Anniversary Ale | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

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Anniversary AleAnniversary Ale
Very Good
104 Ratings
Anniversary AleAnniversary Ale

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States

Style: Belgian Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by SheepNutz on 06-07-2003

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 104 |  Reviews: 86
Reviews by Ellbert:
Photo of Ellbert
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had on tap at GLBC

Appearance: A beautiful Golden color with a nice thick white head.

Smell: Spicy and floural... Not much alcohol in the nose.

Taste is much like the smell but with more alcohol not overpowering however. Very good and warming.

A very drinkable brew... Alcohol is hidden pretty well, just enough to give a warming and spiciness.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of merlin48
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, thanks to cmarushak for this rare, 2004 classic. Pours into a tulip glass a hazed, honey amber body with a persistent, two finger head that is a creamy vanilla. Active carbonation is very apparent through the slight haze. Patchy sheet lacing adds to the striking appearance.

Lovely aroma rivals some of the better Belgian tripels. Honeydew melon, kiwi fruit, clover honey, orangerind, pineapple, bubblegum, coriander, and white pepper. Very nice to inhale!

Mouthfeel is excellent, with a medium body and velvety medium carbonation.

Taste is dominated by a sweet tropical fruitiness comprised of pineapple, melon, and kiwi. Coriander, white pepper, and orangerind add appropriate spiciness. Alcohol presence is very muted for the style. Yeastiness is present, but not a major player.

Very well crafted Tripel by this Ohio brewery. This one has aged quite well and I love the suggestive label depicting a huge slice of cake.

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

12oz. amber bottle with an "enjoy by" date of 3/7/04. Oops. Somehow, with the busty ABV of this brew, I'm not in any danger.

Appearance: The GLBC Anni-Ale poured a very different, and very pretty "copper lager" in color. Very cloudy, yet no individual yeasties are noted. Wispy thin layer of white lace swirls around. Just a tad of lacing.

Smell: Fruity esters abound, trailing contrails of spicy/peppery notes that lazily waft across the nostrils. A wheaty note detected as well. Complex? Indeed.

Taste: Well-suited to the style. Spciy and fruity, with a bready undertone. Oranges, bannanas, clove, pepper, and spices dance across the palate. Finishes slightly dry. No ABV warming effects noted.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Medium body, low carbonation. Very easy on the palate. Hidden ABV raises the drinkability.

Notes: As others have said, I will be curious as to what happens to this beer over a year or so. Thinning out the sweetness would help this beer.

Thanks to PhantomVoDoo for this great offering from a fantastic brewery.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.99/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a glowing amber orange tone with a vibrant white head forms well but short lived not much retention going on lacing is sparse and scatterd in little bundles. Aroma: Deep rich honey sweetness some fruit edges and spiciness tie it altogether great aromatics with a slightly citrus finish I really dig the smell of this one. Taste: Wow, alcohol definitely comes through but the 9.5% abv is tamed by a syrupy rich sweetness with a spiced undertow of flavors, doesn't completely hold up to some of the Belgian tripels I have had but they do a great job of bastardizing the tripel and making it drinkable rich and flavorful so I tip my hat takes some ganas (desire or heart) to attempt such a difficult style. Mouthfeel: Is medium seems light but this syrupy texture grabs your palate and takes it for a ride well done GLBC. Drinkability: Though this one can't touch Bornem or Gouden Carolous it is a great American brewed Belgian style tripel I am enjoying it and I am glad I had the opportunity to sample a bottle. By the way to anybody searching for it it's on tap at D's I took the last couple bottles from the cooler but they may have some left in the back.

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Photo of soper2000
3.77/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a couple of these as a part of my 5 buck mixed six pack deal (thank you village bottle shoppe). Best before date of 11/04. It pours that beautiful golden orange tripel color that I absolutely love. The only problem is that the head didn't bother sticking around for too long. It's a pain because I really enjoy the looks of tripels. Smell is immensely yeasty with hints of clove, orange, and vanilla. Decent nose if you ask me. Taste seemed a little harsh to me. A little more clove flavor than I would have liked. A lot of spiciness in here. This is one of the more assertive tripels I've had. A light fruitiness is present but I would've liked for these flavors to step forward a little bit. Mouthfeel is standard as is drinkability. For less than a buck a bottle this is a great deal for me and I will be getting more. Overall I think this is a decent offering with some room for improvement. I look forward to more Belgian style ales from GLBC.

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Photo of findlayfan
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured light orange with white 1/2" head.

Spicy aroma - with a touch of nutmeg.

Solid mouthfeel with very slight carbonation.

Crisp, slightly sweet initial taste, which tended to mask the high alcohol. Didn't really notice the alcohol that much until about 1/3 of the way through (fortunately, it was a fairly cool July evening).

Certainly not a "session" beer - a couple of these would be plenty!

I actually used it as desert, a role it filled quite well.

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Photo of cokes
4.07/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazy amber-leaning golden with a modest white froth. Fades to an edging quickly.
Aromas of honeyed apricots, black pepper, chalkboards, and hay.
Enters fruity. Mangoes and apricots and oranges. All dripping honey and caramel. Spicy too. Coriander and ample pepper. An ever-growing, juicy lime tartness develops early and begins to dominate midway. It's somewhat strange at first, but I'm falling more and more in love with it every sip. A bit grassy and herbal later, as the hops battle to stave of the forceful white rum alcohol. This is a little hot yet, but it's young too.
Sits heavy in the mouth, and could benefit from some additional carbonation to help offset and dry the alcohol. Lightly syrupy and full.
A little time may do this wonders.
Regardless, this is a tasty, guns-blazing triple as it is.

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Photo of Sammy
3.6/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

took a chance as this is tripel, but its only tripel style. Great Lakes is unpasteurized and not bottle conditioned. Not up to competing with the Belgiums. But GL does not make a bad beer, and this was sippable but not as drinkable as all their others. More like a wheat beer and fruit sweetness was over top. Kudos to Chuck's in Cleveland for breaking up the 4-pack for me.

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Photo of Reverand
4.02/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours to a hazy golden ale with a nice fluffy white head. A distinct smell of banana comes to mind first. A great attempt at a tripel but it might be missing something. Maybe the drinkability aspect. For being 9.5% the alcohol really is noticeable. A good sipping beer for with your friends.

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Photo of beerluvr
4.57/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Light yeast hazed golden liquid topped by a non-descript white head. Very lazy carbonation. Sweet cotton candy and tropical fruit nose, more banana like as it warms in the glass. Sweet fruity flavors supported by an ample malty base. Gentle but noticeable hoppiness, then warming alcohol is felt all the way down the gullet. Soothing, warm finish...bittersweet and fruity. Beautiful! Thanks once again to Craig for the bottles.

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Photo of Jon
4.09/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazed golden peach with very little head. What's there comes to live after some agitation, but leaves no lace. Spiced notes complement green apple, apricot, yeast, honey and melon character in the aroma. Citrus rind, lemon, spiced apple, yeast, confectioner's sugar, pepper and a distinct but subtle breadiness accentuate the flavor. While it's complex, it seems to be missing something to qualify as truly remarkable. Lively mouthfeel is appropriately carbonated, remaining quite smooth. Flavorful, drinkable and full of character for an American Tripel-style ale.

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Photo of jackndan
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Great Lakes Anniversary Ale: Damn this is one fine Belgian Style triple. Not brewed exactly to style, but I for one do not care. Somewhat thick, filling and warming mouthfeel, feels nice going down. Not much head, but a rich golden color, and a bit of haze. As already noted the taste is rich, sweet malty flavors, leading to a yeasty, and banana flavor at the end. Nice.

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Photo of bditty187
3.47/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Apple cider gold in hue, there is a small amount of yeast sediment fluttering in the otherwise clear liquid, absolute no head formed. The color is absolutely lovely but the lack of a head is very disappointing. It was not surprising there was no subsequent lacing. The aromas are fruity and vaguely woody, clean maltiness underneath, candy sugar, alcohol too. For a Triple the bouquet is a little straightforward and too clean. It does say “Belgian” but I’ve smelled much better. The palate is improved over the first two aspects of this beer. The maltiness is much sweeter than the nose indicated; the extra flavors were needed, the alcohol heat is cutting and it provides a relief of the sweetness, candy sugar returns, some apples emerge, the hops bite is noticeable at the finish along with its tasty dose of earthy-spiciness. The palate is tasty but far too clean for the style. The aftertaste has a hot bite that lingers for a good while, that’s nice. Medium in body, the carbonation is modest but the mouthfeel suits this beverage well. It is very drinkable, the high alcohol content is masked enough but this beer could probably use some aging to round out the flavors and draw more to the forefront. This is the first beer from GLBC than did not impress me; at least I know they are mortal now. Regardless I am happy I tired it; a mediocre Triple is still great in comparison to many other beers! Thank you PhantomVodoo!

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

Brownish golden in color with a white to off-white head.
Aroma of ripe fruit, yeast, and tart notes.

The sweet malt and fruit flavors bombard the taste buds initially. Then the huge dry, tart notes come to the forefront. Yeasty notes linger at the finish. Complex and bold.

Plenty of sticky, sweet body here. Good mouthfeel.
High drinkability for 9.5%ABV.

This isn't one of my favorite styles, but this one provides an enjoyable drinking experience.

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Photo of benmiliron
3.39/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A good trippel from the folks at great lakes. Good golden-orange hue. Kind of a nasty resinous scent to it though. Fruity undertones like the bottle describes, with a good bit of alcohol covering everything. Pick up a single if you see it out there, but don't buy a sixpack unless you love trippels.

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Photo of uziangis
2/5  rDev -49.7%

Photo of profzoom
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was excited to see the Anniversary Ale on the shelves at my local store, since I thought I'd already sampled all the Great Lakes they had to offer. But no! Here comes this fine tripel to add another notch on my Ohio beer belt. And what a delicious notch it was.

This ale pours a lovely golden orange with a very thin head. The smell is sharp, and the only adjective I can really think to describe it is Belgian. The taste is fantastic, very sweet and tart. Often I shy away a bit from styles which originate on the other side of the English Channel from the porters and pale ales I love so dearly, but this is one I will drink gladly. Great Lakes has done it again!

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Photo of elricorico
3.72/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This ale is a cloudy orange-brown colour with a thin layer of head on top. Plenty of tiny bubbles are flowing to the top.

The smell is strong, smells of candied sugar and black pepper. Smells nice.

The taste is sweet up front, that same sugar as the smell, then follows up with a hit of pepperry spiciness. The finish is very warm, and some of the alcohol makes it's presence known. The lingering flavour comes from a mix of the spiciness and the alcohol. That flavour fills the back half of my mouth with each swallow.

Mouthfeel is fairly nice, a bit stickier than I'd prefer, but it is comfortable to roll this brew around on your tongue for a bit. The beer is certainly not a gulper, it's high alcohol content and potent flavour make you take your time.

All in all, not bad, but I'd hoped for better. It's worth trying if you have any interest in Belgian style beers. Thanks again to my friend Praneel for the 6er of Great Lakes beers to try.

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Photo of MichaelStoutBeard
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%

Photo of ninner00
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of CortexBomb
3.1/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out pale, strawish yellow with a moderate white head on top. Smell is dominated by malts, pears, and a definite sweet tinge.

Huge fruity flavours mixed with malts to start it out, and then that gives way to pepper, with an accompanying hop bitter on the back of the tongue which grows to a decent stature. A certain alcohol flavour and warming is also noticeably present, and the finish is a fairly defined bitter tinge. The alcohol presence which started at the middle and stayed through to the end was just over the top in comparison to the other things going on for my preferences, and it seemed to become more and more pronounced as the brew warmed, as did the hop profile and aftertaste. Relative to the others I've had in the style this is definitely sub-average.

Body is moderate and creamy, appropriate while the drinkability is moderately above average.

A Belgian, but the fact you can taste the alcohol noticeably and the stronger hop profile (which I don't think fits this style that well) make this one of the weaker Great Lakes offerings that I've tried.

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Photo of MikeDL
4.62/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of pbrian
3.12/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Best By March 7, '04. Yeah right. Poured a hazy golden with loose murkey flakes that were impossible to decant. Weak white head that left quickly without a trace of lace. Surprisingly tart, citric aroma. Taste was kind of a mess. Interesting parts, but didn't meld at all. Started very fruity sweet (melon-ey), a little tart spicyness tried to dry it out, but failed. Finished cloyingly sweet leaving alcohol vapors behind. In general, it's hard for me to find a triple/trippel/tripel I don't enjoy. This is the closest I've come to finding one.

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Photo of Bierguy5
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle, best by Nov. 04. Ok, so only a month past freshness date. Pours a hazy golden, slight orange liquid. Thick, white foamy head, dense bubbles. Head retention was fair. Smells of spices, orange zest. Pale malt, esthery, orange zest flavor. Some spices, and a slightly sour taste. Slight hop bitterness. Full body, high carbonation, slight creamy feel as well, Coats the tongue despite higher carbonation. Alcohol noticable. Wish I would have had this fresh, however still a pretty solid beer.

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

Slightly hazy gold. Big aroma of fruity yeast. Bold flavoring, yet a bit softer than most of the style. I know it is a contradiction in terms, but the yeast fruit flavors struck me as both dry (in an astringent sort of way) and at the same time juicy (in a flavorful sort of way). Alcohol adds a bit of white pepper, and is warming in the belly. Sweetness is well moderated. All in all, this hit me as being a bit softer than Belgian versions I've tried. A good, flavorful beer, but a little toned-down.

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Anniversary Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.98 out of 5 with 104 ratings