Anchor Humming Ale - Anchor Brewing Company

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Anchor Humming AleAnchor Humming Ale

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651 Ratings
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Ratings: 651
Reviews: 328
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 12.63%
Wants: 21
Gots: 22 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Offa on 11-04-2009)
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Ratings: 651 | Reviews: 328 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A 355ml bottle with a BB of July 2012. Picked this up from my nearest beer specialist after noticing it on the shelf and thinking it was a temporary arrival for christmas. I rather like anchor's stubby bottles.

Poured into a Sam Smith's pint glass. A slightly hazy golden-amber colour with nice carbonation. Huge head from a rather fast pour; off-white and creamy with good retention. A lovely hoppy aroma, lots of pine and citrus notes and a malty sweetness underneath. Smells tasty.

A distinctive flavour of hops with notes of pine and some bitterness. This is balanced by slighty sweet, grainy crystal malt - although I expected the malt to be more robust. Mouthfeel is smooth and leaves a dry sensation; less body than I anticipated from the aroma. Some bitterness to the aftertaste.

A good beer overall, could definitely have a few of these (but won't due to cost). The hop flavours are great, reminds me of the smell of pine trees from mediterranean holidays...

Photo of Natural510
4.08/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle code 0GK (Aug 11, 2010)

Pour elicits a hazy golden orange with scant head but a respectable ring of lacing.
Scent is breaded and fruity, with hints of citrus and pine.
Light flavor with sharp citric & pine twang. Toasted, biscuit-like malt meets a juicy, forest-like hop. Notes of grapefruit and green tea complement the discernible ingredients.
Light in body, which deceivingly masks a full-flavored ale. Crisp & refreshing, with a juicy, astringent finish.

It took me a few of these before I could fully realize the flavor. A new offering from Anchor is always welcome, and they did very well with this one. I expected a re-version of Liberty Ale but instead tasted a pale ale which went in a completely different direction.

Photo of originalsin
4.1/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Never having really been a fan of Anchor Steam, I don't expect much from Anchor beers. Which isn't to say that I think the brewery is 'not worthy' but just that my expectations are slightly lowered. Make no mistake, Humming Ale easily exceeded my expectations.

Why I'm drinking this in the Winter? I couldn't say. My only real qualm with the beer is that it's too damn light. That doesn't necessarily work against it in the overall scheme of things though- I wouldn't have much trouble sessioning this one.

Mouthfeel and drinkability are both exceptional. Beer smells estery and zesty. Some orange and other light fruits come through. The dominant flavor is of piney hops mingling with a bit of orange zest.

Overall, I would buy this again.

Photo of albern
3.93/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a very respectable APA, a little thin, a bit too clean, but a nice beer nevertheless. It pours an almost too pale yellow color, with a thin white head, some lacing. The nose is nice piney hops, estery, with some orange blossom notes too. The nose is good.

The taste is a bit too thin and light bodied, and not enough malts in the middle to balance this out with sufficient heft. But that is really the worst you can say about the beer. The estery hops are quite nice, the beer is very clean and palate cleansing. There are plenty of florals in the beer and the finish is just a touch tart and taut. It's a good beer. The floral hop bouquet is nice, there is an herbal grassiness to the beer that goes well with the thinness. There is also just a touch of lemon tartness in the finish to the beer. There is enough complexity going on to warrant a return. This is more of a summer time beer.

Photo of thebrood1987
4.45/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Has a very nice hazy gold appearance which tells you they put a good amount of hops in this one. The smell reminds me of Boston Lager with a very floral but a little bit more grapefruit green apple of a smell but with more of a sour dough bread smell instead of the malt nose you get from Boston Lager. The taste mimics the smell but hits you with a pretty nice bitter tart finish from the hops. This could pretty much pass for an IPA when its real fresh. Its a grassy grape gree apple like taste from the hops followed by a sour dough bread like malt in the middle and nice bitter finish. Nice and crisp and extremely drinkable. This has more hops than the Boston Lager and is a bit more bitter. Fresh hops hit the back of your tongue. This can easily compare with some popular East Coast IPA's. Remnds me of the Sierra Nevada Pale Ale too in some ways. I like this one a bit better I think. You can tell there is a different strain of hops in there it almost taste like Noble hops and American hops mixed together. I know the hop strain is Nelson Sauvin from New Zealand and it really adds a unique twist on the beer that gives the finish a tart like bitterness. This is my favorite beer from Anchor.

Photo of TCHopCraver
3.93/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Humming pours golden-orange with a fluffy, white-as-snow head into a 23 oz. snifter. After the head recedes, a blobby, full covering film remains. I love how the carbonation bubbles sparkle like a champagne and fly up through the body in straight lines. The lacing left on the glass is streaky, clumpy and really attractive.

At first, the smell is of really upfront, skunky hops. As the beer mellows in the glass for a few minutes, the skunkiness combines with a honeydew melon smell that is quite interesting. I do not know that I have smelled a pale ale quite like this before. There are some grassy hop aromas and a slight caramel and biscuit malt smell in the background.

First taste reveals biting citrus hops on the tip of the tongue, followed by a pretty full caramel malt coating on the broad of my tongue. These two flavors mate to produce that honeydew melon taste that I found in the scent. The finish has a fairly bitter grapefruit hop finish that melds with the malts from the middle of the taste nicely. Surprisingly, the skunky hop smells that were so prominent when first I cracked the bottle cap are not really evident in the taste.

The mouthfeel of Humming nudges toward medium-bodied for a pale ale, with a pretty creamy influence from the caramel malts. The finish still has a puckering hop feel that balances the creaminess of the malts. Overall, this is quite a nice MF for the style.

This was a really solid pale ale that would make for a decent six-pack purchase for watching sports and sitting on the couch all day. It did not blow my mind overall, and I can think of several other pales that I would choose over it, but it was tasty and kept my palate interested.

Photo of GregBlatz
4.08/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This was a new one to me when I saw it at the store. Always liked Anchor Brewing offerings.

A - Hazy bronze/golden color. Head is rocky and beautiful. Lacing the glass.

S - Sweet malt grains and floral hops. Strong citrus aroma.

T - The hops are all aroma. Grapefruit is dominating! Don't know what hops these are but I am guessing cascade or maybe amarillo. Thin malt backbone.

M - Not a big beer. Somewhat of a modest beer. Not a big mouthfeel. Carbonation is relatively high.

D - Extremely drinkable beer. You could sit with this one all night long. Wish I had another.

Overall - This is a fantastic American Pale Ale. Somewhat of a session beer. I really like this.

Photo of Shrews629
4.08/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Very nice orange color. Hazy with yellow highlights around the bottom. Bright white, soapy, thick head. Great retention and lacing. The head was rather large due to an aggressive pour.

Smell - Nice aromas of grapefruit citrus, floral hops, orange notes and touches of a biscuit scent. The nose is kind of tame, but in a good way. No obnoxiously strong fragrances. Just nice, solid and well balanced.

Taste - Grapefruit citrus glides across the tongue first. The bitterness is nice and able-bodied. Hearty enough for any hop fan in my opinion. The orange flavoring is pushed to the back to let the slight bit of biscuity malt come forth.

Mouthfeel - Medium mouthfeel. Smooth and crisp. Mostly refreshing. Covers the palate soundly. The mouthfeel is mostly dry, but gets a little bit watery towards the end of the drink.

Drinkability - This is a very nice, very solid Pale Ale. This totally reminds me of the freshness of Spring. Wonderful bitter punches of flavor and a wonderful beer to look at. I would love to try this when the days start to warm and the grill gets fired back up.

Photo of scruffwhor
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The color is a copper and nronze color with great clarity. The head is craggy in shape and doughy in texture. Great retention and good bubbling and sticky foam.

The aroma is pretty citric bbut also has some herbal hop aromas that remind me of lavender and chammomile. What must be toasted caramel and crystal malts adds a sniff of caramel and cereal grains.

The hops and malts balance out wellon the front of the tongue. I got some soft, resiny citric bitterness. The middle is an almost 50/50 mix of bitter hops and toasted, bready, biscuity malt. The finish has a hefty snap of tangerine bitterness. Leaving just a faint metallic note after the swallow.

The palate goes from resiny to start. Oily in the middle, and a little zesty metallic on the finish.

Nice flavor and diverse beer. Pretty easy and fun to drink.

Photo of beergod1
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden color with a frothy white head that leaves a good lace, still there the next morning. A medium bodied American Pale Ale? When I bought this, I was thinking it was just a Summer Ale of some type, Buying just 1 for my Bottle collection.
Well, now I wish I bought a six pack. The aroma is laid back, but has some lightly roasted caramel malt and floral/citrus hopping. The flavors are pretty well balanced between the caramel sweetness and the slightly citrus hop bitterness, with it's unusual hints of white grapes. A nice beer, I will have to hunt this down when warm weather returns.

Photo of Murchmac
3.3/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I always think this beer is better than it is, and then I buy it and although like it, its well:

Has a smell of grapes and earthy quality and pours a golden amber hue.

The taste is superhoppy but too bitter hoppy and not enough sweetness to balance it out. For me.

I wouldnt turn one down but dont go out of my way to buy it. The Nelson Savignon (sp) hop is good when used with other hops but too bitter on its own.

Photo of augustgarage
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hadn't run across this hoppy APA while in SF on any of the many occasions I've been there - randomly found a 6-er in Venice (CA), so here we go:

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Liquid is a hazy school-bus yellow and amber topped by a persistent finger of ivory. Soapy lacing. Good retention.

Whole cone (?) pine-y grapefruit zest-y resinous hops denote a NorCal West Coast IPA. Pale malt and a hint of caramel announce their presence as well. Somewhat "catty" as it warms.

Malt is clean with a hint of grain and toast. The hops are fairly grassy, suggesting a noble variety almost. I think they utilized Nelson and some C-hops instead. The white wine/gooseberry element comes through next leading into a dry grape-skin and mineral-laden finish.

Light bodied, easy drinking ale with a kick. The most recent offering from Anchor, I like this stab at a slightly more hop-forward beer without diverging from their over-all approach.

Photo of biggred1
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazed, honey blonde with a creamy ivory cap that lasts a while. The aroma is nice and hoppy with white grape and pineapple. Hopping ale is indeed a tasty and different APA with the Nelson Sauvin hops imparting a nice change of pace in their fresh New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc-like light fruity flavors. Medium bodied with perfect carbonation. I like this beer a lot, kudos to Anchor for doing something different.

Photo of dsa7783
3.58/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Twelve-ounce single. Can't compete with some of Anchor's best brews but a highly-drinkable, session-type beer. Impressive appearance, golden hue with faint aromas of malt and honey. The beer was lite on the palate and could flow easily with a variety of dishes so points for versatility. Not bad

Photo of biegaman
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer's golden body shimmers in the light like freshly polished brass. A normal pour produced two fingers of extra-durable, cottony head. Bubbles drift like a swarm of insects and initially whirled around like a tornado. Literally. I had yet to ever witness that before; the bubbles were entwined like blankets knotted after a restless night's sleep and spun in a tight, vigorous circle. It was like watching something from National Geographic.

To commemorate an old anniversary, Anchor decided to use a relatively new hop: Nelson Sauvin. This rare and unusual variety, although native to New Zealand, smells an awful lot like something made just up the coast from the brewery - blindfolded, and excusing a breath of biscuity maltiness, this could easily be mistaken for a Napa Sauvignon Blanc. It is an oily and very weedy smell but has undertones of citrus and turnip. Good choice, Anchor!

This may be the brewery's newest offering but its taste is timeless, and awfully reminiscent of a lot of Anchor's classics. A passive, faintly-sweet maltiness, offering hints of honey and biscuit and nothing else, is engulfed in a very floral and weedy hoppiness with notes of muscat grapes, green apple, citrus and root vegetables. And lots and lots of gooseberry.

The hoppiness, as stated enough already, has a distinctly weedy and earthy character, something like fresh cut grass. It also has a vague vegetal quality and oily waxiness, not unlike green beans. Together, the similarity to a Sauvignon Blanc notwithstanding, they make for a wonderfully textured beer. Some credit is also due to its malts which, like any good friend, are very supportive but without being too vocal.

Anchor Humming Ale is a real, honest-to-goodness humdinger. I wish I had bought a whole six-pack (Lord knows I could have carelessly enjoyed another five or so after this one). I've never heard anybody be able to even make up something bad about Anchor Brewing and their products and it's befitting that this special release be every bit as amicable, classical and yet somewhat vanguard as the brewery itself.

Photo of BretSikkink
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm blown away by the look. Beautiful bone-white head, frothy and tall, with near-cragginess in the off-balanced descent. Nose is pretty light, fairly fruity, with some notes of pepper and wine (Nelson Sauvin it turns out is on the hop bill.) Somewhat yeasty note as well.

On the palate, notes of pale malt sweetness, an herbal grassiness, and the white wine of the Sauvin hops are the most noticeable. Body is right down the middle, finishing with a biscuity dryness that's perfect for taking down a Pale Ale or two. Hops are pretty assertive for the light malt body, not that I mind.

Apparently this was a summer release. I hadn't seen a bottle until a week ago, when I scooped this one. This would absolutely hit the spot on a warm day, as it has enough assertive hops to make a beer-drinker happy while also being light and frisky enough with the bubbles to keep things moving along. Fantastic beer.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Gorgeous golden amber with a billowing crown of albaster colored whipped cream that overflowed the pint glass thanks to an overly vigorous pour. A gentle rockiness during descent, along with abundant and attractive lace, puts this APA smack dab in the good looking category.

The nose is fruity, but isn't tropical fruity in the manner of Cascade, Centennial, Simcoe, et al. Nelson Sauvin hops were a good choice to distinguish this new Anchor brew from Liberty Ale and from legions of other American pales. Bolder would have been better. Note: bolder makes a belated appearance once warming has occurred.

Bolder would have been better on the taste buds too. Okay, so it's mostly (entirely?) my fault for not drinking this bottle of Humming Ale immediately after it was purchased. It's good to know that it's still tasty and drinkable even though nearly two seasons have passed since the summertime release.

It tastes like 100% pale malt is present, which allows the distinctive earthy-herbal, white grape-like flavor of NS hops to shine. Sometimes simple is best, especially in beer of this style. A gentle biscuity sweetness underlies a decently firm countering bitterness that takes over at the midway point of the mouthful. This is lip-smackingly good beer.

The mouthfeel is rock-solid as well, which is no surprise when a quality outfit like Anchor is involved. It's easily big enough and has just the right combination of smooth silkiness and lightly tingly bubbles.

Anchor Liberty Ale is a classic, all-American, red-white-and-blue APA. Humming Ale might be just as good, which makes its summer seasonal status hard to take. Then again, AHA gives me even more reason to want the next several months of snowstorms and frigid temperatures to come to an end.

Photo of nasty15108
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A - Poured a slightly cloudy golden color. The pour porduced a thick rocky head of white foam and tons of sudsy lacing.

S - A nice balance of malt and citric hoppiness. The aroma of biscuits mixed with lemon and pine dominate.

T - Slightly malty up front, but followed by a slightly soapy and metalic bitterness. Big citric flavors in the finish.

MF&D - Starts off dry but finishes off with the oilyness of the hops. Crisp, medium bodied and flavorful.

Photo of mrgrinch
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pale golden yellow, active carbonation, thick and frothy head that lasts and lasts. Sudsy. Mostly cloudy. The bubbles look refreshing.

Smell - Sweet and yeasty.

Taste - I have no idea what an American Pale Ale should taste like, but this one tastes very good. It has a nice flavor. Yeasty with a subtle zing in the finish. Grapefruit?

Mouthfeel - Smooth but not watery texture.

Drinkability - I enjoyed this beer and would have it again. I really love the carbonation and head. It is a beer that has substance but isn't too overwhelming. More refreshing than ass-kicking like some IPAs.

Photo of Samp01
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice golden / yellow with a nice lasting head and nice lacing. Aroma of citrusy hops, some lemon light malt. Taste is citrusy hops, some lemon grapefruit notes and a light grassiness. Palate is good med body with good carbonation and nice crisp mouthfeel. Finish is citrusy hops, some light lemon and grapefruit and a kind of nutty lingering aftretaste. Overall a nice drinkable brew.

Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My notes are about a month old, but thorough as always.

This is a mildly hazy yellow-gold in color. A white head forms, fluffy and dense, at just over one finger. It's not huge, but it retains itself very well and leaves evidence by way of fairly thick patches of lacing in moderation.
Aromas are grassy, earthy and herbal, and this is a pretty well hopped. There's a light backing of dryish malts. The aroma is a bit resinous with a spruce character. It's a pretty simple aroma that implies a dry beer to come if I read it correctly.
Hops are up front, but initially the dry, crackery malt is right up there with it before not fading but more leaning back to let hops take charge and sticking around in the background. There's a bit more in here, with a lemony presence coming out and bringing some very light mint and white grape with it. The hops never lose their presence as the backbone. This is a dry one, very grassy, herbal and earthy.
There's a bit of crispness to this one, and enough of a creamy smoothness to balance what's ultimately a very dry feel. A lingering hops finish carries this one well beyond the sip. There's light carbonation makes in a medium body.
This is a very drinkable beer, and the only thing keeping this from being absolutely and perfectly drinkable is that I eventually want to move on from the dryness to either something with a citrus hop character or on the other side to something dark and malty.

Photo of WesWes
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a beautiful gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, pale malt scent along with a mildly bitter, citrus hop nose. It does jump out at you, but it's balanced and inviting. The taste is good as well. It has a smooth pale malt flavor along with a mild citrus hop character. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking pale ale. It's balanced and flavorful; a fine session ale.

Photo of Vengeance526
3.63/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light hazy golden color with a medium sized fluffy white head that hangs around for a while and leaves some lacing.

Simple but pleasing aroma of grapefruit and lemon upfront.

Taste is very citrusy with strong notes of grapefruit throughout along with lighter notes of lemon and orange and hints of pineapple in the background. No real malt presence.

Light to medium body with medium carbonation. A fairly basic APA overall, but not bad and for me, probably a step or two above their Liberty Ale, with a more prevalent citrus presence.

Photo of bnes09
3.4/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Straw colored ale with a thick white head. Good retention and frothy lace. Good clarity and bubbles as well.

Spicy hop aromas dominate the smell ranging from lemon to pine to grapefruit.

Lots of assertive hop bitterness in the flavor also, specific flavors follow the smell. Bitter and drying. Just a touch of honey sweetness. Not very balanced. Pure hop domination. I would appreciate a little more malt character.

Lighter bodied and plenty of lively bubbles. Dry finish.

Its a descent pale ale. There are better examples out there though.

Photo of GJ40
4.05/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on tap at the Idle Rich in Dallas.

A - A light golden with a slight haze and a small white head. Good lacing as the glass empties.

S - Citrusy and fruity.

T - A light, crisp taste with a sensible hop flavor and a firm bitterness that seems to increase over time.

M - A moderate consistency and carbonation.

D - Very refreshing and one you could easily stick with all night.

Anchor Humming Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 651 ratings.