1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Anchor Small Beer - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Small BeerAnchor Small Beer

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
72
okay

434 Ratings
THE BROS
70
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 434
Reviews: 321
rAvg: 3.11
pDev: 18.01%
Wants: 16
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
English Bitter |  3.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
"We believe you will find Anchor Small Beer delicious--similar to what modern brewers call a "bitter"--and we hope you will also enjoy the idea of reviving an ancient brewing tradition, which is something of great importance. "

"We make our Old Foghorn Barleywine Style Ale from the rich first runnings of an all-malt mash, and Anchor Small Beer is our attempt to duplicate the "small beers" of old by sparging that same mash: sprinkling warm water over the Old Foghorn mash after the first wort has run off, thereby creating a second, lighter brew from the resulting thinner wort. "

(Beer added by: UnionMade on 11-11-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Anchor Small Beer Alström Bros
Ratings: 434 | Reviews: 321 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of strongaf
strongaf

Washington

2.5/5  rDev -19.6%

03-09-2013 04:37:27 | More by strongaf
Photo of Porter
Porter

Pennsylvania

3/5  rDev -3.5%

03-07-2013 22:49:39 | More by Porter
Photo of orangesol
orangesol

Pennsylvania

3.25/5  rDev +4.5%

03-06-2013 05:04:42 | More by orangesol
Photo of DrunkinYogi
DrunkinYogi

Connecticut

3.25/5  rDev +4.5%

03-02-2013 16:37:52 | More by DrunkinYogi
Photo of GeezLynn
GeezLynn

Minnesota

3.5/5  rDev +12.5%

02-16-2013 04:55:50 | More by GeezLynn
Photo of GarthDanielson
GarthDanielson

North Carolina

3.25/5  rDev +4.5%

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is a bright, crystal clear copper-orange coloring with a thin, white ring of film on the surface. Aromas of roast, toffee, and a subtle, tangy hops presence. Flavors are heavily roasted, with a very bitter, astringent hops character. Very sharp on the initial tongue. The malt backbone literally gets buried amongst the bitter and astringent characteristics. Tangy, roasty aftertaste, with a dry, bitter finish. Very interesting idea behind the beer, but the flavors just don't seem to meld or balance well.

02-14-2013 03:22:53 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of Thunder
Thunder

Georgia

1.5/5  rDev -51.8%

02-08-2013 23:20:38 | More by Thunder
Photo of leinie13
leinie13

Ohio

3.25/5  rDev +4.5%

02-03-2013 05:00:25 | More by leinie13
Photo of GreyGhost4
GreyGhost4

Ohio

3/5  rDev -3.5%

02-03-2013 04:59:34 | More by GreyGhost4
Photo of DmanGTR
DmanGTR

Florida

4/5  rDev +28.6%

01-28-2013 17:04:34 | More by DmanGTR
Photo of Brew33
Brew33

Ohio

2.75/5  rDev -11.6%

01-22-2013 19:20:12 | More by Brew33
Photo of Budinetz
Budinetz

Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev +20.6%

01-16-2013 20:10:34 | More by Budinetz
Photo of Beermaine
Beermaine

Maine

3.5/5  rDev +12.5%

01-12-2013 23:57:25 | More by Beermaine
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
westcoastbeerlvr

California

3/5  rDev -3.5%

01-10-2013 00:58:50 | More by westcoastbeerlvr
Photo of pukahi91
pukahi91

Hawaii

3/5  rDev -3.5%

01-06-2013 02:24:13 | More by pukahi91
Photo of matjack85
matjack85

Illinois

2/5  rDev -35.7%

01-01-2013 08:09:05 | More by matjack85
Photo of flagmantho
flagmantho

Washington

3.6/5  rDev +15.8%

Poured from 22oz bottle into a dimpled mug.

Appearance: medium orange hue with a touch of haze and a robust effervescence. Head poured a finger of frothy ivory foam, but this is dissipating somewhat rapidly. Still, a nice looking beer.

Smell: sweet malt with plenty of graininess. A little dose of bitey hops is also present. Not too bad.

Taste: light malt with a citrusy hop character. Bitterness at the end is quite moderate, although balanced considering the low alcohol and relatively low sweetness of this brew. There is a sense that this beer is watered-down, but for a 3.3% ABV second-runnings beer, it's not bad at all.

Mouthfeel: light bodied but the big carbonation makes up for some of this. Nicely, if ephemerally, creamy.

Overall: this may not be the greatest beer in the world, but it is quaffable and refreshing and I like its parti-gyle nature. I'd love to have this on draft sometime for a long session.

12-27-2012 20:40:13 | More by flagmantho
Photo of jcoulighan
jcoulighan

New York

2/5  rDev -35.7%

12-24-2012 19:01:22 | More by jcoulighan
Photo of Spikester
Spikester

Oregon

3.45/5  rDev +10.9%

Clear pale copper with one finger of white head that drops to a ring about one third of the way down. Dense tight bubble lacing lasts about the same distance.
Smell is mostly fruity hops with a trace of malts.
Taste is bitter hops, earthy, some citrus.
Mouthfeel is alright for something this light. Good carbonation with a semi dry bitter finish.
Not enough malt for the English Bitter grouping but for a watered down Foghorn and in view of the very low abv. this is quite good.

12-23-2012 03:03:38 | More by Spikester
Photo of Hopheadjeffery
Hopheadjeffery

Illinois

3/5  rDev -3.5%

12-22-2012 16:32:14 | More by Hopheadjeffery
Photo of SLeffler27
SLeffler27

New York

2.5/5  rDev -19.6%

11-18-2012 06:01:55 | More by SLeffler27
Photo of sneaks2210
sneaks2210

New York

1.25/5  rDev -59.8%

11-14-2012 21:30:47 | More by sneaks2210
Photo of Lare453
Lare453

Florida

3/5  rDev -3.5%

11-12-2012 16:31:21 | More by Lare453
Photo of bensbeers
bensbeers

Maryland

3.5/5  rDev +12.5%

Love that this is a sort of "second generation" beer. Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

Has a light fluffy 1.5 finger head. Color is a pale amber.

Surprisingly complex scent - lots of toasty malts, bitterness of coffee grinds, and roasted nuts. Slight fruitiness comes through when tasting - bitter citrus peels.

Taste is certainly bitter - but not the same sought-after bitterness that hop heads enjoy. More a stale bitterness. Reminds me a lot of my Budweiser-drinking days but definitely more enjoyable. Good sessionable beer.

Mouthfeel was really great. Light on the tongue, quenches your thirst. Extremely effervescent.

Great session beer. Don't dive into this looking for a complex game-changer, but it'll do the trick if you want something to enjoy during the game or after working hard. Cheers!

11-11-2012 18:29:59 | More by bensbeers
Photo of Chugs13
Chugs13

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev +12.5%

11-10-2012 22:08:00 | More by Chugs13
Anchor Small Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
72 out of 100 based on 434 ratings.