RATINGS: 342   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.52/5   SEASONAL: Winter   IBU: 30   EST. CALORIES: 174   ABV: 5.8%
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.

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aracauna (3651) - Georgia, USA - JAN 23, 2003
A lingering sticky cream-colored head tops a clear, bright deep amber body. The aroma is mellow malts, toffee and maple. The Hops offer up a slightly piney character. The flavor is sweet but not cloying. Reminds me of toast or biscuits with maple syrup or maybe just pancakes. The bittering hops balance the beer nicely. This is a great well-made beer but doesn't provide the chewy maltiness of the Fuller's.

DaSilky1 (2606) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 22, 2003
good looking creature of transparent golden orange and frothy cream lather..biscuity hop aroma with a hint of carmel..flavor was buttery with big notes of carmel..real buttery mouthful with lots of drippy carmel and a solid bitter hop backbone..full bodied..nice bitterness..defintely takes advantage of all areas of the toungue with the addition of carmel sweetness and peanut skin saltiness..Great ESB

JCW (1278) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - JAN 14, 2003
Ahh, this is what an ESB should be. Carmel colored in appearance and clear. Malty and flavorful(of hops). Buttery monthfeel. Slight malty sweetness on the finish. Hey can I have another?

iwantalambic (1478) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - JAN 4, 2003
Growler: Light golden brown. . .very nice amount of head. . .wonderful bitter flavours all around, great fresh hops, clean finish, I could drink this beer all day, all night. . .all week. . .

JohnC (3008) - Mission Viejo, California, USA - JAN 4, 2003
Exquisite clear amber color w/ a long lasting off white head. Slightly sweet nose, the flavor begins malty & finishes w/ a nice balance of hops. This is an excellent beer

Schroppfy (2360) - Łódż, Warsaw, Poland; Michigan, Ohio, USA - JAN 2, 2003
UPDATED: JAN 20, 2004 An easy call as one of the top 3 Bitters ever in my book. Quite different than Alemith's (and Ballast Point's for that matter) in it's hoppiness. It also shows incredible maltiness and freshness. Mine was bottled on 10/30/2002 and it might have well been yesterday. Deep tangy malt, huge hop presence everywhere, exceptional lacing and body, and a crisp sharpness that must be imparted by the rye (I'm guessing). Clean clear and wonderful and a great seasonal surprise sent by the St. Louie wunderkind -- btw, love the cat and the computer screen in the background. If I lived anywhere near St. Louis i would purchase this by the case. A better all-around challenging beer for everyday drinking than El Toro's fine selections. I love this beer.

Jokes (1453) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 16, 2002
A very satisfying and pleasant ESB. The aroma is light and sweet with a touch of soft hops. The flavors start malty and have that touch of rye. There is a nice hop finish with a warming, lasting finish. Soft, smooth, splendid. Just outstanding. Thanks Jake Barnes.

hopscotch (11182) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - DEC 6, 2002
UPDATED: NOV 28, 2007 Bottle... This beer rocks!... The nose is sweet and rich with a nice, floral burst. Notes of honey and caramel. This sparkling clear amber beer has an off-white, medium-sized frothy head. Partially lasting with decent lacing. Well-balanced flavor. Malty and rich up front, but well-hopped and somewhat bitter and citrusy on the backside. Between light and medium-bodied with an oily mouthfeel. Fizzy carbonation. Long, bitter, crisp, dry finish. A terrific offering from the St. Louis Brewery!

Jake Barnes (456) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - DEC 5, 2002
Re-Rate 12/05/02 Off of cask this beer is just insane! I won't change my rating since it's hard to get off of cask but if you're in St. Louis in the winter stop by the brewery and pick some up. Extremely soft mouthfeel with lots of rye/biscuit/cookie flavors. Great hoppy finish. This was outstanding. Off of cask i would give this a 17/20. One of the better ESB's i've had (although no Crooked River). You can taste the rye and feel it in the mouthfeel. Good balance.

joet (2646) - Wilsonville, Oregon, USA - DEC 2, 2002
Instantly, easily the best midwestern beer I've had. Even better than Two Hearted Ale. Big delicious creamy substantive body, a big aroma with an odd array of hops besting the very present malt aromas. Hoppy belches sweetly. More in between 90-Minute and Anchor Steam than akin to Fullers. This is an APA or IPA. Bits of cookie and astringent herbs. Long and lingering. A fabulous beer.

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