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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.
BA SCORE
87
very good

4,482 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,482
Reviews: 1,836
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.69%
Wants: 119
Gots: 269 | 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: 4,482 | Reviews: 1,836 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jaluria
jaluria

Connecticut

3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a copper color with soapy foam that leaves behind bits of lacing. I detect a roasted, toasty character in the aroma along with a hint of nutmeg. First taste is unique to say the least; very distinct. Roasted malt is upfront with a pepper spice aftertaste. My mouth is left dry and refreshed, but this brew is rather biting (i.e. powerful and flavorful). Some bitterness in the tate, but not on the magnitude of a pale ale or IPA. Overall, a very good beer with an interesting history. Worth of a few pints.

Serving type: on-tap

09-28-2005 13:14:23 | More by jaluria
Photo of Gusler
Gusler

Arizona

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

The beer dispenses from the 12-ounce brown stubby bottle a crystal clear deep amber with a personable creamy light tan head that last for eons before dissolving leaving a fine coating of lace to conceal the glass. Nose is sweet malt, fresh and crisp, clean on the palate, start is lightly sweet with the malt pleasant and the top light to medium in feel, Finish has a pleasing acidity and the hops delightful in their spicy presence, dry aftertaste, a pleasant beer on a still hot Sunday afternoon in Phoenix.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2005 22:36:26 | More by Gusler
Photo of jmz62565
jmz62565

Connecticut

3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a great!!! looking beer wth a full head and a clear dark coppery color..The smell is ok,a pretty full spice and ale mix with a malt backbone.The taste is a little bitter with malt and citrus flavors. The flavors are very unique. A can see myself having more than one of these tailgating perhaps.This goes down so easy I think I'll have another. Cheers.

Serving type: bottle

09-21-2005 02:49:28 | More by jmz62565
Photo of texashammer
texashammer

Texas

3.15/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Comes out of the tap impressively smooth and creamy. Transluscent orange color. Body is lighter than I would like, medium to light. The head is so creamy, and the mouthfeel and finish are silky smooth.
Smell is light and clean and understated. Nutty malt. I taste it and it really strikes me as bland; no hops to speak of. It is a very pleasant texture but boring flavor.

Serving type: on-tap

09-19-2005 16:24:31 | More by texashammer
Photo of AlexJ
AlexJ

North Carolina

3.05/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Darker than expected, coppery brown with a dense off-white head that retains pretty well and leaves a few spots of lace that are quickly washed off.

Aroma is mild and malty, toasty nuts, caramel, floral, citrus, and bread.

Flavor reminds me of a brown ale/marzen hybrid. Smooth caramel, nuts, faint cocoa, with plenty of floral and citrus hops to back it up. Almost a nasty aftertaste detracts points.

Between light and medium in body, softly carbonated, and easy to drink. I'll stick with my ales thank you.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2005 13:57:53 | More by AlexJ
Photo of trevorwideman
trevorwideman

Manitoba (Canada)

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

Beautiful copper colour, pours with just a finger of frothy head, carbonation not vicious, but very pretty. Smells hoppy sweet, caramel and citrus notes.

Taste is wonderfully hoppy, refreshingly bitter, and full of sour citrus, grapefruity...

Mouthfeel has a nice bite to it, sticks to the back of the throat. A very summery beer. This says "west coast" to me in a big way. Even though I haven't much experience with this style, I'm already a bit of a fan.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2005 23:18:57 | More by trevorwideman
Photo of BigBry
BigBry

Alberta (Canada)

3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Classic old style label and the stubby bottle, Anchor Steam is a classic example of the style. It pours a dark coppery orange color, clear and clean, with a short but thick head of off white foam. The head does shrink away, and it is just a bit too thin to leave any lace. There is a strong barley malt aroma, with some earthy characteristics in the smell of caramel and nuts - similar to oa brown ale. Similar taste of malt and some clean hop bitterness. Rich and full bodied, but still quite refreshing - pleasantly ssuprised with this one.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2005 02:47:00 | More by BigBry
Photo of AltBock
AltBock

Ohio

3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle poured into a Pokal.

It came out a light copper color with a nice size head of foam that left some lacing toward the bottom of the glass. Not much of a smell with this beer, except for some malts with a fruity background. Some smell is better than no smell. The taste you get is the the lager first than the ale second. It is a crisp, malted hops with a dry hop bitterness at the end. The mouthfeel was light without being a light beer and with some carbonation. This is a beer that everybody should try for themselves. It would also make a nice summer session beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2005 02:27:23 | More by AltBock
Photo of ommegangpbr
ommegangpbr

New York

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

Really quite pretty for a lagery type animal. Pours a maple syrup, darker (but not dark) honey color with a light tan head that doesnt stay for too long but laces quite well.
Smells kinda like a brown ale and has quite a few brown ale characteristics in flavor. A malty, toasted sweetness in smell and taste. Plenty of dry hop bitterness in taste and mouthfeel... smells sweeter than it is. Mostly well balanced but hops wins out.
Strikes me as a hybrid between a lager and a dry brown ale.
I don't doubt this is spot on for the style. Not my favorite thing in the world but definitely has its place in the beer spectrum.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2005 07:11:50 | More by ommegangpbr
Photo of Bleedingshrimp
Bleedingshrimp

Virginia

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

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass. Head is moderate with O.K. retention and not much lacing. Color is just a deaper red than peach. Smell is faintly caramel. Taste is well carbonated, crisp and slightly sweet. Toast and caramel come to mind, light on the hops and fairly balanced. Refreshing and conducive to nice bouts of belching. Mouthfeel is just thick enough and pretty drinkable. Great example of an All-American lager type beer. Fits right in with lagers and pilsners on the drinkability factor. Definitely will revisit on many a warm summer night.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2005 02:03:13 | More by Bleedingshrimp
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

3.3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in an imperial pint glass)

A- This beer pours a deep burnt orange with a crystal clear body and a big creamy off-white head. A strong carbonation keeps the head big and rocky.

S-The smell of pale malt with some notes of toasted malt and some noble bitter hops lurk in the background.

T- A very smooth soft pale malt taste with some soft bite of hop bitterness finish this beer. The finish is not real dry but has a bit of a long finish with some malt and hop flavor.

M-A medium mouthfeel with some fizziness but no astringency or alcohol warmth.

D- This beer does have interesting qualities of both lagers and ales and is a very smooth beer. It doesn't have quite the complexity to hold my interest.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2005 01:09:37 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of tjthresh
tjthresh

Indiana

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

Anchor Steam is widely accepted as the classic example of a California Common. It features a atrong caramel malt aroma and flavor. A refreshing bitternes, but not too much. Steam is crystal clear, copper orange with some darker hues. Always and acceptable beer in my house.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2005 12:36:40 | More by tjthresh
Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS
FLAbeergutinMASS

Massachusetts

3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pretty good beer, a definitely departure from the heavily malts and sweets of east coast PA’s. I found this beer to be extremely effervescent in terms of its pop and carbonation.

I could sense a vegetable like aftertaste that followed a slightly fruity beginning. A very good beer, but very expensive. Worth a try. The lingering aftertaste is a nice reminder.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2005 01:21:31 | More by FLAbeergutinMASS
Photo of GnomeKing
GnomeKing

Pennsylvania

2.68/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The taste of the lager yeast is very prominent, reminding me of Yuengling Lager, especially toward the end of the pint, when the taste became heavy, dominant, and overwhelming. This beer just doesn't do it for me. There were some hints of strawberries and a tinge of malty sweetness on a few swigs when the pint was half full (or half empty, since I'm giving a negative review), but that was a brief respite from the experience of swigging this beer. Steam (aka California Common) is a style unto itself. I don't have much interest in it, based on this beer. It tastes more or less like a generic lager. I'm not surprised there aren't many brewers working in this style.

Serving type: on-tap

08-18-2005 19:30:02 | More by GnomeKing
Photo of LordChesterfield
LordChesterfield

Oregon

4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

HEAR THEE HEARTHEE, i'm drunk on this beer...

Most of these fellows don't even know what type of beer their reviewing.
This beer uses lager yeast and was brewed at ale temperatures! Unique genre! STEAM, not ale, not lager, but the best of both worlds. Flavorful and clean and refreshing. The only important atribute with this beer is its exquisite balance of hops and malt. This balance carries through to every facet of the tasting process. The end result is lots of flavor and lots of drinkability. A middle of the road beer that is sure to satisfy most who don't prefer one extreme or another. My personal review on the brand- Anchor owns the rights to the name "STEAM." This is like owning the word "ale." This is absurd and usually unnoticed, so if you can find a steam beer of equivelant quality, buy IT instead. I love this beer with all of my heart. Too bad it costs $8 a six!

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2005 04:48:08 | More by LordChesterfield
Photo of swid
swid

Missouri

3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Anchor Steam pours a light amber color into my pilsner glass. A 1/4" head forms, and slowly dissipates. Medium carbonation, little lacing. The aroma is fairly restrained; there's little here beyond some generalized malty sweetness and a mild floral/spice hop aroma.

Forunately, the taste is better than the smell. The malt and hops are nearly perfectly balanced; I can find caramel, chocolate, biscuity, floral, and spicy flavors. The mouthfeel is light, and slighty dry; finishes a combination of "sweet, crisp and slighty spicy". There's some unspecified harshness in the aftertaste that I can't quite pin down (which may be due to the age of this particular bottle).

Anchor Steam is a refreshing, enjoyable beer (and virtually the only example of its style on the market). It may be slightly overrated due to its "cult classic" status. On the other hand, it did single-handedly keep a style alive; overall, it's a good crossover craft beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2005 00:36:11 | More by swid
Photo of KarlHungus
KarlHungus

Minnesota

3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a semi-clear pale red color with a creamy white head. The aroma is malty with hints of spices. The taste is sweet, but not too strong. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, and very smooth.. Overall, this is a great summer brew. It's easy to drink and refreshing.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2005 00:22:31 | More by KarlHungus
Photo of pootz
pootz

Ontario (Canada)

3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I have decided to delete my previous rating because I’m sure I got spoiled samples. The sample I am tasting now was bought from a hotel consignment. According to the date code this beer is 3 weeks old. This was fresh tasting beer. Poured a deep amber color with a nice fluffy 2 finger cap which retains a good lace on the glass. Medium carbonation. Aromas of sweet crystal/caramel malts and grassy hops..very pronounced aromas. Full bodied beer...chewy toasty malts with spicy hopping that goes slightly drying in the finish and lightly bitter in the after taste. All in all this a good session beer...well made, quaffable, full bodied and satisfying.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2005 15:40:10 | More by pootz
Photo of Vancer
Vancer

Illinois

2.58/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

The ol’ standard, eh? Well, it did have a nice pour- amber /orange with a foamy tan head. Only a slight malt aroma. But the taste, not good. Not much in the way of malts or hop. Just some earthy, slightly bitter flavor. Kinda flat in the mouth. Boy, overall a dull & boring lager. Wasn’t’ offensive, but didn’t do anything for me.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2005 17:38:00 | More by Vancer
Photo of kbnooshay
kbnooshay

New York

3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I got a 20 ouncer of this on tap. This pours a really nice dark copper/amber color with a nice uneven off white head. The aroma is sort of caramely and malty. The taste is similar, with sweet but light brown sugar flavor. The taste is fruity but also contains some good hoppage. THe spicy hops balance out the malts nicely.

This is a unique and in my opinion an above average beer. Lots of character to it. The mouthfeel is moderate, almost creamy. I could have a good amount of this.

Serving type: on-tap

07-24-2005 23:40:00 | More by kbnooshay
Photo of mmmbeer
mmmbeer

Massachusetts

3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. with no freshness date - served chilled in a pilsner glass. It is an orangey/caramel color with a 1/4" light tan head that dissipates to nothing. Smells earthy with caramel. It is crisp with a medium body that tastes earthy with caramel, toasty/biscuity malts, and floral/spicy hops that leave a mild bitterness.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2005 16:02:11 | More by mmmbeer
Photo of claytri
claytri

Maryland

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

The beer poured a fine amber with an eggshell head. The aroma was a blast of malt and floral hops. The taste was of hoppy malt with many floral and fuit hints in the finish. the feel was a full bodied beer that was fairly oily with a well proportioned hop finish. This was a pleasant experience I enjoyed the beer and it went well with the meal providing a nice counterpart to calimari and fish giving a good cleansing.

Serving type: on-tap

07-20-2005 03:56:46 | More by claytri
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is one of my all time favorites. One of the first micro's I bought in CA. Pours a nice golden/amber color with a nice head, but does not last long, very light lacing if any at all. Nice malty scent with a great light taste. I really enjoy this beer, very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2005 01:00:35 | More by Wasatch
Photo of palliko
palliko

California

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

Appearance is reddish brown with a beige head of thick foam that lasts and sticks to the glass. Aroma contains loam and malt and brown sugar. Initial taste is a smack-down of bitter hops and citrus. So much flavor! Followed by a complex and fairly bitter finish that lingers, reminding you that there was a barley and malt explosion on your tongue, but a merciful lemon to cleanse the palate.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2005 16:34:33 | More by palliko
Photo of thinkbreakfast
thinkbreakfast

New York

3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Somehow I have yet to try this beer. It seems to be pretty common around here.

App: Cloudy orange/brown/amber. Decent head retention with lacing that slides down the glass.

Smell: Fruity with a hint of metal. Sourness as well.

Taste: Fruity at first, then asprin-like hops kick in. Finish is burnt bitter. Aftertaste is buttery and burnt. Definately a different taste. Pretty good too.

Mouthfeel: Somewhat thin. The buttery aftertaste is a plus though.

Drinkability: Very good. Good taste without numbing the pallate. Good summer beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2005 21:54:58 | More by thinkbreakfast
Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 4,482 ratings.