Lord Rear Admiral | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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Lord Rear AdmiralLord Rear Admiral

Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Three Floyds version of an ESB, this deep amber ale has a complex malt sweetness and pronounced apricot hoppiness. Named after Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson.

55 IBU

Added by scruffwhor on 04-02-2007

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Reviews: 176 | Ratings: 639
Photo of F1Rumors
4.79/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

An American brew that is finally a really good take on the classic British pint of "Best". Really well done Three Floyds - world class.

Look: dark ale with a decent head; head disperses quickly , and leaves laces on the glass.
Smell: full on ale, hops and malt to the front
Taste: classic English bitter style ale, sweet and malty. Flavour is best at cellar (nor fridge) temperature, don't drink it too cold!
Feel: full bodied, plenty of mouth feel but not in the same league as a stout.

Thoroughly enjoyable, reminded me of being 'down the local' in the old country!

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Photo of waterski
3.94/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a bottle that aged nearly two years. Carmel colors with a full white head. Surprised it still had that much carbonation after two years. Nose of strong malt with dried fruits-fig or date. Malty taste with mild flavors accented by baking spices. Some light hop notes at the end. Heavy lacing on the glass.

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Photo of DancoJoe
4.49/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A slightly malty smell, world class head 2 fingers. Carmel Sugar and molasses sweet but not too sweet. High carbonation fights off the overly sweet for a very smooth bitter. Very Bready. Full Body.

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Photo of farrago
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Tops off around two fingers of tan foam, mostly even surface, sizzles off at a slow and steady pace, the stickiness of the lacing is below average. Murky brownish-red to orange colored liquid, can’t see any particulate so not sure where the film is coming from, makes it hard to see what seems to be a bunch of active tiny bubbles. Molasses, caramelized brown sugar and cigar leaf and ash in the nose, a whole lot of doughy breadiness as well, the malts have a burnt quality, bittersweet dark chocolate, orange marmalade, mild dried fruit nature to the peach, apricot scents, overall it’s “big” in the sense of affectionate steamroller. Full-bodied, same basic approach in the mouth with the benefit of aggressive carbonation to relieve some of the sweetness. That said, the honey, molasses, caramel, pine sap and brioche styled breadiness rule this tribe. The very thickness of the liquid makes pounding it unlikely and in the same vein muffles the hops. Apricot, pear, mango fruit with, once more, a more dried fruit than fresh juice nature. It’s pretty much a meal unto itself and perhaps best utilized as a post-dinner/dessert relaxer.

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Photo of Marius
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared at a tasting. Dark orange pour, hazy, thin tan head. Smells like malt sugars and burnt caramel. The taste is bitter-sweet, with notes of malt sugars, citrus hops, some pine.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy amber color with beige head. Aroma is floral with caramel malts. Taste follows with caramel, some fruity esters and hops, finishes on the bitter side. Medium body and carbonation. Really nice and easy drinking.

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Photo of RickS95
3.56/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It's a beautiful beer. Pours out a dark, opaque Amber color with a thick head of light khaki bubbles. The head resembles an IPA with its frothy peaks and valleys and thick lacing.

Very malty nose for a bitter, but the hops come they with waves of floral and fruit. There's something else in there, apparently the apricot notes, though I couldn't have picked the exact fruit without it being on the label.

The taste is very malty as well, but the apricot notes are more pronounced.

Not the most complex beer in the world, but it's fairly well balanced. There's bitterness but it never overpowers the palate and the fruity component helps with the balance. No real alcohol presence, there's a sourish, moderately bitter finish that lingers.

Not my go to for style, but something that is very drinkable.

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Photo of zonker17
4.06/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark amber with thicker foam that laces somewhat. Smells malty, carmely, toffee. Sweet and hoppy. Carmel flavors competing with the bitterness and citrusy hops. Heavy mouthfeel and above average carbonation.

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Photo of joeseppy
4.41/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Burnt sienna pour with paper mache off white head. Spider lacing throughout. Aroma has great balance of malt and hop. Fruit zesstiness of grapefruit and orange. Dried fruit. I would almost mistake this as borderline a barleywine in regards to heavy fructose. Taste is extra strong bitter that accentuates the malt. Sappy pine cone and dried fruit, esp. in apricot, prominent. Hop flavour arrives next in form of rind citrus. Medium body with hop and sugar in the raw layering on the tongue. Carbonation wanes. A little bit of this and a little bit of that and Zombie Dust in the middle. Drinks also as a DPA and barleywine. The experience here is in the taste. Well it delivers as their label says. This is tradition with interpretational flair. I give props to those going a bit off center.

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Photo of tillmac62
3.71/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

BOD 9/24/15. Clear amber pour with a slight garnet cast. World class head volume, lacing and retention.

Rather light but nice nose of citrus (orange), a touch of spruce spiciness, tea and grainy biscuit with a bit of caramel.

Light medium body that is smooth with a touch of oiliness. Normal carbonation with a bit of effervescence in the middle and a stronger burst in the finish.

Quite nice flavor profile, but not quite up to snuff compared to the outstanding classic English bitters, such as Fullers (which is world class). Hop flavors present are predominately tea, whilst light citrus floats around a bit. The rich heavily caramel background is a bit out of balance lending the bitterness to not cut and slash in a sharp crisp fashion characteristic of the style. Do a side by side with Fuller's ESB and you'll taste what I'm saying. The middle bitterness is a bit muted for the style and does add apricot flavor, as advertised. The finish is a slow sweet fade. This beer is quite nice and very flavorful. As a pale ale I would score it outstanding, but as an ESB - it misses the mark.

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Photo of tedvr
3.72/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours amber and is a little cloudy with a medium white head. Smells are hoppy with not much malt. Mild carbonation. Too hoppy for my taste for a bitter in the classic style, the hops override the malt too much.

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Photo of Gobearswalter34
4.39/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a murky dark orange to red. An off white, one-finger head. Very little carbonation. Slight malty pine smell with slight funk. The malt from an amber ale is very good. This really sets a nice stage for a sweet piney hop to come through. The sweet is a mix of slight apple/cherry hard candy. Very interesting. Mouthfeel is very smooth with a medium body. The balance is right on. This one is underrated for FFF.

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Photo of mcrawford
4.21/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark copper with little head. Smell is pine, citrus with some carmel in the background. Carmel, citrus, apricot, and pine. Compared to most ESB's the hops and malt are both turned up, the citrus notes feel out of place but it's still fairly balanced. Fullers ESB is still my go to but if you want an american twist this shouldn't disappoint.

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Photo of kbwalters
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 3/20/15 and consumed on 4/7/15, poured cold into a tulip glass.
Look = 4.25 Pours a clear amber/brown color with a tint of red and 4 fingers of frothy off white head. Great retention and lace.
Aroma = 4.0 Fruity hops and candy sugar. A little nutty, sweet bread malts. Nice and balanced; very pleasant.
Taste = 4.25 Very balanced but leans a little to the sweet side. Buttery and ready malts high lighted with fruity and earthy hop notes. Very low bitterness.
Feel = 4.0 Medium bodied with low carbonation as expected for an ESB, smooth.
Drinkability = 4.25 Very balanced, easy drinking and tasty.
Overall = 4.15 A terrific beer, very well made ESB. Tasty and smooth, balanced.

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Photo of dutesanch
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Really enjoyed this beer. Much better than other breweries beers of th same style. Very malt heavy with the dominating taste being raisins. Sweetness doesn't annoy. Very pleasant beer. Perfect for brisk fall afternoons. ISO more!

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Photo of robotiks
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured a full UK pint glass 19.22 us fluid oz, this reminded me of fresh fullers ESB on cask, the UK beers never travel well to the US, I suppose the best way to drink UK style beer is to drink the beer produced in that style by US brewers.
A wonderful, cloudy, light to darker brown hue came from my glass, fresh fruity, malty nose, plenty of sweet malts, honey, vanilla, stone fruit, juxtaposed to citrus, fruity, floral hops. The mouth was smooth creamy and delicately carbonated.
This was like a slice of well toasted bread with butter and marmalade, delicious, the sour dry hops, cut the fruit, cut the malts and smooth out with a slightly creamy carb.
I've had many ESBs that taste like this, and this is right on style, fruity, rich, sweet malty, citrus fresh drink with a dry finish, bravo three floyds, really enjoyed drinking this one.

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Photo of 4thFloyd
3.79/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

From notes. A hazy copper color with a moderate light tan head. Aroma was mostly malt sweetness with a little fruit and herbs as well. Flavor was also dominated by the malt sweetness with the mild fruit hops adding a nice balance. Medium mouthfeel and smoothness with a little floral and pine bitterness building toward the end of the bomber.

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Photo of Austin32
3.35/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I was not overly impressed by this beer. I have not had a ESB before so I am not familiar with the style and I have nothing to compare it to. That being said if this is a good example of ESB I am not a fan of the style. Flavors were pretty mild in my opinion. Malt sweetness, I tasted little if any apricot, and a mild citrus but not much there. It wasn't bad per-say....just boring IMO.

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Photo of metter98
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is slightly hazy amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head that hardly died down and consistently left a short head covering the surface.
S: Moderate aromas of biscuity malts are present in the nose along with notes of citrus hops and hints of caramel malts.
T: Like the smell, the taste is rather malty and has lots of flavors of biscuity malts along with some hints of oranges and grapefruit from the hops. The hops contribute a light amount of bitterness and their citrusy flavors are most noticeable towards the finish.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is nice and malty but isn't heavy on the palate. I liked how the citrusy hops proved some contrasting flavors and lend complexity.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to BigTuro for sharing this one at mrbubbler's tasting.

Pours a hazy copper with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, and fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with malt, citrus fruit, and citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with nice citrus forward hop qualities all around.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.31/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Caramel to copper orange body, cascades to a lovely three finger frothy pale tan head, with a slight creamy to fine styrofoam like makeup. Light top but very good staying power there hanging around.

Excellent aroma. Tea and citrus hop like bitterness, with tinges of biscuit and caramel sweetness. Hints of marmalade and pekoe orange like qualities, slight zest, even some lemon squeaks in a bit too. Excellent hop forward, not overkill and still passing off as an ESB.

Palate brings some real excellent qualities. Light hop bitterness, but full of hop flavor on the mid palate. Light black and orange tea notes, hints of marmalade with a small caramel sweetness and slight grained biscuit to cracker note. Slight hop juiced palate, but also slightly a little light for an esb on the malt depth, but still very noticeable and in control.

Different take, but real easy drinking. A little bit out of style but not severely but an extremely tasty brew.

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Photo of Chiefy770
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 Ounce Bottle
Bottled on March 30th, 2015
Reviewed on May 24th, 2015
Served in a Nonic Pint Glass

Poured a copper body with a nice amber glow. Decent sized off-white head formed, collapsed, and left a sparse amount of soapy lacing.

Sweet malts with light notes of fruit, think apricot and orange peel.

Sweet notes of fruit hit the tongue first. Light notes of apricot and pear were overpowered by a good hit of citric hops. Dense malts contained the intensifying hops. Biscuit, caramel, and raisin were the main characteristics from the malts. Bitterness reignited and finished out semi dry with lingering notes of herbal hops. Medium-bodied. Moderate carbonation.

Certainly a hoppy ESB but a great offering nonetheless.

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Photo of madelfonatree
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Look - Dark orange. Medium off white head, almost tan. Creamy head. Lacing. See through.

Smell - Caramel. Bread. Light fruitiness.

Taste - Caramel. Bread. Grassy. Orange. Lemon. Apricot. Raisin.

Feel - Medium body. Doesn't explode. Taste of some wheat beers without the carbonation.

Overall - Not a taste I have often. Nice change of pace from the stouts and IPAs in the collection.

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Photo of KevChiTown
4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I'm shocked that this beer doesn't have the traditional signs of the 3Fs beer....super mellow, super easy to drink with just enough bitter to drink and keep drinking. As far as ESBs go, not even close. Still good tho..

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Photo of dleigh
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Lots of lemon in the nose--a really clean citrus hoppiness as it warms up, with a lot of diacetyl also present. Nice balanced hoppy taste with a hint of sweetness to it.

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Lord Rear Admiral from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
4.15 out of 5 based on 639 ratings.
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