Anchor Steam Beer | Anchor Brewing Company

very good
5,972 Ratings
Anchor Steam BeerAnchor Steam Beer

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States

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

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Ratings: 5,972 |  Reviews: 2,044
Photo of AlvinLin
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of davey101
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of dominic4beer
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of tmm313
3.96/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a bright transparent amber with 1/2 finger head. Dissipates pretty quickly. Good lacing.

Smell: Was not expecting this in the least. Pear, apple, caramel, slight citrus hops and sweet spiciness. Just a touch of booze. It reminds me of a sweet white wine.

Taste: Bready with slight caramel malt. Finish is a rush of sweet pear, apple juice, piney hops, and soft pepper.

Mouthfeel: Super light and refreshing with crisp carbonation. Dry finish with bready, fruity and peppery aftertaste.

Overall: This one caught me completely off guard. I was expecting a lager and got something more similar to a fruit beer. And a pretty good one, too. Hot summer days beg for this beer.

 693 characters

Photo of beerme626
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%

Photo of tmryan21
3.18/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Dustin_A_Stoutdrinker
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of vwbus7
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

Photo of abeeronthebeach
3.54/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Amber accented with gold. Clear body with little head. In fact that the clarity seems quite conspicuous, almost as if there is an absence of something as in a Kristalweizen.

S - Sweet malts, concentrated apple juice, a little fresh-lager hoppiness. Apricot jam and honey. The notes definitely develops as this beer sits and warms.

T - The taste is well-balanced; malt and hop play together nicely, but the experience is a little tame and I get none of the fruit from the nose.

M - Mouthfeel feels about right as well. Not overly or underly carbonated. Neither cloyingly thick nor feebly thin.

O - This is an okay beer, but I have no idea when I would drink this beer were I to have again. It is quite refreshing but there are certainly more refreshing beers around. It’s sessionable but I’d rather session a beer with stronger fruit, nut or malt profiles. It’s not particularly hoppy which is fine by me as I don’t enjoy the hops but if I did like hops I’d choose an IPA. It’s relatively inexpensive but if I really want to get after it there are cheaper beers with higher abv’s. It doesn’t taste bad, but if I want a tasty beer I’m going to have some variety of porter, stout, Belgian or sour. It is well-balanced which in this instance is somewhat of an inadmirable virtue as it renders a neutral beer which fails to offer a definitive characteristic required to compel purchase. There are various reasons why I buy beer, but there is not a situation I can think of where another beer would not better compliment that reason.

 1,554 characters

Photo of mthomp081
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of gutbuster
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of tharper178
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of Premo88
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle poured into pilsener
(3AA printed on bottle, translates to April 1, 2013 born date)

L: copper, bronze ... a lot of orange in it, burnt orange; thick 1 1/4-inch head or more, really explodes off a hard pour, nice light tan color; crystal clear, plenty of bubbles floating up in column; the color combination is fantastic -- burnt orange topped by tan, an earth-tone lovers dream; head is sticky

S: grain ... lots of grain when cold; spicy hops are present in a very light form, under the grain; as it warms up, wow! loads of bready, yeasty malt ... sweet, sweet and sweet; always get just a pinch of pepper in the nose

T: strong bitter bite inside a lot of grain with some malt sweetness at the end -- in other words, good. loads of taste, and the hop bite seems just a hair different than others ... the bitter is there, but I'm not detecting an overload of any taste note, maybe just the slightest hint of grass and spice. the upshot is it seems to be letting the solid malt backbone permeate the brew and allow for a really good sweet balance

F: good carbonation despite a strong pour that produced a big head

O: the brew lives up to the reputation ... it's so full of taste, and the thing I like most might be that it seems just different enough from other styles to be it's own thing -- it's very much a mix of czech and german pilseners and the good english-style malty euro pale lager, but it's not exactly like any one of those styles (at least not for me).

i will be purchasing more of this beer. it's light enough for the summer and tasty enough for the winter -- as good a lager as I've run across in the 5.0% ABV and under world.

 1,660 characters

Photo of mkennedy119
3/5  rDev -22.3%

Photo of TargaFlorio
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of BalancingBrooms
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of TCgoalie
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The last of Kyle's bounty given to me.

Pours a near amber color with some foam upon pouring. A ring of bubbles exists throughout with some bubbles sticking to the glass to form lacing.

The smell is odd, butter, green grapes, and apple provide an almost champagne like smell.

I would say that this is better tasting than what I was expecting. There is a firm maltiness to it with subtle hops. The balance is nice with a very clean aftertaste.

Light to medium in the mouth, as I mentioned above, the aftertaste is clean. A small bit of bitterness adds some zing to the aftertaste.

I would describe this as a very drinkable beer which is session worthy. A tasty brew this is...

 679 characters

Photo of SammyJaxxxx
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

Photo of zachthelaxer93
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%

Photo of blastoderm55
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of aufie
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of SheepNutz
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle poured into a pint glass. It pours a dark copper color with two fingers of head that stay along for the ride. There is some lacing left on the glass. The smell is grassy, piney, and malty. A very nice aroma that fills the nostrils. The taste starts out with a light bit of sweet malt and caramel. The taste ends grassy and a little hoppy. A very well balanced beer. The mouthfeel is just a little light, not too bad. The drinkability is very nice, as this isn't even 5% abv. Too bad others don't make this style.

 525 characters

Photo of whynot44
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Medium bodied, nice bronze color with an off white head.

Aroma is primarily grain, caramelized malt with just a bit of citrus and hops.

Taste is caramelly malt, citrus, pear, slightly sweet and earthy, with a nice citrus/hops finish.

Very smooth and drinkable. This would be an excellent "session" beer and should go well with almost any kind of food.

 363 characters

Photo of Vdubb86
3.59/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a pint glass

Pours a nice clear orange amber color with a finger of moderately evaporating ecru head. The aroma is of lime citrus as well as more of a corn syrupy smell along side of the general malty properties that are seen. The taste is both nice and rich in malt character. It is however quite abrasive in regards to the flavor. There is a lemon rind citrus flavor that provides both bitter and astringent properties to the flavor that I don't much care for. The mouthfeel is good as well as the beer is fairly good to drink once you are able to get past the astringent citrus. It's an interesting style. Not probably one of my favorites, but you can't argue with the inventors of the style so it's not all that bad.

 731 characters

Photo of jcoleMA66
3.34/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
3.86 out of 5 based on 5,972 ratings.
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