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Sawtooth Ale - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sawtooth AleSawtooth Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,846 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,846
Reviews: 662
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 12.9%
Wants: 51
Gots: 140 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-16-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,846 | Reviews: 662 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of andreasmwatt
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4






andreasmwatt, Jun 30, 2008
Photo of Getinthevan
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at the Leon Pub last night and this was very tasty.

Appearance was a light orange/copper with a small amount of head and bubbles floating straight to the top.

Smell was pretty aromatic, almost citrusy in a way, but not too overpowering.

Taste was very awesome. It had a strong bite and went down smooth for a bitter beer. It wasn't overly bitter, and very drinkable.

Mouthfeel was smooth and refreshing. Full of flavors, mainly citrus/orange.

Drinkability is major. You can kick back with a six-pack of these and feel recharged, as these bring on a nice buzz in the late hours of the night.

Getinthevan, Jun 26, 2008
Photo of beerthulhu
3.45/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a clear, light coppery-orange with a slight white head that quickly vanished.

S: On the nose was citrus, toasted malt sweetness, and a light herbal hopping.

T: there was a slight caramel sweetness that started things out with some fruity tones (apples). The beer finished with a nice flowery hop zing. Spicy, hoppy and fairly good.

M: a little thin, lightly carbonated and smooth textured.

D: A good pub or everyday drinking ale, fruity and spicy hopwise

beerthulhu, Jun 26, 2008
Photo of neenerzig
3.9/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. This beer pours a clear dark gold/amber/copper color. Settles to a good ring lining the inside of the glass and a fairly thin surface layer. Good lacing here. Has a sort of biscuity aroma of caramel malt and some pine hops, certainly could be a bit stronger here. The taste is the same pretty much, biscuity caramel malty sweetness, rounded out by some piney hop bittereness aslong with a slight bit of clove or other spice. maybe a slight hint of banana as well. Good balance, but I do wish the flavors had been a bit stronger overall. Not a typical ESB taste at all, but still quite enjoyable.Has a smooth, crisp, medium bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Easy to drink indeed.


neenerzig, Jun 24, 2008
Photo of Buebie
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I purchased this from Heritage liquore in St. Paul MN

Pours a hazy orange/ amber with a two finger white head. This is a bit darker for an ale. Almost like a double ipa.

Good amount of bitter citruss hops present on the nose. Some sweet bready caramel present as well.
Taste is very crisp and dry. Not much of any sweatness in the taste. This is a light bodied ale with medium to moderate carbonation.
I would drink this again, as its a great craft style epa. This has been done before and originality is not present, but its a damn fine beer. I'd take this over alot of other epa's any day.

Buebie, Jun 04, 2008
Photo of Brad007
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Color: Reddish-amber color with a two-finger head that fades into one.

Aroma: Sweet, fruity and malty upfront. Hint of hop bitterness on the nose.

Taste: Biscuit malt upfront with low hop bitterness. Smooth. Mildly sweet.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, biscuity and slightly bitter. Packed with flavor.

Drinkability: Very drinkable but at the same time, average overall. It won't knock you out but it leaves more to be desired from the style. Worth a shot though.

Brad007, Jun 01, 2008
Photo of Tolann
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Nice clear amber/copper color. I didn't get a bunch of head out of my poor pour. It's a skill I need to work on... Not a lot of carbonation to see dancing in the glass. for an ESB I for whatever reason expected a darker appearance.

S - bitter in the nose. Some bready malt. I'm getting more floral hops as this beer warms. Gotta be patient with this one. It's really improving with warmth.

T - hoppy and bitter. It realy lays on the bitters at the back of your tongue. Taste is also improving with warmth. Hops are becoming more obvious and floral.

M - Medium mouthfeel and not a lot of carbonation. Good aftertaste of bitter hops. Could have been a bit more heavy IMO.

D - I love bitters nearly as much as I love IPAs. This one is a low enough alcohol level I could drink all night. It's not quite everything I'd want in an ESB, but it's pretty darn good. I'll have no problem finishing the rest of these ESBs from the mix pack.

Tolann, Jun 01, 2008
Photo of marcpal
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into tulip glass with a pizza. Ive been pretty impressed by Left Hand as of late, getting around to their mainstays.

A: Lacing didnt quit on this one. Amber color with a puffy meringue head- high grades here because this is a picturesque ESB.

N: Fresh bakery aroma and biscuity. Mild hops and malt as it warmed some.

T: Bread and caramel malts. Some hops and resounding spices. The bitterness comes later and appropriate for the style. Surely not the best of ESBs but it gets the job done in taste.

M: Smooth and soft. Zing of spiciness when it was poured cold but came down a notch with the rise in temp.

D: A solid ESB, not my favorites because I could use a little more bitter in place of the spice but still a good drink needing just some extra bitterness. I do recommend.

marcpal, May 28, 2008
Photo of kirok1999
3.78/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Arrived a nice clear gold with tons of lacing that coats the glass.
Smells of mad hops, grassy and piney.
Taste is very bitter hops, very little malts, just enough to provide a little backbone for the hops. Feels biting and just a little thin but a very nice hot day beer.

kirok1999, May 27, 2008
Photo of ajmoody76
4.38/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bought at local beer store. 12 ounce bottle poured into an imperial pint glass. clear amber with a thick off white head. looks good.

citrus fruit aroma. has some malt sweetness. no off odors.

caramely and earthy. good balance. sweet aftertaste.

good carbonation. mid to full body. i really enjoyed the mouth feel. nice lace. i dig this beer. i could do a session. i will probably pick up a six in the near future. very good esb.

ajmoody76, May 24, 2008
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.88/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, amber body with a medium-sized, white head that lefts generous layers of lacing on the way down.

Smell: Dry, crumbly, toasted biscuits seasoned with a good dose of spices. Faroff notes of dried citrus rind and creme caramel.

Taste: Toasted biscuit maltiness with a restrained caramel sweetness. Fairly spicy hop character, maybe a hint of citrus, too. Medium bitterness is quite clean. Lingering hoppiness and hint of breadcrusts.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Fine, flavorful ESB from Left Hand.

ChainGangGuy, May 24, 2008
Photo of stephens101
3.98/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite session brews for a long time now. A brownish pour is topped off by a one-finger tan head which recedes fairly quickly and leaves some streaks of lacing behind. Smells and tastes sweet and malty with some hops and tea thrown in to balance things out. Fairly light bodied and drinkable, yet quite tasty. While the Sawtooth is not the highest rated beer, there's something about it I can get to again and again.

stephens101, May 23, 2008
Photo of burnstar
3.48/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper color with a medium head. Nice lacing down the glass. Aroma is mild herbal hops with a bit of toastiness. Taste is hoppy. Low sweetness. Toasty malt. Bitter in the finish. Light to medium bodied. Pretty drinkable. Overall a decent American ESB. It lacking the pleasant malty complexity of many English versions but it's nice anyway.

burnstar, May 23, 2008
Photo of barleywinefiend
3.05/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a nice amber in color with a big head that fades to a thin layer of bubbles. Lots of malty sweetness in the nose. Medium hoppyness. Dry and slightly bitter with slight coffee notes. Finish has just enough bitterness. This is an average ESB at best.

barleywinefiend, May 14, 2008
Photo of Bamabrew22
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured a beautiful amber straight into the glass with a 2-finger fluffy head. This beer smelled of delicious spicy hops. The taste was great; nice foral notes with a bit of sweet malt and a good hop punch. A great West coast style ale. Overall, you can't go wrong with this one.

Bamabrew22, May 09, 2008
Photo of omnigrits
4.3/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A relatively pale amber colour with a nice head that dissipates quickly to leave no head and no lacing.

The aroma is minimal, but what's there is very pleasant. Plenty of floral hops with a hint of fresh-baked bread. The malt isn't too obvious until the beer hits the tongue, and even then it's very well balanced against the hops. A touch of citrus, and a very nice finish - dry and bitter with a bare hint of malty sweetness. Mouthfeel is very good indeed - perfect carbonation.

This is a beer I could drink all night. I really have to find this one on tap somewhere.

omnigrits, May 01, 2008
Photo of Jayli
3.9/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This pours a nice copper/golden color. Minimal off white head that faded very quickly.

The taste is sharp, with quite a bite to it. I wasn't expecting the bite but after a few sips, it went down quite nicely. This is nice beer that you could sit and have a few.

Jayli, Apr 25, 2008
Photo of Beerbuddha
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice dark golden copper color with a nice 2 finger, off white head. Lacing is present throughout whole beer drinking experience. Aroma was minimal. Had a nice bready yeastiness to it with a citrus hint. Also a hint of chocolate in the nose. The taste was very nice. A good bitterness balanced perfectly with the hops. Chocolate also present. The mouthfeel was medium body with medium carbonation. Overall anice drinkable beer. Something I could sit and drink a lot of.

Beerbuddha, Apr 23, 2008
Photo of adams82
3.43/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep copper colour with a white head. Filtered clear.

Smells a little yeasty with a toasty malt background, notes of citric and fruity hops linger throughout.

Tastes of citric and slightly floral/fruity hops with toasted malts in the background, finishes with a bit of a toast or biscuit. The hops really dance around on this one and become more and more dominant sip after sip. Not as balanced as an ESB should be, but it tastes pretty good.

I think this should really be categorized as an American Pale Ale rather than an ESB as it is a bit unbalanced and what little malty character exists shortly gives way to hops rather quickly. Technicality aside, this is an easy drinking session beer with some pretty nice hoppy notes.

adams82, Apr 22, 2008
Photo of hckyfn9999
3.63/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light brown with golden hues. Big head, good retention, nice lacing. Aroma is of caramel, honey, raisins, and fruit. Taste is pretty sweet upfront with more caramel, toasted malt, finish is of bitter, citrusy hops. Medium mouthfeel. Pretty easy drinker.

hckyfn9999, Apr 21, 2008
Photo of SIRIUS2
3.83/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Sort of a light amber color, clear, with thin white creamy head. Low retention and light lacing.

S: Malty, caramel, with some fruity notes in the hops.

T: Quite malty with a light sweetness and the propensity for a dry finish. The hops seem to be fighting for balance but the grain malt flavors still come through. The malts seem to be on the lighter side, pale & caramel. Finish is pretty quick and relatively dry, with little bitter hop kiss at the end.

M&D: Mostly lighter flavors of malt but it has a heavier weight to it in the mouth. Carbonation is fine but abundant and somehow seems to bring out the malt nicely. I can really taste the barley in this one and for the most part, it is pretty good. It's almost reminiscent of a lighter bock style.

SIRIUS2, Apr 20, 2008
Photo of Moxley
3.18/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer was given to me by fellow BA reviewer Hyland24 from one of his beer of the month shipments.

A - Poured a cloudy amber with a nice foamy 1 ½ off white head that settle a little but stuck around. Sketchy lacing

S - I got a bit of a sour smell, some yeast and a faint alcohol smell. Not the best smelling beer

T - Slightly bitter, with malt and caramel up front. I got a strong tea leaf flavor in the finish. Pleepleus, fellow reviewer, noted a touch of vanilla bean and I too noticed it once he pointed it out.

M&D - A bit high on the carbonation for my liking. Medium bodied with a creamy, chewy, yeasty feel. Coated my mouth nicely.

Overall this is a decent beer. I don't know that I would have it again, but I'm willing to try any beer once.

Moxley, Apr 18, 2008
Photo of jsprain1
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I got this one after a positive review from a friend. I wasn't disappointed.
A- The appearance was a a nice copper color with a bit of lighter red, almost orange edges and a finger and half head or so, with a bit of lacing.
S- A pretty solid malt smell with a good amount of hops and fruit backing it up. It reminds me of dough and grapefruit or pineapple.
T- The taste matched the scent but with a but more hoppiness. It was fairly sweet but kept the dough taste there as well. Fruit esters definitely persisted but weren't overwhelming.
M: There was a decent amount of carbonation, but not enough to negatively contribute to the beer. It was a bit heavier in weight than I expected but again, not to an overpowering degree.
O- A good sessionable beer. A solid choice. Plenty of flavor

jsprain1, Apr 17, 2008
Photo of Cyberkedi
4.08/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aroma is strong and richly malty with some fruity undertones. It pours a dark golden brown with a thick, fluffy head that sticks around for a bit. Flavor has a good balance of malt and hops, and the hop bitterness is not overwhelming, but it is not subtle either. This ale is lively in one's mouth and smooth going down the hatch.

Cyberkedi, Apr 12, 2008
Photo of Jwale73
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on 12/12/2007. Served in a standard pint glass. Poured a translucent reddish-copper color; excellent clarity. Two finger rocky, white head with decent retention eventually dissipates into some foamy residue. Sticky webs of lacing adhered to the glass during and after the session. Aromas of hops, citrus and bread. Flavors of grain and some fruity esters and a slight hoppy bitterness at the finish. Some carbonation, but slightly subdued; not at all unpleasant however. Very drinkable session brew, but a little subdued for the style due to the minimal hops presence. However, very well balanced from start to finish.

Jwale73, Apr 11, 2008
Sawtooth Ale from Left Hand Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 1,846 ratings.