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Serve in English pint

bottled
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on tap
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RATINGS: 342   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.52   SEASONAL: Winter   IBU: 30   EST. CALORIES: 174   ABV: 5.8%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Our ESB (Extra Special Bitter) may have the word “bitter” in its name, but the key to this style is balance. The combination of malts and hops creates a toasty, fruity flavor. Our ESB is dry hopped with a US grown hop varietal called Williamette, which has a pronounced spicy, lemon flavor.

In the early 1970’s, brewers in London and the south of England expanded the range of beers available in pubs, reacting to the wave of European lagers moving into the British pub scene. In addition to the ordinary bitters and pale ales, brewers developed recipes for stronger premium ales like ESB, special bitter and special pale ale. These beers contributed to the English traditional ale revival of the 1980’s, making their way into the beer portfolios of many American craft breweries.


3.1
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
DarkElf (3050) - La Jolla, California, USA - DEC 31, 2005
(12 oz bottle: Obtained in trade with iwantalambic, thanks Justin!) Bottled With Love on 26-Oct-05. Whoa, surprisingly hoppy for an ESB, but the mildly sweet pale malt profile seems pretty timid in comparison. I can really taste the grassy hops in this rather than just vague bitterness, though the level of bitterness isn’t exactly shy here either. Slightly grassy and grapefruity hops aroma. Medium bodied, crisp and somewhat clean, pretty standard carbonation mouthfeel. The beer is light amber in color with near perfect clarity. The off-white head rises to almost an inch before settling down to a wide ring and leaving sporadic patchy lacing on the glass. Overall, I’m reminded of a very hoppy English ale rather than the American ESB I was expecting, though I would have known better had I read the label. It’s a pretty decent beer and the flavor of the bitter hops is pleasant, but for my tastes, there’s far too little malt to keep the hops balanced.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
steview (1036) - Petaluma, California, USA - DEC 20, 2005
good ale with a strong abv to make it quite the session winter ale; bold drinkin’ ale, earthy with some cute subtleties--apple, chalkdust, grapefruit, floral, caramel, a bit of malt-like spice, and on, but not much on... although i quite liked it.

3.5
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
LePoopie (151) - Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 6, 2005
Decent aroma. Clear, amber hue, with some head. Has a good, bitter flavor to it. Good texture, with the right amount of carbonation. Overall, it was a nice, enjoyable beer.

2.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
DavidP (1747) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 6, 2005
Bottle (10/26/2005) thanks to Kevin. Clear amber body with just a wisp of white head. Toasty crystal malt aroma with strong fruity melon and ester highlights. Diacetyl and toasty crystal in the flavor along with apple skin esters. Grain dust and some crisp grass hops in the finish dry. Not that great of a beer.

3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
JCapriotti (1379) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 6, 2005
2005 bottle. Shiny clear gold color. Lingering soapy head. Aroma is sweet, slightly stemmy hops (not very hoppy though). Kind of herbal I think, like the purple clover flowery things. That kind of carries over in to the taste. Flowery hops that fade into a soapy residue with a touch of sweetness. Some bright sour saltiness too that is kind of cool if you float it around your tongue enough. Kind of bitter and slightly one-dimensional. But still has some interesting character if you look hard.

2.9
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
SledgeJr (3577) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - DEC 4, 2005
UPDATED: DEC 13, 2005 On tap at the Bottleworks brewpub. Amber/copper in color. Nice warm floral aroma. Strong bitter flavor. Lacks the ESB mouthfeel of say, a Fuller’s. Has a strange metallic finish. UPDATE: Just tried this in a bottle. Equally meaningless. My tap rating stands. Schlafly is definitely overated. I must say that this beer hides its 6.8 ABV quite well. It does not seem that strong.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
whaleman (2178) - North Wales, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 2, 2005
Bottle. Thanks Eric. Bright copper body with medium carbonation and a uniform, sudsy white head. Aroma of fruity and grainy malt with mild organic sweet notes. A malt-featured ESB with subtle and tantalizing English characters plus nice spicy rye accents and medium-low bitterness. A very solid session beer and Schlafly’s best in my humble and limited experience.

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Kevin (2156) - New Mexico, USA - NOV 16, 2005
reddish gold pour and a nice greyish head. a bit of pine in the aroma. taste is chocolately with somemore pine. biscuity alcohol taste. wow the nose gets a lot of marshmallow as it warms. there is a lingering light cocoa taste to it at the same time. i like it.

3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
egleone6 (1) - Springfield, Illinois, USA - NOV 16, 2005 does not count
I had this beer directly from the brewery itself. Went on the tour. Would really like to know what hops they use and how much. This is a very good beer, I am not a hop head, but this was a subtle hoppy beer.

3.4
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
csbosox (1229) - Prairie Village, Kansas, USA - NOV 5, 2005
KC tasting. Brown, goldish color. Hops aroma. Caramel flavor with a nice hops flavor. Nice ESB. Hoppy for style? Best beer, IMO, of the hops in the city tasting.


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