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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 CiderGoggles
4/5  rDev +5%

CiderGoggles, Dec 01, 2013
Photo of Benvarine
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Benvarine, Dec 01, 2013
Photo of rodlavers
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

rodlavers, Nov 22, 2013
Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.36/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

The beer is a caramel-copper color. A cream colored head leaves nice soapy lacing.

The aroma is slightly hoppy, but spices, fruit, and sweet caramel come through making a lovely bouquet.

The taste starts out with sweet caramel then shifts into cinnamon spices before ending with tart fruits. So well balanced.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied, refreshing.

Overall, I just love this beer. Lots of variety in the palate, and not overloaded. Still a good ESB regardless of the month. Maybe my favorite Schlafly offering ever.

JuicesFlowing, Nov 16, 2013
Photo of 4amepiphany
4/5  rDev +5%

4amepiphany, Nov 10, 2013
Photo of Anvilfarm
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Anvilfarm, Nov 02, 2013
Photo of Kahlstrom
2.5/5  rDev -34.4%

Kahlstrom, Oct 27, 2013
Photo of crbnfbr
2.75/5  rDev -27.8%

crbnfbr, Oct 18, 2013
Photo of leroybrown10
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

leroybrown10, Jul 16, 2013
Photo of moarmare
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

moarmare, Jun 25, 2013
Photo of Johnny_Duck
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Johnny_Duck, Jun 22, 2013
Photo of aralim4311
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

aralim4311, Jun 11, 2013
Photo of ToddHolder
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

ToddHolder, May 11, 2013
Photo of InfragilisBrew
2.5/5  rDev -34.4%

InfragilisBrew, Apr 22, 2013
Photo of Schlafly33
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Schlafly33, Apr 09, 2013
Photo of vidguy17
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

vidguy17, Mar 30, 2013
Photo of Shagator
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Shagator, Mar 29, 2013
Photo of StaveHooks
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle served in a Dogfish Head IPA glass

A - Pours a hazy amber, with 1 finger of yellow tinted meringue head. Very nice retention with below average lacing.

S - Bready, pureed peaches, caramel, honey sweet malt, hints of light lemon citrus.

T - Bready malts, light caramel, the peach fruit carries over from the aroma and melds very well with the soft bready malts. There's notions of crisp lemon in there lightly cutting through the bready malt. Hops provide a tannin-like bitterness. Finishes bright and semi-dry.

M - Nice doughy texture, heavy side of medium, super soft carbonation, very nice texture.

This is an all around well crafted beer. It has a rich doughy character with a bright fruity side as well. I would enjoy this anytime of the year.

StaveHooks, Mar 29, 2013
Photo of Jamison85
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Jamison85, Mar 24, 2013
Photo of BryanCarey
3.74/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pouring to an orange/tan color, this brightly colored winter ESB features a nose of hops, caramel malts, and light fruit. There is a moderate amount of foam that tends to clump a little. The body of the beer is cloudy and the foam is slight, leaving little or no lacing as you drink.

This ESB offers the flavors of caramel malt, biscuits, bread, light grapefruit, and lemon. Hops add a good degree of balance to this beer and it remains sweet more than anything. The body is medium to light and the beer is easy- drinking.

This beer is labeled at an extra special bitter, but it is actually quite well balanced for the style. It also is not what I would expect in any beer that claims to be a winter seasonal. The taste is not spicy like other winter brews and it is actually more indicative of an everyday session type of beer. So, this is one of those beers that demands you leave your preconceived notions behind. It isn’t what you think it will be, but the results are still satisfying.

BryanCarey, Mar 15, 2013
Photo of bubseymour
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

bubseymour, Mar 10, 2013
Photo of Bosoxfan20
3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Poured 12 oz bottle into pint glass. Cloudy copper color with a 1 finger head that dissipates relatively quickly. Not a real thick head. Moderate lacing. Bottled on 1-30-13

S- A fruity aromatic splash hits me first. Maybe pineapple or peaches. Smells like i just opened one of those cans of mixed fruit that you take to lunch when you are in grade school. The malty base also comes through. Slightly toasty notes, but not as much as was billed on the label.

T- Once again, fruit flavor up front. Pineapple, tangerine, lemon. Still not detecting a ton of toasty bread flavors, but it does have a decent malt backbone. Some spice flavors let you know that it is a rye malt Moderate bitterness that lingers in the finish. Earthy hop flavors. Not overly dry. Balanced it is, complex it is not

M- Good drink ability. Average carbonation. Mid bodied. Smooth.

O- A nice brew. The aroma was probably the highlight for me. It was a smooth beer that was easy to drink. Would be nice to put a few glasses of these back while hanging with good company at a pub. It gets the job done for sure. Nothing i would insist other must try, but i wouldn't mind drinking again.

Bosoxfan20, Mar 07, 2013
Photo of nlriehl87
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

nlriehl87, Feb 27, 2013
Photo of scratch69
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I poured a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance- Cloudy, golden-orange color with a half a fingers worth of head. Light amount of runny lacing.

Smell- Caramel malt and some floral hops.

Taste- Lightly sweet, malt flavor with some earthy hop bitterness and a hint of citrus.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied with an average amount of carbonation. Smooth and crisp with a slightly dry finish.

Overall- This is a tasty beer. It's not not what I expected from this style, but it is still a good brew.

scratch69, Feb 27, 2013
Schlafly Winter ESB from The Schlafly Tap Room
86 out of 100 based on 279 ratings.