1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

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

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale)Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,976 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,976
Reviews: 966
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 13.26%
Wants: 46
Gots: 157 | 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.
View: Beers (114) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 1,976 | Reviews: 966
Photo of WesWes
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours an amber color with a thick frothy offwhite head that fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, yet malty scent which boasts of pale and crystal malts. It has a slightly fruity yeast aroma. The taste is good as well. It has a nice malty flavor with a dry fruity finish. It goes down smooth and with good mouthfeel. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a fine amber ale. It has excellent aroma and flavor; a good drinker.

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

I had this out of a 12 oz brown bottle with a freshness date clearly notched for January 2005. This beer has plenty of shelf life left.

Appearance is a shade of amber with a decent head that disappeared quickly. Sticky lacings were noticable after some sips.

Aroma is a little fruity, hoppy and plentiful.

Taste is really enjoyable. Sweet malt characteristic with a soft hop profile. Nicely balanced beer.

This is a really good beer when it's fresh. When given the option, I prefer this over the Sam Adams Lager. This has a better overall profile and is a solid ale.

Photo of mynie
4.32/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Excellent pour, tight head, good retention, great lacing. Pretty amber color.

Smell light light hops and fruit. Tastes like light hops up front, along with a hint of a dull fruit, a little bit of allspice in the back along with more light hops. Not bitter. Just tasty.

Take everything that's good about the Boston Lager and improve it by just a little bit and you get this beer.

Photo of kmpitz2
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nice golden amber color. The head is about a finger tall but falls fast to a thin cover over the beer with a nice ring around the top. The nose is sweet with a lot of caramel coming through. Not bad at all. There is a light caramel malt taste that finishes with a decent floral hop. The carbonation is just right for the taste and feel. Much more than I expected from a Sam Adams product. The beer is suprisingly moderately thick, more-so that I had expected. This is an easy drinking beer, easily something to sit down and have more than one of. This was a nice surprise for me, as I tend not to like the Sam products.

Photo of JMendyka
3.45/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a six of this for my weeklong trip in Provincetown. Was looking for the Summer Ale variety, as that would have been more appropriate circumstances, but, alas, this was the finest brew available at the convenience store I was in.

It poured well with a nice head, 2-3 fingers more or less depending on how much I paid attention while pouring. It retained the head well right down to the bottom of the glass. The color was amber, perfectly. I should be well acquainted with the color as it matched with the many amber peices I saw in P-town's myriad jewelry stores.

The smell good, but unbalanced. There is a sweet base, but there is a sharp almost bitterness that gives an uneasiness to it.

The all important taste can be described in one word, solid. While I probably would have preferred the Summer Ale, the Boston Ale served my purpose. A definite balance of maltiness and bitterness, it was refreshing and fulfilling. It had a full mouthfeel and went down like beer should. I could chug it if I had to, but it was definitley more conducive to soothing sips.

While I never drink more than one to two beers a nite, I could have enjoyed a few more of these on the cool Cape Cod nights.

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

Boston Ale is transparent orange-amber, accent on the orange. The head is buttery yellow beige in color and is firmsticky. It displays a significantly rockiness as it descends and leaves a satisfactory amount of chunky lace on the glass. Very nice appearance. The nose is primarily of spiced caramel, but there's also a citrusiness than lightens things up a bit.

It tastes of heavily toasted caramel malt with an enjoyable amount of spicy-earthy hops. Boldness and balance are the operative words here. The flavor profile doesn't change appreciably within each mouthful, but I'm fine with that since the beer is delicious to begin with. The body is a perfect match in that it's firm and smooth with a spot-on degree of carbonation.

The words that keep coming to mind as I drink are 'classic' and 'solid'. If I wanted to nitpick I'd say that I prefer my APAs more citrus hoppy than this, but I'm not in a nitpicking mood today. Besides, this is really more of a British-style pale ale and it hits that target directly. Boston Ale is excellent beer and I'll be sure to look for it from now on.

Photo of Bierguy5
3.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice amber clear liquid with a white foamy head. The head stayed only briefly. There was a slight amount of lace on the glass. Smells slightly toasty, along with slightly floral. Taste is a nice richly toasted malt, to go along with a floral, slightly herbal finish. The bitterness was not very high, and the finish was pretty dry. Slightly astringent. Medium body with a good amunt of carbonation, maybe a bit too much. Overall, this was a pretty drinkable beer to go with my pizza. I would have enjoyed more hops in this one.

Photo of rockdick
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

this beer poured a beautiful, rich brownish-red color with a semi-weak head that didn't last but about 1/3 the way down.
Smell was a light and sweet hop like aroma.
Taste was pretty refreshing and i'm not a big fan of pale ales.
Went down great and very drinkable.
I think this is one of the better pale ales i've had.

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

Not bad. I typically do not seek out ales of this sort. I am a tremendous fan of porters and stouts. This however, is quite tasty. Poured a orange/golden colour with a slightly off-white foamy head about a half inch thick that lingered for a while. Smell was hoppy with a little bit of yeast in there as well. Not usually a big hop fan, either, but in this configuration, it was quite nice. Very easy to drink and almost thirst quenching. Seemed to have a very faintly cream-like mouth feel that I also enjoied. Again, I do not usually seek out this style of brew, but I was kind of impressed with this one and will likely buy it again. Definately worth a try if you've never had it.

Photo of connecticutpoet
4.32/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a nice amber ale with a good-sized head that dissolved into lace after a few moments.

The aroma was of bitter hops, which was very inviting.

The taste was bitter and hoppy, with some hints of maltiness but not sweetness.

Overall a very good ale.

Photo of malthead
3.83/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best before Nov. 04

Looks good, Smells malty, of bread, nuts. Starts with a little malty taste, then some nice hops, then more malt, a good balance of relatively strong flavors. Mouthfeel was a little strange for me, something about the aftertaste wasn't quite right. Good drinkability, good session brew. Overall, very solid, not a strong standout but one to always come back to.

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

Pours medium to dark golden colored. Smells a little of malt and alcohol, but very lightly. This brew goes down quite smoothly, a very solid and thorough taste with a bit of alcohol. Was medium strong. The Boston Lager is a very good choice if you're just up for drinking some beer without any frills.

Photo of RBorsato
3.19/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Golden with a nice full creamy beige head, good carbonation with slow bubbles, and leaves lace rings. Caramel malt (Crystal malt) aroma dominates with a touch of buttery diacetyl. Tastes similar to aroma with a touch of toastiness and something a bit harsh that I cannot define. Medium bodied and smooth but not as rich as the slow bubbles would indicate.

An OK beer but certainly not as good as I remember (could this possibly be a bad bottle?)

Per B.B.Co. website:
Original Gravity: 13.5º Plato, 1.055 specific gravity
Malt Type & Varieties: 2-row Harrington, caramel 60º
Hop Varieties: Saaz, Fuggles, Goldings
Special/Unique Ingredients & Procedures: Stock ale begins with a warm ale fermentation, but is krausened and aged at cooler temperatures.

Purchase Before: 09/04
Tasted: 07/03/04

Photo of kbub6f
3.98/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is a clear, reddish amber with lots of fine carbonation. Its head is medium-sized, cream-colored and coarse. It leaves thin, spotty lacing. The aroma is tangy caramel; some sour milk (ok); some toasty grains. The beer starts sourish and caramelly. A butter malt middle is quite darkly fruity. Buttery, bitter, nutty finish. Nutty burps. This is really good. Nutty and fruity.

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

I was really impressed with this sample. I'd had this years ago and didn't like it nearly as much as this time around.
Aroma is largely roasted yet mild malt with a diacetyl quality. Pleasing.
Orange-brown-gold amber. Clear. Fizzy with a one inch steady head.
Nice complexity and mix of flavors. Starts soft and smooth and then intensifies through the drink. First, with ever increasing malt boldness, followed by hoppy sharpness and bitterness that makes up the middle and lingering finish. Nice changing of the flavors as temperature changes, eg. sweetness up front increases as warms.
Very nice standard ale smoothness. Softness develops as warms. Carbonation may be a little too much which made it a bit too filling.
The hops may prove to present too much for some as it overpowers the smooth malt quality of the middle. As for me, I liked this.

Photo of AllThingsNinja
2.43/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This brew’s average appearance, with a reddish-gold body and a misty white head, is its best feature. The subtle aroma of dried hopes wasn’t too bad – but the watery brew went down hill from there. Stale, or over-dried hops dominated the flavor, all but silencing hints of caramel malts. Remarkably, low taste brew retained notes of the quintessential S.A. house flavor. While I could drink a fair amount of this brew, I don’t see why I’d try.

Photo of cbl2
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Crystal clear light brown with half inch white head.


Malts are readily apparent. Smells inviting. Can't wait to taste.


Much smoother than a typical Sam Adams. Fruit flavors are apparent as well which is an oddity for Sam. Good malt flavors are first sampled to be replaced by the fruit flavors imparted by the hops which make their appearance at the finish with a faint bi

Photo of longpondbeerman
3.25/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The thin head receded very quickly from atop this clear, tawny ale. The smell is mostly buttery malts, no distinguishable hops or spiciness. The mouthfeel is silky and worthy. The taste, however: bland. Some light nutty flavor, a touch of citrus, and at least I get the hops here, but really there is no movement from start to finish--flat line. Perhaps I've become a more discriminating beer drinker or maybe Sam Adams has dumbed down (or both), because I'm sure ten or fifteen years ago, I would have given this rave reviews. And the price is not right!

Photo of far333
3.38/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I'm not a fan of the lager, but I needed to try the ale to give it a fair shake. Copper colored with a thick white head that rises up a full inch and a half high, and then settles quickly, leaving a thin layer. Aroma is light, but mostly of malt and some toffee. Flavor is very thin and not complex at all. It's all malt, no hops, and seems to have that Bud burnt rubber lingering aftertaste. Mouthfeel is big, fat, and creamy, but it's all that this beer has going for it (IMO).

Photo of PhantomVodoo
3.95/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Good sized off-white head forms atop this copper to amber colored brew.
Aroma of toasty, caramel malt and floral, earthy hops. Slight fruit.

Taste shows a solid, crisp, floral, earthy hop bite. Solid toasty caramel malt backbone. Hint of fruit.

Body and mouthfeel just a bit thin.
Flavorful and crisp, yet easy-drinking.
Overall, a good session type beer. I always enjoy this one.

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

Boston Beer Company – Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale)
This brew from Sam Adams is a very good beer, probably their best (in my book, so read into it as you will) year around offering. I really like this brew. It pours to a nice deep coppery color with a nice thick off white head that breaks down slowly to excellent lacing through out the entire brew. The aroma is sweet from a good amount of malt with nice spicy and toasted highlights. The taste is very pleasing with malts dominating and a slight hop hit that balances it out nicely along with those toasted highlights from the aroma. This is a brew that I can enjoy year around and one that has quite a bit of character!

Photo of necoadam
3.78/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out a copper color with the right amount of carbonation I thought. Dark for a pale ale. Sweet malts hit the nose with a little bit of toasted aroma as well. So far so good with this beer. Taste is what makes this beer come alive. Malts come upfront with a hint of sweetness, then mixes with some hops in the middle, then blends in with some toasted flavors all the way through the end. For once this is balanced somewhat. This is what Bass wants to be but never will. Nice flavors with this beer, and one of the better beers from Sam Adams.

Photo of niknar
4.08/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a wonderfully dark amber with hints of red. A large, thick cream colored head appeared and lasted an extra long time. It finally settled into a nice thick lace. The smell to me was primarily that of yeast, but also has faint hints of malt and fruit. I really enjoy the flavor of this one. It initially has the typically strong hop accents you would expect from other Samuel Adams offerings, but is mixed with a nice sweetness in the middle. It then finishes with a slightly bitter and dry feel. Excellent! It is distinctly carbonated in the mouth, but not so that it feels too thin. Samuel Adams is one of my favorite brands of widely distributed beer, and I'm fortunate enough to find it at my local grocery store. This is one I can drink over and over again!

This review was written on the "Brewmaster's Collection" edition... not the standard Stock Ale. I am not sure what the differences are, if any.

Photo of PSUDREW
3.32/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Very interesting beer. I think it combines a nice array of flavor in its boquet.

It pours in a nice darker amber color. Lightly tan, frothy head and a bit of carbonation upon 1st pourings.

Like I said, the taste is a mix of things. It starts with a nice spicy/ hop pa mix. very smooth tasting and rather easy to drink. The aftertaste has an interesting malty/ creamy taste that sticks around for a while, kind of like the winter lager.

Nice beer. I never sampled the original recipe, only the new "brewmaster series" stlye, so I do not know of the difference (if there is any). Nice beer, looking forward to having more

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

Clear, with a color somewhere between copper and honey. An initially large head settles to a persistent layer of lace.

Has an earthy, leaf and mulch aroma with hints of fruit.

Taste is leafy, dry hops, with lightly toasted malt chewyness in exacting balance. Fairly smooth and easy drinking, but still flavorful enough to not disappoint. Not the typical American Pale; more like a Yankee interpretation of the English version.

Obtained in the "brewmasters' sampler", I definitely favor this over the lager; but it's been hard to find the ale in grocery stores. I could track it down at a beer store, but when I do make the trip, there are more exotic selections (and local gems) to browse instead.

Anyway, a quality brew from Sam Adams that isn't "dumbed down" as some of their other offerings are accused of being.

to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
82 out of 100 based on 1,976 ratings.