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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

4,475 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,475
Reviews: 1,836
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.69%
Wants: 118
Gots: 268 | 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: 4,475 | Reviews: 1,836 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of zerk


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

A very unique beer... copper / amber with a thin white head... leaves a good lace on the glass. Malta aroma, some caramel and spice. Upfront, the flavor has a grainy charateristic, then bitter hops, followed by a slight sweetness. Has a rough mouthfeel, and a meduim body. It's been years since I tried this one... and this was probably one of the first micros I can remember truely enjoing. A classic.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2002 15:13:26 | More by zerk
Photo of BeerManDan


3.18/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Although it pours a nice clear yellow, I think don't think that it's an exceptional beer to be rated above average. It is better than your big brewery beers, but an average beer! Tried it about two years ago and thought it tasted better. Will try again later!

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2002 10:57:21 | More by BeerManDan
Photo of allboutbierge


4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tastes like no other amber I have ever had before. Floral taste with a crisp hoppy-bitter aftertaste. After a few sips it became one of my favorite beers. Has an awesome color too it, good all the way around...not very scented though but that to me is by far the least important qualty of a beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2002 11:37:02 | More by allboutbierge
Photo of Lupe

New York

4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a amber-copper color nice, thick and chunky head (that dissipates quick) that leaves nice lace. Great apperance, makes your mouth water just looking at it. Not much to the smell, some malt and floral hop aroma, but what it lacks in smell it makes up for in taste. Medium bodied with a nice mouthfeel, especially for a lager. Starts with light caramel malt taste which then leads the way toward the hops. Some citrus flavor and a crisp bitterness lead to a dry finish and a lasting aftertaste. Very good.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2002 13:54:25 | More by Lupe
Photo of bewareOFpenguin


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

My first taste of a microbrew was this beer. My friend used to steal it from his fathers package store. A clean taste, slightly sweet with a good balance of hops, it seemed exotic at the time, but now just tastes great. I definitely recommend this all.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2002 07:18:49 | More by bewareOFpenguin
Photo of proc


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

A fine beer. On-tap this tastes crisper than out of the bottle. A fine bronze color in the glass with enough malt to let you know its there. The hops hit the palate which grabs you due to the fact its a lager and you may not be ready for a hops from a lager. Very drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

10-03-2002 10:20:30 | More by proc
Photo of zakery


4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: A decent white head on a clear and light amber body.

Smell: Some very shy caramel-malt aromas are peeking out. They become a little more noticable as the beer warms up; don't serve this one too cold.

Taste: Hop bitterness comes first, then the maltier tastes. The hop aromas are mostly noticable in the after-taste before the hop bitterness takes over again in a long dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with medium carbonation.

It's nice whenever you come across a beer that is not afraid to show some bitter hop character and not only hop aromas.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2002 06:57:40 | More by zakery
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The first ever US Beer that I tried when I lived in England, I immediately fell in love with it then, and I still love it today - many, many years later. Lovely deep amber / light copper colored beer that pours with a good head that soon dissipates (as with all bottled Anchor Beers I find). Not much nose, but what it lacks in smell, it makes up for in taste. Lovely mild bitterness with a dryish finish that begs the next mouthfull. Just right for the times when you fancy "a few" beers. Lovely supremely balanced Session Beer that I personally find very Quaffable. First time I found it in England, it was described as Americas only indeginous beer style. Hard to believe this Brewery nearly bit the dust. I raise a Steam-er to Fritz Maytag, I think we all owe him a few beers !!!.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2002 20:01:42 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of the42ndtourist

Ontario (Canada)

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

650mL bottle. has a nice amber/copper colour, with a decent head that fades to a thin lace. I liked this beer, it had a pleasantly bitter taste, along with a dryish finish. It's definitely something that can be considered a session beer, which is something I've been trying to find lately.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2002 18:26:39 | More by the42ndtourist
Photo of aaronh


3.45/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I was not impressed by this beer. It exhibited nice grassy aromas and had a more robust color than I was expecting, but the flavors were disappointing. The beer was very light tasting with little malt sweetness or bitterness. I guess you could call it a well balanced flavor, but it seemed rather un-inspiring.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2002 08:09:29 | More by aaronh
Photo of JeffreyG


4.58/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer for the first time about two months ago. I found that after couple of weeks of having this beer (I had had just one) I was seriously craving it. It has a great deep amber color to it with a foamy head. It's taste is a great balance of malty richness followed by just the right amount of hop finish. This has quickly become one of my favorites. And I love the unique bottle shape as well.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2002 12:00:28 | More by JeffreyG
Photo of bditty187


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

Tawny-brown with a smallish off-white head that wanes to a trace. The bouquet is very unique and very inviting. An earthy-malt and caramel/sugary aroma delights your nose. The taste is divine, it really is. I was completely impressed with it. The taste is complex enough with suggestions of malt and caramel. This beer’s bitterness steels the show. A twang of fruit at the end rounds off the brew nicely.

I think this would be a great beer to widen the horizons of macro-drinkers. Try one.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2002 13:11:49 | More by bditty187
Photo of putnam


4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Red. Sweetly roasty nose like Boston Baked Beans. A smell of seaweed, American chocolate, redwood, Crackerjacks, Elephant ears. Like a carnival in some nowhere town on the Bay or New Jersey or Cape Cod.
I remember the last time in Sanfran, passing time in a bar, I ordered one of these on tap. My expectations were low, based probably on less-than-fresh bottles consumed in MI. But they didn't have any other good choices so... It was absolutely beautiful. Perfect, fresh and living. I recall it was lighter in color than what is in front of me now. Is this bottle contract-brewed somewhere other than in SF? There is no definitive statement of origin on the label. (brewed "by" AS, SanFran; rather than brewed "in" SanFran) I wonder...

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2002 06:36:08 | More by putnam
Photo of Bierman9

New Hampshire

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

First time trying this, after all these years... Has a bright, clear copper color, with a thin, fine white head, and decent lacing. I pick up a mix of both malt sweetness and hops in the nose, with the hops being somewhat more prevalent. Had a good, middle-of-the-road body, and felt good over the tongue. Malt starts things off, with some caramel-like flavors. From there, hops take over, with a citrus notes bouncing around on the palate. Not bad at all...

overall: 3.65
appearance: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | mouthfeel: 4 | drinkability: 3.5


Serving type: on-tap

08-05-2002 04:36:25 | More by Bierman9
Photo of Jason


4.6/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 16oz brown "fatty" with the infamous anchor, hops and barley label. "Made in San Francisco since 1896" No freshness date.

Appearance: Hazy copper with a thick, off-white, rocky, bubbly, sticky, chunky head.

Smell: Earthy malt aromas with semi-caramel sweetness.

Taste: Immediately, the mouth is hit by a sharp bitterness, some salt and slight lemon from the hops. This is a beautiful thing, full of flavour and character. After, a mildly astringent, earthy, highly toasted malt guides you to a dry, grainy, residual citrus after-taste.

Notes: You don't find other beers like this, not even close in their mimics. This is truly a unique brew, and a classic; a legend in the hand-crafted/micro industry.

Serving type: bottle

08-04-2002 10:33:07 | More by Jason
Photo of NeroFiddled


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

Bright copper in color with a foamy off-white head and obvious, brisk but fine carbonation. The aroma is of a clean, rich malt and light fruitiness with some hops. A full body combined with the zesty carbonation gives a distinct mouthfeel. The flavor starts with creamy, lightly caramel malt and leads into a vast hop character of flavor and crisp bitterness as it crosses the palate. The finish is dry and lasting. The classic of the style.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2002 05:33:11 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of BillyBrew


4.58/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a good beer that is fanatastic on tap. I had thiss baby on tap last night and it was the bee's knees. The flavor is tighter and cleaner and it finishes much drier. The taste of this brew is dense, complex and easy drinking. I could have drank ten in a row.

Awesome. Drink, Drink. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2002 13:22:10 | More by BillyBrew
Photo of ryanocerus


3.2/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The beer poured amber with a thick creamy head and a slightly malty aroma. The first drink left nice lacing, but not a great flavor, in my opinion. I thought it tasted too bitter, which lasted for a while on the tongue. Not one I would seek out, but I would not turn it down either.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2002 09:54:59 | More by ryanocerus
Photo of stingo


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

Just had this with a nice roast beef hoagie at a favorite deli/beer store. An all around good beer - the taste and mouthfeel were pleasant, and the finish was very enjoyable. I am not sure i would spend a night drinking it, but would definitely not shun it if it were offered.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2002 14:21:42 | More by stingo
Photo of Dogbrick


3/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Short-lived head and average color. Crisp and not overly bitter, but not much to the finish. Slightly better-than-ordinary overall. It is really a good beer to break out of the macro mold with, as it it not too hard to find.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2002 13:52:49 | More by Dogbrick
Photo of Pegasus


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

Appearance: Pours a deep copper color, thick off-white head, which retains well, very good lace, slight carbonation.

Aroma: Rich aroma of caramel, malts, and subdued bread notes.

Taste: Taste begins with subdued bitterness, the roasted malts then assert themselves strongly, finishes with hints of lemon peel.

Mouth feel: Smooth and full, with a slight tingle of carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: Very well balanced, a unique beer in the lager style. Anchor Steam Lager is legendary, and deservedly so. Highly recommended.

Presentation: Packaged in a custom twelve-ounce brown glass bottle with a twist-off crown, served in a standard pint tap glass.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2002 07:46:00 | More by Pegasus
Photo of BitteBier


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

Pours clear amber with compact, fleeting head. Aroma is noticeable but hard for me to pin down. The taste is not hard to pin down--bitter but in a unique sort of way. Bitterness lingers, but it's a trademark for Anchor Steam.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2002 18:53:47 | More by BitteBier
Photo of Wildman


4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a nice copper/amber color and formed a nice off-white head, that left some nice lace. The aroma was of malt and some hops. The flavor was of malt and hops with a slight citrus aspect. The finish was a touch astrigent, giving it a slight bitter aftertaste. A good beer

Serving type: bottle

07-03-2002 15:38:18 | More by Wildman
Photo of RonfromJersey

New Jersey

4.6/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Beautiful copper body. Rocky, fluffy just slightly off-white head. Excellent lacing. Wonderful mix of floral and citrus hops in aroma. Superb hop and malt balance. This beer could be drank all night. Paired with any food. Clean. Truly does exhibit ale and lager characteristics. Too often overlooked, an America Classic.

Serving type: bottle

06-27-2002 19:49:50 | More by RonfromJersey
Photo of Reverand


4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What a unique brew. A kind copper color in appearance with a nice head to top it off. A simple sip and the hops explode with a sharp bitteness. An absolute full flavored beer and definitely a keeper.

Serving type: bottle

06-20-2002 13:26:58 | More by Reverand
Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 4,475 ratings.