Festivity Ale
Goose Island Beer Co.

Festivity AleFestivity Ale
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Brown Ale - American
Ranked #611
Ranked #41,638
3.66 | pDev: 12.84%
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States
Festivity AleFestivity Ale
Notes: Every year we brew a brown ale to celebrate the holidays. To make each year’s special, we alter the recipe. This year we wrapped caramel and dark fruit malt flavors inside a creamy toasty brown ale. May your holidays be filled with Festivity.
Reviews: 104 | Ratings: 531 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Bierwolf:
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Bierwolf from Missouri

3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Look: Pours hazy reddish brown with about a finger of foam. Foam reduces to thin layer and leaves light lacing.

Aroma: Malty and sweet. Caramel.

Taste: Coffee, roasty, burnt toast. Hoppy.

Feel: Medium light to medium body. Lingering dry finish.

Overall: Pretty good beer for a cold night.

Jan 18, 2015
More User Reviews:
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Br0wnsfn31 from Ohio

4.69/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Okay first off i know what you are thinking why is this guy doing a review at 8:00 am.. I had this beer last night for the first time in a bottle and well lets just say i wanted to take the rest with me..so here is my review

Appearance- Dark Brown with hints of red.. i guess maroon would be a better description but oh well.. impressive finger and a half of a kahki colored head that looked like wasnt going anywhere for a while..with some nice lacing.. 4.25

Smell- Can you say rosted malts?? Alot of caramel toffee notes as well..i get alittle vanilla in the nose.. the aroma is very intriguing..4.5

Taste- The taste is spot on as far as brown ales go.. i dont get the vanilla as much in the taste as the aroma.. alot of coffee like notes in the taste.. wow.. 5

Mouthfeel- Very smooth.. not too much carbonation.. the after taste is bitter, pleasant and lasts a while.. 4.5

Overall- Coming from Cleveland Ohio we have the legendary Great Lakes Christmas Ale.. Which is amazing dont get me wrong but its alittle on the expensive side.. This holiday brown ales stands at a stout 7.7% abv with 50 IBUS and is less than 10 bucks a six pack WHAATT.. now the 50 IBUS is puzzling to me because I dont find it that bitter others may but that is why there are 100000000000 beers in the world right? take caution when drinking and driving especially this one it will sneak up on you.. I hope you liked my review.. we need this beer in the 90's.. GOOSE ISLAND MAKE THIS YOUR STAPLE WINTER ALE

Nov 16, 2014
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whatchathink from Kentucky

1.32/5  rDev -63.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

I'll just keep it short and sweet. This is a really bad ale. It smells like finger nail polish remover and burnt sugar. Taste is the same. This ale is all over the place. I'm surprised they even released it. F

Nov 20, 2015
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EvoRich from Pennsylvania

4.45/5  rDev +21.6%

Look: Pours a reddish brown color, head disappears quickly. Has a look of syrup to it.

Smell: Brown sugar, very sweet, caramel, apple fruitiness with cinnamon. The smell really does make me think of Christmas!

Taste: Wow. Spicy, with a good bit of cinnamon. The cinnamon has a very long lasting presence from the start of the sip to the woody aftertaste, seconds after you've already swallowed. A small touch of caramel apple in the middle.

Feel: Spicy with mid-high levels of carbonation. Creamy texture.

Overall: A perfect Christmas beer. A lot in this beer from the aromas to the taste remind me of Christmas.

Nov 19, 2014
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NeubTube from Texas

2/5  rDev -45.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Horrid. Tastes like paint thinner smells, if that makes sense. Second-closest I've ever come to pouring beer down the drain. Fake fruit flavors, coupled with overwhelming booze, akin to bottom-shelf vodka. If interested go for a single bottle if available, as I wasted nearly $9 on a sixer. I'm cringing while writing this due to the flashbacks of near gagging it induced.

Nov 28, 2015
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yemenmocha from Arizona

2.07/5  rDev -43.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5


Pours a dark reddish color that is fine as far as appearance goes. Some holiday dessert on the nose, nothing stellar but nothing bad either. Palate is horrible. Disgusting boozey fake fruit flavors that seriously challenge one's composure when drinking this. Recommended to try this one in private, rather than in public. Normally I enjoy a winter ale with some of traditional qualities, but this one misses on a few levels.

Nov 28, 2015
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Mitchster from Michigan

4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

$1.69 for a 12oz bottle @ BevCo. Not listed on Goose Islands Website. 7.7% ABV and 50 IBU's per the bottle. Bottled Oct 14, 2014 and enjoyed Oct 30th.
Pours out to a beautiful deep mahogany, forming a tall poofy and creamy yellow head with superior retention and gorgeous lacing. Carbonation is moderate, ~2.5 carbs. The nose is inviting...leather, walnuts, vanilla, oak, some subtle fruity yeast esters, very faint hops. The mouthfeel is smooth and soft with a medium-dense body. Creamy on the tongue. The taste is wonderful..again, leather and walnuts, but I also get some subtle light roast coffee and toffee with some vanilla lingering down the middle and dark toast in the finish. Bitterness is beautifully balanced and smooth with a nice herbal hop quality. There is a touch of acetone towards the end but it is brief and mild and doesn't hurt the flavor thankfully.

An absolutely rich and complex brown ale. Delightful to drink. Worth picking up a few and sitting on them. I am going back to the store to pick up more. Highly recommended.

Nov 01, 2014
BIGPOPPAS from New Jersey

3.2/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Well I saw this today for the first time and just wanted something reasonable until I pick up a case of one of my favorites tomorrow.
The label read caramel, dark fruits and malts , so it actually sounded really exciting to me . I went ahead and purchased the six for under $10.
I'm reading others reviews, but I guess either I'm missing something or maybe I will like the second bottle better .
I was actually really disappointed in that I guess I expected something a little heavier and a bit more flavorful.
We all have different palates I guess and to each his own .
I'll likely be drinking one more and then passing off the others in a mixed six pack to friends for them to try.
I sure hope my $14 bottle of BCBS from GI is certainly better as I'll be cracking that either tomorrow or football Sunday , so I can see what all the hype is about .

Cheers :)

Nov 26, 2016
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lordofthewiens from New Mexico

2.75/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

I like Christmas ales, but this one is a little hard to take.
It starts out well enough. Dark red/brown with a small tan head.
Something amiss in the aroma. Very sweet but acrid.
Sweet, treacly taste. Some dark fruit. Acrid background.
Cloyingly sweet, not a fun beer to drink.

Nov 28, 2015
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mvanaskie13 from Pennsylvania

3.81/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a small chalice: color is cherry, head is light tan presenting about 1/2 inch thick and then dissipating quickly.

Smell is very enticing, nice fruity malt presence, followed by some mild yeast spice and hop earthiness. Caramel and toffee like flavors present as it warms.

Taste is a bit less emphatic than the aroma, with more malt and caramel flavors, fruity/fig/cherry like flavors are less noticeable; nice yeast fruit and spiciness. mild wheat/biscuit like flavors are present that subdue to the moderate hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is very pleasant for a beer of this malt profile, not cloying, very good balance of sweet and dryness with nice lingering fig/plum and caramel/toffee flavors.

Overall, a very solid christmas ale, tending towards the sweet side but solid fermentation and bittering hops complement

Dec 17, 2015
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bsp77 from Minnesota

4.06/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Nonic Pint.

Appearance: Fairly dark reddish-brown with nice light tan head.

Smell: Caramel, brown sugar, cherry, light chocolate, and spicy & earthy hops.

Taste: Strong malt backbone of caramel, brown sugar, dark fruit and chocolate. Some spicy and earthy hops on the finish, maybe a hint of citrus. Pretty sweet overall until the finish.

Feel: Somewhat full-bodied with moderately low carbonation. The finish is dry despite the mostly sweet taste, and that is what makes this beer really good.

Overall: It seems like another tweaking of their past Holiday beers, but I think they nailed it this time. Great taste with an even better mouthfeel.

Nov 18, 2014
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mactrail from Washington

2.82/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.25

This is a Winter Warmer, not a Brown Ale. Quite attractive with a big foam on the dark red brew poured into the Duvel tulip. Other than the flavor, it's well-made and pleasantly fizzy.

Sweet and nasty. Something like boiled-down Hawaiian punch. Leather, sulfury yellow raisins, and jujubes. Odd bitter finish. Licorice and dishwater smell. I keep trying to find something to like about this. From the six pack of 12 ozs, bottled 07 Oct 15.

Jan 07, 2016
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BEERMILER12 from Maine

3.78/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a hazy brownish red color with a 2 fingers of head that fades down to a very thin cap

S: Very malty with hint of nuts and dark fruits. Caramel sweetness comes through quite a bit. Light toastiness comes through as well

T: Follows the nose. Very malty with a big prevalence of caramel and moderate sweetness. Some toasted malt, dark fruits, and nuttiness come through as well. Finishes with lingering fruitiness and caramel

M: Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Nearing smooth

O: A solid holiday-time brown ale with plenty of maltiness. It is able to keep the sweetness down to a point, but it could definitely get a little cloying after a couple. Might be better in a 4-pack, but that's just my opinion. Worth a shot if you're into browns

Dec 18, 2014
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Chappy-88 from Michigan

4.04/5  rDev +10.4%

Dec 13, 2014
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Satchboogie from New Hampshire

3.8/5  rDev +3.8%

Dec 10, 2014
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McAfee85 from Kansas

3.59/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dec 20, 2015
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bubseymour from Maryland

3.8/5  rDev +3.8%

Dec 14, 2014
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RBCBrams17 from Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Dec 09, 2014
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CaptDavyJones from New York

3.81/5  rDev +4.1%

Nov 11, 2014
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rlovitt from New Jersey

3.8/5  rDev +3.8%

Nov 27, 2014
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BeerDawgs from Georgia

4.15/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12oz bottled in 10.2015

L - Deep red, mahogany, 1/2 a finger of head

S - Sugary sweet, dark malts, plums, dark fruit, raisons

T - Caramel, raisons, dark malts, nice citrus finish

F - Medium body and well carbonated

O - A tasty festive ale. Well done

Mar 05, 2016
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Yancey82 from Pennsylvania

3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dec 25, 2014
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mikeg67 from New Jersey

3.87/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Pours hazy brown with fluffy, off-white head and nice lacing. Aroma is of caramel malt, coffee, cherries and herbal hops. Body is medium and tangy. Caramel malt, herbal hops, ripe cherries and spices fill the mouth. Finish is long and dry. Very nice winter brew.

Nov 29, 2014
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misternebbie from Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Feb 03, 2015
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XmnwildX12 from Minnesota

3/5  rDev -18%

Dec 14, 2014
Festivity Ale from Goose Island Beer Co.
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 531 ratings