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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

2,777 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,777
Reviews: 1,463
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 11.79%
Wants: 64
Gots: 109 | FT: 0
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)
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Ratings: 2,777 | Reviews: 1,463 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of objectivemonkey


4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Into a pint glass, pours a slightly hazy golden straw, a half-inch head of off-white foam settling down to a film, slight lacing in small streaks and bubbles. The aroma has that classic Anchor signature to it, that which I can never describe but always pick up. Fresh light fruits, citrus and malts in harmony, its nice, well tempered, well crafted. The taste is similar, more hop bitterness in addition to fruits and citrus, again the malts are well balanced, the finish is long drawn out. The body is great, carbonation is right, the alcohol not very noticeable but perhaps slightly warming. I've never been very into Anchor's beers, but this is definitely a tasty beer that I'd be happy to have any day.

Serving type: bottle

04-06-2007 02:07:40 | More by objectivemonkey
Photo of Redwood21


4.38/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a glass, i poured a little too vigorousl and got mad head, but it subsided leaving a nice golden color(lighter than the steam) with a thin veil of head on top
the aroma did not jump out at me but its very enjoyable, i guess slightly hop like with malty goodness
the taste is great, its subtle but delicious. there is asome fruit sweetness with some hop bitterness. Like all anchor beers its extremely well balanced. One of the best tasting apa's i have tried because of an all around great taste.
Mouthfeel is medium in body and has a slight drying effect in my mouth, very smooth with no poor after taste very clean
drinkability is very subjective, i could drink this beer all day long for the rest of my life so i gave it a 5, i could do the same with other beers too. That said it earned the 5 and i enjoy it alot.

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2007 01:21:10 | More by Redwood21
Photo of alexskovan

New York

3.73/5  rDev -4.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2007 21:39:25 | More by alexskovan
Photo of Poser


4.08/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a typical golden with decent head and lacing and noticable carbonation. Subtle fruit aroma with a distinctly spicy power behind them. The spice is upfront in the taste, which melts into some sweet fruit zest in the middle before it finishes with a cascade bitterness. Very complex, balanced flavor with a bite. Perhaps a little too strong flavored and grainy for more than two or three, but a wonderful sipper.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2007 01:23:02 | More by Poser
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly

New York

4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I like Anchor Brewing.
Their Christmas beer is one of the best out there and the classic "steam" is just that... classic!

This pours a typical (for the style) amber color with a good head and decent lacing.

It smells like an APA... malt baby, malt!

It has a real fine taste, sweet malt, reminds me of a Marzen, (maybe that's just because I'm missing my Oktoberfests!)

It's good, no bite, nice malty taste, clean sweet finish.

Drinkability is always a tough score for me, if I don't feel like I wanna dump it down the sink, I usually give it a '4'.
Oh well, you'll have to try this one for yourself, bro...
don't base your purchase on my review!

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2007 00:17:48 | More by JoeyBeerBelly
Photo of Duster72


4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured a relatively clear golden with ample carbonation. Smallish head dissipates quickly while carbonation bubbles continue to rise to the top for several minutes. Aroma is mild with some floral hops and sweet malts. Taste is herbal hops and bitter with a decent malty sweetness to keep it from being too bitter. Finish is very dry and invites another drink. Excellent to drink and perfect session beer. It's not really a memorable beer, but it is very very good.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2007 23:10:41 | More by Duster72
Photo of joe1510


4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. Bottle
Sam's Downer's Grove

This is another one of those beers I always pass by because it's always there. Liberty Ale pours golden into my pint glass. Large carbonation bubbles rise to the 2 finger white head that formed on the pour. The head fell to a frothy, craggy half-finger. Leaves small spotty lacing after each drink. Looks good.

Smell is a pretty unique combination of hops along with a biscuity background. A touch of caramel in there as well. The hops come across very floral such as rose petals. The floral hops mix with a hay/fresh cut grass hop quality. Neither of which are that unique but together it's something I haven't encountered too often.

Biscuits are present in the flavor and present solid backdrop for the hops that take center stage. The hops are in no way huge but do edge out the biscuit maltiness. There's a squeeze of lemon juice on top of the floral hop flavors that show themselves mid-palate. On the finish the hops transform into the hay and fresh cut grass that was in the aroma. Grass clippings leave a nice lingering bitterness.

Medium body that gets lighter as it works it's way through. I didn't realize it on the first few sips but after a few more my tongue is taking a beating from the hop presence.

This is a good session beer. I can see myself buying this in the future when I feel like sitting down and enjoying a few beers.

Anchor's Liberty Ale is an all around quality beer. Very well made and a pleasure to sip. I need to stop taking these beers that are always available for granted like I so often do.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2007 04:07:35 | More by joe1510
Photo of prototypic


2.63/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Beer pours a cloudy, golden color with about a 1.5 finger head. Decent retention and lacing.

Smell: Smells a bit fruity. I'm picking up some banana and maybe a bit of orange. Hints of some sort of spice are also there. Also has a biscuity-yeast aroma to it. Decent malt and hops coming through.

Taste: It's a bit spicy to me. The banana flavor is there. Malt and hops are decently blended. Definitely leaves a biscuity and spicy taste in my mouth.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's pretty light bodied. But, I'm not a huge fan of the taste. Overall, it's not a bad beer by any stretch. But, it's not very good. I don't think I'll be drinking it again.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2007 03:35:28 | More by prototypic
Photo of Sigmund


4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

355 ml bottle, courtesy of Cardinal pub, Stavanger. Imported to Europe by www.bierenco.nl . ABV is 5.9%. Golden colour, slightly hazy, large head. Lovely Cascade aroma, citrus fruits and tropical fruits abound. Pleasant hoppy flavour - more in terms of "depth of flavour" than actual bitterness. Soft mouthfeel. Some hops in the aftertaste too. A nice beer!

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2007 21:17:11 | More by Sigmund
Photo of Jwaks


3.63/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Serving 12oz bottle

Tons of carbonation well up through a true pale golden body showing a slight chill haze. A two finger head ever so slowly settles leaving a find coating of lacing and a finger thick dense white frothy cap that just won't quit.

Aromas on the nose switch between citrusy hops and sweet malts with hints of grass, whiffs of alcohol and a bit of lemon zest.

Light flavors of lemon and sweet bready malt show on the entry and off-dry mid palate with tasty citrus zest and grass coming through on the short semi-sweet finish. All the flavors are well delineated and expertly balanced.

This light to medium bodied brew has a bit of everything, sweetness, acid, bitters, and dryness that all meld together effortlessly finishing with a slightly acidic citrus flavor.

Easy down at any temperature with great balance and a slightly citric flavor this pale ale would make a great session beer.

Overall, this is a tasty drinkable pale ale from one of my favorite breweries in california.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2007 00:52:53 | More by Jwaks
Photo of isaac


4.53/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 oz. anchor-signature-bottle to pint glass.

pours a slightly hazy golden-orange, amber-y body with a big, soft head, sinking somewhat quickly into thick, fine-bubbled lacing and a clumpy, shiny film. the nose is fresh and fruity, somewhat lemon-like, less than the steam, but still strong. floral notes also climb the nostrils, with a sort of woodland piney-ness. savory malts are also detectable. now on to the taste... amazingly well balanced between the more-than-average-but-not-too-much bitterness and the complex, luscious, bready malts. medium bodied, fine-carbonated, this beer is absolutely sessionable and soft-spoken in its craftsmanship. fantastic. besides, it doesn't hurt to have the "made in san francisco" written on the bottle. it makes me proud, tearing up just a tad for my distant home. san francisco, this one's for you!

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2007 10:45:01 | More by isaac
Photo of Monkeyknife


3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle a slightly hazy copper color. Thick and creamy head which eventually melted away to about a quarter inch cap.

From the first sniff there was a lot of fruity sweetness present.

The first thing I noticed upon tasting was the notes of banana. This was a surprise. Having done no research on this one, I was expecting a much hoppier beer.

Smooth and creamy with moderate carbonation.

A very drinkable beer though not really one for me.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2007 00:34:13 | More by Monkeyknife
Photo of Steve188821

United Kingdom (Scotland)

3.98/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Apperance is golden with a large head, plenty of lace.

S - The smell is citrus and malt.

T - Taste is bitter and very hoppy, the taste of citrus comes through along with esters.

M - Mouthfeel is very dry with good carbonation.

D - This ale goes down very easily, would be a good session beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-05-2007 21:44:30 | More by Steve188821
Photo of malcontent


3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours deep gold, just short of orange, with several fingers of foamy head fed by a steady release of bubbles from glass' bottom.

Strong biscuity aromas laced with hops rather than being steeped in them. Grain scent is akin to many all-malt lagers.

Hops are slightly more complex than the nose would indicate with an herbal/pine emphasis over citrus. Biscuity taste carries over from the nose with an undercurrent of malt sweetness. Bitter but relatively clean finish.

Good body with a certain degree of creaminess although there is a waxy/oily qualtiy to the mouthfeel that detracts a bit from the overall enjoyment. Still, drinkability is high even with a slightly surprising 6% ABV.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2007 04:57:23 | More by malcontent
Photo of nase


3.28/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle with cryptic dating system: "60M"

Smells like a nice brown ale. Taste is lighter, seems halfway between a lager and a brown ale. Mouthfeel is quite light for my tastes. This may be meant to be a light feeling beer but I don't see why it has to be. I suppose a stronger mouthfeel would put this in the brown ale category? Still a fairly drinkable beer.

App - 4.0 , Smell - 4.0, Taste - 3.0, Mouth -2.5 , Drink - 3.0

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2007 04:44:58 | More by nase
Photo of PEBKAC

New York

4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What ever happened to Israel Bissell?

Intense froth lays down on an hazy orange sunset. Quite bitter on the nose, & bit of melon rind comming out too. It's subtle, I'm not crazy.

Such a tasty baked infusion of toast & hops. The twang is subtle, but spikes at the end. In between there is a fresh, lemony liveliness that lasts longer then the moment would appear. Persistant carbonation & a dry tongue leave a nice impression.

I still enjoy Steam more then this, but they both entice you enough to buy a case & then some. :)

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2007 01:28:53 | More by PEBKAC
Photo of witster18


4.4/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

excellent beer. pours with a .5"head....nose of grapefruit...taste, lots of grassy hops with a return of the grapefruit and a nice, unknown origin sweetness....dry at the finish. This is an absolutely awesome beer for it's accessibility! A standard!...HIGHLY SESSIONABLE! Tons of delightful little bubbles but not overcarbonated..almost that paulaner hefe, weird sweetness(yeast strain I'm assuming),...the sweetness is off-caramel....this is really good stuff!!! Nice floral and spicy undertones...this reeks of quality!!

Put this in the world-beer-tourney and you'd have yourself a strong, stein-banging elixer.... Liberty Ale is World Class.

Best American ale? Show me another.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2007 00:15:16 | More by witster18
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy

New Hampshire

3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

AP: Very lively with many streaming bubbles. Hazy light orange-copper color with a 1/4" deep milky-white head that leaves big rings of lacing scattered around the glass.

Smell: Very Herbal and earthy hop scent with subtle citrus notes over red-berries.

Taste: This has a very hearty yeast edged malt flavor that rides over an herbalized and mildly spicey hop taste. Lemmon citrus and raspberries linger sweetly in the after-taste.

Feel: Medium body, crisp and clean feel with a substantial and mildly smooth effect going down.

DA: highly drinkable stuff. Very enjoyable. A good one for Presidents Day.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2007 16:00:55 | More by GratefulBeerGuy
Photo of MaltyGoodness


4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear pale-amber with a dense & creamy white head that maintains. Nice lacing on the glass.

Aroma is a nice blend of citrusy hops and caramel malt. Really well balanced between the two. Very fresh smelling.

Tastes like it smells. Citrusy hop flavor upfront leading into a fresh caramel malt flavor. Medium bitterness. Finishes with a nice blend of flavors, with perhaps a bit more maltiness.

Medium-light body, creamy texture.

Some say that this is the standard for American pale ale, and you'll find no argument here. It's got the right blend of flavors and is superbly balanced. Could drink this one all night.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2007 00:31:09 | More by MaltyGoodness
Photo of TheSarge


4.5/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is probably my favorite beer of all time. God Bless Howard F. Maytag.

This brew pours with much CO2 and looks quite filtered from what I remember. It's almost totally clear. This produces a beautiful sticky and clumpy white head that lasts pretty much all the way through.

Liberty Ale gives off aromas of pine, floral, molasses, and toasty fragrances. This tastes great with a good hops presence, as well as a slight hint of celery.

This feels a bit bity, and a little coarse too. Also, this is very clean and crisp.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2007 20:14:47 | More by TheSarge
Photo of beeragent


3.25/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle, into a pint glass. The beer poured a clear straw collor, forming a 1 inch head, leaving medium rings of lace along the glass. The aroma is mostly of hops, but with a slight trace of grain. The taste is of hops, forming a light citrus flavor, and again being accompanied by a light grain taste. Light mouthfeel, and medium carbonation. This tastes like a combination of a pale ale and a light lager beer. Almost like something released by Miller. Not a bad pale ale, but not my first choice either.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2007 05:16:00 | More by beeragent
Photo of tempest


3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The main thing I'm getting out of this beer is crisp hops. There's a backbone of coppery caramel, but it's really dominated by the hops. The hops profile seems a mix of american and european to me. It's fairly grassy but there's also a citrus edge to it that keeps it from getting too earthy.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2007 04:42:44 | More by tempest
Photo of barefootbrewer


3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a clear golden color with a nice full head – average lacing. The smell is strong of the smell of hops – very nice. The taste is bitter and the hops are definitely noticeable. The mouthfeel is full and crisp. This is a good example of a pale ale, I’d consider it when this style strikes my fancy.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2007 22:22:20 | More by barefootbrewer
Photo of andrewmartin


3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly opaque amber with a nice solid head

S: Both citrusy and piney hops-I though citrus was more noticeable

T: Starts off very hoppy (again, both citrus and piney notes) with a solid malt base, very nice

M: Great mouthfeel, tingly hops cleans the palate, finishes really dry.

D: Definately a great (and underappreciated) pale ale

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2007 01:09:56 | More by andrewmartin
Photo of Homebrew63

New York

4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer reminds me of my first batch of home brew. It was smooth and the yeasty after taste was a warm welcome in a bottle.
A: An amber cloudy ale with the classic yeast base. Bubbles remind me of an asti champagne.

S: Bold and telling. Hops and a sweet tang.

T: This is a smooth flavorful ale with malty and hoppy tastes.

M: Mouth feel is solid and clean.

D: Very pleasing ale and great with many foods.

I am taken by this beer and drink it as often as I can. It is a throwback and homage to homebrewing.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2007 03:22:30 | More by Homebrew63
Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 2,777 ratings.