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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

4,888 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,888
Reviews: 1,862
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.95%
Wants: 132
Gots: 411 | 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: 4,888 | Reviews: 1,862 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of charlatan
2.8/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bought this on tap at Madame Butterfly Restaurant in Portland.

The straw to amber colour was lighter than the beers I tend to prefer. A creamy head added to the feel, particularly early on.

The nose was of a rather dim, bitter type of creaminess, reminding me of Boddington's Bitter which I have never been particularly fond of.

I haven't sampled a beer like this in a good while. It struck me as rather diluted (I prefer a much fuller flavour), yet at the same time dry.

The hops delivered a decent degree of bitterness, but were rather one dimensional, and didn't mix well with the creamy malt. This is a combination which makes little sense to my palate.

charlatan, Feb 21, 2005
Photo of karst
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This Steam beer is a clear copper color and an off-white head foams up 1 cm. hangs around and evently fades to a surface layer near the end. Aroma is mostly malt, some hops, well balanced.

Provides a nice carbonation with an above average body. The beer gives some sweet caramel up front and then gives way to west coast hop finish that is delightful in in their acidity and delectable in their spiciness, dry aftertaste taste along with little bit of grainy flavor.

This little beauty is crisp, refreshing and very easy to drink. Session beer par excellance! I am amazed that nothing under this style rates above 4.0 average. "I don't get no respect"... Rodney Dangerfield.

Worthy of a 4+ IMHO

karst, Feb 10, 2005
Photo of neonbrown82
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had this on tap at my favorite watering hole. It was quite tasty and refreshing, but I couldn't imagine drinking this for too long because of the overbearing sweetness. Nonethess, it was delicious. I might have to pick up a bomber in the near future.

The beer was an amber color with a generous frothy white head that stayed to at least a quarter inch through the pint. The smell was quite fruity and malty. I couldn't quite place the taste, but it was almost tropical. Like I said, quite delicious and refreshing at first, but towards the bottom of the pint it is damn nigh too much. I will probably drink more in the future, but I definitely couldn't foresee this being a session brew even though it is under 5% ABV.

neonbrown82, Feb 05, 2005
Photo of Fish113d
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pouring into a pint glass at about 50 degrees (F) it pours a deep amber color w/ 1 cm of frothy tan head w/ lots of cling to my glass. It also appears a little cloudy at first as well. Smell is of sweetness- cherries or raisins malts maybe. However, no hops or dark malts other than fruit, nothing too special. Smooth vanilla cherry flavors up front with some hops to it and then a little more hops on the finish; a little watery also and not too complex. However, this is a very decent beer to drink. Prickly carbonation that sticks to the tip of your tongue on the sip and then follows the contours of your tongue even after the swallow (lots of carb!). Light-medium bodied; mild and smooth and very easy to drink a whole lot of them!!

Fish113d, Feb 01, 2005
Photo of stjarnflikka
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear red-orange beer with a fingerthick foam and some carbonation.

Smell is malty, somewhat flowery with oranges to aid it. Some fizzy carbonation goes in there to, mainly fresh and nice though.

Taste is at first malt. Citric hops goes together with a somewhat bitter tone to create a nice feel. Somewhat bready and alcoholic, and it finishes with citrus and a long rough bitterness with some spices.

A nice brew by a great brewer.

stjarnflikka, Jan 29, 2005
Photo of steinlifter
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

This poured a dark golden, sudsy head that diminished quickly, but left a collar all the way through, smell was a bit woodsy, with slight fruit aroma, taste is of well balanced mild hops and malt, bit of apple notes, and a bit spicy, mouthfeel is well carbonated, a bit of chewiness, but very mildly so, finishes very smooth, drinkability is excellent, this is a great session brew,I can't believe it has taken me this long to review this as I have had this many times now, I really like Anchor Steam a lot!!!

steinlifter, Jan 28, 2005
Photo of santoslhalper
3.05/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearence: Pours a clear copper with a decent sized white head. No lacing, and little carbonation.

Smell: The smell is a very earthy malt smell. The hops back it up nicely and the yeast is also very present in the nose.

Taste and Mouthfeel: The taste is mainly of malts, and not ones that are all that flavorful or complex. The hops barely make a statement in the mouth. The flavor is bland and uninviting. The mouthfeel is thin but smooth.

Drinkability and Overall: Again, Anchor has left me down. First the OSA 04, and now this. I have yet to try their Bigfoot barelywine, but I have one waiting for me in the cellar. Hopefully it's better than this bland beer.

santoslhalper, Jan 25, 2005
Photo of TackleDummy
3.43/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours a copper color with a minimal off-white head. The head lasts for quite a while and leaves creamy white lacing on the glass.

The aroma is that of malt with a bit of citrus.

The flavor starts with a bit of a hop bite and a slight malt flavor, and finishes with a citrus taste with a decent amount of bitterness.

The mouth feel is pretty light and just a little creamy, and it goes down smoothly.

TackleDummy, Jan 21, 2005
Photo of quasimoto
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First off, I love the way the beer produced one of the best heads of foam I've ever seen. The color of the beer was a nice dark copper. I liked the malty smell, and how the hops are only really distinctive in the taste. It also had a suprisingly somewhat creamy feel. Other than that, it would make a nice brew for a warm summer night.

quasimoto, Jan 17, 2005
Photo of beersarang
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gorgeous beer. Copper colored with a beige head that becomes rather rocky. The lace is intermittent.

Smells almost metallic, hoppy.

Taste is hard to describe. This beer is not bitter per se, but the malts are seemingly overwhelmed by the unique hops. This beer has a mild beginning taste with a bite towards the end, which fades into an aftertaste that is quite pleasant and smooth.

Carbonation is evident in mouthfeel, lighter to medium bodied beer.

Drinkable, to be sure.

I do like this beer. One thing I can say is that there is no beer that is even close to it. Everyone says it is unique, and everyone is right. A great beer to have around; it shows what America is capable of brewing.

beersarang, Jan 15, 2005
Photo of LiquidBreadMan
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is Anchor Brewing's second-best offering, in my opinion -- and it's a top-ten among American made microbrews.

Anchor Steam pours a deep copper with an average life off-white head. Its aroma is fruity: meyer lemon and grapefruit, with an essence of roasted malts and hops. The taste is a similarly complex balance of flavors with a quick bite of hops, sweet malts and a citrus finish. Mouthfeel is a little dry, which is good in my book. This beer's drinkability is better than most I've tried, regardless of style.

LiquidBreadMan, Jan 01, 2005
Photo of elricorico
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear copper colour(how's that for alliteration?) with a touch of off-white head. It smells good, seems to me that it has a citrus smell, with a baked bread aroma and a sweetness not unlike brown sugar.

Has a fresh citrus taste to start and a mild hop finish. Hints of sweetness within the starting, but nothing overpowering.

Decent mouthfeel. without heavy carbonation. Has a little bit of body to it, it doesn't feel thin. This beer is quite drinkable, when finishing one it seems that another is a good idea.

elricorico, Dec 31, 2004
Photo of mynie
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours rust-colored with a very nice head that sticks around. For some reason I figured this would be blonde...

Steam hops on the nose, light citrus along with a harsh, almost rye malt scent. Nice.

Tastes more or less like it smells. Sweet, toasted malt upfront with the citrus of the hops coming in on the back.

This beer is juuust right. A great session ale that goes down easy and doesn't rape your mouth,

mynie, Dec 30, 2004
Photo of BeerBob
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Anchor Steam Beer pours a rich deep copper from a dark brown 12oz glass bottle. Head goes well over two fingers and is off white, thickly packed with small firm bubbles that regenerate from the beer below. A generous lacing of foam covers the side of my glass, giving it a world class picture of a well laced beer glass.

Nose is of hops and sweet malt in pleasing and fragrant amounts. Palate is toasted sweet malt, thick and creamy with a well bittered hops presents. There is a floral profile to the hops, but not the heavy kind but rather soft and well balanced with the sweet malt. Anchor Steam Beer reminds me of a good German Märzen.

A well made brew awaits you from Anchor Brewing, no skimping here, and not watery in the least. See it on the shelf, take it from the shelf and buy, it will not disappoint.

BeerBob, Dec 30, 2004
Photo of orbitalr0x
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this one on-tap w/ dinner tonight. Came to me with a nice golden amber color, but not much head to speak of. I'll blame that on the pour. However, it made up for it with some nice lacing cascading down the glass. A nice citrusy hop nose with some bready sweetness.

Sweet, cirtus/lemon hops mix in with a nice sweet caramel, bready malt. Nice balance and quite tasty.

Mouthfeel was a bit thin but that makes it all the more drinkable. A good session brew. I've never had this in the bottle, but I look forward to trying it.

orbitalr0x, Dec 18, 2004
Photo of MuddyFeet
3.48/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a lot different than what I remember from when I was in SF. For some reason I had the distinct memory of sour dough bread and not particularly liking it. But then again that was a few years ago and my tastes have changed since then. The beer poured out of the bottle with a finger-width head on top that dissappeared down to a thin film with a lace that clung to the sides of the glass. The color was a burnt, clear copper. The hops are not overly complex and roll over the tongue very smoothly. However, I did notice slight hints of lemon and sugar. But what gets me is how much smoother a beer it is now than what I remember.

MuddyFeet, Dec 14, 2004
Photo of Billolick
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ouncer sampled. No freshness indication on the label. Pours a nice rich dark amber, with an off white creamy, dense head. Respectable lacing left behind. Sweet nose of caramel and brown sugar. Medium bodied, smooth malty base to this one, soft, creamy mouthfeel, very easy on the tongue. Smooth subtle hops in the finish, slightly dry very pleasant quafer/sessoner. Classic early/back in the day micro. thanks for the memories and for the fine suds for all these years!

Billolick, Dec 11, 2004
Photo of KoG
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a nice rich gold color with a good amount of creamy head.

Smell was malty with hoppy esters. Couldn't pick out the remaining aromas.

Taste was similar to taht of a good lager. Fresh and crisp with a good malt pallet and light hoppy bite. Not so bad.

Mouth was smooth and lite with a good amount of carbonation.

Being the only steam beer I've had, this isn't that bad. It would probably be better during the summer rather than the winter.

KoG, Dec 09, 2004
Photo of oggg
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a light amber. It has a great lace that rings the glass all the way down. Aroma is neutral malt. Flavor begins very neutral. There is a breath of warm malt towards the end, with the suggestion of fruitiness. Clean finish. Medium body

Overall: Very clean malty beer.

oggg, Nov 19, 2004
Photo of RocketWidget
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This one is quite pleasing. Pours a dark copper color, could use a little more head. Despite this, I love this beer. The hops here have a perfect balance to the malt, and this beer has a crisp, refreshing aftertaste. Exceptionally drinkable. Like a pilsner, this would go with nearly any meal, yet it is more hearty and full bodied than that style.

RocketWidget, Nov 17, 2004
Photo of Backer2004
4.6/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the best all around domestics around. Glad to see it at a cafe for $2.50 a bottle. Usually one of the more expensive six packs at the local grocery store. After reading the review by Michael Jackson 6 months ago, I knew I needed to try this famed steam beer. Loved it then and my feelings haven't changed now. Cannot compare to another steam beer, but the appreance is above average, nice head and carbonation (but seen better). Balanced taste just perfect. Would love to convert others that stick to their Coors, Bud Light and Miller Light. Try one today.

Backer2004, Nov 12, 2004
Photo of moocey
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

God Bless Fritz Maytag.

The commercial beer selection in Auburn, AL is dismal, if not abysmal compared to most anywhere else in America. (I say "commercial beer" because Auburn has a brewpub, of all things. And I homebrew.) Anyway, three quality microbrews make it to Auburn, and Anchor is one of them. Anchor steam can be found in just about every grocery store, amidst the pretend real beers such as Redhook and Flying Dog. If I'm out of my own stuff, and I want to have a good beer sitting at home after work - oftentimes it's Anchor Steam because Anchor Brewing and their 50 employess get beer from San Fran all the way to here.

Appearance - Just your average beautiful amber I'd expect from a beer like this. Good, but nothing special.

The smell is overwhemingly malty

As indicated by the smell, Big and malty up front. Is there something lemony/fruity there as well? Great dry grassy hop finish that balances out the malt perfectly. Mouthfeel is full and kinda creamy. This beer can be different from sip to sip. Lately when I have one of these the flavors all seem to run together rather, rather than having a beginning, middle, and end. Definately some lemony esters up front. One of my few fallbacks.

moocey, Nov 08, 2004
Photo of tweeder263
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out a nice amber color with a 2 finger head ,slightly hazy appearance,,looks really good.Im impressed with the taste, has good amount of hoppiness and it goes down really smooth,,no aftertaste. I could see me havin a few of these and it sucks because i bought only one :(

tweeder263, Nov 08, 2004
Photo of avylover
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a nice copper color with good carbonation a a thick white head.Aroma is a mix of spicy hops and biscuity malt.Taste the definition of "Balance." A malty, creamy front end, with some toffee type notes, which gives way to nice dry bitterness to finish things off. Reminds me of HSA really. very good stuff, and worth the 8 bucks a sixer. Smooth & creamy mouthfeel, drinkablity is decent.

avylover, Nov 01, 2004
Photo of GClarkage
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Consumed in October 2004. Purchased at the local Safeway. Pours with a deep copper/amber color. I very nice head, which some was still remaining after it was gone. Very little lace, but not expected either. Smells of hops, malt, maybe a bit of citrus. A very unique beer in my opinion. Has that lager taste, but also has that IPA taste to it. Even has a bit of citrus taste in the mix. It goes down very smooth. A very easy beer to go through a six pack and still want more. Possibly my favorite session beer, or at least for a nice hot day after working or playing hard. This was the first beer I was introduced to while growing up. I remember swimming in Eagle Lake (Northern California) and doing a little snorkling and finding a bottle cap from an Anchor Steam bottle. I must have smelled it for days. It was such a facsinating smell to me. This was when I was about 7 or 8 years old. Ahhhh, good old memories. Too bad it took me almost 20 years from then to try my first.

GClarkage, Oct 30, 2004
Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 4,888 ratings.