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Sofie - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

988 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 988
Hads: 4,000
Avg: 4.1
pDev: 20.24%
Wants: 198
Gots: 892 | FT: 22
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-29-2009

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 988 | Hads: 4,000
Photo of mjurney
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bright pale golden color, some haze. Lots of lively carbonation streaming. Thick frothy head.

Banana, spices, tropical fruit, peppery, sweet pale malts.

Peppery-fruity up front, Belgium spices, coriander, some orange zest, a bit of grape skin. Sweet pale malts, biscuit. Finish is very tart, crisp. Body is light-medium, very dry, smooth, refreshing.

It's a very good beer.

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Photo of RossiDaMan
4.04/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 ouncer poured into a mid mouthed goblet. Light yellow and cloudy in color- reminded me of carbonated lemon juice. 1 finger head that faded quickly with minimal lacing. The smell was lemon citrus with a hint of pepper that carried over to the taste. Nice mouthfeel, tiny bubbles that danced down the tongue. This was my first Farmhouse ale. I wasn't overly wowed by the flavors but I could see myself enjoying the refreshing Ms. Sofie on the patio during a summer afternoon.

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Photo of KF_MSU
4.29/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Cloudy, golden coloring. Smells of minerals and sweetness. It is very smooth with noticeable carbonation and some citrus hints. I liked it overall.

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Photo of untitledeuphoria
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled: 5.9.14. Drank 3.29.15. Poured from a 12oz bottle to a tulip glass.

A: Pours a cloudy, sediment laden, muted yellow with wild color range from center glass to edge of glass. Light visible carbonation that continues well after initial pour (30min in and it is still bubbling). Picture perfect, three finger, stark white head. Fades to a silky smooth, thin cap, with a moderate collar.

S: Luscious grape, blast of champagne, dried orange rind, light pepper, light lemon zest, wonderful Belgian yeast. Its like the sparkling wine your relatives gave you as a kid for Thanksgiving grew up and decided to rebel by becoming a beer.

T: Dray, sharp carbonation, dried citrus rind, some wood from the barrel, creamy vanilla, distinctly similar to oak barreled chardonnay.

M: An eruption of carbonation akin to champagne. Light, airy, washes down exceptionally dry and clean. Leaves a traces of alcohol warmth and drying grape afterwards. Once again, very similar to champagne.

O: Why on earth did I wait so long to try this? Maybe my palette wasn't ready, maybe I hadn't grown up, but damn, this is a glorious beer. A beautiful counterpart to the overwhelming crush of hop forward beers. Complex, delicate, sophisticated... this beer is perfect for any day with the simple goal of relaxation.

I look forward to setting up a vertical, as I have heard Sofie really hits its stride about three years of conditioning.

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Photo of Csikic93
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bright gold. The smell of pepper is apparent right away. Spicy at first but finishes with a smooth and vanilla flavor. Feels refreshing and an overall great tasting beer.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Goose Island Sofie has a medium, white head, a yellow-gold, quite bubbly appearance, with powdery sediment and minimal lacing. The aroma is of brettanomyces yeast, lemon, light wheat and barley, and sweetness. Taste is of the same elements, with noticeable, yet mild, bitterness. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Goose Island Sofie finishes champagne-like and drinkable.


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Photo of demon
3.89/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

This lightly cloudy, highly effervescent, and light yellow ale poured with a nice and airy head. Very aromatic with floral and citrus notes on the nose. Upfront there are some nice and bread-like flavors combined with some fruity and banana-apple-estery yeast flavors. Very smooth wheat beer feel and leaves a softly bitter tinge of citrus hops on the palate.

Very nice and quite different from other saison/farmhouse style ales I have had. I originally was turned off by the bottles wine-like appearance, but I am glad I tried it. I was having some strong cravings for a saison and this was the closest and only option in stock at a Ralphs here in San Diego, hidden behind the plentiful variety of California IPAs.

I can't really knock this beer because I can't detect anything at fault. This is a really well executed and good beer, without a doubt. I am a little surprised this beer is rated as high as it is though because--while it is good--my mind was not blown as it has been for other beers ranked as well as this one.

I would buy this again if I were going out to a friends house for lunch, or maybe out to a picnic. It would pair excellently with chicken or a salad. Very refreshing.

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Photo of fulcrumbs
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is like a Blue Moon on crack. Awesome! Great beer during the summer for a cook- out and served out of their bomber or 4-pack 12-oz bottles. Distributed by Goose, it is distributed to the masses all year... makes it easy to get your hands on when you want it (except the 4-packs get a little rare during the fall/winter). A super go- to for all types of tastes and preferences.

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Photo of JLaw55
5/5  rDev +22%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is an exceptionally excellent Saison that seems to skirt the line between beer and wine. If you do not believe me, please try for yourself. There are notes of citrus, light wheat, grapes, semi sweet white wine, and hints of pepper here. This is very light for the ABV content it is said to have. Owned by AB/Inbev or not, this is an outstanding beer.

Would absolutely seek out and purchase again.

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Photo of car2052
3.96/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle to goblet.

A: Hazy pale yellow, with a white 1 in. head.
S: Orange zest, lemongrass, peppercorn, dill, and olive brine.
T: A lot of lemon/orange flavors, with a bit of spicy yeast qualities that add character to the fruit. Finishes crisp.
M: Light to medium. Creamy.
O: Not a bad saison. A bit too fruity for me.

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Photo of shmooppee1
4.46/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Cloudy and light froth. Good rendition of style. A bit more bread/yeast flavor would be nice but that's personal preference. Lasting spice on the pallette. Amazing no see of citrus.

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Photo of spense01
4.41/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light and refreshing. Could be more bitter but the finish is smooth and upfront it has some bite. I recommend buying a few and putting one away for a year or 2. I just open a January 2013 and it's smoother and orange-citrusy notes really come through over time.

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Photo of john0721
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

765ml bottle.

Yellow, white head that fully diminishes.

Dry, fruity, very white wine like. Some apple, grape, banana. Very little bitterness.

This is a great introductory beer for the white wine drinker.

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Photo of Fear4Beer
3.65/5  rDev -11%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I loved Matilda so I thought that by all the great reviews that I'd love Sofie since I love me some Belgian style beers. I was very confused by this beer. I poured it into a glass and the beer looked incredibly light looking, I tasted the beer and it tasted incredibly light (like watered down), and thus I was disappointed. I bought a 4 pack so I'll definitely be drinking it all but I'm not a fan of this one. Their beer called Matilda on the other hand was awesome. I'm not sure if they encourage aging this beer but that's what I'll be doing since as it is, it just isn't special. Maybe with time it gets better? idk.

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Photo of spacecake9
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours a hazy golden straw color with a thick white head that settles quickly.
S - Yeasty with banana
T - Flavor follows nose - yeasty, banana, citrus, slight peppery finish.
M - Medium mouth feel, nice carbonation.
O - Others mention the wine influence but I don't drink wine so I don't pick any of that up. Very good saison, looking forward to the other 3 bottles from this 4-pack.

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Photo of TheIPAHunter
3.06/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Too much like a chardonnay for my taste. I'm not a huge fan of Belgian yeast, nor the compliment it provides to any measure of citrus character. Faint, and I mean very faint, hints of vanilla hit the very back end of the tongue. It looks really nice in the glass, but beyond that, not something I'll be seeking out again. Sorry for the one night stand, Sofie!

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Photo of ThaCrax
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As a dark beer fan, I didn't know how I would feel about this, but it really did deliver. Right off the bat you get the citrus aroma and the beautiful bubbly head. On first taste, you immediately detect the wine notes, which are beautifully balanced in the mix. I really loved this beer, and I don't love a lot of lighter beers.

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Photo of dd43
3.96/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The Chardonnay influence is undeniable, both in flavor and mouthfeel. These particle characteristics, the wood aspect and the slightly slick mouthfeel, become more apparent as the beer warms up from fridge temperature. I did not experience the visible carbonation levels that have been reported in other reviews. Saison yeast aromas up front, you get the grassiness and some lemon scent along with a hint of white pepper that I found appealing. Somewhat hard to nail down exactly what is going on with this beer, but it's worth trying for sure.

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Photo of Damorneau
4.34/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Overall a good beer. I am usually a fan of darker beers, but still enjoyed the Sofie. I enjoyed he citrus notes and the zest and the hint of chardonnay.

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Photo of MrBoh
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

The pour of the beer is as beautiful as the design of the bottle. Champagne like in color, a light slightly hazy yellow. A nice frothy head which doesn't last, leading to just a thin cap that leaves lacing wherever it touches.

Scent is wonderful. Just enough spice, I hate too much. A little peppercorn, bitter orange peel and nutty bread. A sweet, minty lemongrass smell lingers before the white peppercorns clean it up. The only hit on the scent is a too prevelant off smell of spent grains.

The scent was so light on the wine barrel notes, that I forgot this thing was aged in them. The taste is a quick reminder though. A really great oak taste, and light, dry chardonnay dominate. Mild peppercorns, bitter orange peels, and sour lemons balance out the wine character. The individual tastes are not extraordinary, and it's missing a fresh character, but the balance here is fantastic. Overall, light and refined is how I would describe it.

The mouthfeel is just not what I expected. I thought it would be more champagne like, instead it's like a mix of chardonnay, moscato and champage. It has a little body, best described as slick, and just a tad bit of stimulation that reminds you it is still a beer.

A very interesting and balanced beer. A little more carbonation, and some fresh character (herbs or more late addition hops?), could make it world class. But, as it stands, it's a good American attempt at a Saison.

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Photo of lushes22
3.52/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A. Cloudy straw color. Full head
S. Although no brett it has some of that funk along with lemon and pepper.
T. Coriander and some light funk. Peppery finish.
M. Real nice. Although poured like a champagne the carbonation and smoothness was just right.
O. If enjoy saisons with a little funk this is really good. A very unique beer. More enjoyable as it warms.

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Photo of Taybeh
4.04/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

From a 6 month old single into a Weyerbacher tulip
A: pale sunlit gold, 3 finger fluffy head with decent lacing
S: coriander, white pepper, clove, lemon peel,
T: pale malt on the front, back half mingles light spicy peppery notes and tart citrusy zest. Nothing terribly complex, but well integrated and very satisfying.
M: moderately dry, moderately tart, effervescent

Overall: Solid.

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Photo of Onemoresolo
3.79/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

765mL bottle dated 22APR13:

L: Huge head quickly dissipates down to a decent sized fluffy Belgian head.
S: Clove, some orange zest and a tiny bit of funk.
T: Much like a tripel with expected Belgian yeast flavors with a quickly passing finish of orange zest, wine, and tartness. Fades quickly.
F: Prickly carbonation, quick finish, thirst quenching. Can't complain.

Not a bad beer, but it I definitely prefer Matilda over this. I was hoping for a big vinous, tart, and bitter beer, but this was mostly just like a tripel with light funk. Maybe it needs more/less time?

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Photo of DMXLOX22
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Brought home in a growler. Poured into a 16 oz. traditional pub glass.

Look: Pours a straw-yellow, very slight hint of orange. Leaves behind possibly about half-inch of foam. Head dissipates somewhat quickly. Lacing is very little which was a disappointment. Kinda boring. Slight hint of bubbles floating to the top, but at least it's consistent.

Smell: Upon first takes of the aroma, I get a hint of some funky yeast aromas. Almost a wine-like aroma as well as I further inspect. Grains, malts, yeast and some wood-like aromas are also noticeable. Not exactly thrilling, but still interesting.

Taste: First sips, I sense a slight sour-like yeast presence. A little funky that blocks the real flavors underneath. As I let the brew settle, I sense slight hints of white grapes, apple, and the orange-zest. Not too bad, but a little unimpressive.

Mouthfeel: A bit above average carbonation. Quite good in that department. Finishes quite full. Not bad at all. Does leave behind a somewhat sour aftertaste.

Overall: Never was a fan of sour beers and something into this, I was quite surprised at the level. However, as the beer leaves cold temperature and enters room temperature, it does reveal some more flavors of orange and woodgrains. Not my favorite brew. I would stick with Hennepin by Ommegang or Saison-Brett by Boulevard. I may recommend to a few friends, but I definitely won't be trying again. Cheers!

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Photo of ClavisAurea
3.79/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Fresh 12oz bottle served in a small wine glass at cellar temps.

Appearance: bright yellow, clear and effervescent with a pale head that went away almost immediately.

Nose: Candied lemon peel, sweet and citrusy

Taste: very light body, citrus, slightly malty, sweet and light

Overall: It almost has a fake or manufactured flavor to it. I don't think it detracts from the overall flavor.

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Sofie from Goose Island Beer Co.
92 out of 100 based on 988 ratings.