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Propeller Extra Special Bitter (ESB) - Propeller Brewery

Not Rated.
Propeller Extra Special Bitter (ESB)Propeller Extra Special Bitter (ESB)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

140 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 140
Reviews: 91
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 9.79%
Wants: 10
Gots: 8 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Propeller Brewery visit their website
Nova Scotia, Canada

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-30-2002

Bitter was originally a draught ale served very fresh under no pressure (gravity or hand pump dispensing only) at cellar temperatures. Lucky for you today its available everywhere!

Our ESB is a rich, full-bodied English-style bitter, brewed with carefully selected malts and hops. This copper coloured, English styled ale is our best seller. Smooth, Full bodied and All Natural, like all our beers.

Our most popular brew is not really a bitter beer, it's a better Bitter!

30 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 140 | Reviews: 91
Photo of jrempel
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Hfx902
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very good with fish and chips!

Photo of PorterPro125
3.76/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Serving Type: 341 mL Bottle

A- Pours a nice copper colour topped by a 2 1/2 finger white head that lasts throughout the brew.

S- Malty with hints of caramel. Mild hop notes.

T- Initially quite bitter but softens out with sweet malt notes. Slight metallic notes but not off putting. Taste improves as it warms.

M- Low carbonation but quite light!

O- Not as silky as other bitters I've had but I quite like this interpretation of the style.

Photo of SchoonerNS
4.17/5  rDev +7.5%

Photo of thedannypink
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%

Purchased in 650ml bottle at local liquor store.
Produces a healthy, long-lasting head when poured. Head very creamy on top with a tan-light brown color. Scents of caramel, and very slightly hoppy. Beer is reddish-brown, more red than brown when held to a light.
Taste: At first bitter, then sweetens. Hints of fruit, and caramel as noted in the smell. Very lightly coats the mouth and leaves a medium bitter taste lingering on the tongue. Flavorful but light-bodied. Refreshing. Carbonation is about average. Very very slightly metallic (but not unpleasant) aftertaste when chilled, but this becomes less apparent as the beer warms. Flavor sweetens after being out of the fridge for 10-15 minutes. Would recommend leaving out before opening as the flavors grow more mellow as it warms.
Pleasant flavors for a 5% ale. Very nice.

Photo of mylespetro
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of DaveBar
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Got on a trade with Curtis. Served at 4deg C in a draught glass

A- 4.25- Opens well and pours a ton of head that lasts forever. DARK brown.

S- 3.75- Caramel and malt.

T- 4.0- Very good. Bit bitter aftertaste. Nice. Caramel and malty

M- 4.0- Very light for a bitter. Nice and refreshing

O- 4.10- This is what I would give this beer. Nice bitter. Good break beer

Food Pairing

This wonderful little bitter went well with...... BBQ steak with blue cheese.


Photo of Electros
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of BRYeleJR
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.81/5  rDev -1.8%

Single bottle poured into a shaker pint glass. A clear but dark mahogany brown with a finger or so of frothy off-white foam. Aroma does deliver a nice ESB or brown ale character: Raisins, hazelnut spread, brown sugar, grape, and a topcoat of earthy, citrus rind evoking hops. Ample malt complexity and fruity esters on the palate, although there are more than enough hops to dry things out and keep this anchored in bitter territory. Some interesting flavors emerging, dusty toasted cinnamon, orange, treacle, bruised brown apples ... Fruit and spice in equal measure. Diacetyl asserting itself. This is a tasty brew ... On the malty side but not cloyingly sweet, fairly thick for the style but finishing rather dry. Would repeat.

Photo of Nightwing
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%

Poured from bottle. Aroma is a nice mixture of caramel, chocolate, and coffee. Appearance is a clear amber with slightly off-white head. Taste is a medium bitter. Body is somewhere between medium and full. Creamy texture, with average carbonation, and a bitter finish. A very drinkable ESB with just the right amount of bitterness.

Photo of Slongie
3.8/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of muskiesman
3.25/5  rDev -16.2%

Photo of johnnnniee
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Bottle from the Brewery store.
Pours a solid dark brown with a decent sized off white head. Toffee, caramel, and dark fruits with just a hint of earthiness. Medium body moderate carbonation. One of the better ESB's that I've had.

Photo of DWG17
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of DreamDeath
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of schnarr84
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of Ivanhoes_Backpack
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of Exeter
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of 1sophrosyne1
4.14/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Enjoyed on tap in its hometown with great local fish.

The pour is mahogany and clear, with nice snowy white head that falls away almost completely, but leaves streams and sheets of lacing.
There's clean malt-hop balance in the nose, just a bit dank, fitting with where it's brewed. A little raisin and caramel are wrapped up in the wheaty elements.
In the flavor, there's a good bitter center after a malt-sweet start (fitting with its style), but more thorough hopping and ample, bright carbonation make for a nice variation. Pine, grapefruit...later almond. There's a spiciness with pepper to the ending that lingers, and a fruity hint of Shiraz and smoke as well.
The medium body, washes out of the mouth rather quickly--just a touch more length and heft might be an improvement.
Very nice, overall. Much more flavor and complexity than I'd expect it to carry...especially at just 5% abv.

Photo of ZachT
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of StomachUlcers
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of TT--Cashout
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of BradMacMullin
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of fizzyted
4/5  rDev +3.1%

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Propeller Extra Special Bitter (ESB) from Propeller Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 140 ratings.