Let me tell you about one of my very favorite beers ever: Anchor Liberty Ale. When I first reviewed this beer for Epinions over 10 years ago, I titled that review “IPA When IPA Wasn’t Cool”, and although Anchor didn’t really call this beer an IPA way back in the early 80s when I first tried it, that’s exactly what it was (and is).
Now, Anchor has changed the game with Anchor Double Liberty IPA, and they’re not being coy about what the beer is this time: the label boldly states IPA in no uncertain terms.
From the label:
We first brewed Liberty Ale in 1975, in celebration of the 200th anniversary of Paul Revere’s historic ride. Liberty--America’s first craft-brewed ale—introduced America to the Cascade hop and the art of dry-hopping. Like Liberty Ale, Double Liberty™ IPA is made with 2-row pale malt and whole-cone Cascade hops. But Double Liberty has double the hops and double the IBUs (International Bittering Units), imparting uniquely complex flavors and dry-hop aroma to this radically traditional IPA. Double Liberty’s label, like our liberty ale label, features a hand-drawn eagle by our artist James Stitt. But Double Liberty’s eagle soars-with hops, shield, and Anchor in tow.
If you clicked the link above and read my review of Anchor Liberty Ale, then you’ll be able to decipher the packaging code on my bottle of Anchor Double Liberty IPA: 5UQ. If you didn’t read it, we’ll allow some time for you to do that very thing. No rush. We’ll wait.
Ah! I see you’re back, and now know that the “5” is for 2015, the “U” is for June, and the “Q” is for the 17th day of that month. So, my sample was bottled on June 17th of this year. Anchor has released Double Liberty for the first time in 2015, and it is a June through August seasonal. I didn’t manage to find any until September. All the same, this is a beer that can stand the test of time.
Anchor Double Liberty IPA has an alcohol content of 8.2% by volume with a whopping 90 IBUs. It’s a single hopped Cascade beer, just like the classic Liberty Ale. It is a bit pricy in my book at $10.99 for a 4-pack.
Anchor Double Liberty IPA pours to a bright orange color with a medium head of creamy foam and a leafy-herbal Cascade hop nose. Taking a sip the beer has thick chewy caramel up front followed by citrusy, resiny aromatic hops. Indeed, the beer is permeated with dry-hopped Cascade aromas and punctuated with a long dry herbal bitterness.
Anchor Double Liberty IPA is really a lot like Liberty Ale, just with more of everything that classic beer offers. Loving Liberty Ale as much as I do (and have), do I love this beer twice as much? That would be like loving one of your children more than the others. I will say that Anchor Double Liberty IPA is a new favorite, and it will be a definite repeat beer. The only downside is the price, I think $10.99 would be a tad high for a six-pack, let alone a 4-pack. Still, I love this beer enough that I’m only knocking off a half star for that.
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.