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Schlafly Winter ESB - The Schlafly Tap Room

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Schlafly Winter ESB
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very good

279 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 279
Reviews: 147
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 12.07%
Wants: 6
Gots: 15 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
The Schlafly Tap Room visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our Winter ESB (Extra Special Bitter) may have the word “bitter” in its name, but the key to this style is balance. The combination of malts and hops creates a toasty, fruity flavor. Our ESB is dry hopped with a US grown hop varietal called Williamette, which has a pronounced spicy, lemon flavor.

In the early 1970’s, brewers in London and the south of England expanded the range of beers available in pubs, reacting to the wave of European lagers moving into the British pub scene. In addition to the ordinary bitters and pale ales, brewers developed recipes for stronger premium ales like ESB, special bitter and special pale ale. These beers contributed to the English traditional ale revival of the 1980’s, making their way into the beer portfolios of many American craft breweries.

30 IBU

(Beer added by: maxpower on 01-09-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 279 | Reviews: 147 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of stortore
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

stortore, Mar 25, 2014
Photo of VeganUndead
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

VeganUndead, Mar 24, 2014
Photo of fishguyac
4/5  rDev +5%

fishguyac, Mar 03, 2014
Photo of NooseJustice
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

NooseJustice, Mar 02, 2014
Photo of squack
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

squack, Feb 25, 2014
Photo of rlee1390
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A-Cloudy yellow orange in the glass, one finger head that doesn't last that long

S-Starts with a very toasty/bread mix with some caramel. Lots of oranges and other citrus present as well.

T-Stats malty with bread and caramel. Then orange, citrus and green apples. Moderate bitterness. Rather sweet.

M-Medium in body, some carbonation.

O-The level of fruity flavor really caught me off guard. Was expecting a maltier beer but the fruit flavors were rather nice.

rlee1390, Feb 12, 2014
Photo of AGB
4/5  rDev +5%

AGB, Feb 08, 2014
Photo of Henrich
3.45/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Woefully disappointing foam with no head retention. Color is slightly opaque copper. It appears quite carbonated, despite the poor foam characteristics.
Smell: Very fruity/citrusy and hoppy. The hops dominate everything. Great smell.
Taste: Basically the same as the smell. A mouth full of hops. Seriously, hardly any discerning flavor outside of the hops. Strong citrus with bitter and toasted grain (maybe) undertones. Quite enjoyable; this definitely showcases the hop variety.
Mouth-Feel: Fizzy and slightly thick compared to how it looks, but not lingering.
Overall: I don't think I'd buy this personally, but then again, I'm not really into highly-hopped beers. This one was very drinkable, just not really my cup of tea.

Henrich, Feb 06, 2014
Photo of threedaggers
3/5  rDev -21.3%

threedaggers, Feb 01, 2014
Photo of BrewSTL
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

BrewSTL, Jan 27, 2014
Photo of rapayn01
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

rapayn01, Jan 21, 2014
Photo of spinrsx
3.44/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz Bottle received in trade with cfrancis - thanks!

Appearance - Copper colour with an average size fizzy off white coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some faint lacing on the sides of the glass. The head lasted for around 2-3 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, caramel, hops

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel and malts mixed with light hops. There is also some toffee and a light nuttiness.

Overall - Pretty decent and quite drinkable. Seems to the fit the style well.

spinrsx, Jan 13, 2014
Photo of delta490
3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A- a great deal of sediment mars an otherwise nice medium amber with a great big creamy white head. Nice retention and lacing.

S- some nice biscuit notes and hints of golden raisin

T- A little underwhelming. The flavors match the aroma but are dialed down and subdued

M- Very thin for the style

O- not a terrible beer, in and of itself, but lacking in the malt richness of a traditional ESB.

delta490, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of jaydoc
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

jaydoc, Jan 05, 2014
Photo of BlueMoon10
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

BlueMoon10, Jan 05, 2014
Photo of Whiskeydeez
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Whiskeydeez, Jan 04, 2014
Photo of rrski198
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%

rrski198, Dec 27, 2013
Photo of emwild12
4/5  rDev +5%

emwild12, Dec 20, 2013
Photo of BerkM
1.18/5  rDev -69%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I love ESBs and most “winter beers” in general. This sounds and looks great. I was really looking forward to trying this. I’m from Missouri and I like to support the locals. BUT…. This is Awful, syrupy sweet and undrinkable for me. It seems purposely aggressively flavored to cover up any redeeming qualities. It reminds me of their Christmas Ale. They are both way too flavored and they both taste like how a cheap Christmas candle smells.

BerkM, Dec 14, 2013
Photo of ThunderChicken7
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

ThunderChicken7, Dec 13, 2013
Photo of taylor714914
3.06/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

I’m a schalfly fan boy, but  have to say, this was disappointing.  A rich translucent brown with a thin cap, this beers smells sweet and bready.  The flavor is somewhat off….there is almost a buttery characteristic to this beer midpalate that I can’t seem to shake.  Sweeness starts, but the buttery note cuts right through.  Finish is caramel with a touch of hop bitterness, but the butteriness just lingers forever.  Can’t say I’d pick this up again. 

taylor714914, Dec 12, 2013
Photo of jlee185
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

jlee185, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of Troville1990
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Troville1990, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of jman005
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

jman005, Dec 03, 2013
Schlafly Winter ESB from The Schlafly Tap Room
86 out of 100 based on 279 ratings.