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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

1,519 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,519
Hads: 3,227
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 10.33%
Wants: 87
Gots: 323 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,519 | Hads: 3,227
Photo of BillyBrew
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite brews made better by finding it on tap! Beautiful, slighty hazey, glowing orange colour with a super cream head that stands tall and sticks all over. Strong, biting raw-hop nose with slight huskiness. Biting, raw hops that are bitter and citrusy. Slight malt sweetness fills the medium-light body.

Flavorful and biting mediumish body. Damn fine. A must find. I cannot belive I drank Liberty out of the bottle for so long. Now I know the meaning of beer. Cheers! (494 characters)

Photo of hmk22
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What an excellent beer -- I really want to believe this is what beer used to taste like. Lots of hops, but so well worked into the whole product it doesn't seem forced. As other reviewers have noted this is in the same class as Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, but I might give the edge to Anchor Liberty owing to its overall more uniform taste and that IMO the "gestalt" is just better. I'm also a fan of Steam -- Anchor is a class outfit. (431 characters)

Photo of terryeckmeier
4.51/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Randomly picked it up looking for a bottle of brew to have with dinner. Read about the brewery in a local beer magazine and thought I would try it.

The smell was really pleasant. Nice citrus notes, little bits of spice and nice floral aromas.

Taste was awesome, never have been a big ale guy but this is the one to turn me I think. Nice bitter hop notes, clean finish with a nice aftertaste.

Looks a nice golden yellow almost like a Weiss Bier. Nice head that quickly vanished. Poured into a pint glass.

Mouth feel was pretty typical of an ale nice lacing.

Suprised at the size of the bottle 650 ml pint and half almost.

Will pick up again. (647 characters)

Photo of CamuMahubah
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Amber with super little silky creamy bubbles...

Dandelions and honey and magnolia...

Succulent tangerine creamy...hint of bubblegum and maybe sea salt...

Possibly the best mouthfeel of any beer I have ever drank...

Boomshakalaka...this is definitely and Anchor offering...that tell tale something...maybe it's the same yeast...big fan of this brewery so I'm a bit jaded but I didn't really expect this beer to be this good...I was actually afraid to review after reading other reviews...have no fear...it's Anchor. (518 characters)

Photo of BigTunaHaircut
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5


Poured into a pint glass

Once poured the beer developed a slightly small head that dissipated quickly. Lacing was a bit thin but constant. Color semi-clear and was a very deep orange with a slight hue of brown.

This beer has great aroma. Its full of great perfumy/herbal hops. The aroma is mostly floral but does have a hint of roasted malt.

The taste of this beer was no surprise giving the great smell. It has great balance all the way through from the minute it hits your tongue to the swallow. The taste is very hop laden but not overpowering.

slightly low carbonation, but I think that this helps the overall mouth feel of the beer along with the taste because it is very smooth.

I could very easily finish my 6 and feel the same way from first to last. This beer is very refreshing. In the midst of February, I can't help but imagine myself sitting by the atlantic, eating some seafood and drinking this beer.

Overall this is one of my favorite ales (972 characters)

Photo of goz
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Medium peach in color, with a large white head that slowly recedes to leave small amounts of lacing. Aroma is mainly dominated with cascade hops (pine needle & some citrus) with some bready maltiness and a bit of yeatiness hanging out. Taste is of piney hops, some sweet citrus, and hints of breadiness. Body is medium, flavor is very well balanced, and immensley drinkable. (374 characters)

Photo of Lexluthor33
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours golden with orange haze. Decent head small lace. The aroma is fruity,malts, and floral. The taste is hops,yeast,sweet,malts,grains and citrus notes.
The overall feel is a mild carbonation with mild bitterness and a dry hop finish.Yeasty and well balanced.

Notes: A very fine brew. A pleasure to have and a very unique Ale. I will go out of my way to find this as this Brewery has given me some good experiences. I would say this is an American classic,perfect for all occasions. Session-Hell yes! (503 characters)

Photo of CajunCavern
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle - Pours golden color with thick white head - I like a little foam. Good hoppy nose. Citrus, smack of grapefruit, hint of orange peel. Sourdough. Good balance of malt. When I get an APA like this one, and perhaps Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, I really am a big fan of the style (APA). Kudos to the brew master. This would go well with Mexican food and crawfish etouffee. (370 characters)

Photo of ManekiNeko
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Sampled on tap at Blind Tiger.

Appearance: Burnished golden yellow. Clear with a nice frothy head. Decent lacing as this heavenly brew was quaffed.

Smell: Great hop profiles on this one. Anchor used more of the floral/fruity aromatic hops than the ones with piney/bitter notes. Slight lemon/citrus scent.

Taste: Floral/citrusy hop flavors balanced nigh-perfectly with the pale malt.

Mouthfeel: Slightly astringent, good drying sensation on the palate. Great medium body.

Drinkability: This has got to be one of the best pale ales I've ever had. I had forgotten how truly great some of Anchor's products are as it had been awhile. This will definitely become a staple in my fridge. (696 characters)

Photo of BeerImmediately
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was excited to see this offered as a sixtel at Paul A. Smith's in Pottstown. Even more excited after having one!

A: Poured with a UUUGE ED, and had a burnt yellow complexion.

S: Light, piney-hopped floral scent... enticing!

T: Wow, this is a fantastic pale ale. Complexity was apparent, as I noticed a bready/yeasty flavor up front, tightened up by a very well balanced piney hop tang in the finish.

M: Relatively dry, and refreshing - exactly what you would hope for in an APA.

D: Nice drinkability, with just the right balances of ... well, everything! Not too much of any aspect.

I'd highly recommend this fine APA! (and very glad that I have 5 gallons worth to enjoy with friends in the coming weeks!) (726 characters)

Photo of alehopman
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I rarely preface a review with comments but this is truly the gold standard of American ales. I have consumed this periodically in the 80's, 90's and have now returned. I can say this ale has not waivered and as in so seldom the case, is as good as I remember it being in the previous 2 decades. Poured into a nonic glass achieved a beautiful 2 finger head, fine beaded carbonation. Head was vigorous and sheeted down glass. The citric hop aroma (I get tangerine) is fantastic. On first taste you get that and a flowery hop note. The malt then kicks in, then a great bitter hop finish. A classic that is one of a kind. (618 characters)

Photo of bmills1608
4.52/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This ale has a cult following and seems to be pretty legendary. After my first sip I could definitely see why. Anchor is the granddaddy of 'em all. Ales like this must have shown like a beacon of hope back in the 70's early 80's when the U.S. was still stuck in it's Dark Age of fizzy yellow crap beer.

It says on the label it was first brewed in 1975 to commemorate Paul Revere's ride. The British are coming! Well, not in this case...."Better beer is coming". Pours out a slightly hazy, nice deep golden color. On the nose is heaps of herbal hops, very fresh, with hints of lemon and citrus. Really inviting dry hopped nose.

My first sip, I new we had a winner, big time. A smooth but sturdy foundation of very lightly toasted malt provided the perfect backbone for this beer. A slightly honeyed maltiness start things off, followed by a spicy and herbal, rather complex hop twang, a bit of nice tingling bitterness, fresh hops, more lemon/citrus in the middle pallette. Dangerous drinkability and a prototype beer in terms of perfect balance. Beautify hopped. One word comes to mind - harmony. A light fruitiness also appeared toward the end of the glass as the beer warmed a bit. Finished with a slight malt sweetness combined with more fresh hop oils. Mouthfeel was awesome. A soft and light creaminess, incredibly soft. Perfect carbonation.

I was literally stunned at how much I enjoyed drinking this beer. I did not have overly big expectations. But every mouthful was a treat. For a pale ale to give this much satisfaction to the drinker says a lot. It's not an "extreme" beer, it's not over the top, it does not hit you over the head with heavy flavors. What it is however is a perfectly balanced ale with class and style. (1,740 characters)

Photo of xhcadamx
4.53/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - medium honey with a with huge long lasting white head and lots of lacing.

S - Cascde hops and a background of grain

T - this is a true masterpiece. It has the base recipe that all Anchor beers have. This isn't a bad thing. Perfect balance between malt and hops.

M - all of their beers are krausened which gains so much respect from me. take the tour it will change your life.

D - Anchor is in the top five of my breweries ever for good reason all their beers are approachable but amazing. (497 characters)

Photo of luvND
4.53/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a cloudy golden color. Perfect head, thick, white, creamy, invites you to drink it. Aroma is crisp with plenty of hop and some citrus. Taste is absolutely perfect for a session beer, plenty of hop with a smooth malt balance. The mouthfeel is like silk, this stuff just feels good on your tongue. Exceptional drinkability. I would have no problem making this my house ale. It's a nice session beer in winter and would make a great companion to any summer BBQ. (464 characters)

Photo of dar482
4.53/5  rDev +14.1%
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. (633 characters)

Photo of BeerResearcher
4.53/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Liberty American Style Pale Ale is, without a doubt, Anchor Brewing's best year round offering. The wonderful hop bouquet is immediately noticed and appreciated when poured into the glass and unlike most American pale ales, the aroma lingers, albeit more subtlety as the brew disappears. The rich copper color shines brightly. I believe Maaco should offer this color in a car paint. They could call it 'Liberty Deep Copper'. It would certainly look great on my Jeep!

After taking the time to fully admire the fine hop nose and rich copper color, the next outstanding trait of Liberty Pale Ale one notices is the hop distinctive taste. The fresh whole hops are in abundance, yet not overwhelming. There's a crisp metallic sharp-edged bitterness with light citrus undertones. The sharpness diminishes slightly as you drink it down and the hop to malt difference becomes less exaggerated and more balanced and smooth. The medium to full malt body is lightly sweet with a hint of nuts. It seems to me that a lot of care has been taken in the malt roasting process. My hats off to the Brew Master.

Liberty Ale is truly a world-class Pale Ale! (1,146 characters)

Photo of TrevorGW
4.53/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

look- Beautiful copper color. A bit cloudy, which I appreciate.

feel - great because it is lightly carbonated but still gives the mouth that great sensation. Nice and wet, refreshing.

taste - great deep, soft hop flavor that doesn't kill the malt. The bitterness is balanced perfectly.

Great beer, which I slightly prefer to regular Anchor Steam. Thank god this beer is widely distributed! (393 characters)

Photo of roddwolff
4.54/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tasted 10 february 2010, at 12 pm, while watching the game of FC Bayern for the DFB Cup. Once served in a pint glass. Look: Amber color, a finger of foamy head, wth good lacing; Smell: Citrus hops and fruit essences, predominant guava and orange, slightly malt cookie; Taste: Pine-Wood and earth hops, plus a cookie-scented malt, the fruit essences of the smell lost; Mouthfeel: Dry, woody and very bitter, medium to robust body, almost creamy, low carbonation; Drinkability: Excepciontal American-freedom beer. (511 characters)

Photo of Mark
4.54/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Light in color, strong in taste. The alcohol is very prominent. Excellent aroma, good mouthfeel, nice solid lacing. Taste seemed to change a bit as the glass was emptied. Very complex solid beer from the brewery that started me on the road to beer snobdom. As an update. The last few bottles have been very refreshing with much less alcohol strength in evidence. A real tremendous beer from the pioneers! (404 characters)

Photo of Ardon
4.54/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark amber appearance with a nice smooth frothy head. Mild malty aroma, very earthy smell but with a sweet balance. Soft malty taste on the pallet with a long bitter hop finish. Slightly sweet with that same earthiness as in the smell. Fantastic balance of malt and hops. I used to think this was a good session beer, yet now, like Anchor Steam, I find it very filling, like a meal in a glass. (393 characters)

Photo of Crundy
4.54/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance: hazy orange color, white head

smell: fruity, bubblegum, floral

taste: floral, hop, fruity, slightly sweet citrus flavor

mouth feel: nice bite from the carbonation, nice balance of bitter and sweet, medium body

overall: Good beer, pleasantly surprised by the smell and taste, very floral even on the aftertaste, very pleasant. I enjoyed it very much. (365 characters)

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.55/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A classic! It's slightly hazy (bottle-conditioned) golden-amber body is topped by a frothy white head that holds really well and leaves some very nice lace throughout the glass. Dry-hopped Cascades saturate the nose - perfumey, floral, lemony, and pine-like over some lightly caramel-tinged grainy malt. The hops are 'softer' from the dry-hopping, however, and not as 'sharp' as if they'd been added to the kettle. It's luxurious! The body is medium; and it's lightly crisp and then smooth and creamy in the mouth due in part to a very fine, natural carbonation from bottle conditioning. Cascades carry over into the flavor in a big way; wrapped in sweet, caramelish malt and backed by a firm bitterness. It's very well-rounded and nicely balanced, without the aggressive edge that many beers like this have. Absolutely worth seeking out! (838 characters)

Photo of Hobbz
4.55/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Ahhh, my old fav, grassy-assed but respectful friend has paid a visit.

What can I say about a beer that was the first real one!? It's like the one-in-a-million chance meeting of the person/place/thing that changes your life and you realize you won't ever be alone any more (though you never were -- it just seamed that way)...

Finding this beer was not the one-in-a-million, but its effect on me certainly was. In this sense and more I ascribe it perfection -- on BA, I will play by the rules and not by my emotions!

This is a bold, assertive beer in flavor and taste. I absolutely love its balance. And yet separated out, each of the main components -- for example grain-bill and hops -- has its own discernable characteristics worthy of notice (grain bitterness with malt sweetness; oily hop bite yet with a strong dry, Cascade dry-hopping). This is THE flagship American pale-/India-pale- ale before all others.

1989 perhaps, in a small, long-forgotten East Village bar where the proprietor was proudly serving up ALL Anchor products on draft...you will never be forgotten.

(PS: in this review whatever unsappy, man-ridden facades I might chose have long lost out) (1,184 characters)

Photo of WGO
4.55/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Love the Anchor bottles, they seem so quaint but hold so much liquid. Great labels.
Very dense thick foam, slowly dissipates, never leaves the edges. Cloudy amber brown colour.
Nose is citrus, but with a bit of tropical fruit ripe banana, mango hint of pineapple. Some bready malts also show through.
Taste is a number of orange fruits. Clementines, satsumas. Possibly dried apricots.
Mouthfeel is almost thick but not quite. Great carbonation, makes it interesting but still very drinkable.
One of my favorite beers. (518 characters)

Photo of dacrza1
4.56/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

DATE TASTED: January 16, 2015... GLASSWARE: Kisatsky Tavern pint ... OCCASION: a good week done... APPEARANCE: a storm of effervescent bubbles whirl violently below an absolute dreamy cloud of thick white head; hazy orange amber in color; lacing is ribbed and substantial... AROMA: sharp orange peel; some sugarlike cookie, vanilla, grapefruit and spring flowers... PALATE: creamy at the lips; slight pings of sourness at the teeth; effervescent but swift to the throat; light and mega-sessionable ...TASTE: citric flavors of grapefruit and lilac, orange and vanilla make this already a winner; the malt settles nicely, providing balance...OVERALL: why so long to revisit this most perfect example of the genre--as refreshing and flavorful as a pale ale can be... (763 characters)

Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 1,519 ratings.