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

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Boston LagerSamuel Adams Boston Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

6,671 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,671
Reviews: 2,411
rAvg: 3.75
pDev: 13.6%
Wants: 55
Gots: 428 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Vienna Lager |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our original beer is full-flavored with a balance of malty sweetness contrasted by hop spiciness and a smooth finish.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-27-2001)
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Ratings: 6,671 | Reviews: 2,411 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sachsenfreude


4/5  rDev +6.7%

11-14-2011 07:27:11 | More by Sachsenfreude
Photo of blackcompg


3.8/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured from their winter sampler into my 12oz beer glass...

Appearance - Poured a quick finger of tight white head, color is a transparent lite amber.

Smell - Wheat bread, carmel, touch of vanilla, slight minerals.

Taste - Simple and flavorful, this is a very balanced mix of fresh wheat bread, nice semi-sweet malt backbone, and lite meadowy hops. Finishes with slightly dry breadcrust and crisp minerals.

Mouthfeel - Lite mouthfeel, medium carb adds a nice fresh crispiness, finishes slightly dry.

Overall - A very good, flavorful and refreshing beer. Very well balanced and extremely sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2011 04:16:49 | More by blackcompg
Photo of TippySelenoid


3.73/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It's a clear amber color with a head so thick you can float a bottlecap on it. But that head quickly turns into lace.

It smells biscuity/bready with a hint of hops.

It's very malty and sort of sweet on the front of the tongue. It leaves a lingering hop flavor.

It's crisp and medium bodied.

Overall, this beer's all right with me. It's pretty session worthy and a good price.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2011 02:42:06 | More by TippySelenoid
Photo of Holland


4/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: golden to light amber with a one inch head and slight lacing and ring around the sides for the remainder of the glass.

S: smells of bittering hops mostly, also some pale malt

T: tastes mostly of the malt, full flavored. It also has that nice hop bitterness, and the aftertaste is beautiful. Full of malt.

M: medium body with a smooth start, crisp finish, and sticky and malty leftover taste. Nice work.

O: delicious, available, can't believe I haven't tried this in years. Wonderful and cheap beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2011 03:17:42 | More by Holland
Photo of JohnnyChicago


4.1/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a SA Perfect Pint glass.

A: Lively amber body with a creamy cap of white head.

S: The caramel malt profile is prominent and inviting, but there is an earthy hop presence that sets this apart from most Vienna Lagers.

T: Again with the hops; they bitter and sharpen this already tasty beer and provide for a full, bright drink and a dry, crisp finish.

D: Great drinkability. Really, beers like this are the drinkability yardstick that I hold to other beers.

Overall: An American classic, and it earned it. Boston Lager, along with SNPA and a couple of other brews is, and always will be one of the quintessential "entry-level" and "old favorite" craft beers of me and many other drinkers. It remains balanced, tasty, easy-drinking, but subtly complex.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2011 19:12:42 | More by JohnnyChicago
Photo of DavidST


3.85/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've had this many times but I've only reviewed it on tap. Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass best before Dec date. This pours a nice amber color with nice foamy white held with good retention. The smells are of crisp floral hops and malts. The feel is medium. The taste is pretty good, crisp floral hops and a nice malts backbone. This was always one of my early go to beers, and its still good these days even if I don't get it as often.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2011 04:48:42 | More by DavidST
Photo of ShanePB


3.85/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass.

A: Copper / amber colored body, completely clear with a fluffy thick two finger head. Dissipation wasn't as rapidly as expected, and left really nice sticky patches of lacing on the walls. A thin white retention ring coated the surface the entire time.

S: Floral and somewhat piney faint hop notes with rich, sweet caramel malts. Dry breads and husk towards the back end of the nose. Not a bad smelling beer by any means; nothing is off though perhaps it's about as aromatic as a lager could be?

T: Sweet caramel malts and pumpernickel bread is up front. Extremely minor hops do come through, a bit sappy and floral. Not really bitter at all, very smooth and balanced. This is a very approachable and easy flavor profile that I'd give to some "new craft drinkers" to try.

M: Active bubbly carbonation, loads of bubbles give a fizzy but somewhat creamy feel to the beer. Talk about an incredibly drinkable beer, this goes down entirely too easy and smoothly. Crisp, medium-bodied, damn good for the style.

I will gladly take a Boston Lager when I'm out at a bar or restaurant. It wouldn't necessarily be my first choice given other craft options; however I love that this beer is so widely available for a solid fallback. A very nice, smooth and easy drinking craft lager.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2011 20:09:51 | More by ShanePB
Photo of ummswimmin

New Jersey

3.58/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked this up to knock off the Vienna Lager style for BA.

I poured this into a pint glass to savor the stronger lager flavors. On the pour I got only one finger of foam. There was quite a bit of little bubbles in this beer

Off the top I get a decent amount of grassy funk. This was much stronger than the typical lager.

The flavor is much stronger. I like the taste, and I don't typically enjoy lagers. There is a lot of grass, funk, and some bitterness.

I recommend this as a gateway beer for people drinking adjunct lagers that want to move on to something much, much better.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2011 19:36:45 | More by ummswimmin
Photo of jhtipton


3.9/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Took me a while to actually write down my thoughts on this standard of American mainstream craft beer. Pours a deep golden 3/4 inch head into my chalice. Smell is inviting but not too overpowering. Malty but not too angry. The lacing urges me to take the beer and have my way with it. And I do. Nice firm malty backbone, slightly sassy, with a nice smack of hoppy bitterness. Not trying to prove anything with its medium body this lager has got what it takes to keep my attention. Definitely sessionable and overall my go to beer when the establishment I frequent cannot provide an exotic beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2011 17:40:39 | More by jhtipton
Photo of spinrsx

Ontario (Canada)

3.53/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Appearance - Copper colour with an average size frothy off-white coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some decent lacing on the sides of the glass. The head lasted for 5 minutes before it began to dissipate.

Smell - Malts, caramel, hops

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and most of the taste is made up of caramel and malts mixed with light hops. There is also a very faint citrus taste going on. It ends with a caramel/brown sugar malty aftertaste.

Overall - Definitely one of the better options for draft beer at most restaurants in my area. I can see how this would work well as a gateway beer to get people away from drinking basic boring macros.

Serving type: on-tap

11-04-2011 19:37:23 | More by spinrsx
Photo of gtermi


3.9/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: This beer pours a nice golden color with a half inch thick head.

S: I get a little hope scent and some malt. Not much else.

T: This beer has a nice amount of hops for a lager and has a nice malty sweetness.

M: The beer is one of the easiest drinkable beers out there. It has a perfect amount of carbonation and crispness.

O: One of the best lagers on the market. I am not a huge lager fan, but it tastes good and it easy to drink.

Serving type: on-tap

11-04-2011 06:31:11 | More by gtermi
Photo of SawDog505

New Hampshire

3.58/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into 13 oz tulip. Pours a nice bright amber, with a nice one inch head, some lacing. Smell is bready, some citrus, and pine. Taste is that with a hint of carmel, very easy to drink. This is the beer that 17 years ago changed me. All I wanted to do is find that same reaction to another beer, that I had to my first Sammy. Then I found BA a year and half ago and have been amazed so many times since. Still a nice beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2011 23:05:54 | More by SawDog505
Photo of PistolCreep


4.33/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle of a 12 pk running at $15.99 to a tulip glass, best by Jan 2012 date notched on it.

Appearance: Pours a nice amber copper color, 2 inch thick frothy head with excellent retention

Smell: Plenty of hops, piney floral smell.

Taste: Very crisp and refreshing spot on mouth feel, you taste the hops more then anything else the piney notes the floral and the bitterness, not as bitter tho it goes down smooth a great beer with a body to it leaves you wanting for more.

Overall: I'm not a lager guy but this beer is outstanding compared to other lagers. A session beer goes great with bbq's something nice to share with friends one of the beers that people often transition to from drinking the macro beers, their available almost everywhere a nice beer and something you should try if you haven't.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2011 12:07:44 | More by PistolCreep
Photo of AgentDark


4.47/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 Fluid Oz light brown bottle. Standard non-twist cap. Location Drank: Columbus, Ohio. Drink by 2/2010

Drank from bottle:
A: Drank from bottle, no cloud whatsoever.

S: Floral, sweet and hops. No other smell detected.

T: Slight bitter taste upfront, then a nice malt flavor with slight yeast.

M: Medium to full beer. Medium carbonation. Crisp. Very nice balance between carbonation and fullness.

O: One of the best lagars I have had. I would try again, and would love to trey on draught.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2011 23:04:26 | More by AgentDark
Photo of Pintofbrown


4.33/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- A very aggressive pour into a mug produces a roiling three finger off-white cap. It is very soapy and airy in nature. The retention is okay. It leaves a good Spackle of lace behind. The body is a really pale golden-amber with steady streams of carbonation.

Smell- There is a good amount of floral and herbal hoppiness to the nose. There's even a sweet malt character to it, very biscuit in nature.

Taste- Balance. I think that is the perfect word for this beer. Even served really cold, the sweet malt profile mixes with the floral hops and hop oil taste. It is hard to say which one comes first, but the hop bitterness is most pronounced in the finish and even comes off as a little spicy. What makes this beer really enjoyable is the biscuit malt backbone. That is a nice taste.

MF- This one is medium bodied and finishes relatively smooth. It is a good balance in the mouth feel department too. I am not sure you could do much more to have a great feel. Maybe a little more carbonation?

Overall- Honestly, I might agree with Jim Koch that this is the diaper dandy of the Samuel Adams line. It is a wonderful lager with great malt and hop balance. Why don't I get this more often?

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2011 21:57:11 | More by Pintofbrown
Photo of rab53


3.55/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a clear medium amber. Big white head fades quickly. Nice floral German hop aroma, no citrus or pine. Light on carbonation, making the mouthfeel a bit bland. Very gentle on the palate. Easy to enjoy more than one in a sitting. Overall an above average selection. Iconic beer with wide appeal.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2011 15:23:15 | More by rab53
Photo of vkv822


3.93/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into tulip snifter.
Best By: February 2012

Pours a clear dark golden with a decent, very light tan head.

The aroma is of light grassy, floral hops that blend nicely with toasty bread malts.

The taste is of toasty malts again, with grassy, floral hops. There is a light touch of lemon zest and spice.

A nice medium mouthfeel with fairly active carbonation.

Very easy drinking beer, it has some pleasant, subtle complexities.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2011 07:42:50 | More by vkv822
Photo of schoolboy


4.08/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have reviewed lots of Boston Beers and so it's about time to do the flagship. I have always admired this brew as extremely drinkable. It has a bit more going for it than most of the style. It is a bit roastier, maltier and hoppier than the norm, and that's a good thing.

The near perfect balance goes down easy and the ber is very widely available. Always a good go to beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2011 23:24:09 | More by schoolboy
Photo of rangerred


3.9/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out of a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a deep gold with a solid one finger head that fades to a thin cover. Plenty of carbonation with this one.

Smell is of floral hops with some caramel.

The taste is much more pronounced than the smell with large amounts of hops of front that fades to a malty caramel before finishing with some hop bitterness. It is a very balanced beer.

Overall this is one of my go to beers and is especially great during warm weather. A perfect example of what a mass produced American lager should taste like.

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2011 22:19:32 | More by rangerred
Photo of gerite


2.35/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Color: Golden honey color with lots of bubbles but hardly any head.

Smell: Mostly a bready malt.

Taste: Bitter up front with a yeasty aftertaste.

Mouth feel: Pretty average feel but way too much carbonation.

Overall: Nothing special here. The aftertaste lingers way too long. Not an enjoyable experience. Not as good as some of their other brews.

Serving type: on-tap

10-23-2011 17:54:11 | More by gerite
Photo of aorloski


3.25/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - A Beautiful dark golden beer with a fingers worth of snow white head that quickly disappears. Head sticks to the side of the glass very nicely, a very good looking beer.

Smell - Nothing too flashy here, just some bready malts that somehow allow for a nice smokiness and maybe a little lager yeast in the background

Taste - A little bitter bite up front followed my some caramel and toffee notes, probably from the malts. Lager yeast is the flavor that stays in my mouth while it gets washed down

Mouthfeel - Average, good carbonation

Overall - I haven't had one of these in years, in college i was quite fond of it, but now that my palate has changed this really isn't anything special. One of the better mass produced beers though obviously. I do give sam adams a lot of respect, especially for their variety packs that usually have 6 beers in them to allow novice drinkers a warm welcoming to try something new.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2011 23:21:32 | More by aorloski
Photo of DaveBlack


3.78/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Light amber color, a full 2 1/2 fingers of white head with decent retention and leaves behind a fair bit of lacing in its wake.

S: A nice smelling beer. Toasty, biscuity malts and some hops at the finish. Smells sweet and delicious, if not overly complex.

T: The taste doesn't quite deliver what the nose promises, but it comes close. The taste starts off strong with the caramel malts and gives way into a hit of hop bitterness before the favor fades into a grainy aftertaste. Not bad, but the aftertaste is a little too reminiscent of some bad adjunct lagers.

M: Medium bodied, medium carbonation and dry going down.

O: Their flagship beer, obviously, it's really quite good. Very drinkable, and a crowd pleaser to be sure. A nice compromise between flavor and taste.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2011 22:44:52 | More by DaveBlack
Photo of falloutsnow


3.93/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased within a seasonal pack from Hyvee in Omaha, NE.

Poured into a standard US pint glass.

Pours a tall head, >2cm, of off-white, medium-sized bubbles. Body is a light amber color with orange and yellow highlights. Transparent, with plenty of carbonation. Excellent lacing and head retention. This is a great looking lager.

Scent opens with malt sweetness and light lemon citrus, gradually transitioning to spicy and herbal hops in the nose, like a more intense oregano aroma. Good, but could be a bit more pronounced.

Taste opens with a constant caramel sweetness from the malt backbone alongside some hops featuring herbal and citrus characters. Fades out beginning with biscuit and grain flavors, dissolving to a general sweet character. As this beer warms, some spices come out in the late taste, particularly cinnamon. Aftertaste is of light sweetness, crisp bitterness and spiciness from hops.

Medium bodied with ample carbonation that does not overpower the body of the beer. Slightly watery, but nothing significant. Finish is semi-dry.

Overall, this is a solid lager and likely to be a staple to those who enjoy classic and subtle lagers in the German tradition. Highly drinkable and able to be enjoyed multiple times.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2011 20:20:50 | More by falloutsnow
Photo of ptykozoon


2.55/5  rDev -32%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Typical sort of pilsner golden honey color. Thin cap.

Honey, malt, bits of grain.

Light earth, bread, light yeast, lemon. Mostly your usual bitter corn earthy taste.

Watery, medium to high carbonation which settle into a dry finish.

Pretty mediocre beer. Nothing stands out, forgettable and boring. Not sessionable as I'd loathe this taste in my mouth for longer than necessary. B+ average? LOL.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2011 03:54:18 | More by ptykozoon
Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan


3.93/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear reddish amber with no head. Light bubbles. Nice glow.

Smell: Roasted malts, toffee and caramel. Hops are earthy, tea-like and floral. Very German.

Taste: Fresh bready dough flavors. Toffee. Toasted biscuit and grain. Some fruits, such as apricot, pear and date in the finish. Crisp and dry with a snappy bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Crisp and tingly. A refreshing beer with a good malt hop balance. Leans to the malt beer side.

Overall: A satisfying product. Extremely sessionable lager that is ubiquitous in the US. Affordable and fresh. You can find it almost anywhere. Share with friends.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2011 03:35:14 | More by BerkeleyBeerMan
Samuel Adams Boston Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
85 out of 100 based on 6,671 ratings.