1. Don't miss our 7th annual American Craft Beer Fest featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers this May 30 & 31 in Boston, MA! Buy your tickets now!
  2. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Sofie - Goose Island Beer Co.

SofieSofie

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

2,694 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2694
Reviews: 859
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 10.24%


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)
View: Beers (269) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers
Ratings: 2,694 | Reviews: 859 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of lenin2040
lenin2040

District of Columbia

4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: slightly hazy straw gold, moderate head
s: a little funk, grape husk, lemongrass
t: ginger, moderate tartness, bubblegum, citrus, sparkling apple cider, faint hop bitterness, finishes kind of sweet
m: delicate bubbly
d: wish i had more than the bomber!

Serving type: bottle

12-12-2009 05:05:52 | More by lenin2040
Photo of Bitterbill
Bitterbill

Wyoming

4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of TATTORSO. Thanks Jeff!

It pours a slightly hazy straw yellow with a 3 finger and growing head of foam. There's a ton of bubbles rising to the top..wow. A very good looker.

The smell is grainy and funky with some lemon zest thrown in and a little bit of clove. It sure smells the part to me and that's always a good thing.

First sip and lemon zest starts things off followed by a definite Brett influence. The lemon adds a nice tartness and I'm also tasting some sweet aspects and working together brings some good balance to the flavours. Very enjoyable and I have to admit, I'm a sucker for a well made Saison.

It has a nice medium body, ditto for the carbonation..well...maybe a tad to high for my liking. I'm still glad all those bubbles I saw didn't translate to an over carbonated brew.

Drinkability? Seeing as this is right up my alley flavourwise and alcoholwise, this is a cheer joy to drink and very drinkable. Excellent example of the style!

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2009 23:32:05 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of ckeegan04
ckeegan04

Texas

4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Golden yellow and rather clear. Beautiful fluffy pillow-like head, about two fingers thick. Ridiculous retention with over one finger of foam still resting on top long after the pour. Chunky lacing left on the glass.

S - White pepper, lemon, clean earthiness. Very mild pale malts.

T - Lightly sour and very acidic fruits up front with lemon being the most dominant flavor. A hint of dustiness underneath. Lots of crisp pale malts. Peppery without being overly spiced.

M/D - Light, crisp and very well carbonated. Very easy drinking as well. Not the best saison ever, but certinaly very very good.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2009 04:09:11 | More by ckeegan04
Photo of nickfl
nickfl

Florida

4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Two fingers of bone white head on top of a perfectly clear, straw-yellow body filled with strings of rising carbonation. The foam settles slowly and leaves only minimal lace.

S - A strong aroma of wild yeast with only moderate sourness. Lemon, pepper, and vanilla yeast notes with plenty of tart wheat backing them up. There are some standard issue, noble hop aromas lurking in the background as well, but they are mostly washed away by the other aromas.

T - Lots of tart wheat up front with moderate sweetness and some vanilla yeast notes. Tropical fruit flavors of pineapple and pepper kick in next with a bit of wild yeast and sour cherry. Finishes with significant herbal hop flavor and moderate bitterness balanced by complex yeast and a bit of malt. Lingering musty hops interact nicely on the palate with the equally musty, but mild, wild yeast character.

M - Moderately thick body, high carbonation, and a slightly dry finish.

D - This distinctive interpretation of the style is quite drinkable and refreshing. The yeast is a wonderful combination of fruity saison yeast and distinct brett mustiness. The hops are subdued in the aroma, but show up in full force flavor-wise, which is a nice nod to classic hoppy saisons like Dupont and also makes for a nice contrast set against the yeast. The finish is perfectly balanced and unusually champagne-like, which leaves me thirsting for another sip.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2009 05:22:57 | More by nickfl
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

3.98/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Duvel, you have company!

Goose Island may have hit a home-run here. Sofie begins with a murky canary-yellow with very lively carbonation, fair head formation, retention, and lacing. A fair but sturdy look.

Aromas of citrusy esters, peppery phenols, and delicate pilsner malts set the stage for a light musty, cork-like dusty note that gives it just a little more than the standard Belgian Pale Ale.

Sweet up front with pilsner malts, cracker-like lightness, and confection sweetness. Lemon-like acidity, limes, and background notes of tropical fruits (appricots, pineapple) usher in the estery mix. White pepper, cumin, orange peel, and hop earthiness come in late with sharp and decisive variations.

Somewhat fuller and sweet to initial sip but the beer quickly morphs into a peppery, citrusy, acidic dryness that makes drinkability effortless- this is where the Duvel comparisons make moste sense.

Great job Goose Island for a Belgian worthy Saison style beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2009 04:31:10 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of bluejacket74
bluejacket74

Ohio

3.7/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle, bottled on 10/23/2009. Served in a tulip glass, the beer pours a hazy light gold color with about an inch white head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty good. Aroma is lemon, orange peel, peppery spice, and wheat. Taste is pretty much the same as the aroma, but with the addition of some green grapes. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it has high (but soft) carbonation, and also has a dry finish. Drinkability is good, it's a nice and refreshing brew. I liked this beer, I'd buy it again.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2009 23:34:44 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of jjayjaye
jjayjaye

New York

4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an ultra pale golden yellow color with a two finger foamy white head that decomposes in 3D...leaving spotty patterns of lacing behind. The smell is aggressive, earthy Belgian yeast lemon orange, spices and banana. Nicely carbonated, the complex texture of tiny bubbles and lively bright tangerine complements the slightly understated citrus banana pear flavors. This has got to be the lightest color ale that i've had the opportunity to consider!! WOW...this is definitely a 'keeper'...would like to have a number of these in my go-to stash. Full flavored..and surprisingly full bodied...it goes to show that you shouldn't judge an ale by it's color!! At 6.5 ABV, this one is HUGELY sessionable!! This one from Gommer's Midtown in KC...highly recommended!!

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2009 21:13:11 | More by jjayjaye
Photo of mmva321
mmva321

Missouri

4.58/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a tulip.

This comes in a beautifully simple bottle. Dated 2009.

I'm struck by the appearance. The color is a light yellow and this may be the best loooking beer to have that color of body. It looks murky, but consistent and has a very dense look. A good amount of head with a little retention, and it leaves a thick and creamy foam on the top that leaves a delicate but lasting lacing on its way down.

Superb smell. The most immediate thing is a citrus auroma consisting of lemon and orange. But it is very dense, earthy and with a full body.

Diddo from the smell. The yeast comes through a little more in the taste. But really, I get an earthy and sour taste that really shines with the mix of lemon and orange.

I'm still surprised by how substantial and full-bodied this beer is considering its pale appearance. The feel is a great consistency. Its a little carbonated, but that serves to highlight the citrus tastes, but it's also dense enough to serve well the earthy and dry yeast of the beer.

This beer is pungent and pulls no punches. This can turn people off, I'm sure, but what I get is a very well refined, well balanced and enjoyable drink that has its ingredients integrated and working together to something great.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2009 03:08:22 | More by mmva321
Photo of katan
katan

Colorado

3.93/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz into a goblet. bottled on 10/23

A - Pours a bright, effervescent gold color. Very hazy - lots of natural yeast floating around. Head formation is quick and very strong, dissipates quickly. Leaves behind a film.

S - Very yeasty, bready, spicy. Behind it is some funky sour notes. Certainly pulls through the belgian ale aspects. Very earthy overall.

T - Starts off with a light malt sweetness, which is matched with a light grain astringency. Mid-stream is fairly light, with some bitterness and some wild yeast and tobacco notes. Very dry. Finishes with a sweet note, has a orange peel type note combined with a sour yeast flair. Some phenolic tones in the aftertaste.

M - Light beer body, some alcohol warming on the palette. Very strong carbonation bite - incredibly carbonated. Certainly in line with a saison.

D - Moderate drinkability. ABV is up there, but not off the charts. A bit filling however. A good one and done from the 22oz. Might have to put a few of these away for the summer.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2009 03:52:43 | More by katan
Photo of Tom8Analise
Tom8Analise

Massachusetts

3.8/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a nice light yellow color with a small head. Leaves very little head on the sides of the glass.

S- Smells very hoppy and fresh yet kinda bitter.

T- Tastes very similar to an IPA but with a little more bitterness and tartness.

M- Mouth feel is smooth and lightly carbonated.

D- Is good because its very refreshing and light. Could definitely drink more then one :).

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2009 06:00:53 | More by Tom8Analise
Photo of Vixie
Vixie

Illinois

4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice yellow color with just a hint of orange. Forms a full white head, which lingers for some time.

Smell is a bit grassy, a bit floral. Reminds me a bit of fresh mown hay, with just a hint of spice.

The taste is a bit of spiced fruit, no one thing stands out, but as a whole, I like the flavor. Has just a touch of hops at the finish.

Feel is decent, pretty much what I expect from the style.

I found this to be very drinkable. Had a nice flavor balance, and was very smooth. This is one I'd have no problem trying again.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2009 01:50:45 | More by Vixie
Photo of BMoney575
BMoney575

Michigan

4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on 11-27-09
2009 Vintage

Pours a cloudy golden yellow color, with a fizzy head that sticks to the sides and lingers for the whole experience.

Smell is very witbier, lots of spice and light, sweet malt, with a big hit of orange if you're patient. A slight funk lets you sense the wild yeasts.

Taste is alot like the smell, subtle malt, a little spice, and some light hops to finish things off. A little sourness, and big wheat on the finish.

Mouthfeel is right for the style, fizzy and light.

Drinkability is very good, the flavors are not overpowering, and the abv is reasonable.

Overall, a solid beer, but a bit too plain to bee anything better.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2009 00:50:00 | More by BMoney575
Photo of david131
david131

California

4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- A creamy yellow liquid with a moderate white head that is remarkably creamy. There is a nice column of carbonation coming to the surface. Pretty nice.

S- Lemon, white bread, horse blanket funk, coriander, and orange meat. Complex and very appealing.

T- Lemon peel, grapefruit, white bread, a bit of funk. Remarkably citrusy, which is nice for a bit of a change. This is complex and very interesting.

M- Creamy with a bit of an alcohol/carbonation bite at the tail end. Tart and dry on the finish. Just about right.

D- For an American take on the style, this is going to be hard to beat. Drinks nicely and really hits the spot.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2009 00:42:48 | More by david131
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had this for Thanksgiving dinner.

A - Poured out a clear, golden yellow color with a white, bubbly, two-finger head of foam. Good rentention and left soapy trails of lace.

S - It smelled of yeast, grains and some spiciness. There was a subtle funky aroma, too.

T - It had a nice toasty caramel flavor with spicy notes and strong yeast flavors. There was a slight funk to it, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A light to medium-bodied ale with a dry, snappy finish.

D - This is a very good saison.It went really well with Thanksgiving dinner.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2009 21:28:07 | More by zeff80
Photo of bheilman
bheilman

Indiana

4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I like this beer.. It has a light color and medium head. It is smooth like a pilsner, yet it has more flavor and I think I do taste some of the orange peel/wine barrel aging. It had a dirty/fruity aftertaste that makes this beer unique in a good way. I might even try aging it but it tastes great fresh. Not quit at saison in my opinion, but somewhere in between a saison and a belgian IPA. Get this one if you are in to belgian IPAs or if you like good beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2009 00:13:28 | More by bheilman
Photo of projectflam86
projectflam86

Ohio

4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a hazy yellow color with some slight orange accents. A thick meringue head leaves behind nice lacing.

S- Lots of sweet spice and citrus aroma. A bit of Belgian yeast and some tart fruitiness.

T- Slight sourness initially with some tart citrus fruit flavors (orange and lemon). A rush of spice, wheat, grass, and earthy hops all appear in the finish. A light Brett character is present as well. The alcohol is masked well.

M- Light bodied with tons of carbonation. Very dry and slightly sour.

D- Really nice complex flavor. A very enjoyable brew.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2009 03:37:39 | More by projectflam86
Photo of hwwty4
hwwty4

Missouri

4.4/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to gbdave for the batch 1 and bobbydigi for the batch 2.

22oz bomber poured into a Boulevard Tank 7 Smokestack tulip. 2009 vintage bottled on 10/23. This beer pours a slightly hazy golden straw with a large 3-inch, tight, white head that leaves subtle, soapy lacing down the sides of glass. The aroma is very standard for a Saison. Earthy, herbal hops, grass, hay, a slight musty funk, and lemon zest. The flavor is much more complex. Basic Saison flavors come through. Grassy hops, hay, earthy mustiness, and white pepper. Orange rind comes through as does a slight vinous character that comes through on the tail of the flavor profile. Just a slight grape sweetness. The mouthfeel is light and crisply carbonated. It finished very dry. Makes the mouth quiver for another sip. This is a very well done beer. Goose Island hits a homer with this one. Definitely will be seeking out another bottle to put some age on.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2009 22:44:11 | More by hwwty4
Photo of Frosty80
Frosty80

Michigan

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

Color: hazy, dull gold

Smell: great belgian yeast with orange peel. hint of white wine

Taste: great belgian flavors of yeast and orange peel. hint of white wine from middle to finish. yeasty with a hint of sharpness from wine notes

Mouthfeel: med-light body. low carbonation

Notes: delicious and refreshing take on a standard belgian wheat

Serving type: bottle

11-20-2009 04:20:28 | More by Frosty80
Photo of bmoney
bmoney

Ohio

3.93/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- A lemonade/straw yellow. Frothy white head. Bubbles of carbonation rushing up from the bottom.

S- Complex yet very familiar smell. Fruity (mostly apple) and citrus (orange and lemon). Spice and wheat in the background. White wine notes linger.

T- Tastes pretty similar to smell (fruit and citrus, wheat). Tart. Belgian Yeast comes through in the back. Also some pepper. Clean finish, not much after-taste.

M- Very carbonated, clean and refreshing. Light bodied.

D- A very drinkable Saison. Interesting flavors mixing and keeping interest. Would recomend.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2009 02:20:26 | More by bmoney
Photo of BeerBelcher
BeerBelcher

Ohio

3.85/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This was a really pleasant and light saison-style beer, but given the price tag and the description, I thought it was a bit under-whelming. There was nothing unpleasant about it, but it lacked the full mouthfeel, intense sourness, and funkyness that I expected from this beer. It was drinkable and light and pleasing, but not the genre-buster I thought it might be.

Color was a light lemonade color with a meringue-colored head. Aroma was lightly sour and wheaty. Flavor was a touch sour, light, and effervescent. Mouthfeel was very light and delicate, and pleasing, although not what I expected. Pretty good.

A big thank you to SurlySober for bringing this beer over to my house to share.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2009 15:07:35 | More by BeerBelcher
Photo of darklordlager
darklordlager

Wisconsin

3.85/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy straw colored yellow with an active bright white head. Bright.
Looks quite a bit like a Berliner Weiss.

S- Fruity belgian yeast, light barnhouse funk, spice (orange?).

T-Tart apples, a kind of odd dry leather taste, then the mild sourness returns to make for an interesting and pleasant finish. A little bit of grape rind, barley husk, and strong phenolic character imparted by the yeast.

M-Highly carbed, yet when that leather flavour hits you the mouthfeel seems to fall flat.

D-
A little too phenolic to be thoroughly enjoyable, though certainly interesting.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2009 04:27:27 | More by darklordlager
Photo of grub
grub

Ontario (Canada)

4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Viggo brought this one over. thanks eric!

22oz bottle, 2009 vintage. sampled nov 15/09.

pours hazy pale yellow with a big fluffy white head. the head drops very slowly and leaves tons of chunky lace behind.

aroma is great. big floral and perfumey blast initially, fading to light citrus and some bretty funk. light horse blanket. bit of leather. there's also a bit of honey and caramel sweetness. hint of alcohol.

taste is great. funkadelic. nice lemony sourness. touch of cider vinegar. horse blanket and leather. touch of honey and caramel. white bread and cracker. light alcohol. nice floral and slightly perfumey character.

mouthfeel is good. nice light body with a pretty dry finish. medium-high carbonation level.

drinkability is good. nice balance of alcohol. just the right amount of funk to add a nice extra level to it. delicious!

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2009 23:03:31 | More by grub
Photo of Viggo
Viggo

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle, thanks to Lexx for the hookup at DLD.

Pours a hazy golden yellow, some orange highlights, very thick and rocky white head forms, slowly settles to a huge layer and ring, some of head everywhere, lots of tiny bubbles stream up from the bottom, looks neat.

Smell is nice, lightly funky and tart, oranges, wine, jasmine, lots of nice floral character, very aromatic, lightly spicy, some candi sugar sweetness, wood, earthy, reminds me some of Orval, a bit grassy, very complex and interesting.

Taste is quite nice, big funky sourness up front, some hay and barnyard, lightly spicy, jasmine, wheat, oranges, a lot of tart fruit, a bit lemony, earth, woody, sugary, very sour and funky finish, very dry and spicy, pretty neat.

Mouthfeel is light bodied with high carbonation, feels a little watery in the finish, but nicely spiced and very dry. Nice funkiness, good stuff.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2009 22:42:20 | More by Viggo
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero

Illinois

3.7/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Straw colored gold just a tad hazy with a small head that dissipated rather quickly.

S - Smells like grapes and lemon and some other fruity notes. Very interesting, almost seems wine influended. Nice dash of yeast.

T - Surprisingly a little bit malty, citric acid is readily pleasant, and the dash of yeast is just that. It's a light brew that could use a little more heavy handed belgian flavor, but I guess that is not what this is going for. Fruity, but light fruits.

M - Decent carbonation in a light bodied beer.

D - Pretty good beer and pretty easy to drink, little too citrusy to be able to pound though.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2009 20:22:31 | More by AgentZero
Photo of capra12
capra12

New York

4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed with speedwayjim at the gingerman nyc.

Appearance: poured by my waitress into a short snifter glass. Golden yellow , slightly cloudy with w finger of head that leaves great lacing.

Smell: lemon citrus with a hint of sweet green grapes and belgian yeast.

Taste: opens with a lemon tartness that does not nellow out. A belgian yeast and semi unriped green grape emerges in the middle to finish leaving a clean and slightly yeasty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: light bodied with lots of carbonation, crisp and refreshing. Almost sessionale.

Drinkability: I would definitely have this again and recommend this to someone who seeks a light bodied belgian style pale ale with hints of lemon and unripened green grapes. Too bad its abv is a bit high to be sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2009 22:40:01 | More by capra12
Sofie from Goose Island Beer Co.
92 out of 100 based on 2,694 ratings.