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Samuel Adams Summer Ale | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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5,582 Ratings

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Pale Wheat Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
An American Wheat, brewed with malted wheat, lemon zest and grains of paradise - a rare pepper from Africa first used as a brewing spice in the 13th Century to create a crisp and spicy flavor and body.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-09-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,582 |  Reviews: 1,685
Photo of ElGuapo
3.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a great summer brew. it is second on my list to pete's. a kick of lemon. goes down very crisp clean and smooth. perfect for a barbeque on a hot day. very refreshing

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Photo of John
4/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy gold color, rocky, tight, sticky off white head. Aroma suggests lemons, peppery spiciness. Flavor delivers much of same with some prickly hops. Smooth, light/medium bodied mouthfeel. It also sort of defies catagorization...probably falls somewhere between a Belgian Wit and a hearty American wheat. This was a pleasant surprise as normally I find summer brews lacking flavor and substance. An excellent summertime thirst quencher. Interesting beer...cheers to SA for creating a unique and inspired summer brew.

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Photo of canoehornpoint
4.1/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was skeptical as this was not my usual style but I promised myself that I'd be objective. Wow, I didn't have to be simply objective, I loved it. This yellowish wheat has a slight orangish haze. Appearance is appropriate for the style. The head is thick and white, retention is good and head life is average. The smell is lemony but not overpowering. The taste starts lemony, crisp, clean, and refreshing. The wheat hop hits you but then finishes out crisp and refreshing.

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Photo of budgood1
3.91/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

hazy deep golden color, almost copperish. nice rocky head that laces down the glass. definite lemony/peppery aroma. taste is ever so slightly complex, teasing me with citrus, wheat, malt and spice. it leaves me longing for more, but i shouldn't complain. a hop bite in the end that lingers in the mouth. a very refreshing brew that is light enough for the summer season. would be great with some spicy barbeque!

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Photo of BeerAngel
3.73/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Surprisingly refreshing! Pours a slightly cloudy golden color with a 3 finger head. It's aroma is slightly weaker, but consistent with it's taste. The taste is that of a mild wheat and a fairly nice balance of hops and with alcohol on the tip of the tail. The mouthfeel is quite nice for the hot summer days here in Texas. I enjoyed this brew and for the sale price of 3.99 per six, you can't beat it. Cheers!

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Photo of Dogbrick
3.6/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I had visions of lemon Pledge before trying this, but it actually worked well on this brew. Not a favorite but I can see it being refreshing after a lawn mowing. Nice golden color and a citrusy aroma.

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Photo of goindownsouth
3.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Not a bad brew from Sam Adams. I saw it on tap and was hesitant, but tried it anyway. It is quite murky with a nice aroma. The first taste of this brew offers a sample of things to come. Tis is a nice and refreshing summer ale. The surprise is the hints of earthiness within it. When I say that, I mean wheat in this case. Not too overpowering, but it is there. A very nice beer from start to finish.

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Photo of Todd
3.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is just a nice beer to have around in the heat of the summer ...

Pours a cloudy light amber beer with a creamy white lace that sticks and retains well. Aroma is grainy, spicy and citric. Mouthfeel is creamy and coarse. Flavour contains dry crisp grain, lemon zest that lends a nice sharp bitter twang, and a soft touch of caramel and malt sweetness. Finish is grainy, faint musty yeast and dry with grain tannins.

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Photo of BitteBier
3.66/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Beautiful color and dangerously drinkable. Carbonation was good, but smell was unremarkable. Taste is refreshingly light--a good *summer* beer. If this beer shows up at a cookout, I'm a happy guy.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.06/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hazy orange body with nice, light carbonation. Rocky white head. Lemons and spice in the nose. Tangy, spicey taste. Wheat and spice dominate taste, hops and lemon are secondary. Lemon slightly more prevalent in aftertaste. An OK summer quencher, but I would prefer to have the Spring Ale available until Octoberfest.

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Photo of chilidog
3.63/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Colder is better! I had one at about 60 degrees and didn't care for it.I thought it was the wheat.I cooled one to 45 like Sam says-to. Iwaited for a hot day after mowing the grass.Imagine this--itwas good stuff! Crisp,drinkable and very refreshing.The lemon is just-rite for summer.

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Photo of shirfan
2.52/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I did not care for the aroma of this beer at all. The slightly alcoholic lemon smell reminded me of bathroom cleaner.

Summer Ale poured a bit cloudy and dark yellow, almost amber, with a full and faintly off-white retentive head.

This brew has a distinct "bite" when first sipping it, perhaps from the grains of paradise, which quickly fades to a sour lemon flavor, and then a faint hint of wheat in the aftertaste.

A quality brew, as can be expected from Sam Adams, but one which I am personally not fond of. The grains of paradise might be interesting, in a different brew, but the sour lemon turned me off. I would not buy this beer again, simply as a matter of personal preference... others may enjoy it.

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Photo of Jordan
3.68/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In all aspects, you get a well crafted brew. Aromas of whole wheat, spurced up with a strong lemony note. Very pleasing for the palate, smooth and light bodied. Soothing. A true summer delight in every respect.

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Photo of rastaman
2.4/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Not that good, kind of boring really, especially for a wheat beer, it pretty much had zero flavour except for a bit of maltiness in the middle.

143 characters

Photo of psugrad98
3.95/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is somewhat cloudy golden in color, with a smell of lemongrass. The smell reminds me somewhat of a seaside ocean grass waving in the wind. The taste is somewhat sweet, with a hint of lemon, and spice. Chewey mouthfeel. An all around compotent ale.

 259 characters

Photo of StevieW
3.53/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Just an ok beer, I really liked it much better last summer, before my beer exploration really started. Better than average, yellow color with a nice fluffy head. I expected a little stronger citrus floral smell. Tasted nice and fuzzy like I remember, but maybe should be a little crisper, more hops, for a summer beer. Still an easy to drink, refreshing summer thirst quencher. Easy to get non ba's to try one. I had it at the Atlanta airport, Samuel Adams brewpub, that could have effected the review. I think the Allagash is better in this style.

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Photo of pbrian
3.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm not he biggest fan of grains of paradise, but this is a decent full-flavored wheat beer that I'd pick over many other brewer's summer offerings. And fortunately, a lot of non-beer geek people have this on hand in the summer. That's not such a bad thing.

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Photo of Suds
3.97/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy, golden colored beer with a thick, white head. Perceptible citrus aroma and taste. Also has perceptible light hopping and wheat character. Very pleasant on a sunny spring day.

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Photo of ebraun
3.95/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was pretty excited to see a Sam Adams Belgian Wit style brew. As other reviewers have noted this just doesn't get the job done for that. I really have no idea what 'grains of paradise' are and I don't really detect any spice in this beer to speak of. Nevertheless, it's a very enjoyable easy-drinker. Enough hoppiness to give it a good dry finish. There is a certain amount of sweetness from the wheat and a soft, persistent head and lace to the bottom of the glass. I found it quite tasty, probably great with barbecue or mexican food.... it's just not really what I was hoping for in a Belgian Wit style.

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Photo of MrNuggets
2.54/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

i must have gotten a bad bottle of this because the pour gave no head like a date with a nun. the taste was nothing to write home about either. another example on why i stockpile my favorite winter seasonals for when this time a year roles around.

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Photo of Bighuge
4.1/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazy light golden with a sticky white head. Nice aroma of malted wheat and vanilla. Nice malty wheat backbone. Tangy taste. A bit of lemon. I do get somewhat of a bite in this one too. Similar to the nice hop bite you'll find in properly brewed European Pilseners, but not as harsh. A case of these would be a nice way to fill up the poolside cooler.

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Photo of inebrius
2.86/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not too long ago this was a summer staple of mine. Now that I revisit I realize why I have moved on. Although Summer Ale is not a bad beer it lacks the flavors and complexities of the Wit style. If your looking for something that goes down easily, without thought, but a mild bitterness and slight tart finish, give it a try. If you seek a Wit, look elsewhere.

Cool Winslow Homer on the bottle though.

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Photo of Murph
3.03/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Is this actually supposed to be a wit??? Pours a perfectly clear? straw color with a nice whit head that sticks around nicely. Smell is very weak and almost completely of lemon, faint wheat and yeast aromas. There is so much lemon in this brew that it almost makes my mouth pucker when I drink it. There are some vague wheat flavors in the brew and no discernable yeast or spice flavors. Somewhat creamy but not nearly as it should be for the style. Somewhat drinkable. When Coors can make a better wit (Blue Moon) than Sam Adams something is very wrong. I more than likely won't purchase this again.

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Photo of WilliamPhilaPa
3.05/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours an off-white cloudy color. On the nose there is aroma’s of wheat malt and lemon zest. The same two things lemon and wheat malt on the palate too. I’m not a big on wheat’s, but 2 or 3 on a nice warm day… served ice cold, does the trick. Nice summer quencher, I actually prefer to be eating something while drinking these types of beers, but overall not to shabby for a wheat brew…

 390 characters

Photo of Pegasus
3.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy golden color with a decent and rather sticky white head and moderate lace. Strong aromas of wheat, lemon and spices. Upon tasting, malt notes assert themselves very briefly, followed by lemon and spices and a hoppy finish. A refreshing summer beer.

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Samuel Adams Summer Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.33 out of 5 with 5,582 ratings
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