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Seriously Bad Elf - Ridgeway Brewing

Not Rated.
Seriously Bad ElfSeriously Bad Elf

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

178 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 178
Reviews: 124
rAvg: 3.38
pDev: 16.27%
Wants: 1
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ridgeway Brewing visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ADR on 11-11-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 178 | Reviews: 124 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jaasen64
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml sized bottle poured into a 22oz glass.

A- reddish gold, translucent, about a finger of white head, average carbonation.

S- Cinnamon, some spices, slightly floral, sweet.

T- Sweet, lightly spiced, some barley. Slightly sweet aftertaste.

M- Average carbonation, medium bodied, slightly syrupy, drinkable, alcohol decently well hidden.

O- This beer wasn't bad for a strong ale. It was a little bit too much on the sweet side and a little bit too syrupy however at least these characteristics hid the alcohol fairly well. Overall not bad, would have again but probably wouldn't purchase again.

jaasen64, Feb 12, 2012
Photo of jfcaa193
4/5  rDev +18.3%

jfcaa193, Feb 05, 2012
Photo of CWhite
4/5  rDev +18.3%

CWhite, Jan 31, 2012
Photo of wallyworld68
1/5  rDev -70.4%

wallyworld68, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of Ryan1423
4/5  rDev +18.3%

Ryan1423, Jan 16, 2012
Photo of Cozzatoad
3.08/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500ml bottle

A- Transparent dark gold/honey colour. One finger, soft looking white head. Decent retention at first, though it completely disappears after a couple of sips. Near to lacing on the glass

S- Caramel and honey malts with a strong boozy feel. A hint of spiciness from the esters

T- Strong boozy feel throughout the whole tasting experience, with some plain alcohol notes that have not really melded with the beer's flavours. Biscuity and caramel malts with a faint hint of roastiness while swallowing. Some fruity hints (apple maybe), a thouch of herbal bitterness, some spicy notes (pepper) show up at times. Overall quite tasty, but a bit of a boozy mess

M- Medium body and carbonation. Decently smooth, feels nicely warming

O- Not a really, really bad beer but not even close to be good. It has a bit of a nice warming feel and has some flavour range, but it's a mess, and it's not that much drinkable either

Cozzatoad, Jan 16, 2012
Photo of TheQuietMan22
3.3/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Serving type: 500 ml bottle. There is a code printed on the label but no clear freshness date. Boo!

Appearance: Straight pour into a pint glass. The color is clean and clear honey. Two fingers of white head dissipated slowly to leave a billowy/spotted cap and foamy ring around the edge.

Smell: During the pour I could smell the alcohol, but when I put my nose to it the booze had faded. Pale malts, sweet caramel, toffee, honey, apple cider, green grapes, and musty basement.

Taste: The first sip offers sharp booziness, which serves as a fitting prelude for the rest of the pint. The alcohol is not completely overpowering — it fades after a bit — but it is very noticeable throughout. There are flavors of grapes, pale malts, apple cider, light caramel and toffee, honey, raisins, and lemon citrus.

Drinkability: It is okay. Not seriously good but not seriously bad. Seriously, though, I doubt I will ever buy it again.

TheQuietMan22, Dec 21, 2011
Photo of steveh
3.9/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Number three in what's been a pretty good tasting run of beers. English Strong Ale, eh? Not sure if that would be an Old Ale, or what. 9% -- perfect for the first day of Winter.

A -- Clear golden with a thick, lightly off-white head that holds up well and leaves good lacing in my imperial pint.

S -- Light fusel alcohol, a mellow fruit cake/cookie aroma. Sweet, no hoppiness.

T -- Up front taste is a luscious, fruity blend that folds into sweet, nearly unattenuated biscuit malts. The finish is toffee-like and lightly sweet with just a touch of bitterness in the aftertaste. From start to finish there is a backbone of spicy, peppery alcohol that let's you know it's there, but doesn't overpower the richer flavors.

M -- Mouthfeel is syrupy to dry in the finish with a light-medium body.

O -- Someone think light colored beers can't be strong and characterful? Hand 'em one'a these! A smooth, cold weather sipper. The strong alcohol is present, but it doesn't hit you over the head to let you know it's there. This is a perfect sipper for a cold winter's evening.

steveh, Dec 21, 2011
Photo of mvilushis
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%

mvilushis, Dec 21, 2011
Photo of wmickdds32
4/5  rDev +18.3%

wmickdds32, Dec 15, 2011
Photo of brotherloco
4/5  rDev +18.3%

brotherloco, Dec 14, 2011
Photo of brandoman63
3.25/5  rDev -3.8%

brandoman63, Nov 30, 2011
Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev +18.3%

Rochefort10nh, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of Exiled
3/5  rDev -11.2%

Exiled, Nov 23, 2011
Photo of jayhawk73
2.98/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a medium gold color w/ a one finger white head. The head quickly disappears. Not much lacing on my snifter glass. This beer is fairly clear in appearance- you can see right through it. The nose has grain, malt, apple, and a slight honey smell as well. Improves as it warms, but not much more than average here. Wow- The taste is completely different than the nose. Big malt and honey take over here- a little better than the nose. I don't really get any of the 9% ABV in the taste at all. Feel is light, syrupy, and carbonated w/ a hops bite on the aftertaste. Overall, this is a style I haven't had before- and I'm glad I got to try one. I probably won't buy this again though. Cheers.

jayhawk73, Nov 06, 2011
Photo of OttoPeeWee
3.73/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I got this beer for a good price and have never had a british beer with 9% abv, so I figured I'd give it a try. The pour is pretty standard with more of a soapy head that dissipates. It is a golden beer. The smell is faint honey and grain, not bad. The taste is subtle grain, malt, medicinal and more honey. I am actually surprised I don't taste much alcohol in this beer. Pretty good, I would just prefer a bit more esters to spice up the flavors a bit. Worth a try if you like british and belgium beer.

OttoPeeWee, Jul 24, 2011
Photo of obrendano
3.23/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

mostly drank this out of a cup, but finally found a good clean glass to view in

A - beer pours a cidery gold with champagne bubbliness. head is good at first, but I think is hindered by the alcohol. not exactly what I look for in a "strong ale"

S - fruity esthers, very slight, thin malt, and a faint scent of the alcohol. a musty wine note also comes through

T - big on esther notes, grapes mostly, rough booze taste and pale malt dominate afterwards

M - a little odd and sticky in a bad way

D - to me, this is a lot like drinking a very alcoholic ale version of most big time industrial lager brews. before you put it up to your nose to smell it, the lingering odor in the air is of generic "beer". this is not a horrible beer, though, and is great as the kickoff to a good session, but other than that and getting knocked onto your ass, that may be all it's good for.

obrendano, Jun 22, 2011
Photo of jmdrpi
2.42/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

500mL bottle

appears a bright clear golden color, with bright white head. the lacing clings the sides of the glass.

smells of pale malt and grass. reminds me of the aroma of a cheap adjuct lager. not good.

taste is sweet and malty, no hops that I can detect. fruity and boozy in the finish. just kinda boring overall. an average moutfeel.

same batch, after a year in the cellar.

appearance the same. aroma and taste have softened. no longer boozy. improved, but still not a good beer.

jmdrpi, Feb 03, 2011
Photo of ElGordo
3.43/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pretty orange color with a very light lace of white head that fades instantly. Just a touch of faint carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass. Sweet aroma of pale and caramel malts, some fruity esters from the hops, and more than a little treacle.
Palate is sweet and fruity up front, lots of tropical fruit and apple notes. The decent pale malt backbone keeps it from being overwhelmingly fruity, but the treacly sweetness comes through towards the swallow. Finish is drier than one would expect for a beer this big and sweet (hence low attenuation), but it is much more subtle than the rest of the palate.
Body is somewhat creamy, not bubbly, but still a bit thinner than is usually expected from a high-alcohol beer. The sweetness is a bit overwhelming, but does help mask the alcohol content. I am kind of glad that I split the bottle with my wife, but it's not exactly a chore to drink. Maybe not the most festive holiday ale, though.

ElGordo, Dec 29, 2010
Photo of Erish
3.95/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I poured this 1 pt. 9 oz. bottle into a wine glass.

A: clear honey gold color, light egg shell colored head quickly falls into a light cap with decent lacing.

S: cherries, raisins, sweet malt.

T: much like how it smells, fruit up front, ester-laden and boozy in the middle, and oaky, herbal/floral hop finish.

M: medium-bodied, silky to oily texture, light carbonation.

D: a very nice strong ale. Happy Christmas!

Erish, Dec 25, 2010
Photo of BEERchitect
4.03/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Elf is definately serious in it's alcoholic impact and the impression of flavor that it lays on the palate. Total Engligh-like through and through, the beer has a Belgian-like dryness and spiciness that only fuels the intrigue.

Seriously Bad Elf pours a rich golden or light amber color with steady streams of carbonation and near-clear appearances. A creamy blanket of foam coates the glass and clings to the sides for intermitten lacing. A very solid look throughout.

Aromas of biscuit malt, honey/honey suckle, and highly estery fruitiness rule the nose with spicy alcohols (almost boozy), with oranges, cherries, and red licorice. Rich and assertive aromas that amplify as the beer warms.

Flavors of caramels, doughy breads, sugar cookies, and light rum set the stage. Then there are layers of peppery spice, fruity esters, herbal/earthy bitterness, jam-like sweetness, and boozy alcohols that continue to give new impressions to the beer, wave after wave.

Medium weighted early, muted because of the higher than expected attenuation, high abv., and abundant carbonation. But as the carbonation subsides, the alcoholic warmth and light sugary feel weighs on the mouth for a dry but sweetly finish.

With a lot of flavors borrowed from both a English Pale Ale and an English Barlwyine with with more flavor and feel than the Pale but with less syrupiness than Barleywines. The beer does a good job of straddling the fence.

BEERchitect, Nov 27, 2010
Photo of stcules
2.8/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bright amber color, very beautiful. Copper edges. One and a half finger of decent head.
Malty smell, with light biscuit notes. And light spicy notes, too, peppery. And then hints of hop, quite musky.
Malty taste, with sweet and sugary notes, and some hop in the back.
Spices? I don't think.
Anyway, a bit cloying and heavy.
Nothing to remember.

stcules, Jun 07, 2010
Photo of sauron681
2.68/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours clear coppery color with next to no head and hardly any lacing. Fairly light carbonation that is hard to pick up. A slight fruity aroma, and that was all i could get from it.

Medium light bodied in the mouth. Slight lemony flavor, no hops, hint of spice, and an overpowering alcohol aftertaste. They definetly got the "strong" part of the ale.

sauron681, May 02, 2010
Photo of wangbruins
2.73/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- Extremely light golden yellow with a decent head- pretty generic really

S- Lots of lemon and fairly yeasty, very light smelling and not too overpowering

T- Lemon and yeast mostly, very plain without much aftertaste

M- Thin and oily and goes down easy, not as bold as I expected

D- High ABV but not as bold as I like. It's okay for the one or two and the novelty, but that's about it

wangbruins, Jan 17, 2010
Photo of BTPete
3.25/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On cask at Mahar's in Albany, NY. Notes taken directly from phone.

Cask seriously bad elf

Cask to mug @ mahars

A: clear golden with just a tad of head on top.

S: sweet smelling, malty and fruity, a little sweet and sour in a way.

T: very sweet with fruity esters. Very smooth, but sweet with little to no alcohol zing which is surprising for ABV. Maybe due to cask. There is sour embedded in there at the finish. Actually it comes across as a little odd.

M: smooth and creamy....aaaah cask

D: good brew, probably low drinkability in my opinion due to sweetness alone, abv second.

BTPete, Dec 16, 2009
Seriously Bad Elf from Ridgeway Brewing
78 out of 100 based on 178 ratings.