HSB (Horndean Special Bitter) - George Gale & Company Ltd
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Ratings: 51 | Reviews: 37 | Display Reviews Only:
3.2/5 rDev -19.6%
Dark Amber color. It made just one finger head.
Faint malty aroma.
Taste is quite malty with earthy hops, with a dry finish. I could not get much more than that.
Light body with light carbonation and small bubbles.
It is a straight forward bitter ale, no thrills.
12-23-2012 19:22:31 | More by FLima
United Kingdom (Wales)
3.95/5 rDev -0.8%
Served on cask hand pump at the Mad Bishop and Bear in Paddington Station, London.
Pours a dark, rich brown colour. Quite a nice looking head on it.
Didn't make any note on the smell so I assume it was average.
Tastes extremely malty, very earthy and wholesome. Never had anything taste like this without going into the realms of dark, burnt malt flavours like a stout or porter. Extremely moreish though it eventually gets a bit heavy, plus it's a bit too boozy for a session beer. Slight hops in the background provide a bit of fruitiness to balance, though they are very faint in comparison.
Overall a really nice offering from the now owned by Fullers brewery. Should be noted that this pub has always served beer at a perfect (for me) temperature.
11-17-2012 22:44:53 | More by CwrwAmByth
3.9/5 rDev -2%
Poured into a nonic pint glass at a pub in Salisbury, England. Pours a deep red with a good head retention. Sweet malt aromas, some slight fuggle style hop aromas as well.
Taste is really nice, great sweet malty flavors and maybe some toffe, but is well balanced with a good amount of hops. Easy drinker but heavy. Im usually not a fan of bitters, but this is one of the best bitters ive had to date.
08-07-2012 14:01:46 | More by DrinkSlurm
3.85/5 rDev -3.3%
Pours a clear ruby hue which leaves a two finger head and sporadic lacing,the smell is sweet caramelized malts,herbal hops,a touch of dried fruits and also some sweet dark port,the mouthfeel is just over light bodied and has tastes of dark ripe fruits,sweet caramel,marzipan,sticky toffee and finished with a earthy hop bittersweetness and overall its alright and different but not my favourite example of the style.
09-12-2011 13:27:45 | More by ADZA
3.6/5 rDev -9.5%
Handpump half-pint at the Thornbury Castle. The bartender insisted on pouring me a sample first, in case the beer was too strong for me to handle. Oooh, 4.8%, I'm scared!
A: Clear deep amber body; thin tan head with ok retention and nice lace. Solid, but not memorable.
S: Fairly assertive aroma of earthy hops + caramel malt. Not much complexity, but it smells nice enough.
T: Follows the nose - earthy + floral hops up front, with solidly sweet caramel malt following close behind. Long, bittersweet finish. Enjoyable, but nothing special.
M: Fairly hefty bitter, with good body and moderate, fine carbonation. Very nice.
O: This one was above average, but far from great. I was surprised to see it's A- overall rating on here, as it struck me as being a fairly pedestrian bitter: there was nothing wrong with it, but it didn't have any real subtlety or individuality.
06-17-2011 13:30:22 | More by woosterbill
4/5 rDev +0.5%
Very dark red, bordering on brown. Eggshell head, settles to a nice film. Well marked lacings to the finish.
Mostly caramel on the nose.
Nice English malts give a real red ale character to this one. Loads of caramel to start with touches of nice red fruit in the middle. Bittering hops clean up nicely in the finish, making it a very sessionable ale.
Cask was in good condition, no complaints.
04-14-2011 16:33:48 | More by CanuckRover
3.5/5 rDev -12.1%
Cask conditioned at The Hogshead pub, Ipswich. Deep amber to brown colour, low head. Moderate aroma of English malt vinegar and plums. The flavour is "dusty" malty with notes of malt vinegar and sour fruits. "Dusty" hops in the finish. OKish.
02-14-2011 18:41:27 | More by Sigmund
3.73/5 rDev -6.3%
The beer is clear brown with hints of read, an off-white lively head that leaves lacing.
The smell is rather light, some bread and lemon marmalade.
Upfront tasting sweet and malty, a fresh loaf of bread, citric, lemon and orange, nice bitterness, fresh grass and nettles.
Small carbonation, soft and smooth, a medium body and dry finish.
Well balanced and well done.
12-05-2010 22:00:14 | More by rarbring
3.78/5 rDev -5%
Very solid, substantial head, and a nice red colour.
Very balanced overall, but I was a bit surprised with this being a bitter, since there is precious little hop that can be felt in this brew. A very drinkable beer, but maybe, just maybe a little bland, especially compared to Fuller's ESB for example.
07-20-2010 12:46:54 | More by dolzan
3.58/5 rDev -10.1%
Poured from a 500ml bottle into a nonic
A - copper with a reddish tint, a bit light tan head rests on the top
S - raisins, prunes, plums, dates with a sweet smell at the end, maybe a hint of alcohol in there. This smells real delicious.
T - balanced malt hop mix up front with a hint of the fruity taste the smell indicated. A bit of a buttery finish.
M - I really hate to do this because this beer in the bottle isn't anywhere near what I remember this beer being like on cask but the mouthfeel on this is terrible, especially terrible for the style. This is way too carbonated and that really takes away from the flavor.
D - Smells great but the taste really isn't the greatest and the mouthfeel really hurts this one. I remember this being a million times better when I had it out of a cask and hopefully I will be able to try it again that way to post another review for this beer. I wouldn't pick up another bottle of this but would love to try it out of the cask!
04-15-2010 01:44:49 | More by jpmclaug
4.08/5 rDev +2.5%
On cask at NERAX
Appears Deep reddish brown with a light tan head that sustains.
The aroma is watery fruitiness, some caramel and bitter hops. The taste though pokes your tongue awake! Wow, lot's of flavor! Rich malt, fruit, The bitterness has a slight sourness which adds a lot of interest. The body is light/medium. The brew is super silky smooth. Very nice and very, very drinkable. I would love to have this beer available in my market.
03-26-2010 16:18:04 | More by ThirstyBird
HSB (Horndean Special Bitter) from George Gale & Company Ltd
88 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.