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boss302
07-19-2008, 21:48
So, is anyone else in to the Extra Special/Strong Bitters category?

If so, what is your favorite?

boss302
07-19-2008, 21:50
So, is anyone else in to the Extra Special/Strong Bitters category?

If so, what is your favorite?


I'll start...

Typically, I enjoy craft brews. Scarlet Lady, by Stoudt's Brewery, is quite good.

Having said that, they still make these best on the other side of the pond. I'm especially fond of Felinfoel ESB (from Wales)...

barturtle
07-20-2008, 05:20
Well, of course there is Fuller's ESB...

other's
Bishop's Finger
Theakston
Young's RamRod

nor02lei
07-20-2008, 10:17
We got the Sierra Nevada ESB recently here in Sweden. Big disappointment and not at all up to the better beers from that brewery.

Leif

Gillman
07-20-2008, 14:27
Fuller's Extra Special Bitter apparently is the origin of the ESB style, or at least, of the moniker. Fuller ESB was I believe originally a winter beer of the Burton type (a strongish, relatively sweet pale ale), and called simply Fuller Winter Ale. At some point it was renamed Extra Special Bitter and made available year round in London (home of the Fuller brewery). This beer, via Michael Jackson's early books, became famous in beer circles and was emulated by many craft brewers around the world.

I first tasted Fuller ESB in the mid-1980's in cask-conditioned form. It was a superb product, being estery/fruity (red wine-like), malty sweet and with a good but not over-dominant hop taste. It is not as good today IMO because in the last few years it has been brewed to be more hoppy. Still, it is a world classic.

The Americans, using usually their own citric West Coast hops, have made many ESBs, some of which are mentioned in this thread. We have a couple in Ontario that are excellent, e.g., Durham ESB, also Mill St. ESB.

An ESB by my lights should be reddish, full-flavoured, estery and on the sweet side. Most of the beers that bear this name in fact are very good. I have never tried Sierra Nevada's version. I've had its IPA, which is okay but not great IMO. I still think its Pale Ale is the best thing they make.

Gary

jeff
07-21-2008, 11:59
An ESB by my lights should be reddish, full-flavoured, estery and on the sweet side. Most of the beers that bear this name in fact are very good. I have never tried Sierra Nevada's version. I've had its IPA, which is okay but not great IMO. I still think its Pale Ale is the best thing they make.

Gary

What he said!
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