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Wilson Creek ESB - Olde Hickory Brewery

Wilson Creek ESBWilson Creek ESB

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

42 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 42
Reviews: 20
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 12.6%


Brewed by:
Olde Hickory Brewery visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  ABV ?

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: wcudwight on 12-06-2009)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 42 | Reviews: 20 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of cosmicevan
cosmicevan

New York

4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

picked this one up in NC around the holidays. says fresh before march 2012 and the clock is ticking so why not tick it tonight? poured into a duck rabbit snifter.

a - a hard pour yeilds a transparent reddish orange brew with a finger full of frothy white foamy head. some carbonation can be seen.

s - very nice festive malt. a hint of potpouri and autumn. somewhat marzen like.

t - oh wow, that is quite nice. again, marzen comes to mind. very festive on the malt. good potpouri and craft store vibe to the flavor. apples and cinnamon. i dig it quite a lot.

m - smooth and crisp. refreshing.

o - overall, this may be the best ESB i've ever had. the spicing really adds an element of tastiness to a style that although i have been appreciating a lot more...i don't particularly find all that exciting. as opposed to a hopped out version, olde hickory took the malt and zested it up. if it didn't say ESB on the bottle, i'd swear this was a fresh oktoberfest. nicely done.

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2012 03:59:23 | More by cosmicevan
Photo of jgreenearrow
jgreenearrow

Virginia

4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a medium brown walnut color with a thick tan head forming at the top of the pour. Lacing remains on the sides of the glass.

S: The nose is dominated by malt and caramel. Some slight hop notes are present as well.

T: Bitterness hits the tongue at the outset of the sip. The bitterness fades into a somewhat sweet strong malt backbone with the striking bitterness reemerging for the finish. Some slight floral and fruity tones combine with the bitterness to linger briefly after the sip.

M: This is a light to medium bodied beer with good carbonation.

Overall, this is an excellent ESB. The malt backbone is blended nicely with the bitterness to create and tasty, complex beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2011 20:21:29 | More by jgreenearrow
Photo of wcudwight
wcudwight

North Carolina

4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ruby, orange and gold in color. Intiially a nice head but it fades pretty fast to a thin lace on top. Nice sticky lacing.
Smells of caramel malts and citrus hops. Smells more hoppy than other ESBs.
The bitterness bites the tongue immediately. Hop heavy. More earthy than in the aroma and more earthy than thier popular Pale Ale. While being hoppy a caramel malt maintains the balance.
Medium bodied with some twang in the mouthfeel. This is a good one. I'd recommed it if you ever find it on-tap. It's not as good as the Table Rock PA(one of my favorites) but it's a nice beer to have as a change of pace.

Serving type: growler

12-06-2009 22:40:17 | More by wcudwight
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz brown bomber with a freshness date.

LOOK: Orange amber, clear with a lively lacing on the glass.

SMELL: Caramel, ripe plums and pears, baked apple, cake batter, herbal hops, woody and earthy.

TASTE: Malt bomb, toasted bread, caramel, fresh grain, grassy, bark-like hops, earthy, woody, yeast, ripe orchard fruit.

Killer, soooo drinkable. Seriously, every sip I take I cry knowing that this bomber is the only one I have. There is balance, near perfection. To style, no doubt there.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2011 05:21:01 | More by Jason
Photo of SLeffler27
SLeffler27

New York

4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pale orange creamy foam continues to build well after the pour, ultimately reaching equal parts head to beer. The head lasts an eternity as it slowly turns rocky over a clear, dark amber beer while continuous random carbonation ferments from within. Dense clouds of lace are left behind on the Dogfish Head Fisheye pint glass.

Apricot gives way to honey and caramel with spice and caraway, imparting a freshness on this beer.

Opening with a nice, bitter bite that is equaled by a grainy or bready flavor. There is some acidity and lots of caramelized sugar, though not too sweet.

A full body with prickly carbonation and soft texture, followed by a hint of alcohol.

This stands up as an everyday beer with lots of character. It is quite satisfying on a hot Sunday afternoon and the bottle can easily be finished in one sitting.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2012 19:46:17 | More by SLeffler27
Photo of Onenote81
Onenote81

North Carolina

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

Had on tap at the OHB Tap room recently. Came out a dark honey orange with a small cap on top. Nose carried some vegetable scent, noble hops, grass. Crisp, mouth with moderate carbonation. Mild bitterness with dry character. Subtle fruit-like sweetness pulls through. This is a balanced bitter beer, that pared really well with my burger. Sorry I've passed over this one for so long. I may have to grab a few bottles now.

Serving type: on-tap

07-11-2012 14:22:08 | More by Onenote81
Photo of Axnjxn
Axnjxn

North Carolina

3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on draft at beer study in chapel hill. teku glass.

pours a dark orange with an inch thick head. more hops than most esbs, though smell isn't intense. excellent taste. bready and sweet flavor, reality great. malts are the big thing here, but the hops are there too. medium bodied, mild carbonation.

very recommended for ESB fans. liked a lot.

Serving type: on-tap

08-27-2013 01:13:49 | More by Axnjxn
Photo of mechamifune
mechamifune

North Carolina

3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice deeo amber with very little head. A very clean looking beer. Lacing is nice and carbonation is evident.

Smell is of malt/caramel though relatively subtle. Not any hops in the nose beyond what I would call a slightly "earthy" componant.

Taste is slightly sweet up front followed by bready/caramel/toffee notes. Slight bitterness to the finish but not that strong. A great overall taste for the style.

Mouthfeel is pretty creamy and smooth and works well with the flavor profile.

Overall this is a nice example of the style. I just wish it came in a six pack rather than a bomber. Very pleasant and sessionable but if you're looking for a beer with big notes this won't be your cup of tea.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2011 01:47:30 | More by mechamifune
Photo of LikeARollingStout
LikeARollingStout

North Carolina

3.86/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a snifter. Enjoy by October 13.

A - Pours a lovely copper/orange with just over a finger's worth of head that dissipated quickly. Spotty lacings.

S - Piney hops, sweet malts, and a good deal of booze.

T - Malt-forward with a mild earthy hop kick on the end. Very biscuity, and strong notes of caramel/honey/toffee. A bit sweeter than I'd like, but it's still delicious.

M - Medium bodied, moderate carbonation.

O - A great take on the ESB. I'd like to see this hoppier/stronger, but solid overall.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2013 01:39:46 | More by LikeARollingStout
Photo of wedge
wedge

North Carolina

3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

@ Busy Bee

Clear, dark amber color with a small white head on top. Smooth, pleasant aromas of bread, fruit, and light caramel malt. Refreshing malty flavor...earthy sweetness, toasted malt, sweet tea, and mild fruity esters with a slightly bitter finish. Notes of apple and spice. Fine carbonation, medium bodied, and fairly crisp. This is a nice, smooth, well-blended ESB from OH. I had a few...

Serving type: on-tap

05-09-2012 20:27:07 | More by wedge
Photo of PhillyStyle
PhillyStyle

Georgia

3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Brixx Wood Fired Pizza - Uptown (October 2011):

The beer appeared to be a nice, clear, deep reddish/dark amber color that produced a nice, foamy, white head that was decently retained and that ultimately left some lacing on the glass.

The aroma was good, a solid and fresh malty aroma with hints of earthy hops, wood and yeast. A pleasant aroma.

The taste is what one would expect from the style...a solid malt backbone, toasted malt, earthly hops and perhaps some fruit. The beer had a full and lasting flavor.

The beer had a lighter body and it was very easy to drink, very smooth and refreshing. Overall, this is a good representation of the style and a very enjoyable beer.

Serving type: on-tap

11-07-2011 19:01:08 | More by PhillyStyle
Photo of lanamj
lanamj

North Carolina

3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle served into a Duck Rabbit pint glass.

A- A very copper color that is very translucent. It was a soft pour so not to much head was generated, but I've had it on tap and know it creates a nice foamy white head. Which is slightly present here. A soap lacing is left behind on the glass.

S- Lots of sweet malts and bread. I get some honey and biscuits. Not to much in the way of a hop profile. Kinda one-sided.

T- A lot more complex then the nose. All of the aroma components from the nose, sweet malts, biscuit, honey and bread are all present but they're balanced with a beautiful hop bitterness. Just what it should be.

M- Nice and smooth. Medium body that seems flat on the tongue and active in the throat ( like sprite ). Not to much carbonation, just enough.

O- A very nice beer from OHB. The drinkability is very nice and it seems the flavor is well paired with anything. I wish the nose was a little more but still pleasant enough. This beer is one I find my self getting again and again and again...

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2011 19:01:36 | More by lanamj
Photo of KajII
KajII

North Carolina

3.6/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

[Best served in a Nonic Pint glass]

The pour was a hazy medium reddish brown with a large off white frothy head that had decent retention, reducing after a while to about a semi thin layer of film and a large collar which did allow for excellent sheeting of sticky lace.

The aroma was of a biscuit malt, an herbal hop and an earthy yeast with notes of a mild caramel, honey and a bit of dried fruit (raisins).

The taste was sweet and boldly malty with a hint of caramel and honey early on and progressed into a decently pronounced hoppy flavor with just a mild note of dark fruit at the end. The flavor stuck around for an average duration after the swallow with a moderate harsh hoppy ending.

Mouthfeel was just a tad above light in body and extremely creamy and yet a little dry in texture with nice mild carbonation.

Overall a very full flavored and smooth ESB, one that I enjoyed immensely...

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2012 15:15:36 | More by KajII
Photo of MacQ32
MacQ32

South Carolina

3.6/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a deep copper orange with a hint of ruby coloring. A nice dense finger of light caramel head results from a somewhat aggressive pour, fantastic lacing and retention!

S - Some light APA type fruits, earthy hops and biscuity grain mostly. Sweeter sugary caramel malts peek through as it warms slightly. A little faint

T - A quick hit of bitter earthy hops lasts for a split second before the sweet caramel malts and light sweet fruits and honey come through. The bitterness continues to linger throughout the taste as I continue to drink. More biscuity towards the end, the aftertaste is mildly astringent and bitter.

M - Good mouthfeel, fairly light, well carbonated, refreshing.

O - Not bad but I'm getting too much apple type fruityness and the flavors seem a little confused... or maybe my palates confused, just a little hard for me to grasp

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2013 22:45:44 | More by MacQ32
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.55/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Iam not sure if this is the same ESB I had at Amos Howards last spring.Poured into an imperial nonic a brilliant burnt orange with a soapy-like 1/2 finger white head that left a half ring of lace at settled pretty quickly.Fruity esters over top of crispy bread malt,myself I would have liked a little more bready malt but it's still appetizing none the less.Bready malt and juicy fruit on the palate,mild caramel/biscuit and leafy hops in the finish.It's a nice ESB I will say my favorite American ESB's are brewed in Pennsylvania where a few breweries make great bready renditions,this is above average.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2012 21:13:48 | More by oberon
Photo of thagr81us
thagr81us

South Carolina

3.55/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from tap into a shaker. Poured red-orange with a minimal off-white head. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, caramel, caramel hop, earth, and earth hop. The flavor was of sweet malt, bitter hop, caramel, dark chocolate, earth, and earth hop. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a pretty decent brew. I was really surprised to find the dark chocolate note in this one. It really added a nice bit of complexity to this one that tied the bitter and sweet aspects together. All of the proper notes for the style were definitely there as well. Worth trying if you get the opportunity and definitely do so if you are a fan of the style.

Serving type: on-tap

06-12-2012 12:54:55 | More by thagr81us
Photo of soulfly1492
soulfly1492

Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma: Mild for a bitter. Sweet pale and crystal malts, some darker malts in the mix, albeit small doses. Hops are mild to moderate and are pine and floral rather than citrus.

Appearance: Deep copper, clear when held up to a light. Head is pure white, mild retention and lots of lacing.

Taste: Nice blend of malts, pilsner, munich and crystal. Mostly sweet with some added bitterness. Some fuity esters from the malts and yeast, not from the hops. Little citrus. Some of the darker malts show up as roasty notes.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body. A bit watery. Finishes moderately dry.

Overall: Overall a good brew. Nice complex malt flavor.

Serving type: on-tap

06-25-2012 00:32:26 | More by soulfly1492
Photo of jmarsh123
jmarsh123

Indiana

3.48/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep caramel with a wispy head.

Aroma is fresh baked bread. Not a whole lot of hops and the bready aroma is center stage.

This is a malt bomb. Lots of toasted bread and some earthy hops, but malts are center stage. Finishes with a sweet yeasty grainy flavor.

Mouthfeel and carb are good.

This one doesn't really do it for me. A bit too sweet. I'd prefer if the malt bill were dialed back a bit as there's promise here, but definitely above average and definitely better when it warmed a touch.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2011 22:06:15 | More by jmarsh123
Photo of tdm168
tdm168

North Carolina

3.48/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - dark orangish amber with a mountain of loose, bubbly, soft, white head that has great retention

S - lightly malty, a bit earthy

T - lightly malty, faintly nutty, a hint of caramel

M - a bit crisp, heavily carbonated, medium bodied

This is a rather mediocre ESB. The flavor is there but it's light. Drinkability is high, but if you're looking for something that's traditional you'll probably want to look elsewhere.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2012 01:42:28 | More by tdm168
Photo of CooperEllis
CooperEllis

New York

3.33/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This Bomber is labeled Wilson Creek E.S.B. so reviewing it here.
Freshness dated "Before March '12"

from brentk56 in the '11 SSBIF

It's a bit light in the glass. Amber, bright, few bubbles until to you tap it a bit to hard on the table then there is a small explosion.

Thin lacing, sticks but not sticky. So much grain in the nose.

Malt, a bit more malt but gentle on the palate. The after taste is square, four corners of malt, baked apple and oatmeal. nothing flowing or improvisational. It might not be jazz, but it is certainly solid. The mouthfeel is smooth, light without much in the end. Light end of carbonation as well. Easy to drink but it's missing something.

(143rd)

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2011 03:22:14 | More by CooperEllis
Wilson Creek ESB from Olde Hickory Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 42 ratings.