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Adnams Broadside Strong Original - Adnams plc, Sole Bay Brewery

Not Rated.
Adnams Broadside Strong OriginalAdnams Broadside Strong Original

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

155 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 155
Hads: 198
Avg: 3.91
pDev: 10.49%
Wants: 14
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Adnams plc, Sole Bay Brewery visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  6.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jdhilt on 08-26-2003

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (55) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Adnams Broadside Strong Original Alström Bros
Reviews: 155 | Hads: 198
Photo of woemad
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This review comes with apologies to historians of the Anglo-Dutch wars and fans of Patrick O'Brian.

Big-ass 1.pt9oz bottle, featuring a line-of-battle ship loosing a broadside - presumably HMS Royal James (ok, that's the only ship name from this battle I know), purchased at Jim's Homebrew in Spokane for $5.45. I went in looking for AK Smoked Porter for a possible trade. Not finding my quarry (and knowing it was gone everywhere else in town), and feeling all those bottle staring at me, I decided to pick up something to make putting up with the moronic Division Street traffic worth my while. I settled on the Broadside bomber and remembered I'd had a couple of pints of the draft version at the Castle Inn on a rainy day in Cambridge, UK, in the summer of 2001. I decided it would be fun to try the bottled take on it. Also my predilection for naval and maritime history dictated that I had to drink something commemorating the Battle of Sole Bay (or Solebay, as it's often written). "Best before 21 Sept 05." Oops. BTW, why is an English brewery commemorating a defeat? Yeah, yeah, it was their local battle, but their side lost! It'd be like a brewer in Honolulu offering a Day of Infamy IPA, or a Russian brewer making a Tsushima Stout.

Poured a muddy brown that took on a copperish orange shade when held up to direct light, with a big, thick off-white head that dropped faster than you can say Michiel Adriaanszoon De Ruyter. The head dropped in about 2 minutes, but left lovely sheets of foam on the sides of the glass as it made it's way down my imperial pint glass.

The smell isn't what I expected, despite not really knowing what to expect. There's a mild, berry sweetness, along with a mild bitterness. There's also a noticeable bready yeast scent that might have been less strong had this been fresher, but had not reached an unpleasant level. This smelled tasty without being flashy about it.

This unflappable, steady without being spectacular quality carried over to the taste. Make no bones about it - this is a mostly malty beer. The mildly fruity sweetness is the most noticable flavor component, but it's kept from beating the drinker over the head by a no-frills hoppiness that doggedly sticks to it's job -keeping the malts from running amok. Otherwise, the hops are about as active as the French were at Sole Bay.

While more substantial than a typical English pale ale, the thickness of this beer is no slab-sided Dutch built buggar. Mouthfeel-wise, this is at the upper end of medium bodied, with a level of carbonation that keeps this from being too heavy but other wise doesn't draw too much attention to itself.

This is a tasty beer that doesn't make too many demands on the palate, but at the same time is more interesting tasting than a typical English pale ale. It would go well with a hearty (earl of) sandwich, and you'd probably fare better than Mr. Montagu if you chose this.

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Photo of DogFood11
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a deep shade of copper, medium carbonation. Forms a decent white head that has some girth to it. Lacing is minimal.

Not alot to the nose. Some dark fruits and sweet malts are about all that come through in the smell. The taste? Boy oh boy what a nice fruitiness to this beer. A deep berry type presence mixed with a lighter more citrusy pineapple and buried in a mix of charred malt and caramel. Alcohol grows as it warms and is a welcomed change from the rich malty goodness.

Notes: Tasted pretty damn nice. Missed alot of the other categories in my opinion. Rather heavy for the style in the mouthfeel, kinda syrupy at times. Bit of a tinny presence as well. All told this is probably the last I'll have of this. In order to pay import prices I'll have to have a stunner to keep up the purchases.

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Photo of Absumaster
4.17/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark brown, copper beer with a creamy crude head.

Smell is malty with nutty, caramel layers. The yeast is fruity and it has some hoppy, earthy flavors.

Taste of palemalt, nutty, light roasted, a bit husky, and earthy. The top layer of caramalts only enforce the great depth of maltiness. Bitterness is high for style, it balances the sweet malts. Fruit notes given by the yeast of grapes and peach. Body is a bit sweet, but well balanced.

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Photo of marc77
3.81/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Slightly murked ruddy chestnut hue. Mountainous, fluffy light tan head leaves frothy lace. Mellow notes of singed toffee and licorice in aroma, accompanied by earthy hop and trace butterscotch. Just a touch too soft aromawise, but welcoming nonetheless. In flavor, prevalent in malt character is an impression of treacle sweetened burnt biscuit and raisin. After a deliberation, dryish, baker's chocolate melds with butterscotch and dark crystal malt tones to lend a cocoa dusted caramel candy impression. Hop bitterness creeps in, soundly offsetting caramel sweetness and lending overall balance. Undertone of candied fig augments as the beer warms. Mild woody hop flavor complements bitter chocolate notes. Agreeably dextrinous in mouthfeel, but not overly so. Finishes with a surprising surge of hop bitterness that yields to a continution of burnt malt tones. A flavorful, rather complex ale that's seemingly a hybrid of a true ESB and English old ale. Not every flavor component coalesces, however, thus precluding excellence. Regardless, Broadside is certainly worth a try.

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Photo of TerryW
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Great looking beer. Walnut colour with a big chunky head that settles to a heavy film and leaves lots of lace. Impressive.

Unremarkable nose, just a little dark fruit and a whiff of malt. This is a muscular beer tastewise though. Solidly bitter, evenhanded malt and hops. A hint of dark fruit. Leaves an impression of black licorice. Finishes with dry lingering bittereness. Interesting, not for the faint of heart. Initiallt too spritzy, but quicklt settles down and edges towards syrupy.

Higher than normal alcohol content, but well managed, just warms you up nicely.

Interesting, worth a try, quite substantial.

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Photo of granger10
4.28/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Really nice deep auburn color with a creamy tan head. Fruity aroma with some hops but a little vegetable note in there as well. Taste is very creamy on the mouth with a rich caramel sweetness and good English hop hit on the backside that provides a fruityness. Slight buttery note actually helps the smoothness of this really thick, chewy bready body. It all works here. Depth is an issue and the richness could be overwhelming after a few but overall this is simply a really well made English ale.

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Photo of WastingFreetime
4.17/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours out a clear brownish-amber color with a single finger of tan foam that lasts for about three minutes and leaves behind fairly decent loops of lacing on the glass. Medium body and carbonation levels, smooth texture.

Smells of an even blend of caramel and toffee malts with a general toasted nuttiness and plenty of dark fruits. The bottle wasn't kidding when the label boasted of a fruit cake aroma. The flavor follows suit mostly, with a touch of balancing herbal / medicinal hopping. A faintly metallic ghostly flavor nuance does appear as the glass warms up, but rather than being a flaw, it surprisingly seems to provide a dab of extra counter-balance to the malt sweetness! It's really good... right up there amongst my other personal favorite English offerings.

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Photo of allergictomacros
3.56/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark and hazy ruby red, really good tan foam. Rocky and creamy.

S - Hoppy and malty. Typical EPA qualities. Slight sharpness with a hint of grain and coffee.

T - Kind of a heavy beer. Slightly metallic and nutty with coffee and fruitiness. Fairly bitter finish.

M - Medium-heavy without being creamy. Medium carbonation.

D - Somewhat complex. Not a sessioning beer. Fairly tasty and worth trying.

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Photo of daliandragon
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another one I remember trying during my time in the British Isles but that was long before I really learned to appreciate beer aso lets give it a more scientific effort. Most obvious initial feature is sticky lacing but also exhibits a thick, rocky head and a dark brown color with an orange tint at its extremities. Nose is spice, hops and malt. Looking very good indeed.

A broad river of English hop flavor. Refreshing, but followed by a slightly metallic aftertaste. Mouthfeel carries the body well enough and has minimal carbonation.

This was very good but I still feel somewhat disappointed after the almost amazing appearance. Stiill, a highly regarded English pale ale.

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Photo of aracauna
3.5/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a beautiful color, a deep ruby that’s fairly clear. The head is a bit fizzy, and fades incompletely pretty fast. This is a malty beer. A little wood and a good bit of caramel, brown sugar and cherries. Not a lot of hops present and a bit sweet in the finish.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber color with a long lasting head and good lacing. The aroma is of fruity malts with raisin bread and overripe banana hints. The taste rich with a lot of malts up front and a few hops in the back. Hops show themselves the most in the finish, with some mild bittering. This Tastes like a Scotch Ale with a bit more hop flavor.

The mouthfeel is thick with active carbonation. The drinkability and mouthfeel of this beer are somewhat dinged by a pronounced sweetness that lasts till the finish.

Overall this beer is decent though nothing special. Its worth a try but its a little one dimensional with the malts.

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Photo of rajendra82
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer came in a 500 ml. brown bottle with a best before date of 3 February 2005 on the back label. The pour was clear reddish brown with a decent sized reddish white head. The lacing was good too. The aroma was sweetly malty with some earthy mild English hops lurking in the background. The taste was similar with chocolate malts, dark skinned fruits, rum raisins, and charred wood. The hops were restrained, but provided a peppery kick and a dry mouthfeel. It is a bit of stretch to call this one a Strong Ale, as this is at a mere 6% ABV. I would put it in the category of an ordinary Brown Ale. But call it what you may, it is quite good.

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Photo of tmoneyba
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5


Poured dark brownish hue with medium off-white head that diminished slowly with fair lacing. Good aroma of malt and sweet fruit. Medium body with flat carbonation. Medium sweet flavor with small bitter finish of moderate duration.

My expectations where met.

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Photo of connecticutpoet
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was another ale I got to try as a free sample at a local liquor store, so I can't comment much on the head from what I got in a 2-ounce glass. It was a nice brown color. The aroma was of very complex malts, very layered, with no hoppiness.

It had a rich, malty taste that had so many flavors intertwined I couldn't pick any particular ones out. It was quite good, with a lingering bitterness. One I wouldn't mind having again.

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Photo of kimcgolf
3.18/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured to a brown color with hints of ruby red, with a thin off-white head that lingereed midway and left okay lacing. Aroma was muted, but slightly nuts and caramel. Flavor was somewhat malty sweet, and while body was fairly creamy, any true flavor was diifficult to ascertain. Although only 6.3%, the alcohol made itself known toward the end in both aroma and flavor, and the palate and finish were just so-so. Not a bad beer, but not great either.

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.28/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16.9oz brown bottle from Florian's. Hazy brick-reddish/brown with around an inch of off-white head that leaves a good amount of lacing. Diacetyl plays a big part in the aroma with a fair bit of malt. Biscuit malt and earthy hops dominate the flavor with undertones of diacetyl. Very well balanced. Full flavored. Full bodied with a good amount of carbonation to support it. Drinkable as well. This is a damn good English ale. I'm quite impressed, and will deffinitely be picking this one up again.

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Photo of NightINgale
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle poured into a tulip pint glass...

A - Light brown body, with a ruby glow to it. Rich off-white head, with some good lacing, and pretty good retention. Not very carbonated.

S - Loads of fruit notes; cherries, raisins, grapes. Slightly nutty, with a good caramel malty backbone. Somewhat floral as well, with a faint hint of citrusy hops. I could pick up a little bit of the yeast, which have a very English aroma. So far so good.

T - There was a lot going on. First I got a very fruity malt taste (with hints of cherry, dried fruit, and red grape), somewhat sweet, with loads of caramel and a hint of roastiness. Then the bitterness kicked in, leaving some floral hop notes on the palate. This beer indeed had a fruit cake-like taste to it, and reminded me of a red wine or port. The finish was bitter, with some breadiness to it.

M - Somewhat boozy (but not over the top), with a winter warmer feel to it. Medium-bodied (or slightly thicker than medium) and very lightly carbonated. A touch of spiciness on the tongue could be felt.

D - Not the most drinkable ale, and definitely not a session one. However, it was quite pleasant to drink. I also paired it with some aged cheddar cheese, which was an excellent combination.

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Photo of bruachan
3.99/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

this is a fine, malty brew. it's a deep brownish red with a tan head that spews forth robust malt aromas. it's an intoxicating cocktail of chocolate and soft nuttiness. it actually reminds me of the rochefort 10 (is that crazy?)

doesn't taste much like it smells. dark fruits romp around the strong bitterness. blackcurrant and earthy hop flavors. sweet, but the bitterness cuts this off

too bitter for me, actually, but otherwise a fine beer

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Photo of Dentist666
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

ABV 6,3
Ruby-brown beer with decent off-white head, some lacing. Low carbonation, fruit nose - grapes, prunes & sweet malt. Crisp taste with well expressed alcohol, also fruits and caramel, lingering on the tongue for minutes after beer is over. Warming & balanced ale.

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.11/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What's this? A new imported strong ale at the LCBO?

Done. And. Done.

Lovely looking bottle, shaped almost like a bullet. Poured into a nonic. A deep, dark ruby, one inch thick head. Loads of spidery lacing. Very nice.

The smell is not this brew's strongpoint, but gets a bit more discernible with warmth. Mostly roasted malts, bread, a bit of fruit (plums and cherries).

A terrific English bitter ale. Intensely flavourful, with nice roasted maltiness up front, fruitiness in the middle (cherry, plums, apples), tart bitterness at the finish. I get a slight taste of alcohol, but not enough to be a problem.

Mouthfeel is slightly syrupy, but still terrific. Right amount of carbonation. The bitterness lingers long after each sip.

Just a terrific ale. Well worth a try if you like the style, certainly good for a session, although the ABV is certainly high enough to warrant caution.

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Photo of Naerhu
3.89/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to RobBeer for bringing this beer all the way to Japan!

A - Dark amber body, transparent thick head. Stubborn lacing.
S - Light sweet earth malts, with English hops.
T - Earthy malt balanced with a substantial bitterness. Smoky aftertaste or rather hints of burnt old fruit. Not overly sweet.
M - A little light in the body. Alcohol integrated nicely.
D - A nice ale to be had, though nothing outstanding.

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Photo of jmz62565
3.6/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This pours a dark brownish red with a large tan foamy head. The smell has a strong dark fruit,prune or raisin, and alcohol aroma. The taste is malty with dark fruit flavors. The flavors are strong except for the malt, which is too weak for my tastes. The m/f is light with flavors that don't mix well at all. The fruit is much too strong with the malt sweetness being an afterthought. This is an Ok beer, but it is flawed.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep amber with ruby back-lit tints. A decent light tan head forms,a nd it nicely proudly sticks around for a good long time. Aroma is malty bready with some dark fruit notes, slight brown sugar/molassas, and a hint of alcohol. Flavor follows through, the alcohol is stronger in the flavor than expected for a 6% brew. Also has a somewhat (but not strong) sharp hop bite back end. Overall nice taste, but generally bigger and heavier than I want in a beer most of the time. Body is full and rich.

A good, decent beer, and at $5.99 for a four pack of 12 oz bottles, this one is a great value!

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Photo of GreenCard
3.55/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: dark amber, great clarity, thick layer of tan suds, good head retention, some lace

Aroma: Trappist-like maltiness, caramel, herbal hops, cotton candy, alcohol, dark honey, sisal rope

Flavor: full malty sweetness with an edge of roast, burnt caramel, herbal hop flavor, roots, licorice, cannabis, a bit vegetal in the background, finishes semi-dry with a long-lingering aftertaste of roast bitterness and caramel

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, fine carbonation, alcohol warmth

Other comments: After living in Belgium, I was used to 6% abv as the norm. In the UK, this is considered "strong", but with that also comes more flavor than the typical British ale. Now that winter is here, it is nice to have some of these higher abv British ales around.

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Photo of dasenebler
3.66/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml, best by 7/31/11. Gift from a friend, and I haven't had (reviewed) a British ale in a while.

Pours a slightly hazy, coppery amber with a fantastic creamy head. Nice sheets of lacing.

The nose has a big dose of woody hops, though not much else.

Very bitter strong ale here. The middle reveals some nice malt complexity, with a burnt caramel goodness and toasty notes. Little bit of tang and ale fruitiness. The finish is very dry and woody. The mouthfeel is soft and creamy with medium-low carbonation. I appreciate the hop bitterness, but I feel this is unbalanced in the end. In addition, the (moderate) alcohol content is pretty noticeable.

This is a solid beer, though nothing I'd seek out.

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Adnams Broadside Strong Original from Adnams plc, Sole Bay Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 155 ratings.