long-lasting hop bitterness. Hops just will not dissipate; they leave quite a memorable bite.

Overall: Drinkable, but too much like a BMC to waste the extra couple of bucks on for a sixer.

Photo of mdcrouser
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A light caramel orange glows stunningly, nearly enlightening the entire room, capped by a pretty lively white head.

Sparks of carbonation jump around the mouth like metal dragging on concrete - subtle and slow at first, but building to a quickly burning mild fire of hops-laden happiness.

It all quickly smoothes, with hints of orange peel-, woody-, and hazelnut-tinged hops serving as an overlay to a light mouthful of malt.

Simply enjoyable and wholly delightful - a good place to drop anchor for awhile.

Photo of kbeals
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Plenty of fizzy white head top this copper colored beer. Smell is of sweet malts, with a slight hint of citrus. The taste is a bit citrusy, some malts come into play, with a smooth, slightly bitter finish. The beer is slightly carbonated, light-medium bodied, and very pleasing overall. An excellent beer in my opinion.

Photo of Bookseeb
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance has a dark golden amber head with a generous head. Smell is sweet citrus malt with hop aroma. Taste is grainy, slight grapefruit bitter, good balance with malt and hops. Mouthfeel is medium light with a good amount of carbonation. A good brew, but for me the hops get in the way of making it a good session.

Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.33/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Amber color with white head that is very thin

Smells of earthy tones with very little hop character and spices. Very very malty to the nose soothing as well. Nutty character.

Taste is excellent very full bodied with a nice crisp start a nice nutty and earthy middle and a sharp but sweet finish.

the mouthfeel is very full perfect balance of carbonation. At the same time refreshing very attractive overall

Drinkability is very big. You can have many pints of this and not feel full. Goes down smooth.

Photo of searsclone
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours clear golden amber with a thin white head.

smells dry and earthy and nutty

tastes nutty and hoppy, kind of sharp on the back of the throat

not many bubbles from the carbonation, but definitely not flat, not much aftertaste.

I can see and taste why this beer has been around for so long.

Photo of droomyster
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This much-celebrated brew deserves every bit of the hype that's been heaped upon it over the years. No matter how many micros I try, this classic remains one my favorites. Pours a foggy copper with thick white foam and smells of strong earthy hops and sweet malts. It's extremely flavorful. Carmelly malts perfected balanced by a complex fruitiness and powerful hoppiness. Medium body is well carbonated and crackles on the tongue. A hauntingly long finish that leaves you to contemplate just what exactly hit your palate. Highly recommended.

Photo of theghost3
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Anchor Steam pours a slightly hazy amber with a moderately thick, golden beige head. Smell is mainly malts with a hint of citrusy hops. Taste is malty, but a good balance of bitter hops. Nuts & oak are present. Feel is nicely carbonated. This is a drinkable beer and incredibly unique.

Photo of Soneast
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden color with a 1/2 inch, cream colored head comprised of really large bubbles, that dissipates relatively quickly, leaving a lot of foam where it had existed.

Not a whole lot of aromas, but those detected are predominately sweet malt, caramel, with an earthy quality to it.

A lot of grains coming through, very multi-grain-like in flavor, despite that there is a prominent bitterness in the beer, which actually took me off guard. Leaves a sweet flavor on the tongue, yet a lot of residual bitterness as well. Quite unique.

Photo of plaid75
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Finley's in Huntington.

Poured a slightly hazy medium copper hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a subtle fruity hop and a soft sweetness.

The taste consisted of a balanced clean grainand grassy hop. Slight esters detected as well.

The mouthfeel was average for the style (it is the style).

Overall a tasty and easy drinking beer.

Photo of hoppheadIPA
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber color that pproduced a fluffy white head that sticks to the glass and produces excellent lacing as I drink. Tastes of hop bitterness with a malty backround. Tastes somewhat caramely. This is a light bodied beer with outstanding taste. This is a prime example of a steam beer. Very good drinkability. Definatly drinking this alot more.

Photo of Onenote81
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this at a local restaurant. Unfortunately, when I asked for a glass to pour this in, it was frosty frosterton. I waited until the glass got closer to room temp before I poured. Pours a deep gold with a nice rocky 2-finger head. Smells sweet with a touch of hop twang.

Nice crisp mouthfeel aides the drinkability, yet this is a smooth beer. A little mellow on the taste, but I'm tasting some corny mealy taste, with a slight hop bite on the finish. Aftertaste reminds me of Cheerios. Not too bad a beer. Anchor does well with most anything they put out. Recommend.

Photo of TheEclecticGent
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I used to drink this all the time when I first discovered it out in San Fran on tap. My favorite watering hole now has it on tap, so I picked up this beer again and began drinking it.

A - A copper colored beer with a thin (2 mm) white head that slowly fades away. Some lacing.
S - A slightly sharp citrus / hop smell with a hint of light malt.
T - A clean tasting beer, like a light Pale Ale but smoother, those larger yeasts did their work. The hoppyness at the end is mild and pleasant. Clean keeps coming to mind as I drink this beer, the light malt taste is clean.
M - Very light with good carbonation.
D - Highly drinkable beer.
Beers like this are great relaxation beers. This is a great overall beer and as good as I remember it.

Photo of magnj
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a - 1 finger head on a vigorous pour fades to a thin film and no lacing. Great darkish orange color, very clear but doesn't look watery, lots of bubbles.

s - Not too big on the smell besides sweet malt. Smells like beer...

t - Right away, carbonation. Then malt, and at the end it's dry and a little hoppy.

m/d - A little thin. Overall very sessionable, I'll go back for more at some point

Photo of kasper
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark, semi-translucent amber. Huge billowing banana cream-colored foamy head that leaves thick walls of lacing on the way down.

S: Odd aroma that must be common amongst steam beers. Smells like wet grains with a tad of sweet malt. There's also this wet, steamy, metallic scent that reminds me of a gym steam room.

T: Fairly malty taste, bit of tangy fruit. Finish is slightly bitter and grainy from the touch of hops. This taste lingers afterwards.

D: Malty-thick medium body with moderate amounts of carbonation.

M: Not one of the more popular styles, but I picked up a 6-pack because my entire beer cellar consists of mostly heavy, high octane beers. I was searching for something lighter and different and this does the trick.

Photo of Fatduck
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Another one I drink on a regular basis, and took months to formally review. That said, I'm finding it hard to review this, It has been one of those beers that I compare other beers to.

Golden in color, fluffy head if you pour hard enough, but it fades fast. Smells like malt, grass, some caramel. Crisp clean tasting more grass/hay some kind of earthy hop. Highly carbonated can be a little too much at times, but on a hot summer day its great. Truly this is a drinkable beer, honed for decades for just that purpose, this is one of my go to session beers.

Photo of hoplover82
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a clear reddish golden color with a thin white head, with ok lacing.

The aroma is soft,of sweet malts and mild hops.

The flavor is dry and malty. Kind watery in the finish, but it's not bad.

It is a medium to light bodied beer with good carbonation.

Pretty good session beer.

Photo of Brewsmith
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the BJs Restaurant and Brewhouse in Torrance, CA. Aroma is lisghtly spicy, hoppy with some maltiness in there. An amber color that is crystal clear and very little head. Flavor is toasty, biscuity and balanced with hop bitterness. Some woody, spicy notes from the hops. Balanced and a dry finish. Very drinkable. Complexity comes out when it warms a little.

Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 5,055 ratings.