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

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Samuel Adams Summer AleSamuel Adams Summer Ale

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4,753 Ratings

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Ratings: 4,753
Reviews: 1,548
rAvg: 3.33
pDev: 16.52%
Wants: 34
Gots: 551 | 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:
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.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-09-2001)
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Ratings: 4,753 | Reviews: 1,548 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of spaceranger
3.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sammy makes some really good ones. Sammy makes some so-so ones. This is one of the good ones. Cloudy, gold and smooth in appearance. Head is decent, little lacing, but what the hell, let's have a swig. Light hoppy and malty flavor combine very well. There is that under-lying sweetness that is soooo wonderful in the summertime. Some fruityness. Lemon / Orange? Good stuff. Carb is really right - not too much. Drinkability? - drink it and then drink another one. If it's a warm summer evening - sit out on the dock by the river and drink another. Thank you Mr. Sam. Keep up the excellent work.

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

Clear golden body with yellow highlights. The short but creamy white head holds fairly well and leaves some minor lacing. The nose is interesting with a hint of lemon and some wheat. Medium bodied. Crisp. The flavor is similar to the aroma with clear notes of wheat and a lemony side. Some peppery spiciness helps to balance the malt, and a firm bitterness backs it. Well-made, enjoyable, and refreshing.

Photo of jpkoch1962
3.68/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A very refreshing summer Ale. Serverd from 12oz chilled bottle. Pours a cloudy orange, which errupts into a very light yellow, foamy head. The head is long lasting with plenty of lacing. The aroma is a tangy, citrus, spicy and slighty grainy. The front end is tart with plenty of hoppy hints. The middle smooths out, but the tartness returns in the finish. Lingering citrurs aftertaste.

This ale is great for cookouts; however, the spicy tartness may leave the palate exhausted after a couple bottles.

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

On tap at The Muddy Charles at MIT.

Appearance: Pours a brilliant hazy golden with a thick white head that fades and persists as a thin layer.

Smell: Light citric/lemon fruitiness and a light grainy aroma.

Taste: Lemon tartness, light sweetness. The finish is grainy and spicy with a very slight bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Tingly carbonation, oily, light dryness.

Drinkability: Refreshing.

Overall: Not an amazing beer, but nice enough. Definitely good for a hot and humid day.

Photo of StoutHearted
3.9/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aptly named, this beer is perfect for summer drinking. It poured a light corn color and the smell of citris storms up one's nose at first whiff. Drinking, it's heavy on the lemon and orange peel. It's tart, but not overly sweet. Its very easy to drink, but the tart may get annoying after a while if the beer warms up. I found myself getting tired of the lemony taste after a while. Not the best summer seasonal out there, but as a Sam Adams beer, it does have the advantage of popping up in the majority of bars during the hotter months.

Photo of akajimmyd
3.98/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Translucent but cloudy rusty pale yellow, some light orange. White head on the pour that does not last. Some solid lacing.

Smell - Orange peel and lemon zest.

Taste - Grain and lemon up front. A little tart. Some sweet malts on the finish.

Mouthfeel - This has a nice full smooth body.

Drinkability/Notes - I have a soft spot for this brew. It was one of the first “micros” that I feel in love with. Now I realize it is not the “best” or most complex, but still a solid brew. Highly drinkable and very enjoyable. Simple but fun beer. Always a hit at BBQs.

Photo of smcolw
3.65/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours cloudy; light amber. Thin head, decent lace

The smell is almost non-existent--too mild to evaluate well. I detect some wheat, little else.

A classic wheat beer taste. Some sourness and nice spice. Tight carbonation, moderate body.

Any easily quaffable brew. Think front porch, watching thirsty people walking by--here's the beer for that.

Photo of fank2788
3.38/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- poured from the bottle into a glass, it has a nice yellow gold color, I would have expected it to be a bit more hazy. The head is foamy bright white but it recedes quickly.
S- this beer has a nice citrus smell
T- you can really taste the lemon and it is slightly peppery I guess that is from the grains of paradise
M- nothing special but it is crisp and refreshing
D- highly drinkable beer it would be great for a summer picnic.
This is probably one of Sam Adams' better offerings

Photo of zeff80
3.6/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle pours out an orange/gold color. It had a nice foamy head. The beer smelled of lemon and citrus. The lemon flavor was complimented by the wheat taste and a hint of malt. The mouthfeel was pretty good, slightly grainy. It is a nice light brew for summer and very drinkable.

Photo of MeLikeBeer
3.25/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in a pint glass a little too cold...wait for it, wait for it...
...Okay...appears a hazy amber in the glass. Effervescent, frothy head on top.
Smells of malt, wheat, lemon and citrus- but not a strong aroma.
Tastes spicy with hints of fruitiness...lemon and wheat. A sweet sugary taste (not overwhelming) is also present.
Goes down easy and a good choice for the patio.

Photo of brentk56
3.25/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Pours a hazy pale golden color with a nice head that displays good retention and deposits gobs of foam around the pint glass

Smell: Smells like a bowl of Wheaties with a spritz of lemon

Taste: Starts with a definite light American wheat character that is quite bready, with a touch of lemon; after the swallow the flavor doesn't change much until the very end when the interesting peppery grains of paradise flavor kicks in

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Although the peppery finish adds an interesting twist, this beer just doesn't have enough other attributes to make me want to have another

Photo of tsmthrs
3.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.
A hazy golden color with a decent white head.
This is the first of this style (APWA) I am trying as I have stayed away from any wheat beers after disliking the style, but this looked appealing and SA has been good to me so far, so I picked up a sixer.
The aroma was great, lemon and grains with hints of spice. I hope it tastes like it smells... Ah, it does. Light mouthfeel that goes down smooth, not an over bearing wheat grain as I have not liked in the past. I really enjoyed this beer and will have another and can't wait to try others in this style.

Photo of boblog
3.85/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I always like season beers because if done right they embody and fit the season for which they are brewed. This summer ale is a good example of such. This beers appearance is not much to brag about. It has a hazy golden color with a full white head. The scent is a bit better, a soft wheat, citrus smell. But the taste is far better than its aesthetics. The beer has a delicious soft wheat taste followed by a crisp citrus aftertaste. The mouthfeel is also very superb. A very drinkable beer, even when fairly warm. Overall a very good beer and a perfect drink for a hot summer day.

Photo of heidelbeerg
3.83/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy golden orange in color with a foamy white head that falls fairly quickly. Grainy lemony citrousy smell. The taste is good. A a crisp, citrousy taste with the wheat taste only slighly noticeable. Good hot weather beer. These go down easy. Nice to have around throughout the summer.

Photo of whynot44
3.63/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy orange color with a substanbtial creamy whitehead that subsides slowly to just a skin, but continues to leave some nice lacing.

The aroma is slightly spicy, wit hsome bread and citrus notes.

The taste starts with a soft wheat flavor, then a pleasant lemon undertone kicks in along with that spicy/peppery note that continues through the slightly dry finish. A refreshing drink, even slightly warmed up and the peppery note adds some definite interest.

Smooth and easy to drink. Definitely worth a try.

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

Poured a golden blonde leaving a thick white lace that stayed with the entire glass. The smell is sweetly laced, upfront is honey, wheat, and grass. The taste starts with a tart wheat twang that is pleasantly balanced by a honey, bready mouthfeel, that finishes with a fruit rind bitterness on the palate. Overall this is a great session, summer brew, not complicated it tastes great on a hot day not flavorless but nothing exciting as well.

Photo of mherring
3.78/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

While I haven't tried a whole lot from the Sam Adams line, I was pleasantly surprised by this beer.

It poured out of a bottle into a regular pint glass with a nice golden color with about an inch of head at the top, a pretty good appearance. The scent had hints of citrus to it, possibly orange or lemon?? My first impression of the taste was that it was fairly crisp and went down very smooth...definitely something I could sit down and enjoy on occasion. I would say that the overall drinkability is good for this beer. On the whole, I really liked the beer. Killing a 6er of this would be an enjoyable task for an evening.

Photo of nlmartin
3.13/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer was purchased at a Krogers. The beer was served in a pub glass.

Appearance: The beer has a slightly hazy apricot coloration. The head was off white. The head was short lived. Rings of lacing remain on the glass.

Smell: The beer has a lemony citrus and wheat malty smell.

Taste: The beer has an unmelded lemon and orange juice combo. There is a sharpness to the wheat malts.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: The beer is light bodied. The beer has an odd buttery mouthfeel. The beer is drinkable and isnt bad. The beer doesnt rise to above average.

Photo of rtratzlaff
4.2/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a hazy amber with little head. This beer was served very very cold. I know that wheat beers should be about the coldest of them, but this was almost numbingly cold. The first few sips were refreshing though. Because of the temp, it was hard to pick up on much in the nose beyond the typical wheat and slightly hopped smell. As the beer got to a normal drinking temp, I was able to pick up on more of the citrus feel and more of the hop florals. As far as the drinkability goes, this beer can be sessioned as easily as anything. I started and finished a session off with this beer and really enjoyed it at both ends. For what this beer is, it's quite refreshing and does the job as good as any.

Photo of supercolter
3.73/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- not too much going on here, straw yellow, a bit cloudy, decent lacing
S- not a real lot going on here either, some malt and lemony smell
T- Decent flavor, some citrusy flavor, lemon and orange
M- not a real lot of creaminess or carbonation, but some good weight to it
D- goes down pretty easy

Photo of FenwaySquid
4.33/5  rDev +30%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz bottle, BBD of October notched on the label.

Appearance: Poured a hazy gold color with a small head that faded quickly into lacing.

Aroma: Wheat malt with lemon and spices, pleasant.

Taste: Wheat malts up front but that gradually gives way to the lemon flavors and something else I can't place (maybe the paradise grains mentioned on the label). The finish is lemony with a hint of some hops.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, kind of light though. Carbonation was in good balance.

Overall: This is a great beer to have on a hot day. I spent a year living in the Persian Gulf the base liquor store sold this stuff during the summer months. I ended many a day on my balcony sipping one of these as the sun set. Maybe it's those memories but I really enjoy this one.

Photo of polyester
2.6/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

My wife loves the stuff, so I figured I'd steal one of hers and try it out. Overall the lemony flavor just didn't seem to work for me.

A: surprisingly nice color, a deep buttery orange. Looks darker than it tastes though.

S: Crisp and "summery" - nothing to complain about.

T: Ah, here we go. Lemonade is a nice summer drink. Tea with lemon equally so. But to a beer traditionalist, beer with lemon is downright sacrilege. The lemon overwhelmed any of the other flavors, to the point that I had trouble finishing the bottle. Pour a black and tan with lemonade instead of the "black" and you're on the right track. Seems like a gimmicky beer to me; Sam Adams does some questionable things with fruit, and here's another beer to add to that list.

M: Pretty standard ale. Light and fizzy, not too heavy.

D: I'm adding a point because some people (e.g. my wife, who doesn't normally drink beer) seem to like this. But this didn't do it at all for me. If you like some of the weirder fruity beers (Magic Hat's #9 comes to mind) this might be right up your alley. But if you like your beer to taste like, well, beer, then drink with caution.

Photo of AChamberlain
3.95/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I think mine was a bit too cold, which affected the mouthfeel and taste at first. I let it warm up in my hand and it became much more pleasant. The color is a fuzzy orange. The lemon is very prevalent in the smell and taste. The lemon flavor makes it refreshing, which is nice for a summer beer, even though I feel the whole "summer beer" thing is a bit of a scam. Enjoy.

Photo of nicksta
3.25/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: It pours a great cloudy orange, with big tan head. In some parts it changes color to yellow. It has lots of lacing on the glass. It is truly a sight to behold.

S: There are some sour, refreshing, cleaner, citrus notes. These are all faint, however.

T: It starts out with some herb burn and citrus. In the middle it has a bitter taste to it. It finishes with a big unfiltered wheat aftertaste. But, don't let it get too warm otherwise, it gets really sour you will just want to pour it out.

M: The mouthfeel is good, not acidic like I have found in some Wheats.

D: At first it as a big sour bite too it. If you let it warm a little you will do just fine.

Photo of mithrascruor
4.33/5  rDev +30%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a mug.

Appearance: Pours a nice hazy orange color with a light, fluffy off-white head.

Smell: Aroma is sweet with wheat, orange, and a bit of banana. Also noticable is a slight aroma of malt and hops.

Taste: This ale has a fairly bold taste of wheat and oranges, with hops and a bit of malt. A bit surprising at first taste, but it really grows.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is the first thing noticed; it's very tingly, but not too much. Light- to medium-bodied and smooth.

Drinkability: Alcohol content is not bothersome and the beer goes down very nicely. Could easilly drink a number of these, I'm sure.

Overall, it's a really great beer but nothing about it particularly catches the drinker's attention. For some beers, however, that's a good thing. This would be great to drink on a warm summer evening outdoors. Very relaxing and refreshing.

Samuel Adams Summer Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
76 out of 100 based on 4,753 ratings.