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Sofie - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,182 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,182
Reviews: 894
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 10.24%
Wants: 137
Gots: 456 | FT: 17
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
80% Belgian Style Ale, 20% Belgian Style Ale aged in wine barrels with citrus peel. Champagne color, white pepper aroma, citrus & vanilla flavor, sparkling body.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-29-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,182 | Reviews: 894 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CaptainIPA


4/5  rDev -2.4%

Served on-tap @ Cafe Hollander on Downer and presented in appropriate glassware. Cheers to Patrick (father of the daughter who captained U of Michigan's sailing team) for buying the round.

Pours a hazy pale gold with a frothy white head that fades to lacing. Aromas of malt, yeast, citrus and spice.

Opens with a malty spiced flavor and subtle notes of white pepper and orange peel. Earthy yeast tones surface with mild tartness. More malt and spice. Moderate hop presence with a touch of bitterness. Crisp mouthfeel. Semi-dry finish.

A complex and sessionable Saison that's spot on for the Farmhouse Ale style.

11-04-2010 14:54:31 | More by CaptainIPA
Photo of drinkankuss


4.78/5  rDev +16.6%

This was one amazingly good beer. Something that if I could replicate I would brew consistantly.

bottle 2010 into a wine glass

A - spot on, no cloudiness in the first pour. Bright yellow small bubbles good retention

S - Not a ton going on, but my nose is busted.

T- Big Saison Flavors - Farm houseness is balance by a pretty big hop flavor. Taste very fresh and crisp.

M - Go down Easy. Want more.

D - If it wasn't expensive I would be hooked.

Have been trying a lot of saision stylea : Bam Biere, Devotion, Helios, Stillwater. This rises to the top. For an american made Saison.

11-02-2010 18:55:22 | More by drinkankuss
Photo of readbaron


4.55/5  rDev +11%

A - golden, slightly cloudy/opaque. Tons of carbonation and a light foamy head.

S - fairly light - not as strong as I expected - but quite nice. yeasty with a hint of citrus - some hops -

T - clean and refreshing - finish is exceptionally smooth. Can taste the flowery yeast, with hints of citrus, hops, melon, dry white wine. A complex and well balanced variety of flavors.

M - champagne like carbonation is excellent. Dry and clean.

D - flows down easily

10-29-2010 04:43:47 | More by readbaron
Photo of Chronofied

North Dakota

4.72/5  rDev +15.1%

About 50°F, served in a laser-etched snifter.

Appearance - A slightly cloudy golden color, with visible sediment and a simply epic carbonation stream (in part thanks to the laser etch). Wonderful head retention with a nice lacing left behind on the sides of the glass.

Smell - Nose is marked with a resin and yeast smell that hides a hint of orange, with just a suggestion of esters. Not as strong of an aroma as I might hope; the bubbliness would imply more effervescence.

Taste - Medium bodied and very smooth, there is a very shy acidity that gives it a definitive crispness. The taste of this brew is light on the malt, with a solid but not overpowering yeast flavor very true to the saison style. The taste is mostly sweet with a hint of hoppy bitterness
and a lightly fruity finish of citrus. Alcohol is almost indiscernible throughout, just enough to remind you it is there.

Mouthfeel - This beer manages to be both creamy and crisp, with a jubilant carbonation that delights the tongue. The carbonation, along with the light fruitiness of the taste, is almost reminiscent of a cider. Not much heat on it, just a little flare on the finish.

Drinkability - Not even fair. I find myself pulling on my glass again and again. I could honestly drink this all night. Just over the course of this review I've drained a full pint-six, and could go for another.

Overall - Sofie is my paramour, and I'll care for her all the long days of my life.

10-27-2010 03:47:31 | More by Chronofied
Photo of andyosterman


5/5  rDev +22%

I love this beer. Especially on tap.

Occasion :: Night out w/ friends. Drank in a signature Goose Island Vintage Ales glass.

Appearance :: Light and bright. Beautiful creamy collar of foam. Left a good amount of lacing.

Color :: Straw.

Smell :: Delightful. Hints of vanilla. Slight orange. Definitely can pull out the fresh oak aged barrels.

Taste :: Tart. The oak and vanilla play subtly. The citrus from the orange zest is apparent but not overbearing.

Mouthfeel :: Dry. Effervescent. Clean.

10-26-2010 21:15:20 | More by andyosterman
Photo of FreshHawk


4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

A - Nice crisp, golden color with a fairly large, foamy, light fluffy, pearly white head. Great retention that finally settles into a nice foamy layer of lace.

S - Wonderful juicy golden fruit is strongest with lots of pear, apple, golden raisin, lemon and some other citrus. Grassy (especially lemon grass) along with hay. Some barnyard saison and wild yeast and funky aroma. Touch of a white wine and spice. Very complex and enjoyable.

T - Taste is also very complex. Plenty of fruitiness that mirrors the nose. Mid-sip, it definitely has a white wine type of flavor, although it isn't particularly vinous. A nice woody flavor with a good dose of vanilla also comes out to support that wine flavor. Has an underlying funk that is a great compliment to the other flavors and doesn't overtake them. There is always a strong underlying orange/lemon rind and lemon grass citrusy flavor, but toward the finish it comes out particularly strong along with a nice spiciness featuring white pepper, clove, coriander, and a hint of cumin amongst other spices.

M - Medium body with a bit above average carbonation. A zesty, active feel with a drying finish. Very champagne/sparkling wine like feel that accompanies the white wine taste well.

D - Complex but balanced beer that is a delight to sip. Nothing overpowers the other flavors, and the body is great. A little strong for the palate to want another right away, especially compared to some other saisons I've had, but I had no trouble finishing the bottle.

Notes: Very nice and enjoyable beer. Complex and balanced drink that had some nice funky/barnyard aspects of a saison, but it had some other flavor aspects that were similar to a Chardonnay, a biere de garde, and some BSPA aspects as well. It definitely had a nice Belgian flavor though. Funk, fruitiness, grassiness, grape, and sweetness all present. And that woody/vanilla flavor just steps it up more. Definitely worth a try and is a great beer.

10-25-2010 06:37:00 | More by FreshHawk
Photo of merlin48


4.43/5  rDev +8%

22 ounce bottle(2010 edition) pours into a St Bernardus goblet a very effervescent, hazy yellow gold body with a large, but delicate, white head. Good retention and some Belgian style sheet lacing.

Aroma is bold. Musty, funky, yeasty, barnyard, fruity lemon and honeydew melon, white pepper, orange peel, lemon, and floral hops. Nice.

Mouthfeel is dry and silky, with a medium body and champagne like carbonation.

Taste is funky,fruity, and dry. Tastes very much like the aroma. Melon, lemon, orange peel,kiwi, white grape skins, herbal and floral hops, yeasty, and a definite presence of some wild yeasties that are still a bit young.

This is a topnotch farmhouse ale, best American stab at the style I've enjoyed to date. I would love to have a few bottles of this to age, as I think some time would really develop a pastoral character that this one could use in matching some of the better Belgian examples. Hats off to Goose Island for an excellent effort here.

10-23-2010 20:37:38 | More by merlin48
Photo of cnally


4.33/5  rDev +5.6%

I always get at least a little psyched for a Goose I haven't had yet.

This is a grand pear-yellow beer, a little neon--strange. A massive uncontrollable head builds quick and sits imposingly, white and fizzy.

A floral aroma, big on the hops. Awesome fruity aroma, like a fresh squeezed orange, with some apple.

This is a damn good one. Positions itself as a blast of citrusy fruits, grapefruit and orange, with a good flavor of wild yeasts. The yeast is followed with a bitter finish. High class stuff here.

An experience of a mouthfeel, fizzy as hell and just explodes off your tongue.

Like champagne. Too much is not recommended. It is a beer to limit, and love.

10-22-2010 00:52:29 | More by cnally
Photo of salvo


4.18/5  rDev +2%

Appearance is straw yellow-towards-green with just a hint of lacing, no real head, lightly clouded, and medium carbonation with sharp bubbles.

Nose is grain and fresh rising sourdough with fruit esters and sour apple notes; smell is sharper than the taste, and two deep sniffs had my tastebuds firing.

Taste is mellower than the smell hints at, with pronounced tastes of wild yeast and sour green apple flavor. Mild hoppiness bitters and tempers the "sourpatch kid" sourness, greatly improving drinkability.

Goose island Sofie is a great farmhouse, a perfect companion for Black Sparrow's Pub Burger: tart and assertive, it was not aggressive or over-the-top. It's a great saisson and represents the stye and Goose Island very well. Thanks for great beer!

10-21-2010 01:41:46 | More by salvo
Photo of scoobybrew


4.65/5  rDev +13.4%

A - slightly hazy (bottle condition) light straw color, decent head, good retention, nice lacing

S - funky yeasty esters and phenols with an almost wheat like malt; no hop detected, but might be a variety that is well hidden by the yeast

T - tangy malt with slightly funky strong yeast character; hop bitterness noted on finish, but in check; finish is dry and crisp with some of the esters and phenols lingering

M - medium to light body with moderate to high carbonation

D - This is an excellent saison and one of the best commercial examples that I've had this side or that side of the water. Goose Island makes some pretty good 'specials' and this is no exception.

10-19-2010 22:14:29 | More by scoobybrew
Photo of plaid75

New York

4/5  rDev -2.4%

On draft at the Blind Tiger, NYC.

Poured a medium straw hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured yeast esters and lemon with a grassy hop.

The taste consisted of soft esters, a light honey sweetness and a spirited lemon zest.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a zesty and complex saison.

10-19-2010 15:06:23 | More by plaid75
Photo of MowryJC


4.4/5  rDev +7.3%

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a goblet.

A - Bright straw-yellow color with a great cloudy yeast presence that looks like you could chew through it. Topped with a thick soapy head that retains its volume for quite a while before deflating into a moderate head with sticky lacing.

S - Great cider aroma with a touch of citrus, nice and fruity, with a spicy Belgian yeast scent. A hint of grain rounds out a great complexity in this beer. Not the funkiest of Saisons, but that's not necessarily a bad thing.

T - Great sour apple tartness, which progresses into a very present spiciness from the yeast. Balances out with a slightly sweet note. After awhile the alcohol has a nice easy presence. As complex as the smell is, the taste delivers the same complexity.

M - As chewy as I had hoped, a great thick mouthfeel that borders on oat-like from the yeast texture.

D - A very drinkable saison that would be perfect for a newbie to the style. Not the funkiest when it's fresh, so it is a good training saison for someone who isn't ready for a whiff of horseblanket.

I'm a huge fan of this beer. I plan on rereviewing this beer after cellaring it for a year or two. I am hoping it gets a little funkier, but I love the experience of it when it is young as well. Goose once again delivers with their Belgian line beers.

10-16-2010 00:22:40 | More by MowryJC
Photo of brewmudgeon


4.15/5  rDev +1.2%


a 5 cloudy dull yellow with an enormous merangue head, excellent retention. massive, dense formation of small yeast particles slowly drifting downard. something to behold.

s 4 lemony, some pear and sour apple. not bad, but i'd prefer more hay, horseblanket and funk.

t 4-4.5 despite the low funk level, this beer has it going on. sufficiently dry without being parched. sour and snappy, lemons rolled in hay

m 4 very carbonated as befits the brew and with enough textural oomph (including some from the surprisingly detectible yeast particles) to keep things interesting. this is not one of those lighter than air saisons. those are nice in their way; this one has a solid presence, probably due to a lower level of attenuation.

d 4.5 this one makes sense as a beginner's saison, but even though sofie is not very challenging there is a certain grace about it that continues to please.

10-08-2010 01:53:38 | More by brewmudgeon
Photo of JLeege


4.4/5  rDev +7.3%

2010 vintage

Appearance- Pours a hazy straw color with active carbonation. Big chunky white head, great retention, good lace.

Smell- Some light but present citrus notes. Getting some green apple. Fruity. Some classic belgian yeast.

Taste- That is prickly, in a very good way. Lemon and orange zest right off the bat. Earthy and yeast in the middle. A short quick sweetness towards the back end from the partial wine barrel aging. A tad tart, then a semi dry aftertaste. This is actually very complex.

Mouthfeel- light, crisp, refreshing

Overall- This beer doesnt really fit into any category. It is a suprisingly complex belgian style ale. Very good.

10-08-2010 01:46:24 | More by JLeege
Photo of WesWes

New York

4.53/5  rDev +10.5%

The beer pours a hazy pale gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great! It has a light and fruity pale malt scent along with a touch of orange peel and Belgian yeast esters. It's incredibly complex with a light wine barrel aging character as well. The taste is great as well. It's light and quaffable, but with tons of flavor and yeast character. It goes down so easy and finishes dry with bits of orange peel and citrus. Wow, what an incredibly drinkable beer. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a masterpiece of a Belgian pale. It's smooth as hell and so tasty. Good work Goose Island.

10-07-2010 00:05:55 | More by WesWes
Photo of sixerofelixir


4.05/5  rDev -1.2%

Pours super-pale yellow, almost green (on 2nd pour, a darker yellow..) with a big white head. Little carbonation. Smell is a cavalcade of flowers, fruits and spicy herbs. A potpurri, if you will. First taste is pleasantly sour and rather wine/champagne like. It tastes like a rustic crafts store on a breezy day. Feels like the finish should be dryer than it is, but it's not. A pleasing and bitter herbal twist kicks into gear and dominates the aftertaste. A good and very unique brew. Kudos to GI for making some interesting sh*t!

10-05-2010 05:19:59 | More by sixerofelixir
Photo of aasher


4.43/5  rDev +8%

I poured a 12oz bottle dated in late March. It poured a light, straw yellow with a hint of light orange to it with a billowing white head. It smells delicious, a nice blend of yeast and citrus aromas with light sweetness. It tastes excellent as well. Once again, a great mix of breadyness and citrus flavors with a subtle sweetness. It drank very crisp and didn't lose any carbonation in it's six months after being bottled. This one is very, very drinkable and delicious on tap or out of the bottle. I can't wait to try this one aged.

10-04-2010 23:48:32 | More by aasher
Photo of latackbeer


4.85/5  rDev +18.3%

First time I had Sofie I was working a beer tasting and Goose Island was there with a 1/6 of Sofie. I think I drank most of it :). The head was very impressive and the smell was unbelievable, so many smells of fruity and spicy notes. The taste well, as I stated earlier I drank most of it myself.

I buy a few pints a week from my local beer store!!

A two thumbs up for Goose Island Sofie!

10-04-2010 19:24:19 | More by latackbeer
Photo of afinepilsner


4.33/5  rDev +5.6%

12oz brown bottle

Sofie was pale yellow and hazy. It had a towering white fluffy head with good retention and lacing. The smell was yeasty with some citrus. The taste was spice upfront with some citrus (mainly orange) flavors, more spice, wheat, and yeast coming through later. The finish was dry and lingering. The mouthfeel was good; with a medium body and medium-high carbonation. Drinkability was very good. Overall it was a very good beer and I would recommend it to anyone liking the style.

10-04-2010 00:39:02 | More by afinepilsner
Photo of prototypic


4.43/5  rDev +8%

Sofie is a light, pale straw color. It's slightly hazy. Light cutting through gives it a distinct yellow color that leans just a tad toward gold. A very active white head covers it. It falls away to a surface covering rather quickly, but holds steady there. A very light coat of lace lines the glass as it descends.

The nose is impressive. It kicks off with a strong dose of Belgian yeast. Excellent. No better place than front and center. Mild pepper and orange peel follow. Earthy and musky notes permeate throughout. But, there's a funky, barnhouse scent that strongly suggests the presence of Brett. Wasn't aware of that. Nice. Light orange and apple fruit scents are noted. Alcohol is nowhere to be found. Wow! I'm really impressed. Great smelling stuff.

Sofie is a pretty stunning beer. It's far more complex and impressive than I ever imagined. Once again, Belgian yeast makes its presence known very early. It's followed by light lemon, apple, and orange flavors. They add some fruity sweetness to the mix. Light pepper and orange peel add a spicy jolt to the flavor. Earthy, musky, and funky notes are prevalent throughout. The barnyard Brett funkiness is mild and restrained. Works perfectly here. Alcohol is buried. Finishes spicy, fruity, and slightly funky. Fantastic!

Sofie has a light-medium body. Carbonation seems active, but feels light. Overall, it feels smooth and very nice. It almost passes for an authentic Belgian release. Drinkability is very high. I'm really enjoying this bomber. Much moreso than I anticipated. I regret not having another. It's that good.

Wow! Goose Island really outdid themselves with Sofie. It is simply an excellent Saison that damn near passes for an authentic, Belgian brewed beer. It really doesn't have any shortcomings to discuss. It's extremely impressive in every respect. Do yourself a huge favor and go find a bottle. This is really great stuff.

10-03-2010 03:20:41 | More by prototypic
Photo of HopJ


4.55/5  rDev +11%

Sofie 2010 - After having this from bottle and few times and loving it, I found it on tap multiple times while traveling. I began to crave this throughout the summer. So refreshing. Showed great complexity from smell to taste. Nothing ever stuck out too much. Sometimes I notice pepper, sometimes citrus/banana & sometimes a bit of funk. Amazing drinkability without sacrificing intrigue.

10-02-2010 16:31:51 | More by HopJ
Photo of JoeAmerican77


4.13/5  rDev +0.7%

A- Pours Clear Golden from Bomber to Tulip glass. One inch of big bubble head that quickly dissipates

s-Smells strong of Belgian yeast and citrus, and biscuits, also a little floral.

T- Grapefruit, guava and bubblegum up front, just a bouquet of fruit, alc esthers on the tongue are visible and slightly warm.

M-Smooth and medium bodied. Great medium strong carbonation, just a good representation of the style.

D- I'd give it a 8/10. Just a good beer filled with flavors that are usually kept to specialty brews (i.e. Guava) really interesting brew. have one, gotta love G.I.

10-01-2010 12:40:12 | More by JoeAmerican77
Photo of zimmerbloke


4/5  rDev -2.4%

From Blind Bomber BIF (Thanks to Hophead101!):

A: Hazy blonde pour with a huge, three-inch cream colored head which really sticks around. Looks like some a weizen or saison.

S: Strong belgian yeast notes, some spiciness. Estery.

T: Lots of yeast flavor; some banana, spice and just a hint of booze. Sweeter light malt notes fade pretty quickly into a slight bitterness.

M: Heavily carbonated and brisk, but still has a thicker mouthfeel. Fits flavor profile very well.

D: Very high. If there is much alcohol present, it's well hidden... possibly dangerously so.

Wow! This is one of those backyard beers that I've seen quite a bit of but never tried. Really happy to have had the choice... it feels like this beer would be an excellent choice for a spicy food pairing.

09-30-2010 00:22:42 | More by zimmerbloke
Photo of brewandbbq

New Hampshire

4.3/5  rDev +4.9%

22oz bottle.

Pours pale gold with a haze and a half inch head of white froth. A partial skim coat remained for the duration along with some streaky lacing.

Aromatics lead off with grassy, yeasty esters with fruity overtones. Peaches, pears, pepper-dusted cut grass, cloves, and a hint of husky malt.

Light bodied with a crisp mouthfeel. Somewhat drying with a tinge of roundness.

Bright, spicey hops start off the palate with tropical fruit and Belgian yeasty bits. Cloves, apples, bubblegum, coriander, and wet grass with peaches and pears. Lightly toasted biscuit ends way underneath.

Finishes fairly dry with plenty of zesty fruit and hints of spice.

Very balanced and the hopping lends some great fruit and grass qualities. I'm not really tasting a Saison here, but a very tasty Belgian pale.

09-28-2010 00:20:58 | More by brewandbbq
Photo of hopsbreath


2.5/5  rDev -39%

Reviewed as part of the Blind Beer BIF #2 Bombers. Thanks Jamnescameron.

Bomber #8 poured into a tulip. A very pale yellow body is capped off with a huge fluffy white head that takes up 2/3 of the glass. Moderate lacing and a continuous cap look good. Saison is the only thing that looks like this.

Smell confirms this is a saison. Lemony and funky aromas have me thinking that I'm in for a treat!

Whoa and not in a good way. Big buttery banana, is not something I like in a saison and this delivers in spades. This actually reminds me of Hennepin...which I am the lowest rater of.

Mouthfeel is sticky and moderate. High carbonation is adequate for the style. Not the best.

Drinkability is not very good I don't want this again.

As part of such a fun BIF reviews are just part of the game. Unfortunately, this was not one that I preferred. Thanks to Jamnescameron for taking the time to include this one but my personal tastes didn't jive with it.

09-26-2010 02:34:12 | More by hopsbreath
Sofie from Goose Island Beer Co.
92 out of 100 based on 3,182 ratings.