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Chester County Bitter - Sly Fox Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Chester County Bitter
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BA SCORE
80
good

66 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 66
Reviews: 19
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 17.71%
Wants: 0
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sly Fox Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
English Bitter |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
This traditional British Ale is authentic cask conditioned beer with a smooth malt profile balance by a subtle hop presence. Dry-hopping in the cask produces an enticing hop aroma in this quaffable session ale.

(Beer added by: corby112 on 10-14-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 66 | Reviews: 19 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by TheycallmeTim:
Photo of TheycallmeTim
3.43/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a growler into a tulip pint.

Looks great--pitch perfect apple cider color. On the darker end of the range for the style, which is fine by me. Small ring of salmon roe popped up and popped out.

Smells pretty, too--stiff green apples, some minty notes, faint faint earthiness. Smells restrained and refined.

Taste proves the nose is false advertising. This is neither restrained or refined, and doesn't coax nearly enough out of the malt for my taste. There's a rough, unbalanced feel to the flavor profile, no doubt as a result of what seems like a heavy-handed hopping. The finish is just plain astringent, which I thought was because it was too cold, even though I didn't even refrigerate the growler. So I held it in my hands--I cradled this tender pint--but, sadly, it just became warmly astringent.

Mouthfeel, again, suffers from that astringency. Never quites attains that creamy buttery blanket for the juicy biscuit middle heaven that I like in bitters. Oh well.

It's ok for an American version of the style. But American craft brewers are showing they don't do subtlety real well. Right now the English are kicking our asses in the bitter category.

TheycallmeTim, Feb 04, 2010
More User Reviews:
Photo of LegalAlienBC
4/5  rDev +14.3%

LegalAlienBC, Jun 18, 2014
Photo of Soonami
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have not seen Sly Fox Chester County Bitter before, but since it was offered on cask at Local 44, I thought that I would give it a try since the beers they present on hand pumps are always well done. This is a beer that had a good bit of dry hopping either in fermentation or on cask, that really adds a nice woody, fresh hop aroma and flavor. The malt adds a bready character that helps ground the beer and provided the body that a smaller hopped beer requires.

Soonami, Dec 13, 2010
Photo of Sammy
3.4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cask at Cole's cask festival. A fine bitter although a sour finish. Pros were the understated bitterness, and full mouthfeel. A faint Caesar crown an apple juice colour. Is it infection? Sourness does spoil getting it spot in, still a drinkable one.

Sammy, Dec 06, 2009
Photo of tempest
3.65/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a glass on cask at Tap and Table. I always like a good bitter, but the red color is a little dark for a bitter. The flavor is dominated by crystal malts (there's the color). Really, the beer just tasted like a lighter amber/red ale on cask. That's not all bad, there was a please citrus hop note in addition to the caramelized malt, but I'd hope for more depth.

tempest, Feb 12, 2010
Photo of Kegatron
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask, via hand pump, @ the Sly Fox Brewing Company (Phoenixville, PA) on 12/20/10. Served in a 10 oz Pils glass.

Pours a clear copper, with a finger of tight and foamy bright-white head. This retains with a thin creamy frothiness that leaves back spotty lacing which sticks to the sides of the glass. The aroma is grassy and a little spicy, with some bitter smelling citric character and a touch of earth. This is set against some malty tones of fresh baked biscuits and a dash of sweeter caramel in the nose.

The taste has both a fresh citric flavor and bitterness going on here and is balanced by a sturdy backbone of bready grains, which trails some leftover light toast into the finish, along with dry spice and rind. The mouthfeel is lighter-medium bodied, with a light prickle to the carbonation that runs through the middle of the feel, but is mostly easy on the edges and overall very smooth on the palate. This feels good on cask.

This was another pleasant enough quaff that I found on the hand pumps here at Sly Fox. This Bitter had some bite but was still mostly well balanced and the easy feel from the cask and lower ABV kept this drinking nicely. Sessionable little brew here.

Kegatron, Dec 21, 2010
Photo of DarthTremens
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

DarthTremens, Jan 02, 2013
Photo of PhillyStyle
4.08/5  rDev +16.6%

PhillyStyle, Nov 03, 2014
Photo of philbe311
3.88/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On hand pump at Al's of Hampden...

A - One fingers worth of slightly off-white batter-like head with minmal retention... A rich caramel color... Still with limited carbonation... Leaves rings upon rings of lacing on the glass that stay throughout...

S - Loaded with bready malts... Caramel... Toffee... Some euro hoppiness... Textbook, but subdued for the style...

T - Wonderful assertive mix of malt and hops... The bready malts and caramel are at the forefront as expected, but there is a not so subtle hop kick on the finish that lingers slightly...

M - Light to medium bodied... Slightly creamy... Slightly thin... Goes down very easy, but seems mildly inconsistent from sip to tip...

D - Drinability is off the charts... A great tasting ESB that is sub 5% ABV... I could drink this all night long...

philbe311, Sep 10, 2010
Photo of mdillon86
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

mdillon86, Jul 31, 2012
Photo of Mudawg
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Mudawg, Jan 15, 2012
Photo of DavidHume
4/5  rDev +14.3%

DavidHume, Sep 06, 2014
Photo of mendvicdog
3.25/5  rDev -7.1%

mendvicdog, Nov 06, 2013
Photo of djcira
3/5  rDev -14.3%

djcira, Jun 07, 2014
Photo of plaid75
3.98/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at the Brazen Head, Brooklyn.

Poured a medium copper hue with a wisp of a head.

The smell featured a lemony hop and a light malt.

The taste consisted of a smooth pale malt, a touch of crystal and a balancing dry herbal hop.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a tasty and easily sessionable ale.

plaid75, Nov 07, 2009
Photo of NatsnSkinsDC
3/5  rDev -14.3%

NatsnSkinsDC, Dec 16, 2013
Photo of drtth
4.22/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a nonic pint glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As served the beer is a clear reddish golden brown in color with a ¼" creamy head that persists for quite a while. Sipping leaves scattered legs or lacing.

Smell: The aroma is soft and pleasant and includes some malt, some citrus zest and a touch of pine. While not strong the aroma is pleasant.

Taste: The flavors include the caramel and toffee from the malt, traces of citrus zest and fruit with some light earthy character. There is quite a nice balance of malt and hops here.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium bodied and smooth as silk with gentle but lasting carbonation. The finish is medium long with some ending hop bitterness.

Drinkability and Overall Impression: I enjoyed this one, finding that each sip followed naturally from the other. I certainly would be willing to have this one again. My overall impression is of a well made, thoroughly enjoyable beer that is well worth drinking.

drtth, Mar 19, 2011
Photo of kkazemi
2/5  rDev -42.9%

kkazemi, Jul 20, 2014
Photo of scottbrew4u
4.05/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Served from cask at McMinimens to mug a clear light amber to golden orange color with a fluffy white one finger head.

S: Bready and roasted malt with a sweetness of vanilla, caramel, and toffee. Hops were orange peel and herbal with a touch of peppery spice in the nose. Looking for a bit more in the aroma but good.

T: Lightly toasted malt and fresh bread, some vanilla and toffee add a mild sweetness. Orange peel and grapefruit from some PNW hops with a spicy European hop finish. Chamomile bitterness is in there too which ways in more than the sweet maltiness.

M: Smooth and creamy, light to medium body. Subtle smooth carbonation as a good cask ale should have.

D: All round great session beer with a nice flavor and ease of drinkability.

scottbrew4u, Jan 07, 2011
Photo of curlybird
3.25/5  rDev -7.1%

curlybird, Jul 22, 2014
Photo of rfgetz
3.5/5  rDev 0%

rfgetz, Mar 29, 2012
Photo of Drknight
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Drknight, Apr 30, 2014
Photo of BKBassist
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

BKBassist, Nov 04, 2013
Photo of VikeMan
5/5  rDev +42.9%

VikeMan, Dec 04, 2011
Photo of justintcoons
2.75/5  rDev -21.4%

justintcoons, Dec 08, 2012
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Chester County Bitter from Sly Fox Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 66 ratings.