Full Sail ESB - Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub

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Full Sail ESBFull Sail ESB

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BA SCORE
84
good

74 Reviews
THE BROS
85
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 74
Hads: 220
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 10.16%
Wants: 4
Gots: 26 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub visit their website
Oregon, United States

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

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 12-28-2011

'A nicely balanced small batch bitter concocted by our own Barney Brennan, featuring five different specialty malts and aromatic Challenger hops'

35 IBU

Originally a pub-only beer, Re-released in January 2012 as part of the Brewer's Share series.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 74 | Hads: 220
Photo of muldersha
3.35/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle purchased in Portland, OR with an Enjoy By date of 09/05/15

Sports a clear copper/amber body with a solid tan head that dissipates slowly and leaves a pleasant lacing.

Super estery aromas of banana bread and macadamia nuts with more subtle nuances of citrus, brown sugar, and Christmas spices.

Very soft, slightly sweet, very malty, and medium-bodied with dry, herbal finish.

This is a solid anytime brew, though maybe a bit one-dimensional. (479 characters)

Photo of sporklift87
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Half finger off-white. Short retention and no lacing. Darker orange, yet clear. Straightforward bitterness on nose, suggests bitter orange peel, with some nearly medicinal hints. On tongue, bitter hops are up front with toasted and caramel malts on finish. Feels medium bodied, with a mild viscosity and slight tack. Lighter carbonation and good slickness. Overall, pretty solid, especially considering how easy it is to find them for about a dollar each. Not very complex, but not expecting it to be, either. A pretty good go-to on a budget. (542 characters)

Photo of archyquaffer
4.12/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a longneck into a shaker pint. A semi-aggressive pour produces a good frothy, chunky pale tan head that sticks to the sides of the glass. The beer is a crystal clear pale amber color with light carbonation.

The aroma is fairly subtle and melds into the flavor such that it is scarcely discernable after awhile. There is a good deal of pleasant bitterness in the aroma-flavor, with nutty and citrus notes balancing a malt base with caramel notes. It seems rather more bitter than the stated 35 IBUs but is quite smooth overall and has a creamy mouth feel.

This is a very quaffable brew that strikes me as true to the English style with a twist of northwestern American intermixed. Excellent plus. (716 characters)

Photo of ricke49
3.81/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

It's getting harder in the IPA crazed northwest to find domestic (read: fresh) ESBs. Full Sail is to be commended for helping to fill the void left by Deschutes when they dropped one of their original 3 brews (ESB). Full Sail achieves a good classic hop malt balance with this offering. Helpfully freshness dated as 'by Aug 9 2015'. Appearance is spectacular. Taste and smell certainly passable. Enjoyed this British inspired homegrown version of one of my favorite styles. A "working" persons beer at a great price. (521 characters)

Photo of delta490
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I had a review. It was pretty good. Somehow it did not upload despite hitting "Review". The beer is amber and has a white head. Smells mildly of malt. Tastes about the same with a nutty quality to the finish. Nice body weight and feel. Decent but nothing exciting. (264 characters)

Photo of KTCamm
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

8/10 review....Pours amber medium dark, light layer of white. Light malty nose, caramel hints. Toffee sweet, quite toasty. Slight spices in there too. Very light carbonation and a mild hop burn. Starts strong, bitter a little too pushy. (236 characters)

Photo of MarkNoseBeer
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%

Great, easy to drink, crisp. Bitter, but not overly so. Great with a burger or sub. One of the better ones from full sail, comparable in quality to the Amber I think. (167 characters)

Photo of seedyone
4.07/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

05/14/14 On tap. Now this is what a beer should taste like. It hits all the right spots. Not wanting to ruin the magic w/analytics I'll just say this is a great example of a well rounded & balanced beer.

At 6.5% I'm going to have to exhibit some restraint...not a strong point.

Funny...I find myself thinking this is just short of great, but only because it's so solid in appeal. Nothing sharpish or spiky. Solid is what I'm left with & there's nothing wrong with that. (473 characters)

Photo of Brutaltruth
3.69/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Good session ESB from Full Sail. Pour a reddish amber with medium white head that dies down to thin clinging lacing. Nose of is subtle with hints of caramel malts, light herbal hops, and some light bread qualities. Flavor is mild caramel malts with light hops bitterness to the back, mellowed out by the malt. Very nice mouth feel with light bittering hops on the aftertaste. Nice all around session beer for the more novice beer nut or a good one for large get-togethers. (472 characters)

Photo of allengarvin
3.57/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours out a clear walnut amber color with a small very white head. The nose offers a moderate malt scent, a little grainy, with a faint hop presence. And though faint in aroma, bitterness comes through well to taste, providing a good offset to the strong malt flavor. It's too bad hop flavor is a bit lacking. This feels more like a generic amber American ale than an ESB. It's drinkable enough, but not worth a special release. (433 characters)

Photo of KYGunner
3.54/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A great deal of carbonation bubbles teamed through the body of bright copper. This was capped by a dense head that thickened across the top and laced well.

The aroma is crackery, almost biscuit like, with barley, and Pilsner cereal malts.

The flavors are dry and malty. I get good barley notes with a cracker, toast, cereal grains and even a rice like taste.

The feel is nicely dry, smooth with a moderate carbonation.

This is a typical example of the style with a good grain profile it simply does not set itself apart from say a Fullers ESB. (547 characters)

Photo of Fatehunter
3.68/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a thin head on a dark red colored body.
The aroma is rich malt and caramel. Wonderful.
The taste has a nice malt sweetness all the way through, broken up a little in the middle by some lemon bitterness. Great profile.
The texture is soft with moderate carbonation.
Quite enjoyable. (287 characters)

Photo of Zorro
3.4/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper colored ale with a small tan colored head.

Smells of caramel and scorched sugar. Mildly sweet smelling with some grassy hop. Light fruity scent of pineapple. Fainter scent of plum.

Starts out mildly sweet with a sharp bitter finish. Some tobacco leaf and leather with a stout bitter finish. Carmel and some burnt sugars with a little hard water flavor. Grassy hop flavor doesn't taste as fruity as it smells.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall this is pretty tasty, I will have to get another six pack of this for the weekend. (535 characters)

Photo of mikeg67
3.58/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours amber with a long lasting, white, fluffy head. Aroma is of piney hops and caramel malt. Body is medium and smooth. Piney, earthy hops dominate the flavor, with caramel malt and some fruity esters in the background. Finish is long and hoppy. Overall it is good session brew. (293 characters)

Photo of thebeergeek
2.41/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Wow, Full Sail. What went wrong here? I am a fan of your "amber ale", so, I was expecting something good with your ESB. I've been a homebrewer since 1992, so, I can tell when something has gone wrong in the brewing process, The beer starts out well enough, fairly malty and dry. But, then, uh oh. What is that WEIRD after taste, that lingers and lingers? I can only figure the brew was fermented at too warm a temperature, or something is not right with the yeast strain. I was hoping for an English style (Fullers') or American (Anderson Valley) ESB taste. Not even close. Please reformulate your recipe. (605 characters)

Photo of arizcards
3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked up a single from Total Wine (received by Total Wine on 7/8/13) in late September for $1.49. Best before 8/16/13...oh well.

Beer poured orange with an off white head that dissipated quickly.

Nose has hints of citrus.

Taste is very well balanced, caramel malts and citrus hops merge nicely. Lingering bitterness in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and pretty smooth.

Overall this is a really smackable beer despite it's age. Ages well LOL! The brewers at Full Sail nailed the style on this one. Definitely worthy of a shot and I will look for this next spring! (580 characters)

Photo of StaveHooks
3.49/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle served in a Sam Adams perfect pint glass

A - Pours a clear copper with a dense off-white head

S - Sweet bread, caramel, very sweet and bready, tangy fruit, apple, nutty yeasty, hints of alcohol, very British aroma.

T - Hops upfront, grassy with a hint of citrus, caramel malt rushes in providing a full balanced sweetness, notes of toffee and toasted grain as well. Some weird artificial notes come up but are very faint. Hints of apple and creamy vanilla come in giving way to a strong tea tannin bitterness. Grassy and herbal hops sing into the finish. The finish pushes heavy tannins that linger on the palate long after.

M - Low carbonation, medium full body, creamy feel with a tannin dry finish

Great stab at the style. Nice homey caramel malts that showed grain notes with some fruit notions. Everything worked except for the hints of artificial flavors that faintly showed up. Very good but not quite what you'd find in the UK. I would pick up a six of this anytime. (991 characters)

Photo of puboflyons
3.53/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle marked 06/24/13-66. Sampled on September 17, 2013.

The pour is a good looking medium amber with reddish hues and a moderate off-white head that becomes a ring.

The aroma has some of the qualities of an ESB that I am used to with caramel toasted malts, fudge, and butter. Hops are downplayed.

The body is medium and creamy.

The taste most definitely begins sweet and malty and ends nice and bitter with a quick lingering finish. At the same time it seems to be missing something that I like about ESB's but I can't pin my finger on it. (566 characters)

Photo of kennymule
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Red amber with one finger head that dissipates quickly leaving light lacing.

Smell - Slight caramel nose.

Taste - Caramel sweetness right up front leading into some biscuit and finishing with a semi-dry hop dryness. Pretty well balanced.
Mouthfeel - Medium body with a semi-dry finish.

Overall - I'm not an expert on ESB as a style, but I tend to rate beers on how they taste, not if they have held to tradition for the style. FS ESB is a good beer that is easy to drink and definitely can have more than one without feeling bombed, boozed and busted. Buy it, drink it, share it. (595 characters)

Photo of Spikester
3.41/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I have had a couple of six packs so far and have a few conclusions to pass along. Tasty beer though a bit on the sweet end of the ESB spectrum. Hops are a bit less prominent than I would have expected. Since Deschutes and Bridgeport have quit bottling ESB's this will have to suffice for now. Always on the lookout for this style of beer. (338 characters)

Photo of BobN
3.83/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - poured into a pint glass. Honey colored, pillowy cream-colored head with very good retention throughout tasting.

S - starts with a nice biscuity profile, sweet caramel and toffee, and maybe a floral hint

T - malty, sweet caramel which is balanced with a nice clean hoppiness that trails to nice lingering bitterness

M - light to medium carbonation

O - Very nice ESB, Would definitely enjoy this again. (410 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.74/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Enjoy by date of 08/16/13

Appearance - Pours a clear, bright red amber with a light tan finger width head. Fair retention, resulting in a thin layer of suds across the surface. Lacing is small, spotty and with fair stick.

Smell - Toasted malt, hints of caramel. Very light floral and grass notes.

Taste - Follows the nose; toasted bread or biscuit upfront and throughout. Light caramel notes. The hops hit on the back-end with grass and light floral character.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium body with moderate carbonation. Smooth. Semi-dry finish.

Overall - A commendable ESB from Full Sail. Nothing special, but its full flavor and ease of drink makes this a beer I wouldn't mind having again. The kind of beer you'd drink and watch baseball with, or maybe that's just me. (776 characters)

Photo of brewcifix
3.77/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- ESB pours my absolute favorite golden amber color with a cream colored frothy head that dissipates to a thin film that remains for the session.

S- Caramel, toffee, sugar candy, and sweet malts delight the nose! This stuff smells just as beautiful as it looks!

T- The "bitter" is comprised of a roasted malt front that comes in strong, followed by caramel, sugar, and a note of honey that mellow the flavor nicely. Mild hops sweep in on the finish, balancing this brew perfectly. Roasted malts linger long on the palate. This is a proper Bitter that rightfully claims to be "Extra Special".

M- Light to medium weight and hardy carbonation make this beer lively and refreshing. This beer can be enjoyed in Spring, Summer, and Fall. It has characteristics that would compliment all three seasons.

Overall, this is easily one of my favorite Bitter styles. It's robust roasted malts and lack of over-the-top sweetness make it manly as hell. This concoction reminds me of unfinished wood, tough leather, and black iron. WARNING: This beer may accelerate mustache and/or beard growth. (1,084 characters)

Photo of TheMarkE
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Caramel colored with a decent head.

Smell: Toffee, caramel, toasted malts, with hints of citrus and pine.

Taste: Sweet malts, pine, and citrus.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, syrupy. A bit of hop bitterness in the aftertaste.

The Verdict: Not bad. Taken on it's own merits as a fairly balanced brew it's just fine, but compared to a quality ESB it falls short. (371 characters)

Photo of XCOR
3.36/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This was a little sweeter and a little less bitter than I expected, especially with the title "Extra Special Bitter." Was that supposed to be "extra bitter" beer that was special, or "extra special" beer that happened to be bitter?

Either way, it was pleasant. (262 characters)

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Full Sail ESB from Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub
84 out of 100 based on 74 ratings.