Anchor Liberty Ale | Anchor Brewing Company

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Anchor Liberty AleAnchor Liberty Ale
Very Good
3,472 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.

Added by kbub6f on 11-18-2000

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Ratings: 3,472 |  Reviews: 1,580
Photo of LXIXME
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of SocalKicks
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of superspak
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled on 1/28/2015. Pours slightly hazy deep golden yellow color with a 2 finger dense and fluffy of white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Nice dense soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of grapefruit, lemon zest, orange peel, light pine, honey, light caramel, biscuit, and floral/grassy earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of citrus/floral hops and moderate bready malt notes; with solid strength. Taste of grapefruit, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, honey, light caramel, biscuit, and floral/grassy earthiness. Good amount of pine/grassy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, lemon/orange peel, pine, honey, light caramel, biscuit, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/pine hops and moderate bready malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately sticky, and lightly creamy/bready mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice pale ale. All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/pine hops and moderate bready malt flavors; and very smooth and easy to drink. This one straddles the line between an IPA and pale ale in bitterness and malt character, but I’d be much more inclined to think of it as a pale ale overall. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,652 characters

Photo of Boone757
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of Kurmaraja
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

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

Pale amber in appearance with an unfiltered haze and a sticky cap of foam. Honey-like sweetness and bitter citrus make up the nose. Herbal and citric hops (lots of grapefruit) balance with bready malts to make up the foundation of this beer. It finishes dry and slow. This is pretty rich and complex for a pale ale - not exactly a session beer, it feels too heavy to drink a lot of, but it's exceptionally flavorful. A great pale ale.

 434 characters

Photo of mothman
3.82/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a dark straw yellow. It is actually pale which is nice to see in a pale ale. Light off white head. Medium amount of lace observed.

Smell is of floral hops and oranges. Taste is quite similiar. Very heavy on the floral flavor and many citrus notes.

Mouthfeel is somewhat smooth, but leaves a very dry taste in your mouth, similiar to an IPA.

Overall, this is a pretty solid pale ale. When I opened it, I could immediately smell the hops and thought it was an IPA. Give it shot, it's worth it.

 500 characters

Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of DrBier
3.69/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of dbrauneis
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%

A: Pours a very lightly hazy medium yellow in color with light to moderate amounts of gentle visible carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass and some moderate golden yellow highlights. The beer has a three finger tall dense foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a medium sized two finger thick cap in the center surrounded by a very thick film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of citrus/lemon zest and floral hops over the top of a pale + grainy malt body.

T: Upfront there is an initial sweetness from the grainy and pale malts along with a touch of biscuit malts. That is followed by moderate flavors of citrus/lemon zest and floral hops with just a hint of spicy hops. Light to moderate amounts of lingering bitterness is present.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: Easy to drink and pretty enjoyable though I wonder how much better this would be fresh on the west coast vs. on the east coast (there is a slight hint of fading hops in my opinion). Could put down a couple of these though with the 5.9% ABV it is probably a touch strong for a session beer. Alcohol is well hidden.

 1,243 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.55/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A classic! It's slightly hazy (bottle-conditioned) golden-amber body is topped by a frothy white head that holds really well and leaves some very nice lace throughout the glass. Dry-hopped Cascades saturate the nose - perfumey, floral, lemony, and pine-like over some lightly caramel-tinged grainy malt. The hops are 'softer' from the dry-hopping, however, and not as 'sharp' as if they'd been added to the kettle. It's luxurious! The body is medium; and it's lightly crisp and then smooth and creamy in the mouth due in part to a very fine, natural carbonation from bottle conditioning. Cascades carry over into the flavor in a big way; wrapped in sweet, caramelish malt and backed by a firm bitterness. It's very well-rounded and nicely balanced, without the aggressive edge that many beers like this have. Absolutely worth seeking out!

 838 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.06/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz undated bottle served in a pint glass. No sediment.

Hazy light amber color; Cream head after a light pour has decent retention, but leaving an uneven coat on top of the beer. Fine carbonation bubbling.

Aroma is very promising, with good level of citrus hops and some floral and herbal elements over a clear malt base.

Tastes a little more fruity than most Amer. pale ales slightly sweeter at first, but eventually ends with a mildly bitter and quite hoppy finish.

Mouthfeel - excellent natural carbonation; slightly dry finish; delightful.

O- Liberty Ale is an exceptionally well-crafted pale ale, largely true to style yet refreshingly unique.

(revised with bottle consumed Sept. 2013)

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Photo of jlindros
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle to pint glass.

A: Huge bubbly head almost 3 fingers, slightly clear golden orange color

N: Nose is pretty close to amber ale with some hints of lighter hops, some light malts, a slight pine, and touch of sugar, it has an interesting malt quality to it that I wish I could pick out the exact malt

T: Taste has a very light ale malt base with some slight spices, its pretty clean drinking, not a huge flavor

M: Pretty light on the mouth with some frothy carbonation

F: Finish has some more bitter hops that fade pretty quick, its semi sweet and light, finishes pretty clean

Final thoughts: Its a very light, clean, and easy drinking lightly hoped ale. It doesn't have much body or hop base, but its got a decent malt and enough hops. It doesn't try to do anything special, just a nice session beer. Its very crisp and refreshing. I would like something like this as a summer beer more than many summer style hefes (since IMO most American Hefes don't do it right).

 988 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.41/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle dated 10/27/06 into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color with a thin white head that fades slowly and leaves a decent lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of mild hops, citrus and some caramelized malt.

T: The taste starts off with a flavor of pale hops, then the malt character kicks in with flavors of citrus and caramel. There's also a hint of smokiness in there. The hops presence seems toned down for the style but it comes out a bit more in the grassy after-taste.

M: Crisp, but I didn't find it very smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

D: Not quite the tastiest beer I've had, goes down easy enough and it isn't very filling. It's not a bad beer, but there are definitely many others within the style that I would choose first.

 816 characters

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.

 324 characters

Photo of olradetbalder
2.5/5  rDev -35.6%

Photo of Gagnonsux
3.46/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Let me preface my review by saying that I haven't quite gotten into really hoppy beers yet. I'm still pretty much a newbie and a hoppy beer like Liberty Ale is new to me. Still, I did like Liberty Ale quite a lot. I didn't smell to much other than hops, but the appearance is an excellent orange copper with a think head. My first couple of sips of Liberty Ale seemed too bitter, but I quickly settled in and began to enjoy. Beneath the hops I tasted a little citrus and perhaps some spice. Liberty Ale is fairly drinkable, but a little to filling for a long session and maybe a little too hoppy for a newbie such as myself.

 624 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours with one finger of white foam on top of a lightly hazy, copper colored body. The foam recedes slowly and leaves nice lace.

S - Aromas of spicy hops with some grapefruit. Some toasted malt in the background with a hint of caramel.

T - Spicy hops and dry caramel up front with some lightly fruity yeast. The hop flavor becomes more fruity in the middle with notes of grapefruit and orange. The beer finishes with lots of dry toffee flavored malt and moderate bitterness.

M - Medium body, moderately high carbonation, and a fairly dry finish.

D - A nice combination of dry malt and spicy hops with some fruity notes that come out in the finish. The malt is well balanced with enough sweetness to keep the toasted notes from becoming unpleasant. Moderate, herbal bitterness rounds things out. This isn't as pungent or pine oriented as many modern pale ales, but after 35 years it is still a good pale ale and an interesting glimpse into the early years of American craft brewing.

 989 characters

Photo of Ciocanelu
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of Thorpe429
3.7/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

G: Poured into a pint glass.

A: Goldish-amber in color with a good white head with plenty of lacing.

S: Smell of malts and hops. Some caramel notes go along with a slightly citrusy and floral hop nose.

T: Somewhat of a letdown after the initial smell. Much of the smell is there in the flavor department, but I'm not getting as much from the hops as I'd like.

M: Medium-boded and a good amount of carbonation.

D: Good feel and smell, but the taste comes up a little bit short. A solid brew, and one that I'll definitely try again.

 537 characters

Photo of vfgccp
3.72/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A – Solid orange gold. Bone white head is creamy with nice retention.

S – Sweet malt, lightly floral. Tart wheat and honey as it warms.

T – Waxy herbal bitters up front. Touch of malt in the center into a dry, almost dusty finish.

M – Medium light body. Dry, lightly tart finish.

O – Surprisingly dry with a nice hop character.

 341 characters

Photo of smithj4
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of dcmchew
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of mactrail
3.23/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Attractive amber brew with plenty of white foam. Spritzy on the tongue. There is a little bit of spiciness which gives this some interest. Otherwise it's a plain, woody, vegetal brew. Bitter aftertaste. I don't see how this can be considered a showcase for Cascade hops.

I think years ago, in the 70s, this was a breath of fresh air among the Olympia, Burgermeister, and Lucky Lager that provided the ubiquitous taste of beer. From the 12 oz can purchased at Elizabeth Station in Bellingham, Washington.

 504 characters

Photo of billab914
3.89/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.88 out of 5 with 3,472 ratings
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