Belgian Session | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Belgian SessionBelgian Session

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

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.25%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Jason on 01-09-2012

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Reviews: 239 | Ratings: 1,215
Photo of mooseisloose
3.45/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Popping the top yields a classic Belgian smell of both earthy and zesty hops and a very sweet maltiness. Pours to a orange-yellow color with a big bubble head with a semi creamy top. Taste is a light up front bitterness, immediately followed by a sweet malty banana flavor with a hint of clove. Finish is a transition of the banana flavor to a zestier sweetness that has a flat bitterness in the background. A tasty brew that is good on a hot summer day. Good flavors without being as lethal as your typical Belgian so the name fits. Part of a case with 6 different Sam brews.

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Photo of BlackBelt5112203
3.69/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter at cellar temperature.

L - Pale-to-medium amber color with a 3-finger creamy and pillow white head. Very nice retention and great lacing. Crystal clear with a TON of carbonation bubbles.

S - Biscuit malt, orange and floral hop, and black pepper, bubble gum, and banana yeast aromas. Par for the course as far as Belgian pale ales go.

T - Starts off with sweet biscuity malt and orange flavors and finishes with spicy black peppery yeast.

F - Light-to-medium bodied with not nearly as much carbonation as the appearance suggests, a smooth and creamy mouthfeel, and dry and peppery finish. Sweet biscuit and orange flavors linger.

O - This is a pretty nice beer from Sam Adams. It has all the qualities that a Belgian pale ale should have, but they’re just watered down a bit too much to give this a higher score. Still very tasty, drinkable, and totally sessionable. This came in the summer seasonal pack that I got, and that is the perfect place for it. Great summer session beer.

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

A heavily carbonated bright yellow body. Fizzy white head. Lots of peppery spice and doughy malt. Strong yeast presence in the nose for sure.

The taste is actually really nice, and quite surprising for a Sam Adams beer. Very sweet for a Belgian Pale, but lots of doughy, bready malt as well. The yeast feel spicy, yet weaker with each drink. Which isnt actually a bad thing, it was quite strong at first. Underlying slick sweet citrus feeling.

The session-ish (youre welcome DING) nature makes it drinkable, but doesnt lack in flavor one bit. Very well done Sam Adams.

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Photo of jsprain1
3.23/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Very clear honey golden. Compliments are due for the big billowy white head that lasts well with good lacing on the glass.
S- The aroma is pleasantly clovey up first, but an aroma of bubblegum and plastic overwhelms it way to quickly and intensely. More balance necessary.
T- Whereas the aroma has a wealth of notes (good and not so good), the flavors are way too mild. A bit of spice, some wheatlike notes, and a faint hint of citrus.
M- Very light body. Dry finish.
O- It was a fun attempt for Samuel Adams, but not particularly well executed. Will pass on it in the future.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear golden-orange color with a finger of frothy white head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some lace.

S - Aroma is a mix of Belgian yeast with some coriander, other spices, and banana, citrus, pepper, tart lemon, and some caramel malts.

T - Starts off with some Belgian yeast with some clove, coriander, pepper, and some banana with some tart lemon and other citrus flavors. Through the middle, some sweet caramel malts come through with some light funk. The finish is a mix of Belgian yeast, spices, and tart lemon.

M - Medium-light bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a tart and dry finish.

D - Very drinkable. Pretty good BPA. The balance is pretty good and the finish is nice and crisp.

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Photo of StoutHunter
3.28/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I got a bottle of Samuel Adams Belgian Session Ale in their summer variety pack for $11.99 at Krogers. It's a hot night in Mid Michigan and I want something that's flavorful and refreshing, so lets see how this beer goes. Best by November 2012. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into my Belgian Tulip.

A- I like the label on this beer and I think it's nicely done, it's got a session beer theme to it. It poured a nice and clear slightly orange golden color that took on a little more of an orange color when held to the light and it had three fingers worth of fluffy white head that died down to thin layer that stayed till the end and left some patchy lacing. This was a nice looking beer with some nice head, looks good to me.

S- The aroma starts off with a big dose of malty sweetness that is quickly followed by a large amount of yeast and spice, they impart some banana, apple and pear aromas, next comes the spices which seem to stick out the most and impart some orange peel, clove, coriander, nutmeg, and a couple other spicy aromas. I like the aroma it's nice, but I thought it could use just a little more balance, the spices seem to overpower some of the other aromas.

T- The taste is somewhat similar to the aroma, but overall it's much lighter. It starts off with some caramel malts that have a medium amount of of sweetness and impart a light grainy, bready, and slightly caramel like flavor. Next comes the Belgian yeast that impart most of the fruits that I picked up in the aroma, the banana shows up a little but it's the orange peel that shows up the most. Next comes the spices that impart most of the spices that I got in the aroma just much lighter, they don't stick out that much and I can only really pick up a little nutmeg. The flavor is ok but I wish that the Belgian aspects stuck out a little more in the flavor like they did in the aroma.

M- Very smooth, crisp, a little on the dry side, on the light side of being medium bodied, and it had a nice amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel worked well with this beer, I have no complaints.

Overall I thought that this was an Ok beer and a pretty average example of a Belgian Pale Ale, it seemed like this beer was going in the right direction, but when it got to the taste it ended up falling a little flat. This beer had ok drinkability, it was pretty smooth, but the flavor doesn't do a great job at holding my attention, I could drink one or two till I would want something different and more flavorful. What I liked most about this beer was the appearance and mouthfeel, they were both nice and fairly true to style. What I liked least about this beer was the slightly bland taste, it seems like by making it more sessionable they lost some of the flavors that define this style. I wouldn't buy this beer on it's own, but I don't dread finding this in the summer pack, it's worth a try, but don't expect an awesome Belgian Pale Ale. In the end I just wish this beer came together better, if the taste matched the aroma it would be a solid beer, but the focus on drinkability takes away from the flavor, I guess I wasn't impressed with this beer, but I didn't hate it, just thought it could be better executed, better luck next time guys.

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Photo of neenerzig
3.85/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 oz bottle poured into my pint glass on this warm late spring evening here in Cleveland. this beer pours a clear medium to dark golden color. Nice frizzy looking head is about an inch thick when first poured, settling to a nice thick ring lining the inside of the glass with a pretty good layer of foam floating on thh beer's surface. Decent lacing. Aromas of caramel toffee malts and spice such as clove, coriander and perhaps grains of paradise, rounded out with a nice floral citrus hop note. Has a bready malty flavor upfront with some caramel and toffee sweetness, a bit of banana, coriander, cloves and maybe another spice or two. Ends with a nice citrus floral hop undertone. Nice balance of flavors. Has a sort of sticky, oily, crisp, smooth medium bodied mouthfeel with light to moderate carbonation. Very drinkable in the way good beer should be. A very enjoyable beer to end out a warm late spring evening.


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Photo of shand
3.59/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint.

This beer pours out an orange color with a tiny head. The aroma is of citrus and Belgian yeasts. The taste again is dominated by the slightly peppery Belgian yeast. There's some bready malts and wheat on the finish that go a long way to balance things out, along with a light touch of mild hops, and a bit of citrus too. The mouthfeel is crisp, and the drinkaility is actually good. As someone who's not too fond of BPAs, this one is pretty solid. I could imagine someone who can't get enough of that peppery yeast being let down, but it's just enough for me.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.65/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours into a tulip glass a perfectly translucent orange, white head eventually falls to a patchy cap leaving spots of lace.

Nose presents toffee malt sweetness, belgian yeast, floral notes, spice and some coriander.

Taste brings on a mix of Belgian yeast and sweet caramel-ish malts, some clove+spice, herbal hops, light fruit, coriander still apparent. Baked bread finish.

Very smooth mouthfeel, a little on the foamy side but well done.

Overall pretty good, certainly nothing outstanding but works as a nice light session ale that's very easy drinking with a good flavor profile. A good addition to the summer mix pack, I hope to see it return.

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Photo of BDIMike
4.29/5  rDev +24%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pour is not great for a Belgian. A clear Golden color with a little bit of carbonation that creates a thin white head with very nice retention.
Smell is very nice. A good amount of Belgian sugars and floral hops. However, this beer adds a nice amount of hefeweizen smells of biscuit and a strong banana in the nose.
Taste is very nice. A good Belgian taste of floral hops and sweet sugars, but a much lighter tone. Instead, there is a cleaner wheat taste with banana undertones, too.
Mouthfeel is not as thick as the regular Belgian. It has a thinner feel to it and a nice refreshment too.
Drinkability is awesome on this beer. A very refreshing Belgian that is great for the summer time. An awesome selection from Sam Adams that I would suggest for anyone.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.41/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark golden yellow in color with some light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a 3/4 finger tall off-white head that reduces to a thin film covering the entire surface of the beer with a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: A moderate aroma of banana, clove, citrus, and spice (maybe coriander).

T: The taste follows pretty closely to the smell of this beer, there is a light amount of malty sweetness. After the malt flavors, you get a little of the banana + clove flavors that I associate with Belgian yeast and then there is a light amount of citrus hop bitterness in the finish.

M: Medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation.

O: This beer is definitely easy to drink and quite sessionable. Seems like a beer that is intended to drive BMC drinkers to better styles of beer - a gateway beer. I might try this one again but not anything I would go out of my way for...

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Photo of u2carew
3.43/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle
A) pours with a finger thick head. Settles slightly to a nice tight and creamy lacing on top and on the drink down. Gold to light copper in color. Ultra clear body.
S) Yeasty notes. Fruity - apple, banana, hints of pineapple. Mellow clove in the mix.
T) Belgian-esque but still a pilsner grainy-ness to the taste. Subtle fruity notes upfront then intermixed with grains and a wheat taste.
M) Crisp. Light body. Dry in the finish.
O) An okay beer, not one i'd return to frequently.

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Photo of rfgetz
3.3/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a bright gold color, whispy white bubbles, low retention. Scent is mild and muted, faint mutsy grain backed by citrus and grass. Taste brings light bready and moderate citrus, faintly grassy. Light bodied, moderately bubbly. Passable light bodied and flavored beer.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Pours light gold/copper with fluffy white foam. Some stickiness. Belgian yeastiness in the nose, some citrus. Sugars too. Light crisp refreshing taste. Lemony. Well balanced and very smooth. Good. Like a low grade Duvel, but good enough to keep the summer mix pack interesting.

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Photo of barnzy78
3.32/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

12oz bottle, notched NOV
A - unknown; drank from the bottle
S - Begian yeast, spicy, fruity
T - toffee, caramel, spicy Belgian yeast, slight fruitiness, slight orangy citrus
M - lighter body, moderate carbonation
O - just ok for me. I guess I have had it before seeing as it had a rating, but it was not memorable then, might not be now.

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Photo of chinchill
3.41/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Light golden-amber with a durable off-white head. Crystal clear with visible carbonation.

T: Light yeast, yet a bit too much clove. Nice light malt and the expected level of banana.

M: medium-light body; medium-high carbonation. Crisp.

O: true to style; no real flaws; good price for style (in U.S.).

(lightly revised with fresh bottle in July 2014).

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Photo of zaphodchak
3.83/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Big 2 finger white head. Deep applejuice color body. Good retention and lace.

Full yeasty nose, exactly what you'd expect. Smells almost exactly like a Unibroue.

Doesn't taste like a Unibroue though. There's a lot more saison-type spice at the front, and a mellower, wheatier finish with some coriander so it doesn't get too sweet. Malty presence throughout, and I even get some ginger on this, in addition to the peppery front. This is really quite nice; too bad it's only in the 12-pack.

Mouthfeel is a bit force-carbonated/gritty. I guess I have been spoiled by bottle-conditioned Belgians!

Nice, and good for lunchtime in Summer with a relatively low ABV.

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Photo of schoolboy
3.73/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This ale feels very average for the style. It is a well made brew and looks great in the glass. As the name implies, it is an easy drinking beer. Perhaps this is what is missing - it doesn't stand out in any way. It is too well balanced, but that is true to the style.

It almost seems as though Boston Beer is trying to make a bunch of beers that would appeal to a bud light drinker - gateway beers. This is one of those, but it is a nice easy beer to have for refreshment.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.87/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a conical Guinness pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Acquired at a local Ralph's market as part of a Sam Adams summer seasonal variety box. Pricing was fair. Best before date: September 2012. Expectations are average given the brewery and style.

Not paired with food.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a two finger head of beige colour, slight cream, okay thickness, and average (~2 minute) retention. Colour is a semitransparent dark yellow. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. A generic appearance with nothing unique or special to offer.

Sm: Spices, slight citrus (vague orange and lemon - likely from hops), clean malts, light toffee, and hints of toasted malt. Almost a very light hint of milk. A mild strength aroma. No yeast or alcohol comes through.

T: Spicey with some nice orange citrus notes. The citrus seems to come from the hops but manifests surprisingly fully. Clean malts provide a firm solid backbone. Some biscuit malt. Hints of very slight caramel malt and biscuit malt. Toffee doesn't come through at all, even when I look for it. Filtered remnants of biscuity yeast come through, though not yeast itself - certainly not lees. It's a pretty well-rounded flavour profile, though comes off a bit too pale to be truly vibrant and complex. Simple but enjoyable. Not at all subtle. No alcohol comes through. Some mild layering is present.

Mf: Smooth and wet. No creamy feel. Somewhat artificial in terms of thickness, with a vague syrupy feel. Adequately carbonated.

Dr: A sessionable beer. Certainly drinkable. I might try it on draught, but I wouldn't recommend it to friends. A mediocre beer in the style. Not one of Sam Adams' best offerings, but not one of their worst. Rather average.

Low C

A poor candidate for aging.

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.76/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

was at a party and saw these in bottles so have out a try and was pretty impressed. poured somewhat amber.smell was rather unimpressive, but the flavor was pretty nice with soft bubblegum and banana notes. very drinkable and great for the warm weather. I will revisit this.

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Photo of cousineddy
3.19/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into sam adams perfect pint glass.

Appearence: Pours a crisp golden/amber color with 3 fingers of foamy off white head the stick around a few minutes.

Smell: Nice and mild, slight fruit notes with a hint of citrus from hops. gentle caramel notes as well.

Taste: Not as much going on here as expected, mild citrus balanced against toffe and caramel. Kind of hard to pick out, slightly watery.

Mouthfeel: Once again has a slightly water feel to it, decent carbonation.

Overall: Wouldn't be hard to drink a few of these, glad i got to try it with the summer pack, nothing outstanding however. Basically your average summer beer.

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Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.17/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Tan to light orange with a one finger fizzy head that didn't last too long and left so-so lacing.

Smells pretty good, clove, spice, yeast, malt, fruity. Taste follows pretty close. It's tasty but nothing special.

Feel is pretty light but has a good yeasty aftertaste. Carbonation is pretty good.

For a Belgian pale ale, it's pretty so-so.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.58/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: deep, rich golden hue with a clear body and good effervescence. Head is a finger of pillowy ivory foam. Looks good.

Smell: light malt aroma with a floral and lightly fruity quality. Not bad, if a bit on the light side.

Taste: lightly malty and quite floral -- almost to the point of being soapy in flavor. There's also a light caramel quality and some graininess in the mix. It's actually not that bad, but it doesn't blow my mind or anything.

Mouthfeel: light body with a high level of carbonation and resulting creaminess. Good!

Overall: not a bad beer, and I appreciate its session strength, but it's just a little too soapy tasting for my taste.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.35/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shared at bu11zeye's 10,000th rating tasting.

The beer pours a yellowish color with a white head. The aroma is fairly fruity with a lot of orange and lemon notes, with a little bit of malt and some yeast thrown in. The flavor is similar, with a nice wheat malt backbone, with some grain and some orange also present. Thin mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Fairly straightforward. Nothing offensive, but nothing really stands out.

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Photo of tweeder263
3.48/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a hazy golden beer with a fluffy white head. Has the typical belgian smell (esters?)that i can never describe. Beer is moderately carbonated. Taste is very mild,dry tart, and pretty good. Mouthfeel is average. I wouldnt quite call it a real belgian but its a pretty good brew

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Belgian Session from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.46 out of 5 based on 1,215 ratings.
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