There And Back: English-Style Bitter (Beer Camp Across America) | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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There And Back: English-Style Bitter (Beer Camp Across America)There And Back: English-Style Bitter (Beer Camp Across America)

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: English Bitter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
For beer folks, Chico, CA, and New Glarus, WI, are must-see capitals on the U.S. brewing map, but getting between the two is no simple feat. There and Back is named for the planes, trains, and zeal needed to connect them. This classic English-style Bitter is a complex yet easy-drinking mix of toasty malt and a fruity, herbal hop flavor.

New Glarus is fiercely loyal to its home state, growing to one of the largest breweries in the U.S. without selling a single drop outside of the borders of Wisconsin. With those local tastes in mind, New Glarus has perfected traditional German styles and invented masterful versions of complex and intense fruit beers featuring Wisconsin-grown ingredients.

Added by raynmoon on 07-03-2014

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 184 | Ratings: 1,274
Photo of elNopalero
4.43/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This pours a warm copper-amber with generous foaming.

There’s a great aroma that showcases the malts while allowing room for a wonderfully vibrant hop combination. I get a toasted caramel malt note which is balanced by a tropical fruit punchbowl of hoppy goodness. The flavor has that same caramel malty character, rich and fulfilling without being weighted down or heavy. The hops play well in this field with a guava mango floral citrus mélange. It’s not what I’d expect from a run-of-the-mill bitter but here it works, and it works wonderfully. So glad I have another bottle of this to enjoy again later.

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Photo of woosterbill
4.37/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear chestnut body under two fingers of frothy off-white head. Ok retention, light lace. Good, not great.

S: Fresh, vibrant, and balanced: bready malt, floral hops, and a distinct overtone of citrus. Slight caramel and strawberry notes as well. Lovely.

T: Follows the nose. Substantial maltiness up front, with toasty bread and restrained caramel side by side; herbal, floral, and citrusy hops toward the back end, leading up to a long, clean finish balancing mild bitterness with fruity yeast, as well as a lovely hint of almond. Delicious.

M: Lively, frothy medium body. A bit too much fizz for the style, but pleasantly creamy all the same.

O: Beautiful Bitter. If this were on cask, it might be my favorite Bitter of all time. I'm not surprised it's getting mediocre reviews on here, but that's just because it's not an exciting style.


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Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%

Begins with an earthy, spicy nose floating on a rich British malt backbone. It pours brilliant coppery amber with a 1” white foam cap that provides rich lace. Big grainy malt initiates the palate with light spice, a hint of chocolate, caramel and vanilla over a subtle malty sweetness in the background that fades into a grain spiced dry finish. There and Back’s medium body and medium low carbonation make it an easy drinking session beer.

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Photo of goochpunch
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours out a brilliantly clear copper with a thin head. I get lots of juicy fruit from the yeast and hops. Caramel and toasted bread aromas. Smells great. Flavor is malty with a solid caramel backbone. A lot more toast than in the nose. Hops are subdued in flavor - herbal and floral. Bitterness is solid in the finish. Aftertaste is very fruity. Dry. Mouthfeel is fairly light. Too much carbonation for me. This is a great American example of a British bitter. Great job.

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Photo of Naugled
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Highlights: Great example of a biscuity bitter

Appearance - typical to style, no flaws
smell - wonderful bready biscuity aroma, other aromas typical
taste - very apparent bready, buscuity notes, firm bitterness , other flavors typical
mouthfeel - good for style

Overall a well crafted beer, very drinkable and flavorful.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.23/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Ah, a great ale. Ale are wonderful cooking projects. This one is a success.

It pours as something special, with aromas and foam rising. It's a light color. The aroma is malty but still has some finishing hop smell.

The taste is sweet and rich like the best of ales. Not as dark as many of the style, nor as bitter. The aftertaste is also sweeter than usual. Nice!

A great one time cook up. Thanks to the cooks!

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Photo of MattyG85
4.21/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the Groveland Tap in St. Paul, MN. 12 oz. serving in a chalice glass.

Appearance: Color is a deep brownish golden orange. Moderate amount of bubbles and about two fingers of off white head with decent retention. Leaves a lot of creamy lacing on the glass.

Smell: A toasty and juicy balanced aroma with good hints of citrus and nutty malt. Toasted malt with bready hints of toast, biscuit, caramel, toffee, nuts, and yeast. Sweet hints of sugar. Solid hop presence with citrus hints of orange marmalade and lemon. Subtle floral and herbal hop hints of grass and pine. A very solid toasty English Bitter aroma.

Taste: Like the smell hints at, a nicely toasty and juicy balance of malt and juicy hops. Toasted malt with notes of bready biscuit, toast, caramel, toffee, nuts, and yeast. Subtle notes of sugar sweetness. Good hop balance with some earthy and herbal notes of pine and grass. Juicy citrus hop notes of oranges and lemon zest. A very solid English style Bitter taste.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with a fairly high level of carbonation. Crisp, creamy, and very smooth with a fairly drying finish.

Overall: A very solid take on the English ESB style. Good toasty and nutty malt presence with some good citrus hop esters.

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Photo of bubseymour
4.21/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Has a nice brown ale appearance with small head that doesn't hold that long. Smell is nice. Very bready and grainy. Fresh grain smell I like. The taste is quite shocking and interesting. Almost a numbing quality like novacaine but I don't mean that in a negative way. Its honestly void of flavor, but not in a negative way like a cheap watery adjunct. Incredibly sessionable. Maybe my pallet is off from the last one, but aside from a slight grain flavor upfront and slight hop finish, this beer I really can't detect much flavor yet I still crave it. Overall, its a wonderful session beer but unfortunately this is a 1 and done beer camp sampling. If this were sold regularly, I'd buy periodically as a great lawnmower, pallet break beer.

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Photo of Tone
4.15/5  rDev +12.5%

Pours a hazy, dark copper color. 2/3 inch head of a white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of sweet malt, hint of hop, hint of pale malt, slight citrus, and a hint of alcohol. Fits the style of an English Bitter. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, citrus, hops, hint of pine, hint of pale malt, slight alcohol, and a hint of yeast. Overall, great appearance, good aroma, great aroma, great blend, and decent feel.

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Photo of Hoptometrist
4.15/5  rDev +12.5%

Served from the bottle into a nonic glass.

A- Poured a clear orange color with off-white soapy head that left minimal lacing.

S- Pretty rich malty aroma full of bready notes, caramel, toffee, and white grape..

T- Rich bready notes, lots of white grape and bright citrusy notes, caramel, cream soda, and toffee.

M- Very smooth, prickly carbonation, dry, and medium body.

O- This is such a well-balanced, flavorful, and smooth English Ale. This one caught me by surprise, quite a treat.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.13/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this 12oz chilled from the bottle in a 1/2 pint

The color is medium amber with light beige cream and very fine bead.The smell is very good with great toasted odor and mild fruitiness in the yeast ester and light pear-like sweet scent with mild biscuit aroma. The feel is great with medium bitter entry with slight creamy entery and medium light bitterness with light nutty toasted grain texture and mostly dry clean finish.

Gentle hop flavor with herbal element and slight caramel flavor from the malt with subtle fruity yeast taste with hint of dry toast and yet creamy flavor from malt and yeast comingling which adds a light smooth yet not really buttery aspect. The taste is great-what you expect from an English bitter-a blend of hops malt and yeast. I am finding more to enjoy as it warms with light spice and slight dark sugar in the back with mildly bitter herbal hop aspect in the finish. Overall I could drink this every day...enjoyable actually a pretty great bitter/ESB with lots of dimension second favorite in the case so far: splendid and enjoyable

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Photo of stephenjmoore
4.13/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Pale amber with some golden highlights throughout. Foamy off-white head sits on top and lingers throughout. Body is very transparent, with lots of carbonation bubbles rising from the bottom of the glass.

S- Toasted malts, slight hint of sweet fruit, grassy/herbal hops.

T- Similar to the aroma with the toasted malts making up most of the flavor, but there is a huge presence of fruitiness to it. Way more than I expected from a bitter. I'm getting almost an apple flavor with some citrus zest in the back. The grassy/herbal hops show up too and give it a nice dash of earthiness. For a bitter, this one is very complex and deep in flavor profile.

M- Medium bodied, with the malt presence providing a nice body. Medium carbonation as well making this one very drinkable.

O- I chose this one first in the 12-pack because I figured it would be a boring, generic bitter. This one is very complex for the style and was extremely enjoyable. Really impressive effort from Sierra Nevada and New Glarus.

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Photo of JednoPivoProsim
4.12/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 FL. OZ. bottle into a pint glass. PKGD 052214 in Chico.

Appearance: Pours a light amber body with a thinner soapy off white head. Looks like sediment on the bottom of the glass.

Smell: Classic English ale fruitiness. Light nutty malts balanced by soft fruity and floral hops. A lot of aroma.

Taste: A flavorful combination of biscuity, bready malts and light floral hops. This is delicious!

Mouthfeel: Very light, refreshing, and no harsh aftertaste. A little thin though.

Overall: A fantastic bitter! Reminds me a lot of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, but with more floral hoppiness as opposed to a stronger bitterness.

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Photo of chanokokoro
4.1/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Sierra Nevada branded IPA glass

Pours clear amber topped by an slightly off white two finger head. Excellent retention, spotty sticky lacing. Pear, apple, and biscuity notes on the nose. Opens with mixed fruit notes, pear, and appleskin. Caramel, toasted biscuit, and bready malt joins in. Finishes dry with a pleasant mild herbal bitterness. Light to light medium body, lively carbonation slick and smooth. Really enjoyable and quaffable brew.

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Photo of allengarvin
4.09/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This beer pours out a nice walnut color, clear, with a small head--looks pretty English, in other words. Aroma has a crystal-malt caramel smell; hops are present, but very light. In the taste though, bitterness is there and moderately high, but it's well-balanced with malt. Yeast character is slightly fruity. Soft carbonation and body is spot-on too. Really, this is de-lish, a really drinkable English PA (maybe a bit strong to be a bitter per se). The highlight in the set so far.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.08/5  rDev +10.6%

Poured into a Sierra Nevada shaker pint. Pours a medium coppery amber with a half finger light khaki head that dissipates to patches, leaving light lacing. Nice biscuity and lightly bready malt aroma with brown bread, good lightly earthy and grassy English hops. Flavor is mild biscuit malt, unassuming at first, but developing a nice dry biscuity, brown bread and nut flavor into a malty, lightly grassy hop finish. Medium bodied. Starts a little shyly, but the finish is spot on, except much fresher than some authentic imports, perhaps because of shipping time. This is exactly what I would want to drink on a foggy day in an English pub (or hobbit hole). I've had only a few chances to drink New Glarus beers and expected the best; very flavorful, authentic tasting bitter. My penultimate Beer Camp Across America and another one I'm very happy with. A truly fun and tasty case of beer. I'm glad Sierra went to this much trouble, it was worth it.
EDIT: As I finish this, I'm detecting more nice malty flavor with a slight floral element to the hops, and I'm enjoying enough to give it a boost in flavor points.

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Photo of DIM
4.05/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: Slightly hazy coppery golden color; poured with medium sized sticky head.

s: Strong, biscuity malt backbone with aspirin and hints of potpourri.

t: Mirrors the smell, a satisfying balance of bready, biscuity malts and herbal, aspirin bitterness.

m: Crisp and biting.

o: My first from the "Tickers Delight" pack, good first impression.

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Photo of ClePaul
4.03/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Look 8/10
Smell 17/20
Taste 32/40
Feel 8/10
Drinkability 16/20

Overall 81/100

Overall an ok toasty bitter, lacks body and is very light and watery. Nothing special will forget it in no time~

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Photo of TheBrewo
4.02/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

We crack a bottle, pouring into our Great Lakes pint glasses. It shows a solid golden-amber coloring and holds a fluffy two finger head of cakey, French vanilla colored foam. This retains well, leaving etched craters of lacing around our glasses. No haze or sediment is noted, but carbonation appears to be highly active. The aroma gives bright notes of pear, cherry, and prune fruitiness, licorice bite, English pale malts and ruddy amber malt sugars, black pepper spice, board chalk, crumbly Graham cracker sweetness, light but warming buttery diacetyls, hand lotion emollients, tin, moldy books, lightly piney and herbal hoppiness, wet cardboard, and ink. The flavor involves a blend of sweet and biscuity brown, amber, and crisply chalky pale malts, chemical phenolic bite, garbage bag plastics, steely metallics, creamed corn adjuncts, baked blueberry pie crust, wood lacquer, mineral water, leafy and sappy hop greenness, burnt molasses, honeysuckle floral pollens, tea tree oil freshness, lemon balm bitters, aloe vera, and shaved ice coolness. The body is medium, and the carbonation is moderate. The lip meets hearty cream, froth, slurp, and smack, with nice and crisp pop to the back, and glug on the pull. The mouth is cooled and coated, but this drips into a metallic sheen of tannic dryness that creeps all the way down to the belly. The abv is appropriate, and the beer drinks nicely.

Overall, this beer is drunk on the day of our style-quest, where we attempt to round out the remaining styles we need to rate on BA. We’ve been excited to sample each of the Beer Camp offerings, so we figured that here we could kill two birds with one stone. “There and Back” served both of these purposes nicely. This is an expectedly mild beer, with a bit more sweetness than hoppiness for the style. The bitterness of it tends to come on the back, and as you allow for each sip to settle. We found this to be a refreshing presentation and introduction of that aspect of the beer, rather than being killed off the top with forced flavoring. The malts are allowed to build to their dark, biscuity center; enough to cushion the bitterness of yeast, booze, and toast. This will be easy to enjoy for most beer lovers.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
4.01/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12oz bottle picked up as one of the Beer Camp 2014 series. Bottled on date of 5.22.14

L - Amber red with some clarity, not much lace or head.

S - Malt sweetness and sugar. Smells very good.

T - Grains and sugar. Slight sweetness and well balanced throughout. Slight citrus hop in the background. Very tasty.

F - Well carbonated and light bodied. Well balanced throughout as well.

O - Disclosure that the ESB's are not on my favorite beer list. That being said, this is one of the better ones I have ever had. I would buy this one again, and that says a lot!

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Head dwindles rather quickly body is a deep copper hue with a beige off white head, forms fine speckled lacing around the sides of my nonic pint glass.

Aroma has earthy, vinous hop notes with caramel malts and raisins in the back end pretty interesting smell to it.

Malt base shines through in the flavor profile, rich complex vinous grape notes, herbal earthy bittering hops in this English style bitter. Gives off a nutty edge and beautiful malt base, rich with complexity really makes for a drinkable style of beer that New Glarus Brewing is known for.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied even flowing carbonation on the palate goes great with every approach in a nice big malt bill like this…even balance perfect match of hop and malt balance actually.

Overall, very impressive from start to finish, here’s to complexity I’m game for a beer like this anyday!

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Photo of Auraan
4/5  rDev +8.4%

Poured a nice clear amber body with fairly lively carbonation at first, which quickly died off and a fluffy white three-finger head that slowly receded. A nice looking bitter. Scents of sweetly floral hops, medium levels of fruity esters reminiscent of apple, a moderate presence of caramel, a lightly earthy herbal hop presence in the background, a touch of alcohol faintly discernible and light presence biscuity malt. Overall impression is a sweet, malty aroma with a nice balancing touch of fruity esters and hop aromas. Very pleasing and quite balanced. Flavor begins malty sweet with notes of caramel and slight toasted and nutty malts balanced by a nice moderate level of hop bitterness with an herbal and lightly citrusy character. This moves into a moderately bitter middle with notes of herbal and floral hop flavors and a medium-light level of fruity esters with a balancing pale and nutty malt backbone. Finish is dry with notes of toasted and nutty malt, herbal, earthy and zesty citrus fruit hops and a light presence of fruity esters with a touch of alcohol. Aftertaste is dry with notes of resinous hops, toasted and nutty malts. Mouthfeel is light bodied and smooth feeling with low carbonation adding to this impression. Overall this is a good English Bitter. It balances sweet, nutty and toasted malt flavors with a nice level of hop character and bitterness to create a moderately bitter, yet still balanced impression on the drinker. Its aroma is similarly balanced and the mouthfeel adds to impression of a balanced, quaffable session ale. A very nice beer and one of the best of the Beer Camp series.

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Photo of secondtooth
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich amber with ample, bursting head of creamy white carbonation. Lace is big and loopy.

Aroma is toasted malts, with a creamy feel. Very nice!

Taste is smooth and malty, with a distinctive bitter hops finish. There's some grapefruit on the tongue t the finish, but this is predominantly a malt-based brew, heavy on the toasty grains. A well-done and enjoyable collision of both breweries' distinctive styles.

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Photo of n2185
4/5  rDev +8.4%

A: Pours a clear honey orange with two fingers of white head that fades into a frothy ring with little lacing.

S: Sweet crystal malts with a little bit of caramel and biscuit aromas and notes of bubblegum.

T: Crystal malts and sweet biscuit flavors with notes of caramel, bubblegum, and hearty bread before a slightly bitter but clean finish.

M: Light body with moderate carbonation, this beer is drinkable and refreshing.

O: A good beer, overall. Simple, but tasty, crisp, and refreshing.

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Photo of Bills453
4/5  rDev +8.4%

Really great collaboration as part of the Beer Camp offerings. I think this is my favorite one so far and I have had about half of them. An excellent Summer beer. Crisp, refreshing, very nice.

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There And Back: English-Style Bitter (Beer Camp Across America) from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
3.69 out of 5 based on 1,274 ratings.
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