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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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5,343 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,343
Reviews: 1,928
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 13.65%
Wants: 68
Gots: 755 | 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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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,343 | Reviews: 1,928
Photo of JohnQVegas
3.88/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into Sam Adams lager glass.

Pours dark copper, clear, with a one-finger light-khaki head that settles into a thin cap.

Nose is toasty, light fruitcake, floral hops are there but don't dominate. Bit of earthiness I attribute to the hops.

Taste is well balanced - toasty, biscuity malt body, light caramel sweetness, complemented by notes of fruitcake and herbal hops. Nutty and I think just a hint of chocolate in there. Finish is very lightly bitter, earthy, more of the fruitcake. Well balanced, quite tasty.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, moderate carbonation sits on top of a body that has a nice fullness without being syrupy.

Excellent drinkability - the earthiness is just a bit trying by the end, but still nicely flavorful and well balanced, easy drinking beer.

Photo of Mosley1212
3.56/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of my favorite beers. Smells of cinamon and spices. I can see why they release this only at Christmas time--the smell definetly reminds me of the holidays

This is a good bear to sit down on a winter night and sip away at. Great taste. I highly recommend it.

Photo of Morey
4.2/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This winter lager pours a very clear reddish brown color (especially when held up to a light). Nice white head that has slowly settled to a thin lace after about 5 minutes or so. Very little head retention.

Smells of of wheat as well as spices.

Taste is a nice combination of all of the ingredients in this beer. I get the hops, wheat, and spices all at the same time.

I could definitely session this beer for the night.

Morey's Bottom Line: I'm not big on lagers, or Sam Adams for that matter...but this is a well crafted beer no questions asked. Fairly unique too. I feel like they achieved exactly what they were aiming for with this one.

Photo of GoalieRon33
3.73/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Deep coppery brown with reddish hues when light shines through it

S- Heavy, almost like a porter. Bready, almost musty. "Smells like it means business"

T- Bready, with oranges and ginger, just as the packaging claims. Not much hop to speak of, but still pleasent. Thought it would be a little more flavorful, but still ok overall.

M- A little watery for my liking, but not bad. Leaves a wet taste on the tongue with a fruity aftertaste. Resembles a Marzen aftertaste effect.

D- Easy to drink a few of, but not really a session beer. Good beer to drink with heavier food such as steaks and ribs. A personal favorite of mine which is my wintertime go-to dinner beer.

Photo of craftaholic
3.4/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Poured from tap into a Nonic. Had a translucent crimson red with a light quarter pillow head of lacing. Looked much like a wine in an soap filled glass.

Smell: Has the aroma of a macro to me, there is a heavy amount of grains with touches of wheat.

Taste: Had a big kick of malt as well as some ginger and a strong yeast presence that made it like drinking a big hunk of bread (if that was possible). There is some displeasing characteristics such as it being somewhat metallic as well as unbalanced hops.

Mouthfeel: Light yet crisp and leaves a full coating of dry powder in the aftertaste yet leaves the tongue wet.

Drinkability: Easily could session if it's your thing, will give it another chance on bottle but so far it wouldn't make it past more than one with me.

Overall: Doesn't scream winter to me or even particularly lager, it warms you up sure but it is too light in my honest opinion.

Photo of ProudGreen89
4.2/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a weizen glass.

A-immediately a 2 finger fluffy head is produced and retains nicely with sticky lacing. Body is a beautiful dark amber with ruby highlights.

S-sweet malts with a spiced up aroma. The spices seem a bit overboard in this beer but this was probably done to remind the drinker that its a bock but also a decent winter warmer with its cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. There is wheat present but i was expecting more (the bottle emphasizes on the wheat.)

T-I love how balanced yet intense this beer is. Right off the bat you get a malty punch of flavor but its immediately balanced out with the caramel, spices and noteable bitterness. You can detect a subtle alcoholic burn if you let it sit on the tongue and drink it down slowly, this is where you get another hint at a winter warmer.

M-Medium-light bodied with a pleasant carbonated tingle on the tip of the tongue.

D-Easy to drink, easy on the stomach, nothing offensive about this beer. I would say its a session beer except that i kind of want to save them and not finish off a sixer in one night.

I wish this beer was available year round.

Photo of womencantsail
3.56/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This one pours a clear, rich amber color with two fingers of off-white head and very nice lacing.

S: I'm not all that big of a fan of the nose on this. It's very malty, with a lot of caramel, and it seems to be incredibly spicy. I'm okay with some mild spice in a beer, but this one is a bit too much.

T: The taste is better than the nose, that's for certain. The caramel and malt is quite up front, with the spices much more subdued.

M: The fizziness is rather light for a lager and it's rather full bodied as well. I haven't had this beer in quite some time and I found this to be quite impressive.

D: This is a pretty easy drinking beer and one that you could easily have several of in a session. I'm not the biggest fan of bocks, but I found this one to be fairly enjoyable and wouldn't turn it down if offered one.

Photo of drawbackwards
3.13/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I have to say...I really wanted to like this beer from all that I have heard. Unfortunately, it really was nothing special. It really did not have a ton of flavor and tasted just "ok". Didn;t hate it, but for the price there are way better choices than sam's winter.

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

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a 0.5L Pilsner Urquell-branded pilsner glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark reddish-brown color with a thick foamy head that lingers for a while and leaves nice lacing.

Smell: Has a nice malty nose with some hop character to it too. Has some citrus fruit notes to it as well.

Taste: Has a strong citrus fruit taste backed by some heavy spice flavors. Besides that, malty character backed by some hoppy bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Smooth. The spices give it a nice bite as well.

Drinkability: A highly drinkable beer and one of my favorite selections from SA. I will definitely turn to this beer at least one more time this season and will look forward to it in winters to come.

Photo of Blitzstyle
3.71/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Decent head and laceing. Nice deep amber color looks very inviteing.

Nice spiceyness to the nose. Pick up toasty malts as well. Some hints of cinniamon.

Smooth malty taste, Some cinniamon and vanilla hints. Some ginger hidden in their too I bet. Also a slight orange peel taste on the back of the tounge.

Nice medium body and pleasent lingering after taste. Would defenatly reach fo another.

Photo of chetripley
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My favorite Sam Adams seasonal. Just what you would expect from a lager to prepare you for the winter months.

Dark brown with a small head with little lacing, poured really cold from a bottle into a footed cooler glass.

Pleasant malt flavor, no bitterness, taste the grains and the sweetness involved.

Smooth and drinkable, had another one to taste for sure.

Photo of HURTemHIZZY
3.65/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Poured a nice dark amber color. Head was disappointing, with a half finger head dissipating to a thin off white ring in a minute or two. left minimal lacing.

Smelled a bit hoppy, with some noticeable alcohol. Thick notes of ginger and cinnamon, couldn't smell much orange.

Taste has a nice balance, with some hops up front and some maltiness following. Again, thick notes of ginger and cinnamon. Nice flavor. Can taste a bit of the orange that wasn't present in the aroma. Also some earthy notes and hoppy spice.

Nicely carbonated, with a solid body to it. On a colder day, this is a beer that I could drink for a while.

Photo of Meik
3.93/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent scent and appearance. Seems to be heavy on the cinnamon and ginger but that didn't throw it off to much for me.
Goes down nice and smooth with a little warming action while still staying light and tasty.
The only real downfall is the fact that only 2 came inside the Winter variety pack.

Photo of Tee76
4.84/5  rDev +34.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Dark amber color with a thick tannish white head.

S: Very malty and spicy, cinnamon and ginger are present.

T: DAMN good!! the taste is full of spices... molasses, ginger and cinnamon being the most present.

M: Full bodied and smooth, very rich and warming on the palate

D: Very High, one of the best tasting Winter beers i have ever had the pleasure of drinking.This beer is full flavored and goes down nicely. Only downfall is.... it's a seasonal beer

Photo of Darkhorse09
3.38/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark amber without any noticable head. I think this is the fault of the bartender. Little to no lacing. Good color though, really great amber rays when held to the light.

Aroma is one of malts, with some sprucy undertones. Wintery yes, but not really spicey or warm-smelling (if there is such a thing). Kind of a subtle aroma, I could have used more.

Taste is clearly malt and grain driven. Semi sweet, but also some bitter hops to balance. I find some caramel and what seems like charred chocolate. Almost a burnt, carbon flavor. Strange. Very dry finish.

M: Quite smooth, good carbonation. Nothing too notable here though.

D: Pretty good. It isn't really a show-stopper, but it's widely available and not bad at all.

Photo of MrStark
4.06/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pilsener glass.

Appearance is a dark amber/copper with a nice two-finger off white head. Pretty good retention and a decent amount of sticky lacing.

Smell is mostly malts and spices and a hint of caramel as well. But overall not to potent an aroma.

Taste is quite good! A nice sweet malt upfront with caramel and spices, molasses and ciinnamon making a presence towards the end. A minuscule amount of hop bitterness to give it a nice balance.

Mouhfeel is medium bodied with a good mount of carbonation. Fairly rich and smooth.

Drinakblity is great! This would make a very nice session beer as it is quite flavorful and goes down smooth. I look forward to having many more of these in the coming cold winter months.

Photo of MrDanno96
3.9/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark orange/copper color with about one finger of off-white head. Lots of sticky lacing after each sip.

S: Pretty clean: Some basic hop and malt scents, along with ginger, cinnamon, and a little citrus.

T: Toasted malt up front and a fair amount of spice, similar to the nose. I taste cinnamon and ginger mostly, some caramel, and mild hops at the finish. Lots of good flavors here that are in decent balance. The sharpness of the spices overwhelmed my taste buds just a little.

M: A nice crisp beer with a medium body and moderate carbonation.

D: I really like this beer. As I noted above, the flavors could use just a little more balance, but overall it's tasty and very drinkable. When I go out to restaurants this time of year that don't have anything special on tap this is almost always what I get. This would be good to session as well.

Photo of rhollman
3.4/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance - Dark amber

Smell - Hints of spices

Taste - Slight taste of cinnamon and ginger with some hop bitterness

Mouth Feel - Starts crisp, slight burst of flavor, ends nicely with hop bitterness

Drinkability - Pleasant to drink. As the beer warms up, the slight spice is no longer noticeable and the hops finish very well - Cheers!

Photo of natelocc787
3.45/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

An old friend of mine. One of the beers that got me started years ago. Mediocre example of the style, malty and spicy with little hop presence. The thing I did appreciate about this beer was the alcohol bite which warms you on those cold winter nights and also the spice character. Nutmeg, vanilla extract and cinnamon were all present. Still not very tasty, close to a cola feel and a bitterness from spice in the finish that is mildly unpleasant.

Photo of steveh
3.84/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Have never reviewed this long-time favorite, here goes.

A -- Clear, deep chestnut color with a very persistent, dense, off-white head.

S -- Pretty weak aroma, not much coming from the beer but some vague spiciness -- maybe some light cinnamon and bready malt.

T -- Flavor trumps whatever is missing from the aroma. Sweet, dark bread-crust, toasty malts and nuttiness with some slightly vinous character back, finishes with a hint of molasses that heightens the dark bread character. Spicy hop character blends with sweet malts in the aftertaste. No fruit character to my palate, but for the vaguely tart vinous character -- I suppose that could be orange peel, but I'd be reaching.

M -- Medium body with a soft mouthfeel.

D -- Very nice drinker for cooler to colder days and nights.

Photo of bsp77
3.56/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Summit Pint glass.

Appearance: Clear, somewhat dark copper with reddish highlights. Thin off-white head. Not much lacing but the color simply looks hearty.

Smell: Faint fruity malts and faint winter spices. Key word "faint". But what's there seems good.

Taste: Mostly malt driven, highlighted by bread, toast, cherry and a slight wheat taste. The winter spices (particularly the nutmeg) are more noticeable on the finish. Besides for the spices and slight wheat taste, it is Bock-like.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, medium body, somewhat dry finish.

Drinkability: Nice, hearty winter lager with just a touch of spice so you can't forget the upcoming festivities. Of course, this isn't really a Bock. A Bock with wheat and spices? Nein!

Photo of jsh420
3.36/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours clear carmel redish brown with a 1/2 finger head that left no lacing

smells a bit watery and thin - carmel malts tiny bit of spice

taste - much better then the nose - lots of spices nutmeg & cinnamon - a decent body of sweet carmel malts with a bit of hops

mouthfeel is nice and light/medium - well carbonated to giive it life

drinkabiltiy is good - one of the better seasonal SA beers

Photo of SpdKilz
4.22/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow, saw these in stock at my local Bev Mo today and despite it being mid October and almost 90 today I couldn't resist picking up a sixer of these.

Appearance - Pours a dark red/amber color with over a finger of fluffy white head that dissipates relatively fast but is leaving some decent lacing on the sides.

Smell - Spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and perhaps some clove. There is a definite sweet/malty scent to this also, after the initial spices wane away. Overall smells extremely inviting and I can't wait to dive into one of my favorite beers (one of my first craft brews that led me into the great land of good craft beer).

Taste - Yes! I missed this so much. I was hoping it would taste just like it did last year (for some reason SA's Octoberfest this year did NOT remind me of what I had last year so I was worried my tastes had changed so much my old favorites would never taste good to me again). This is for sure how I remember the brew from last year and it definitely has more of a cinnamon note to it as others have said. After the initial spice kick you get a toffee/malty taste at the end. Extremely well balanced for the amount of spices in it.

Mouthfeel - Medium mouthfeel with decent carbonation that ever so slightly prickles the tongue at the end of the sip.

Drinkability - Very much so. I can't wait for it to get a bit cooler outside so I can sit out in the cool autumn air with a jacket and enjoy a few of these on the porch. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw this today and couldn't help myself to having one tonight. I can't wait for the other SA Winter Seasonals to come out! My god I'm going to stock up on those!

Photo of OverToad
4.5/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Part of the Winter classics I picked up at Kroger.

First off I'm glad they dropped last years label "Winter Brew" and put back the label "Winter Lager" on it.

This years brew I noticed more Cinnamon that last years which was a nice welcome. I look forward to this bad boy every year from SA.

I love this brew, but of course it takes a back seat to old Fezzie.

Photo of smibroncos
4.17/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. Poured a rich caramel, with a one finger diminishing light brown head. Light lacing clung to the glass.

S. Carmel, malt, allspice, nutmeg, leaves.

T. Sweet malt, fall and winter spices. Nice bitter finish.

M. Great balance, great carbonation. Rich flavor.

D. I will buy a few more of these this season. A good session beer with, alot of flavor.

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Samuel Adams Winter Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
81 out of 100 based on 5,343 ratings.