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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.

7,249 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 7,249
Reviews: 2,434
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 13.9%
Wants: 70
Gots: 709 | 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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7,249 | Reviews: 2,434 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BadRockBeer
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Serving Type Sampled: 12 fl. oz. crown top bottle. Features “Best Before Date”

Appearance: Golden amber, crystal clear, Wonderful rocky head that smears itself down the side of the glass with every drink.

Smell: Aromatic floral hops, sweet grains.

Taste: Soft caramel malt, nice bitter hop balance. Dry hoppy aftertaste. Lovin’ it.

Mouthfeel: Light-medium body, slightly creamy with perfect carbonation.

Drinkability: Excellent! Great session beer from the micro monster.

BadRockBeer, Feb 20, 2007
Photo of guitarmage
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: A nice amber, golden highlights, a slightly off-white sudsy head, hangs around, about a half inch.

Smell: Grainy and rich, nice grassy hops.

Taste: Taste is lightly sweet malt, crisp and clean, finishes with a solid hop dose, hops linger.

Mouthfeel: Crisp, moderate to high carbonation, medium bodied, finishes juicy and smooth.

Drinkability: A tasty lager, very drinkable and clean. No off flavors, or nasty steely macro lager garbage.

guitarmage, Feb 20, 2007
Photo of stereosforgeeks
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Very clear copper color with a nice, slightly off-white head.

Smell - Sweet malts with caramel and some floral hops.

Taste - Nice floral hop presence to balance the caramel malts. Nothing too complex here but it's very refreshing.

Mouthfeel - Crisp and clean with modest carbonation. Never overstays it's welcome but lingers long enough to be known.

Drinkablilty - I can drink a lot of these. I mostly partake at bars when I want something I don't want to think too much about, but still is very well rounded.

stereosforgeeks, Feb 20, 2007
Photo of lehows
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very nice copper amber color with a classic and fluffy white head. Fine carbonation bubbles rise excitedly to the top of the beer. Nice but mellow aromas of malt and floral hops. Smooth flavors of caramel malt, nice and even display of hops, also a bit of citrus tang that is refreshing. All around an excellent lager and very sessionable. Also a great stand-by as it can be found even at most crappy beer bars.

lehows, Feb 17, 2007
Photo of jeffjfindley
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

What a beauty. Say what you will about this one, but I don't see how anyone could dispute that this is one of the prettiest beers on earth. Transparent, yet rich golden amber, with champagne bubbles rising to the surface to fight for air. The head is rich and downright pillowy. The nose is treated almost as well, with a toasty caramel malt profile and a touch of hop bite. The taste doesn't disappoint, but doesn't quite live up to the aroma. Just a little thin on the finish, and ditto for the mouthfeel. Terrific little hop bite, though. Despite a recent trouncing on the forum, I still think that the character of this is similar to Anchor Steam, and I'm convinced that a similar yeast strain is the culprit. Anyway, that's one for the forum. Great drinkability, and a truly great beer that deserves it's status and prominence.

jeffjfindley, Feb 14, 2007
Photo of pavandal
4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer poured from the bottle into my pint glass with no real head. The beer had an apple juice color. Nothing special about the look of this one, at least for me.

The smell matched the color, with the apple-juiceness. I also detected hints of caramel and some pine.

When I sip, the first thing I taste is a caramel malt backbone. The hop profile is just slightly bitter, and the final thing I can sense is a bready aftertaste.

A well rounded beer for sure. The best thing to order when you're at a bar that doesn't cater to the micro drinker!

pavandal, Feb 14, 2007
Photo of MrHungryMonkey
4.22/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Amber, clear. Mild head, great carbonation.

Grape, biscuit/bread, butter/toffee, tart edge, cool and crisp, light roasted/toasted vibe, spice essence, refreshing.

Wave of foamy fruit and bread flavors. Moderate carbonation and a nice sour/tartness make me pucker a little. Finishes out to a smooth and creamy butter/toffee edged apple/grape taste leaving me wanting more.

Not bad. Boston Lager is a well tuned and tweaked brew. This is the quintessential craft brew, the proverbial snowball of the beer world, and it does taste good.

MrHungryMonkey, Feb 13, 2007
Photo of Procrastinator
3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Nonic pint glass. Part of the holiday 12-pack with best before date 02-07 on label.

Appearance: bronze orange color with small 1-finger head which soon fades. Tiny bubble carbonation leads to constant lacing.

Smell: floral hops with mild caramel sweetness with hints of toasted bread crusts.

Taste: very clean and crisp flavors with slight hop bite. Nutty and dry on the tongue at finish.

Mouthfeel: carbonation is about perfect for my liking. Slight dryness adds to the enjoyment.

Drinkability: Very sessionable beer. I've been drinking SA lager for over twenty years and enjoying it. It's always that go-to beer where some places serve it as the only alternative to BMC.

Procrastinator, Feb 12, 2007
Photo of Atron67
4.33/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from a bottle in a pint glass

A- a nice solid amber color very clear, a finger or so of foam but it stayed very well and left some yellowey laces behind

S- Malty aroma although not lacking in hop bitterness, a good strong aroma

T- Transforms great, from a smooth malt start to a bittery end at the back of the throat, taste a sublte caramel that isnt too strong

M- a full, kinda heavy mouthfeel, a nice solid feel, leaves the mouth a little bitter. not 'dry' but not wet eaither which is nice

D- its a good choice to sit down , theres enough to it to keep the enjoyment up

D- its great not overly

Atron67, Feb 10, 2007
Photo of dmamiano
3/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nice amber beer with a full white head and plenty of carbination. Laced nicely as it was drank.
Mouthfeel was rather full, wih a decent flavor of peppery spice and smooth bready malt.
The finish to me lingered a bit to a bitter ending.
Good session beer for sure.

dmamiano, Feb 10, 2007
Photo of becktone
2.93/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

As with all Sam Adams brews, they look great. This one has excellent head retention and formation. A one finger creamy white head forms when poured and will not diminish. I was expecting something a bit darker. The color here is copper, though with more of a yellow tint to it than a red/orange tint. Of the other Vienna Lagers I've had, they've all been darker than this one. Just a tad dissapointed, still looks good though.

Rich malt influenced background. Very strong malt aromas, a bit of a caramel aroma in there, and something that reminds me a bit of toffee, and perhaps a pinch of vanilla(more of an after thought, really... "I guess that you could associate that aroma with a vanilla character."). Lightly toasted aromas are present too. Overall complex aroma with some noble hops that first grabbed me when I opened the bottle but no longer are present.

The real test, taste. Ohh that tell tale metallic taste is there. I recently bought a mixed 12, so far 4 of the 6 styles in there have had this metallic tang. It detracts from the taste so much that I can't really describe it. Very unhappy with this.

Mouthfeel is good, creamy and full bodied this is pretty much all you could want in a brew. As to the drinkability, I'd much rather buy Elliot Ness than this, its just so much better. This brew goes down easy enough, and makes a good session beer. I'll probably give it another go-round as this is their flagship beer, I'm beginning to think that it was a bad set of batches or something happened during shipping.

becktone, Feb 09, 2007
Photo of hefevice
4.08/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Liquid rose gold, creamy off white head. Oh, the aroma! You can get lost in the malts; toffee, caramel, cookie dough with the hops adding some spice and potpourri. Subtle but wonderful aroma. Main impression in the taste is balance - the caramel and toffee sweetness is subltly balanced with a smooth but firm hop presence.

Given the distance this beer has travelled, it has held up very well. A wonderfully balanced, extremely drinkable beer.

hefevice, Feb 09, 2007
Photo of billybob
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours the color of a bright copper penny and crystal clear with a three finger head that held for a short time with some lacing. roasted malt, slight citrus and toffee aromas. taste about the same. mouthfeel is light, smooth, lots of carbonation and nicely hopped. very nice beer, easy to drink, easy to find, and reasonably priced.

billybob, Feb 08, 2007
Photo of Domingo
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I've probably had more of this beer than any other, so why not review it?
Pours somewhere between a dark golden and light amber color. Reminds me a little of a very light Oktoberfest.
Smell is of grain and hops. It's actually got a pretty strong hops smell, although keep in mind that it's a noble hop character and not the typical pacific northwestern big cone IPA variety.
Flavor is hoppy (more like a European pale lager) but with a surprisingly good malt backbone. It has the balance of a good APA, but with the distinct lager yeast crispness and kiss of clover honey.
Mouthfeel is a strong point because it's thick enough to compliment a hearty meal, but goes down easy enough to be a summer quencher.
I personally think the noble hops keep it from being a perfect session beer (after a while they overpower the malt a bit), but the texture and overall package still make up for it.

This is the ultimate go-to beer. You can get it almost anywhere, it's not expensive, it's included in all of their variety packs (which I appreciate), and it's the ultimate example that a craft beer can cover so many bases.
In a lot of ways it's one of the world's best just because of the versatility behind it.

Domingo, Feb 07, 2007
Photo of gmfessen
3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a copper-orange color with a huge frothy off-white head and a nice stream of carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass. Smell is an even combination of both sweet malt and grassy, earthy hops. The taste has an initial sweetness of caramel and amber malts but is quickly followed by a bitterness not found in your typical lager. Well balanced and goes down smooth. The mouthfeel is full-bodied and very creamy. This is a tasty, easy to drink lager that is readily available almost anywhere.

gmfessen, Feb 06, 2007
Photo of Madmax99
3.48/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

An average style beer. I say this because the copper color is starting to become old. I don't like the misconception on how a "darker" styled beer always tastes good. This is a mildley hoppy beer that is slightly bitter and slightly sweet. A slightly stale aroma that has some corriander notes. Very well carbonated because it fizzes the entire glass, and has some bite in the mouth when consumed.

Madmax99, Feb 06, 2007
Photo of FenwaySquid
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle, BBD of April 2007 notched into the side of the label, poured into a pilsner glass.

Appearance: Pours a pale copper color, a few small carbonation bubbles rising within. The head formed a creamy 2 fingers thick and faded slowly.

Aroma: Hoppiness dominates along with some caramel malts in the background, fairly pleasant.

Taste: Caramel malts and some bitter hops start off, and the hops gradually become stronger. The finish is bitter and all hops.

Mouthfeel: Crisp and smooth. The carbonation was a little weak, but oh well.

Overall: This was my first foray into the world of craft beer, and was one of the only options (aside from Guinness) when I lived in the Middle East. The best thing about this beer is that it's mass marketed so most bars and restaurants carry it, leaving me with a decent fall back option when I'm in one of those places. For a beer that's as mass marketed as it is, this really is a good beer.

FenwaySquid, Feb 05, 2007
Photo of theformula
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice looking, nice tasting American brew. Simply put.

Coppery orange body w/ big head that sticks around very well. By the way, this was delicious with my homemade pizza, as the more pizza I ate the more I wanted to drink it.

Light and balanced mouthfeel, with a crisp carbonation.

Aromatic hops, lightly sweet malts and citrus characterize this beer.

Nothing extraordinary, but a balanced, extremely drinkable imbibement. Easy going hops linger in the dry finish. Always available and there's always room in the fridge for it. Just refreshing and just tasty enough.

theformula, Feb 04, 2007
Photo of Roderick
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is as always a good solid beer that is easily found almost anywhere in the country.
Pours a nice clear amber with a thin white head. The aroma is of hops and has a freshness to it.
The taste is full of hops and is very crisp easy to drink.
This is just a good beer that always has a spot in my refrigerator.
Cost: 14.99 for a 12 box

Roderick, Feb 04, 2007
Photo of veech
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I can't believe I've never reviewed this beer. A fraternity brother who had grandparents in Delaware used to bring back Sam Adams for us on his summer visits circa 1988-89. What a contrast to the keg of Old Milwaukee that stayed tapped at the house. Thanks Mike!!This and SNPA have been oases in a beer desert for many a better beer fan for years. It has saved my palate on more than one occasion.
A: A very nice medium gold/copper hue with a frothy head and nice retention and lacing
S: Hops and malts compete but the hopped character wins out nice and refreshing
T: Delicious hoppy flavor that is reasonably balanced. A real thirst quencher and approachable in any situation.
M: Style appropriate and quite nice. Not too thin, not too thick just right.
D: Easily one of the more sessionable beers that is readily available in the US today. A go to beer when other craft options aren't available. A major reason why many of us started to drink better beer in the first place.

veech, Feb 03, 2007
Photo of Cyberkedi
3.9/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very nice beer. If it isn't outstanding, it is certainly worth your time and money.

It looks like a typical American lager, but has a noticeable and pleasant beer scent. The taste is mildly hoppy, neither wussy like most major US brands nor complex and profound. There is just a hint of bitterness. It slips down the hatch smoothly, inviting another slug.

Though Samuel Adams is now a major brand, they still have a microbrew attitude, and it shows in this and their other beers.

Cyberkedi, Feb 03, 2007
Photo of Homebrew63
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was also my first craft experience after a long time -gulp- bud, michelob, coors (enter any mass produced watered down beer here)and I was hooked.
This beer has everything that my frat boy brews lacked. A head that lasted more than 3 minutes along with a smell I had not experienced...HOPS! It's color was as smooth as a penny and had great carbonation and mouth feel. I have not turned back. Mr. Koch is a great man!

Homebrew63, Feb 01, 2007
Photo of JasonCoop
4.45/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

the gateway to craft beer. a classic. the first craft beer i ever enjoyed.

pours a nice clear golden color with frothy head that leaves plenty of lacing. looking like a great lager.

smell is somewhat faint but balanced. a pleasant hoppy aroma with hints of the malt backbone to come (some light caramel).

taste is excellent. full in flavor, nicely balanced. a nice dry crisp taste. definitely a hoppy brew, but not so much as to overpower the great caramel malty taste. great balance to this. light crisp mouthfeel. one of the most drinkable beers i know of.

JasonCoop, Jan 29, 2007
Photo of Poser
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I generally don't like lagers, but this is one I'll pick up every now and then. Frothy head with excellent lacing, the commercials are right when they say this is a hop-heavy beer. It still manages to be balanced, however. Remarkably full-flavored for the type, and one I'll be coming back to. I may start trying some of the other Vienna lagers recommended here.

Poser, Jan 29, 2007
Photo of crayphish
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The old reliable. No matter what podunk gas station or dive bar you find yourself thirsty in, chances are you'll find SA Boston Lager. Availability aside it's a solid, very drinkable beer. The 12oz bottle poured into my pilsner glass to a light crystal clear amber. A small loose head left little lacing as I drank it down. A crisp hop smell, maybe some malt in there as well. Taste is a nice malty hop balance. The hops are a bit more bitter than the smell indicates. The brew feels crisp and refreshing in my mouth. A solid taste, but nothing overwhelming. I have always found this to be a strong session beer, very drinkable.

crayphish, Jan 27, 2007
Samuel Adams Boston Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
84 out of 100 based on 7,249 ratings.