Anchor Liberty Ale | Anchor Brewing Company

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Anchor Liberty AleAnchor Liberty Ale
Very Good
3,513 Ratings
Anchor Liberty AleAnchor Liberty Ale

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,513 |  Reviews: 1,587
Reviews by wizo:
Photo of wizo
4/5  rDev +3.1%

More User Reviews:
Photo of Brolo75
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass

A: Pours a golden orange with a white creamy full head, lots of lacing and carbonation, good retention.

A: Floral, citrus like grapefruit peel, and slight spice notes, slight honey/lager like malt aromas on the backend, nice balanced aromas.

T: Follows the nose with floral, grapefruit and spice notes, moderate amount of citrus peel like bitterness in the middle, finish has more floral and citrus notes with nice balance of malt, citrus peel lingers in the aftertaste.

M: Light bodied with a good amount of carbonation and a very dry citrus peel like finish, easy drinking.

O: Enjoyed this one, not a "hoppy" IPA but enough hops and bitterness to satiate my taste buds, nice malt balanced aromas and flavors, moderate bitterness and a dry finish. This is another Anchor beer that I could drink everyday without being overwhelmed by the ABV or wrecking my palate.

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Photo of StoutElk_92
4.32/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle

Pours slightly hazed amber orange with a creamy frothy white foam head. Smells like leafy earthy pine, caramelized orange citrus, grapefruit, herbal grass, papaya, with toasted crackery biscuity malt. Tastes like caramelized orange citrus, bitter leafy pine, earthy herbal grass, papaya, sweet white grapefruit, with dark toasted crackery biscuity malt. Feels medium-light bodied, creamy and smooth with moderate carbonation. Overall a nice classic IPA.

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Photo of captaincoffee
3.74/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Oldie but goodie. Pours a lightish honey-gold amber with full head and a bit of spotty lace. Nose be honest...a bit on the AAL side with grain and only feint hops and malt. Taste is a bit more on the pale ale side...I'm seriously trying to figure out who defined this as an IPA. Crisp for sure, some more hops and bitterness coming through than you'd think from the nose. Especially nice on the finish as the hops linger. Mouthfeel is very nice...champagne like. Overall, the kind of beer you pray for at a BMC event, but not something you'd go looking for any more now that there are so many great craft options.

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Photo of TongoRad
4.42/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Label dated 5NB (November 2, 2005)

Hazy amber yellow with a lovely long lasting tall head.

Fresh juicy/citrus aroma- particularly tangerine and maybe a touch of grapefruit. Some caramel lurks in the background. It comes across as a bit mild, though its refined nature works in its favor.

The palate follows through on the nose yet adds a toasty dimension as well as the perfect amount of bitterness for the residual malt. The bitterness and the citrus are wonderfully entwined on the lengthy finish that finally ends with a kiss of toasted bread.

Just a superb beer in every way that counts.

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Photo of oberon
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep golden/amber color with a nice fruffy head,the aroma is somewhat dry and hoppy with some slight sweetness in the background.The flavor is zesty and citruis-like with a malty sweet lingering backbone but the hop profile is the main taste I got from this brew.A pretty darn good ale even better if your a hophead.

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Photo of Popsinc
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lovely amber pour with a generous foamy head that doesn't fade too fast.

The nose is nicely hopped and there is the presence of some fruit, possibly sun dried apricot.

The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Exceptionaly hopped and complimented by a subtle fruitiness (but not sweet), this beer has great balance. Again, i really enjoy the hoppiness and find this beer to have exceptional body. Pleasant, dry, hoppy finish.

A great drinking experience. This is something i would buy again, and highly recommend.

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Photo of Marty
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden amber hue with a lively head -- well carbonated. Did not smell particularly exciting (perhaps a result of a recent but persistent case of sinusitus -- blech!!). The taste, however, was very pleasing. I could drink a lot of this beer. Hops are in the front row, but nicely balanced by a nutty maltiness. This beer might not have the claim to fame of Anchor's Steam beer, but it is a terrific beer in its own right.

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Photo of mojohawk21
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of RoyalT
3.15/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance – Nice orange color but a smallish head that quickly fizzles away leaving the glass dry.

Smell – Some citrus fruit at first, but then the hops kick in.

Taste – This has a similar flavor to Anchor Steam Beer. I poured this one right after it for comparison purposes. There’s a noticeable malt taste to compliment the mostly hop body. The citrus flavors come out as well, with a bitter finish tempered with an orange peel.

Mouthfeel – Nice, light carbonation gives this beer a comfortable tingle on the tongue, but it’s kind of clumsy going down.

Drinkability – Like post APAs, this one is rather dry and will probably go down well on a hot summer day.

Comments – The Liberty Ale is less authoritative in its flavors than the Small Beer.

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Photo of cam477
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DanGeo
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of Turbo
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of iRaven99664
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

L: looks amazing! Has a nice apple juice appearance. Its deep amber but not too dark. And its clear with no mirk. When opened there was jsut a hint of smoke. Lacey head, seems to stick as it goes down.

S: Cracked it open and the first thing I noticed after the smoke was "this is that ideal beer smell". In the "this is the smell I smelt in high school and in college, but better". It's not bad as the aroma is spot on perfect for what its going for at the time it was brewed. It's just not "ale" smell. It's definitely an adjunct lager smell.

T: Again, it feels like an ideal product for what it must be going for back in the day. Seriously it makes me feel that they were trying to do an operation of taking the taste of lager into the world of ale [which seems blasphemous today, but what was probably preferred in the day]. Fruitish, caramel, and slight hop dominate front and back on the tongue, and lingers pleasantly on the tongue. As I saw with another review it may have raised an eye brow in the late 70's, but not too par to todays standards. Should it be knocked for that? No. It's Old Gard. It really truly reminds me of PBR that's filtered for impurities. And as a new found lover of PBR for lower end beer, I'm okay with that. It's just not an IPA, not even English. Hell its not even an ESB or Pale Ale.

F: Again, an ideal quality to this. For being as light as it is, its perfect. It's just a tad thicker than water, with a hint of sudsy carb. rather pleasant. The coating is nice, and the lingering taste reminds you "Oh yeah, that hint of alcohol reminds me I am drinking an adult beverage, but the fruity malt sweetness says its wonderfully soothing".

Overall: If like most of us that started with the BMC adjuncts, but has a preferred taste for PBR and its fruity sweetness, you will enjoy this with its "less than insta-hangover" quality. I can see where this was a hit after decades with Bud and Miller. Todays standards, it doesn't seem high quality or over the top. But I can see this as an American style that screams "I'M FUCKING PATRIOTIC AND THIS BEER SAYS 'MURICA!". Though, it's not a Sam Adams.

 2,133 characters

Photo of tectactoe
3.25/5  rDev -16.2%

Photo of MadScientist
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This pours a medium gold with very good clarity. The persistent off-white head of rocky bubble falls to a 1/4 of an inch but is easily roused.

S: Moderate citrus hops and a grassy dry hopped aroma along with a floral alcohol note dominate the aroma. There is a moderately-low biscuity malt aroma with a light note of caramel. There is also a yeast ester of oranges that start very low bt becomes more apparent as it warms.

T: A moderate flavor of citrus hops with a moderate hops bitterness dominate the flavor. The moderately-low malt sweetness has a light caramel flavor. The balance is mostly bitter with a dry finish and a lingering aftertaste of hop bitterness.

M: This is a medium-light bodied beer with moderate carbonation. There is no warmth and a little dry hopped astringency.

O: This is an IPA with American hops with excellent balance of flavor. I generally seek out hoppy IPA but still enjoy this beer from time to time. It's a great example of the style but most would think it's more of an English IPA with American hops.

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Photo of BRB1978
4.34/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
4.72/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Big fluffy two fingers of eggshell head with little cake in the middle. I love that. Beer is hazy orange color. Head leaves slowly, reducing to a thin layer, leaves fractured lace.

Aroma- bready english malt, lively ale fruit, bright yeastiness, maybe shortbread or poundcake, forceful hop spice and alcohol punches through it all.

Taste- For starters, this brew is ludicrously balanced. It makes it very difficult to review becaus the flavors all hit the palate at the same time and meld togther beautifuly. I get a wonderful crisp red apple character, softed by very subtle diacetyl, full bodied, bready malt supports it all and gives the esters a nice home, hops creep in mid-sip and while never forgrounded, leave the final impression with a nice spicy/ juicy, bitterness that lasts into a slightly soapy aftertaste. Lemony taste emerges with warmth. Very interesting and artful interpretation of the style.

MF- Mid-wieght, full and fuzzy. Nice natural carbonation.
Drinakability- Had trouble keeping it in the glass long enough to review it.

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Photo of Spaten454
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tbryan5
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of Shakerman
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Breen
3.67/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pour/Appearance: 1 finger head that dissipated at a moderate pace w/minimal lacing. Rich amber in color, a bit cloudy.

Smell: Yeast, spice, tangerine

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, heavily carbonated

Taste: The bitterness is balanced by spicy notes, tangerine, and grassy malt.

This beer had a unique taste which set it apart from your average ale. It took a minute to pick up that it was the tangerine I was tasting. Overall great ale, worth a try.

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Photo of SIRIUS2
4.33/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from bottle into a pint glass producing plentiful white foamy head with good retention and excellent lacing. Color is a dark yellow or light gold.

S: Floral hops - light but predominant. The faintest fresh yeast smell comes in second the the initial bouquet.

T: Very nice initial balance between pale & caramel malts with flavorful hoppy bittering. The finish is tight with a light bitterness.

M&D: Nice medium body and great carbonation creates a feel that is a bit light on the tongue but quite satisfying. Very smooth.

Fantastic brew! The complexity is subtle but is more than meets the eye. Though light in color and texture, the flavors range from light maltiness to light hoppy sharpness in the finish. This goes down so smoothly with such a clean taste that I can see how this could become a favorite. Excellent.

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Photo of drewkennedy
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of skybluewater
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle code "4L7" (although this beer is most definitely not square), which I translate as "July 27, 2004" (don't blame me if I'm wrong). Pours a nice honey color, quite a bit lighter than Steam. Nice rocky head that lasts for quite a while. Smell is a big burst of fruit and pine. Taste is a bit fruity, a bit piney, but with Steam in the background.

Overall, I like this one a bit less than Steam, but this is still a darn good beer.

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Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.88 out of 5 with 3,513 ratings