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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.

883 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 883
Reviews: 575
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 14.37%
Wants: 20
Gots: 17 | 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: 883 | Reviews: 575 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sabrills70
3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle with a best before date of September 2007. Pours a crystal clear deep gold with a 2 finger head that faded rather quickly, but had decent lace. Deep honey malt aromas with a slight citrus smell mixed in. Upon first tasting its a big honey malt followed by a subdued hop flavor finishing with a decent mix of the two. Pretty evenly balanced. Not a ton to think about here, but thats what makes it nice. Lots of big bold flavors but they are very straight forward and blend nicely. A nice session beer.

sabrills70, Jun 03, 2007
Photo of daledeee
3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours into a golden clear with a nice fluffy head; kind of mirange looking. The head goes away and leaves a skim of bubbles. The nose is mild. Maybe a hint of malt but not much worth reporting. Taste is kind of boring but not bad. Not much hops with some malt and hops at the finish. Medium carbonation on the tongue; a little seltzer like. This is tamed down Samuel Adams. Mouthfeel is average and not annoying. Easy to drink but not very strong flavored. I tend to like stronger flavored beer regardless of the style. This is OK to drink but not remarkable.

daledeee, Jan 05, 2008
Photo of davidshamoon
3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Samuel Adams Pale Ale is no epic beer, but it's not aiming to be. What it does, it does right.

A thick, white head sets off the amber color of this refreshing ale. Its palate of flavors is fairly simple, but delicious. I tend to be sensitive to hops, so that's what dominated my tasting. Which is not to say that the hops were jarring or unpleasant -- like most other Sam Adams beers I've enjoyed, this one is expertly blended.

I have to recommend sampling this beer with some sharp, cheddar cheese. Other hard cheeses would probably be tasty, too.

davidshamoon, Sep 01, 2006
Photo of prototypic
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: It's transparent gold (almost looks copper). Head is foamy and about one and a half fingers. Average retention and lacing.

Smell: It's a nice blend of caramel malts, citrus scents (orange and grapefruit), and a nice dose of hops.

Taste: It's got an initial sweet taste that's attributed to the mix of malt and citrus flavors. There's a bit of grapefruit, orange, and maybe lemon in there. Hops provide a nice, dry bitter taste.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Light bodied and extremely drinkable. Carbonation is excellent. I could session this with no problem. Overall, it's a good beer. There's better APAs out there, but this one is pretty good.

prototypic, Jun 02, 2007
Photo of jsh420
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

drink by oct 09

pours clear gold with a 1 finger head that leaves spotted lacing

smells of sour spicey bread

taste is spicey earthy hops and nice bready malts

mouthfeel is light and refreshing with plenty of carbonation

drinkability - is very good on this 85 degree day

jsh420, May 21, 2009
Photo of SpecialK088
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a sam adams pint glass

A-Light yellowish/copper color with a good head and pretty good lace throughout not real thick but present.

S-Fresh very clean, hops and fresh citrus with the very slightest pine note

T&M-Flavor is very clean just like the nose fresh very clean notes of citrus and a nice crisp finish that lingers in the back of your mouth, small piney note as well. Its very good balance and good level of carbonation make it very smooth and easy to drink.

D-Not the very 1st APA i would reach for but this is definatly one i would pull out for somone just starting into the craft beer scene

SpecialK088, Jul 06, 2008
Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Nonic. Best by Aug '09 notched on label.

A - Clear, light golden budy with little carbonation bubbles feeding an otherwise nice, dense, off-white and lumpy head. Low retention and little lacing.

S - Piney and floral with a touch of fruity hop aromas coming fourth. Spices a little bit? A sort of crystal light iced-tea aroma. Low levels of malt on the nose with a very subtle sweetness.

T - Dry straw flavor, no malt, with a strong hop presence yet not asserting itself in any certain way. "Green" and flowery hop flavor. A tad spicy maybe.

M - Dry, crisp, and bitter with a strong carbonation kick to it.

D - Its a nice lawnmower beer but there isn't a whole lot of depth to it. The malt level is almost non-existent while the hops are just there. It's certainly easy to drink though.

BeerFMAndy, May 27, 2009
Photo of mikesgroove
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A – Poured a nice light amber, pretty pale with a good amount of yellow in the color. A very nice towering two inch plus white head of foam toppled over on this one like a beast. A large amount of carbonation came steaming up from the bottom of the glass throughout the session. The large head faded after a few minutes and left behind nothing more then a touch of side glass lace. Overall pretty decent for a pale.

S – Aroma was light. Full of grain and a touch of a floral hop presence, A nice orange peel, or some other citric hoppiness was definatly present and formed a good overall punch on here. However the overall aroma was a little light. Maybe a touch of peach or apple, possibly some other fruit combo in there, but overall it was kinda light.

T – Very nice plae ale. It had a nice tight little hoppy punch right in the front of it, then as it mellowed down brought out some more flavors of grains, a touch of cereal and a little bit apple, or maybe even apricot. Proably in the yeast. But very nice overall package here on this one. I really did like what was done with it. It was a decent classic hoppy plae ale. Nice mixed in light malted back as well.

M – Very nice, light with huge carbonation really helped it roll quite well. Had a nice smooth feel to it and a really crisp, quick and very clean finish. No residual left on this one at all. A really decent pale for sure.

Overall this was easily the most sessionable out of all the ones in the mixed pack. It was just very light but had just the right amount of fruitiness or hoppiness to get you to really wanna put down a few. Now don’t get me wrong there are a lot of very fine pales out there that this cannot hold a candle to, but for what it is I really have no complaints. If you see it around you could definatly do worse and I would say go for it and give it a shot. Proabaly very nice on tap indeed.

mikesgroove, Sep 15, 2007
Photo of erosier
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear yellow color with a short white head with a good amount of lacing on the sides of the glass. It has some pale malt smell with some hoppy finish at the end of the aroma. The taste is pretty good for a pale ale. It is not as hoppy as other pale ales, but it adds to the drinkability that way. The pale malts are a good sweet base that the hop bitterness finishes off at the end. But since it is not that hoppy, it is more of a sweeter pale ale. The mouthfeel is very good as this is a nice smooth beer with a perfect amount of carbonation. It is a very drinkable beer as it does not have alot of overpowering flavor.

erosier, Jan 28, 2008
Photo of bundy462
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Crisp and clear. Very clean, on par for BBC's quality brews.

S: Very nice, hops come through with some grain and pine aromas.

T: I was surprised with how good this was. Nice and clean. A junior IPA in my opinion. Lots of hop flavor that was very refreshing.

M: Average body and carbonation, very balanced and not overpowering in any aspect.

O: Very drinkable, I enjoyed it very much.

I got to try 4 of these as part of the Summer sampler pack, but I will buy a case of them in the future. A very refreshing and tasty offering from BBC.

bundy462, May 23, 2010
Photo of neenerzig
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Although this site this claims this beer is available year around I have never seen this beer before until a few days ago when I saw it as a part of a Sam Adams Summer Seasonal mix 12 pack. This beer pours a deep light to medium clear golden color. The head is about 1/4 inch thick when poured and settles very quickly to a decent film layer. Very little lacing here. Aromas of malt and hops are somewhat present along with some citrus. Sweet flavors of malt and honey are present followed by some citrus and floral hops. The flavors are very nicely balanced tastewise, I just wish they were all a bit stronger overall, especially the hops that round out the taste. Not bad by any means, but I have come to expect a bit more from the fine folks at the Boston Beer Company. Has a crisp, medium to full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Easy to drink in the way a good beer should be. Not bad. A good solid beer here, but nothing too great either.


neenerzig, Jun 05, 2007
Photo of Greggy
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- pouring into a pint glass, it leaves a 1 finger head that recedes slowly into a thin cap with some nice lacing. The beer has great clarity but the pale straw color isn't overly appealing.

S- This isn't your average APA, but more of the English styling because of the English hop varieties used. Because of this, This beer has balance and on the nose, I can pick up some light hopiness and some really nice toasty grains. Nice.

T- Initially, I get a little funky hopiness and some sour and tart maltiness. It's a bit of an odd combo, but there is some balance there. The finish of the beer is a light hop dryness.

M- Low/med carb works well with the style and the dryer finish is nice.

D- This isn't a good representative of the American Pale Ale styling. For the stereotypical APA, I think of sierra nevada, and this simply is a bit more of an english pale, and not a great one, that an APA. I really can't see myself having this again.

Greggy, May 16, 2008
Photo of Budlum
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with one inch of foamy white head lasting well in to the first few sips. Amber, pale body with a strong orange hue. Displays quite a bit of carbonation. Nice lacing on the glass.

Sweet and aromatic on the nose. Very fresh and clean hops mixed with a sweet and bready malt smell. The presence of pine and vanilla is notable.

Immediately loaded with fresh hops providing a pine and nutty taste. The hops are followed by sweet and toasted malty flavors. A fine balance between the malt and hops unveils some vanilla flavors. Pleasant finish with faint hops dominated by a malty sweetness.

Mouthfeel is creamy and light at the same time. Great effervesence adds to the enjoyment.

Drinkability is great. A very refreshing brew. The flavors and balance make this an enjoyable session choice.

Budlum, Aug 24, 2006
Photo of sixerofelixir
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Drinking a few 12 ounce bottles from a Samuel Adams Summer Styles 12 pack. 'Enjoy before' date notched August 2010.

Poured golden amber, mostly clear. Head started off white and tall but very soon turned to a diminutive ring. Fresh green hops on the nose, not much else to note. Taste twists into some bitterness midway through, followed by some mellow malts. A bit of citric aftertaste; feel is carbonated and acidic. Nothing really stood out a lot about this beer, but it was worth the try in the sampler pack.

sixerofelixir, May 20, 2010
Photo of IronCitySteve
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear golden color with a small white head that quickly disappears.

S: A decent amount of bready/toast smell with just hint of sour smell.

T: A decent balance between the bread and toast which is most prevalant on the front end with a nice amount of hops on the back end.

M: A decent light bodied beer, good carbonation. Leaves a nice dry feel.

D: Very easy to drink this pale ale. Not overly complex but a nice summer beer.

IronCitySteve, Jun 10, 2009
Photo of Pittsburgh
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another solid but not spectacular offering from Sam, true to the style, what you would expect to get for it, but nothing really different or over the top, but done well. Stands to be a solid offering, I would get it at a bar, or at dinner and be happy to get it in the mixed 12 pack. Doesn't stand up to some of the other pale ales I like better.

Nice golden yellow pour, decent head, crisp and clean looking. Smells faintly of hops and citrus.

Nice and smooth, goes down easy, very easy drinking.

Pretty hoppy, a bit bitter but not overly so, not that dry for a pale ale. Has a nice finish, hits you in the back of the throat. Not a lot to describe though, I think they could have done a little more with it. Slight citrus flavor as well.

All in all pretty good, but not wowing me, worth a try in the mix pack but don't go out of your way to get it.

Pittsburgh, Jun 30, 2010
Photo of rowew
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz longneck, same as the rest of the SA line. Best by month notched on the label.

Appearance: Pours clear gold with just a hint of red, medium sized head. Nice retention.

Smell: Floral hops, and light bready malt.

Taste: Nice combination of bready malt and subdued hops.

Overall impression: Certainly not a thrilling beer, but a solid offering. Nice combination of malt and hops makes it highly drinkable.

rowew, Feb 09, 2008
Photo of showell
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance and smell are pretty average honestly. The taste and the mouthfeel is really sort of unique. It's a really tart beer, and I think in this case the carbonation fits the flavor. There is a lot of carbonation... more than I'd normally like, but it's really fitting for this one. You could drink these one after the other because of the taste and feel. Different.

showell, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of thekevlarkid
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Out of standard brown bottle this beer was a light orange color with good clarity. The head was slightly yellow in tint, a little more than a finger thick and displayed decent retention and good lacing. The aroma was a blend of slightly musty malt, pale malt and light, floral hops. The flavors were dry and bitter, but lacked the malt sweetness to balance it. I tasted some citrus rind and herbal notes at first followed by the dry biscuit-like flavor of the malt. Towards the very end I got a flash of bitter hops, but it was very subtle and short lived. The body was med/full, the carbonation good and the acidity high. Nothing much to speak of.

thekevlarkid, Feb 20, 2009
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

($1.29 - 12oz. single at Total Wine in Kennesaw, GA)

Appearance: Pours a light, pale copper body with a small, white head.

Smell: Biscuity malt aroma with some caramel and with a faint nutty, buttery character.

Taste: Manages a delicate balance between sweetness and bitterness, aided by the fact that neither side is overwhelming. Dry, biscuity flavor with a brief caramel sweetness. Hops remain light and indistinct, but provide enough bitterness to counter the light, sweet malt taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: After the previous gut-wrenching gluten-free "beer" I just punished myself with, this beer tastes like a beautiful dream!

ChainGangGuy, Oct 22, 2007
Photo of damndirtyape
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Single bottle (best by 11/2010) poured into a shaker pint glass.

Appearance: Clear golden yellow with orange notes. Lots of carbonation coming up through the beer to end in a dense 1/8" thick white head. Tendrils of lacing here and there along with some thick chunks and walls of lacing on other parts of the glass.

Smell: Hints of yeast and biscuit-like malt....like inhaling from a bag of flour with some hoppy notes at the end. I'm having to take a deep inhale to even get this though - it's not very strong. As it warms up some of these smells go away and some apple-like smells dominate, but it's still faint.

Taste: An even balance between English bitter hops and malt sweetness with some cider-like notes at the end. The cider-notes become a bit of an aftertaste after awhile - but not in a bad way. It's okay.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation on the tongue, but not so excessively carbonated that it feels like your tongue is scrubbed clean, but it does cleanse the palate. Thicker than water, but goes down slick and easy.

Drinkability: Went fine with a meal (Vegetarian chili and cornbread) and I could see myself drinking it alone. It's way too carbonated to be a true cask English pale ale, but despite this it hits a lot of the flavor notes well and it's an enjoyable beer.

damndirtyape, Aug 06, 2010
Photo of Poser
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sam Adams brings another great brew -- pours a good golden color with a nice head. Smells woodsy but very crisp. Taste is good on the hops with a little sediment.

Overall, a very solid pale ale. I think this one may be a little under-rated because Jim Kock does commercials now. This one is always a safe bet and is available in most areas that generally specialize in the BMC crowd.

Poser, Aug 05, 2006
Photo of cbutova
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Apricot orange with a creamy two finger white head. Retention is good and a big pillow stays atop the ale. A sufficient coat of lace on the glass.

S- Pretty hop forward. Tropical citrus, floral and earthy. Some light biscuit caramel malt as well. Overall the strength could be better.

T- Starts out with a lot of floral notes and caramel malt. Finishes with a big citrus zest note balanced by a nice bready malt profile. A little buttery hint.

MF- Light, highly carbonated body. A bit creamy, on par in what you would expect in the style. Some bitterness and a fairly dry finish.

DB- Nice malt and hop flavors and certainly refreshing. Sam Adams makes a lot of solid beers with nice flavors. Maybe just a tad too hoppy and bitter for the substance of this one.

cbutova, Oct 05, 2010
Photo of charlzm
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Consumed May 29th, 2010.

Very clear golden hue with a very fine white foam head. Good retention and sticky lacing.

Aroma affects a citrus and floral hop character.

Palate notes - strong biscuity caramel malt that lingers long after the mildly bitter finish after the swallow. A little more hop bite would be welcome to cut that. And then there is the tell-tale house note of almost all Samuel Adams beer - the light dish soap character.

Dry, slightly prickly on tongue.

Not my favorite example of the style, but quite drinkable.

charlzm, Jun 05, 2010
Photo of maddogruss
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 12 ounce bottle into a glass mug.

A: Poured a nice amber body with a small, white head with decent retention. About halfway through the beer, reduces to a nice lacing that holds until the finish.

S: A sweet, malty small that seemed a little like caramel, but slightly less sweeter.

T: Same sweet malty taste that was very pleasant on the palate. A slightly bitter aftertaste to balance the initial sweet taste.

M: Nice, smooth mouthfeel. Not too much carbonation, but a solid feel.

D: Definitely a drinkable beer. Nice malt to hops balance. definitely a good brew. Seemed more like an English Pale Ale than an APA with the initial taste of malts, but the bitter aftertaste brings the American out of it.

maddogruss, Aug 24, 2007
Samuel Adams Pale Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
79 out of 100 based on 883 ratings.