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Steel Wheels ESB | Blue Mountain Brewery

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Steel Wheels ESBSteel Wheels ESB
BA SCORE
3.79/5
Very Good
146 Ratings
Steel Wheels ESBSteel Wheels ESB
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Blue Mountain Brewery
Virginia, United States
bluemountainbrewery.com

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by argock on 09-05-2011

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#18,347
Reviews:
33
Ratings:
146
pDev:
11.61%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
3
Gots:
16
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
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Ratings: 146 |  Reviews: 33
Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of nmann08
3.25/5  rDev -14.2%

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of superspak
4.06/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into pint glass, best before 6/2014 stamped on the cork. Pours lightly cloudy reddish copper color with a 2-3 finger dense and fluffy light khaki head with incredible retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts the whole glass. Dense soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a lot of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of caramel, pear, raisin, apple, toast, biscuit, brown sugar, floral, grass, light pine, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of malt and fruity ester notes; with good strength. Taste of caramel, brown sugar, toast, biscuit, pear, apple, pepper, floral, pine, grass, and yeast earthiness. Light pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, brown sugar, toast, biscuit, light fruits, floral, pepper, light pine, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice balance of malt, hop, and fruity ester flavors; with good robustness and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium-high carbonation and medium bodied; with a moderately creamy and crisp mouthfeel that is very nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent ESB style. All around great balance and complexity of malt, yeast, and hop flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,350 characters

Photo of Boone757
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of dbrauneis
3.91/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served in a can at City Beverage in Winston-Salem, NC

A: Pours a clear bronze-ish amber in color with light to moderate amounts of active visible carbonation slowly rising from the bottom of the glass and some golden yellow + brassy highlights. The beer has a half finger tall foamy light beige head that reduces to a medium sized patch of thin film and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of biscuit and caramel malts with a light amount of spicy and earthy hops.

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of bready and biscuity malts with a light to moderate amount of caramel sweetness. That is followed by light to moderate flavors of earthy and spicy hops which contribute a light amount of bitterness which fades pretty quickly.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly creamy.

O: An enjoyable offering, sort of an Americanized version of the ESB with a slightly more aggressive hoppiness than is expected for the style. Definitely easy to drink and one I will pick up again. Alcohol is well hidden.

 1,089 characters

Photo of oberon
3.96/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial nonic a rich full bronze with a creamy half finger white head atop that settles very slowly into froth.Caramel/biscuit malt and some spicy hops in the nose,they don't jump out at ya but are pronounced.Fresh tasting with a nice bready maltiness on the palate,lightly sweet caramel provides more layered maltiness,a decent shot of spicy hops in a lingering finish.A full almost creamy feel to the makes it easy going down and a pleasure to drink.I would love to try this on the hand pump,a bigger ESB with a dose of American hops,a very solid offering.

 574 characters

Photo of nickfl
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of smithj4
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of Rifugium
3.57/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Blue Mountain, Afton, VA

Coppery-amber pour, clear, with a foamy white head that dissipated almost completely, leaving some trails of lace behind. Caramel malts in the nose, toasted cereal, light spicy/herbal hops. A nicely balanced ESB, caramel malt sweetness, toasted cereal grains, light peppery spice, herbal hops for an mellow but lasting bitterness. Light-medium body, easy drinkability, goes well with about any food, or just on its own.

 466 characters

Photo of atrocity
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%

Photo of PhineasMcClintock
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of ZEB89
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of mendvicdog
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of woodychandler
4.48/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Rumor has it that Blue Mountain may be backing off of their CANned offerings and that would be a shame. I have had this CAN in abeyance for a while, trying to get a pic approved. It finally required my acquisition of a tripod (!), but all is now in readiness. Nobody ever said that The CANQuest (TM) is easy!

From the CAN: "Real Virginia Beer"; "Demand Fresh Beer: Check my butt to mke sure I'm not older than I look."; "Drink the good stuff."; "The music of The Steel Wheels and the beer from Blue Mountain are both original and handcrafted with inspired Ameri[CAN]a flavors from the heart of Virginia. Our collaboration E.S.B. draws from the past with British Crystal malts and Scottish yeast, but uses Ameri[CAN] hop to put our own stamp on the creation. Take time to drink slowly and listen truly. Wherever you are, get ready to sing along, to harmonize. Maybe even get up and dance."; "Hear the Steel Wheels at www.TheSteelWheels.com, or meet them soon at a show to hear the music as they love to share it: live, kickin' and real."; "Virginia's first craft brewery in a [CAN]"; "Pack it in [,] pack it out".

I wanted to make an allusion to Stealers Wheel's "Stuck in the Middle with You" or something about a trifecta wheel combination, but when their website allowed me to listen to some of their music, I decided to go with their "Winter Is Coming" as accompaniment. Music and beer, another winning CANbination!

At long last, the Crack! occurred and thanks to yet another brimful craft CAN, I incurred a spritz of beer across my fingers. I liken it to a happy puppy eager to come out and play. The band and I celebrated with an inverted Glug that created a quick pseudo-cascade and easily two fingers of dense, light-tan head with good retention. Color was a deep-copper (SRM = > 17, < 22) with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a distinct caramel malt sweetness underlain by a grassy hoppiness. Mouthfeel was medium and the taste was unexpectedly more bitter than the nose had led me to expect. I really liked the way that the hops and malts interacted on this one, with neither overwhelming the other and making for an eminently quaffable beer. It had a dry biscuity maltiness and a grassiness that made for a very dry iteration of the style. Finish was quite dry and an unexpected bonus for me as I was expecting yet another sweet ESB. I really hope that the rumors are unfounded as I would love to have some more CANs of this one!

 2,445 characters

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.03/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer is copper hued and teeming with bubbles. Thin tan head that dissipates quickly. The aroma is weak, offering some fruity malt and grain. Sweet malt with caramel malt and fruity toffee. A bit syrupy on the palate. Alcohol presence is too much for the style. Too sweet and lacking that pleasant bitterness to help balance everything out. Mediocre.

 353 characters

Photo of VeganUndead
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of imbibehour
3.91/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A real aggressive looking ESB. Nicely foamy and soapy four to five finger controlled head with nice even pinhead bubbles althroughout. Big retention and some speckled soapy lacing. Body color is a deep super crystal clear, but dark copper red, with dark brown hues on the edges. Very big and impressive looking.

Nose is fruity estery large. Hints of caramel and lots of sweet cinnamon alover with some little bit of berried red fruit. A little bit of heat comes off in the background, with some mineral like touches. Some herbal sensing hops but the malt and yeast fruity character seems to be the star. Solid.

Light bodied feel with lots of cinnamon and herbal tea flavors on first sip. Malt action has subdued caramel on the swallow and a hint of faint brown sugars. Sharp. A good hop lingering herbal tea bitterness on the swallow that fits nicely with the cinnamon angles of the malt profile.

Overall, just a solid esb and a good looking one as well.

 1,006 characters

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.84/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A nice esb. Smooth character and flavor profile. Nice mildly sweet malt thing going on. Very small amount of aged fruits on the backend. I like how deep the flavor profile is on this one. It's nice and easy to drink. Some people might not like how it's thicker, but I can dig it. Another nice brew from Blue Mountain.

 317 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into a shaker pint, the beer is a deep, ruby-tinted caramel coloring with a foamy, low profile, dense, off-white head. Aromas of roasted caramel, toffee, sweet cream, hints of char, and a subtle hops bitterness. Very balanced and aromatic. Flavors are roasted and smooth forward, with notes of toffee, caramel, and subtle smoke, with cream highlights, and an undertone of hops bitterness. Very balanced and dynamic. The body is light and smooth, with good lacing on the glass, and an underlying dry edge. Roasted sweet, sugary caramel aftertaste, into a smooth, slow, slightly cloying finish. This is a great ESB.

 631 characters

Photo of tone77
3.55/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another can courtesy of the legendary woodychandler. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a pretty amber color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of caramel malts, some hops. Taste is well balanced hops and malts, a light bitterness, smooth and easy drinking. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a solid beer.

 310 characters

Photo of redfox405
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of beernads
2.75/5  rDev -27.4%

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Steel Wheels ESB from Blue Mountain Brewery
Beer rating: 3.79 out of 5 with 146 ratings
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