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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)

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very good

708 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 708
Reviews: 329
rAvg: 3.75
pDev: 13.6%
Wants: 10
Gots: 45 | 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
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Ratings: 708 | Reviews: 329 | Display Reviews Only:
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.

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.

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...

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.

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

Photo of Gavage
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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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!

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.

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..

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.

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.

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!

Photo of beveritt
4.63/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a standard pint glass. Thanks to Wasatch for setting me up with this in a selection of brews from out West. Label is a background of river rocks with a white banner superimposed. No clear freshness date.

Appearance: Initially pours with a massive 4 finger head, enough that I have to pause during the pour. Eventually settles to a still substantial coating, leaving behind amazingly thick and sticky lacing, literally looks like some kind of glue or resin. The beer itself is dark mahogany, bordering on opaque. Some sediment remains in the bottle.

Smell: Strong aroma of caramel malt with notes of dark fruit and bubblegum.

Taste: Smokey caramel malt upfront, with a distinct sugary sweetness. Mild lingering bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Lower than average carbonation level. Body is excellent.

Drinkability: My first beer from Grand Teton and I am thoroughly impressed. I can honestly say that I have never seen a beer with such a resinous, sticky head and lacing.

Photo of riversider76
3.63/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours amber brown with a thin tan head. Some retention and very nice laceing. Aroma is bready with hints of carmel. Body is lighter than I expected with a good amount of carbonation. Taste is bready,and malty with some hops in the finish. Very good stuff.

Photo of WesWes
3.83/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark amber color with a 1/2" offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great! It has a complex malt scent that screams burnt toffee and bisquits. The taste is decent. It has a smooth crystal malt and hops taste that's mildly bitter and a bit thin in the finish. The aroma suggests a heavier, warmer beer, but it doesn't carry over to the taste. The mouthfeel is decent as well. It is a low/medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinker. It's complex, yet thin and easily quaffable.

Photo of maximum12
4.45/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ThirstyHopHead for sending a couple of these my way.

BC ESB is dark amber, bit o' foam, looks purty with the light shining behind it. My wife approves of the smell but has to work tonight, so no sippee cup for her! Smells like someone bred a hereweizen with an IPA late at night during a thunderstorm. Whilst cackling.

Wow, cool beans. Taste is very bitter, which surprised me, due to my evident reading deficiency (you know, extra special BITTER). More so that I expected, however. Plenty of earthy, grainy, & nutty tones lurking under the surface bitterness. There's a lot of depth here that I wasn't really expecting. Guess my expectations were all wrong here, but I'm happy to say they've been exceeded warmly.

If it didn't peel the skin off the top of my mouth, I can see sessioning up on this one. It's smooth & easy to drink, but has a very appealing taste profile.

Excellent brew! I haven't had an ESB yet that could hold a candle to it, but now I'm going to have to start looking harder.

Photo of kbnooshay
2.68/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a weird orange-brown red with a non existent head. Aroma is of strong of hay and rabbit pellets. Im glad this doesn't taste how it smells. Flavor is of earthy bitter hops and weirdness. feel is tingly from the carbonation. The oddness of this beer will prevent me from ever buying another. There are much better ESBs out there.

Photo of bakeller
3.75/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a stella artois glass

A: Deep red copper color, crystal clear without any sediment. Pours with a 1 finger tan head that dies down to a nice ring that hugs the side of the glass. There is a fantastic thick lace that graces the side of the glass as you drink.

S: Nose is predominantly subtle hops. Some grassy, citrus, and pine tones

T: Taste follows the smell. There is a clear earthy/grassy taste. Some caramel malts also mingled in. The hops are in the forefront. Drink finishes with a slightly bitter piney taste

M: Smooth, crisp, and clean. Carbonation is mild.

D: Goes down really easy, would love this on a summer night, very crisp and refreshing. I enjoyed this beer.

Photo of Proteus93
3.93/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle comes courtesy dkachur

A: Quite a deep red... Dark for an ESB. Short head, decent retention, spotty lacing.

S: Toasty malts, a bit of creamed corn, caramel and a soft kiss of chocolate. Pleasant and easy going.

T: Some soft fruity flavours, a modest maltiness and caramel / chocolate sweetness.

M + D: Soft carbonation with a bit of tingling carbonation noted later in the mouth. Medium body, easier drinking. Not bad at all, and I'd be happy to try it again.

4.22/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this as a bonus from colts9016. This was one of the best ESB's I ever had, so I decided to start reviewing.

A- Pours a dark ruby brown with a thick tan head leaving behind a noticeable lacing.

S- Very nice nose with a nutty sweetness with citrus overtones.

T- Bitter hops up front followed by chestnut and sweet molasses. The bitterness stays through the finish and becomes more prominent as it warms.

M- Medium body with a refreshing carbonation which works well with the bitterness.

D- very drinkable ESB. Well balanced with the right amount of bitterness. One of the nicest ESB's out there.

Bitch Creek ESB (Extra Special Brown) from Grand Teton Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 708 ratings.