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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)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

800 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 800
Reviews: 411
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 12.14%
Wants: 14
Gots: 59 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 800 | Reviews: 411 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cichief
3.33/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had a pint at the Porchester from the cask.

A- Pours a deep gold with a nice white head, clear no haze.

S- Subtle hop aroma, somewhat spicy, plenty of malt.

T- Malty and yeasty, some clove, a little medicinal, with a dry finish.

M- Smooth, medium bodied, nice feeling.

O- A decent session beer, but nothing special.

Photo of bryehn
3.63/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A clear, ruby-copper colour with a moderate tan head that leaves a good amount of lace. Very nice to look at, if not a bit light.

Aroma is hoppy and spicy, but subdued with a warm honey sweetness and rocky-metallic tone.

The taste is very mild, but rich with roasted malt and a slight, lemony tea tone. A creamy start gives way to an unripened green grape bitterness that verges on sour. A familiar mineral tone can be tasted on the tongue and finish.

I could drink this at any time, it's above-average, but not great in my books.

Photo of keithmurray
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - beer pours a rich copper color with a white head that left quickly

smell - malts, graham cracker, hint of cherry

taste - better than the smell, malty goodness upfront, some of that bready, graham cracker mixed in there for good measure

mouthfeel - meduim carbonation, medium bodied, slight bitterness on the finish

drinkability - good version of the style, this was a beer that i'm glad i tried.

Photo of steveh
3.71/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

New to the local store. Best by Oct. 31, 2011 right on the brown bottle neck.

The label reads: "English Premium Ale," not "Bitter," as the BA listing reads.

A -- Pours a nice amber-copper with a slow-settling, off-white head.

S -- Mild mix of caramel malt and spicy hops. Rather light in esters. Some light citrus notes and sulfur with warming.

T -- Sweet, caramel malt up front that folds quickly into an earthy bitterness that lingers until a breadiness finishes off the flavors. Some mild dark fruit characters in the aftertaste. There is a distinct, nearly astringent bitterness in the aftertaste -- even vaguely hot alcohol with warming.

M -- Mouthfeel is soft to watery with a light body.

D -- This is certainly a very palatable beer, goes down well and keeps you interested. It's on the lighter edge of an ESB, if that's what you're expecting, but certainly won't disappoint as it will leave room to step into something a bit bigger for the next choice.

*As I finish the pint, I note that the flavors smooth out nicely with warming -- don't sample this too cold.

Photo of Halcyondays
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle, best by 5/19/11,

A: Pours a deep amber to red. Head is a solid two fingers and lasts throughout the glass, going down to a soapy film. Some lace.

S: Biscuity and toasty malt, some sweetness, light hopping.

T: Toast, toffee, English malt character. Drying out at the end with some earthy hops and husky grain. Definitely gets better as it warms, the minerality and nuance appears and makes a much more appealing drink.

M: Smooth, medium-bodied, crisp carbonation, fairly smooth, bitter finish.

D: Very much an ESB, but not in the realm of Fuller's classic for me. The taste is pretty good though, drink this above 55F for the full experience.

Photo of Ochsenblut
3.63/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

An off-white one and a half finger head sits atop a dark copper body, which acted like a Guinness in the way it settled. It took nearly 5 minutes for the beer to separate into a well defined head and body. The head is very fine and never properly disappears, leaving gobs trailing down the glass.

Smells like fresh pretzels and floral hops.

Savory bread malts are tinged with a slightly citrusy hop character. More assertive bittering hops come in to reinforce the beers namesake. It finishes softly and leaves a faint reminder of grain and dry bitterness on the back of the tongue.

The mouthfeel is as smooth as can be. With a medium body it's not exactly chewy, but sits in the mouth with some weight.

Drinkability for this whole style is way up for me. I really love the assertive hops balanced with bready malts, and this particular beer is just that. Balanced and highly quaffable.

Photo of flyingpig
3.34/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A large, foamy and slightly off white head sitting atop a dark, brownish amber beer. A lot darker than the other bitters I have reviewed thus far but it looks good non the less. The head itself it also rather thick, lasts well & leaves nice lacing on the glass.

An aroma consisting mainly of dark fruits with an underlying spiciness that works well together. I can also detect the malts in there as well.

This one has an earthy malt taste to it with a nutty flavour upfront and a very bitter finish. Somewhere in the middle is the dark fruits hinted at from the aroma.

Medium bodied with only slight carbonation, it is smooth with a dry finish.

It looks fantastic, smells pretty good & taste okay. Too bitter for my liking in the finish but still an very good bitter that goes down quite easily and kind of grows on you as you take another sip.


Photo of beerquestman
3.72/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: a light lucid amber

Smell: smelled of spiciness, hops and a bit of grapefruit juice.

Taste: Tasted of hops, caramel, and a hint of grapefruit

Mouthfeel: warming and easy on the tongue.

Drinkability: Fairly drinkable, about what I'd expect from an ale.

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

Grabbed at the local food coop. Poured into 10oz glass. Poured a clean, clear coppery amber color with about an inch of khaki head that that had good retention and lacing.

The aroma was mostly slightly sweet malt, with some backing grain, and a trace of gentle hopping. On the tongue the characteristics were fairly similar, nice earthy grains, a bit of sweet malt and a faint tickle of hops.

The body was very good, smooth even, well-balanced and clean. Drinkability is also very good, the pint bottle went down so easily that I didn't realize I had drank the whole bottle.

Overall, a very nice brew. A worthy companion for a comfortable session at your local or home. Worth trying.

Photo of Intrinsic
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A healthy 1.5" head sits atop the dark copper ale after pouring. It also leaves beautiful lacing on the glass. Very appetizing.

The first scents to hit the nose are of molasses and spice with slight hop notes and a trace of coffee. Its all a very pleasant mix and makes you look forward to the taste.

This is a great bitter, with the Fuggles hops adding flavour that complements the mild maltiness quite well. Neither side is overpowering so we're left with a well-balanced taste that deserving of the name 'Premium.'

A very dry finish rounds this beer out very nicely. I think I could easily sit at the local pub all night drinking these back without batting an eyelid. Great beer.

Photo of CaptDavyJones
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap in a pint glass.
Dark reddish-brown in color with ruby red hues. One finger head that dissipated fairly quickly.
Aroma is high on malts with hints of dark fruits.
Taste is also high on malts, with a dry bitter finish. Typical example of an ESB, light and easy to drink.
There wasn't any noticeable lacing with this ESB.
A decent ESB, and certainly worth trying if you like this kind of beer.

Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.48/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A 500ml bottle with a BB of June 2011. Label describes it as the drink of England.

Poured into a Sam Smith's pint glass. A deep reddish copper colour with good carbonation. Creamy light tan head which subsides after a couple of minutes. Decent aroma of lightly toasted malt and some burnt caramel notes. A hint of hops.

A rich malty character with good bitterness. Interesting notes of burnt malt / caramel. A smooth mouthfeel that leaves a dryness on the palate. Mild bitter aftertaste.

A decent ale - not likely to become my regular but representative of English beer.

Photo of jpkoch1962
4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep golden yellow with a thick white, long lasting head. The aroma was dominated by bready, sweet malts with a touch of pepper. The ale was thick, malty and smooth. Bittering hops came through in the middle before fading somewhat in the finish. A very nice, full body session ale. Watch the alcohol, as you will not notice it until you stand.

Photo of biboergosum
3.71/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle, the most English-looking yet of many in any store that I've ever seen.

This beer pours a clear, dark burnt amber hue, with two fingers of puffy, filmy, foamy, and pleasantly sudsy beige head, which settles at a leisurely pace, eventually leaving a decent wash of webbed lace around the glass.

It smells of lightly toasted biscuity caramel malt, sugary cooked apple, a touch of bready yeast, and some herbal, earthy hops. The taste is more crackery, lightly biscuity caramel and pale malt, bolstered by some mild rock toffee notes, muddled orchard drupe fruit, soft black peppercorn, and somewhat bitter leafy, floral hops.

The carbonation is moderate, yet a bit prickly, the body an adequate medium weight, generally smooth, and perhaps a tad creamy, through the zingy bitterness. It finishes sweeter than I would have thought - the gritty caramel malt still standing strong against the fruity, and mildly bitter herbal and leafy hops.

An offering that teeters well away from the banality that I unfortunately encounter too much in imported British ales. I sure wouldn't pass up a few rounds of this as the local pub bitter option, if that sort of thing actually existed in my neck of the woods.

Photo of Dster
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from bottle in wells bombardier pint glass...life is good.

Appearance - golden brown, half inch of fluffy head that settled into a film

Smell - mild, sweet, malts

Taste - citrus, earthy malt taste.

Mouthfeel - silky, carbonation is bright with very small bubbles.

Drinkablity - could drink it all day.

Photo of DaveHS
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On cask at the Bunch of Grapes near London Bridge, London.

A-Pours amber with a thin, brilliant white head and lots of attractive bubbles.

S-Light citrus, pale malts.

T/M-Biscuity malts, an almost imperceptible floral hoppiness. One of the lightest bitters I've ever had. There is a delicate note of leather in the citrusy finish.

D-Pleasant. One of the lightest bitters I've had.

Photo of Spineypanda
4.23/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a transparent light brown in color with a good foamy head that feels like marshmallows.
Smells of malts and bitterness. Not so much a citrusy hop bitterness but an earthy one.
Taste is somewhat earthy with an undertone and aftertaste of milk chocolate.
Creamy mouthfeel.

A good beer to drink and enjoy with the pals.

Photo of darkmartin
4.08/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours to a transparent, dark copper with strong red undertones. Almost an inch of off-white head. Looks quite nice.

Smell: Strong earthy hops with a minor amount of subtle mount present.

Taste: Unlike the nose, first up is nutty malt with a good dose of butter. Definitely some fruit follows, maybe apple? Those potent English hops dominate the finish, and really round the beer out quite well.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a minor amount of carbonation, quite smooth.

Drinkability: One of the better ESB's I've had, I will keep an eye out for this one.

Photo of damndirtyape
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Imperial pint poured into a Tulip stout glass. Best by 07/12/11.

Appearance: Pours a 1/2" off-white foam which dies down to thin island of foam skin across the top. Nice walls and strands of lacing though. The beer is a clear dark coppery-red color. Nice.

Smell: Roasted malts, some cider-like apple smells, and something a bit floral at the end.

Taste: Roasted malt up front, followed immediately by a strong English bitter, which is usually the finish most of the time, but every now and then some other flavors come through like tart apples and toffee at mixed in with the bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation for an English ale. Mouthfeel is quite smooth - well on the thicker side of things.

Drinkability: For an ESB, the bitterness is prevalent here which works well. I think I prefer a beer with a bit more malt present, but overall I like this one, although with the strong bitter finish I'm definitely done at one pint. Went very well with Turkey, spiced sweet potatoes, and green beans. A solidly good English ale.

Photo of BeerLover99
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: flowing golden yellow, hint of orange hue.

S: slight grain, malt and earthy hops.

T: cream sweet up front, with nice mild bitter finish.

M: solid carbonation with med/light body. smooth going down. the sweet and bitter play off each other quite nicely.

D: Great session beer. Enough flavor for beer geeks and something adventurous for your newbies. Not usually great beer for the warmer months. Give this English brew a try, it's worth it.

Photo of mountsnow1010
3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - tan head, brown beer, attractive but not astounding
S - not bad. oatmeal smell with a bit of dark fruits/sugars
T- not much beginning flavor, hit with some nice fruit and malt in the middle, finishes quite dry with a bit of hop bite on top of a decent malt and nutty flavor. more hops in the aftertaste. not a TON going on with the flavor, but I like/expect that for this type of beer. a refreshing drink that I can actually drink without getting more thirsty.
M - nice sharp carbonation, coats the mouth, not overly watery which is nice
D - I could drink a lot of this, but I'm not sure I would have more than a couple before switching types

Solid brew.

Photo of Suds
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Here is a very clear light chestnut color with a modest off-white head. The aroma is notably malty, with a caramel and toasted malt character. Not much in the way of hops in the aroma, but there is a very English-style biscuit and toffee scent. The taste is more on the dry side than the smell presumes. It's moderately bitter, and very satisfying. All around, this is fine English-style ale.

Photo of AgentMunky
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500mL bottle into a pint glass.

A: A very nice ruddy brown. Clear. Almost no head.

S: Pleasant malt, hints of roast and caramel.

T: Very nicely balanced! Malt and strong hops vie for attention, with a significant amount of carbonation distracting further. It's a toss-up as to which flavours are dominant -- some sips are sweeter, some hoppier...all are lively. Aftertaste is dryish and more hopped than not.

M: Delightful! The interplay of drying hops, smooth malts, and captivating carbonation continually pleases me.

D: An unassuming, but eventually delicious beer. More depth than I have come to expect of British ales (perhaps unfairly.) Bombardier Bitter is well worth your time and attention. I will be having a few more.

Photo of kwjd
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper brown colour with thick off white head. Head takes a long time to dissipate. Some lacing around the glass. Smells of raisin, biscuit malt and mild earthy hops. Flavour has mild bitterness and some sweetness. Nice medium bodied carbonation. I like that the Control Board in Ontario has this so I can frequently have this.

Photo of samie85
3.02/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-Pours a dark copper red color with a very light tan, one finger head.

S-Faint fruity aromas mixed with light caramel malt.

T-Fruity esters with caramel malt notes and a fruity, dry, bitter finish.

M-Pretty smooth and medium bodied with low carbonation.

D-Pretty easy drinking beer that is decent but the price tag does not match up with the quality of this one.

Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter) from Wells & Young's Ltd
85 out of 100 based on 800 ratings.