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Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter) - Wells & Young's Ltd

Not Rated.
Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter)Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter)

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BA SCORE
86
very good

419 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 419
Hads: 833
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 11.84%
Wants: 16
Gots: 84 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Wells & Young's Ltd visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: xlperro on 10-23-2001

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 419 | Hads: 833
Photo of superspak
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle into imperial pint glass, best before 3/22/2012. Pours fairly crystal clear reddish copper color with a 1 finger fairly dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. spotty soapy lacing clings to the glass. Aromas of caramel, pear, apple, toast, biscuit, nuttiness, molasses, toffee, and light herbal. Very nice aromas with good strength and balance. Taste of caramel, toast, nuttiness, pear, apple, biscuit, toffee, molasses, light earth, and herbal. Lingering notes of caramel, toast, nuttiness, light fruit, biscuit, and toffee on the finish for a bit. Very nice balance of flavors that are quite robust; zero cloying after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a nice creamy and lightly slick mouthfeel that is very nice. Overall this is a damn nice ESB offering. Great balance of fairly robust flavors; very smooth and easy to drink. Really enjoyed this. (921 characters)

Photo of shand
4.04/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wells Bombardier pours a clear ruby-brown with a small cap of head. The aroma is awesome and just what I want from the style. It's got an assertive, but not overwhelming amount of caramel malt, along with some nuts, bright fruits and a touch of pepper. The taste is a little less assertive than the nose and comes on gently with a bit of caramel before revealing everything from the nose at once - the caramel and nutty malts, the bright fruits, and the bit of pepper rush right in, leaving a nice, flavorful yet mellow aftertaste. Maybe a touch too much on the fruits, but otherwise solid. The mouthfeel is a touch over-carbonated, but otherwise nice. The drinkability is very good. Overall, this is a great ESB from a style I'm increasingly realizing I'll never fully unlock without a trip to England. (803 characters)

Photo of eduardolinhalis
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle served in a Pint glass.

A: Pours a dark amber copper clear color forming a big bubbled and very creamy beige head. Excellent retention and lots of lacings left

S: Sweet toffee, caramel malts and strong notes of flowery British style hops. In overall, it's a very "British" Ale

T: Slightly sweet upfront. Mainly composed by toffee, caramel malts and bready yeasts. Strong notes of citrus hoppy bitterness in the end

M: Light to medium body. Medium carbonation. A little bit molasses. Toffee and mild citrus hoppy bittersweet aftertaste

O: Good drinkability. Extremely British. Great session beer (612 characters)

Photo of Tone
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, amber color. 1/3 inch head of an off-white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of slight citrus hops, slight pale malt, slight sweet malt, and a hint of caramel malt. Fits the style of an Extra Special / Strong Bitter. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with a low carbonation level. Tastes of hint of sweet malt, slight pale malt, slight citrus hops, hint of floral hops, and a hint of caramel malt. Overall, good appearance and feel. (459 characters)

Photo of mactrail
3.46/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Attractive dark amber in the tall glass. Nice sudsy foam, which is a pleasant nod to the American consumer. Light bodied but warm-toned and even fairly rich. The classic British mineral taste. Fairly hoppy but I wouldn't say there is much of an aroma. A fair amount of maltiness, though you wouldn't call it rich. Some roasted malt, a tart resiny taste, a hint of walnuts and apple skins, and then that foamy taste that makes me wonder about water flowing through limestone.

It's hard to review these English beers in cans or bottle. This is more of a lager than what you would find on the hand pump in a pub. However, it's a highly drinkable sudsy gulp from the modestly-priced 440 ml can which seems to be a Trader Joe's regular. (732 characters)

Photo of FlyingBull
3.47/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Nice light amber color, clear, 1 finger head that lasted the pour.

S: Somewhat sweet/floral, malty, nice English hop aroma.

T: Slightly on the sweet side, malty on the front; medium hop flavor and bitterness in the middle, smooth. To me, it kind of tasted like a "better" PBR on tap. Strange, but I found this beer very drinkable and easy to like.

M: medium bodied and carobonation; nice mouthfeel - easy to drink.

O: This beer was not as I expected. It was a little more sweet but still had some hoppiness in it. It's very drinkable. I got a 4 pack of cans at Trader Joe's. Would buy again. A nice beer to throw in the ice chest mix for a party. (654 characters)

Photo of elNopalero
3.41/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Trader Joes for a buck a can—sold in four packs—and for the price you can’t beat it!

Poured it into an imperial pint glass just because I could. I was treated to two big fingers of cottony foam that died down into a gummy lacing atop an amber-caramel brew. Not much of an aroma to speak of—more of a light malt than anything—but the flavor has a light maltiness, a mellow bitterness and a clean finish. This is one I’ll pick up again. (465 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best by 6/16/13.

Pours a clear copper with a 2 inch foamy orange-tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy chunks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, burnt caramel, and some slight metallic aromas. Taste is of toasted malt, slight caramel, and some nutty flavors. There is a mild hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink. (517 characters)

Photo of beergoot
3.98/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rich amber body with a very thick, creamy head. Aroma comes across as rich, sweet malt grains with an emphasis on caramel and some citurs hop smell. Some toasted bread. Toffee and caramel sweetness to the taste; slightly burnt or carmelized sugars. Buttery. Light, bright bitterness rounds the flavor out. Medium body, clean yet chewey.

A very flavorful, decently balanced ESB. Nice complexity, leaning more towards the sweet malt side of things. (447 characters)

Photo of Reaper16
4.33/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

14.9oz. can served into a nonic pint glass

Pours a dark amber color with plenty of red undertones. It's close to a garnet slash ruby color. Decent clarity to the body. The head is strange looking. It's huge, first of all -- 2.5 fingers of sand colored foam, though it settles down to 3/4 of a finger. The head looks really dense and creamy on top, but it's actually composed of very large, loose bubbles. Lovely lacing.

The nose is full of crisp apple and stewed pear -- this is immediately recognizable as an English ale. A bit of baking spice in there too. The hops aren't that assertive (I don't know how old this can is), but they do lend a needed steel-like sharpness.

The taste follows the nose. Lots of soft malt flavors, ranging from breadcrusts to fruitcake. Sugar cookies are in here, with a bit of baking spice. The fruits are very present: baked apple, mostly. A touch of orange marmalade. The hops -- far from the beer's focus -- lend a metallic bitterness that brings the whole palate together.

The mouthfeel is medium to full for the style. Not a lot of active carbonation. It feels as an ESB should, mostly.

Overall, this is a wonderful English ale. It has an incredible drinkability, owing to the beer's balance. Every element has an integral place. I want to drink the entire 4-pack of cans right now. This is lovely. (1,343 characters)

Photo of brewskifan55
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured up at the Ale House, Bath England while watching the Olympic torch proceedings coupled with the Colorado shooting.

A: Amber with a half finger head that dissipates rather quickly. Some lacing.

S: Malt, oily, caramel, toffee.

T: rustic; malts, peppers, sweet. A nice malt/hop combination that gives a clean finish.

M: Light with low carbonation.

O: Very sessionable. (379 characters)

Photo of metter98
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is crystal clear garnet red in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin off white head that died down, leaving a large patch of lacy bubbles on the surface and a ring around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of caramel, nuts and toffee in the nose from the malts. The slightest hints of fruity yeast are detectable.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has light to moderately strong but a complex mixture of caramel, nutty and toffee flavors from the malts along with a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a low to moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The aromas and flavors are quite complex for a light-bodied beer. There is also a good balance between the malt and hops because it doesn’t taste overly malty. This beer is very sessionable. (865 characters)

Photo of dbrauneis
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a crystal clear dark amber to garnet red in color with some light amounts of visible carbonation near the surface of the beer. The beer has a finger tall dark beige head that slowly reduces to a very thin film covering the entire surface of the beer with a medium sized thick patch and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Rather mild in overall aroma but a very pleasant smelling beer. There are light notes of caramel malts, toffee, brown sugar, and just a hint of nuts.

T: There is a light amount of malt sweetness upfront with hints of caramel malt. Additionally, there is some notes of nuttiness and light earthiness. Light to moderate amounts o bitterness in the finish, but those bitter flavors do not linger.

M: On the lighter side of medium bodied with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly chewy.

O: Very enjoyable, very easy to drink, and very sessionable. I thoroughly enjoyed this beer and would gladly have another of these - I only wish I could find this one on cask. (1,058 characters)

Photo of BeerDocT
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a chilled British pub pint glass.

-Appearance 4.0: Gorgeous, deep, opaque mahogany in color. Clear, but certainly not translucent. Very small head that dissipated into a delightful, swirling mass of foamy residue. Looks like an English ale should.

-Smell 4.0: Bouquet is very nice, but subtle. I smell caramel and grains and slight straw hint. Faint traces of hops.

-Taste 4.5: Front is a very slight sweetness and the feel of carbonation bubbles. Middle is a subdued, deep caramel barley malt that is wonderfully refreshing. Finish is bright tasting grains and a subtle hoppiness. The hops are very noticeable in the dry and alkaline finish. Excellent.

-Mouthfeel 4.5: Above average and the light carbonation made this beer all the more enjoyable.

-Overall 4.5: This beer gets it right. What is "it"? "It" is how a quality beer tastes. It isn't about jamming as much hops and barley into every aspect of the beer pallet. It's about following tradition and keeping it right once you have gotten it right. Wells Bombardier hits the mark. Excellent English ale and highly recommended. (1,101 characters)

Photo of hoserking
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On cask at founders pub in London near the Globe

Just what I was looking for. This is what I imagined English ESB should taste like. Very strong malts a subtle bitterness super easy drinking. The pint was gone before food was ordered.

Wonderful beer. I wish youngs/wells would start sending it to the US (305 characters)

Photo of DrDemento456
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Drank from the can but I can assume it has a dark amber color to it, clear with a 1/2 inch of opaque colored head.

S - Smell is nice, borderline brown ale with a great nutty aspect and a touch of toffee. English malts making it smell of freshly brewed tea.

T - Wow this is a smooth English bitter. Again sharing equally nutty flavors with the clash of English malts giving it an herbal tea quality. Taste is mostly smooth with little bitterness from herbal teas flavors or hops. Quite good.

M - Light to medium it does had a chewy aspect to it.

Overall next to Anderson Valleys version this one is equally as good with smooth flavors and crisp taste. Worth trying if you love the style. (694 characters)

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.87/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter)
Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)
ABV: 5.20 %

LOOK: Copper/amber color with a chill haze. Small soapy head forms and retains a while.

SMELL: Malt, gingerbread cookie, brown sugar aromas but pretty mild. Suggestions of toffee and caramels.

TASTE: A beer perhaps sharing qualities of an English brown ale, this is malt forward with very low bitterness. Nutty, light toasted malt flavor, and is complexly malty. There is a touch of lemony/herbal hops, quite English indeed, and tasty.

FEEL: Medium bodied, medium-high carbonation. Even feel with some malt flavors lingering into the finish.

OVERALL: A solid brew from England making its way to the states. Probably the type of beer you would expect to find at English pubs. Good flavor, good feel, everything is just about right and proper with this beer. (859 characters)

Photo of StuartCarter
3.63/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: a nice light brown with a white head that slowly dissipates to a thin white foam.

Smell: lightly caramel sweetness.

Taste: mild bitterness with a pleasant malty character.

Mouthfeel: relatively thin, which is appropriate for the style.

Overall: an easily quaffable English bitter. (296 characters)

Photo of JerryOdom
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance is quite nice. Pours with a nice thick head that lasts for several minutes. Settles in to a creamy 1/8 inch with nice lace. Ideal color and clarity for this type of beer.

The smell is quite strong and lovely. I detected it while pouring from farther away than I'd usually expect. Rich malt with hints of dates and plum; deep caramel. For me the malt somewhat hides any hop aroma although it's there in the spiciness.

I find the taste fantastic for this sort of beer. Very smooth and rich tastes but not overly cloying which happens often with bitters. The sweetness is there and stays with throughout but it's very good caramel and plum. Bitterness is well balanced for my liking. Hop taste is more detectable as spicy to me. I think the herbal and earthy characters of the fuggle are hidden beneath the caramel and dark fruit tastes for me.

Mouthfeel is just what I'd expect. Carbonation is a little high for my liking. I let it sit a while to fade out. Smooth drinking with a good feel from that well staying head.

Overall I love this beer. Will drink it anytime I get a desire for bitter. (1,107 characters)

Photo of StJamesGate
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On gravity at The Tin Goose, Heathrow airport.

Mahogany with white film that cathedrals. Nut, sour grain and mulch on the nose with a bit of cat box.
Nut and apple stuffing, some toffee and sawdust and candied orange rind hops.
Musky finish and drying linger. Medium, round, slight chew and a bit oily.

A stand up pint of bitter. Deep malts and definite bite. Jumps with freshness.

Gravity at LHR – who’d have thought? (429 characters)

Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours nice out of a can, deep caramel tinted ruby color with a tan khaki head pouring thick. Fine even spread lacing clings to my imperial pint glass as it settles. Aroma has a pleasant fruitiness with grain induced sliced bread qualities. Aromatic hops are distant but definitely in there, comes off herbal mint with a nice earthiness to it. Refreshing quality about this beer served up in a 14.9 oz/440 ml can. Way cleaner and more enjoyable than a New castle inline with a Fuller's but yet a bit more easy drinking. Assertive English hop character, mild fruit, bready caramelized malts coming through to balance it out, along with an earthy bitter hop finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, even sturdy carbonation flowing smooth, I can't complain about anything while drinking this beer. Overall very enjoyable flavorful introduction to English ales, damn good and fresh in the can. (883 characters)

Photo of mscudder
3.29/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a can into a pint glass. Best by June 2012.

A - Pours a rich copper with a ruby hue. Head is a light tan while being quite frothy. From a can... very nice!

S - Almost skunky on the nose. Toasted malts and some apple mix for something I do not find attractive.

T - Soft malts hit the palette first and are followed by some sweet malts and then apple sweetness. There is some caramel tying everything together making this pretty unique.

M - Light-medium body, a bit too thin for me in an ESB. Low carbonation from the can, but I think it helps the beer out a bit.

O - This is an interesting brew to say the least and it is not bad, yet I do not think I will pursue it again in the future. (703 characters)

Photo of Luigi
4.47/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out into imperial pint glass with a rich amber color. Has a two finger with head that quickly settles down to a think blanket on top of the beer. Some sticky lacing as well.

The aroma is bitter sweet and malty. Has that quintessential English spicy hop to bring balance. Hints of plums, butterscotch and fresh bread.

The taste is dominated sweet toasted malts. Plums, butterscotch, and a spicy citrus from the hops. A little harshness (and I mean that in a good way) from the mineral water.

Medium bodied, with a semi-dry finish.

One of best English ESB's money can buy! (585 characters)

Photo of cervezango
3.46/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

very cool patriotic look to the bottle , advetised as britans first brewery. amber/ tree sapp look to the body with a 1.5 finger of small bubbled head.

spicy(pepper) apple and malty to the nose.

very british tasting nice strong hops bite, with a dry malty aftertaste. a little pepper like the smell but bitter hops is prevailing . kindoff a simple taste but quite nice. a good classic bitter. (394 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.59/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a light golden brown that sets up a 2+ finger head of fluffy off-white foam, which very slowly collapses on itself and leaves plenty of lace rings around the glass. Held to a full-spectrum light, beer is a vibrant orange-red and clear.

S - Lightly toasted, bready malt mixed in with bitter flowering hops. Nose really has to be coaxed out of the glass. This is not a beer that you smell before you taste.

T - Gently toasted malts, light caramel, and simple fruit-like sugar up front. Definitive earthy hops show up in the finish to clear the sweetness / malts away and switch the focus. There's almost a hint of black pepper in the back end.

M - Somewhat fizzy and crisp. Above moderate, pushing full carbonation. Rather thin, but not watery. Body is on the light side. Finish snaps off the back of the tongue rather quickly, leaving a dry, refreshing impression.

O - This is a good beer to have with lunch - it would compliment most sandwiches well, such as a roast beef and cheddar with a soft horseradish sauce, or even fish-n-chips with a tasty, tangy tartar sauce. More hop-forward than the typical English brew, but not an American hopfest, either - it's an interesting juxtaposition of lightly toasted malts against straightforward bittering hops that delivers both sides of the coin. (1,347 characters)

Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter) from Wells & Young's Ltd
86 out of 100 based on 419 ratings.