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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

1,943 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,943
Hads: 5,562
Avg: 3.85
pDev: 21.82%
Wants: 192
Gots: 957 | 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 (28) | 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: 1,943 | Hads: 5,562
Photo of Vito
1.92/5  rDev -50.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Anchor Steam. I thought I'd give it a try, because I overheard a few people talking about it during a recent visit to San Francisco. Here goes:

Appearance: It has a unique look. It pours a burnt-orange color that glows like the fluid in a lava lamp. Thin head that looks like the foam on a glass of iced tea.

Smell: I really couldn't smell anything at all.

Taste: I don't like the taste. Bitter, sour, acidic.

Mouthfeel: Average. Low carbonation, but still sort of crisp.

Drinkability: Nope.

For me, Anchor Steam is custom-made for the kind of beer drinker who orders one beer, takes a few sips, and talks about how great it is instead of actually finishing the bottle and ordering another. I can't understand why this beer gets such high ratings. I guess it's one of those "Emperor's New Clothes" things.

Tastes bad, overpriced, no big f***in' deal.

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Photo of burtonbe
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A - Wonderful deep amber in color. Crystal clear. Two-finger head, but dissipates rather quickly. Leaves a good lacing.

S - A solid malt aroma with general lager characteristics. Some hoppyness, but it is much less pronounced, very subtle.

T - What a tasty beer. I'm getting a fruity and malty profile. The hop bitterness and flavor is there, but the balance is towards the malt on this one. Some DMS is present, but it seems to really work in this beer.

M - Solid mouth-feel for this style. Carbonation is medium and it is smooth.

D - The drinkability is where this beer really shines. It is so flavorful, yet so very drinkable. I could drink this all day. Very Nice.

Overall, this is an awesome beer of an awesome style. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Rsobotka
3.2/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Gold to Dark Brown with a thin foamy head
S: Lots of Malt flavor with a little floral of violet
T: Tasted like a rich malt follwed by a ravish of spicy hop bitterness
M: This, tasty and fun to drink...

D: I could easily drink a 6er of this beer and I hear they open ferment on top of the roofs in SF.

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Photo of vrushing88
2.33/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Had this beer on tap last night.

It presented with a dark golden color, with a quickly dissipating head.

I could smell mostly yeast in this beer.

The taste was somewhere between an amber lager and an amber ale, which I suppose was fitting for what they wanted.

No real feel to this. It was extremely light, and airy, almost as if it were floating in my mouth.

Overall I am not a fan nor am I impressed. I am not saying this is a bad beer. It just is not something I care for. Being on the east coast, I suppose I'm judging harshly as this is my first steam beer. I do plan to revisit.

I recommend this beer to anyone who would like to try steam-beer.

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

Pours a copper color with an egg shell head and good retention. Leaves decent lacing on the glass. Aroma of caramel and roasted malts. Taste clearly shows the roasted malts along with some bitterness at the end making is nicely balanced. Finishes clean and crisp. Moderate carbonation and medium bodied.

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Photo of RedLion
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very rich, beautiful amber color. Tight, bubbly head. Nice lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Malty, and little salty. Very pleasant.

Taste: Good taste, but I don't detect much up front. Most of the citrusy hop taste comes at the end of the swallow. I wish there was more flavor in the front.

Mouthfeel: This beer has one of the better mouthfeels around. Very full and comfortable.

Drinkability: I wish it had more flavor, but it's definately easy to put down a few. I'd like to try this on draught sometime. Maybe that will open it up some.

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Photo of Nixon
4.38/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Anchor Steam was one of the first 'other than Bud, Coors and Schlitz' beers I ever had back in the late 70s. I credit it with opening my eyes to what beer can and should be. My stepdad introduced me to it in San Luis Obispo while we downed a few along with some oyster shooters.

This evening I poured my Anchor Steam Beer from its beautifully labeled short-neck bottle into a tall, narrow German glass beer mug and the head was tall and rocky and stayed with the beer almost all the way down.

I too can detect fruit flavors along the line of cantaloupe-rounded flavors-that compliment the carmelized sugars present in the maltiness.

I also taste the perfectly balanced presence of hops, both in bitterness and flavor(ness?)...these flavors seem to be almost painted on to my upper palate and the back of my throat--making these areas feel sort of 'numb'- while the rounded fruit and malt flavors show up on the front half of my tongue.

I find Anchor Steam Beer to be delicious and very well balanced. They've done a great job of combining the classic beer flavors of bitter and sweet and even managed to seperate the places within my mouth where these flavors appear.

When I buy Anchor Steam Beer I feel like I've done something good. Thank you Fritz Maytag and your 'posse' for putting together such a wonderful product and sticking with it.

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Photo of HalenRush
3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

...whatever. What you need to know is this: A beautiful golden beer and a nice foamy head that laces the glass throughout. A moderate dose of Norther Brewer hops makes this an unassuming quencher. You are not going to smell anything extraordinary except a clean proprietary yeast doing its job well. Well made and highly quaffable.

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

Pours a deep amber with a lively head that disappears fast and doesn't lace. Smell's subtle and dry. Hop-dominant and burnt, yet crisp and subtle.

This is not a typical lager, but it's a very beer-y tasting beer, unique in its simplicity. Great session choice if you're in the mood for something dry that's not a hopmonster.

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Photo of TheVenerableMead
3.2/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

12oz into a conical pint.
A - Orangey- gold with a hint of chill haze. Not much head, but a decent short-lived lace.

S - BLAND. Not much muchness. But not terrible. A hint of something resembling a respectable beer.

T - Very fruity with wildflowers.

M - Dry fruit and some... thing.

O - Begging forgiveness. Not at all familiar with California Steam beer. This just wasn't bad at all. It's like my opinion of Belgian beers: they just have their own little thing going on. My first impression? Honestly? "So this is what happens when you ale a lager!" Give me another try next summer.

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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.

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Photo of mjmbeer
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Coming from the grandfather of all craft beer this beer lives up to its rep
beautiful light coppery color with a nice very small bubbles head with a creamy smooth texture. A breadiness comes out in the taste. This is an easy drinking beer and well worth getting any time you can.

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

Served in 22 ounce bottle.

A - Medium amber clear. Good off white head that lasted well.

F - Moderate malt with a strong hop bitterness. Moderately high hop flavor Finish was dry and crisp, lingering hop bitterness and had a solid malt flavor.

T - Medium bodied higher than average carbonation.

Excellent refreshing brew.

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Photo of RuEXP1
3.56/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Served from 12 oz bottle into standard pint. pours a dark golden color. Little to no head when poured with a medium/heavy amount of carbonation, and a light amount of lacing.

S - Smells of fruit, maybe melon? Not to strong of a smell so it's tough to tell. Hops/malt come through as well.

T - Tastes of malt and some burnt caramel. Has a slight bitterness to it as well.

M - Has a nice tingle from the carbonation. Medium bodied beer that stays crisp the whole way through.

O - Solid beer that really embodies what a pilsner should be. I would say with this beer there is nothing 'new' about it. They set out to make a really solid beer and they did just that.

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Photo of Forgottensaints
3/5  rDev -22.1%

It's ok it's pretty damn pricy here in NYC. I've only had this when friends had it in there fridge. I would never buy it. Give me a lagonitas IPA instead.

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

Poured into a pint glass with a 1 finger head lasting 5 seconds. I love the color of this brew, it looks exceptional. At first sip, it tasted somewhat like an ale, but later it subsided to a malty taste. I think this would be an excellent session beer (I will find out tonight.) Not too much in the aftertaste, but quite refreshing

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Photo of kboett77
4.21/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow, what a beer. So different and interesting, and extremely drinkable. This is one of my top Session Beers. It is well structured in flavor, and drinkable with out being watery (aqueous?) or wimpy. I have difficulty describing the flavor, but I highly recommend you try it out right away.

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Photo of surcorx
1.66/5  rDev -56.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Appearance--This pours a deep golden amber color. Nearly no surface foam. Low carbonation--nearly flat. No lacing.

Aroma--Smells of slight carmel, malt and hints of a metal trash can. Smells like a dirty bar room floor. Sorry. A combination of puke and metal.

Taste--This was terrible. Actually one of the first beers I have ever stopped drinking. No skunking, but possibly it has gone bad. Unfortunately, there are no dates for freshness. That is their fault for not labeling as such. It was bought at a very good high volume store--Binny's in Chicago. I am willing someday to try again based on the favorable reviews of others. But if it has gone bad it speaks volumes to the importance of date labeling.

Mouthfeel--Watery, flat metallic- awful.

Drinkability--I stopped drinking it.

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Photo of shawnsmith1
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a golden amber into a tulip glass. 1/2" ivory head disappears quickly.

S: Estery. Up front pear, followed by candied orange peel. Pleasing and promising.

T: Rich bready malts on a backbone of hop bitterness which lingers well into the finish. Well balanced.

M: Medium bodied with a slightly creamy mouthfeel. Finishes long with a satisfying hop bitterness.

O: Well balanced and refreshing--an easy session beer.

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Photo of Ugarte_CP
4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Tried this beer at Lombard's Restaurant at Universal Studios Florida. Was very pleasantly surprised to enjoy a good micro-brew at the theme park. Great taste with no bitterness. Paired it with the Turkey burger and calamari appetizer. I will have to find this one again.

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

I've been drinking Anchor Steam Beer for awhile as my "what is that beer?" of choice, i.e. the ones that get my friends talking when I pull it out.

Upon pouring, it has a nice Amber colour with a decent head. There is not a lot of carbonation bubbles but it still has some kick when drinking it. It smells quite crisp and has a little bitterness to it. You can taste some of the hops, but it is not overpowering. There is a bit of an aftertaste but nothing bad. You can feel the beer on the front and back of the mouth.

I would suggest this as a nice beer to try if you want some hops but don't want to go all crazy with an American IPA.

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Photo of Webby64
4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a copper, amber color with a slight haze and a good head which stuck around fer awhile. Smell was malty and touch of carmel, very nice. Taste was complex, lil bit of bite (hops) but malt and other well established but simple tastes are present. It is obvious that this beer has been around awhile. I am not too wordy today. I will say, this is very fine beer and I will definately get it again!


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Photo of 44ouncer
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As tasted in the hospitality room after a tour of the brewery in San Francisco. Actually got yelled at by Fritz Maytag because I was heading toward the employees' bathroom instead of the one for brewery guests. Sorry, Fritz.

Appearance a wonderful golden red. Terrific smell -- a terrific blend of all the ingredients. The hops, the malt, everything. A smooth, rich taste, with just enough of a bite to remind you that this is an adult beverage. Not too harsh, though. Pefect. Mouthfeel was very smooth, yet rich. As far as drinkability was concerned, it's a great beer to sit around with family and friends with.

If you're ever planning on coming to San Francisco, make sure you make your reservations for the brewery tour ASAP. They only do them once a day -- for 12 or so people. You won't be disappointed!

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Photo of sevenredrabbits
4.01/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This would make a great session beer if it wasn't so expensive. Not incredibly intoxicating and I could easily drink this all night long without being overwhelmed.

Poured into Pint glass. Head was two fingers for about 30-45 seconds.

Appearance : Amber. Exactly what you would call amber.

Smell : Scent was not overpowering. Nothing citrus or floral.
Grainy if anything.

Taste : Cereal. tea.

Mouthfeel : Not too bitter. Not overly carbonated. Really a pleasant experience.

Drinkability : see first paragraph.

$10.79 for a 6 @ local package store.

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Photo of TheChauffeur1
2.75/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a red gold with some orange color good white head with a little lacing. Not much smell to speak of. I try not to review beer styles I do not like, but I should like this one. Some really like this beer. IMO it is just a run of the mill beer. Its ok, but lacks any depth or real taste to speak of. I have had many a bottle and this beer is better on tap. You can do much better than this one. Later

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Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,943 ratings.