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Halia - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
HaliaHalia

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

640 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 640
Reviews: 102
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 8.21%
Wants: 58
Gots: 175 | FT: 24
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed with the Saison and farmhouse ales of Belgium in mind, we added fresh Georgia peaches and Brettanomyces claussenii to a fresh white wine barrel and aged the Saison base for 9 months. Stretching the boundaries of the traditional style, we decided to put our own little spin on it.

Formerly known as Mae.

(Beer added by: sidetracked on 04-24-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 640 | Reviews: 102 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BEERchitect
4.06/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

As Goose Island continues to up their game in the sour arena, this abhorrently priced American "wild" ale employs Georgia peaches as its Belgian lambic inspirations show true form despite its gross misrepresentation on the label- it vague "farmhouse" moniker indicates nothing about its sour underpinnings.

But Halia opens with a glowing pour of golden and canary hues. Despite its mild yeasty haze, the beer simply seems to light up right there in the glass. As a dainty and delicate lacy sheet rises to cap the beer, its foam structures dissolve into a simple collar about its edge. Random and spotty lacing temporarily hangs on the glass before collapsing back into the beer. Its a common appearance where the beer's head character has been compromised by by its own acidity.

Mouthwatering aromas of tart fruit, dry cider, light vinegar and must fills the nose with olfactory-piercing intensity. As any short-lived sweetness contributes only a dry whole wheat type of breadiness and "Sweetheart" candies. But soon its lemon, lime, white grape and white wine acidity wafts over the nose; carrying with it the scent of musty, dried fruit, sea air, and a glimpse of damp hay.

To taste, that thin sweetness and breadiness only gives a lift to the fruit- giving it a modest ripeness before it trails. In its absence, the acidity has full control from the middle palate onward: minerally white wine, dried limes, crab apples, earthy brine and mild apple cider vinegar. Its dry and acidic taste is clean, sharp and palate-stripping. It shies away from the richer and earthier "funk" flavors of traditional lambics in its preference of cleanness and crispness. Its dry fruit taste only reveals any notions of peach as the ale finishes and echoes of its Georgia fruit return in aftertaste, accompanied by wheat.

Dry from start to finish, its early carbonation carries away any sweetness with ease- leaving only acidity to scrub the palate late. Mild alcohol warmth is wrapped into the acids and light barrel tannin with soft spice and powdery oak to finish.

Halia is a wonderful sour ale but misses an opportunity to express more earthen character. Though I like its expressive and clean acidity, it seems overly simplified. It would certainly provide a perfect counterpart to rich french reductions in entrees.

BEERchitect, Dec 09, 2013
Photo of kojevergas
3.35/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

"Belgian style farmhouse ale." 7.50% ABV confirmed. Bottled 06 Aug 13. "0855." "Ale aged in wine barrels with peaches." Expectations are high given its $21ish price point. 765ml brown glass bottle with classy understated label art and orange foil-ed over branded pressure cap acquired at Argonaut Liquor and served into a slender stem-tulip in me parents' gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, CO. 2013 vintage.

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it pours.

Pours a four finger wide head of white colour. Somewhat thin. Lacking creaminess. Spotty lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Head retention is good - about 4 minutes.

Body colour is a slightly hazy yellow of average vibrance. Appears well-carbonated.

Overall, it looks okay for a saison and average for a wild ale. I'm not really sure what it is at this point. Not unique or special, but there are no egregious flaws.

Sm: Lemongrass, faint lemon peel, faint brettanomyces-induced funkiness, floral hop character, fruity hop character, a white wine tone, and peach fruits (along with accompanying esters). Light bready and biscuity malts. Some biscuity yeast character replete with vitamins. Some hay.

A clean fragrant pleasant aroma of moderate strength. I really wanted some tart fruit or sourness from this. There's none of the nuanced white pepper or milky notes you'd expect in a good saison, and none of the notes you'd want in a sour.

No alcohol presence is noticeable.

T: Floral and fruity hop character. A backgrounded white wine tone is present and adds little; it doesn't even guide the beer or lend much cohesion, but rather distracts. Faint hay. Golden malts. Some biscuity and lightly funky brettanomyces yeast. No real sourness or tartness at all. Light peach fruit; it's not particularly evocative - it isn't juicy orchard fruit or anything. Has an unwelcome kiss of lychee. Sadly, there aren't any real barrel notes at all - no rich oak wood or anything.

Decently balanced, but certainly not gestalt. Fair complexity and decent subtlety. Average depth, duration, and intensity of flavour.

If they were shooting for a saison, they flat out missed the requisite subtlety, intricacy, and nuance. There's no white pepper, spice, or milky notes here at all. If they were shooting for a wild ale, they flat out missed the requisite sourness and the beneficial tart fruit.

Even the highlights here - the peach fruit and the brettanomyces yeast - feel like wasted potential. Subdued for a saison.

No alcohol comes through.

Mf: Lightly coarse - unnecessarily so. Wet. Somewhat refreshing. A bit overcarbonated. Decent body and thickness. There's nothing terrible here, but it just doesn't complement the flavour profile as well as it ought to. Gets the job done, but it doesn't feel custom-tailored specifically to the taste. Fair presence on the palate.

Not oily, harsh, astringent, gushed, hot, scratchy, or boozy.

I'd like the mouthfeel to be dry, juicy, and vaguely refreshing like an orchard fruit, but it falls well short.

Dr: Certainly drinkable, but at this price point it just isn't worth it. Frankly, the wine barrel aging isn't helping the base beer at all, and I figure that's probably what drove the price up in the first place. This is disappointing work from Goose Island, but only because it's priced unreasonably. It'd be fine at $8.99. It drinks like a good-but-not-great saison. Hides its ABV well. The peach notes in particular were disappointingly reticent. I'll easily kill this bottle alone, but I definitely wouldn't get it again, nor would I recommend it to friends.

B-

kojevergas, Dec 08, 2013
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4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

cd34, Friday at 03:24 AM
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4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

tommyguz, Nov 20, 2014
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4/5  rDev -3.4%

schmidtmattsays, Nov 19, 2014
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4/5  rDev -3.4%

redblacks75, Nov 19, 2014
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4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

Shandycan, Nov 17, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Rogorama, Nov 16, 2014
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4/5  rDev -3.4%

BeerMeBro720, Nov 15, 2014
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3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

AndyEdgar, Nov 15, 2014
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4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

SoCalBeerIdiot, Nov 15, 2014
Photo of HumanParaquat
4.09/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

HumanParaquat, Nov 10, 2014
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5/5  rDev +20.8%

RinZo, Nov 08, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

wellsnb, Nov 04, 2014
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4/5  rDev -3.4%

spycow, Nov 02, 2014
Photo of floridadrift
4/5  rDev -3.4%

Sweetish and sour.

All the girls are a sour drinker's dream come true.

floridadrift, Oct 30, 2014
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4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

Davelucas88, Oct 30, 2014
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3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

BRami127, Oct 29, 2014
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4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Davihaw, Oct 28, 2014
Photo of BergBeer
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Look: Hazy golden straw with a minimal head that lines the glass. Lots of legs on this one with a mix of big a small bubbles. Looks like champagne rather the beer.

Smell: Pungent sweet peach explodes from the bottl.! Can smell it from a few feet away. Getting tart Belgian funk, lemon, candied peaches, white wine, straw, sourdough bread, nectarines, and more peach.

Taste: Huge sour hits the tongue followed by, tart lemon, sourdough yeast notes, white peppercorn, sweet white wine, huge sweet and tart peach notes, white nectarines, and more funk on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Light and dances on the tongue like a fine champagne. The bodied fills out after the tart punch but still dances on the tongue. Wets the palate at first but the finish is easily one of the best parts of this amazing brew as it finishes quite dry but leaves behind the sweet peach and white wine notes to linger on the tongue. No hint of alcohol.

Overall: Outstanding brew. The big sour funk punch works seamlessly with the white wine and peach notes to make one hell of tasty American sour. The dry finish really sells this guy by leaving the fruit and wine notes buzzing on the tongue! Letting you really enjoy the complex flavors of this beer after every sip!

BergBeer, Oct 28, 2014
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4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

wiescins, Oct 28, 2014
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4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

jwat, Oct 27, 2014
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3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

helios7, Oct 27, 2014
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4/5  rDev -3.4%

mantissa, Oct 27, 2014
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Halia from Goose Island Beer Co.
93 out of 100 based on 640 ratings.