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RATINGS: 283   WEIGHTED AVG: 2.92   EST. CALORIES: 165   ABV: 5.5%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Note: this beer is now an amber ale, and the ABV has gone up from 4.5 to 5.5%. Special Ale is our flagship ESB. It’s been with us from the start and hasn’t changed since that first brew way back in 1996. Ample quantities of caramel malt give this English ale a soft copper hue and the colorful addition of carapils malt adds a slight sweetness you might mistake for honey.


blinesam's rating

1.1
   AROMA 1/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 2/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 3/20
blinesam (235) - USA - NOV 3, 2007
man this beer sucks. Starts off with an unmistakable baby diaper aroma, has white particles and is not bitter at all. carbonation ok but taste not ok. taste fading instantly. no aftertaste whatsoever. TOO SWEET.


3.5
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Darkmagus82 (1204) - - SEP 13, 2014
Transfer from BA review on 6-3-13- Poured from bottle into a pint glass Appearance – The beer pours a hazy copper/mahogany color with a two finger cream colored head. The head has a great level of retention, holding on for quite some time, fading slowly to leave a good level of lace on the sides of the glass. Smell- The aroma is mainly of a lightly roasted malt smell mixed with a decent showing of caramel and some toffee. Along with these aromas so too comes a tiny bit of dark fruit, which overall creates a rather sweet aroma. Taste – The taste begins with a lightly roasted malt flavor and some fruit flavors of apple. A caramel sweetness is present upfront as well, with it slowly fading throughout most of the taste. More toward the middle, with the caramel fading some, come some flavor of a more bitter hop nature. They are mainly of an earthy and herbal flavor and remain relatively light till the end. While the caramel faded steadily from the beginning it picks up again at the end, and when mixed with the rest of the flavors, it leaves a nice easy going taste of a bready caramel and light hop to linger on the tongue. Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is average in terms of its creaminess and thickness with a carbonation level that is average as well. Overall – A nice drinking brew, but overall nothing extraordinary.

2.8
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
ectuohy27 (596) - ESTONIA - JUN 1, 2014
Not bad, actually--the caramel hops do provide a softer, sweetened finish compared to the sandpaper experience of most microbrews. Worth trying even for the IBU-averse like myself

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
N3lson1 (186) - Long Valley, New Jersey, USA - APR 23, 2014
Had this one on draft at the brewery. This is another good beverage by River Horse. A Nice dark, malty beer.

3.1
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
John25 (491) - Middletown, New Jersey, USA - APR 13, 2014
Draft. Nut brown. Caramel, toasted bready malts, toffee. Smooth light carb, medium feel overall. Not bad, not great but, a nice full bodied session brew with a turkey club for lunch. Hit the spot. Good stuff. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Psytron (1313) - Turku, FINLAND - MAR 17, 2014
From tap at the Lufthansa lounge, Newark Liberty airport. Smell of candy, malts. Copper colour, beige head. Aroma of sugar, malt. Sweet with a faintly bitter finish. Soft and lively carbon.

2.8
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
maniac (3800) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - JAN 1, 2014
Bottle on 04/18/2011. Hazy orange amber body with a large frothy off-white head and some chunky bits. Sweet fruit, caramel, and light floral hops. Sweet caramel flavor, some cheerios and fruit with a yeasty background and some floral hops. Medium body with moderate carbonation.

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
BillWyce (723) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 26, 2013
From notes: Poured hazy nut-brown with a 2-finger off-white head. Aroma of roasty and nutty malt. Medium body, a touch watery, with a brief, lightly dry finish. Nutty malt flavor with a roasty note and a light note of citrus underneath.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
generallee08 (656) - New York, USA - OCT 6, 2013
UPDATED: OCT 7, 2013 Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Appearance: It has an orange amber colored body with lots of yeast fine sediment floating around inside. This is cap off by a tall, light and foamy head. It is light tan in color and slowly fades to thin filmy covering which leaves behind a little slick lacing on the glass. Smell: I get some really nice sweet bready and doughy maltiness with a faint hint of English hops. Taste/Palate: There is a nice base of bready maltiness and yeast with pleasant sweetness. I get some mellow notes of honey like sweetness, sugar cookies and even a touch of light caramel and vanilla. The hops come in at the finish and offer some pleasant herbal character and light bitterness for balance. The mouth feel has a firm medium feel with soft carbonation. Notes: My overall thought is that it may not be the prettiest beer but it has some good flavor notes and nice balance. Also I could see myself drinking more then a few of these at 4.5% abv.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
AirForceHops (3174) - Epping, New Hampshire, USA - OCT 2, 2013
12 oz. bottle from a trade with a friend on Utappd. Very deep red color, nearly brown with nice lasting head. The nose indicates heavy caramel malts. The flavor reflects that with toffee hints, caramel and a fruity and Earthy hop in the finish. Texture is lightly syrupy with a sticky texture. For the style I got to say this is under rated. Very sessionable and really decent. Glass emptied fast and I wanted another.

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
conway (1425) - - AUG 15, 2013
Bottle. Deep amber with a 1 finger white head. Aroma is nutty and vaguely fruity. Taste has a hint of fruitiness followed by coffee, finishing with a wheaty malt finish. Medium mouthfeel with sufficient carb. Not bad but slightly confusing. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone


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