shadey (2125) - Nashville, Tennessee, USA - MAY 20, 2004
Redish pour with a thin white head. Aroma is crisp and fresh. I definitely didnít smell any carmel in this. Not sure where people are getting that from. Woody yes. The flavor wasnít what I expected. Slight bitterness with nothing too abrasive. A very drinkable brew with good flavor. dhlesq (233) - Thousand Oaks, California, USA - MAY 20, 2004
Aroma of caramel, malt, and slight green apple. Appears a deep copper color with crystal clarity and one to two finger head that rapidly dissipates but that leaves some lacing. Caramel molasses flavor that is a bit on the sweet side, followed by the slightest tinge of hop bitterness at the finish, and a slightly spicy aftertaste. Palate is somewhat thicker than expected, possibly enhanced by the sweet caramel taste. Overall, this beer is slightly greater than the sum of its parts. Malakin (470) - Victoria, British Columbia, CANADA - MAY 20, 2004
Not too keen on the earthy aroma. Nice malt flavours, not very bitter for an esb and little hop aroma. omnivore (270) - San Francisco, California, USA - MAY 19, 2004
Pours a rosy gold color with a fluffy white head. Smells strongly of smoke and wood, tinged with hops. Bitter woody flavor that ends with a sort of rough maltyness. Tasty! monkeycmdr (18) - Burnaby, British Columbia, CANADA - MAY 19, 2004
A good, solid overall beer. Nice color, good head, good taste and mouthfeel. Very malty and bitter, as advertised. Probably one of the best, if not the best, of the style.
madquacker (1138) - Canberra ACT, AUSTRALIA - MAY 12, 2004
After a promising aroma this beer quickly falls into a caramelly morass of unpleasentness. Predominating flavour is medicinal. They are trying a little to hard with this. Very disappointing. MrKevvie (29) - Texas, USA - MAY 9, 2004
I remember drinking this in my 20ís in the UK, it used to be known as GBH(grevious bodily harm) for a reason. Excellent flavour and aroma, pours out wonderfully and is just a real ball tearer of a beer. Jukkabro (3484) - Tampere, FINLAND - MAY 3, 2004
Malt flavour very bitter for the first half of the glass, then balances slightly. Hops cut bitterness nicely and left warm feeling in mouth, although aftertaste is still nicely bitter. Full-flavored body and carbonated at first, balances quickly and cuts away some bitterness. Nice dark red color. ThomasE (5174) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - APR 26, 2004
Nice copper colour with small off white head. Aroma is malty, spicy and with some toffee. Flavor is bitter and with some sweetness. Palate is ok. Lumpy (1802) - Carrollton, Texas, USA - APR 23, 2004
UPDATED: MAR 30, 2005 Bottle. Nice amber pour with a loose one finger off white head. Nose is strong of malt, spice(almost a black pepper) and caramel. Great bitter flavor. The palate is clean and sharp. Flavor notes are of caramel, spice, and malt. The bitterness is perfect: it is good and bitter, but not so bitter that it is unenjoyable. The finish is dry and almost a little sweet. This is pretty much a perfect beer. The flavor is very complex and well balanced, the finish is sharp and full. This is the best ESB I have ever had, and it will be the gold standard which I use to measure other ESBís.