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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

1,964 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,964
Hads: 5,654
Avg: 3.85
pDev: 21.82%
Wants: 196
Gots: 1,020 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States | website

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 (30) | 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: 1,964 | Hads: 5,654
Photo of silks636
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle. No freshness date indicated.

Light golden amber in color. A touch of haze with a medium white head. Decent retention, little lacing. A few quick swirls reveal a light earthy aroma with hints of bread and caramel. Taste begins with a quick flash of sweetness but that is quickly overcome by a salty citric flavor. Definitely hits you, but is not at all unpleasant. Finishes up with a nice toasted malt that ends with a crisp bitterness. Carbonation is vigorous and mouthfeel is light and clean. Very easy drinking and an excellent thirst quencher on a warm evening.

This was one of my first introductions to good beer and has always been a fall back brew for me. Just had to review it as it is simply a classic. After a few tastes to review I paired it up with a few slices of colby-jack cheese... absolutely wonderful!

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Photo of icemonkey908
4.32/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presented from the tap in a pint glass. Very clear with an amber hue and a couple fingers of head. The beer smells like bread with hints of fruit. Wow, the taste is very refreshing, clean, fresh, and crisp. This is a wonderfully drinkable beer. I don't know how I missed this one for so long!

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

A- Clear, golden color with a nice finger high head.

S- Nice clean smell, with a bready undertone. The hops have a slightly pine and evergreen aroma.

T- The taste is very crisp and clean, with a slight malt tone. The carbonation adds to the crispness. Nice bitterness that does not take over the taste. At the end a pleasant dry finish comes about.

M- Nice medium mouthful, with lively carbonation.

D- Very drinkable.

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Photo of BillH200174
3.53/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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.

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

A: About 1 finger of head, medium carbonation

S: Malty aroma with an underlying slight floral and fruity aroma

T: tastes malty and similar to a lager on the front end; slightly bitter finish.

M: medium bodied

O: I seem to remeber this as a much more flavorful hoppy beer. All in all, this was a very average beer, but I appreciate the backstory of steam beers/California common beers.

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Photo of BREWS4LA
4.24/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a mug..Nice color great smell. Nose.. .some citrus and good roasted malty and caramel scents,

I was surprised by taste more malty than hoppy and just a little bitter on the finish but very nice. Good balance and very drinkable. I would dare to say maybe an entry level into an IPA style. Would be a great starter/move up beer for someone used to the macro lagers. I will definitely be getting more next visit to trader joes.

I guess when you make a product for more than 100 years you do it right.

Cheers.

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Photo of stingo
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
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.

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

one finger head grabs the side of the glass and hangs on respectably well. copper color. crisp fruity smell and taste. highly bittered dry finish. good stuff. i have tried with this one just sitting down with a beer and with several different types of food and this beer is much better with food.

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Photo of crazybrody06
4.17/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

pours a light amber color with rocky offwhite 1 finger head.
smell is earthy malts with some floral hops, citrus. Taste is fruit with some bitter hops. Mouthfeel was a little thin, but I could drink this bad boy all day long.

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Photo of SmithwicksNut
4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It has been awhile since I have had this beer. I forgot how good it really is.

A: A nice copper color with a wonderful white head. Good lacing on the glass.

S: I little hop aroma that blends nicely with the malt aroma.

T: Restrained bitter hops and sweet pale malts. Great balance between the two. Kinda salty. It's like and IPA and a lager at the same time.

M: Very creamy in mouthfeel, more than you would expect given the color. Quite smooth, to boot.

D: A session beer that could satisfy a hophead, a maltoid, and a new convert to good beer. It has something for the first two to like, and won't scare the newbie.

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Photo of Looneybiz
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A true amber color, (looks like hardened tree sap... which is amber) with a somewhat retentive head. Not a strong aroma, but you pick up some sweet malt. I also enjoyed the back story on the bottle's label of how it was called "Steam Beer".

Taste and mouthfeel were well above average and it had a nice front with what tastes like caramel malt and then finishes with a subtle hop bitterness. After drinking it the hop flavor stays with you for a bit but not excessive.

Seen it in the store and was intrigued by the name, so i bought it.

I'm glad I did as it was very enjoyable.

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

This is a terrific beer, while agree that this is one of the best around it pales to a Liberty Ale. But I degress, take your Bud swilling friends and have them try an Anchor Steam - the shock will do them good.

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Photo of ch473
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

If I had to pick my favorite beer, Anchor Steam is it.

It pours a beautiful amber and maple syrup color. It almost glows. It's nearly transparent with a tall foamy head that quickly dissipates into thin lacing around the edges. Carbonations is light which makes this refreshing on the palate; very drinkable and smooth.

I get some nice malty sweetness in the smell and a little of the cascade hops. Some honey too.

The taste is wonderful. Well balanced with hops and grains. Going down it's smooth and refreshing with a solid body. It has a rich but not too sweet malty body with pleasant citrus and hop aftertaste.

I cannot wait to try Anchor Steam on draft but I've yet to find any in the midwest that offer it.

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Photo of CNeilP09
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I'm actually surprised at myself for waiting so long to review this beer, as I've always been a fan of anchor. Anyhow, the good stuff: nice copper/red hue. hefty body on the lager. good carbonation. soft fruity cereal notes on the nose. medium viscosity for a lager, a bit heavier on the palate than one would expect (on first try). a spiked dry creaminess on the finish. good beer.

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

APPEARANCE
A brownish gold clear color. Has good head retention.

SMELL
Smells appetizing. Has a hoppy fragrance.

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

MOUTHFEEL
Slippery. Somewhat watery. Well carbonated.

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

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Photo of DaveUK
4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - clear amber brown, small head of large bubbles which fades to lacing.

Aroma - Toasted and fresh malts, some hop bitterness present.

Taste - Fresh and juicy malt with notes of butter and bitter coffee. The finish is bitter with citrusy hops in the background.

Mouthfeel - well balanced with carbonation, medium to heavy presence. Surprising for such a crisp beer.

Drinkability - Definately good, I could drink this beer all night. A superb choice for a session.

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Photo of montecristo2
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A very drinkable offering from Anchor Steam-their signature beer that got them all started!

Pours a clear light amber color. Decent head, two fingers of thick bubbles. Head dissipates pretty fast leaving nice lacing on the glass.

Aroma is faint- I get some malt/bread. Light citrus.

Taste is a nice blend of malt and hops-maltiness is a bit more pronounced, but the hop bite is there in the finish.

A great session beer-an awesome choice for a drinkable, solid beer that you can drink often or save for your own stash!

Cheers!

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Photo of HardcoreKeith
4.45/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of my birthday presents was a six pack of Anchor Steam. Awesome present. Take note.

12 oz adorable stubby bottle into Sam Adams glass.

I don't really feel like talking about the individual qualities of this beer. It's a delicious beer of an authentic original American style. It's hoppy and satisfying, yet light and thirst quenching. Spicy and a little fruity, yet also clean and crisp. A classic, and something I can drink almost all the time. If you're reading this and haven't tried it yet, do it!

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Photo of PerroGrande
4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Anchor steam pours to a beautiful deep golden color with prodigious, rich foam. The head endures nicely adhering nicely to the sides of the glass.

Smell: I picked up some nice malt and caramel overtones, along with some hops. There were some citrus hints hanging around ever so slightly on the periphery, but I couldn't isolate what they were.

Taste: Anchor Steam is on the bitter side of center, but certainly isn't off-putting to one who isn't a big hops or IPA fan. It represents a nice compromise point in a number of ways. The opening is mildly bitter with hops overtones, but follows with an interesting malty, caramel taste with hints of sweetness in the background. The finish is long and pleasing with a nice mix of hops and malt hanging around for a long time. I find the taste and finish of this beer very pleasing.

Mouthfeel: Less creamy than the glorious foam would indicate, but certainly acceptable.

Drinkability: Outstanding. Very refreshing. Would be a nice session beer, good in both cold and warm weather, and a complement to numerous foods.

Until tonight, it had been a few years since I had an Anchor Steam, and I'm reminded again of how much I enjoy this beer. I need to work it back in to my regular beer "rotation".

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Photo of Grohnke
4.16/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

(BA / BJCP)

Brilliantly clear, copper. Large, fluffy, off-white head forms and holds well. Leaves the lightest of etchings behind as it falls to a light surface-covering film that remains throughout the session.
( 5 / 3)

Medium earthy/woody hops. Lightly fruity. Light caramel malt.
( 4 / 10)

Moderate earthy/woody hop flavor. Medium-light sharp toffee, and toasty malt, a very light roast. Light fruitiness is kept in check by the hops and malt. Moderately significant bitterness makes way for a medium-dry finish. Aftertaste has a slight note of malt, but the hop flavor and bitterness are the ones lingering. Soapiness came out as it warmed.
( 4 / 16)

Medium-light body, medium-high carbonation. No astringency. Rather crisp, yet has a slight creaminess to the body.
(5 / 5)

I am in love with the hop variety (Norther Brewer) used, a breath of fresh air from the currently over-used citrus hops. With that said, the aroma could have used some added "punch". This some-what small beer (<5% abv) is packed with some serious flavor, and that is something I will always appreciate. I found the strong lingering bitterness to be a bit much given the depth of the body.
( 4 / 8)

( 4.15 / 42)

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Photo of Hops4Pops
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber Bottle. I had to try this because it was this beer that was the inspiration to Greg Koch, CEO of Stone Brewing, for going into the beer brewing business. I have changed my rating to a higher level based on several things: 1. There was no refrigeration when this style was created and when this brewer went into business. 2. They actually created this style, Steam Beer, and were very creative at the time in making a lager work. 3. I have respect for elders and this company is one of the eldest. Forgive me Bros for having to go through the second act and letting it warm to room temperature to get the essence of this style and this beer.
A: Aggressive pour. Giant, slightly off-white head slowly receding into a cloud like formation and then slowly settling to a foam across the surface. Sticky lacing on the side of the glass. Reddish amber color.
S: Smells kind of fruity but not sure which fruit. Some hops. Some malt.
T: About the same.
M: The carbonation gives it a little bite and the rest is pretty smooth. Easy on the mouth.
O: I guess I am seeing the Bros rate it so highly due to the respect it deserves for longevity in the brewing industry and the true to style characteristics based on the fact that Anchor Brewing actually created the style. Its a very drinkable beer but not my favorite style in general. If you like this style, this beer pretty much defines it. While I tend to gravitate to stronger, more robust, modern styles, I can see however where 150 years ago, brewing this kind of beer was a most awesome achievement! Go Anchor!!!

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Photo of 911CROFT
3.35/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

355ml bottle into a conical 2/3 pint glass. Paid £1.79 for a single bottle.

Pours a clear, dark amber coloured body with a small amount of fine visible carbonation. A light, bubbly, two-finger in height, white head fades quickly to a patchy film and collar, leaving token amounts of spotty lacing.

Crisp, grainy, toasted malts and caramel lead the nose upfront. Mild grassy and floral hop profiles follow shortly after, along with aromas of lightly fruity yeast. The taste follows almost exactly, opening with crisp, toasted, pale and caramel malts before a vague fruitiness gently enters around the mid-palate. Light hop bitterness builds towards the back end, taking a mainly grassy form, along with some floral notes and perhaps a trace of citrus peel. In the mouth a light body and plenty of sharp, lively carbonation give a thin but clean and crisp feel. Moderately bitter hops linger just long enough in the finish to cancel out any residual malt sweetness, drying the palate slightly and increasing the sense of refreshment.

Overall this is a decent beer. It’s clean, crisp, refreshing, plenty session-able and widely available at an excellent price point (in the UK at least), but ultimately, so are a lot of other beers. Ignoring the history and heavy steam based marketing, judging on taste alone, this is probably still worth a try, but not worth seeking out specifically to do so.

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Photo of Illini5596
4.6/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Revisiting this beer to give a more full review. When I first cut my teeth on this beer in 2005, I was just getting into the world of real craft beers. Prior to that I only had experience with a handful of craft beers and while a bit of a beer snob, I was not the connoisseur I am today.

Head is rather impressive and very foamy with some lingering lace, easily an inch and a half of head after the pour. The head has a creamy texture, which isn't very sticky at all, even the lace is frothy and foamy in comparison to other beers. Color is a beautiful amber, and crystal clear.

The smell is full of grains, hops, and a fresh cleanness that I associate with steam beer in general.

This is still one of my favorite "every day" beers. It isn't too strong, yet has a lot of character. The taste begins sweep and slightly sharp, hints of citrus and hops, then smooths out to a nice biscuit creamy full flavor that leaves you with a refreshing after taste.

Mouthfeel is very soft, velvety and satisfying.

Still one of the most drinkable beers around. I definitely recommend this to anyone and everyone.

====Old Review is below====

I've had Anchor Steam in both the bottle and on tap, it's an excellent experience either way. It has become my defacto beer of choice when I can find nothing else on the menu. I'm not saying it is strictly a fall back beer, it's pretty much my ale of choice all things being equal, and it is a right enjoyable brew. It just tends to show up as one of the few good beers on some of lists in town, when I'm not at a true beer drinker's bar.

While not as excellent as some beers, don't be surprised when this one turns out to be one of your favorites. It's good old reliable, good to the core, and a good beer to start out any night.

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Photo of goodbyesoberday
4.57/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance is good, clear with a nice colour but slightly thin head.
Malty caramel aroma with some hop presence and a little alcohol. Pleasing grainy malt flavour backed with a good hop flavour, almost wood-like. Medium body and carbonation, with a faint alcohol warmth. Very refreshing and drinkable for a beer with this much flavour.

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Photo of culver501
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-medium amber color, fair amount of carbonation, head doesn't linger

S-sweet, malty, yeasty, musty

T-crisp, fizzy at first. A quick piny hop note, then balancing to a nice malt flavor. Sort of an earthy, grassy tone that stays between sips (a fainter version of the harsh vegetal aftertaste we encountered in our first homebrew attempt, an attempt at a common.

M-Clean

D-Very drinkable, this is one of my early favorites when I started drinking beer. It's not knocking my socks off now and I fear I've moved to more extreme styles leaving this solid winner behind. Definitely a beer I'd recommend to someone who doesn't normally think about good beer. Very accessible

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Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,964 ratings.