After a long day, I wanted to stop at The Gingerman for a few beers. It’s a beer bar in Austin (they have a few other locations) that has a ton of beers on tap. For me, it’s a good opportunity to try some new and local stuff. I didn’t even know what this beer was, but it was local, so I wanted to give the Liberation Ale from Live Oak Brewing a try.
At liveoakbrewing.com, it says, “Liberation Ale is light in color and strong in hop character. Dry hopping with Cascade hops, gives this favorite a delicious citrus note reminiscent of a Texas Ruby Red. Its 60 IBUs will satisfy the most demanding of hop heads, while its full malt character balances the assertive hoppiness. This is one of the most well-balanced IPAs you can find.”
Numbers: 6.3% ABV, 60 IBUs
Appearance & Aroma: It was clear and golden in color, with a thin head on it. There was a nice aroma to it, with plenty of citrusy hops and a bready maltiness that broke through the hoppiness. I also noticed a bit of a fruitiness as well.
Taste & Feel: The body was light-medium, and there was a refreshing crispness to it. After a little bit of a carbonation tingle up front, there was a nice bready – not quite caramelly – maltiness to it. In the finish, the citrusy hop flavor came through and lasted into the aftertaste a little. the more I drank it, the more I noticed the strong malt backbone and how balanced the malt and hops were.
Food Pairing: This was a well-balanced beer and would probably go good with almost any pub-type food. In particular, I thought a mushroom-swiss burger or brick oven pizza would pair nicely.
Overall Impression: This was crisp and refreshing, yet there was plenty of flavor to it. The bready maltiness and the citrusy hop bitterness were pretty nicely balanced. However, the hopiness was fairly low-key for an IPA. Overall, I thought this was a pretty good beer, but don’t expect a huge hop flavor like you get out of most IPAs.