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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.

4,615 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,615
Reviews: 1,851
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 13.65%
Wants: 40
Gots: 255 | 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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,615 | Reviews: 1,851 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jasonpeckins32
3.78/5  rDev +5.3%

Pours a true copper color with a foamy, khaki colored head.

The smell is of sweet, caramel malts mixed with a faint fruity aroma.

The taste reminds me very much of an english brown ale. Nothing like other winter warmers I've tried, but still a good tasting beer. I notice dry pecans in the flavor. There is a slight bitterness and a yeasty aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is light and somewhat creamy. Easy to drink and it keeps me satisfied throughout the session.

jasonpeckins32, Dec 28, 2005
Photo of sopor
4/5  rDev +11.4%

Amber, with no head (purchased at a certain day of the week, [think "Thanks God it's..."] so I'm not surprised by the lack of head). Very little nose. Taste comes in caramelly sweet with a hint of tang as the carbonation briefly comes alive and stings the tongue. A very slight hint of diacetyl leads into a wonderful pale cereal malt flavor. Light body with the delicate stinging carbonation. Very quaffable "dark" lager.

The bottles taste closer to an Oktoberfest to me.

sopor, Dec 25, 2005
Photo of dirtylou
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%

12 oz, from a 6 pack in the parent's fridge

appearance: pours a bloody copper color, not much in the way of head, spotted lacing...looks like an american amber

smell: malty and clean, sweet caramel malts, a touch of herbal hops...slightly grainy, earthy

taste: well rounded....sweet and malty, caramel, plums, white grapes, grassy and herbal, a touch of winter spices...some dry herbal hops...this is a pretty solid brew, but not what i come to expect from a winter warmer

mouthfeel: medium bodied, dry finish

drinkability: quite

dirtylou, Dec 25, 2005
Photo of daliandragon
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%

Looks like Sam Adams will be sponsoring my (first) Christmas Eve beer. I like the dark amber color and sediment rushing along with the carbonation to the top, producing a substantial milky white head. The nose is faint and difficult to define..I get sugars, yeast, and a little pale malt. Also a mix of hops.
A monster draught reveals chocolate and toasted malts and a well balanced body finishing sweet and tasty. The mouthfeel is reserved and not overcarbonated, which is a huge plus. One minus might be that the brew is a little thinner than I would prefer.
This is still a fairly solid winter sipping beer that will probably be in my fridge intermittantly for the next few months.

daliandragon, Dec 24, 2005
Photo of pbr85
4.15/5  rDev +15.6%

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a mug. Freshness date clearly marked (May, assumed to be 2006).

Appearance: Pours a dark reddish-brown color with a large two inch head that slowly disipates. Good amount of lacing. Nice looking brew.

Smell: Sweet malts and orangy hops are on the nose, along with a few spices. There is a dominant spice but I can't put a finger on what it is.

Taste: Slightly bitter at first followed by a malt that I associated with sourdough bread. Leaves a bitter taste (grapefruity hops?) in your mouth for a while after each sip, which is very pleasant. Spices (not sure which ones...little experience with them) are distinctly present. This beer is good.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is excellent, and the beer is silky smooth, just as a lager should be.

Drinkability: Great. I could drink many of these in one night and will definetly be considering it in the future.

Notes: All around great winter lager...highly recommended.

pbr85, Dec 24, 2005
Photo of danielocean03
4.13/5  rDev +15%

Poured a reddish-orange hue into a pint glass. Smells sweetly of caramel and toffee aromas, cinnamon and malt also present. Thick foamy cream-colored head lasts a few minutes before falling away to whitish lacing. Tastes very much like a brown ale, almost reminiscent to that of a Newcastle, although much more complex, with a much creamier yet light mouthfeel. Overall excellent lager, would definitely purchase again.

danielocean03, Dec 24, 2005
Photo of edmundfitzoil
3.23/5  rDev -10%

Sam Adams Winter Lager, another brew from the Winter Seasonal sampler, poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle with a best by date of March '06. I poured it into a standard pint glass.

This one poured a copper brown, with an intial 3/4" in. of big bubbled head. The head left lacing around the top of the glass and did not prove have very good retention. The nose was malt with heavy spices (cinnamon) and some fruitiness. This lightly carbonated brew had a thick, more syrupy texture but a medium body. The beer's flavor proved to have some similarity to a brown ale. The beer's taste lacked the spiciness and fruitiness of its aroma, and predominately featured a maltiness along with a faint cinnamon.

This is still a solid, and pretty drinkable winter warmer, but I would reach for the Fezziwig before a Winter Lager - simply a personal preferenc.

edmundfitzoil, Dec 24, 2005
Photo of ChiSox05
3.48/5  rDev -3.1%

Clear, copper brown. Quickly fading 1/2" head left a lasting, floating ring of foam.

Aroma of sweet cherry preserves, raisins, cinnamon and pecan malt.

Taste of orange rindy hops, touch of cinnamon, nutty malt aftertaste, but the flavors are all doing their own thing without any transition from one to the next. Also some harshness that wasn't exactly bitter, just not pleasant.

Medium carbonation goes with medium body. Could be more smooth, maybe that isn't what they were going for, who knows with a warmer.

An average winter offering with kudos on the varied, season oriented smell. Maybe letting one rest for a year would bring the flavors together.

ChiSox05, Dec 24, 2005
Photo of MuddyFeet
3.88/5  rDev +8.1%

Brown-orange in color with not much of a head. Almost flat. Nose was caramel and cut apples that were left out too long.

Flavor was delectably spicy with not-so-subtle caramel, molasses and syrup tones. The spices were more of a burst on the palate (dominated by nutmeg and cinnamon) that quickly vanished. Just a slight hop presence at the end. Medium body with a slight syrupy feel. Definitely one of the most drinkable Sam Adams beers.

MuddyFeet, Dec 23, 2005
Photo of soulgrowl
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%

Appearance: Bold, brick red-orange with just barely off-white head; compliments the Christmas tree well.

Smell: Caramel malts, diacetyl, apple jelly, sugar, and citric hops.

Taste: A smooth caramel malt base balanced with woody/resiny hops. The bottle claims that this beer has been brewed with "winter spices," but I honestly cannot taste them at all, except perhaps for an EXTREMELY understated nutmeg character. Tangy yeast adds an interesting edge, but otherwise this is more or less just an average red lager.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and clean; flavorful without being aggressive or overpowering. I think this will go well with my Christmas dinner.

Drinkability: Very drinkable, but I long for something with a bit more presence.

soulgrowl, Dec 23, 2005
Photo of Enola
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

This beer poured out with a small head. It is tea-like in color. The smell is a sweet smell. It has a nice lightly spiced taste. Not over the top like many winter warmers. The mouthfeel is fairly smooth. No bad aftertastes here. The drinkability is pretty good. I could drink more of these. This beer is higher end within the style.

Enola, Dec 22, 2005
Photo of AlexJ
3.18/5  rDev -11.4%

Dark, amber orange pour with a sustained head of light beige froth.

Aromas are malty and sweet with hints of caramel, dark bread, and golden fruits.

Flavor is primarily malty with a good deal of toffee sweetness and a citrus and pine hop finish that is unexpected for a Sam Adams brew.

Body is almost medium with vigorous carbonation and a slick texture.

AlexJ, Dec 21, 2005
Photo of mntlover
4/5  rDev +11.4%

Pours a medium/light brown amber hints decent cream colored head that falls to ringed scum and laces well.

Aroma is malty fruit wheat lots of spice nutmeg, clove vanilla hints maybe touches of cinnamon.

Taste is good nice fruit malt presence along with wheat malts moving into a good spicey finish that lingers, with hop hints. A good brew from Samuel Adams one of the better ones and one I enjoy every year now, was suprised I never reviewed it yet. So this is on the fly after another review and no clean pallet but if it wasn't good wouldn't buy it year after year after year, hell you get the idea.

Mouthfeel is about medium with a medium level of carbonation.

Drinkability is good see above remarks, Sam Adams has been know to make good beers occasionally, this and there Oktoberfest plus their Schwarzbier.

mntlover, Dec 18, 2005
Photo of jslot38
3.8/5  rDev +5.8%

12 oz 05-06 Winter Season. Freshness Date Clearly Marked.

Appearance: Clear amber, touches of cherry oaked wood. White sticky head that covered the top of the brew throughout.

Smell: Floral notes surrounded by citrus (orange, faint lemon peel). Touch of coriander and ginger spices. A hint of pine towards the end.

Taste: Slightly dried hops, floral esters pervade the tongue upon impact. Background of orange peel with ending spices of ginger and cinnamon. A slightly sweet malt base brings up the rear.

Mouthfeel: Traditional lager feel with an extra spice kick to add to complexities on the tongue. Perfect level of carbonation.

Drinkability: As a lager, could drink many of these to spice up the winter months. And would enjoy drinking many of them.

Notes: "A dark wheat lager brewed with winter spices" adorns the bottle. And thats very true, but not much more than this. A good winter brew nevertheless.

jslot38, Dec 18, 2005
Photo of maddamish
3.9/5  rDev +8.6%

Appearance: Clear and amber in color. Nice sized head that did not dissipate quickly. Very impressive

Smell: Hop notes but not hoppy. A bit of sweet fruit.

Taste: Nice hop and malt taste going on here. The spices linger in the aftertaste. Smooth and creamy going down. I was very pleased with this beer.

Notes/Drinkability: Much better than their regular lager in my opinion. Pick this up if you see it in the store.

maddamish, Dec 13, 2005
Photo of UberWasser
4.1/5  rDev +14.2%

Pours a nice clear amber color, with a fizzy head that develops to about one and half fingers thick. It dissipates in about a minute, leaving a thin lace on the top of the beer, which is fed by a small but steady flow of bubbles from the bottom and sides of the glass.

Smell is pleasent, mainly a malt scent with hints of gingerbread cookies, brown sugar and some spiciness faintly reminiscent of ground pepper.

Taste is really quite nice. Sweet and malty at first, with hints of a molasses flavor with touches of ginger and spices in the background. Caramel flavors linger in the middle. Ends with a slight bitterness and a definite flavor of alcohol. Very warm on the way down. The finish lingers for several seconds, leaving a grassy metallic flavor in the mouth. Mouthfeel is smooth and slick, coating the mouth, while a bit of carbonation fizzles on the back of the tounge.

Definitely a nice winter warmer. The spices remind one of the season and the warm alcohol flavor that is allowed to creep in at the end feels nice going down. I would certainly drink it again and could have in a row on a particularly cold winter night (yes it gets cold in Arizona!)

UberWasser, Dec 13, 2005
Photo of MurphyMacManus
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%

12-ounce longneck into pint glass.

Appearance: light brown/ dark amber with off-white head that sticks to the glass.

Smell: spices and I think I'm catching banana in there, which makes sense, given the wheat malt.

Taste: Sweet, spicy, mildly fruity (bananas again). The wheat definitely comes through a bit, as do the added cinnamon, nutmeg, and orange peel.

Mouthfeel: The wheat malt and carbonation keep it fairly light.

Drinkability: This is a "where'd my beer go?" experience.

MurphyMacManus, Dec 12, 2005
Photo of JayQue
4.25/5  rDev +18.4%

Tried this beer at the company Christmas party. Nice event, sit down dinner and band. The main beer choices were Coors Lite on tap and bottled Budweiser. As soon as they got the Sam Adams tap working, I was on it!!!! Appearance was good. I didn'[t notice a great head but it left some lacing and had a nice coppery/caramel color. Could definitely smell the spices, I'm figuring cinnamon and nutmeg. The flavor was nicely balanced between the spices and malt flavor. Nothing too overpowering. The spices were noticible first and then smooth, rich malt and spice flavor. This beer is heavier and has a stronger mouthfeel than what I am used to (lagers, marzens and Pale Ales). It was very drinkable. I would have enjoyed something else to wash down dinner and then switch to this afterwards and just enjoy the rich flavor for it's own sake. I would drink this again.

JayQue, Dec 12, 2005
Photo of Bitterbill
3.65/5  rDev +1.7%

Poured from bottle(rom temp) a medium gold with a fairly large head that dissipated slowly...good lacing.

The smell is of sweet spices and malt though I had to work to sense them.

The taste is quite nice. I taste roasted malt with a dash of spice, mainly the cinnamon mentioned on the label;^) And...it has a nice lingering aftertaste of said spices with just a bit of bitterness.

Overall, this is a good example of the style and I recommend it.

PS: The Sam Adams holiday pack in general is pleasing; only the Cranberry "Lambic" disappointed me.

Bitterbill, Dec 11, 2005
Photo of LordChesterfield
2.45/5  rDev -31.8%

I just tried this for again without tasting anything prior to skew the flavor and I can honestly say that this is entirely too insipid for my taste. It really does taste like a weird waffle syrup of some kind without the sugar. It needs som e hops quick. Jeez, more often then not I'm finding I'm not a big fan of Sam Adams' offerings.

LordChesterfield, Dec 10, 2005
Photo of MetroOhio
4.15/5  rDev +15.6%

Mmmm it's so buttery. I forget that Sam Adams isn't afraid to bring the true drunky assbeat. I got the 12 tonight for 12 bux and it's quite the bargain. Very smooth lager taste and the end- THE CLIMAX- is like hot love in a cold world- YES! your hands are cold but your lips are warm. Truly the finest slightly high maintenance girlfriend ever. mmm. It's good. It packs the 5.8% which is a plenty.

This isn't one I could drink all night and get tanked off of, but I wouldn't suspect many Witner warmers to be suitable to that end. However, the drinkablity is enough to keep you coming back. You could have several rounds of the stuff.

The smell is quite nice, with hints of ginger and orangespice. You can tell that there's a slightly higher than average alcohol in this, or at least, that's what the smell might indicate.

The punch to this beer can tend to hide for a while, so watch your intake, because it will definitely come back.

And I also got a 12 of Milwaukee's Best Ice. And it sucks shit in comparison. There you go.

MetroOhio, Dec 09, 2005
Photo of walleye
3.4/5  rDev -5.3%

from the bottle. poured a dark amber, with a small light tan head wit a small amount of lacing. aroma malts, caramel got a little pumpkin pie spices and just a small amount of hops. flavor caramel, spices, got some berries. not to bad of a beer good session beer

walleye, Dec 08, 2005
Photo of clemtig76
4.22/5  rDev +17.5%

Another solid offering from Jim Koch and the gang. Pours a beautiful deep copper color with a nice fluffy tan head that stays around. I noticed a moderate amount of lacing. The smell is rich and malty with hints of cinammon, nutmeg, and pumpkin pie. Taste is very complex and perfectly balanced between the toasted malt, noble hops and winter spices. The warming effect from the alcohol is just noticable for a relatively high ABV (5.9%). A new winter favorite of mine. Hope Santa brings me more.

clemtig76, Dec 07, 2005
Photo of WanderingFool
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%

Sam Adams Winter Lager pours a clear copper color with a frothy tan head on top. When the foam dissolves to a thick ring around the surface of the beer it leaves quite a bit of netted lace on the side of the glass.

The sweet malty aroma has some hints of yeast and nutmeg mixed in. It seemed a bit odd to me. Each sip of this smooth medium bodied beer is full of crisp caramel malt. Some subtle spicy notes of cinnamon and nutmeg are also present. It finishes with a bit of floral hops leaving hints of the caramel malt behind when it's gone.

I thought this was an easy drinking well balanced beer. But there was something in the aroma and flavor I couldn't quite place. Kind of reminded me of wheat bread.

WanderingFool, Dec 06, 2005
Photo of scooter231
4/5  rDev +11.4%

A tasty, easily available Winter Warmer. Sam Adams usually doesn't disappoint me. It's a pretty enough beer, ruby colored with white head that disappears a tich too quickly. Smells sweet, a bit hoppy, Hennepinish? Nice light spice aroma coming through.

Taste is intricate and interesting. It's like laced coffee. A mild coffee flavor with bitter, roastedness going on, with spices all throughout it. Ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg? Caramel, toasted maltyness... it's interesting. Mouthfeel is also quite nice, warming, with a lightly dry finish. A very drinkable brew- warming, tasty, lovely.

scooter231, Dec 06, 2005
Samuel Adams Winter Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
81 out of 100 based on 4,615 ratings.