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Sofie | Goose Island Beer Co.

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1,064 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
80% Belgian Style Ale, 20% Belgian Style Ale aged in wine barrels with citrus peel. Champagne color, white pepper aroma, citrus & vanilla flavor, sparkling body.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 03-29-2009

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Reviews: 1,064 | Ratings: 4,346
Photo of Rifugium
3.75/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Not sure where or when I first had this, but I recently revisited it on tap at TJ's, Paoli, PA.

Cloudy pale yellow pour with a creamy puff of white head that retained well and left nice lacing on the glass. Aroma of grassy funk, ripe pears and melons. Much of the same in the taste, bready yeast, ripe fruits including banana as well, wet funk and trace of peppery spice. Medium body and easily drinkable making for a nice beer overall.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.33/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

very hazy medium yellow color came gurgling out of the bottle, quickly coming to a head that reached a height of maybe two inches. There was then a rich coating of side glass lace that thoroughly coated the glass with some nice carbonation being visible throughout the session.

The aroma was highly charged on this one. Lots of light fruit swirling around with a healthy dose of spice in it as well. Nice touches of coriander, lemon, hints of pepper coming through, with a touch of pears warming up to it as it came up to room temperature. The initial taste was peppery, with a rush of lemon following suit almost immediately. A wonderful sense of light fruit really just ran all over this one. I was quite impressed I have to admit. Smooth mouth feel was more the adequately carbonated and really just kept the profile popping throughout. An easy sipper, the moderate ABV lended itself well to a warm late summer evening.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.68/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this up at Wegman's, enjoyed chilled from a tulip shared with tenderbranson69.

A - The color is golden with hazed appearance and thin cap with tight bead. the smell has a big phenolic and fruity vinous nose with light tart white grape odor with light wheat w/ slight sulfur tinge. Mouthfeel is dry and tart with tangy and slightly spiced tinge with highly carbonated and semi-creamy w/ mild fruity sweet tinge with light mineral essence.

The taste is nice vibrant and tangy with dry vinous and lightly sulfuric with gentle white grape and light pepper with slight apple skin quality and mild yeast with wheat and light element of vinous barrel essence coming forward. The flavor is good I found this to be an enjoyable saison with fruity quality from the barrel with some aspects that might come off as cheesiness from the yeast which detracts a tinge from the flavor, but overall a good beer.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.07/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Jacob for sharing this one today.

A: The pour is a pale golden yellow color with a fluffy white head.

S: The nose is quite fruity with plenty of citrus, pears, and maybe some melon. There's a definite spice aroma along with some yeast and perhaps even a bit of tartness.

T: I was very pleased by the nose, but the flavors didn't quite live up to that. The spices are much more pronounced and the tartness doesn't make an appearance either. There is still some nice fruit character, namely apples, pears, and bananas, however.

M: The body is medium with a very nice tingly carbonation which gives the beer a bit more of a light feeling on the tongue.

D: I liked this much better than some of Goose Islands special releases, but I still don't know how much of this I could drink. A nice beer to have a small pour of, however.

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Photo of russpowell
4.39/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is courtesy of BEERchitect, cheers Kevin!

2009 vintage pours a very effervescent straw color with 3 fingers of fluffy ivory colored head. Hazes a bit a the bottom, duh... Average head retention & lacing

S: Grassy with apple peels, plus lemons

T: Apple peels, white grape, lemony hops & a wee bit of dirt & tartness up front. Tartness with a bit of golden delicious apple & lemon zest as this warms, slight dryness & a touch of Chardonnay. finishes dry with cidery character, with a touch of coriander & white pepper thrown in, plus slight acidic twang at the very end. Might just taste bit too clean to pull a 5.0..

MF: Light & spritzy, much winey & cidery aspects to this

Extremely drinkable, abv is completely hidden. This is very quaffable. Would love to age a bottle to see how this progresses in a few years, but I doubt that will happen...

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Photo of dbrauneis
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2011 Edition.

A: Pours a hazy pale yellow with a fair amount of particulates in suspension and light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a three finger tall fizzy white head that reduces to a dense thick patch with a thin film covering the entire surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant lacing is observed.

S: A very interesting smell to this beer and one that is unexpected for the style. There is a significant amount of funkiness in the aroma along with citrus and sour hints. There are also some floral notes as well as hints of spices (like clove and coriander).

T: The taste is very similar to the smell of this beer, there are significant notes of citrus (mostly orange/orange peel) along with some prominent spice notes (clove and coriander). Additionally there is quite a bit of funkiness in the flavor as well.

M: On the lighter side of medium bodied with significant amounts of carbonation. Smooth and slightly dry in the finish.

O: The beer is quite tasty and enjoyable though is a little too intense in flavor to be sessionable - this is a very good sipping beer. I found the beer to be quite refreshing. The funkiness of this beer might make it a little less approachable for folks that are not fans of that flavor profile.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.92/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a chalice at the Clybourn brewpub.

Y'know, I think I've had Sofie a couple times before...why the hell haven't I given her the proper respect of a review yet? Let's fix it: She pours a clear pale straw topped by a finger-and-a-half of white foam. The nose comprises lemon zest, sour wheat, pepper, dank oak, and spicy white grapes. The taste holds notes of lemon zest, orange peel, cardamom, wheat, black pepper, and spicy white wine grapes. As nice as the flavors come across, it's not as good as the smell would have me believe. The body is a hefty light, with a moderate carbonation and a dry finish. Overall, a tasty, refreshing Belgian treat. Good times.

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Photo of smcolw
3.68/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Impressive huge white head that recedes in a rocky fashion. Cloudy, straw color.

Belgian yeast aroma with a light malt/wheat touch.

Lemony, with a strong shot of yeast. Flowery and biting in the swallow. Light hop. Short aftertaste. Neutral mouthfeel. A good saison to try with others.

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Photo of billab914
4.04/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Lost Abbey stemware. Poured a light gold straw color with a thick bubbly white head. The head faded but left some nice lacing on the glass as I drank it.

The aroma has a peppery, yeasty spice to it along with a lemony, orange citrus flavor. It has a little bit of a grape aroma to it as well. It has a nice balanced and flavorful aroma to it.

The taste has a sharp acidic citrusness to it with lemon and orange both coming through in the flavors. It has a bit of a dry grape flavor coming through as well. It has bit of peppery spiciness to it that comes through more in the finish.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side with above average carbonation that is a little sharp on the tongue. Drinkability is good, it's a very nice Belgian ale. It was nicely balanced with some very good flavors.

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Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip. 2010 vintage bottled on 02/19/10.

a - Pours a clear golden color with high carbonation evident and three fingers of fluffy white head. Head lasts for several minutes and leaves some lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of floral hops, spices, brett, earthy tones, fruity malts, cloves, and bananas. Smells pretty nice, some definite brett/funk which I enjoy.

t - Tastes of spices, yeast, floral notes, fruity malts, cloves, grass, light brett, and wheat. Not much brett, maybe a hint.

m - Light body and moderate carbonation. Crisp, very easy to drink.

d - A pretty nice saison. I didn't feel like there was much brett in the taste but definitely saw some in the nose. An easy drinking saison I would try again.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Light clouded peach/orange golden with a bright fine effervescent white head. Fine Belgian style lacing spread evenly, very good looking beer. Aroma has hints of citrus, white grape, light toasted oak with tart green apple hanging on. Slightly spicy Belgian inspired notes as well, with a honeysuckle floral quality. Flavors bring on bold but refreshing qualities, swirl this around in the mouth and you'll get some tart green apple, lime citrus peel, with spicy black pepper. Amongst other flavors are some light toasted oak, and mild honey sweetness, finishes perfectly dry from the Belgian yeast utilized. Mouthfeel is on point with your favorite Belgians, effervescent light and airy, perfect really. Overall, another perfect creation from Goose Island, AB buyout hasn't changed them yet. Really nice beer, up there with Matilda comparing this to a Belgian Pale is a bit out of touch but both unique dead on style Belgians.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.32/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Light yellow, slightly hazy, moderate head, little lacing.

S: Grapes, spices, and enticing brettanomyces. Brett is such an inviting aroma.

T: Very crisp with white grapes, orange and/or orange peel, white wine. The wild yeast is tasty and well integrated into the overall flavor.

M: Very crisply carbonated. Nice feel.

D: A tasty beer that I really enjoyed. I'll buy this if I see it and I'd certainly drink it again.

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Photo of stakem
3.64/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a tulip. The brew appears a hazed golden yellow color with a rich white finger of froth atop. Some sudsy patches of lace stick to the glass as the cap fades.

The smell is a bit sulfuric but with a lemony almost lactic tang. Some wheat and vinous elements really emerge as the brew warms up. This is a pretty tight, simplistic and enjoyable smelling brew.

The flavor has a solid wheat inclusion mixed with a touch of sulfur. Some lemony almost coriander essence and clingy oil quality is present before getting a bit tangy and vinous towards the back.

This is a light bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is a nice offering overall with that partial barrel aging part of the blend being a nice subtle addition to an otherwise ordinary saison. If some of the sulfites could be removed, this brew would be a real winner.

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Photo of jwc215
4/5  rDev -2.7%

On-tap at 3 Cellars in Franklin, Wi:

Pours golden yellow with champagne-like effervescence and a fluffy lasting white head. Lacing sticks.

The smell is of lemon, orange peel, coriander and oak/vanilla.

The taste is of orange peel, coriander, lemon and vanilla. Sweet and sour. Sourdough finish.

Light-bodied and bubbly, this is an interesting brew. A bit sweet, a bit sour/funky. A white ale/saison mix with a champagne-like character to it.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.73/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from 10/23/2009
Bottle opens with a nice crack and then a volcano of foam that almost made it into the sink. When it all settles down it pours a mostly clear golden straw color with a pillowy white head that sticks around forever. Smells sweet and fruity with lemons and green apples dominating the aroma. There's some funk in there that reminds me a bit of spoiled meat? Luckily its not to strong but its there. Taste is a bit sweet, green apples and honey mixed with a bit of funk. Spirited level of carbonation, medium body, sweet almost sticky mouthfeel. Despite the misstep upon opening, this beer isn't half bad.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.18/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Goose Island Sofie

Clouded, "white", prodigious head, lively and lovely.

Beautiful, spicy aromatics, coriander, ginger, clove....bright and sprightly.

Spice hits the palate right up front, very spritzy, with delightful spice...Mmmm, smooth,wheaty, easy-drinking, delicious....nice, grainy/grassy texture. Some malty, spicy flavor, then all is smooth...

Spice never quits, never never flags...really great saison!

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Photo of smakawhat
4.09/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass. Vintage 2011, bottled August 2nd 2011 - 1720.

A real nice lemon and green orb glowing body, sort of almost chardonnay in appearance but also a bit opaque too. Head forms nicely but then disappears quite quickly, leaving a very soapy ringed minimal collar.

Nose brings a nice simple lemon and yeast hotness. There's some slight lemon juice in here with a hint of sugar and sweet orange but very faint, real sour sense coming off this. Smells real solid I actually really dig this bouquet going on here.

Taste is surprisingly sweet front sugars, mixing with the nose of lemon, orange, and mild citrus. Kind of a nice play on the palate and very light bodied, even some drying tannic qualities on the tongue. Mild crispness mixing with malt and bread dough like qualities with some solid density. After a few sips lots of rooftop tannic dryness comes forth.

Overall quite easy drinking, and a good intro saison for I think those who might not want to jump into something too extreme. I can see giving this off to many wine drinkers and seeing them really enjoying it. THe only thing missing I think is a bit of yeast punch and funk/brett and or sour qualities, but that's alright.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
2.93/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

2012 bottle vintage

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is a bright, hazy, orange-gold coloring with only a hint of film atop the brew. Steady carbonation flow throughout the body of the beer. Aromas of clove, butter, saffron, and some dull fruity sweetness. Flavors are a bit watered down, with a toasty, slightly sour backbone of cereal and banana. The slight sour character keeps the spice notes to a bare minimum, with only a hint of oregano and clove. There is a slick, oily partial lacing left along the glass. Toasty, subtle aftertaste, with not much else to go on. The finish is quick and sharp, with a slight bitterness to it. Meh.

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Photo of Billolick
4.42/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber bottle, "Bottled on 12-11-09" Typed onto the label, $7.99 at Whole Foods Bowery, NYC. Pours quite light, yellowy and clear, the head is eggshell, initially quite impressive, slow morph to meraingue and 1/2 inch froth, leaves the expected quality, thicker and sticky lace. The nose is loaded with lemony fruit, yeasty nuttyness and general Belgian style spiced up yummyness. The final pour is yeast infused and produces a cloudy look. Notes on the tongue and mouth include more yeasty nuttyness, moderate pepper, tropical fruit, and hoppy herbaliciousness. Simply yummy. Complex, flavorful, delicate yet full of flavor and interest. Huge ups for the quality take on the style. A bargain price for this high qality brew. Wish I picked up 2 or more bottles, which sums things up..

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Photo of drabmuh
3.63/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer is yellow and mosltly clear with a white head of small and medium bubbles.

Aroma is overall a little weak but its fruity with a mild tartness to it.

Beer is quite tart, mild fruitiness in the midpalate. No sweetness up front. Beer is medium to light in body and the carbonation is low on the palate, just like in the glass. Beer is kind of boring, not boring just plain. Its a very mild wild ale. Overall its OK.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.95/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 04/24/2012 "1000". Poured in to tulip.

A - Translucent medium yellow colour; very slightly cloudy. A small layer of white head with very light bubbles formed.

S - Clove, Belgian yeast, oak, spice and vinous fruit. Funk is present throughout.

T - Big oak flavour up front with a fairly big funk presence. Cloves, Belgian yeast and bready malts are also prominent in the palate. The background adds very light citrus, spice and some vinous fruit.

M - Light body, clightly creamy. Moderate carbonation.

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Photo of tempest
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ah, a nice rich farmhouse aroma with white grapes and sharp apple and horse blanket. The fruit morphs into a sweeter, creamy frosting taste with lemon tart cupcake and a mild cherry finish. This is an impressive beer. It doesn't quite have the mouthfeel of classic, big bottle saison from Belgian, but Goose Island has created a great take of the farmhouse ale.

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Photo of Gobzilla
4.32/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle courtesy of bauermj thanx for this one

A: poured a hazy golden yellow with a thin head that left good sticky lacing on the glass.

S: acidic herbal spice aromas at first whiff with faint citrus notes and hints of sweet malts and tropical fruits. Really good nose.

T: nice spice apples up front with sweet malts faint tropical fruits like the nose and slight brett character as well. There is also cinnamon and apple sauce type flavors.

M: light body with a nice amount of carbonation that accents the overall taste and a sweet and spicey fruit finish.

D: good saison from goose island that made me want more after the beer was gone. I hope I can get my hands on more of this brew.

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Photo of Tone
3.97/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, pale yellow color. One inch head of a white color. Great retention and decent lacing. Smells of tart malt, citrus, slight spice, pale hops, sweet malt, and slight wheat. Fits the style of a Saison / Farmhouse Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp with a high carbonation level. Tastes of tart malt, citrus, pale hops, slight sweet malt, slight wheat, and a hint of spice. Overall, a good aroma, body, and blend.

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Photo of WesWes
4.52/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The beer pours a hazy pale gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great! It has a light and fruity pale malt scent along with a touch of orange peel and Belgian yeast esters. It's incredibly complex with a light wine barrel aging character as well. The taste is great as well. It's light and quaffable, but with tons of flavor and yeast character. It goes down so easy and finishes dry with bits of orange peel and citrus. Wow, what an incredibly drinkable beer. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a masterpiece of a Belgian pale. It's smooth as hell and so tasty. Good work Goose Island.

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Sofie from Goose Island Beer Co.
4.11 out of 5 based on 4,346 ratings.
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