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

2,092 Ratings
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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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Ratings: 2,092 |  Reviews: 978
Photo of Applesauce1
3.89/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've drank this many times before, but none for the last few months, so I figured I'd go back to an old favorite for a review.

Bottle says the beer expires in December 2006.

Appearance: amber color with a 1/2" off-white head; looks really good
Smell: little bit of hops; some kind of weird smell (maybe some caramel malt?)
Taste: pretty good, little bit sweet; light on the hops for a pale ale; caramel; gets better as it gets warmer
Mouthfeel: light-medium bodied; good carbonation
Drinkability: very easy to drink; could go with 2 or 3 in a row

This beer is pretty easy to find at most good beer shops. It's a reliable beer for a meal or a night out.

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

Served from a 12 ounce bottle in to a pint glass. The pour produces one half inch of foamy white head lasting about 30 seconds. The body is a brilliant orange and red. A well balanced amber color to say the least.

Plenty of hops immediately on the nose with a lingering effect of roasted malt. Faint odors of fresh cut grass and pine. There are subtle hints of vanilla and caramel behind the hops.

The taste is immediately hoppy yet smooth on the tongue. The roasted malt body barely noticeable on the nose is more apparent at the midpoint of a sip. Plenty of sweet vanilla and caramelized sugar flavors working together with the relative hop bitterness. Very well balanced throughout.

Excellent, slick mouthfeel with a relatively light body make the drinkability of this one huge.

The combined smell and taste followed by a great body and drinkability measure make this an excellent choice for any palate. An excellent choice for a fridge stocker.

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Photo of badbeer
3.95/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice pale color with a soft white head leaving a nice lacing. Toffee, caramel, and light floral hops in the nose. Much of the same in the taste, with a slight hoppy finish. High carbonation and medium bodied. Pretty solid choice here, I could have this on occasion.

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Photo of jasonjlewis
4.15/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice ale, great head and head retention, rich gold color. Nice rich strong smell. The hops come out strong on the nose. Taste is pretty well balance, but I think they use a little bit too many hops. I personally love that about the beer, but I am judging style. Mouthfeel is somewhat normal for an ale, rich on the palate, but not a lot of carbonation. I could knock a few of these back.

I had to edit this, the malt flavor comes out more as it warms up. When it's cold it's all hops.

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Photo of MarkBlackout
4.45/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I like this. I didn't immediately label it as a Pale Ale upon trying it: maybe a decently hopped ESB or Amber Ale? It has a really nice maltiness and maybe a more spicy, peppery hop flavor (as opposed to fruit/pine oriented which i find prominent in other easily-acquired, major market pale ales). I used to disrespect Sam Adams, but lately I've retried several of their beers and found all three passable or better. May this review serve as a retraction of those statements. Except for the one to the effect that their television ads are indeed as corny and contrived as the commercials for any other product. I'm impressed with the product, though, so I'm willing to ignore the advertisements and proceed to pick more of these up (I only bought one this evening) on the way home from work tomorrow.

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Photo of bodybyadam
3.1/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Traditional Sam Adams bottles. Smartly appealing.

A: Poured into my glass an amber to orange hue with 1/4 inch bead of white foam.

S: A mild hop nose and mild note of malt in the nose as well.

T: This one is hoppy * but not bitter in taste.

M: A good smooth, mellow tasting blend, well balanced.

D: Fairly drinkable, I prefer more bitter. Good poolside or in the hot tub.

Elbows Up,

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Photo of Frozensoul327
3.42/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From the tap, and far too cold. Yellow appearance with a small head of white foam. Not so amber, more golden brown. Aromas of fresh mashed malts and grain. Taste is similar to smell; malt, grain, raw molassas, a touch of hops. Mouthfeel was unremarkable, yet acceptable. Drinkability is decent. Not bad with the pizza I had. Worth a try. Then move on.

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Photo of jpkoch1962
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very nice middle-of-the-road Pale Ale.

Served in at 45 deg F in pint glass. Pours a nice orange-copper hue with a long lasting head. The hops aroma are somewhat subdued. A slight citrusy, floral aroma can barely be detected. This ale begins with a nice balance of toasty, grainy malts and floral bittering hops. They blend nicely together in the middle, before the ale finishes bitter- but not overly so. Just a faint malty aftertaste remains.

A very nice pale ale which can be enjoyed with about any dish or gathering. The alcohol is low enough to to drink a few without worrying about calling a taxis.

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Photo of HoustonTX
4.17/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured ice cold from a 12oz bottle.

A - Pale amber color, nice head and lacing, decent retention.

S - Smell is of roasted grains, hops, slight barley, and a citrus tart.

T - Taste is very appealing with it's mild hop backbone. The taste is very solid and suprisingly crisp. Very well balanced and the flavors tend to meld together in a quite unique way. The hops/malt/caramel flavors just go so well together and in such a perfect balance. Fruit ester flavors are also apparent. Delicious.

M - Crisp, smooth, and refreshing.

D - I could drink these all day long.

This is by far my favorite Sam Adams brew, it's just so damn solid. All around this is quite possibly the most well-rounded brew I have tasted. All the qualitys just blend so nicely together. Great session brew, and defintely one of the best American brewed ale to date. Sam Adams has a gem with these, and at $5.99 a 6 pack, it's quite a wonderful deal.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - this ale pours a rich coppery brown color, with a genrous but short lived white head, there is light cabronation

S - a hoppier aroma than i expected, a nice refreshing aroma, intertwined with slight citrus and pine hints

T - hmmm, very nice, a tasty hoppiness in this ale that is of a higher quality than i expected for the most macro brewery among crafts, otherwise not a complex taste,

M - moderate, nice and smooth, but unassuming

D - slightly above average, a nice ale that is easy to throw back, and not too bitter throw off the casual beer enthusiast

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Photo of spiffysamurai
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearence of the beer is something of an ambereque and copper colored.

The scent of the beer was a little on the sweet side. The malty smells aren't very evident. This beer definely has more of a macro side to it.

The influence of spice and nuts is definely in there. Vanilla flavor is evident but nothing too major. There are some hops also.

The Mouthfeel is decent. A little hoppy and cabinated but flows very well.

Sam Adams Boston Ale is quite decent. Its a good beer to have on a chill friday night of catching up with friends.

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Photo of Gaisgeil
3/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This has got to be the most average beer I've ever had. It is perfectly situated between lesser maco beer and it's craft cousins. It has many of the characteristics of both, so, very, very middle of the road. Pours a crystal amber in color with a fizzy white head. Nose is a little lager-like, nearly macro territory, not sure if it's corn or what, but it smells a lot like Labatt or something, there is some extra malt sweetness in there, but by and large, unimpressed. Taste is quite light, almost a balance between a standard pale ale and a plisner. Bready maltiness combined with a light floral hoppiness. Mouthfeel is light, again, middle of the road. Drinlability is pretty good except that the beer is pretty uninteresting overall, well crafted though, no glaring faults.

SlĂ inte!

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Photo of Erdinger2003
2.99/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The head was so big that it didn't stay in the bottle when I opened it and when poured it was big a fluffy. Since it has fallen and stayed 3mm big leaving a lacing that is very strong. The color is light brown and clear.

The smell is malty and sweet, a bit nutty as well. I smell only slightly the hops, it smells like a macro a little bit.

The taste is a little spiced, nutty, and slightly sweet, but mostly hopped fairly well. There is a little bit of a vanilla flavor in the nose with some roasted malts as well.

Mouthfeel is ok, nothing special, but well carbonated and a little smooth.

This doesn't seem like a beer I could get into, but without a doubt I will try this again at warmer temperatures and see if it's better like everyone says it is.

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Photo of StonyB
3.48/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

How many times have I tried Sam Adams Boston Ale before I got around to reviewing it? I don't know....rhetorical question. Never mind.

Appearance is ok...copper color, decent head with nice retention of lacing.

Vanilla malt aroma, pleasant but not very special...

Nice balance of hops and malt...buttery, smooth, and very drinkable.

Reviewing a beer by Sam Adams is a little far as I'm concerned it is THE definitive brewer of beers that bridge the gap from macro swill to craft beer...certainly one of my training wheels.

That being can never go wrong with a Sam Adams Boston Ale. It's well-made, easy to drink, and has just enough flavor to satisfy...

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Photo of lpayette
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Hazy copperish orange with big frothy and cloud-like head. Similar to gently rolling hills.

Smell- heavenly. Lots of malt, with a slight hop presence.

Taste & Mouthfeel - Delicious. Malt dominates as expected, but there is a very very fesh hop presence. Kent goldings? Slight Grainyness . About mid sip there is a slight bitterness like a hint of grapefruit peel. Finishes with what tastes like sweet wort. Carbonation is moderate. Very smooth- nearly lager-like in some respects.

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Photo of palffyfan
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance - Amber, no carbonation, doesn't form much of a head. Looks delicious.

Smell - Sweet, with a hint of honey (?) and a bit hoppy. Not too dominating.

Taste - Mildly sweet, great deal of hops with a mildly bitter aftertaste. This beer certainly has some flavor to it and is not a watered-down brew. Appears to be a pretty good brew by Sam Adams.

Drinkability - Beer could eventually wear on me because of the mildly bitter aftertaste, but I would buy a six-pack of this brew. Recommended.

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Photo of ProfessorHops
4.3/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- cloudy bronze, beautiful off white head that cakes easy.

Smell- nutty sweet smell. Fruity juices on the edge.

Taste- caramel malt with a terrific smoothness. Sweet bread with no discomfort or sharpness to it, but still has a little of that Sam Adams trade mark bight.

Mouthfeel- moderately thick, but not extremely filling. Just right!!!!

Drinkability- guzzles easy, and can be sipped to. Very sour and possessing when it fall into your gut, but this I find satisfying. Very drinkable.

One of my favorite Samuel Adams brews.

Gulp Gulp,

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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 soultrain
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A-1" of head. fades leaving some lace. Beer is orange/amber. Looks good.
S-Nuanced yeast aroma, semi-sweetish malt, that's it.
T-Mild fruit, very mild, and well, this is a very juicy ale. Nice bitterness, too. Kinda like an ESB. Juicy and bitter: a winner, IMHO. Just had a hop burp. (And I love it.)
M-Decent carbonation, light/medium mouthfeel.
D-Very sessionable stuff. Really delightful to quaff after a hard day of tree pruning. One of the most drinkable beers, ever.

CRUX: GOOD ALE HERE. I like this better than their Boston lager, and have yet to meet someone who didn't like this beer. Solid. Solid. Solid. (Like a Rock.) This beer is welcome in my DBF (and pallette) at any time.

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Photo of etenbus
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My Boston Ale poured orange-copper into my Cooperstown Brewing Company Slugger Pale Ale pint glass. I wasn't planning to have this one tonight but having just watched the season-ending episode for 24, I need something to counteract the adrenaline. It pours a sizeable head, perhaps 3/4" of fluffy foam, which disappears after several minutes, leaving psychedelic lacing on the glass.

The aroma hints of oranges, citrus, pine, yeasty bread, and after several minutes there's a bit of that comforting musty aroma that accompanies some of those best bitters from the Mother Country.

The mouthfeel is solid medium-style, not watery at all, as some reviewers have implied. The hops attack the center of the tongue and then pull their bitterness towards the sides, which lingers after the beer is gone.

The flavor could be described as a cross between a standard, solid bitter (Bass or Fuller's) with a bit of spice. The beer works well as an ESB in this regard, which brings a little British lineage to this German-heavy brewery. The warmer the ale grows, the flavor smooths out somewhat, providing a flash of that milky satin sheen that used to be a trademark of Pilsner Urquell, even though they are far different styles.

This is one of Sam Adams' better offerings. If you can't find a quality ESB at your local beer retailer, Boston Ale will fill the role well. I rank it equally with their signature Lager and their Black Lager--those three being the best of Sam Adams that I can get here in Missouri.

I wonder what this would taste like on tap. My best bet for that is to hit the Sam Adams brew pub at Concourse A at Hartsfield Int'l in Atlanta. One reason to fly Delta!

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Photo of Blakaeris
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear amber with a bit of a coppery wash. Moderate carbonation with a thick pillowy white head that leaves sheets of lacing.

Smell is slightly sweet malt, hints of fruit and a pleasant earthy, yeasty character.

Taste is similiar to the nose. caramel malt is balanced with the earthy hops. Fruit notes add depth. Mellow and smooth.

Mouthfeel is medium-full and quite buttery.

Verysimiliar to an english ESB. Flavors are balanced, buttery, and mellow. A solid brew.

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Photo of bashiba
4.07/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a very light orange with a creamy thick head with tons of lacing and retention.

Smell is very nice with a heavy butter and mild malt smell with a touch of herbal hops. Very much like a good ESB.

Taste has that smooth buttery flavor with a nice bit of maltyness and a light bit of floral hops for an extremely balanced flavor.

Mouthfeel is light and dry.

Overall a very easy to drink and enjoyable offering.

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Photo of goochpunch
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a clear amber with a foamy head that really lingers for quite a while. Smell is bready, fruity, buttery, and with an herbal and spicy hops kick. Reminds me of an ESB. Flavor is of chewy, nutty malts with a hint of butter. Nice hop finish rounds this out nicely. Mouthfeel is midly carbonated, and has the right amount of body to have a good enough presence yet not hinder the solid drinkability.

This is a really solid English pale/bitter and definately one of the better Samuel Adams brews.

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Photo of orfeu
3.67/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden amber with sparse carbonation and a just slightly off-white head. Aroma is sweet caramel with some spicy hop notes -- seems to be an English buttery diacetyl thing going on, too. Bready caramel flavors up front with some floral and not-quite-citrusy hop character. Slight diacetyl flavor. Mineral finish and earthy-floral-doughy aftertaste. This reminds me quite a bit of Middle Ages Syracuse Pale Ale, with less fruit characteristics. Nicely attenuated carbonation in the mouthfeel. Light (but not extremely so) body, and overall lively. Quaffable, indeed, but maybe only when in the mood for a bit of butter in your beer.

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Photo of Sosh
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow, I am very impressed. I am not one to get excited about pale ale's, but this is the best I've had thus far. It's tastes kind of leafy in the same way that really good unsweetened tea does. I think this would be a great cross-over beer for somone who wants to get away from the fizzy yellow stuff. I don't think it's the best Sam Adam's has to offer, but I would never turn one down.

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Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.68 out of 5 based on 2,092 ratings.
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