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Anchor Steam Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

1,923 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,923
Hads: 5,468
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 180
Gots: 890 | 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 (26) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Anchor Steam Beer Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,923 | Hads: 5,468
Photo of mzingie
3.05/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

After reading the first few chapters of "The Audacity of Hope" I was very excited to try this beer. Overall I think it's a pretty average beer, a little too much carbonation for my tastes and I'm not the biggest fan of the pokey hop profile that seems a bit unfounded. Mouthfeel is about what youd expect. Not a bad beer for casual drinking but certainly not the best. (368 characters)

Photo of maedhros09
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Clear Amber-Gold with nice foamy white head that leaves some lacing
Smell: Light caramel and grassy aromas
Taste: I like the complexity and subtlety of the steam beer. It has some of the fruity and floral aspects I like about ales but it has a cleanness and dryness that I like about lagers. it has that characteristic floral aroma of Anchor beers and a mild herbal grassy hoppiness.
Feel: Smooth with perfect carbonation, light to medium body.

Overall: Steam Beer is a great session beer. Despite the overall lightness and low ABV there is subtlety to its flavor. A characteristic Anchor fruity and floral aroma serves as a backdrop for the otherwise fairly clean and dry balance between malt and light herbal/grassy hops. I still prefer the Liberty Ale but the Steam Beer is a great standby. (804 characters)

Photo of coltonbrimhall
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

- darker than most lagers with light head
- smell is pretty faint if any very mellow
- taste is crisp and refreshing with a beer lingering after
- very smooth and refreshing light carbonation is nice
- overall one of the better beers i have had in the lager style great drink, (277 characters)

Photo of predikit
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pale amber/copper color with a fizzy white 1 inch head with good retention.


Smell is malty, slight fruity notes.

Taste is very much an american beer, if Budweiser or the like actually kept some depth to their beer, it would taste like this. Sweet malt, minor bitters take the middle, aftertaste comes through as toasted grain and biscuit.

Light-medium bodied, very drinkable, is a good compromise between smooth and crisp.

A tasty, drinkable brew, not much complexity, but what it does it does right. (516 characters)

Photo of jonb5
3/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

355ml bottle, poured into tall tulip.

A: Didn’t look overly lively, golden, small head, poor retention, barely any lacing, slightly hazy.

S: Very malty, also had some Saaz style floral aroma.

T: Bitter Malts and charcoal.

M: Sticky texture, minimal carbonation, coarse edge from the bitterness.

O: A bit like a Franconian Kellerbier, not bad but not great either. (375 characters)

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

I bought my first one of these in 1983 and I have had thousands since. I drink at least a 12 pack each week. One of the best readily available American beers that you can find anywhere. (187 characters)

Photo of Aurora83
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: copper colour with a slight tangerine head. Aroma: Fruity esters from the yeast, caramel sweetness from the malt as well as a earthiness from the hops. Flavour: Caramel, candy like sweetness,pleasant bitterness. Like this beer a lot (244 characters)

Photo of Libeertarian
3.09/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A very lucid and clear amber with off-white bubbly head of medium retention. Aromatically it is caramel, bread, and esters. Grainy and sweet up front. Crisp, bready, lightly hopped finish. Light to medium bodied and watery with fairly moderate carbonation. Not as good of a beer as I had hoped. I would prefer a pilsner or a decent all-malt pale/premium to this, to be honest. But it's really not a bad beer. (408 characters)

Photo of CtyLineBeerBlog
3.97/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

L - average brown color with 2-finger foam head

S - Not very complex. It just smells like beer, not sure what else other than earthy, woodsy scent.

T - What else.....beer! It has a very clean, strong bite to it. Not sure what they did to the barley malt but it is pretty strong

F - Easy to drink feeling and sessionable, but complex in flavor.

O - This beer is mostly made of malts, but the intensity is very good for the stronger palates. Certainly a historic and delicious beer for any beer lover. (505 characters)

Photo of MikeDL
4.14/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Great beer, I tried this brew a couple years ago and just tried it again the other day and I almost forgot how good this brew actually is. This is one of those beers that you just have to try! (192 characters)

Photo of WyethBednar
3.51/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Bright orangey-amber. Creamy tan head and good lacing throughout. Carbonation very visible. Overall, very inviting looking and very tasty looking.

Smell: Not much. Slight notes of malt and sweetbread

Taste: Strong grain notes, very bready. Malty backbone with a slight dry finish. Very easy to drink, but not that exciting.

Mouthfeel: Very nice. Good carbonation and very quaffable.

Overall, this is a good beer for what it is. Very drinkable and also very sessionable. Not a very overpowering or interesting flavor palate, but I don't think that's what they were intending here. This is essentially a more finely crafted take on a standard American amber lager (677 characters)

Photo of Bunman3
4.09/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a tremendous beer, in so many ways. It looks, smells, and tastes great. The combination of malt and hops is such that you have substantial flavor, a clean finish, and an incredibly drinkable beer. I picked this up to celebrate a special moment, and it absolutely fit the bill. This is truly a world class beer. (318 characters)

Photo of PatrickCT
3.79/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into a tulip glass.

a: Clear, deep amber honey color. Light one finger head. No real lacing.

s: Slight malt and caramel aroma.

t: Bitter and graining taste but in a good way. Toast, malt, copper flavors follow.

mf: nice carbonation, grainy mouth feel. A little bitter.

o: an interesting beer. Very unique. A very pleasant beer that I enjoyed this time where as 10 years ago I disliked. (398 characters)

Photo of demon
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

L - The color of honey. Poured with a tall thin head which dissipated to essentially nothing in seconds.

S - Smells light and a little hoppy.

T - Delighted with very strong toast, caramel, and yeast-imparted flavors. The hops provide a bitter tease in the aftertaste that contrasts very well with bread yeast dominant flavors. It's really good!

F - Crisp. Lightly carbonated.

O - I was quite blown away by this beer. It is really good! I had been putting off trying this one for a while because a coworker said she wasn't a fan of it, so I assumed it wasn't good. As a matter of fact, this is a very enjoyable beer. If you are into bread-dominant flavors, this one will sing to you. Couldn't see myself drinking this one frequently, but I'm sure it'd pair well with a plate of fish and chips, or crab cioppino. It probably would be an excellent choice for cooking with. (875 characters)

Photo of MichialTanner1
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Having drank beer every weekend for 15 or 20 years, I had a month-long diet/workout that didn't allow for beer or other alcohol. I had a while to plan for my "first" beer celebrating the end of this apocalypse and craved an Anchor Steam. Not disappointed--I'm a little surprised I hadn't rated or reviewed this one before.

Pours maybe one shade lighter than a pale ale with a 1 or 2-finger whitish head. Crackery, mildly spicy, crisp & refreshing. Mild floral aura. Sessionable, as far as I'm concerned. Not overly complex, so neither does this review need to be.

And it may seem petty, but I have always loved the whole package of Anchor beers--the roundish bottle, the label, the cap. Maybe I'm a little over-sensitive after having been "away"... (756 characters)

Photo of 31Sam13
4.54/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Wow, I rated this higher than I thought I would, but I sat down and thought and thought and this beer, to me is unique enough and so incredibly drinkable that I had forgotten that I had spent a couple years drinking only this stuff ( well, the predominant, on-hand brew). It's very good and a bit underrated. (308 characters)

Photo of zac16125
3.74/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a mug
no bottling dates


A: Light amber, crystal clear, lots of carbonation bubbles, 2plus fingers width of dense slightly off-white colored head builds quickly and has great retention. Leaves a ton of lacing. 4.5

S: Malty, caramel, sweet, bread yeast, very subtle hop spice. 3.5

T: More hops than on the nose, with bitterness, floral notes, and some hop spice. Lots of malty characters, particularly caramel malt. Very nice lager combo of malts and hops. 3.75

M/D: Medium body, appropriate carbonation, drinkability is average. 3.75

O: Solid beer. Nothing spectacular but hits most of when I look for in a solid lager style beer. 3.75 (664 characters)

Photo of tillmac62
3.74/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear medium amber with a touch of ruby. World Class head volume, lacing and retention.

Nice light nose of caramel and biscuit.

Heavy light bodied with a touch of creamy texture. Above normal carbonation with a bit of effervescence in the middle and a nice burst in the finish.

The flavor profile is reasonably intense, fairly well balanced and slightly complex. It begins with a moderate earthy bitterness that slowly fades to a mild caramel and biscuit sweetness. The middle has a slight lemon zest like citrus note. The finish is a slow fade of earthy and zest bitterness that lingers. (604 characters)

Photo of 10Crumra
3.42/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass. Bottled on date of Nov 7, 2014.

Poured a dark golden color with a nice one finger white head. Lots of bubbles visible.

The aroma had some slight hoppiness but was overwhelmingly biscuity. I like to call that distinctive smell/flavor "corn flakes."

The taste has a strong helping of corn flakes upfront. The beer had some faint hop notes and had a nice malty aftertaste that lingered for a while.

The mouthfeel was slightly creamy yet fairly light-bodied like a typical lager. The beer was strongly carbonated as its appearance indicated.

Overall this beer was pleasant but I was expecting more. It was a decent tasting beer that I could definitely drink it again as a light, sessionable beer. I would like to try a slightly fresher bottle/draft just to see if four months is a bit past this beers prime. (868 characters)

Photo of SFACRKnight
3.39/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Pours a deep gold, bordering on amber. Creamy white head persists.
earthy hop aroma, hint of mint, some mineral scents as well. Cant discern much malt. No dms, no diacetyl.
Hop flavor in the forefront. Earthy, musty. Hops yield to subtle carmel malt flavor, touch of biscuit and malt sweetness. Aftertaste of minerals, hint of dms, no diacetyl.
medium bodied, good carbonation. Almost creamy. A bit astringent.
overall, refreshing beer, a bit sweet on the backside keeps it from being exceptionally drinkable, but a decent beer none the less. Would like to try the dryhopped version, I would like to see a bit more hops to balance out the sweetness of the malt. (661 characters)

Photo of jngrizzaffi
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours an amber color with a finger width foamy head. Head retention is decent. Lacing is mild. Has more of a sour fruit aroma. Slightly sweet with some floral notes. Has that lager type taste with a very slight sweetness to it. Nice bitter hop at the end with a sour fruit aftertaste. Not much of a lager drinker, but this one is not bad and definitely worth trying. It is my first try at a Cali Common. (411 characters)

Photo of Beer_Loving_Brandon
2.47/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

An average beer. Nothing special. Has a slight skunkish smell and taste to it. Lacks depth. Drinks smoothly with moderate/light carbonation. Aftertaste is not very pleasant, but not harsh. (188 characters)

Photo of DeepBrew
3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into pint glass.

A: Clear copper-amber color with medium white foam. Foam recedes rather quickly and leaves spotty lacing behind. Large bubbles at the bottom of the glass break down into smaller ones with every sip.

S: Inviting smell of malts and yeast.

T: Malt sweetness and hops bitter hit at once, well balanced. Leaves behind some sticky bitterness, although not an overwhelming one.

M: Medium-low mouthfeel with some light chewiness.

O: Solid, easily drinkable beer. (500 characters)

Photo of colingaiser
3.15/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Poured from bomber into tulip glass.

L: A hazy amber verging on orange with a creamy, three-finger head leaving delicate lacing. Good start.

S: A little metallic (like a rusty anchor), with notes of honey and perfume, and an uninviting macro lager musk.

T: Fortunately it tastes much better than it smells. It's fruity like a tart and refreshing Granny Smith, with some underlying floral (perhaps lavender) notes, while the malt is reminiscent of honey and biscuit. There's a nice mouth-coating bitterness, but the finish is light on taste and high on tannins.

F: The mouthfeel is like a flat soda -- a medium body that leaves me craving more carbonation. It goes easily enough, but the feel doesn't do the beer's fruity notes any favors.

O: Anchor Steam is pleasant enough, but if this is the prime example of a California Common, there's nothing about it that makes me want to explore this style any further. (920 characters)

Photo of tony12hd
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Have had better porter, but not bad overall quality. This is a beer you have once in a while, in between heavier beers while out bar hopping. It has plenty calories to keep you going. (183 characters)

Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,923 ratings.