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Beast Bitter | Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.

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Beast BitterBeast Bitter
Very Good
242 Ratings
Beast BitterBeast Bitter

Brewed by:
Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
New York, United States

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by OldFrothingSlosh on 09-24-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 242 |  Reviews: 165
Photo of FranklinPCombs
3.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

While "The Beast" conjures images of cheap booze and college parties lived through a funnel, this one certainly gives "The Beast" a new connotation, and a much better one at that. The color is a hazy orange and the head, which starts small, certainlyl doesnt get any bigger. In fact, it was gone in about a minute, leaving just a thin top and ring. Smell is tons of sweet buttery popcorn with roasted malts and a tiny hop presence. The taste is less than I had hoped for, but its still good (I think I need to drink it less chiled next time). Its a unpronounced chalky nut flavor with definatley a bit of bitterness, but not quite enough from the hops. The buttery malts come through here too. Mouthfeel is slightly dry, medium body, with a whole lot of small stinging bubbles. Looks, smell and moutfeel are good, however the taste which needs a bit more to it, although it does have a pleasant aftertaste.

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

Cool bottle. Pours a nice dark gold, with a heavy head and lots of carbonation. Smells hoppy. Very carbonated body, sweet and smooth with good hops. Quite drinkable. A good beer, but nothing particularly outstanding, fun to try but I don't think I'll buy it again.

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Photo of PhantomVodoo
3.41/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Off-white head. Burnt orange to pale copper in color.
Aroma dominated by a vinegary scent. Pale malt and hops underneath.

Taste shows a pale, caramel malt backbone. Floral hops provide a solid balance. Slight to moderate vinegar presence.

Solid mouthfeel.
Drinkability knocked down due to the vinegary notes.

Overall, a decent bitter. Thanks to OldFrothingSlosh for the bottle!

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Photo of ppoitras
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12ozer, purchased at Oliver's Beverage, Albany, NY, as part of a group of Middle Ages singles.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, big ol' 1"+ thick foamy white head formed, which left extensive lace as drinking transpired. Brew is a golden/light copper and has a dominating hoppy aroma with slight yeast undertones. Taste is mostly about the hops, but doesn't overdo it, and I can appreciate that. The flavor has its sharp corners rounded by the light malts, which makes it a very easy-drinking brew, not as beasty as one might expect, after all.

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

Pours a lightly hazed plae copper or golden color with minimal dark whitehead without any lac remnants.
Aroma of big time fruity and scotchy flavors with a heavy yeasty accents.
Flavor is caramel and slightly sour apple and some buttery notes in the background.
Mouthfeel is sweet for an instant but quikcly overrun by a gritty, hard water bitterness and a dry spicy bitter finish. So bitter its almost sweet.
Drinkability is fairly high though not my favorite Middle Ages by far.
Thanks to PPoitras for the Middle Ages sampler.

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Photo of RoyalT
3.68/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – Nice orange in color and a bit hazy with a great-looking head that left lava pits as it settled.

Smell – The citrus “fuggle” aroma is in full effect followed by some nice yeasty notes.

Taste – The bitter nature of this ale comes on very nicely. It’s not overpowering, but it eases into the role with a bit of dark, powdery spicing. The hops are delicate and mix well with the significant malt backbone.

Mouthfeel – I thought that this was the beer’s strong point. It is very creamy and smooth with a lovely bitter finish. It’s just a tad below medium-bodied.

Drinkability – Wonderful session ale. Smooth yet complex. Nice.

Comments – Big thanks to OFS for hooking me up with this East Coast beauty shop.

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Photo of steorn
3.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

**courtesy of Feloniousmonk **

Hazy orange-gold with a finger of fine white foam.Well carbonated with a multitude of bubbles rising.

Hops in the nose for sure with a nice fruitiness as well. Very appetizing.
The first sip surprises me with a very rounded mouthfilling maltiness.This slowly,grudgingly gives way to a gentle hop bitterness which is in no hurry.The aftertaste too is long and gentle as if this beer is saying "take your time,enjoy,were not going anywhere soon."
Some caramel toffee notes appear as the glass warms and more hops both in the nose and mouth. The Beast within the glass has revealed himself as hops now coat my mouth and spar with the malt.Be patient with this stealthy creature and you will find a fine example of a bitter.

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

Pale straw gold in color with a bit of a chill haze, nice finger high head of solidly firm froth that changed some as it drifted down, started whitish as a soft beige-like yellow but as it settled the yellow vanished and went greyish. A thin collar and broken, thickly webbed curtains of lace stick well around most of the glass. Aroma has a very dulled lemony citrus mixed with a grassy edge and just a tad on the dry side. Taste is a little short lived, mostly located mid palate to the finish is where most of the flavors decide to take effect with a slight sharp grassy hop bitterness with citrus and wood poking around the edges. Malts come through light but present with a dryness of paper. Not all that appetizing to me for some reason, it picks up some strange notes of iced tea, watery cola, and cardboardish things as it warms. Feel is alright I guess, weakened front, thin and a tad watery, but the middle and finish gain some slight fullness and smudges of hopped bitterness and some light dryness fading off, but the thin/watery feel seems to stay within through out the stint of each sip and/or gulp. Nothing to get excited about here, slightly better then average for an ESB, but not by much in my book.

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

This was my first experience with a cask-conditioned beer and I can say it was pretty interesting.

The brew was a hazy amber color with a big old white head. The aroma of the beer has a lot of different smells going on, the one’s that I can pick out are citrus, butterscotch and a strong sense of floral hops. The taste is all about the hops, hops and more hops! Also has some nice flavors of malt, fruit and spice. Over all a nice beer, just not one of my favorites!

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Photo of Charthepirate
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A definately solid, smooth english bitter.

Poured golden, slightly amber with a creamy head that lasted. Lacing was thick and sticky. Very pretty.

Smelled of some roatsted malts and lots of english hops.

the flavor is wonderfull, with a perfect balance of hops and malt, each complex in their own way. Mild fruit notes mix well with some nice bittters to create a wonderful beer. A great american representation of the style.

Great session beer, Cheers!


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

Pours an orange amber color that is quite hazy and almost opeuque. The head almost didn't exist. There was a clean grassy smell with subtle hints of sweetness. The taste was very much on the bready side with mild grain and hop tastes. It was also semi sweet. The aftertaste had a bitter kick to it. A good beer, but nothing to wow anyone.

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Photo of waughbrew
4.67/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Update 8/7/06: This beer is the man. I had to go to NY to get some more, but it was worth it. Unfortunately it is one of only a few of MA's beers that does not make it to MA. Smell and taste is complex, but it goes down easy. Nice!

A hazy peach with an impressive off-white white head that sticks around. Aroma is a nice blend of piney/grassy hops and diacetyl. Taste is pleasing and rather complex. Grassy and earthy hops that are slightly spicy. A sweetness appears to be there from the bready malt and the buttery diacetyl, but the finish is definitely bitter. Feel is smooth with a slight hop prickle. Very solid and drinkable. I wish this was local to me, I would drink it all of the time.

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Photo of Gavage
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a amber color with a thick head. Lacing was produced during the first half of the drink. The aroma was hoppy and sweet. The carbonation seemed lighter than normal. The flavor was as expected, a bitter brew that pleases the palette. The malt and hops were nicely balanced. The mouthfeel was somewhat dry and had a very minor metallic finish. Bitterness lasted a bit into the aftertaste. Very drinkable - a pure session beer.

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Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
3.62/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz amber bottle with a warning that the beast contained within is not for the faint of heart. No freshness dating.

Apearance: Poured a clear burned orange in color. Inital billowing cream-colored head, sadly, faded away into near-nothing in the blink of an eye.

Smell: Hoppy. Leafy greens. Zesty and spicy...almost peppery. A little malty sweetness noted as well.

Flavor: Make sure this warms up before you drink it. Fresh from a cold refrigerator, and this one is like fizzy, over-carbonated water. As it warmed up, the flavors started to come through. Nicely bitter on the palate. Some "iced tea" flavors show up. Dry, long-lasting finish. Strange, "cardboard-like" aftertaste.

Mouthfeel & Drinkability: Fairly creamy. Medium-bodied. Mild puckering effect from the bitterness. Drinkable, but not one that I'd put on my "must have again" list.

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Photo of DagFishHead
4.3/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear light-amber body. Voluminous, fizzy off-white head that dissapates quickly to a wispy 1/8" capper.
Smell: Piney/oily/bitter hops, sweet malt, whiff of banana, vanilla, and butterscotch.
Taste: Sweet caramel malt start is quickly overtaken by a flowery, bitter IPA-like hop flavor at the top. Finish dries abrupty with a spicy bitter citrus aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied malt, carbonation a little fizzy, dry bitter-hop pucker at the end.
Drinkability: Classic British-style ESB. Well done.

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Photo of goz
3.03/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours medium golden peach, with a medium white head that races to recede leaving just a small coating of bubbles, laces is mostly non-existent. Aroma is apple, caramel, some hops, and a bunch of butterscotch. Flavor is a bit fruity, strong butterscotch, and ends with a decent bitter and spicy hoppiness. Medium bodied, quite dry ending.

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

Pours a copper color with a dull hue with and soft and fluffy head. Has loads of carbonation shooting up everywhere, with a wall of soft stain sticking too easily to the glass from a wall of similar lace.

Smells at first of caramel, spice, nutty malt, opening to hop scents of grass, light hay/dried flowers. Taste is of juicy, light citric flavors with sourish tones, supported by a smooth and tasty amber malt. But, green grass and floral hop flavors takeover, creating a dry floral flavor and mouthfell with a citric rind flavor and effect - biting, juicy flavored, but oily. Has a thin body with carbonation tickling the tongue.

A good bitter and fairly drinkable.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: clear, honeyed auburn hue, solid, creamy 1/2" head
Aroma: sweet and well-rounded, showing some hops, but softly, seems to fit the classic ESB mode rather nicely.
Taste: very smooth entrance on the palate, sweet and tasty.
Body and texture on the light side, finish is brief.
Not a limpid ale, but too lively, however, I have to keep remembering that that's just right for the style, which isn't among my favorites.
Flavor is well appreciated, some some fruitiness, citrus, peach, certainly more flavorful than your average bitter.
Huge thanks to the great McCall for the chance to drink this one!

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Photo of HappyHourHero
3.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Beast Bitter pours a light amber color with a slight orange hue, kind of like a dark iced tea. The head dissapeared really quick, but there's still a bunch of bubbles rising up from the bottom. It would have been fun to watch if I had used a chalice. The smell is of flowery hops. I really dig the taste, the hops are there but don't leave a bitter aftertaste, but the ringwood yeast is there to mellow everything out. All in all a good beer like all Middle Ages brews, definitely give it a try if you're in Central New York.

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Photo of UnionMade
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer itself pours a dark amber bronze color, with a light misting of head, forming little islands of bubbles.
Aroma is very pleasant, with a strong maltiness and some british hopping. I'm guessing Goldings are in here. They smell very wierd, and I don't really like them unless there's other kind of hops involved.
Flavor is a bit lighter than i expected, more like an ordinary bitter and less like an ESB, I think. Body is light to medium with moderate effervescence. Light esteriness with a bit of apply/pear flavor. i think this beer would benefit from some extra body but, aside from that, it was pretty well done. Authentic british taste. Plenty of herbal/floral hops, . Some biscuity flavor, with perhaps a touch of caramel malt. Good stuff.
Reading the label, I was thinking that this might be one of those overly hopped american style "bitters", which really just seem like another excuse to make an IPA. I'm happy to say it's very british in style, all the way down to the hops. with a decent malty balance

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Photo of jeffboo
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep orange color with cream colored head. This beer has a lemon/lime hop aroma with a hint of butterscotch and caramel. Flavorwise it starts out caramel malt sweet and lemony hop bitter. A good balance is found in a light to medium body. It finishes dry and nicely bitter. A very drinkable bitter.

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Photo of WesWes
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a golden color with a lacey white head; good carbonation. The aroma is sweet with Ringwood yeast and light crystal malts. Maybe munich or vienna malts are used in this one to account for malt flavor and aroma without a dark lovibond. The taste is good. There is that maltiness about it with a medium to heavy bitter aftertaste. This is a medium bodied beer that goes down smooth. A good session beer. I'm not usually an ESB fan, but this is one that I could have a few of and enjoy.

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Photo of shirfan
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a ruddy golden, Smaug-colored hue. Exceptional lacing, the head on this one seems to have a life of its own.

A mild aroma of citric hops and smoky malt; does not really do justice to the flavor.

Far from a hop monster; there are many Devils and Rogues that could slay this dragon with ease. If this does indeed use Ringwood yeast (as it seems), it's the first beer I've really enjoyed with that strain.

Moderate in its hopping and malt backbone, this has hints of butterscotch and slightly carmelized grain, which give way to an earthy and citrusy hop zing before a mildy bitter, drawn-out finish.

A down-and-dirty session ale to be sure; I think that most of the flavors being understated but complex somehow allow the yeast to not become annoying here.

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Photo of sponberg
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cool as hell label. Bright copper/gold with a white head. Carbonation and lace last a good long time. Inhale the aromas of citric and earthy hops and caramelly butterscotchy malt. Get to know them. They'll be your partners for the rest of this glass.

Mmm - good firm bitterness from start to finish. Not super-highly hopped, but the hops definitely take the flavor lead throughout this brew, with citric (Cascade) and earthy (Fuggles) components. There's enough malt to balance out the hops, with a caramelly, fruity flavor characteristic of the lighter brews from MA (and of M&F malt in general in my experience). Finishes bitter, with some toffee and butterscotch in the background. Really good hop burp. This brew grows on you with exposure - the more you drink it, the more you like it. A very quaffable bottled example of a British bitter.

If you see this brew on cask, I challenge you to pull yourself away from it. Dangerous.

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Photo of cokes
4.12/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden amber with a puffed off-white head.
Nose of buttered pears, vanilla-toffee hard candies, and drying hay.
Taste begins with a small bite of cream filled caramels, immediately swallowed by the Ringwood yeast carnivore. Lightly fruity in a dehydrated apple sort of way, with loads of buttery and woody notes Becomes quite hoppy, grassier and drier at the finish. At the very end, it is all fuel for a prairie fire. Parched stalks and leaves. Earthy too, like grapefruit peels after a week in the compost pile. Occasional pangs of metal and alcohol are noted.
Medium bodied with subdued carbonation gives this a caskesque feel. This would be beautiful served via the real deal.

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Beast Bitter from Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
Beer rating: 3.91 out of 5 with 242 ratings
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