alyor (1) - Sonning, ENGLAND - FEB 1, 2003 does not count
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 9/20
Liquid copper, clear as crystal, with a smooth creamy-white head that stayed till the end. Caramel sweetness at first with a hint of vanilla possibly before a long bitter finish. Good clean malty aroma. Excellent!
Oristo (67) - Orinda, California, USA - JAN 30, 2003
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Great looking beer. Rich brown, nice tan head that sticks around and leaves plenty of lacing on the glass. Sour grainy nose. Green silage rather than roasted, toasted. Doesn't come through to the mouth, though. The flavor is strong Fullers malts cut by enough hops to cut the softness to a reasonable level. Short finish for such a rich beer.
johninmelb (1126) - Bristol, Gloucestershire, ENGLAND - JAN 29, 2003
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Very tasty indeed. The colour and appearance of this beer is top class, and the head foamy and persistent. The aroma has a nice, rich caramel maltiness, and this carries through into the flavour. The finish has hints of spicy plum and more caramelly flavours, with a long bitter palate. Very impressive.
mwsf (360) - San Francisco, California, USA - JAN 29, 2003
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Beautiful deep copper color with a medium head. Malty aroma with a fair amount of fruitiness. Some caramel notes. Some butterscotch. Earthy hop aroma. Firm bitterness. Nice malty caramel flavor. Bitterness lingers in the finish. Nice medium body. I'd prefer a bit less diacetyl and a touch more sweetness. Update: By the end of the pint, the beer had warmed slightly and the diacetyl/butterscotch flavor began to add to the complexity of the beer. Excellent.
rodolito (163) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 28, 2003
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Poured a clear copper with an off-white head that had lasting retention. Malty, bread-lie aroma with some caramel and light diacetyl. Complex flavor with malty, bicuit notes and a moderate bitterness. Creamy with a medium mouthfeel and low carbonation.
kevinhume (4) - USA - JAN 27, 2003 does not count
3.9 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
The original and still the best ESB by far.
Full flavored and excellent balance with slight bitter finish.
DrunkAsASkunk (847) - Lynnwood, Washington, USA - JAN 25, 2003
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Aroma of malt and a hint of hops jumped out of my bottle and into my glass after the pour. I also noticed a scent of nuts in the aroma as well...strange!!! It poured an orangey red mix...almost perfectly clear, with heavy carbonation apparent and a very small layer of creamy white head that did make its attempt at lacing here and there. The taste was all malt upfront, with heavy emphasis on the carbonation attacking the palate. Very clean finishing however, as most English beers i have found are. Its only in the aftertaste that the true effect of those bittering hops arises. Its actually a very subtle bitterness, highly subdued by the malty content. All i could really pick up were those damn Goldings hops which are everywhere these days. Mildly dry aftertaste but not overdone in any respect. A nice ESB, but probably not worth what i overpaid for it!
GermanBrews76 (679) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - JAN 25, 2003
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 16/20
Damn! I had had an ESB earlier in the evening, but this one rocked it out! Beautiful harmony of hops with the crystal malts. Pretty powerful stuff, quite bitter with a fruity/floral majorly intense nose. Dry hopped like nuts!! A fine, dry barley taste on the tongue, an excellent finish.
JohnC (3000) - Mission Viejo, California, USA - JAN 24, 2003
2.8 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
on draught, clear copper color w/ virtually no head. nice maltiness up front w /a slightly bitter finish.
Marc (486) - Yokosuka, JAPAN - JAN 23, 2003
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Chestnut color with a persistant thin white head. Definate nutty biscuty nose. Caramel, hazelnut, a little vinous malt, exellant laceing but through it all there is this odd bitterness that is more akin to chemical or oversteeped tea.