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: 978 | Ratings: 2,088
Photo of BigDRS
3.91/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Color is a copper/apricot with a slightly off white head. The head leaves a decent film and lots of lace down the sides of my glass.

S - Light on the nose. A bit of floral hops, some earthy notes and that's about it.

T - Just the right amount of sweetness combined with some earthy hop flavors. Just the right amount of crispness. Very session-able.

M - Medium to light body with good carbonation.

O - This isn't the best beer in the world, but it's a solid choice. When faced with the decision between this and some piece of crap BMC-whatever ... choose this beer every time.

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Photo of brewskifan55
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle freshness date marked Jan 2012, but still very tasty
Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass

A: Opaque, light amber color. 1 finger head that lingers; light lacing.

S: clean, floral, malty

T: smooth and robust; malts come through with sweet toffee. Slightly bitter, hoppy finish that doesn't offend.

M: medium with low carbonation. Creamy.

O: This style was always my favorite of the SA line when I was just getting into craft beers. Haven't tried it in a few years. It's still a great beer; very sessionable. Wonder why it's not as readily available as all the other SA flavors. I'll be having more, soon.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass. Good till March 2012, no excuses now! You are an odd find strangely in the plethora of Sam Adams land down here, I never see this beer around. Sam Adams anything else... not a problem.

A hazy body off the pour, a dull amber, mixing with an off white forming head that manages a finger. Good retention and staying power on the head. Mild lacing.

Not much of a nose, some fainty yeast fruity esters, and mild malt, but fairly quiet, and some biscuity sensations.

Mild fruity and an interesting bitter on this. Mixing chewy and malt body with a faint spritzy and bitter hop on the aftertaste. Seems almost like an aggressive English Pale Ale. Biscuit like malts and stickiness slightly become a little more noticeable after some time. There's some faint chocolate in this also.

A pretty solid and simple straightforward brew from the Sam Adams gang.

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Photo of rlee1390
3.47/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Clear copper orange with little carbonation that produces a one finger head

S-Malt and some citrus hops.

T-Extremly malty for an APA with little in the way of hops.

M-Light with little carbonation.

O-Very disappointing. It seems (or am I just hoping?) that the beer was not fresh as it would explain the lack of hops and the malt presence.

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Photo of depechemode1983
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours and amber bronze color. The head is a light khaki color and has excellent retention. There is tons of sticky lacing all around the tulip. Looks awesome.

S - Right up front you get a subtle caramel sweetness that sorta just fades into light floral and piney hops. Orange is noticeable but not really dominant.

T - More caramel with more piney hops. The hops don't coming in as complicated. Just a sweet end with a simple bitter finish. Very tasty none the less.

M - Mouth feel is right there in the middle and a bit oily. Coats the palate nicely. Slick

O - Pretty damn good stuff. This is a good go to beer if nothing else better is available. Not to say this beer can't stand amongst the greats.

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Photo of barleyroad
4.41/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is amber, light and clear. Smell is smooth and clean to the nose. This is a nicely hopped APA. The mouthfeel is great with the right balance of hops and is lingers well, wow. Taste is well blended and hit the tongue in all the right places. Overall this is a well brewed American Pale Ale, one worth having in the fridge. This brew will leave you wanting more. Eat some peanuts.

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

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear reddish-brown with a two-finger quickly dissipating head, some lacing left on the glass.

Smell: Malts, caramel, burnt notes

Taste: Heavy on the malts all the way through; caramel and brown sugar, extremely well balanced with very little bitterness. Not really much hop presence, but some.

Mouthfeel: Moderate body with light carbonation, still an easy drinker. Creamy as well.

Overall: An excellent brew and something to grab if I'm in the mood for something malty, cheap, and good.

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

P: pours a clear copper with 2 fingers of off white head that fades quickly and leaves a nice lacing.

S: smell is strait up orange peel and spices

T: taste follows, lots of orange with a nice mix of spices, it also has a nice sweetness that hangs around and leads into some hoppy bite. pretty awesome.

M: goes down pretty clean little bit of hoppy resin

O: pretty good overall, good to session and watch the nucks beat bruins with!!

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Photo of Ilovesuds
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this Carmel colored concoction right after I finished a Dogfish 60 Minute IPA. It was a terrific transition. Sam Ale had a cherry, malt, sweetness that I don't think I would have enjoyed if I didn't start with an IPA. Great head and lacing. Sudsy mouthfeel. An all around great brew. I will keep it in the fridge at all times.

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Photo of jsisko01
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours dark orange-amber color with an inch thick head that lasts for a while. Has very nice lacing.

Smell - Toasted malts with caramel. Nothing else really..

Taste - Caramel with a sweet, toasty flavor. Has a slightly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Has a pretty thick body with a decent amount of carbonation.

Overall - I was excited to try the original beer made by Samuel Adams.. it's not bad.

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Photo of Innocentexile
3.36/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz poured into pint glass

A-poures an orange color with a pretty big head the way i poured it. laces all the way down, nice

S-faint malts with very little else, maybe some yeast

T/M-unoffensive malty beer with a slight hop taste near the end. medium bodied with a normal amount of carbonation.

O-very decent. this is not meant to be extravagant, its their "go to beer" and it does a good job as just that

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Photo of phenomenologian
3.48/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured this in a wine glass. opening the bottle came some smoke right out but not a whole lot. it has a very thin head but at pouring it kind of hovers around the edge of the glass but it dissipates very very quickly (or at least it did for me). The color is a nice brown orange dark color. its a bit cloudy and see only a little bit of bubbles rising. kind of a nice pretty ale.

the smell for me did not turn up much. its not a robust smell with not a whole lot of character in the smell. what I do smell is alcohol and malt for sure. by saying I smell alcohol I mean that I just smell that sting of alcohol that you might smell in a 12 % abv 4 Loko (that I do not drink anymore because I ended up sleeping in the yard). now that I keep smelling, its maybe a caramel smell.

the taste is pretty nice. Im not one who seeks after malty beers but this one has some good malt taste to it with definitely a caramel taste (caramel taste in more of a non robust hint form). the malt taste is very robust but I think to use to world robust with respect to hoppiness so using the world robust here seems odd. it has a nice smooth taste because of the malt and caramel taste. the aftertaste is also very malty. I can just drink this down very quickly because its so smooth.

I like this beer simply because its a very malty beer that I enjoy drinking. it seems to be a beer for anybody whether you like extra hops or whatever. I normally like extra hoppiness but this has little of that but I still really like it. by the way the mouth feel is very smooth and not harsh so its very smooth. give this one a try.

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Photo of hardy008
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear amber with an off white head with good retention and lacing. The aroma and the taste are similar, with caramel malt, toasted grains, and floral hops. Very nicely balanced.

Medium bodied, with modest carbonation, and a lightly sweet aftertaste. An underrated beer from Sam Adams, which is worth trying if you get the chance.

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Photo of tone77
3.21/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a bronze color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some malts detected. Taste is also very mild, some malts, very lightly hopped, not very big on flavor. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall this is a mediocre beer.

 263 characters

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

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a SA Perfect Pint glass.

A: Pours pumpkin orange with a lumpy, white head that clings to the glass.

S: Gritty bitterness of lower AA hops and earthy malts.

T: Follows the nose. Its a very un-American pale ale and the hop presence is restrained and balanced by caramel notes.

D: It is very easy drinking stuff and the balance is nice, but its almost too boring to finish a single bottle, let alone a sixer.

Overall: More "just OK" stuff from SA. That being said, this beer has no real flaws and I feel like it would be excellent on cask...I'll keep on the lookout for that.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.46/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer is transparent and orange hued, with a half inch of white head that leaves some decent lacing on the glass. The aroma is rather weak, offering faint scents of lightly sweetened malts, biscuits, bread. The flavor is a bit sweet, but not too. Bready and malty, with only a light hop presence evident in the finish. Easy to drink, but not the most exciting flavor. I would prefer a bit less sweetness in favor of some hop bitterness and/or biscuit flavors. Decent feel. Light to medium bodied. Overall, a decent beer and worth a try, though I prefer the Samuel Adams Boston Lager.

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Photo of BeerLover99
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: shiny amber body, finger head, very little lacing

S: light caramel, nutty, malt

T: sweet toasted malt, caramel, mild biter finish

M: light/med body, semi-dry mouth, hint of smooth

O: Not a bad beer, not amazing, but not bad
either. Enjoy it in the SA Variety packs, but would
not grab a 6 or 12 pack of this.


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Photo of codysjb
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an Amber color that’s clear with some head that dissipates relatively soon (not instant but certainly not holding on for too long). Smells like a Sam Adams, nothing too special but better than a generic lager. The taste really holds up on this beer, it’s very balanced and while there’s not all that much going on except for some caramel malts, is never fads during the mouthful nor does it taste to watery. I don’t usually drink the Boston Ale as I prefer to go for something that has more flavor but this beer really holds up and doesn’t fall apart which I find to be quite rare for a generic non-flavored ale. Certainly something to have around for a refreshing day.

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Photo of emmasdad
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

from a six pack. Poured a nice dark red color, with a bit of creamy white head. Pretty standard all around, both on the nose and on the palate. Some earthy hops, sweet malt, a little caramel and an easy drinking medium body. Not bad but not much more.

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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 lstokes
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange with a fair bit of lacing and a strong caramel smell. Earthy hops, biscuit/caramel malt, some bitter hop oils. I found that it became too sweet throughout the glass, so I'm marking it down a bit for that. Creamy in the mouth with good carbonation. Nothing particularly memorable, but a solid, classic, enjoyable session ale.

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

12oz bottle poured into my trusty mug.

A- clear amber hue, some thin white head that leaves some very light lacing that sticks better than you would think.

S- some caramel, and generic malts, with a touch of hops which are on the earthy side of things.

T- Clean. Typical Sam Adams hopping without going overboard. Toasty malts, and caramel.

M- Slightly drying, and decidedly medium bodied. Light Carbonation.

O- I think that this deserves much more praise, and likely gets looked over due to Boston Lager.

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Photo of BennyL1
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoy by date Dec. 2011. Into a Perfect Pint.

Pours a nice amber/orange. Slim off white foamy head, decent retention and lacing.

Light aromas of floral hops and pale malt.

Very refreshing taste, biscuit malt with a touch of the floral hops at the end. Nothing overpowering or complex, but pleasing.

Medium body with good carbonation. Crisp and clean in the finish.

A very balanced and sessionable pale ale. I've had this on a few occasions and wouldn't hesitate to go back to it.

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

Appearance: Quick streams of carbonation zipping up to the thin white head. Some lace is evident as the beer drops down the glass. It is a golden brown with ruby highlights, attractive looking ale.

Smell: As with most Sam Adam’s offerings, the Bavarian hops are strong with this one. They are all over the nose. Also a slight burnt hop flavor in here, it is definitely more burnt than roasted. If you’ve smelled this one you’ve had a whiff of most generic ales out there.

Taste: Hop bitterness is one of the first things that catch my attention. Again, that distinctive Bavarian hop smell transfers to the palate, too. What’s nice is there are also some esters working here. As well as some toasted malt flavors, and an earthy taste from the hops. It all works pretty well together.

Mouth feel: It’s not thin at all. Very medium bodied, it’s crisp and smooth.

Overall: It’s pretty generic ale with the classic Sam Adam’s hop twist. The crispness and roasted malt help give it a little personality. Try it if you see it.

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Photo of fsvan
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into pint glass. Best by date of October, consumed in July.

A- A copper tinged darkish orange. A finger of clinging off white head.

S- Bready malts, some pine hops. Fairly subdued vs. some of the hoppier versions of the style. Nice smelling, just not incredibly potent.

T- A nice tasting beer. Again, not nearly as hop forward as many of the style (ie, SNPA). More like an English pale in that sense to me. Very balanced bready malt and bitter hop profiles.

M- Medium. Nice for the style.

O- A solid pale ale, esp. if hop overkill is not your style.

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Samuel Adams Boston Ale (Stock Ale) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.68 out of 5 based on 2,088 ratings.
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