Sam Adams Light | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

835 Reviews
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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

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Reviews: 835 | Ratings: 2,216
Photo of Jarod
3.47/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured into the glass a clear golden/amber color. To be honest, the color surprised me, it was darker then I thought it would be, like Coors light, Miller light, etc. No head except for a small skin on the top, white in color. Again surprised when I saw lace left behind. The aroma was light with some grains and hops (floral). The taste was also light. It had hints of sweet malt, grains and hops at the end. A well carbonated creamy beer in the middle and dry and crisp at the end. For this type of beer, I say “good job”

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Photo of SixpointJMH
3.48/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a very hard beer to rate. would i prefer just about any other BBC brew to SA light? yes. is this 10 times better than any other light beer i've ever had? yes. that said, it's an excellent light beer as light beers go. there's actually a bit of flavour and colour here. very smooth going down. i'd like to see the boston ale (or better yet, bring back the scotch of the best sam's ever) back in the winter classics 12 pk instead of SA light, but i certainly won't mind having to drink this one.

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Photo of TAMU99
3.2/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

It's a Sam Adams, so it's above average. Though I'm not a huge SA fan, this is a good light beer. It retains the essential qualities of the SA Lager, same taste (mostly), feel, etc. It's light, golden and yes, better than a Big3 light beer.
If you like Sam Adams, save yourself the calories and try it. If you don't like SA, this won't win you over.

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Photo of MaineBeerMan
3.68/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color of this beer was a clear clean very light amber, pretty much orange, with a small and fast fading head of white foam that stays as just a collar around the glass and didn't leave any lace to speak of.
For a light beer, the aroma was quite nice, a small whiff of sweet sort of caramel-ish malt and a bit of floral hops, not spectacular, but beats the cooked vegetable smell of the typical American light.
Taste was pretty good, almost like a watery version of Sam Adams lager. Sweet pale malt flavor is most notable, with just a touch of caramel thrown in, very mild hop bitterness leads to a nice dry finish.
Mouthfeel is very smooth, kind of creamy with a slightly above average carbonation.
For a "light" beer, this beer does a far better job than others in the category of actually tasting like I feel beer should. Not something I would drink a lot or seek out, (the sample was included in a Winter sampler 12 pack) but if you know someone who drinks light beer and would like to expand their palate, you couldn't go wrong showing them this beer.

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Photo of frank4sail
2.45/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Musty cardboard nose (oxidation). Light clear amber color with a slight white head. No detectable hop flavor and very little malt base. Slightly more mouth that other light beers. Overall not to usual SA standards. I expected some hop taste.. this was just watery.

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Photo of stegmakk
2.43/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I had to try SA version of light beer.
At first sight this was a nice light copper color with very little head that went away quick. Looks alot better than other light beers.

Then I tasted it. Does not taste watery like other light beers, but does not taste like any other BBC beers. I caught a hint of floral and a little metallic flavors mixed in with the slightly sweet malty taste. It had a better mouthfeel than any other light beers, but it still was not enough to get over the taste.

Better than drinking watery light beers...but id rather take the extra calories and have a Boston Lager.

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Photo of psugrad98
2.8/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Goldem amber with moderage head and fizziness. Crisp malteness highlights the first taste, with a slight dose of dry hoppiness to round out the brew. Not quite the beer I've expected. Sam Adams tried to keep the full figured Reinheitsgebot thing going but still keeping a lower cal beer. I think there are better lighter beers out there. And at 128 callories, this really isn't that light!

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Photo of mjohn27603
3.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

OK, a tough one to call. Pours with a big head that dissipates quickly. A bit of malty smell which is an accomplishment for a lite beer. Slightly citrus and metallic taste with some malty flavor. Has some character compared to other lite beers. I give it slightly higher marks for being good in it's style. It is not a 3.5 beer vs. others out of this style. As they say lite beers are like making love in a canoe - f***ing close to water. The two from the Winter Classics variety pack will be it for me. This beer sort of marked a change in philosophy for Sammy and I don't like the way it is going.

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Photo of BeerBuilder
3.16/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours to a light copper color with a white head that quickly dissipates. The nose is of light caramel malt and floral hops. The taste is a caramel malt sweetness, with little hop flavor and bitterness. It is light in body and smooth. Overall it is a very drinkable beer. It is a very nice surprise in comparison to your typical Americal Light Lagers. If I were to choose an American Light Lager to drink, this would be the one.

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Photo of Bierman9
3.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Holy Michelob, Batman! This isn't that bad! A striking, light-alcoholic drink! As a slightly-older than 26 year old male, I found it tastier than expected, with decent mouthfeel! Has a decent golden color, yet with a fine, thin white head. Nose is a bit mild, yet the Nobles are evident. Compares favorably, price-wise, to other lights.... and at 124! That's just a potato-chip or 2 from being ultra low! How'd a light get such decent taste? Using only 2-row malt and expensive Spalt Spalter Noble hops! But "Sammy" himself is missing from the label? Why? Sloped shoulders, perhaps? I miss him! I'll tell ya, if I get on the Sammy Light band-wagon, I'll be really "ripped"! Watch out, goddesses!!

overall: 3.55
appearance: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | mouthfeel: 3.5 | drinkability: 3


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Photo of ADR
2.94/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Time to test the Sam Adams Winter Variety pack...

Decent clear amber color, 1/8 inch head settles to a skim in 25 seconds. Slight hop to the very reserved aroma. Watery flavor, malt is decent and slightly brown sugar but quickly fades from the flavor. The hops are nice and "English" pollen-like floral (not like macro extract cop-outs in quick and cheap impression). This beer has a good finish but its the mid mouth "pause" between malt and hop that just doesn't cut it or identify it as a good beer. I guess its the best "botique" Light I've had so far (Amstel, Saranac, Leinenkugel's Amber Light) but, ehhh...why?

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Photo of Lupe
3.78/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This does not look like a light beer. It has color!!! Not another fizzy yellow lite beer!

Nice amber hue and a frothy off-white head. Decent lace is left behind on the glass. Soft grain and floral hop aromas. Light bodied with a smooth and creamy mouthfeel, not bad at all for a light beer. Starts malty sweet, followed by a dry crispness with hints of carmel. Hops are not very prominent, lend to a citrus flavor, not very bitter but still helps to balance. Finishes slightly dry. Very easy to drink.

A light beer with flavor!! See it can be done. Definitely the best I have ever had in the style. Full of flavor for a lite, and even when compared to regular macros.

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Photo of manofmanners
4.36/5  rDev +29.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I am not a big light beer guy. If i have a light beer it is Amstel. But behold, America answers the call. This is the first American light beer i can drink. It is amlost as goo as regular Samy's, but you can tell it is lighter. First it won't fill up as quickly. Second it is a little lighter in color. This is as close as America will come to a truely Europian light beer. Ladies also drink alot of it too, whwich is a big plus. This is a truely though a manly beer, just take of the light an you are good to go.

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Photo of Amdahl
3.36/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a dark amber with a amble amount of head that goes dowm pretty fast, leaving no trace of head. There is also no noticable lace. The auroma contians no noticable smells. The taste is is very good for a light beer. I would have no trouble drinking a six pack of this beer but dont think i will be buying this beer again.

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Photo of BeerBob
3.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sam Adams Light pours a copper amber from a 12oz brown glass bottle. The light tan head went to about one finger before collapse.

Nose is a pleasant toasted malt and palate is toasted malt with a light drying bitter hops, interestingly there is also a sweet barley malt note as well.

Not a bad brew this Sam Adams Light, I will have to keep this one in mind the next time I’m doing the lights.

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Photo of inebrius
3.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A good beer for people that believe the hype. So it has more flavor than your typical American light, who cares? BBC didn't think they could join the market share scrum without a beer that had the word "light" in its name, but it all weighs the same to me. What decent beer is the next victim when the ad campaign does its job and production of light takes priority? Sam has replaced the old-timey knit shirt and vest for a dark-blue suit and red power tie. So long old friend.

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Photo of johnrobe
2.94/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is light amber in the glass, darker than any "light" beer I've ever seen, with a two finger off-white head that quickly disappears. Almost no smell at all. Malt flavor dominates, hops are muted but evident and there's a slightly metallic quality to the finish. Very smooth and easy to drink. Kudos to SA for producing an adjunct-free light beer, but as has been pointed out many times before, the caloric difference between "light" beers and regular versions of lighter styles is minimal so why bother.

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Photo of francisweizen
3/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A pretty average lager by the BBC but great considering it is a light beer. This is right up there with yuengling lager light in my book. A highly carbonated light amber pour makes a nice head on the top of this brew. This smells pretty nicely like a boston lager, and some water:-) It also tastes like a watered down Boston Lager, but this is still a good beer, even if the mouthfeel is a bit on the light side. This is still a highly drinkable brew, and one of the best light beers that I have ever had.

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Photo of Morris729
4.1/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden amber color with a thin white head. Very dark for a light beer. Aroma is sweet malts and grains with some floral notes. Very malty flavor, especially for a light beer, and is crisp and refreshing in the mouth. This is one of the best light beers I’ve had the pleasure to drink.

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Photo of Winter
3.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a clear copper color. Aroma consisted of malt, hops and a slight caramel scent. This light-bodied lager has a crisp, clean mouthfeel. Taste was somewhat biscuity or malty and the finish had a feint metallic hint to it. Overall not bad for a light beer. Prior to trying SA Light, Amstel Light was probably my favorite light beer and it still might be a toss-up between the two.

I really don't think it's fair to say this is only a "lighter" version of SA Boston Lager. After trying the two back to back, there is quite a difference between the flavor charcteristics of each. Light is obviously much more bland compared to the regular. But between Miller Lite and Coors Light, the better tasting Sam Adams Light definitely gets my vote.

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Photo of ThreePistols
3/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

First of all I'm not a "light" drinker. I like a lot of beer flavor and Second, the SA Lights came in this years Winter Classics 12-pack so I tried them.

Nice amber color with a quick lived head and a thin lace. The aroma is sweet with malt. The flavor is light, smooth, malty sweet, crisp, and grainy with a touch of hops and caramel flavor. The body is light not watery. Overall, this is a good light beer.

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Photo of BeerAngel
3.78/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Keep in mind, I'm basing my review as per the style. I don't condone light beer, nor do I usually ever buy it. That said, here it goes. Pours a beautiful amber/orange that has excellent clarity. It has a very small white head that disappeared very quickly only leaving a light sheet on the top. Faint aromas revealing light earthy malt are non-offensive and are fairly pleasant for such a brew. First taste reveals a carb/hop bite right off and tapers into a mild (very mild) light grain and faint malt and finishes clean and quite crisp for a light beer. This brew is very light bodied, duh!

Now, for my opinion. I'll never buy this again and I can't ever see myself in the situation where this is the best on the list. Surely if they have SA Light, they will at least have regular SA I would choose the lager. Why does SA make this stuff? Well, it's not for us BA's. Obviously trying to please everyone. Can't say I wouldn't do the same if it were my business, but I'd like to think that I would not. Cheers!

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Photo of hyuga
2.88/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pure transparent amber color with a white head that's nearly gone in no time. Only a thin lace stays. Unexpectedly big aroma for a light, sharply sweet malt with a little hop character. As for the flavor, more big yet soft malty sweetness. A pretty big dose of it for a light beer, but still far from powerful. It's got a metallic sweetness to it as well, which I don't like. Hops appear in a lingering tingly bitterness that roams about the tongue. More sweet grain in the finish. As expected, it's pretty much a watered-down version of Boston Lager, but it is a bit different, the malt is much sweeter, and just too metallic. It almost has a corn sweetness, but I don't really want to get into that territory, I'm not saying they used adjuncts. Definitely good for a light beer, but the key phrase there is "for a light beer". I'd much rather have a Boston Lager. However, for the macroswillers/light beer drinkers, this could be a turning point.

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Photo of bditty187
3.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This is the best light beer I have ever tasted… then again, that is like being the best basketball player in Montana.

Clear goldish-amber hue, the slightly off-white head reached a very modest half finger in height. It falls to sparse soapy bubbles quickly. The appearance has some visual appeal, especially for a Light Beer. The nose is far from impressive, vaguely sweet and grainy, there is a trace of caramel. The bouquet is a tickle better than a typical Light Beer, the aroma is not disheartening but it has a way to go before I could call it “inviting.” The palate has far more pleasant flavors than any Light Beer I’ve tasted. Crisp caramel malts upfront, a kiss of sweetness mixes well in the middle, dry, slightly bitter hops at the finish. It is simplistic tasting but pleasant enough. I’d never purchase this beer alone, so thank you ‘Winter Classics’ & ‘Brewmaster’s Collection’ for supplying me with a total of four bottles to sample! Yeah! It is medium-light in body, firm, crisp carbonation. This is a respectable Light Beer; I guess you can say a beer with 124 calories is Light? I feel that every beer drinker should at least try this once.

Aside note observation: Once the “shockingly great taste” subsides and you revisit this beer in the future you will be disappointed. It really is not that good once you know what to expect. You notice how thin it is, you notice the overly leafy, tea-like taste, and you notice the obviously low alcohol content. You notice the flaws…

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Photo of twi1609372
5/5  rDev +48.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just like the Boston lager, with a less prevalent taste, but the taste kicks in at the end. A good beer for when you don't want to get full. But still not as good as some of the other Sam Adams varieties. not bad if you just want a good beer but don't want to be filled up, or excessively drunk, still a better alternative than bud light.

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Sam Adams Light from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.36 out of 5 based on 2,216 ratings.
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