Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB | Stoudts Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
82
good
672 Ratings
THE BROS
82
good
Read the review
Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESBStoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stoudts Brewing Co.
Pennsylvania, United States
stoudtsbeer.com

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-12-2001

BEER STATS
Ratings:
672
Reviews:
372
Avg:
3.6
pDev:
12.22%
 
 
Wants:
14
Gots:
42
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 672 |  Reviews: 372
Photo of dsa7783
3.58/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz, single bottle purchased from Buy Rite on Oak Tree in South Plainfield...
Deep, dark red, mahogany-brown appearance with a slight foamy head that left a clear amount of lacing around the glass...
Noticeable bitter-hop aroma with a strong suggestion of florals and vanilla...
Taste complemented the smell, with a slightly bitter flavor that was watered-down and not too strong or noticeable, yet still left a somewhat bitter suggestion including essences of caramel and hops...
Watered down, loose mouthfeel, not too rich or thick...
Drinkability was good due to the low ABV and lack of cloying flavors, but due to the lack of complexity in the taste, wouldn't want to make this one my single choice for the night...
Stoudt makes much better beers than this one...

 769 characters

Photo of Hojaminbag
4.11/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice ruby color that lightens to a hazy orange around the edges. Very little head that recedes quickly.

I detect a little of a bitter holp aroma, but the strongest scent is a chocolately malt.

This beer starts with a honey taste that has hints of floral hops underneath it. In the middle is a malty flavor. Finishes with a characteristic bitter hoppy taste. This is an excellent ESB, although it is not one of my favorite styles.

Mouthfeel is good, nothing spectacular, but a rather drinkable beer.

 503 characters

Photo of BBM
3.18/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The "Best By" date on this bottle was some time in 2005. I probably should have check that before purchase. Anyhow I think it had minimal effect on ther beer, since there wasn't any trace of skunkiness. It poured a medium amber color, thin white head. Aroma was not strong, hints of bread and sugar though.

This was a pretty standard amber ale in my book, not really in the same echelon as English ESBs. Big malty character with a slight hop fix, it was well balanced but not extraordinary.

Overall it's not a bad beer, but it's decidedly average. I may try a fresher on to see if it changes my opinion at all.

 612 characters

Photo of dmamiano
3.4/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a nice, polishe d copper color with a decent, one finger head. Minimal lacing displayed. Very clean looking..clear.
Smells of caramel malt, sweet with a slight mingling of hops.
Taste is of a mild maltiness with a bitter bite.
Seem to taste a slight burn of alcholol,although at 5%, that seems unlikely.
Decent mouthfeel.

 327 characters

Photo of ZimZamZoom
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice deep amber color with a thick tan head. The head is pretty foamy, nice tight bubbles, and the lacing on the glass is patchy.

A mildly floral hop aroma, touch of fruitiness and definitely some bitter hops in there. The nose has an overall pleasant spiciness to it which is probably just a great melding of all the aromas.

Taste, blends some ripe pear with earthy hops, a nice bit of caramel and great bitterness in the finish. Not a long lingering finish but a bit abrupt, and pleasant nonetheless.

This ESB has good body, and is a great drinkable example of the style. I could definitely hit these all day long if the calling arose.

 640 characters

Photo of plaid75
3.47/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a medium copper hue with a half finger foamy white head. There was little retention and lacing.

The smell featured a flowery hop, a sweet grain and some wildflower honey.

The flavor was slightly toasted with an herbal hop, and some light honey sweetness.

The mouthfeel was of average fullness for the style.

Overall a decent ESB. Good drinkability on cask.

 369 characters

Photo of ffejherb
3.95/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On cask at Stoudt's on 2/9/08.

A - Deep garnet body with ruby hues around the edges and one-finger creamy, off-white head. Decent head retention with lots of thick, sticky lacing around the glass.

S - Perfumy hops paired with sweet caramel malts. A bit of brown sugar sweetness and a slight buttery aroma. Some flowery hops as well. Nothing overly complex, just a very nice, classic ESB aroma.

T - Very well-balanced flavor with the perfumy hops and sweet malts blending together quite nicely.

M - Light to medium body with creamy texture and a mild bitter-sweet finish. Body is smooth, but a little thin. Floral and perfumy hops really come out in the finish, but they are balanced by the sweetness of the malts.

D - Solid ESB. One of my favorite offerings from Stoudt's. First time on cask. Nothing mild-blowing, but still very nice.

 843 characters

Photo of asabreed
3.41/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: A nice amber color with lots of carbonation and a head that billows and leaves lots of lacing down the glass as I keep sipping. I think the temperature was just right for the pour too, which helps.

Smell: A fairly tame, yet seemingly balanced, mix of malt and hops. Slight roasted malts, slight fruit and zest, with some bread crust or tree bark too.

Taste: Again, fairly tame with not a lot going on. The balance is nice, it's very drinkable, but there's not much to write home about. Slight roasted malts, with fruit and a bit of hops rounding out the mix in a more citrus finish. It's balanced, as I said, but neither the hops nor malt characteristics are dominant, which hampers the taste a bit.

Mouthfeel: Almost slightly creamy, as it feels thick at first but then the carbonation comes through, enough to be there and accompany the body but without making it watery.

Drinkability: I could drink this in a session, as it goes down easy, but there's not much there in terms of yearning for flavor with each sip. But for a balanced and fairly tasty and tame session brew, this could work for a lot of people.

 1,166 characters

Photo of KOPBeerDrinker
3.28/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass a medium dark brown, slightly reddish with a short tan head. Left a little lacing as it disappeared. Smells malty and sweet, a little toasty. Malty in taste, some bread like flavors, maybe a little hops in the finish, also slightly metallic. Mouthfeel is medium light with crisp carbonation. Not a bad beer.

 332 characters

Photo of DevilDogBeer
3.46/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When I was first introduced to the Scarlet Lady in 2000, it was my first taste of an ESB, or really anything not from a North American Macro plant. I was smitten with the fact I could taste the hops and that beer didn’t need that funny aftertaste (that I eventually found to be corn). Even so, the beer was very good and very clean. I am sorry to say that the last two cases I have had have some bottling issue. The Scarlet Lady is a little metallic from the bottle. I stopped by Stoudt's over the summer (about 4 months ago) and the beer from the tap did not have this taste. I fear Stoudt's is trying to bottle more beer than their line can handle. Alas, I shall re-0review the old girl. The bottle pours a nice red color with a white head, about one finger deep. The smell is light and floral but has a hint of a metallic edge in it. The taste is great up front, it hits with a floral hop taste and aroma that is pleasant and not overbearing. The malt begins to work its way through on the back of the tongue and it finishes clean. Unfortunately, just as you are enjoying the taste of he sip, alight metallic taste disrupts the experience. The mouthfeel is light and this beer is super drinkable! Even with the off aftertaste, Scarlet Lady is one of my favorite ESB's. I simply hope Stoudt's clears out their bottling lines soon. Cheers!

 1,341 characters

Photo of bosco7
3.4/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Chunky head sits atop a amber colored brew. The lacing is fluffy and thick.

Familiar soft flowery aroma that seems to grace good ESBs. Malty, bready, and caramely aromas in the nose as well. Some mint and orange too.

I must say that the aroma is much more pleasurable than the taste. It has an extremely dry flavor profile. Malt gets lost on the palate behind the dryness and hops. Some bread, apricot pits, mint and suggestions of caramel.

I really think this beer would be great if it weren't so attenuated. The aroma is quite pleasant and the appearance appealing. The dryness just adds harshness and masks any malt flavors. Try it for yourself.

 653 characters

Photo of Abita45
3.69/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice ruby/copper color with very little head, but nice lacing and pleasant earth and malt aroma. Similarly, the taste is both malty and heavy, but the mouthfeel, while not light, is crisp and balanced. The density of the malt is cut by the slightly hoppy flavor that is present. This beer skirts the line of a heavy malty beer and a lighter ale and is a nicely put together ESB. It is definitely full bodied and nicely nuanced. In my experience, it is probably on the heavier side of ESB's, but I really like it. A good beer from a very good brewer.

 557 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
3.34/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a lazy red into my pint glass, with a small white head, no lacing.

S: Malt, caramel malt definitely, sweet toffee, and English-style hops.

T: A mix of caramel malt, and dry earth and grass.

M: Smooth and easy to drink, with nice prickly carbonation at the end.

D: An OK beer, good not great, probably won't buy again, but worth a shot for the ESB fan.

 380 characters

Photo of BeaBeerWife
3.03/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured nicely with a wonderful head, and the smell was a rich sweet wort malty flav, but that's mostly where it ended for me. Titled as an ESB, it reminded me more of a Märzen. The aftertaste was a killer for me, zingy which was awkwardly metallic at first, but ok after drinking it thru the duration.

2007 bottle. You'd think the hop shortages had already started after drinking this one.

 391 characters

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

Pours a slightly clouded ruby brown with a lighter tan head. Nose is hopped and slightly cherry sweet, with a stronger overall sugary tone to it. Flavor is lacking. Seems to be a bit too traditional, but it falls off way too fast. Almost tastes like semi stale pretzels...or just pretzels in general. There is an overall bitter tone to it, but I just think it lacks. Feel is nice with a decent carbonation. Drinkable, yes. Isn't horrid, but it's definitely not the best ESB you've ever had.

 490 characters

Photo of jneiswender
2.84/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured out of a 12 oz brown bottle into a pint glass.

Tan head the quickly dissolves. Brownish red gem color.

Nutty, toasted malt smell. Very little hop smell.

Very strong malt character. Just some hop bitterness thats left on the tongue.

Medium body. Fairly drinkable. Might not be the best ESB (weak on the hops).

 322 characters

Photo of deapokid
3.61/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Resembling an Irish Red upon initial viewing and featuring a frothy head and thick body, Stoudt's ESB was a definite standout in a sampler pack which featured a Helles, Pilsner and American Pale Ale (which was exceptional as well).

Combining the sweetness of cherries with a hearty wiff of alcohol, Scarlet Lady smelled delicious from the word go and tasted just as awesome. Each sip offered up a cinnamon-y flavor (maybe that was just the hops) with an awesome aftertaste that seemed nutty at first but eventually reminded me of the taste of ginger beer. Was nothing short of surprising and stood out among the many ESBs I've tried as superbly flavorful, original and drinkable.

 680 characters

Photo of williamherbert
4.13/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The look is a deep, deep red with a brownish hue. Nice and solid off-white head. Deep and dark. Terrific mahogany color. Looks stout, no pun intended.

Has a really good English bitter smell, with a sharp red/amber overlay. Some minorly bitter hops with a pale malt aroma.

The taste is of a really nice pale ale flavor with tangy English yeast. Nice English bitter flavor with top layer of bitter red malt. The yeast comes out more as it warms up.

Feels a bit bubbly and thick. Leaves a light film. It's really delicious; bitter but sweet and bready. Excellent.

 563 characters

Photo of eberkman
3.88/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice reddish-brown color with a thick, creamy tan head with the whipped consistency of a beer from a nitro can or tap. The smell was mostly caramel malts with some buttery (diacetyl?) undertones -- very English. Ditto for the taste. Very malty up front -- biscuity, buttery caramel flavor -- giving way to a very slight bitterness at the back end. Not disappointed with its mildness -- English ESBs are never really very bitter per se. Medium bodied mouthfeel with flavors that really emerge as it warms. Very sessionable.

One of the more "English" American ESBs I've had. I'd certainly enjoy another.

 602 characters

Photo of weasbri
3.41/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fairly nice color, decent head with good lacing. Just okay on the nose, slightly hoppy with mainly malty undertones. I found it hoppier than some have noticed, especially at first, but the flavors blended as I drank for a decent balance.
Pretty good, especially as it warms up, which is probably appropriate given the English origins of the style.

 348 characters

Photo of MmmIPA
3.22/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Finally got to try this beer fromt Stoudts.Off white small head sits atop of a nice ruby colored body.Grassy hops and malts in the nose.Grassy hops in the nose and sweet malts.Pretty easy carbonation.This is a tasty beer but its not bitter like I thought it would be.Good stuff though.Tasty burps.Caramel tasting malts.Not my favorite beer from Stoudts.

 353 characters

Photo of geexploitation
2.95/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours very dark, with a bit of coffee colors in the middle and red-amber tinges on the outsides of the liquid. No head. The aroma is very malty, with some buttery yeast notes, rye bread and earthy hops. The hops are a background component, though. On the palate, things are malty and one-dimensional, with a touch of slightly metallic hops sitting atop heavy, tea-ish malts. Mouthfeel is a tad flat and unlively. Overall, this is lackluster, with little to recommend it.

 470 characters

Photo of dbatch
3.26/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce glass into my Sammy A glass. I do love using these glasses as much as possible.

A: Pours a nice dark amber color with about an inch of head. Good carbonation flowing in this beer.

S: Very subdued floral notes and a little malt flavor. Not overwhelming, actually kind of underwhelming.

T: Very mild malt flavor, somewhat floral, not especially bitter, but the bitterness is there. There is a little bit of a bitter kick at the end, but not a whole lot.

M: It is creamy and smooth, but again there isnt much to it.

D: Its pretty easy to drink, definitely a session beer because the flavor is not particularly strong.

Overall, I wouldnt turn it down, and I feel as if I've had a better ESB from Stoudt's. On tap is definitely the way to go here.

 783 characters

Photo of Budro
2.68/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

My mother-in-law sent me on a beer run. She was throwing a party for my father-in-law's 60th birthday. "Get something for yourself, too," she said. I admire Stoudt's Fat Dog quite a bit, but it's been months since I've spotted any of their brews in Valdosta. When I saw their label again, I knew what I wanted for myself.

A: A two-finger head the color of cinnamon cream sits atop an amber body with deep red hues and the clarity of glass.

S: The sweet, malty nose is muted, but some distinct aromas emerge, evoking buttery caramel and hints of clove.

T: Disappointing. The bracing bitter front quickly fades, along with most of the flavor. There's a faint taste of spiced fruits underneath; apple notes are dominant. The finish is pleasantly sour, but again, the flavor is faint. There are lots of interesting flavors, but all of them feel watered-down.

M: Despite its creamy appearance, the head feels thin on the palate. The brew itself is thin and watery, especially as it warms. The carbonation barely registers.

D: This beer would go well with spicy food. It's so light that you won't fill up on it, and it's so unobtrusive that it won't interfere with the flavors on the plate.

I won't seek this one out again. I'm happy to have had the opportunity to try another brew from Stoudt's, but I found this one weak. I prefer a bolder ESB.

 1,358 characters

Photo of OWSLEY069
2.83/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours an amber color with an off white head that goes away quickly. Aromas a small sweet malt presence and a small peppery hop. It has a small bitterness, sweet malty, and a bit earthy taste. Very clean aftertaste, just a small sweet malt presence lingers. Easy to drink, kind of hoping for more bitterness, but it is nice.

 323 characters

Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB from Stoudts Brewing Co.
3.6 out of 5 based on 672 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.