Next up, we present Scratch Beer #11-2008, a Bitter. We used to brew a little number called Tröegs ESB. Even though this beer was retired almost six years ago, we still get numerous Tröegs old-schoolers begging for its return.
Well hang onto your boot straps because Scratch #11 is about as close as we can get to the original ESB without firing up the old brew kettle. The Scratch #11 recipe originates from Chris’ stint at England’s University of Sunderland brewing program. After returning to Colorado the brothers drew on Chris’ experience and brewed pilot batches tweaking that recipe. The ESB production recipe has direct bloodlines to these pilot batches.
<li>O.G.: 13 Plato
<li>Malt: Dark Crystal, Roasted Barley, Extra Special Malt
<li>Yeast: Thames Valley Ale
<li>Hops: East Kent Goldings, Willamette, Chinook</ul>
MainerInExile (41) - Bangor, Maine, USA - MAR 4, 2001
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
I agree with past raters that this closely resembles a brown ale. I’m not a huge brown ale fan, but I like this. Probably because the hops are more pronounced than a brown ale. The aroma has something in it I can’t quite identify, and am not sure I’ve seen (smelled) before. Perhaps it’s the caramel malt, but I don’t know. Sweetness followed by bitter hops, makes for an interesting beer. Troegs ESB is darker than most ESBs, again leaning toward a brown ale color. Not a great ESB, but it works as a bitter brown ale.
turtlehead (111) - Nottingham, New Hampshire, USA - JUN 18, 2000
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Not a bitter as I expect for an ESB, actually this beer tends to have more characteristics of a brown. The chewiness in this beer I enjoyed.
Aubrey (3443) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - MAY 14, 2000
3.4 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Dark amber with a reddish tint. Nutty and chewy, almost has a brown ale flavor. Not a lot of ’nasal’ aroma; mostly mouthbound flavor. Initially sweet; finishes dry and bitter. Low carbonation. Extra specially bitter indeed.
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