Anchor Steam Beer

2 Oct

Anchor Steam Beer

Anchor Steam Beer

Today will be the first of a trilogy of beer reviews. Each of the beers will fall into a slightly different price category and will be offered as alternatives to the standard Bud or Miller you may be drinking. The first beer I will be reviewing falls in the middle of the price range at $8.50 for six twelve-ounce bottles (all prices will be what I paid for them at the local ABC liquor store before tax). It also happened to be the beer I paired with my Bruschetta Chicken Bake and Ore-Ida Steam’n Mash potatoes for dinner Monday night.

Immediately, many of you will be asking how a beer can be called “Anchor Steam Beer.” In fact, I asked the same question when I first saw the beer. Wikipedia tells us that:

Steam beer may be defined as a highly effervescent beer made by brewing lager yeasts at ale fermentation temperatures. It has two distinct but related meanings:

  • Historic steam beer, by all accounts bad-tasting, produced in California from the mid-1800s to the mid-1900s;
  • Modern California Common beer, the official name for the beer family which includes Anchor Steam beer.

So a modern day company has decided to use a name of a historically bad beer. Sounds like a good marketing plan! After reading this I was highly unsure of what to expect from the glass I had just poured:

Nice color

Nice color and head.

The nice orange/caramel color and the nice head looked attractive. Definitely not a dark beer and the head was nice and airy giving away to a pleasant aroma. The aroma was malty with just a hint of hops and a roasted nut scent. As you drink the beer all of the bitterness is up front. On your first sip you may do a “bitter beer face” but give it a chance, trust me! The Steam Beer quickly gives way to a refreshing middle and after taste. This is a full bodied beer, so if all you have ever had is Bud, this may seem like a strong beer, but at only 4.9% abv (alcohol by volume) it won’t knock your socks off (wait until I get to part 3 for that!).

I would recommend HIGHLY that you pour this beer into a glass (as I have) for best tasting results. I found the beer very refreshing, though it may be one that you have to work into if you are used to the standard mass produced American beers. At $1.50 a beer I would say it as a good beer to have in the fridge for after a rough day, or hanging out watching the Miami Dolphins win on Sundays!


2 Responses to “Anchor Steam Beer”

  1. Brian P October 2, 2008 at 8:26 am #

    Wow, fantastic pour. I’ve never tried a steam beer before – I’ll have to check this one out.

    Have you ever tried shiner bock? It’s from near where I lived in texas. It’s made in the same vein as traditional german beers. They also have a hefeweizen that’s pretty admirable. Really the only domestic I’ve had that I would truly call “beer.”


  1. Dogfish Head 90-Minute IPA « Eternal Rambling of a Boy With Two Brains - October 4, 2008

    […] reviewed over the last three days I would put this one at the top followed by the surprisingly good Anchor Steam Beer with Budweiser’s American Ale finishing strong in third. You may like these beers or you may […]

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