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Magnumus Ete Tomahawkus ESB³ | Rock Art Brewery

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Magnumus Ete Tomahawkus ESB³Magnumus Ete Tomahawkus ESB³

Brewed by:
Rock Art Brewery
Vermont, United States | website

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
An ESB squared! It’s big! It’s bitter and it’s balanced! Heck, we even dry hopped it with Tettnang hops, but I’ll admit the Tomahawk chewed up the dry hop and didn’t spit it out!

Added by scottum on 08-29-2006

User Reviews
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Reviews: 144 | Ratings: 209
Photo of jtierney89
1.3/5  rDev -65.5%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Semi hazy golden color with a quickly fading off white head.

Tastes like copius amounts of pale malt extract. Nose is the same. Very litter carbonation borderlining on none. Body is big up front but thundering out big time on the swallow. Earthy English hops provide some fleeting bitterness but there's no malt sweetness to balance it just malt blandness. Seriously tastes like unfermented home brew. Probably not finishing this bottle. I had high hopes for this beer getting mostly good beer from these guys but this and infusco are gross.

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Photo of rickyleepotts
2.23/5  rDev -40.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2

I have had a few beers from Rock Art, but nothing I can remember. Actually, I take that back. I shared a bottle of their imperial stout the other night. I was drunk when I drank it, but I remember it having an almost metallic flavor. Anyway, that is the last Rock Art beer I remember. I do like their logo, though. Reminds me of the west. It also makes me think of Dave Matthews Band for some reason. Anyway, I just got done running 3 miles, so this beer better deliver!

In the Glass: This is a lot cloudier than I expected. I don't generally like this style, but the ones I have had, I didn't care for. I expect them to be more bitter. You know, hence the name. The beer did produce a really nice head, and even a few minutes after pouring, it still sits proud on top of the beer. Not much lace, but I am still enamored with the head. You could sit a quarter on this pillow of suds!

Nose: Imagine taking a pine cone and soaking it in a pale ale. Then smell that. Bingo. That is exactly what this smells like. TONS of pine, which make me think of hops, and a nice earthy finish. I hope that transfers over into the flavor, because this smells great. I close my eyes and imagine sitting by a campfire in the middle of the woods… not like I would do that, of course! Let's drink!

Oh, and before I forget, there is a funny quote on the label. It says, "This Ain't For No Mama's Boy of Daddy's Girl". Cute.

Flavor: I just took a drink, and had to look in the glass to make sure I wasn't drinking water. There was practically nothing on this at first. Then, toward the back of the palate, a few hoppy flavors show up, and you can taste the bitterness. This beer comes in at 80 IBU. The finish is smooth, leaving nothing to look forward to. I do, however, like the aftertaste. But that's about it. Here… let me take another sip. Same experience. Not much going on.

Mouthfeel: What mouthfeel? Unless you swish this around in your mouth, you wouldn't even know you were drinking beer. There is no carbonation, and it literally drinks like water. Not impressed at all. This style just isn't for me.

Aftertaste: This is the only place where flavor comes in. Remember that pine cone I was talking about? The aftertaste leaves a thin layer of piney goodness for you to suck on, but that's it. The finish is also drying, and the more times I swallow, the dryer the flavor becomes. Not sure what it is about this style, but it feels like an IPA gone bad. These are hoppier than a pale, but not quite an IPA.

Sorry Rock Art, but I won't be buying anything from you anytime soon. I almost wonder why this beer made the list. Some might like this style, but I ain't one of them! (I used ain't twice in this blog post.) The best thing about this beer is the name. Might be the longest beer name out there.

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Photo of joeland
2.29/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

appearance- An amber color with a off white head that leaves a good lacing

smell- a very weak hoppy smell

taste- it has a weak bitter taste with a hint of the alchol taste

mouthfeel- you get a tiny hint of burn going down

drinkability- one is enough for me. i struggled to finsih the one i was on

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Photo of gkatsoris
2.5/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A: Golden honey and quite murky. Really big, foamy, white, THICK head. The head too k 3-5 minutes to fall. Lots of lacing.

S: Citrusy hops. Grapefruit and grapefruit rind. Orange and orange peel.

T: Sour. Bitter and SOUR. Pure grapefruit rind. Not yummy.

M: Honestly the taste has ruined the mouthfeel. The carbonation is good, but someone give me a Budweiser to rinse my mouth out with.

D: And down the drain it went.

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Photo of negroobserver
2.71/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

I bought a six pack of this beer while in Vermont. Sadly, the store where I purchased the beer had extremely misleading labels which indicated that this beer was rated over 95 on BA. Clearly that's not the case and it's truly evident in the beer as well.

The beer pours a dark hazy brown with a significant bubbly head which lingers for only a few seconds and recedes to the edge. The aroma is largely non-existent. There is no sweetness, just a bit of maltiness which transitions into a clean crisp scent. Personally, I find this very disappointing because the aroma is a very large part of the overall experience. The taste, like the smell, is non-existent. I only tasted a profound bitterness near the middle and end, but nothing else stood out. BORING.... The mouthfeel is decent. The beer has good weight and density without being oppressive. There is a little tingle from the alcohol, but not much.

Bottom line, it's not worth the money. More hype than anything else here.

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Photo of jmdrpi
2.76/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

22 oz bottle, August is notched on the label.

appears a clear bright copper color with bright white head that fades. smells earthy, grassy hops and oxidized malt. taste is biscuity malt, bitter finish. herbal flavors. medium body, moderate carbonation. oily mouthfeel. overall a bit disappointing in the flavors.

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
2.77/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - this ESB cubed pours out a cloudy golden orange color, with a thin cream colored head, too cloudy to note carbonation

S - smells like a DESB/DIPA combo, the piney and grapefruitty notes associated with those styles, lurking in the background is a subtle nondescript sweetness

T - alcohol is too big up front, with the hops characteristics, the pine and grapefruit are secondary and in the background, not much else in the flavor, for me anyway

M&D - dry and light bodied, not much of a mouthfeel, decent flavors and brew, i was just rather unimpressed, especially for such a pretentious label, latin words and and extreme labels, a decent brew though, not bad

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Photo of potownbill
2.94/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I try not to drink the same beer twice, but for some reason, I bought 2 bottles of this when I was in Winooski. Forgot the first tasting, and entered the data in my review list. Finished reviewing and realized that it was the second time. Both reviews were identical.
Appearance:Cloudy golden yellow. Head dissipated after a few minutes
Smell: Funk. Old dishtowel. Not good
Taste: Yes, it is bitter. Grapefruit, some floral. Overall not bad.
Mouthfeel: Carbonation was suprisingly persistant. Good mouthfeel
Drinkability: OK, but I will not be buying a third.

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Photo of scriabin
2.95/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

I love the ESB. It is right up their in my own personal trinity of beer styles, along with the weissbeir and english ale. I certainly give rock art credit for creativity, but this one is just a little over the top. It has a great appearance and excellent mouthfeel, but the extra extra hops and apricotish flavor were a bit of a turnoff. But maybe that's just me...

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Photo of ROMER79
3/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The pour was a cloudy golden color with a thick white head. Miller lite looks like this beer, but w/o the thick head part.
It smelled of citrus and hops. The taste wasn't all that great, it was a mix of orange, lemons, and grapefruit with a hoppy kick. The mouthfeel wasn't anything to write home about and it was easy to drink just not a beer for me.

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Photo of silentjay
3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours an amber tinted copper with excessive hop haze and a sizable big-bubbled white head that recedes quick, but leaves chunky lacing on the glass.

buttery aroma with caramel, doughy bread, some herbal hops..nothing great here.

herbal hops up front with a sweet citrus kick, quickly gives way to the caramel, bready, peppery, and slightly grainy malts that linger in the finish as well as a bit of lingering booze. meh.

rather light bodied but with a generous amount of prickly carbonation that doesn't help much.

drinks average at best. kind of like a light barelywine meets an esb, meets an english IPA. not my thing. I will pass next time.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.11/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A triple ESB is a difficult thing to fathom, but here goes...

Somewhat cloudy orange body, possibly chill haze. Three fingers of lunar surface white foam.

Takes a very deep sniff, but I finally pull some citrus aroma out of the glass. Was expecting much more oomph.

Nice semi-sweet malt base. Good rising tide of earthy and citrusy hops. Citrus notes linger on and on post swallow, the most extreme thing of the beer.

Solid medium/light mouthfeel. Good, enjoyable drinkability.

A solid pale ale ? Sure. A triple ESB ? Maybe an ESB-and-a-half. An EESB. Unfortunately though, the label hype had me looking for something bigger and better than Troegs HopBack Amber and this isn't in that league. Needs a bigger beer or a less boastful label.

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Photo of beermanbrian
3.18/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A nice big off white head foams up with a strong pour. Clear copper color. Sticky lacing coats the glass as you drink it and it dosn't move. A wiff of citrus hops hits me when i pop open the bottle. At first taste though i get all piney resinous hops. The ABV tells me that there must be some sugar sweetness in this thing but it's hard to find through the pine. Some biscuit malt eventually shows through but just faintly. Mouthfeel is oily. I love pine but this one just dosn't have enough balance. The alcohol shows itself toward the end. Worth a try, but nothing great.

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Photo of nhindian
3.2/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into a Dogfish Head Signature glass. Bottle generously provided as an extra by CharlieMurphy, thanks a lot!

A - Pours a hazy burnt orange color, the shade of tangerines and late-afternoon sunsets. A hard pour only develops about a finger's worth of head with moderate retention. Interesting lacing as it doesn't stay to together to form a solid curtain, yet when it breaks apart it doesn't slide down the glass.

S - Smell is eerily reminiscent of an aggressively dry-hopped IPA, bringing strong aromas of citrus and pine. There's also some grass and lemon in here as well. The back-end has a good amount of malt backbone to it and biscuit dryness.

T - The first few seconds of this beer are incredibly bitter mixed with caramel malts. Unfortunately the hop presence that was so strong in the nose doesn't translate to the flavor, as it is overly bitter without the benefit of the citrus fruits or pine that the hops delivered in the aroma. There's a bit of hop spice here as well. Finishes bland with another hit of bitterness and alcohol heat.

M - Mouthfeel is moderately heavy-bodied with good carbonation. A bit syrupy in the mouth and the lasting impression on the palate is strong bitterness.

D - Drinkability is moderately low. Much too bitter in the taste without extracting much flavor from the loads of hops in this. The flavor is uninspired and not overly pleasant to drink.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.23/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Pours a clear amber with a big foamy white head that nearly fills have the glass. It eventually settles down to the point where I can fill it up more. Huge lacing that covers the glass in a sticky web. Aroma is kind of subdued. Mostly hoppy citrus notes and some light tones of sweet malt.

Taste is extremely sweet up front with caramel malt that gives way to a very aggressive flood of strong floral citrus and hop bitterness. The bitterness is very biting and lingers on the tongue for a while. The extremeness of the malt and hops does tame down some and feels more balanced as it warms. Mouthfeel is a beefy medium body that takes on an almost viscous feel at times.

I'm not really sure what to think of this "ESB Squared" experiment from Rock Art. The thick body and in your face hops and malt definitely made for a tough drinking experience at times. A lot tougher anyway than most of the Double IPAs that this seems to be trying to imitate. Maybe a little more balance would have helped make this a more enjoyable encounter.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.23/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a three finger white head that fades slowly to a thin layer, leaving a good lace. Nearly cloudy amber color. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Slight grapefruit nose. Flavor is sweet piney/grapefruit. Lingering grapefruit aftertaste. Higher ABV is hidden. $3.49 for a 22oz bottle from Cabot Quechee Store Quechee, VT.
FWIW this is now only ESB squared and not ESB cubed.

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Photo of alcstradamus
3.26/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed from notes

Murky amber/brown pour with a full finger of head. Smell is dominated by floral hops and some waxiness. Hints of caramel and biscuit.

Taste is extremely bitter...this one lives up to it's reputation. Not really enough juicy hop flavor to go along with it though, so it becomes a somewhat empty bitterness. Medium bodied with good carbonation levels. A very interesting beer. I wish there was some more depth and complexity to keep the bitterness from completely taking over. Definitely a beer worth checking out though. A true extreme ESB.

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Photo of Cavanaghty
3.27/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

poured from bottle into a pint.

Appearance: Darker golden color with about 3 fingers of an off white head that lasted a few minutes and left almost no lacing on the glass.

Smell: Sweet smelling citrus, with alcohol.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Medium bodied and smooth, a delightful strong punch of bitterness after a sweet taste upfront. After taste was a bitter and I could taste the alcohol.

Overall: It is what I expected from an ESB, I enjoyed this brew from begining to end. I would buy again if I was in the mood.

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Photo of far333
3.3/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Slightly hazy honey colored with quick rising streams of fine bubbles running towards a half inch high head of thick off-white foam. The head lingers long and leaves a ring of lace around the inside of the glass as it lowers itself.

Aroma of buttery malt and hops - I'm picking up citrus, some floral, and a bit of pine, all the colors of the hop rainbow with none dominating. Maybe even a bit of alcohol ether showing through.

Flavor is initially piney hops, slowly morphing to...piney hops. Malt base is understated but some doughey malt does come through. It is somewhat hidden by hop bitters and alcohol fumes, and no other flavors emerge, save for some grapefruit rind.

Full and rich mouthfeel, fills the entire mouth as it rolls through. A carbonation tingle in the finish and an alcohol warmth lingers.

Not very drinkable for me, lacks depth.

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Photo of MmmIPA
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Cloudy golden yellow body with a off white head.Some nice lacing is left on the glass.Smell is pine and grapfruity and some buscuity malt tied in there for good measure.Grapefruit up front and there is a bitter hop in the aftertaste.Mouthful seams a bit thin and like dishwater but enjoyable with a good amount of carbonation.This stuff aint bad but its 80 ibu's and it dont seem that high.I would give it a higher drinkability but its 8% and that may get to you sooner then later.Good stuff but not somthing I will have again for a while.

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Photo of NEhophead
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 fl oz brown bottle; served in a nonic.
Note: the bottle that I am reviewing is clearly labeled Magnumus ete Tomahawkus ESB 2 (not ESB 3) as the BA name indicates or the photo displays. After some investigating, I'm pretty confident that this is the same brew.

Somewhat hazy, two-toned copper: dark oak and light camel beneath a massive 1 1/2" of dense, white foam showing no signs of receding. Dense rings of sticky lacing down the entire nonic.

Bright, fresh floral hops with a nice balance of citrus and pine that cut the floral aspect rather well. The pine aroma is mild, but very clean giving a nice freshness. Faint hints of must over a mild, balanced caramel malt backbone.

Metallic-heavy caramel malts that give a mild sweetness. As a result of the metal off-flavor, the malt character is almost watery. The hop flavor is nearly all spruce and pine with a stiff, somewhat artifical fir flavor. Solvent-like lemon flavors in the slick, burnt hop finish. The lemon solvency and intense off-balanced hop profile linger in the aftertaste.

Almost a full, medium in body; filmy and slick, especially leading to the finish and the aftertaste. Not quite balanced in an unusal way: watery, malt character and over-the-top, artficial spruce/citrus hops.

Unfortunately, a pretty typical "Extreme Series" offering from Rock Art: bulky and over-the-top just for the sake of reaching the previous VT maximum ABV. This one demonstrates an inability to brew a well-crafted, balanced big ESB/IPA. I get it: sometimes you have to take risks to succeed, this one just isn't a success.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.38/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bomber poured into a pint glass. Hazy orange color with a medium head that was very sticky. Mostly a pine aroma, a little bit of floral presence. The taste was mostly all piney hops, a little late bitterness. It had an oily, not altogether pleasant mouthfeel. Not an enjoyable beer.

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Photo of telecomz
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Kind of a surprise.

Part ESB, part IPA ande part barleywine.

IBUs are profound as is the sweet maltiness at the backend. I like the beer quite a bit but I can understand how some might be confused.

An OK beer. I might drink it again but there are better ESBs out there - I like ESBs.

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Photo of mcallister
3.41/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very clear copper with a huge frothy head that last and lasts leaving thick sticky lacing behind.

Spicey citrusy hops slightly offputting in nature with some fussel alcohol in the finish. A stagnant nature ensues that throwns things off as well. Now don't get me wrong it's not that offending however something is just off.

Caramel, toffee, bitter chalky hops, hints of acidity, pine, grassy spicey character, moderate spice character with an almost belgian approach.

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Photo of weeare138
3.43/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Much thanks to grassrootsvt for this bomber...
Appears a hazy, light gold with a small, soapy, white head that slowly fades out. Streaky lacing is left around the glass.
Smell is floral, perfumey, earthy, tea-like, and very English. There are mild notes of caramel malts behind all of the other sweet notes happening in the mix.
Taste is of the same mentioned aromas. Subtle citrus flavors seem to make their way in the mix.
Mouthfeel is bready, medium bodied, yeasty, with floral, and spicy earth notes running along the palate.

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Magnumus Ete Tomahawkus ESB³ from Rock Art Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 144 ratings.