Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Green Man ESB - Green Man Brewery

Not Rated.
Green Man ESBGreen Man ESB

Educational use only; do not reuse.

59 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 59
Hads: 316
Avg: 3.73
pDev: 12.33%
Wants: 9
Gots: 53 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Green Man Brewery visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-02-2006

A malty amber ale boasting rich toasted and caramel flavors, Green Man ESB is one of our award-winning signature brews. Our blend of authentic British malts and hops creates a nutty aroma, full body, and a sweet finish. Prepare yourself for a truly exceptional interpretation of a traditional English style.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 59 | Hads: 316
Photo of rangerred
2.87/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a deep dark brown with a thin half finger head. While the head is not big it has decent retention and ok lacing.

Aroma of sweet caramel and roasted malt with some hints of coffee. A little biscuit in there too. Nothing really in the way of hops.

The flavor is roasted malt and toast with some biscuit. Caramel and toffee underneath and it is quite sweet throughout. Some light spicy hops underneath with a moderate bitterness. Way too much carbonation with a spritzy but sweet mouthfeel.

Overall, not very good. Tastes like a homebrewed brown ale. No real yeast character and way too much carbonation. I'll pass next time.

 663 characters

Photo of sweetwaterman
2.94/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I've head this on draft at their pub, but it was a while back and this is for the bottled version.

Appearance is fine. Slightly hazy brown. Not much head after pouring.

Nose is malt and caramel, but not much else.

Taste is ok for the style. On the sweeter side. Nothing off putting, but perhaps the short, slightly sour finish. No real depth, but nothing bad.

Mouthfeel is strangely viscous. Not exactly what I had in mind.

Overall it's fine, but nothing to write home about.

 480 characters

Photo of TheRougeBastard
3.03/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On draft at Harrahs Cherokee casino. Poured a dark brown with little head. Smell was nearly indistinguishable, I don't know how else to describe it. Taste was alright but to be fair, I had just come from another brewery and enjoyed several top flight IPA's, so my palate may have been wrecked. So suffice it to say, this isn't a beer to follow an IPA. I'll give this another try one of these days.

 397 characters

Photo of VaterRoss
3.05/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

on-tap at Pandora's Pies

Appearance is a clear copper with a small white head that goes down to a film. Smell is of a nice mellow caramel malt with some light skunk. Overall not a huge nose. The initial taste is the funk/skunk that was just noticeable in the nose, it is far more prominent in the taste. After the unpleasantness, some of those nice English malts come through followed by some light hop spiciness. Well balanced. Mouthfeel is medium in body and carb.

This is an ok beer, the funkiness almost ruins it but it is just barely saved by the nice malt. If it didn't have the funk this would be in the 3.5-4 range. One cannot help but to compare a beer to the epitome of its style and this one simply does not match up to Fuller's.

notes: I have a suspicion that this keg is old as the location (college town) suggests to me that an ESB wouldn't be the most ordered beer, also, the keg kicked soon after.
from notes 1/31/12

 936 characters

Photo of SportsandJorts
3.11/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Appearance: a deep red, almost blood red if it wasn't so clear. Just a touch of an off white head. Pretty clear with just a touch of haze

Smell: sweetness. Fruity slightly caramel sweetness. No hop aroma but you know the hops are there balancing the sweetness.

Taste: opens up with fruit. Sweetness is always present as it moves towards caramel. A bitterness is apparent as the sweetness kicks off but it doesn't leave muc flavor

Mouthfeel: light and kind of insignificant

Overall: pretty drinkable but just missing enough to not be good. The sweetness is fought off by the hops but still win by a landslide. Almost too sweet

 630 characters

Photo of Fulkrum78
3.31/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I had this on draft at Twelve Bones in Asheville, NC. Nice beer, with a great brown color and decent head. Not as much on the aroma side of things as I would expect, but that could have been part of sitting outside. I got a malty backbone to this, and not so much of the hoppiness that I would have expected out of an ESB. Tasty beer, just not what I had expected.

 364 characters

Photo of babaracas
3.34/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Jack of the Wood in a shaker pint. A hazy aged copper with a quarter inch of off-white head that stuck around and deposited a thin sheet of lace down the glass. Smell: really sparse -- toffee, minerally. Taste: toffee, decently fruity, apricot, mildly nutty, with an earthy and herbal bitterness. Finishes earthy and a little nutty, drying. Decent.

 358 characters

Photo of Treyliff
3.36/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Color is slightly hazy copper brown with a very small fast disappearing head, leaving no lace. Smells of straight barley with so toasted malt notes and a bit of earthy hops. Taste is toast and malty, slightly bready, herbal and earthy hops at the end with a dry finish. Mouthfeel is light in carbonation, medium body and slick finish.

This one was ok, but nothing mind blowing. Not something I'd get again.

 407 characters

Photo of blackie
3.38/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a: Deep amber brown in color with a low head

s: Good caramel malt aromas bring a moderate sweetness. Earthy hops provide some balance.

m: medium-low carbonation and a medium body

t: Seems a bit light and bland but there is a decent grainy malt presence. Nondescript hop flavor and a moderate bitterness. Could use a bit more character. Considerably "husky".

d: easy enough...nothing off and a decent beer

on-tap at Jack of the Wood

 437 characters

Photo of denver10
3.4/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours caramelish amber wit a dirty cream colored head. Aroma is kinda ashy and earthy, caramel,coffee cake, and nutty. Toffee, earthy, caramel dominate the flavor. Maybe a touch of roast thrown in. A medium bodied, semi active mouthfeel. Overall, solid beer here. Would drink again.

My rating: 3.40

 299 characters

Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.44/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from tap into pint at 12south Nashville. Pours a deep seethrough brown with nice looking head. Pretty much no aroma...so I didn't penalize it but its not good.
Taste is pretty boring but not offensive. Just blah...alt like watery malt. Meh
Its very mild and boring...not bad, just boring.
I wouldnt get again.

 318 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.45/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It's a fine beer, however there are a few things about it that offsets the style. A good firm malt base seems to headge on sweet barley grains with a bit of astringency (husks) in the mouthfeel. The hops also seem a bit high, citrus / pine, and bite-ey. But the beer comes together nicely with a cleanly brewed taste of fermentation and attenuation. Nearly mint-y in the finish. Body could be maltier with a higher gravity (use English malts) would have sweetened the beer and rounded out the (American) hop abrasion. Call it beer, and it's pretty tasty stuff. Call it an ESB, and it stumbles a bit.

 599 characters

Photo of wcudwight
3.48/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark amber in color with a nice sized sticky head. Lot's of lace cascades down the sides of the glass.
Grainy aroma with some fruit. Sour apples.
Taste comes together much better than the aroma. Sweet grainy malts. Nice hoppiness in the finish. This kind of leans more to an IPA for me. I taste citrus hops. There's also a roasted flavor for this beer that I didn't expect.
Mouthfeel is smooth and it's an easy to drink session beer.

 433 characters

Photo of sweett3k
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On a visit of the Local brew of Ashville, NC. Pours brownish orange into the pint glass with a quick head. Banana and coffee aroma. Smooth grain and barley malt. Some fruit notes. Think I will change up on my next order. Good selection here at the Bier Garten.

 260 characters

Photo of lastmango
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. Root beer color with tan thin head. Faint oak/chocolate smell. Nice malty flavor with almost no bite at the end. Expected more bitterness.

 168 characters

Photo of GJ40
3.58/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled on tap at Jack of the Wood in Asheville, NC.

A deep, deep amber if not light brown. A nice foamy head. Aroma was mild with biscuit and a hint of brown sugar. Flavor was bready malts with minimal hops. Slightly tart. Not especially complex. A smooth, silky mouthfeel that delivered well from the cask.

English in spirit but not in complexity. A smooth, enjoyable beer nonetheless.

 389 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.58/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Listed as being 5.5% at the time of this rating.

Appearance: Pours a clear, dark copper body with a small, white head.

Smell: Pale, bready malts with some slight sweetish toffee notes.

Taste: Biscuity, pale maltiness with a bit of toffee-like sweetness. Earthy, medium hop bitterness. Lightly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A decent ESB.

 386 characters

Photo of Omnium
3.6/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Heads up., I cant justly rate this because I feel it does not conform to style.
Bottle > Tulip glass

A - clear brown with a finger of off white head, no lacing.
S - Very nutty, some woodiness to it, cedar, big roasted maltiness, light grassy and earthy hop tone.
T - Extra, special....brown ale? seriously this is closer to an amber, but especially a brown way more so than and ESB, no hops really come through in the flavor, its roasty malts.
M. Mildly creamy, smooth.
O - In no way shape or form is this an ESB, its way too roasty and there's barely any hop profile...But it is a good brown ale!

 600 characters

Photo of PhillipJFry
3.62/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: Has a nice amber color and little head retention.

s: Interesting caramel malts and some unique hops.

m: medium body and average composition.

t: Some hop flavors and a moderate bitterness. I wish there was just a bit more to this one.

d: Real easy drinking, like most Green Man offerings.

 294 characters

Photo of taylorhamrick
3.62/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Tried on cask 1/8/09

Copper brown color and kind of hazy. There was almost no head, and I believe this was the last of the cask left, which may have contributed to the low carbonation. The smell is wonderful, at least to me. Smells kind of like 'raw' beer, like boiled wort. Very sweet smell, and a bit estery, kind of like a tea smell. The taste is a bit woody, you can tell its from a cask. Tastes very sweet, without a whole lot of bitterness, but it balanced out the beer to keep the sweetness from being cloying. Tastes a bit like sweet tea, from the floral esters in the beer. The mouthfeel is nice and full. Though there was almost no carbonation. I actually started to like this beer once I got into it. There was good balance and drinkability, and I may have a second one or revisit it, but not something I'd want all the time. The esters were just a bit too dominant for me.

 885 characters

Photo of oberon
3.63/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On cask at Jack of the Wood.Poured a clear rich bronze with a thin soapy-like head atop,fruity malt notes in the nose with light toast,and lingering leafy hop although light.A tad thin in the feel with malt tilted fruit on the palate,some biscuit and caramel sweetness as well makes it more malt tilted,a leafy hop smack comes in the finish.A decent ESB but I have had better.

 376 characters

Photo of charlzm
3.65/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Consumed December 26th, 2013 at Harrah's Casino, Cherokee, NC.

Medium amber with reddish/ruby highlights. Minimal head.

Aroma is nutty, roasted malts.

Flavor is almost like a brown ale: toffee, melanoidin, low bitterness. Some light resiny hop character on finish.

Carbonation tingle, medium bodied.

I would drink this again, especially if I see it on tap at a mega-casino! Nice local alternative to the usual BMC fare.

 424 characters

Photo of dmbdusty41
3.66/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It's funny, at first I was not impressed with this ESB, HOWEVER, through finishing the glass casually I learned to enjoy it. Maybe it was the brewmaster giving the history of ESBs or just grew to liking the beer, but I believe I could enjoy a few more of these. It's a nice caremely color, like a golden amber if that makes any sense. Mouth-feel is about what I expected from a beer of it's stature, but after a few sips/gulps I really liked it.

 445 characters

Photo of barczar
3.74/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very toasty, almost roasted malt aroma, which is unexpected for the style. Flavor is similar, with a lightly bitter finish. Nice malt character, but the roastiness is out of place.

 181 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.75/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured on-tap and served in a shaker pint, the beer is a hazy, amber-brown coloring, with a filmy, clingy, white head. Nose of roasted caramel and toffee, with hints of coffee in the backbone, too. Flavors are a toffee and coffee blend forward, with a bittersweet balance throughout. Smooth and light bodied, with a richly sweet and roasted aftertaste. The flavor is smooth and sweet. Solid, simple, balanced, well crafted brew.

 428 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Green Man ESB from Green Man Brewery
84 out of 100 based on 59 ratings.