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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
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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.

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Photo of SLeffler27
3.76/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Fills a Dogfish Head Fish-eye pint with clear, deep copper (SRM 18-19), while a half-inch, beige froth quickly settles to leave rings of lace.

The malt is strong and pronounced with toasted notes while hops are subdued. Lots of caramelized sugar, but otherwise lacking complexity.

Balanced between light bitterness and sweetness. Some burnt sugar supports wheat bread and tar flavors. The finish is modest and lingering. Warmth brings out cashews and butter.

A medium body with light carbonation and no alcohol. Somewhat dry with a cotton texture.

While rather simple, this is a beer to sit back and enjoy while watching a ballgame with bar food.

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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

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Photo of mikeg67
3.88/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Pours copper with tall, long-lasting, fluffy white head and lively carbonation. Aroma is of earthy hops, bready malt and some caramel. Body is medium and smooth. Earthy hops, bready and caramel malt and ripe fruit nicely balanced on the palate. Finish is long and spicy. Great brew.

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Photo of beer2day
4.01/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of the best things about Jack of the Wood is the cask handle.

Cloudy copper color with thin head. Nice thick lace.

Subtle citrus hit with light malt presence in the nose.

Very chewy beer with lots of body. Smoky, peaty, bread pudding, and a citrus bite all combine for a very interesting presentation. Peat, like a scotch ale, creeps in too.

Thick body. Not syrupy, just thick.

I could drink a lot of these.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.39/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Growler into Sam Smith Tulip Imperial Pint.

Pours hazy dark copper with a thinnish off-white head that quickly fades to nothing. Bumped up for over-valuation, and also because it's a growler.

Nose is as I remember it at the pub - beautifully malty, toasty, rich caramel, hints of toffee, chocolate, and the perfect amount of floral hops for balance.

Taste is excellent, and follows the nose very closely - intros with a blend of floral, slightly earthy hops and toasty, rich, complex malt. Like the nose, toasty caramel, a bit of restrained fruitiness, a bit nutty, hints of chocolate and toffee mingle with the lovely earthiness from the hops. This beer literally nails the style for me. Beautifully put together, expertly done.

Mouthfeel is restrained, medium-full bodied and with a very light carbonation, perhaps just a bit too light. Drying in the finish, and with a nice silkiness to it.

Drinkability was fantastic - this beer had more flavor than some beers I've tried twice its size. Fantastic beer.

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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.

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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

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Photo of ViveLaChouffe
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A couple a weeks ago, I took a hiking trip up near Asheville, NC so I drove into town to hunt for some beer. North Carolina has no annoying laws forbidding growlers so I picked up a growler of fresh ESB brewed by Green Man Ales.

It pours a deep orangey copper with a creamy but thin, light tan head. Sheeting lace on the glass. Very fruity and herbal in the nose

Taste is bready and fruity, a well balanced ale with herbal English hops, (Kent Goldings and Fuggles according to the website) offsetting a sweetish, fruity malt. Quite British in character but surprisingly sweet and that sweetness lingers long in the finish and aftertaste.

It's a well crafted ale and certainly enticing enough for me to want to try some more from Green Man the next time I find myself in Asheville.

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Photo of Dave1999
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a semi transparent reddish brown.

The smell is dark malts, caramel, coffee. Smells really good.

The taste is coffee, and dark malts, it's also very nutty.

The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with medium carbonation.

I really enjoyed this, smells great and flavorful. This is a really great lower end abv beer.

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Photo of Fcolle2
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber nearly brown in color and has a pretty big haze to it. Head is about one finger, fizzy and off white. Head has fair retention .

Nose has some rich doughy bready malt forward. There is a faint hazelnut sweetness also present hops are there but light, hard to detect particular aromas, maybe some herbal aromas.

Taste is great. Some more bready malt is forward that fades into a light herbal hop midsection before a slightly doughy malt finishs the beer leaving sone residual sweetness.

Mouthfeel is good, medium body is cut with moderate to high carbonation and leaves it pretty soft and highly drinkable. Very light bitterness lets the malt really come out.

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Photo of ncvbc
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep amber with a somewhat fizzy head and fading pretty quick. Nice lacing down the glass. Good smell of grain, lightly toasted bread, caramel, and earthy hops. Taste is a bit more expansive than the smell, which was a somewhat muted. Lots of roast flavor, more than I expected form the nose or a beer of this type. Some chocolate and caramel. Toasted bread. Finishes fairly bitter with a crisp hop bite. In the mouth it's fairly smooth but a chalky bitterness from the hops takes away from that at times. Very easy to drink. I enjoyed the entire growler, simply because this stuff is hard to put down. Tasty enough and while there's not much to it, this helps drinkability. One that you can figure out pretty quickly and then sit back and enjoy. Glad I grabbed it.

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Photo of Enola
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pint at the brewery.

This beer was a bit lighter than most ESB's. The smell was bitter. The taste was bitter with a sweet ending. The mouthfeel was fairly smooth. The drinkability was good. I could drink these again. I was going to get this in my growler but the Oatmeal Stout was awfully good.

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Photo of thegodfather2701
3.85/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a nice brown with a thin off white head that dissipates quickly and left no lace.

S-Malty, some hints of caramel, and some hops.

T-Hops up front providing a nice bitterness and it finishes with a nice chocolate/caramel malt backbone. I was really surprised at how much chocolate flavor I got out of this beer. It almost tasted more like a brown ale due to the malt over powering the hops.

M-About right for the style a nice amount of carbonation.

D-Very drinkable beer. Not overly complex and an average abv. make this a session beer all the way.

Overall, I enjoyed this beer. I would have like some more hops, but I would definitely drink this again.

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Photo of dbl_delta
3.81/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle dated July 17, 2015 into pint glass. Hazy amber with an off-white head. Malt predominates, with an unusual nuttiness (peanuts?) and a slight hint of hops. Medium mouthfeel. Not much bitterness. Good but not outstanding.

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Photo of mchegash
3.85/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Look: Hazy dark orange brown, with a finger of off-white head.

Smell: Dark malts, slight fruit and hops

Taste: Dark, almost porter-like malts. Slight fruit, metallic, and hops.

Feel: Medium-full bodied, smooth and crisp. Medium carbonation.

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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.

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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

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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.

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Photo of drperm
4.71/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I liked this beer on tap at Jack of the Wood ok, but having it cask-conditioned at Brewgrass has changed my life!

Regarding the appearance, it pours pure foam into the glass before settling into a shimmering raw umber. It sits poised with good posture, laced with a delicate doily of white foam.

As it approaches the nose, an aroma of freshly-cracked roasted barley awakens and caresses the olfactory. This flows seamlessly into a melange of fresh hops and a nostalgic hint of summer meadows untainted by industrialism.

The taste is creamy-smooth, roasty, and above all mellow: mellow like the quiet sage who only speaks once a month, but when his mouth opens pure poetic wisdom spouts forth.

As it tickles the tongue and continues its journey, it leaves a calling-card: more mellowness, richly smooth. I could make sweet love to this brew all night (or day!) long.

Overall: Have I mentioned yet that I think I'm in love?

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Photo of JimKal
3.83/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Sticks and Stones in Greensboro, NC

Draft poured a dark brown into a pint glass. Minimal head with OK to thin lacing. There was minimal carbonation as well.

Taste had a hint of chocolate but other than that it was quite balanced.

Mouthfeel was smooth as with most ESBs.

This is a nice beer if you like ESBs and I'll order it again when I see it on tap.

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Photo of ncfranklin
3.92/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Jack of the Wood

A: Deep amber. FInger tall beige head.

S: Pine, grass, some caramel.

T: Follows the nose. Grass with some bitter upfront, hoppy floral inbetween, backbone of caramel malt.

M: Good medium body, not too much carbonation, some slight dryness on the finish in the tongue. Refreshing.

D: A very quaffable ESB.

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Photo of beerdown77
4.2/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've been excited to try this beer for a few reasons: One, it's a local place and I appreciate that. Two, it comes recommended by a friend. This beer was good. I thoroughly enjoyed the intense hoppy flavor, which I was not expecting. It had a robust, natural element. I enjoyed the "rawness" and heaviness despite the fact that it is only 5.3%. Maybe there is power of suggestion in the name, but earthy and organic came to mind as well. I could have a few of these in a row and am looking forward to trying Green Man's other beers.

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Photo of Griffin2
3.91/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L- dark brown with a nice white head.
S- Roasty smell.
T - very nice beer. Seemed like a light version of a porter.
F- medium carbonation.
O - very easy drinking beer.

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Photo of raszputini
3.92/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rock solid ESB. From the growler to the pint glass. Pours a light amber with thin whitish head. Green man malts are easily identifiable and this makes for a very distinctive taste, the malt is very similar to their IPA, but tones of caramel, distinct bitterness but reduced hoppiness provides the distinction. This is a very easy drinking brew and one of my favorite ESBs.

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Green Man ESB from Green Man Brewery
84 out of 100 based on 59 ratings.