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

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Samuel Adams Winter LagerSamuel Adams Winter Lager

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5,281 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,281
Reviews: 1,916
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 13.65%
Wants: 64
Gots: 663 | 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).
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Ratings: 5,281 | Reviews: 1,916 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Yeastcakes
3.58/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving notes: 45F, Hefe glass
Aroma: Very clean, I could not detect an aroma.
Appearance: Dark copper, clear. Half-inch, large-bubble head. Some lacing.
Mouthfeel: light-medium body, light carbonation.
Taste: Winter spices subtle but present. Some sweetness on the tip of the tongue but finish is dry.
Drinkability: Good beer. This is a seasonal that you can find in more bars than most other good winter beers and is often a fall-back for me in an otherwise BMC bar.

Photo of BeanBone
3.91/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear copper/burnt orange body with a finger and a mass of sticky, off-white head. It easily topped my Pilsner glass and left good lacing.

Aroma: Brown sugar and caramel malt with a decent dash of spices. A little bit of citrusy hops on the edges.

Taste: Bold, toasty malt with the spices providing decent balance. There's also a bit of honey that lingers into the aftertaste. Citrusy hops show up in the finish, but are still firmly behind the malt backbone. Occasional tinges of booze in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and medium-light bodied with moderate carbonation. Compared to the sweet body, the finish drys a bit.

Drinkability: Another relativity quick Winter seasonal from Sam Adams. While very full-flavored, Winter Lager goes down easily.

Verdict: A solid Winter seasonal and, at least in my opinion, one of Sam Adam's best offerings. A safe bet for a mellow, but still full-flavored Winter seasonal, Winter Lager is worth a try for sure.

Photo of irishtjb11
3.58/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

nice, but typically safe offering from sam adams. didnt find anything that stood out, but good for drinking a high quantitity for sure. has a nice brownish/amber appearance, filtered. had a nice head that stuck around for most of the beer. smell i found hints of the spices they claim to have, but mainly strong malty presence. taste more of the same as with the smell. mouthfeel is what you would expect as well as the drinkability. certainly a beer made for average beer drinkers, or drinking of high quantities; nothing too stand out here.

Photo of BoitSansSoif
3.91/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a dark copper amber, crystal clear, and I can see perfect outlines of a couple of water drops left on other side of the Bordeaux glass. One-finger head off of gentle pour, great retention, and beautiful lacing. A lovely looking beer.
S-Toasty malt w/apple, spice, light ginger, cinnamon.
T-Complex blend of toasty malt, caramel midpalate, ginger, apple, and a slightly dry finish of bitter hops w/a touch of orange zest.
M-Complex and well-balanced, the flavor holds up well, and the finish is gentle. Body is medium, carbonation is slightly prickly and carries the flavor well.
D-Got this the variety pack...one of my favorite in it. Very enjoyable beer I'd consider buying in a sixer.

Photo of prototypic
3.98/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: It's crystal clear and pours a nice looking copper-amber color. Head is vanilla colored and about a finger and a half tall. Retention was on the shorter side and lacing was rather light.

Smell: It's overall rather light on the nose. There are some spicy notes. Mostly cinnamon and some nutmeg up front. That's followed by a very malty, sweet smell. There's some toasted malt that adds a nice element to it. Smells like there's some light hops that are mostly floral in character. On the tail, it's a little yeasty smelling.

Taste: Caramel malts are noticable initially and provide a somewhat sweet taste. It's mixed with a light toasted malt flavor. Cinnamon and other spices blend pretty well. Nutmeg is the only other one I can identify. Spices are very flavorful. Hops are light in the mix, but are definitely effective in adding some zeal. It finishes sweet and a little spicy.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's light bodied and goes down smooth. Carbonation is active, but provides a very nice crisp bite. Its no quite lush, but it does have a nice feel. Drinkability is very good. It's got a nice flavor and goes down very easy. ABV is modest and it doesn't intimidate. I could handle a few of these.

Winter Lager's a good beer. It's definitely nice during the cold months. Frankly, I prefer BBC's Holiday Porter and Old Fezziwig. I wish they put those in six packs. But, this is good beer. Definitely one to pick around this time of year. Easily recommended.

Photo of KTCamm
3.8/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured draft into a pint glass. Color is reddish brown, low foam, some lacing.

Smell is sweet, some halt, maybe just a hint of rasberrry.

Taste is clean, crisp, flavorful - goes down very smooth. Very little, if any, hop at the finish. This is definitely a winter beer, but a very mellow smooth one. I've had this bottled as well, and the draft feels even smoother.

Very drinkable - not heavy at all, easy to see having more than a few.

Photo of kurlare
3.47/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Very pretty red color. Average head with weak retention. The beer itself is quite beautiful, but the head is weak. Yup, head gone after 2 minutes.

Aroma: Sweet, metallic, caramel, some nice malt in there. Not too strong though.

Taste: Malt, caramel, sweetness, some spice in there somewhere. Quite tasty to be honest. Hops are not very pronounced , but add a subtle bitterness to the brew. The finish is sweet also. Reminds me of a pilsner in some ways.

Mouthfeel: Crisp, nicely carbonated.

Drinkability: Quite drinkable. I feel like this category is the beers' strong point. It is tasty, malty, crisp, with a nice depth of flavor. Nicely done Mr. Adams.

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.19/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a real nice looking brownish red color with a pillowy fine foam that is frothy and sticky.

Sweet, malty distinctive BBC smell to it...I guess it is their proprietary yeast that I'm not a huge fan of, but most of their standard lineup has a very easily identifiable scent for me. This one smells like a double boston lager with some creaminess and spices thrown in.

Taste is malty with a lot of the sweetness replaced by hoppy and toasty bitterness. Not getting too many winter spices in the flavor. Overall, a decent beer, and I give props to BBC for doing a winter beer that's a lager.

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

Lovely copper color, creamy head and spicy wheat malt aroma. Some mild roasted malts with the spices coming through a bit. Just a touch of hops. Mouthfeel is not too thick, not too thin. Pretty drinkable, I'd have a few of these.

Not an everyday sort of beer, but another solid brew from Samuel Adams, and one that I enjoy a six pack or so of just about every winter.

I'm not too sure of classifying this as a bock due to the wheat malt and spices used.

Photo of dudecandle
3.83/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A: 12oz bottle poured into stange. Deep red-brown color with amazing billowy off-white head: thick and lasting with good lacing
S: Hoppy and malty balance with yeasty notes and spices
T: Orange and nutmeg maltiness with a hoppy bitter finish
M: A little thin, but this is towards the end of its season by now. Still has a bit of chewiness to it.
D: A heck of a beer overall, one that I'll wait for every year. Great balances of malts and hops with a spiciness that most beers don't have.

Photo of ckeegan04
4.3/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Coppery orange color with a thick light tan head. Excellent retention and decent lacing

S - Very sweet and earthy malt nose. Some toasted bread and hints of toffee. A light spice lingers underneath.

T - Very sweet and bready. Strong malt backbone dominates this beer. Hints of baking spices as well with allspice being the most obvious. Hops are present mid to late drink with a little spiciness, but they are never overwhelming.

M/D - Medium bodied and very drinkable.

Photo of AChamberlain
3.41/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my SA pint glass. Looks like a Boston Lager. Sweet malt and caramel aroma. Slight hop smell. Good bitterness, for a lager. Medium bodied. Easy to drink just not what I'd prefer to have again. Nothing too special, normal. Sometimes normal is ok, not for me.

Photo of theghost3
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

SA Winter Lager pours a dark amber with a one-finger off-white head. Moderate lacing. The smell is slightly roasted malts and yeast with spices (maybe allspice & nutmeg). The taste is malty with hints of allspice & cinnamon, but not too pronounced. Mouthfeel is crisp at first, then smooth. This is a very drinkable beer, much smoother than I expected.

Photo of tai4ji2x
3.98/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

on-tap at ruby tuesdays in westboro, ma. huge 22oz mug for just 3.99!

clear, dark amber. nice head fades to thin layer. good lacing.

aroma of caramelized malt with notes of fruity raisins and yeasty esters along with whiffs of grassy hop.

flavor is malty and nutty, with gentle, grassy/herbal hop and accompanying moderate bitterness. faint hints of spice and fruit, but the malt is the center. finish is crisp but persists with that malt note.

smooth, but slightly thin and almost watery. crisp carbonation, but almost overly fizzy.

a very drinkable brew. can't beat the price.

Photo of tconboy
3.97/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from the Winter Classics collection pack into my pint glass. Pours a dark clear amber with a small white head that fades to a light cover. Some lacing present. Smells of malt, caramel, and spices. Feels light bodied, moderate carbonation, definitely the malty characteristics of the Boston Lager, but with a sweet spicey twist. Worth a try.

Photo of PintOHops
4.05/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance/Smell - Appears a rich amber, a little hazy , high carbonation, and about a quarter of an inch of head. Good head retention, and no lacing. Smells of bright citrus and raisins, a little fruity grape & apple aroma as well. Sweet caramel malt, and finishes with warm pepper like spices.

Taste/Mouthfeel - Tastes of lots of orange peel like citrus flavors, some sweet caramel malt, and a little cleaner than other winter seasonal's. Dark chocolate with warm pepper like spices on the finish. Hop bitterness lingers a tad. Mouthfeel is a little thin, a little watery, crisp, and has a lite body.

Drinkability/Final thoughts - This winter seasonal is very good and allot more drinkable than the seasonal ales. I could enjoy about 3 of these, full flavored like an ale, but allot more drinkable. That being said, Its a little to thin for my taste. I think i would enjoy the seasonal ales more, keep in mind though, its a lager and not an ale. Still a very good seasonal offering. Worth a try id say.

Cheers and Hoppy Holidays!

Photo of gubbt
3.85/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark amber color with a small off white head that leaves spotty lace.

Sweet, spicy nose. There is some spice that is lending this sweet, almost perfumey aroma, with caramel underneath that produces a pleasent bouquet.

Overall pretty spicy flavor profile with sweet spices like cinnomon and nutmeg, but they are balanced. Some underlying malt sweetness keeps the spices in check and gives the brew some depth. A hint of hops towards the end gives additional complexity and some dryness.

Nice carbonation, lighter side of medium body.

Very good drinkability. A winter session beer dare I say? (I know, I know, too much alcohol, but it goes down very easy) A great winter staple and it's nice that the freshness is ensured each year.

Photo of bamadog
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I got a pint of this because the one I wanted was actually out. I've had it before, and I wasn't overly impressed with it compared to the other brews made by Sam Adams, but I thought, "what the hell..."

Appearance: Dark copper in color, a very thin head that reduced to an even thinner lacing that didn't really stick around.

Smell: A little like carmel, a little bit of a hoppiness to it in the back. I really couldn't pull a whole lot out of this.

Taste: Nice carmel, and again like the smell, just a smidge of the hoppiness to it. It was kind of sweet and reminded me a bit of a Scotch ale. Again, it tastes OK, but I wouldn't go out of my way to get it (also, is it strange that it's named "Winter Lager" yet it's classified as a bock on BA?).

Mouthfeel: Solid carbonation, dried the palate nicely. Again, not bad - something I could live with and it didn't let me down, so I gave it the 4 as listed.

Drinkability: Again, I would give it a fair drinkability, but I'm just not a huge fan of this one compared to the other brews from Sam Adams. It's not overpowering though and it would be fairly easy to session with.

Photo of olmatty
3.81/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Pours a creamy off-white two-finger head with excellent retention and lacing. Beer is a reddish tobacco.

Smell- Cinnamon and nutmeg, dark caramel malts and a hint of yeast

Taste- Less spicy than most spiced holiday beers. Dark malty character, moderate hops are masked by spices. A nice mixture.

Mouthfeel- Moderately carbonated, full bodied and rich.

Drinkability- Occupies an odd slot for me. Tasty and full bodied enough to enjoy a couple, not so flavorful and tasty as to be crave it very often. A good brew, but not exceptional

Photo of mashedpotatoes
3.91/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice deep copper color with a beautiful two-finger billowy head. Lacing is excellent. Smell is slightly spiced but mostly uneventful. Taste is warm, lightly spicy with large caramel overtones. Mouthfeel is thick with a nice lingering flavor and aftertaste. Drinkability is quite high with this well balanced beer.

Photo of turamarth
3.28/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

served on tap a flying saucer

appearance: crystal clear amber/brown. whiteish head that leaves some lacing but disapates quickly to a film.

nose: malts. some xmas candies. yeast. more malts.

taste: some candied apple sweetness. maybe a hint of hops. a major toasty biscuitiness in the finish.

mouth: kind of chewy. with a fairly dry finish.

drink: not too bad. smooth going

Photo of nrbw23
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a deep, bright, dark copper. Head is an off-white in color. Head leaves some spotty lacing.

S- Sweet malts, spicy hops and cinnamon. Also could pick up a bit of yeast and ginger. Might be something that's toasted/roasted but can't really put my finger on it.

T- Overall, pretty sweet finishes with a slight hop bitterness to it. For the most part follows the nose.

M- Medium body and quite a bit of carbonation here.

D- Easy to drink.

Photo of damienblack
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours medium brown with a rush of carbonation. Two-fingered foamy head makes for a nice looking presentation. Smells like SA yeast (man, that's present in all their beers... kind of like graham cracker), and some dark fruit, something exotic like fig, date, that sort of thing.

Smooth, buttery and just a little roasty. Lightly roasted malt, with caramel flavors. Little bit of hop to carry the end, but overall the experience is sweet. A little dry and grassy to finish. Light to medium body, not too much behind it. Very drinkable and inoffensive, easy to session. Not much to say about this one. It's a step above the typical spiced winter fare, and some at some places, probably a step above what else is on tap, but it probably wouldn't make it into a regular winter rotation for me.

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

This is a great seasonal that I pick up every year.

A - Poured from bottle into glass. Nice dark amber. Good head.

S - light roasty malt, caramel

T - clean with slightly buttery and grassy dry finish.

M - Medium dryness, nice lingering flavor.

D - Definitely drinkable. Very good both fridge or cellar temp. It's quite refreshing too, unlike some other Winter beers. So this would be a great choice for those that live in warmer climates but still want a special seasonal.

Photo of dakid618
3.51/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from draft into pint glass. Poured a deep dark mahogany with a half finger of tan head. Smell is almost non-existent, slight chocolate smell. Taste is light cocoa with some light malty taste in the undertones. Light mouthfeel. Could drink several of these for sure.

Samuel Adams Winter Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
81 out of 100 based on 5,281 ratings.