Honker's Ale
Goose Island Beer Co.

Honker's AleHonker's Ale
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Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States
Bitter - English
Ranked #46
Ranked #25,487
3.65 | pDev: 11.78%
Jan 17, 2022
Aug 08, 2001
Honker's AleHonker's Ale
Notes: Golden sunset color, fruity hop aroma, biscuity malt flavor, soft body.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of illtexzona
3.84/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
by illtexzona from Illinois

On draft at Goose Island Clybourn 1/15/21

Reddish amber hues with thin white head. Dark malt and and some dark fruits on the nose. Sweet malt, breadiness, hint of fruits, and mildy bitter taste. It's fairly light and easy on the palate. This was my first Goose Island beer and I will always come back to it. It's a great sessionable ESB.

Jan 17, 2022
3.62 by LesDewitt4beer from Minnesota on Nov 21, 2021
3.56 by tottel from Netherlands on Jul 30, 2021
4.1 by BrewsOverHoes from Georgia on Jun 10, 2021
4 by jeschaefer from Texas on Apr 18, 2021
Photo of StanleysCup
3.77/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by StanleysCup from Maryland

Was once one of my "go-to" options in the days of independent Goose Island; this was my standard bearer for ESBs for some time. The post AB-InBev offering isn't as appealing; the most recent offerings seem to lack the maltiness and body I enjoyed previously. The scores above reflect an average of pre/post acquisition.

Feb 23, 2021
3.58 by TwilightBeerCareer from Illinois on Feb 15, 2021
3.5 by Chipwells from Georgia on Feb 02, 2021
3.62 by GaryM6 from New York on Jan 28, 2021
3.82 by uncleotis from Illinois on Dec 29, 2020
3 by JohnG190 from New York on Dec 08, 2020
3.73 by Insomniac from Canada (ON) on Nov 16, 2020
3.04 by Jaasoares from Virginia on Nov 11, 2020
Photo of gatornation
3.69/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by gatornation from Minnesota

Pours a red copper color with a khaki head , Smell and taste was dark fruits,toffee and caramel,baked bread malts . Had medium carbonation with a thickness coating and bitterness..

Jul 26, 2020
3.5 by 4DAloveofSTOUT from Illinois on Jun 03, 2020
2.5 by RiceOwls27 from Texas on May 04, 2020
3.5 by GRG1313 from California on Apr 19, 2020
4 by doctorgary from New York on Mar 11, 2020
3.5 by MJSFS from Florida on Dec 07, 2019
2.88 by emerge077 from Illinois on Nov 10, 2019
Photo of EMH73
3.64/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
by EMH73 from New York

Pours amber with a half inch white head that left nice lacing. Smells of roasted malts, caramel, yeast and hops. Tastes of bready malts, caramel, burnt sugar, yeast and a nice balancing hop presence. Light bodied, well carbonated, watery mouth feel.

Nov 01, 2019
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
2.64/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5
by JonnoWillsteed from England

L- Seems to be a slightly reddish amber, clear. Pours with 3mm white head, clears quite swiftly.
S- Light roast smell, and there could be a hint of fruit in it too.
T- Somewhat dry on the front, though more of that comes over as rather dryly carbonic, ie from high carbonation, instead of notable hopping. Otherwise the flavour is say like a lager + a bit more sweetness + a touch more body.
F- There's something rather synthetic about it, and I can't put my finger on it...
O- ... I can finish it but I shan't put this on my list to buy again.
p.s. The lable states that the brew is styled on English Bitter, really!
330ml bottle

Oct 29, 2019
4 by Wheels2532 from Pennsylvania on Aug 22, 2019
3.52 by bird_soul from Netherlands on Aug 12, 2019
3.75 by ian_graf from Minnesota on Jun 09, 2019
3.78 by DarrellK from Florida on Jun 01, 2019
3.28 by lastmango from Pennsylvania on Apr 04, 2019
3.63 by digitalflood from New York on Feb 14, 2019
3.52 by btbcolo from Colorado on Feb 03, 2019
2.75 by TheOutlet from Missouri on Jan 16, 2019
Photo of mothmanscott
3.62/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by mothmanscott from Georgia

From notes 3/31/13: Pours clear medium amber producing 2+ fingers of frothy, off-white, somewhat lasting head that leaves abundant webs of lace. Aroma is toasted malt, sugary caramel, yeast and a burnt hint with a thin hop character. Taste is malty toast with a hint of char, caramel, toffee, some chocolate, cream and yeast backed by a hoppy bitterness. Average at best, To tell the truth I'm a little disappointed based on what I have come to expect from this brewery. Taste more like a bitter Amber Ale than an English Bitter.

Jan 04, 2019
Photo of monkist
4.06/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by monkist from Hungary

It's funny that the best English Bitter that I had is made by an American brewery.
As it has much morecontent, aromaand flavor than the English counterparts, I vote this the best I've ever had.
Along with the typical/trademark English Bitter light/watery body, it has enough malts and most importantly, fragrant hops that stand out in the aroma. The taste is also quite well balanced, does not get too light nor too dry bitter so I found it overall nice - although not to an extent that I would want to drink it again. I loved the aroma though, it was a pleasant beer.

Dec 17, 2018
Photo of GrumpyGas
3.93/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by GrumpyGas from Illinois

12oz bottle dated 21SEP18 poured into my mouth looks awful, but I remember it being more on the dirty orange end of the color scale and with active bubbly carbonation.

Aroma is flowery, fruity hops and that flows into the flavor to which is added a good caramel malt for balance.

Mouthfeel is lighter with a slight stickiness.

Overall this is very much like beer.

Dec 14, 2018
2.83 by kofukasho from Japan on Nov 26, 2018
3.75 by McBraniel from Virginia on Nov 17, 2018
4.75 by dtmusser from Florida on Oct 21, 2018
3.75 by rossracing from Illinois on Oct 05, 2018
3.5 by soundaurora from Pennsylvania on Sep 25, 2018
3.74 by Nunya from Ohio on Aug 25, 2018
Photo of CraigHeron
4.35/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by CraigHeron from Canada (ON)

Had this on tap when we went for dinner. I was struck immediately by the wonderful look, smell, and taste. I pulled a social ‘no no’ with my smart phone to check where it is available in Toronto.

Aug 19, 2018
Honker's Ale from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 3991 ratings