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Anchor Liberty Ale - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Liberty AleAnchor Liberty Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

3,093 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,093
Reviews: 1,501
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 11.83%
Wants: 75
Gots: 236 | 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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Ratings: 3,093 | Reviews: 1,501
Photo of JimmyCop
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of bigbutter
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of the42ndtourist
4.57/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly amber tinted golden, with a light white head that fades to a thin covering layer. Aroma is interesting, hops evident with light perfumes and a good dose of spicy hops. Taste is also quite interesting. Regardless of reputations, this is my first time trying Liberty Ale, and it leaps out to me as exactly what an APA should be. Flowery hops merely flesh out the spicy hop flavours, with quite a bit of sweetness to keep that all in check. Light (in a good way), refreshing, and ever so good. A fabulous beer, and a permanent fixture at the LCBO, so I have a new option for backup for when I can't find anything new.

Photo of sopor
3.67/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Slightly orageish-amber with a thin whitish head quickly reduced to a splotchy film. Smells of toasty malt touched with some caramel and just a note of citrus under bitter hop. A nice APA that comes off on the sweet and juicy side. Seems to have perhaps some German malts in there, caramel malty flavor and much less biscuity malt. Hops are bitter, but well-balanced, knowing just when to bite. A light refreshing brew, but not enough carbonation for "crisp." Pretty drinkable, but not super APA.

Photo of ommegoose
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle. No one else makes bombers that look quite like Anchor's.

Pours out an orangey gold with a slowly building head that gets to about a half inch and then drops to a thin cap after a few sips. Plenty of visible carbonation streams. The color is a bit hazier than some other pale ales. It's a bright yellow when held to the light. With my second pour I was quicker and induced a more lasting head. At the end there are some floaties from the bottle conditioning.

Floral hops are the first thing that hits the nose, followed by some slightly buttery malt, with more sweetness than expected. Some herbal and nutty notes come through. For a California brewer, it's somewhat surprising to find so little citrus or piney aromas here. It's fruity in a vague sense, I believe. And as others have suggested, there's a little mint leaf aroma in there too.

A buttery start to this gives way to a mouthful of flowery, herbal (slightly grassy) hops. I love the way that bitterness hardly comes into play at all until the finish. Balanced for sure, although less emphasis on hops, namely hop bitterness, than other APAs. Still, you get a herbal, bitter finish, featuring some mint, and hints of grapefruit from the Cascades. Might be too buttery overall for some, but I like it.

Full and creamy, yet light and easy to drink. The somewhat large carbonation bubbles in the glass suggest that it might be too fizzy, but this is far from it. Very impressive. I don't think I drank my bomber slowly by any means, so I was a little disappointed to find that this flattened out pretty fast.

I like this better than I thought I would. It really reminds me more of Bass (taken up a few notches) more than something like SNPA. No trouble drinking it, although I wish it maybe was lower in abv. I would love to session this, but 6% can catch up with me a little quick. I would get it again if I was in the mood for pale ales. I was a bit sad when I took the last sip.

Photo of PerzentRizen
4.17/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I have always enjoyed Anchor's beers and I am just now getting a chance to review them in my logbook and online. I find their beers to be hardy, flavorful and extremely versatile.

I poured mine into a duvel glass so I could smell the many aroms found within this classic American ale. The head was around 2 inches then quickly dispersed to a thin lace.

The Aroma is like caramel corn hot from the fair with a faint hint of cider and toasted almonds. Very Appetizing!

The taste is very malty with very little hop character at the beginning. The finish is the perfect amount of hop bite with only a faint hint of hop at the very end. This is one very smooth beer.

The mouthfeel is full and inviting. It begs you to keep drinking. I would recommend drinking it around 45-50 degrees in hot weather and 55-60 degrees in cold weather. This is part of the versatility of this great beer. This will mostly affect mouthfeel and taste. The colder version is very refreshing and the slightly warmer version is a very cozy friend in cold weather.

You could basically drink this beer all day and sometimes I do. I love the flavors and aromas - It's like coming home from a long vacation.

Photo of jhtipton
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into my Coors Banquet tasting pilsner glass. Produce a fairly decent head with mild lacing. Nice continuous carbonation and rich golden hue. Smell the typical anchor steam brew with some mild piney and citrusy additions. Taste is very much like the smell. I think it is a tad tastier than the anchor steam due to the additional piney hoppy flavour. Mouthfeel is wonderful, light to medium bodied with plenty of carbonation. Drinkability is splendid; I could certainly enjoy two or three outside on a sunny day. I could enjoy a few inside, if need be. Cheers.

Photo of StephenRich
4.82/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Everyone should have a go-to beer for that very specific moment which runs over and over again and requires something just totally perfect. Of course experimenting with new beers is amazing and fun, but you always need that one beer which you know will never let you down and will always perform exactly the way you want it to. Its hot outside, your palate is dry, and you are thirsty for a beer - my go-to is, and for a very long time has been, the Liberty Ale by Anchor Brewing. And for good reason.

There are lots, actually tons of thirst quenching IPAs, Pale Ales, Pilsners, Weissebiers, etc which will all quench your palate exceptionally well. But the Liberty Ale is my staple beyond any other beer I have ever tried when I have this specific goal in mind. Its immaculate balance, complex yet sublime simplicity, and elegant flavors come together to create a beer which is exactly what I need when I need it - really nothing else would do the trick; and there are several reasons for this... First of all, ease of purchase is very important for your go-to beer. The Liberty ale is brewed by Anchor Brewing, one of the United States most historic and founding craft breweries; and as such is available through almost all of the country. In Ontario it is also available at almost every LCBO that has a reasonable beer selection. So thankfully, it is not hard to find. Also, it comes in a 650ml bottle rather than a 341 or 355ml bottle. This way you can fill yourself a proper pint glass and ensure you have enough of the goods! Its also only $3.90 at the LCBO, so its not going to break the bank.

Most of all though, it tastes and feels amazing. Lets take a look. The Liberty Ale was first brewed on April 18, 1975 to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Paul Revere's historic ride. It is of course brewed only with the finest malts, fresh whole hops, and a special top fermenting ale yeast. This beer is 100% naturally carbonated by a process called bunging which gives the Liberty Ale a distinct crisp lightness in your mouth. Its not aggressive and champagne like, it just seems to be more precise and strategic than typical carbonation.

It pours smoothly forming a pillowy white head immediately which will build to an inch and a touch of sturdy white foam on top of your beer, bursting with air and life. The Liberty Ale sits contently crisp and transparent, glowing a golden straw color fuming with bubbles streaming up the center of the beer. The nose is fresh and filled with citrus, hay fields, bright earth, grapefruit, crisp hops and a light touch of pale malts. It smells very clean and refreshing - a pure indicator of what's to come.

When the Ale hits your palate first light sweet pale malts and the crisp freshness of west coast hops float across your tongue and cheeks elegantly showing tinny and elaborate carbonation. Immediately the mouthfeel is superb; its very light on your tongue but it definitely has a strong presence allowing its flavors to do their job. Its as if the beer floating in only the bottom half of your mouth somehow fills the entire thing.

In comes a bright floral splash of citrus hops, biscuit and bread, light grapefruit-like spice, and a dry malt and hop finish. This beer is not overwhelming or to complex, but it does have a beautiful array of flavors that work so perfectly together that they can really only be described as liberating. Its finish is so clean and crisp, along with the amazing mouthfeel creating a beer that perfectly quenches, refreshes, and scrubs your palate clean. I love the fresh simplicity of the pale malts here, they speak out to easily and create such a clean light caramel and honey malt flavor that you will want to come back to it again and again!

The Liberty Ale is an amazing beer on its own, but shines with so many food dishes. Anything with grease, cheese, dough, or spice will be lifted to a new level with the Liberty Ale. One of my favorite combinations is a fresh off the grill hamburger with lots of toppings. Or a thick juicy steak and baked potato. Or Pasta with Carbonara, or Vindaloo, or chicken wings, or so much more!

I've never had this beer on draft, however I hear that it is available some places in the U.S. so I will be hunting for it! And trust me, you should too...

Photo of beerded_drunk
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Beersignal
4.11/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a 650 ml bottle... absolutely love the label artwork on this beer.

The pour yields a deep amber liquid with copper/caramel highlights that is covered with a huge off white and billowy cap of foam that lasts and clings like a defector to liberty.

The bouquet is redolent of fresh cascade hops and notes of citrus fruits. Hints of pepper and malt manifest their presence in mid to late aroma and leave behind traces of oak.

The carbonation is nearly perfect. Firm and full mouthfeel leads in for flavours of hops to dominate the profile. Soft hints of malt surface but are soon buried by a long and biting hoppy finish.

This is a remarkably clean yet wonderful session ale that would also fit into the IPA category IMHO. The freshness and bitterness of the hops dominates this beer from start to finish without being overdone. I buy this whenever I'm in Ontario... Québec will not import this beer.

Photo of alexskovan
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a cloudy pale orange, with a big white head. Aroma is. . . oh hell, I DON'T KNOW! IT SMELLS LIKE BEER FOR GOD'S SAKE!

Excuse me, sorry. It was a tough day at work today. But really; it smells like a light ale. What more can I say? There is nothing that jumps out at me; a little estery, a little hoppy, a little little mostly. The aroma is understated.

Taste is . . . light but full, a twang of grapefruit hops and a toasty malt finish.

It's getting better as I approach the bottom of the glass (funny that!). The aroma seems to be opening up too; toasty and a bit of honey.

OK, I like it. I don't love it. It's a micro APA, but not an overly grapefruity one, and that is always a good thing. It isn't as frustratingly complex and trecherous as Anchor Steam ( a beer I am constantly trying to like and don't) it is a solid APA that you can drink without thinking about it too much. Or something.

Photo of robthepenguin
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of arfenhouse
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of Niners49
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Monsta-beer-drinker
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of drinkininthewood
3.16/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served from a 650 ml brown pop off bottle into a pint glass. No freshness date.

A- Foggy golden in color with a nice thick head that sticks for the whole beer.

S- Malty sweet with nice/grassy floral hop aromas .

T Nice malt flavor countered with a fresh floral hop taste with lots of lemon/citrus flavors mid palate. Finishes somewhat tangy (due to the vast fruity flavors) also a little dry in the end. Very nice hop profile.

M- Smooth, medium bodied beer with good carbonation and hop acidity.

D- worth having a couple for sure.

Overall a pretty good APA. Not readily available in Canada so when ever I find it I usually stock up. Recommended.

Photo of priwen
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of KOP_Beer_OUtlet
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Indybeer
4.12/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Poured a hazy orange color, with a moderate head that quickly receded to a smallish ring, leaving some lacing behind. Aroma is floral and citrus from the hops! Very nice. Taste is slightly malty, witha good hop balance and with moderate carbonation, this is a very drinkable beer! Very enjoyable.

Photo of beersarang
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light copper with a white head that holds its own and leaves lace all over. A healty and appetizing beer.

Grassy citrus aroma gently meets the nose, no harshness here.

Nice domestic malts upfront with a steady hit of hop bitterness with grapefruit hop undertones. A true west coast pale ale flavor. Citrusy hops give way and the most pleasant suprise is a very wonderful sweet grainy finish. A perfectly balanced APA.

Medium bodied with crisp but smooth carbonation.

I would buy this one again for sure, ranks at the top of APAs for sure.

Photo of JacobGumina
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of PortLargo
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of KeeganRohovich
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of dancinwillie
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Apricot in color, hazy and some yeast sediment floaters. Inch white head, takes it's time dropping. Leaves a ring of lacing that looks like a white mountain silhouette.

Smells a little like apricots too! Or maybe peaches. Some light nuttiness too.

Light citrus flavors, mingle with that sweet apricot. A little of the nut flavor that I picked up in the nose. A dry, roasty malt flavor is there as well. Some light floral hops. Very good balance here. Good hop bitterness on the front of my tongue, and gets sweeter as it continues back. Good mouthfeel, vibrant, and a bit chewy.

Good beer to kick back with and have a few. Unassuming and refreshing. Balanced and tasty. Give me Liberty, or... ah forget it. I'm sure someone's used it already anyway. Cheers!

Photo of jeffjfindley
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Orange, hazy autumn morning, oddly enough the ground is covered in a thick blanket of snow. When it starts to warm the snow melts away, but not completely. Some nice formations remain. Pretty goddamn beer. Smell is robust, musky and hoppy. Taste is a punch in the head, with an extremely German hop aftertaste, big time Saaz. Mouthfeel is substantial, and clinging. Drinkabillity doesn't get much better.

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Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 3,093 ratings.