Mill Street E.S.B. (Extra Special Bitter) | Mill Street Brew Pub

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Mill Street E.S.B. (Extra Special Bitter)Mill Street E.S.B. (Extra Special Bitter)
59 Ratings
Mill Street E.S.B. (Extra Special Bitter)Mill Street E.S.B. (Extra Special Bitter)

Brewed by:
Mill Street Brew Pub
Ontario, Canada

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.60%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Bitters have been the common drink in English pubs for decades. Mill St ESB uses only traditional ingredients, Marris Otter malt and Fuggles and East Kent Goldings hops, all imported from England. With light malt and hops in the nose, this copper coloured ale gives rise to a malty body with hints of chocolate and black currants. The hoppiness is always present but never out of balance in this style.

Added by Sammy on 11-05-2006

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 59 |  Reviews: 30
Photo of bigox420
3/5  rDev -13.3%

Photo of LoveBeerNo7
3.25/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of JZ57
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.22/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a clear light copper color ale with a medium size foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of light dry caramel malt notes with some light dry hops. Taste is a mix of dry caramel malt notes with some light subtle hops at the end. Body is about average with good carbonation. Nothing bad here though nothing earth shattering either.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
3.41/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - clear brown with a tall off white head, retained respectably with some random blobs of lacing
S - very sweet and sour aroma, molasses and some adjunct, a little odd for the style
T - a big nutty malt start with some molasses, light earthy hop notes, not what I expect in an ESB but it is tasty
S - sticky yet light, finishing with a dry that builds through the finish
O - this one is tough because it tastes nothing like the bitter and malty ESB's I love, but it is tasty, just more akin to a nut brown ale, worth a try but the Russian judge gives a few .5 deductions on style

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Photo of bylerteck
3.02/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From the Mill Street sampler in the LCBO.

A - Pours bright, the colour is copper with tons of carbonation. One finger of white head fades fast to a ring around the edges with no lace.

S - Earthy, pear, some graininess, berries, tame.

T - Some fruity esters, pear, toffee malts, slight herbal hops.

M - Good carbonation, medium body, sweetish/dry finish.

O/D - Weak for an ESB. If Fuller's is the benchmark, this isn't even close. Odd for an ESB. Definintely nothing special and mostly forgettable.

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Photo of jbonapar
1.76/5  rDev -49.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I decied to retry Mill Street as i know people who love their stuff.

Poured from a bottle into a a pilsner glass.

Light amber, minimal head.

Aroma....what aroma.. ESB? I dont smell anything apart from a subtle malt.

Taste....Hmmm...Minerally, "corn" like...Tastes like a lager. Very very light with a crips finish. I'd say almost 0 hop in here. I can barely perceive any bitterness. I'm comparing this to a good ESB like FUller's and Propeller. This is just undrinkable to me.

Reminds of a big-brand discount beer. Again, Mill Street disapoints. I have no idea how people are so impressed with this place. I suppose its meant for the Masses but there are FAR better ESB's out there. This is a lager, not an ESB.

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Photo of TheHammer
3.46/5  rDev 0%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Not a lot of head, barely a finger's worth which quickly dissolved and did not lace at all. The body is crystal clear penny coloured copper with steady carbonation.

Smell: Sweet malt with fruity elements, specifically peach, berries and a light citrus that I think is coming from the hops. All in all it's nice but far too muted and warming doesn't help.

Taste: Starts with a very nice nutty caramel taste as the nuttier element seems to curb the malt sweetness nicely. The hops then make a bit of an early appearance as herbal and citrus notes with a touch of berries come into play. Unfortunately a bit of a metallic twang hits the end of the beer and finishes poorly.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation helps out the entire beer, and regrettably it also helps out the ending twang. That metallic aftertaste doesn't linger to fiercely but it is there and it creeps into the picture so suddenly.

Drinkability: Surprisingly easy and drinkable for a medium bodied beer. The carbonation doesn't quite settle as well as it should, but all in all it's good.

Final Thoughts: Save only for the most sweltering of summer heat, this is a beer for all seasons. That being said, that metal twang needs to go. This would make a good gateway beer to offer a macro drinker. It's both drinkable and flavourful but not excessively so.

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Photo of scott451
3.42/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. One finger off white head on a clear dark reddish amber. The head soon diminished to a thin ring.

Fruity malts in the smell. Buttery diacelyl. Sweet buttercotch caramel. Mild but present. Mild hop finish.

Medium body. Fairly light carbonation. A bit weak in the flavour department. Pleasant but not outstanding. I guess that is the philosophy of Mill Street. True to style but milded down for broader appeal.

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Photo of liamt07
3.46/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from the brewpub store, 355ml into a tulip. Listed at 4.6%ABV.

Clear orange-brown with a few fingers of sorta thick off-white head. GOod lace and only a bit of head retention. Not much on the nose, some vague earthy and bready notes and touch of hops. A touch of grass and caramel. Taste has some warm caramel and toasty malts, some earthier hop notes as well. A mild metallic note as well. Mouthfeel is medium, with a pretty low carbonation. Nothing too wrong with this beers, but nothing special about it either. Could be sessionable, but not something I'd seek out really.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.13/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured in to Founder's tulip glass.

A - Medium copper colour; translucent. Half a finger of off-white head formed and quickly receded to a few bubbles. Some yellow/orange glow around the edges of glass.

S - Caramel and toffee aromas up front balanced by an earthy and floral bitterness from the hops.

T - Floral and earthy notes from the hops up front with a light to moderate bitterness. The malt bill provides a good balance and notes of caramel and toffee.

M - Medium body, slightly creamy with light carbonation.

O - An enjoyable session beer and very easy drinking but not memorable.

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Photo of ElGallo
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%

Photo of slitherySOB
2.99/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear copper colour with little to no head whatsoever. Strong malt and hay aroma, with some lemony hops. Tastes very earthy. Bit of nuts, with big malt profile. Some caramel to be had in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is a bit thin. Overall, a decent beer to have, but nothing to sing praises of.

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Photo of PhatMatt905
2.83/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

a- mild copper colour with a very nice long lasting bright white head.

s- strong malt aroma. breads, caramel, and nice toasted qualities. Nice fruity ester. some earthy and slightly spice hops notes also.

t- Nice and easy drinking beer. Nice malt flavours some weird yeasty flavour too. Mild bitterness. lots of earthy kettle hops.

m- Decent for a beer with such low abv. Nice mild carbonation.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Another gem in the holiday mixer pack...

A - Pours a crystal clear dark copper colour, finger of head with little retention or lacing.

S - Musty caramel, light leafy hops, nutty and earthy, but comes across a tad mild.

T - This was rather surprising given the nose, quite flavourful with the roasted almonds, caramel and toffee notes dominating. Leafy and earthy hops linger alongside a lasting bitterness.

M - Medium bodied and smooth but the finish can come across a tad too dry.

O - This one was certainly a surprise on the palette, and certainly worth picking up the mixer pack for. Would be a solid session ale that won't tire the palette and is fantastically drinkable.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.17/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

355ml bottle poured into tulip 9/12/11

A clear copper with a few bib bubbles that feed a short lived thumbs width of head that leaves a couple polka dots of lace

S some citric hops and bread crust with a little purple candy, and some hay and grass

T slightly sour grapes, grainy flavors and not as much hops as the nose

M light but well carbonated a little bite to it but not overly bitter

O pretty average stuff, nothing really off but nothing stands out either

I don't mind some of Mill Streets stuff but this one's pretty basic

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Photo of kelvarnsen
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of RedAleMan
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of peensteen
3.8/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Caramel colour, one finger on white head, not much retention but some lace is left behind. Smell is loaded with malt, bready, decent hop bill, lightly grassy, caramel, mild sweet scents as well. Taste is malty initially, grassy hops come in leaving a firm bitterness throughout, fairly hoppy with some orange and muted citrus, light caramel with a faint sweetness in the aftertaste. Med-high carbonation, medium body, decent enough feel, carbonation is a touch prickly. This is actually quite nice, really enjoyed the flavours and balance that this offers and would revisit this more often than the rest of the Mill St. offerings.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz Bottle

Appearance – Clear dark copper colour with an above average size fizzy beige coloured head. There is a below average amount of carbonation visible and there is a good amount of lacing. The head lasted for 6 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, hay/straw, caramel/butterscotch, hops

Taste & Mouth - The beer has an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel/butterscotch, and some hops. The is also a bit of chocolate flavour going on. It ends with a malty sweet aftertaste with a light hop bitterness.

Overall – For me it had a little bit too much of a chocolatey taste, but it was still enjoyable. There are far better examples of the style available to me locally however. Not a waste of money, but I wouldn't buy it again.

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Photo of fostachild
3.5/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pours a nice super clear light brown/amber colour. okay head and some lacing - both faded quickly.

smell was nice. hoppy, bitter, malty, sweet and a hint of fruit.

taste was okay. malt heavy with a bitter aftertaste - not a lot happening. good carbonation and drinkability.

good but not overly interesting - probably won't get again but was nice to try.

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Photo of bryehn
4.01/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From notes taken at the Mill Street Brew Pub on 07/15/2011. Served in an American-style pint glass.

Poured an absolutely beautiful rusty amber colour with a frothy light cream-coloured head that stuck around as a thick film until the end of the glass. Extremely appealing.

Smelled of raisins and chocolate as well as dark malts. A dark or candied cherry smell opens up after warming.

Taste was chocolate-forward, with hints of grape and dark, bready malts and a really solid hoppy bite that had a citrus kick I'd normally associate with an IPA. Simple, but well-executed.

Smooth-drinking and creamy thanks to the thick film. Light-bodied overall, but did leave a bit of a resin aftertaste on my tongue.

A great session ale that washed down a greasy, starchy poutine nicely. If they bottled and distributed this I'd buy it all the time.

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Photo of pootz
3.8/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap from the MS pub:

Tapped a clear amber-orange with a decent cap.

Aromas: Caramel-bread-grassyness.

Flavor profile: Pretty much a replica of the way it smells...a nice bready-caramel chew of malt balanced well with a grassy-herbal hop profile...light bitter finish...not the intense bittering of a Brit ESB but very approachable and sessionable

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Photo of biboergosum
3.78/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer appears a clear orange-ish amber hue, with two fingers of creamy, foamy off-white head, which leaves a full paint job of lace around the glass in its wake. It smells of crackery grain, and grassy, spicy hops. The taste is light cracker malt, and grassy, earthy hops. The carbonation is moderate, the body light and crisp, and it finishes dry and clean.

A bang-on mild bitter, nice and drying, makes you want more.

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Photo of ritzkiss
4.05/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Dry hopped version on cask at Volo as part of their pre-cask days.

Arrives a nice caramelly brown with minimal head, nothing too exciting here, leaves lacing down a good portion of the glass.

Nice light leafy British hop presence, leaves a pleasant balanced bitterness in the mouth, decent finish. Toasty caramel malt base, hint of lemon in there. Very drinkable would be extremely refreshing in the summer, enough bitterness to please the discerning drinker. For an ESB, for 4.5%, for Ontario - this is a fine, well made drinker and thirst quencher.

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Mill Street E.S.B. (Extra Special Bitter) from Mill Street Brew Pub
Beer rating: 3.46 out of 5 with 59 ratings