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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.

4,623 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,623
Reviews: 1,851
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 13.65%
Wants: 40
Gots: 257 | 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: 4,623 | Reviews: 1,851 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JayQue
4.25/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

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%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 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
Photo of FuzzyGuy84
4.2/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm a big fan of this seasonal beer - more complex and interesting than the standard Boston Lager. Lots of typical winter spice (nutmeg and allspice are definetely present), with some underlying tones of wood and banana. A most enjoyable beer and highly reccomended for this time of the year.

FuzzyGuy84, Dec 06, 2005
Photo of skynxnex
3.98/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Notched best by March, 2006. Pours a fluffy off white head. Color is dark amber. Smells sweet, with some slight sour notes. A hint of bannana and spices. Definately by Sam Adams.

Tastes of toasted malt with medium sweetness. Good level, low, level of hops balacing the malt. The spices show up as well, maybe allspice. Hint of tanginess. Nothing super exciting, but comes together fairly well. Good mouthfeel and I could easily drink a second.

skynxnex, Dec 06, 2005
Photo of dmowen
4.58/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Found this at my local beer store and just had to try it. pours a nice dark amber color with a nice light tan head. Good head retention and nice lacing. Very first thought I had as I first smelled it was WOW, pumpkin pie, fresh from the oven! Taste is very much like other dark lagers I have had before but with very slight
hint of spice in the background; a very nice combo. (hang on; off to pour another one!) MMM, second one better than the first!
I would definitly recommend this brew to warm You up on those long cold winter nights(it does have a kick to it so be carefull!!)
A must try!!

dmowen, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of RedHaze
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a a dark amber/brown with a one inch head that fade to a decent cap that leaves only moderate lacing behind.

Smell; sweet roasted malts dominate, with a little nutmeg, cinammon and a some caramel.

Taste; I get nutmeg upfront, then some biscuity malts and caramel, and some other spices I can't put my finger on. Mouthfeel was a litlle thin for what I like a winter warmer, but the carbonation was nice and smooth. I don't usually go for the Sam Adams beers anymore as I tend to be a bit disapointed in them nowadays, but I was surprised how good this was.

RedHaze, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of ColoradoBobs
4.2/5  rDev +17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In the winter sampler pack.

A: Dark clear amber-brown topped by an off-white, mostly fading small head that leaves only a small ring, but a surprising amount of lacing.

S: Malty-biscuity with a bit of coffee in the background, toasted white bread with apple-butter(?) on it.

T: More malt depth and sweetness, but not cloying. Nice dry hoppiness without too much bitterness. A bit of sourness is there too -- nice surprise: reminds me a little of a Belgian Dubbel. There's a spiciness that is quite notable -- pepper, cloves stuck into whole oranges. Really nice.

M: Nice round thickness. Much fuller feel than you might think from the small head.

D: Goes down nice and smooth. May I have another, please?

Overall, surprisingly delightful and rich beer. A macro with a craft touch. Gotta go get some more. Sad there are only two in the twelve-pack.

ColoradoBobs, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of nathanho
2.78/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Stong pour, ample head, moderate lacing, bland amber - slight haziness?

Light wheat and spice smell; strong metal & some citrus.

Malt, spice, metal - metal ruins taste as well as good aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is good except ruined by pervasive metal.

Metal ruins decent drinkability, also.

Tastes like it came out of a dirty tap. I like this beer minus the metal - did I mention the metal? Perhaps a re-review is in order at a later point in time.

nathanho, Dec 03, 2005
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer came an orange gold with a creamy head that fell a bit but was sustained for the duration. Smells like a little cranberry sourness, an apple sweetness, a slight dry hop and a bit of grain. Tastes like blueberries, currants a touch of grapefruit with nice molasses sweetness. A few spices seem to be hiding in here as well. Mouth feel is full with a light carbonation. This is a tasty sipping beer. Lively enough to get your attention, but not overpowering.

DarkerTheBetter, Dec 02, 2005
Photo of SacoDeToro
3.95/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Let's give credit where credit is due. Despite the relative size and popularity of Sam Adams beers, they still make a very worthy effort to please the afficionado with a large selection of tasty full-time, limited edition and seasonal beers. Okay, I'm still trying to forgive them for Sam Adams Light, but whatever...

The Winter Lager is a very balanced and flavorful bock-type beer. It's color is a dark amber with a light tan head that disipates quickly. The aroma is heavy on sweet caramel maltiness. No hop aroma is present and the hops in this beer due their job in just balancing out the intense Munich maltiness. There is an addition of wheat malt which adds some creaminess to the brew as well. Alcohol is present on the nose with slight banana undertones. Considering the intense maltiness of this beer, the mouthfeel is not too thick or chewy, which makes it easy to quaff.

Grab a bottle and let it prepare you for the Sam Adams Double Bock this Winter.

SacoDeToro, Dec 02, 2005
Photo of Shovelbum
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Arrived with a thin white head over a translucent brown-body. Light aroma of caramel malt. More caramel malt in the flavor with a noticeable hop bitterness and tea-like grain notes. Lean to medium in body. Slightly crisp in the mouth, finishes smooth with a mild hop bitterness in the aftertaste.

A bit more hop character than the standard SA Boston lager. Darker and more body too, but not as well balanced as its non-seasonal counterpart. Although, the warming alcohol presence does help it out.

Shovelbum, Dec 01, 2005
Photo of stof0048
4.22/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured this into a beer mug. Poured an amber color with a thin head that quickly disipated. Moderately sticky lacing.

S: Malts, dark candies, hint of spice and some floral aromas.

T: Dark malts, slightly hoppy flavor, dark sugars/fruits (plums...). Actually rather imressed with this beer (this is actually my first sampling of Sam Adams).

M: Nice mouthfeel, smooth, medium body, carbonation become apparent as it goes over the tongue.

D: Pretty easy to drink, will definitely have to acquire a little more of this stuff as I could easily enjoy a few of these in a night.

Overall, I'm very impressed with this. I haven't actually tried any Sam Adams before this but must admit that it's better than I was expecting. Can't wait to try again.

stof0048, Dec 01, 2005
Photo of rowew
3.98/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Purchased as part of the Holiday sampler. 12 oz longneck with Samuel Adams embossed on the neck. Best by date notched on the label.

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a very frothy, large head. Head leaves quite a bit of lacing as it slowly fades. Very good retention.

Smell: Sweet malt, and as it warms up you can detect some pumpkin pie spice aromas in there. Just a hint of floral hops.

Taste: Smooth mouthfeel, medium bodied. Sweet malt start and then a little bit of floral hop flavor. The spice comes mainly in the aftertaste.

Overall impression: Nice winter warmer - not overly complex but well made. Nice for the cold winter evenings to come.

rowew, Nov 30, 2005
Photo of metallistout
4.45/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I could have swore that this beer tasted different a couple of years ago. Still a good brew, but I thought that it had more hop presence in it.

Pours a reddish copper color, with a large foamy head that stuck around for a pretty long while.

Smells of orange, cinnamon, ginger, pine?, and malty tones.

Tastes mostly of malt, a decent amount hops, but mostly spices of the aromas nature.

Deffinately taste the spices and malt, a good beer, but I would prefer maybe a little more hops. I had to review this beer over because I drank it a different temperature(let it warm up a little)and it had much more flavor. I was thinking that it needed to be really cold like most lagers, but you can pretty much drink it at ale temperatures.

metallistout, Nov 30, 2005
Photo of danielharper
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased from Target in Jones Valley, Huntsville, AL.

I poured this into a clean pint glass -- it formed a dark amber body with a tiny off-white foamy head that stuck around for the length of the beer, despite being thin. Looks a bit like soap suds at the end of the brew.

Aroma is strong with fruit and quite a bit of winter spices. Very nice, floral bouquet here -- I'm enjoying the nose quite a bit and find it very inviting for the beer as a whole, despite not being incredibly complex.

Grainy and granulated spice presence up front on the taste, with a fruity finish and a slight astringent aftertaste. No real hop presence noted, but the yeast gives this a pleasant flavor overall. Nice.

Mouthfeel is moderate-to-thick, coating the throat and palate admirably and leaving me wanting more. Mild carbonation helps to keep this one smooth but interesting.

I guess it's a four straight down. This is far from a perfect beer, but it's very pleasant, doesn't get in the way of itself, and makes me happy to be drinking it. Nothing really amazing, but for what it is it is relatively flawless. High marks for style.

danielharper, Nov 29, 2005
Photo of Tim460
3.88/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark amber with an off white, slightly tan head. Smells malty, cinnamon, with a slight hint of caramel and citris. Taste is caramel with malt sweetness, though slightly bitter in the back end. Medium bodied, goes down smooth but carbonation is apparent. Highly drinkable with its low alcohol and mild taste, not too sweet. I enjoy the Winter Lager more than their other seasonal offerings, but there are several better available in this years holiday 12 pack.

Tim460, Nov 29, 2005
Photo of jakester
3.93/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is from the Sam Adams Winter sampler case. I drank it in a goblet. Expiry date clearly notched on the label.

Pours a hazy copper/brown with a 1/2 finger head of off-white foam. The head eventually falls to islands and a ring, with minimal lacing. Carbonation looks medium.

Aroma is spicy cinnamon, citrusy, (from wheat?), sweet caramel, with no real fruit smells. Almost smells like a wheat bock.

Flavor is smooth citrusy wheat, sweet caramel, cinnamon, and vanilla. Not fruity at all, but clean and slightly sweet. Aftertaste is sweet and spicy from cinnamon.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with medium carbonation across the tongue. Finish is lip-smacking sweet.

This is a pretty straightforward holiday beer, but the wheat certainly adds a nice complexity. There is the usual cinnamon flavor, with the added citrus/tartness from wheat. Dark malts make this caramel sweet and rich. Recommended.

jakester, Nov 28, 2005
Photo of whartontallboy
3.83/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a slightly-cloudy light-brown color with a fairly large off-white head of big bubbles and streaming carbonation.

Smell is fruity, with some lemon and orange citrus notes coming through, with lots of caramel, baked-bread, and a little bit of alcohol.

Flavor is similarly doughy, with biscuit and caramel flavors coming to the front, and the little citric fruitiness blending well with some spices, cinnamon and nutmeg maybe, underneath. The alcohol is not present like it is in the nose. Mouthfeel is light-medium.

Overall: Solid, drinkable winter warmer, but not as good as Old Fezziwig.

whartontallboy, Nov 28, 2005
Photo of kmcnair
3.05/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Another bottle from Sam's mixed winter brew collection.

Pours a nice dark copper color and makes a nice fluffy eggshell colored head that lingers around for a bit, makes some nice lacing as well. Aroma is strong of malt and winter spices, particularly cinnamon. Rich malty flavor, very little bittering or hop character, very slight spice in the background, a bit bready, some caramel sweetness. Light to medium body, peppery carbonation, finishes a bit sticky. Not bad, but not my favorite offering from Boston Beer Co.

kmcnair, Nov 26, 2005
Samuel Adams Winter Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
81 out of 100 based on 4,623 ratings.