Sunday, June 2, 2013

Berkshire Mountain Brewers ESB

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Chad9976 (896) - Albany, New York, USA - JUN 2, 2013
I poured a 22oz bottle into a nonic pint glass. Its best before month was notched at August 2013. It cost $4 ($0.18 per ounce).

Appearance: Dark copper to brown proper hue. Hazy but translucent, not opaque. Forms a large, white, soapy head which retains and laces quite well.

Smell: Standard British pub ale aroma of cereal and a hint of spicy/citrusy hops.

Taste: No beer is more difficult to review than those that conform to their style and don’t have anything particularly unique to them. That’s how I feel about Berkshire Mountain Brewers ESB - it’s a good beer and it exemplifies the style quite well (especially for an American version), but going into detail about it will be challenging.

This is the type of beer I would pair with breakfast. It has a lot of flavors that would be perfect in that setting. Firstly, there’s a cinnamon toast flavor present. British pub style ales tend to have a bready or toasty character, and this one does too. I swear I get a wisp of cinnamon in the aftertaste. Secondly, there’s an orange marmalade taste as well. It’s brewed with Fuggles and East Goldings hops, which might account for a hint of citrus, though the malts are definitely doing most of the work here. There’s mild bitterness on the second half, along with some dryness, but despite the style’s name these beers aren’t intended to be of IPA or even pale ale-level hoppiness. This would be a good introductory brew of the style, but those looking for excitement and pizzazz might be disappointed.

Drinkability: There’s no challenge in drinking Berkshire Mountain Brewers ESB, though not that there should be. The mouthfeel isn’t too heavy, but is noticeably soft and a bit tepid, but it goes down easily. Drinking one bottle alone is satisfying with its relatively light weight of only 5% ABV. 
Grade: 6/10

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