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Best Bitter - Picaroons Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Best BitterBest Bitter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

63 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 63
Reviews: 35
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 12.23%
Wants: 1
Gots: 2 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Picaroons Brewing Co. visit their website
New Brunswick, Canada

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

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: PiratePete on 11-10-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 63 | Reviews: 35 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by mmmbeer:
Photo of mmmbeer


4/5  rDev +8.7%

Half-liter brown bottle, packaged 27/04/11. Pours auburn, with good carbonation and an inch of light tan head. The Ringwood yeast leads off in the nose with earthy and nutty notes, followed by a bit of malt and spicy/herbal hops. On the palate, it's the same yeast and hop profile as on the nose, and the malts are lighter than expected, but they do give notes of caramel and toast. Its fullish, moderately-carbonated body is creamy and chewy, with lingering bitterness. I think the Ringwood could turn some people off, but the beer is solid and quite sessionable.

10-18-2011 01:23:24 | More by mmmbeer
More User Reviews:
Photo of cam477

Newfoundland (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

10-12-2013 13:02:08 | More by cam477
Photo of FadetoBock

Alberta (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

07-31-2014 05:06:31 | More by FadetoBock
Photo of skellock

4/5  rDev +8.7%

06-11-2012 13:41:43 | More by skellock
Photo of djcreepshow

Nova Scotia (Canada)

3/5  rDev -18.5%

07-22-2013 23:36:29 | More by djcreepshow
Photo of Brenden


3.56/5  rDev -3.3%

I'm not sure where this came from, but it's fresh.

It's a medium brown with good clarity to it, transparent but for the color itself. The pale head shows some density as it settles on top to 3/4 finger. Retention is good, and lacing is thin but drops in a really nice sheeting effect to about the middle of the glass. It shows some rigidity to it overall, staying together well.
This beer showcases the strengths of the style; my main criticism would be that the yeast is a bit heavy and forward. Otherwise, the nicely complex blend of earthy, toasty, nutty and floral notes as well as its balance of each moderately strong malts and hops in the aroma and flavor make for a nice beer.
It's got a good medium body to it without going thin or, on the other side, heavier than it should. It's creamy with a bit of dryness and flows very nicely.
Is this Bitter the best? No. Is it good? Across the board.

03-19-2014 19:08:21 | More by Brenden
Photo of biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.7/5  rDev +0.5%

500ml sturdy squat bottle. Nice to see another proper 'best bitter' available in Alberta.

This beer pours a clear, bright medium red-brick amber hue, with three fat fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and rather bubbly off-white head, which leaves some pleasant cobwebbed lace around the glass as it slowly seeps away.

It smells of semi-sweet, almost pastry-like pale and caramel malt, simple syrup, fruity yeast, and earthy, leafy, and otherwise green hops. The taste is bready, faintly biscuity caramel malt, a further toffee sweetness, more earthy yeast, a bit of sour drupe fruitiness, oily nuts, and weedy, sort of floral, leafy hops.

The carbonation is present and accounted for, but does little to make you remember it, the body an adequate medium weight, and generically smooth, as those hops drop a metallic bomb right about now for some reason. It finishes off-dry, the bready caramel malt persisting mostly intact, amongst some increasingly peppy floral, leafy hops.

Picaroons' Best Bitter holds true to its God Save the Queen, or whatever British allegiances, right up until the veritably bitter end of this affair, when the hops exhibit a (relatively) heady dash of New World elan. Fairly crisp, sweet enough, and with that so-called elevated ABV for the style, I could envision downing a few of these should I ever find myself in a Maritimes public house.

07-09-2014 04:38:04 | More by biboergosum
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +17.7%

New Brunswick? What a surprise, and what a winner best bitter. Very good ingredients: the malt, the yeast, the hops, the creamy mouthfeel. And me mates loved it just the same. An initial bite, with nuts and fruit. Amber-mahagoney dark. Fresh as if on tap. Must try.

09-06-2004 22:10:33 | More by Sammy
Photo of juliendesrochers

Quebec (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

08-23-2013 00:05:13 | More by juliendesrochers
Photo of Yoonisaykul

Quebec (Canada)

3.38/5  rDev -8.2%

Friend brought it back from N-B

A- Clear copper chestnut under a pillowy, chunky light beige.

S- Honey. Reminds me a lot of Boréale Rousse. Some bitterness lurking in the back.

T- Nice green hoppiness which I was not expecting. Malt is pretty sour though. I'd like a little more sweetness. Especially with the hoppiness bringing some grapefruit notes, part of it almost ressembles white grapefruit juice.

M- Medium carbonation. Full body. Medium mouthfeel.

D- Good. Bitterness is just right to stick to style while being highly drinkable but the sourness is a little off-putting.

Good enough to make me want to try more from this brewery.

01-04-2011 01:39:07 | More by Yoonisaykul
Photo of abust

New Brunswick (Canada)

4/5  rDev +8.7%

11-14-2011 12:15:34 | More by abust
Photo of eat

Quebec (Canada)

3.8/5  rDev +3.3%

Picked up from the brewery store in downtown Fredericton. Clear dark copper body with ruby highlights and a good cover of cream-white head. Some lacing left as the head dissipates.

The nose is of slightly-burnt caramel, light earthy hops and minerals, graham cracker and a touch of diacetyl, though it's nothing extreme. I seem to be catching a whiff of cigarette ash now and then, but not when I go looking for it. Strange.

Quite well-balanced, with lightly-smoky caramel and moderately-bitter earthy hops meeting equally. Minerals, toasted nuts and a subtle chocolate note round it out. A touch of grapefruit pith lingers on the palate.

Acceptable feel: medium-light body with moderate carbonation. This is probably the lesser aspect of this brew; the body could be a little fuller and the carbonation toned down.

Based on this brewery's reviews here I can't say I was expecting much but this one far exceeded my (admittedly low) expectations. Reviews seem to be all over the place, looks like I got a lucky good bottle. I'm picky when it comes to bitters as it's not one of my favourite styles but I think I'd honestly drink this one pretty often if I lived in Fredericton. I sampled three of their other offerings at the store and this one easily ends up as the highlight of the four Picaroons I've tried. I'm now wishing I picked up a few more of these...

08-01-2011 03:48:07 | More by eat
Photo of Wrhino

British Columbia (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

10-20-2013 18:23:07 | More by Wrhino
Photo of Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Bottle courtesy of Okbeer: Poured a cloudy dirty brown color ale with a nice foamy head with some good retention. Aroma of malt with a light floral aroma. Taste is lightly sweet with some subtle floral hops. Body is fuller then expected with some adequate carbonation. Well done session ale that stays within the style parameter.

05-30-2007 19:38:34 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of TimeLincoln

New Brunswick (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

01-09-2013 17:13:22 | More by TimeLincoln
Photo of Nightwing

Nova Scotia (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Poured from bottle. Aroma of toffee and maybe nuts. Hazy amber with white head. Medium bitter taste. Medium body, thin texture, average carbonation, with a slight bitter finish. Overall a nice bitter brew.

08-19-2014 23:13:14 | More by Nightwing
Photo of ZorPrime

Quebec (Canada)

3.55/5  rDev -3.5%

Thanks to Moniker for this beer. Received in a 2009 trade.

A: Amber color beer, cloudy. This beer isn't filtered. I like it. The head is creamy looking with average to big bubbles. The foam sticks quite well to the glass.
S: The aroma is of medium intensity. I get caramel with some sugar.
T: The taste is very caramel with an aftertaste that is all bitterness. I get some maple syrup at the very end...
M: Medium body with enough carbonation to feel it. Sugary...
D: Good session beer.

On the label, it is written that the flavor are nuts and caramel... after thinking about it, yes it reminds me a little of the Honey nut brown ale from Rogue...

12-06-2009 21:27:30 | More by ZorPrime
Photo of CurtisD

New Brunswick (Canada)

4.25/5  rDev +15.5%

09-29-2012 02:09:19 | More by CurtisD
Photo of ritzkiss

Ontario (Canada)

2.15/5  rDev -41.6%

500ml bottle shared by Bobsy - you always bring the best stuff buddy ;)

Pours a murky orangeish brown with 2-3 fingers of foamy, soapy sticky head that leaves some lacing as it recedes. Way too heavy carbonation for a bitter.

Nose reveals the first WTF moment and it's all downhill from there (the head should have tipped us off perhaps). Funky lemon-y dish soap mixes with a decent but overpowered nutty, woody biscuit malt base. A hint of caramel in the body, malt tries to assert itself but is beaten down by this odd soapy funk. Light hop bittering in the finish. Infected? Perhaps. It's hard to tell. Fizzy, brash carb zips through the mouth. Nothing about this beer tells me it's an ESB.

I finished my portion but it wasn't pleasant. Hard to tell if this is what they intended to do or if they just have quality control issues (leaning this way). Either way, this bottle was a disaster.

05-28-2010 13:44:17 | More by ritzkiss
Photo of hef


3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

08-13-2013 03:40:46 | More by hef
Photo of papat444

Quebec (Canada)

3.65/5  rDev -0.8%

Thanks to cjbmcdon for this one. Shared with my wife last night with our supper, fish sticks & fries.

Poured from a 500ml. bottle, batch 1107, packaged 01/03/10.

Appearance: Pours a little too much foam for my liking. It gradually recedes to leave a amber reddish body. Head is fluffy and sticks a little to the glass.

Smell: Bitter hops with some fruit, orange maybe?

Taste: Reserved bitterness with the hard to pin down fruit which i think it might be melon. Has a touch of dryness to it. Would have liked a bit more flavor.

Mouthfeel: Reminds me a little of cask ale. Low carbonation with a smooth feel. Not quite full-bodied but i still like it.

Drinkability: Goes down easy especially with the warm weather.

Overall: I'd have this again probably. A well done bitter that doesn't wow you but is a faithful beer.

05-19-2010 12:17:13 | More by papat444
Photo of spinrsx

Ontario (Canada)

3.45/5  rDev -6.3%

500ml Bottle - thanks to frenchy for this one

Appearance - Clear reddish-copper colour with a large size fizzy beige coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for 5 minutes.

Smell - Malts, hops, caramel, toffee, reminded me a bit of a creme brule

Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel/toffee, light hops, and malts. There is also a bit of a roasted nut flavour and a woodiness. It ends with a malty and light bitter hopped aftertaste.

Overall - A solid ESB that might benefit from a touch less carbonation. The taste is pleasant and it's quite drinkable. Don't go out of your way to track down, but if you see it pick one up.

03-02-2012 18:23:01 | More by spinrsx
Photo of DreamDeath

New Brunswick (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

05-18-2014 05:56:42 | More by DreamDeath
Photo of TylerD420

3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

06-27-2012 00:51:16 | More by TylerD420
Photo of DrMalt

Saskatchewan (Canada)

3.68/5  rDev 0%

Picked up this "Best Bitter" at a local brewpub who brought it in for sale at the pub or for offsale. It was suppose to be part of a beer fest but arrived too late for tasting at the fest.

500ml bottle. 5.2 ABV Unique bottle with traditonal pop off bottle cap.

Poured a deep copper with a fine white head. Aroma was traditional English hop.

Flavour profile of a good english ale with a hint of nuttiness to it. An appealing spicy hop characteristic of Fuggles? No off flavours

Carbination was a bit too much & detracted from mouthfeel. Would be better after sitting for 30 minutes?

Overall a drinkable beer (English Best Bitter) & worth a try. Would perhaps be even better on tap or cask conditioned.

01-06-2007 23:22:54 | More by DrMalt
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Best Bitter from Picaroons Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 63 ratings.