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Samuel Adams Pale Ale | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Samuel Adams Pale AleSamuel Adams Pale Ale
911 Ratings
Samuel Adams Pale AleSamuel Adams Pale Ale

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

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.25%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-07-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 911 |  Reviews: 571
Photo of JayNH
3.75/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a crystal clear golden color with a large white frothy head. Retention and lacing are quite respectable.

S- A sweet and fruity, bready malt dominates the nose. Smells very similar to SA Boston Ale.

T- A slightly sweet doughy maltiness. The hops are subdued but definitely are on the English side of the pond. A bit earthy and every so slightly tea like.

M- smooth... almost a bit creamy. Light bodied and lightly carbonated.

D- Nothing here to wow you but I could drink a few of these. The flavor profile of the ale is quite pleasant, it just tastes watered down. A bit more body and maybe a bit more hops and this would be a very solid brew.

 655 characters

Photo of BlackBearForge
3.6/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Golden yellow in the glass with a whitish tan head which fades quickly leaving an oily lacing in it's wake.

Smell is bready/yeasty with perhaps a bit of lemon grassiness.

Taste is bready and a little sweet up front, a bit of sour in the back of the palate and a mild bitterness on the finish. There is some lemon citrus hop flavor but it's mild and on the grassy side.

Mouth feel is mostly light, a bit oily, with a fair amount of carbonation.

I have to admit I'm a big fan of American styles of pale ales so it's taken several of these for me to develop a feel for the English variety. I still prefer an APA but this is a very good beer, it's mild but that's the style.

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Photo of Offa
4.05/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This seems more like a lighter, golden-ale version of an English pale ale.

It is pale golden amber, it has a fairly large, off-white head that shrinks steadily to a thin top with some lace.

The aroma is overall quite good, with bread, grain, leafy and citrusy hints, a little fruit, and pine.

The taste is light grain, hay, citrus, bread, and hints of pine. It's nice, clean, crisp, and very drinkable, if rather light and a bit thin.

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Photo of emsroth
4.34/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle with freshness date. Poured into a 12oz glass.

App: Gold with hints of amber. One finger head that quickyl recedes. Substantial lacing.

Smell: Sweet bready malt, reminiscent of a sweet baguette. Faint hop smell, but it is not needed or missed.

Taste: Starts husky and grainy paired perfectly with the carbonation. A touch of roasted flavor. Next is pleasant sweetness. It ends with the slightest hint of hops. As I finish the sweetness diminishes and the hopiness comes forward. The hops remind me of pine, wood, and grass.

Nice, full mouthfeel. Dry aftertaste.

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Photo of thespaceman
4.02/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Samuel Adams curved pint glass.

Appearance: Nice light gold in color, pour yields a nice size head, good lacing down the glass. Soapy and sticky.

Smell: Small bits of hoppiness are present along with a toasted malt backround. Biscuit like aroma is pretty dominant here, not much in the way of hop overkill. Nicely balanced in the nose.

Taste: Up front, a small hop presence gives way to a toasted malt elements. Honey, a bit of spice from the malt, and some dry hops are all here. The finish consists of a huge malt backbone, finishes slightly bitter in account of the carbonation, the hops are very subtle but balanced to the maltiness just right.

Mouthfeel: Decent amount of carbonation, although balanced right, this brew gets a bit wet on the tongue when sitting. Medium bodied, and a slight bitterness in the finish.

Drinkability: It's nice to have a Pale ale that has more of a malt figure then a grapefruit hopped mess. Not only is this balanced correctly, but it's a perfect year round beer, refreshing in the summer, and toasty enough to keep your attention on a cold night. A excellent stab at the English style thats a sure go to brew in my book!

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Photo of Mardukk
3.82/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden honey color with a quickly fading head and some lasting lacing.

Smells of honey touched hops.

Has medium carbonation with a good balance of hops and malt balance. Slightly honey tasting with some bittering hops to finish.

Overall, a very nicely balanced pale ale without assaulting your taste buds with excessive hoppy taste.

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Photo of mempath
3.99/5  rDev +15%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

pours nicely, quick fade head, good lacing. light honey tint.

subtle, but interesting smell...hops aren't quite upfront...what i get and really like is the almost muscadine (grape) scent. interesting.

taste is in synch with the smell...again, the hops lingering in the back, suggest a sour dough/muscadine sense. yep. interesting.

mouthfeel is above average, nice, carbonated crispness works well with that sweet/nutty malt-hop fusion, subtle as it is...which leads to the high drinkability.

whether you are a hophead or one afraid of hops, this is a good standby ale. if you prefer tastebud assaults by hops, this would be a way to step back and cleanse the palate...(ha!). should you want a nice introduction to the glorious hops and don't want front row, 50 yard line seats, you can catch the glory in the nosebleed section and still participate. part of me wishes it shouted out more but there are plenty of out of tune shouters.

a mellow, crisp, unique, subtle brew from a great macroCraft brewery system.

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Photo of goblue3509
3.67/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a yellow color to it. Aroma is inline with other pale ale's. The taste is slightly more complex than other pale ale's. The taste is clean and but not too dry. It is sweet while not being overly bitter. Sweeter than more pale ale's. Very drinkable. More malty than bitter so it is easy to drink.

 305 characters

Photo of CityBoy1986
3.95/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass from a 12 oz. bottle. Freshness date is March.

The pour is golden coloured with one finger's white head. The head recedes quickly and leaves some lacing.

The nose is a lot of wheat mixed with citrus. The taste is more of the same; this is a very bready beer. There is little bitterness.

Mouthfeel is light to medium without too much carbonation. Drinkability is high.

This is yet another good starter beer from BBC.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
3.65/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Out of standard brown bottle this beer was a light orange color with good clarity. The head was slightly yellow in tint, a little more than a finger thick and displayed decent retention and good lacing. The aroma was a blend of slightly musty malt, pale malt and light, floral hops. The flavors were dry and bitter, but lacked the malt sweetness to balance it. I tasted some citrus rind and herbal notes at first followed by the dry biscuit-like flavor of the malt. Towards the very end I got a flash of bitter hops, but it was very subtle and short lived. The body was med/full, the carbonation good and the acidity high. Nothing much to speak of.

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Photo of LyonsHead
3.88/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a glass

A: Nice golden color, I think of honey when I see this beer

S: Malty hop balance, this is a sweet smelling beer

T: Tastes sweet but the hops are what mark this beers taste. They are a nice fruity flavor, almost lemony

M: light-body especially for Samuel Adams which is usually a brand of Fuller-bodied brews.

D: a very drinkable brew, thirst quencher, you could quite a few of these. Another good one from Sam

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Photo of OtherShoe2
3.06/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a honeyed gold with a slight white head -- but some decent lacing.

Has a faint citric hop aroma with a light malt fragrance.

Flavors are muted in this one. Light sweetness from the malt, light hop bitterness, and a slight tart finish. Understated.

Medium body with fair carbonation. Kinda soft actually.

Overall, you can put these down, but not really exciting me either. Not a bad beer by any means, just not knocking me back with any aspect.

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Photo of jujubeast6000
3.14/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed 11/16/2006 (12oz bottle):

Pours a clear yellow colored body, big fizzy bubbles, with a good sized white foamy head, but diminishing. Has a very bitter aroma, not too malty, effervescent, but not very strong. Sweet malty taste, refrehing taste, a little dry.

 267 characters

Photo of Duhast500
3/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass.

The color is an amber/gold with a greyish or white head.

The smell is malty, with some hop flavor.

The taste is of lemon and roasted malt. A bit bitter but not over welling. The favor seems a bit muted.

A nice even and well balanced not a bad Pale Ale.

 303 characters

Photo of chaunur
4.07/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass a light yellow tan color with a slight haze, looked 'thin'. Left a very light head with some lacing. Smelled better than it looked, nice floral hop smell yet not overpowering. Again tasted better than it looked, mildly hop for a pale ale, which suits me fine, almost 'dry'. I thought this was a good pale ale, could easily drink several at a sitting, a pity only available in a sampler pack

 415 characters

Photo of Beernoisseur
3.8/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a pilsner glass.

A - Honey amber. Great clarity. initial 1 1/2 inch head, that retreated fairly slowly, and laced nicely.

S - Malt first, then hops, but only by an nose... no pun intended. There is a certain lemon zest quality in the aroma. Nice.

T - Good, but slightly metallic. Aside from that, hops win the battle, but just barely. Nicely balanced. Not terribly interesting, but not bad at all. As i get closer to the bottom of the glass, the malt and the yeasts begin to assert their character more and more. The sweetness creeps in... but not in an offensive way at all.

M - Excellent mouthfeel. Very soft, and creamy.

D - This is a very approachable beer. It's like the girl at the party that you know you can hook up with, so your confidence is off the charts. She's cute, but she's not the head cheerleader, so you aren't scared of rejection at all. Maybe she's not the hottest girl ever, and maybe she's not the greatest conversationalist, but she's a good, if unmemorable, time.

 1,026 characters

Photo of smcolw
3.54/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Modest head that dies to nearly no bubbles. Initially light lace, then none. Dark gold color with a touch of green; slight haze.

Pleasant floral hop aroma;

Closer to the British style in the malt flavor. Slightly tart and quite dry. The hop finish is brief and not very pronounced. Good body with a high carbonation level.

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Photo of johnnyirishman
2.98/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Pint glass.

Apperance- Golden Yellow with a decent head and retention that dissapated to decent lacing.

Smell- A malty nose with subdued hops poking through.

Taste,Mouthfeel-Decently balanced pale ale, with a decent body and good carb.

Drinkability- A good sessionable pale ale

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Photo of BigBry
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown bottle served at the aunt and uncles. Poured a gold color, with a white head that thins to a floating cap. Some thin lace is left on the glass. The smell is bready malt with earthy hop fragrance. A bit metallic taste, with a good dose of hops. Some balancing roasted malt. The mouthfeel is a bit on the light side, good carbonation. Easy enough to drink, flavor was alright, but nothing really stands out. Decent, no complaints, but nothing special either.

 462 characters

Photo of gerardoluna
3.1/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

[Eyes] The Color is Yellow and brillant, with a goood start white head but a little retention...

[Nouse] Aroma is very hoppy, floral & fruity.

[Mouth] The body is good, complex, with a gentile hoppiness the taste is biiitter...

Serving type: bottle

 252 characters

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.05/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Nice lacing from a tight-bubbled head on top of an amber/orange transparent body

S- Smell is full of good malts and hops competing for dominance

T- Brilliant balance in this beer. Bold, earthy, grainy malts combine with spicy, floral hops to create a very enjoyable, refreshing taste

M- Not much to the feel but sorta crisp

D- Refreshing with no nasty off flavors to detract from drinkability

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.14/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 5/18/08. Bottle. Pours a light orange with a nice white head that leaves pretty lacing on the glass. Aroma of floral hops. Flavor of sweet malt initially with a roasted malt finish. Pretty good and easily sessionable.
Aroma: 5/10
Appearance: 4/5
Flavor: 6/10
Palate: 4/5
Overall: 14/20

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.45/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a pale golden color with a soft white head.

S: On the nose was light citrus, fresh grains and a light breadiness.

T: dry, crisp, with some light floral bittering, fresh grains and a light breadiness similar to English style malt.

M: fizzy with dry citrus and a tad thin.

D: Overall a moderately hopped pale with moderate flavor and drinkability.

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Photo of stockingcpl
4/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: This brew poured quite well. Average head thickness, but very nice spiderwebbing. Color is a nice clover honey with very slight cloudiness.

Smell: The aroma is a light hopiness with a sweet zing early in the aroma curve. Pretty good. Well balanced, but a little light.

Taste: This is a fairly typical pale ale. However, the flavors are blended well and tend to roll of the tongue wuite well. Flavor curve is well defined. There are also citrus overtones. Very well balanced flavor.

Mouthfeel: This is a very crisp brew which has just abotu a perfect flavor curve. Nice sharpness during onset. Tone tapers when citrus overtones kick in, followed by a smooth hop bitterness. Very well executed design for an English Pale Ale. I'm impressed.

Drinkability: This is a brew is very different. One sips this beer and wants more but upon a second look, there is more in the glass. Hard to explain, but I'm impressed.

I highly recommend this brew.


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Photo of Vendetta
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Original Rating Date:
August 1, 2008

Pours a shadowy yellow with a thick, foamy head that leaves a cloudy lacing down the glass. Smell erupts from the glass- citrusy, strongly beerish, but I think I detect a little skunk. Looks very fizzy. First taste... Not skunky at all. Actually very good- not nearly as fizzy as it looks, very malty with some hop presence detectable. Finishes with a burst of light citrus and leaves a hoppy aftertaste. Really surprising, I didn't expect all that much from the beer but it delivered, well balanced despite some of the other reviews here. Might not be your cup of tea but it's a must try.

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Samuel Adams Pale Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Beer rating: 3.47 out of 5 with 911 ratings
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