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!

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.
BA SCORE
79
okay

870 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 870
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)
View: Beers (129) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Adams Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 870 | Reviews: 575 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Tilley4
Tilley4

Tennessee

3.5/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was a part of the Summer Sampler 12 pack and I finally decided to have a go at this one today.

Pours out a clear light golden....good fluffy head...lots of carbonation as well...

Nice light sweet malt aromas that seem balanced pretty well by a slight hop bitterness...

Nice light crisp maltiness up front with a bite of hop spiciness on the finish that ends up rather dry..

This is a nice Pale Ale but sort of blends in with lots of others I've had.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2008 18:47:27 | More by Tilley4
Photo of beveritt
beveritt

Ohio

3.28/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a standard pint glass. Standard Samuel Adams label indicates best by September 2008.

Appearance: Pours with just over 2 fingers of nearly white head. This settles fairly quickly to about half its original height. Nice lacing. The beer itself is pale yellow, maybe a shade darker than a standard BMC lager. Medium level of activity in the glass.

Smell: Faint citrus hop aroma.

Taste: A little hop spiciness upfront, almost piney. Slightly sweet biscuity malt. Mild bitterness in the finish. Finish is fairly dry.

Mouthfeel: Average level of carbonation. Body is average.

Drinkability: An easy drinking ale, a bit more bland than I expected.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2008 00:02:21 | More by beveritt
Photo of changeup45
changeup45

Florida

3.13/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Being a New Englander I am really surprised I have never tried this beer. They do however market the hell out of their Boston Lager and Boston Ale and I guess I can see why. Ended up picking up a six pack of this in Florida. Funny how that works. Pours a clear looking golden color topped with a moderate head. Citrus floral aroma with hints of light malts. The hops take a back seat to a stronger malt flavor. Some carmel and mild hop bitterness but not much. Pretty light and refreshing. Overall a decent beer but I wish they made an American style Pale Ale with a stronger hop profile.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2008 01:13:49 | More by changeup45
Photo of fitzy84
fitzy84

Massachusetts

3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer poured with an extremely clear, golden slight-amber appearance with a thin island of lacing on the head. Aromas were subtly rich with citrus hops. Not too strong, which is a good thing for some. However, it definitely could have had more volume. Good clean and dry taste. A thin, slightly watery sweetness with a good load of spiced hops to it. Mouthfeel could have had more of a kick but the watery aspect of the drink helps it be refreshing and not overpowering. Overall, a decent and accessible pale ale.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2008 01:50:08 | More by fitzy84
Photo of hiikeeba
hiikeeba

Texas

3.7/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours up a clear golden yellow with a thin white head

S - Faint aroma of citrusy hops, not much else

T - A faint grainy taste with hops in the finish. The hop bitterness builds up as you go along.

M - good mouthfeel

D - A little underwhelming, but not undrinkable.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2008 21:43:34 | More by hiikeeba
Photo of semihobo
semihobo

Michigan

2.48/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

12 oz. best this month so time to get with the drinkin'.

Pours with a head that fills the pint glass, leaves good lacing (looks like white flames) as it settles up top with a solid 1/8" covering, then dies. Nice dark gold body, fairly clear, moderate bubbling.

Mineral smell with starchy malts and assertive grassy hops.

First thing noticed in the taste is a mineral, adjunct-like note. The mild roasting of the malts is definitely perceptible. Some low alpha flavoring hops as well as a decent dose of bitterness, very grassy and vegetable-like. Dry.

Medium body and thick but tickly carbonation.

Grass and minerals... otherwise has aspects of a nice reserved English Pale Ale. Don't want more though.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2008 17:57:55 | More by semihobo
Photo of philbe311
philbe311

Pennsylvania

2.73/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - Very light copper color... Very very slight carbonation, otherwise extremely still... Soft white head is minimal and quickly fades...

S - Light mild malt scent... Traces of toffee... Not much else...

T - Biscuit... Earthy... Extremely mild and plain... No complexity to be found...

M - Dry with tingly carbonation on the tongue...

D - If I didn't know any better I'd think that I was drinking a flat ginger ale... I hate to be rough, but this brew deserves it... On par with a BMC...

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2008 02:26:52 | More by philbe311
Photo of usmittymc
usmittymc

Mississippi

3.1/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tumbler glass from a bottle (best by September).

A: Pale golden color with a white head that quickly recedes to a ring. decent lacing.

S: Not a whole lot in the aroma department. Malt mostly dominates the nose. A lot of sweetness in the nose and not much hops.

T: Just like the nose. Sweet, sweet malts. Very little hop presence. Bite from the carbonation on the back. Reminds me more of a kolsch than a pale ale.

M: Really smooth and relatively light. Good carbonation.

D: While not the best example for the style, this is a very drinkable Pale Ale.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2008 01:42:32 | More by usmittymc
Photo of BirdFlu
BirdFlu

New Jersey

3.2/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

served in bottle at Earl of Sandwich at Downtown Disney in Orlando.

This was pretty standard, not too much out of the ordinary. The appearance was sort of dark for a pale ale. The aroma has a subtle hint of malts which seems uncommon for pale ales and so that was nice. The flavor is pretty much wheat, a little citrusy, a very little malt and hop. Mouth is pretty light and it's easily drinkable. Nothing special but not bad.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2008 04:23:08 | More by BirdFlu
Photo of beerkittycat
beerkittycat

Minnesota

3.03/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours a really subdued crystal-clear yellow. I mean it looks thin. Average off-white head. Not much foam or lacing. Aroma has some faint bready malt and flowery hops, more like Noble than grassier or earthy English hops. Flavor is a bit thin with some malt and flowery hops again, but no earthy malt tones or grassy hops that are found in English pale ales. Mouthfeel is thin but the drinkability is definately there. This tasted more like an American blonde ale and nothing like an English pale ale. However, this would make a tasty alternative to your average industrial American lager.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2008 01:45:23 | More by beerkittycat
Photo of JohnnyDuvel
JohnnyDuvel

Florida

3.08/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I consider Sam Adams to be one of the "gateway" breweries, something I'll have when it's the only good beer available. I rarely buy their beer when I have choices. This one is quite unexceptional. The appearance is a little pale (I know. "pale ale" - but not as deep a hue as my usuals). The taste is OK, but there's a macro sweetness hiding way down in there. Also, quite watery. You certainly can knock a few of these down, and it's definitely above the "Bud line". However, either a Liberty Ale or a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale will blow this away, for about the same price.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2008 01:38:29 | More by JohnnyDuvel
Photo of birchstick
birchstick

Colorado

3.23/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - pours a clear yellow with a small head
S - smells of malts and honey oat bread and a touch of hops
T - tasted as the nose suggested...a bit of toasted malt and a bread taste with only the slightest bit of hops
MF - a bit thin and not overly carbonated
O - This was decent, not as bitter as other pale ales I have had but easy to drink nonetheless. Very good to drink one after another after another...

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2008 03:55:58 | More by birchstick
Photo of Boozefox
Boozefox

Connecticut

4.03/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very good British-style pale ale. More malt character than a lot of American style pales, not as ridiculously hopped, but still a good, biting, refreshing ale.

Poured from the bottle, starting soft, then hard, into a Yazoo Pale Ale glass.

A - Pours pale gold, clear with tiny bubbles. Thin white head from a (mostly) hard pour has excellent retention, sticking around for a long, long time. I'm halfway done with this one and it's still got almost as much (not a lot) head as it did right after the pour. Nice.

S - Not a whole lot going on in the nose; just a bit of hops and a bit of clean. Then again, I'm just getting over a sinus infection. But, as I say, not a lot to smell but what there is smells good and crisp.

T&M - Crisp on the tongue without being thin, perhaps a bit sticky on the finish. Malt is present, bringing some sweetness; hops are definitely there without being overpowering. Good hoppiness on the finish, leaving your mouth perhaps not with a bite so much as with a nip. It feels good and it tastes good.

D - High. I could smack these back in a continuous line for quite some time.

Notes: I'm drinking this one with the dregs of a delicious tilapia curry my girlfriend made today and some store-bought naan. This ale is strong enough to stand up to the spices without being strong enough to knock them down. It's definitely a pairing I will be making again.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2008 01:08:27 | More by Boozefox
Photo of orcasteve
orcasteve

North Carolina

3/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

just strait avrage, strait down the middle, not good not bad, this was a tuch hopy and the malt was nice but with all the outher fine products that sam has this just gets lost in the shuffle. i would drink agan if it were their but wouldent seak this one out.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2008 01:23:12 | More by orcasteve
Photo of grmarcil
grmarcil

North Carolina

3.7/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear straw color, orangy against light. Pours with a small white head.

Scent is mostly malt - a little weak - with a hint of peach on the nose.

Taste is a good mix of malt and moderate hoppy bitterness. Not too heavy, nice carbonated fresh mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2008 04:06:03 | More by grmarcil
Photo of cswhitehorse
cswhitehorse

Oregon

4/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Pale Ale from Sam Adams poured a clear straw color with a good two finger foam head and some good retention. It left some good lacing and encircled the glass.

The aroma was pleasant. The two hops listed on the bottle Fuggles and East Kent Golding gave it a grapefruit smell along with a mix of malt. The taste was crisp and smooth and the maltiness stayed quite a while after. The malt and hop brightness played together well. I found this to be a great session beer and would buy again.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2008 04:14:17 | More by cswhitehorse
Photo of xare
xare

Ohio

2.05/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Nice light caramel color with a soapy bit of head (not very much head) - it does the job as far as looks go.

Aroma is of hops and bitterness and something that smells a bit sour but not too much. Decent blend of aromas but something seems a bit off kilter.

Taste is oddly, reminiscent of coffee and has a bit of a bitter touch from the hops but doesn't taste very well done as far as the style goes. Has something musky with the flavor as well at the end. It's quite hard to describe since I can't identify it as much as I can say that it's "musky".

Mouthfeel is decent but not average. It's wet, has the hoppy finish that should be there for a pale ale but then there's a bitterness that lingers long past the swallow. Then some dryness comes and odd sensations/muskiness comes and hits.

I wanted to try this brew as I love most of the offerings from Sam Adams but I'll probably have to take a pass on this one and it definitely isn't one of my favorites from Sam Adams. Wish it was though as pale ales are my favorite and Sam is one of my favorite breweries.

Overall, I wouldn't really finish this beer but I'd give it a try again sometime if it comes in a mixed pack but I won't search this out again just for itself.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2008 19:21:22 | More by xare
Photo of Kendo
Kendo

New York

3.5/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured into a pint glass. Body is clear, light golden-amber with a small whitish head that disappears fast. Plenty of active carbonation.

S: Distinct nose that differs from the C-hopped APAs I've become used to. Light toasty malt with some grassy hops and something slightly off -- I described it as burnt sweat socks if that makes sense.

T: Biscuity malt is followed by mild grassy hops. There's also some spiciness toward the back of the mouth and a touch of metal. As it warms that grassy bitterness seems to linger on the palate in the aftertaste. General impression is one of lightness. Definitely more of an English Pale Ale than an American one.

M: Active carbonation gives a fizzy feel to it. Body is definitely on the lighter side of things, maybe a tad bit thin.

D: Goes down easy being so light. I could see this being a decent "gateway" pale ale, as it's balanced between malt and hops and doesn't go overboard with a lot of flavor from either.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2008 12:18:38 | More by Kendo
Photo of lifebeer
lifebeer

New Jersey

2.88/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

the first time i had this beer it had been sitting in someone's trunkall day in june. needless to say, it was awful and incredibly acidic. i decided to give it another try at the appropriate temperature.

a. amber gold with almost no head

s. muted hops, like previous reviewer said theres a grassiness, sweet malts

t. some funky hops, a sweet maltiness and grassiness with maybe a hint of citrus, maybe some diacetyl, falls flat in the end

m. fairly watery, hardly any body

drinking this beer was slightly more eventful than drinking a budweiser. i just cant help but feel that they used some unidentifiable hop adjunct instead of real hops. honestly, i probably wont buy this one again.

Serving type: bottle

08-08-2008 02:22:21 | More by lifebeer
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

3.75/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a golden/orange color with a foamy, white, two-finger head. It left sticky rings of lace.

S - It smelled of grass and roasted malts.

T - It tasted very earthy/grassy. A nice malt flavor with a sweet caramel kick.

M - It was fairly soft and smooth. A light-bodied beer that really felt like an english ale.

D - This is a pretty good pale ale. It really reminded me of something from Samuel Smith's not Samuel Adams.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2008 23:03:53 | More by zeff80
Photo of aquaderek
aquaderek

California

3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased this beer as part of the Sam Adams summer variety pack. I poured the beer from the bottle into a pint glass. The beer is a golden orange golden color and the head disappears quickly. The nose is biscuty and hoppy and the taste is well balanced and follows the nose. Pretty good offering of pale ale, not the best, but good none the less.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2008 02:18:36 | More by aquaderek
Photo of matty
matty

Pennsylvania

3.38/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Medium yellow colored ale with a thick foamy head that fades slowly.Aroma is toasty malts.Taste I can best describe as a faint buttery toffee.There is not a lot going on here but it is refreshing and smooth.I would give this beer another try and recommend to my buddies.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2008 05:29:43 | More by matty
Photo of flipshevanel
flipshevanel

Arizona

4.38/5  rDev +25.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of the most stand-out Pale Ale's I've had in a while that I can really remember. Started out with an average white head that was mostly diminishing. A nice clear body with a golden orange hue. Carbonation was normal. This aroma stood out by the dominance of the yeast over the hops, unusually for Pale Ales. I got hints of dough and banana. The palate was incredible, a nice medium to full body that was creamy in texture, soft carbonation, and a finish that screamed bread (my favorite). The flavor is a little subdued with light bitterness but long finish, I think this adds to the drinkability.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2008 03:44:31 | More by flipshevanel
Photo of danny013
danny013

Florida

3.43/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pair of bottles used to review. Nice hard pour into an English pint glass. Golden color with a thick, off white 2 finger head that slowly dissipates back to the beer, leaving a thin covering over it as it is drank. Light lacing.

Smell is of sweet malts with a hint of toastiness. No hop aroma to pick out.

Taste is gentle and light. Sweet malts up front, hints of light honey, faint toasted grains. Rounds out to a light earthy hoppiness, not much of a fresh hop or grassy flavor, just a nice bitter flavor. Not too bad, but I feel that the malt flavor is too 'plain' or one dimensional. It's certainly not a bad ale, but not at the top of the list.

Mouthfeel is the worst part of this beer for me. Lots of carbonation like all SA brews, but it's way overcarbonated for the style. Body is light-medium.

Overall, a fairly drinkable ale. Not the best example of the style, but it is still good. A tasty beer to drink a few of and not worry about flavors, balance, esters, etc. Plus I'd say it's a nice beer to try and get some BMC drinkers to branch out a bit - though perhaps that is what they were going for when brewing the beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2008 02:40:58 | More by danny013
Photo of jeffmonarch
jeffmonarch

Maryland

2.93/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle in a pint glass.

A - Transparent copper color with a thin layer of white head that stays around forever.

S - Very hoppy but fairly light in smell.

T - Grainy hops. Not as much bite as I would expect from an Pale Ale.

M - Light bodied with good carbonation.

D - Average beer. Not even close to the pest Pale Ale i've had.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2008 01:36:53 | More by jeffmonarch
Samuel Adams Pale Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
79 out of 100 based on 870 ratings.