I love Anchor’s Liberty Ale. It’s got that wow-factor from the moment that you pour it into the glass, with its hazy golden shine. The fruity-floral aroma gets me seriously excited, and the flavour doesn’t disappoint, with hints of peaches blended beautifully with the American hops. It has that kind of robust, unctuous body you get with American pale ales which makes the whole drinking experience seriously satisfying.
At 5.9%, I can’t drink too much of it, but then again, it does come in diddy little bottles, and that level and depth of flavour makes it ideal for sipping over a long period of time.
We also really enjoyed their “Special Ale” last Christmas. So I was quite excited to try Anchor’s Old Foghorn Barley Wine. This beastie is 8.8% and pours much darker than the Liberty Ale. It has a similar tantalising smell, although with more sherry notes. It’s incredibly sweet — quite a contrast to the Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barley Wine we drank last week, where it was all hops and no malt. I have to say I found the Old Foghorn a bit one-sided.
On a slightly related topic, with a view to reducing our airmiles, we’re going to attempt to clone Liberty Ale. Any suggestions? I’ve found a few recipes on the internet as a starting point, but if anyone’s got any personal experience to share, that’d be great, particularly on priming / conditioning it to get that wonderful mouthfeel.