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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

4,482 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,482
Reviews: 1,836
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.69%
Wants: 119
Gots: 269 | 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: 4,482 | Reviews: 1,836 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of famous_mortimur


3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

09-21-2013 04:48:26 | More by famous_mortimur
Photo of markaberrant

Saskatchewan (Canada)

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

A - crystal clear, deep amber with a red hue, creamy thick off white head. Sheets of lace down the glass.

S - herbal hops, gentle malt sweetness with a hint of breadiness

T - get a lot more of the woody/rustic hop notes in the flavour, nicely matched by the bready malt. Sweetness is low, and virtually no fruity character. Finish is dry and bitter, with lingering woody hops.

M - light bodied, refreshing. Medium carbonation. Very smooth. Extremely easy to drink.

D - damn tasty and refreshing. very unique session beer.

My first venture into Steam Beer (I don't count the Sleemans Steam I tried 10 years ago). The aroma reminds me somewhat of pilsener, but the taste itself is unique and comes across as rustic. The overall effect is somewhere between a pilsener and an english bitter. I'm gonna have to get off my butt and brew one of these.

Thanks to Mattt for the bottle!

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2008 21:36:16 | More by markaberrant
Photo of SamN


3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Into a tumbler.

Mmmm, nice frothy head here. Pretty thick and fluffy. Spotty like an IPAs, thick like a porters. Leaving a nice sheet of lacing already. Color is decent, if not a little flat. Copper and brownish, with amber highlights. Smell is of sweet smokey caramel, tinny adjuncts. Honestly, not too impressed by the aroma. However, the taste is a different matter! I had no idea this style of beer was so flavorful! Lots of full, malty tastes of wood, grain and grass and balanced with a fruity/flowery hops bite. The hops bitterness swells but never really crests in a buzzsaw of sticky pine resin; instead it strikes a nice balanced chord of taste. Unlike any lager I've ever had before, really a unique brew. Has a mild sweetness in the background. Glossy, polished tastes. Exceptionally clear flavors! Decently bodied lager, more character and a bit more body than most American lags.

Despite it's mediocre aroma, this beer really came out and shone for me. A classic American craft beer, the West Coast is proud.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2011 03:47:38 | More by SamN
Photo of uustal

Rhode Island

3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a honey-amber with a bright white head that quickly dissipates. Smells of sweet malt and caramel. A very bready, sweet malt starts the beer off. Hints of honey and caramel as well. Toastyness too. Finishes with a minor rush of citrus hops and some more faint sweetness. Nothing big about the flavor. Very light bodied and highly carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2010 22:03:04 | More by uustal
Photo of Jeeb

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

07-13-2013 16:35:54 | More by Jeeb
Photo of olympicgatorade

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +3.6%

05-02-2012 20:30:29 | More by olympicgatorade
Photo of Leftofthedial


3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

12-18-2011 10:12:07 | More by Leftofthedial
Photo of milkbone_underwear


4/5  rDev +3.6%

08-19-2013 10:30:33 | More by milkbone_underwear
Photo of nasty15108

New York

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

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A - Poured an orange/amber color with a fluffy head of white foam. Good carbonation and lacing.

S - Malty with slightly floral with hints of butterscotch.

T - Malty and buttery with a slightly bitter hop finish.

MF&D - Medium bodied with a slightly creamy mouthful. Excellent seession beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2009 21:55:03 | More by nasty15108
Photo of DioS


3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

08-28-2012 18:50:55 | More by DioS
Photo of 2neardead


4/5  rDev +3.6%

12-11-2011 21:59:31 | More by 2neardead
Photo of dbrelsfo


3.25/5  rDev -15.8%

04-21-2013 21:27:56 | More by dbrelsfo
Photo of BeerBob


4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Anchor Steam Beer pours a rich deep copper from a dark brown 12oz glass bottle. Head goes well over two fingers and is off white, thickly packed with small firm bubbles that regenerate from the beer below. A generous lacing of foam covers the side of my glass, giving it a world class picture of a well laced beer glass.

Nose is of hops and sweet malt in pleasing and fragrant amounts. Palate is toasted sweet malt, thick and creamy with a well bittered hops presents. There is a floral profile to the hops, but not the heavy kind but rather soft and well balanced with the sweet malt. Anchor Steam Beer reminds me of a good German Märzen.

A well made brew awaits you from Anchor Brewing, no skimping here, and not watery in the least. See it on the shelf, take it from the shelf and buy, it will not disappoint.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2004 00:36:23 | More by BeerBob
Photo of mpyle


3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Creamy white head. Smallish but lingers nicely. Pale amber color and excellent clarity. An attractive brew.

Aroma is very clean, with some caramel maltiness that increases as the beer warms.

Has a hoppy bitter initial impression, balanced somewhat by a caramelly maltiness. Finishes moderately dry and generally bitter, the malt isn't completely lost at the end. Tasty.

Light to medium body with moderately high carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel despite the carbonation.

Overall a flavorful, bitter, clean beer with just enough malt to keep it balanced and interesting.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2007 01:13:52 | More by mpyle
Photo of jskennedy


4/5  rDev +3.6%

01-25-2012 05:38:22 | More by jskennedy
Photo of GreatPondBrewer


3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am excited to finally review this classic! Anchor poured very smoothly, revealing a light copper/red color with a 1/2 a finger thick off-white head that remained the entire way down the glass. The only complaint was the smell. There wasn't any. It just smelled like "beer". The taste on the other hand was great. There was a nice hop bitterness that attcked the front of my tongue while a more mellow malted flavor pleased the back. The aftertaste was tart with some notes of apple. This had a unique lager style taste that I do not think I have ever tasted before. The mouthfeel was well carbonated and creamy. One of the more distinct american beers around. try it if you can.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2003 15:28:57 | More by GreatPondBrewer
Photo of sloejams


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

Old reliable Anchor Steam. Hard to believe I haven't reviewed this yet. This was one of my early introductions to craft brewing. The Frankenstein beer only the US could create: part lager / part ale. Thing is it's tasty, always. The malted caramel of an ale with the crisp hop character of a lager.

I have no problem give this 4 across the board. I've learned a lot about beer since my first Anchor Steam, but this always a great place to revisted.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2007 00:38:17 | More by sloejams
Photo of devilben02

North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

07-12-2012 14:24:32 | More by devilben02
Photo of velosuds


3.4/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a clear pint glass. Appears to be a code printed on the label. I'm lazy. I like bottled on dates foremost, and then best by dates. Codes are better than nothing, for I suppose they can be decoded. Single purchased at local health food store for $1.59.

A-Poured a medium amber hue with a 2+ finger head and modest lacing. Overall, a nice looking beer in the glass.

S-What smell? If I had been wearing a blindfold, I would have only recognized it as "beer." Non-descript.

T-I'm still waiting for this. Someone, please let me know the secret to discerning this beer's taste. But a 12 oz. bottle for nostalgia's sake is all I am willing to grant this offering. Very disappointing. Mostly earthy malts and bitterness. Can't quite tell if bitterness from hops or the modest alcohol. Not very well crafted.

M-Excellent mouthfeel. Exceedingly smooth and well balanced carbonation. This and the appearance are quite good. Too bad taste accounts for 40% of the rating.

D-This went down very easily, but I wouldn't readily reach for another. Taste just isn't there, and there are much more affordable alternatives available for getting a buzz, not that I was looking to this beer for, but presently I can't see much other use for this. Sad.

Not sure about what the California Common/Steam Beer style is all about. This beer makes me want to suggest a new style: enigma. This is a craft beer icon, but it has no taste. Thankfully, it is not yellow. I want to like this beer. It is probably one of the first craft beers I recall having at an excellent hole-in-the-wall pizzeria in Sausalito, CA while on my honeymoon 26 August's ago. Not even close to the caliber of Anchor Liberty or Anchor Porter. I am flummoxed, and disappointed.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2009 03:12:18 | More by velosuds
Photo of Parrotbeak


3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Light amber with a golden hue. Thin white head that fades quickly.
Smell is corny malts, with some hops following.
Taste is slightly bready malts, with some mild hops presence. Very faint toasty caramel notes as well.
Mouthfeel is crisp and light. Slightly dry finish.
Exceptional drinkability. Nothing too exciting, but still, it's a solid beer that goes down easily.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2010 00:46:27 | More by Parrotbeak
Photo of Andrew041180


3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

11-10-2013 13:45:10 | More by Andrew041180
Photo of juju7


3.3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A decently made, fairly unremarkable beer. For all the fuss made about the way this beer is made, it doesn`t really deliver anything particularly special. Nice golden copper body with a soft head that fades quickly. Pleasant but maybe characterless nose of soft fruitiness. It`s significantly more bitter than I expected. A touch metallic in the finish. Not a bad beer but nothing to get excited about.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2010 07:38:31 | More by juju7
Photo of beerbtl


2.5/5  rDev -35.2%

06-23-2013 21:01:55 | More by beerbtl
Photo of TypsiYpsi


3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

07-15-2013 19:12:14 | More by TypsiYpsi
Photo of CBFanWish

New York

3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A copper colour with a thick head that had real staying power and ended in a pretty lace. The smell was sweet and malty. The taste had a bready quality to it. Also sweet. It went down pretty smooth with just the right amount of carbonation. A good beer to enjoy with friends or at the bar.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2004 05:59:55 | More by CBFanWish
Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 4,482 ratings.