Samuel Adams Bonfire Rauchbier - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 549 | Reviews: 234 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by AleEvangelist:
3.6/5 rDev +7.1%
A new offering to the Sam Adams line, the Bonfire Rauchbier admittedly concerns me. I had some bad experiences with a rauchbier once, and I don't think I ever fully recovered, but on to the review.
Appearance - The beer pours a flat, dark brown. Definitely what I expect to see from this style, but I believe a little more light coming through would set off the glass more. Head is very slight, with no staying power, little lacing.
Smell - Very little of this beer is actually present in the nose. When I first poured, I got some sweetness with some residual smoke. As I type this, I am getting less and less on the nose. Additional head may help with the aromatics on this beer.
Taste - The front of this beer is all malt. The finish, all smoke, but it's not overpowering. The authentic rauchbiers I've had in the past always tasted like what I imagine licking the bottom of a barbeque would taste like. Way too much smoke to be worth drinking. This beer moderates it some, like I'd hoped Sam Adams would do. The smoke lingers and lingers on, too, which is a nice touch. The finish turns this 3.5 taste into a 4.0 for me. Otherwise, the front of the palate is way too generic to be spectacular.
Mouthfeel - As with all Sam Adams' non-Imperial offerings, the mouthfeel leaves something to be desired. Letting the beer warm in the glass improves it, but it could definitely use a little more body.
Overall - Considering this is a style that I'm not terribly fond of, I have to give it props for not offending me. :) I like this much better than the more authentic Rauchbiers I've had. If I were rating it based on my preferences, I'd probably give it better numbers. However, to label this a rauchbier is definitely misleading. While many West Coast brewers take styles and kick them up to 11, Boston Beer Co's tactics seem to be to take potentially bold styles and make them more palatable. This is, essentially, a smoked version of the Octoberfest.
As a campfire beer, I think this one would rock pretty well. Labeled as a rauchbier, however, it is lackluster.
09-08-2011 03:09:06 | More by AleEvangelist
More User Reviews:
3/5 rDev -10.7%
Nice to see SA make a foray into the style,to bad the results were not better.Poured into a becker a clear bronze with almost no head at all to speak of,very uninspiring pour here.Aromas mainly of caramel malt with faint smoke,sweet on the palate with caramel flavors and a tinge of fruit,the smoke is subdued and relegated to a minor role.Eh just very average and uninspired in my opinion.
09-09-2011 21:38:47 | More by oberon
3.43/5 rDev +2.1%
I'm not sure if they repitch the yeast to effect the smoke nature but this is overall a touch thinner than I anticipated for a rauchbier. I didn't sample the Sam's retired rauch bier so I have no basis to compare there. Rauchbier is a marzen or March beer and can be a bit higher in alcohol content.
12-08-2011 00:17:36 | More by jeffress
4.22/5 rDev +25.6%
I love smoke beers and am looking forward to see what Boston Beer can do with the style.
The beer pours dark brown with red highlights and an off-white head. The aroma is pretty nice. I get some meaty smoke as well as some ash and a little bit of heavily roasted malts.
The flavor is more of the same. The ashy, meaty smoke is very strong and is the first thing you notice. I also get a little bit of roasted malt and chocolate in the flavor.
Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Overall, I am impressed.
10-16-2011 00:25:21 | More by Mora2000
3.63/5 rDev +8%
12oz bottle at fridge temp poured into a snifter. from the harvest collection 12 pack. best before MAR notched on the label.
pours out a clear deep, dark mahghony color with some red hues. thin off white/ light tan colored head that quickly faded to a ring and some patchy foam. no lace and just average head retention.
the intital aroma, i detect no smoke, just a sweet toasted malt and some fruity esters. as it warms the slightest hint of spicy charred wood makes itself known, almost perfumey, but just not enough to satisfy.
again, no real smoke when this beer is cold, as it warms it does take on a nice smoke character, meaty, bacon, charred wood like, but it is moderate and in balance with sweet toasty malts and some fruity esters. finishes with a very nice smoke flavor.
light to medium in body, a little too much carbonation.
overall, just not enough smoke to satisfy, if you want a rauchbier, stick to schlenkerla, straight intense smoke, which is what i like my rauchbiers to taste like. this is more of a beginer smoke beer. i would definatly drink this more on the warmer side.
10-02-2011 23:46:10 | More by dogfishandi
4.1/5 rDev +22%
Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.
Appearance: Deep brownish ruby red with a tint of orange. Lots of bubbles and a solid three fingers of off white head with decent retention and a decent amount of lacing.
Smell: A big aroma of smoke with some burnt dark malts and wood. Hints of chocolate and smoked red meats. Very smoky and somewhat sweet. Definitely smells like an outdoor bonfire.
Taste: Like the smell but a little more subtle. Sweet roasted caramel and toffee malts with a good amount of smoke. Hints of chocolate, wood and smoked meat. Pretty well balanced.
Mouthfeel: Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation. Creamy, smokey, and smooth.
Overall: A pretty good take on a smoked beer from Sam Adams. Smoke forward but very well balanced.
10-25-2011 03:23:55 | More by MattyG85
3.83/5 rDev +14%
Copper amber color with a light beige head that settles out quickly. Low aroma of phenolic smokiness, a hint of a floral note, and a low biscuity maltiness. Even flavor of smoked malt, a bit of bacon and band aid, but subtle and well-balanced. Mild offsetting bitterness, but nearly no hop flavors or aromas. Even mouthfeel, moderate carbonation. Very enjoyable beer, not over the top.
10-05-2011 13:41:50 | More by far333
3.48/5 rDev +3.6%
Brownish color, not much head to it. Smell was lightly smokey, nice not over the top. I'm a noob for rauchbier, can't take that gallon of liquid smoke type beer.
Relatively smooth, tail end of a campfire taste, relatively easy to drink for the style. No off tastes, hops or big challenges with this one, stays away from any meaty flavors. Mildly enjoyable, this is my kind of rauchbier.
10-13-2011 23:58:14 | More by Beerandraiderfan
4.1/5 rDev +22%
I really enjoyed this beer, I really enjoyed the sampler from Sam Adams the fall sampler is bringing their A game. Black Lager, Pumpkin, Boston Lager, Irish Red, Bonfire, Oktoberfest. Not a bad beer in the variety pack, this just happens to be the new release, pours a deep mahogany ruby tinted brown color with light beige head forming thick and leaving behind intricate lacing. Aroma has a nice air of smoked malts, a bit of charred wood, smoked meat but really compared to some of the German Rauchbiers out their this comes of mild with the smokiness the other elements that come to play included a nice caramel roasted toffee darker malt profile and light herbal hops. Flavor wise this beer is nice especially with smoked meats enough sweetness to balance but rich with smoked malts to add another level of complexity to whatever you're eating. Medium bodied big fall seasonal definitely wouldn't mind pairing this with a bonfire, perfect cooler weather beer too bad it's still August and balmy. I have a feeling we will be seeing this around until late fall, again great drinkable version of a classic German style.
08-26-2011 22:17:01 | More by WVbeergeek
3.6/5 rDev +7.1%
This beer pours a mohogany ruby color with a thin white head with a tan tint to it, into a Sam Adams glass. The head fades fast, leaving no lace.
This beer smells of charred wood. I get a charcoal aroma also. I get a little caramel sweetness too. A slight beef jerkey aroma mixes in as well.
This beer tastes much like it smells. Smokey charred wood and beef jerkey. A slight caramel sweet malty aroms is also present.
This beer leaves a smokey wood like aftertaste. It is carbonated just right for the style.
This beer wouldnt make a good session beer. The smokey flavor is a bit much for more than 1 bottle.
Overall: This beer is a bit over the top for most beer drinkers. As for Rauchbier drinkers, it is pretty decent. I am not a huge fan of the style, but I wouldnt turn this beer down in the future.
10-21-2011 03:02:44 | More by OStrungT
3.48/5 rDev +3.6%
Another one out of the fall variety pack. If there's been one underlying theme to these beers so far, its been simplicity. Not that they are bad, but just very straightforward, lacking any real complexities. Let's see if their Rauchbier follows suit.
Pour is light brown, crystal clear and clean. Short off-white head quickly dissipates to nothing, no lace, no film, nadda.
Nose is smoky, freshly cooked bacon, light hop presence as well, but not much else.
This is probably the tamest Rauchbier I've ever had. As with the nose, mild smoke and meat, malty, not much of a hop presence.
Rather light bodied, medium carbonation, I'm not sure I know anyone who would want to session a Rauch, but I guess this could do the trick because of its timid flavor profile.
Overall, this fits in perfectly with the rest of the fall pack, a pretty toned down version of a traditional style. Faint hints without really blowing your hair pack, simplistic, but good. Cheers!
09-10-2011 02:48:41 | More by mocktm
3.55/5 rDev +5.7%
This is a good brew. It grew on me. The smokiness dominates the flavor at first, but other flavors creep in as this beer warms up. It tasted good on an autumn evening. It looks pretty decent, dark brown with a little head. The nose is all smoked malt. The taste s a little more crisp than I suspected. The mouthfeel is good. The fullness of the beer is matched with crispness . I would not seek it out again, but I would drink it if it were around.
10-10-2011 21:31:42 | More by mentaltraveller
3.98/5 rDev +18.5%
Clear ruby-mahogany color with a 1cm foamy tan head. Medium retention with spotty lacing.
Nice smoky, earthy nose. Like smoky-leather and a touch of euro malt.
Flavor has a real nice smoke to it. Good balance. Quiet lingering smoke in the aftertaste. Mild tartness from euro malt.
Mouth is light bodied, fresh with medium carbonation.
Overall it's a nice Rauchbier. Exceeded my expectations. I recommend a try.
10-29-2011 17:43:51 | More by MrVonzipper
2.68/5 rDev -20.2%
Let me start by saying Sam Adam's Rauchbier is a smoked ale. That being said, it should turn a few people off right away. I'm generally not a fan, but it was in the Fall Harvest pack, and I won't turn away new beer. It's a darker color, not anywhere near porter, but still darker than your usual ale. The first sip tastes of smoked wood immediately followed by heavy malt. The mouthfeel reflects this flavor; very heavy and coats your entire mouth. If you are a fan of the smoke variety, I do expect you will like this, but if you're like me you should let this one ride.
08-13-2011 08:17:13 | More by dkoehler42
3.63/5 rDev +8%
Drink by Feb '12 notched on the label. Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Part of the Fall Harvest pack.
Brew pours a nice mahogany color with a very slim beige head.
Lots of roasted malt in the nose with definite notes of a nice smokiness. More of the same in the taste. Just a hint of smoked meat along with some caramel notes. Nice roasted malts in the flavor as well.
Medium body and carbonation.
My first go at a smoked beer, enjoyable but not sure if I'm digging the style to much.
11-03-2011 02:54:53 | More by BennyL1
3.95/5 rDev +17.6%
Pours a dark amber with 1/4" of bubbly head that quickly fades to nothing. Smell has obvious smokey malt notes. Taste is sweet caramel and toffee malts up front mixed with a woody smokiness that dominates the finish; there is also a fruity sweetness that I detect in the finish, though faint it's noticeable. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and crisp.
The smokiness takes away from the drinkability here, but this is still a drinkable beer, and a welcomed addition to the fall mixed pack.
08-24-2011 22:49:15 | More by tdm168
Samuel Adams Bonfire Rauchbier from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
77 out of 100 based on 549 ratings.