Anchor Steam Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer

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

1,914 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

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Reviews: 1,914
Hads: 5,420
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 176
Gots: 849 | 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.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,914 | Hads: 5,420
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 skineg
3.87/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Meduim, clear (not cloudy) amber color with 1/4 head that doesn't stick around long, but never completely goes away.

Smell:Sweet and lightly toasted malts with the smell of floral and herbal hops. I can definitely smell of hops in this brew, but not too strong.

Taste: This is just a very good beer. Well rounded and smooth with little aftertaste. Tastes a bit like a lager but is more smooth and has a hint of floral.

Mouthfeel: Very light on the palate, not Miller Lite, but very light nonetheless. Good, but not great in this department

Drinkability: Very drinkable and easy to put back a few because it doesn't fill you up (652 characters)

Photo of JimBird
4.45/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Haven't reviewed in a while; this is a good one to get back into it with:

Poured a pale amber color, with a decent head. Bright, hoppy aroma hit my nostrils as soon as I had poured it, with a hint of sweetness.
The taste is amazingly caramel-like. It doesn't taste as hoppy as it smells, but the flavor is there. Very good balance.
Slightly fizzy mouthfeel that adds a little prick to the character; best served ice cold.

Overall: I enjoyed this beer suprisingly more than I thought I would. Thumbs up! (504 characters)

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

Gold medal game last night in the World Junior Hockey Championship, but no Canadian beer in the fridge. An Anchor Steam would have to do, and after Team USA won it in OT, an American beer was appropriate after all.

Poured about midway through the second period, the head was a beauty, piling up to a couple fingers worth of frothy off-white to light wheat-colored foam. Held steady, remaining a ring all the way down the glass. A deep yellow, not-quite-transparent beer, and pretty in the light.

Smell-wise, I couldn't get much of a noseful from what I poured. What I did get was hoppy more than anything, but not much else.

Though the smell was minimal, the taste was a strong, hop-forward blast. I would best descibe the taste as weedy - not in a bad way - and bitter. Hops definitely the senior partner in this brew, if you ask me. Taking a more deliberate gulp, the upfront bitterness fades into a very pleasant pulse of malty sweetness, which then evaporates back into a bitter, hoppy fade. Interesting.

Well-carbonated and flavorful, the Steam was plenty satsifying. Perhaps a little strong flavor-wise for an extended session, but ABV is within that range. A nice reliable brew for stocking in the fridge and suitable for indoor or outdoor applications!

Raising a glass to the US Junior team, since they are too young to have one themselves. Well done boys, and all in due time. (1,390 characters)

Photo of TylerBGoode
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

There's nothing quite like an Anchor Steam. At first glance it may seem as if it has a lot in common with your everyday Macro brew. But, as you nurse a glass of Anchor Steam, you'll soon find it's hidden complexities and it's undeniable uniqueness.

The appearance of an Anchor Steam isn't necessarily anything to write home about in my opinion. It pours a light color with little head with the accompanying smell is kind of underwhelming as well. It's the taste of this beer that has set it apart from so many of its counterparts. Though it is obviously, by all definitions, a beer, there really aren't many beers that are comparable to an Anchor Steam. It's bitter but not overly hoppy, malty but not thick, highly carbonated but not overly so. There also lies a hint of citrus sweetness and a earthiness in the flavor of this one. You don't often find such a well rounded flavor in such a light bodied beer.

The drinkability may be this beer's strongest attribute. Though the price usually keeps me from actually doing it, it would be easy go through a sixer in a single night. Seeing as how this is one of the only good beers served at one of my favorite restaurants, I tend to drink my fair share of Anchor Steam. (1,220 characters)

Photo of adevans
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A - One finger head with very little lacing. The head was dense and the liquid was an amber brown.

S - Faint citrusy smell with a touch of butter.

T - Ripe citrus taste was balanced well with rich hops and left a slightly bitter aftertaste.

M - Very light mouthfeel with very little carbonation, which makes it quite refreshing.

O - Easy drinker that still satisfies the palate. (421 characters)

Photo of Claude-Irishman
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This has always bee one of my favorites. Some people find it not so good. The aftertaste is like really good french bread. This used to be an option before Sam Adams. If you wanted any other "craft brew" you had to make it. Wish the ABV was a bit higher, I never even knew until today. (285 characters)

Photo of DrDocRudge
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

While the color and smell say drink this one, I find that each bottle has a nasty metallic aftertaste to it. In addition, the beer seems watery in comparison to other ales, though firmer than all pilsners and most lagers. Some people swear by this beer, I just swear at it. Much better than Bud or Coors though. (314 characters)

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

Appearance: Hazy peach colour with a thick, whipped-cream off-white head.

Smell: Struggled a bit here, as the aromas weren't that obvious. Some metallic hints from the hops and a mild bready backdrop.

Taste: Wonderfully balanced between a biscuity, malty body and apricot/peach fruits, with a noticeable sweetness as the beer warms up.

Mouthfeel: soft, light carbonation means this is one easy beer to swallow. Hop tingle remains long after the last gulp.

Drinkabilty. Goes down easier than an Italian footballer in the penalty box. A great all-year round beer that matches well with everyday food. (610 characters)

Photo of cfriend2
4.53/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Left this one out a little bit to warm up. This beer pours a rich amber color with a fully thick, off-white, chunky head. Mild citrus and caramel sweetness in the nose with some graininess and earthy hops. Bitter tasting in the beginning, then comes barley and grain and mild hint of sulphur. Roasted malt and caramel. Finishes dry with a mild lingering malt and citrus aftertaste. A beer with a great profile of flavor. The mouthfeel is wonderful, chewy and completely full. Carbonation is on the mark.

This is one of the best beers I've ever had, and my first of its style. I am extremely pleased with this one. In a class all its own. (638 characters)

Photo of nano
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this in a trip i made to Laredo Tx.

poured into a lager cup form a 330ml beautifull bottle

A- light brown color, with a nice foamy head that dissipates very fast

S- caramel and roast malts

T- caramel, herbs, and bitterness

M- medium body with a lot of carbonation

D- very good, this can be a exelent session for a hot summer night. (342 characters)

Photo of bl400315
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

New to BA, first review! Big Anchor fan, picked up in philadelphia. Type-bottle.

Poured nicely. Good white head, brown-copper color. Caramel smell. Very sweet taste, leaves a bitter, dry taste.

Had 2 to get a feel for it but could have easily kept going. Drinks very easy. Great steam beer. (293 characters)

Photo of Schmit
2.4/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Drank from the bottle, so I'll just assume that it looks fine. The label is appealing, anyway. Tried it while I was in Berkeley for the weekend since it was local and I couldn't remember seeing it in Tacoma (though now that I'm back, I keep seeing it around).

Anyway, couldn't really smell it in the bottle. It tasted fine, pretty much like any ol' somewhat drinkable lager. At first. There was a hot, lingering aftertaste that must be the weird California heat-loving brewing agents which this stuff has been concocted with.

I'd drink it if it were the only thing on hand, but I don't exactly have high praise for this one. (626 characters)

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

poured a beautiful copper color with a nice frothy white head. With aromas of toasted malts with hints of citrus. The first drink reveals a soft bitternes with a bit of caramel sweetness. The carbonation is nice and makes this american classic easy to drink. only the price keeps me from drinking this one on a regular basis. (325 characters)

Photo of mummbearsfan
3.97/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer drinking alone is aggressively both hoppy and malty at the same time. If feels like drinking an ESB at times but pairing it with rich foods cut the hoppiness out.

The aroma of caramel malts hits you right away thinking that this beer will be smooth but trying the first sip you get nailed with both the hops and the malts.

This is something I would drink again and recommend to others and have with rich fatty foods to cut the hoppiness down. (454 characters)

Photo of unclepedro
4.43/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my all-time favorite beers. If I had to have my fridge stocked with ONE kind of beer forever, this would be on the short list. It would also be on my short list for introducing newcomers to good beer. (And the Anchor Steam story is good for that, too.)

Why do I like it so much? I'm not sure... it's kind of a "sleeper beer" ... it's not exciting or especially bold, but the flavor profile, mouthfeel, and whole experience is so enjoyable and satisfying I am never disappointed.

The big thing for me is the taste. There's something so wonderfully balanced about Anchor Steam. It's malty, toasty, caramelly, with these flavors that are reminiscent of a darker beer, but it also has these brighter citrusey and fruity characteristics that poke out now and again. Those notes mostly just brighten up the flavor, but every once and a while it grabs you in a different way. It's well carbonated, not in an aggressive way, but in a way that makes your mouth happy.

It's just one of the best all-around beers, period. (1,030 characters)

Photo of dustified1234567
3.23/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Light brown with 3-4 fingers of he


S- Grainy and something else that I couldn't make out


T-A little tart for a beer. Also was harder to taste because of the carbonation.

M-Light not too smooth

D-A little tart and makes your mouth water and your cheeks pucker. Recomend it once (295 characters)

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

Picked up a six on sale for $8 So i figured why not.
Appearance : amber
Smell: Malty with a slight hop aroma
Taste: Malty dry and very little hop in the background, but overall a solid flavor.
Feel: Very smooth not too carbonated
Drinkability: I'm more of an IPA fan so this was a little to big in the malts to takedown but I could have one or two with a meal (359 characters)

Photo of pauljmccain
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12fl oz bottle into pint glass

A: Copper with a finger of slightly offwhite head

S: Quite bitter smell, very hoppy, though offset by a nice level of malts and a bit of fruit.

T: Again, the distinct hops dominate. Floral aftertaste. A bit bready but still fairly light.

M: Medium carbonation. Good, but I didn't think it was too amazing as others state.

D: Great for a specialty beer. Would go well with or without food, any time of day. (441 characters)

Photo of afogg0855
3.51/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I usually skip over this beer when I'm at the liquor store due to the vast over-usage of nautical terms to try and sell beer. (SeaDog, Shipyard, Harpoon, etc.) It's nothing against the beer itself, just parody in general.

It pours a huge creamy head you could float a golf ball on. Very light smell of sweet malts, sorta like corn pops lol.

Theres more alcohol taste than you would expect with a sub 5% abv. A slight bitterness to balance the sweet taste of apple and wheat makes this beer great. I'll definitely buy it again! (530 characters)

Photo of Landar
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Anchor Steam Beer
7B - California Common Beer

Pour on 1/18/14 from a bottle.

Aroma 10/12
Woody hops aroma supported by a toasted malt. As it warms a light fruitiness becomes pronounced with a hint of caramel. The pear fruitiness starts to become the dominant aroma with the toasted malt and woody hops taking a back seat.

Appearance 3/3
Medium amber color. Carbonation bubbles. Clear. White frothy head that builds surprisingly quickly with excellent retention.
A thick white foamy layer sticks to the sides of the glass and stays there.

Flavor 17/20
An immediate toasted biscuit malt with a noticeable woody hop bitterness and a distinct salt from the water profile hits you on the first taste. As you drink notes of caramel and pear comes through.
The finish is dry and very crisp. Very clean flavor. Grainy malt aftertaste with a lingering woody hop bitterness.
As it warms a pear fruitiness starts to dominate a tad too much and a grainy malt flavor comes through. The woody hop bitterness dominates the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel 4/5
Medium bodied with a high carbonation. Crisp, dry, clean feeling on the tongue as it washes over. There is a mild astringency.

Overall 10/10
Overall Impression
This is exactly what a California Commons/Steam beer should be. It highlights everything that one looks for in this style of beer. The balance of the woody Northern Brewer hops is well balanced with the toasted grainy malt. There is a hint of fruitiness that comes out as it warms. The beer is crisp, clean, and refreshing.

46/50 (1,555 characters)

Photo of HazelEyedHippie
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

I'm in love with California made beers.. perhaps I'm biased, as I'm from the great Golden State. ;) This beer is delicious, plain and simple. Has a good amount of bitterness to it, but it's a pleasant one. I like it straight out of the bottle, and I love supporting CA. :) (276 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 CrescentFresh
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow. A very tasty beer. Malt sweetness and mild hop bitterness are present. All flavors blend in well to make this a unique brew. Worth the 7 bones for a sixer. Hard to find in this small town so I have to grab it whenever I see it.

Earns at least 4 out of 5 swills in my opinion. (283 characters)

Photo of ArcTeryx
3.45/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours an amber with an orange-ish hue. There is a thick, slightly creamy looking head present. After the beer settled a bit, there was a small amount of lacing. This beverage smelled of caramel, with a slight citrus aroma as well.

This beer has a certain maltiness throughout, with a very light citrus flavor. There is a small amount of hoppiness in the aftertaste.

This is a tasty beer, with a good flavor. For me though, it has a bit too much maltiness to really be viable for sessionability. However, as previously suggested by others, this is a great beer for summertime, so drink up! (596 characters)

Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,914 ratings.