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Organic ESB - Lakefront Brewery, Inc.

Organic ESBOrganic ESB

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

328 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 328
Reviews: 223
rAvg: 3.28
pDev: 15.85%

Brewed by:
Lakefront Brewery, Inc. visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.42% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-22-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 328 | Reviews: 223 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of metter98

New York

3.43/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A: The beer is clear yellowish amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high off white head that quickly died down, leaving some lacing on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of caramel and toasted malts as well as earthy yeasts are present in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, except it is maltier and there are less of the earthy yeast flavors. A very slight amount of bitterness is perceptible.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink, but seems like it could use stronger aromas and better head retention.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2013 18:50:29 | More by metter98
Photo of dacrza1

New Jersey

3.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

DATE TASTED: November 22, 2013... GLASSWARE: Howard's Pub pint... OCCASION: Shark Tank Friday... APPEARANCE: another handsome ale from Lakefront--a dark copper body with a slow,, steady carbonation; milky, thick head again, formidable lacing... AROMA: nice buttery, toffee fragrance floats easily through the nostrils; pleasant malts and sugars balance reasonably... PALATE: strong backbone belies the alluring scent; medium-bodied and a bit stronger than the average ESB, I would suspect...TASTE: impactful at the teeth--some fruit suggestions and malt that stacks itself rather earnestly--a rather thin profile, overall...OVERALL: I prefer my ESBs light, buttery, nutty and drinkable; Lakefront's edition offers little engagement in these areas, coming on a bit too strong for my expectations...

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2013 04:35:59 | More by dacrza1
Photo of cyclonece09


3.55/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a 14 oz "pint" glass. Pours a nice red with a fluffy white head. Smells of some grassy and flowery hops. Tastes of nice grain with some grassy hops, bitter, but not overly so. Beer is carbonated nicely light bodied and goes down great. Overall an above average beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2013 00:27:22 | More by cyclonece09
Photo of homebrew311


3.16/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served on tap at the brewery. Pours a deep murky red with some head and nice lacing. The nose comprises of a light caramel malts with touches of earth and toast. Also picking up some metallic notes. The taste is light with leafy herbal notes, light grain, and light bitterness. The body is... you guessed it, very light with high carbonation. Overall, this beer is pretty bland with dull flavors. Wouldn't come back to this one.

Serving type: on-tap

10-23-2013 06:01:10 | More by homebrew311
Photo of Murrhey


3.16/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz standard pressure-cap bottle into a conic pint glass in high elevation Kalispell, Mont. Reviewed live.

A- One-finger white head with tiny bubbles and quickly eroding retention. Amber body with thick, slow-moving carbonation.

S- Amber malts with crisp, grassy hops. Interesting dichotomy in this beer. Not great, not bad.

T- Crisp, amber flavor. Grassy hops with slightly darker malts.

M- Light bodied but biting carbonation. It's alright.

O- Mediocre beer, but not bad for organic stuff.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2013 04:38:57 | More by Murrhey
Photo of KTCamm

New Jersey

3.31/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

8 beer variety pack. Poured into a pint glass.

Pours orange hued amber/copper with fizzy white foam. Sits nicely. Very lite orange peel nose, some malt. Taste is a light bitter, juicy. Conflicting bitter, Earthy. Fast finish, then aftertaste. Uneven. Ends up ok, but not standout.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2013 18:16:31 | More by KTCamm
Photo of 57md


3.41/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light and cloudy copper with well over a finger of head. The head retained well and left nice lace rings in its wake. The nose is both floral and bready, but also soapy. The malt flavors are not as pronounced as a top shelf ESB, but they are certainly present. The bitterness increases on the finish, but does not really pack a noteworthy punch in the end. This is a light and drinkable offering that is good, but clearly lacks the attributes of the best versions of this style.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2013 04:44:23 | More by 57md
Photo of Ri0


3.55/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

poured 12oz bottle into Duvel tulip.

A - Dark red brown color, with a 2 finger dirty white head that fades slowly and leaves a ring and some lacing on glass.

S - Caramel, toffee, light roasted malts. Honey, fruit, nuts and floral hops.

T - A nice sweet malty caramel and toffee with bits of honey and fruit. Floral hops are in the background and provide a very subtle bitterness to go with a slight nutty flavor. Pretty good.

M - Medium body with light carbonation. Somewhat sticky sweet finish.

O - A nice offering if hops are not your choice. It is a nice beer to drink with almost any meal. I would definitely get this beer on tap at a restaurant, but would not buy it in the bottle to drink at home as a stand alone.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2013 23:29:50 | More by Ri0
Photo of TheSSG


3.03/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a nice, soft, soapy head that has nice persistence and leaves great lacing. Sweet, nutty aroma is almost tart with caramel in the back. Lovely burnt umber color. Starts with an almost tartness, sweetness, and floral hoppiness. Becomes medium bitter as a nuttiness melds with toasted malt behind the hops. The finish is lingering toasted malt with floral hop bitterness, and a hint of caramel wafts in and out. There is a bit of a biting carbonation to it, I almost dislike that.

Overall, this isn't too bad. It's a nice mix of toasty malt and hop bitterness. Not my favorite, but not terrible. Fairly average.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2013 00:55:51 | More by TheSSG
Photo of waitforit


3.18/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A: Beautiful, rich russet red. A reasonable amount of cream-colored head. Decent lacing.

S: Very faint. Caramel and cherries.

T: Biscuity and burnt, with just a little spice.

M: Average. Rather clean finish.

O: One of the more piquant ESBs I've had, slightly different from the run of the mill.

Try it again? 4 - Probably

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2013 23:33:06 | More by waitforit
Photo of baos


4.15/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Poured out of bottle into pint glass.

A: Nice translucent amber color. Two finger head that dwindles to a nice sheen with bits of lacing here and there.

S: Nice floral hops and light malt character makes for a fresh smelling esb!

T: ESB's aren't one of my favorite styles, but this one seems a bit different. The lighter malt character makes for a great flavor. A bit of malt sweetness and floral hops at first this evens out into a pleasant bitter hop flavor.

M: A bit watery, just a bit more would be nice, however, this would make a great brew from a hot day.

O: Not a bad bier, try one on for size!

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2013 04:19:30 | More by baos
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep amber color, with a thin off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, fruit, nuts and some hops.

T: The taste starts out with some mildly sweet flavors of caramel and fruit that fade quickly. Then a hearty but not too heavy malt character comes in. There are some background flavors of honey and nuts. The hops good for the style and brings a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is dry and slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, decent representation of style, it’s not a bad beer but there are others in the style that I would choose first.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2012 18:32:46 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


2.75/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Another bottle from my favorite brewery tour. Copper pour, thin off white head that is below .5". Lacing and retention are decent though. Aroma imparts almost nothing but a mild undercurrent of breadiness and bitterness. Very miniscule, very far from robust.

Bitterness and cardboard are the heavy hitters in the flavor profile. Cardboard lacks any caramel or toffee notes. Kind of a headscratcher. A tiny bit of old closet mustiness. Copper + cardboard doesn't make for the best of beers. I've had better bottles than these, but even those weren't awesome by any means. There's just a void of hops in this beer, and even when viewed through the most stringent (I should mention the beer is also astringent, without hops, like it was dry hopped with cardboard and pennies) traditionalist viewpoint of an old school English esb.

Kinda hurts to give a brewery I really like a negative review. I think for some, the word 'organic' on the front is license to charge a bunch for an underwhelming product.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2012 19:50:37 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of barnzy78


3.73/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, pours copper-brown, with a foamy, beige head that leaves a little lace. Aromas are malty with toasted grain, brown sugar, spicy/earthy hop. Tastes are lots of brown sugar with caramel, toffee, toasty grain, bready, earthy, complementary spicy hop, some fruity notes in there as well. Mouth-feel is creamy and smooth, with a little over-carbonation, but it does allow for the flavors to meld on the palate. Overall, it seems to be that I liked this one more than most. I thought it was good, regardless of whether it was organic or not.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2012 02:47:37 | More by barnzy78
Photo of JerzDevl2000

New Jersey

3.05/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked this up, er...actually, I was given this. Free. No charge. Left to drink on my own. After having the fabulous Wisconsinite and Local Acre Lagers recently, I wasn't sure what to expect here and now that I've nearly finished downing this, I'm not sure exactly what I had. Many reviewers on here wondered what was missing on here and it comes as no surprise that the ingredient lacking in this is none other than HOPS. If you're expecting this to be bitter, keep expecting. This is unlike any other EB that I've ever had.

This poured like a Weizenbock with an apricot hue, cloudy appearance, and somewhat decent head that lasted for a little while. Not much of an aroma to this and the taste was bland and uncarbonated. Lots of brown sugar, apricot, and crystalline sweetness here with the sugar holding on for a while after each sip. Maybe some signs of a light Ale from Belgium here without the alcohol, or dark fruit that would categorize this as such. A slight earthy bitterness was found here but was this anything like Fuller's, Goose Island, or Red Hook? No way...

I can't quite tell where this missed but I wish the alcohol was a bit stronger, if for no other reason than to giver this beer some teeth. I downed it pretty quick but I prefer to savor my beer as I search for the distinctions in it. Unfortunately, there's not much memorable to this, even if "organic" was printed on the bottle. A disappointment, to say the least.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2012 06:01:10 | More by JerzDevl2000
Photo of waldoiverson


2.83/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz into nonic

A: amber with moderate carbonation, soapy head, and light lacing

S: sweet sugary malt, lightly hopped green apple, toasted grain

T: very malty body with grassy hops, ritz cracker sugary overtones

M: overly sweet and juicy, no heavy body so missing something to justify the malt base

o meh, it's fine but all components are just a a tad shy of exceptional

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2012 03:28:09 | More by waldoiverson
Photo of MadScientist

New York

3.75/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: This is a somewhat hazy medium amber having a thin, persistent and creamy, light tan head.

S: Mild fruity esters of apricot and orange with a mild floral hops and a biscuity malt aroma.

T: The flavor is mostly a mix of fruity easter, a caramel and biscuity malt flavor with a moderate hops bitterness taking over at the end. The balance is mostly towards the bitter. The finish is dry with a malt aftertaste.

M: A crisp, medium-light bodied with a moderately-low level of carbonation.

O: This is a nicely balanced ESB with a a bit of fruitienss and a nice malt flavor. A little cloudy for an ESB it lost a bit on appearance.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2012 23:33:07 | More by MadScientist
Photo of jsprain1


2.08/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A- Red-copper with golden highlights. Head is half a finger, just a shade off white. Decent retention, light lacing.
S- The aroma is minimally there. There is some malty notes. But where is the bitterness? It really is missing that.
T- Not very flavorful. There is some generic sweetness up front with a touch malty caramel. But the bitterness is really really lacking.
M- The body is lacking depth and the carbonation comes off fizzy.
O- This was an absolute disappointment for me. All around lacking, unfortunately.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2012 01:05:06 | More by jsprain1
Photo of Knapp85


3.43/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This poured out as a decent looking amber color with a thin very minimal tan colored head on top. The smell of the beer was malty, it had some nice caramel like aroma's on the nose as well as some other grains in there too. The taste of the beer was earty, semi-sweet with a nice dry bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel of the beer had a good amount of carbonation to it, the beer was drinkable and easy going. Overall this beer wasn't too bad, not my favorite ESB but still not a bad beer in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2012 03:17:17 | More by Knapp85
Photo of donmonkey1


2.78/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Reddish-brown, like hazy tea. The head is good but dissipates too fast. Very little lacing.

Smell: Not enough to tell. Possibly the faintest smell of brown sugar. They need to man-up on the smell. I mean, where the hell is it?

Taste: A hint of hops in metal water. I'm really feeling ripped off. WHAT THE HELL IS THIS ORGANIC BULLSHIT?

It's pretty fucking average.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2012 04:42:23 | More by donmonkey1
Photo of WastingFreetime


3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from session notes.

Poured out a semi-hazed standard amber color with a single finger that lasted for about a minute before dissolving without leaving any lacing behind. Presents a very fruity yeast ester aroma, some candied nuts and earthy hop tones as well in the nose. Flavor is very toasted whole-grain bread and cereal grain-like with a sharp crispness from the heavy carbonation over the medium body texture.

I've had worse and I've had better than this one...

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2012 00:16:31 | More by WastingFreetime
Photo of BeerFMAndy


3.93/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Lakefront imperial Pint.
Bottled Apr Wk2 (2012) notched on label.

A - Pouring a delicious clear copper color with a tall egg-shell head comprised of densely packed bubbles, Lakefront's Organic ESB looks beautiful. Plateauing to a thick pile of foam, the head randomly dots the pint in chunky lace.

S - Earthy and harsh opening, little caramel and some wet, spent grain notes arise followed by slight hop aromas, but nothing about it screams ESB. Soft, earthy hops seem present, but in very low levels.

T - Very malty right off the bat, caramelization flavors pull through with toffee slivers and toasted Vienna notes. Wet grain undertones hide behind a slight earthy hop flavor. While the grain bill seems on par, the hops only balance in flavor. It isn't until bitterness becomes a part do they really kick this ESB towards the style a little more.

M - Medium-light bodied and smooth in the entry, Organic ESB is well-balanced by a bitter, dry finish from the organic hop additions and a lingering finish on the tongue.

O - The under-rated and humble Lakefront scores again with the first USDA certified organic beer! While this ESB doesn't hold a candle to the classics from England, Organic ESB features a nice, tasty malt base with subtle earthy hop overtones and a refreshing bitterness along the finish. A great session beer to put pint after pint back while chatting up the blokes at the bar, I'd say!

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2012 00:45:48 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of StaveHooks


3.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz served into a SA perfect pint glass.

A - Pours a clear amber with an off-white head. Average lacing.

S - Sweet cereal grains, caramel malts, biscuits.

T - Yeasty bread, caramel, sweet cereal grains, grapes, and hints of citrus. It finishes up semi-dry with a light earthy toastedness.

M - Creamy carbonation, medium body, smooth feel.

This was straightforward and pretty good. Needs a little more hops but drinks nice. Caramel malts and a sweet grain flavor dominate. I would drink this again.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2012 22:28:26 | More by StaveHooks
Photo of jimmah120


2.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle brewed 3rd week of December.

Cloudy amber with minimal head. Smell is skunky grains. A slight sweet smell as well. Bitter character at first as you sip. Some sweet malts but mostly the rest is grain. Very plain tasting. Dry mouthfeel.

Overall I was a little disappointed in this one. Easy drinking and balanced but seems to be missing something.

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2012 00:43:46 | More by jimmah120
Photo of mrfrancis


1.85/5  rDev -43.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A: Pours a murky amber with no real head.

S: Aromas of earthy, peppery hops and caramel are overwhelmed by an oddly pungent, grainy aroma. What is going on here?

T: Notes of minerals, caramel, toffee, roasted nuts, and peppery ale hops are muddled by tart grainy flavors and an odd metallic backtaste. The finish lingers for some time and is most notable for its complete lack of hop and malt character; instead, that metallic taste takes over completely.

M: Medium-bodied and very dry with active, firm carbonation. If it tasted better, I could see myself being generous and calling it drinkable.

O: This is hands down not only the worst ESB I've ever had, but also the worst organic beer of any type I've ever had. I don't know what the people at Lakefront were thinking. Maybe they weren't. I've never been so happy to pour a bottle down the drain as I am now.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2012 15:55:23 | More by mrfrancis
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Organic ESB from Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
75 out of 100 based on 328 ratings.