1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Sam Adams Light - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Sam Adams LightSam Adams Light

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,962 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,962
Reviews: 815
rAvg: 3.26
pDev: 18.4%
Wants: 25
Gots: 87 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Light Lager |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-12-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sam Adams Light Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,962 | Reviews: 815 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JamesS


4.13/5  rDev +26.7%

Pours a nice amber color with good head and good lacing. Nice scent, good and malty with slightly bitter traces. Great taste for a light lager, very clean and refreshing, but not at all weak like most 'light' beers. It has an excellent bit of hoppiness you won't find in the other light lagers produced in any quantity. Goes down nice and smooth. If I were to actually drink light beers in any amount, it would be this one.

01-20-2008 14:04:56 | More by JamesS
Photo of Halcyondays


2.85/5  rDev -12.6%

12 oz. bottle, picked up on a whim since I've never had it before, and I was in the mood for something lighter,

A: Darkest light beer ever, it pours a light amber, about the colour of light maple syrup, the real stuff from Vermont or Canada, with a small off-white head, which dissipates quickly.

S: Very light, but picked up some maltiness and bread character/cracked wheat/bulghur.

T: Bready in the main taste, with a light hop bite at the end, tasty enough for a light beer, but for a craft brewed lager it is lacking.

M: Light and watery, but with enough heft to know you're drinking a beer.

D: Best light beer I've ever had, but that's not saying much for this style, don't think I'll buy it again, but was nice to try to see if a light lager could actually have flavour.

01-19-2008 02:23:19 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of BigRedN


3.63/5  rDev +11.3%

Left over from Christmas. I was finishing the last of these off and surfing BA when I thought I'd see how I rated this. Well, low-and-behold I had not reviewed it yer.

Appearance: Poured from the 12 oz bottle with best by April '08 notched on the label into a pint glass. The beer is a crystal clear amber color with a rather thin 1/2 inch head that faded to a ring around the glass and leaves little lacing. When compared to other light beers this one blows them away.

Smell: A light aroma of some malts (a lightly roasted caramel aroma). A bit low on scent.

Taste: Some light malt and grains, just a hint of bitterness on the finish. Low in flavor for many other styles (such as amber lager/ale that this looks like), but is pretty decent for a light beer.

Mouthfeel: I hesitate to call this light in body, but it is. Not watery, so that is good. A nice crisp, clean finish.

Drinkability: Low alcohol, just enough flavor, I could session with this for long hours with no problem. While this is probably just an average craft beer; when compared to other beers that call themselves light (or lite) beer (the typical BMC offerings) this is by far better.

01-17-2008 04:47:23 | More by BigRedN
Photo of wcudwight

North Carolina

3.78/5  rDev +16%

The darkest light beer I've seen. Golden amber in color with some ruby hues. Not much head to speak of, yet good sticky lacing.
Faint aroma of some sweet maltiness. Very little hop aroma.
Extremely flavorful for a light beer. Sweet malts with a quick hop kick at the end.
Smooth light bodied mouthfeel and very drinkable. There's a ton of better beers out there but if feel the need to drink a light beer, then this is the one to get.

01-12-2008 05:23:28 | More by wcudwight
Photo of jerrychino


4.05/5  rDev +24.2%

I´m reviewing this beer based on what it is, a light beer. Comparing color and taste, it´s seriouslly above other light beers. I´ve heard people say they would prefer bud or miller lite. I´m not a beer expert yet, but I don´t think there is any comparison. I trully think this is a light beer that doesn´t really taste like light beer (watered down beer).

12-20-2007 03:49:46 | More by jerrychino
Photo of dsa7783

New Jersey

2.28/5  rDev -30.1%

Had this on tap at Chili's... Not bad for $2.99 at a 16-ounce size, but definitely not my favorite lite beer... was never a big fan of Sam Adams, and the only brew from the company which ever caught my fancy was the Cream Stout... this one doesn't do it for me for a lite beer... personally would prefer a Miller or Coors, but I'm sure those in the Boston area might be a little warmer towards a home-town favorite... Drinkability was average, and the taste, which wasn't awful just wasn't too impressive... somewhat bitter which really didn't do it for me... Not recommended... Better lite beers to choose from...

12-16-2007 20:26:35 | More by dsa7783
Photo of BeerTaster

New York

3.45/5  rDev +5.8%

I am judging this light beer compaired to other light beers and compaired to them this beer is fantastic. I picked up a 12pk because I decided to only have the higher calorie stuff on weekends. Served in a pilsner glass formed and retained a nice head. Color was much darker than your average light beer but the taste was amazing it had flavor unlike most light beers. all in all if you are trying to watch what you eat this is a good beer to unwind with at the end of the day

12-05-2007 03:47:27 | More by BeerTaster
Photo of caminiti

New York

3.38/5  rDev +3.7%

Just what you would expect from a light beer, and maybe, just maybe, a little bit more, though at $13 a twelve pack, it should be.
The good folks at Sam Adams, through their advertising, get you to drink the Kool-Aid and think this may be something better than light beer, but its really not ("Won best beer, and there wasnt even a category for light beer"). If I was forced to drink light, which I sometimes am, I would choose this, but its probably along the same lines, calorie wise, as Guiness, but twelve steps up from Coors light, etc.

11-24-2007 01:20:25 | More by caminiti
Photo of dnichols


3.58/5  rDev +9.8%

I poured a 12 ounce capped bottle into a 12 ounce mug.

A: It poured a fresh clear, bright copper body with amber highlights when back lit. A moderately aggressive pour produced a dirty white robust half finger head that receded to a ring around the collar and supported a barely there curtain.

S: It had crisp and clean lightly roasted malts with a recessed hop aroma. More aroma than any macro light I have tried.

T: It has a light sweet malt flavor with a recessed bitterness. There is a steady stream of carbonation that helps keep the taste fresh and zippy on the tongue. There are hints of sweet white fruit but they are so recessed it is difficult to determine the profile of the flavors.

M: It is a light bodied very clean brew with sweet malts on the front and slight bitterness on the back. The carbonation keeps the palate fresh and clean.

D: I doubt you could find a finer session beer for the diet set. This brew is easy to consume in mass and light and refreshing enough for a hot long day while being sufficiently flavorful to not loose your interest due to lack of character.

Comment: This is a surprising light brew. It is more like a dilute ale than any macro light. Well done and one that I could recommend to my Coors and Bud light friends.

11-21-2007 06:15:39 | More by dnichols
Photo of montageman


3.93/5  rDev +20.6%

Poured into a pint glass.

While this is by no means my favorite beer, this is by far the best widely available light beer I've tried. The look, smell, & taste are totally decent when the style is considered. The carbonation is a light heavy, but that is the case for most light beers. Overall, an easy drinking light beer that can be paired with just about anything, I'd imagined. Recommended.

11-19-2007 04:34:04 | More by montageman
Photo of calebmills

West Virginia

3.23/5  rDev -0.9%

tastes really malty has a dark color for light beer and i really wouldnt want to sit down and just drink one for the taste. my second to least favorite sam adams style. good for a light beer but if you want a good sam adams go elsewhere but an above average light beer thats for sure.

11-18-2007 03:46:54 | More by calebmills
Photo of usmittymc


4.28/5  rDev +31.3%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a standard room-temp pub glass

A- Perfectly clear, medium amber color with a full 1.5 finger head that dissipates to a nice lacing around the glass. Much darker than any other "light" beer that I have ever experienced.

S- Faint citrusy hoppiness that you do not experience with other "light" beers. Also a nice "biscuity" aroma is present

T- Full of flavor that you will not get from other "light" beers. Smooth malt on the front with a nice hoppy finish

M- Much more body to this beer than other "light" beers. Sits very well on the palate and has a nice, clean finish

D- Definitely my default beer of choice. SA Light is available practically everywhere, at a reasonable price ($5.99 / 6-pack). So you get a good quality "light" beer (not so light calorie-wise), for under a buck a beer.

11-13-2007 21:07:11 | More by usmittymc
Photo of supercolter


2.68/5  rDev -17.8%

All in all not the best light beer that I have had.

Appearance is average for the style- not a lot of head and less retension. Little lacing and straw yellow coloring.
Smell and taste are not bad but do lack some flavor/smell- MGD light and Leine's light both have better and more flavor and are more aromatic.
Mouthfeel and drinkability are on par for the style- its meant to be a light palate beer and it satisfies that.

11-08-2007 04:24:24 | More by supercolter
Photo of Dukeofearl


4.22/5  rDev +29.4%

Simply one of the best, most flavorful light beers I have ever tried.

Six pack for $7.99 at La Bodega in Riverside, CA. in Sept. 2007.

Pours a surprisingly deep amber golden for the style, with a slight head that doesn't last too long. Aroma is dry malty, maybe a hint of hops. Flavor is light but still a lot for the style. Moderate, toasty malts, minimal hops makes for a tasty light alternative.

Mouthfeel includes a fair amount of carbonation- why no head retention?

Good stuff.

11-07-2007 02:36:02 | More by Dukeofearl
Photo of metallistout


4.22/5  rDev +29.4%

Ok, I went into this review knowing that I have to match it up with other Light Lagers, like Miller Lite, Bud Light etc...

Bottle 12 oz.

Amber in color and a decent thick head for a light beer.

Smell of floral hops and malty grains, does not quite smell like a light beer.

This beer taste pretty much like a "toned down" version of it's big brother. Take out a little hops and a little malt and instead of Boston Lager; you have Sam Light.

Mouthfeel is watery, and refreshing.

Drinkability- if I ever get a feeling to drink a light beer, this would be the beer for sure. If you stack it up to the Big Commercial Light beers (includin amstel) I would say that Sam Adams Light is the winner.

10-31-2007 20:35:04 | More by metallistout
Photo of jcdiflorio

West Virginia

3.25/5  rDev -0.3%

12oz. brown bottle,poured into my SA glass. Best by Nov. 07
Very clear,brilliant amber/coppery color with a 1' white creamy head,dissapated a bit quick to a creamy coating. A few tiny bubbles staggered rising to the surface.

Very moderate aromas, kinda expected a bit more aroma. Light sweet maltiness with some herbal,perfumy hop notes. Had a bit og skunkiness to it. Haven't really smelled this before in a SA within the freshness date.

Light malty tastes,slightly toasty and sweet. very well balanced with a good sharp,clean bitterness. earthy and woody. has a bit of the skunkyness in the taste also.

Had more of a meduim bodied feel than a light. A good bit more than most light beers. Was a bit of a letdown. Expected just a bit more taste and aroma even for a light,afterall it's still a Sam Adams. Could have a few,just a teaser for me,makes me crave the real thing Boston Lager.

10-25-2007 01:15:28 | More by jcdiflorio
Photo of BeerTruth


3.15/5  rDev -3.4%

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a super clear light copper hue with a one finger head that quickly dies down to an almost non-existant layer. No stickiness to be seen, not a whole lot goin' on with this beer in terms of looks. Smell is a bit metallic with a small amount of caramel malt and a hint of noble hops. A weak floral aroma seems to appear in the nose as well. Yeah, this is definitely a light beer. Watered down caramel malt and corn with a tiny hop aftertaste, nothing more, nothing less. Good fluffy light mouthfeel with a bunch of carbonation. If I had to choose a light beer, this would be it. Good flavor for the style, but clearly weak in the overall spectrum.

10-23-2007 00:06:09 | More by BeerTruth
Photo of ChainGangGuy


3.55/5  rDev +8.9%

Appearance: Pours a light brown body with a full, though quickly thinning off-white head.

Smell: Faint aroma of caramel and crumbly, dry toast.

Taste: Light flavor of toasted bread with a touch of caramel malts and a very subdued sweetness. Hops remain exceedingly light. Clean finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: It has alot to offer, relatively, for a little light lager.

10-21-2007 02:10:08 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of Pauly2X


3.7/5  rDev +13.5%

A- Light amber color, poured one finger head which faded to wisp which then also faded. Lacing is all but non exsistent.

S- Nice spicy hop aroma with little to no malt aroma

T- Initial malt taste is somewhat weak in the sweetness area followed by a solid but light hop pressence.

M- Smooth, typical carbonation for a light beer.

D- I'll take this over anyother light beer out there.

If I were to eliminate personall taste completely and judge based on style I'd rank this beer much higher. In my opinion this is the best mass marketed light beer out there, it actually tastes like beer!

10-16-2007 18:19:18 | More by Pauly2X
Photo of Beerbuddha


3/5  rDev -8%

Appearance- Poured a light amber color with a thin off white head which disappears quickly.

Smell- Smells of grain with hint of malts and slight hops smell.

Taste- Not bad for a light beer. There is taste to it. Slight hints of sweetness and pine.

Mouthfeel- Light body with medium carbonation

Drinkabilty- Not so bad. I'm not a fan of light beers but as light beers go this was the best of the bunch that I've had.

10-05-2007 19:31:11 | More by Beerbuddha
Photo of BeerDreadz


3.8/5  rDev +16.6%

!2 onz amber bottle

Appearance : Light brown color with a pale creamy color head that looks really good.

Smell: Grainy and a light but very light sweet aroma.

Taste: Light bodied, maltiness is there in a very nice way,Hops are there present, a small caramel or sweet flavour.

Mouthfeel & Drinkabilty : Very easy to drink,feels nice in the mouth not wattery like light beer.

Notes; This beer can be a regular lager for other brand. Very nice label.

09-29-2007 05:18:26 | More by BeerDreadz
Photo of Overlord


2.68/5  rDev -17.8%

Just how "light" is this beer? Judging from taste alone, I don't think it's quite the caloric minimizer the label would lead one to suggest. Mouthfeel is thicker than water (which is better than just about every other beer of this type) and the head stayed longer than thirty seconds, which was nice.

In any event, it pours a mildly attractive reddish color. Nice malt backbone, some grain/yeast notes ... tastes like a real beer. One of the best of the "light" beers out there.

09-23-2007 04:36:09 | More by Overlord
Photo of Romulus141


3.35/5  rDev +2.8%

Poured into the Sam Adams Lager drinking glass.

Appearance: Pours a medium amber color into my glass. There is a pale, white head with decent retention. The lacing in this beer isn't that strong. When held up to the light, the beer glows red-orange. There are carbonation bubbles that float to the surface. Overall this is a healthy looking beer, very atypical of the "light" category.

Smell: Malts are the dominating characteristic here. The smell is somewhat sweet, and also gives hints of grains. Nothing complicated here.

Taste: It begins with a malty sweetness, which gives way to a nice balance of hoppy bitterness. There are also grains and oats in the flavor. The finish is crisp, and leaves no aftertaste. This balance of taste makes this the best "light" beer I've ever had. Truly, I'm not sure you can even consider this a true light beer, as its calorie content is higher than any other in this category. It is what it is, and it is enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: Light and carbonated, which is par for such a beer. It leaves no residue.

Drinkability: It'd be very easy to drink several of these, and with the lower calorie count, I guess that makes you feel less guilty. Truly, if this was offered on tap around my area, I'd probably buy pitchers of these somewhat often.

A good entry in the light category. It's nothing overly special, but it's worth a try.

09-23-2007 01:38:49 | More by Romulus141
Photo of Floydster


3.25/5  rDev -0.3%

Pint from Bad Dog Ale House in El Segundo

Pour was an almost see through golden color with no real head

Smell was nothing at really, maybe a little yeast

Tasted very nice for a light beer with a strong flavor at the end

Could drink several of these because it is about as light as a Michelob Ultra as far as ultra light brews go

09-21-2007 03:37:35 | More by Floydster
Photo of Brad007


4.83/5  rDev +48.2%

Pours a golden color with a very thin head. Aroma is one of malt and a bit of sweetness, much more than a typical light lager. Taste is much of the same except that it has a nice biscuity goodness to it. Goes down very smooth and tastes better than many other examples of the style that I have had.

No other light lager can come close to this one. This beer is perfection for the style as far as I'm concerned. Not many craft beer companies have even made light lagers. However, it's too bad that many macros cannot come close to matching a beer as good as this. It's not thin or watery, there are no adjuncts and it doesn't taste like a typical light lager. Could down a few of these on a warm day when I didn't feel like drinking heavier beers.

09-17-2007 02:01:52 | More by Brad007
Sam Adams Light from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
75 out of 100 based on 1,962 ratings.