1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Samuel Adams Summer Ale - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Summer AleSamuel Adams Summer Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

4,786 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,786
Reviews: 1,556
rAvg: 3.33
pDev: 16.52%
Wants: 37
Gots: 637 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Wheat Ale |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-09-2001

An American Wheat, brewed with malted wheat, lemon zest and grains of paradise - a rare pepper from Africa first used as a brewing spice in the 13th Century to create a crisp and spicy flavor and body.
View: Beers (114) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Adams Summer Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,786 | Reviews: 1,556 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jeremyd365
4.07/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hey what a delight! I finally tried this summer brew not knowing anything about it and was pleasantly surprised indeed. I was happy to find that Sam Adams strayed from the common banana or orange-infused summer wheats. The lemon zest and grains of paradise do a great job relaying that summer feel in an original way. Smelled good, tasted good, and was very drinkable, not to mention affordable.

Photo of Dodo2step
3.63/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

P- on tap at Red Lobster...from notes.

A-arrives with a massive head and overflows my pint. slightly hazy straw hay color. a nice lacing is left behind.

S- lemon citrus and i think i get some sort of spice...pepper maybe.

T- lemon zest and sourness. Not bad but a lil too tart. Some breaded yeast as well.

M-cool and crisp and kind of wheaty. reminds me of munching on hay.

D- easy to put these down and a nice beer from sam adams. I had a troegs hop back right after it. Not a good idea. the flavors really collided.

Photo of tdawgydog
3.56/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I've been working my way through various summer beers. Most of them being some variation of an American lager (which is not my favorite) I usually end up disappointed. Not the case with Sam's Summer. It pours a hazy yellow, not as cloudy as the Spring White (if your familiar with Sam's Spring offering) There was a two finger head that quickly dissipated into a thin lace. The taste is refreshing especially on a hot summer day. This is one beer that I would definitely drink again. There is a taste (possibly the lemon zest) that I can quite place but makes the beer very appealing.

Photo of ewright
3.82/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear golden straw color with a thin layer of head that quickly vanishes leaving little lacing.

S: Hints of lemon and peppery spice are obvious up front. Some sour raw wheat shows up in the background.

T: Sourness from the wheat shows up quickly. This is joined by hints of lemon zest, mild pepper and lightly toasted bread.

M: Just a bit too much "tongue twanging" late in the swallow. Medium-light body with decent carbonation.

D: Better on a hot summer afternoon than a night slaving in front of the computer, but it was here and it was cold!

Photo of tjkurz
3.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap poured into tall narrow glass - tappered at top and bottom. Hazy body creamy head. Smells of lemony zest citrus and spice. Tastes as it smells but was expecting a little more substantial flavor - finishes quickly and dry. Nicely carbed with a creamy/grainy sensation. Drinkable enough - not very strong - but the spice seemed to tickle my noise (I might be allergic to their grains of paradise or it could have been something I ate) and I was left wanting more - just not necessarily another one of these.

Photo of julian
4.24/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Love this beer, finally getting around to reviewing it!

A: pours a somewhat hazy golden straw color with slight citrus hues with a creamy 1+ finger white head from a vigorous pour! Nice lacing all around as well! Beautiful!

S: funky sour lemon aroma with sweet malt and yeast to the nose on the finish.

T&M: clean, crisp, very refreshing, nicely carbonated...very light bodied. goes down very easily. taste is of sweet wheat malt, lemon zest, and grains of paradise (read it from the bottle) also detecting some orange/tangerine lingering on the palate near the end. Very interesting use of lemon and ancient spices. Nice job BBC!

D: sessionable for sure, this is a light bodied, refreshing and uniquely flavorful brew that deviates from the norm in their use of ingredients. Nice job, and excellent execution!

Photo of Baileyuk
3.75/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was listed and advertised as a Pale Wheat Summer Beer. I was expecting more wheat and unconventional flavors (pepper was advertised). In reality it was more lagerish in quality with a little kick.

Now dont get me wrong it was a great taste, just not what I was expecting. Actually the smell of banana in the taste was more Wheatish than the taste for me.

Again a great beer that I like to drink but I consider this way out of style.

Photo of Goliath
3.16/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden color with a one inch bright white head. Decent retention and nice lacing.

Aroma is weak, but citrus, spice, and pale malt can all be found.

Taste is ok, a good burst of orange/citrus and a pale pils like malt finish.

Mouthis medium bodied with ample carbonation.

Drinkability is moderate. Decent flavor and low alcohol make the beer sessionable. However, it is a bit boring.

Photo of BradLikesBrew
3.75/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: hazy gold body. thin white head with wisps of lace. sediment floats down throughout the body.

s: lemon, spice and wheat

t: very grainy upfront, then lemon, honey, and spice.

m: light, refreshing, crisp with a dry finish.

d: great beer for the summer. nice balance, not too sweet. what a summer seasonal should be.

Photo of DesMoinesMike
4.03/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another winner from Sam Adams.

This brew has a mezmorizing golden color that mimicks sunshine. The foam is almost pure white and thick but short lived. The aroma contains a bit of citrus. Taste-wise the cirtus is there too, and the very mild tartness makes for a smooth drink.

If you want a nice drink that is light at flavorfull, Sam Adams Summer Ale is just what you need.

Photo of whiplash3825
3.62/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours the typical cloudy wheat color with a smallish one-finger head... minimal retention and no lacing.

I get that dusty wheat smell of a hefe but with more detectable hops aroma. Surprisingly strong fusels also, and sweet malts become more apparent as it warms.

The first sip leaves me with a feeling of "WTF", with several flavors that don't seem bad but just don't seem to go together. Almost like mixing a hefe and a lager, with a few more flavors thrown in for good measure. Luckily it gets better after several swallows, or at least tolerable, but still something just doesn't seem right.

Mouthfeel seems about right for a wheat beer. Maybe a tad thin.

On this very hot and muggy July day in Georgia they seem to slide down pretty easy once you get past the initial taste surprise. Still, I won't go out of my way to get more.

Photo of ibashmuck
3.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Purchased as part of "build-your-own-six-pack" at local grocer. Medium foam head on an only slightly cloudy body. Smell of citrus was immediate, with "wheatness" a distinct second. Something else in there too, something not so good, which came through in the taste: dusty, or moldy, maybe. May have gotten a bad bottle or something, but that taste was certainly unappealing. The citrus flavor was just about right, but the wheat was lost amid the lemon and dust. Also not as thick as other wheat's. Not too special, and certainly not among the best.

Photo of naterock
3.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

my first good summer ale this year. since the temerature hasn't really been that bad I haven't been in the summer-seasonal mood.
A: pale orangish yellow. thin head
S: smells of grassy hops and lemon, a very strange wheat smell. lingers in the back.
T: tastes of lemony wheat, I still get a grassy taste in the body that is making me indifferent to this beer. I think it's a good pale wheat though.
M: lightly carbonated and light body.
D: nice and refreshing with a light body. I just got in from working outside for about three hours and felt that this was the best choice. definitely a good lawnmower beer. I might find myself kicking back a few on a hot summer night outside. nicely balanced and clean

Photo of SMADMS
4.7/5  rDev +41.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at T-Bones Roadhouse in Plymouth
22oz is the standard at T-Bones Roadhouse

Poured from tap (decline the lemon garnish)
pours a beautiful hazy golden color. no head here they fill the mug to the rim...
Smells of citrus and spice ..not overpowering
Lemon zest and a crisp bite taste as it washes the palette full body.
very smooth beer, can drink endless amounts on a hot summer day/evening.

This is one of my summer favorites and it goes well with a bbq

I wish bartenders would stop putting lemon on the rim when this is ordered. ASK first

Photo of DubBrewer
2.97/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The beer pours a hazy yellow color. It had some head when I poured it, but it quickly disappeared. You can smell some spices and a subtle hop aroma. It tastes very smooth and light on the palate, with a soft bitterness in the end. I could also taste a slight citrus flavor. Its a good summer beer, very drinkable, as my roommate and I finished a six pack very quickly.

Photo of thisisshsas
3.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Beer is colored in a hazed golden hew. Smell shows hops, but also a little spice as well. The Taste is smooth, with lite hops and easily drinkable. Goes down easy, with a very littly bitter aftertaste. Summer ale is a staple of summer drinking, and for good reason. Its light hop aroma and simple mouthfeel make it a good session beer for the summer.

Photo of Lepley
3.71/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this in the Sam Adams Summer variety pack. This beer pours deep gold in color with light head. It smells of citrus, lemon, and I got honey as well. The taste is crisp with hints of lemon and orange and a sweet after taste. Its a smooth beer and very drinkable, especially on a warm evening.

Photo of johannasclimacus
3.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a nice hazy golden color, and as noted on the label, this is because it is unfiltered. Because it is unfiltered, however, it also has more of a body than you would expect in a "summer beer." This wasn't necessarily a bad thing, but I would only have a handful in one sitting.

The beer smells faintly of lemon, and I picked up a little bit of grainy/hops smell as well. The taste follows about as you would expect. To me, it was like a run of the mill pale ale with a hint of wheat and lemon. Interesting, but the beer didn't seem to work together as much as I would have liked.

I would enjoy this again, although next time I would like it in the middle of the afternoon on a hot day instead of the evening. Overall, a decently drinkable pale ale with a bit of a twist.

Photo of jadpsu
3.72/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bought this in American Canyon, Ca. while doing (god forbid) a wine tour as I have to give the wife a break for putting up with me for 40 years (anniversary).
Poured with sufficient head with pretty good retention.
Hops and lemon citrus are what come first and foremost in aroma.
This is the first time that I found a tolerate a beer that idntifies itself as a wheat. So only a hint of wheat was noticable and (for me) that is a positive.
Can see why this is a summer ale brand because this beer tasts like it has some lemonade in it.
I liked it and I have never before liked a wheat beer.

Photo of peacesignmoose
4.05/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Have mercy on me for this is my first beer review...

Bought a 12 pack from Liquor Land (now at it's new, wondrous location in Boston) fresh out of the fridge, got home and loved every sip of it. Poured a beautiful hazy golden/orange color with about a 2 finger head. Dissipates fairly quickly but some decent lacing.

Smell was truly delightful. Fresh and crisp with a hint of lemony goodness. I suppose that's what heaven smells like. If I never write another review, it's because God has struck me down for such blasphemy.

Raised the pint glass to my lips and ::gasp::. does this year's Sam Summer taste more lemony than last years or is it just me? Egad, it still tastes great but don't ramp up the lemony sweetness up anymore, Boston Beer Co!

Fantastically drinkable. This is one of my favorite beers, especially on a hot summer day whilst barbecuing massive amounts of food. Certainly not a complaint, but if you're looking for a beer that will get you hammered, this isn't it. Sits too heavy on the stomach (for me at least) to drink massive quantities.

Photo of burnstar
3.75/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours gold with a medium sized head, maybe a bit small for a wheat beer. Nice lacing though. A bit hazy but mostly clear. Very light aroma. Somewhat yeasty. Perhaps some light fruit notes. Taste is sweet but not too much so with a bit of wheat tang and lemon notes. Some spiciness in the finish. Little to no bitterness. Medium bodied. Not as much carbonation as some wheat beers but enough. Very drinkable on a summer day. Maybe a little subdued, but pleasant overall.

Photo of ajmoody76
3.68/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

buddy brought some of these over and left one. 12 ounce bottle poured into an imperial pint glass. hazy straw yellow with a two finger white head. not much lacing.

citrus on the nose. a little grain and wheat presence.

citrusy taste with some wheat tang. good crispness. not much hop bitterness. balanced for style. clean aftertaste.

light to mid body. good carbonation. drinks nice. i could drink many laying in the sun. good summer beer.

Photo of Auroraboy
1.92/5  rDev -42.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

I'm afraid this one just does not agree with me. Maybe it's just me, but the lemon/citrus taste is gnarly.Gave me a rotten case of heartburn, which I've never gotten from any other beer, even from adding real lemon or lime to Mexican beers. To me, doesn't compare well to the other Sam Adams brews I've sampled. Would not buy again.

Photo of GodOfBeer
3.75/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A nice hazy golden colour with a fluffy white head with good lacing..

Smells delicious, lemony, grassy and some floral hops.

Tastes lemony upfront, finishes bitter and sour -maybe too sour in the aftertaste, but very refreshing and nice and drinkable!!

Photo of elniko
3.93/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into pint glass

A: Light golden, two fingers of head that left light lacing. Good looking brew.

S: Definitely a hint of lemon, grassy tones as well.

T & M: Best word I can describe this beer with is zesty. The lemon is there but does not overwhelm either. Mouthfeel is nice with the carbonation, leaves a bite on the aftertaste as well.

D: Definitely drinkable, great beer for the summer. I could definitely put back a few of these on a hot summer day!

Samuel Adams Summer Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
76 out of 100 based on 4,786 ratings.