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

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Samuel Adams Summer AleSamuel Adams Summer Ale
BEER INFO

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

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,654
Ratings:
5,425
Avg:
3.37
pDev:
29.08%
 
 
Wants:
67
Gots:
1,242
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 1,654 | Ratings: 5,425
Photo of abastias
3.35/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Hazy, bright golden orange-yellow. Foam is light, white, and short duration.
S: Soapy, lemony.
T: Cherry, woody, spices, white grape, peppery finish. Aftertaste sits on middle to front of tongue.
M: Smooth and slightly viscus to watery. Sharp.
O: Delightfully complex and yet refreshing. The aftertaste overstays it's welcome, but overall the spices and flavors.

 366 characters

Photo of mattjv
3.32/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-Warm golden color a few shades darker than a typical lager. Around 2 fingers of fizzy, crackling soda head dissipates rapidly. lots of bubbles rising up, looks highly carbonated.

S-Light bready grain, assertive lemon notes. An antiseptic quality lingers with the lemon, reminiscent of a lemon-scented cleaning spray. Faintly grassy with a mild yeast note.

T-Mild grain flavor with a hint of sweetness starts the palate off. Lemon flavors dominate, with a grassy hint. Light herbal notes that are difficult to place, I guess that's the grains of paradise? Things get a little rocky on the finish. Lemon notes transition into a coarse, bitter, lip-smacking sourness. The sourness is not especially strong, it just isn't pleasant. Very difficult to describe as I've never encountered it in a beer, nothing like a Belgian-style
sour or similar. Aftertaste is dry and mildly soapy. 3.0

M-Light bodied in keeping with a typical summer brew, carbonation is high but not offensive.

O-This beer has potential but the lemon peel just runs amok on the finish. This was a difficult one to make a call on, but what settled it is what one expects from a "summer" type beer. In a
style that typically goes down easy for hours, I never desire more than one of these.

 1,261 characters

Photo of The_Atom
3.78/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

From a bottle so I couldn't get a true analysis of the look. Smell is somewhat average with a slight lemon smell. Taste is sharp with carbonation and an immediate presence of wheat, lemon zest and followed by a spicy note. Overall, a pleasant, enjoyable, yet decently spicy summer beer, but it doesn't pack a whole lot of flavor so that disappoints me some.

 357 characters

Photo of VDJ104
2.93/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Got to admit this was the first non macor I tasted. Even before boston lager or Blue Moon, and at the time I loved it. But I recently got again and was somewhat dissapointed. It reminded me of lemon flavors halls the lemon seemed stronger than I remember. Also the first time I had it I drank it out of the bottle . In the glass it has a weird look to it. Really thought I liked this beer now not so sure.

 405 characters

Photo of PZuke
3.1/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A hazy golden color with a nice foamy white head. This beer smells of wheat and lemons. The taste is even heavy on lemons. I hate having a lemon in my wheat beer and this was like they put one in for you. It is very light in taste and hops. I will say that on a hot day this is a good beer to have. I had this beer quite a few times this past summer at local establishments and while it is drinkable I would not say by any means that given a place with a good selection this would be the beer I would chouse. I would say that this is a very average beer.

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Photo of JAL67
3.97/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great beer to have in the Summer time. Has a nice golden haze when poured and a thin creamy head. It's a "light" Summer beer that's nice to have after working out in the yard. Taste is a little strong on the lemon side but you/I can always throw down quite a few. Goes down very smooth. Nothing like having this beer during a BBQ and sitting out in the sun relaxing. I miss it...now it's onto Octoberfest.

 405 characters

Photo of thisisshsas
3.43/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Beer is colored in a hazed golden hew. Smell shows hops, but also a little spice as well. The Taste is smooth, with lite hops and easily drinkable. Goes down easy, with a very littly bitter aftertaste. Summer ale is a staple of summer drinking, and for good reason. Its light hop aroma and simple mouthfeel make it a good session beer for the summer.

 350 characters

Photo of Jyubei
4.08/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. Pale yellow/gold body with a white one finger head very visually appealing.

S. A delicate floral bouquet with hops. Nothing incredible but still pleasant.

T. Bitter wheat at the front of the mouth leading to a Honey and nuts taste as it slides across the tongue.

M. Slightly rough carbonation feel at first but becomes smooth and silky, with a floral and citrus after taste.

D. Very good brew to enjoy with friends and a summer evening. I could go for another. Right now in fact.

 486 characters

Photo of shanecb
3.53/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Light golden yellow color. Slightly opaque, though not as much as other wheat beers. Head is bright white, dissipating after a few minutes.

S - Not very powerful. Spicy aroma, coming likely from the grains of paradise. Picked up a mellow butterscotch flavor as it warmed in the glass. Overall, the smell is pleasant, but not strong at all. No banana smell like most wheat beers.

T - Not very powerful or strong. The lemon flavor is there in the beginning, but leads off to a slightly spicy flavor. As the beer warmed up, I was able to pick up the slight butterscotch flavor near the beginning that I got in the aroma. One of the least wheaty wheat beers I've had.

M - The effervescence tingles the back of the throat, but otherwise the beer is rather smooth. Not a very full feeling, slightly thin, but enjoyable.

D - Very drinkable. Could easily drink a few of these with no problem. Would be very refreshing during the summer.

 936 characters

Photo of a4tuurbo
3.21/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A-This beer came to my table with just a tiny little head that quickly dissipated. It was a nice clear gold color with high carbonation.

S- The most prominent smell was malt with a little bit of lemon.

T- I could definitely taste the malt as well as a touch of hoppy bitterness. I did get a hint of lemon but not much. The grains of paraside gave a slight spicyness at the end.

M- I didnt particularly like the high carbonation. Otherwise, I can only describe it as average. Not too thick and heavy but also not watery.

D- Although not my favorite flavor profile, I could definitely drink quite a few of these.

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Photo of TheDragonTony
3.35/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Cloudy orange with a wonderful long lasting three finger head that leaves a beautiful lace as I drink the beer.

Smell: Very grainy with some citrus as well.

Taste: Malty, and spicy. The hops make for a nice balance. This beer is tasty but I think not outstanding.

Mouthfeel: Full mouthfeel, smooth and creamy. Heavier than I would expect from this type of beer, and not as much carbonation as I would expect from the appearance.

Drinkability: This is a very easy beer to drink.

This isn't a bad beer, I wouldn't mind drinking one, but I don't think that it is something that I will seek out in the future.

 632 characters

Photo of spaceranger
3.85/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sammy makes some really good ones. Sammy makes some so-so ones. This is one of the good ones. Cloudy, gold and smooth in appearance. Head is decent, little lacing, but what the hell, let's have a swig. Light hoppy and malty flavor combine very well. There is that under-lying sweetness that is soooo wonderful in the summertime. Some fruityness. Lemon / Orange? Good stuff. Carb is really right - not too much. Drinkability? - drink it and then drink another one. If it's a warm summer evening - sit out on the dock by the river and drink another. Thank you Mr. Sam. Keep up the excellent work.

 594 characters

Photo of dansm
3.43/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A-Pours a cloudy pale yellow with a forthy white head that quickly fades.

S-Aroma comes off as a faint wheaty lemon smell with some spice in the background.

T-Starts with the sweet wheat and lemon followed by a little spice and just the slightest hop bite.

M-Nice and light, with a fair amount of carbonation.

D-The nice blend of flavors, and the fact that it goes down nice and smooth make this a pretty good summer beer.

 435 characters

Photo of hegelec
2/5  rDev -40.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

standard pale wheat beer look, with substandard head and lacing - no torrified wheat? smell nicely peppery and citrusy, but disturbingly chemical and soapy. taste is clementines and bleachy solvents. almost unspeakable. i sincerely hope there is merely something wrong with the glass than with the beer, but a quick chat with the bartender, who has overseen innummeable kegs of this stuff pass through the draught line in the last two months, and another sample confirms my worst suspicions. african spices be damned. hideous.

 526 characters

Photo of brobeerbot
2.94/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle best by Sept. Poured into duvel tulip.

First and foremost the best thing going for this beer is appearance. It pours a pretty golden pale color with a white fluffy two finger head. After that it goes to middle of the road. Now o love and respect Boston beer company and all they brew but I know that most offerings aren't going to be mind blowing but more often than not the deliver a beer that sets the bar for what styles should be better than and not worst than.

Anyways it smells of wheat and lemon and pretty much follows that on the Taste. Mouth is substantial with just enough body. Overall this is am easy drinker for hot days and nights and someone new to craft beer might be able to enjoy this simple summer ale.

 732 characters

Photo of BrianBoruma
2.17/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Had this on tap. Honestly I think there most have been something wrong with the tap line...

A: Looked good. Faint head that was white over blonde body.

S: buttery. No spices in the nose

T: Butter. It wasn't very drinkable.

M: Oily.

D: I didn't order another. So take what you will from that.

 297 characters

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

Bottom line, this beer is better than average, but not the greatest.
It pours a hazy golden color with a decent head that lingers.
Smell is kind of crispy like the American light beers. The taste is sort of lemony w/hints of wheat. Goes down easy and pretty drinkable.

 270 characters

Photo of TheViceBlog
3.85/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had Sam Summer many times in the past, but I don't recall it being as good as it was on my most recent time to have it. While most summer beers seem to be brewed for little sissies that don't like the taste of beer and want the lowest of ABVs in order to not risk getting any alcohol poisoning, Sam still packs a bit of a punch. In fact, I kept asking my buddy, "Are we sure this is Sam Summer? Is it possible the tap was screwed up?!" It's darker than most all pisswater yellow summer beers and actually has a nice, complex taste. No idea what grains of paradise are, but they must be tasty. I don't know if this is "how" you make a summer beer, per se, but it's how you make a tasty, flavorable beer. Very nice wheat and malt body with a good lemon hint that nails you. Thus, based on an exceedingly small sample size and one single plastic cup draught at a ballgame, I will declare Sam Summer the best quote unquote summer beer in the bid'ness.

Aaron
www.theviceblog.com

 979 characters

Photo of philibum13
4.45/5  rDev +32%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

After numerous different beers tasted over the years, I have to remove my hat for Summer Ale. It has to be my all-time favorite. A fan of Sam to begin with, I could not help but easily enjoy Summer Ale. I miss it when it's off the shelves and I buy out the store when it's in season.

 283 characters

Photo of Bestinyourgirl
3.23/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

It taste exactly like a more subtle version of White Christmas, I believe it is called, but without leaving your palate extremely dry afterwards. Excellent!

 156 characters

Photo of odietrying
3.9/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Served on-tap in a Weizen glass.

A: Clear and honey-colored. Sam Adams claims this is an unfiltered beer, but it appeared to be pretty clear, which I don't like to see in wheat beers. It robs the beer of the complexity from the wheat and yeast. However, this may have added to the drinkability. Served with a lemon wedge which killed the head, and was unnecessary since it already contains lemon zest.

S: Smells of lemon and spice.

T: Crisp, refreshing taste. Malts and hops add moderate flavors, but nothing too strong. Perfect for the summer season. Lemon and spice.

M: Not over-carbonated, not too sweet or bitter from malt and hops.

D: Definitely drinkable on a hot summer day.

 689 characters

Photo of redzone3120
3.59/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a deep and dark golden color with a hint of amber mixed in. The cloudiness adds to the color giving it an even deeper hue when held up to the light. The head is relatively thick and has a nice brownness. As it disappears, there is a thin lace on the glass.

S - There is not much smell to the beer. Hints of hops and little lemon zest are about all I can smell.

T - Has a nice wheaty taste and the hops are evident. The lemon zest blends well with the wheat to enhance the flavor.

M - The feel is very smooth and the carbonation is is very fine. Has a light refreshing body with medium flavor.

D - A good summer brew and a good wheat beer. Definitely drinkable.

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Photo of AlfaMale
3.59/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This is a great beer to drink ice cold while watching the ballgame. It's smooth and flavorful without being over the top and just a hint of sweetness. The African spice adds an interesting note. Probably great for your less sophisticated beer drinking friends looking to advance beyond a Bud Light.

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Photo of SiriusBock
3.23/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: clear, dark gold color, good head, not too much lacing

S: smelled with a hint of lemon, otherwise like any other Sam Adams wheat (to me, they really have their own scent)

T: took a while to get the lemon peel flavor, the grains of paradise gave a little spiciness to the brew, and the lemon was tasted more on the backend of the sip

M: went down smooth, like a summer beer should. Would have liked more of the lemon sensation in its sourness or bitterness. Was just a note.

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Photo of Acho
3.72/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beachy beer at its best. Had it directly from the bottle (imagine taking glasses to the beach, quite a mess). Crisp taste and mouthfeel, great for hot Maine summers and light body that makes this beer the perfect companion on a sticky day in the north east coast.
This beer does it for me.

 289 characters

Samuel Adams Summer Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.37 out of 5 based on 5,425 ratings.
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