25th Anniversary Ale - Goose Island Beer Co.

Not Rated.
25th Anniversary Ale25th Anniversary Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

591 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 591
Reviews: 119
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 7
Gots: 22 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co. visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  6.40% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 05-06-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 591 | Reviews: 119
Reviews by Jeffreysan:
Photo of Jeffreysan
3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a deep, dark mahogany brown color with a full finger of off-white head that quickly dissolved into a thin lacing of foam that covered the entire top of the beer in wispy clouds.

Aroma: Notes of malt and sugar dominate the aroma, with hints of orange peel and coriander.

Taste: Malty up front with some caramel highlights, finished by some nicely balanced hoppy bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium with some good carbonation to tickle the taste buds. With an ABV of 6.4% there is just the slightest hint of alcohol on the palate, but not much.

Overall: I really liked this beer, finding it to be very tasty. A solid offering from Goose Island.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottled on May 29 2013.Wow GI has been around for twenty five years,that's a long time.Poured into a nonic a deep clear copper/bronze with a nice lacey slightly off white head,great rich clarity ro the color.Fruitiness and caramel biscuit malts are mild but stand out most in the nose.Very English in style on the palate with big fruitiness and bready tones,the hops are subdued providing some leafiness in the finish.It's a little bigger than most of the style but it's pretty good,would like to have on the hand pump.

Photo of MadScientist
3.96/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A copper colored ale with good clarity. A long lasting, off-white head made of a thin layer of compact bubbles.

S: A medium earthy and citrus hops aroma with moderate caramel malt. Some biscuit-like malt character as well.

T: A fruity and bitter beer with a good malt foundation. There is a medium-strong hops bitterness with some earthy and citrus hops character. It seems like the yeast is bringing complementing fruit flavors.

M: A medium bodied beer with a medium-low level of carbonation.

O: An elegant beer that is a great example of the style. An odd choice of style for an anniversary beer but still very nice.

Photo of Billolick
3.89/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on dating: 24 APR 13

12 ounce bottle. Pours darker amber, darker tan head.

Rich malty nose, rich malty brew. Vanilla, caramel, a hint of chocolate and more malty goodness.

Full flavor malt bomb...in a good way.

Congrats G.I., here's to 25 more years

Photo of tigg924
3.02/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: 1/4 inch head, moderate carbonation, gold in color, cloudy, sediment

Smell: citrus hops, caramel, and woodsy hops

Taste: citrus hops, caramel, and woodsy hops

Mouthfeel: sweetish start with a bitter with a stronger bitter aftertaste, light body, medium carbonation, dry

Overall: To me this is very much middle of the road for the style for the beers that I have had. Not bad, not overly memorable..I think I will pass in the future.

Photo of bsp77
3.96/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Imperial Pint.

Appearance: Darker than expected amber with initially strong head due to aggressive pour but died down almost completely.

Smell: Extremely mild. Caramel, biscuit, tea and citrus, but I struggle to find those.

Taste: Extremely well balanced and integrated, with caramel, biscuit, tea, floral notes and light citrus. Mildly spicy and bitter finish.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, creamy and smooth firm body, dry finish.

Overall: This is a perfect example of a classic Goose Island beer, before they were known for Bourbon County, Belgians and Sours. Nice flavor, great mouthfeel, but the aroma could take a kick in the ass.

Photo of deebo
3.99/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cask on tap at Clybourn location.
A-Clear with an amber/copper color. Heavy white filmy head.
S-Bicuity, caramel, nice grainy malt presence.
T-Tastes like an ESB. Just like you would get on tap at a good English pub.
M-Soft tasting, low carbonation. NIce malt body.
O-Solid beer. Soft bodied and very clean tasting. That characteristic cookie grainy maltiness. A nice light hop flavor to carry through to the next drink. I haven't had this beer out of the bottle but I think this has to be the way to enjoy this brew.

Photo of Franziskaner
3.57/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color is like a shiny new copper penny. Carbonation is lighter and after a minute or two nearly vanishes. Aroma of biscuity malt blended with a gentle, well balanced touch of hops. The mouthfeel is smooth and the malt pounces over your palate and prickles your tounge. The aftertaste is of judiciously used hops and then it quickly disappates with a flourish. It's a well made beer and beckons for further tastes.

Photo of MattyG85
4.16/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass. Bottled on May 16th, 2013.

Appearance: Pours a deep copper amber orange with a lot of rising bubbles. Big three finger off white head with good retention. Leaves a lot of creamy lacing on the glass.

Smell: A balanced biscuit malt aroma with solid earthy hop hints and citrus esters. Dry toasty malts with good hints of biscuit, toast, grains, yeast, caramel, toffee, nuts, and crackers. Some tea like hints. Nicely hoppy with good hints of citrus orange marmalade. Earthy hop hints along with some grass. A pretty nice English bitter aroma. Mild but zesty and well balanced.

Taste: Like the aroma hints, a biscuity malty taste with a solid earthy and citrus hop presence. Toasted malts upfront with a taste of biscuit, grains, toasted bread, yeast, nuts, caramel, toffee, and crackers. Solid hop balance with a citrus fruit taste of marmalade orange. Earthy hop notes of grass as well. Also some tea like taste. Tastes very English with a nice laid back biscuit malt and hop balance. Solid.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Crisp, creamy and very smooth with a drying finish.

Overall: A pretty solid English style Bitter. Has the toasty biscuit and orange citrus flavor typical of the style.

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
3.79/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into nonic pint glass (as the bottle demands). Clear amber with a thin white head. Smells bitter and piney, clean malts hiding in the background. Taste is clean and smooth and drinkable, bitterness starts tingling the tip of your tongue at the beginning of the sip and washes over the roof of your mouth as you drink, finishing at the back of your mouth after the swallow. Mouthfeel is fizzy but smooth. A great ESB.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.48/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured out at the first half of the summer concert in the park in Fallon. Came across as a dark golden color, small 1/2" white head on it.

Aroma was grainy and mildly hopped, like nobles. Tea leaves, mild biscuity aromas waft, but aren't the beer's strong suit.

Taste, good bitterness, a little stronger than usual for style, but still drinks pretty effortlessly. Some nice citrusy floral notes that are perfectly minimalistic but yet present. Caramel in a small amount in the mouthfeel, great integration. Carbonation spot on. Malty, but not heavy.

Good, relatively sessionable stuff. When you want something not as hoppy, not heavy, but not aal either. Good call.

Photo of chinchill
3.81/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle, bottled on 24 april 2013, served in a snifter.

Cloudy, amber-brown with a tan head. Head has limited retention and leaves average lacing.
The appealing, malt-dominated aroma is perhaps a bit faint but has nice hints of dates and vague dark fruits.
Adequately flavorful for style, with a mix of sweet and roasted malts, some fruitiness (again, some dates), and a very mild bitterness. A touch of smoke in the aftertaste.

Exceptional feel, particularly in the markedly dry finish; Medium-light body. Good carbonation.

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a Nonic)
A- This beer pours a crystal clear slightly garnet-brown body with a thin film of sticky beige foam and a few random microbubbles working to the surface.

S- The clean slightly brassy malt hint with some stronger mineral water aromas covering in the finish.

T- The slight brassy quality leads to a bitey field greens bite in the finish. A hint of woody malt flavor comes through as the beer opens.

M- The medium-light mouthfeel has a gentle little fizz that grows as the beer opens.

O- This is a very light beer with odd flavors and only a hint of malt with much more bitterness.

Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a tough review because Honkers is a good ESB and this beer isn't too different and doesn't actually have a whole lot more strength than the original. Just per style, it's as good, but there isn't much difference overall.

It looks very similar to Honkers, if I recall; a similar depth and haze in an amber-yellow body. It grows an eggshell-colored head that is both sturdy and extremely creamy, shows good retention, and leaves mostly patchy lace on the glass with some legging.
The smell and the taste comprises the familiar combination of softness and strength that I admire in the original and the style as a whole. It begins with light caramel and toffee sweetness, combines gently floral and grassy notes, shows a very light bitterness, and combines a bit of minerality (metallic note) and leafy earth. It's got lots of flavor and builds a good, strong beer on its malty foundation. This beer is a good celebration of the original, quintessential Americanized ESB.
The body is medium, and this beer finds the balance needed to be struck in the style between having the light metallic / mineral notes (in feel as well as anything) and showing depth. Carbonation is soft, leading to a smooth, creamy flow off just a light, gentle crispness.

Photo of CloudStrife
3.83/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a tulip.

A: Pours a hazy brownish copper with a dense slightly yellowed head. Lots of visible carbonation. Head takes a couple minutes to dissipate leaving some spots of lacing on the side of the glass.

S: Appealing aroma, craftily blended balance of hop and malt. Hops are floral and malts provide some sweetness.

T: Fairly malt forward brew with a mild kick of hop bitterness. Malt is a carmel sweetness with some characteristics of cracker and bread.

M: Medium body with ample carbonation. A touch of stickiness but mostly a clean finish. Perhaps a bit thin but that

Overall fits the style of this beer very well. Enjoyable beer with a nice balance and drinkability. Malts arent too sweet and hops have some good bitterness.

Photo of tjsdomer2
3.84/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Orange honey with a bit of foam and good lacing...a lot like Honker's Ale.

Smell: Bitter hops and smooth malt with some orange...a lot like Honker's Ale, just a bit milder.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Good balance of caramel and orangey hops. Very woody. Overall, a lot like Honker's Ale, just a bit boozier, almost as if someone spiked it with rum. Mouthfeel is very smooth and medium-bodied, but I wish there were more carbonation.

Overall Drinkability: A good homage to the original, but like many remixes, not quite as good.

Photo of cjgator3
3.82/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle

A- Pours a clear dark copper color with an off-white head with great retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is toasted malts, sweet caramel, and some hops. Smells good!

T- The taste like the aroma is extremely balanced with an equal amount of sweet malt and hops. Very tasty!

M- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a great smooth quality.

O- Overall, this was an enjoyable beer that I'm glad I tried. Happy 25th Goose Island. Cheers!

Photo of russpowell
4.03/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Had this on draft thought it was little better, but wasn't taking notes. Bottled on 29 May 13

Pours an effervescent copper with 3 fingers of sand colored head. Stellar lacing & head retention

S: Caramel, bready notes, a bit of tangerine & a little bit of pine

T: Follows the nose, plus dryness & pears up front. Caramel, a touch of dryness & woody hops as this warms along with a little pear & white grape, & a kiss of pink grapefruit. Finishes with much citrus, some dryness, a touch of pear & woody dryness

MF: Medium bodied, a bit sticky even, slight carbonation, nice balance

Super drinkability, some American slant on the style. Draft version had more malt backbone/balance

Photo of KTCamm
3.59/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Mix a six pick up. 12/15

Pours dark amber, deep copper bronze. Heavy foam settles but rings thick. Bready nose, hints of pine. Little sweet. Taste is a layered malt with an immediate hop bitter that punches through. Rinds, grapefruits contribute. Finishes sweet. Fast close. Hop aftertaste. Like a hoppier Honkers ale.

Photo of jtierney89
3.3/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bright orange glow with brilliant clarity. Half finger of off white head, pretty clingy. Toasted caramel with piney and soapy hoppiness on the nose. Faint toffee and butterscotch.

Pretty good. Thick malt body, medium bodied. Decent carbonation. Dry hearty breads up front followed by some rich toffee and caramel flavors. Whole grain flavor goes into a snappy hoppy bitter bite that balances the beer. Finishes nice and dry and balanced. Good flavors with good balance, smooth and tasty with alcohol that stays pretty well hidden. Body thins out a bit on the finish.

Photo of KYGunner
3.79/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Very rich and hearty amber color the head was just off white and was stiff and frothy.

Very rich and hearty malt aromas with some roasted malt quality and bready, crackery aroma.

Everything in the nose manifests in the taste as strong malt and roasted qualities compliment a bread and cracker finish. Less ESB, and more rich red/amber, this is a really good beer.

Photo of bluejacket74
3.74/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce bottle, bottled on date of 25 APR 13. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a slightly hazy copper color with about an inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both decent. The brew smells like toasted malt, toffee, and candied oranges. The taste is similar to the aroma, but there's the addition of some herbal hop flavor. I know this brew isn't exactly fresh, but it's still tasty. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit slick with moderate carbonation. I think it's a good ESB. Definitely worth a try.

Photo of smakawhat
3.87/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Dark brown to copper amber body, very clear, with some slow rising thin carbonation in the middle. Head makes a fluffy light tan three fingers and settles into a one finger cap very nicely.

Good nose, but some faint cinnamon toast like qualities. Good sense of light brown sugar and borderline charring malts with the toasty sense also. Good crispness to this.

Palate comes with a full coating mouthfeel. Flavors hinted on the nose are present of toasty cinnamon and malts but a bit tuned down. Fruity ester quality not so noticeable, but a good leafy hop bitterness finishes on the swallow. Almost crackery dry with a flowery bitter hop quality and more hop pronouncement than usual ESBs. As the beer warms the sugars get more pronounced and bring the flavors more forward making it much more enjoyable to drink. Some sticky yeast and caramel also.

Overall a solid fun ESB from the Goose. Hopefully another 25 more years still in the tank.

Photo of matjack85
3.6/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I found this at the Binny's store in Bloomingdale, IL. Got it as part of a build-your own six pack for $9.99, so $1.67 for a single 12oz bottle. Bottled on date of 5/5/13 on the back label.

The beer poured a mostly clear iced tea color with a 1½-finger white head that had decent retention and incredible lacing.

The aroma was weak, but what there was of it seemed like toasted malt, floral hops, and a bit of fruit.

Nice balance here between malt and hops. It's really not very bitter at all. Toasty breaded malt combines with herbal hops and a bit of orange peel. Not sweet, not bitter, but it is dry.

Smooth and creamy with medium body and low carbonation.

Very drinkable, but no "wow" factor.

Photo of Hammer35
3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Opaque reddish/copper color with a pale head that doesn't stick around long and minimal lacing. Not much carbonation to be seen either.

Smell: Malty and sweet with a hint of fruit.

Taste: Similar to the aroma, but the flavor seems thin to me. Bitter finish that is a palate cleanser though.

Mouthfeel: Thin and almost watery. Very lightly carbonated.

Overall: Far from the worst beer I've ever had but there's nothing that makes this stand out to me. There's nothing particularly offensive about this, but nothing memorable either.

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25th Anniversary Ale from Goose Island Beer Co.
83 out of 100 based on 591 ratings.