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.

1,912 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,912
Reviews: 815
rAvg: 3.26
pDev: 18.4%
Wants: 21
Gots: 58 | 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)
View: Beers (127) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sam Adams Light Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,912 | Reviews: 815 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BeerSox


3.78/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into pilsner glass.

Ultra clear amber color with an off white one inch head that has decent retention, especially for a light lager.

Sweet and grainy, with a stronger (and better) smell than other light lagers.

Cracker like malts with maybe a tiny hint of hop bitterness in the back of the tongue, but you really have to look for this. Thin bodied with high carbonation gives it a sharp feel. The finish (yes, there is a finish) is some lingering grain.

For the beer enthusiast, this is a good light lager to try. You're not going to get any outstanding characteristics or bursts of flavors, but you are going to get a relatively flavorful light lager that's made with 100% two-row barley malt, rather than adjuncts. I don't normally drink this style of beer, but if I did, this would be my choice.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2006 23:42:45 | More by BeerSox
Photo of MiScusi


1.98/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I understand what they are aiming for in this beer, and the reason I score it so low is because it is so highly carbonated that it almost hurts when it hits your tongue. It made it almost undrinkable to me. That and it still has that "cheap beer" feel regardless of being all-natural or whatever they claim. It looks nice in a glass though, at least for a light lager.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2006 23:18:35 | More by MiScusi
Photo of RJLarse


2.9/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a six pack of Sam Adams Light to taste and review. I poured this beer in to a pint tumbler.

Pours a pale copper color and is clear. A small bubbly head forms, and dissipates quickly to nothing.

The smell is very faint. Malted grain aroma is about it.

The taste is cereal, grain, with a mild hop finish.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery.

This is a drinkable beer, but not a very compelling one. It is average or below average in almost every respect. Still it is very sessionable, and would be a good thirst quencher on a hot day.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2006 04:46:50 | More by RJLarse
Photo of

2.4/5  rDev -26.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz. bottle

Clear gold in color, medium sized white head.

Not much aroma, seemed to be more malt than hops.

Taste followed aroma. I prefer hoppier beers, and this one certainly wasn't. Cracker kind of taste characterized the malt character. Hops faintly pine. Left an aftertaste I really didn't like.

Mouthfeel was light in body, with medium to high carbonation. Sweet/wet finish.

Overall, I just don't like this beer. Lack of hops and an unpleasant aftertaste pretty much finished this off for me. I had tried it some time ago and didn't like it, then decided to give it another go. Unfortunately, first impression was accurate.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2006 19:47:27 | More by
Photo of tgbljb


3.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a pale golden color with moderate white puffy head. Pour retention.
Smell is very light for a sweet maltiness.
Taste id also very light, witha faint sweet maltiness backed by an even fainter note of hops
Thin in the mnouth with little taste retention.
Nothing offensive about the beer, but little flavor.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2006 12:58:31 | More by tgbljb
Photo of rhoadsrage


3.85/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(Served in an American pint glass)

A-This beer has a golden yellow body that is crystal clear. There is a strong carbonation of bubbles supporting a thin white head that fades pretty quickly.

S- The clean light smell of dry malt with a slight sweetness had a hint of green hops as it warmed. Very soft over all.

T- The taste of dry pale malt has a fresh note with a faint depth of toasted hint. There was a smooth faint noble hop finish but it didn't really have any bitterness to it.

M- This beer has a light mouthfeel with a tiny fizz that makes the finish pretty clean.

D- This beer is smooth and light but it has much more flavor than any other beer in this style that I have tasted.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2006 02:31:55 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of afinepilsner


3.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz brown bottle

Sam Adams Light was a light amber color with an off-white head. The head was medium in size with decent retention. The aroma was light with some sweet malt, a little hops and a touch toasty. The taste was sweet malt with a hint hops and a dry finish. The body was medium-light with medium carbonation. Drinkabilty was good for a light beer. This is the best light beer I have tried so far.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2006 22:20:33 | More by afinepilsner
Photo of beeroclock

United Arab Emirates

2.78/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The bottle is very professional looking. nice and sleek, the bottle's graphics has changed since the picture on this site. Very appealing just as the bottle. Once poured, it's even more amazing. The first thought is "this is a light beer??" as it looks like a regular Sam Adams w/ a dark color, copper and carbonated w/ a nice head that fades quickly, mild lacing. Smell is average, I'm actually not picking up a lot from it. Taste is not as much as I had hoped, maybe the appearance got me excited. I am picking up some corn type of flavors. Maybe a slight sweetness in there as well. Mouthfeel is nothing special, some carbonation, thats it. It's ok, one of the better light beers, but still not great. I would bring this to a get together of non-appreciative beer drinkers, those that wouldn't appeal to some of the better beers out there.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2006 01:25:43 | More by beeroclock
Photo of DogFood11


3/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I can enjoy a light offering now and again and this has a reputation for being one of the better light beers around so I had to pick up a sixer. It pours much darker than any light offering I've had. It is a light shade of copper with lots of racing carbonation.

Malted body is the theme here. Sweet malts with underlying light fruitiness and a slight hop twinger. Sweetness seems to come from a fresh baked breadiness and is somewhat balanced out by a slighty spiced hop presence. This is unlike any light brew I've had. This one has taste and doesn't come across as corny or adjunct riddled.

Notes: Although this won't make it to my fridge to often, I won't turn a nose to this well brewed beer. If I want something on the lighter side a good German pils will do it for me every time but Sam Adams is usually more available and a decent tasting brew.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2006 18:16:08 | More by DogFood11
Photo of teg8612


3.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Not your typical light beer. Light amber, almost copper color. White head with a thick cap and some decent lacing.

S- Clean. Malt is somewhat grainy. Hops are subtle. The whole smell thing is mild but inviting.

T&M- Malt has a dextrin sweetness to it with only a hint of hop bitterness. finish is also sweet. Light bodied though not watery with good carbonation. Clean.

D- This is a fine light lager. Nothing comes close in the category. Not lawnmower type but good for a night out with many brews. I would reach for a lighter style first if that's what I wanted like a kolsch or helles but this will work.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2006 13:26:19 | More by teg8612
Photo of asabreed

New York

2.93/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance:A darker yellow color, though not really all that close to amber. Lots of bubbles floating to the top, and actually a decent net of white lacing clinging to the middle of the glass.

Smell: Seems like a lot of dextrin sweetness and maybe DMS, though I doubt the latter since they're using what they say they use. Can't discern much other than the malt sweetness; there's hardly any hops in the nose.

Taste: Again, a lot of seemingly artificial sweetness and hardly any hops, which is a big disappointment. I can discern maybe a bit of darker German malts, but that's about it.

Mouthfeel: I wish there was more carbonation, as it's slightly watery, though still fairly full-feeling I suppose somehow.

Drinkability: I'd take this light beer over others I imagine, but at the same time, why not just have a regular Sam Adams lager? More hops, more body, more taste, and probably not a lot more calories a bottle.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2006 18:56:13 | More by asabreed
Photo of barleywinebrewer

New Hampshire

3.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Another brew with a ton of reviews. My 2 cents - great for the summer at a restaurant eating outside. This tasting was in an indoor event and it involved multiple appetizers crossing quite a few taste spectrums. Good choice for the evening but not one that pick up for enjoyment during the week.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2006 18:00:43 | More by barleywinebrewer
Photo of tattooedtolley


3.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Darker amber in color, big head left lots of lacing.

Smell: Surprisingly some smell here, I didn't expect that from a light beer, a bit of malts, a bit of hops.

Taste: Nice balance between the hops and malts, with the malts winning.

Mouthfeel: Light and crisp.

Drinkability: I can't imagine anyone reading this that couldnt session it.

Overall, good for a "light" beer. I always think "light" as the body of the beer, so I'm not sure if thats what Boston Beer was going for or the whole calorie thing. Either way, I am never in the mood for anything called light but I would pick this up for guests who I know would rather have something along these lines.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2006 14:47:02 | More by tattooedtolley
Photo of jwc215


3.55/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Light copper with a fizzy head that, unfortunately doesn't stick around.

Some vague fruity hoppiness is present. Actually has a beer-type aroma, unlike the macro-lights, for the most part.

It's watered down malt and hops. Some graininess, too. Unfortunately, there is a metallic edge to it. Still, it has some actual flavors, again - unlike most other lights.

It has a watery thinness to it, but the flavors hold on. the sweet malt and bitter hops are well-blended. This is certainly better than the typical macro light by far. Still in all, it is a light beer, and has an unfortunate metallic taste (though mild). I bought this in a restaurant to try it, but switched to regular Sam Adams Lager just after it. The latter is much better, but for a light beer, this one is not bad at all.
Scores reflective of light beer style.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2006 02:52:56 | More by jwc215
Photo of MrHurmateeowish

New Hampshire

3.73/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Amber in color with a very thin light tan head. Smells hoppy with some malt. Tastes somewhat sweet with some hops too. Slight hints of roast. Not too strong in flavor, but by far the most flavorful low calorie beer I've ever had. Light medium body. In the right situation, I can see myself having this. It's a decent beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2006 00:24:30 | More by MrHurmateeowish
Photo of tastybeer

North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is way better than most light lagers. I can smell it and even taste it! It also has a solid deep amber color to it. Nose is sweet and malty. reminds me of toasted buttery oats. Taste is likewise. Not extreme, but for the style the best yet. Crisp and clean with some actual body. Nice pleasant mouthfeel, brisk, clean and slightly coating. Unoffensive in any way and actually enjoyable.

If seeking giant flavor and a healthy dose of hops, then stay clear of light beer. If your plan is to consume, a lot fairly soon, then this is for you.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2006 03:33:02 | More by tastybeer
Photo of wedge

North Carolina

3.6/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bright golden amber - foamy white head. Faint sweet malt aroma with a rich, toasty butterscotch note that I've never found in a light beer before. Solid flavor...nothing really sticks out but there's not a nasty or overly cheap taste to be found. Sweet with a grainy aftertaste. Solidly carbonated, better-than-light mouthfeel.

Real good for a light beer and no adjuncts either which is a huge plus. Suprisingly only 10-20 more calories than most of the others...not that I care.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2006 03:06:22 | More by wedge
Photo of Freshie


3.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark golden colour, with decent head that dissapates to the sides and laces nicely. Very active carbonation. Is this a light beer?!

Smells of caramel malt and something fruity, like an apple, or any other various crisp fruit, maybe a pear?

The taste is surprisingly flavourful for light beer. Rich sweet malt, and fruitiness that comes later. The carbonation leaves a bite in your mouth and makes this beer very crisp.

Very very drinkable, hence the high score. I can absolutely enjoy this anytime.

Cheers to SA for once again a great light beer, most likely the best!

Serving type: bottle

09-16-2006 01:31:39 | More by Freshie
Photo of veech


3.63/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is far and away the best american macro light out there. A: Deep golden with a nice level of carbonation and head esp. for a light beer S: Light maltiness, with some very mild citrus hints and a touch of hopped bitterness all on the mild side. T: Very close to the aroma with understated flavors of what the nose hints at. More body than you would expect from a light lager without being filling M: Good viscosity with enough feel to coat one's mouth without affecting the drinkability which is very good. To put it simply, this is a beer drinker's light beer with enough taste to satisfy without resorting to levels of heaviness that would exclude it from being classified a light lager. Another nicely done product from Sam A.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2006 12:45:37 | More by veech
Photo of beerphilosopher


3.58/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Okay, I don't often imbibe in "light" beers, but I wanted to see how Sam Adams stacks up. Pours a nice golden color...darker and richer than it's macro cousins. Huge, fluffy white head and a lot of lacing in the pint glass. Nose is quite malty...but wait, Ido smell some hops in here, I believe. Palate is definitely on the light side, but not completely tasteless. Malty and easy going, with just enough hop character to keep it interesting. Mouthfeel is light and the finish, dry. A light beer that actually has a flavor profile, albeit slight. Definitely beats the macro competition in the light lager category.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2006 22:01:00 | More by beerphilosopher
Photo of mcarroll10177


3.48/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

poured from the bottle into an imperial pint glass

A- carmel brown with a nice off white head and some good lacing on the glass.

S- some malt some hops, the fact that this has any nose at all is amazing for a light beer

T- some balanced hops and a clean finish

M- a bit light but some decent carbination balances it out

D- SA beers are always very drinkable, this is not an execption. If I had to drink a light beer this is the only one I would drink.

Notes- light beers are not my thing; and honestly this beer borders on whether it is actually a light beer. However, none of the awful chemical adjucts that are added to lights are present in this beer. So one has to say this is the standard of what semi light beers should aspire too.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2006 16:32:53 | More by mcarroll10177
Photo of dherling

New Jersey

3.53/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

In the world of light beers, this is a good one. It drinks like a decent brew, but with fewer calories, if you are intersted in that sort of thing. It pours clean with a foamy just off white head. The taste is straight forward, a little malt, a decent amount of hops, but basically a watered down experience. If you are looking to go light, this is a great choice. If you're looking for refreshing beer, you could do a lot worse.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2006 04:39:16 | More by dherling
Photo of cjgator3


3.25/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear amber color with a white creamy head that quickly forms into a thin lace. This is a light beer? Amazing, this is the darkest light beer I have ever seen. Aroma is malty with a slight amount of hops as well. Taste is much like the smell in that it is malty with a mild hop flavor. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Decent brew but excellent light lager. Good job by Boston Beer Company in making such a good light beer. At 4% abv this would make a decent session beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2006 20:42:37 | More by cjgator3
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


3.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12 ounce standard brown glass bottle with a “Sam Adams” embossed shoulder. Classic Sam Adams label design with a light silver colored background. ‘Sam Adams’ in dark blue lettering above a red banner that has the words ‘LIGHT’ in a silvery gray color. Looks slightly different to the bottle pictured in the BA Database. Crown cap and neck label is color coordinated with the main label. No strength listed but it has a prominently nicked purchase before “Nov 2006” Brewery-Fresh date.

Appearance: Sturdy looks, fresh copper body when not back lit but closer examination reveals a light amber body, either it is very much darker than I expected. Dirty white head leaves a great looking ½” thick beige cap that leaves some smattered lacing on the walls of my Glass. I actually dunked two 12 ounce bottles into my large 24 ounce Mug, and it looked damn fine.

Nose: Clean malts, some grain and a low brow hoppy tone. Gentle yeast with a dried hay body. The strength is medium but the simple schnozzle does more than enough to maintain interest and convince you that this may not even be a Light beer. Could be better though.

Taste: Two tone body, sweet-ish malts with a light bitterness and a little more sweetness in the finish. Carbonation helps to get the tastes that are here to all the nooks and crannies. Fulfilling, in a not-so Light way.

Mouthfeel: A very clean brew, brisk malts and soft carbonation give this one a well above average feel in the mouth for a light beer at least. Satisfying body with a medium-plus composition.

Drinkability: This is a damn fine Light beer, and one that I could drink all night with little hassle. If anything the flavors may become a tad staid after the first Six-Pack, but nothing but praise from me for this, this is in fact the *only* Light beer that I have ever grabbed a second bottle of.

Overall: Quietly impressive, hard to get too excited about this brew, as Light beer is not one of my favorite “genre styles”, I like some “balls” in my beer. That said, this is no disappointment either, in fact given this in a blind tasting I will freely admit that, if I had not tried this before, I would have never thought it was a Light beer at all, to me it is more of a Mild Ale than a Light Beer.

The darkest, tastiest, heaviest “Light” beer that I have ever had. Great stuff from SamA’s and a beer that could well push boundaries and open up new frontiers for many a fledgling craft beer drinker; it has to be applauded for that alone. Well crafted and cleverly constructed.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2006 05:23:57 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of ColoradoBobs


3.55/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Moderately vigorous pour produces a large off-white head that quickly fades and leaves minimal lacing over a clear amber body. Decent looking beer for a light lager.

Smell is remarkably malty and relatively intense for an l.l.

Taste falls off a bit, but still good. Not very hoppy or very malty, but pretty pleasant.

Mouthfeel is where this brew suffers: it's really just pretty thin.

If you like the taste -- and I do -- you could drink a lot of these.

Overall, a pretty decent beer, for a light lager. Still, this is not a stand-alone brew: it goes great with food.

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2006 03:51:38 | More by ColoradoBobs
Sam Adams Light from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
75 out of 100 based on 1,912 ratings.