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)
2,107 Ratings
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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,107 |  Reviews: 984
Photo of xare
4.89/5  rDev +35.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance is exactly what I want in an APA (and this is probably the beer that got me hooked onto APAs). Lovely amber color with an off-white head that doesn't stick around but does lace somewhat and clings to the glass. Nice looking.

Smell is light floral hop boquet blended with a touch of malt. Truly exceptional blend of aromas that makes my mouth water whenever I smell it.

Taste is of light malts with touches of hops throughout. Excellent balance and you always get a dose of hoppiness (but it never pushes it over the edge). Fantastically balanced flavor and I truly wish that more beers would meld flavors into a single cohesive flavor that works harmoniously as this beer does.

Mouthfeel is nearly perfect, crisp, clean, smooth, somewhat creamy. Only deduction is that there's a somewhat bitter carbonation sensation going on near the back end of each gulp. The bitterness abates before the finish but is offputting enough to deduct half a point from an otherwise exceptional drinking experience.

Drinkability is outstanding. I specifically search for this beer every year. Oddly enough, it's hard for me to find in my area as you can easily find almost every other Sam Adams product easier than this one, excepting Utopias and the brewery-specific area-limited-releases. Give this one a try and you won't be sorry. I try to sample this beer every year as part of my annual rotation.

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

Nice dark amber pour with a decent offwhite head that leaves modest lace.

Aroma is malt, caramel, light fruit, and earthy hops.

Flavor opens with roasty grain and caramel malt, hints of fruit or citrus, and a mild nip of earthy and almost grassy hops in the finish. Simple but easy going.

Body is below medium, with an average mouthfeel and good drinkability.

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Photo of berserker256
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice reddish/orange color. Medium head moderate lacing. I smell a nice sweet and citrus aroma along with a carmel malt smell. All of those flavors are present as well but you get the addition of slight hop bitterness too. Good body. Good drinking ale. One of the better ales I've had in some time.

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Photo of jeffmonarch
3.52/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle in a pint glass.

A - Dark orange brown with very little head and slightly cloudy.

S - Toasted malt and hops.

T - Strong hop flavor hits you right away but is very smooth until the bite at the finish. The malts also are very subtle until the finish when they linger for a while.

M - Light to medium bodied with good carbonation.

D - Good beer. I still like the lager better than the ale.

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Photo of Baileyuk
3.26/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bought of Uno Amber from Uno Chicago Grille.

Looked great, a light brown color with great head and lacing that retained well throughout.

Malt and fruit smell

The taste had a caramelized apple taste. That itself was subtle and pleasant. Other than that this was mediocre in other areas. The beer was good but just did not go down well.

I was dissapointed with this one but it was still an okay beer

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Photo of nrbw23
3.8/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a nice clear bright copper color with a nice white head that left a nice amount of layered lacing.

S- Smells of sweet malts, caramel and just a bit of hops.

T- Sweet malty backbone with some bready flavours combined a bit of hops bitterness. A very nice tasting brew.

M- Very crisp, light to medium in body and very low carbonation.

D- Not hard to drink at all. Has a very good taste and not to heavy.

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

I always forget how much I enjoy this brew. It pours with a huge rich and creamy head on it. The taste is very balanced to my palate. Most noticeable about the beer is a mild hop kick in the aftertaste that is quite pleasing. Just a great refreshing taste left on the tongue after each sip - it oddly got more tastier as it warmed up slightly. It's a great session brew that probably doesn't get the respect it deserves.

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Photo of bozebus17
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a crystal-clear copper. A foamy white head topped the pint. In time it died down to a small white layer that seemed to have staying power. A bit of lacing was evident in the glass.

This beer smelled very toasted and roasted. There was a hint of citrus in the nose, but malt definitely dominates here.

Upon first sip I am hit with layers of malt. Flavors are all over the place, from toffee to toasted malt. I can taste a bit of earthiness from the hops, but like the aroma suggests, this brew is almost all malt. The flavor is just a tad sweet for my liking. The beer feels creamy throughout the mouth, and goes down pretty easy.

I can't believe it's taken me this long to try this beer. It was pretty good, although not a stand out. I was drinking it on its own, and I feel it could use a touch more bitterness for balance. I think it would pair nicely with grilled beef.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Clear orange-amber with a very thin, white head (poured viciously).

Smell: Candied apples and warm pie crust with some maple syrup and a touch of hops. Sounds delicious, but the smell is quite artificial and a bit overdone. Still, I kind of like it.

Taste: "A toned down version of the smell: very sweet and apple-y, grainy malts, and a wee bit of hops and alcohol to finish it off" Says one wiseman I think the taste is hollow and empty, it missed badly. It's not a bad taste, just has almost nothing going for it.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied, crisp, and bubbly. Similar to a cider.

Drinkability: Not a great APA, but still alright. I don't like the artificial flavorings too much, but other than that it's very agreeable.

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Photo of dsa7783
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Single, 12-ounce bottle just copped from Total Wine and More in West Orange... "Brewmasters Collection"...
Pours a ruby-red, mahogany brown hue with a decent-sized foamy head that exhibited impressive staying power...
Sweet, nutty and malty aroma with hints of vanilla...
Taste was replete with caramel cream, vanilla, bread, butter, honey, and slight toffee...
Crisp, clean, medium-bodied mouthfeel along with a good level of drinkability...
Good stuff from Sam Adams...

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Photo of cjgator3
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Best before OCT 2008 notched on the side of the label. 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours an amber color wtih an off-white head that leaves a decent amount of lacing around the glass. The aroma is sweet toasted malts and slightly biscuity with some citrusy hops, not overly aromatic but pleasant nonetheless. The taste is toasted malts with a kick of citrusy hops in the finish. The drinkability is very high, this would make a great session beer, and I could easily throw down a few of these without getting bored. Good classic American brew, enjoyed on 4th of July weekend! Overall, Sam Adam's Boston Ale is definitely worth a shot!

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Photo of MDekker
3.75/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a slightly opaque dark orange color with a somewhat weak head. In the aroma I notice caramel, general sweetness, and banana. The flavor is lightly sweet and refreshing with mild flavors that I couldn't name, although I noticed some lemon. The carbonation was good in the mouth, and it felt full-bodied but not thick. As usual, Sam Adams doesn't hit a lot of homeruns with their mainstream offerings, but this one is another solid stand-up double.

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Photo of daythree16
3.72/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an extremely clear gold/copper color with a two-finger foamy off-white head.

The aroma is very fresh, and it's bursting with herbal hoppy goodness. There's also a little roasted malt in the background. The taste, however doesn't match up. There is a little malty sweetness up front, but not much complexity overall. A touch of hop bitterness shows up on the back of the tongue, but there is also a bit of metallic flavor that keeps popping up in each sip.

The mouthfeel is fairly light, and while it's not my favorite APA, this could be a good session ale.

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Photo of rtratzlaff
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear deep amber with some reddish tones. Lacing sticks to the glass after a good off white head.

Smells are similar to Boston lager but more american hops and less caramel malt.

Taste is slightly simple, but well balanced and tasty. Slightly light mouthfeel up front with good carbonation. Slightly citrus hops come in late.

Not a bad beer. Exactly what I would expect from SA Boston Ale. Not a west coast hoppy pale ale, but a well balanced subdued session beer.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.8/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz from the Summer Mix-pack... poured into my shaped Sam Adams glass.

2" head lasts forever with pretty lacing ... brew is a clear copper.

Aroma has an earthy/spicy hop component balanced by some toasty malts and light caramel.

Flavor is identical to the aroma but with a yeasty fruitiness.. and a slightly tannic black tea finish.

Body is a little bit less than medium and the carbonation is perfect.... I have always really liked this beer... I just wish it was available locally in 6'ers.

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Photo of Rayek
3.35/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Amber color has good clarity with minimal carbonation. Very little head and what's there doesn't stay long. Leaves bits of lace.

S: Floral with toffee and toasted grain notes. A hint of cloves.

T: Malt has toasted and toffee qualities. Bitterness is moderate with tastes of citrus, cloves and pepper. Finishes with a lingering citrus bitterness.

M: Medium-light body with the right amount of fizz.

D: Not very exciting to me. Good session beer, but not one I would seek out.

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

Orange Amber with a nice subdued head compared to the lager...

That characteristic caramel orange similiar to the lager...

A fruitiness all of its own. Caramel malt. Nice hop profile. This is one of the few Macros, or whatever you want to call it, that could almost pass for a homebrew. The Ale has that fruitiness to it that I have come to expect form ESB's and homebrews. Must be the yeast. Thoroughly enjoyable almost as if the Boston Lager were brewed with ale yeast. The finish is slightly sour...Nice...

Oh and this beer is severly balanced. Big malt profile matched by a superb hop profile, whatever they are. This is a balanced ale!

Has a crispness and lightness I wasn't expecting from an ale.

Delicous! I have passed this beer up way too many times in favor of the lager. From now I will buy whichever is fresher and be happy!

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Photo of CaptainIPA
3.4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

P: 12 oz., brown bottle purchased as part of the Samuel Adams Summer Styles 12-Pack.

A: Pours a clear copper color with a thin, off-white head that yields spotty lacing.

S: Aromas of malt, biscuit, fruit and yeast.

T: Solid malt foundation balanced with spicy hop notes, followed by touches of sweet fruit and biscuit. Finishes dry and slightly bitter.

M: Rather thin mouthfeeel with moderate carbonation.

D: A less than robust taste profile lends itself to prime summertime poundability.

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Photo of Pauly2X
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Light amber, solid one finger head.

S- Sweet toasted malts with hints of hops.

T- Subtle complex malt profile with a pleasing hop finish.

M- Rich, but not heavy, good carbonation.

D- Too bad this is one of the less popular sam adams styles.

Annother good solid beer from Jim Koch.

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Photo of Gehrig
4.15/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Copper-cider orange body with a thick patch of off-white head, decent lacing on the Yanks mug. Caramel malt weighs heavily on the nose, with modest amounts of citrus hops in tow. I'd prefer to get more hops in the smell, but this is certainly pleasant. As is the taste. Boston Ale strikes a nice balance between malt and hops. Again, I'm inclined to say more of each would raise the stock of this even more. Yet this is really good, faintly roasty, smooth, fairly straightforward but well done.

Easy to quaff, Boston Ale fares nicely, more malted than hopped. Sam Adams has again created a fine ale, different from its other brews. I'd love to see this supercharged with more malt and hops, but it has appeal nonetheless.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a light amber, with a long-lasting medium white head, medium lacing.

S: Strong scent of an English ale maltiness, lots of toffee.

T: Sweet treacle malts dominate the flavour, not the harsh caramel flavour that amber ales can have. Light grassy hop character to balance, overall, I really enjoyed the malt in this one.

M: Very light carbonation, low to medium body, smooth and creamy, would like a bit more heft in this beer.

D: A very good beer from Sam Adams, don't know why it took me so long to revisit it. Similar flavour profile to the ubiquitous Boston Lager, but a smooth overall feel and I think the ale fruitiness complimented the malt better than in the lager. An easy beer to find, and relatively inexpensive for a craft, recommended.

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a transparent red/brown color with ok head that leaves minute yet visible lace. Nose is slight copper and a bit of english malt. Taste is english malt with some slight hop flavors. Very lagery taste, red lager. Mouthfeel is on the thin side, but drinkability is poundable. Overall a good summer brew, but If you are expecting a very full flavored robust ale, you will be dissapointed.

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Photo of gpogo
3.77/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Clear copper-amber with off-white head that dissipates but leaves a thin lacing.

A- Sweet malty aroma with a slight hint of hops. Fruity with a bit of caramel.

T- Grainy malt flavor with a bit of spicy hop flavor. A hoppy bitterness attacks the tongue, but is by no means overwhelming. Slightly watery taste

M- Medium-light bodied with moderate-low carbonation. Relatively smooth drinking beer.

D- I'm not sure I'd consider this an apa, Sam Adams refers to it as a Stock Ale. A decent beer all around, just don't expect an apa out of it.

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Photo of KeefD
3.62/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an orange/amber color with small head, little retention, and little lacing. Where's the huge rocky head that everyone described?!

Smell is malty and citrusy. Taste is good, nice malt flavor, fruity hops accents, and a nice, clean finish. This is a great beer to just kick back and drink while you're grilling on a fine spring day. Nice interpretation of an English Pale Ale.

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Photo of tempest
3.78/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Why is this called an APA? Sam Adams calls it a stock ale (which can also mean old ale) and has a very British character in my opinion. Tastes and smells like an English pale ale really. The aroma is a smooth, creamy bread and carries over in the flavor. Mellow caramel malt with a slight herbal hops note make up most of the flavor. Mostly its all smooth sailing with the creamy yeast character and sweet malts. Quite delicious in all, though not as complex as I'd wish.

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Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.62 out of 5 with 2,107 ratings
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