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Halia | Goose Island Beer Co.

124 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States | website

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

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.

Added by sidetracked on 04-24-2011

User Reviews
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Reviews: 124 | Ratings: 821
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

(Served in a chalice)
2013 vintage
A-4 This beer pours a hazy lemon yellow body with a sea of microcarbonation and a sticky white film of snow white head.

S- 4.5 The light stone fruit pit aroma has notes of Brett white cheese rind and a dry woody gentle french oak quality with a dry green mango and pine note in the finish. There is the paper straws aroma of oak that comes through as it opens.

T- 4.5 The nice soft tartness is lactic with some full brett flavor of cheese rind and saison ester fruity qualities. There is some soft white wine flavors in the finish with a nice full but soft oak flavor lingering.

M- 4.5 The medium mouthfeel has a nice creamy texture and no real alcohol heat.

O- 5.0 The nice white wine character in the aroma is delicate with great brett character blending in and strong support from the fruity saison yeast and peach notes. This is a delicious beer that didn't last long on a cool summer evening.

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Photo of fmccormi
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%

Straight pour from a 1 pint, 9.87oz/765ml pry-off bottle to a teku. There’s also a packaging date of August 6, 2013 printed in black ink near the bottom-left corner of the back label (“BOTTLED ON: 0830 06AUG13”), which would make this bottle just over a year old (53 ½ weeks, more or less). Been looking forward to this one for a while now!

Appearance (4.5): Nearly three fingers of bone-white, crackling foam rise off of the pour easily, dying down at a moderate pace (especially for the style), showing overall pretty good retention including scattered suds, a wide but thin film at the surface forming thin, arcing collars, and a thick, crackly cap which dies down on the surface of the body. Which, by the way, is a glowing, nearly clear, light golden body with honey-orange highlights.

Smell (4.25): Quite a bit of mixed acidic tones coming through right off the bat—a little lactic tang, moderate acetic strength without coming off as vinegary, and light citric acid married to the fruit aromas—but they get out of the way for the fruit and other elements. Peach flesh, light passion fruit, underripe kiwi, oaky chardonnay, and a nice layer of peach juice underneath fills out the aroma.

Taste (4.5): Sharp citric and tangy lactic acid jump out in front and hang out at the top of the palate from start to finish (more on that later). Underneath it, a very, very tasteful acetic character mingles with tart and juicy orange and peach flavors, a mellow, oaky layer (think chardonnay), vinous mineral notes (think pinot grigio), and light melon flavors. There’s some very minimal malt character left here, but at this point it’s widdled down to some dry common crackers and a little dry hay and straw after interacting with the primary yeast, I’d guess. The finish is long, citrusy, very tart without being bitter, and drying. Tart, lean, complex, and thoroughly pleasant from start to finish—and no sign of ABV.

Mouthfeel (4.0): Not surprisingly, considering the style, the carbonation really dominates the feel, offering a moderately sharp prickle as it fills up all spaces with coarse, but friendly bubbles as it foams up and washes out. The body, meanwhile, is lean, dry, far lighter than medium-weight, and juicy without being syrupy. It finishes dry, to be sure, but certainly not parching.

Overall (4.25): Hell of a beer. The price is a little prohibitive, unfortunately, but forgetting that, it’s a great example of why sours are still the future of craft beer. Any wine lover should be able to appreciate this beer, in addition to the beer geeks already in the know, and it feels like a crowd pleaser for anyone with a discriminating palate (and plenty of folks less interested in such things, too). My only gripes are that the mouthfeel could be smoother, the oak could be more understated, and the fruit could pop a little more. But the sour dynamics are spot-on, it drinks like a champ, and is as refreshing as a cold shower in the tropics. Love it.

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Photo of sweemzander
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

765mL bottle poured into a snifter.

(A)- Pours a cloudy golden yellow color. Some white froth and lacing.

(S)- A big nose of white wine and peaches/apricots. Subtle dry oakiness and funk. Superb combo of wine barrel and fruit in this.

(T)- Quite similar to the smell. Great combination of wine barrel and peach/apricot-like fruits; almost becomes like pineapple as it warms and opens up. Bits of tartness.

(M)- A nice carbonation level meets a very harmonious wine barrel fruit profile. Not overly complex, but very refreshing and vibrant.

(O)- A great wine barrel aged fruit beer if there ever was one. Just a touch of funk and tartness to make this stand out.

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Photo of NuclearRich
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12Aug13 stamped on the label, drank today. poured from the bottle into my favorite HF stemmed glass.

A. Medium haze, pale straw color, tiny lazy bubbles form a fluffy white cloud that retains well and laces great.
S. Definitely full of white wine barrel and brett. Really lacking the peach that is advertised and expected.
T. Lightly tart, white wine, grape skins, lemon, a little oak, a bit of horsey brett but the brett seems to be adding a general light funk and that lemon flavor. Again, missing any hint of peach.
M. Light, with a mid grade effervescence that compliments the tartness nicely.
O. Very drinkable and high quality, but I have a problem with the price tag and the false advertisement of peaches. A little less white wine and at least a discernible level of peaches would benefit it. I would definitely drink it again but I wont be looking to dole out the chedda for it.

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Photo of Rutager
3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

I think it said Aug 2013 on the bottle.

Appearance. Pours a lemony gold ... lulz lemony gold. light haze, half finger of frothy white head that fades quickly to a lasting skim.

Smell. Floral peach notes, some tart juiciness, a little whit wine, and some dry oaky funk.

Taste tart peaches and a ton of woody oaky followed by that mellow toasty vanilla. Some dry white wine for sure that doesn't sit amazingly well in the aftertaste. Super serial, it's gotta sit well in the aftertaste. Yeah...

Mouthfeel. Below medium body, fine and lively carbonation.

Overall. It's a good fruited saison but doesn't hold a candle to the PnB I've been spoiled with lately.

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Photo of SeaRip
4.19/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Vey nice sour. Not too much of the peach flavor came though in the taste more in the nose with nice waft of sweetness. Hazy complexion with good head retention. Nice smooth sour flavor (if those 2 adjectives go together). Nice drinkable sour. Possibly good introduction to sours.

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Photo of Resuin
4.49/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 765 mL bottle into a stemmed glass. This was bottled on August 6, 2013 so almost a year ago.

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy, translucent peach/gold color and leaves a couple fingers of white, fluffy head, which slowly fades to a white layer atop the beer, leaving lacing on the glass. Carbonation bubbles can be seen floating to the surface of the beer.

Smell: Barnyard funk, lemon zest, fresh peaches, grape skins, grapes, grassy funk. Nice balance of funk, sour, fruit. Pleasant and refreshing aroma.

Taste: Sour lemon zest, fresh peaches, grapes, a bit of hay-grass funk. The peach and the sour are a little bigger than in the aroma, but are still well balanced in the flavor. Definitely some white wine influence in here - a bit dry towards the end. Nice and very drinkable.

Mouth-feel: Medium to well carbonated with an interested fairly heavy, foamy-feeling body. Finishes a little dry and a little sour.

Overall: The peaches play nicely in the background of this slightly funky/sour/white wine influenced beer. Well balanced and quite drinkable, this is a tasty, well crafted farmhouse ale.

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Photo of slackattack
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours clear straw yellow with nice initial head that dissipates a little quicker that I would've liked to see. The smell is big. Bretty barny funk is nice, hints of wood also that then gives way to fruity peachy notes. Taste is sour peach and cherry, fresh cut wood, and a little bit of wild yeast/Brett. Mouthfeel is right for the style. Dry, good amount of carbonation. Overall I enjoyed this beer, but it's not my favorite of the goose island "sisters," I prefer the Lolita if I'm looking for a wild/sour offering in this price range.

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Photo of Ri0
4.58/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

poured 2013 bottle into Duvel tulip. Cost was $19.99.

A - It is a lighter golden peach with a 2 finger of white head. Good retention and decent lacing for aged sour beer.

S - The aroma is definitely tart with lemon zest, unripened peaches , sour apples. Wet grass, slight funk and dry wine notes are all present.

T - Starts off with yeast, sour notes of lemon zest, unripe peaches and sour apple. Good amount of Brett and wet grass, along with some grain and mild spice. This flavor profile really works for me.

M - Light body and fantastic carbonation. The beer has a mild sour flavor and a dry finish.

O - I passed up this beer for 6 months. Finally decided to buy it and I am glad I did. One of my favorites from GI.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Let's make this my celebratory beer for saving somebody's bacon.

This is a great beer. Nice even sour tones with some accents of fruit and sweetness. Quite smooth really. A wine-like character rarely seen in wild yeast brewed beers. Brings a good level of intensity without being overbearing or obnoxious. In a word: finesse.

I wonder what more age would do to this one. I'm half tempted to drive out and go get some more and find out personally.

A stellar beer. Truly stellar.

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Photo of leroybrown10
4.44/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours pale straw gold with some haziness. 1 finger white head bubbles off fairly quick. Some small amount of spiderweb lacing.

Wine barrel on the nose to start. Chardonnay-like with some oak barrel and brett funkiness. Peach is light but noticeable. Very light malt.

Lots of brett funk on the tongue with a rather tart aspect as well. Light peach with a bit more tartness. White grape, oak, lemon, and some melon. Light malt, cracker-y. Some pepper notes. Something lightly floral.

Light body with medium carbonation. Good tart/funk mix. Strong lingering barrel notes with a light peach undercurrent.

Really superb wine barrel aged saison. Smooth peach complements.

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Photo of rcjennings
4.12/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - A light wheaty haziness along with the dull wheaty color. A few shades shy of orange and a bit too dull to be yellow. It appears very drinkable and refreshing with light carbonation springing to top and settling into a thin ring of small bubbles.

Smell - Brett and fruit. What could be better? More Brett and fruit would be better.

Taste - Oh yes. Light funk. Dryness from the wine barrels. The dryness melds with the tartness in the back of the throat for an awesome swallow (yeah, I wrote that).

Mouthfeel - Looking at the beer, I suspected a thinner feel, but it left a rich coating that allowed me to wait before taking another sip. It hung around, and I like that. I didn't want that flavor to go away.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.31/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

easily one of goose islands best, halia is a wild belgian saison type aged in wine barrels with peaches. im guessing chardonnay barrels here, the acid is right on for that, as is the body infused into an otherwise rather light wheat based brew. great color, hazy burnt yellow color, shining bright brass when i hold it west towards a setting sun, crowned by just less than an inch of frosty white lace. the nose is peachy, awesomely so. a million peach beers taste fake or no fruit at all, this is right on, juicy and ripe, and the effervescent carbonation tickles my nose, a welcomed addition and improvement over some others in this series, wine tannins are there, white for sure, and the saison yeast and brett complex is remarkably more tart than anticipated. the flavor too has a great tartness to it, low on acid, but high in pucker. the peaches stay strong from the nose to the flavor too, especially in the finish when their sweetness and softness is front and center. wine barrel character is enormous, sharp but also mellow from the oak, a nice dichotomy of textures. finally, the proportionality of it all is what impresses me the most. not too much peach, not too little. dead on between wild ale yeast and saison or belgian yeast. not too much barrel, but certainly prominent time in them. a great balanced and interesting beer, that seems perfect for the first real warm night of the season. maybe overpriced, but i like this a whole lot, and appreciate the extra 15ml in these bottles, that last sip really is sweet!

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Photo of metter98
4.07/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is hazy light yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high white head that died down, leaving a patch of bubbles on the surface, a collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of sourness from the brett are present in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste starts off sour but also has notes of whitesome hints of peaches.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I found this to be saison that is easy to drink and has lots of interesting complexities, neither of which are too strong.

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Photo of FLima
3.74/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hazy yellow color with a thin aired head.
Light aroma, peaches just shows up randomly when it warms up. Notes of funky lemony sourness.
Flavor of white wine, pear, green apples, lemon, funky yeast and just a bit of white pepper. Again no peaches. Barrel aging is quite subtle. Very dry aftertaste.
Light to medium body with medium carbonation.
Good beer even though I was expecting more peaches. In my mind I was singing: I am going to the country and eat a lot of peaches...

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.41/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Served in a Boulevard tulip snifter.

Luckily for my poor ass, VDubb's brother was willing to share this bottle with us. Good man. It pours a partly-hazy gold topped by over a finger of lightly cream-white foam. The nose comprises white grape must, mildly-funky citrus, cracked wheat, light Belgian yeast, and a touch of black pepper deep in the background. The taste basically mirrors the smell, though with more funk, mostly growing on some faded fruit that they tell me is a "peach". Sure, whatever you say, he says, nodding condescendingly. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta/kinda drying finish. Overall, there isn't enough flavor (especially in the peach department) here to warrant the price tag. In the end, it comes across as a week, lightly Brett-ed, lightly fruited saison. Not a bad beer, but a thoroughly disappointing one.

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

Pours beautiful yellow/ golden body with a pure white head that settles down,displaying nice lacing.
Smells funky of old furniture and some perfume. Slight white wine grape scent.
Tastes refreshing but is quite tart, and the flavors pick up on the farmhouse funk from the nose, but in a sour fashion with white wine grape and lemon being the fruit presence. Old leather antiques, but this is not harsh. It is well- rounded in its own right. Crisp, medium bodied and with a bite at the end that juggles sour with sharper perfume. Interesting. I love farmhouse ales/ saisons. While I'm not sure why it was about $20.00 for this bottle (very limited?), it is quite good.

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Photo of Tilley4
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A pricey offering from GI for sure but one I wanted to try along with Lolita...

Its 80 here today and I need something refreshing...

Aromas of funk and wood...a little Brett... tinges of peach here and there but mostly citrus notes... smells rather intriguing...

Burst of peach sweetness mingled with a dry sourness and some of the funkiness of the Brett... dead dry on the finish and im guessing that's the Brett... not overly sour which im glad of... farmhouse ale would describe this one quite accurately for sure...

A little funky, a little sour, some sweetness from the peaches... a nice blend here for sure...

The $ is a little too steep for a regular purchase and while this is a good, im not sure it warrants the $27 I laid down for it... might be worth picking up a bottle to age though....

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Photo of dapperslapper
5/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

the beer makes me think about having sex in a peach orchard. it is wonderful. each sip makes me go "whoa". it is a wonderfully balanced sour with bright peachy notes. it is exquisite. I hope they do it next year so I can put a vertical together.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.04/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2013 batch poured from a bottle into a Goose Island tulip. The pour is clear, golden in color, and sports two fingers of snow white head. Pretty good retention and decent lacing for such a sour beer. The nose is all vinegar, sour apples, dry white wine, and a slight trace of barnyard funk. No peaches.

Light body and firm feel. The beer has a mild sour flavor and nice fruity backbone and a dry finish. Up front, I get a crisp, soda-cracker wheatiness along with sour notes of lemon zest and apple cider. The sourness is not at all overwhelming. Rather, it accompanies the graininess and allows the peaches and brett to contribute a few of their attributes to the overall flavor. On the back of the palate, the beer dries out considerably and leaves you with rough metallic tannins on your palate. Very refreshing.

I bought this bottle several months ago and put it aside until springtime. I am definitely digging this beer from Goose Island. It's not a sour bomb at all, Instead, it is quite gentle and agreeable. The flavor is a bit on the light side and I feel it could use more fruit (especially peaches), but nonetheless an excellent offering. Unfortunately, the price makes it unlikely I shall revisit this one.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I purchased this at The Beer Store in Southampton, enjoyed chilled in a wine glass, shared with tenderbranson69.

The color is a sunny golden with haze like peach juice with small white head and very fine bead with lace that sticks in spots. The aroma is very enjoyable with nice lactic scent up front with a mild fruit aroma wiht light peach type odor with mild sweet note and subtle oakiness from the wine barrel. The feel has a mild prickly carbonation with slight sour entry and moderately sweet middle and light woody texture rounding it out.

The flavor is excellent a lot of tangy tropical fruit flavor with light peachy taste and mellow white wine aspect adding to the slight sourness of wild yeast with some nice citrus elements and a very tasty wine barrel element adding to the complexity - a very nice blend of peach with the sour ale flavor and only a hint of alcohol in the finish with the tangy lemony aspect lingering. Overall I consider this delicious and drinkable with enough sourness without becoming to acidic to drink more than 1 glass.

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Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

765 ml bottle into tulip, bottled on 8/12/2013. Pours moderately hazy bright golden amber color with a 2 finger dense white head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a good amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big tart peach, pineapple, lemon, pear, apple, white wine, clove, pepper, hay, straw, grass, musty funk, wheat, cracker, bread, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of peach, yeast, brett, and moderate malt notes; with great strength. Taste of tart peach, pineapple, lemon, pear, apple, white wine, clove, pepper, hay, straw, grass, musty funk, wheat, cracker, bread, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Fair amount of earthy tartness/spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of tart peach, pineapple, lemon, pear, apple, white wine, clove, pepper, hay, straw, grass, musty funk, wheat, cracker, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity of tart peach, yeast, brett, and moderate malt flavors; with a great fruity/spicy yeast balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a very smooth, crisp, and lightly prickly mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome brett fruited saison. All around great complexity and balance of peach, yeast, brett, and moderate malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to sip on. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.96/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 8/9/13.

Pours a clear yellow with a foamy white head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is slightly sour with malt, peach, funk, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with slightly sour peach, funk, and wood flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of acidity on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp and dry mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink, but I am not getting any barrel aged characteristics other than wood.

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Photo of jrenihan
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer is cloudy golden with a good-sized white head. Good retention, nice lacing.

Very nice smell. Light fruits, peach, a notable Brett scent, suggesting some tartness. Yeast and a malty scent.

Taste is nice, but not on the level of the nose. The peaches come through even more strongly and are really the centrepiece of the beer. The Brett provides a bit of a dryness, but there is only a minimal tartness. Other fruit flavours are present, including a bit of apple. The fruit flavours, combined with the effervescent body, are reminiscent of champagne.

Medium bodied, strongly carbonated but not in an irritating way. Dryer than expected given all the fruit sweetness.

Overall, good. The nose is the standout and had me expecting a truly first rate beer. Instead, it is just a very good beer. Still quite happy to drink it - but it is not worth the high price tag.

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Photo of TruePerception
3.4/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Goose Islands' Halia, saison aged in wine barrels with peaches. Supposedly, lots of peaches. 7.5%.

A: A little over half a finger of head. Hazy yellow. Bright towards outsides, deeper and duller towards the center.

S: Definitely more peach aroma than a peach wheat beer would have. Fruit fades quickly, leaving behind peach skin and pit notes. Some acidity

T/MF: Very crisp and cool. Almost champagne-like sparkle. Peach is light, leaning more towards skin and pit. Very dry, but it seems to work better for this beer than it might a wheat. Pit bitterness in the background.

This seems like a step up for wheat beer fans, but not nearly worth the $22 price tag, to me. I blame AB for that...

Poured from a 765mL(?!) bottle, into Belgian tulip glass.

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Halia from Goose Island Beer Co.
92 out of 100 based on 124 ratings.