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Samuel Adams Winter Lager - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Winter LagerSamuel Adams Winter Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,905 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,905
Hads: 5,491
Avg: 3.64
pDev: 22.8%
Wants: 80
Gots: 959 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Bock |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-25-2001

Samuel Adams Winter Lager is a dark wheat bock. Bock beers are traditionally strong dark lagers.

This beer is a lager, and hence not a Weizenbock (an ale).
View: Beers (120) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,905 | Hads: 5,491
Reviews by Roguer:
Photo of Roguer
3.75/5  rDev +3%

More User Reviews:
Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4.12/5  rDev +13.2%

This one has been sitting in my beer fridge staring at me for the longest time. I gotta drink this one or else it will start crying.

Appearance (4.25) : Pours an aggressive tan-beige head. I'm measuring about four fingers. Actually I have a tape measure sitting right here. 3 1/4". Impressive. Leaves lacing as it slowly recedes. The body is a dark honey color with about 30% opacity. Nice clarity on this one. Due to the massive head, the generous lacing, and the clarity of the dark body, I'm giving this one a solid 4.25.

Aroma (3.75) : Barley malt, oats, some faint wild berry, toasty grains; and finally darker earth notes upon very deep inhalation. Complex, characteristic. Bouquet is soft and weak, however.

Taste (4.25) : Well, this is quite interesting. The berry notes and the malt-heavy toasted grain play well with each other and are very loud. Hop bitterness is cheering from the sidelines, still present but kept on a margin by the barley and berry. The sour lambic-type taste gives it an interesting spin and the hops help balance out the malts nicely. It's very forward, very strong in the taste department, and for this reason it is a sipper and not a chugger. I will say, it is pretty impressive. I like the flavor, it's a true craft.

Mouthfeel (3.25) : Airy, light, estery...ends a tad papery and semi-dry. Medium bodied.

Overall (4.12) : If someone pushed this glass in front of me and told me it was from a top craft brewer, and they charged $15/4 pack, I would believe them. I would probably also try to find the beer to purchase it. This is actually a fine, fine beer and to think that Sam Adams made this is pretty incredible. It's got a great craft feel to it, a bit lambic and a bit festive, not too malty, not too hoppy, and that extra berry sourness just makes things interesting. The bottle talks about spice but I'm not intercepting any spice. Just good, berry, malty, hoppy goodness.

Edit : I see that this is a Bock. It is absolutely nothing like a Bock. I would knock the rating down but it's too good to do that. Approach it like a Bock and you'll probably be sorely disappointed. Approach it like a winter beer and you'll be jumping rope.

 2,179 characters

Photo of Strat58cat
2.9/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is another beer that starts Samuel Adams fans down the path of only drinking Boston Lager. Sure, it looks so good that you can almost taste your hopes for what it is. Plus, you've heard about how they add spices in this lager, and brew it up with a heavy malt, so that it's a true winter beer from the winter environs of Boston. It may be the first seasonal you drink from Samuel Adams, because of all the promised goodness. Then you drink it and it's like . . . wtf? Damn! I shoud've just had a Boston Lager.

This is another old-school, "big" beer from Samuel Adams, but by "big" they mean a big beery malt. Beery Malt? Really? It is extremely lightly hopped (22 ibu) compared to today's beers, or even the original Boston Lager. The spice that they talk about adding during brewing is barely detectable. After trying this one, nobody could blame you if you decided to drink only Boston Lager. However, they do make White Christmas, which is pretty good.

The look, as with many of the beers from Samuel Adams, shows their attention to quality ingredients. It's a deep copper color. The head foams up very abundantly and laces very abundantly. Looks good!

When you snuff in the aroma, however, you realize that something may be amiss. There's just not much to it. Forget about a powerful aroma of grapefruit, pine or any of the other hallmarks of a modern IPA - of course. Also forget about the ineffable scent of paradise that you get in a Boston Lager. It's basically just a meh smell of beery malt. There's a barely detectable hint of cinnamon spice in the mix, but it's about a 1 on a scale to 10. Uh, oh.

The taste confirms that damn! I should have just ordered a Boston Lager. It's malt. That's the flavor - beery malt. Now I'm not talking about a Lagunitas Sucks multi-layered, syrup-thick complex of flavor combining sweetness and spice. I'm talking about a powerfully beery malt. "Beeaahh" as a Beantown resident might say. Time has sort of passed by that so-so flavor. The spice is really not contributing much. It may smell great when they brew it, but it doesn't do much for me.

The feel is fine. It's not super-thick feeling, but far from watery. With the powerfully beery malt flavor, the consistency is pretty substantial. The carbonation seems medium.

Overall, time has passed by this approach to craft beer. Perhaps as a reaction to the watery beers of the giant brewers, Samuel Adams brewed a hugely beery-malt of a beery malt beery malt. Did I mention it tastes like beery malt? Pass.

 2,551 characters

Photo of oberon
3.85/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Have drank this seasonal over the last few years on tap and in the bottle,went out last night and had this on tap.Pours a brownish amber with alight but somewhat sticky head,aroma is rich and malty.The flavor has a nice flavorful holiday spice to it its a nice rich tasting brew,this beer is served at alot of the big name bar and grilles wich is great compared to most of there other offerings.A beer with some nice spiced notes and is slightly warming.

 454 characters

Photo of davemarc87
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of mojohawk21
3/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of RoyalT
3.6/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – The body of this lager is brown and very clear. The head frothed up quickly and laced the glass as it went down.

Smell – The grain here came out nicely, which is a welcome surprise from an American brewery. The cinnamon, allspice, and sharp clove where terrific, and the toasty malts created a solid backbone.

Taste – The grain reserved itself for the finish, giving me a joyful mouthful of heavily spiced beer. There were some good maple notes along with toffee and a hint of cocoa. The light herbal bitterness brought up the rear.

Mouthfeel – Thin but a little better than light-bodied with little carbonation. The body was a bit light in the ass for the big flavors in this beer.

Drinkability – This is a solid entry into the Winter Warmer style.

Comments: I didn’t care at all for the 2003 offering, but the 2004 sample that I had was so above and beyond the ’03 that I completely rewrote the review.

 939 characters

Photo of cam477
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of Turbo
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of tectactoe
3.56/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice copper-amber color, decent clarity with a beige colored head that left a surprisingly nice amount of lacing. Nice mix of aromas on the nose, albeit overall very faint. Spices, malts, bread, yeast, cinnamon, orange zest, maybe a bit of ginger, and a slight hint of floral hops. Smooth and creamy to the mouth, starting off with a hefty helping of carbonation. First come the yeasty-bready flavors following quickly by the spices. The beer gives a nice warming feel and sensation, it really hits the "winter lager" feel quite well. Hops and bitterness are low, but still present in small amounts to balance out the heavy malt that is relevant throughout.

A tasty winter style lager, Samuel Adams usually does not disappoint. Easy to drink, fairly cheap, and highly sessionable. Drink this one next to a fireplace.

 825 characters

Photo of Hoppin_mad
3/5  rDev -17.6%

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

Finishing up the winter pack, poured into a SA Perfect Pint Glass

A - Pours a nice deep amber color with about a fingers worth of white foamy head. Nice lacing along the glass as well.

S - Dark malts with a bit of hop in the background. Some spice scents in there as well.

T - Mostly malts up front with a small, almost indiscernible amount of spice at the end. I was expecting a little more here to be honest.

M - Light to medium body with decent carbonation.

D - I could kick back with a few of these. Nothing to crazy going on here but a solid brew that I'll probably have again before the seasons change.

 614 characters

Photo of t2grogan
3/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of Rijtjeshuis
4.09/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look ~ a deep coppery brown. decent head: rose to about a finger or two; fell at usual rate with relatively little lacing. Clarity is excellent.

Smell ~ munich/vienna malt is really dominant with, which has very nice levels of caramel and melanoidin (I often find the former too high in bocks); some breadcrust in there; no burnt/roasted notes. spicing gives a bit of sharpness to the softer malt notes and plays really well. Any yeast aromatics play into the overall melanoidin fruit or spicing and aren't strong at all. no hops, no alcohol.

Taste ~ similar to nose. the malt was wot amazingly complex, but tasty. strong munich/vienna malts with great levels of melanoidin and caramel. some lighter breadcrust. overall, more delicate than many bocks. Bitterness and spicing come in at the same time in the finish: bitterness is light, good for balance; spicing is delicate, with cinnamon up front.

Mouthfeel ~ a bit of a lighter body and higher carbonation than most bocks: medium body and medium-high carbonation. Surprisingly dry finish really supports spicier end.

I really like all bock varieties and this is a solid offering by SA. Not as complex as some continental varieties; it is very tasty and more balanced than many others. Spicing is a nice addition to the style!

 1,281 characters

Photo of OhioBobcat
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of brownbeer
3.63/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours amber with a tan head.

Smells a lot like they've spiced Boston Lager. Quite a malt character with ginger, orange, and peppery hops.

Taste has a caramel sweetness that lasts through the swallow. Fades into a gingery, hoppy spiciness.

Medium bodied and slightly syrupy leads to a quick and smooth drink, though, not the most exciting.

 341 characters

Photo of Tiernan
2.75/5  rDev -24.5%

Photo of ccapurso
3/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of tohe9384
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of tbryan5
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of J2L
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of GameOfBeers
3.24/5  rDev -11%

Photo of Shakerman
3.75/5  rDev +3%

Photo of dmheinz57
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of SkiBum22
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

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Samuel Adams Winter Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
82 out of 100 based on 1,905 ratings.