Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Lord Rear Admiral - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Lord Rear AdmiralLord Rear Admiral

Educational use only; do not reuse.

165 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 165
Hads: 597
Avg: 4.16
pDev: 16.35%
Wants: 171
Gots: 113 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co. visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: scruffwhor on 04-02-2007

Three Floyds version of an ESB, this deep amber ale has a complex malt sweetness and pronounced apricot hoppiness. Named after Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson.

55 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 165 | Hads: 597
Photo of 2BDChicago
4.57/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Hazy, orange amber, with full off-white foam.

S: Appealing aroma of multiple notes. Fruit, light spice, and some caramely-biscuity malt.

T: Don't you love it when the taste and aroma are equally fine. Equal parts of fruit and malt sweetness, but not overly so. The hop bitterness is unique in that I get a hop bite at back of the tongue, but it's like a side show definately not the main attraction. Don't mis-understand, FFFs is almost always big hops, just mostly well blanaced. The mouthfeel is dry and very clean, with good carbonation.

D: A very under the radar offering from FFFs, and I don't know why. To me it's a very enjoyable, and highly drinkable brew. It's probably the most IPA-ish ESB on the planet, and it totally works because of balance. There's a very pleasant flavor that runs through the brew that gives it a great personality. The malts and hop flavors work perfectly together. Hard to find but woth the hunt.

 937 characters

Photo of PHBoiler
4.56/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into 3 Floyd's Nonic Pint

Deep, golden almost amber color with fluffy white head that delivers excellent lacing throughout the drinking experience. The smell jumps out of the bottle as soon as you pop the cap. Big bright hop punch that has some fruitiness and bitterness that hits hard then fades away. This beer was even better than I remember it from last year. Hop forward like many 3 Floyd's but there is balance with the malt. An ESB that would satisfy hop heads for sure.

 492 characters

Photo of TwelveOunces
4.55/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bought myself a bomber at the Brewery, For whatever reason, its their only year around bomber I cant get in my area.
Poured into a Three Floyds pint glass.

A- Pours Golden crystal clear with a three finger large foamy head, an off white coloration.

S- No surprise that this guy is hoppy, coming from 3F I wouldnt expect otherwise. Lots of fresh citrus like mango and pineapple as well as a lot of grapefruit and pine needles. A light but present creamy caramel maltiness. Really really nice stuff here.

T- One hoppy bitter, but theres a lot more then hops here. This baby comes at you with a moderate/ high amount of bitterness and leaves you with some sharp citrus tones in your mouth. This beer has a creamy smooth feel and a refreshingly light and tasteful malt backbone. Goes down way to easy but leaves you with a lot of flavor. Malts resemble English malts a little but im also getting a light bready flavor as well. A strange and unique bitter but incredibly delicious.

M- Too easy to drink, it goes down crazy smooth and quick and leaves you refreshed and with a pleasant aftertaste. It has a light body and is full of flavor. Easy to drink and refreshing. It doesn't get any better then this.

O- I was expecting something good but I got something great, a unique ESB and an amazing beer all around. Thank the gods I took that trip to the brew pub.

 1,361 characters

Photo of cratez
4.54/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber purchased from the brewery in Munster, IN.

Pours a deep copper/ruby hue with three fingers of eggshell white foam. Head subsides to a thick cap and leaves several strands of lacing on the tulip glass. Gorgeous appearance.

Smell is big citric and zesty orange peel, marmalade, jujube candy, peach, pine sap, pungently floral and herbaceous hops, caramel, light doughy notes, and red grapefruit. Incredibly aromatic nose.

Taste is navel orange, peach, marmalade, and nectarine upfront, malts counteract with brown bread, roasted malt, and caramel flavours, mildly sweet palate transitions to a juicy grapefruit bitterness with some pine on the cough. Booze hits about half way in, but thankfully I can't taste it. Easily the boldest, most hop-forward ESB that I've sampled. Really yummy stuff.

Mouthfeel is lush and medium-bodied, average carbonation, spicy hop bite precedes a bone dry, citrusy finish. In keeping with the style, the bitterness is relatively balanced (compared to an IPA, for instance) and fades away quickly. I'm left with a clean palate after each sip.

Overall, Admiral Lord Nelson is an excellent North American interpretation of an Extra Special Bitter. It combines many standard ESB qualities with an over-the-top hoppiness and insanely robust aromas. A complete joy to drink, I would recommend this to hop heads and English ale lovers alike.

 1,385 characters

Photo of hooliganlife
4.52/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thanks to Sean9689 for bringing this

light copper cola color, light fluffy head

big floral aroma, almost concentrated with a touch of sweet malts

bitter all over like it should be with bitterness from the malts and a combo of pine and citrus hops. very floral through out with a great ESB finish. quite complex, love it.

medium body, easy drinking

this was great, one of the highlights of my night. i hope they end up bottling this.

 437 characters

Photo of GbVDave
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in an imperial pint at FFF 3/11/10.

A: Served a clear, rusty copper color. Capping this is a thick and pillowy head, slightly off white in color, that retains for nearly the whole glass and leaves a ton of gorgeous lace behind.

S: Big aroma of spicy/piney hops coupled with toasted malt. I couldn't keep my nose out of the glass. Excellent!

T: Piney hops, toasted malt, and mild citrus. Doesn't sound very earth shattering, but actually is!

M: Spicy and dry with a big dry malt backbone.

D: Phenominal. Not much more I can say about that.

 550 characters

Photo of cameraman
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A medium amber color is poured in the glass, with a light beige colored head that is about a half inch high. The laces slowly down the glass and settles to a thin layer. Citrus and grass right into the nose at every scent, then gradually fading away slowly. A cracked grain and bready/yeasty flavor attacks the palate come to the front, but is soon overtaken by the hops. The hops bring a strong grapefruit flavor that attacks the palate, that is followed up by a piney resin flavor, that lingers on the palate. A watery thin texture at the front, then gradually gaining weight and becoming more medium bodied, staying that way till the finish. A strong bitter? How about an extreme bitter, this one crosses over into the IPA realm. Everything is very good about this beer though, an inviting look and a fragrant aroma invites one to the glass. The taste just backs up those aspects, with strong hop flavor and intensity. The feel stays consistent all the way through, so hop heads drink up.

 991 characters

Photo of MrMcGibblets
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

doubtless the top esb i've had, even better than boont or rogue. a deep, clear dark ruby in the glass with an off-white head and lacing. signature 3f's aromas of citric hops and sweet malt. some dark fruit and floral aromas as well in the nose. taste is balanced a little more towards the sweet malt despite the listed 55 ibu's which seemed to be playing a supportive role. not that i was complaining, though. perfectly carbonated, creamy, and lively. medium-bodied with a medium-long finish. this would be a top choice were i not at 3f's. having it fresh at the pub didn't hurt this one. one of the favorites among my party at our last visit to 3f's.
have had this several times since it's bomber release and surprisingly i've been even more impressed each time. best esb ever.

 778 characters

Photo of karengarys
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I slow poured this cold from the fridge, spent some time with it so it warmed up by the time I was done.

It pours a nice almost reddish light orange-brown. There wasn't a lot of head, I slow-pour though so it surprised me how much was there (bubbles just covered the surface). A ring remained around the edges throughout the drink

Smell is sweet, leomny flowers.

Taste is - wow - hoppy. Grapefruit peel bitter. ...YUM!! Very citriusy, and as it warmed up almost buttery. Strange, but goood!!! It also contains that signature 3 floyds richness, like anything watery was removed leaving nothing but the wonderful brew... How DO they do that?

Mouthfeel was very good, coarse bubblies throughout the glass. Slow pouring helps with that, though.

Finish is quite clean, leaving a bit of a sting in the back of the throat.

I could drink this all night!!!

 853 characters

Photo of cpetrone84
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on Draught at the brewery.

A-deep copper colored beer with brown hues allowing light to shine through. two fingers of a medium thickness, off white head that retains for some time leaving a decent lacing on the glass

S-citrus and grapefruit hops hit the nose first with a faint hint of a sweet caramel malt

T-a light caramel malt hits the tongue first followed by a nice light citrus hop taste and a very light bitter finish

M-very smooth and very limited amount of carbonation with a pretty nice medium body

D-very well balanced favoring the hops make this a super tasty beer that is backed by a great mouthfeel

 621 characters

Photo of ekardz
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Golden Honey Brown, clear, 1 finger head, lacing on beer and glass. looks like it will be amazing.

Smell - floral/piney hops. very citrusy, orange, lemon, coriander? sweet scents off this brew.

Taste - very floral hops, taste the orange peel flavor. some resiny flavors as well.

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, smooth, little carbonation.

Drinkability - no alcohol burn, great hop flavor. nice citrusy zest, very easy to drink, I hope I can obtain this one again!!!!

 478 characters

Photo of brewcrew76
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another great label from 3 Floyds.

A - Clear amber, chestnut with a sandy colored head that leaves huge patches of sticky lacing.

S - Sweet caramel, slightly sugary, blended nicely with pine and floral hops.

T - Piney, resiny, citrusy hops with caramel sweetness and some earthy undertones.

M - Medium body but DIPA sticky sweet with a lingering dry finish.

D - Not really true to style but exactly what I would expect from a 3F ESB.

 438 characters

Photo of Lunch
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from a 22oz. bottle into my Bruery tulip at the appropriate temperature (05/08/10)

A: Pours a burnt, orange. amber capped with 2 fingers of an off-white head which stays leaving bits of sticky lacing.

S: I'm getting a lot of citrus hops along with a bready, caramel malt. Notes of toasted, sweet malt as well as some English IPA characteristics. Great smelling beer.

T: Taste mirrors the nose with layers of caramel and bread surrounded in a blanket of citrus hops with lots of orange, marmalade, zest and lemon. Sweet toasted malt rounds out the flavor with some lingering bitterness. Really a complex beer.

M: Medium-bodied with some appropriate carbonation that was lively. Fuller than expected and quite nice.

D: An easy drinking beer that was exceptionally well balanced.

Overall this was a very nice ESB and another great beer from Three Floyds. If you see this beer grab a bottle or two and enjoy! Recommended.

 931 characters

Photo of dmgeng
4.49/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really love 3-F's and I knew that even though this was a lower ABV offering I knew that It wouldn't be normal.

A - Rich amber color. Clear with lots of fine, eggshell colored head and strong lacing.

S - Nice full hop fragrance with lots of tangerine, herbal, and some floral tones. After the hops there is a strong malt/caramalt presence accompanied by the fruitiness of the English yeast.

T - Similar to the smell the flavor is very good with a decisive hop character that has a citrus/tangerine flavor, fruit esters, soft herbal and then comes the malt. There is a soft, sweet malt character that is comforted by the rich caramel. The bitterness from hops lends very well to the sweet malt and is very balanced for a 3-F's beer. Not as hoppy as I expected but tasty.

M - Moderate to high mouth-feel with moderate carbonation. For only 6.5% ABV this baby has some body and with the caramalts and the hops it is almost chewy in the middle but still enough bitterness, carbonation, and alcohol to keep it refreshing on the finish.

Overall, the best ESB I've ever had. The great hops mixing with the rich malt character are a class act. Though I still prefer more over less when it comes to my beer I would gladly enjoy another one of these in the future. I wouldn't forgo a Dreadnaught or other one of their DIPAs for this one but I wouldn't just dismiss this beer either.

Glass- Imperial Nonic

 1,401 characters

Photo of lightindarkness
4.48/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber. Honestly one of the most attractive beers I've ever seen right off the pour. A little richer in appearance than I expected, with a deep burnt caramelly look to the body (almost not a color I can describe very well), nearly murky, but clear at the same time, with a full 3 finger climbing head that rests just perfectly on top filling the glass. Head thins out to a large rocky mass with bubbly sides, and some sticky patches of lace all over.

Enticing rich aromas of balanced hop and herbal character, with a fine malt background. Hoppy citrus, with mild pine, sage, a hint of lemon peel, and perhaps some rosemary. Remarkably delicate and yet full and hardy. I want to marinate chicken in it.

Taste has much more malt and graininess than the flavor alludes to, with an excellent bitter quality for the style, and yet uncommonly nuanced. Full crackery grains up front run with herbal notes of sage and bay leaf through to a dry raw grain flavor balanced with toffee toward the finish. Hops present more fully in mild citrus, and herbal florals toward the end. Finishes with stronger hop bitterness clinging a little.

Feel is nice, fuller medium body with mild soft tingly carbonation, allowing the taste to really stand up front. A little filmy toward the end, full for the style, but not too out of whack.

I know FFF is all about doing things a little different, and for me, this beer expands my concept of this style. Definitely strong on hops, but with considerable sensitivity to some of the other character of the beer, it varies between full-on strength and finely subtle nuance. Quite worth the try, in my opinion.

 1,640 characters

Photo of JamesS
4.48/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a great deep copper color with wonderful head and excellent lacing. Has a great deep hop scent, very citrus/orange, with a nice sweet malt backing. Great taste, a wonderful malt body with great hop (extremely citrus) tones, but with only a slight hop aftertaste, unlike a pale ale. Goes down smooth, with just a bit of rough from the hops.

It was odd to me, that an ESB had such citrusy hops, but it is an American ESB, just like APAs differ from EPAs.

 459 characters

Photo of NorthsideFred
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is my last bottle of this stuff - DAMN!!!

A: Poured into a mug with a huge, white, frothy, head. Looks refreshing!

S: Very hoppy - I also smell pineapple and citrus. Smells similar to Hop Slam. Very inviting!

T: Great taste. Starts with the pineapple, then the citrus and finishes with a slight bitterness.

M: Medium bodied, not as carbonated as I would expect.

D: I could drink this all day and all night, and then wake up and have more.

I really enjoy this beer. I hope FFF decides to brew this again.

 515 characters

Photo of Pencible
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured a clear copper with a little tan head. It smelled like apricot and papaya and candied grapefruit, with some light caramel and orange. It tasted like orange and apricot, with some grapefruit and papaya and honey. It was slightly thick with a bit of carbonation, with a bitter aftertaste. Overall this was unlike any other ESB I've had, but it was certainly both extra special and bitter. It was also very sweet and hoppy and clean. This is what English IPAs should be (rather than the boring, earthy, under-hopped drinks they tend to be). Great beer.

 561 characters

Photo of ffejherb
4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bomber shared with friends on 2/8/11.

A - Poured a very hazy orange liquid with a thin off-white head that reduced to some patchy residue and lots of spotty lacing.

S - Aroma is very citrus-forward with plenty of pineapple and grapefruit notes. Malt character is sweet with hints of caramel and toffee. The aroma is unabashedly FFF!

T - Tropical fruit is at the forefront of Lord Admiral Nelson, giving the initial flavor quite a bit of hoppiness right from the get-go. I definitely get a lot of pineapple. Malt is expectedly sweet with caramel and toffee tones. Finishes like a juicy, hoppy West Coast IPA with a backing of toasted grains to balance.

M - Medium bodied with an oily texture and moderate carbonation. Finish is moderately bitter with residual sweetness.

D - This is a typical FFF hopfest, whereby they take a style and hop the shit out of it to create an awesome beer. Yeah! That's not to say that the beer itself is "typical". Quite the contrary. It's also not just a hop bomb, as there is plenty of malt sweetness that is typical of the ESB style. You could call it an EESB, I guess.

 1,114 characters

Photo of SHODriver
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: pours a deep gold to medium brown with a finger and a half of off white head
S: smelled of delicious hops when I cracked the bottle open but in the glass the nose brings caramel and toffee with some of that nice juicy hop aroma
T: slightly toasty with some caramel a little bit of pine and floral hop flavor and a back and forth battle across the palate for dominance. aftertaste is a bit of oily hop and some residual sweetness from the malt
M: medium body with slightly prickly carbonation
O: very flavorful and great balance. this is my first beer from three Floyd's and it is very good.

 593 characters

Photo of SuperNova777
4.45/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A:Pours a non transparent copper/amber color with a nice fluffy head that slowly falls, leaving a nice web lacing down the glass.

S:Classic FFF aroma, including grapefruit, citrus, and tropical hops with a slight sweet malt scent as well.

T:First up hits a nice floral hop kick on the initial sip, followed up by a nice malt backbone balance that smoothes everything out on the back burner. A really flavorful taste that leaves an oily hop resin on the palate that begs for more of the sweet nectar.

M:A thinner body which is what you would expect from the style. Good carbonation throughout and almost no alcohol bite.

D:A very delicious, easy to drink, and flavorful beer that I could take down all the time no problem (especially with the decent price tag and abv.) Another great brew from FFF as usual, just a lot of pleasant hop action that is very balanced at the same time. Highly recommended.

 904 characters

Photo of alleykatking
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from 22oz bottle.

A- Pours a clear amber brown color. Two finger light tan head on this one stays around for a little while. Lacing is sticky and streaky. Looks good for a ESB.

S- This has a ton of citrus hops in the front end of this beer. I enjoy the light biscuty malts in this that come out a little when this beer warms. For the most part all you smell is citrus and light pine tones in this.

T- The hops in this are not as in your face as in the aroma. Citrus hops clash with a light bready malt that brings a nice semi-sweet balance. Light pine and almost tea like taste in the back end of this beer. I enjoy this almost too much in the flavor. Everything is very balanced but hops come out a little on top.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is a little lacking which is my only complaint with this beer. Still this beer has a wonderful appearance in the mouth. Light malty bready flavors with citrus hops are left on the palate. Some light bready malts are left into the aftertaste. Clean tastes throughout in this beer.

D- The lower ABV on this makes it a easy drinker. In fact I cracked open another one after I was done with this one. Good work like usual Three Floyds! If you have the chance to snag this one....do it. You won't regret it at all.

 1,272 characters

Photo of LordAdmNelson
4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Is this the first bottling of this beer? Cheap compared to other FFF, great stuff here, highly recommended. As usual, great label from FFF as well.

Pours a nice maple syrup brown with two inches of sandy head. Great lacing and retention. Smell is largely grapefruit, big hops, though there is something that's a bit off and I can't put my finger on it. Taste here is great, big piney hops, a bit of weedy hops, finished with some biscuity/bready malt--a hopped-up ESB. Great stuff here, I guess this review is to style, because as a beer overall I would call this an A-, but as an ESB, this is definitely an A. MF is medium, coating, creamy, maybe a tad over-carbonated. Very drinkable, a great session brew, if I had it in me I could easily have three bombers of this. I do not, but that's the kind of drinkability this thing has.

 832 characters

Photo of dutesanch
4.42/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Really enjoyed this beer. Much better than other breweries beers of th same style. Very malt heavy with the dominating taste being raisins. Sweetness doesn't annoy. Very pleasant beer. Perfect for brisk fall afternoons. ISO more!

 229 characters

Photo of Jayli
4.42/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Acquired this from GbvDave so a big THANK YOU goes out to him!
Poured in to a pint glass
Consumed 6/14

A: This beer pours a massively cloudy/burnt orange with a one finger of crisp white head. Head recedes quickly leaving ringlet lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is very hoppy. Big doses of piney and citrus hops with some minor malt presence.

T: Taste is piney hops at the forefront. Mingle of pineapple and mango coupled with malts fill out the middle. Finish is a big citrus hop - juicy lemon citrus lingers in the finish.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, creamy yet oily body.

D: Goes down easily, somewhat filling, mild kick. This is one that I would love to have again!

 681 characters

Lord Rear Admiral from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 165 ratings.