Anchor Steam Beer | Anchor Brewing Company

BA SCORE
87
very good
5,961 Ratings
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
Ratings:
5,961
Reviews:
2,042
Avg:
3.86
pDev:
12.69%
 
 
Wants:
230
Gots:
1,249
For Trade:
1
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,961 |  Reviews: 2,042
Photo of Bookseeb
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance has a dark golden amber head with a generous head. Smell is sweet citrus malt with hop aroma. Taste is grainy, slight grapefruit bitter, good balance with malt and hops. Mouthfeel is medium light with a good amount of carbonation. A good brew, but for me the hops get in the way of making it a good session.

 318 characters

Photo of TychoNDC
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of puck1225
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorites from the 1980's! Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass. A clear golden Amber color with a nice beige head and great lacing. A malty nose with earthiness. Slightly sweet taste with a bit of banana and bread. Blast from the past and great fun!

 263 characters

Photo of beerluvr
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with an ivory colored head settling over clear deep amber liquid with ample carbonation. The nose is fresh sweet maltiness tempered with flowery hoppiness. Taste is crisp with sweet crystal malt-like notes, bready/biscuity flavors and a clean slightly minty hoppiness rounds out things. Finishes on a bitter and fruity note, very distinctive & very drinkable!

 365 characters

Photo of danthehopslamman
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of Cook82
2/5  rDev -48.2%

Photo of becktone
3.28/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Anchor Steam pours a rich orange color. It is crystal clear and has an off white billowy head. Carbonation is visible, therefore bringing a lifelike appearance to the beer. First began with a two finger head, now down to about a finger and a half, somewhat good retention. The beer exhibits farily good lacing characteristics.

The nose of this beer is of strong sweet malts. Reminds me somewhat of candy,(however, not belgian candi sugar). Don't detect any hops in the aroma of this beer. The sweet malt smell is too upfront and in the face, I can't take much of it before I have to move the glass away from my nose, I think that it could be toned down a bit.

When it first hits the tongue bitterness if very evident, whether it was from hops or roasted grain I couldn't tell on the first taste, but it is very evident, right up there in the front car on a big rollercoaster. This beer is a big malt beer. While it is in balance between bitter and sweet, the main flavor profile is composed of sweet malts. Not much hop flavor in this brew. A little bit might be nice. Big on a darker caramel flavor.

The carbonation of this beer is forefront. It is highly carbonated. The carbonation can be felt up to the point where one swallows the beer. I'm not a big fan of that, seems to be a little too much if you ask me. This is a beer that I'll drink again, but I don't know how soon I'll be in the mood to drink this beer again. It is something unique, however, there are many unique beers that I have had that I might prefer over this one. It just doesn't seem to hit the spot, or any spot like a good beer (in my opinion) should.

 1,636 characters

Photo of neckbeered
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

Photo of klewis
3.41/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 6MG

A: Pours a caramel color with a big bubbly head with good sustain.

S: Neutral hop aroma with a slight vegetal smell.

T: Sweet with buttery malt flavors and a touch of hop bitterness in the finish.

M: Light-bodied with plenty of carbonation.

D: Nice for a session beer, but in the grand scheme of things, this is pretty average.

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Photo of Didier
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of GarbageMan10
3.16/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Photo of Clydesdale
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy, amber/copper color. Bubbly head.

S: Somewhat earthy, slightly sweet.

T: Complex flavors. Some hop bitterness at first, then a creamy toasty malt flavor. Dry and somewhat citrusy at the finish.

M: Creamy, tight carbonation. A bit dry.

D: A nice balance of flavors, complicated without being overwhelming. Very tasty.

 332 characters

Photo of cam477
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mikefuski17
3.37/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Second go with Anchor Steam.

A. The appearance is a golden amber, more on the darker side. There was a minimal head and dissipated quickly. Not cloudy or sedimenty.

S. The aroma was very light and was rather difficult for me to pick anything out. The only smell that could be picked out were the malts, but again it was so light, I couldn't get a full appreciation for it.

T. Like the smell, the taste is also very light. It is very light and crisp. The maltiness is quietly followed by the hops.

M. It has a slight and quick feel of carbonation initially then disappears within a blink. Again it feels light bodied and smooth.

O. I think this is a great summer beer due to the lightness of it all around. It tastes great and is an excellent beer to sit and relax with.

 779 characters

Photo of cd_beer_disapear
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of PatrickJR
3.72/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from 12 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

A - Clear copper with large 2-3 finger head that lasted quite a while. Fell to decent white cap and had solid lacing.

S - Great nose on this one. Sweet, caramel/vanilla malt aroma with some fruit behind it, something like peach or golden apples. No hop presence which is surprising...

T - The semi-sweet malt starts off, but degenerates into a bland sourness. Earthy/floral hop character briefly kicks in late palate leading to a dry and mineral-like bitterness. Not a huge fan of the taste, but the malt works really well and I feel the hops ruin the taste.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. The beer has a sort of silkiness.

D - I might have a few of these, but the only memorable aspect of this beer is it's aroma. The taste isn't all that interesting, and for the price I definitely wouldn't choose this as a session beer; it's not *that* good.

 910 characters

Photo of MoreThanWine
3.03/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a 2" head which dissipated quickly. Slightly orange-yellow in color. Fairly mild and generic to me, pretty much a standard American. A hint of caramel, some bitterness.

I had fond memories of this from about 20 years ago when I first set out from home. But the truth is afte comparison to the many other choices out there this beer just isn't special to me anymore. Sorry, just telling the truth.

 404 characters

Photo of Patrick999
4.53/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Time to review an old favorite. The classic American craft lager pours a deep burnished gold into my pint glass. Not much lacing, but head retention is never a problem with Anchor beers.

Smell - I never get a ton of aroma here, but I do get light tones of wet earth...faint, but it's a fresh smell, certainly not displeasing.

Taste, Mouthfeel - Here's where the Steam excels, This beer always strikes me as fairly complex, especially for an under-5% session lager. First off, it's balanced. There's a solid backing of sweet malt, and an equally bracing lemony, grassy, earthy hop...excellent, distinctive hop profile. I get hints of pale ale-like fruity esters as well. Slightly sour and funky at times. That's the thing about this beer, no two sips really taste the same. Pair it with food and you get even more diversity. Strong carbonation helps keep things crisp, but never seems too burpy.

Need I even mention that this is extremely drinkable? Easily #1 in its category, and a distinguished, proud American classic. Next time you wear yourself out on high-gravity ales, pick up a six pack of Anchor Steam and be glad. I really should have a few bottles of this around at all times.

 1,191 characters

Photo of WiggyKGB
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Tdenham
3.81/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Lettsgo3
4.21/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of hwwty4
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 12oz bottle into my Chimay goblet. This beer pours a deep reddish amber with a big 2 inch head that melted into a thin layer on the surface of the beer. Anchor Steam also left just a slight lacing down the sides of the glass. On first aroma, roasted malts and caramel come out. Then hints of biscuits and just a smidge of hops come out in the finish. The taste is toffee up front with slight notes of roasted coffee beans and the finish is just a slight hoppy bitterness. The mouthfeel is interesting. Its really carbonated, but has a very clean and dry finish. This is a great session beer when you want something a little fuller than things that are fizzy and yellow.

 678 characters

Photo of JohnnyChicago
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a seidel mug.

A: Pours a light amber with a cap of pure white foam that sticks and leaves lacing.

S: Crisp, earthy hops and light caramel accent toastiness and deep bitterness.

T: That lager flavour: crisp lemons, spicy hops, mild melanoidins, but the ale is there too with smooth caramel and toast notes.

D: Super drinkable and refreshing. I would love a case of these in the midst of a hot summer day.

Overall: Its a great little beer and there is nothing else quite like it. Right smack in between a lager and an ale. This classic brew will always be a good choice.

 606 characters

Photo of dd43
3.48/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of jettjon
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Highs: Mouth, flavor
Lows: None

Sometimes it pays attention to know the background of the beer your drinking. Usually, though I try to judge a beer on its own merits. Anchor Steam Beer, though, shines on both counts. At first, I didn’t really know what it was supposed to be. I was guessing a pale ale. As it turns out, it’s a great representation of the Steam Beer or California Common style. Either way, it’s a noteworthy brew.

Pours a clear amber color beneath a thick, creamy 2-finger head that fades away slowly leaving behind good lacing. Nose is mostly malt. Taste starts with semisweet malt but finishes dry on a bitter hopsy note. Presenting like an ale so far. Mouth is semi-creamy and smooth; quite good. Drinkability is very good. This is a substantial, tasty beer.

Overall: Never had a “Steam Beer?” This one presents like a great pale ale, with good flavor and a good mouthfeel. Very enjoyable. Recommended.

 936 characters

Anchor Steam Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
3.86 out of 5 based on 5,961 ratings.
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