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

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Winter LagerSamuel Adams Winter Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

4,503 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,503
Reviews: 1,850
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 13.65%
Wants: 34
Gots: 195 | 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:
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).

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-25-2001)
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Ratings: 4,503 | Reviews: 1,850 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of emerge077
emerge077

Illinois

2.83/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Deep saturated copper color, jewel tone clarity, lasting foam and fine lacing crowning the edges. Retention is good, the skim doesn't break after the first few sips.

Sweet and malty smell, nuts, brown sugar, grains of paradise. Later it smells a bit bland and lagery.

First sip is a little vegetal and gross. Later sips aren't as off putting, but there's something there that just doesn't work. Some astringency in the mouthfeel, though light bodied and fairly smooth otherwise. Earthy vegetal flavor that reminds me of pumpkin or squash oddly enough. Some nutty malt character in there too, maybe some nutmeg? Overall the flavors don't coalesce well. Not too sure what to make of this, not really looking forward to finishing the glass either. edit: drank a 2nd one straight from the fridge a few weeks later, didn't seem as bad. Still a bit astringent with discordant flavors though.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2011 00:44:24 | More by emerge077
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
westcoastbeerlvr

California

3/5  rDev -16.4%

11-15-2011 00:59:48 | More by westcoastbeerlvr
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

355ml bottle - strange with the Swedish and English label info...

This beer pours a clear, medium burnt amber colour, with two fingers of foamy ecru head, which leaves a nice Swiss cheese spectrum of lace around the glass as it recedes. It smells of mild caramel malt, ginger spice, and a bit of orange citrus. The taste is ginger and clove inflected bready caramel malt, some other pepper-esque spice, and earthy, nondescript hops. The carbonation is quite mild, the body medium-light in weight, and a bit astringent - hops and booze equally responsible. It finishes sweet, but with that persistent edgy, warmed spice bitterness.

A decent, moderately spiced lager, evoking memories of the holiday season past. Given the still frigid weather hereabouts, this is a welcome tipple.

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2011 02:52:04 | More by biboergosum
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

3.93/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark amber with great clarity. Pours with a 2-inch head that slowly settles to a crown. I really like the color of this beer.

Smell: The nose is disappointingly mild - it's bready and toasty with a hint of caramel, but it's very faint. Where's the hop aroma?

Taste: Tastes like Boston Lager's big brother. A hearty caramel malt backbone is nicely balanced with noble hops and spices (ginger and orange peel perhaps, maybe even a bit of cinnamon). The finish is clean and dry.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, smooth and warming. Slightly sticky on the palate.

Drinkability: An excellent winter session beer - it's hearty and warming but easy on the palate and remarkably smooth. Recommended and underrated.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2007 00:32:27 | More by largadeer
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

4.08/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This "dark wheat lager" pours a clear, deep amber body with a ruby cast. It's topped by a frothy head of ivory cream that holds exceptionally well and leaves some very nice lacing about the glass. The nose is malty and clean with a hint of hops and just a suggestion of the winter spices that are used. They do come out in the flavor, however, once the rich, wheaty and caramel-glazed maltiness subsides a little bit; and they stick around to linger in the aftertaste. A bit of cinnamon is discernable, and perhaps some nutmeg, but overall the spices are nicely restrained, lending more to balance than flavor. And it's really well-balanced with the spices working in tandem with the low-key bitterness to balance the malt and dry the finish. A slap of delicately spicy noble hop ties everything together throughout; and it's alternating sweet malt - spicy finish keeps it really drinkable. Nicely done! A very enjoyable "winter" ale that's quite welcome on my table at any time during the year.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2004 15:36:52 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of nickfl
nickfl

Florida

3.45/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - One finger of brownish, off-white foam that settles down quite quickly. The body is amber-brown with perfect clarity.

S - Malt, slight roast with caramel.

T - Malt with cinnamon and nutmeg. Slight roast character from malt. Hops are minimal if detectable at all. The roast character increases somewhat in the finish.

M - Heavy, slightly syrupy body with moderate carbonation.

D - Despite the somewhat heavy mouthfeel this beer is reasonably drinkable. It finishes quite clean and has just enough carbonation to lift the taste off the palate.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2007 04:37:34 | More by nickfl
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.45/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a deep copper color with a short and foamy off-white head and leaves a thick, even lace.

S: Fruitiness & malt with some hops and a slight bit of cinnamon.

T: I’m tasting berry and citrus malt sweetness and the distinct Sam Adams hops flavor, but not much else. It’s not a bad taste, just not anything special.

M: Very smooth, medium-to-heavy body, medium carbonation, not as thick as other winter seasonals that I’ve had and it’s a little sweeter and yet more crisp than the Sam Adams Old Fezziwig Ale.

D: It’s not over-powering and goes down easy, not very filling.

I’ve liked all of the beers that I’ve had from Boston Beer Co. so far. However I’m not quite as impressed with this beer as I have been with their others. It seems more like a hybrid of their Boston Lager and their Old Fezziwig Ale with a bit more sweetness.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2006 05:42:50 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

3.35/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark orangey color, good clarity with a quick to froth carbonation and a decent head retention that leaves some lace behind. Wet spicy aroma, a tad malty with some herbal hop in the nose. Creamy medium body with an ample sweetness from the toasted and caramel malt flavors. Spicing and hops keep it balanced with some cininimon and ginger undetones and a spicy herbal hop bitterness. Finishes a bit sweet with warming spices.

I remember when this beer used to be a little bit bigger, badder and ... well better. It used to be closer to 7% abv and with a lot more brawn you would expect from a bock. Todays version is decent, a good pick if you are going to a house or dinner party and don't want to rock the boat.

Serving type: bottle

01-12-2008 03:33:38 | More by Jason
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a lovely ruby red color, with a nice, lasting tannish head. Aroma is delightful, with loads of spices, very sweet, and dark, lush with dark fruits, plums, grapes. A rich cornucopia of fruits and spice.
On the palate, we feel a warm rush of hops, and the thick, luscious malt shows up immediately. Very pleasant recurring finish, notes of fruit, spice, and nuts return again and again. A little thin in body, but then, it's plenty full for a lager.
I first tried this on tap, earlier this winter, and was disappointed. Right now, drinking from a bottle, in a Minnesota late March that still won't give up to a proper springtime, I can't find a fault with this tasty, delicious brew.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2003 01:46:25 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

West Virginia

3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a ruby copper tone with a massive fluffy tan head leaving healthy amounts of dispersed lacing. Aroma: Nice shot of pine cone scented hops initially much better improved from last year's Winter lager, this is a rich malty lager nice caramel sweetness mixed with some bready dough like yeast notes and an undertow of spices. Taste: Full flavor syrupy rich nutty edge with hop bitterness not as dominant in flavor as the aromatic qualities with the bready finish characteristic of most Sam Adams products the spiciness bites at the palate nice winter lager, the BBC can still get it done when it wants to. Mouthfeel: Medium bodied slightly syrupy texture and a strong carbonation, does the palate good. Drinkability: Glad to see a lager around 7%abv this one can definitely be sipped on it's on tap at a local restaurant in Morgantown right now very tasty.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2003 18:16:55 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

4.22/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2006 version

Pours copper with 3 fingers of sand colored head. Some lacing & head retention

S: Sweet malt & brown sugar

T: Sweet malt with hints of caramel &brown sugar up front. Cinamon follows as it warms up, plus some warming sensation from the alcohol, along with biscuitty notes. Finishes dry & biscuitty

MF: Rich, medium bodied & moderate carbonation, plus superb balance

Drank very easy, much tastier than last year

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2006 04:31:35 | More by russpowell
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a Sam Adams Uber-glass.

Pours a clear amber with a nice looking finger width of light tan foam. Not a whole lot of retention was lacing was OK. The aroma is deep with sweet caramel malts, roast, and a little spice.

The taste has a nice thick feel of bready sweet malt that gives way to a livey spice character and some dark fruits. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a enjoyable smooth feel.

This is a very tasty Winter Bock and one of the more enjoyable ones from Sam Adams. With a good tate profile and easy drinkibility, it's one that I never hesitate to order up when I'm dining out somewhere.

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2008 17:18:24 | More by Kegatron
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beer served on draft at some sports bar. Beer is dark amber with a tight off white head. Beer is totally clear and there is moderate carbonation made up of moderate bubbles. Lacing high.

Aroma is low, a light unoffensive smelling lager. Some malt in there not much of anything though.

Beer is full bodied with an interesting sweetness. There is a cereal like aftertaste that gets stronger the more you drink. Low bitterness although there is some hop bitterness present. There is also a hint of spice in the midpalate. Drinkability high, mouthfeel is ok.

Serving type: on-tap

12-01-2009 18:37:21 | More by drabmuh
Photo of SocalKicks
SocalKicks

California

3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

12-24-2012 14:41:03 | More by SocalKicks
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank

Pennsylvania

3.64/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap at Market Cross Pub and Brewery in Carlisle, Pa.
Served cool in an Imperial pint glass.
3.5-3.5-3.5-3-3

A - A deep copper/caramel brown w/ a sliver of a light tan head. Sporadic lace is strewn as the lager is sipped.

S - A nutty woody malt aroma is dominant. A light caramel note is found in the bready aroma and a faint smell of spiced hops.

M - Medium, slick and fully carbonated w/ sweet malt and a clean finish. The effervescence is a bit aggressive for my taste. At least for the style, anyway.

T - There is a gentle caramel note w/ sweet and lactic malt flavors that are rather mild. The carbonation kind of overwhelms the chance to taste the malt and a light hop spice is barely detected. Pretty average flavors nowhere near the complexity of some other notables. Not as interesting as the Longshot or other seasonal products that SA has produced recently.

D - Barely passable, but may go well with greasy onion rings or cheddar skins to cut through. Just ok for me. It seems like it may be more drinkable when compared to the lineup at TGI Fridays.

had recently so decided to re review
A-dark brown with haze and thick cream, smell is slight toasted grain with mild yeast ester and light spice/nuts. The feel is pretty light somewhat dry with moderately high carbonation
Taste is good with moderately high malt impact with mellow toasted grain and mostly clean yeast flavor. Overall a pretty average beer, but is pretty drinkable

Serving type: on-tap

11-10-2007 12:26:13 | More by Slatetank
Photo of jlindros
jlindros

Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Recently realized I hadn't reviewed this beer, one of the beers that helped me get into the craft beer scene.

A: Pours a large 2 finger head that is pretty rich and slowly bides back. A very clear amber orange reddish brown color like the glass is made of rust. The head leaves a lacing on the glass as it fades.

N: Lots of sweet malts start this beer. Almost a syrupy molasses like nose, but just slightly. A slight toasty malt aroma also makes its way in there with a touch of nutty aroma. Some crystal malt and other darker malts really hammer out the aroma and finishes with a touch of some spicy earthy malts.

T: Starts very lightly sweet with some dark malts, a little but of a syrupy like molasses or some other syrup taste. Then comes some nutty flavors, almost nutmeg but not really, as well as some interesting crystal and other dark malt flavors. It has a strange toasty syrupy flavor to it that is pretty reminiscent of winter beers. A light crisp lager taste hides in the background as well. A slight spicy and earthy hop flavor bitters the palate but ever so slightly, perhaps more hops would be nice.

M: Medium body, not too light or heavy, good carbonation.

F: Finishes a little sweet still, a little drier would make it even nicer. The dark malt and syrupy flavor sticks around (pun intended) as it clings to the sides of the mouth and the tongue for a short while leaving the sticky flavor. A slight bitterness and spicy earthy hop flavor remain at the finish, but don't get stronger at all.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2009 03:49:01 | More by jlindros
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

3.68/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours an amber color with a thick off-white head. The aroma is fruity and full of spices. The lager smell comes through revealing a bit of yeasty scent. The taste is decent. There is quite a lot of ginger used in this one. There are some crystal malts here giving it a malty taste. It's crisp and refreshing. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low/medium bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a good drinking seasonal beer. I always look forward each year to having one.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2003 01:26:59 | More by WesWes
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

3.68/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a reddish-brown color with a cream-colored head. The aroma is ginger and cinnamon with some toffee and wheat mixed in. A little bit spicier than I was expecting. The flavor is just like the aroma. I get some wheat, ginger, cinnamon, caramel and toffee. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Pretty good, but nothing too exciting.

Serving type: bottle

12-13-2010 04:51:19 | More by Mora2000
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

2.95/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

not crisp and cold and refreshing like most lagers, and not even fully seasonally applicable due to its average abv and dumbed down flavor. sam makes some epic beers, but this ones just average. pours a light indian brown color into that funny sam adams glassware, good head. smells like a malt bomb, but tastes a bit cinnamon and clove spice, thick mouthfeel drags it down and sits in the gut. not a good session lager. of the winter brews the cream stout and the scotch murder this one. id say pass it by but its so damn common in the northeast...

Serving type: on-tap

12-02-2011 04:47:38 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of oline73
oline73

Maryland

4/5  rDev +11.4%

11-15-2011 02:17:26 | More by oline73
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

3.35/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pilsener glass.

a - Pours a somewhat transparent reddish amber color with two inches of white head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of cinnamon, bready malts, spices, sweet fruity malts, and hops. A little sweet but pretty good.

t - Tastes of hops, cinnamon, and bready malts. Hints of spices, but a bit of a drop off from the smell; not really getting the fruit in the taste.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Pretty smooth and creamy body.

d - A decent bock that is widely available and easy to drink. Can definitely drink a few of these and while not my favorite, something I can drink at Thanksgiving with non BA's and we can all enjoy. I enjoyed the smell and would have it again.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2010 19:06:37 | More by mdfb79
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

Washington

3.28/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Handsome coppery red color with a faultless foam. Smells of orange and pumpkin pie. Rather sweet with butter and pie crust in the flavors. A little of the sweet vermouth taste and that hard-candy butterscotch flavor. Light body with a pleasant carbonation. More watery than most beers of this sort, it's definitely not a Winter Warmer.

Among my least favorite of the Sam Adams regular beers, but it's pretty inoffensive compared to some of the spiced concoctions sold for big prices by others. This was a deal in the $11.99 twelve-pack.

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2012 05:37:48 | More by mactrail
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

3.9/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber with a nice head that slowly descends to a thin cover. Some lacing sticks to glass.

The smell is of sweet grainy malt with a touch of caramel and mild winter spices.

The taste is of sweet malt. Caramel, a hint of winter spices, and mild earthy hops to balance out sweetness while keeping sweet character. Subtle peppery alcohol comes through. A slight metallic tinge is present, but doesn't interfere much.

Medium to full - Smooth with slight warming alcohol kick. Coating.

This is one, IMO - that tastes better on a nice tap than on a bottle. It's not a great winter, but good one and a good selection for a wintery brew on tap that is easy to drink, esp. for style.

Serving type: on-tap

01-19-2007 02:24:44 | More by jwc215
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

3.78/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Best By Date June 2008; Sampled February 2008
A vigorous pour yields a frothy, initially two-finger thick, tan colored head. The beer is a clear, rich cherry color, but shows a deeply cranberry stained, brilliantly clear, copper color when held up to the light. The aroma has a nice maltiness to it that is not quite rich (like a bock would be for instance), but it does smell a bit sweet with light toffee notes and it has a nice backdrop of toasty grain notes that accent a biscuit aroma as well as notes of lightly browned, crushed soda crackers. A light herbal hop character is here in the nose as well and there is also a berry aromatic that seems to be from the hop and malt interplay.

Well carbonated the bubble cause this to froth a bit as it hits my tongue. It picks up a sweetness pretty quickly that helps accent a light berry note, hints of sweet plums and even a touch of something like candied tangelo zest. This has a nice, though soft bitterness that mixes with a herbal hop note, both of which linger on a bit in the finish. The sweetness tends to hide a the toasty malt character that was noticed in the nose, but you still get more than suggestions of it at times; caramelized bread crust and biscuit malt flavors are also joined by caramelized malt sugars and a touch of toffee.

I definitely like the mix of berry notes, light herbal hop character, toasty malt and drinkability that this beer provides. It is rich enough for the colder months, but kept quite quaffable so that you could have a couple. This beer definitely hits the spot and I have always enjoyed it when I happen to find it in my glass.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2008 02:18:37 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of Rochefort10nh
Rochefort10nh

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev +11.4%

12-06-2011 18:38:04 | More by Rochefort10nh
Samuel Adams Winter Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
81 out of 100 based on 4,503 ratings.