XS Imperial Younger's Special Bitter | Rogue Ales

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XS Imperial Younger's Special BitterXS Imperial Younger's Special Bitter
Very Good
222 Ratings
XS Imperial Younger's Special BitterXS Imperial Younger's Special Bitter

Brewed by:
Rogue Ales
Oregon, United States

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.10%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
8 Ingredients:
Malts: 2-row pale and Crystal.
Hops: Willamette, Kent Golding
and Amarillo
Yeast & Water: Rogue's Pacman Yeast & Free Range Coastal Water.

52 IBU
76 AA
35º Lovibond

Added by klewis on 01-15-2007

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 222 |  Reviews: 148
Photo of kilobees
1.42/5  rDev -63.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

my bottle was full of sediment. dreadful

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Photo of jmilo64
2.75/5  rDev -29.5%

Photo of BlakeAM
2.75/5  rDev -29.5%

Photo of thagr81us
2.76/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served from 7 oz bottle into a Stone nonic. Pours a hazy red-orange with a one finger white head. Maintains lacing throughout. The aroma is comprised of malt, hops, and skunky. The flavor is of malt, subtle hop, and wood. It is medium on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall I did not really enjoy this brew much. The flavor was quite harsh and not appealing. I think the skunky aroma was also a turnoff on this one. I was expecting more, but was unfortunately let down. A rare miss from Rogue...

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Photo of Megahertz
2.84/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

7 oz bottle poured roughly into a shaker, dregs and all.

A - Light brown, murky cloudy, with a 1 inch, lasting tan head. No lacing noted.

S - Estery, with mild plum and apricot. Slight English-style hop aromas detected (pungent, earthy).

T - Immediate yeast bite with alcohol warmth. Dark fruity esters mid with slight caramel sweetness. Astringent "spent tea bag" finish.

M - Medium to heavy body with surprisingly high carbonation, even at mild temperatures.

O - What are these guys doing? While rogue products are expensive, they typically have some value for the money. This is like bad homebrew.

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Photo of bashiba
2.88/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured a deep and slightly cloudy amber with a thin line of off white head.

The smell is very mild with a light toasted malt odor.

The flavor is mild with a bit of grain in the backbone and a mild citrus and pine hop flavor dominating the finish.

The mouthfeel is fine, a bit sticky.

A very average beer with nothing special to speak of, then considering the ridiculous price of this it really brings it down. Why is this so expensive? There are no special or rare ingredients that would drive the price up, also no special barrel aging or time constraints that would drive the price up. Easily one of the most overpriced beers I have ever had, and makes me feel embarrassed for purchasing it when I was so completely sure this would be the case.

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Photo of MacStinson
3/5  rDev -23.1%

Photo of mhaugo
3/5  rDev -23.1%

Photo of kenzak
3/5  rDev -23.1%

Photo of sweemzander
3.03/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

7oz. bottle poured into a tulip.

(A)- Pours a hazy amber color. Some tan to white froth and lace.

(S)- Dry, with some cottonball-like grassy lemon citrus.

(T)- Sweet, mild heat. Some fig-like pine and citrus. Bitter.

(M)- A mellow carbonation level. A decent balance, though kinda sugary sweet and thin feeling.

(D)- Decent. Not quite sure how old it is, but its still good. A bit on the sweet side, but it does carry a nice bitterness.

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Photo of cjacobsen
3.1/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to sweemzander for bringing this one by. More likely that it got lost in his pocket for a while and had just finally found it.

Poured from a bottle for elves, 7 oz., into a snifter.

(A) Pretty clean with an orange hue to it. Brown in the darker areas of the beer. Not much head but it leaves some lacing.

(S) Not much here. Light malt, some grapefruit, hops and sugar.

(T) Tastes pretty bitter. Definitely a lot of sweet light malt. Some light citrus.

(M) Kind of grainy. Light body.

(O) Tastes like a hoppier pale ale. Not a lot going on with this beer and nothing to write home about. Worth a shot, literally...like a small small bottle's worth, but don't feel shorted (pun intended) if you can't find or try this one.

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Photo of stevoj
3.1/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at PreFunk. Murky copper pour, small creamy beige head. Overall comes off as very malty, nice bitter hop finish compliments the overall brew. I saw a comment that said barleywine light., very appropriate.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.16/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

16 ounce pint - $7.25 at Taco Mac in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Clear, rich mahogany-hued body with a ½ inch of off-white suds on top.

Smell: Lightly toasty pale maltiness with some distinct crystal malt whiffs and, of course, the hops, with earthy, floral notes and a fair amount of Amarillo.

Taste: Pale malts with some toasted undertones and a distinct crystal malt sweetness present. Floral, earthy hop flavors along with a hearty dose of citrus pith and line pine. Medium-high bitterness. The malts attempt to rebound late with a smidgen of brown sugar, but it soon submerges beneath the heavy hop tastes. As expected from a Rogue offering, this one wraps up particularly dry and bitter.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium-plus carbonation.

Drinkability: An ESB crossed with American hops, Rogue's typically higher bitterness, and a solid bump of alcohol which, I'm continually being told, is what folks are into these days. Personally, I found the full entire sixteen ounces to be a bit of a chore to finish.

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Photo of kingcrowing
3.21/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Ceramic bottle poured into a tulip.

Pours a nice ruby red, very crisp and clear with a small bright white head. Nose Is malty and a bit bitter.

Taste is sharp and fairly bitter, it's a bit funky and odd but pretty tasty and creamy. It's got a sharp bitterness. Pretty decent beer.

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Photo of jmarsh123
3.22/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy caramel with a two finger off-white sticky head.

Smells of caramel malt with a touch of earthy hops.

Caramel/meladroinen malt up front rounding into a spicy dry hop finish. Has that unique Rogue yeast flavor.

Fairly light mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Pretty good beer, but at the price not nearly worth it.

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Photo of cannabanaceae
3.23/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer poured with a slight head that dissipated to nothing, probably a half oz. of yeast at the bottom.

The beer smells oxidized like an old barley wine, sweet, and bready.

The taste was no different than an average ESB. Exept for the oxidation. I bet it sat on the self for awhile because people were not as stupid as me, to spend $5 on 7oz of nothing special.

Mouthfeel was sticky, It finished with a Ho hum ending.

If your thinking about buying this beer DONT. It was pretty average, not bad per say but at a RIP OFF price. This is a gimmicky beer.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of bsuedekum
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of drabmuh
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

7 ounce bottle into a RR wine glass. Beer is brown with haze, thin head of tan bubbles, minimal lacing, low carbonation.

Aroma is sweet, has that Rogueness to it, and some caramel. Smells OK.

For such a big beer its rather weak in all the flavor departments. There is some lead off sweetness and malt character but overall its just not happening in the taste department. Its almost flat and plasticy on the palate. I did not dislike it but there is almost nothing to enjoy about it at the same time.

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Photo of WDJersey
3.25/5  rDev -16.7%

Photo of ImusBeer
3.3/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Another 11oz pour, not a problem but I wish they had some glasses other than the white wine stems.

It came a clear copper color with a white head and large bubbles. Died rather quickly.

The aromas started with citus then a slight malt. The flavours were of citrus, mostly orange and a sour aftertaste.

nothing much in the way of piney bitterness I was expecting but it was light and dry almost thin IMHO, bitter at the end mostly in the form of dryness.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.37/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

One freakin' dollar an ounce. Hey, a tick is a tick. $6.99 for a tiny 7 ounce bottle from Perry's Liquor, on to the beer:

Dark reddish orange in color. The head on top forms small and somewhat creamy, retaining its head mediocrily. The aroma is strong; diacetyl is dominant, hints of apricot hanging around. Also some rusty grain.

Very strong is the flavor. The bottle doesn't list an alcohol value, so I'm left to guessing it. I would have over 8% easy, but BA lists it at 7.1%. Diacetyl and bittersctch pair to make a strong base flavor. Hints of apricot skin, a vague veggie note diversify the portfolio. Some alcohol is present. In the mouth, the beer has a buzzy feel, primarily from the alcohol sppeing through. A little metallic and butterscotch run into the aftertaste.

An interesting concept; an imperial ESB. To be frank, I don't think this style needs any intensifying, as this offering shows.

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Photo of TheHoppiest
3.38/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 7 oz splits bottle into a small chalice. Pours a slightly hazy amber-brown, like unfiltered iced-tea, with a 1/4" off-white head that soon reduces to a mere skim of head.

Smells sweet and yeasty, with hints of toffee, alcohol, apricot, and pear. Not exactly what I was expecting smell-wise from an ESB.

Starts bitter, but that flavor quickly rolls off in favor of a weak sweet tea taste with lingering bitter, almost like an echo. Notes of tobacco, spice, and earthy, herbal leafiness mid-taste, ending like the beer is trying to escape without being tasted.

Mouthfeel is rather light and unimpressive.

This is the third or fourth of the 7 oz splits XS beer I've had from Rogue. While I generally like their beers, this XS series has been underwhelming, particularly given that each tiny bottle is costing me $4-$5. I've not had one yet where I'd say the taste was such that I'd want to buy and drink another.

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.38/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

7 oz bottle.
No freshness date.

Pours a 1cm off-white head that fades in about two minutes to a thin ring around the glass. Swirling easily revives head. Leaves a bit of lacing/streaking, but not a particularly memorable amount. Body is a dark brown color, golden-copper when held up to light, hazy from no filtration.

Aroma of caramel-colored malt sweetness, some maple. Acceptable per the style, but still fairly toned-down, would appreciate a bit more here.

Taste opens with fairly rich malt sweetness, some noticeable but mild bitterness, and assorted fruity esters. Ethanol becomes more apparent in the back of the mouth and aftertaste as the beer warms.

Body is medium to medium-heavy with enough carbonation to make this foam slightly on the palate. Moves pleasantly about. Finish very dry, slightly tannic, not sticky. Ethanol makes this warming in the mouth and body.

This would be much better if the ethanol was a bit more masked and the aromas a bit more expressive.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.4/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Poured a hazy, dark ice-tea color with a beach sand frothy head about a finger high. Against natural light the coloring appeared a firebrick red, revealing a steadfast effervesce of micro-bubbles. The lacing was slight, of very low coverage area, while the head retention was good, leaving a skim coating for the remainder of the drink.

S: The alcohol was most noticeable upfront. There were some instances of ripe tomatoes, toasted grains and a hop spiciness of warm cooked pineapples, and leafy green stem notes. Overall the bitterness was soft, mostly masked by the forefront of alcohol.

T: The flavor appeared a bit thin at first with warm watery citrus and toasted grains highlighted by a bit of alcohol warmth. The finish finds a bittering of warm pine juice and alcohol. The alcohol seems to be the main focus here, while the malting and hop bitterness play a weak second fiddle.

M: Medium body with hardly a mention of carbonation. Warm citrus and alcohol appear on the finish. Lacked a good residual coating, a bit light and mostly fueled by alcohol then anything else.

D: The alcohol seemed a bit excessive, though I've had much bigger, this tells me this just wasn't balanced to well. A drink of limited quantities. Overall I would prefer a more traditional take and the 7oz played well here.

End musings: this sample came from a 7oz. Nip bottle, which I think is probably the bare minimal to base a review of, but somehow still didn't seem enough for me. At the price they charge $4.60 I would say its not worthy of its high price for its limited volume and appeal.

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XS Imperial Younger's Special Bitter from Rogue Ales
Beer rating: 3.9 out of 5 with 222 ratings