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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

4,655 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,655
Reviews: 1,845
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.95%
Wants: 129
Gots: 339 | 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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Anchor Steam Beer Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,655 | Reviews: 1,845 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rickyleepotts
rickyleepotts

Arizona

2.4/5  rDev -37.8%

We only have a few more of these "boring" beers in the fridge… and then it's time to go shopping! That is my favorite part, buying new bottles to have in the fridge. Gives me something to look forward to. I like to let Sheryl pick a number to determine the beer we are going to drink. Let me tell you… the beer selection process is pretty crazy!

Anyway, tonight we are drinking a bottle of Anchor Steam Beer from the Anchor Brewing Company. Until tonight, I didn't realize that Anchor owned the trademark on the word "steam". I wonder how that works… I wonder what it costs to buy a trademark. Maybe I should trademark the word "beer"… I'd make millions! Come on people, let's drink.

In the Glass: It has a nice copper color in the glass. It makes me think of those giant cider stills you see in breweries. I call them cider stills because I don't know the correct name for them… but they use them to make cider, I know that much. This beer also provides little head, and a weak lace.

Nose: The nose is pretty boring. Smells like a typical American lager, really. I wonder what makes this a "steam beer"… I mean, I know what makes it a steam beer, but I have never heard of this style before. Maybe because Anchor owns the trademark to the word "steam".

Flavor: The flavor is unexpected. It has some subtle sweetness to it, but then the malts really hit. In the tasting notes they call the mouthfeel "spritzy"… I call it carbonated. It's not overwhelming, though. Provides an easy drinking sensation that reminds me of a polished session beer.

Mouthfeel: There are a lot of bubbles going on here. Not too much, but enough that from my first drink I remember the carbonation.

Aftertaste: The aftertaste, what little aftertaste there is, has a certain malty sweetness to it. The tasting notes said it was lingering… but it's not. It's there and gone again. However, the sweetness stick around and begs for another sip.

Regardless of how they make this beer, I wouldn't consider buying this on a regular basis. I would simply grab a case on the way to the ballgame or pass it around in the parking lot while we tailgate. It's nothing to write home about. I will say, after sparking up a conversation with Anchor Brewing on Twitter, that their porter is one of the best porters on the market. But out of all the Anchor beers I have tried, most of them are middle of the road. Good thing they have that porter to keep me buying their product! Bottoms up, people.

Anchor Steam Beer - The bottle says: "Anchor Steam brand beer is virtually handmade with an exceptional respect for the ancient art of brewing. The deep amber color, thick creamy head, and the rich flavor all testify to our traditional brewing methods. Anchor Steam Beer derives its unusual name from the 19th century when "steam" seems to have been a nickname for beer brewed on the West Coast of American under primitive conditions and without ice. The word "steam" may have referred to the pressure of nature carbonation developing in the beers. Today the brewing methods of those days are a mystery, and for many decades Anchor alone has used the quaint name "steam" for its unique beer. Today Anchor is one of the smallest and most traditional breweries in the world. San Francisco's famous Anchor Steam brand beer is unique, for our brewing process has evolved over many decades and is like no other in the world."

09-20-2012 04:54:16 | More by rickyleepotts
Photo of TheHammer
TheHammer

Ontario (Canada)

2.45/5  rDev -36.5%

Given that Anchor was the original steam beer, I'm going to try to use as many sea and sailing comparisons as I can in this review.

Appearance: This Lager pours with a frothy white layer of sea foam, an eighth of a span high which sticks to the side of the of the glass like a few stray barnacles to a ship. It lingers decent enough, as ample carbonation arise from bronze depths, coloured as the sky at sunset. A bit more lacing and retention is needed though.

Smell: What a happy coincidence, as this smells like what I would expect spiced grog to smell like. A great deal of yeasty spice with a bit of orange scent (perhaps to fight the scurvy?) and a light toasted bread touch. It warms the heart, but it's about as tame as still water.

Taste: Argh...we're running aground here. It sets sail to a calm sweet malt with orange notes, with only but a mild touch of yeast to warn you of the storm ahead. The beer turns to overpowering dry yeast that kills your thirst as sea water would. It ends as all who visit Davy Jones's Locker, with a bitter end as dry musty hop taste that is accented with sulphur that sinks the ship.

Mouthfeel: Well, the carbonation is good and the aftertaste lingers as long as a small boat's wake, which is good. However it leaves you as dry as the bones of dead men, left to bleach in the sun. Transitioning is a bit too abrupt for my liking.

Drinkability: This beer is quite possibly the only beer I've had that leaves you thirstier then when you started drinking it! It's light bodied and easy to keep down which is good if you are getting your sea legs, but not if you want to drink something. Too dry and about as satisfying as having to walk the plank.

Final Thoughts: Well, if you are on a boat with this stuff, I would suggest you follow the beer's namesake and pitch it overboard. It's like you found a treasure map, were overjoyed to a calm sea journey, only to toil through storms & pirates at great cost only to find that the treasure you found, didn't even cover the cost of the journey. Disappointing, although not unexpected I'd have to say. I knew Steam Beer had weird yeast so maybe it's just not the style for me. In conclusion, it won't leave you shanghaied, but don't expect smooth sailing so you'll want to pass.

12-30-2010 03:48:26 | More by TheHammer
Photo of DesMoinesMike
DesMoinesMike

Iowa

2.45/5  rDev -36.5%

Copper color with an overabundance of white foam. The aroma is kinda hoppy but bland. The taste has a tartness that I don't find appealing, like it's meant to be acidic instead of build character. The finish is tart leaving a somewhat nasty aftertaste. No me gusta. Drain pour.

03-28-2011 23:32:51 | More by DesMoinesMike
Photo of avaulteriam
avaulteriam

Illinois

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

05-29-2008 22:46:16 | More by avaulteriam
Photo of mdcajun
mdcajun


2.48/5  rDev -35.8%

08-25-2014 02:41:23 | More by mdcajun
Photo of iemailjack
iemailjack

Florida

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

12-04-2011 22:18:46 | More by iemailjack
Photo of atlbravsrno1
atlbravsrno1

Tennessee

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

07-14-2014 18:59:20 | More by atlbravsrno1
Photo of cfrobrew
cfrobrew

Texas

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

08-20-2014 22:03:41 | More by cfrobrew
Photo of dnoahg
dnoahg

Massachusetts

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

05-25-2013 03:04:11 | More by dnoahg
Photo of SpartyJoe
SpartyJoe

Ohio

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

02-17-2014 23:24:28 | More by SpartyJoe
Photo of JimmyP
JimmyP


2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

11-19-2012 22:45:18 | More by JimmyP
Photo of abernethyj
abernethyj

North Carolina

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

07-10-2013 01:13:22 | More by abernethyj
Photo of wiegs4life
wiegs4life

Pennsylvania

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

03-14-2012 19:07:56 | More by wiegs4life
Photo of core42
core42

Michigan

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

07-15-2014 15:25:11 | More by core42
Photo of beerbtl
beerbtl

California

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

06-23-2013 21:01:55 | More by beerbtl
Photo of Stratocat0
Stratocat0

Connecticut

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

01-10-2012 14:21:21 | More by Stratocat0
Photo of jar2574
jar2574

Missouri

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Not impressed with the appearance. A tiny amount of head formed, and then disappeared quickly. What remains is a flat looking, orangish beer.

Metallic fruity smell.

Not a good beer. Malty, musty taste with a sickly aftertaste than just hangs on your tongue.

Better than a macro-brew, because at least it has a distinctive taste. But not better by much.

01-05-2008 00:33:50 | More by jar2574
Photo of Metal4Breakfast
Metal4Breakfast

Florida

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

03-07-2012 12:28:14 | More by Metal4Breakfast
Photo of OleDixie
OleDixie

Pennsylvania

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

08-01-2014 16:56:30 | More by OleDixie
Photo of godmare
godmare

Florida

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

04-15-2012 05:52:04 | More by godmare
Photo of yas
yas

California

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

05-31-2012 21:59:53 | More by yas
Photo of amalburg
amalburg

Michigan

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

05-03-2014 16:01:35 | More by amalburg
Photo of Anthony1
Anthony1

Colorado

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

Poured into a pint glass

This beer was also an upset. I have never had a steam beer before, so perhaps i am missing the point of the style. Pours a lighter amber color with a terrible head that quickly disappeared and left no signs for its existance. The aroma was very basic with no specific smells. The taste was similar. There were no distinct flavors, mild hoppiness and malt. Felt light but had no redeeming features. I didn't want to finish the beer, but i did in hopes it would get better toward the end... it didn't

06-20-2009 15:04:06 | More by Anthony1
Photo of thedifferencemaker
thedifferencemaker

Ohio

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

01-08-2014 00:05:33 | More by thedifferencemaker
Photo of WillRadar
WillRadar

Minnesota

2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

12-29-2011 17:25:02 | More by WillRadar
Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 4,655 ratings.