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

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Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale)Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale)

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

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-12-2001

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Reviews: 975 | Ratings: 2,081
Photo of dabarton
1.5/5  rDev -59.2%

I have had roughly two dozen different types of Sam Adams beer and this is in my opinion by far the worst. Nearly undrinkable, this beer is a disgrace to the brewery.

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Photo of bobhits
1.94/5  rDev -47.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A watery stock ale? A rather odd APA? I have no idea what this beer is. Not much nose on this one and what there is isn't great. Pours like most sam adams, large but thin bodied head, lots of carbonation and this one is a dark amber copper color. Taste...well it's like a watery stock ale with some European style pale ale characteristics...which begs why this is called an APA. Sierra, stone, and every other great American brewer is doing a face palm at this being called an APA. It's not as drinkable as you'd think given everything else and the mouth feel is a bit off for the flavors. I just feel this is a failed beer that's got a lot of potential.

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Photo of sarahspat
2.32/5  rDev -37%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Pours a clear halfway-in-between golden and amber color. A healthy looking head sits atop the liquid. Nice and craggy with good retention and lacing, both of which are probably above average for the style.

The nose is nearly impossible to detect, even very close up... I can just barely pick out some biscuity malts.

This medium-bodied beer tastes of biscuits, sweet maple syrup, with low key white grapefruit and pine. A crisp bitter edge complements each sip. Unfortunately, the whole glass did not taste as good as the above description might imply. As it warmed, some flaws began to show up: a nasty plastic flavor, an inappropriate astringency and an unsettling artificial, fruit roll-ups-esque flavor. All of the following made it almost painful to finish the glass.

WTF? I don't know what went wrong here, but I would not drink this one again. Terrible pale ale. It was nearing the "best by" date, but even if it was past it, I don't see any justification of these flaws. Sam Adams is hit or miss for me... and this is definitely a miss.

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Photo of Brad007
2.4/5  rDev -34.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

I have no idea why breweries brew more than one style of beer and slap different names on them? Anyway, Sam Adam's Boston Ale pours a reddish-copper color. The aroma resembles mostly malt with some hint of alcohol in the background. The taste is much of the same. There's that sweetness at the beginning that I also noticed in the Pale Ale. Still too much malt flavor for my liking. It feels to me like SA didn't really try on this beer and that's never a good thing. I hope SA doesn't decide to make an IPA because so far, their Pale Ales are too similar and unimpressive.

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Photo of Klondike
2.42/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I've had this bottle of Boston Ale for over a year. I bought a 6 pack and tried one and hated it. I used four for my barbecue which came out great. I had one more left that I forgot about and decided to drink it for opening day of the Major League Baseball season.

I poured the beer into a glass and got very little head. The color is a reddish brown and clear with hops floating around in the beer. Don't care for the smell. I smell a nutty to carmel scent that is very loud and not attractive.

When drinking the beer I noticed that the beer is light and almost watery like a lager. You get the carmel to nutty taste that goes away as you drink it down. This beer will do in a pinch but, its not something that I would buy again. Kinda like drinking butterscotch.

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Photo of osi
2.43/5  rDev -34%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - Poured light amber with a pretty impressive head. When faded the lace hung around with more than just a film.

S - Smelled of malts with a slight plum undertone on the backend.

T - Mix of malts and hops that was very even and balanced. Alcohol was somewhat apparent with bitterness too.

M - Good average mouthfeel. Suited the flavor output of the beer. Just in the middle weight wise.

D - I expected more flavor out of this beer rather than the watered down taste it presented. Not sure if I had a bad bottle or not but I will try this beer and if necessary modify my review.

I would not drink this regularly.

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Photo of AllThingsNinja
2.43/5  rDev -34%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This brew’s average appearance, with a reddish-gold body and a misty white head, is its best feature. The subtle aroma of dried hopes wasn’t too bad – but the watery brew went down hill from there. Stale, or over-dried hops dominated the flavor, all but silencing hints of caramel malts. Remarkably, low taste brew retained notes of the quintessential S.A. house flavor. While I could drink a fair amount of this brew, I don’t see why I’d try.

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Photo of Freshie
2.46/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pale golden color, clear. One finger frothy head.

I couldn't detect much aroma, but the beer was very cold. A bit of hops I guess.

I tasted some roasted malts with oliy hop. The after-taste was stale and bitter.

Not sure whether all of this was the bar's fault or the brewer's, but not a good time. I will try the bottle at some point and re-review.

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Photo of peabody
2.53/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours out like weak Ice Tea. Slight white suds but nice lacing.
Slight wheat and caramel smell. Nothing really strong.
Very bland tasting with almost nothing going on.
This is a not a tasty beer. Might be too old or something.
You could drink a whole bunch of these but who in their right mind would want to?

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Photo of TheAlamoWrocker
2.59/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle, best if consumed by November 2011, into a Blue Star Brewery Pint Glass


This Ale pours a one fingered head which dissipates quite quickly and what remains is a sad lacing around the edges even though I haven't even picked up this drink. It pours a sinopia, shade of brown, body and edges. The color is solid all around and it seems different, but inviting none the less.


The smell is mostly malts with a fairly decent aroma of sweet caramels. This smells are just sweet and nothing too interesting.


This taste is close to what it smells like. It's mostly sweet malts throughout with a nice hoppy bitterness at the end.


The mouthful is just were this drinks just fails. It feels like water in my mouth. It's just too thin and it makes me feel like I'm barely drinking an ale.


I usually feel like Boston Brewing Company makes good drinks, but this is not one of them. It's just so far from being special and memorable. Its not completely horrible, but I feel bad that I bought a 6 pack of this. I feel like I have to give the rest of these to people who don't have taste and I could only hope that they enjoy it because I won't.

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Photo of Drew966
2.61/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap at the original Pizzeria Uno in Chicago on Ohio Street. The glass arrived at the table with almost no head. The beer is amber in color. The aroma is on the malty side. I don't think this is that great of a beer tastewise, almost seems like there's some diacetyl, or something along those lines going on. Malt comes out up front with some hop toward the end. I'd probably go with something else.

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Photo of klewis
2.61/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Best before 7/07

A: Pours a clear amber with a smal bubbly head. Moderate lacing.

S: Light malt smell with a touch of caramel. No noticable hop character.

T: Bland, watered down malt flavor with a mild hop character that is barely more pronounced than the Boston Lager.

M: Light and crisp with moderate carbonation. Clena finish.

D: I remember loving this beer a few years ago. What happened? Drinkable but extremely dull and boring. Not enough hop character for evena n English pale ale. Pass.

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Photo of Caesar1pup
2.63/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I bought a couple of Sam Adams six packs last night that I have not tried yet from a store that was going out of business. 30% off, what a deal!

Appearance: Pours with an amber/orange in color.
Aroma: Sweet and slightly fruity but no discernable hop smell.
Taste: I found the taste to be rather unexciting and bland. Grass like sourness with very little hop flavor.

Overall: I was not overly impressed with this offering and would not purchase it again considering all of the alternatives in this category that one has to choose from.

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Photo of bucko
2.63/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This beer pours a dark copper color with an almost white head that quickly disappears. The smell is dominated by carmel from the malt. The hop aroma is there, but extremely subdued. The taste is dominated by the malt - carmel comes through. The hop bitterness is there, but the flavors are overpowered by the malt. The mouthfeel is rich and heavier than what I'd expect from an APA. The beer is definitely drinkable, but it took me some time to get over my expectations for an APA. I don't think this beer fits the style very well and think it might be a stretch to even call it an English Pale Ale. That being said, it's a smooth, consistant brew, but certainly not what one might expect within the APA category.

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Photo of goz
2.64/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

On tap the the Pic in Tewksbury. Pours clear amber, with a decent sized white head, long lasting, but no lacing. Aroma is malty and sweet, mostly hinting of caramel. Flavor is intenselt caramel, maybe overly sweet. No hops to speak of. Pretty thin mouthfeel also.

 263 characters

Photo of dmamiano
2.64/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Beer poured nicely. Beautifull golden yellow, clear and crisp looking. Ample beads of carbonation headed towards the top of the glass.
Thats where the goodness in my opinion ended. The nose was very non-descript with note of malt and almost a raw, skunked odor.
Taste was very average and hops and malt were both most elusive. Very bland at best. Mouthfeel average.
Not bad for a macro, but it can get a lot better.

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Photo of midaszero
2.65/5  rDev -28%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Clear amber with 2 finger light tan head that has ok retention and lacing.

S - Heavy malt with a little floral

T - Just like the nose with some toasty notes maybe a little caramel with a off after taste.

M - Light-medium body with light carbonation, kind of sticky feeling

D - Good for sessioning if it is all you got but I won't be buying it again.

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Photo of magictrokini
2.68/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear amber pour, short off-white head. Weak aroma of hops, toffee, and earth. Watery taste that is mostly crisp hops. Some malt and caramel in the back. Just never had the full compliment of both to make this better. In the end, it tasted matery and somewhat skunked.

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Photo of drunkenmess
2.68/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Average beer for Sam Adams. Wanted something with a little more hops, so I strayed from my usual (comfort zone) stout and porter thirst. And this is defintley a more bitter beer then I'm used to. Pours a very light amber color with an excellent light tan head. Minimal lacing. Smells of yeast to me and also wheat idk... mayb its me. At first taste it was bitter then quickly went away till the next swig, as i keep drinking it gets smoother. Nice after taste. Overall... not bad Sam, not bad.
P.S. goes really good with sloppy joes

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Photo of packetknife
2.68/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Orange-golden tone with a thin off-white head that was dense and laced. Too much hop on the nose and not enough on the tongue. It tasted like it was watered down a bit or not developed enough before bottling. Typical feel and drinkability. Nothing remarkable here.

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Photo of DogFood11
2.68/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Light copper, light body, medium carbonation Eggshell white head leaves plenty of DNA.

Watery body, mashy smell, sweet basic malts. Cake comes to mind followed hopes intent to clean but they come up short. This is a malty ummm pale ale. Yes, its listed under American Pale Ale, but it definately leans towards an english version. Caramel around the edges, carbonation gets aggressive about half way through and then subsides.

Notes: Pretty boring. Along the line of most brews I've had from this company. Inoffensive, decent, but nothing more.

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Photo of belzo35
2.7/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

It oured orange-gold in color, with not much head.

Smell was of flowers, caramel, and some citrus.

Taste was same but also pretty hoppy.

Watery and clean feel.

I was a little disappointed, but overall not that bad of a brew... Ive had better for less price

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Photo of Bagman007
2.76/5  rDev -25%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a bottle poured into a pint glass.

A- Pale orange coloring with just over a finger's width of head.

S- Very mild scent of hops. I'd say the smell of yeast is more dominating.

T- Very yeast like flavor with some hops mixed in. They hops are barely noticable.

M- Bitter and not in a good way at all.

D- Too yeast like for me to have too many of theses.

Overall it's a beer that had some potential, but ultimately didn't pan out.

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Photo of becktone
2.79/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Quite appealing to the eye. Light copper, or copper in the literal sense when it comes to color. head is a creamy egg white with very nice retention and formation at one finger. Some good lacing also. I'll say that Sam Adams, from the two that I've had today(different styles) seem to always have a great appearance, especially good head retention.

Aroma of this beer has a strong malt backbone. A real grainy character in the nose along with hints of caramel and a very lightly toasted aroma. Don't really smell any of the hops.

Perhaps I've got some bad batches of brew. I picked up a mixed 12 today, and both of these have had a real metallic flavor. Strong malt backbone right up front. Just a bit of flavor hops near the finish of this brew, not very much though, took me a while to notice it. Sweet and nicely balanced by the hops, though I'd prefer more hop flavor and aroma from an APA. And definitely less metallic taste. Nothing to brag about I'd rather SNPA, Burning River, Stone PA, Anchor Liberty, or Bell's Pale Ale. This one just doesn't do it.

Medium-light bodied with perhaps just a bit too much carbonation, feels almost like I'm drinking a heavy soda. Finishes somewhat dry with a metallic tang. All in all mouthfeel is ok, I wouldn't call it average, but I don't think that it deserves below a three. Drinkability-there's much better out there, from just the few APAs I've sampled this I know. This just doesn't cut it.

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Photo of Boto
2.8/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Draught at a Pizzeria Uno: I had hopes that it may be a good beer, but those hopes were dashed with the first sip. The color was a fairly clear amber hue. There ws some head. The aroma was ok, just a bit thin. Some malts and hops coming through. The flavor was passable, but not exciting at all. I switched to Sam Adams as it was the best thing available there. I was suprised to see that the beer had been brewed by Sam.

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Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.68 out of 5 based on 2,081 ratings.
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