Anchor Liberty Ale - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Liberty AleAnchor Liberty Ale

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BA SCORE
87
very good

3,177 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,177
Reviews: 1,524
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 11.86%
Wants: 82
Gots: 295 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 11-18-2000

The champagne-like bubbles, distinctive hop bouquet, and balanced character of Liberty Ale® revives centuries-old ale brewing traditions that are now more relevant than ever. First introduced in 1975, Liberty Ale® is brewed strictly according to traditional craft brewing methods, and uses only natural ingredients — pale malted barley, fresh whole-cone Cascade hops and a special top-fermenting yeast, and water.

The yeast used during fermentation produces many of Liberty Ale's subtle flavors and characteristics. A natural process called "bunging" creates gentle carbonation, and the practice of dry hopping (adding fresh hops to the brew during aging), revived by Anchor, creates its unique aroma.

Liberty Ale® was first brewed to celebrate the bicentennial of Paul Revere’s historic ride. As the first modern American IPA brewed after prohibition and the first modern American single-hop ale and dry-hopped ale, Anchor’s Liberty Ale® is the original craft brewed ale and the historic beer that started a revolution.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,177 | Reviews: 1,524
Reviews by saintwarrick:
Photo of saintwarrick
5/5  rDev +28.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours golden with an orangish hue, with no effort needed to build any sort of head. A perfect lacy head stays on the beer through the glass. Very citrusy aroma on the first sniff, those cascade hops really stand out. Great balance but it is definitely a hop-head's delight. Goes down water smooth with a kick of dryness, but not too much to be distracting.

I discovered this a couple years ago and I have yet to find a better session beer. I'd keep this stocked 24-7 if I could. Growing up as a beer drinker and going through some of the run of the mill macros, this is what I imagined that beer should look, smell and taste like. A true American classic. Cheers.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep golden/amber color with a nice fruffy head,the aroma is somewhat dry and hoppy with some slight sweetness in the background.The flavor is zesty and citruis-like with a malty sweet lingering backbone but the hop profile is the main taste I got from this brew.A pretty darn good ale even better if your a hophead.

Photo of Popsinc
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lovely amber pour with a generous foamy head that doesn't fade too fast.

The nose is nicely hopped and there is the presence of some fruit, possibly sun dried apricot.

The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Exceptionaly hopped and complimented by a subtle fruitiness (but not sweet), this beer has great balance. Again, i really enjoy the hoppiness and find this beer to have exceptional body. Pleasant, dry, hoppy finish.

A great drinking experience. This is something i would buy again, and highly recommend.

Photo of Marty
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden amber hue with a lively head -- well carbonated. Did not smell particularly exciting (perhaps a result of a recent but persistent case of sinusitus -- blech!!). The taste, however, was very pleasing. I could drink a lot of this beer. Hops are in the front row, but nicely balanced by a nutty maltiness. This beer might not have the claim to fame of Anchor's Steam beer, but it is a terrific beer in its own right.

Photo of RoyalT
3.15/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance – Nice orange color but a smallish head that quickly fizzles away leaving the glass dry.

Smell – Some citrus fruit at first, but then the hops kick in.

Taste – This has a similar flavor to Anchor Steam Beer. I poured this one right after it for comparison purposes. There’s a noticeable malt taste to compliment the mostly hop body. The citrus flavors come out as well, with a bitter finish tempered with an orange peel.

Mouthfeel – Nice, light carbonation gives this beer a comfortable tingle on the tongue, but it’s kind of clumsy going down.

Drinkability – Like post APAs, this one is rather dry and will probably go down well on a hot summer day.

Comments – The Liberty Ale is less authoritative in its flavors than the Small Beer.

Photo of iRaven99664
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

L: looks amazing! Has a nice apple juice appearance. Its deep amber but not too dark. And its clear with no mirk. When opened there was jsut a hint of smoke. Lacey head, seems to stick as it goes down.

S: Cracked it open and the first thing I noticed after the smoke was "this is that ideal beer smell". In the "this is the smell I smelt in high school and in college, but better". It's not bad as the aroma is spot on perfect for what its going for at the time it was brewed. It's just not "ale" smell. It's definitely an adjunct lager smell.

T: Again, it feels like an ideal product for what it must be going for back in the day. Seriously it makes me feel that they were trying to do an operation of taking the taste of lager into the world of ale [which seems blasphemous today, but what was probably preferred in the day]. Fruitish, caramel, and slight hop dominate front and back on the tongue, and lingers pleasantly on the tongue. As I saw with another review it may have raised an eye brow in the late 70's, but not too par to todays standards. Should it be knocked for that? No. It's Old Gard. It really truly reminds me of PBR that's filtered for impurities. And as a new found lover of PBR for lower end beer, I'm okay with that. It's just not an IPA, not even English. Hell its not even an ESB or Pale Ale.

F: Again, an ideal quality to this. For being as light as it is, its perfect. It's just a tad thicker than water, with a hint of sudsy carb. rather pleasant. The coating is nice, and the lingering taste reminds you "Oh yeah, that hint of alcohol reminds me I am drinking an adult beverage, but the fruity malt sweetness says its wonderfully soothing".

Overall: If like most of us that started with the BMC adjuncts, but has a preferred taste for PBR and its fruity sweetness, you will enjoy this with its "less than insta-hangover" quality. I can see where this was a hit after decades with Bud and Miller. Todays standards, it doesn't seem high quality or over the top. But I can see this as an American style that screams "I'M FUCKING PATRIOTIC AND THIS BEER SAYS 'MURICA!". Though, it's not a Sam Adams.

Photo of MadScientist
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This pours a medium gold with very good clarity. The persistent off-white head of rocky bubble falls to a 1/4 of an inch but is easily roused.

S: Moderate citrus hops and a grassy dry hopped aroma along with a floral alcohol note dominate the aroma. There is a moderately-low biscuity malt aroma with a light note of caramel. There is also a yeast ester of oranges that start very low bt becomes more apparent as it warms.

T: A moderate flavor of citrus hops with a moderate hops bitterness dominate the flavor. The moderately-low malt sweetness has a light caramel flavor. The balance is mostly bitter with a dry finish and a lingering aftertaste of hop bitterness.

M: This is a medium-light bodied beer with moderate carbonation. There is no warmth and a little dry hopped astringency.

O: This is an IPA with American hops with excellent balance of flavor. I generally seek out hoppy IPA but still enjoy this beer from time to time. It's a great example of the style but most would think it's more of an English IPA with American hops.

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
4.72/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Big fluffy two fingers of eggshell head with little cake in the middle. I love that. Beer is hazy orange color. Head leaves slowly, reducing to a thin layer, leaves fractured lace.

Aroma- bready english malt, lively ale fruit, bright yeastiness, maybe shortbread or poundcake, forceful hop spice and alcohol punches through it all.

Taste- For starters, this brew is ludicrously balanced. It makes it very difficult to review becaus the flavors all hit the palate at the same time and meld togther beautifuly. I get a wonderful crisp red apple character, softed by very subtle diacetyl, full bodied, bready malt supports it all and gives the esters a nice home, hops creep in mid-sip and while never forgrounded, leave the final impression with a nice spicy/ juicy, bitterness that lasts into a slightly soapy aftertaste. Lemony taste emerges with warmth. Very interesting and artful interpretation of the style.

MF- Mid-wieght, full and fuzzy. Nice natural carbonation.
Drinakability- Had trouble keeping it in the glass long enough to review it.

Photo of Breen
3.67/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pour/Appearance: 1 finger head that dissipated at a moderate pace w/minimal lacing. Rich amber in color, a bit cloudy.

Smell: Yeast, spice, tangerine

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, heavily carbonated

Taste: The bitterness is balanced by spicy notes, tangerine, and grassy malt.

This beer had a unique taste which set it apart from your average ale. It took a minute to pick up that it was the tangerine I was tasting. Overall great ale, worth a try.

Photo of SIRIUS2
4.33/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from bottle into a pint glass producing plentiful white foamy head with good retention and excellent lacing. Color is a dark yellow or light gold.

S: Floral hops - light but predominant. The faintest fresh yeast smell comes in second the the initial bouquet.

T: Very nice initial balance between pale & caramel malts with flavorful hoppy bittering. The finish is tight with a light bitterness.

M&D: Nice medium body and great carbonation creates a feel that is a bit light on the tongue but quite satisfying. Very smooth.

Fantastic brew! The complexity is subtle but is more than meets the eye. Though light in color and texture, the flavors range from light maltiness to light hoppy sharpness in the finish. This goes down so smoothly with such a clean taste that I can see how this could become a favorite. Excellent.

Photo of skybluewater
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle code "4L7" (although this beer is most definitely not square), which I translate as "July 27, 2004" (don't blame me if I'm wrong). Pours a nice honey color, quite a bit lighter than Steam. Nice rocky head that lasts for quite a while. Smell is a big burst of fruit and pine. Taste is a bit fruity, a bit piney, but with Steam in the background.

Overall, I like this one a bit less than Steam, but this is still a darn good beer.

Photo of blitz134
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice light yellow orange body with a white head on top which slowly disappeared to a thin layer of bubbles. Aroma is loaded with hops which range from grapefruit to a nice resin pine aroma. Overall very typical hop profile from a west coast pale ale. There is also a nice malty sweet balance. The flavor has less of the grapefruit flavors and more of the pine resin aspect. Finish is slightly bitter. Mouthfeel is medium, not as thick and oily as some, but definitely coats better than others. This is a typical session beer of mine so of course its highly drinkable. Definitely a classic.

Photo of chOAKbarrell
3.41/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very inviting vibrant golden with a small head.

Strange aroma. I pick up a hop aroma with a strong field-of-grain scent right behind that. The smell kind of reminds me of some summer ales I've had (Samuel Adams, Mendocino). I feel like the scent of alcohol is also pretty noticeable too, though, which is a turn-off.

Taste is interesting. In ways, the grassy flavors remind me of a macro lager, which is wierd. I would like a bit more hop-kick in the finish, instead of the slight wateryness I pick up.

Mouthfeel is also a bit watery, but satisfying enough.

This beer was decent, but not as good as I expected. If I was choosing an APA, I would definitely opt for Sierra Nevada Pale Ale instead.

Photo of sellmeagod
3.4/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This isn't touching Anchor Steam, but for 6.0 abv this has all of the necessary sessionable qualities.

The flavor is more biting than a regular Pale Ale, and that makes it all the more enjoyable. Some citrus smell, some bitter taste, mostly just an easy drink. A crisp and clean finish and there's nothing at all unpleasant to be found.

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A solid, respectable beer. It's an orange color with a small head. An outdoorsy, grainy aroma, with a little citrus. Mostly a hoppy taste, sweet. I think it had a nice balance. This is a beer you could drink a few of, and be very satisfied. I know I was.

Photo of Walker8810
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a nice tawny copper color with at least an inch of head. smells vaguely of bananas with a hint of floral hops. imparts a nice sweet taste at first, not too sweet, very pleasant with a bitter hop finish. mouthfeel is medium. goes down very smooth with a clean finish. overall a delicious ale that would make an excellent session beer.

Photo of SD-Alefan
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a hazy yellow-orange with a one-finger head that compacts to a 1/2" layer of bubbly foam that slowly fades away to some lacing around the top of the glass.
The smell may be the best part of this ale. Bread and citrus, maybe a little grassy and maybe a little peach.
The first taste comes on as a mild bitter. If I let it linger on the tongue, I even get a bit of burnt toast but mostly a pleasant, mild, and lingering bitterness. Also a little citrus. As it warms, I taste a bit more of the sweet malt but that mild bitter really hangs on. It is not unpleasant.

The mouthfeel is a fairly bubbly and thin.

Overall, a tasty and different IPA. I'd drink it again.

Photo of andyfrancis
3.03/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear yellow with a couple streams of bubbles. Poured a tall head that reduced to a froth I could eat with a fork.

Smells of pilsner-like malts, with a bit of orange.

Interesting combo of flavors right away. Still, the malt stands out to me. A little ting from the carbonation. Some lingering sour/bitter aftertaste.

I appreciate anchor brewing, but this not my favorite of their offerings.

Photo of Todd
3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap @ Redbones.

Golden light amber in colour with a thin lace. Aroma is slightly estery with some sense of bitterness. Peach-like fruitiness. Light biscuity sweetness. Bitter flash on the palate. Bitty, dry finish.

Not bad on-tap, but much more preferred in the bottle -- seems to be hoppier in the bottle and all the flavours pop out more.

Photo of grynder33
3.01/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a light amber color, quick disappearing head, First sniff was extremely flowery. Taste was fine, malty fruity and sweet, very pleasant sweetish aftertaste. The taste was perfectly fine, but I can't get past that initial aroma. It was almost like my grandma
s worst perfume.

Photo of Beaver13
3.06/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle. Pours golden yellow with a big creamy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is bready malts and fruity, piney cascade hops.

The flavor is sweet bready malts and some mint with a fruity piney hop finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with some sharp carbonation.

Overall, a solid APA - old school cascade.

Photo of bishopdc0
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden with a nice thick white head lacing all over the side of the glass

Starts with a pale malt aroma with a hint of a hop aroma finish

The taste is full of pale malt seems very fresh to the taste the body is mild but apparent a mild hop bitterness finishes

Photo of niangelo
4.35/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a bottle, poured into a straight-sided beer glass. Poured a hazy, deep gold/caramel hue. The head is over an inch thick, I have to take care in pouring this one because the carbonation is lively and it foams. The head is ruddy, colored like pear flesh.

Great nose on this beer! Lots of malt, refreshing burst of hops and some tart green apples. After drinking some lagers lately, this is a nice change.

Great hop hit at first. Nice piney, bready notes initially, and a solid body with a medium malt flavor. The finish takes on some cheese characteristic, like a nice aged cheddar. The hops are a little more bitter than expected and last a while in the aftertaste. This increases as the beer warms. Mouthfeel is slightly viscous, with medium carbonation. The beer sticks on the palate a while after finishing.

Overall, a great beer. Very enjoyable look and presentation, and very drinkable.

Photo of Fcip78
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A truly great beer from Anchor, pours golden in a pint glass, with a picture perfect foamy head. Great use of the cascade hops throughout, but not too hoppy to make it one dimensional....perfect beer for summertime picnics or baseball games in July. One of my favs.

Photo of Doomcifer
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite pale ales and a lot different from the typical pale ale, in my opinion. Pours a hazy, golden color with a nice, foamy head. Smells of breadiness, citrusy, and earthy. Flavors of bready malts, citrusy hops, yeast, and a certain "earthy" flavor...I dont know how else to describe it. This beer isnt as crisp as the typical APA but packs more body and depth of flavor. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied, and good carbonation. Very balanced beer and extremely drinkable. Anchor doesnt let down.

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Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 3,177 ratings.