Witchtree E.S.B. | Fitger's Brewhouse

15 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Fitger's Brewhouse
Minnesota, United States

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): not listed

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by garymuchow on 06-21-2003

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 15 | Ratings: 44
Photo of mwilbur
3.38/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured on-tap from cask into pint glass at the brewery.
A: Pours a clear coppery red hue with 1/2 inch light tan head.
S: Spicy malt and a hint of nuttiness.
T: Buttery caramel malt, spicy grains, and mild nuttiness.
M: Super smooth from the cask. Light body. Sweet with a bit of spice. Dry bitter finish.
D: A nice, but not outstanding session beer. Having this on cask really helps it out.

 391 characters

Photo of mothman
3.11/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Kahki head with lots lace. Color is amber.

Aroma: bready and caramel with some floral hops. Not too much here.

Taste: mimics the nose but has a bigger malt profile but a bit of citrus and hops.

Mouthfeel: bitter. Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Ends a little sticky.

Overall, a very basic esb. Easy to drink but no big standout flavors. Average.

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Photo of maximum12
3.65/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Love me a good ESB, so looking forward to this glass fo' sho'.

Pour is hybrid between golden & amber, leaning in the direction of the former. Nose is languid & lazy, bare hops, fresh biscuits.

Witchtree ESB gives a solid accounting of the style. Grassy, grainy, bready, spare suggestion of bittering hops. All the classic ESBisms are present, as if the beer were making reparations for foul ESBs the world over. It was nice & easy to sip upon.

Right on the outside corner of the style; good beer without being noteworthy among its well-crafted peers.

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Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.86/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer arrived with a brown color and a very nice creamy head which left an unbelievable amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma is nutty and British for sure.

On the palate the flavors are malty and nutty and provide the backbone for this thing. It ends with a whisper of bitterness which provides the balance emblematic of the style. Overall this is a good beer.

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Photo of supercolter
3.85/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is good, nice medium brown color and some head and lacing. Smell and taste are good as well. bitter and dry malt up front with just a touch of hops and caramel on the backend. Mouthfeel is prety good, but almost feels chalky. Drinkability is pretty good as well.

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Photo of zeff80
3.36/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a dark burgandy color with a fairly large, tan head. It left thick rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of malt and hops. Also, some nice floral notes.

T - It was fairly malty with a subtle bitterness. There was also a citrus-like kick.

M - It was crisp and smooth. A medium-bodied beer.

D - One of their regular beers. It is one I'd like to have again. It certainly is growler-worthy.

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Photo of beckje01
2.62/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Clear gold color with no activity.

S- Nose is ok but really lacking malt for the style.

T- This is ok but too hoppy for an ESB. This beer should be much more balanced but its just lacks what ESBs truly are balance.

M- Good thickness just a nice mouthfeel.

D- Easy to drink a good beer really just not a good ESB.

Note: I tend to be hard on ESBs as they are my favorite style so if your looking for a nice beer have one of these but it your looking for a good ESB look elsewhere.

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Photo of tempest
3.73/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Just a good session beer here. Creamy in the mouthfeel with subtle malt flavors that come off a bit like caramel. There’s a slight bitterness on par with an English pale ale to balance the malt. Still, while this is tasty beverage, the flavor is just a little too mild for my liking.

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Photo of pweis909
2.74/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Pint size glass, at Fitgers.

This beer was a disappointment. First of all, I didn't realize that it would be a nitro-tap, which I have decided I do not like. The texture this creates, the thick chewyness, seems inappropriate for a bitter. It was distracting. I think this has turned me off from the Guinness that I drank recently. It just makes my mouth feel full of mucous, which is a word that you need to keep out of your brain if you are trying to enjoy a beer.

There was an English hop aroma to this beer, and a bitter finish, but there was nothing special about the malt used. Pretty bland.

 603 characters

Photo of CharlesDarwin
3.26/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Originally rated February 4th, 2005. On Nitro-Tap at the Brewpub. Thin aroma. Very nice amber, caramel glow. Smacks nicely of oak. Even malt and hops distribution. Very drinkable and smooth. Some minor complex tones. The oaky is heavy and predominating in this example, with a good dose of Kent Golding backing it up.

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Photo of Redrover
4.08/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Witchtree ESB on cask served in an imperial pint. The beer is a hazy bronze with a meringue like head. Sheets of lacing. Very attractive!

Nice aroma of hops and malts. Reminds me a bit of pine resin.

Served at the proper temp. Subdued hops, bit of spice, some bread like malts. More hops (english nobel emerge late)

Extremely smooth, a nice session beer. Not one to order with food as anything remotely spicy will overwhelm it. Well done!

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.07/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear, amber hue, near caramel color, light layer of foam floating above.
Aroma, herbal, malty, rather full and rich, just enough English hops, roasty, toasty, delicious...
Taste: nice. Grassy, a bit sticky on the palate, very clingy, toffee and butterscotch flavors rise up for a bit, gritty a bit, yeasty, bready...feels like the well-done ESB that it is. Just bitter enough, and very, very easy-drinking, with plenty going on flavor-wise to keep my tastebuds happy.
If I needed something to keep me mildly entertained while waiting my turn at darts or shooting the shit with the mates at the pub, this would do the job, but...they've always got so many other fantastic brews here, i fear this very fine ESB would be at the bottom of the list.
that's just me, though, and i surprised myself by finishing the growler in one sitting...can't believe i drank the whole thing!
From a growler, courtesy of tavernjef.

 918 characters

Photo of ZAP
3.26/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Light brown...nice creamy head...soft noble hops and sweet malt on the nose...mouthfeel is a bit thin and watery....taste features a bock like maltiness...not thick like a bock but that flavor...hops are spicy and lend a nice bitterness on the finish...

Unremarkable but decent beer....I think this has won some awards but I would select some of their other fares before this and I typically like ESB's...

 408 characters

Photo of tavernjef
3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On nitro tap at the brewpub: Clear dark syrupy brownish orange color with a medium sized bone white head thats super creamy and puffy smooth and sustains a small cloud of haze on top and tons of lacing in thin sheets. Smell is considerably faint of roasted/toasted malts with a light touch of sweetness. Taste has a nice roasty character mostly coming through late in the finish with a touch of herbal hops and bite. Feel is smooth but a empty start that picks up a nice late effect of drying and roasty/nutty crispness. Not a bad ESB but I think the nitro may have paled it down some.

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Photo of garymuchow
4.06/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a year around beer and a nitro. The presentation is very good, with a firm creamy looking head, a beautiful amber color, good clarity and lacing from start to finish. It contains the flatter aroma of many nitro served beers, with only a small amount of malt noted. Served a bit on the colder side. Smooth malt flavor with a much lighter hop presence, with slight bitterness appearing in the middle and staying until the end. The finish is short with a slight tartness in addition to the bitterness. A very nice creaminess and lower carbonation helping with the smoothness. Very nice beer and a great compliment to a variety of food.

 640 characters

Witchtree E.S.B. from Fitger's Brewhouse
3.52 out of 5 based on 44 ratings.
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