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Sam Adams Light - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Sam Adams LightSam Adams Light

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,079 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,079
Reviews: 823
rAvg: 3.26
pDev: 18.71%
Wants: 31
Gots: 124 | 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)
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Ratings: 2,079 | Reviews: 823 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of spaceranger
3.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

What can you say? It is, afterall, a LIGHT beer. When the finest brewers in the universe attempt to make something LIGHT it's gonna get screwed up. BUT - if light is what you want then this is one of the very few (2) that is worth a drink...If taste is what you want don't drink LIGHT.

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

The only reason I gave it a four, is because it is the best Light Lager I've drank. When poured, it was a medium golden in color with a slight reddish hue.

The smell of lightly roasted malts and hops was evident in the aroma. The flavor was a surprise. I tasted the mild malts and hops, but, I could also pick up a hint of citrus and it seemed like just a hint of corriander.

A fine balanced Light Lager you have here. For me a pleasant surprise on the flavor of this light lager!

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

Tried this with a Sam Adams rep last night.

Pours a very light amber with very active carbonation. Nice head that faded quickly. Much more color than any other light beer that I have tasted. The nose is uninspiring. It has that very typical "beer" smell that is present in so many domestic macros, i.e. total lack of hops and odd grains. On the palate it is again unexciting, but certainly not offensive. Sweet grains to begin with and only the slightest hop presence in the finish. Oddly enough I thought that the alcohol was discernable on the palate. The mouthfeel is light but not watery. It has active enough carbonation that I knew there was a beer in my mouth. Impressive for a light beer. Given that it is a light beer the drinkability is fairly high. There is not much to it, so if you like the taste you could easily throw them down.
Overall it is the best light beer that I have ever encountered. Unfortunately that isn't saying a whole lot.

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

12 oz. bottle poured into a mug.

Appearance: The color is fairly nice, a light amber/dark orange color. The head unfortunately goes away (almost entirely) rather quickly.

Smell: Grains, malts, hops, and fruit. But unfortunately it's got some rather nasty undertones that defy description.

Taste: Mostly grains and malts. Plus a bit of hops. Not really complex, but the flavor is nice and isn't watered down at all. Sometimes the aftertaste gets a bit of the nasty flavor that the smell has... this seems to increase over time, for some reason.

Mouthfeel: A light- to medium-bodied beer, to my surprise. Generally smooth feel. Tingly with carbonation, but a bit too much for my liking (makes it feel a bit gritty going down at times).

Drinkability: A fairly drinkable light beer. Goes down alright; low but sufficient ABV. Unfortunately the nastiness becomes a bit bothersome after a while.

One of the better light beers I've had -- it has flavor and body. Could definitely drink a lot of these with ease if it weren't for this inexplicable and indescribable nasty smell and taste. When you start, usually it's fine but with some sips it's a bit nasty. But then every sip begins to have this nasty aftertaste. I'd probably ignore this one unless someone offered it to me for free. Basically, if you really want a light beer, try this one. Otherwise, no need to bother...

Photo of AChamberlain
3.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Goldish color with a thin head, which fizzled out quickly. If there is anything bad about this light beer it is the smell, it is quite repulsive. Luckily, it tastes much better and can be very refreshing. It is best served very cold and is a great beer to drink while watching a baseball game. When I settle down for the Met's game, this is a perfect partner.

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

Appearance - goldish color, little head. not the typical light beer.

Smell - sweet smell to it, little hops, more malt

Taste - weak beer, but it is still good.

Mouthfeel - not much carbonation, very good.

Drinkability - since it is a light beer, you can drink more, right?

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

Best before September 2006. Served in a pint glass at fridge temperature.

Appearance- Pours a clear medium gold, with a loud, popping white head that recedes gently to a thin mat. Surprisingly active in the glass, small bubbles rush to the surface.

Smell- Grains and malt primarily envelop the nose, what a nice change to not smell corn and vegetables in a light beer. Very clean and honest... great for the style.

Taste- Very watered down version of a great beer... you can grasp the malts and hops easily, and they're good... just fleeting and wimpy. The finish is over before it even starts, and it's a bit sweet. The hops do lend a bright, hoppy bitterness right at the end.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Though the carbonation is certainly more than adequate, it is borderline aggressive... the bubbles are knife-edged and sharp texturally. But more is better with this beer, and I enjoy the light but full mouthfeel. A bit gassy in the stomach, and after one I'm not thinking about following it up with another.

Photo of acrawf6
3.63/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours out a dark straw/orange with a white head.

Smell. All malts; nice sweet malts, small caramel aroma and a touch of tea.

Taste. Toasty malts and sweet. It has a nice flavor, especially for a light beer, but this is pretty much all it get in the taste. Aftertaste is about the same as the taste, nothing new.

Mouthfeel is good for a light beer, but is on the light side. Balance is ok, carbonation level is good.

Overall, a decent beer, and a very good light beer. Not one I would get often though- much rather get the lager.

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

This is not bad for a light beer. Had one at the Norfolk Tides game at Harbor Park. Nice copper color, a fairly good head, good lacing in the plastic cup. Decent smell and taste not too far off from Traditional Lager. The mouthfeel was a bit weak and watery. Given the choice, I prefer the higher calorie version but this would make a good session beer. No bad aftertaste or anything that I would find annoying over an evening.

Photo of plaid75
3.08/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice dark copper hue with a finger of foamy head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell was very subtle. There were minor malt and hop aromas. A bit of a grainy element.

The taste had a light malt sweetness and a decent hop presence. It was well balanced. There was a definite biscuity aftertaste. Really nothing to write home about. Tastes a bit like a low end micro effort. Pocono lager comes to mind.

The mouthfeel was rather light, but not thin. Very carbonated.

This is a drinkable beer. However, since in terms of calories it isn't really a light beer, I really would not opt for this beer again. For 40 more calories I'd go for the Boston Lager.

Photo of bignick
3.65/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle, consumed numerous times.

This is a very good light beer. It truly is a lighter version of Sam Adams Boston Lager, in the way it drinks and tastes. There is a nice caramelly maltiness with a little hop bite. The body is thin, but it is decently full-bodied for a light beer. While I could drink this beer all night, the thiness gets tiresome, the metallic after taste starts to catch up.

Photo of jasonjlewis
4.6/5  rDev +41.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I just got home from the bar where i sample various beers. I cleansed my pallet before each.
Sam Adam's light had a great smell for a light beer.
My first sip on my tongue and I said hmmm, not impressed ( I run over all of my taste buds). then when I went to swallow I was surprised (it hit the back ones). It tastes like regular sam adams but with less of a bite. A little more watery. But tthat slides for light beers.
However, I wouldn't suggest this beer, just go for sam Adams. The carbs and calories are still high, which makes drinking it pointless.
Overall this beer is excellent especialy for a light beer. I rated other beers that aren't as good as this higher. I thnk for what this is going for, I believe a vienna lager type beer, it could do a little bit better. But then again, it is a light beer.

Photo of barleyman
2.63/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the 12 oz. brown bottle into my straight sided tumbler.
One inch head dissolves down to a nice brussels lace. An amber color which is quite dark for a light beer. Very little aroma of any kind, detecting a very slight malt aroma. With a bit of aeration, a slight hop aroma can be detected. Taste is of malt with a bit more hop flavor than aroma. There are no off aromas of corn or rice, which is a pleasant change. Mouthfeel is average, as is the drinkability. Here is a sessionable beer for a day at the lake or while doing chores in the summer heat.


Photo of Applesauce1
2.55/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

First time for me trying this beer. Overall, I'm not very impressed. Of course, I wasn't expecting much from a light beer.

Pours a copper color with a half inch head.
Smells like a macro with a little less skunk.
Taste is better, however than any other light beer I've had before. Still, there's not much here as far as taste.
Goes down pretty easy.

Photo of jettjon
3.03/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Highs: None
Lows: Compares poorly to the regular Sam Adams lager

Pours golden/amber clear with bubbles and a moderate head that fades away fairly quickly. Nose is of light hops and malt. Flavor is malty and overly sweet, with a diminished hops flavor compared to the orginal. Actually, there is no comparison to a regular Sam Adams Lager, which I consider to be one of the best lagers out there. It’s just too sweet/malty. Drinkability is average.

Overall: Avoid it and drink the original.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is light copper amber hued with a nicely formed off white foam head leaves even lacing down my pint. Aroma contains a touch of caramel in the malts with herbal hops showing up in the scent as well. Taste has a smooth mild sweetness, touch of caramel toasty nut from the the specialty malts finishes mildly bitter with herbal hops. Mouthfeel is lighter bodied evenly carbonated not watery but light. Drinkability is very smooth and refreshing with ample flavor one of the best tasting light beers available in the US market.

Photo of geexploitation
3.55/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Good for a light beer but not good for a beer. Pours a very clear amber with a small white head. Aromas are mostly of grains, with minimal hops. The taste is quite sweet up front, and that sweetness lingers in spite of the emergence of more malt notes. There's a slight bitter snap combined with some fizzy carbonation, but nothing terribly tasty or interesting. As expected, this is a very mild beer -- slight flavor, light-medium body, pretty drinkable. But this beer is actually pretty caloric... why not absorb a few more calories, drink one less beer over an evening, and get something that has more taste. Forget Sam Light... get a real beer.

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

darker and fuller bodied than a regular light beer. more tastey than the regular light beer. easier to drink than a regular light beer. why? because its not really a light beer. i guess the light means its lighter in alc. because as far as calories go is in the same ballpark as regular brews. but for what it is, its clean, suprisingly malty, balanced and def. a solid brew. a great bbq/summer beer.

Photo of acarroll413
3.93/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this into a glass.

A- Very surprising for a light beer. It had a nice amber color. I was expecting some yellowish/gold color like you get from the cheap macros, but I was impressed.

S- I couldn't smell anything, so not much to report here.

T- Very smooth. It was carbonated, which I like a lot. It had a wonderful light flavor but still full enough to be satisfying.

M- Easy, very easy man.

D- Shit yeah, I'll drink this again.

Photo of oldirtycaffrey
3.38/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Excellent light beer. Can Sam Adams do any wrong? (Well, yes...see my review for their Cranberry Lambic). Sam Adams light is average in appearance & smell -- pours a light amber color, with a nice hint of malt in the smell. For a light beer, the taste is surprising. It has a bit of a kick, with a nice mixture of malt and hops. With a mild but still prominent carbonation, SA Light is easy to drink and makes an excellent session beer. For my money, this is definitely the best commonplace choice out there for a light beer.

Photo of adam42381
3.9/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Remember that this is a light beer, because otherwise, it tastes just ok. It's still better than any other American macro full-bodied.

Color is about what you would expect from a full flavor macro.

Smell is decent, not great.

Mouthfeel is not too heavy.

Extremely high drinkability due to it being a great tasting light beer. Good choice for a light beer overall.

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.1/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A light yellow color with light brown undertones. Head was small, but visible.
Didn't smell much of anything, but I was at a smokey bar.
Taste had bits of dill, malt and lemon. Not too bad for a light beer. Clean finish, dry and smooth
Very drinkable if you want to drink a lot.

Photo of casualbeerman
3.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I was really eager to try this beer. Not because I'm desperate for a light beer that tastes good, but because I thought it might stand up well on its own. You see, for those of you who can't believe this is a light beer, I know the explanation. It's not really that light. Whereas say an Amstel Light is about 95 calories per 12oz serving, Sam Light is 120 calories for 12oz. Now if you're one of the people who still thinks this is a lame watered down version of the flagship Sam Adams Boston Lager, you're right too. Its made with the same two row barley and the same German Noble aroma hops as the origional, yet somehow serves up I think 30 less calories per 12oz (I'm guessing on that one, but I think regular Sam is 150 calories a bottle). So if you think Sam Adams Light is a typically lame light beer, it is because you are a person who likes beer that's heavy on the taste and probably think most beers lighter than the regular Boston Lager are weak. If your normal beer is oh say Heineken or Becks or something even weaker, you will think Sam Adams Light tastes just like a real beer. If you drink heavier, stronger stuff you'll think something is missing. Oh wait I'm supposed to give my opinion too aren't I?

Appearance- The color was ok. Still a pretty dark tan, the head is definately weaker than normal Sam Adams though.

Smell- Smells like a decent beer. Like a normal Sam Adams, but weaker. Shocked aren't you?

Taste- I was definately disappointed. I thought a slightly lighter more drinkable Sam Adams might be worthwhile not just as a light beer, but as a regular beer. Maybe it would be but this beer is a badly done version of that. Whatever procceess they used removed some of the good depth of regular Sam, and left a slightly wierd aftertaste too. Mind you, this wasn't a bad beer. It'd be a good option over some non-light lagers of lower quality (MGD for example), but it is NOT a serious option where really good beer is available. Especially not at the premium price.

Mouthfeel- Lighter than regular Sam, actually heavier than many Macro style lagers. Pretty near to what I usually drink actually.

Drinkability-Disappointing. I can definately think of heavier, higher calorie beers that are more drinkable and thirst quenching than this. Saranac
"Smooth" (Dunkel) Lager for just one example. I mean I could definately drink several of these in a sitting, but there are a lot of beers I rate higher in this category.

Conclusion- Ok, its not a bad beer, I didn't hate it. But I'm not really that concerned about beer as a source of calories anyway. I don't drink enough where it really matters, and like I already said this isn't very low in calories for a light beer anyway. And while it tastes ok, there are a lot of beers I'd rather drink (regular Sam included), so its probably going to be a while before I have another of these. I mean if someone just handed me one I'd drink it and be glad, but I could say that of an MGD as well.

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.05/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

"Best Light Beer"
-2005 DarkerTheBetter Beer Awards

This beer pours an orange copper color with a slight tan creamy head. Smells of oat malt, honey, lime and banana. Tastes like… Is this a light beer? Wow! …Oat and barley malt with a nice nip of hops, smooth burnt caramel and a buttery, sour citrus finish. The mouth feel is medium-light with lots of carbonation. I seriously have trouble believing that this is a “light” beer.

Photo of daliandragon
3/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Wow, I'm almost impressed that Sam's thinks enough of it's light lager to include it in the Winter Mixed 12 pack. I haven't given light beer any serious concern for several years. Post college I downed the Amstels, until I trealized that a lack of flavor wasn't much better than bad flavor and a few calories isn't worth missing out on the good stuff for. My brother, a maven of light beers, ranks this second best behind Beck's (but he also highly rates their regular offering, which I don't, really.
This beer has a light brown/orange color and light cap of ivory head, just like its more burley counterpart namesake. The nose is more direct with hops predominant but adjuncts raise their head as well.
Drinking this beer directly after a standard Boston Lager is revealing, as you can see right where they took that beer and removed some calories and taste. The caramel malt flavor is watered down and the hoppy bite is largely nonexistant. Overall is feels thinner and less substantial in the mouth. Also, I dislike carbonation generally but this brew could step it up a bit, its crispness factor is minimal and shows few signs of life from lips to gullet...it just kind of flows anonymously.
An interesting experiment but not really too enlightening. It hasn't raised my opinion of light beers too much. I can drink it without hating myself but I still wouldn't choose it over regular Sam's or any other half decent beer.

Sam Adams Light from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
75 out of 100 based on 2,079 ratings.