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Bishops Finger - Shepherd Neame Ltd

Not Rated.
Bishops FingerBishops Finger

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

192 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 192
Reviews: 99
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 15.85%
Wants: 7
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Shepherd Neame Ltd visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-25-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 192 | Reviews: 99 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by doktorhops:
Photo of doktorhops


3.83/5  rDev +4.6%

How this one stayed off my radar for so long [I love a good pint of English Bitter] I'll never know, but there it is: a pint of Shepherd Neame Bishops Finger... it even sounds like a saucy sacrilegious poke at the ecclesiastical order. And we all know how much I love a good beer label euphemism mixing with satire, and beer... Ok as it turns out I looked at the back label of this beer and the name is disappointingly innocuous "It takes its name from the finger-shaped signposts which pointed pilgrims on their way to the tomb of Thomas a Becket in Canterburys"... Poo.

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Clear Jersey caramel body with a boisterous beige foam on top. This screams of a classic Kentish Bitter, Oi!

S: Toasted toffee base upfront, followed by caramel notes and a nice earthy hop finish. There is a slight fruitiness in the hops as well - lemon.

T: Tasty toasted toffee biscuit toasts its way tracing a tantalising dance across my taste buds. Classic English Bitters are generally a malt/hops balancing act and this ale is no different. With flavours of; toffee, caramel, earthy and citric hops finished with a tea-like tannin in the finish. Tastes as English pub as an ale can get really.

M: Medium bodied with light carbonation.

D: As English as shepherds pie and a Friday night biff-up followed by some hard slapper shagging/snogging. This brew really takes me back to my jaunt across the capital 'U' capital 'K', with memories of working menial jobs for little pay which all got spent on rent, beer and food, ahhh, those were the days. Anyway reality, you big douche, time to be in the present and presently this is a decent English ale, not the best, nothing like a Citra, St Peter's or Pride of Oxford, but nonetheless a good drop.

Food match: Traditional English fare: shepherds pie and a Friday night biff-up followed by some hard slapper shagging/snogging... and crumpets.

03-14-2014 23:17:09 | More by doktorhops
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

3.3/5  rDev -9.8%

From Englands oldest brewery poured a bownish color with minimal head,kind of a funky smell almost skunked and a little musty.Taste is slightly fruity with some dryness in the finish,pretty drinkable but nothing spectacular.It's still nice to find ales from the island across the pond.

06-14-2003 20:11:39 | More by oberon
Photo of beerhunter13

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev +9.3%

11-22-2012 11:52:31 | More by beerhunter13
Photo of Imaster


4/5  rDev +9.3%

06-15-2013 08:04:48 | More by Imaster
Photo of ant1


3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

05-09-2014 15:15:05 | More by ant1
Photo of Marius


4/5  rDev +9.3%

06-23-2012 18:43:57 | More by Marius
Photo of innominat


3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

10-21-2012 15:05:20 | More by innominat
Photo of fionn13


3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

06-04-2012 14:00:43 | More by fionn13
Photo of jazzyjeff13

United Kingdom (England)

3.95/5  rDev +7.9%

A 500ml clear glass bottle with a BB of Jan 2011. This is ale with a pedigree - the label proclaims Shepherd Neame as Britain's oldest brewer (from 1698).

Poured into a Sam Smith's pint glass. A deep ruby-brown colour with good carbonation. A thick, creamy off-white head tops the liquid and remains for 5 minutes or so before dissipating to a surface film. A rich aroma of roasted malt and caramel, with notes of hops and a hint of burning. A whiff of alcohol.

A strong malty flavour with good bitterness. Slightly sweet with caramel notes, but mostly a distinctive roasted flavour tempered by hops as you swallow. A warming hint of alcohol on the palate. Mouthfeel is somewhat carbonated and mildly astringent, leaving a dry sensation. Aftertaste of bitter hops and malt.

Highly drinkable. This is probably my favourite ale from Shepherd Neame, and is the beer that springs to mind when someone mentions strong English ale. A good flavour makes it an drink for all seasons. Worth seeking out.

02-01-2011 23:29:51 | More by jazzyjeff13
Photo of TheBrk


4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

09-17-2013 23:31:21 | More by TheBrk
Photo of rastaman

United Kingdom (England)

2.8/5  rDev -23.5%

I think its Ok, but its a bit smelly. The body is thin, but theres some nice flavours of citrus, roasty chocolate in there, i think its OK, but theres better stuff from the mother country.

04-04-2002 16:45:31 | More by rastaman
Photo of Boffone

United Kingdom (England)

3/5  rDev -18%

05-13-2014 21:45:08 | More by Boffone
Photo of sloejams


3.93/5  rDev +7.4%

I had this on cask at Heathrow Airport in London. The Wetherspoon Restaurant in Terminal 4 has 4-5 beers on cask and proudly hangs the Cask Marque at the entrance. Pours a turbid amber color topped with a few bubbles. The flavor is textbook English Bitter – toasty malts, low hop presence. I enjoyed.

I wish LAX had places like this to grab a pint.

02-14-2007 01:50:34 | More by sloejams
Photo of MaevaS


3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

08-04-2014 19:25:46 | More by MaevaS
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.28/5  rDev -10.4%

Golding hops, great hoppy aroma. Some barley initially. Pale copper colour with lace and aestheticly pleasant transparent bottle (keep out of sunshine!) Drying, tad metallic. Understated carbonation. Drinkable but a 500 ml. for 3 is more than enough.

05-26-2005 02:51:56 | More by Sammy
Photo of beerinabottle


4/5  rDev +9.3%

07-14-2014 18:28:31 | More by beerinabottle
Photo of NeroFiddled


3.7/5  rDev +1.1%

The nun's delight! Clear, bright amber with a reddish tint and a creamy head. (The aroma is slightly skunky). The body is moderately light with a gentle carbonation. The flavor is assertive with a strong malt presence and an assault of hops. The hops win out in the finish, leaving it dry and long lasting. Though it's not a very complex ale, it is full of bold malt and hop. An excellent beer to pair with English cheeses.

08-10-2002 13:00:43 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of mick_cooper

United Kingdom (England)

3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

05-04-2014 17:19:29 | More by mick_cooper
Photo of Ciocanelu


3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

05-24-2013 14:22:55 | More by Ciocanelu
Photo of surfadelic23


3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Had this on cask at a pub in Bath. It was a solid ale but a little on the uninspired side. It had a dark reddish color with an off-white head. It's smell packed way more of a wallop that the taste as it was rather full-bodied. Overall, the is a good bitter and very easy to drink. If I ever see it on cask in America, I'll definitely have this again!

02-21-2006 15:23:48 | More by surfadelic23
Photo of scruffy1

2/5  rDev -45.4%

06-24-2012 20:03:40 | More by scruffy1
Photo of Bierschenker


4.63/5  rDev +26.5%

Brought this along from Ireland.

This beer was consumed in a Pint glass.
The colour is a beautiful copper brown.
On top a nice creamy head with mediate bubbles.
The scent is very pleasant, hop and malt. Sometimes the most basic elements form the greatest dish. No carbonation present.
The taste is as superb in simplicity as the scent. Malt, hops and slight yeast.
The mouthfeel is watery and creamy at the same time.
The aftertaste gives more hop bitterness and some lemonpeel.

I am convinced!

12-21-2007 17:11:50 | More by Bierschenker
Photo of klimoja


4/5  rDev +9.3%

11-17-2013 16:02:51 | More by klimoja
Photo of george42


4/5  rDev +9.3%

10-31-2012 00:59:07 | More by george42
Photo of Graphirus

Russian Federation

4.24/5  rDev +15.8%

A - Pours deep copper with a small off.white head that don not stay longer. Small lacing

S - Moderate maltiness, some hops notes and fruity esters.

T - Medium bitterness that stays for long. Maltiness is evident with some notes of caramel.

M - In the mouth feels medium-bodied, Medium carbonation

O - A very good Strong Bitter with the right amount of bitterness to make it easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2013 22:46:20 | More by Graphirus
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Bishops Finger from Shepherd Neame Ltd
83 out of 100 based on 192 ratings.