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Samuel Adams Boston Lager | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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2,646 Reviews
Samuel Adams Boston LagerSamuel Adams Boston Lager

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

Style: Vienna Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our original beer is full-flavored with a balance of malty sweetness contrasted by hop spiciness and a smooth finish.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-27-2001

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Reviews: 2,646 | Ratings: 8,938
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer came a very clear golden brown with a creamy, slightly tan, dry head that left a little lacing around the top few inches of the glass. Smelled like sour skunky corn chips with a hint of lime and a tiny bit of dryness. Tasted of smooth non-aggressive lager sourness, with some good wheat and oat flavors along with an apple and raspberry sweetness. This beer finished with a crisp hop dryness. The mouth feel was thick with playful small bubble carbonation. This beer is fantastically drinkable as its flavors are very subdued, and well done at the same time. Also, the mouth feel makes this a very easy beer to drink.

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Photo of Tim460
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a light copper color with small white head that turns to a nice lacing. Smell is a nice balance between hops and malt. The malt tastes hits you up front followed by hops in the back end of the drink. The beer is smooth with some carbonation. This makes for a great session beer due to the low alcohol content and good taste.

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Photo of orfeu
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle, best before March 2006. Clear golden-brown, moderate carbonation, pristine white and fluffy head with adequately sticky lacing. Nose is spicy hops and doughy yeast. Hallertau spice at the front of the tongue, impressive tasty biscuit middle, dry hoppy finish. Juicy mouthfeel, and very drinkable. Always a good option early in the day or when other, more "special" craft brews aren't available. Consistent quality despite growth gets BBC many props from me.

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Photo of Terp96
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have had this on many occasions as most people have but this is my first review.

I had this in a bottle at a restaurant in Little Italy, Baltimore last night with dinner. Not much of a selection as my choices were Peroni, Sam Adams and the rest of the American Macro crap. This Sam was welcomed after my Peroni starter.

This beer looks great. Nice amber color. Just the right amount of carmonation and head all in one package. This is the example other macros should follow.

Smell is mostly malt with a little bit of floral hop spike. Smells of warm bread.

Taste is solid. I am not a huge fan of Vienna Lagers but this one is good. Nice malty sweetness up front. A very smooth finish with a nice dry finish. Very balanced.

Mouthfeel is good as well. Heavier than I typically like in a beer, especially with food but very balanced. Not overly carbonated. Very smooth.

Drinkability is good. You could drink this one all night if you favor the style. Again, it goes down smooth and is tasty. Low alcohol makes it a very good beer for parties. The prototypical cross-over for macro drinkers.

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Photo of Finite
4.5/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I don’t care if it’s a macro! This is a great beer. Pours a sexy red golden colour with a perfect sized lager head which reduces a slightly thicker leaving some of the greatest lacing I have seen for a lager.

The smell is of sweet caramel malts and floral hops which fill the noise with perfect balance. The taste is of smooth caramel malts, accompanied with some refreshing floral hops.

The taste if sweet for a long time with the sweetness lingering on the edges of the palate for as long as possible.

Ending with a perfect bitter aftertaste and a tad of those yummy malts, which just teases you to have more.

The mouthfeel is great carbonation which makes for a very refreshing drop.

This brew kicks arse

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Photo of Px2GrafX
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

had this with my dinner last night after listening to a review on craft beer radio podcast. poured a very clear, golden and lightly-amber in a pint glass. nice 2 inch foamy slightly off-white head with good retention and lacing down the glass. sweet caramelly aroma with a very evident and surprising floral hop aroma. i didn't expect the hops from a sam adams lager. first sip is caramel malt. balancing lightly spicy hop flavor with good bitterness. nice balancing hop character. finishes a touch try with a light toastiness. light-medium body with good carbonation and a decent swallow that clunks just a tad. very drinkable session brew with good flavor and no apparent alcohol. i haven't tasted this in propbably 4 years or more until last night. excellent session brew if you're strapped for more flavorful options. one of my new non-micro favorites.

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Photo of Vancer
2.61/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Hmm, from the winter sampler pack – this one turned me off Sam Adams a long time ago. It was on tap at a local place, and I remember the exact same thoughts:
Nice looking pour, mahogany brown with a nice tan head, somewhat malty aroma with just some hints of hops. But wow, is this an awful taste, raspy, hoppy and earthy – just not a pleasant brew at all. Way to unbalanced in my book.

The Boston Ale is good, the lager is a bad rep of a Vienna lager.

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Photo of metallistout
4.52/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Well I'm partial to this beer, because this is the beer that started it all for me. After I had enjoyed this little brew for the first time, all I'd had was the normal macros(We're going back at least 7 or 8 years ago). Until the beer, I never knew what real malt or hops tasted like. Now, I'm not saying this is the best beer in the world, but it is one of the better beers out there with "HUGE NAME".

Pours a light amber color with a frothy thick head(even better on draft).

Smells of floral hops and sweet malts.

Tastes mostly of hops, but you can taste the malt presence.

Finishes dry, but I could drink it until I fall over.

Thanks Jim Koch!

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Photo of MSchae1017
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was tasted in a Mug from the bottle.

The beer pours a nice amber/brown color with a gold sizeable frothy head that laces nicely. It smells of some good hops with some sweet malty smell. It tastes nicely sweet with some mixed in good bitterness. Basically a great flavor overall for this style. It feels moderately thick with some good carbonation. This is definitely one of my favorite lagers.

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Photo of Mitchel
3.3/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Samuel Adams Boston Lager pours a light orange with a blond tinge. The head is pretty average in thickness and is uneven and creamy and sticks to the glass for the whole time I enjoy this fallback beer.

The lager smells of hops and caramel. It is very flowery in aroma.
The taste is what you should expect of SA. It has that initial kick in the teeth which keeps you coming back for more every time. It has a sweet hoppy finish which concludes fairly dry. I don’t know what to call the taste other than herbal.

As stated before, this is a fallback beer for me as I imagine that it is for most BA’s. The thing that I appreciate the most about The Boston Beer Companies products is the fact that they are consistent. I don’t rank this beer incredibly high, but I really appreciate the dependability of this brewer and its products.

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Photo of jarmby1711
4.13/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My beer was sloudy mid amber with a fine off white head and a bead that seemed just about right
Plenty of hoppy fruits in the smell and the taste.
In the nicest way this was a complicated beer. Hops malt and yeast were all ther but all integrated.Not overly hoppy not too malted , it ws very pleasant.
This would be a fantastic session beer , because it is so balanced and smooth , but it costs a premium ,so ,alas will be a special treat beer only

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Photo of OStrungT
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer pours a golden yellow with a white head. The head fades slowly, leaving few laces. This beer has a crisp refreshing aroma. It has a slight caramel aroma. It smells sweet. There is also a slight hop aroma. Not piney , just floral. This beer has a clean crisp taste. I can taste a caramel sweet flavor. The hop presence is light, but refreshing. It has a slight spicy finish. It goes down very smooth, leaving a malty sweet aftertaste. I think this beer would make an excelent session beer. It is refreshing, and it tastes good. Also, it is not high in alcohol. I usually have a six pack of this stuff in my second refrigerator. It is good to drink, and it is acceptable by those that do not yet like craft beer.

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Photo of SteveO1231
4.45/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Ah! The beer that started it all. In highschool, I started drinking beers like Coors Light and Busch Light. I snuck one of my father's Sam Adam's Boston Lagers when I was 17, and I've been on the path of craft beer ever since. I've been living in San D for the past 3 1/2 years and have developed a taste for big hoppy bears. I've been drinking Sammy Boston Lager for years and now I will review it with a new palate.

Poured a bright golden orange. Thick foamy white head holds nicely in my glass. Leaves little bubbly lacing as I sip away. Nice slow carbonation.

Great smell of breadlike malts and mild hops. A scent of tea in there.

Very smooth, rich caramel malt sweetness. Mild tea-like bitterness. Very balanced and totally drinkable.

One of my favorite beers, my #1 fall back beer, and definetely a session beer.


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Photo of dmbgator
3.42/5  rDev -10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle

What can you really say about this well known Boston creation. I personally am not a large fan of macrobreweries, however, I enjoy some of the high quality brews that Samuel Adams produces. With that being said, let me speak about the Boston Lager. I poured the lager into my Sam Adams pint glass, and noticed a very golden-like hue. At the top of the glass formed a very nice white head, which stayed througout my drink. The nose of the beer was full of fruits and some nice maltiness. The taste of the beer wasn't as good as the smell. I was expecting more of a sweeter taste, however, seemed a little bland with a little spice at the end. The mouth feel was average, and of course the drinkability is quite high. Must say that for an American macrobrew, it is enjoyable. Can put a few of these back easily during the course of a night.

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Photo of chOAKbarrell
3.63/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well, what more is there really to say about Samuel Adams Boston Lager?

Everyone knows what its like - a rich golden, smooth drinking, incredibly consistent, flavorful beer.

It's a great thing that a craft brewery has gotten so big, and accepted into the mainstream, that they can compete with the big guns. Often times, Samuel Adams is the only decent beer you will find in a liquor store or bar. They broke the mold, and now hopefully, other craft breweries will be able to follow and gain mainstream acceptance as well.

This beer, and brewery, demand respect.

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Photo of PBRstreetgang
4.13/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an orange mahogany with perfect clarity. A creamy 1 1/2 finger head shows excellent retention and leaves good sticky lacing. American hop nose, with some toasted crystal malt. The taste is caramel and crystal malt upfront, then some sweet munich malts come out. The aftertaste is herbal american hops and leaves a semi-dry bitter finish with slight residual sweetness. Lightly carbonated,and medium in body with a mouthfeel that is both crisp and smooth. Hop flavor is more pronounced on-tap, and perhaps a bit stronger than appropriate, but the rich malt profile makes a nice balance. Full flavored and highly drinkable, it's no mystery why this wins awards.

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Photo of ski271
4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear medium-dark amber with a small, slightly off-white, foamy head that quickly diminishes to a thin film. The smell is mild and bready with light herbal hops backing it up. Pleasant caramel aroma. It has a good balance of flavors: caramel, grain, citrus, and a little tea-like. It has a very nice dry, lightly citrus finish, a medium body, and soft carbonation. I forgot how good this beer is for being one that’s so widely available. It’s an all around satisfying and easy drinking beer, that was a great transition beer for me.

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Photo of misterscooter
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The big, frothy white head sat on dark golden liquid, slowly forming larger bubbles from the mass of tiny ones. This head lasted quite a while and gave off a balanced smell of hops and malt, neither overly strong. A flowery sweet smell intermingled in the common beer aromas.

This guy is solid. Great hops, through and through. It is dry but not bitingly bitter. The malt balances it with some sweetness but always a bite of dryness there. Through and through, a great beer, an excellent benchmark.

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Photo of sevineyes
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown bottle with a blue label.

A: Amber in color with an orange tint. Good bright head on the pour and good prevailing lacing.

S: Malty and hoppy with some light floral aspects.

T: Continues with malty and hoppy profiles from the scent, but adds some breadiness and caramel. Finishes nicely bitter.

M: Coats the mouth. Has a nice meduim body and not too much carbonation.

D: Definitely a session beer. Almost seems to be the definition of a session beer.

Overall: This is really a nice little lager, and readily available most places. Definitely a good alternative to try.

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Photo of jettjon
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Highs: Flavor complexity
Lows: None

Pours a dark golden amber color with a copious brownish tan head that slowly fades leaving plenty of lacing. Nose is pleasant, of malt and hops with a sweet nutty aroma and perhaps some wood. Taste is quite pleasing, with sweet and bitter mixing along with some hops and complexity that I can’t place. Mouth is quite smooth and enjoyable, making this a very drinkable brew. The finish is nicely bitter.

Overall: A very good to excellent lager. Not a premium beer, but definitely several cuts above most of what is usually available at the local sports bar.

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Photo of Shovelbum
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A billowing white head over a translucent light-amber body. Decent retention and long-lingering lace. A light hop aroma upfront combines with notes of malt. Strikes a perfect balance between flavors of sweet and caramel malts and hop bitterness. Medium-light body with full-flavor, not at all watery. Crisp in the mouth and finishes with a mildly drying hop bitterness.

This is one fine session beer. The price to character ratio, makes this an ideal beer for supplying large thirsty groups. On-top of that it is not too great of a shock for macro-lager drinkers. Combine that with Jim Koch’s recent spate of beer- drinker education propaganda on the labels and this makes a very effective conversion tool. Utility aside, this is one of the few lagers I drink by choice.

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Photo of DogFood11
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

For some reason I usually drink this when I'm traveling through airports. On this trip to Denver I noticed alot of folks drinking Sam Adams which was a nice sight.

This fine lager has a milky smooth head that leaves chunked and thorough lacing with every pull. Amber color with shades of red on the edges.

Malted flavors dominate but its very smooth and not overpowering. Caramel is the strongest taste once again smooth and a slight hop presence to clean up. Carbonation is nicely balanced to create a comfortable mouthfeel.

Low ABV, big Flavor, not a combination you will find too often. This is the flagship beer from boston brewing company and it stands up to that label. The best of the standard offerings by a long shot.

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Photo of cheers2beers
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pouring this beer the head rose about one finger slightly off white,and traces of laceing can be found.The color is syrupy,mahongony.The nose is full of heavy malts.Not good not bad either.Tastes much like the nose malts and a hint of hay in the finish.A thin mouthfeel goes down smooth and easy.
I know i could drink a few of these with no problem.This is definitly a good session beer,and i would purchase this one again.
Overall this is a good beer.


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Photo of Naes
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one is copper/amber colored with an inch of white head. There is lots of carbonation floating up in this beer.
The aroma is quite malty and bread like.
The flavor starts out with toasty malt, then moves to a semi bitter hop flavor and goes back to the malt. The hops make a final return in the aftertaste. As the beer warms, the malts take over and it becomes significantly less hopy.
Mouth feel is medium bodied and nicely carbonated.
Though this is not my favorite style of beer, I must say that this is a much better beer than I remember.

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Photo of shbobdb
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sam Adam's is a solid beer. It occupies that grey area between BMC and craft brews and does so splendidly! The beer is a nice, dark vienna lager with a pleasant caramel taste which is nicely complimented by the artful use of hops. No one aspect of this beer stands out as being remarkable, but the blending is incredibly pleasant.
Oh, and the mouthfeel! I judge a good beer on its mouthfeel and this beer has got a nice grainy feel to it. It has a hint of the liquid bread aspect that I demand of good beers without being too thick.
It's a perfect beer for drinking with the guys. Even ardent male BMC drinkers will have it (get the light if there are ardent female BMC drinkers. . . I found that out the hard way) and enjoy it, and ardent beer nerds will drink it without complaint. Good stuff. Good, good stuff.

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Samuel Adams Boston Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.8 out of 5 based on 8,938 ratings.
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