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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

5,237 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,237
Reviews: 1,922
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 12.99%
Wants: 161
Gots: 683 | 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.
View: Beers (25) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,237 | Reviews: 1,922
Photo of Derek
3.11/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Copper-bronze, off-white head, good retention, some lace.

S: Earthy-mineral & floral hops with a slight caramel aroma.

T: Earthy-mineral, caramel, orange zest, slight hint of fruity esters. There's a slight nutshell-like bitterness that I'm not fond of.

M: Moderate body, slightly higher than moderate carbonation, dry finish.

D: Personally I'm not fond of that nutshell flavour.

Photo of mobud
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into a pint glass

A- Nice copper color with thick head that slowly faded. Active carbonation.

S- Strong malty nose with a fresh bread smell.

T- Sweet malt with a slight hop taste,but just enough to keep it from being a malt explosion on sipping.

M- Medium feel with an easy finish.

D- Another winner for me from this great brewery. It is easy to see why this company has been so strong for so long. Light enough to have several, but complex enough to keep you enjoy every sip.

Photo of BigRedN
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured from the 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. The beer is amber/copery in color, clear, with a fluffy white head about an inch and a half in height. The head lingers half way through before it finally fades to a thin cover. Leaves good lacing.

Smell: Aromas of bready malt. Some light floral hops are present as well.

Taste: The beer has a strong malty presence on the outset, followed by a slightly bitter hoppy finish. Overall though, the beer is well balanced.

Mouthfeel: Medium in body, well carbonated. A touch dry with a crisp finish.

Drinkability: A very interesting beer, somewhat rare and unique. This beer has great taste, an ABV less than 5%, and I don't get bored or filled up drinking it. Just a perfect session beer. However, it is unfortunately somewhat expensive for me (I purchased some Anchor 6 packs on sale for $6.99, they are regularly $7.99). If this were less than $6 a six pack, it would be a regular in my fridge.

Photo of biggmike
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep amber in color with thick creamy head. Very drinkable beer and like the other Anchor entries that I’ve tried(Porter and Liberty Ale) very tasty and satisfying. The head was not that long lasting and the lacing was mediocre. Still, an excellent beer that I would recommend. Flavor grows on you.

Photo of cichief
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on draft, always a welcome favorite.

A- Pours a deep golden amber, with a nice tan head.

S- Scent of toasted malt and subtle hops.

T- Toasted barley, very biscuity, a very clean, balanced flavor.

M- Well carbonated, not too bubbly, thin to medium on the tongue.

D- A super beer to spend a session with, tasty, but not overly done.

Photo of scriabin
4.32/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Anchor's flagship beer is very solid and never disappoints. It seems to be one of the more versatile beers in that I love it on a hot summer day and it satisfies on the coldest night.

This one has a lovely copperish color and a subtle but enticing smell steeped in hops. The flavor is a nice mix of hops and malt. It is quite flavorful, yet light enough to enjoy again and again without bogging down the stomach. Mmmm...

Photo of Rudgers73
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly cloudy, reddish/amber. Sort of a cider color. 1/4 inch head that settles to almost nothing. Sort of bready in the nose, earthy malt balanced with a very faint hop aroma. The taste is sort of peculiar. Not much flavor at all at the beginning of the drink, although it tastes very fresh and pure. The taste is mostly towards the end of the sip and ends with a rye-like dryness. The mouthfeel is crispy and smooth especially served relatively cool. Quite drinkable as well. It is almost like a brown ale with an extremely light body and a little less flavor. Good session beer I would imagine.

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

Poured a clear, light copper color with a nice, big, long-lasting light tan head. Nose was very hoppy with some caramel in the background and a subdued fruitiness. Some mintiness in there, too. Tasted about the same--crystal malt with a lingering bitterness. Moderate hop flavor; thought it could use a bit more malt for balance, but very nice. Mouthfeel was lively though a bit thin. Drinkability was quite nice.

An all-around solid brew.

Photo of Shadman
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Good old 8th street wine & liquor store brought some of this in. Heard lots about it, let's see if the hype holds.

Not sure where all the hazy reviews came from. My bottle poured a slight copper color with a head that showed some good retnetion, but no lacing.

Rich, bready malt with a hint of caramel to it. Spicy hops linger in the background.

Interesting taste. Flood of bitter hop and smooth caramel malt attack the tastebuds in perfect unison. Finish, even with the hop blast, is only slightly dry.

Very smooth, almost creamy mouthfeel. Maybe a tad bit watery..but overall a good experience.

Nice west coast offering as they didn't go overboard with the hops and the smoothness certainly makes it a breeze to drink. Would be a good companion to some SF seafood

Photo of jayfarley3
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

from a 12oz bottle pours a medium hazy copper color with a big fluffy off white head.

smells bready, malty and has a slight sweetness to it.

this is a very tasty beer, toasted malts, slightly hoppy and a very balanced bitter finish.

very smooth medium-bodied beer with moderate carbonation. this is a great beer, definitley worth trying if you havent yet.

Photo of AlephNull
3.62/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a slightly hazy deep amber, little head retention.

S- floral hoppiness over some apricot/fruity malt.

T- Active citrusy hops come to the forefront immediately, once they smooth out a bit, I taste a bit of a slightly nutty malts.

M- Very active and refreshing. The mouthfeel's the best part of the beer.

D- I can imagine a lot of situations this would be a great beer. But I probably wouldn't choose it often out of a huge lineup. Still not bad.

Photo of GeneralZod
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A brownish gold clear color. Has good head retention.

Smells appetizing. Has a hoppy fragrance.

Very balanced. Slighty bitter, but in a good way. Very good

Slippery. Somewhat watery. Well carbonated.

Taste great. Quickly one of my favorite beer. Would definitely have another one.

Photo of Durge
3.86/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ice tea brown, a thin but steady head with a lot of lace. Smells of malt and white bread, tangy with nice carbonation. A touch of clove flavor with a pleasant bitter finish. Very drinkable, mild but interesting flavor. This would always be a welcome selection. Nice.

Photo of sleazo
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I haven't gotten around to reviewing this so I figured I would see if I could uncover anythign else here.

A-Pours a clear brown with a steady stream of bubbles. Nice soapy foam head settles to a thin covering but the lacing is impressive. Sheets of lace cling to the sides of the mug.

S-Very bready with hints of caramel. The hops are lurking in the background, not enough to determine the kind.

T-The first impact of the taste is the sweetness from the malt. A sort of caramel flavour gives way to rich toasted bread and this is followed by a very nice bitterness from the hops. The hops make their presence very well known here at the end with their resiny slightly floral quality. Running throughout is certain mineral taste much like a good bottled water.

M-Very much American lager in body. It is slightly thin with a good carbonation and a slightly oily feel to it.

D-What more can I say, this is a true classic and one of the first beers that got me into the whole craft movement. This is a welcome summer beer on a humid evening.

Photo of PittBeerGirl
3.35/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Transparent Golden amber body with minimal white head. Head fades rather quickly. Leaves behind little lacing in the glass.

S- Somewhat of a dry fruity nose with accents of hops. Caramel malt in the background.

T- Dry fruits and some spicy hops with a lager yeast backbone. Finish is a balance of caramel malt and bitter hops. Sweet caramel malt lingers.

M- High carbonation and thin lager body. Goes down smooth.

D- This is a pretty drinkable brew-but nothing special. It was interesting to try this steam beer. Definately worth a try.

Photo of SSBrennan
3.97/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish amber with a thick slow falling cream head.

Smells of complex fruit with a yeasty bread in the background.

The flavors are similarly complex with a basic malt sweetness that gives way to fruit notes and hop bitterness.

The mouthfeel is light and appropriately carbonated.

I would drink a few of these.

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

A-Amber color and very clear. 1/2 inch off-white head (no lace) fell to thin ring in a few moments

S-Sweet carmel malt, faint spicy, green hops and lager yeast

T-Lager yeast, spicy hops with a mild bitterness that linger a few moments after the swallow.

M-Nice lager zingy carbonation. Light body a little fizzy

D-Very drinkable could easily be a session of not a lot else was available

Photo of OWSLEY069
2.73/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clean copper color with an off-white head. In the aroma, a sweet malt characteristic, and the same for taste, but with a dryer end. A sweet dryness left in the mouth. A very easy going, smooth beer. Lots of repect to Anchor, it got my parents to understand craft beer!

Photo of bozebus17
3.72/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a clear amber with a thick white head. It looked like it was going to hang around but didn't. It did leave a nice lacing.

Smells of caramel sweetness with some grassy notes.

The taste is sweet malt at the star. There is a bit of nice fresh grains. This is balanced by some bitterness but the malt seems to dominate this brew. It feels fairly light on the palate and has a nice crisp feel from the seemingly high carbonation. It goes down smooth and easy.

This is one beer that I like better from the bottle than on tap. It is light and damn refreshing. This beer is a true American classic and one I'd be glad to drink any time.

Photo of Halcyondays
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle,

A: Dark amber orange with pretty thick white head.

S: Thick malt, with baking bread, sugar cookies, maybe a bit of barnyard feel, interesting.

T: Maltiness, with that fruity ale yeast ester flavor due to high fermentation temperatures, steamy. A bit of sulfur carries the load, with a midly astringent taste, it's a difficult taste to describe.

M: Smooth, that steam beer lager character is there.

D: Very drinkable, not the best beer in the world by any stretch, but a very good one.

Photo of IPAcraig
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I bought a 6 pack of this yesterday becasue I thought it would make a great marinade for steak. The steak turned out really well, and it was nice to pair with this beer. Poured into an anonymous pint glass.

A - Pours a very rich amber color, though only minimal head and lacing.

S - Smells creamy (can a beverage smell creamy?) and sweet. I swear I get a bit of roastiness in the nose, though i am absolutely certain no roasted barley was used in this beer.

T & M - This beer is light and a bit sweet. The yeast produces a very nice fruitiness. The beer is crisp, but slightly creamy, with a very minimal (real ale-ish) carbonation - that I think works great for this beer. Slightly salty finish with a hint of bitterness.

D - Overall this is a great beer. Nice to have on hot days. There may be more flavorful beers out there, but not many as exceptionally balanced as this one.

Photo of sullysbeer
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Aroma: Sweet caramel malt, gentle minty hop nose, Light on the esters and has hints of toffee.

Appearance: Very clear golden copper hue, slight off white head that has a creamy bubble.

Flavor: Malty sweetness, minty and woody hop flavor followed by an assertive woody and minty hop bitterness that lingers a bit and seems to finish dry and crisp. Has a complex fermentation flavor of prunes, maybe? Toasty and caramel.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, perfect CO2 that's not too prickly on the tongue at all. Slight hop astringency that coats the teeth.

Overall Impression: A lightly fruity beer with a firm grainy maltiness, toasty and caramel flavors with a lingering hop bitterness. Steam beer is beer fermented with a lager yeast strain at warmer temperatures around 60F. Hense the name steam beer. Also known as California Common style beer.

Photo of ekempey
3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Tulip glass, the beer pours a nice amber color, with an off white head that eventually laces nicely. The beer has a nice sweet hoppy aroma to it, and the taste is that of oranges, hops, black pepper, and some lemon. The beer goes down easy and opens up as the beer warms up to the proper serving temp. There is a nice dry hopped after taste to the beer as it feels carbonated just right, any more would induce soda like qualities.

Photo of viperpiper522
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- A beautiful ruby with a medium body head that dissapated at an average speed. No lacing.

S- Malt invites you in and at the end some hops foreshadows that experience to come.

T- Hoppy and full of complexities. Is it the high fermentation temperature that makes Anchor Steam so special, or is it the love put into the recipe? I don't know but I don't care. Delicious.

M- Leaves something behind that I enjoy. Sort of sticks around in between sips so you maintain that flavor.

D- Great If it wasn't so expensive here in MD I would make it a regular on my roster.

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a beautiful effervescent copper color and shows a nice spongey, eggshell head, with no lace really. The nose is herbal hop, sugar, cracked grain, and very faint all around. Taste is smooth, soft, bready grain with a pleasant brassy undertone. The finish is drying, with a faint hop aftertaste. This beer is a great example of one that puts emphasis on malt, yet stays extremely light and refreshing. The mouthfeel is round, smooth, fluffy.

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Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 5,237 ratings.