Oliver's ESB | Pratt Street Ale House

BA SCORE
3.99/5
49 Ratings
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Pratt Street Ale House
Maryland, United States
prattstreetalehouse.com

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A special bitter with a dark amber color and smooth body. It has a good malt to hops balance and is fairly high in alcohol. Chosen by Michael Jackson for his book "Ultimate Beer".

Added by Gavage on 10-07-2003

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#8,545
Reviews:
28
Ratings:
49
pDev:
9.02%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
0
Gots:
1
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Ratings: 49 |  Reviews: 28
Photo of nmann08
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of brentk56
4.29/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Arrives at the bar with a cloudy copper body that settles down to a haze, and a whipped egg white head that leaves sheets of lace on the way down

Smell: Modest earthy aroma

Taste: Starts with a touch of the biscuit; after the swallow, a nice fruity element apperas followed by an earthy/woody bitterness

Mouthfeel: Creamy texture with low carbonation

Drinkability: Smooth, rich and bitter - what more could you ask for in an ESB; this is a classic

 471 characters

Photo of Boone757
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of Thorpe429
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. On cask at Pratt Street.

Pours a moderate caramel color with a white head and a good dose of lacing. Nose brings some light woody and earthy hops as well as slight caramel and toffee. Taste is the aforementioned toffee and caramel as well as slight hops. Good creamy feel with a nice body. Drinks really well and is a nice American ESB.

 358 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

Photo of mendvicdog
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of Slatetank
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear amber touched brown. Malty caramel nose. Thick character with a leafy bitter tone. Caramel thick malt character holds sway over everything. Smooth feel. Carbonation is mild with a larger bubble than the Best Bitter had. Nice one here, but a bit more robust and heavier than the Best Bitter (which I've decided I prefer more.)

 339 characters

Photo of jwc215
3.63/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours hazed amber/copper with a thin white head that leaves some lacing.

The smell is of caramel and herbal notes.

The taste is of caramel with herbal notes with some sourish fruitiness mixing into the bittersweet balance. Yeast is there (Ringwood?) though subtle. It has a dry-ish finish.

Light-to-medium bodied, with a touch of watery thinness.

Not bad, though personally I preferred the standard Bitter. Nice enough balance and is certainly drinkable/sessionable.

 470 characters

Photo of IPAchris
3/5  rDev -24.8%

Photo of Gavage
4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Figure you enter an English style pub, you got to have the ESB. Nice looking beer - deep copper color with a foamy head. The aroma is alright, noting some floral and sweet tones. The taste was great, since this is served around 50 degrees the bitterness and malt were nicely balanced. There was some lacing on the glass as the drink was consumed. The tongue was happy with the smooth bitterness that lingered. Overall one of the better ESBs I have had.

 452 characters

Photo of drabmuh
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer on cask at Churchkey in D.C. Served in a goblet. Beer is brown with a thin white head. Completely clear, no lacing and low to non-existent carbonation.

Aroma is reminiscent of butterscotch. I know this is a well known off flavor but this is really kind of pleasing, burnt sugar / caramel aroma without being annoying or overwhelming. There may be a slight alcohol aroma in this beer.

Beer tastes woodsy, thin slightly bitter, and really sweet. The smell accurately matches the flavor. Its a little too "sweet" for my tastes. I put "sweet" in quotes because often what people describe as sweet in beers is a malty character that isn't like sugar water.

Beer is also a little thinner than I expected. The cask could have something to do with this but I'm giving it a slight deduction because of it. Drinkability of this beer is about as high as an ESB can get. I would recommend it.

 897 characters

Photo of BillRoth
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Photo of John_M
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on cask at Frisco's the other night.

The beer pours a solid amber, copper color, with a very nice creamy head and good lacing. This beer has a very attractive, impressive nose, consisting of roasted malt, apples and cherries. The beer is quite flavorful for a low abv. (relatively low) ESB. It starts off fairly sweet, with very nice flavors of roasted malt, apple again and cherry (in other words, the flavors on the palate replicate the nose). The beer has a nice creamy mouthfeel, and comes across as quite drinkable. There's a touch of dry, bitter, hoppiness in the finish, which is also quite nice. Quite well done.

This is a very nice ESB from Oliver; one my favorite beers made by this fine local brewery.

 728 characters

Photo of rfgetz
4.28/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Shimmering amber color, frothy creamy white cask head, great retention and lacing.

S: Full scented roasted nuts and carmel, faint hops.

T: Full flavored roasted nuts and carmel. Biscuity. Nice hop flavors.

M: Creamy, smooth, soft, great cask carbonation.

D: Excellent ESB, one of the tops in the style.

 309 characters

Photo of akorsak
3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a hand-pulled pint of ESB, served at The Wharf Rat in Baltimore. The ale is slightly chilled, but closer to room temperature.

Appearance: The ale has an amber to orange color. A dominant feature of the beer is the soft creamy head that results from the hand pull. Very classy.

Smell: There is not much of a hop smell here. The head gives a nice frothy milky aroma, but beyond that, not a lot stood out.

Taste: The ale is well balanced. First and foremost, the creamy head imparts a sweet taste on the ale. Behind that, an earthy hop flavor appears, giving a nice bitterness without going overboard. The malts are biscuity sweet, imparting a bread-like taste.

Mouthfeel: It's very difficult to go wrong with a hand pumped ale.

Drinkability: A little stronger that the Best Bitter (of which I purchased a growler), this beer is still quite drinkable and good for a pre- or post O's game tailgate.

 917 characters

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

A pub that brews English influenced beers and offers an ESB on cask - no question what I had to try. Certainly did not let me down. According to the beer menu: "A special bitter with a dark amber color and smooth body. It has a good malt to hops balance and is fairly high in alcohol. Chosen by Michael Jackson for his book 'Ultimate Beer.'" Who am I to argue with the great one? An interesting play of flavors. Beefy, caramel body, but very smooth, almost, but not quite, thin in the mouth. Alcohol made itself known, nearly crashing the party but being held back just enough. Went wonderfully with the shepherd's pie.

 619 characters

Photo of reebtaerG
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of ffejherb
4.06/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Pratt St. Ale House on 11/20/10.

A - Beautiful cask pour revealed a reddish, copper-toned liquid with deep amber hues and a solid finger's worth of creamy froth on top that retained brilliantly and deposited spotty lace around the glass.

S - Aroma blends light noble hops with a biscuity malt character and toasted bread notes as well as a hint of herbal, tea-like hops.

T - Toffee and caramel comprise the sweet malty base of this ESB. However, the hop character isn't bashful here, and boasts a fairly bold slap of grassy, herbal bitterness. Finishes with a hint of toasted grains.

M - Smooth and full-bodied, this is a creamy, robust ESB with a very pleasant mouthfeel. Finishes bittersweet on the palate.

D - Great straight-up British style ESB that really shines on cask. This is a full-bodied ale with a nice hop presence and really creamy texture. This one delivers the whole package.

 909 characters

Photo of Deuane
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Hazy deep copper with a thin white head that held on and reduced to a thin cap and left spotty lace.

S-Light toasted biscuit, a hint of sweet caramel and faint spicy, herbal hops.

T-Toasted biscuit up front with some dry nut like astringency. Light spicy hops in the drying finish.

M-Medium-light bodied fairly creamy, soft and quite smooth. Drying finish with nut like astringency.

D-A little light on the aroma and palate but this one builds into a nicely dry, spicy brew. A pleasant and very easy drinking ESB. Well done.

 530 characters

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

Wharf Rat/ Oliver's- ESB

Appearance- dark dirty/ muddy brown with a thick frothy head.
Smell- heavy malt. Earthy, like a mixture of tubers and earth.
Taste- thick and creamy. Heavy earthy malt and hops balanced nicely.
Mouthfeel- thick and smooth. Warm yet refreshing.

Overall- my first beer from Oliver's and a damn good 1.

 333 characters

Photo of Biggiekrock627
3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Hoptometrist
3.84/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served into a shaker glass on cask at Pratt Street Ale House.

A-Ruby reddish color with nice finger of creamy head. The lacing was pretty spectacular, coated the whole glass without hardly any holes in the lace.

S- Malty aroma

T- Malty, bready, with mild fruity hop bitterness towards the finish

M- Creamy and smooth, finishes dry

O- Very creamy beer. I have only had a couple other ESB's, but this one takes the cake. Great balance and highly drinkable beer.

 464 characters

Photo of Wobbly
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

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Oliver's ESB from Pratt Street Ale House
Beer rating: 3.99 out of 5 with 49 ratings
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