Welcome to BeerAdvocate!

Looking to talk, rate or trade beer? Join today by creating your free account.

Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

Halia | Goose Island Beer Co.

133 Reviews
no score
Send samples

Brewed by:
Goose Island Beer Co.
Illinois, United States | website

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed with the Saison and farmhouse ales of Belgium in mind, we added fresh Georgia peaches and Brettanomyces claussenii to a fresh white wine barrel and aged the Saison base for 9 months. Stretching the boundaries of the traditional style, we decided to put our own little spin on it.

Formerly known as Mae.

Added by sidetracked on 04-24-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 133 | Ratings: 856
Photo of bmwats
4.01/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a teku.

A: Slightly hazy, golden hue. Moderate amounts of rising effervescence. Pours into a 2 finger, bubbly white head. Dryly craters, dissipating to a collection of foam, a rim ring, and some dry residue. Persistent dry lacing remains.

S: Yeast, apricot, and raspberry.

T: Tastes like it smells. Lightly sweet fruity components consisting of fermented apricot and raspberry.

M: Light and crisp. Syrupy feel on the palate. Forward sweet and funk, with a hint of bitterness in the rear. Quite acidic. Dry finish.

D: Sip and enjoy.

Atmosphere is really nice. A little hazy with fair amounts of carbonation evident throughout, bubbly head, and some dry persistent lacing. Nose is yeasty and fruity. Crisp and lightly sweet fruit components, balanced with lightly bitter yeastiness. Overall, this is a really good quaff.

 857 characters

Photo of BarryMFBurton
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I bought the hype; I finally pulled the $25 trigger and picked up that 765mL bottle that’s been staring me in the face whenever I’ve perused the local bottle shop these past few months. Ah well, I guess it’s a late Christmas gift to myself. Cheers!

Bottled 08/12/2013, just about five months before the date of this tasting.

A: Hazy, pale goldenrod with an inch-high head of fizz, stark white and bubbly. It settles to just a short hill of retention over the nucleation site in seconds, leaving strands of delicate lace all around.

S: Mildly funky with a wonderful aroma of fresh peaches. Brett scents come off as green and slightly peppery – less must, more grass – and they make up the majority of the nose, but the peach adds an alluring fruit character. Lime, orange marmalade, and pear notes bounce around in the background.

T: A bright, bretty palate throughout, marked by dominant notes of fresh lemon, tangerine, crisp green apple, and a lightly metallic brine taste (reminiscent of a low-alcohol sauvignon blanc). All this combined makes a remarkably refreshing – though still complex – sipper. The flavor of genuine peach also permeates the palate, tasting exactly how I like them: underripe. That is, softly sweet, but with a sour edge, which meshes well with the brisk brett profile. Finishes without much of an aftertaste, maybe a sweet baked apple flavor but not much else; it hits a sour peak in the back-middle of the palate, so everything else seems a little diminished, including the finish.

M: Not as silky as I thought it would be. Actually, it has a somewhat oily body with a bright, effervescent carbonation, though in the end, that serves to bring this a step closer to the authentic Belgian experience.

O: My favorite Belgian-style beer from Goose Island, hands-down. I definitely got my money’s worth here – even at $25. Excellent.

 1,881 characters

Photo of PHBoiler
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Really looking forward to this beer. The bottle poured a nice orange colored body with a one finger foamy white head. Pretty cloudy as I would expect it to be. There is no fruit on the nose. You get some of the Belgian yeast esters and a bit of oak. The taste is loaded with lactic/yogurty tartness. The base saison does come through, but it is certainly an oaked beer. You get hints of the white wine barrel, but the barrel seems to have really killed the efferevescence in the mouthfeel. I just don't know where the peaches are. That was the lone reason I bought this beer. It would satisfy you if you're looking for a tart saison with some wine character, but if you tell me I'm getting peaches then I want it to taste like peaches. This one was a far cry from Gillian for me in terms of delivering the flavor. I only got hints of peach when the beer came close to room temperature.

 885 characters

Photo of nataku00
4.24/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle poured into a tulip glass. Beer pours a hazy golden color with a finger of loose bubbly pure white head. Head dissipates quickly, but leaves a good amount of stick lacing that clings to the glass for a while. Nice carbonation, many tiny bubbles streaming up from the bottom of the glass.

Nose is stone fruit, apricot and peaches, lemon, light almond, green grape, mild earthy funk, and old oak.

Taste follows the nose, good apricot skin and fruit flavor up front, oak and earthy brett funk, and lactic acid sourness. Biscuit malt sweetness and sweeter stone fruit mid tongue, before a dry oaky finish.

Light body with plentiful soft carbonation.

 657 characters

Photo of pmarlowe
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 release (first batch). Tulip glass.

A: Pours a light straw color, good clarity, effervescent, with two fingers of airy, bright white head. Pretty good retention and a few streaks of lacing.

S: Peach, a little funk and white wine, lemon, a hint of clove, with a solid oak backbone.

T: Light, mouthwatering tart peach, white wine, hefty wheat, some sweetness, a little funkiness. Refreshing, and the flavors meld nicely.

M: Creamy texture. Very light carbonation with medium body.

O: Highly drinkable, refreshing with nice flavors, and pairs well with food. They got the peach addition right on this. The price tag makes this unreasonable for everyday drinking.

 671 characters

Photo of popery
4.34/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours yellow with a touch of orange. Quite cloudy. Small to medium white head, a bit fizzy. The aroma is fruity with some mild grape and oak. The peaches come through bright and clean. Not terribly jammy. There's some lacto sourness and a touch of funk. The beer tastes mildly sour - picks up a bit as the beer warms. Again, the fruit is relatively strong and quite pleasant but not very jammy. Rather dry. More wine barrel flavor. Seems like a mild, buttery white wine. Finish is fruity and pleasant with a strong tannic oak note. Mouthfeel is a bit effervescent. There's more body to the beer than I'd expect from the flavor. This beer doesn't have the depth or complexity of some fruited sours, but it's very pleasant and easy to like. I can't really find a fault with the beer. It would be an excellent choice for someone new to sours, and I don't mean that as a slight. It's tasty, fun to drink and unlike most other fruit sours. Interesting and delicious.

 961 characters

Photo of draheim
3.88/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

765mL (2013) into a tulip. Pours a slightly hazy pale yellow w/ a 1-finger white head, moderate carbonation.

Aroma is tart and lemony with underlying biscuity pale malt.

Taste is likewise light and crisp, but not particularly complex. Basically pale malt fermented by wild yeast. A hint of oak. It's good, but it's pretty one-dimensional.

Mouthfeel is refreshing and drinkable, finishes dry.

Overall a passable wild ale, but not one I'd feel compelled to drink again.

 471 characters

Photo of Etan
3.96/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml into an oversized snifter. Took me a while to find this one for some reason.

A: Pours a clearish straw gold with a nice white head.

S: Lots of brett and moderate peach notes in the nose. Yogurty, gamey, peach flesh, cobwebs, sweet pale malt.

T: Taste brings moderate citrusy tartness, mild cloves and peach and white cake, palpable wine barrel notes, a bit lactic, vague dry grainy finish.

M: Light-bodied with almost-frothy carbonation.

O: A nice wild saison with a bit of a weak finish. Tasty but it doesn't stand up to other peach-brett saisons like Logsdon's Peche 'n Brett.

 589 characters

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle opened on 11.10.13
Bottled on 1516 06AUG13

A - Pours a hazy light orange with a fizzy white head that is gone fast.

S - Lots of wine and barrel tartness, fruity sweetness, subtle peach.

T - Soft peach, chardonnay-wine and some subtle oak.

D - Decent carbonation with a light body, smooth.

O - Lots of wine and subtle peach. Nice, but spendy.

 354 characters

Photo of boilermakerbrew
4.56/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A- Pours a light straw yellow in color with a mild amount of haze. Medium sized head that retained well and lacing is very good.

S- Light and slightly tart. Spicy and grainy with lemon tones. Tartness is enticing and shows just a slight amount peach.

T- Starts with a mild tart bang. Same great light and grainy flavors appear in the taste. Lemon grass flavor is there and then the peaches mix in. Slightly dry flavor after the peaches from the wine barrels.

M- Light, crisp, and highly carbonated. This is a classic light sour feel. Grainy and slightly tart, but still refreshing and easy to drink.

Overall, an awesome, somewhat sour, farmhouse ale. Not too sour, not too spicy or grainy, and tremendously easy to drink. It's refreshing and just a touch fruity.

 766 characters

Photo of Roguer
4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful one-finger snow white head with decent retention and nice lacing. Beer is incredibly lively, bubbling through the head. Beer is a cloudy pale yellow straw color.

Sharp Belgian yeast aroma: sweet yeast mingled with sharp funk. Lemon and wheat.

More sour than funky in the flavor, although there's a bit of both. Brett funkiness comes through as a mild cheesiness at the end. Up front, there's a sharp lemony and white wine sourness, riding a strong wheat background. I don't get any peaches. Very tasty wild Saison, extremely well balanced.

Mouthfeel is very light, even taking into account the tartness and the Brett funk. Balance and complexity, though, means you'll want to take your time. Lively with a pleasant sting.

This is my first of the GI "Sisters." It comes across as a fairly typical wild saison: light, noticeable Belgian yeast, straw, and Brett. That said, everything is well-represented and balanced, and GI did a good job marrying complexity and subtlety.

2013 edition.

 1,000 characters

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.31/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle into Chouffe tulip. Purchased at Foodtown Express for $10.99!! (bought 2)
Pours a golden color with lots of foamy head and some lacing. Huuge sour nose. Some woody aroma and slight fruit finish; really nice aroma. You can deff taste the peaches, its subtle but it especially shines in the aftertaste as it warms. Big brett funk, but im getting sourness/tartness as well, maybe some other critters in there also...nice malty backbone.
Its a bit acidic but otherwise really a great brew. I have another aging for a while...this should be an interesting one to see how it develops.

 597 characters

Photo of JVB
2.65/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

This one was hard to choke down, ended up drain dumping. Wife picked it up confusing it with the release of BCBS.

Initial pour was intriguing, very thick consistency. LOADS of peach flesh.

Smell was absolutely amazing.

Taste reminded me of a vurp that you swallow back down. Too Sour...

Mouth feel was same as orange juice with extra pulp.

 343 characters

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml foiled and capped bottle into Tired Hands stemware. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a 4 finger frothy white head with moderate retention. Beer is a crystal clear goldenrod. Lacing is stringy and webbed with great stick. Nice looking beer.

Nose is lemon, peach and apricot. Some cobweb, band-aid, and wood. Light, crisp and clean. Real nice.

Opens lemon rind, hay, citrus, and peach. Cobweb, oak and funk in the middle. Some spice and more crisp lemon tartness at the end. Finishes funky and peppery with a tart aftertaste. Delicious!

Light bodied with moderate carbonation. Prickly and foamy in the mouth and goes down dry and aggressive. Finishes dry with a sticky aftertaste. Very drinkable.

A real impressive beer that's solid in every aspect. A great addition to the Sisters collection

 799 characters

Photo of corby112
3.71/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottled on 06AUG13

Pours a very cloudy, dark golden yellow color with banana-like hues and a massive pillowy white head that very slowly settles into a thick, lasting ring. Excellent retention with streaks of soapy lacing coating the glass on the way down.

Inviting aroma with a nice balance of earthy farmhouse yeast, wine barrel, musty brett and light fruit. There's a decent amount of funk from the bugs and saison yeasts which is nicely complimented by grassy hops, peppery spice and a tame barrel character. Some toast oak and damp basement along with vinous light grape sweetness and a slight buttery presence but it's not offensive or too heavy on the diacetyl. As it warms, the peaches and ester-y light fruit notes stand out a bit more. Juicy canned peaches along with grape, apple and pear. Not the most complex aroma but the brett and farmhouse funk are nicely balanced by light fruit and subtle white wine characteristics.

Medium body with tight, tingling carbonation and a strong white wine barrel presence that slightly overpowers the wild yeast, peaches and saison flavors. Not much oak with just a touch of wood/toothpick but there is a really strong sweet vinous fruit flavor with light grape, raisin and buttery Chardonnay. This is followed by some peppery spice, possibly coriander or grains of oaradise, wild bugs and funky farmhouse yeast. Some grass and hay-like flavor along with musty brett and crisp light fruit, especially cider and pear. Light, crisp and refreshing with nice flavor but it's lacking depth and complexity. The white wine flavors are pleasant enough and this beer is very easy to drink, but I just wish that the peaches and farmhouse/saison flavors were a bit stronger. Decent beer but I wouldn't buy it again, especially at it's high price point.

 1,794 characters

Photo of Florida9
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Somewhat hazy straw in color. Almost a very pale pastel yellow. Forms a moderate sized foamy white head that reduces down to a thin, patchy surface coating and a ring around the edge. Some blotchy lacing.

S: A very aromatic beer. Lots of tartness. Lemon juice, summer fruit, white wine and peaches. Pineapple to a less extent. Fruity Brett character with only a hint of mustiness.

T: The taste is similar. Mildly acidic, it's more tart than sour. Moderately vinous - I'm getting the white wine barrels here, though I'm getting more of the white wine than the barrel itself. The Brett is fairly strong as well, but this is the mildly, fruity Brett, so while there is a bit of that musty basement character, its more of a fruity tartness. There is a hint of peaches on the finish.

M: Lighter bodied. Crisp and acidic with a higher carbonation level. Mild bitterness, but there are some tannins in this one. Dry on the finish.

O: A very nice take on the Saison. Not sure it's worth the price, but an enjoyable beer none-the-less.

 1,036 characters

Photo of MCain04
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Halia is a Belgian Farmhouse ale with peaches aged in wine barrels. This 765ml bottle is courtesy from the higher-ups over at Goose Island Fulton and Wood. Thanks guys! Poured appropriately into a GI chalice.

This beers pours a delicated straw yellow out of the bottle, and accumulates into a body of a slightly muddier yellow color with an opaque nature. A fizzy pure-white head of a finger of depth is present, which lends to some nice lacing. A thin film of white settles atop the beer and is present all the way down as the drink finishes.

Belgian-style yeast and bacteria-laden funk is present on the nose. I am searching for peaches but they are not as apparent as I might have expected. Definitely picking up a lot of vino character, and a little bit of grape sweetness. A hint of lactic acid on the nose as well. Delicate and not overpowering.

The first sip lends to exactly what I expected out of this brew. A softer sour, the lactic acid (moreso than funky) taste bites my tongue but not aggressively so. Wine flavors and belgian malts and yeast swoop in and round out the character. Not very oaky, but the wine barrel character is apparent and melds the flavor well. The peaches again are not as apparent as, say, the strawberries in Gillian, but are noted towards the end in the fruity sweetness. My guess is that the peaches used were more tart and less ripe, and thus lend more to the acidity of this beer instead of making it fruity and sweet.

Mouthfeel on this brew is medium-to-highly carbonated. It is prickly on the tongue from the start, much like a champagne. It is light-bodied and very easy to drink. The finish is somewhat dry, and a little sticky.

Overall, this is a great farmhouse ale from goose island. It is meticulously crafted and all the taste profiles that were attempted were landed. I might have like to have more peach taste and aroma in this. In addition, there was a large amount of carbonation, more than I typically enjoy. Finally, the taste is more so lactic than funky. I think this brew drinks great now, but could really benefit from spending a couple years in a cool dark cellar, as the wild yeast develops a funky taste and aroma, and the carbonation calms down to lend to a smoother drink. Well-done from Goose Island. I'd drink it often if I could afford to!

 2,313 characters

Photo of angrybabboon
4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this

Consumed 12/11/13

Appearance: Pours a hazy, golden honey color - some tones of light orange - medium, bright white head, leaves some nice lacing

Smell: Loads of Brett, with an undertone of peaches - seems a bit more funk forward than peach forward - some musty, damp cellar - peach flesh - some woodiness, white wine barrel aromas - tart, wet sourness

Taste: Moderately sour peaches with a lot of Brett - lactic, damp, musty sourness - tart and funky - fruity peaches coated in Brett - white wine, wood, wine barrels - floral and earthy - some light citrus in the background - some light, pale malts at the base - some light sweetness, finishes pretty clean

Mouthfeel: Medium to light body, smooth, nicely low carbonation, finishes with some wetness, but mostly dry

Overall: Hooray Halia

This has some great Brett and peach flavors. Overall, the Brett, the peaches, and the sourness could definitely be more intense, but it's great for what it is. I'm curious to see how this evolves over a couple years.

 1,052 characters

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.85/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Hazy yellow-gold. Head is bright-white, creamy, and tight. Drops to a small cap in short order. Some splotches of lacing. Moderate carbonation on the pour.

Smell: Big bretty push right up front. Earthy, damp, musty, and loaded with bretty funk. Some barnyard and grass. Slightly tart and sweet peach running through the back. Some nice wine barrel notes. Grape skin and slightly tart and juicy grape flesh thrown in the mix. A touch of dry apple cider and light acetic vinegar. Fruity esters as well. Powdery yeast. Warming pushes even more of the brett to the front. Some hay and lime juice.

Taste: Tart peach flesh coupled with a tiny bit of juicy peach flesh. Brett is huge. Earthy, damp, yeasty, and funky. Some barnyard must. Damp cellar. Grassy and nicely floral. Wine barrel adds some nice grape must and skin. Tart lime juice and green apple. Slightly acidic with a touch of acetic acid. Nice and bright and fruity. Super clean. Pear and mealy crab apple. A slight touch of wheat thrown in the mix. Slightly vinous.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light body. Slightly above average carbonation. Bright and clean and crisp. Very slightly dry on the finish.

Overall: Peachy keen jelly bean.

Brett and peach. Funky and fruity in good measure. It's worth drinking, but it might need a little bit more time to develop more complexity.

 1,347 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
4.07/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

As Goose Island continues to up their game in the sour arena, this abhorrently priced American "wild" ale employs Georgia peaches as its Belgian lambic inspirations show true form despite its gross misrepresentation on the label- it vague "farmhouse" moniker indicates nothing about its sour underpinnings.

But Halia opens with a glowing pour of golden and canary hues. Despite its mild yeasty haze, the beer simply seems to light up right there in the glass. As a dainty and delicate lacy sheet rises to cap the beer, its foam structures dissolve into a simple collar about its edge. Random and spotty lacing temporarily hangs on the glass before collapsing back into the beer. Its a common appearance where the beer's head character has been compromised by by its own acidity.

Mouthwatering aromas of tart fruit, dry cider, light vinegar and must fills the nose with olfactory-piercing intensity. As any short-lived sweetness contributes only a dry whole wheat type of breadiness and "Sweetheart" candies. But soon its lemon, lime, white grape and white wine acidity wafts over the nose; carrying with it the scent of musty, dried fruit, sea air, and a glimpse of damp hay.

To taste, that thin sweetness and breadiness only gives a lift to the fruit- giving it a modest ripeness before it trails. In its absence, the acidity has full control from the middle palate onward: minerally white wine, dried limes, crab apples, earthy brine and mild apple cider vinegar. Its dry and acidic taste is clean, sharp and palate-stripping. It shies away from the richer and earthier "funk" flavors of traditional lambics in its preference of cleanness and crispness. Its dry fruit taste only reveals any notions of peach as the ale finishes and echoes of its Georgia fruit return in aftertaste, accompanied by wheat.

Dry from start to finish, its early carbonation carries away any sweetness with ease- leaving only acidity to scrub the palate late. Mild alcohol warmth is wrapped into the acids and light barrel tannin with soft spice and powdery oak to finish.

Halia is a wonderful sour ale but misses an opportunity to express more earthen character. Though I like its expressive and clean acidity, it seems overly simplified. It would certainly provide a perfect counterpart to rich french reductions in entrees.

 2,312 characters

Photo of bigfnjoe
4.09/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a Duvel tulip

A- pours a cloudy yellow with a one finger white head. Nice looking beer, but nothing outrageous

S- nice peach aroma, with some subtle white wine characteristics - it's tough to get a good peach aroma in a beer that doesn't smell artificial, but this is does it well.

T- light peach, along with some bubblegum, slight vinous flavor. I honestly expected a lot more, but it's not bad by any means

M- medium bodied, extremely effervescent like Alka Seltzer (despite a normal amount of carb).

O- not worth the ridiculous price point, but still a very good beer worth trying

 614 characters

Photo of kojevergas
3.35/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

"Belgian style farmhouse ale." 7.50% ABV confirmed. Bottled 06 Aug 13. "0855." "Ale aged in wine barrels with peaches." Expectations are high given its $21ish price point. 765ml brown glass bottle with classy understated label art and orange foil-ed over branded pressure cap acquired at Argonaut Liquor and served into a slender stem-tulip in me parents' gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, CO. 2013 vintage.

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it pours.

Pours a four finger wide head of white colour. Somewhat thin. Lacking creaminess. Spotty lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Head retention is good - about 4 minutes.

Body colour is a slightly hazy yellow of average vibrance. Appears well-carbonated.

Overall, it looks okay for a saison and average for a wild ale. I'm not really sure what it is at this point. Not unique or special, but there are no egregious flaws.

Sm: Lemongrass, faint lemon peel, faint brettanomyces-induced funkiness, floral hop character, fruity hop character, a white wine tone, and peach fruits (along with accompanying esters). Light bready and biscuity malts. Some biscuity yeast character replete with vitamins. Some hay.

A clean fragrant pleasant aroma of moderate strength. I really wanted some tart fruit or sourness from this. There's none of the nuanced white pepper or milky notes you'd expect in a good saison, and none of the notes you'd want in a sour.

No alcohol presence is noticeable.

T: Floral and fruity hop character. A backgrounded white wine tone is present and adds little; it doesn't even guide the beer or lend much cohesion, but rather distracts. Faint hay. Golden malts. Some biscuity and lightly funky brettanomyces yeast. No real sourness or tartness at all. Light peach fruit; it's not particularly evocative - it isn't juicy orchard fruit or anything. Has an unwelcome kiss of lychee. Sadly, there aren't any real barrel notes at all - no rich oak wood or anything.

Decently balanced, but certainly not gestalt. Fair complexity and decent subtlety. Average depth, duration, and intensity of flavour.

If they were shooting for a saison, they flat out missed the requisite subtlety, intricacy, and nuance. There's no white pepper, spice, or milky notes here at all. If they were shooting for a wild ale, they flat out missed the requisite sourness and the beneficial tart fruit.

Even the highlights here - the peach fruit and the brettanomyces yeast - feel like wasted potential. Subdued for a saison.

No alcohol comes through.

Mf: Lightly coarse - unnecessarily so. Wet. Somewhat refreshing. A bit overcarbonated. Decent body and thickness. There's nothing terrible here, but it just doesn't complement the flavour profile as well as it ought to. Gets the job done, but it doesn't feel custom-tailored specifically to the taste. Fair presence on the palate.

Not oily, harsh, astringent, gushed, hot, scratchy, or boozy.

I'd like the mouthfeel to be dry, juicy, and vaguely refreshing like an orchard fruit, but it falls well short.

Dr: Certainly drinkable, but at this price point it just isn't worth it. Frankly, the wine barrel aging isn't helping the base beer at all, and I figure that's probably what drove the price up in the first place. This is disappointing work from Goose Island, but only because it's priced unreasonably. It'd be fine at $8.99. It drinks like a good-but-not-great saison. Hides its ABV well. The peach notes in particular were disappointingly reticent. I'll easily kill this bottle alone, but I definitely wouldn't get it again, nor would I recommend it to friends.


 3,775 characters

Photo of tsauce2
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P: 765 ml bottle poured in to a DFH tulip.

A: SRM is bright golden/straw yellow. Translucent. Head is foamy, 1 in, dissipates to 1 cm. Medium carbonation. Light lacing.

S: Big waft of tart initially, with peach undertones. Pick up notes of barrel aging as well.

T: Following nose with a sharp tartness initially. As beer warms a bit, peach notes and chardonnay notes really come through. Gives more of a funky/tart saison taste rather than a sourness in terms of "wild"ness. A bit of a biscuit aftertaste along with peach.

M: Medium/light body. Belgian characteristics along with fruit addition and wine barrel aging give a complex feel. Semi-dry finish.

O: Overall, just the beer, this is very nice. Great flavors, well crafted. At the price point though, I would definitely not buy this again.

 800 characters

Photo of Immortale25
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery glass. Back label says Bottled On: 09AUG13

A- Pours a medium gold color with a 1/2 inch white head that doesn't retain long before soon fizzing away to a thin ring around the edge of the glass and and a honeycomb pattern of surface foam specs. Non-resilient lacing leaves a thin ring behind on the glass.

S- The Brett gives off a nice aroma similar to green olive and goes well with the light peach fruitiness in the back.

T- The Brett kicks just as hard in the flavor and the peach is still just an afterthought. Mildly sweet with the alcohol being present but not too bothersome.

M- I was hoping for more tartness like there is in Lolita but there's practically none. Still, a bit dry and crisp. Medium-low carbonation also a disappointment. Light in body.

O- Doesn't hold a candle to Lolita, or even Matilda for that matter. Nice for a fruity Brett fix but definitely not worth the $21 I paid.

 938 characters

Photo of Stevedore
3.81/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

750ml bottle of the 2013 vintage, bought over by Doug today, 11/4/2013. Poured into a Hill Farmstead stemmed glass.

Looks like an above-average saison- clear straw-orange body, effervescent with a nice fluffy white head that has solid retention. Not much lacing.

Smells delicious actually, hints of peaches accompany a decent funkiness and some oak. Not surprising, but its very delicious smelling.

However, the flavour profile is just not as good as it smells. Some funk, some mustiness, some oak, a little bit of fruity sweetness that doesn't immediately translate to peaches for me. But there are definitely faint hints of peaches. I get no white wine in this. Disappointing, honestly, but not bad.

Mouthfeel is the biggest achilles heel on this. This is so watery and thin bodied for a saison which isn't the most full-bodied style. Carbonation is good and sufficient, but not enough to overcome the wateriness of this beer.

This beer was so disappointing, I just didn't want to finish my glass yet alone the bottle. Watery, not interesting enough. In fact, the Crooked Stave Vielle saison we opened up after this was just so much flavourful, Halia tasted like water after we cracked the CS bottle. No way this is worth $23, and I'm absolutely done with Goose Island sours/saisons from here on. If you're thinking about taking the plunge, don't. You're better off with a Saison Dupont or something like that.

 1,417 characters

Halia from Goose Island Beer Co.
92 out of 100 based on 133 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.