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E. S. Bam - Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

E. S. BamE. S. Bam

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very good

423 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 423
Reviews: 236
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 12.93%

Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
E.S. Bam - Extra Special Farmhouse Ale
A Bam celebration of excess. More malt, more hops, same vivacious personality.

Seasonal released in April
4.7% Alc./Vol.

(Beer added by: Big78CJ on 02-14-2008)
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Photo of pixieskid


3.2/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

My first experience with Jolly Pumpkin, been meaning to try some of their beers for a while...finally getting around to it.

Picked this out knowing that it was a spring/summer seasonal; figured that the hops would fade away a bit and that the potentially funky yeast characteristics would present themselves over the time since bottling in March.

Pours a mahogany hue with a strong white head, tiny bubbles about 2 in head with some staying power for sure.

Nose: as it warms up, gets much more funky. Earthy, yeast, woodiness, slightly acidic, with floral hop overtones.

Taste: pretty simplistic overall. A touch of floral hops, some grassy, hay like flavors, a tad of acidity and a lingering dry bitterness.

Mouthfeel: on the watery side, very much so, with a club soda like bitterness/carbonation in the finish (a terrible characteristic imo, along the cardboard lines...)

Overall: decent at best. I didnt hate it, but for the money it was quite lack-luster. I had been "waiting" to give Jolly Pumkin's beers a shot, for one reason or another; guess I should have kept waiting...

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2012 04:17:05 | More by pixieskid
Photo of Brenden


3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The color is a thick burnished copper, hazy and opaque. An off-white head is nearly two fingers tall and holds its form for a good while. Lacing is left on the glass in patches with plenty of consistency and quantity.
This is a pretty raw beer. Lots of earthiness and a spicy bite set the tone along with a pithiness to the lightly bitter element but also seeming to stem a bit from the funkiness and the tart elements. There's enough caramel to add some balance from sweetness along with a bit of citrus. There's lots green apple skin and some vinous, more grape-like character. Going into the flavor, the finish brings out some interesting notes, with something almost smoky but also a little metallic and slightly charred riding off the crackery-dry malts. Maybe a touch of a medicinal note lingering there?
The feel is pretty good but shifts a lot in an odd way. The crispness is tingly but comes in and out a bit, though smoothness, while not exactly creamy, is consistent. This is an extremely interesting beer and a unique take on Saisons.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2012 22:24:50 | More by Brenden
Photo of cpetrone84


3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pour is a dark hazy copper. Head is fluffy off white and lace left behind. The nose is nice, decent hop presence, citrusy and fruity with a nice citrusy Brett presence. The flavor falls of a bit, hops aren't quite there as much, Brett is still citrusy and nice but a hint of oxidation. Body is light and good carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2012 13:39:23 | More by cpetrone84
Photo of mrfrancis


3.38/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy golden orange with an enormous, pillowy white head.

S: Aromas of lactic yeast, oak, must, pickle brine, unripened grapes, unripened pineapple, lemon rind, lime zest, and grapefruit fill the nose.

T: Notes of unripened pineapple, carambola, unripened grapes, green apple, lemon rind, grapefruit pith, and lime zest are underscored by notes of biscuit, oak, must, pickle brine, cider vinegar, sea salt, white pepper, chalk, and talc. The finish is extremely dry, crisp, and acidic with notes of citrus, biscuit, chalk, and vinegar.

M: Light-to-medium in body, chewy, and very dry. Carbonation is fairly intense. This ale is very drinkable, at least at first, but tends to dry out one's mouth completely.

O: This is an interesting ale that displays a ton of depth and complexity, but at the same time, it lacks drinkability and balance. For me, there is a point where sour ales simply become too vinegary, and this beer has more than reached that threshold. I can't say I wholeheartedly dislike E.S. Bam, but I also can't say that I would ever come back to it. In the end, this is not Jolly Pumpkin's best effort, but it is interesting nonetheless.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2012 15:57:12 | More by mrfrancis
Photo of Jamesthebrit


4.23/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Super bubbly, nice light brown color. Big bold head and nice clarity.

S: This really smells like a farm. I got some hay, some wheat, malt, dirt, pine, fruity. It pretty much smells like a state fair where you get that mix of like animal, produce, and foodstall smells all blend together. I mean I think it's unique and I love it.

T: interesting taste... very dirty and earthy. That pine really comes through. The hops are musty but hit pretty directly. I guess I don't know what to think. Truely unique but maybe a little too earthy for me.

M: A little bubbly and a little light but not bad.

This beer is a great example of why I love Jolly Pumpkin beers in that this is something like I have never tasted before. The problem is it's just too earthy for me. A lot of unique notes and they blend well together but there's just something about it I can't put my finger on that I don't care for.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2012 19:55:46 | More by Jamesthebrit
Photo of kjyost

Manitoba (Canada)

3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Batch 1050, bottled 03-20-2012. Acquired at Bridgeview Liquorsbin Moorhead, MN Served fridge cold into a tulip.

Pours a hazy copper with a large white fluffy head that caps and laces wonderfully. Nose has barnyard Brett. Fruity notes and a deep earthy hop. Quite nice. The body has much the same as the nose along with a nice rich nutty malt backbone, yet the bitterness builds and doesn't seem to pair well with the earthy body and the Brett notes. Disappointing actually and I would have much preferred the original Bam to this guy...

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2012 00:46:08 | More by kjyost
Photo of Hopswagger

South Carolina

3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 1060
Bottled on 4-6-2012

P:  A cavernous mountain of off white orange tinted head that seems to dissolve into itself leaving behind cotton candy lacing.  The body I nice and hazy with vigorous bubbles in a sea of golden apricot.  Retention is great and leaves the glass looking like a melted ice cream float. 

S:  Vibrant fruity esters, apricot, pineapple, saw dust, coriander, typical JP vinegar funky yeast, herbal and timid citrus hops. 

T/M:  Taste starts of earthy and smooth with a sting of carbonation on the tongue and backdrop of apples, and timid farmhouse yeast. Then the dry hops join the party on the palate with herbs and pine oil. A similar bitterness of unsweet iced tea with lemon, toasted grains, hints of honey, and citrus. Body I'd medium and zesty and finishes dry, salty and woody bitterness. 

O:  A nice hopped up version on the Bam. Hopped saisons are great but sometimes the hop counterbalances the subtlety of the delicate flavors. This is border line but still a good beer that I would never refuse. So far I'm a big fan of Jolly Pumpkin and eager to continue partaking of their offerings. 

Serving type: bottle

08-04-2012 00:45:35 | More by Hopswagger
Photo of StaveHooks


3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml served in a Duvel tulip.
Batch 1063/1064 Bottled: 04-05-2012

A - Murky brown body with 3 fingers of moundy head slowly collapses into several different textures of foam. Excellent retention with minimal lacing.

S - Fresh fruity esters, green apple, watermelon, lemon, green grass, dry funky yeast, earthy and spicy herbal aromas. Salty wood and white balsamic come out as it warms.

T - Moderate grassy and zesty citrus hops add aggressive bitterness that pushes against a mild grain malt. Hints of berry fruit and tannins coat the back of the tongue. Salty and woody with a dry bitter finish.

M - Moderate prickly carbonation, medium body, dry finish.

Well it's definitely hoppy. More so in the flavor than the nose. Very complex nose though. Crunchy herbal dryness. The hops are right on the edge of choking all other flavors out. I haven't had the original so I can't compare the two. If you feel like a hopped up Saison this should feed your craving well.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2012 23:58:40 | More by StaveHooks
Photo of bump8628


4.13/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazed amber with a huge cap of foam that climbs over the lip of the glass despite a gentle pour.

Nice lemony tartness, coarse grassy bitterness, slightly salty sea air aroma, brett funk, leather. Firmly bitter.

Despite the "more malt, more hops" claim, I find regular Bam more expressive. However, this is still a serious farmhouse ale and the amount of flavor packed into a sub 5% beer is pretty remarkable.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2012 20:19:21 | More by bump8628
Photo of claspada

New Jersey

4.05/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very hazy medium copper with some orange tints. Initially a massive khaki-colored head that slowly settles down into a small foam cap and leaves a decent amount of lacing behind.

Aromas begin with some earthy, floral and citrus hops reminiscent of orange pith. Alongside this comes a good amount of rustic Farmhouse funk. Some toasted pale and bready malt in the background emerges as it warms.

The tastes follow the nose with the hops being a little little less pronounced. Main flavors are earth, Farmhouse yeast spice and funk and a bit of toasted Enlgish style bready malt.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium to high amounts of carbonation. Finish has a solid dryness accompanying the funk, with a substantial body for much a low ABV beer; something I always greatly appreciate.

Overall this was very flavorful and complex; a lot going on and certainly enough to keep me occupied for half the bottle that I split with a friend during our Sushi BYO dinner.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2012 15:35:18 | More by claspada
Photo of BEERchitect


3.7/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Somehow, I feel like I've been taken back hundreds of years as the first sip of this beer takes on the character that I'd expect in those early versions: Raw rustic yeast elements, strong hop character, and moderate strength; yet not lacking complexity.

Muddy copper in color, the rusticity begins with the eye. Opaque with its yeasty haze, the beer builds a rocky eggshell white head that's as creamy, firm, and withstanding as you'd ever want it to be. It's a true Belgian ale appearance through and through.

Weedy and acidic hops work over the nose with the scent of grapefruit pith, lemon, muddled grasses, and under ripened grapes. An underlying brine of sea air, saddle leather, burnt plastics, and horse hair character create complexity and intrigue that extends well into taste.

Where the most terse of malt character was claimed in the aromas, the taste starts off with a cracker-ish taste of bread crust and baked barley before turning dry and giving the flavors over to the hops and yeast. Acidic flavors limes, grapefruit skins and pith, fresh cut straw bridge the taste of hops to the taste of fruit-forward esters and spicy yeast phenols. The plastic taste approaches almost-smoke and medicinal notes before steering toward the brine of mussel shells and iron-like snap. Turning from fruity to sharply acidic bitterness in finish, the beer closes with fleeting malt taste and spicy hop aftertaste.

Medium-light in body, the light malt presence allows the carbonation to play out on the palate with a semi-creamed, but mostly prickle feel. But the finish ushers in slight woody dryness, resinous dryness, and minty alcohol warmth. Only the bitterness of hops and a memory of brine last into an extended finish.

With so much earthen character and unrestrained mineral and wild yeast character, I appreciate the value that Jolly Pumpkin places on the raw taste of Saison- done the upper Midwest way.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2012 05:33:05 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of dbrauneis

North Carolina

4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 1058. Bottled on 04-02-2012.

A: Pours a very hazy to cloudy dark golden yellow to orange to copper in color. The beer has a three finger tall dense foamy light beige head that slowly reduces to an inch thick cap towards the center of the beer - this beer has great head retention properties. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: There is a light to moderate amount of earthiness along with yeast spiciness and some notes of sour. The strength of the sourness in the aroma gets much stronger as the beer warms.

T: The taste starts out earthy with quite a bit of yeast spiciness. After that the sour notes set in, and persist through the finish. The sour flavors are stronger than those in the smell and also strengthen as the beer warms. Light hints of some grainy/wheaty malts.

M: Just heavier than light bodied with heavy amounts of carbonation. Very dry, especially in the finish.

O: This beer is delicious and refreshing - the spices, sourness, and dry finish make this beer a very easy drinking beer. While it is a big bottle, the low ABV and easy drinking feel make this one no problem to put away.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2012 18:50:53 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of hosehead83


4.38/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a big 750ml bottle into a wine goblet.
Deep, cloudy apricot in color, with a super-thick, rocky head of foam. Beautiful.
Aroma-Herbal, spicy yeast
Taste-Big onrush of herbal hops, earthy spices. Complex, herbaceous flavor. Incredible character for what could be described as "session" Farmhouse ale due to the only 4.7ABV. Lacking only in the sour/tart flavor that is JP's signature, this offering is a pleasant diversion.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2012 15:58:11 | More by hosehead83
Photo of SHODriver


4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a nice shade of hazed bronze with an ample fluffy and rocky slightly off white head with excellent retention in a duvel tulip
S: smells of citrus, green apple skin, some funk and a bit of spice
T: bready malt, funk, peppery spice slight citric hop kick, some floral notes, and a bit of lemon zest. swallow brings more citrus hop and spice plus a soft tartness.
M: light with soft but prevalent carb, sightly drying buy some juicy hop prevents it from being overwhelming
O: another tasty offering from Jolly Pumpkin. just enough funk to keep things lively without making you think that you're sucking on a horse blanket. not a lot of malt after the initial hit but enough to keep everything else from taking over. Definitely meant to be drank fresh with the extra hops but I guess you could give this one a bit of time to let the hops die down a bit.

Serving type: bottle

06-11-2012 10:19:59 | More by SHODriver
Photo of Hopdaemon39

New York

4.48/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a capped bomber into a tulip- pours a murky amber/brown color with an HUGE head (more head than beer when pouring for me). I got a couple ounces into the tulip before the head was already at three fingers. Good retention just very strange- dissipates quicker in the middle while leaving a concave wall of lacing.

Smells pretty funky and hoppy. Nice combination.

Taste is consistent with smell- hard to believe this is below 5 abv. Tartness up front, followed by a nice light malt sweetness, then some piney hops, finishing semi-tart and kinda dry. I like it.

Mouthfeel is great- light body, full carbonation. If you're not into bold funky flavors, stay away. Otherwise, go for it!

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2012 02:01:19 | More by Hopdaemon39
Photo of daledeee


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

Been trying the Jolly Pumpkin line. This is another 750 ml bottle.

It poured a dark cloudy orange with a wonderful fluffy white head that absolutely does not go away.

Nose is fruit, hops, earthy.

Taste is pretty strong with Belgian hops intensity. The funk is not as apparent as others. Citrus rind is around too.

Mouth feel is nice and carbonated.

I was a tad disappointed with this one. I think it is what they intended to do but not to my taste for the style. Could be personal.

Serving type: bottle

06-06-2012 00:09:58 | More by daledeee
Photo of NoLeafClover44


4.33/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into tulip. Batch 1037/1038, bottled 3/6/12.

A - Pours an apple cider color with a huge pillow of off-white head that towers above the rim of the glass. Lacing paints the glass.

S - Smells of citrus, coriander, and some serious grassy hops. Just enough funk to round it out.

T - Lime up front combines with the funk to give a very tart flavor. Grass and bitterness on the finish, but the aftertaste is clean. Doesn't leave the strong grass flavor in my mouth that other hoppy saisons/blondes do. Impressive.

M - Intense carbonation and a light body. Refreshing.

O - This was the perfect beer for such a hot day. Surprisingly tart with a great hop bite. Great combination of two of my favorite styles: saison and hops. A little bit pricey for a low alcohol beer, but I thought it was fantastic.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2012 02:51:19 | More by NoLeafClover44
Photo of philbe311


3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Two fingers worth of densely packed cloud like white colored head with a bit of a rocky top... Excellent retention... A lot of small bubbled very rapid paced swirling carbonation... The color is a pale golden copper... A bit of lacing clings tot he sides of the glass...

S - Fresh apples... Golden raisins... Pears... A slight vinegar component... A little bit of funk... A little bit of Belgian yeast... Bread pudding... Very pleasant and fairly complex aroma...

T - Surprisingly bitter and tart... Lots of grassy notes.. A bit of Belgian yeast... Some farmhouse funk... Some light tannins... Some lemon zest...

M - Medium bodied... Slightly lush... Limited carbonation... The finish is a touch dry... Very interesting mouthfeel and as complex as I've encountered...

D - The whole doesn't quite equal the sum of the parts... There's lots of good going on, but the it doesn't quite come together in a coherent fashion... Is it a sour beer... Is it a Saison... I'm quite not sure and that takes away from the overall experience...

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2012 02:57:34 | More by philbe311
Photo of n2185

North Carolina

3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a murky brown with three fingers of beige head that fades into a rocky cap with good lacing

S: there are dry, funky barnyard aromas up front followed by sweet citrus and grass notes from the hops. Smells great.

T: again, those funky farmhouse notes strike first. There are some grass flavors along with slight citrus from the hops.

M: medium-light body with medium carbonation, this beer is light and drinkable.

O: a good beer overall, though I'd like more hop presence in the flavor. Still, it smells great and is nice and drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2012 23:24:07 | More by n2185
Photo of bsp77


4.4/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Tulip.

Appearance: Murky orange with a giant dollop of head and fantastic lacing.

Smell: Very musty and dry, with barnyard funk, tea, toast, pepper, and light citrus.

Taste: Extremely musty, with wet blanket, dirt, wood, burnt toast, tea, pepper and other spiciness. That sounds terrible, but certainly is not. Fairly bitter finish, with a light tartness throughout.

Feel: Light, refreshing body with high carbonation. Bone wrenchingly dry.

Overall: This refuses to be placed in a style, with elements of a Saison, a Bitter, and a Wild Ale. What it is is extremely refreshing and delicious. And it is under 5%? Wow!

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2012 21:44:37 | More by bsp77
Photo of gatornation


4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from batch 1050 bottled on 032012

A- pours a hazy light copper with a khaki 2 finger head and copious amounts of lacing

S- was grassy musty funky floral and hoppy

T- was musty funky slight sour fruit with spice and hops lemon peel and pepper bready malts wet grass

M- dry and spicy hoppy and crisp sourness on the palate

O- fresh dry and crisp easily drinkable slightly sour delicious

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2012 21:10:53 | More by gatornation
Photo of korguy123

Ontario (Canada)

3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Unfortunately purchased a year old bottle 3/27/2011
Into tulip

A- Slightly murky dark copper pour. Three finger soapy, sticky, chunky off white head that deflates leaving gobs of lacing everywhere.

S- Sweet malt, bright floral hops, citrus (grapefruit, mandarin oranges and lemon zest) Grape skins, Belgian yeast and a nice earthy presence.

T- Full on Bam Biere assault, the extra hops and malt really stand out making this a chewy and dry monster of a good beer.

M- Light and refreshing, huge carbonation.

O- I really wish this was a fresher version, as good as this beer is I can only imagine it's a millions times better fresh.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2012 23:08:04 | More by korguy123
Photo of webmanspidey


3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a pint glass. This is a murky brown color with a nice inch or so of fluffy head. The smell combines some funky sourness, lemonheads, and light grassy hoppiness. The dominant flavor in the taste is bitter citrus and lemon, blended in with a slight funkiness. This is very drinkable with little alcohol presence. Mouthfeel is creamy.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2012 00:42:17 | More by webmanspidey
Photo of onewetpaw


4.33/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my JP tulip glass.

A- Funk predominates. Gentle fruity notes reminding me of belgian yeast esters are present. I don't detect a hop nose.

A- Dark golden slightly hazy. Brilliant large white head.

F- Awesome dry drinkable wild beer. Complex brett character along with a strong sourness. Fruit notes echoing the nose are present.

M- Highly carbonated. Dry and cleansing on the palate. Drinkable without being overly thin.

O- Love this one. The JP house flavor is there in spades. I've brewed a clone that approximates this, but the original remains elusive.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2012 00:16:21 | More by onewetpaw
Photo of draheim


3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750mL bottle (batch 775 - bottled 4/7/2011) into a saison glass. Cap comes off w/ a vigorous pfft!

Creamy foam peeks out of the mouth of the bottle before I can even start pouring - because I'm writing this instead. Reminds me of Saison-Brett in this regard.

A gentle pour yields a glass about evenly divided - the bottom half slightly hazy amber liquid, the other half a dense creamy off-white head that leaves behind a nice coat of lacing as it slowly recedes. Despite the rich head, not much carbonation rises from the bottom of the glass.

Aroma is Belgian yeast, spice, citrusy hops... as it warms more fruity esters, funk and a hint of wet hay become evident.

Taste is mostly a balance between Belgian yeast and ample bitter hops. A little apple/pear and subtle spice, perhaps ginger. As it warms a soapy, slight band-aid taste emerges. Generally lacks complexity on the palate.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied but a little flat, perhaps not aided by the lack of carbonation.

Overall an interesting saison, but not in the top tier for the style.

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2012 05:54:26 | More by draheim
E. S. Bam from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
85 out of 100 based on 423 ratings.