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RATINGS: 184   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.7/5   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 116   EST. CALORIES: 240   ABV: 8%
Liberator was made as a 30th birthday gift to Joe Short. As a double IPA, this beast employs a sizable malt bill, but it is the crazy amount of hops added to the boil every 4 minutes, for 120 minutes, that really make this beer special. Fruity, floral, and piney hop flavors penetrate throughout the caramelized malt profile. Liberator is a well-balanced, full bodied brew that has a bitter finish due to the post fermentation addition of lemon and orange zest.

The original batch brewed on the Bellaire system had 42lbs of hops in it, compared to Huma, which has around 20lbs of hops per batch. Today’s Elk Rapids batches have up to 138lbs of hops. The name, Liberator, came from Joe’s name for the Short’s employees who carry out our company’s mission statement as “Beer Liberators”, freeing the masses from their misconceptions surrounding beer.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
milewide (2059) - Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA - DEC 30, 2009
UPDATED: MAR 6, 2010 Overpowering hop smell and bitterness! Orange and lemon zest missed me, but I loved the hops so much that I don’t care! Cloudy orange color and medium body. Rerate: I bought a case of this, and only have one six pack left! It is now my number one double IPA. The aroma and taste is tangy and herbal, without the sweetness of some DIPAs. Alcohol is modest. Bitter aftertaste lingers!

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
MJPG (10) - Mount Pleasant, Michigan, USA - JUL 2, 2015
The aroma is excellent. The appearance is as well. It reminded me of PGGB. It hits the palate perfectly. I give it a 100.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
dukefan (215) - Dallas, Texas, USA - MAR 22, 2010
Hands down my favorite in the Michigan Double IPA battles which usually feature Founders Double Trouble and Bells HopSlam. Intense Grapefruity flavor, and with the lemon and orange zest added a true 2x IPA with that wonderful citrus push that I love. Had only one bottle of this - but wanted many, many more.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
JoshuaB (476) - Detroit, Michigan, USA - JUL 9, 2010
Good dank astringentness. Dont pick up too much lemon or orange peels, but is yum. Hides the alcohol well.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
umich03jm (3494) - Flat Rock, Michigan, USA - APR 2, 2012
UPDATED: DEC 16, 2012 Cloudy orange color with no head. Big citrus and floral aroma. Orange and lemon for sure but maybe grapefruit too. Also some sweet malt comes through. Taste is a citrus explosion at first that turns bitter and ends slightly dry. Really makes you want to keep drinking more. Really like this double IPA. Re-rate 12/16/12. Need to bump this beer up higher. I absolutely love this beer and wish it was available year round. I have nothing to add to my review really only that I think this beer seems to get better each time its released.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
574deadzone (1379) - North Central, Indiana, USA - JAN 10, 2014
Pours a cloudy amber-orange with a thicker cream-colored head that settles to a ring and a film and leaves some spotty, dripping lace. Nose involves spicy hop notes, heavy citrus (grapefruit), some toasted malt, very fruit forward. Quite sweet flavor, very bitter. Light to medium bodied, oily, bright with hops, average carb, with a long fruity and drying bitter finish. Awesome brew, very flavorful.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Huhzubendah (3484) - Washington DC, USA - AUG 4, 2012
Bottle gifted by Thorpe429. Thanks Mike! A: The Liberator appears slightly hazy and light orange in color. The head is an off-white hue and measures in at about a half inch thick. Although it fades to a thin, wispy layer within a couple of minutes, it does generate numerous thick ringlets of lacing around the perimeter of the entire pint glass. S: Aromas include tangy citrus fruits, hops, and malt, respectively. T: My first reaction is that I am drinking a delicious and complex beer. My second sip confirms my initial supposition. The Liberator is a terrific double IPA. This beer doesn’t have hints of grapefruit, it tastes as if I just squeezed fresh grapefruit juice into my beer. The lemon zest is wonderful, complementing a full bouquet of tart citrus. The malt component is just prominent enough to support the myriad of fruit and hop flavors that abound in this delectable brew. M: Medium bodied, with a lasting tart and tangy aftertaste. D: What a great beer. Short’s hit their mark with this one. I definitely recommend it. Serving type: bottle Reviewed on: 01-05-2011

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
SrSilliGose (3328) - pouring bus, New Brunswick, CANADA - JAN 4, 2010
bottle. pours a hazy orange copper hue with a small dirty white head. Aroma is a big, orange, lemon, grapefruit rinds, caramel, flowers. wow. very pungent, nice. flavor is a quite bitter with a lot of grapefruit, citrus, caramel, and a hint of booze. like sucking on a grapefruit while smelling fresh oranges, lemons, and flowers. This was quite good. better than expected. Nice job shorts!

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
illidurit (2284) - San Francisco, California, USA - FEB 9, 2010
12 ounce bottle courtesy iceicebaby, poured into a pint glass. Murky bronze color with a great fluffy beige head that leaves some sticky lacing. Aroma just jumps out of the bottle, and even more so from the glass. Very lemony but not sour, the citrus peel is immediately apparent and it complements the bright tropical hops (Simcoe perhaps?) perfectly. I can also smell a bit of crystal malt, which I usually hate, but it’s pretty subtle here. Onto the flavor. You know when you eat a grapefruit and after you’re done spooning out the flesh, you squeeze the rind to get the last remaining drops of juice and any missed drupelets into the bowl? Well this beer tastes like that, almost startlingly so. Huge unripe citrus and herbal resins with no malt at all. Absurd lingering bitterness begs the next sip. Upon warming there’s a minor caramel note that creeps in but this is not some Midwest sugarbomb euphemized as "well-balanced." This is a tongue-bruising west coast-style hop monster, and at only 7.4%. Unfortunately, Shorts overlooked the fact that citrus peel is naturally astringent, and this comes through in the mouthfeel, which is a bit overdry and chalky. But that’s a negligible gripe at this point. This beer is epic.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
brokensail (16055) - Dublin, California, USA - FEB 28, 2010
A: The pour into my Stone nonic pint glass is a hazy burnt orange color with a thin layer of off-white foam. S: I’m immediately struck by very pungent hop aromas. The combination of bitter grapefruit and pine is one of my favorites and this beer certainly delivers there. T: It doesn’t get much better than this. While the beer is not as intensely bitter as many CA IPAs (ie. Ruination and Pliny), it still has plenty of resinous pine. The Front end is very citrusy with the aforementioned pine taking over the finish. Not a trace of malt in the beer. M: The body is medium with a moderate to high level of carbonation. D: These Michigan breweries really know how to make a fantastic IPA. This is just as good (if not better) than certain IPAs made by Bell’s, and I would gladly enjoy a few more of these.

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