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Blue Point Extra Special Bitter - Blue Point Brewing Company

Blue Point Extra Special Bitter
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BA SCORE
92
outstanding

37 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 37
Reviews: 30
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 8.25%


Brewed by:
Blue Point Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-14-2002)
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Ratings: 37 | Reviews: 30 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.63/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A big thanks to Biggness for sending me down this growler of a long sought after beer. Served from my growler, this one was consumed on 02/25/2009.

The pour was very nice, a rich looking amber color with a nice amount of cloudiness to it, this one was definitly a very solid beer to behold. Nice head of white coming up over the top and settled down quickly leaving behind no lacing at all. The aroma was loaded with piney hops. Lots of depth here, and amazingly full bodied in the aroma for the style. This one drank like an IPA for sure. Rich, bitter, lots of piney hops, hints of deep, seet notes of malt and an almost sticky, resin like feel. As it warms some nice touches of bready malts and hints of grains start to come through. A little undercarbonated or it would have been dead on for the style, but it was easily the most drinkable beer I have had in a long time and the growler went down quickly to say the least.

Serving type: growler

02-27-2009 02:38:34 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of womencantsail
womencantsail

California

3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler shared by Bobby. Thanks.

A: The pour is a slightly hazed amber color with a finger of white head.

S: A very interesting aroma. It's got a touch of juniper berries, herbal hops, and pine to go with a solid amount of bready hops and a touch of banana. Very mild yeast notes.

T: There is a good balance of bitterness and maltiness. Sweet bread and toffee malts with a light bitterness to go with the grassy and herbal hops. Some more juniper berry flavor.

M: Medium in body with a medium carbonation.

O: A more interesting ESB than I'm accustomed to. Not bad.

Serving type: growler

08-12-2011 02:15:59 | More by womencantsail
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

3.93/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to cosmicevan for getting me a growler of this. Finally, the 2-plus-year wait is finally over. Currently the #1 ESB. Served in a Mikasa tulip at our Christmas in July tasting.

Pours a dark copper color with a great, great off-white head with loads of lacing on the way down. Nice cap and collar throughout. The nose brings some caramel and bready malt and actually a bit of light roastiness, which is a bit strange. Light nuttiness there as well along with some earthy and herbal hops.

The flavor takes down the malt a touch and focuses slightly more on the hops. Good blend of hop flavor and bready malt. Light toast as well. Medium body with good carbonation and a very nice bitterness in the finish. Not quite the best ESB that I've ever had -- that honor goes to FFF Lord Admiral Nelson -- but this is a good beer, albeit not one worth a several-year wait.

Serving type: growler

07-19-2011 01:00:01 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is crystal clear mahogany in color and has no visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down but left some lacing on the surface and a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of bready malts in the nose along with notes of butter, caramel and toffee plus hints of citrus hops.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and has a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and somewhat smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is very easy to drink and goes down effortlessly. It pairs especially well with food.

Serving type: on-tap

09-18-2011 00:30:02 | More by metter98
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler filled at Bierkraft courtesy of gory4d! Thanks for helping me try this longtime want. Served in a Surly pint glass.

A - Two-plus fingers of creamy white foam that settles to a thick cap, leaving behind small splotches of lace. Transparent caramel amber color.

S - Toasted malts, toffee, fruity English ale yeast, dry roasted nuts, earthy and slightly lemony hops, and perhaps an herbal note as well. It's spot on for the style.

T - Taste is predominantly toasted bread, nuts, a hint of yeast, light brown sugar and milk chocolate, and a pleasant herbaceous finish that imparts some moderate bitterness that lingers well into the aftertaste. Perhaps a faint soapy note as well.

M - Feel is quite nice, with some light dry roast to the texture, lower cask-like carbonation. Surprisingly viscous and chewy medium body, with a dry finish and some surprising resinous hop character as well.

D - Absolutely crushable stuff. I was forced to open a growler on my own due to unusual circumstances, but I should have no problems finishing 64oz of this stuff over the course of any evening. If you put this on hand-pump in London no one would think it was made in the colonies.

Serving type: growler

07-28-2011 01:19:17 | More by MasterSki
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

At the time of this review, this is the #1 ESB on beeradvocate.com best of lists. Another number 1 shared by Thorpe429 in this sprint to the finish line. Beer served in a snifter.

Beer is dark amber to copper and clear with a nice head of small bubbles, some lacing, nice carbonation, looking good (especially for a growler).

Aroma is mildly caramel and some hoppiness to it. Smells pretty good.

Beer is medium in body and has a nice moderately bitter finish. The lead off is malty with a mild sweetness to it. The entire beer is pretty good. I go back to it that night several times. I'd have it again in 3 years when they release it.

Serving type: growler

07-17-2011 15:54:08 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on cask at the Brazen head, BKLYN NY. Poured cloudy, orangy almond, off white minimal head, tiny bubbles and leaving lacing. Fresh hoppy nose. Nicely balanced ale, Malt in place, Floral, fresh piney hops come through loud and clear. Tasty and enjoyable. Freshness is the word here. Low carbonation, smooth mouthfeel. Well done!, Classy and tasty ESB. This is the best I've had from Blue point

Serving type: cask

04-28-2004 02:56:53 | More by Billolick
Photo of plaid75
plaid75

New York

4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at the brewery.

Poured a dark copper hue, with a one and a half finger creamy white head. There was good retention and very good sticky lacing.

The aromas jumped out of the glass and featured an ufront piney and earthy hop followed by a clean, yet sweet malt.

The taste was very well balanced and consisted of a nice biscuity malt and multi tiered hop. Good toasted element.

The mouthfeel superior on cask. Smooth and creamy.

The best ESB on the face of the planet. Absolutely amazing on cask.

Serving type: cask

10-15-2008 17:08:40 | More by plaid75
Photo of Huhzubendah
Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler shared by Thorpe429. Thanks Mike!

Currently the #1 ESB.

The beer is slightly hazy and a light brown color, with nearly an inch of tan head that leaves ample lacing throughout the glass. The aroma is malty, with some dank hop scents, almost rubbery smelling. The flavor is pleasant and the beer is quite easy to drink. Moderate hop bitterness emerges in the finish. The beer concludes fairly dry. Overall, a nice brew, and one I would have again.

Serving type: growler

07-18-2011 20:12:30 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of DefenCorps
DefenCorps

Oregon

4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

So I managed to try this both on cask and out of the growler. Admittedly, the growler was consumed 15 minutes after it was filled, so this probably qualifies as an on-tap review, but oh well.

Pouring a burnished copper, this growler pour of the Blue Point ESB has a fantastic off-white head and with excellent retention and lacing.The nose is excellent. A blend of a fresh, herbal, green and grassy hop notes and a complex malt profile with oats, nuts, toffee and brown sugar, this smells wonderful. The moderate carbonation makes this pop a lot more, bringing to the forefront more of a fruity yeast character, especially with plums and fruit.
The palate opens mildly bitter with a pronounced hop character with an herbal hop character. Toffee, brown sugar and nuts with a strong toasted malt character. Really, this is a beautiful showcase for Marris Otter and all its nutty complexity. This beer is medium in body with moderate carbonation. The yeast is a little more active, with a moderate fruitiness. There's an oat-like fullness to the mouthfeel that is quite enjoyable. Fantastic balance and drinkability, I drank half a growler with no problems and could have gone for more. Highly recommended, this is one of those few English beers I enjoyed more on tap than out of a cask.

Serving type: growler

07-24-2011 03:23:51 | More by DefenCorps
Photo of francisweizen
francisweizen

Arizona

4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fresh 1/2 Gallon Growler purchased at Bierkraft in Park Slope for $12. Not bad. This is a bright red/copper colour with a nice fluffy head of white foam that stays around and leaves nice lace on my pint glass. The aromas are toasty, buttery, and very malty with a fresh floral hop bite on the nose as well. The taste is very malty up front with the hops in the middle and a lovely blend of the two in the finish. This is a very good English ESB here! The mouthfeel is smooth and very "cask-like" and the drinkability is excellent. A great version!

Serving type: on-tap

03-01-2004 23:03:25 | More by francisweizen
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
LilBeerDoctor

New York

3.53/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 7/17/08. Growler. Pours a clear copper with a huge, thick, creamy and expanding tan head that leaves nice lacing on the glass. Aroma of roasted malts, toast, with flowery hops hiding in the background. Aroma of roasted malts, bitterness. Refreshing. Pretty good, more so if you like that toast/roast taste in your ESB.
7/4/7/4/14 (3.6/5)

Serving type: growler

12-20-2008 19:40:27 | More by LilBeerDoctor
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
JoeyBeerBelly

New York

4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

fresh growler, served in a standard pint glass.

L - clear, reddish/brown color with a beige head that lasted for the entire glass leaving good, sticky lacing.

S - bitter citrusy/hoppy aroma with faint smell of malt.

T - bitter / sweet malt / bitter, very good, very balanced beer.

F - light/medium bodied, good carbonation, head is creamy.

D - very good, real easy drinking brew.

Final Note: I ♥ this beer!

Serving type: growler

08-17-2007 01:18:09 | More by JoeyBeerBelly
Photo of cosmicevan
cosmicevan

New York

4.43/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When a fellow BA put out the call for this beer on the trade forum, I headed out to the brewery to see what the hub bub was about (as well as to nab a growler). Beer arrived in a sample pour cup with a surprising head (these small pours usually don't have any head). Nice deep rich amber color. Really nicely balanced in the smell dept. Great malt presence. Taste was even better. Smooth grassy malt finishes subtley bitter. Very bready and feels more like a pale ale to me. Nice one from the locals, very glad I caught wind of this while available.

Serving type: on-tap

07-14-2011 20:01:52 | More by cosmicevan
Photo of NJpadreFan
NJpadreFan

New Jersey

4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Blue Point ESB

On tap at Isaac Newton's- Newtown, PA

Appearance- Dark majogany brown with a decent a little moderate lacing head.
Smell- Strong caramel, brown sugar, and molasses malt.
Taste- Big, HUGE, molasses/ caramel malt slight dryness in the end.
Mouthfeel- Big and flavorful throughout. Slight dryness in the end.

Overall- Man this was good. I ended up drinking 2 pints of this. Highly recommended!!! I want more!!!

Serving type: on-tap

12-10-2006 22:15:16 | More by NJpadreFan
Photo of DIM
DIM

Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: This ESB is clear dark copper color. It pours with a massive, uneven, craggy, light tan head.

s: English hop smells dominate, biscuity and floral.

t: This is not a style I know well, but I can't help but think this is spot on. The hops take center stage. They are slightly tart, perfumed, and have a bready quality.

m: The carbonation has a creamy feel that reminded me of a casked beer.

d: Thanks to plaid75 for sending my growler back filled with this outstanding brew. I wish Blue Point was local so I could try more from them.

Serving type: growler

02-08-2008 10:42:29 | More by DIM
Photo of aerozeppl
aerozeppl

New York

4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On cask at Mahar's

A: Just about perfect hazy copper appearance. A half finger of white head and great lacing especially for a cask beer.

S: Really nice nose. Hints of malt, toffee, and caramel. Even picked up a hint of burnt espresso beans. Hops as well but the nose really did blend everything together so nicely.

T: Nice bitterness up front. Then comes the malt and caramel. Hints of coffee beans follow which was nice and different. Very well balanced beer.

M: Great mouthfeel. Dead on for a British real ale.

D: This would make a damn fine session beer. ESBs really are not my favorite style but this was a really nice beer.

Serving type: cask

09-06-2008 14:22:01 | More by aerozeppl
Photo of daliandragon
daliandragon

North Carolina

4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Brought a growler of this over to my buddy's for a few cold ones in his backyard this afternoon. We poured a pair into some nice goblets he had, told a few stories, and enjoyed this excellent, fresh brew from Blue Point.

Beautiful, deep brown cloudy burst of color with respectable head that holds up well before fading. Nose is caramel and malt with some backing hops.

English hops are at the forefront here, more so than with most ESBs. Caramel and dark malt sugars blend seamlessly in a crisp, dry finish that makes this a joy to sip in the sun, or anywhere presumably. Highly drinkable, this growler was gone before we knew it.

Serving type: growler

07-23-2007 04:01:29 | More by daliandragon
Photo of david18
david18

New York

3.83/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had a sixteen ounce draft of this at the Amsterdam Ale House on Manhattan's Upper West Side. This was the perfect summer beer. Plenty of flavor, great balance, not too strong. Overall: great.

The appearance was a dark amber with a smallish head and very cloudy.

Aroma combined the bready malt with some english hops and toffee.

Flavor was mostly malt but not too heavy or cloying. Overall, a very balanced flavor.

This beer is a very easy drinker and one I hope to see more often.

Serving type: on-tap

08-03-2011 19:25:41 | More by david18
Photo of BeerTruth
BeerTruth

Connecticut

4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to JoeyBeerBelly for this growler.

64 oz. poured into a nonic. Best by date of 3/7.

Pours a clear ruby copper hue with a generous two finger head that sticks around for a while. Stickiness is pretty good, nice webbing left on the sides of the glass. I can smell this one from across the room, surpised it has such a powerful scent for this style of beer. Good amount of nut and malt with a bitter earthy hop aroma. Big bitter nut flavors with sweet buttery biscuit taste. Caramel malt and hint of citrus hops on the tongue as well. Aftertaste is a malty wood like flavor, quite enjoyable. Light to medium body with a wet and slick feel to it. Carbonation can be a bit strong at times but doesn't take away from the true quality of this beer. What a great session beer. Blue Point should really think about bottling this one. By far the best I've had from these guys. Thanks again Joe for the trade.

Serving type: growler

02-24-2008 03:38:44 | More by BeerTruth
Photo of ncvbc
ncvbc

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to plaid75 for this growler in the Secret Bunny '08!

Pours basically crystal clear, a copper color with ruby highlights. Nice billowy off-white head rises up, leaving some good sticky lacing down the glass. Low to moderate carbonation.

Smell is lovely. I think it's mainly malty for sure (I'm a hophead). You get sweet nutty malt scents, along with light caramel. An excellent toasted, buttery bread comes through and it's freaking great! Light citrus hop presence underneath, otherwise this is all about the malt.

Hops come through a little more in the taste, starting off with a bitterness but that is quickly overtaken by malts. Again, nutty, I think I notice some oat like flavors. The bready character in this beer is wonderful and I can't get enough of it. Adds a great depth to the flavor and smell. How is there so much flavor in such a small beer?!

Mouthfeel is pretty light with a perfect amount of carbonation. Creamy, silky smoothness on the tongue. Utterly refreshing and satisfying.

I could drink this over and over again. In fact, I have. Three pints deep and I'm thinking my pictures for Secret Bunny will include an empty growler. Quite delicious, indeed! Thanks again to plaid75 for the chance to try this great brew, it's almost time to look for another growler. :-)

Serving type: growler

03-16-2008 02:39:55 | More by ncvbc
Photo of dragonWhale
dragonWhale

New York

4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

After a long hiatus, the ESB resurfaces! A fine beverage!

Clear red, a little lace, and overall sexiness. Some toast, some fruitiness, caramel, a little grassy hop.
A delicious beverage, smooth, slight bitterness followed by a lingering caramel bread. Finishes clean and a little sweet. Probably the finest beer from this brewery.

Serving type: growler

07-28-2011 01:32:22 | More by dragonWhale
Photo of albertjr21
albertjr21

New York

4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Into a pint glass on 7-24-11:

A: Settles a very clear gold color that borders on amber under a persistent dense creamy suds head.

S: Aroma is a mild yet noteworthy one with a crisp note of toasted sweet malt and light wild berry fruit ester.

M: Overall palate feel delivers a solid and steady flowery hop bitterness that gently finds its way around my taste buds on the back of a creamy biscuity malt balance. A relatively low abv really preserves the palate from alcohol related fatigue and I feel I am truly able to detect and appreciate the flavors offered here long after my first sip. Session brew anyone?

T: Toasted sweet biscuit malt harmonizes with waves of earthy, flowery, and maybe even some grapefruit accented citrus hops.

Serving type: growler

07-25-2011 00:57:13 | More by albertjr21
Photo of stegmakk
stegmakk

New York

4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was a little nervous after trying BP's toasted Lager (very dissapointing), but those fears were put to rest as soon as I caught a whiff of this beer.
Dark amber color with a nice off-white head.
Aroma was sweet floral, earthy. The flavor was great. A load of hops. Finish slightly more bitter but not overpowering.
Great brew...a must have from Bluepoint.

Serving type: on-tap

02-16-2003 13:26:39 | More by stegmakk
Photo of gory4d
gory4d

New York

4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark golden, almost russet. Not much of a head - just a few bubbles on top. No lacing. The smell is stone fruit, caramel, maybe tea, some hibiscus, rising bread. The taste is similar, but with an emphasis on the tannic and bready qualities, with a round bitter finish. It's very mildly carbonated, medium-bodied. Great even in this 100-degree heat. A marvelous beer, even better on cask.

Serving type: cask

07-23-2011 01:32:00 | More by gory4d
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Blue Point Extra Special Bitter from Blue Point Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 37 ratings.