Friday, November 13, 2015

Goose Island Honkers Ale

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
Chad9976 (1496) - Albany, New York, USA - NOV 13, 2015
Plain ol’ “Bitter” might be the epitome of British-style brews. Despite the name, beers of the style tend to be rather sweet and only mildly bitter. Any American brewery that makes one that’s decent is worthy of commendation; such is the case with Goose Island Honkers Ale. This is one of their original brews and I can see why it’s maintained appeal all these years. It’s a very drinker-friendly beer in all aspects (but not an amazing one). 

I poured a 12oz bottle into a tumbler glass. It was bottled on 7/27/15 and cost $1.66 ($0.14 per ounce).

Appearance: A pretty shade of copper/magenta with a clear body and carbonation visible. Pours to an average-sized, off-white, foamy head which retains and laces well.

Smell: Lightly fruity, though I detect some signs of oxidation. Slightly floral; though mild overall.

Taste: There seems to be a lot going on in this beer… and yet, not much at all. I do taste a genuine malt flavor – quite grainy and slightly biscuity. This creates for sweetness, but it’s mild. Lurking in the background is a dry bitterness with just a hint of resin. Faint caramel or treacle flavor on the backend which creates for additional sweetness, and then it finishes almost completely clean. All these characteristics are enjoyable to be sure. Perhaps I shouldn’t penalize it for being mild since that’s the point of the style. Still, a little more pizzazz would be nice.

Drinkability: At 4.3% ABV, Goose Island Honkers Ale is a sessionable beer to be sure. The mouthfeel is crisp with a consistent moistness to it as well. Though there is noticeable hop presence, there’s no lingering bitterness. I would consider it refreshing while in the mouth. I could see this working well in the summer, especially from a can, though it’s got the palette to work as a year-round brew, too.

RATING: 6/10

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