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Bitch Creek ESB (Extra Special Brown) - Grand Teton Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Bitch Creek ESB (Extra Special Brown)Bitch Creek ESB (Extra Special Brown)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

641 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 641
Reviews: 325
rAvg: 3.75
pDev: 13.33%
Wants: 9
Gots: 27 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Grand Teton Brewing Co. visit their website
Idaho, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Bitch Creek perfectly balances big malt sweetness and robust hop flavor for a full bodied, satisfying mahogany ale. Like the stream for which it is named, our Bitch Creek ESB is full of character... not for the timid.

54 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-04-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bitch Creek ESB (Extra Special Brown) Alström Bros
Ratings: 641 | Reviews: 325 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CPeterson


3.85/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A -- Big frothy head and a deep brownish/copper color. Almost no lacing.

S -- Smells of fresh floral hops and heavy malt.

T -- Sweet and malty only being halted by the hops, which make a very well balanced brew.

M -- Medium heavy, low carbonation.

D -- Very drinkable, especially in colder weather...a perfect compliment to MN. Overall, a very enjoyable beer with good character. Very much worth trying.

Serving type: on-tap

09-10-2009 01:59:38 | More by CPeterson
Photo of armock

New York

3.83/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a hazed brown color with a tan head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of roasted malts mostly with some hops

T - Starts off with some bitter hops then gets balanced with caramel malt flavors

M - This beer has a medium body with medium carbonation to it

D - Overall this is one easy to drink enjoyable beer if was available around me it would be in my regular rotation of beers worth trying

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2009 23:22:06 | More by armock
Photo of beerwolf77


3.93/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass the beer is a rusty brownish red. The head is plentiful and a creamy beige color. A nice ring of lace is left behind after the head slowy recedes. The aroma is a mix of malt and hops. The hops are much more aggresive of the two but, not overdone. There's hint of sweetness in the nose as well. The flavor is slightly piney with a bit of sour fruit and a bread like maltiness in the finish. Seems kind of funny to have bitter in the name when the beer isn't really bitter. Medium body not much carbonation. Overall a decent beer. The style is still a bit of a mystery to me. I will have to try a few more ESB beers to get a handle on them.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2009 03:29:30 | More by beerwolf77
Photo of ChopperSmith


3.73/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a chilled pint glass.

Appearance: Hazy dark red/amber in color. Low carbonation and minimal tan head with no retention or lacing. Great color, though...especially in the sunlight.

Smell: Floral hops and dark roasted maltiness, a very pleasing mix. The best of both worlds.

Taste: Very complex and nice. A little sweetness mixed in with grapefruit hops and bready malts. I get a little spice and apples and raisins in the mix as well. Delicious example of the style. Well done Grand Teton brewmasters!

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, lower carbonation (which works with a flavorful beer like this). A slight bitter bite on the finish, but it doesn't linger.

Drinkability: Very drinkable. Could easily do a session with this one, especially in fall or winter. Love the complex flavors in this one. A beautiful example of the ESB style. Easily my favorite of the Grand Teton beers I've tried (but the Sweetgrass IPA is nice, too).

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2009 23:24:05 | More by ChopperSmith
Photo of champ103


4.33/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a very cloudy reddish brown color. Almost to much yeast floating around. A two finger beige head forms and leaves good lace behind.
S: Toasted caramel and toffee malts. Some wonderful fruity esters. Apples, pears, and plums. Some floral hops to balance everything out perfectly.
T: Follows the nose. Toasted malts of caramel and toffee. Fruit esters, and a great hop balance. Freakin' awesome.
M/D: A medium body that is creamy and rich. Just enough carbonation to give this a nice snap. Very easy and smooth to drink. I can drink this all day and be happy.

This is a great ESB. One of my favorite styles, and Grand Teton did it right. I enjoyed this with lunch at Yelloystone National Park. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2009 07:45:20 | More by champ103
Photo of Wheelinb


4.03/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bitter indeed but there is a lot more going on here.

Poured a nice copper color with a creme colored foam that left nice lacing in concentric rings all the way down the glass. Can't say I got much in the way of distinct aroma from this.

My first sip was all bitter tasting. It grabbed my tongue and held tight, but as I sipped more, the more flavors came out. There is actually a lot of completxity and big flavors to be had here once you get past the initial bitter shock.

Serving type: on-tap

08-28-2009 00:22:35 | More by Wheelinb
Photo of Tolnik


4.2/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was poured into a pint glass. When first poured the head of the beer was decent, not to ambitious. Sedimentation is present when pouring the last of the beer out of the bottle. The aroma of this beer is great floweral, hoppy and coriander is present. The taste of the beer good bitterness, a hoppy sweetness to the tastebuds. Overall a really great beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2009 05:40:19 | More by Tolnik
Photo of beertunes


2.93/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in straight pint glass. Poured a very dark brown with a 1/2 inch of deep tan head that had very good retention and left just slight lacing.

A very malty aroma has just a slight hop spicieness in the nose. The flavor was mostly biscuity type malts with a slightly bitter finish. The finish was also on the dry side and had a sharpness that made me wonder if they used Rye in this brew.

The body was good, typical for the style. The drinkability was good as well. Overall, a solidly decent beer that if it were more regularly available to me, I'd mix into my regular rotation.

Serving type: on-tap

08-21-2009 19:57:05 | More by beertunes
Photo of OlRasputin989


4.18/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: a dark and cloudy brown with a decent tan head.

S: cocoa dusted orange peel, pie crust, and brown sugar.

T: fruity upfront, an almost tart cocoa-grapefruit flavor. finishes with orange peel, wheat toast, and spice.

M: medium to full body. lively carbonation up front with an off-dry finish.

Overall, this is a really good beer and the first ESB I've reviewed. You get the best of both worlds if you're a maltlover or hophead.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2009 02:16:11 | More by OlRasputin989
Photo of CHSLBrew


4.1/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a pint glass.

A-Hazy, nearly opaque brown beer with copper highlights. Frothy dark-tan head rose 2-fingers off the pour. Head sustains nicely, remaining as a thick, consistent bubble layer throught the drink.

S-Grapefruit hoppiness is very prominent. Something sweet and nutty is under there, too, trying to get out.

T-Grapefruity hops resting atop a nutty, toasty malt foundation. What am I saying, "resting"; the hops are actively pursuing each tastebud, luring them in with citrus hoppiness, then smacking them with an assertive 54 IBU bitterness. Finishes dry, nutty.

M-Moderate body is filling and comforting, but not overwhelming. Lower-level carbonation is smooth and rather subtle.

D-I love this beer. I'll have to reach for it more frequently. Smooth and easy, whle also a little bit different.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2009 17:39:34 | More by CHSLBrew
Photo of ZAP


4.15/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Pours a deep scarlet/brown color...fizzy tan head of about 1/8 inch on top.

S-Toffee, caramel, biscuits combine for the malt along with a piney hop aroma

T-The toffee/caramel backbone is strong....but the hops really add a west coast bite....pine and grapefruit on the hops....

M-Medium to full bodied...creamy...bigger than expected...

D-This is a pretty big ESB...I was surprised with the color and the profile overall. An ESB to savor and enjoy rather than to session with...

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2009 04:51:18 | More by ZAP
Photo of jacobseyb


4.1/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A=Deep dark brown in color with little clarity, light brown head, one finger

S=nice malty caramel aromas with bitter hops very evident

T=good bitter flavors with the caramel/coffee malts nicely present, overall a nice balance of flavors but each very evident

M=very light on the tongue, small tight carbonation,

D=good beer, sessionable, and enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2009 03:53:41 | More by jacobseyb
Photo of bort11


3.88/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Sam Adams shaped pint glass. Tall khaki head jumps to the edge of the glass. Recedes quickly, but leaves chunky bits of lace on the glass. Color is a dark caramel brown with a dense clarity.

Smell is a mild orange peel bitterness with some caramel malt sweetness in the background. Taste is a strong mash up of citrusy sweet marmalade and caramel malts. Keeps everything in balance.

Mouthfeel is pretty light, even though the taste is pretty bold. Very easy drinking and a nice session beer.

Blipped "Life's a Bitch" by Motorhead

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2009 02:23:59 | More by bort11
Photo of Gavage

New Jersey

4.03/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: clear copper color with a thick 2" head that slowly falls to a spotty surface covering.

Smell: bread, caramel, and some light fruit sweetness is mild but pleasant.

Taste: caramel, brown sugar, ripe red apples, and a mellow bitterness is wrapped in a bready malt base.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Smooth from start to finish. Very short aftertaste.

Drinkability: easy to quaff. Definite session beer. Nice ESB that is worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2009 23:01:30 | More by Gavage
Photo of BeerisfoodLLC


4.22/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Suprisingly good beer! I had it on tap in West Yellowstone, MT and bought a 6pk to take with me.

A - Reddish Brown coloring, creamy head that lingers.

S - All kinds on good things going on here. Complex with toasty malty scents battling with strong floral & citris hops.

T - Bitter sweet. This beer has very bitter undertones that battle with the bold malt infusions.

M - Creamy smooth.

D - The extremes of this beer make it less drinkable for the average beer drinker...but extreme beer lovers with love it.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2009 18:39:45 | More by BeerisfoodLLC
Photo of Shaw


4.13/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I bought a bottle of this in the Tower-Roosevelt area of Yellowstone National Park and saved it to drink while in Salt Lake City.

It's a deep mahogany in color with and off-white head.

It has an aroma of hops, which surprises me. It also smells of toasted malt. Good stuff.

The taste is very nice. Rich flavors of coffee, toffee and caramel mix with citrus hops and finish with a nice bitterness.

The body is smooth and creamy.

Overall, this is a very good beer and one of the best on my Yellowstone/Grand Teton/SLC trip.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2009 17:27:04 | More by Shaw
Photo of vacax


4.55/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a deep caramel brown with a generous and thick reddish tan head. On the dark side for an ESB, but love the red tones and luxuriously thick head and lacing.

Aroma is an appetizing blend of earthy grassy hops that are complemented by crisp and rich caramel malts and brown sugar. The taste is quite similar, with the focus on the earthy grassy hops with just a hint of pineapple, balanced out with a caramel malt backbone that almost adds the more traditional ESB balance back to the hop proflie. A delicious beer, a bit hop forward. Medium to full bodied with low-medium carbonation.

A great take on an ESB from Grand Teton. At first I was concerned this beer was just a mediocre brew with a catchy name... but then I tasted it. This is my favorite ESB right now.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2009 07:30:31 | More by vacax
Photo of flexabull


3.68/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a clear and dark amber color with a small white head. Looks pretty good.

Aromas are quite malty, brewed tea like, with some earthy pine like hops.

Taste is mild, with general maltiness. Brewed tea like flavors, some caramel sweetness, crisp and clean with a light hop finish.

Mouthfeel is ok, but definitely feels too thin to my.

All in all, a good drinkable ESP. This could use a little more body though... still a beer worth trying, and quite sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2009 22:55:10 | More by flexabull
Photo of JBogan


3.95/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a very good looking dark amber color with a large creamy slightly off white head which leaves plenty of lacing clinging to the glass.

Smells of sweet malt with roasted nuts.

Tastes very much as it smells. No real sign of alcohol in there. Nicely balanced by a small amount of hops.

Mouthfeel was thick and smooth, but could have used a hint more carbonation. A little on the flat side.

This beer was a nice surprise and one I'd have again.

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2009 19:10:20 | More by JBogan
Photo of AgingWarrior


4.1/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep reddish brown into my Sam Adams beer glass. Aggressive pour produced a nice thick two finger head. Plenty of retention and lacing.

Smells like sweet malts with a hint of the hops underneath.

Tastes like it smells. It hits the tongue with rich sweetness and then the hops kick in on the back side.

Medium body and carbonation, but rich and pleasing.

This brew went down ever so easily....

This beer was a gift from a friend who had been to Idaho. I'm don't have a lot of experience with ESB's, but I know what I like, and I liked this beer a lot!

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2009 16:22:49 | More by AgingWarrior
Photo of tjkurz


3.15/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark brown with nice creamy head bottle poured into imperial pint glass - excellent lacing. Smells malty, earthy. Taste reminds me of a brown but with somewhat of a bitter finish - really not what I expected from an ESB. Mouthfeel was heavy - again not what I was expecting from an ESB. Drinkability diminished because it is very heavy. Can't see finishing two.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2009 12:43:33 | More by tjkurz
Photo of bmcclure


3.38/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear red with a nice foamy medium beige head. Aroma is light malt with a little orange hop. Flavor is initially quite malty followed by a blast of bitter hops, the finish is long and kind of bready. Quite drinkable and a decent example of an ESB..

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2009 17:56:28 | More by bmcclure
Photo of tpd975


4.15/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Foamy mess of a beer. I started to pour this one and in a split second it was on the floor. 9/10 of the glass was full of foam. Insane retention (not a good thing) with nice lace. Had I not poured it all over the floor I would have been a bit more forgiving.

S: Wonderful malty aroma. Tons of sweet malt with hints of caramel apple. Hints of brown sugar and a dash of green hops.

T: Wow this is a damn good ESB, I may go as far as great. Tons of rich crystal malt sweetness. Tons of brown sugar and rich caramel. Wonderful hints of summer fruit, nuts, and toffee. Hints of fresh orange hops in the finish.

M: Medium body, tons of carbonation.

D: Good and tasty, still pissed about the pour though, it was an absolute mess.

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2009 02:17:56 | More by tpd975
Photo of MisterClean


3.98/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the west coast beer festival

A - Poured mahogany with 2 fingers of cappuccino colored head. Dissipated slow and left nice lacing.

S/T - Caramel, grass, and light citrus.

M - Full-bodied and well-balanced. Could have been a bit creamier.

D - Good, but needs to be creamier. The color is a little dark and the alcohol content is high for the style.

Serving type: on-tap

05-17-2009 19:06:39 | More by MisterClean
Photo of spointon


4.05/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I poured this one from a 12oz brown bottle into a shaker pint glass.

A= This ale poured a mostly clear, rich dark amber brown color with a big 2" off-white head. The head eventually settled to a creamy cap and left some sticky lacing behind.

S= The aroma could only be described as rich. Lots of sweet malts, caramel, treacle, and a hint of earthy, spicy hops.

T= A heavy dose of caramelly sweet malts started things off followed by a citrusy hop character. Some dark fruity esters in there too. The finish dried a bit, but still retained some sweetness.

MF= Heavy side of medium bodied with a soft, slick, almost oily mouthfeel.

D= This was my first Grand Teton and though it was heavy for an ESB, it was a damn good ale. I would now like to try many other Grand Teton beers as well as have some more of this one!

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2009 06:07:38 | More by spointon
Bitch Creek ESB (Extra Special Brown) from Grand Teton Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 641 ratings.