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)
2,113 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: 2,113 |  Reviews: 984
Photo of cheers2beers
3.82/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: This beer is a light amber hue with two shades darker than white pillowy head that stacked up with no problem. Lots of beading rumbleing up to the surface and a minimal amount of laceing can be found.

Smell: The aromas are vague traces of oranges, woody notes, a semi-sweet maltiness and a blunt hop character. No alcohol in in the nose. Not a powerfully aromatic beer but nice subtle hints to all.

Taste: The flavors are good stout hop profile, woody/nutty touch, mild caramel malts with just a hint of alcohol. I am surprised that this is a pale ale,only because the pales that I have tasted so far have all been hoppy,such as Sierra Nevada. Very good taste overall.

Mouthfeel: Has a creamy,smooth, and almost grainy feel. Medium bodied with high carbonation and has a bubbly finish.

Drinkability: A great beer to drink on all ocassions. This beer seems like it would pair up with almost every type of food and would session quite nicely. A must try if you have not already.


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Photo of shererjt
3.77/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a clear copper color with a huge, billowy head. Very pleasant grassy/flowery/hoppy bouquet; probably one of the best-smelling beers around. It has to be dry-hopped. Medium body. Sweet, lots of hop flavor but not too much bitterness. Mouthfeel is nice; a teeny bit on the thin side, but still highly quaffable.

A high-quality brew that lives in the shadow of the lager. Great stuff.

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Photo of sammy44
3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a bottle with a drink by date of Sept of '06. Has a nice appearance. Looks similar to the Boston Lager. The head does not pour up as nice but is more dense than the lager. Smells almost identical to the lager but I've docked the score a little bit. That hop aroma is impressive for a lager but is not that impressive in an American Ale. That is the biggest problem with this ale. It is a little average compared to Sierra Nevada or Sweetwater 420, but better than your standardly available American fair.

The mouthfeel is good and heavy, lots of carbonation on the tongue. Finishes with some hop dryness. Good but not great.

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Photo of Fugazme
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wonderful to look at... 1/2" bright white head... very thick. Swirls great. Lots of lacing. Color is copper. Looks a bit like a glass of iced-tea.

Aroma is dead-on floral. Sweet malt traces... Strawberry and grass. A touch of spice. Very nice.

A very tea-like astringency on the palate. Bitter, tannic. Smooth.

A decent hop flavor with definite tea flavors. Bitter upfront, smoothly sweet malt in the middle... and the finish is bitter again.

Highly drinkable...

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Photo of acarroll413
3.64/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had on tap at (duh) pizzeria unos

A- a dull, pale amber. didn't look good at all. no head

S- hops, wheat are both dominant here.

T- delicious. the front end is all wheat. the hoppiness is in the back end and its not very bitter. a great beer.

M- nice and thick, well carbonated, and very smooth

D- i'd definitely have this again(next time im at unos, probably!)

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Photo of soulgrowl
3.87/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: A hazy orange Tang-like color, with a fairly good-sized head with bubbles that snap, crackle, and pop audibly. The head collapses to about a centimeter fairly quickly, but retains well.

Smell: Caramel malts, herbal hops, and something that really reminds me of sweet potato pie, a combination of brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, butter, and marshmallows. Yum!

Taste: This is subdued and somewhat watery, but with a surprisingly nuanced flavor. A grainy taste is especially prominent, with a lot of oats in the finish. Woody and citric hops make their presence known but remain politely in the background.

Mouthfeel: Not bad, but a little thin and flat.

Drinkability: Another relaxing, unpretentious offering from SA. Definitely easy to drink!

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Photo of chrishickman
3.87/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I got this beer from the grocery the other day when I was too lazy (and really, didn't have enough time) to make a trip to the liquor store. I've always liked the lager but wanted something a little "heartier", especially since I was grilling up some marinated steaks for dinner. I was hoping for a more "ale-y" version of the lager and was not disappointed. I've always liked the "texured" taste of ales over lagers and tend to gravitate toward them, whether a Belgian brown or an American pale.

My hope above perfectly describes this beer - just like the lager, only in Ale form. Toasted, carmel/nutty flavor, good head, great drinkability (Boston Brewing Co. never has a problem in this area respective to style), this will be a beer I hope to see when in an unfamiliar bar that has a few beers on its menu. Would love to try this on tap.

In short, there's not going to be anything new here for anybody who has run out of fingers and toes with which to count the number of different beers tried, but you could definitely do a lot worse than this one.

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Photo of wingman14
3.44/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very rich golden tan with a frothy white head. Looks like a standard beer with a bit deeper hue. Not much aroma here, mostly hops with a bit of the Sam Adams kick. A lighter flavor for Sam, but as in all their selections this is a very balanced beer. I can appreciate this even though it does not necessarily fit the style of beer it is titled to. The taste is driven by a slight taste of hops which is more apparent in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is again balanced and really hits the spot. The lighter feel and weak flavor actually compliment each other here with a powerful aftertaste which allows for easy consumption. A beer I would recommend for those who are not fans of hoppy beers but would like to respect them for the flavor they can bring to a beer. This beer is worth a try, but I wouldnt go out of my way to find it.

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Photo of Liquids
3.57/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pale muted amber, between a dark pale ale and a light amber ale. Pours a steady yellow head, and leaves a dolop of foam in the bottom of the glass. Smells like their Boston lager mostly, but slightly more muted and not as clean, more ale like of course. Taste is not as expected, an odd aftertaste that I'm not sure I like, I detect cotton candy somewhere in there, too. Rich flavor compared to a macro lager, light for an amber ale, and slightly off for an APA. Of course, it's actually a "stock ale." Makes me wish I were drinking the boston lager instead, though. Taste is fair though. Mouthfeel is excessively carbonated with a medium low depth of body. Taste is better when carbonation dissipates some, and the subtlties come through. But overall, not for me. Your mileage may very.

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Photo of Freshie
2.46/5  rDev -32%
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 dauss
3.52/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: standard 12oz. bottle, sam adams in raised lettering on the bottle neck. Best before August 2005.

Appearance: Chunky, cloudy brown color. Actually dull looking. Very poor head formation

Smell: Piney hop aroma with a lot if biscuity toasty malt aroma, with almost a minty quality.

Taste: Good balance between hops and malt, although the malt is definitely stronger. It could be due to the old bottle. Has an herbal and slightly spicy hop flavor, light astringency, low bitterness, and low carbonation. The beer is medium bodied with a nice full mouthfeel in the finish.

Notes: Reminds me of an ESB, not an APA. The hop flavors are way off, but overall it is a good beer. Its drinkable. The low carbonation really hurt the head formation.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.07/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this at Logan Airport while suffering through a 4 hour flight delay.

Pours a clear copper with a minimal head and not much lace. The aroma is biscuity with lots of caramel and fruit (apples?) and a bit of herbal hops. The taste is like a slightly hoppier and fuller bodied Ordinary Bitter. Doughy flavors meld well with the floral, herbal hops. A slight astringency builds in the finish. The mouthfeel is full bodied with somewhat heavy handed carbonation.

This is a great ale, like a lightly hopped ESB. Ive been waiting to try it for years and Im not dissapointed. Not as hoppy or complex as the Boston lager, but still great.

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Photo of kbnooshay
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yummm. This poured a pretty orange-gold color with a decent amount of carbonation and a foamy white head. The smell is sweet and tasty with a nice balance of hop and malt presence. The taste was sweet and caramelly with great malt aftertaste and a nice but light hop presence. The mouthfeel was kinda tingly from the carbonation but overall quite moderate that leaves a nice slick coated feeling to the tounge. Oh man, this is so drinkable! A lot more than the boston lager(which I enjoy). A perfectly balanced brew.

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Photo of Shultzerdugen
3.13/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. brown bottle with best before date clearly notched.

Copper/orange in color with a lacy white head and a touch of haze.

Bread and biscuits at the top in the nose. Caramel notes along with light fruits and butter later in the aroma.

Medium-light body with a pleasant carbonation and an apparent slickness and oiliness. Bread and butter flavors at the top, then toffee and caramel notes in the middle flowing into a spicy hop finish. Then more diacetyl.

What a big butter bomb. Hard to drink.

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Photo of zjungleist
3.23/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Light amber in color with a reasonable white head. The smell has grassy hops, sweet malts, and even a little funky yeasty smell. The taste is similar to the smell, but I get a tiny hint of something fruity as well. The mouthfeel is highly carbonated, and the body is pretty light. Overall this beer is not great, but that wont stop me from lining them up and knocking them down.

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Photo of hylton44
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep, translucent amber/amber brown. Nicely balanced nose; smelling of thick malt and hops.

First draught tasted of thick, full-bodied, grassy malts, with a robust bitterness the nicely balanced the mouth feel from start to finish. The descriptor on the bottle tells of a cellar-aging process. I suspect that is an aspect of the brewing that brough out the depth of flavor in this hearty, satisfying drink. Yum and YUM!

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Photo of LarryV
3.15/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours an amber color with a thin head that fades quickly. Aroma of toasted malt with a slight hop overtone. Taste is fruity, and slightly hoppy but with an odd sourness in the finish. The sourness turns me off a bit on this brew, I much prefer the Boston Lager. This doesn't seem very balanced, I can think of many APA's I would prefer over it. A bit tiresome to drink more than a couple.

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

I agree with the reviewer below me. Nothing to see here move along! I was hoping for something a little better. This beer doesn't offer much in the way of taste. Light hop notes fllowed with a slight hint of orange peel.

Other than that there is nothing special about this one. Is it a bad beer? No, but it doesn't do anything for me.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well, it's beer. Not any real problems, but no real stand out contributing flavors either. Medium body; not too sweet and not dull. Moderate malty sweetness, but not cloying. Nutty, fruity, and spicy, but not bold on either. Fruity (peaches and appricots) with hop spiciness. Hopped for solid bitterness and a mild hop flavor. Copper colored with a fair head retention. Finishes clean and fresh. Good beer, just nothing to latch on to.

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Photo of lackenhauser
3.51/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice, copper color. No head by the time it hits the table. Wonder what it ws like at the bar. Low aroma-decent mix of hops and malt though none of the two stand out. Nice, somewhat carmel like flavor. Definate hop bitterness to it. Reminds me of a mellowed Sam Adams. Good enough mouthfeel. Damn drinkable. I have had this several times at my local Uno Grill. Sometimes it is much fresher then others. Nice step up from my usual BUD at places like this. I often thought it tasted like a "baby Sam". I had NO IDEA it was contract brewed by them. Big world out there I guess...

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Photo of sevineyes
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a brown bottle featuring Sam Adams lifting a pewter pint.

A: Pours a burnished copper in color. Poured with an ample head that hangs around a while. Leaves very nice lacing.

S: Rich malty presence with ample hops. Behind that I do get some spicyness like fresh ground pepper. Very clean. Very pleasant aroma.

T: Caramel with some burnt orange. Definite toasted presence. Floral flavors that turn into a subtle bitter. Very compimentary to the smell.

M: Coating and rich for the style. Smooth with perfect carbonation.

D: Very drinkable.

Overall: This beer pulled me in a lot more than I guess I was expecting. There are a lot more nuances to this beer than my review attests to. Everything is very fresh and clean. A friend described it as being like after a short rain in the summer and I really can't argue with that fitting the beer.

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Photo of hero27
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Brewmaster's Collection. Best before July 2006.

Clear copper color. Aroma is thick toffee & caramel. Hints of diacetyl in the flavor, but nothing overwhelming. It's definitely a wave of butterscotch and toffee that comes to a very bready and sweet finish. The mouthfeel is fairly thin, which makes this very easy to drink while still having enough body to hold the flavors well. Their Boston Ale has always been a solid beer, and it hasn't changed much over time.

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Photo of Manosbeeroffate
4.06/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a mix pack. Pours a nice amber gold color, similar to the boston lager. Can't smell much but that might just be me. Taste is really nice, a balance of sweet malt and hops with a dry biscuity flavor too. Nice mouthfeel, not thin. Overall a really nice beer. One of my faves, they can sell this along with their flagship lager as a regular beer. Sam Adams may be a big company but most of their beers are damn good.

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Photo of mcarroll10177
4.28/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

served from a bottle into an American pint glass

A- golden amber color with a thick white head that disappeared after a few minutes. Leaves really great lacing on the glass as well.

S- some hops but balanced and not over powering

T- crisp and clean upfront with slight hint of citrus. Slightly bitter, just enough to clean the palate as well. Smooth finish with a slight sour or bitterness, just right.

M- the same as almost all from SA, balanced not to thin or too thick

D- an incredibly drinkable ale. Goes down very smooth. SA has another achivement in the drinkablility department.

Notes- this is a very underated ale ( as in my opinon many SA offerings are) this is my go to ale when an English Brown is not availible. A person can also get this anywhere ( I assume you can, but I am from Western MA) and it is perfectly balanced, just enough complexity for a BA yet nothing over powering for someone used to macros.

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Photo of hanco005
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle marked 036451320 poured into a pint glass

A—clear orange amber brown with ½ tan head that slip down to a thin white line in a matter of minutes

S—roasted malts and hops are balanced in the aroma, sweet and a little sour

T—again a nice balance of malt sweetness and hops bitterness, starts sweet then changes to a dry bitter finish

M—medium bodied with good carbonation

D—A good solid beer. I have a hard time finding a dominate taste…it’s really well balanced. Could easily have a few more.

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Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.62 out of 5 with 2,113 ratings