Anchor Steam Beer | Anchor Brewing Company

BA SCORE
87
very good
2,028 Reviews
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States
anchorbrewing.com

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:
2,028
Ratings:
5,914
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
12.73%
 
 
Wants:
223
Gots:
1,228
For Trade:
1
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,028 | Ratings: 5,914
Photo of MinnesotaRIS
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with medium-low body. Copper, golden amber with great clarity. Ample, robust, slightly off-white head that retains well. Some lacing. Long lasting top foam.

A- malt sweetness is the first thing in the nose followed by a touch of low hops. Warming and inviting aroma.

T- some malt sweetness initially that isn't entirely smooth. Slight corn. No hop taste to speak of but the bitterness supports the body well.

M- has some sharpness but it may be a little too cold. Bitters in the after are not overwhelming. Pleasant.

This is the CA common flagship. It is a good beer that is lagery in quality but has the esters of an ale that really give it character.

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Photo of MrHolland
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass from bottle.
Appearance - Bright orange-amber color with a nice creamy white head that
sticks around on the glass.
Smell - Can pick up hints of sweet malts with something else hiding in there but cannot tell.
Taste - Sweet malts, don't really pick up much hops as others say. Also some caramel infused to the taste. Thats the smell I could not pick up(caramel).
MF - Has perfect amount of carbonation goes down smooth.
Drinkability - This is what a "Beer" should taste like, could drink these in a session... matter of fact I think I will now ;)

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Photo of californiakulak
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this beer into my Anchor Steam pint glass. The bottle for this beer in very cool. Maybe the coolest bottle that I have seen, for whatever thats worth.

A. Poured into the pint glass and a beautiful, thick, firm head of about 1.5 inches formed. It lasted for a good amount of time. The color of the beer was a brilliant amber color.

S. It smells of sweet, caramel malt. Some bready scents as well. The aroma is balanced out with some nice hop scents.

T. It is a good beer. Hard to describe. A very good combination of malt flavors and hop bite. It has a bready flavor but isn't too sweet. I like it.

M. This beer had a crisp finish. Very high carbonation and just enough bitterness. A pretty dry finish.

D. This beer is extremely drinkable. It goes down easy. Low alcohol makes this a very sessionable beer. I hope to get a keg of this into my kegerator in the near future.

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Photo of kshizzle101
3.97/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass

A - A slightly hazy amber color with a robust 3inch head. thick lacing down the sides.

S - toasted malts, bready, biscuits, some corn in there as well and a slight scent of hops.

T - Deep malt backbone, grainy/corny. slight bit of bite from the hops towards the end.

M - Medium bodied, well-balanced good carbonation, very smooth drinking

Overall - A very well-rounded beer by anchor

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Photo of madeofsteel
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a lovely coppery-golden color, with an off white head of about a half inch. It fades after about a minute, leaving a soapy film with little lacing.

S - Mellow, caramel malts.

T - There's a nice sharp, citrusy bitter twinge, like gnawing on a lemon rind. Quite roasty, and oddly delicious. Unbalanced, but very good.

M - Creamy, but with a very dry after-affect that I'm not too fond of.

O - This is my second time drinking this one, but my first review... I think I like it a lot more a second time. Must try.

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Photo of HopNelius
3.72/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a small snifter glass out of the bottle.
A-Amber color, small amount of carbonation.
Smell-Crisp, light malty smell, yeasty.
Taste-Crisp malty taste, leaves you wanting to take another sip, slight notes of the yeast come through.
Mouthfull-Creamy, drinkable, refreshing.
O-This was one of the first "good" beers I had every had way back in the day. I think I am likely not along in that. This beer style made "california common" a house hold name due to the fact that no one else is allowed to claim steam beer. Although not overly complex, I appreciate this beer for what it is an amazing drinkable beer, a timeless classic, a craft beer when no one knew what that meant. Someone had purchased this for me as a gift and I was happy to drink it for the first time in a very long time.

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Photo of Serge
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle. Pretty darkish cobber amber with a medium creamy off white head. Lots of bubbles in the liquid. Aroma is malty, some barn and rye bread. Wonderful spritzy carbonation with lots of small bubbles. Flavor is sweet, caramel malty with a slight peppery bitterness. Nice and fresh - wonderful summer beer!

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Photo of studentofbeer
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a clear orange/copper with a slight dirty white head. Some big bubbles, and it fades pretty fast.

clean, bready malt, sweet and kind of sea-breezy. hints of fruit and earth, with slight astringency.

dry, sweet and crisp bready malt, with a tickle of bitterness at the end. very clean tasting and a bit spritzy. again a hint of fruit sweetness comes through but isn't very present. almost a bit of mustiness in the malt-- i think it's that earthy flavor, maybe the hops? great balance between bready malt and hop aftertaste. Super drinkable.

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Photo of rugerj
3.38/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer pours a deep copper color with a good 2 finger head that dissipates over a couple minutes, not much lacing left in glass though. Smell is a malt and slight hop aroma. Taste is mildly bready, with a decent malt profile. Not much hops here but enough to provide a decent balance with the malt so that the beer is not too sweet. Mouth feel is smooth with decent carbonation.

A good beer although not a style that excites me too much. Nothing outstanding but a decent beer for what it is.

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Photo of rosmhuire
3.51/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap throughout my brief 2-day trip to SanFran.

A: Amber coloring, significant lacing, decent-sized head.

S: Not all that much on the nose for me.

T: Nice balance of hops and malt.

M: Nice carbonation.

D: Good - goes down easy, but not too easy.

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Photo of Jazzcrop
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tastes are bitter caramel, crusts, salt, finishing hops, sogginess, bread, pistachios, cornbread and yeast. Smells of caramel bitterness, more hops, stringy barley and weirdly enough, I know, brandy-esque booze. Available anywhere. One reason I rated this guy!

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Photo of SassyBootblack
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap in San Fransisco, for what that's worth.

Appearance: A nice, clear amber color. A finger of white head.

Smell: Clean malt. Not much in the way of hop aroma.

Taste: Malt, with some hops and a mineral water quality. Quite good and not over bearing. The hops aren't as "woody" as some imitators I've tasted and I mean that as a compliment.

Mouthfeel: Crisp and clean!

Overall: A delicious lager beer with enough character to be interesting.

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Photo of moistnugget
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an ale glass (yeah, yeah, yeah, it was sitting at my desk already,) developed a rich amber color, very clear, very small head. Nose is nice; rye, fruit, though hard to say what, maybe peach and lemon, a little fresh oregano, and yeast. Taste is fresh and bright, citrus notes (without the hop explosion that I've come to associate with it.) Finish is zesty, with lemon grass and fresh herbs riding it out. Mouthfeel is perfectly matched to the taste, light, spritzy, and bitter. The flavor and feel race across your tongue and disappear, enticing you to sip again. Overall, a well put together beer, and American styles are not usually my favorite territory. 4.25/5

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Photo of jahsausage
2.66/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I suspect that I have got myself a skunked bottle or something here, its had to come a long way you understand. On first pour the beer looked beautiful with a nice coppery colour and decent head and smelt mildly of malt & yeast (it reminded me of homebrew). The taste itself I found quite subdued, perhaps what would be expected in a kiwi/uk style mild ale but the aftertaste was not to my taste. I found it not only lingering but astringent and sourish like nothing I have tasted before bar homebrewing disasters. I think I am going to have to reserve my judgement on this one until I can try a (hopefully) fresher bottle.

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Photo of BVukelich
3.51/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the stubby 22 into glass. It created a light tan, 1-finger head. A little darker head and color than I remembered. It's been a long time since I've had this one. The creamy head lingers nicely and leaves very decent lace. I honestly didn't pick up much on the aroma, slight hops. The beer is very dry, skews malty but leaves a pronounced bitterness. Clean finish. It is busy in the mouth and appears very lively in the glass with its active carbonation.

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Photo of Mike_Moe
1.96/5  rDev -49.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: Light amber brown color, small white head.
Aroma: Lightly toasted malt aroma.
Taste: Lightly roasted malt, somewhat smokey flavor. Very bitter harsh finish. Medium bodied, medium carbonation.
Overall: This beer is a major disappointment. It miss the mark on every level. The aroma and taste only gave hints of roasted malts. While trying to infuse a hoppy finish, this brew ended up being a “bitter” mess.

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Photo of LiquidBreadMan
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is Anchor Brewing's second-best offering, in my opinion -- and it's a top-ten among American made microbrews.

Anchor Steam pours a deep copper with an average life off-white head. Its aroma is fruity: meyer lemon and grapefruit, with an essence of roasted malts and hops. The taste is a similarly complex balance of flavors with a quick bite of hops, sweet malts and a citrus finish. Mouthfeel is a little dry, which is good in my book. This beer's drinkability is better than most I've tried, regardless of style.

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Photo of micmillon18
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pilsner glass. No born on date. Ah the legendary Anchor Steam beer. Truly an American classic. Love the bottle shape and art.

A - Pours a clear amber color with a large bubbly head. Lots of carbonation is apparent as tons of bubbles can be seen rising from the bottom of the glass. Lots of lacing.

S - Hops, some yeast, and sweet malt. The hop smell is spicy.

T - Hops with a good balancing sweet malt presence. The bitterness is prevalent like that of a pilsner-esque hop spiciness, which is rather nice. Earthy flavors follow. Finishes with a lasting bitterness and some lemon flavors.

M - Crisp, light to medium body. Carbonation is in check with the style.

O - Very balanced and drinkable, I could and certainly have had a number of these in a sitting. A great session beer no matter the occasion.

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Photo of metallistout
4.8/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

People have always recommended this one and now I can finally get it. Good beer.
Pours a lovely amber color with a creamy white head. You can smell the hops from the moment the bottle opens and once poured it mixes with a sweet malty tone.
Hops a major flavor with a sweet caramel taste, also a fruity flavor and finishes a little dry. I like this beer. Now I know why people have recommended it over the years.

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Photo of lawman834
3.46/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Copper with a creamy head that's tall but goes away fast.

S-Kinda hoppy and grassy. Not very strong.

T-Not bad at all. Balanced to a little on the hoppy side. Has a little bit of a strange metallic taste.

M-Very bright and carbonated in the mouth. A little slick on the finish.

D-Pretty darn drinkable. It does however leave a little of that odd metallic aftertaste in my mouth and a bit of that slicknees on my tounge.

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Photo of johnwarne
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A beer haiku for you:

"An old standby beer,
Easy to drink and to own.
Anchors away, friends!"

Many years ago--prior to being introduced to Belgians, Brooklyns, Dogfish, and multiple other offerings I had this beer at the top of my list. Having not had one in nearly a decade, my revisit brought back good memories but provided clarity about my changing tastes. Bottom line--very drinkable and enjoyable beer, without pretense, but not nearly as tasty as many of its peers in this $10/six pack price range.

Cheers!

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Photo of marcellaproust
2.83/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice, fluffly head that eventually dissipates into an assertive cloud cover. Amber colored. Smells like basic beer: that Budweiser, Miller, Pabst scent. Starts with a malty (no roast) blank creaminess and ends with plenty of hops. A conversation-enabling beer: pleasant enough to go unnoticed.

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Photo of thinkbreakfast
3.71/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Somehow I have yet to try this beer. It seems to be pretty common around here.

App: Cloudy orange/brown/amber. Decent head retention with lacing that slides down the glass.

Smell: Fruity with a hint of metal. Sourness as well.

Taste: Fruity at first, then asprin-like hops kick in. Finish is burnt bitter. Aftertaste is buttery and burnt. Definately a different taste. Pretty good too.

Mouthfeel: Somewhat thin. The buttery aftertaste is a plus though.

Drinkability: Very good. Good taste without numbing the pallate. Good summer beer.

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Photo of NilsFrisk
2.94/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured red, with a white head, seems to stick around for a while.
Smells of fruity yeast and a little metallic.
Creamy and well carbonated, full malt body with a nice amber malt taste and a slight hoppy bitterness.

Been wanting to try this one for quite a time now, and i recently got my hand on a bottle of it, I've tried "Oslo Mikrobryggeri's" steamer, and i don't really feel anchor steam beer reaches the same level, i was kind of disapointed.

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Photo of DeepBrew
3.89/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into pint glass.

A: Clear copper-amber color with medium white foam. Foam recedes rather quickly and leaves spotty lacing behind. Large bubbles at the bottom of the glass break down into smaller ones with every sip.

S: Inviting smell of malts and yeast.

T: Malt sweetness and hops bitter hit at once, well balanced. Leaves behind some sticky bitterness, although not an overwhelming one.

M: Medium-low mouthfeel with some light chewiness.

O: Solid, easily drinkable beer.

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Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
3.85 out of 5 based on 5,914 ratings.
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