Review of Goose Island Harvest Ale

17 Oct
For today’s craft beer review I’m going to be drinking a Goose Island Harvest Ale produced by the Goose Island Brewing Company located in Chicago, Illinois.

I don’t know why I have missed trying this beer over the last few years, but I picked up a bottle the last time I went beer shopping, so I’m ready to see how it stacks up to the rest of the Fall seasonals that are out there. 

Let’s see what the website,, has to say about this brew.

Brewed in honor of the Harvest season this copper colored ESB is made with Cascade hops and the richest Midwestern malts.  A fruity American hop aroma and a toasty malt character make Goose Island Harvest Ale an extra special beer worthy of your devotion.

Alrighty.  Let’s drink up.

This brew has an ABV of 5.7% and it comes in a 12 oz. bottle.

The appearance was of a mostly clear, deep orange/amber/copper color with some burnt orange highlights glistening when held toward the light.  The head was an off white color that had great size and great retention.  It was somewhat creamy and soft and it left some very nice lacing on the sides of the glass.  This beer looks really good in my opinion.

The aroma started with a nice little burst of hops along with some fruity peach and pear undertones.  Hints of caramel sweetness combine with a fragrance of toasted bread and biscuits.  Minutely floral as well and it has further aromas of some earthy, leafy goodness to boot.  It smelled nicely balanced and even.

The taste began with a subtle hop bite and bitterness.  A little bit more of the peach pleasantries along with a justified earthy savor.  It had a light taste of grain juxtaposed by some toasted breadiness.  Finally, a caramel sweetness complimented the flavor well and helped balance the overall profile.  The taste was not real strong or over-the-top, however it was good, solid and respectable.

The mouthfeel was a sturdy medium, smooth, creamy and crisp.  It was silky and slick as it made its way down the throat.  It left an ok amount of flavor behind on the palate too.  Not bad at all.

Actually, I think this beer is pretty darn good.  It’s a “sleeper” for sure.  Super easy to drink with a solid aroma, flavor and mouthfeel, not to mention that it looked really nice.  For me, this is one of the better Fall seasonals on the market.  I liked how the hops were a bit more prevalent than most Fall beers.  I definitely think this is worth a try and I will definitely pick up the Goose Island Harvest Ale again next year.  I, like everyone I’m sure, just hope that the recipes don’t change.  I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

Thanks for reading and commenting everyone.  Have a great craft beer day.


Score:  4.0 out of 5
Grade:  B+   

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Posted by on October 17, 2011 in Country: USA, Goose Island


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