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

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Pale AleSamuel Adams Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

877 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 877
Reviews: 575
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 14.37%
Wants: 18
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.25% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-07-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 877 | Reviews: 575 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by JohnL9013:
Photo of JohnL9013


2.9/5  rDev -16.7%

A wonderful drain pour for me from Sam Adams.

A: The appearance is probably the only good feature of this beer. Nice half-inch head with some lacing and a pale-ale green-yellow.

S: Smells of light hops, light barley. Not much.

T: I'm sorry, but this beer is truly mediocre. I realize that Pale Ale isn't my style, but I've had other moderately priced Pale Ales before that not only impressed me, but blew this junk out of the water. There's just not enough flavor, and it's slightly too bitter, and almost sour from whatever citrus they added.

M: Way too carbonated and unpleasant. This is ultimately why I poured the remaining half down the drain...the unpleasant (lack of) taste combined with the unpleasant mouthfeel just creates the perfect storm of mediocrity for me.

D: Did I mention that I had to pour this beer down the drain?? I never have to do that!

Sorry, SA, but you need to look elsewhere.

04-11-2010 15:52:54 | More by JohnL9013
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

3.2/5  rDev -8%

Found this in my father inlaws garage fridge and grabbed a few to take home,poured into a standard pint glass a light clear golden with a tight pillowy one finger white head that settled nicely into a creamy mass.Light lemon and toasted grain notes in the nose mainly,quite clean on the palate hints of lemon, faint leafy notes,tea, with that underlying toastiness.Kinda ho hum flavors but its not bad,it could appeal to the people trying to venture into ale territory but for me just average.

01-05-2008 20:53:23 | More by oberon
Photo of ExtraStout


3.13/5  rDev -10.1%

It's a murky yellow, and the translucence allows you to see the carbon dioxide escape to the surface. The top presents a thin, patchy head, though most of the beverage surface is covered.

The smell is also on-point for the style, smells like an English Pale Ale. As with the smell, Sam Adams' tastes commonly run into each other. There are surely better pale ales out there, but there's a consistency and fulfillment of expectations that Sam Adams lovers expect. In that context, I deem it an average pale ale.

The mouthfeel's got the subtle hops, but the "specialty malts" have got to be your average pale malts. The hop presence offers a bit better feel than your baseline pale ale.

05-09-2010 03:14:20 | More by ExtraStout
Photo of SIRIUS2

North Carolina

3.3/5  rDev -5.2%

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a crystal clear pale yellow with abundant carbonation and a white soapy head of about 3/4" thick. Retention was decent, reducing down to a nice layer of uneven bubbles that stayed with the brew. Lacing was good.

S: Light malt and some modest hops; relatively well balanced.

T&M: For a pale ale, I would have expected more hops. This brew was very well balanced between light malts and hops and the relatively abundant carbonation and generally creamy texture made this feel pretty light on the tongue. Overall, the taste was about average and relatively refreshing.

D: Even though it was a bit light on the hops in my humble opinion, this was still a smooth easy to drink brew and was rather enjoyable. I nice summer brew on the back porch.

05-12-2008 00:17:12 | More by SIRIUS2
Photo of orbitalr0x


3.03/5  rDev -12.9%

Crystal clear golden yellow/orange pour with a half inch of bubbly white head on top. Steady bubbles rise up from the bottom. Aromas start off with crisp, lightly toast grains. Some lemon zest along with herbal, grassy hops. Biscuit tone underneath as well.

First sip brings a lightly toasted grain malt upfront that is somewhat sweet and dominates the flavor. Mellow citrus and light biscuit that is followed by some herbal, grassy hops. Flows down with just a hint of bitterness. Is it just me or does it seem like this one is seriously lacking in the hops department for a pale ale? Finishes with a lingering malt aftertaste. Kinda boring.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with plenty of carbonation that lends a nice creaminess. Fairly well spot on for a pale ale making it easy to consume. However, this one just ends up being a bit too underwhelming for me and doesn't have the hop profile I like in a pale ale. I'll be passing on this one next time.

07-20-2007 04:09:04 | More by orbitalr0x
Photo of chOAKbarrell


3.53/5  rDev +1.4%

Attractive golden color on the darker side. Sweetish malty nose, not hoppy like I'd expect. Smooth, unintrusive taste. The first impression I had of this beer was that it seemed to be more in the English Pale Ale style. The beer had some of the metallic characteristics of other English pale ales, like Samuel Smith's. This is as good as any other Sam Adams beer, but also what some people may interpret as being middle-of-the-road and forgettable.

07-13-2006 00:34:25 | More by chOAKbarrell
Photo of jonny1138


3/5  rDev -13.8%

06-21-2014 21:44:33 | More by jonny1138
Photo of lordofthewiens


3.4/5  rDev -2.3%

Part of the summer variety pack. Poured into a pint glass, it was a dark yellow with a medium head and a little bit of lacing. Aroma was some sweet grain, not anything else. Mildly hoppy taste. While it was crisp and refreshing as advertised, I didn't think it was that outstanding.

07-18-2007 16:39:34 | More by lordofthewiens
Photo of BK2084


3/5  rDev -13.8%

08-25-2012 03:07:05 | More by BK2084
Photo of twi1609372


4.05/5  rDev +16.4%

very nice ale. nice balance between full bodied and smooth. intricate taste, sort of unusually pale, but it's good. somewhat reminds me of spring ale, but a little more bodied. hard to find this here anymore but i woulden tpass it up when i do. never had a chance to try it but im sure it would be a great tap beer.

06-13-2004 08:08:21 | More by twi1609372
Photo of 40451


3.5/5  rDev +0.6%

05-19-2012 01:05:18 | More by 40451
Photo of marvin213

North Carolina

3.1/5  rDev -10.9%

Pale ales don't ever look overly impressive, but this is probably exactly what you want one to look like. It's a murky yellow, and the translucence allows you to see the carbon dioxide escape to the surface. The top presents a thin, patchy head, though most of the beverage surface is covered. I figure an "exceptional" pale ale might provide full coverage, but I'm confident this is a good-lookin' pale ale.

The smell is also on-point for the style, but what is it about Sam Adams beers that they offer that same distinguishing odor? Is it the Kent hops? Golding? I'm not knowledgable enough to specify it, but the beer otherwise smells like an English Pale Ale. But that lingering Sam Adams smell....

As with the smell, Sam Adams' tastes commonly run into each other. This is like a mixture of Sam regular with Sam Light. Does that a pale ale make? Surely not, but there's just not much to the taste. At what point do you just go normal, cheap BMC if you don't want a really good beer? There are surely better pale ales out there, but there's a consistency and fulfillment of expectations that Sam Adams lovers expect. In that context, I deem it an average pale ale.

The mouthfeel's got the subtle hops I previously mentioned, but the "specialty malts" have got to be your average pale malts. Though "hand-selected" hops could be just as blindly selected as machine-assorted ones, the hop presence offers a bit better feel than your baseline pale ale.

I never want another one, but I don't really like pale ales. Even if you do, I wonder how much of this you'd want to enjoy. The more experience with "better" beers I get, the more I wonder how pale ales continue to exist.

08-23-2009 19:39:41 | More by marvin213
Photo of generallee

New York

4/5  rDev +14.9%

Its appearance is golden yellow with a good white head that makes nice lacing. The aroma is light with sweet honey and light roasted malts. The hops are light in the nose adding some faint floral notes. There is a smooth malty flavor up front that is lightly roasted and sweet with hints of caramel. The hops are earthy and add a delicate bitterness towards the finish which is crisp and dry. The medium body and easy carbonation give it a creamy smooth mouth feel. Overall it's a very good easy drinking beer.

05-03-2008 12:31:04 | More by generallee
Photo of TimoP


4/5  rDev +14.9%

11-25-2011 07:31:43 | More by TimoP
Photo of Twifiter


3/5  rDev -13.8%

10-15-2012 20:28:06 | More by Twifiter
Photo of orm56


3/5  rDev -13.8%

12-23-2011 10:05:26 | More by orm56
Photo of Jason


4/5  rDev +14.9%

Full flavoured pale ale leaning towards English style, good balance to make for a beer that one could sit down and have a few and not be overwhelmed in any aspect. An all around good pale ale and a decent stab at the English style.

04-10-2002 19:16:29 | More by Jason
Photo of Rifrafboy


2.78/5  rDev -20.1%

Pours thick with a typical Samuel Adams head. Smell is very hoppy, with malt accents. The Taste is malty and sweet. I don't know if this is what a pale ale is supposed to taste like. Overall, a pretty decent beer. The problem I have with Samuel Adams is the the beers all taste pretty much the same. I drank this out of a sampler, and after a few they all tasted the same.

03-25-2003 16:09:50 | More by Rifrafboy
Photo of merlin48


3.63/5  rDev +4.3%

Pours a clear, amber body with a two finger, offwhite head that demonstrates good retention and laces the glass with considerable patching. Aroma features pale malt, a hint of caramel, and a restrained, but evident, English style, herbal/floral hops note. Mouthfeel is light bodied, and has medium carbonation. Very mild hops bite on the tongue. Taste is of a well balanced, British style, pale ale, similar to Bass. A sweet malt backbone is balanced by a subdued, but pleasant, hops presence. Don't expect an American style, IPA here. This is nowhere close to a hoppy, SNPA, but compares favorably to a Bass Pale Ale. Finish is clean, and slightly dry. Drinkability is very good. A very nice alternative if you're faced with a limited selection in a store or restaurant.

04-13-2004 11:41:55 | More by merlin48
Photo of tigg924


3.5/5  rDev +0.6%

From the variety pack

Appearance: gold in color, clear, moderate carbonation, 1 inch head

Smell: toasted malt and light citrus hops

Taste: toasted malt, grass, and light citrus hops

Mouthfeel: light bodied, moderate carbonation, nice mix of sweet and bitter.

Drinkability: An above average pale that very much tastes like a Sam Adams brew. Nothing I would get excited over, yet high quality, and one I could have a six of.

08-20-2010 19:47:29 | More by tigg924
Photo of LyonsHead


3.9/5  rDev +12.1%

12 oz bottle into a glass

A: Nice golden color, I think of honey when I see this beer

S: Malty hop balance, this is a sweet smelling beer

T: Tastes sweet but the hops are what mark this beers taste. They are a nice fruity flavor, almost lemony

M: light-body especially for Samuel Adams which is usually a brand of Fuller-bodied brews.

D: a very drinkable brew, thirst quencher, you could quite a few of these. Another good one from Sam

02-15-2009 18:04:38 | More by LyonsHead
Photo of Byeast


3.6/5  rDev +3.4%

Poured a clear, pure deep gold, with a small foamy white head. Smells pretty good, bit of bisquity malt in there , good dose of citrus thats on the lemon side and a hint of chalk(?). The flavor is a just bit thin for my liking, but what is there is not bad at all. First comes a quick flash of bitter leafy hops , then some medium bodied maltiness fills the feel and flavor out a bit, faint fruitiness, then more hops for a slightly lingering, bitter, and dry finish. Overall i think it would be a good beer to session , with its easy drinking qualities and soft light body,a good brew by BBC.

I liked this beer so much more once i let it warm just a bit, much better that way.

06-23-2007 04:56:22 | More by Byeast
Photo of jisak74

3.5/5  rDev +0.6%

04-20-2012 23:18:16 | More by jisak74
Photo of Cavanaghty


3.75/5  rDev +7.8%

04-26-2012 22:58:17 | More by Cavanaghty
Photo of bsp77


3.48/5  rDev 0%

Part of Sam Adams Summer Pack.

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Nonic Imperial Pint.

Appearance: Pale, burnished yellow with minimal head. Very clear, looks like a lager.

Smell: Cereal grains, semi-sweet malts, and very slight British hop presence.

Taste: Grainy, about halfway between sweet and dry. Not much bitterness at all, just a very mild Fuggles taste.

Feel: Medium carbonation and body. Semi-dry finish (prefer drier for the style).

Drinkability: It's an English Pale Ale, so of course it's drinkable, but there are many better to choose from.

I would rather have the Sam Adams Boston Ale, which despite it's claim to be an old style American Stock Ale, is very much an English Pale Ale in my book.

04-26-2009 22:08:11 | More by bsp77
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Samuel Adams Pale Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
79 out of 100 based on 877 ratings.