Minnesota Special Bitter | Badger Hill Brewing Company

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Minnesota Special BitterMinnesota Special Bitter
98 Ratings
Minnesota Special BitterMinnesota Special Bitter

Brewed by:
Badger Hill Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mjryan on 08-05-2012

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 98 |  Reviews: 23
Photo of JstrawSavage
4.27/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

great off of the tap or can, malty, not too hopped

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Photo of Kern_Anderson
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of Bravak
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Saw a list on Beer Info that listed this as the best ESB brewed in US. Had to give it a try. Also saw it won a Gold Medal at US Beer Open.

Copper color with fantastic clarity and one finger head that laced continously. Aromas of warm bread and earthy marmalade. Complex and full flavor quickly recedes with a surprising crispness. Seems heavier at first but actually is quite refreshing. Had it paired with BBQ and is outstanding with food. A little estery but in a good way.

While most American versions of ESB's seem to be disguised ambers, this is like the British ales I have had across the pond. Really good and highly recommend.

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Photo of elec
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of Wanna_B_Hmong
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of Can_if_you_can
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of hjmayniac
4.22/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Metalsnota
4.13/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This is a very good representation of an American attempt at an ESB. It's not quite as good as Bent Paddle's 14º ESB, but it is a great beer in its own right. It is currently one of my favorite beers from MN right now.

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Photo of NuclearDolphin
4.12/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Pint Glass

Appearance - Darker Orange and hazy with tons of carbonation initially before it becomes mild. Head width pours in around 2 fingers and has some soapy retention.

Smell - Floral Hops, Bready/Biscuits, Orange Peel, and Malts. Has a slightly resin scent to it; Interesting...

Taste - Floral Hops, Resin, Citrus, and Yeasts. Surprisingly Hoppy considering my past experience with ESB Ales. Still very tasty to drink with a more robust flavor as it warms up.

Mouthfeel - Moderate body with mild carbonation. Slightly crisp but not what I would call refreshing. It had a very slight creamy feel to it though.

Overall - It's always fun to explore the ever-expanding Minnesota craft beer scene and beers like this prove to me why. It's easy to enjoy, quite good and provides a unique twist in ESB style ales. I look forward to trying out more from Badger Hill in the future!

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Photo of M-Jez84
4.11/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MNAle
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very good attempt at a bitter, not much hop bite as expected for a bitter in the British style.Very good malt flavor, again, in the British style. This is very nice actually, and fairly true to style.

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Photo of ceanderson
4.1/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Taybeh
4.09/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a single into an imperial pint

A: clear light copper, 2 finger puffy off-white head, great lacing
S: toasty and toffee maltiness, orange, jammy berries
T: very nice, couple layers of breadiness and crystal malt sweetness, some round fruity notes, and some mellow herbal earthy hoppy bitterness. Very nice integration of flavors.
M: medium carbonation, medium body, really nice feel.

Overall: I was excited when this first came out b/c English bitters were few and far between in these parts, and it is a style that I love...this one seemed to have a lot of the parts, but they weren't entirely integrated. Now, these guys seemed to have figure it out; MSB is a real pleasure. Would love to try it on cask.

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Photo of mjryan
4.06/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

ESB. Extra Special Bitter. Sure. A new world interpretation of a strong English pale ale. A Minnesota interpretation to be exact, hence it's name, Minnesota Special Bitter. Amber, not red. Golden hued. Freshly baked brown bread, hay and citrus fruit on the nose. I'm guessing these aromas are coming from the malt, hops and yeast. Perhaps maybe even the water. Malt dominates the first sip. Bready, as in freshly baked. The hops come along and play a floral, slightly green grass tune. Caramel flavours follow, then it finishes with a mild grapefruity bitterness with some toffe notes in there as well. Very nice. I didn't feel the Earth shake when I took my first sip. I'm not going to wait in a line for days for it. I won't fill a bottle of it from a glass in the toilet of some bar and trade it to a guy in Rotterdamn for some "Westy 12". I will however order it again. Gladly.

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Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Biscuit nose, hop aromas, earthy
Bright dark amber with a ferocious pillowy off white head. The foam is outrageously dense and rocky.
Palate: Balanced malt and bitterness. Earthy and resiny hops, hops more prominent as it warms.
Medium to medium high carbonation.

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Photo of Snow81
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of Justdoit1234
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ddavison
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of minneapolitanjim
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of MinnTwins
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of JakeBarnett
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of thecosmicturtle
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of ThePublicHouse
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of dmueller
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of MonkeyPilates
4/5  rDev +9.3%

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Minnesota Special Bitter from Badger Hill Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.66 out of 5 with 98 ratings