1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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.
BA SCORE
85
very good

7,572 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 7,572
Reviews: 2,456
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 13.9%
Wants: 86
Gots: 880 | 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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Adams Boston Lager Alström Bros
Ratings: 7,572 | Reviews: 2,456 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dickieb
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

pours into a sam adams boston lager glass a nice amber with a finger of frothy head leaving some nice lacing down he glass. The smell is light and balanced with malt grain and a hint of hops. The flavor is not complex, but subtle and pleasant with a solid grain and malt backbone, and some hops that linger long after swallowed. Mouthfeel is average for the size of the beer, and quite drinkable. At least this is a pretty good beer because it is available every where around here

dickieb, Dec 03, 2007
Photo of ccrida
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a nonic, Boston Larger is a clear burnt gold, with a medium sized, bone colored head, which settles rather quickly to about 1/4 inch, leaving lots of foamy lace.

Smell is nice and spicy noble hops and a bit of cereral grain, but is generally soft and ester free, as a lager should be.

Taste is full, satisfying and clean. Nice rich malt profile and appropriate balance of hop flavor and bitterness. Aftertaste is long lingering hop bitterness and grainy, and would make a non-beer drinker go yuk. Not a bad amber lager, but a bit watery. I'll take Yuengling over this one every time.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin but well carbonated.

Drinkablity is a about average. If I'm at some type of chain restaurant with limited selection, I'd just assume have a German larger for the same price, but it's light enough in body and ABV to be able to really throw them back with ease. But I've only ever done that when there wasn't much else, like a wedding or BBQ. Still, I give them credit for really ushering in the American craft brew revolution.

ccrida, Dec 02, 2007
Photo of SargeC
4.47/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Deep golden color with an impressive, rocky head.

Smell: solid sweet malt aromas with a touch of hops.

Taste: Initial blast of sweetness followed by a well crafted and balanced hop presence. The finish allows both flavors to linger.

Mouthfeel: Medium body. Very satisfying.

Drinkability: Great brew. Perfect beer for when you just want a good, quality brew to enjoy. Consistently classic.

SargeC, Dec 01, 2007
Photo of Deus1138
4.33/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What can you say about this beer that hasn't already been said?

I'm enjoying this for about the 1000th time. So let's get to it...

Poured a very nice golden brown.

Smells of floral hops and mildly sweet malts. A very nice blend I might add.

Taste is exceptionally well balanced. Malts come through initially, then the hops make their presence known.

Drinkability... come on... this is Sam Adams Boston Lager! It's one of the all time greats! If the place you're at doesn't have this, you might as well get up and leave, cause you're not going to find anything else worth drinking. Anyplace with ANYTHING worth drinking will have Sam Adams Boston Lager.

I probably speak for a lot of people when I say this is the brew that got me into quality beers. If it wasn't for Sam Adams Boston Lager, I'd still be chugging macro lagers. If you're trying to get friends to appreciate better beers, this is a great introductory brew.

Deus1138, Dec 01, 2007
Photo of Strix
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a classic. A nice malty and toasty smell. Taste has roasted nutty malt flavors, supported by some hop balance in the background. Nice full smooth mouthfeel. Nothing earth-shattering, but quite solid and widely available, and often the best choice at many bars.

Strix, Nov 30, 2007
Photo of spiffysamurai
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This review is a bottle poured into a liberal cup glass.

A - The color came out to a medium amber color with a nice little head.

S - Normal, natural malts. Nothing too extremely special but above average when compared to other lagers.

T - Nothing is overtoned in this beer. It is trying to get to the normal idea of just tasting beer. Nothing more, nothing less.

M - Not too bitter and no metal taste. Any standard beer like this is aokay in my book.

D - Easy drinkable beer. Good for just chilling out when needed. Not something to overly enjoy, but easy enough to drink during a football game or some quick social event.

spiffysamurai, Nov 28, 2007
Photo of matty
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber colored lager with a sweet bread aroma.Taste is also of sweet bread.This is a good lager that goes down smoothly and is enjoyable from first to last gulp.Moderate ABV ensures that you can comfortably drink a six pack! One of the most popular lagers around probably because both micro and macro drinkers like this stuff.

matty, Nov 28, 2007
Photo of Smixam
3.65/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The old standard. This beer is my baseline, where I judge almost all others. That doesn't mean its the best or the worst, but in terms of availability and overall quality, its set a great standard in the re-emerging American beer world.

This review is a bottle poured into a pint glass, but I prefer on-tap.

A - Just about perfect for my taste. Awesome medium amber color with a nice 1finger off white head that lingers for a good while. Very clear and lightly carbonated. One of the best looking beers I've ever seen.

S - Very nice, nothing terribly special or unique, but a good floral nose, strong hops and just a touch of an earthy malt. Very well balanced, and very appealing if not outstanding.

T - I love this beer for its mission, to bring taste back to everyday beer. That's exactly what it is; it's nothing extraordinary, but it's just so consistent and exceptional when taken in that regard. A really nice hop profile, and again those malt undertones are with you throughout. Maybe a touch fruity at the end. It's never overpowering, but it's very clean and flavorful.

M - Nothing to complain about here; no metallic aftertaste, not overly bitter. Consistency that you would expect from a macro, but quality you expect from a craft.

D - Excellent. I could drink only this beer for the rest of my days and be content, if a little bored! Not overly alcoholic, so this makes a good session beer. Great all year round - a chameleon for every season.

Smixam, Nov 27, 2007
Photo of mogul37
4.2/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love this beer, probably because it's the best beer I can get just about anywhere. Almost always get it in a pint glass, but pretty good out of the bottle as well. Great color and clarity that holds a decent head. Great smell with an excellent hop balance. Very tasty, but doesn't need to be quite so sweet. Very smooth, but could stand to feel a little heavier in the mouth. Still, it's a beer I enjoy getting pretty much all the timem

mogul37, Nov 27, 2007
Photo of SMark
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was poured from a 12 ounce bottle at 42º with a notched best by date on the label. The pour produced a huge, white, foamy head in the .51 liter glass which left quite a bit of lacing as it disappeared. A crystal clear, burnt orange and gold color filled the glass.

The hops were quite evident with a pine tree seeming to be in there somewhere.

The taste was balanced with the hops not asserting too much over the slight sweetness of the malt. Did not detect the roasted malt I was expecting.

This was a mouthful to swallow and brought back thoughts of my first experiences with this beer. I could not believe this was what a lager was supposed to taste and feel like when I was used to the mass produced efforts. This goes down smooth.

My first real memory of a beer that was brewed for all the right reasons. This has led me to try many different beers and ales (just joking). Although I had tried the Pilsner Urquell, Heineken, and other beers over the years (and I regret that I do not remember if any of them were ales), the marketing and smaller brewery explosion thankfully brought this to my attention.

SMark, Nov 27, 2007
Photo of Gambrinus1184
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12-ounce bottle into Saranac pint glass.

A: Poured a light, reddish copper color with a rocky two-finger head of off-white foam. Carbonation seems sparse; very clean looking.

S: Smells like sweet toast; grainy scent and sweet malts. There's a dash of noticeable hops also.

T: Rich caramel malt flavor with a well-balanced bitterness that makes this one of the more even lagers I've had. A pleasant amount of pine oil hops stays in the back of my palate.

M: Very clean and crisp. Cleansing, refreshing and enjoyable.

D: One could drink this standby til the cows came home, if they so chose to. Modest ABV, great balance, and good flavor makes for great drinkability.

I'm not a huge fan of regular 'ol Sam Adams when anything else is really available, but it's a great session beer choice for non-BMC, non-adventurous beer drinkers. I'd have again if it were the best available.

Gambrinus1184, Nov 26, 2007
Photo of superswing123
4.33/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of the best "macro-micro" brews available. Have some!!!

Appearance: Coppery golden beautiful Lager with a nice three-finger head, upon pour that is easily rejuvenated over and over again. Considerable lacing about the glass on the way down.

Smell: Deep toasted bread and butter, some hops, vanilla, well-balanced and very pleasant.

Taste: That's what it is all about here. A fine blend of malts, hops, deep and continuous that never thins out or becomes boring.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, yet full. Kind of like eating a good steak.

Drinkability: Well, given the realtively low ABV, this one could be around over and over again all night, interrupted by a few other tastings of a more powerful sample. A great beer overall, especially as an "in-between" something a bit stronger. My son (this beer is his favorite) can knock off a bunch of these without a problem and never ends up acting stupid or silly.

Overall, Sam A. has continued to create staple good brew at a reasonable price for a long time now. Let's hope they continue.

Hat's off, Mr Koch!

.... WIlly

superswing123, Nov 24, 2007
Photo of hoegaardenhero
3.18/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

a: nice amber color w/ pretty minimal white head

s: sweet malts w/ caramel and fruitty overtones; a final touch of bitter hops

t: pretty unexciting; some caramel malt flavors w/ the slightest hopped aftertaste

m: a little cloying/syrupy but well carbonated and pretty crisp

d: decent for what essentially is a macro lager but overall nothing special; though it could be a good session beer

hoegaardenhero, Nov 20, 2007
Photo of calebmills
4.47/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

my favorite all time sam adams style! one of the first beers i tried personally that wasnt steriotypical light american stuff. love hops? you will love this beer has a flowery aroma and a great hoppy taste. kind of reminds me of a weaker version of stones IPA ruination which isnt necessarily a bad thing because its about half as expensive too. i have yet to try all the sam adams styles but like i say this is the most consistant and as they say always a good decision! go get some

calebmills, Nov 18, 2007
Photo of BiereBlanche
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. Botttle

Appearance - Slightly red deep amber, nice color capped by a full off-white head. Persists a long time, leaving thick lacing and a smaller head.

Smell - Sweet, malty smell for the most part. Some hops.

Taste - The hops balance out and create a nice bitterness mid-taste that evens out the mostly malt, sweet aftertaste. Crisp.

Mouthfeel - Low-mid mouthfeel, medium carbonation, crisp and dry aftertaste.

Drinkability - Very drinkable, nice, well balanced flavor and smell. Definitely something I could drink in multiples.

BiereBlanche, Nov 18, 2007
Photo of scottyshades
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As far as Vienna Lagers go, Boston Lager is one of my favorites...picked up a SA Winter Collections at Publix for around $13 in Gainesville
A: Pours a golden amber color with a nice rocky 2 finger head that leaves a spotty lace on the glass

S: Malts dominate the nose, accompanied by a nutty and hoppy note...very sweet smelling

T: Very interesting mouth consisting of spices, orange peel, toasted malts, and a strong presence of wheat throughout...also, when this beer warms, the alcohol begins to show itself

MF: Super clean finish, full in body, creamy going down, decently carbonated

D: Definitely a session beer...with an ABV of under 5% and a rich/full body makes this guy easy to handle and enjoy

Overall this is one of my favorite Vienna Lagers along with Negra Modelo...this beer is constant and true throughout the whole experience, highly recommended

scottyshades, Nov 15, 2007
Photo of les1721
4.6/5  rDev +23%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearence is a beautiful amber with a nice frothy head.
Smell is sweet with hints of caramel with a mild hop aroma.
Taste is exceptionaly well balanced. Malt profile is phenomenal with a light caramel flavor, very complex for a lager, and a good amount of noble hops. The bitterness is tame but gives the beer a nice dry finish. A very complex but well balanced beer. This is an excellent every day or session beer. Very well crafted. Mouthfeel is light to medium and the drinkabilty is great.

An American classic. If there was such thing as a perfect beer this would be one of them.

les1721, Nov 14, 2007
Photo of erosier
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a nice lager. It pours a nice amber color from the bottle with a white head that sticks to the sides of the glass long after it's gone. It has a rich malty and hoppy aroma that is what a lager should smell like. The taste is no different. Excellent taste. Very smooth blend of the roasted malts and hops. It has exceptional mouthfeel and tastes good the entire experiece. A very good drinkable beer.

erosier, Nov 13, 2007
Photo of baos
4.08/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. from tap.

A: Very nice golden color with descent head retention and awesome lacing.

S: Grains, malts and the slightest whiff of hoppiness.

T: This was the freshest batch of Sam Adams that I have ever had. Super smooth and well balanced. There is even a nice hop taste in there that I was not expecting.

M: Light to medium bodied, not bad.

D: I had a couple of the 22 ounces eating out the other night. I paired this beer with some really spicy jerk sauce sauteed shrimp with plantains. It was awesome and if I wanted to stay another half hour I would've ordered another one. Good beer.

baos, Nov 12, 2007
Photo of crazybrody06
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass pours a clear, copper color with a big off white head, some lacing down the glass. Smell is the sam adams hops with some bread, and caramel in the mix. Taste is bit hoppy with toasty malts. Mouthfeel is thin but easy to drink and a great session beer.

crazybrody06, Nov 12, 2007
Photo of Gehrig
4.35/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Like an old friend, Boston Lager is always a beer easy to come back to, steady and reliable. With all the other treats Sam Adams brews, and with my own wandering taste buds, I usually only drink the Lager when it comes as part of a mixed pack, in this case Winter Classics. Yet it's always worth getting around to as I usually immediately delve into the Holiday Porter, Old Fezziwig, Winter Lager and Cream Stout. Its bold taste still impresses me, and brings me back to when I first encountered it well over a decade ago.

The presentation is very good, a deep, clear golden color that almost has a tinge of orange. The head is two fingers thick, and laces the glass nicely as the beer is consumed. The taste is bold, hoppy and moderately carbonated, but smooth and easy to consume. It compares quite favorably with Molson Canadian Lager (which I find pretty decent) in terms of flavor and appearance. A very good steady, and great to come back to after several months away.

Gehrig, Nov 12, 2007
Photo of BeerTaster
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I know some BA's knock this onw because its not rare or amazing but I love it. If I am in a bar that I don't think has a lot to choose from sam adams is the first word out of my mouth. Its avalible as convenence stores and gas stations. Its not too expensive and tastes good for what you pay. Its also a great session beer. Also we have a well known craft beer that I think is poised to give BMC a run for their money.

BeerTaster, Nov 10, 2007
Photo of WJVII
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass this has a rich amber color, as expected from a Sam Adams Lager. There was a 1/2in creamy white head that lasted for a while along with nice lacing. There is a very sweet caramel and spice smell to match the rich color. This beer has a medium body with lighter carbonation. There was a slight bitter after taste with a hint of yeast, but smooth. This is a very well made beer. I have been very pleased with all the Sam Adams I have been trying from my variety pack.

WJVII, Nov 09, 2007
Photo of MarzenMan
3.48/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle.

From the bottle this time but has a nice head when poured. Amber color with a fair amount of carbonation. Sweet at first with a drier, largely hopped finish. The hops have a nice bitterness that for me make this beer stand out as a Sam Adams.

I just can't session this thing. I appreciate its qualities. The hop aroma is awesome and the hop flavor is OK but I just can't drink it. It oddly fills me up very quickly. I can't explain it.

MarzenMan, Nov 04, 2007
Photo of hopman333
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

OK THE OLD STANDBY SAM ADAMS, BEEN DRINKING IT OFF AND ON FOR 17 YEAR'S NOW.

APPEARANCE IS OF A TYPICAL AMBER LAGER, SOMEWHAT BRIGHT AND BRASSY.

THE SMELL IS A WONDERFUL BLEND OF RICH CARAMEL MALT'S AND FLORAL NOBLE HOP'S.

THE TASTE IS STILL A NICE MIX OF CARAMEL AND SPICY HOP'S WITH THAT FRESH LAGER YEAST FLAVOR THAT I HAVE GROWN TO LOVE OVER THE YEAR'S.

ALL AND ALL A TERERIFIC AMBER LAGER REGARDLESS OF IT'S POPULARITY. I'M SURPRISED AT IT'S NOT SO HOT REVIEWS FROM ALOT OF OTHER MEMBERS. I CAN'T THINK OF TO MANY OTHER AMBER'S THAT BLOW IT AWAY, THERE ARE SOME BUT NOT MANY. AND OF COURSE IT IS ALWAY'S THE OLD STANBY WHEN THERE IS NOTHING ELSE TO DRINK AT A BAR OR RESATARAUNT EXCEPT THE MACRO'S. I ALSO THINK IT TASTE MUCH BETTER WHEN FRESH OR ON TAP. I NEVER BUY ANY SA UNLESS THERE ARE AT LEAST FOUR MONTHS TO GO BEFORE THE EXPIRATION DATE.

STILL SOLID AFTER ALL OF THESE YEAR'S. GREAT JOB JIM. EVERY BAR IN AMERICA SHOULD CARRY SAM ADAM'S !!!

hopman333, Nov 02, 2007
Samuel Adams Boston Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
85 out of 100 based on 7,572 ratings.