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Harvest Ale - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
Harvest AleHarvest Ale

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BA SCORE
84
good

1,048 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,048
Reviews: 403
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 12.03%
Wants: 24
Gots: 37 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Dark auburn color, citrus hop aroma, caramel flavor, medium body

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-03-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,048 | Reviews: 403 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of wisrarebeer
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Stopping by Goose Island Clybourn every chance I can get before it closes down for good.

Picked up a free growler as part of my Master of Beer Appreciation.

Beer is described as:

Harvest Ale (5.7% ABV)
As summertime fades, the sun shines less bright, and evening comes a little sooner. Harvest time arrives - it's a time to reap the benefits of a great summer. Fresh picked cascade hops from Washington and the richest Midwestern males makes Goose Island Harvest Ale an extra special beer worthy of your devotion.

Light brown color. Great creamy head. Nose is amazing from addition of wet hop cascades; very earthy (musty) and oily. Taste is nothing like I expected. I'm not a big fan of cascade hops but this really grew on me. Spicy, earthy taste that didn't have the intense grapefruit backbone. Doesn't linger on the tongue either which I liked. A bit thin in the finish but all-in-all a very decent beer.

wisrarebeer, Oct 12, 2008
Photo of jpkoch1962
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very solid amber, and nicely carbonated with a thick two finger head and lacing. Strong whiff of Cascades and Centenial hops dominate the aroma. A firm, smooth body balance the citrus bitterness of the hops. The malt base provided enough balance. The finish was a bit dry and not at all cloying. One of Goose Island's finest. Served at cellar temps (50-55 deg) in pint glass.

jpkoch1962, Oct 10, 2008
Photo of ibashmuck
2.65/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Purchased as part of "build-your-own-six-pack" at local grocer. Poured a small head on an amber body. Smells very sweet, maple syrup, a touch of citrus, and a bit of hop bite. Although the hoppiness wasn't too overpowering in the taste, none of the other elements could rise to the hops level, much less above it. A bit if a disappointment.

ibashmuck, Oct 08, 2008
Photo of TubaManJack
3.68/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A medium bodied ESB with a orange color reminiscent of the fall leaves. The brew is more carbonated then other ales I have had and the foamy top dissipating slowly overtime. The taste is rather unique style that is not really an ESB but rather a hoppy orange ale. The malt introduces the beer and the clean hops seem to punctuate the taste. The taste didn't disappoint just a drinkable brew that finishes clean.

TubaManJack, Oct 07, 2008
Photo of ajmoody76
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

my bro-in-law bought me a sixer of this and a sixer of 312. gotta love it. twelve ounce bottle poured into an imperial pint. one finger white head. clear amber. nice lace.

citrus hop nose. hard to get past that. i like it.

hoppy with a nice caramel sweetness. bitter hop aftertaste. a little hoppy for an esb, but i like it none-the-less.

mid body with good carbonation. i like this beer. the hop aroma knocked me down. very fresh smelling. could drink many more. i will try to pick another sixer up before the end of the season. i do not want to wait for my bro-in-law to send more my way.

ajmoody76, Oct 06, 2008
Photo of Boto
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draught @ Old Chicago: This one pours an orangish-amber color that was pretty clear. There was a decent sized white head on it. The aroma was quite nice. Lots of hops to the nose. They are mainly piney, but there is a caramel sweetness comong to the top also. Some spiciness too. The taste is quite good also. A little bit of sweet malts, piney bitterness, some spiciness. Well balanced and easy to drink.

Boto, Oct 04, 2008
Photo of Monkeyknife
4.18/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle a bright amber orange with a foamy white head.

Nice aroma loaded with spicy floral hops. Very much like a Bell's Two Hearted. Hops then give way to a caramel malt aroma floating in the background.

Tastes of citrus hops, caramel malts, and biscuit at the finish.

Medium bodied and moderately carbonated.

Easy to drink and easier to love. A perfect beer for the Fall season.

Monkeyknife, Oct 03, 2008
Photo of hero27
3.93/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle

Pours a burnt orange with a firm head of foam.
Floral hop aroma, big caramel/toffee malt aspect as well..smells great.
The flavor is a combination of roasted toffee malt, earthy/floral hops, subtle nuttiness, and some light spice. The hop bitterness carries really well into the finish, and it's quite thirstquenching also.
I actually thought this was a really good ESB, and it's worth saying it's good value for the $$. Picked up a sixer of this for $6.99.. well worth trying, in my book.

hero27, Oct 03, 2008
Photo of jwinship83
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- golden to amber with a finger sized sticky white head on it.

S- caramel malt with a faint odor of hops.

T- about like it smells, but everything is magnified. the hops are pine and citrus tasting.

M- medium feel, crisp clean and refreshing.

D- another solid beer that i wish goose that i wish was more than a seasonal. easy enough to finish one, maybe even two. thats when i would look to see what else i had in the fridge.

jwinship83, Oct 02, 2008
Photo of 2heartedMIKE
3.88/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fairly new to Chicago...

October 1st...

To me, this was the obvious choice for my first autumnal seasonal brew of 2008.

Poured nice and orange with a modest head.

Smell gave an instant flashback to the malts of last year's fall seasonals with a bit of extra hop aroma.

Taste was a delicious caramel base with a spicy/citrusy hop finish.

Overall mouthfeel was a bit creamier than expected, but very pleasant.

Highly drinkable in my opinion. I'll definitely be picking this up regularly while it is around. I almost wish I was outside in the cold to enjoy this first bit of seasonal briskness with the Harvest Ale.

2heartedMIKE, Oct 02, 2008
Photo of spointon
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this one on tap tonight at The Outpost in Lockport, IL.

A= This ale poured a medium orange-amber color with a 1" creamy white head. The head lasted forever and left some sticky lace down my glass.

A= I found aromas of spicy hops, bakery malts, and a hint of citrus fruitiness. Not overly complex but clean and pleasant.

T= The spicy hops came on first, followed by sweetish caramel malts forming a simple but effective 1-2 punch. The finish dried out a bit but was basically just more of the same.

MF= Light to medium carbonation, lacked any sharp crispness. Feel was soft and creamy.

D= This is a great Fall beer and one whose release I look forward to every year. Definitely a fantastic session beer to enjoy on a crisp day.

spointon, Oct 01, 2008
Photo of brdc
3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Small capped bottle, poured into a pint. Thanks SykDoc.

Nice amber color, good light tan head, nice retention and lacing.
Toasted aroma, some caramel, some fruity hops. Simple, yet pleasant. Taste follows suit, with a nice balance, slightly more so to the bitter side, but always keeping a high drinkability with a good amount of flavor.
Nothing spectacular here, but a solid offering.

brdc, Sep 29, 2008
Photo of birchstick
3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - amber with a nice, creamy head
S - smells of hops and little bit of malts; smells similar to their honker's ale but with a lot more hop to it
T - At first I got hit with the hops, then the caramel malts. However, the aftertaste lingered with a mixture of hops and malts. It is like a hoppy ESB.
M - creamy and smooth
D - this drinks well, it has a good balance and isn't overpowering that it overwhelms after a while. It is a good autumn beer and I will look forward the rest I purchased.

birchstick, Sep 26, 2008
Photo of pwoods
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. brown twist off bottle, purchased at Krogers in Finneytown, poured into a SA pint. Bottled 8/25/08.

A: Pours a bright orange-y amber with light hazing. About 2 fingers of dense head forms and holds pretty good. Some decent lacing.

S: Nice hop aroma and on the light side. Cascade, Cent, Amarillo. Malts are lightly sweet to balance.

T/M: Lightly bitter and very crisp and clean. The hop flavor is a bit toned down from the nose but still tasty. Balancing sweet and lightly earthy malts. Body is medium light or lighter with good carbonation. Finishes lightly dry with a speck of lasting bitterness.

D: Very drinkable and low ABV. Not a whole shit load going on but it's doing it right.

pwoods, Sep 25, 2008
Photo of Billolick
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ouncer, Bottled on dating on the rear label of "08/12/08", nice gotta love fresh beer and this stuff has been in the bottle for just about 6 weeks....pours typical medium amber, nice soft creamy head/fine bubble film and fine, delicate lacing. Nose is of sweet biscuits and malt. Pleasant, balanced offering. The kind of beer you could drink all night. Crowd pleaser, and a nice entry level beer for newbies to the good beer world.

Billolick, Sep 25, 2008
Photo of prsguitarsr4me
3.45/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I think the Goose Island Oatmeal Stout is ok and so I check this out. Decent - Taste is nothing too special but nothing bad. Carbonation is a bit high. Not much head, either. Still a somewhat enjoyable beer - I'd drink a few if they were given to me. I prefer many others, though, like Sierra Nevada and Rogue.

prsguitarsr4me, Sep 23, 2008
Photo of homebrewhawk
4.08/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle served in a shaker pint glass. Poured a deep amber/orange with a couple of fingers of fine bubbled white head. Really fresh piney hop aroma with a good dose of caramel malt. Medium bodied with a smooth moutfeel. Good caramel malt base, followed by a solid hop bitterness. Very drinkable. This is a great example of why I like fresh, seasonal beer.

homebrewhawk, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of SykDoc
3.9/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer appears a copper color and has a 1/4-1/2 inch head which is long lasting. The head is a light off-white color.
Primarily, the scent is hops and some floral/herbs and a small amount of caramel is noted.
It has a medium body with some strong hops flavors and the caramel again comes through, although it again could compete with the hops a little better. It is reasonably easy to drink overall and has a good amount of bitterness, as well as crisp feel. Overall, this is a good beer but is could be better with a little more balance in the taste.

SykDoc, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of champ103
3.95/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours an orange/amber color. A small white head forms and leaves some good lace behind.
S: Piney and floral hops up front. Sweet caramel malt towards the back. Not bad, but I like my ESB's with lots of toasted caramel, not just a hint.
T: More toasted than in the nose. Lots of caramel with a good balance of piney hops.
M/D: Medium body with a good crispness. Like many Goose Island beers this is soapy and oily. Very easy and smooth to drink. It would not be hard for me to session several of these.

An enjoyable beer and a decent representation of an ESB. Not among the upper tier for the style, but if this was all that was around I would be very happy.

champ103, Sep 19, 2008
Photo of Slynger
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Harvest Ale pours a lightly hazed copper orange with a fuzzy cap of dirtied off-white.

The nose is caramelly sweet and toasted bready malts with herbal/floral hops.

The flavor is good, with excellent balance. A good amount of malt, brown sugar dusted, and caramel drizzled toasted bread with a nice hop load coming herbal and spicy, with a bit of grapefruit citrus, and a pleasant rind bitterness. Medium bodied and smooth with a nice, crispy-fuzzy carbonation.

Solid fall-time ESB from the Goose.

Slynger, Sep 18, 2008
Photo of GoodKnight1220
3.9/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a botle to a glass.

Poured a very nice orange/amber with a small 1 finger head and some lacing throught.

Smell was a very floral/pine hop scent. Also kind of smells like plastic. Not too impressed with the smell.

The taste and mouthfeel was pleasently suprising, pick up very powerful pine hop flavor at first, then to a slight bitterness and ends fairly smooth.

Could drink this often. Just not the spicy, sweet, or malty as the other beers of the fall season.

GoodKnight1220, Sep 17, 2008
Photo of littlekidlover
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is one of my favorite times of year for beer. I like to drink seasonally. With the abundance of great liquor stores in Chicago, there is a wide variety of fall 12 packs hitting the stores. My wallet thanks me as well, being that I buy a lot more 12 packs of autumn beers at $12-$15 as opposed to 6 packs at 9-12 in other seasons.

The Harvest Ale has an attractive appearance, deep amber fairly clear. Two finger, off white head with decent retention and lacing. There's a grapefruit and pine hop nose, not too overpowering. The taste is typical of an American Pale Ale with a little extra caramel malt. All in all the flavor is pretty well balanced. The body is medium and lightly carbonated. I would say this does not work quite as well as an Oktoberfest for a session beer, however it went well when I alternated it one for one with Sam Adams Oktoberfest last weekend.

littlekidlover, Sep 16, 2008
Photo of naterock
4.45/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

pours a nice dark orange with a thin head, dissapears quickly but leaves that nice ring. there is a haunting quality about this beer. I have trouble describing this color.

smells like Special K said "leafy" weird but I'm not kidding, a nice citrusy hop in the nose as well

tastes like a autumn day, a bit of spice and hop bite but a fully complex flavor, such a fantastic brew.

mouth feels medium and crisp, I could drink this all autumn long.

naterock, Sep 14, 2008
Photo of SpecialK088
4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass

A-Crystal clear copper with a nice head not alot of retention but good lace.

S-It actually reminds me of walking outside in the fall, very earthy/Leafy notes of hops and barley also some spicy grain notes.

T-Very subtle yet very good. Spicy with grain flavor with some maltyness and a nice warming finish. Note some bitter hops in the middle.

M-Light body great carbonation level nice and smooth.

D-I will enojy this one more before fall lets out and with the suprising warming sensation may save a few for winter.

SpecialK088, Sep 13, 2008
Photo of swizzlenuts
4.03/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The nose on this beer is fucking awesome! It has a nice citrus/spicy hops to it with a slight caramel malt undertone. Absolutely beautiful. The colour of the beer is a dark copper with a good inch head that doesn't have that good of retention or lacing. Looks really good though. The beer has a quite odd taste for an harvest ale. There is almost a bit of a leafy hop flavour and a nice fruit taste to the beer and very little bitterness. The leafy/aroma hops is absolutely beautiful, but the beer really lacks in bitterness (hence the low taste rating). If the beer would give a slight bit of bitterness this would rival Sierra Nevada's Harvest Ale. The beer is slightly cream and incredibly fucking drinkable!

swizzlenuts, Sep 09, 2008
Harvest Ale from Goose Island Beer Co.
84 out of 100 based on 1,048 ratings.