Welcome to BeerAdvocate!

Looking to talk, rate or trade beer? Join today by creating your free account.

Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

Anchor Steam Beer | Anchor Brewing Company

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
87
very good
2,004 Reviews
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: California Common / Steam Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Anchor Steam® Beer owes its deep amber color, thick, creamy head, and rich, distinctive flavor to a historic brewing process like none other.

It is a process that combines deep respect for craft brewing tradition with many decades of evolution to arrive at a unique approach: a blend of pale and caramel malts, fermentation with lager yeast at warmer ale temperatures in shallow open-air fermenters, and gentle carbonation in our cellars through an all-natural process called kräusening.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-08-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,004
Ratings:
5,812
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
12.73%
 
 
Wants:
209
Gots:
1,150
For Trade:
1
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,004 | Ratings: 5,812
Photo of DaveBar
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at the LCBO as a single. Served at 5deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens ok. Pours a good 1" head that stays for a bit

S- Malt and yeast. Pretty smooth on the nose. Hint of grapefruit

T- Malty good. Not too roasted at all but lots of it. Touch of hops that are overpowered by the aforementioned malt!

M- Dry and crisp

- Ok. Nothing special and will not buy again. Don't get me wrong it's not bad, just nothing special that's all

Food Pairing

This ok beer went well with... Hamburgers. I don't use a lot of toppings so for me it's meat and bun off the BBQ

Enjoy

 576 characters

Photo of scottoale
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the funky shaped 22oz. brown bottle pours a deep, honey-amber, slightly hazy brew with a foamy inch+ of off-white head. After a couple minutes the head subsides leaving some nice lace on the glass.

Nice barley malt nose, kinda earthy and toast like with notes of yeast, wheat, faint tobacco and hops. The hops smell a bit grassy.

The taste is much like the smell with some black tea, more tobacco and a matallic twang in the finish. Pretty tasty stuff, not too sweet at all, very well balanced with a crisp, clean finish. Alcohol is well hidden.

Medium body, good carbonation give a nice smooth, cream like mouthfeel, then a bitter dry ending as it disappears.

Very drinkable, worth a try.

 706 characters

Photo of stjarnflikka
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear red-orange beer with a fingerthick foam and some carbonation.

Smell is malty, somewhat flowery with oranges to aid it. Some fizzy carbonation goes in there to, mainly fresh and nice though.

Taste is at first malt. Citric hops goes together with a somewhat bitter tone to create a nice feel. Somewhat bready and alcoholic, and it finishes with citrus and a long rough bitterness with some spices.

A nice brew by a great brewer.

 449 characters

Photo of jwc215
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a a light amber color with a relatively thick head that fairly quickly becomes a thin lace. There is quite a bit of carbonation at first. But that too disspipates after a brief time.
The smell is light. After smelling it, I wasn't sure what to expect, maybe a hint of caramel flavor. Nothing special, but nothing offensive.
The taste is thick but without much of a distinct flavor, except a bit of refreshing sweetness. Tastes good but nothing special.
It does leave a refreshing feel in the mouth, as there is nothing offensive, while nothing special about it either.
Overall, it is a decent session beer.

 626 characters

Photo of NODAK
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is of caramel malt and a bit of hops. Pretty strong smell.

Taste has a fair amount of sweet caramel malt at first with a small note of toasted grain there as well in the background. At the backend, there's a small bitterness that rounds the beer out but doesn't come close to the maltiness. I seem to remember this as a more hoppy beer than this, but as it is it seemed more like an EPA than anything to be quite honest. Interesting. I'll have to have it again sometime.

Tasty, though. Very easy to put down.

 516 characters

Photo of moulefrite
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A solid "above average brew." The beer pours a medium golden with a good creamy head. Aromas of malt dominate as they do in the mouth. The texture is fine with a round medium bodied feel. The taste is pleasantly malty, and almost a tad sweet. A little fruitiness can be found as well. A nice tuesday night beer that happens to work better as a food beer than a sipper to me. I served this with halibut in parchment paper using lots of vegetables an Asian flavors. Delicious, and the beer was just right. This is a solid workhorse beer that is priced right and delivers nicely.

 576 characters

Photo of rtorres80
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Anchor Steam Beer is a good beer. It's a little bitter than I would like. A cloudy Ale but that could be because it's steamed? I would recommend Anchor Steam Beer to my friends but I wouldn't buy it for a party or a get-together. Anyone who tries it wont be disappointed.

 271 characters

Photo of Noxious26
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle served in pint glass.

Clear, copper coloured. Thin off-white head.

Aroma is sweet and malty with touches of fruit and hops.

The words that come immediately to mind are: Bright, crisp, dry. Taste is bitter hop with undertones of fruity malt. The aftertaste is dry and hoppy and lingers for awhile, but not too long.

Mouthfeel is medium-bodied, but very fizzy. Too much carbonation in my mind.

An interesting blend of hops and malt, but the hoppy-bitter bite is a little harsh for my liking. The first time I had this was at a fish and chips joint in Crescent City, CA and went really well with my meal, but I've had it a few times since and can't say I'd consider it much more than an average session beer.

 733 characters

Photo of seanyfo
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

My first steam beer, poured into a half pint glass

A: Copper body with 2-3 finger head, produces great lacing throughout.

S: I can get some pear, mint a marinara herby tomato sauce smell ( yes i know thats weird, but i reckon i smell that in Paulaner Munich Helles aswell - must be the malt)

T: Pretty bland, a nice hop bite in the end, not a lot of malty profile in this one,

M: medium carbonation, a little thin.

D: A very drinkable session beer, that has little character in my opinion, just something to pour down your neck. However, does beat macro in appearance and smell, not too sure about taste tho. Glad i tried it once.

 645 characters

Photo of IchLiebeBier
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Amber; medium head; good lacing

Aroma: Light malt; light grassy aroma; light citrus

Taste: Juicy malt on start with a quick, light hit of hops; light citrus in the mid; finishes a little tart, bitter, dry and crisp; pretty refreshing and sessionable, but not complex

Remarks: Did not score A, T, S, M at that time; disregard those scores

 354 characters

Photo of berpwillie
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a hazy copper color with large head and lacing with lively carbonation. light hoppy bitter taste. good smooth beer but not much else to it. light body and thin texture. short flavor duration. nothing special, pretty average but a decent easy to attain beer.

 263 characters

Photo of DrewsBrews450
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Copper color with a head that died to a thin ring.. spotty lace.. the smell is fruit, pear, clean malt sweetness.. tatse is the same fruit mostly a pear, tartness, yeast, very slight caramel.. thin lager body.. its decent for what it is.. would probably rate it lower if not rating for style.. just not a huge fan of the past 3 anchor beers i tryed.

 350 characters

Photo of beershrine
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

appearance - copper/dark amber colored, crystal clear

smell- nice smell of hops, with alcohol and faint malt smell.

taste- nice mixture of malt with a finish on the hoppy side

mouthfeel- malty mouthfeel that lingers in your mouth

overall- Great beer but tastes like an Ale, This isn't the old Anchor Steam, Recently the brewers have added alot more color to this beer along with more hops. The old Anchor was much ligher in color with a lower hop level and a yeasty character. Is it better? I'm not so sure, this beer kind of tastes like a hopped up amber ale without that character. I like the older Anchor

 615 characters

Photo of DuqTroops
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed January 19, 2006 in a pint glass from a bottle.

This is a great steam beer. One of the original of its kind. It is well worth every penny of it. In fact, while out in SF, try to go to the brewery there, this is surely a great beer and visit. A must have.

 267 characters

Photo of Soneast
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden color with a 1/2 inch, cream colored head comprised of really large bubbles, that dissipates relatively quickly, leaving a lot of foam where it had existed.

Not a whole lot of aromas, but those detected are predominately sweet malt, caramel, with an earthy quality to it.

A lot of grains coming through, very multi-grain-like in flavor, despite that there is a prominent bitterness in the beer, which actually took me off guard. Leaves a sweet flavor on the tongue, yet a lot of residual bitterness as well. Quite unique.

 544 characters

Photo of ElGuapo
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Unless the draught of this brew is that much better than the bottle, my taste buds have greatly changed. I remember not liking this beer too much before.
Pours to a deep copper with a pretty good sized white head. It dies a little quick, but leaves lace. Aroma is pleasantly hoppy with a sweetness in the backround.
A very nicely hopped brew with good balance. The flavor is all there. The body is medium and it is very smooth. A great drinker. I could session with this one anytime. I'll have to grab a few bottles and see if it is the same.

 546 characters

Photo of aaronh
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I was not impressed by this beer. It exhibited nice grassy aromas and had a more robust color than I was expecting, but the flavors were disappointing. The beer was very light tasting with little malt sweetness or bitterness. I guess you could call it a well balanced flavor, but it seemed rather un-inspiring.

 313 characters

Photo of MichaelProcton
3.49/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours nice and dark, with a hue that can range from amber to golden depending on how the light hits it. Not much in the way of head or active carbonation, but there is the thinnest of caps that sticks around, like a light dusting of snow. Smell is hoppy, but not in a sharp or aggressive way; plenty of malt on the nose, too. Taste is unique. Light hops, and a clear taste of dark fruit (raisins?) Mouthfeel is substantial without being heavy. Good, interesting cousin of the amber, and worth having, though not a favorite of mine.

 537 characters

Photo of tectactoe
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I've had this numerous times, just never really got around to taking notes on it. Seems like they have this all over the place in downtown Detroit on tap. Had this particular one at Park Bar. Pours a muddled copper color with lighter hues around the edges, closer to a rustic amber; half clear and half hazy. Slightly gray-tinted head turns to a skin and leaves some small dripping of lace on its way down the glass.

The aroma is pretty bleak and mild; but relaxing and calm may be a more appropriate description. Musty hops, seemingly of the Noble variety (perhaps Saaz?) with a slight touch of leafiness to accompany the musk. Faint grains are the backdrop for the hop play, yet they remain fairly quiet and never interrupt. Very light citrus zest on the tail end. Warming doesn't reveal any more aromas; this beer is pretty simple and straightforward.

The taste begins with a small mouth washing of light biscuit malts and heavy grains; a substantial hop bitterness hits the palate quickly up front and fades away during the remainder of the sip. Citrus zest, lemongrass, and a faint herbal tea leaf flavor comprise a good majority of the rest of the flavor. The finish contains some heavier lager yeast, leaving a crisp and mouth-coating finish; light bitterness and an even lighter fruit zest. Thin bodied with a different mouth feel - borderline "creamy" considering the style and thin body. Lots of carbonation.

Easy drinker; relaxed, mild, and highly quaffable. Nothing tremendous in terms of flavor or aroma, but then again, nothing off-putting or offensive, either. I respect the originality of the style but I think I prefer "Steamy Windows" from Liberty Street over this one, despite its history as the precedent-setter.

 1,735 characters

Photo of Gmann
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear amber color with a small off-white head that dissipated into a ring around the glass. The smell has an odd caramel aroma, kind of powdery (perfumey?); its weird but not offensive. The taste is of lightly toasted malt, grainy, with a shot of bitter hops in the end. Nothing crazy with the hops, subtle. The feel is light but not watery, slightly fizzy; finishes rather clean and crisp. Nothing outstanding here, a bit grainy which I'm not a fan of. However it is nice and light and a good change up brew.

 525 characters

Photo of Kaiser777
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Drop the anchor I am ready to get steamed.

A- It is a golden brownish yellow, with little bubbles rising to the top of a solid white foam, witch disappears rather quickly, and leaves a light residue that disappears quickly also.

S- It has a similar smell to most American lagers, with a hint of barley and malt.

T- Just an edge over average I do like the taste, just wasn't blown away by it, but it is very delicious.

MF- Also just above average although it is on the brink of being a 4.

D- I am very impressed by it's drink ability, I could drink this beer all the time, with that said I want to thank all my G's in Cali that steam there beer, west coast in the house!!!!

 677 characters

Photo of charlzm
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Consumed 12/14/07.

Pours clear light copper with nice little off-white head that quickly dissipates. Toasty nose with notes of spicy hop. A little thin on the palate, but flavorful nonetheless.

Rich maltiness is quickly upstaged by bitterness, but the whole affair is rather milder than is typical of many west coast brews. A little of the Bass Ale type flavor is going on, and the clean finish with a hint of astringency reminds me a little of that British brew as well. A very easy drinking beer with some flavor.

Might be a good gateway beer to get from macrobrew lager swill to the good stuff.

 603 characters

Photo of wnh
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a goblet.

Pours a bright, crisp golden copper with a thick, frothy and creamy white head.

Nose is gentle but nice, slightly citric and fruity hops on top of a light grainy malt base. A little earthy, almost cocoa powder character underneath. Sweet on the whole.

Suprising on the palate, with chocolate-covered oranges and an earthy, somewhat tannic dark fruit character. Fruit blend flavor includes a muddled earthy-but-tart raspberry note, and subtle lime. Finishes with a dry yeasty twang.

Fullish in body, quite well carbonated, somewhat scrubbing. It's been perhaps four years since I first had Anchor Steam, and I had no real memory of this beer. A bit muddled on the whole. Certainly not bad, but I'm not a huge fan.

 752 characters

Photo of zrab11
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- a hazzy orange amber color

S- not much of a smell but definitely get a hint of yeast and corn

T-not a ton of flavor but a slight citrus and goes down easy

M- light boddied with decent carbonation

D- very easy to drink... noting mind blowing but wouldn't mind drinking more for the price. Overall good for its style

 324 characters

Photo of choyhosoi
3.48/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

After reading various reviews about this beer I decided to try this brew. I must agree with the majority this is a good beer. It has a little bit of an aftertaste after awhile but nothing to make me not want to not buy another one. The color is amber and the smell was citrus like.

 281 characters

Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 2,004 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe