Anchor Liberty Ale | Anchor Brewing Company

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Anchor Liberty AleAnchor Liberty Ale
Very Good
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 Reviews & Ratings
Reviews: 1,588 | Ratings: 3,517
Photo of MaltyPythonsHopCircus
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cascade hops carry the basic pale malt flavour. I love the simplicity of this ale. A classic original IPA that is very sessionable. Definitely a great base beer to have around for friends etc. Also would make a great camping beer in cans

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Photo of Snowball
3.91/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served in a 6 oz plastic cup at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival. This beer was served at the Hops and Barley showcase.

This beer has a white head, and a translucent orange body. One can faintly smell the hops. This IPA has a powerful taste. The first gulp tastes slightly of citrus, especially grapefruit, and is chased swiftly by those bitter Liberty hops. The carbonation is crisp and even quite gassy. I enjoyed the balance between the hops and malt. The flavor coats your mouth and the flavor will stay with you for quite some time. Some may criticize the flavor for coming on too strong, but I personally find the taste extremely refreshing. It was really a treat on such a hot day.

This flavor is quite special and memorable. I think there may be another day soon where I might wish to enjoy this again.

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Photo of Jesterr44
3.67/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This beer was fine for a run-of-the-mill ale, but nothing more. It reminded me a little of Samuel Adams Boston Lager with less sweetness & bready malt. There was nothing unpleasant about it, but at the same time, there was little complexity to the taste, and almost no noticeable hop flavour. It was just a decent regular beer which to me doesn't fit the style of modern American IPA.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a darker beer for an ipa. Comes in with 2/3" head. Aroma might be psychosomatic, but I swear I can pick up Liberty and Cascade hops.

Taste is them old school grapefruit and pine feels. Plenty of maltiness for it, but its dry and not heavy. Plenty of bitterness. This and Celebration ale are like drinking a time capsule. This keeps consistent throughout, first sip pretty much the same as the last sip. Just a sip, just a sip, beer or whiskey if you're with me wet your lips.

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Photo of teromous
3.59/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

There is no can date that I can see.

Appearance: It has a hazy orange and gold body with a fluffy cloud-like head of pure white. Some suspended solids are present in the beer but they are very small. Good retention and lacing.

Aroma: It has a strong buttered caramel aroma.There is a light spicy, slightly floral, aroma that carries a bit of a bamboo scent. It is pretty intriguing.

Taste: Sweet caramel flavor with a bit of biscuit crust up front and at the end. In the middle there is this slightly fruity almost grape-like flavor.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation but pretty low on bitterness. The finish is crisp and dry with a nice wash of carbonation.

Overall: It is an interesting beer. I doubt you will find a beer on the market that really tastes like this. For that reason alone I would recommend at least trying it once just to experience the beer for what it is. It doesn't have a massive hop flavor that is often found in American style IPA's but the flavors are good and that is what counts. I probably wouldn't go out and buy it again but if somebody tossed me a can of this I would gladly enjoy it again.

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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 vinicole
4.01/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Golden haze. Thin head which lasts.
Crisp aroma. A sweet floral bouquet with a hint of malt biscuit and citrus fruit.
Taste reflects the complexity of the smell.
Medium body with high carbonation.

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Photo of mklmcgrew
4.02/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

L: Pours a pretty amber, with a good 2-finger head and which reduced to some solid lacing. Good carbonation.

S: Pretty pronounced citrus, with a little piney resin.

T: Very nicely balanced between hops and malts, with a little bitterness but some sweetness.

F: Medium bodied with a little astringency at the end..

O: This seems more like a Pale Ale rather than an IPA. Definitely not as hoppy as an IPA, but maybe a little more than some Pale Ales. A very good beer nonetheless.

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Photo of sjccmd
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Big juicy, perfumey aroma. Pine and grapefruit. Spicy. Rich caramel malts and toasted bread. Some mild spicy phenols. Crackery malts. A hint of juicy fruit.

Pours clear pale amber/burnt orange. Foamy off-white head with good lacing and retention.

Juicy bitter hops upfront on the palate. Follows quickly with slightly sweet honey malt leaving lingering grapefruit peel and racy bitterness. Graham cracker and orange marmalade. Assertively bitter. Hop resin seems to linger for a while.
Medium full body with medium low carbonation. Somewhat creamy. Dry with lingering bitterness.

Like many of Anchor's beers, there seems to be an English soul behind their American styles. I find that to be a good thing.

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Photo of John1985
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Nice amber color with inch of off white head. Nice balanced malt/hop aroma. Strong hop flavor up front with sweet biscuit malt middle and long complex finish. Wonderful ale!

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Photo of Bulabeers
4.12/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

L: Nice big two fingers of white head. Golden amber colored beer. Decent lacing as you drink.
S: Floral hop aromas with some orange. Slight cough syrup smell.
T: Oranges, grapefruit, dandelions, and malty flavored
F: Nice moderate feel here.
O: This is one of the better beers Anchor does. Reminds me of a pale ale. Needs a date on the can.

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Photo of Bierliebhaber3
3.84/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This beer pours a light copper color with a huge foamy white head. The smell is of bread and a little fruity. The taste is of bready malts, there’s a little hint of caramel also and some sweetness from the malts. There’s a slightly acrid earthy tang to it also and a nice piney hop finish. The hop profile is reasonable and I wouldn’t say it’s overwhelming at all. The hops are actually somewhere between a pale or red ale and an IPA, which I’m actually surprised this is classified as. This beer has a nice creamy quality to it also, that you rarely see in beers this light.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 fl oz. bottle, code 5NC on the back label. A new one to me from Anchor; acquired a single bottle of this as part of a mixed six pack at the local Binny's.

Poured into a Duvel tulip snifter.

A - Crisp golden orange pour; just under two fingers of frothy off-white head that stays a while, leaving lots of good fluffy lacing on the glass. Appears adequately carbonated. Looks very nice.

S - Aroma is mostly smooth, crisp, malty / yeast forward. Crisp, creamy, & appley in the nose.

T - Taste follows the nose: lots of bready malt, crisp green apple sweetness, notes of grass / hay. I'd say the yeast is in full-form here. Not particularly hoppy, dank, or resinous. Mild piney gummy resin lingers on the finish. Nicely balanced stuff. Lightly coppery / metallic water flavor.

M - Feel is very smooth, crisp, & creamy. Medium-light & easy-drinking stuff. Good crisp carbonation; feels very nice. Crisp, earthy, & appley finish. Semi-dry.

Overall, a very nice traditional take on the style from Anchor.

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Photo of Weisenbeer
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Far exceeded my expectations. Now, in all candor, my expectations were zero. Especially given the fact they have been brewing this lil beauty since 1975. That said, it appears Anchor was way ahead of its time in making good craft beer. Thumbs up.

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Photo of Bruno74200
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I'll rate this as an apa because it never states being an ipa and it's definitely not one.
L - clear golden colour with a small white head

S - herbal hops and grain

T - follow the taste plus a good bitterness, just what you want

F - medium mouthfeel

O - a good session ale. Worked well with pizza

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Photo of Buck89
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Amber-orange color with a generous off white head. Nice aromas of grapefruit, bread, and caramel. Taste is nice grapefruit resin with a slightly sweet malty background. Definitely an old-school IPA but I feel like I'm drinking history. Respect.

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Photo of Beginner2
4.07/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

So much has been said about this ale. It has Anchor's 4th most ratings on BA. So, I cannot add much. And won't. Listen to the experts.

MJ's 1999 "Guide" gave it 4 of 4 stars and called it "an American classic, widely copied."
On the "1001" list and deservedly so for defining the American IPA as Cascade-hop forward for decades.
Reviewed in Roger Protz' CAMRA classic " 300 Beers To Try Before You Die!" for similar and more reasons.
All said, for me this is one of the few ales that could make me a -- a malt-head -- into a fan of Cascade hops.

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Photo of Bunman3
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No visit to San Francisco would be complete without sampling an Anchor product. I found this gem in a pint plus 6 at the bottle shop across the street from our hotel. The packaging, look and feel are fantastic. Definitely in the APA spectrum - I don't have much to add to previous reviews.

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Photo of HenryPorter7777
3.96/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Well balanced, clean American IPA; easy-drinking with nice, long dry finish. Natural ingredients brewed with a dry hop style. Excellent with antipasto platter. Available year round.
ABV 5.9%

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Photo of PlutonowyManiek
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Color: Tea with orange reflections and light mist. Head high, ecru, very durable.
Aroma: sweet fruits, honey, light caramel.
Taste: lots of sweet fruit, are the tropics and citrus. What a sometimes noticeable accents are forest. Strong point of the Liberty Ale it is also bitterness, without a beer can to be poor. Grapefruit resin, fantastically balances the sweetness of the fruit.

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Photo of GOBLIN
3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Eh' . . . average beer. Sweet, smooth, malty, bitter . . . Not bad. In my opinion not much like an ipa. More like a pale ale. These Anchor beers all taste the same. Except Steam, that's the only one that stands out.

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Photo of Alpha309
3.72/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a straw to golden color. A little bit of murkiness. About a finger of fine white head that retains perfectly.

Smells of biscuit or wafers. A touch of sugary smell in there as well.

First thing on the tongue is a sweet tanginess, followed by an earthy and peppery kick. Some citrus peel flavor as well.

Very high in carbonation. Very light in the mouth. Almost no stickiness.

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Photo of AC-Mivsek
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A- Pours light gold, slight haze, small white head
S-Citrus and floral hops, orange, pineapple, biscuit malts
T-Sour and bitter on the front end, finishes sweet and malty.
M-Creamy, medium body, thick yet very drinkable.
O-This beer is interesting, I wasn't expecting the sourness, but the hops and malts combine well to make it a tasty and complex trifecta of flavors.

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Photo of SGT_Cookie
4.19/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Super Short and sweet review, great APA. I tried the anchor steam beer, which was also a good choice, but this one had an amazing aroma, a rather crisp taste followed by a dry after taste. Just what you would expect from an APA. Reminds me of a sweetwater 420 except a little dry. Great beer overall

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Photo of ctylinebeer
4.24/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip. From the mix and match at my work.

L - amber color with gold highlights. Cloudy hue. Two finger head with medium-light lacing. Nice ring around the glass.

S - soft grapefruit aroma. Citrus feel all around.

T - subtle grapefruit notes but overpowered by the citrus spice on the back. Little bit of pine also.

F - very carbonated but crisp and clean. Good amount of body but not too much.

O - very opposite from the regular Anchor IPA. File this under citrus IPA, but I like the pine notes. Cheers!

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Anchor Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.88 out of 5 with 3,517 ratings