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Old Izaak - Whim Ales

Not Rated.
Old IzaakOld Izaak

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

46 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 46
Reviews: 44
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 9.95%
Wants: 0
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Whim Ales visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-11-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 46 | Reviews: 44 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of merlin48


3.9/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper body with a two finger ecru shaded head that quickly falls into film and abundant patchy lace. Aroma is somewhat restrained, but is malty with toffee and very floral with earthy dandelion flower. Mouthfeel is light medium bodied with smooth and even carbonation. Taste is well balanced toffee maltiness with lavender and dandelion flavors fronting the floral hops bitterness. Toffee is very dominant in the taste, almost chewy, but the floral hops lend a nice balancing bitterness. A nice ESB, but I missed any pear or apple fruity notes that I prefer in a good English special bitter. Very well done, overall, and I would buy this one again.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2005 10:43:30 | More by merlin48
Photo of clvand0


3.53/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one pours a brown color with a small head that fades fast and doesn't leave much lacing on the glass. The aroma is not what I expect from an ESB. It has a raisin character that is more common among Belgian ales. Not much hop smell. The flavor is not what the aroma says it should be. The bitterness is much more prevalent and the raisin character isn't as strong, making the flavor much better than the aroma. It could use a little more body, but it drinks nicely.

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2005 18:21:51 | More by clvand0
Photo of kmpitz2


3.55/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a dirty brown color with a finger of head that falls to coat the beer. The nose is kind of a rum raisin, slightly bready. I don't get much hop in there. The hop is a little more prevalent in there in the flavor, but the bready raisiney tones are still pretty strong as well. Not exactly what I consider for an ESB. The feel is on the light side of moderate, with a moderate carbonation and a slight creamyness. The beer is pretty easy drinking, but it just doesn't do it for me.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2005 23:56:32 | More by kmpitz2
Photo of allengarvin


4.4/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Deep reddish-walnut color, small (typically English) head.

Aroma: Very little smell, with only a small malt aroma with a slight tartness.

Flavor: Rich nutty malt flavor, with a very nice earthy bitterness and hop flavor, with fruity yeast character, and finishing with enough acidity for a tart, sour, slightly sulfurish finish.

Body: Medium, yet slightly tingly, carbonation and mouthfeel.

A very quaffable ('quaffable' is just about my favorite drinking word) English beer, absolutely top-notch for a bottled beer of the style (except for the small aroma).

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2005 05:15:34 | More by allengarvin
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep red/orange mixture with a big rocky head that sticks like glue to the glass I didnt expect that large of a head I have to say.Very English in aroma some dried fruit and bready malt with a metallic note lingering.Now this is what an ESB should taste like in my opinion,on the malty side very fruity and lightly caramelly sweet with a enough herbal hoppiness to make it extremeley balanced and extremely easy to drink.How good on cask would this be,I will likely never know but I can dream thats for sure.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2004 19:10:30 | More by oberon
Photo of Suds


4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

½ liter bottle with a fishing lure on the label and an explanation that the beer is named after the writer of The Compleat Angler (go figure).
Pours a dark, muddy, brown color. Moderate carbonation with a thin, but sticky, tan head. The aroma is a mix of yeast, caramel, and sweet-smelling malts. The brew has a soft, slightly sweet taste. It’s extremely soft and smooth. At times it can be tongue-coating, with just a bit of oiliness. Finish has a tasty hop bite. This is a solid English ESB.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2004 00:54:49 | More by Suds
Photo of RoyalT


3.9/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – This beauty shop was gorgeous. The liquid is a nice, solid, almost glowing brown and the white head stained with an orangish-brown. The head came up explosively on a careful pour, lingered well, and left some nice lacing.

Smell – Wet, sticky malts make up the aroma of this English Ale. The thick toffee and tart fruits will make your mouth salivate.

Taste – Yes, very typical English ESB. The gooey malts are not sweetened in the refined sugar way that we’re used to with a lot of American Ales. No, here you have that raw, bitter, molasses-type of sweetness that you get in a good, dry cider.

Mouthfeel – A tad bigger than light in the body with some real bitterness. This one is also lightly carbonated, making it a terrific session ale.

Drinkability – I’m not a huge fan of the style, but this is what I expect when I pop the top of an English ESB.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2004 01:24:51 | More by RoyalT
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: A rather heavy wide bodied 500ml (1 Pt 0.9 fl.oz) brown glass bottle with a thin neck and a distinctive embossed hop vine around the shoulder. Inkjet code ‘BBE Apr 04 L302 08:49’ on the neck. The main label has a picture fly fishing hook and some text to the left goes onto explain that this brew is named after the 17th Century author of “The Compleat Angler”, Sir Izaak Walton. Listed as 5% Alc/Vol.

Appearance: Ruddy yet clear deep brown body that benefits from a lovely tan brown head that positively fizzes as it settles down. Nice conditioning and some great lacing.

Nose: Toffee and chocolate covered caramel set against a tannin stained malt background which has a spicy hop finish.

Taste: Has a very smooth ESB feel about it. A creamy malty start with a fruity toffee middle and a lasting malt-sweetness in the last third which benefits from a smart hop bitterness that lends a great balance. Milk chocolate occasionally breaks through the creamy finish as well. Smooth and very tasty.

Mouthfeel: Smooth yet solid with a chewy toffee feel gives the Old Isaak a full-bodied feel.

Drinkability: Immensely so, it makes a great session brew, even at 5% which is a tad high for a UK beer. I found little to stop me downing several of these, well maybe except for the price tag.

Overall: I’m a big fan of Whim Ales, their Magic Mushroom Mild is a great Cask offering, but this is the first time I have had one of Whims Ale from the bottle. The Old Isaak is a solid fruity brew indeed – well worth the coin.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2004 06:36:37 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of Zorro


4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear dark red brew.

Smell is malty and a bit of apple and bready with a faint soy sauce scent.

Taste is a bit sweet and a bit bitter. Mild fruit and molasses taste. A mild tasty ale.

Mouthfeel is good.

Drinkability is excellent, mild tasty brew.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2004 01:55:21 | More by Zorro
Photo of ark57


4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This reddish-brown ale has a grassy-hay aroma. The medium body is earthy and slight metallic with notes of some caramel and slight fruit. The smooth, dry finish dissipates fast. It is refreshing and very appetizing. It makes a wonderful session beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2004 13:50:02 | More by ark57
Photo of aracauna


3.5/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice reddish brown body with a good glow and a nice buttered bread-colored fluffy head that's not too big but sizeable. Slow to recede and laces nicely. The aroma is cherries and wood. More of the same in the flavor. A little sweet caramel up front, but the finish is shockingly dry. A little tea lingers. The mouthfeel is surprisingly creamy for a 5% beer. Very attractive and tactily pleasant beer, but lacks a bit in the flavor.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2004 06:32:05 | More by aracauna
Photo of Imbiber

New York

4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This bottle came from American Beer Distributors, Brooklyn.

Reddish-brown in colour with a tan-coloured head. Aroma is slightly malty and a touch earthy. Flavour is rich in malt with some caramel and fruit but with a balance of hops; quite complex and satisfying. Aftertaste is balanced sweetness and maltiness, quite assertive.

A very nice beer with interesting qualities.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2004 16:09:38 | More by Imbiber
Photo of hotstuff


4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite styles of beer.When poured, this beer had a medium sized tan head with fine-medium bubbles.There was carbonation observed and the body was dense.The hue was reddish brown and this beer left a fair amount of lacing on the sides of my glass.The nose was that of alcohol, malt and spices.The flavor was bitter, dry, mild and also alcohol.The mouthfeel was smooth and light-medium bodied.All in all, a very fine English Strong Ale in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2003 21:01:54 | More by hotstuff
Photo of UnionMade


4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber color, with a moderate antique white head. The head lasts forever, well beyond the beer in the glass. Very rich looking ale. I'm excited!
Aroma is seriously malty and powerful. Light estery fruitiness, english hops, and lots of malt. Apple and pear, with perhaps a touch of clovey spiciness. That could be the hops, though.
Flavor is strong and decidedly british. Carbonation is british, which seems to be slightly lower and smoother than american brews. Somewhat spicy hop finish, with a nutty aftertaste. Smooth for it's presence. I am loving every sip of this beer, and I can't wait to hit HalfTime again to get another one.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2003 18:24:41 | More by UnionMade
Photo of John

New York

4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep, clear, ruby/amber color. Creamy, dense tan head. Toasty malty and fruity aroma. Drunk at about 55° F. The inviting flavors subtly combine toasted malt, caramel, toffee, fruit (faint dark cherry) and hop bitterness that lends a semi-dry finish. A steady swirl regenerates a pleasant waft of malty goodness. Carbonation is steady but smooth. An easy drinkin bitter that doesn't require a great deal of analysis to appreciate it's understated complexities.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2003 20:26:41 | More by John
Photo of ThreePistols


4.38/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Rich brown color with a red hue. Short head, lasted well, some lace. Hops nose with roasted caramel malt. Smooth and rich. Loads of toasted caramel malt flavor up front followed by an apple sweetness. Long lasting aftertaste.

Excellent blend of pale, crystal and black malts flawlessly balanced with Northdown hops bitterness.

I Love English Ales! Skoal.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2002 09:26:58 | More by ThreePistols
Photo of zerk


4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Slightly hazy deep amber brown, with a fine lace of white on top. Very malty aroma, with some fruity and spicy hops. Flavor is intese upfront, with malt, a touch of smoke and dried fruit, and some spicy hops, with a dry, crisp finish. Medium bodied, with a fairly high carbonation. A very good ESB.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2002 16:32:26 | More by zerk
Photo of Jason


4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: One pint, .9oz brown bottle with raised glass of hop vines below the neck of the bottle. Noted on the bottle that this ale was named after the 17th century author, Sir Isaak Walton. Freshness date clearly scored.

Appearance: Rusty reddish in colour with a ever so creamy and bubbly lace which even leaves a few rings around the glass.

Smell: Fresh cut pie apples and a slight herbal hop in the nose.

Taste: Very very smooth with a dry crisp medium body, lots of flavours hit in the front ... nice malt character with hints of apple in the fruitiness and a mild sweetness that has a touch of caramel also. Hops are perfect with a level bitterness that keeps this brew on an even keel and lingers for a long time. The end gets even better with a pinch of chocolate and toasted grain in the finish.

Notes: Goes down very easy, on the label it says its a "Traditional English Ale" so we assumed its an Old Style Bitter. A well built ale and a sure treat to quaff.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2002 19:29:24 | More by Jason
Photo of Reverand


4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Exceptional beer. Deep brown color with tan colored head that clung to the side. Very smooth taste with a dry crisp aftertaste. A perfect balance of hops that encourages another glass.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2002 20:47:38 | More by Reverand
Photo of hooligan


4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep dark brown opaque beer with a thin bubbly head that clings to the side of the glass. Caramel and grainy smell, faint fruitiness, with no aroma of hops. Very robust roasted malt bitterness upfront, more savory then sweet, very roasted and dry. Caramel/toffee flavors are present but also quite dry. Excellent herbal hop flavor that cuts through the dry malt character, slight floral, grassy hop astringency at the finish. Cleans well on the palate and has an excellent roasted character. Prickly mouthfeel on a clean and thin bodied beer... great beer, very interesting and unique for the style.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2002 16:49:06 | More by hooligan
Photo of Brent


4.85/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A very nice beer. Lots of caramel malt at the front, with a slight to moderate hops bittering at the finish. Very smooth and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2001 23:48:08 | More by Brent
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Old Izaak from Whim Ales
89 out of 100 based on 46 ratings.