HOME > Chowhound > Beer >


Sam Adams Noble pils

  • t

My new favorite all around beer!
As balanced as a beer could possibly be.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I've heard nothing but praise for this beer. I haven't seen it in SF yet, but I'm excited to try it. I'm getting a bit tired of the "extreme" beers right now, so a well made pilsner would be refreshing change.

    1. While I do like it, it has a bit of a wheat-beer essence to it IMHO....maybe it's a little fruitier than a pilsner.

      3 Replies
      1. re: chris in illinois

        I haven't tried this beer yet, but wheat beer and fruity characteristics in a pilsner would normally be cause for concern.

        1. re: Kenji

          Czechvar has a certain "fruity" characteristic.

          1. re: Josh

            Czechvar is a Czech pilsner while SA Noble pils is German style. However what I think differentiates the two styles are malts. From Czech pils (e.g. Pilsner Urquell) I get a nut and nut oil richness that isn't present in German pils.

        1. I'm a German pilsner lover and was really looking forward to trying this beer. I agree that it is a solid beer that I'd order again however to me as a pilsner it doesn't stand up to any of my favorites such as Pikeland, Stoudts, Prima or Stiegl. For me the "German pilsner" character was restrained and clouded by malts that weren't clean enough for the style. Not that the beer is malty it was just to me again the quality of the malts.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Chinon00

            Same here- I was really jazzed about this beer, and was maybe even feeling nostalgic about the Boston Lager of old which was more aromatic and Pilsner-ish than it is these days. The bottom line is that I also like it just fine, but it hasn't toppled my favorites. The thing is, though, Pikeland, Prima, Sunshine Pils, etc. aren't going to be found in most supermarkets and liquor stores like this one will likely be, so that makes it a really attractive fallback option to me.

            1. re: TongoRad

              I agree with that, it didn't seem to me to have the same depth of flavor that Victory or Stiegl have. However, it was good and I liked that it felt like a departure for SA. It's probably one of the few that I wouldn't have definitely known it was there's (although I think other breweries like New Belgium or SN beers have the same issue).

          2. I liked the flavor but, found the body to be lacking. The body seemed to be flat or watery.

            1 Reply
            1. re: JAB

              I picked up a 12 pack yesterday and it did remind me of the Boston Lager in the days of yore; in other words, I liked it alot! It had a nice hop bite with the malts lingering in the background. It;s not Prima Pils, but you can find it everywhere. It says its a seasonal, but I would like it to become an all year brew.

            2. Had several pints of this last night. I enjoyed it as a Seasonal and am pleased to think that it will be available in places whose beer selection is otherwise pretty poor.

              It is a solid american pils. Not as good as some of the better European varieties but as freshness counts in this beer style, it will do in a pinch.

              5 Replies
              1. re: Ernie Diamond

                I ran into the Sam Adams guy at Waldbaums today and I asked him when the SA Noble Pils will be available until and he said until March 31st so you can probably see it in stores until sometime in April. I think it will make a fine summer beer so I plan on picking some up with the last good until bottle stamp month.
                Plus, as a bonus, a little known fact.....Sam Adams was the first two sport athlete.

                1. re: imhungryletseat

                  Good to know that the end of the month is the end of the beer. I will have to save my pennies. I would love to see this enter regular rotation. It is becoming a fast favorite.

                  At the risk of getting off-topic, what do you mean when you say that SA was the first two-sport athlete?

                  1. re: Ernie Diamond

                    Look at the bottle; it says that SA was a Brewer and a Patriot!!

                      1. re: Ernie Diamond

                        Ha ha! I cant believe you let him set that one up.

              2. I tried a few and think its a decent beer. Honestly, coming from SA production facilities, I was expecting a trainwreck of hot alcohol or other off flavors, but besides the somewhat out of style fruitiness, its a pretty clean beer with decent hop flavor. But since Sierra Nevada has their blonde bock out at the same time, SA doesn't stand a chance at getting any more of my late winter/spring lager money. Good alternative to SA Lager at bars with mediocre selections though.

                1. My first taste was ok. I was not thrilled by it, and am just not a big Pils fan.
                  However, I spend a bit of time at the local casino, and the beer selection there is awful. No pale ales, no IPA's, In the last year they brought in Fat Tire. The only non macro available.
                  Then they started serving Sam Adams seasonal on tap.
                  With the Noble Pils being the only thing you can get hops from, that became my choice.
                  I found it much better on tap, and have really grown to love this beer. I'm really gonna miss it when it's gone.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: Bobfrmia

                    Tonight I found a lone twelve pack of Noble for 12.99. Brought it home, checked a bottle, and it is notched to drink before June. I'm having one now, and have no doubt I can finish it all before June.
                    Nice treat.

                    1. re: Bobfrmia

                      Lucky fellah.

                      I would be thrilled to find another 12 somewhere. Should have stocked up.

                      1. re: Ernie Diamond

                        Sam Adams distributors have, in many cases, reportedly been very aggressive about pulling the previous seasonal as soon as the new one hits the shelves. Doesn't really make a lot of sense, financially or for the fans, if there's still some demand and the beers' "Best by" dates are still good. I suppose retailers wouldn't want to have two seasonals on the shelves -given the limited shelf space and the constant new beers hitting many markets - but if they're still selling?

                        I mean, I don't care when they pull the Winter ale in the middle of Feb. or the Summer Ale in the middle of August (good riddance to both those "spiced" beers), but I wouldn't mind a longer period for Noble Pils or even their O'fest (which I think I missed totally last year- except for one bottle in a store-assembled US Oktoberfest mixed 6 pack).

                        1. re: JessKidden

                          I've never heard of this practice. Every wholesaler I know tries to roll the previous seasonal through the system (whatever the brand) before starting in with the new one. I doubt very much that what you say takes place, because it amounts to willingly not selling product that costs them money.

                          1. re: Jim Dorsch

                            Hey, I doubted it too when I first started hearing and reading about it (and why I even used the qualifier "reportedly")- because, like you, that's what I've always seen happen- in some cases distributors specifically telling retailers (and customers) they WOULDN'T deliver the new seasonal until the old one was sold out, even tho' it was sitting in their warehouse.

                            Seems some of the "reports" I read (yeah," ...on...the...internet...") were *from* retailers who wanted to keep the old seasonal on the shelf and were surprised when the distributor pulled them.

                  2. I'm a huge fan of pilsners, which means that living in the US is like a wasteland for me. Anyway, I just found this out on the left coast and tried it for the first time. Excellent beer, definitely one of the top ten domestic pilsners at least. I hope Sam Adams recognizes that they have a winner here, and that one day folks will realize what a good pilsner can really be.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: tevis

                      SA is treating this as a seasonal brew and it is now out of rotation as the summer ale is in its' place. It is nowhere to be found on LI now, so I'll have to wait untik next year

                      1. re: tevis

                        "I'm a huge fan of pilsners, which means that living in the US is like a wasteland for me."

                        Correction, living in the WESTERN US is like a wasteland. There are fine pilsners in the Midwest and of course Pennsylvania.

                        1. re: Chinon00

                          Gordon Biersch actually makes a few good ones, IMO. Their Marzen is pretty tasty. Also, Trumer Pils is produced in Berkeley, CA, and is available pretty widely in CA.

                        2. re: tevis

                          Apparently you've not heard of or tried Moonlight Brewing's Reality Czech.

                        3. I just had my first Sam Adams Noble PIls about a week ago. I rate it very highly for flavor, balance and aftertaste. This is a great brew.

                          9 Replies
                          1. re: Tripeler

                            The 2011 Noble Pils is out!!!
                            Got it at Pathmark today for 13.99 a 12 pack. Had my first one today with a brisket sandwich for lunch. Kids at school, wife at work, the only one home to annoy me was the dog, and I dispatched him by giving him a treat so it was me, the sandwich, the beer, and the newspaper...talk about good times!!
                            Similiar hop profile from what I remember from last year. I like that you can drink a couple of them without getting hop head!!
                            Will definately be in my rotation for watching the games this weekend (go J-E-T-S) along with tasty nuggets from Ithaca, Long Trail, and Ommegang!

                            1. re: imhungryletseat

                              Bad News that turned good

                              I was at the store a couple of days ago to see if the Noble Pils was out yet and where the rotating seasonal 12 packs are was an Alpine Spring seasonal...my first thought was the demise of the SA Noble Pils, one of my SA favorites.
                              I didn't buy a 12 pack of it as I would rather give it a taste test first.
                              After the requisite mourning period, I went to the SA website to leave a nastygram and lo and behold, I read that they are making the Noble Pils a year round beer with a release date of March! Good news for the 5 or 6 or us who like the Noble Pils!!!

                              1. re: imhungryletseat

                                I didn't care for the Alpine Spring seasonal at all.

                                1. re: JAB

                                  What didn't you like about it?

                                  I had an Alpine Spring with my dinner a few nights ago and thought it was quite good...crisp, very nicely balanced.

                                  1. re: The Professor

                                    Like my comment above, I found this one to be lacking in body as well seeming flat and watery. It's a problem that I have with many but, not all of Sam Adams' beers.

                                    1. re: The Professor

                                      I enjoyed it as well. Very crisp with a touch of sourness. Love the Tettnang hop signature.

                                      1. re: Insidious Rex

                                        The tartness in this beer reminded me of last year's summer ale. Estery, unclean yeast profile didn't help either.

                                        1. re: LStaff

                                          Well there you go.
                                          Those are two things I _liked_ about the brew!
                                          Vive la difference!