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Lancaster Bomber - Daniel Thwaites Brewery PLC

Lancaster BomberLancaster Bomber

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

100 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 100
Reviews: 67
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 13.78%

Brewed by:
Daniel Thwaites Brewery PLC visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  4.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-24-2003)
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Ratings: 100 | Reviews: 67 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of dreamchaser

Ontario (Canada)

3.21/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Very clear amber colour and unsubstantial yet long-lasting light white head. A surprising taste. Strong aroma of hops. Taste begins crisp and clean with fine bitter hop notes but finishes with very sharply metallic maltiness that lingers only briefly. Mouthfeel is quite watery and weak. Well balanced but lacks substantial flavour notes.

Serving type: can

09-12-2013 16:00:46 | More by dreamchaser
Photo of biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.93/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

500ml single can. Very subtle, well-rendered WW2 imagery evoked on the label imagery.

This beer pours a crystal clear, medium copper amber hue, with two fingers of tightly foamy, loosely bubbly ecru head, which leaves a rather random array of upwardly mobile peninsular lace around the glass as it evenly subsides.

It smells quite prominently of biscuity, grainy pale malt, with a touch of straight up caramel, some stoney flintiness, a blended apple-heavy fruitiness, and further fruity, somewhat floral hops. The taste is more semi-sweet, hollow fruity, and slightly biscuity malt, emboldened with hints of wet stone, ethereal black pepper dust, and more understated, mildly bitter floral, earthy hops.

The carbonation is almost near non-existent, the body on the lee side of medium weight, and more or less smooth. It finishes off-dry, the biscuity malt, mild orchard fruitiness, and slight black pepper character going a long way in recommending this.

A very presentable version of the style - biscuity and hoppy - what else could you want? Maybe a tad thin, but that's neither here nor there, the overall effect still more heady than anything I was expecting. Pretty solidly drinkable, that's the bottom line.

Serving type: can

07-14-2013 05:49:12 | More by biboergosum
Photo of derekvandenbrink

Ontario (Canada)

4.5/5  rDev +32%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was surprised how much I liked this pint. Quite often a canned or bottled beer can be quite different from a pint served at a pub. This pint was less gassy than for example a London Pride in a bottle. Smelled more hoppy than it tasted.
I wouldn't say it tasted much like an ESB more like a Gayles pint - as taken over by The Griffin Brewery.

Serving type: can

05-04-2013 22:04:41 | More by derekvandenbrink
Photo of jonb5

United Kingdom (England)

3.73/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Half litre bottle, poured into pint glass. Bronze auburn colour, clear, one finger off white head. Retained a fair amount of lacing. Aroma had hints of Fuggles and Goldings hop with some apple, also had to think of a north German style Pilsner. Tasted pine and citrus fruits (mainly grapefruit) sharp finish, moderate bitterness. Smooth texture, decent carbonation, slightly watery body. Overall it lacked the character of some ESBs and was slightly too strong to session as Andrew Flintoff found out after 17 pints at the 2007 cricket world cup in Barbados.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2013 15:46:39 | More by jonb5
Photo of bark


3.73/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The colour is deep copper (30 EBC), the liquid is clear. The three finger head is airy and beige. It sinks slowly leaving lots of thick lacing.

The smell is semi-sweet with distinct notes of apricots, hay, spices (allspice?), caramel and flowers (black currant bush).

The taste is smooth. It is not very bitter, instead the hoppy flavours dominates. Fresh flowers, dried and fresh apricots, hints of tart berries (gooseberries, green bananas) and grass. Mild sweet notes with some caramel and plums. Medium to light body. The aftertaste got a smooth flowery bitterness and a growing sweetness (caramel, brown sugar) and green berries. The finish is somewhat bitter.

The carbonation is light, the many small bubbles are smooth. The liquid is semi-dry.

More like a malty best bitter than an ESB. Still, a highly gulpable ale.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2012 19:53:23 | More by bark
Photo of andrenaline

Ontario (Canada)

3.43/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a nice copper colour, finger of head with little retention and no lacing.

S - Musty caramel, grassy hops, hints of buttered bread.

T - The musty caramel dominates, solid grassy hop notes, caramel corn and buttered bread lingers.

M - Thin and watery, but smooth an refreshing.

O - A super tasty ale that goes down smooth and is super sessoionable. I will be buying more of this.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2012 19:15:42 | More by andrenaline
Photo of Antikythera

New York

3.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have a soft spot for this beer's namesake. It flew over on my wedding day. No, I did not get married during WWII.

A: thick creamy head with fine bubbles. Pour it right or the head will stay around forever. It's still lacing up the sides of the glass fifteen minutes later. Crystal-clear brownish amber colour.

S: hoppy to the point where I was afraid it would be very bitter.

T: barely bitter at all, and in fact very mellow considering the hoppy smell. There's definitely a hop flavour but it's not overpowering. I expected other flavours to dominate in a beer this dark.

M: a little tiny bit fizzy. Little bubbles are popping on my lips after every sip. Smooth and lingering.

O: Pleasant and easy-drinking. Not as attention-grabbing as I expected for a beer named after a giant buzzing bomb-dropping airplane, but I'd buy it again.

Serving type: can

08-07-2012 00:19:55 | More by Antikythera
Photo of thehyperduck

Ontario (Canada)

3.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 mL can from the LCBO; best before May 7 2013. The abv seems a little light for an ESB, but I'll reserve judgment until I've tasted it - besides, I tend to like sessionable, mild English-style ales in general anyway.

Pours a clear amber-copper colour, topped with one finger of smooth, creamy, pearl white-coloured head. It lasts for a few minutes, until it finally wilts away completely, leaving an even coat on the surface - and another fine coat of lacing on the sides of the glass. Mild aroma with bready malts, some tea leafy hops and a touch of toffee and butterscotch. Certainly to style, but a little plain.

The flavour doesn't exactly wow me either. The initial sweetness is kicked off with some caramel and biscuity, grainy malts, but this is soon countered with the leafy, tea-like, vaguely earthly (and highly English) hop dryness. This bitterness remains dominant into the finish, and lingers for a while in the aftertaste. Nothing is out of place flavour-wise, but everything comes across as weak and diluted for an ESB. Light-bodied and disappointingly watery, with very mild (almost flat) carbonation levels. Easy to drink quickly, if nothing else.

Final Grade: 3.28, a relatively forgettable B minus. Not much of an ESB; there's nothing special or extra about it that's for sure. I graded this as a regular English bitter, but even by those standards it's nothing remarkable - serviceable, at best. One thing I will say - the bitter finish encourages quick sips, and this fact combined with the low abv and diluted flavours make this an absurdly drinkable ale.

But even though it's highly sessionable and I wouldn't be opposed to drinking it again... frankly I can't see myself bothering. Maybe on-tap if I find myself in merry old England. Anyone who enjoys bitters should consider Lancaster Bomber worthy of a try (at 2.50 for a half-litre it's actually decent value), but you probably shouldn't expect an award winner.

Serving type: can

08-04-2012 05:32:02 | More by thehyperduck
Photo of bryehn

Ontario (Canada)

3.43/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a copper-amber colour with a large and fluffy white head that has great retention, acting as a cap and leaving behind thick lace.

Very fruity aroma, mild caramel and grain backing.

Toasted malts, mild caramel and a surprisingly biting bitterness. Hints of chocolate, grain, orange peel and grape in the dry finish.

Medium-bodied with a mild carbonation. The everlasting head makes for a very smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Slightly syrupy sensation in the aftertaste.

Nothing Earth-shattering, but makes for a great session ale. Goes well with sandwiches, fried foods, potato chips and crackers.

Serving type: can

07-18-2012 16:31:25 | More by bryehn
Photo of Sunnanek


3.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours warm copper with a rather large pale tan soapy head that sinks into nice lacings.

S: Sweet malts, slightly roasted, at least some caramell. Some honey and some bitter hops. A fruityness lingers in the back.

T: A bit earthy, metallic/mineral. Toffee, slightly roasted malts, somewhat sweet. On the maltier side, but some bitter hops are there, as well as fruityness.

M: Long bitter aftertaste. Body is medium to light, while carbonation is low.

O: Not bad, but also not great.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2012 17:35:25 | More by Sunnanek
Photo of rarbring


3.3/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A clear copper ale, a high off-white head leaving good lacing and some curtains.

Smelling of honey, porridge, bitter oranges.

Starting with sweet brown bread, bitter oranges, orange peel.

Medium low carbonation, soft, medium light body, a dry finish.

A decent ESB, nothing wrong, nothing outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

04-11-2012 16:02:48 | More by rarbring
Photo of EmperorBevis

United Kingdom (England)

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

Pours a rich chestnut brown body with thick white head that laces the side of the glass

rich aroma of hops malts and potato peelings

Slight roasts start the taste experience then onto a brief malt stop, hops ahoy, bandits nine-er, prang the kite on a yeasty bitter finish

nice mouthfeel kinda chewy with a low key carb

good and dependable kind of like the plane I guess.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2012 22:18:15 | More by EmperorBevis
Photo of BDTyre

British Columbia (Canada)

3.68/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Decent ESB from Thwaites. Honestly, I bought this mostly due to the name. But I still like it.

Copper colour with a bubbly slightly off-white head. Toast and toffee malts, light fruit hops that are barely detectable.

Toasty malts carry through to the flavour, but with a nice creamy, buttery aftertaste. Nice, sweet fruity hops with just a hint of citrus to it.

Very smooth moutfheel, almost surprising for a bottle. Good session ESB, nice beer all-in-all. Not great, but quite good.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2011 20:43:07 | More by BDTyre
Photo of hopsolutely

Ontario (Canada)

3.6/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber with copper highlights. Yields a decent cream coloured head and carbonation pleasantly maintained, although flatter than many North American ESB's.

Aroma is of caramelized malts, albeit with a disconcerting metallic note that I have to believe is indicative of an issue with this bottle rather than the intent of the brewer.

Taste is well balanced with a pleasantly bitter finish. Caramelized malts are the predominant tone, with hints of citrus before the finish.

A lot of flavour for 4.4% ABV and definitely a beer I'd recommend.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2011 16:53:12 | More by hopsolutely
Photo of Richter35

Ontario (Canada)

3.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light mahogany colour with large and bubbly head that retains for a few minutes after the pour. Served in a pint glass. Looks appetizing enough...

Smell has s strong hop presence, backed up by a bready-malt base. Nothing new here and I would say probably that the beer is a bit one-dimensional in this category.

Tastes include mildly bitter hops, a sweet malt profile that has a somehwat dry and metallic finish.

Mouthfeel is curious. A medium bodied beer, but somewhat heavy and syrupy.

This beer, for me, is too awkward and unnapproachable in a lot of ways. The mouthfeel and colour would suggest a stronger showing in the taste department, but somehow leaves something to be desired.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2011 18:30:53 | More by Richter35
Photo of Kartoffeln

Ontario (Canada)

3.55/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours coppery amber with sizeable dense, fluffy off-white head. It has good retention, gradually dissipating to a foamy cap, and leaves plenty of frothy lacing.

S: Biscuit malts backed up by chalky minerality, herbal, woody hops, and caramel.

T: Toffee and toasty biscuit malts up front with undertones of bread and grain, followed by hops that start lightly fruity and turn to earthy and particularly citric bitterness - drawing out bitter roasted notes from the biscuit malt's aftertaste - accompanied by yeast and butteriness.

M: Light bodied with smooth, gentle carbonation - sort of cask-like when poured hard. The citrus and toasted malt finish provides strong, enduring bitterness demanding another sip, but throws the balance and overpowers the milder malt tastes by the end of the bottle.

D: Although solid, it isn't as balanced as an ESB should be: the finish is more in line with a bitter, I think. That said, it'd make for a great session ale if you enjoy that sort of citric/roasty astringency, and it's a solid ale in itself.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2011 23:47:13 | More by Kartoffeln
Photo of Stocean1

Ontario (Canada)

3.18/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - dark amber - 1 finger head - some lacing

S - hint of sweet malt, caramel

T - not much here, very subdued and only a hint of grassy hops (ESB?)

M - very light, only slight bitterness on the end, but goes down easy

O - easy drinking but very subdued for the style, simply lacks much character.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2011 11:39:08 | More by Stocean1
Photo of bucklemyshoe


3.85/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle at 45 degrees into a 20 oz mug.

A: It pours a dark copper color with a half-finger of light tan head that does not hold or lace much at all.

S: Caramel, buttery diacetyl, wet grains, and a strong whiff of goldings.

T: Caramel, a little almond, buttery diacetyl, mild fruitiness, and some English hoppiness.

M: The body is relatively light with average carbonation levels.

O: This is flavorful and oh...so...quaffable. I could do five of these.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2011 02:59:07 | More by bucklemyshoe
Photo of Groucho75


3.25/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle with L156 15:15 marked on the neck. Picked up for $3 when my local was clearing out some backstock. Apparently this was sitting in the back for ages. Usually marked $4. Let's see if the dollar off makes up for any age.

Served into a proper British pint glass at room temperature because I haven't had a proper British ale in some time and jolly well wanted to reminisce.

Beautiful rich toffee-mahogany color on the pour. Didn't notice any yeast so I added the whole bottle. Some slight foam, but it didn't last for long. A touch of it clings to the glass. I'd say this is the best part of the beer. I thought the carbonation was non-existent at first, but after a few minutes I noticed loads of tiny bubbles 20 minutes after I opened it.

Not getting a lot of nose here. Faint raisin at best.

Plum, some currant/raisin-y goodness as far as mouth flavor goes. Some notes of tea as well as the finish lingers. I think I could taste the age on this one; if it were fresher, I think the character would be more assertive.

Served this warm I was hoping for a little more character, but I have to remember that this is a veddy British ESB and a mild one to boot. 4.4% ABV isn't supposed to knock you out. This is an afternoon pint on a Sunday outside in the garden type ale. Descent and very sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2011 22:34:03 | More by Groucho75
Photo of Brabander


3.5/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I got this bottle (and some other goodies from the UK) from my buddy BlackHaddock, thanks Jeremy for this beer!

Poured in my Struize glass the beer looks ok. Nice darkcopperclour beer and a broken white to lightbrowm head. Little carbonation and the head vanished quit fast. A pity.

Taste is pretty good, soft malt taste with the dry taste they promise on the bottle.

A nice beer but not spectacular.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2011 20:53:38 | More by Brabander
Photo of flyingpig

United Kingdom (Scotland)

1.88/5  rDev -44.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Mahogany in colour with lots of small bubbles. It forms a large foamy head full of holes but it lasts well. Leaves a bit of lacing on the glass too. Hops, malts & caramel & hints of coffee thrown in as well.

Tastes of malts & hops to start, finished of with caramel & a very bitter finish stays with you. Medium bodied, it tingles the tongue slightly when held.

Definitely not my type of drink although it was drinkable I just wouldn't drink it through choice again I don't think.

Bottle (http://abarwithnoname.wordpress.com)

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2010 23:55:13 | More by flyingpig
Photo of beerprovedwright


3.6/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Unimpressive less than a finger head from the pour and that vanished in less than half a minute. Lace is splotchy and has little cling. Color is a 17 on the SRM chart. Mild smell of citrus, malt, wheat, toffee, and hops. Flavors much the same as detected in the smell, but some taste of coffee also after the initial flavor has pasted. A little thin in the mouthfeel category, some carbonation, but not much body. Not just the flavor to grow on me. Not bad initially, but as I drink more, it sort of bends me the wrong way. I guess it is good as a treat, but not one I would want to drink several in one night.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2010 23:01:55 | More by beerprovedwright
Photo of Reinheitsgebot71

Ontario (Canada)

3.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a clear light mahogany colour. Capping this is a bubbly off white head with decent retention.

Malty notes possibly some caramel or maris otter give a sweet note on the nose. Some floral aromas mix with a tinge of chlorination.

Watery malt flavours, biscuits, very mild. A light bitterness grows stringer as I get deeper into the drink, almost to the level of astringency.
This is not helped by a odd taste which can best be likened to pool water.

Passable, would go well with pub fair but nothing overly interesting.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2010 19:38:39 | More by Reinheitsgebot71
Photo of BeerAdvocate


3.5/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue IX:

A beer named after the WWII English bomber aircraft--nostalgia for a very few, small history lesson for the rest. "More-ish" or moreish is on the label, which simply means "so good you want more."

Pour this beer hard or you'll end up with a paper lacing. And obviously, we served this at cellar temperature. Nice thick stack of tiny bubbles slowly crackle to a whipped froth-like lace; bright and clear brownish/brassy color. Hint of woody hop, mildly sweet biscuity malt and a touch of mineral in the aroma. Smooth carbonation; thin, wet body. Malt is mild all around with notes of toasted grain and toffee. Hops add more flavor than bitterness--wood and faint citric peel all help to balance. Lots of yeast character here with a mild buttery flavor from the diacetyl, overripe fruit and some apple skin. Ends with a semisweet maltiness and muddled hop and yeast flavors.

To sum it up, more-ish could be used, but we prefer typical session ale. It's traditional with the style, just don't set your taste bud expectations too high. It's good to bring beer back to ground level once in a while.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2010 17:21:00 | More by BeerAdvocate
Photo of spinrsx

Ontario (Canada)

3.15/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

450ml bottle poured into a pint glass

Appearance - The beer pours an amber colour with a medium size frothy off white head. There is a low to average amount of carbonation. There is also some faint lacing and the head lasted for a minute or two before it was gone.

Smell - slightly metallic, hops, malts, and tea.

Taste & Mouth - A pretty good mouth feel on this beer; an average amount of carbonation which suits the mild flavour well. The bottle boasts how the beer has a powerful hop flavour.. Not by a long shot. The hops are there, but they are mild. It really doesn't have much flavour at all. It is reminiscent of a iced tea; lemony and sugary.

Drink - It's not bad, it's just not great. I wouldn't say I'd never drink it again, but I definitely wouldn't seek it out.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2010 23:00:02 | More by spinrsx
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Lancaster Bomber from Daniel Thwaites Brewery PLC
78 out of 100 based on 100 ratings.