ESB Amber Ale | Flying Fish Brewing Company

144 Reviews
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ESB Amber AleESB Amber Ale

Brewed by:
Flying Fish Brewing Company
New Jersey, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-20-2001

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Reviews: 144 | Ratings: 242
Photo of TheFightfan1
3.8/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I bought this in a variety pack case.

Poured into a mug which pours a deepergolden color with a white heading that disapates to a very tiny bubbled lacing that follows with every sip and leaves some globbage throughout.

Smell is spicy with a citrus blast of hops,also a slightest touch of caramel.

Taste starts out with a nice roasted malt flavor that is quickly overpowerd by bitterness of hops.

Mouth is a bit watery has a nice spicey sting on the tongue. Medium bodied alive and well.

Drink is very easy going a few more would be easy to handle.In fact I think I will.

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Photo of templar316
3.7/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I'm suprised at only two reviews. This beer is far better and deserves to be sampled by a wide variety. Pours golden with off white head, light laceing, head falls fast. Aroma has a hint of corn, and candy sugar. Taste has malt sugar and light hop finish, not complex but not crap. Washes over the tongue like sweet nothing. Light crisp and I could drink it all night in good company.

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Photo of sprucetip
3.18/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into snifter. From notes. Clear amber, almost without head, no lacing. SMELLS like corn to me, reminiscent of macro lager, some malt, maybe a faint hint of hops? Very faint. TASTE unfortunately is like the nose. Corn, malt and barely perceptible hops. Smooth, I guess, with some sweetness. and a hint of bitterness. Clean finish. FEELing is of medium carbonation and fiz, thin, but a bit of body. DRINKS easily enough if body and flavor are not important components of your beer. Probably the first and last time for this one.

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Photo of Stunner97
3.42/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Golden brown with very high carbonation, head faded away quickly to leave almost none at all,

Smell- Strong smell of sugar malts, lots of sweetness

Taste- Little bit of sweetness up front with small amount of bitterness on the finish, little bit of fruitiness maybe apples,

Mouthfeel- Pretty thin but you definitely feel alot of carbonation going down

Drinkability- This one was okay but I wasn't to crazily impressed, definitely not hard to drink but felt a bit might been missing here with this one.

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Photo of Dulliwhig
3.6/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Medium sized head that doesn't hang around long comprised of fine bubbles. Reddish light brorange hue.

Smell - Malty sweet and sour with a grass-flower twinge

Taste - Semisweet maltiness caramel grassy hay followed by a decently bitter and lasting hoppy finish.

Mouthfeel - Average to slightly below average carbonation

Drinkability - I find myself drinking this fast...

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Photo of mynie
3.88/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice pour for an ESB. Clear amber with a very big, rocky head that stick around forever. Filtered, which I *think* is the standard for the style but don't quote me on that.

Smells of strong bread malts and light, spicy British hops. Very firm nodes of fuggles in there, along with something else that I can't quite put my finger on.

Tastes the same as it smells: bready, sweet, and spicy. The maltiness is sweet like Wheaties, that moves into a silky smooth middle of more caramel sweetness, and everything is balanced out nicely by the British hops.

Very good example of an unfortunately bland style. There's not enough going on here for me to heartily recommend this beer, but I can say without hesitation that it's very well brewed.

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Photo of williamherbert
4.02/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is a carrot orange with a thin frosting of head. Cloudy with slowly upfloating carbonation. More head would have been nice.

The smell is dual malt aromas creating a tug-of-war: the spicy pale malt and the toasted amber malt. The hops are spicy and flowery both. It's a very spring-y beer, with a lot of pop.

The hops in the flavor shine though here, giving a refreshing, spicy and estery taste. The caramel-tinged malt adds more flavor. A real burst of disparate tastes.

The body on this beer is fantastic: it is thick and creamy and whips into a foam when agitated. There is lots of flavor here: spicy, flowery, roasted and yet refreshing.

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Photo of BBM
3.52/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a crisp amber color with a white head. Aroma was sweet and bready with hints of caramel.

Taste is well-balanced with bread-like malts and floral hops, although the package is a bit too heavy to be a sessioner, in my opinion. Slightly oily mouthfeel and dry finish. It's not a bad beer by any means, but I would look elsewhere after one or two.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.7/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle

Pours a golden amber with a good amount of carbonation. Head bubbled up a bone white. There is a decent amount of lacing left on the glass.

Slight caramel malts and piney hops. Not a big nose here.

Taste is of clean, crisp malts and a very light hop backbone.

Crisp, clean and light on the tongue.

The best thing this beer has going for it is that you can put a few of these down pretty easily. A good session beer.

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Photo of dsa7783
2.76/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Single, 12 oz bottle copped from Total Wine and More in West Orange for $1.79...
Impressive appearance was the result of a hefty pour, yielding a huge, foamy head that left strong lacing around the glass...
Pear and apple aroma, with noticeable sweet smells coming through...
Taste was very unusual and unrecognizable for the style... Tasted almost exactly like super-sweet applejuice, no bitterness here, just extreme sugars and candy flavors bursting through that seemed abnormal for the style and was not what I was anticipating...
Decent mouthfeel, but due to the hefty dose of sugars, the drinkability took a big hit...
Not recommended...

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Photo of edskirk3
3.78/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Twelve ounce brown glass bottle. No freshness information.

Pours burnt orange with nearly white froth. Nice lacing and staying power.

Slightly toasted caramel grains and fresh leafy hops are featured in the aroma.

Well-balanced flavors of toasted malt, caramel and juicy fruit. Hops slide in a little later and blossom forth ever slowly. Medium-bodied and crisp.

I can see myself going through a few bottles of this. An easy drinker that's tasty as well.

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Photo of AltBock
3.03/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Flying Fish American pint glass. This one poured a clear amber that had a 1/2 inch head of fizzy white foam. This fizzy head of foam quickly fizzled away into some bubbly islands, white bubbly rings, and a handful of white spots. The aroma was very mild with sweet caramel malts and some dried and burnt citrus hops. I could understand why they would be dried hops, but not dried and burnt. The taste was also mild and filled filled with toasted malts, dried juicy fruits, and dried out crispy floral and citrus hops. It was a light to medium bodied beer that had a nice crispy aftertaste of citrus hops. It was the mouthfeel that saved this beer. Overall, it was a nice mild well rounded ESB. This is one I wouldn't mind having again as long as I don't have to smell it.

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Photo of beerthulhu
2.95/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a pale orange color with a thin white creamy head with very soft carbonation. The color is a little lighter then I expected per style.

S: On the nose are some light citrus notes, fresh oranges with a slight touch of honey-caramel sweetness. The hopping is light providing just enough of citrus tones to be detected.

T: There is a nice smooth caramel backing providing a malt smoothness similar to an octoberfest style beer with some good citrus notes and a touch of honey malt. Overall the flavor is moderately average, perhaps a tad sweet per style, and the hopping is light and comes off more sweet then bitter.

M: The beer seems to be filtered down to much depriving the palate and body of substance as like most of their other beers which is why it seems watery at times.

D: easy and light per style, but may disappoint due to lack of heartiness.

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Photo of IgnatiusReilly
3.68/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured on-tap to pint glass at PJW’s.

Clear, amber/slight ruby, good head retention, with a little lace on the sides of the glass. Aroma is deep and earthy, grain, hint of malt sweetness. Taste mimics nose, a little sweet and grainy in the front, dry and slightly hoppy in the back. Honestly a little confusing as the hops and malt seem to be competing rather than complementing. It tastes a little like a red ale with its sweetness, but it comes up dry, hoppy, with a tea-like undertone at the end. Fairly enjoyable and the taste are subtle enough to be able to enjoy a few during an afternoon. Pretty good ESB.

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Photo of marcpal
2.55/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap poured into American pint glass.

A: Amber tings with a very thin head and little lacing through the beer. Amber-copper color, half-finger head

S: ESB? Malts and sugar but dont really catch anything ESB like.

T: Dont catch the bitterness here, far too mild. Seems like all malts and fruit, no substantial hop bitterness. However, not bad tasting- just a bit bland and lifeless.

M: Thin with a crisp quick finish that leaves a bit dry.

D: Never been a fan of this one but willing to give many tries. The blandness really makes this one drinkable in a sense but just gets to taste waterlike over time though. FF other offerings better.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.41/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an orange amber with a small amount of head. Nose is extremely mild wood. Very little to it. Flavor is a woody bitter. Fairly prevalent tang on the tongue as well. Not really a complex beer, but certainly isn't lacking. Feel has an attacking carbonation. Decent liquid feel. Overall it is drinkable, but not one to rush to the store for.

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Photo of Romulus141
3.36/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a slightly golden amber color with minimal head. The beer leaves minimal lacing on the edges, and when held up to a light, it has a slight hazy quality to it.

Smell: Malts seem to be the predominant scent here. There is a sweetness to it, and the smell of dark grains also are present. Nothing exciting here, but it is pleasant.

Taste: It starts with a strong taste of sweet malts, which gives way to a strong grain quality. There aren't a lot of bitter tastes here, despite the ESB name. The aftertaste has a slight bitterness, but it is hardly noticable. The overall taste is good, although it's nothing special.

Mouthfeel: The brew is thin, and has light carbonation. Once again, average, with no distinguishing characteristics.

Drinkability: Since these are malty and thin, they make for easy drinking. These would make a good session beer.

A solid "B" quality beer. I enjoy these, although it's nothing I would go out of my way to procure.

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Photo of Biscuit033
4.07/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear orange-golden, with two fingers of head moderate lacing.

S: Malts and floral hops.

T: Metallic earthiness, malts, and a bit of pine bitterness.

M: Nice bubbles on the tonge with long clinging bitter finish.

D: This beer is balanced the way an ESB should be. It is something that I would order more than oone of throughout the night. A little too much ABV for my idea of a perfect sesion beer.

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Photo of jwc215
3.8/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours light amber with an ample head that descends to a thin cover. Some traces of thin lacing sticks to the glass.

The smelll is of lightly roasted caramel with a slightly floral backing.

The taste is of caramel and toast with a floral/earthy balance. Malt accented but with some bitterness mixed in. Fairly dry in the finish.

It has a medium body though there is something thin about it.

Seems more like an amber ale than an ESB, though I can see some English characteristics to it. Overall, a decent, "sessionable" ale.

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Photo of tempest
3.78/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks a nice amber-gold color with a short white head and thick lacing. I wish I could find this on cask or nitro, because it'd really rock with a creamier body. As is, there's a nice, smooth, caramel malt body with a touch of grassy/herbal hops in the aftertaste. Seems a bit sweet at first, but it slowly balanced by the hops. Overall, quite a nice session beer.

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Photo of AlexJ
3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Burnt caramel in color with a dense head of eggshell white that has light retention and lace.

Aroma is mushy, sweet malt with faint floral sweetness, toasted bread, and a dry peppery note that is out of place.

Flavor is quite similar. Quite malty and dextrinous, somewhat buttery, and the hops just don't work for me. Meh.

Body is medium, slick, and slippery on the palate. Drinkable but tedious.

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Photo of lupulinaddict
3.83/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a deep golden amber with about two fingers of nice off white rocky head. Head sticks for a minute or so and drops down to a thin layer never completely dropping out. So far so good. Caramel jumps out at first on the nose and is the predominant scent followed by a subtle earthy, spicey hop aroma. As I take my first sip again caramel is the dominant flavor along with some subtle bready notes, some esters, and with just enough herbal hops in the finish to balance out the sweetness. A little light to medium body but still comes across smooth and lets you know it's there. Overall not a bad offering but not the best I've had either. I could easily knock back a six pack of these without complaint.

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Photo of klewis
3.73/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to leftmindedrighty for this one.

A: pours caramel with a white, rocky head. No lacing.

S: Light caramel and toffee aromas. No noticable hop aroma.

T: This one falls firmly in the malty end of the spectrum, although the taste is rounded out and balanced by a mild bitterness. Sweet caramel flavor with a slight vegetal hop taste.

M: Moderate-light in body with light, fizzy carbonation. A stickiness gives the flavor some lasting power.

D: This one seems closer to an ordinary bitter than an ESB, but still pretty good. The smooth mouthfeel and non-imposing taste profile would make this one a good session beer.

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Photo of flood
4.06/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed a bottle of this at a bar in Chadds Ford PA - I was duly impressed started off as a typical ESB, hit a caramel/smokey note in he middle and ended with a little bitter bite - I wouldn't classify this as a true to form ESB but a good beverage none the less. The only problem is the hops are a little muted for the style. The flavor overall is excellent though and very drinkable - had three of them with no regrets.

I would like to taste the draft form of this...

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Photo of Phatz
3.88/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours an amber orange with a frothy white head and scattered lacing and a cap that lasts the duration of the beer.

Smell: Toffee and grain, a touch of caramel and a light dose of hops, in an otherwise malty aroma. I certainly think I smell some butterscotch as well.

Taste: It is a bizarre beer because I keep thinking I detect that buttery diacetyl and then it hides, so if it is there is well masked. The first suggestion on the tongue is butterscotch, and then immediately sweet bread and toasted grains. There is also a fruity overtone that seems like some of the yeast is helping while I was tasting the bread flavor, but again it show up and is gone just as quickly. Like I said; how bizarre. There is a nibbling feeling in the back of the mouth; a sort of hoppyness along with a dryness and a spice kick that almost seems like a bit of pepper nibbling at the cheeks, and maybe some cinnamon too. The finish is short. While I like the flavors they seem illusive. Then long after the swallow a second wave of light bitterness seeps out of cheeks and leaves a pleasant dry aftertaste in my mouth. The next sip; when I hold it on my tongue the beer seems overly grainy and not so much like the pleasant sweet bread, it is a little rough and unbalanced but it pulls together again. The flavors from sip to sip are hit or miss.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is light more like a brown ale than as ESB. Malty and smooth bigger medium than most ESBs and with a spice kick.

Drinkability: this is an interesting beer. It seems to me like an English Brown ale and an American Pale Ale met and conceived this baby in hay stack. The offspring of this unlikely pair is this beer. I wouldn't call it a favorite but it is well worth the taste.

Hope this is helpful.

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ESB Amber Ale from Flying Fish Brewing Company
3.51 out of 5 based on 242 ratings.
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