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Anchor Liberty Ale - Anchor Brewing Company

Anchor Liberty AleAnchor Liberty Ale

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

2,582 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2582
Reviews: 1447
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 12.02%

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 11-18-2000)
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Ratings: 2,582 | Reviews: 1,447 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of dar482

New York

4.53/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

The beer is a hazy yellow and orange.

The aroma is quite big on fresh grapefruit and then some biscuit malt. A very nice aroma.

The taste is fantastic as it hits you with tons of grapefruit. Then it has a nice amount of malt and a lasting bitterness. It's very citrus hoppy and then a great malt backbone.

I would say this is more of the hoppy American pale ales than truly an IPA. It does push the boundaries though. I was pleasantly surprised by this. Fantastic citrus hoppy pale ale.

It's darn impressive that this was brewed in 1975, before Sierra Nevada's groundbreaking pale ale. This beer is an under appreciated classic.

Serving type: on-tap

06-06-2013 20:26:53 | More by dar482
Photo of mick303

Ontario (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A bright golden colour with a strong cap of white head, excellent retention and lines of carbonation. Great lacing 4
S – crisp malt, spicey peppery hops, some dry grapefruit, interesting almost sourdough breadiness, banana, displays all the composite elements at work here.
T- bright clean hop profile, lots of dry citrus, earthy spiciness, ending is dry, orange pithy, some clean pale malt profile, bitterness is apparent and pleasing throughout, hops are an interesting spicey/citrus blend. Works well.
M – moderate, lively carbonation with a solid grainy body and a coating bitterness, perfect session beer with a pleasing dry finish. Could maybe use a bit more hoppy oiliness.
A well crafted IPA, has less of a Cascade punch than SNPA but this has a solid earthy profile, a bit grainy and malty with a dry finish. I think it works pretty well, not the most hoppy IPA or flavour intense but it is flavourful and is quite quenching. Worth trying. Flavor is tasty and crisp and session able with a earthy fruity profile.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2013 08:44:11 | More by mick303
Photo of barczar


3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a chill hazed medium copper with a pillowy 2 inch cream head that lingers.

Lime zest, lemon, floral hops, and caramel sweetness form the initial aroma. Complex, and different than most. Pine and resin emerge, along with grapefruit, mango, and peach.

Flavor is initially resinous and fairly bitter at the finish. Underpinnings of peaches, lemon, and lime fade to toasted bread and caramel malt mid palate, becoming slightly peppery, herbal, and grassy. Floral notes surface in the aftertaste.

Body is creamy and moderately full, with moderate draconian and a touch of alcohol warmth. There's a bit if hop astringency.

Fairly complex hop flavor profile and aroma. A little too resinous for my liking, but good support from the malt. Bitterness overwhelms in the aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2013 03:00:01 | More by barczar
Photo of BeerAficionadoMCMXC


4.65/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

It appears a golden color with good head retention. The aroma is belgian-esque with a hoppy and cereal smell. The taste begins with the belgian flavor, a kind of estery citrus perhaps. It is followed by a light and hoppy finish. A well balanced ale as the body remains medium to light. I'd drink six.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2013 02:21:29 | More by BeerAficionadoMCMXC
Photo of JesseMurdock


3.43/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

This beer was a bit disappointing. It seemed very unbalanced. The hop notes were all citrus, so much so it tasted almost as if there was a little lemonade in the beer. Very little else in terms of hop character. Bready, overly sweet malty backbone. Poured a gold-amber with a thin white head. good lacing. Smelled of citrus and grain.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2013 05:38:24 | More by JesseMurdock
Photo of ZethOfTheNorth


4.21/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle from a $10 six-pack. Bottled 4/1/13, so super fresh.

Judging this as an APA and not an IPA.

A: Nice rust color. Beautiful, billowy head. Tons of cling.

S: Promising West Coast hop smell. Famously, this is single-hopped with Cascade.

T: It's just great. Straightforwardly, assertively hoppy, then a bready aftertaste. Balanced, not crude like some single-hopped beers can be. Dangerously sessionable.

M: Full. Creamy.

O: A criminally underrated American classic worth returning to as a summer quasi-sessioner if it's been too long. Really a great beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2013 03:06:01 | More by ZethOfTheNorth
Photo of CloudStrife

New York

3.81/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a tulip. Bottled Sept 27 2012.

A: Pours a cloudy light amber gold with a half finger dense white head. Lots of small bubbles visible in the body. Spots of lacing on the glass.

S: Grapefruit, orange and lemon come through from the hops. Malts give it a bit of a raisiny fig note.

T: Well balanced IPA. A citrus hopping and a solid crackery malt finish. A bit of soapiness to it, fairly floral too.

M: Light to medium body with ample carbonation and a nice crisp finish.

Overall I'll def need to get a fresher bottle of this to revisit it with less than 6 months on it. Held up well

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2013 17:49:40 | More by CloudStrife
Photo of Lemke10


3.41/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

This pours a semi-clear, golden yellow color with a fizzy, off-white head. The aroma is very inviting with bold scents of hops and citrus. The flavor is very hoppy but the texture is thinner then I was expecting. I know this generally reviewed pretty highly but I just find the flavor to be a little off for a pale ale but maybe it’s the flavor pine that I’m not as used to. This is one of the few brews that didn’t live up to its high rating for me.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2013 06:53:44 | More by Lemke10
Photo of AmitC


3.6/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

Color is Pale golden. Hazy. More than a finger thick off white colored head with excellent retention. Awesome lacing. A few bubbles. Translucent.

Aroma is of very faint malts and hops. Would have never considered this as an IPA. Strength is faint to moderate.

Flavor is of very little hop bitterness and a lot of malt body. Green, earthy and slightly herbal hops.

Mouth feel is medium light. Moderate carbonation.

Not an IPA to me. Or is it too old?

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2013 02:12:31 | More by AmitC
Photo of TrappistJohnMD


3.64/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Served in beer flight at Epcot.

Bright golden color with nice thick white head that lingers well and leaves lots of sticky lacing along sides of cup.

Smell is pine and tangerine. Not a hop smack to the face but nice and refreshing.

Taste is also pine and tangerine with malt backbone and mild bitterness. Very refreshing.

Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth. Light medium bodied.

Overall this was good and worth a try.

Serving type: on-tap

03-07-2013 20:19:11 | More by TrappistJohnMD
Photo of Murrhey


3.46/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12-oz standard carbonation bottle into a pint glass in high elevation Libby, Mont. No best-by date. Reviewed live.

A- Half-finger of quickly eroding white head. Very wet head, no real lacing. Hazy golden-brown color. Semi-clear. Not tremendously attractive.

S- Crisp apples, tropical fruits and a brilliant hop bouquet. Aromatic and fruity.

T- Light hops, crisp, light malty body. At times bitter and sour.

M- Light, thick for it's light weight, finishes high and dry.

O- Above average beer, excellent aroma. Met expectations.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2013 02:46:12 | More by Murrhey
Photo of Converge

Alberta (Canada)

4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz into a pint.

A - Bright golden color, not quite amber, with a rocky head of off-white suds. Nice sticky webs of lacing, and above average head retention. Great packaging and presentation as well, and to me that really counts. A handsome looking brew all around.

S - Mild biscuity malt with some lemon zest and crisp hops. There's something distinctly English about the malt character, with a sort of toffee aroma and maybe even a touch of fennel. Hop bouquet is pronounced but not overly so, with some grassy and leafy qualities and a subdued citric character. Definitely a little milder than the average American IPA.

T - Follows suit with the nose fairly closely. There's a substantial base of biscuity caramel malt, along with some toasty and bready notes. The hop profile is quite mild, predominantly grassy with lemon and a subtle bit of citric rind. I wouldn't go as far as to call it fruity or floral, but more traditional. Balance is certainly key here, and I like it.

M - High carbonation, with fine bubbles that really fill the body, which is fairly light itself. The combination of the two gives the brew a really lively, bubbly feel, but still remains very smooth on the palate. Really good.

D - Despite being into craft for a few years now, there's a lot of big name American breweries I haven't had the pleasure to try; the sort of 'entry-level' gateway breweries that get most folks into craft. But the thing is, a lot of these brands don't distribute around my parts, so brews from Sierra Nevada or DFH aren't really in the cards for me, but luckily Anchor brewing is. Last weekend I picked up my first sixer of Steam Beer and was really impressed, so I figured I'd grab Liberty Ale this time. The result? Another solid, tasty offering from a brewery I probably should have familiarized myself with a long time ago. Something tells me I'm going to be seeing a certain porter in my fridge next weekend...

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2013 01:07:34 | More by Converge
Photo of kshizzle101


3.93/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass

A - aggressive pour yields a 4 inch head, very thick. Color is hazy gold, looks beautiful.

S - lemon up front, backed by large amounts of citrus hops. some sweeter malts come through as well

T - Sweet hops up front, the lemon really comes through here, bitter as well. slight maltiness in the background.

M - carbonated properly, a little bit of stickiness to it but overall a little watery in my opinion.

Overall - Worth a try

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2013 02:09:40 | More by kshizzle101
Photo of BEERMILER12


3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. fatty bottle dated 2SR (September 18, 2012)

A: Pours a golden yellow color with 2 fingers of head that recedes to a finger that retains for a good long while

S: Some floral, citrus, and grassy hops are balanced out by malts and breadiness. Not too complex, but that should be expected from a single-hop beer

T: Follows the nose. Hops are floral and grassy for the most part. These are balanced very nicely by the malts and house yeast. Again, not terribly complex, but expected

M: Medium bodied with soft, moderate carbonation

O: Not like most IPAs these days. The sole use of cascade hops really narrows the scope on how far the aromas and flavors can go, but this does a nice job of showcasing them. Definitely a classic (and an inexpensive one at that)

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2013 05:27:13 | More by BEERMILER12
Photo of rickyleepotts


3.54/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

I see this beer on the shelf all the time, but had no idea the history behind it. I just figured it was another beer in their portfolio. But to hear this was originally brewed as a Christmas beer was news to me. Also, a lot of breweries change the recipe every year. Fun to learn that this one was so good they decided to keep it! There are a few beers from Anchor on our list, and I have generally liked everything I have had from them. Their porter is amazing, and their Anchor Steam Beer is their most popular. Excited to see what Liberty Ale has to offer.

In the Glass: The beer is quite cloudy in the glass. It looks more like a pale than an IPA, as I feel an IPA should be more copper in color. The beer also produced a weak head, and it offers a meager lace. But I could smell this as I was pouring it into the glass. Knowing what I know about this brewing company, chance are I will enjoy this beer.

Nose: Whoa. That is a powerful aroma. At first, your nostrils are hit with some earthiness in the hops but you finish with a nice mellow citrus aroma. If you breathe deep, you can almost taste the Cascade hops as you swallow. I hope this tastes as good as it smells!

Flavor: Yep. It does! Very rarely do you find a beer that has a similar aroma and flavor profile. This flavor starts soft, but as you swallow your palate is hit with all the hoppy goodness from the dry hopping method they use here. Also, the carbonation is nice. This carbonation is naturally occurring, and provides a very thin line of bubbles as you drink the beer. Not enough to put down, but enough for me to keep drinking. This beer also gets better as you take a second and third drink.

Mouthfeel: At first, it's boring. Then, as the beer slides across the palate, you are hit with the bubbles and you swallow to a nice flavorful finish. The flavor that remains is the best part of this beer.

Aftertaste: The aftertaste is incredible. I wouldn't say this is an IPA by traditional American IPA standards. (The burp is nice and mellow, with some dryness creeping in.) The aftertaste here reminds me of pine needles, but then as it sits, it becomes dry and while not overwhelming, keeps me begging for more. I took three drinks by the time I got to this part of the review.

Anchor Brewing has impressed me yet again. Plus, the price is right on. I am impressed with Liberty Ale. It makes sense that this beer became so popular. I am a hop head, and while this isn't overwhelming with hops, I do like the profile that the Cascade hop provides. Well done, Anchor.

Liberty Ale - The bottle says: "San Francisco's famous Liberty Ale was first brewed on the 18th of April, 1975 to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Paul Revere's historic ride. It is virtually handmade by the brewers of Anchor Steam Beer in one of the smalls and most traditional breweries in the world. Liberty Ale is made with the finest barley, fresh, whole hops, top fermenting yeast, pure water, and the simple natural meths which reflect our exceptional respect for the ancient art of brewing. It is "dry hopped", a classic ale tradition and slowly completes its fermentation in sealed vats in our cellars. This unique process creates Liberty Ale's distinctive bouquet and uncommonly delicate, entirely natural carbonation."

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2013 20:17:50 | More by rickyleepotts
Photo of harrymel


2.21/5  rDev -43.5%
look: 3 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Batch 6NH (I think)

Diaphanous apricot with soapy white sheet. Smells herbal hops, green apple, oxidized malts, some metals, some grass. Taste biscuity with some bitterness, a little tea, some white grapefruit spritz and a little artificial pistachio flavor. Medium bodied with hi carb and an off dry finish. Meh, seems like a pretty good English IPA, but a poor American IPA.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2013 04:18:25 | More by harrymel
Photo of JohnnyMc


3.81/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

First time having this classic!

Pours out a very beautiful, hazy orange/yellow with 2 fingers of white head.

The aroma is mostly dominated by hops. There are earthy/grassy hop notes as well as floral and citrusy hop notes. There is a touch of caramel malt sweetness and some bready notes.

The taste is also mainly driven by hops. There are the grassy notes along with the floral and citrus notes, an almost peach type of character and that's followed by a little bit of sweetness from the caramel malt and some bready notes.

The body is a very light-medium and the mouthfeel is crisp and clean. Very easy to drink and incredibly refreshing while still having a lot of flavor. It's nice to have a lower ABV IPA too.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2013 18:54:53 | More by JohnnyMc
Photo of bakingjames

3.41/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A beautiful beer. Not the freshest bottle, poured a light amber. Subtle floral notes shot up the nose and a lagery tang takes up the rear. Taste is just quite lovely if subdued; clean with a surprisingly bitter finish. Extremely drinkable, it just aches to line your mouth as it does so well. Could do with rather a lot more carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2013 20:24:21 | More by bakingjames
Photo of janubio


3.69/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

355 ml. bottle. Pours a small head, that doesn't hold much, though it leaves some lace. Smell of tropical fruits, citrus, hops, spices, pine.Medium body and salty palate, the taste is just as the aroma: tropical fruits, spices, citrus and pine.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2013 15:35:35 | More by janubio
Photo of patpbr


3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy yellow and has a strong head. Aroma is citrus and sweet. Bitter up front with a taste of citrus. Malt and sweetness. Herbal tones, It finishes dry and has a hint of pine. Easy to drink. Not as aggressive as many in the style but worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2013 03:47:46 | More by patpbr
Photo of VelvetExtract


2.9/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Surprised it took me this long.

A-Pours lightly hazy. Bright orange; nearly yellow. Light, white head leaves light, white lacing.

S-Not very hoppy. Supremely balanced. Sweet, wet, bready malt and some citrusy hops. Bland.

T-Apple juice, some citrus and grass, and crackers. Works a bit better than the nose but it is boring.

M-Bubbles and body and stuff...

O/D-Hard to review this beer with much conviction. Its been around forever. Its one of the forefathers and what not. Its boring to me. Really regretting my choice of a six-pack over a bomber...Sorry America?

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2013 02:46:28 | More by VelvetExtract
Photo of Act25

New Jersey

3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

American IPA. Amazingly unique for being one of the first.
Drinks like dales pale ale, but with more sweet subtlety.
Wish it came in cans, please

Color: Creamy, hazy blonde copper.
Smell: complex, shifting back and forth between inviting bitter, salt, and sweet. How do they do that? with herbs, flowers, and cookie dough.
Taste: similar board ranging from salt, bitter, sweet, bready. And the after taste is fine.
This also is a great appetizing before food beer.
Feel: Solid weight, but not heavy, easy to drink in the afternoon.

Lovely short bottle and American tradition earns it a regular place in my fridge along with Dales Pale Ale.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2013 22:51:57 | More by Act25
Photo of DrDemento456


4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Snagged this one off halftime beverage. I checked the code and it was bottled in September.

A - Hazy bright orange yellow with a full half inch of sticky white head. Lacing and body looks nice for under 6%

S - Smells like a hopped up pale to me soft gram cracker malt accompanied but some grapefruit and pine needle bitterness.

T - Quite bright and refreshing for almost two months old. I found it to be more session able than most hopped up pales with bright yet soft peachy and grapefruit hops and the sweet cracker balance. It didn't quite bitter your tongue or stick to your palate but it was enjoyable.

M - Light to medium, crisp, hoppy, delicious.

Overall expecting just a run of the mill IPA I was impressed with both the smoothness of the beer and the great aromatics/flavor of the hop profile. Only problem is I can't find this around my area fresh to pick it up by the sixer. Someday...

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2012 19:29:02 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of Spikester


4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy orange with at least two fingers of white head. Lacing is average.
Smell is piney hop oils , citrus. Very strong aroma.
Taste is Cascade hops, fruity, pine, leather bitterness on the back of the tongue.
Mouthfeel is just right for the style. Dry finish, bitterness lingers.
Overall a benchmark IPA that now more closely resembles an English IPA. Not a bad thing as that was the original IPA. Easy drinking tasty IPA now listed as 5.5% abv on their website.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2012 06:00:07 | More by Spikester
Photo of Flounder57


3.58/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that reduced yo a thin layer and left some nice lacing on the glass. It is a pale orange color with great clarity and slow moving bubbles coming up through the glass.

Smell: Grassy, slight citrus, bready,toasted, and caramel malts.

Taste: Same as above with lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, lingering bitterness, easy to drink, medium bodied, and medium carbonation.

Overall: A nice IPA to me. Wouldn't mind seeing a bit more sweetness and balance to the beer though. This is more like an English IPA to me.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2012 23:49:01 | More by Flounder57
Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 2,582 ratings.