Sam Adams Light | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Sam Adams LightSam Adams Light
2,254 Ratings
Sam Adams LightSam Adams Light

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

Style: Light Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-12-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,254 |  Reviews: 847
Photo of FenwaySquid
3.39/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12 oz brown bottle, BBD of June '07 notched into the label, poured into a pilsner glass.

Appearance: Pours a crystal clear amber color, very dark for a "light beer." The head formed 2 fingers thick and faded into a thin layer and some lacing, both remained.

Aroma: Grains and sweet malts, a little faint but considering the style that's not too surprising.

Taste: Nice, although soft, caramel malty flavor along with some grains. The hops remain in the background throughout but never really show their teeth. The finish is a mix of the caramel malt and grains. Noticeably missing is the corn and adjuncts that one would usually taste with this style.

Mouthfeel: Tough to put a finger on, really. At first it seemed kind of watery but crisp. But at times it was also very smooth and full-bodied, almost creamy.

Overall: While I'm not a fan of the light beers any more, (ah youth) I do enjoy this one. One should note, though, that it is a light beer in name only. The color, ingredients, taste, and mouthfeel (not to mention calories I bet) are not typical of the style at all, which is in reality a good thing. I usually try to keep some of this around for my non-BA friends when they visit, and it tends to get good reviews. I'd recommend it to anyone, BA or non-BA. Like with most light beers you won't be offended, but at least this one has some taste to it.

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Photo of Drew966
3.51/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sam Adams Light pours an orange color, much darker than most regular lagers and it has an off white head from a brown twelve ounce bottle. The aroma is mild and malty. Light, crisp and malty. Best light beer I've tasted, but I'm not sure how light it really is, most companies would consider this a darker lager.

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Photo of prototypic
3.45/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a transparent golden color (has a reddish tint when held to light) with a one finger head. Very short retention and little lacing.

Smell: Smell is predominantly malty with a light grainy aromas bleeding through. Not really hoppy. But, it has a bit of a better smell than most light beers.

Taste: Very crisp taste. Nice malty flavor. It does have some grainy flavors. There are hints of hops, but it lacks serious bite. It also has a slight watered down taste, but far from what one would expect from a macro light beer. Noticeably absent is the strong corn taste also found in the macros.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Very light bodied beer. 4% ABV lends itself well to drinkability. Overall, this is easily the best light beer on the market. I'm not a huge fan of light beers, but this is my preference out of the bunch. It really is a pretty good beer.

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Photo of EStreet20
3.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

My first ever light beer review, simply because I never beer light beer. A family friend had some of this left over from a party and gave it to us so I figure I'd review it. I had this once before quite some time ago (before I discovered BA) and remember it being better than any other light beer out there. Here goes...

A - Light, and pale colored but had a little golden character to it, not as yellow as most light beers. About one finger of foamy head that dissipates rapidly. Lots of bubbles.

S - Nearly non-existent. Basicallly just a clean "light beer" smell.

T - A light beer. A little bit better than most adjunct laden light beers, as it doesn't have an offensive corn flavor to it. Still largely just a watery liquid.

M - Very light and highly carbonated.

D - I really just don't get how people drink light beer. This could be a session beer for someone drinking beer for the sake of drinking a beer but there are no characteristics that make me want this brew.

M -

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Photo of treehugger02010
2.98/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I got this 12 ounze bottle from my brother and poured it into a flared pint glass.
Appearance: Pretty much the only saving grace. I poured a nice light amber color with a couple fingers of head. The head was a light light tan with pour rentention and light lacing.
Smell: A hopping smell that hits the nose fast but goes away just like it came.
Taste: A horrible 50/50 mix between hops and malts. One would think that would make a well blend, but nope.
Mouthfeel: A fare crisp mouthfeel, a bit ridgid.
Drinkability: Not very high, but it was nice to look at.
Don't drink and review.

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Photo of Gatch
4.2/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The greatest light beer in the world, hands down. The low ratings don't make sense to me. I think people have the anti-AB snob mentality when it comes to light beers. I also think people tend to forget about rating a beer based on style. This beer has just as much flavor and nose as a Boston Lager, yep I said it, and it's one of the most drinkable beers I've ever had. It's a great night when you have a 12-pack of Sammy's Light and don't have to worry about a huge amount of calories or a lack of flavor.

Other light beers don't even touch Sammy's Light and there's a reason it doesn't participate in Light Beer competitions. Jim Koch spent a lot of time developing such a great Light Beer and he definitely did it right.

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Photo of goschool
3.83/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: This is a nice looking light beer. It pours light to medium copper depending on the angle of the glass with two and a half fingers of white head.

Smell: A light and balanced blend grains, semi-sweet malts, hops, and yeast makes up the soft and inviting aroma.

Taste: The flavor profile starts out with grains and crystal malts, followed by toasted malts, and a noble hop flavor and bitterness that pops in momentarily before it fades away, leaving a bit of malts and grains in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is light-bodied and crisp with plenty of carbonation.

Drinkability: It's not an amazing lager, but it's much better than any other light beers, so if it's important for a beer to be light, this is the only choice. I like this quite a bit more than Boston Larger.

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Photo of 1fastz28
4.07/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this is one of my absolute favorite beers. Pours a nice amber hue with a decent head. Smell is like fresh bread, very malty with a slight hopiness. Taste is similar, very sweet maltiness with a breadish taste. The alcohol is hard to detect, which isn't too hard to believe considering its only 4% ABV. I could easily drink this beer on a hot summer day or a cold winter evening, all day long, i truly think its a great beer.

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Photo of jaydanahy
2.89/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle 12 oz...poured into pint glass

Poured a pale yellow color with moderate white head. Smell is very light. Taste is also very faint overall. Beer doesn't have bad qualities about the beer, but little flavor that Sam Adams Lager has for a mass-market beer. A decent alternative if necessary

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Photo of ikats
2.71/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear, light amber in color. Head builds up to a nice size, but then fizzles out quickly. Light hops in aroma, definitely not enough. Taste is more substantial then in other light beers, but flavor is not there. It is light in taste, yet with some presence. I guess if there was nothing else, I wouldn't mind drinking it.

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.5/5  rDev +38%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into my pint glass and appears a very rich clear amber color with a finger of tight, eggshell colored foam. Smells of honey, nuts and toasted malt. Tastes of sweet, toasty, bready malted grains, with a touch of nutiness. Excellent body for a light beer with medium carbonation. A fantastic light lager. I could session this forever and a day. The absolute mother of all light beers. Highly recommended.

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Photo of rowew
3.75/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz longneck. Best by month and date notched on the label.

Appearance: Pale amber in color, decent sized head that fades quickly. Quite dark in color for a light beer.

Smell: Bready malt aroma - a bit sweet, and some grassy smells.

Taste: Similar to the aroma - malt dominated, with some grassy hop flavor in the finish.

Overall impression: This seems to be a light beer in name only. Color, flavor, and everything else are in the range of a standard amber lager. Enjoyable - and maybe the name will get more people on to quality beer.

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Photo of Homebrew63
3.77/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was surprised by this light beer from the Sam Adams company. It actually is not a bad light as others I have tatsed. It poured with good color and very minimal lacing (which is surprising) and malty nose. it had an almost clensing mouth feel and finished crisp. Not a bad beer to mow the lawn to as it does taste better than the mass produced light beer swill.

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Photo of auxiliary
4.3/5  rDev +31.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I think this is best light beer I have tasted so far.

A - Golden color, carbinated, white head.

S - Sweetness, light smell, hints of hops. Nice.

T - Love it, hints of malt and hops, not too heavy. Not bitter.

M - Very light in the mouth, not watery, nice and clean feel.

D - I could drink a few of these, best light beer I have tasted.

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Photo of kkosmoski
3.48/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4.5

Poured this 12 oz longneck into a standard pint glass. Beer was light copper in color with a minimal head that quickly faded to a slight covering. There was lively carbonation rising to the surface throughout the life of this beer. The only aroma I detected was that of light grain. The initial taste of this beer was obstructed by the very high carbonation, but this quickly subsided, and a very delicate and pleasant grainy flavor came through. This was coupled with a slight caramel flavor, and if its really looked for, there is a slight bitterness to the finish. In the mouth, this beer is light-bodied and has high carbonation. It is highly drinkable and very refreshing, but if you are looking to experience the nice flavors of this beer, I wouldn't drink anything but water or swill before it. Overall, a very good light beer made with quality ingredients.

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Photo of theopholis
3.23/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Very clear amber color with an off white 3 finger head that has little staying power and leaves a touch of lace. For a light lager, it's okay I guess.

Aroma-A bit sour and fairly grainy. Very little malt sweetness or hop aroma. Bit of cardboard aroma. Still...better than most light beers.

Taste-Some malt characteristics, with a graininess that actually makes it kind of interesting.'s a light beer. Just the tiniest amount of bittering hops.

Mouthfeel- Thin bodied (which is appropriate) with high carbonation . Good CO2 bite through-out. Fairly refreshing. Not as thirst quenching as Coors light, but hey, that's not really beer is it?

Drinkability- Pretty good. I don't like light beers that much, but this one ALMOST tastes like beer. Let's face it. You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

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Photo of barefootbrewer
3.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a clear copper – golden color with a nice head which quickly left. The smell is malty but faint. The taste is sweet with some slight caramel characteristics. The mouthfeel is a bit thin. This is a very drinkable beer – probably the best light beer I’ve encountered thus far.

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.17/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a wonderful light beer....yards and yards above the typical 'light'.
Pours a pale crystal clear gold with a half finger of white that slowly melts.
Aroma of lager yeast, grain, and crisp light hops in the background.
Flavor is very crisp and light with a nice balance between sweet malt and citrus hops. Finish is crisp hop.
Very drinkable. Great to session.

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Photo of BeerSox
3.78/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into pilsner glass.

Ultra clear amber color with an off white one inch head that has decent retention, especially for a light lager.

Sweet and grainy, with a stronger (and better) smell than other light lagers.

Cracker like malts with maybe a tiny hint of hop bitterness in the back of the tongue, but you really have to look for this. Thin bodied with high carbonation gives it a sharp feel. The finish (yes, there is a finish) is some lingering grain.

For the beer enthusiast, this is a good light lager to try. You're not going to get any outstanding characteristics or bursts of flavors, but you are going to get a relatively flavorful light lager that's made with 100% two-row barley malt, rather than adjuncts. I don't normally drink this style of beer, but if I did, this would be my choice.

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Photo of MiScusi
2/5  rDev -38.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

I understand what they are aiming for in this beer, and the reason I score it so low is because it is so highly carbonated that it almost hurts when it hits your tongue. It made it almost undrinkable to me. That and it still has that "cheap beer" feel regardless of being all-natural or whatever they claim. It looks nice in a glass though, at least for a light lager.

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Photo of RJLarse
2.86/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a six pack of Sam Adams Light to taste and review. I poured this beer in to a pint tumbler.

Pours a pale copper color and is clear. A small bubbly head forms, and dissipates quickly to nothing.

The smell is very faint. Malted grain aroma is about it.

The taste is cereal, grain, with a mild hop finish.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery.

This is a drinkable beer, but not a very compelling one. It is average or below average in almost every respect. Still it is very sessionable, and would be a good thirst quencher on a hot day.

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Photo of
2.44/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz. bottle

Clear gold in color, medium sized white head.

Not much aroma, seemed to be more malt than hops.

Taste followed aroma. I prefer hoppier beers, and this one certainly wasn't. Cracker kind of taste characterized the malt character. Hops faintly pine. Left an aftertaste I really didn't like.

Mouthfeel was light in body, with medium to high carbonation. Sweet/wet finish.

Overall, I just don't like this beer. Lack of hops and an unpleasant aftertaste pretty much finished this off for me. I had tried it some time ago and didn't like it, then decided to give it another go. Unfortunately, first impression was accurate.

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Photo of tgbljb
3.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a pale golden color with moderate white puffy head. Pour retention.
Smell is very light for a sweet maltiness.
Taste id also very light, witha faint sweet maltiness backed by an even fainter note of hops
Thin in the mnouth with little taste retention.
Nothing offensive about the beer, but little flavor.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.83/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(Served in an American pint glass)

A-This beer has a golden yellow body that is crystal clear. There is a strong carbonation of bubbles supporting a thin white head that fades pretty quickly.

S- The clean light smell of dry malt with a slight sweetness had a hint of green hops as it warmed. Very soft over all.

T- The taste of dry pale malt has a fresh note with a faint depth of toasted hint. There was a smooth faint noble hop finish but it didn't really have any bitterness to it.

M- This beer has a light mouthfeel with a tiny fizz that makes the finish pretty clean.

D- This beer is smooth and light but it has much more flavor than any other beer in this style that I have tasted.

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

12oz brown bottle

Sam Adams Light was a light amber color with an off-white head. The head was medium in size with decent retention. The aroma was light with some sweet malt, a little hops and a touch toasty. The taste was sweet malt with a hint hops and a dry finish. The body was medium-light with medium carbonation. Drinkabilty was good for a light beer. This is the best light beer I have tried so far.

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Sam Adams Light from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.26 out of 5 with 2,254 ratings