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Anchor Liberty Ale - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor Liberty AleAnchor Liberty Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,925 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,925
Reviews: 1,477
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 11.83%
Wants: 69
Gots: 159 | 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:
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.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 11-18-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,925 | Reviews: 1,477 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of erz316
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into Sam Smith pint glass. as I poured it, I noticed: this beer is a boss.

A - slightly hazy light-amber body, mostly transparent. thin solid white head, not much formed, retains well for what its got.

S - a very aromatic beer. a bitter aroma from the hops is the most prevalent. some herbal presence in the background.

T - initial taste is a strong bitterness: like citrus rind and bitter black tea. the finish pronounces the initial tastes and has some alcohol and medicinal taste to it as well, not very appealing. the aftertaste is like bitter herbs, but this fades quickly. we are left with something slightly sweet, but the lingering bitter tries to cover this up.

MF&D - the beer is a tad bit thin and the carbonation is just not right for some reason, I think it could be a bit more dense. nothing bad to say.

erz316, Feb 22, 2009
Photo of ralree
3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Orange and a little cloudy with a beautiful white head. Retention is good, lacing is fantastic.

S: Rice, some roasted grain - almost like a burnt rubber smell. Maybe that's the hops. Not too appetizing.

T: Very bready - this one wins as far as tasting like a slice of freshly baked bread. Alcohol is subdued behind some frightfully flowery hops. This actually tastes very good. Leaves a dandelion taste in the mouth after swallowing.

M: Pretty slick and oily, not clean at all. Medium-light bodied. Carbonation good. Very thirst-quenching.

D: Drinks wonderfully. Would go well with a meal.

ralree, Feb 21, 2009
Photo of cpn920
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a pale gold with a lively head that faded to a thin layer.
Smelled the malt base with hops in the background.
Taste is similar to smell with caramel malt and slightly bitter hops on the finish.
Medium bodied with good carbonation.
Drinkability is good with this beer that is well balanced and more subtle with the hops than many other versions of this style.

cpn920, Feb 21, 2009
Photo of Stunner97
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Golden yellow color beer with extrodinary amount of carbonation with bubbles just ripping up the glass to a thick white foamy heavy carbonation head

Smell- heavy heavy yeast and slight citrusy hop notes, but a dominated yeasty hop smell

Taste- again alot of yeast as in the smell, but a tasty floral and citrus hop tone and finish, this is a good beer for someone who likes a bit of hoppy bitterness but not to overwhelming, definite slight bitter finish from the hops

Mouthfeel- light bodied but with a high level of carbonation for sure

Drinkability- overall a pretty good tasting and interesting pale ale, similar flavor to that of the sierra nevada pale if you are a fan of that give this one a try, one i will have to try again as I found this to be pretty tasty hoppy enjoyable pale ale beer, highly drinkable good session brewski

Stunner97, Feb 20, 2009
Photo of tai4ji2x
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle. batch "8D1"

clear, lightly amber color with straw tones. decent, fluffy head slowly fades to thin layer. somewhat thin but consistent lacing.

toast malts in the aroma and lightly piney, grassy hop meld together. metallic whiff at the end.

flavor has hop resins and bitterness upfront, with pine notes and moderate bitterness. quick transition to toasty, bready, slightly caramelized malt. then some fruity esters, then back to a flash of resins and bitterness with a hint of yeast.

medium body, though ever so slightly thin or watery. moderate carbonation can be fluffy.

tai4ji2x, Feb 19, 2009
Photo of Troyone
3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a blondish color with an apple juice hue. Has minimal off white head and action with some sediment suspended.

Some esters in the aroma, maybe mild pine, and a hint of caramel smell.

A hint of caramel in the taste with some tea and mild pine and grapefruit, maybe some lemon/lime, flavor.

Light to medium bodied, some resin feel, and crisp carbonation throughout.

Well balanced the resin may be off, for my taste, or too much tea flavor other than that a good session beer if the crisp carbonation is tolerable.

Troyone, Feb 17, 2009
Photo of YesFest
3.38/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearence: Pours a Duracell-Copper body with a thick white paint head. Uneven half-rows of lacing stick to the side of the glass like part of a Gallager punchline.

Nose: Some earthy malts, faint citrus and amber waives of grains. Smells like a solid American Pale Ale.

Taste: Just a touch of bitterness, light/balanced hops; not too intimidating. More earthy notes, tastes pretty much the same as it smells, like a solid American Pale Ale.

Mouthfeel: A bit on the light side. Nothing too controversial. If this were your 12th beer, you might mistake it for a Lager. But the alcohol is 6 percent, when it tastes like around 4 percent. Not bad gettin' some extra points in.

Drinkability: Again, pretty light this solid American Pale Ale isn't the most memorable on the palate, but it certainly pleases going down. I could probably drink about 9 of these, thinking I just drank 5. Could make that extra percent of alcohol actually factor in later on in the evening!

What can I say, nothing to snail-mail my grandpa about but a solid American Pale Ale all around.

YesFest, Feb 16, 2009
Photo of cagocubs
3.55/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle.

Poured golden with white head that laced, had some nice looking active carbonation going on. The smell was hoppy with some citrus scent. The taste was bitter from the hop packed potion. It is light and crisp with good aftertaste. I couldnt see myself drinking these all the time, but it was refreshing and worth a try once in a while.

cagocubs, Feb 16, 2009
Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.1/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a clear light golden color with a minimal head that quickly dissipates to nothing. Smell is slightly hoppy. There's a bit of light fruit in the nose as well. Taste is crisp and hoppy. Comes across very clean and refreshing. Not a hop-bomb, but decent in it's own right. A sessionable beer, but nothing to get excited about. Would be a very nice summertime patio beer.

FtownThrowDown, Feb 13, 2009
Photo of KTCamm
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured very light plae yellow, transparent, with a think creamy head and lacing down the side.

Smell is of hops - some floral aroma, some pine notes detected.

Taste is very lively and flavorful - there is a bitter hop taste but with a surprisingly clean crisp finish. Hints of fruit.

Active carbonation in the mouthfeel.

Another solid beer from AS. Very drinkable. This was my only one, but I would have loved to have more to enjoy.

KTCamm, Feb 12, 2009
Photo of oriolesfan4
4.4/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Ive liked everything I had from Liberty so far, so I tried their flagship beer. Pours a cloudy orange with a nice fluffy head and tons of lacing.. off to a good start. Smell is quite hoppy.... moreso than I was expecting for a pale ale. First gulp of this was outstanding.. nice creamy, mouthfeel to it that just bombards your mouth with sweet, delicious beer flavor. Taste is slightly dry and leaves you craving more. This is a great beer and when I'm looking for a nice six pack to have on the weekend I will be choosing Liberty Ale!

oriolesfan4, Feb 11, 2009
Photo of 12NattiBottles
3.03/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Mode: 12oz. Bottle, poured into a standard beer glass

Presentation: Love the label and the stout brown bottle, classy, American

Appearance: Gorgeous orange color, great two finger head, and decent lacing. Extremely active carbonation...don't see a beer with this type of carbonation often.

Smell: Lightly hopped with sweet floral scents.

Taste: Decent flavor, full tasting, not too bitter; weaker hop taste at the start with a malty finish; Bitter notes here and there mixed with lighter sweet spots that almost taste like orange.

Mouth feel: Very smooth, not dry at all.

Drinkability: Smooth with little to no bite, enjoyable.

Overall: Enjoyable, neat label and concept ...good marketing. Good Drinking!

12NattiBottles, Feb 09, 2009
Photo of bmwats
3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint.

A: Golden color. Medium carbonation pours into a 2 finger, frothy, white head. Slowly settles leaving sticky spider web lacing as it does. Very light carbonation continues to rise. Drinking it down results in more clingy lacing.

S: A light malt, strong hops, and freshly cut grass.

T: Hops are prominent. Kind of a peppery flavor. Not much else.

M: Sharp hops assault the palette and linger for the after-party. Light bodied. Fairly noticeable strong alcohol taste.

D: Good sipping beer.

Good quaff. Very nice atmosphere. No complexity of flavor, but a nice hoppy pale ale with a formidable, but not offensive feel. Good quaff.

bmwats, Feb 08, 2009
Photo of MinorThreat
3.35/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served from a 12oz bottle

A-Light honey/straw color, awesome clarity nice dense white head with great retention and lacing. Looks Awesome.

S-Eh? Slight grassy and oily smell with a light cereal grain scent. Pretty hard to detect.

T- Very interesting for an APA. The first thing I get is that horsey/animal flavor that comes with most Belgian yeast strains. The Yeast rounds out and gives way to a nice grassy hop bitterness and some low lovibond crystal malt(?) flavors. Long lasting bitterness.

M-Tons of gas, sharp bite (Co2 burn) with a medium body, and a decent oily finish.

D-Decent, I can enjoy one or two.

Overall a nice change of pace from the typical west coast APA. Focuses more on the bittering hops and yeast than the usual aroma bombs. Worth a try for sure, this is not my favorite APA however that is just me. I know this beer is so highly regarded for a reason and while I gave it a modest score (based on other opinions) I think every beer geek needs to try this one, it is after all a micro brew classic for a reason.

MinorThreat, Feb 07, 2009
Photo of Magpie14
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I always loved the bottles of Anchor Brewing Company and the presentation label, logo, colors etc...

A: if I had to describe carbonated liquid gold this would be in the running. It harbors a very light gold color with strong yellows. Immense amount of busy bubbles weaving throughout the glass with a foamy off-white top that reckoned ample swiss cheese lacing

S: nose is of hops: oranges, grass and a floral bouquet. Soft dry earthy notes with very light metallic whiff

T: this has that classic feel and vibe of pale barley and malt with a agreeable hop presence. Hops are nice and of the sweet citrus variety with a touch of oily bite/peppery. The balance is good between the grains, sweetness, and oily hop finish. Everything is nice and even on a mild level. If anything the sweet juicy orange flavor is most notable, not a bad thing...it is just a little sweeter than average

M: has a good medium-style feel and is in a good harmony with the taste buds. Body might be considered a little heavy as far as APA go, that is a plus for me

D: liberty just freed my flavor palate. Top notch stuff and this brewery continues with awesome stuff. I can drink this all the time....ding ding ding!

Magpie14, Feb 01, 2009
Photo of KBomb
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bright tangerine orange, noticeable carbonation, 1/2 inch of foamy but not thick head. Fruity notes on the nose, a little floral character to the hops. Taste is a mellow blend of citrus hop bitterness and biscuity sweetness. The hops are a little subdued for an APA. The warmth of alcohol chases the bitter and sweet flavors, provides a pleasant contrast. Extremely dry finish. This might be one of my favorite pale ales--exceptionally nice flavors and a great body/mouthfeel.

KBomb, Jan 31, 2009
Photo of KenC411
2.78/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: An orange beer with numerous small bubbles of carbonation, which formed a modest head. While drinking the beer, the head formed less of a lace and more of a curtain of bubbles on the side of the glass. A beautiful beer to pour and drink.

Smell: After popping the top, a fruity aroma enveloped the area, and continued while I poured. During the pour, a light hop smell was also noted. Pear notes could be found with deep breaths, though very small.

Taste: Beer was surprisingly carbonated, masking the flavor that the smells had alluded to. After a sip, only a bitter aftertaste remained. On warming a crisp honey-fruit flavor was enjoyed, though the aftertaste still clinged to the mouth.

Mouthfeel: The beer was moderate in thickness, not gritty nor watery.

Drinkability: The flavor was very subtle and the aftertaste off putting. The carbonation left a foamy feeling in the mouth. For me, the beer was not as enjoyable as expected.

KenC411, Jan 30, 2009
Photo of biboergosum
3.73/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

355ml squat bottle, a pleasant enough surprise find at a friend's moving day after-party.

This beer pours a lightly hazy, glassy medium orange-amber hue, with two fingers of puffy, foamy, and kind of creamy off-white head, which leaves some broadly scattered swaths of fuzzy cloud lace around the glass as it slowly abates.

It smells of multi-toned citrus hops - orange, grapefruit, and lemon - some musty pine resin, and a decent offset of fruity, honeyed pale malt. The taste starts again with the orange and lemon citrus astringency, with a close-following grainy, biscuity pale malt caramel sweetness, and a hint of further leafy, spicy, and perfumed hops.

The carbonation is rather moderate, and hard to discern at times, the body an adequate medium weight, and mostly smooth. It finishes off-dry, the bready caramel malt well in balance with the now waning hop contingent.

A fairly well rendered, and tasty brew - maybe not the headiest of IPAs from their native turf, but quite drinkable all the same. I could see going with this as a party sixer for slow sippin' all night, with the aim of keeping my palate intact for other pursuits.

biboergosum, Jan 29, 2009
Photo of Asgeirr
3.53/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Anchor Liberty Ale pours a apricot colour along with a creamy and frothy crown of great persistence, small in visible carbonation.

Smell: Mainly apricot and peach with notes of yeast and a overall sourness in a great combination!

Taste: A sweetness similar to the above mentioned fruits, only a bit more discrete this time. Dry and distinctively bitter in its aftertaste, at times, almost with a Absinthe-like wormwood-dryness.

Mouthfeel: Medium full and rather creamy, carbonation is subtle but not low or all too distant.

Drinkability: A bit too over-represented in its bitterness. Personally, I would've liked it if the fruitier and sweeter notes were a bit more pronounced, but then again it sort of fades at a higher temperature.

Asgeirr, Jan 23, 2009
Photo of Riccymon
2.8/5  rDev -28%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a bright orangey-red from the bottle with three fingers of white head. Nice retention and carbonation after the pour. The scent of piney hops is mostly what I take away, along with a little citurs, particularly lemon.

The taste is where things went semi-awry. I took in a little grapefruit, followed by some biscuity malt, but the flavors were all very weak. Even the slightly bitter finish seemed bland. Maybe my bomber was a bit on the old side... but what I got was disappointing.

The mouthfeel was average given the beer's carbonation and the drinkability good; if the taste had been more pronounced, this would be a great session beer.

Overall, I'll have to revisit this in the future to see if freshness held me back..

Riccymon, Jan 23, 2009
Photo of DavoleBomb
3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

3.5 A: Clear orange yellow color. About one finger of head with a semi-aggressive pour with below average retention and a decent amount of lacing.

4.0 S: Awesome aroma, but could be more pronounced. Smells like a bouquet of flowers and Sprite.

4.0 T: Not a whole lot of bitterness, but the hop flavor (herbal) is very noticeable. A bit grainy, a bit biscuity, and more than a bit fruity, but overall the flavors are weaker than I'd like.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good carbonation, everything's in order, but nothing's stellar.

4.0 D: One of the more drinkable beers I've come across. Can easily session this.

DavoleBomb, Jan 22, 2009
Photo of Stinkypuss
3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A. 12 oz bottle poured into a mug. Murky strange colored body, burnt orange. Some lace.

S. Clean yeast and bread notes.

T. Pretty solid and malty, with a very delicate hop character. Toffee notes. Pretty solid overall.

M. Medium bodied and fairly smooth.

D. Another quality beer from the anchor brewery, though I think their Christmas Ale is lighter than in past years.

Stinkypuss, Jan 21, 2009
Photo of Murchmac
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On this historic of days, cracking a Liberty Ale seemed right.

Pours a majestic golden copper with some lacing and nice foamy sea head on it. You can see the amber waves of grain.

Smells fragrantly hoppy, some citrus notes above the fruited plain.

I pledge allegiance to the hops and sweet malty body for which it stands, wheaty, and fruity, for all.

This is my drinking beer and watching football beer. And yes President Ford, I do like beer and Nachos.

Murchmac, Jan 21, 2009
Photo of GJ40
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 12oz bottle dated Sep 08 in a DFH shaped pint glass.

A - Nice golden color with a slight haze and a large creamy head.

S - Very nice hop aroma with piney, floral and citrusy scents.

T - Nice blend of citrusy hop bitterness and floral hop flavor. Clean, crisp and on the dry side. A slightly tangy finish.

M - Carbonation is a bit higher than average but with very fine bubbles. Moderate consistency.

D - This is a very drinkable beer for me. I can enjoy them one after another.

GJ40, Jan 18, 2009
Photo of icefisherman
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poored from stubie brown in to regular pint glass man does it look good a medium gold huge head fell quickly in to film great lacing smell of some hops light malt more bitter than I would like from an APA but what do you do other than that very drinkable solid beer.

icefisherman, Jan 18, 2009
Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 2,925 ratings.