Anchor Small Beer | Anchor Brewing Company

BA SCORE
73
okay
450 Ratings
THE BROS
70
okay
Read the review
Anchor Small BeerAnchor Small Beer
BEER INFO

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

Style: English Bitter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 3.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
"We believe you will find Anchor Small Beer delicious--similar to what modern brewers call a "bitter"--and we hope you will also enjoy the idea of reviving an ancient brewing tradition, which is something of great importance. "

"We make our Old Foghorn Barleywine Style Ale from the rich first runnings of an all-malt mash, and Anchor Small Beer is our attempt to duplicate the "small beers" of old by sparging that same mash: sprinkling warm water over the Old Foghorn mash after the first wort has run off, thereby creating a second, lighter brew from the resulting thinner wort. "

Added by UnionMade on 11-11-2000

BEER STATS
Ratings:
450
Reviews:
326
Avg:
3.12
pDev:
17.31%
 
 
Wants:
21
Gots:
16
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 450 |  Reviews: 326
Photo of DmanGTR
4/5  rDev +28.2%

Photo of Brew33
2.75/5  rDev -11.9%

Photo of Budinetz
3.75/5  rDev +20.2%

Photo of Beermaine
3.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of pukahi91
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of matjack85
2/5  rDev -35.9%

Photo of flagmantho
3.6/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle into a dimpled mug.

Appearance: medium orange hue with a touch of haze and a robust effervescence. Head poured a finger of frothy ivory foam, but this is dissipating somewhat rapidly. Still, a nice looking beer.

Smell: sweet malt with plenty of graininess. A little dose of bitey hops is also present. Not too bad.

Taste: light malt with a citrusy hop character. Bitterness at the end is quite moderate, although balanced considering the low alcohol and relatively low sweetness of this brew. There is a sense that this beer is watered-down, but for a 3.3% ABV second-runnings beer, it's not bad at all.

Mouthfeel: light bodied but the big carbonation makes up for some of this. Nicely, if ephemerally, creamy.

Overall: this may not be the greatest beer in the world, but it is quaffable and refreshing and I like its parti-gyle nature. I'd love to have this on draft sometime for a long session.

 925 characters

Photo of jcoulighan
2/5  rDev -35.9%

Photo of Spikester
3.45/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Clear pale copper with one finger of white head that drops to a ring about one third of the way down. Dense tight bubble lacing lasts about the same distance.
Smell is mostly fruity hops with a trace of malts.
Taste is bitter hops, earthy, some citrus.
Mouthfeel is alright for something this light. Good carbonation with a semi dry bitter finish.
Not enough malt for the English Bitter grouping but for a watered down Foghorn and in view of the very low abv. this is quite good.

 481 characters

Photo of Hopheadjeffery
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of SLeffler27
2.5/5  rDev -19.9%

Photo of sneaks2210
1.25/5  rDev -59.9%

Photo of Lare453
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of bensbeers
3.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Love that this is a sort of "second generation" beer. Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

Has a light fluffy 1.5 finger head. Color is a pale amber.

Surprisingly complex scent - lots of toasty malts, bitterness of coffee grinds, and roasted nuts. Slight fruitiness comes through when tasting - bitter citrus peels.

Taste is certainly bitter - but not the same sought-after bitterness that hop heads enjoy. More a stale bitterness. Reminds me a lot of my Budweiser-drinking days but definitely more enjoyable. Good sessionable beer.

Mouthfeel was really great. Light on the tongue, quenches your thirst. Extremely effervescent.

Great session beer. Don't dive into this looking for a complex game-changer, but it'll do the trick if you want something to enjoy during the game or after working hard. Cheers!

 817 characters

Photo of Chugs13
3.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of sendbeer
3.25/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.53/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Stone gargoyle pint. Pours a light copper amber with a nice two finger yellowish white head with good retention and lacing. Light aroma of sweet malt with slight toastiness, lightly spicy. Flavor is light malt, slightly nutty, finishing malty and dry with bittering hops, slightly astringent. It does give the impression of a more flavorful malty beer that has been watered down, but it is being presented as a remake of the traditional small beers that were widely drunk and made from spent malt. From that point of view, the flavor is very pleasant for the very low ABV and second malt run. It was enjoyable trying this classic style and I'm glad Anchor makes it. It probably would be a good idea to make a category for this style, since it is traditional and was widely drunk at one time. I'm rating it as a small beer, not an English bitter (although it doesn't miss that mark by much).

 904 characters

Photo of hogrider
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of sprucetip
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of harrymel
2.31/5  rDev -26%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Bottle code: 2LI

Pours a nice light amber with a solid sheet of loose whites. Smells of peanuts, light grain, sweet toffee (faintly), some hints of grass. Flavor is bitter up front, some of the peanut flavor comes through, a good dose of cardboard (candy box style) some bits of metals. Medium bodied with much too much carbonation and a wettish finish. Not very impressive, but I can see how on a sunny summer day, with sweat dripping down my face this would satisfy. Maybe if this wasn't listed as a bitter.

 510 characters

Photo of ScreamForMe
3.75/5  rDev +20.2%

Photo of Jsteez
3.4/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a pint 6 oz. brown bottle into a dimpled mug.

A-Not too special: a translucent golden-yellow with a touch of light orange and visible lager-esque carbonation. It poured a nice white head that dissipated after 20 seconds. The head pretty much disappeared and left little traces of lace on the glass and around the sides.

S-Toasty malt and grainy. A little skunky right after pour. I sensed some sweet malt and maybe some bread.

T-Wet, dry, and a bitter aftertaste. It is similar to an English Bitter. However, I think it reminded me of an Australian Bitter. Toasty malt and bitter hops were the prevailing tastes overall.

M-Bitter and dry. Quite wet and carbonated.

Overall-It is an okay beer if you don't want to drink a heavier beer and you don't want to drink a Bud. I would buy it again when in the mood, but I wouldn't seek it out. I have had better bitter beers. Overall, for a lighter beer it is good to drink any time of year when in the mood.

 972 characters

Photo of BeerKangaroo
3/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

From the bomber and into a pint glass:

A: very light golden colored body yielding a one finger white foamy head that dies to a film after thirty seconds and then lasts for an extra minute. Despite the very light body, no carbonation is seen rising. Some light spider web lacing is seen speckling the sides of the glass.

S: sour graininess, nothing else is really noticed.

T: roasty/toasty, very dry and bitter

M: very light; dry, bland aftertaste. With the ABV where it is, this is an extremely sessionable beer.

O: despite the bittering being a bit more present than other English bitters and barely any malt present, I'd say this is a decent beer. For the style, its about right there. For me, I'm not sure if I would seek this out again, depends...but the price is definitely there.

 790 characters

Anchor Small Beer from Anchor Brewing Company
3.12 out of 5 based on 450 ratings.
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