Samuel Adams Little White Rye | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Samuel Adams Little White RyeSamuel Adams Little White Rye

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

Style: Witbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Brad007 on 03-28-2013

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Reviews: 100 | Ratings: 511
Photo of MattyG85
3.82/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass.

Appearance: Pours a somewhat hazy yellowish golden orange with a lot of rising bubbles. Huge five finger white head with good retention. Leaves a lot of creamy lacing around the glass.

Smell: A pretty spice forward aroma with wheat hints and citrus in the background. The sage and rye spice scent is pretty prominent upfront. Wheat and pale malt with hints of grains, biscuit, yeast, and cracker. Coriander spicing and some citrus hop hints of orange. Light hint of honey. Again the sage scent is prominent giving a spiced bread like aroma. Interesting and decent.

Taste: Like it smells, a very spice forward wheat beer taste with prominent notes of sage and rye spice. Upfront sage and spicy rye followed by wheat and pale malt. Notes of grains, biscuit, yeast, and cracker. Coriander spice along with citrus notes of orange and lemon. Slight taste of honey sweetness. The spices linger through the aftertaste and kind of hide the other wheat ale flavors in the background. Quite an interesting twist.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Crisp, smooth, and fairly drying on the finish.

Overall: A unique twist on the wheat ale style. The spices kind of overpower everything but the taste is decent overall.

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Photo of lwillitz
3.62/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12-oz bottle into wheat beer glass

A - 4-finger white head over a hazy body of yellow/gold with a small amount of rising carbonation; head sticks around a while, lacing the glass nicely

S - orange peel, lemon, coriander, grassy notes, touch of wheat bread

T - oranges, lemons, coriander, peppery spice, wheat bread, banana and clove, rye, balanced finish

M - smooth medium body, high carbonation, quite refreshing

O - a fairly decent wheat beer; tasty and refreshing

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Photo of Jeffreysan
3.18/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, poured into a Samuel Adams pint glass

Appearance: Pours a hazy, golden yellow, with a finger of off-white head that dissolved into a thin cloud of wispy foam that formed a halo of foam that gripped the sides of the glass and formed a cloud of lacy foam that collected in the center of the beer. Doesn’t look exactly like a Budweiser, but it’s close.

Aroma: Lots of hops, yeasts and citrus, and some spice. Specifically, I get orange, lemon, banana, coriander, sage and clove. Actually, it smells pretty nice.

Taste: Ok, very Belgian whit-style flavors. Yeasty, but there’s the bubble gum and clove and banana that’s so prevalent in whitbiers and weissbiers that I’m not a fan of. This beer also has a very long finish.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied, with some good carbonation to cleanse the palate and tickle the tastebuds.

Overall: I’m not a fan of this beer, mainly because I don’t like Belgian whitbiers and German weissbiers. That being said, the flavors are interesting and I’m assuming that it’s a pretty good example of what a Belgian-style whitbier is supposed to taste like.

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Photo of Daktah
3.74/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a hazy amber/orange with a fluffy white head. Smell was wheat, spice, some citrus. Taste was more of the same, in a very good way. Mouthfeel was medium, which is pretty much the standard for Sam Adams - rarely more, rarely less.

Overall, a very good beer. Not sure why this beer has such mediocre reviews. For a summer beer in a taster pack, this is really solid. I'd definitely buy a six pack of this for hot summer sipping.

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Photo of hreb
2.66/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle best before December. Served in imperial pint glass. Beer is pale yellow and just slightly cloudy, with a very thin white head. Aroma is of lemon and orange peel, with a hint of coriander in the back, but nothing to blow away your senses. Ooh, very fizzy. And once I get through the intense carbonation the coriander flavor is really dominant. And past that the beer is way sweet. I find the herbaceousness is the harshest part of this beer, and along with the intense carbonation it makes for an outright unpleasant drink. I find myself wanting either higher more hops to up the raw IBUs of this beer, or simply higher attenuation to dry it out. Oh, and the label promised a rye beer, but there's only the most subtle rye flavor hiding behind all this sweetness and flavoring nonsense. I guess the idea of a rye wit was novel but I'll pass next time.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.33/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Part of the summer mix pack.

Pours an amber/orange color. A white head of about a finger falls to wispy cap and thick ring after some sippage.

Sage/spice sticks out in the scent, along with coriander, grassy/earthy notes, some bread. Decent, a little plain.

Sage/spicy/rye presence is easily noticeable and grows over time. A nice touch though perhaps overpowering, not too much else going on other than the expected orange/coriander and wheat.

Mouthfeel is fine other than highish carbonation that is a bit much at times. Decent body to it. Not quite as quaffable as your average wit.

The extra spice makes this one unique but still another pretty mediocre, over-orangey witbier.

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Photo of jeffjeff1
3.52/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This came in one of the variety packs.

Appearance- yellowish color, thick foamy head, nice lacing

Smell- spices, wheat, rye

Taste- spices, wheat, rye

Mouthfeel- medium bodied

Drinkability- It was ok. I would drink it again but probably wouldn't buy it again.

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Photo of mvanaskie13
3.55/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass, color is copper, head is white, dissipating to ring, no lacing.

Smell is blend of wheat/rye and spices, sage is pretty present, coriander as well, i'm also picking up ginger or lemongrass.

Taste is a blend of the grains, wheat and rye, a spices, sage again, hints of coriander and a ginger note, light yeast spice.

Mouthfeel is a bit overcarbonated, strong without the flavor, harsh carbonation, lighter malt flavors are present

Overall, a interesting take, similar to philadelphia brewing company's fleur de lehigh, the rye is interesting take.

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Photo of mothman
3.18/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy brass orange color.

Flavors of orange peel, zest, coriander and rye. Pretty much everything advertised. A lot of spice flavors. The sage shows in the finish.

Mouthfeel: crisp and spiced. Lighter body. Ends dry.

Overall, an okay wit. Too much spice for me, however. I'd only want one of these.

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Photo of larryarms847
2.75/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Pours a cloudy amber gold.

Rye spice, toast, bread, floral hops.

Floral and earthy hop bitterness, slight rye spiciness on top.

Light-bodied, medium carbonation, spiced.

Overall, pretty bad.

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Photo of GossageBrewery
3.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured this Witbier from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Poured a hazy orange color, produced a thick head that has decent retention and leaves some lacing on the glass. The aroma consisted of malted grain, spicy rye and sage. Medium bodied, there is a base of spicy rye, sage, and white pepper. Crisp, easy to drink- the use of sage and rye gives a spicy twist to a classic beer style.

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Photo of plaid75
3.31/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured a hazy brass hue with a two finger foamy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a dull citrus and sage.

The taste consisted of a round pale malt, esters and a strange herbal sage.

The mouthfeel was full and chewy.

Overall a strange muddle of flavors. Not such a great idea.

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Photo of boesesfleisch
3.39/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden, slight hazy color( pretty clear for the style) with white head and dissipates rather fast. The smell is that of the traditional witbier with the addition of some other uncommon fruit and spices notes which gives it a pleasant aroma. The taste is is mostly of rye and sage than that of the traditional witbier. The mouth feel is rather watery and disappointing. I feel that the addition of sage and rye to a witbier is something that was a good idea, but could have had a better execution.

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

Golden/orange in color with a slightly cloudy body, this beer has a spicy nose that features scents of citrus, coriander, and other spice. The foam is okay, but it doesn’t last very long and slowly settles into a thin coating as you consume.

This beer has a taste that is spicy, with flavors of coriander and sage. Look beyond these contributions and you can pick up on flavors of citrus, wheat, rye, and just a small amount of hop to round it out. But the taste of spice from the sage and coriander are what you notice most.

This is an interesting beer for its addition of sage. It is most obvious in the taste. I could detect spice in the nose, but I didn’t even think of sage until I tasted the beer. Then, it was obvious: The scent I noticed earlier was that of sage. The reason I didn’t think of sage when I inhaled for the first time is because it isn’t an ingredient you think of when you drink beer.

This seems like good beer for the warm days of summer and it seems like a beer that will pique the interest of many and raise some eyebrows due to the unusual flavor profile. I don’t know if I will be seeking it out anytime soon, but this is an interesting beer that does have some good things to offer.

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Photo of Beric
3.41/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Serving: Bottle, from the bottle
Served: 7 June 2013

Appearance: I drank this from the bottle, so it's much harder to comment about the overall appearance. However, when swirled in the bottle, it did generate a nice head that stuck around for a little while. Can't comment on color for obvious reasons.

Smell: The smell is the most off-putting part of this beer. It says that it is made with orange peel, coriander, sage, and rye (of course). The orange peel and coriander is fine for a wit, but I'm a little turned off by the sage smell. Sage is something that belongs in food, not drink.

Taste: The sage you can smell in the nose is a little more muted in the actual taste, though you can taste it on the back end after a sip. If anything, the dry finish and sage taste makes you want to drink more, since the orange and coriander comes out more on the tip of the tongue than in the throat. Not the worst herbed wit I've had (that goes to Blue Moon Spiced Amber), but definitely not something I'd want to drink all the time.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation, to style.

Overall: People on this site slam Sam Adams for not being 'craft', but I fail to see how throwing orange, coriander, and sage into a beer fails to make it 'craft'. It's a unique beer, good for a one-time drink but I'm not sure I would want to drink again. A decent beer, but the sage is too off putting.

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Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.44/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Yellow-tan and pretty good, head wasn't bad and lacing was pretty good.

Aroma is very spicy, a little sweet, with some citrus and some yeasty notes. Flavor is somewhat of the same, but with a little more Belgian-ish yeast, a little less citrus, and still with a good spiciness. I like the rye addition, it seems to add a nice touch.

Drinkability is high, it goes down easy. Carbonation was medium and body was light to medium.

It's not fantastic, but it's an interesting new beer to try from the summer mixer-12 packs.

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Photo of beagle75
3.18/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

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

A: Slightly hazy, medium golden color with over one finger of white foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: Coriander is pronounced; coupled with phenolic-leaning yeast, it imparts a slight chemical quality. An aura of soapy lime citrus lurks around the edges.

T: Begins barely off-dry, with bready yeast, mild coriander, and bright carbonic acidity. Peppery rye is sharp in the middle, aggressively drying, a standout feature of this beer. Lemon and lime citrus peel shows up just in time for the finish, briefly lingering on the palate.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, slightly acidic on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: Eye-opening rye breaks up what is otherwise a parade of expected features. Wit beers work best when they are treated with delicacy, but this is typical of it's maker's clumsiness with the style. Hopefully others will see in this a needed new direction for the style and make it happen with more favorable results.

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Photo of LambicPentameter
3.86/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured out of a brown 12 oz bottle into a 16 oz nonic style tumbler. Label is marked with a "best by" date of September 2013.

Appearance - Pours the color of apricot and tangerine flesh, with the light shifting through to display highlights of lemony yellow. Body is hazy and wears a half-finger head of golden-white. Foam dissipates after a couple minutes, leaving a spotty film of bubbles.

Smell - Dominated by the round, wheaty base with the coriander coming through along with some mild floral hoppiness and faint phenols. I wish it was a bit stronger, but it's pleasant nonetheless.

Taste - Fresh bread with some faint rye spiciness, the coriander again comes through along with orange peel and citrus. The sage is pleasantly detectable and adds a depth to the flavor without making it too complex/overbearing. Not a flavor I've thought about with beer, but it works. Hops provide a bitterness that isn't typical of the style, but it's subtle and it works.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium body with moderate carbonation and a slight bit of chewiness. Aftertaste doesn't linger.

Overall, now that I've tasted this beer, I'm shocked by how low it's rated. To me, it was balanced, interesting and well-made. Sort of an American take on a classic Belgian style, and it performs well.

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Photo of Mavigo
3.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I got this from the Sam Adams summer pack from Costco. Served in a chalice.

A: Pours a golden yellow color with a thin white head that dissipates fast with small amounts of white lacing.

S: Smells of wheat, grains, rye, malts, lemon zest

T: Tastes pretty good, sweet, though it could be more flavorful, still it's fairly balanced and tastes alright. Tastes of wheat, grains, rye, malts, hops at the finish

M: Medium bodied with medium amounts of carbonation, its quite alright, not too special but pretty good.

O: Overall this beer is not very original but that does not mean it's horrible, its decent, I could drink a lot of these, no sweat and no complaints and I'd be alright with buying it again, I'd say give it a try.

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Photo of StoutHunter
3.14/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I picked up a bottle of Samuel Adams Little White Rye in their summer variety pack last week for $13.29 at Meijers. Not really sure what to expect with this one, but I think it might be similar to Witbier and I believe this is the first time I have had a beer brewed with sage, so lets see how it goes. Notched best by September. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a Weizen glass.

A- The label is pretty simple and is typical for most of their beers, it looks ok. It poured a hazy bright yellow color that took on some golden hues when held to the light with a finger and half worth of white head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and left a little bit of spotty lacing behind. This was a nice looking beer, but i wish the head and lacing were a little better.

S- The aroma starts off with a medium amount of sweetness followed by some spices with sage and coriander really coming through and the sage seems to stick out the most. Up next i get some orange rind and some yeast aromas that are very Belgian Witbier like. I don't really pick up any rye, but that might be because it blends in with the other spices, but it didn't stick out for me. The aroma was ok, but I thought the sage was a little too overpowering.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma and it starts off with a medium amount of sweetness followed by a high amount of spice with coriander and sage really showing up and the sage stuck out the most and was a little overpowering. Up next comes a real slight earthy spice flavor that may be from the rye, but I can't tell for sure and it's followed by some orange rind and typical Witbier yeast flavors. On the finish there's a little more orange rind with a lower amount of bitterness with a very sage and coriander like aftertaste with a little bit of orange rind in the background. The taste was ok, but I thought the sage was too overpowering and it didn't let the rye show up enough, it was pretty average tasting.

M- Fairly smooth, a little crisp, slightly sticky, medium bodied, with a slightly higher amount of medium carbonation that was a little fizzy. The mouthfeel was nice and it worked well with this beer.

Overall I wasn't impressed with this beer and I thought it was an average at best example of the style, the sage seemed interesting when I read about it on the label, but when I got to the taste and aroma of this beer the sage seemed to be too overpowering which didn't give this beer the best balance. This beer didn't have good drinkability, it was a little tough to finish the bottle, it was a little smooth, but the overpowering sage did not hold my attention and one would be enough for me, no way would I want to session this beer. What I liked the most about this beer was the appearance and mouthfeel, they were both nice and turned out to be the highlights of this beer. What I liked the least about this beer was how overpowering the sage was, It would have been a lot nicer if the sage was toned down and the rye shined through a little more. I wouldn't buy this beer again, it's not what I look for in the style, and I wouldn't recommend this beer unless you really like sage. All in all I wasn't a fan of this one, Samuel Adams generally knows what their doing, but they got a little out of hand with the sage this time and the beer suffered because of it, better luck next time guys. Blueberry Hill Lager was my favorite of this years summer pack, the rest of the beers were average at best, I think last years summer pack was much better, I don't think I will get another one this season.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.86/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from twelve ounce bottle into a pint glass. Summer variety pack.

Pours orange tinted gold. Low to no foam. Bready rye nose. Orange rind/coriander pokes through. Starts witbier and then takes a right turn with the sage/rye blend. Earthy. Chalky hefe close. Just hints of all the spices. Comes together well. Reviewers here seem to be more down than up, but I thought it was decent.

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Photo of secondtooth
3.49/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden amber, with substantial head of fine, white carbonation. Nice spoke-style lace.

Nose is spicy. I get the sage and coriander most prominently, with a touch of the citrus peeking in underneath. Different, for sure.

Taste is more of the pungent, earthy spice. I get a hint of fruit at the finish, but it's pretty well obscured by the rye and spice.

Definitely a unique and unusual flavor combination, but this one's not a favorite I'd care to revisit.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.43/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

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

A: The beer is a light yellow color, with a large white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick but spotty lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains lemon, orange, a lot of spices, light caramelized malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of citrus and strong coriander up front. Then some breadiness comes in from Belgian yeast and a thin malt character. The hops presence is very mild but brings some balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly spicy.

M: Crisp and smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, mild kick, decent representation of style, this beer seems like a lighter version of their Summer Ale with a stronger spice flavor, so if those two things are what you like in the Summer Ale, you’ll like this beer.

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Photo of Chiefy770
2.95/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Poured from a bottle into a pilsener glass.

A: Hazy golden color. Pours with a thick fluffy head. Nice finish.

S: The smell hit me as I was pouring the beer into the glass. An herb-like aroma dominates the scent. The hops stick out a little bit but the coriander and spices really stand out.

T: Much like the smell, the herbs dominate. I picked up mild bitterness from the hops. The herb taste for me was a bit overwhelming. The label said this contained orange peel but I did not taste any notes of orange.

M: Relatively dry finish. Low carbonation, moderate to full-body.

Overall: This was part of the Sam Adams Summer Sampler I picked up. The other beers were pretty good but this one was not my favorite, in fact I could not even finish this beer. Fans of herbal beer would like to check this one out. Fans of the Witbier variety may be caught off guard with this brew.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
2.71/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Part of a Samuel Adams mixed 12 pack. We shared the box 6 ways. Tick tick tick.

The beer appears light golden with a small head. The aroma offers bready malts, spice, particularly coriander. Chemicals and oddness. A rye beer with coriander sounded pretty nice, but this one misses the mark entirely for me. Soapy and grainy. No fun.

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Samuel Adams Little White Rye from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.32 out of 5 based on 511 ratings.
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