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

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Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale)Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale)

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1,958 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,958
Reviews: 962
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 13.26%
Wants: 41
Gots: 137 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-12-2001

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,958 | Reviews: 962 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tempest
3.78/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Why is this called an APA? Sam Adams calls it a stock ale (which can also mean old ale) and has a very British character in my opinion. Tastes and smells like an English pale ale really. The aroma is a smooth, creamy bread and carries over in the flavor. Mellow caramel malt with a slight herbal hops note make up most of the flavor. Mostly its all smooth sailing with the creamy yeast character and sweet malts. Quite delicious in all, though not as complex as I'd wish.

Photo of bboven
3.2/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Medium copper body; clear with a thin head that leaves a decent amount of lacing.

Aroma is slightly sweet, slightly sour buiscuity malt, very little hop aroma.

There is a harsh graininess to this beer like tannins went unchecked. the underlying beer seems okay, but the initial harshness in the flavor is carried throughout the entire drink.

Bubbly, slightly drying, everything is where it should be here.

Everything is great about this ber except the flavor. I wouldn't buy it again because of that though. Too many other fine beers out there in this style.

Photo of rye726
3.13/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I feel that stock ale describes this one quite well. It pour a clear amber and has a light tan head. The nose has some grainy malt with some light fruity hops. Taste is malty and has a bit of sweet caramel or honey in there. Body was average with decent carbonation. A good session brew, but needs a bigger malt and hop profile.

Photo of BradLikesBrew
3.85/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: Copper body, minimal cream colored head.

s: Caramel and toffee.

t: Caramel and toffee with a light herbal/spicy hop finish.

m: Medium to light body. Smooth and crisp.

d: Not bad. I like the hop profile and the caramel malt. Maltier than the Boston Lager, but the hops aren't as pronounced.

Photo of pabstsmear
4.65/5  rDev +28.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Unforunately this brew is hard to find since the lager, light, and seasonal brews are always on display. I was lucky enough to find one 12 pack in my local Shaws on sale for $10.99. The brew is and has always been my favorite from Sam Adams. Well, nothing changed with this purchase, in fact I think I got a pretty lively batch. I have nothing more to say except seek out an American classic- stock ale.

Photo of Proteus93
3.8/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours on the darker side of amber - maybe a touch darker than the Boston Lager, but I'd have to do a side-by-side pour to see. Head is about a finger tall, and a bit of a creamy ring of lacing wraps around the edges.

S: A bit of an herbal nose, perhaps a little grassy - like fresh cut grass, or even a bit like new leaves. Quite nice and light, and the scent hints that it might be nice and refreshing.

T: An interesting hops flavour here... a gentle, caramel hinting malt taste rounds it out. A little more robust than I might have expected from the aroma, but still quite nice.

M: A pretty standard, medium body, with a touch of stickiness on the finish. It would be far more sessionable in the heat if that were not there, but it's alright. A tasty beer, an easy going beer, and certainly a reasonable session beer. I think I might go with the standard Boston Lager in most cases, but this one stands up well.

Photo of Greggy
3.6/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a crystal clear copper color with a 1 finger head that recedes into an unimpressive cap of bubbles.

S- I initially get more maltiness but I sense that it is balanced out with some lighter hops. The light hopiness I gather has a touch of skunk to it as well.

T- Initially I get a very well balanced, smooth, malty taste that quickly recedes. The still is pretty thin, although it does have some good balance. This definitely isn't your average hoppy APA but rather more malty and less hoppy, but yet retains balance. The finish has a touch of dry hopiness to it.

M- The low-med/low carb is a touch cloying but otherwise, ok.

D- This is an ok brew that I can see being a good crossover piece for one entering the craft beer world.

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

Presentation: 12 oz bottle part of the Summer Styles collection.

Appearance: Smooth pour that nets a perfect head with nice retention and lace.

Smell: Nice hop smell. Slight fruit notes.

Taste & Mouth Feel: Medium mouthfeel. Starts a bit sweet. Tastes of caramel malt. Finishes hoppy and clean. A good taste that is balanced.

Drinkability & Notes: Not my favorite Sammy A's but certainly one of the most drinkable in my opinion. Has a solid taste if not quite great. Decent hops but wouldn't classify a hoppy pale ale like a Sierra Nevada.

Photo of PatrickJR
3.78/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

A - Transparent amber with pillowy 2 finger head that dies down to thick white cap. Lots of lacing.

S - Sweet malt is mostly what I pick up, but there are citrusy, borderline floral hops in the background.

T - Now this is what I thought Sam Adams "Pale Ale" should've tasted like. A nice balance of sweet malt and spicy/floral hops hits the palate upfront, with a pleasant decrescendo of malt leading to the finish. Midly phenolic late palate, and a bit of an unnatural bitterness. Not a very complicated brew, but I think it acheives what it tries to.

M - Moderately carbonated with a medium body.

D - Very drinkable if not for that damn bitterness. It's not even that the bitterness is overbearing, it's just out of place, and I have this problem with about half of Sam Adams' beers. Whatever great flavors they may have bottled are offset by a bitterness that does nothing but bring the beer down.

Photo of SIRIUS2
3.62/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Crystal clear coppery amber in color; Good off-white colored head of about 3/4" reducing slowly into an uneven layer of bubbles. Good lacing. It just looks pretty!

S: Faint aromas of moderate malts and light hops.

T&M: Relatively light weight on the tongue with a fuller than expected taste. The malt comes on strong in flavor without being sweet. The balance with the malt and hops is very good and quite nice, with a result of a brew with a slightly dry edge. The carbonation in this was fine but abundant and contributes quite a bit to the overall mouthfeel. The finish is mostly clean with just a bit of maltiness on the linger.

D: A cut above average, this is an enjoyable brew to drink. It's similar in so many ways to the Boston Lager but there is a nice edginess to the flavor that I like in a brew. Recommended.

Photo of Hoagie1973
4.3/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks like the SA Boston Lager in just about every way. From the color to the head to lacing; all good.
Aroma and flavor are rich and malty. Much maltier than its lager counterpart, which lines right up with my preference for ales over lagers (though I don't think I say which of the two from Sam Adams I prefer, they're both excellent). Hops show up at the end of the sip to perfectly balance things out, then they disappear in a nice clean finish.
Good feel and body. Extremely drinkable. An all around solid, flavorful beer. Not fancy, just good.

Photo of albern
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I haven't had their Boston Ale in years because their more ubiquitous lager is more standard fare. The ale is much better than their lager and I'm glad that I had this again. It pours a frothy off white thick head with crisp malts in the aroma. The carbonation is modest and what is most impressive in this beer is the creamy mouthfeel, medium body, big malt flavors, and the nice balance with some hops in the finish. The beer isn't brilliant, but it is an old standby for most any occasion. The maltiness is a bit carmelized, somewhat bready, definitely creamy in texture, and maybe a tad bit of spice, but that's hard to detect. The beer hits all the right notes, and the malts are neither overdone, nor too thin. Again, the balance is what makes the beer, rather than any fancy tastes, spices, or frills. L'Chaim.

Photo of avalon07
3.2/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: When I poured this one from a bottle to a pint glass, it had a decent amber color and a somewhat cloudy consistency. A quarter inch of head and some OK lacing.

S: A very sharp aroma, with hops, malt and mild spices making an appearance.

T: The taste on this one didn't seem to go one way or another. There's a fair amount of hops, a bit of malt and possibly some cinammon. It just seemed indecisive to me.

M: A decent amount of carbonation and a slightly slick finish. This is a medium-bodied beer.

T: Overall, this is just an OK beer. Sam Adams has done better. The taste just wasn't enough of one thing or another to make it compelling.

Photo of generallee
4.6/5  rDev +27.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Always a good choice. The Boston Ale has a golden amber color with good clarity and carbonation. It forms a thick off white head that leaves nice lacing on the glass. Its aroma is malty sweet with a hint of honey and floral hops. On the tongue the malts are bready and lightly toasty. The hops are light and have a nice piney and citrus bitterness that fades slowly into the finish. I really like the balance on this ale and I fined it to be very drinkable and refreshing. Cheers!

Photo of jayrod20
3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle smell is sweet and malty with hints of cinnamon. Pours to a yellow bronze with a lacy foamy head. Taste is sweet with hints a cinnamon and a hoppy finish. Mouthfeel is good, carbonation is just right. A good brew, a liitle sweet for my tastes. A little more hopping would make it very delicious. I wouldn't go out of my way to look for it but if someone gave me one I'd have seconds.

Photo of wheatyweiss
3.81/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint.

Pours a light amber with a huge bubbled head with aggressive carbonation. Rocky head leaves tight lace all around the glass. Nice looking head.

Aroma is caramel malts with a hop hit.

Flavor is caramel malts. Copper pennies and blood. Floral hops with a nice bitter hit on the back. Hops stand up in this one, for me but maybe not for the hop heads.

Mouthfeel is excellent, chewy and slick at the same time. The carbonation is perfect to balance the sweetness of the malt.

I didn't think I would find a better beer than the Boston Lager for an everyday session beer, this is it. Excellent for what it is.

Photo of rowew
3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz longneck, typical SA bottle with a best by date notched on the side of th elabel.

Appearance: Poured into the fancy Sam Adams glass, Amber in color with a bit of haze, nice offwhite head with good retention and lacing.

Smell: Floral hops, bready malt with a bit of caramel, just a hint of butterscotch.

Taste: The main flavor here seems to be the butterscotch I usually associate with diacytle, but it actually seems to work here. Nice malty backbone, just a hint of hops.

Overall impression: This is a bit different, lots of flavors I normally encounter more in British beers, but it comes together in a nice drinkable offering.

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

355ml bottle bought from Redmonds, Dublin

Poured a hazy amber orange colour. Slightly off white head poured thick and meringue like then faded slowly to good thick coating... very faint carbonation drifts slowly to surface... some decent patchy lacing...

Aroma - Lots of toasted bready malts, slightly burnt caramel notes, some fig and orange fruitiness (marmalade hints), some woody traces, light ginger and peppery spiciness, grassy hops, toasted nuts...

Taste - Quite a lot of spicy fruits (bitter oranges, figs, pears), some butterscotch notes, toasted bready malts, light caramel sweetness, peppery and grassy hop bitterness, light metallic traces, some saltiness...

Feel - Pretty sharp and dry... light bodied... Extremely drinkable - i could happily knock back a few of these in a session...

Overall - A very good APA... i wish i could get this on a regular basis as it would be an excellent beer for everyday drinking... recommended...

Photo of tab021
2.88/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

I've pretty much ransacked the local food mart and tried everything they carry over the past few months, then this came in...

A: light tan/amber with off white short lasting head

S: Sweeter smell with very little scent that comes across.

T: Fruity sweet with a bitter hop flavor that is gone as soon as you can think about it.

M: lightly carbonated with a slight creamy feel

D: this is definitely okay at best for my taste. I really like the feel of the creamy carbonation, but the taste is so bland it really doesn't do anything for me.

Photo of Beerislife652854
4.15/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal-clear amber body with a robust and frothy head into a standard pint glass. There is a good amount of lacing on the inside of the glass, and the head remains until the glass is empty.

Smells like wheat, hops and malt, sweet florals.

Tasted slightly sweet with a bit of a bitter finish. Carbonation is consistent and hardly fades.

Samuel Adams Boston Ale is a well-rounded brew. Not too bitter, not too sweet, and not too expensive.

Photo of Squelch
3.75/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours light tan with a off white fleeting head. No haze present.

Smell: Sweet crystal aroma comes through. No hop aroma. I mean none.

Taste: Fruity esters, crystal malts, with a touch of english hop bitterness. Pretty yummy flavor. Slight breadiness comes through as well.

Mouthfeel: twinge of carbonation comes through at first with the creamy sweetness at the end.

Drinkability: good beer. I would buy this one again. Not my favorite from the brewery and not a typical american pale ale, but very nice.

Photo of msolar
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours deep amber color with a bit of head which dissipates with nice lacing. Smells like malt with some citrus notes. Tastes good, low-to-medium carbonation with a hint of alcohol. Leaves a 'dry' flavor on the palette. Great drinkability and a bit lighter than their Boston Lager.

Photo of SargeC
4.18/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Rich amber colored brew with a dense, golden tan head.

Smell: Buttery hints of hops with sweet malt undertones.

Taste: great blend of sweet and bitter elements. Very mild citrus finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Very smooth.

Drinkablity: Very good brew. Great taste and easy sessionability.

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

12 oz bottle pored into a seidel yields a pretty deep-amber body with a puffy white head that retreats slowly and leaves nice lacing.

Smells sweet, earthy, malty, lightly spicy;

Sweet malt flavor, pleasant sharpness; nutty, maybe even a little woody; with a nice mellow finish.

Lightly carbonated, smooth and refreshing in the mouth. Infinitely drinkable.

Photo of charlzm
3.13/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Consumed 03/25/08 at Sam Adams Brewhouse in Atlanta International Airport.

Clear amber beer with low carbonation. Thin, foamy white head.

Aroma is a little soapy with some floral hops.

Consistency is a bit thin. Flavor has a slight caramel malt character with a little bitter hop aftertaste.

The flavor is so close to the Boston Lager as to be splitting hairs when comparing them, except their flagship lager is actually a bit more flavorful.

Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
82 out of 100 based on 1,958 ratings.