Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB | Stoudts Brewing Co.

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Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESBStoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB
673 Ratings
Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESBStoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB

Brewed by:
Stoudts Brewing Co.
Pennsylvania, United States

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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 673 |  Reviews: 373
Photo of Schwarzbart
3.28/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Dark reddish brown amber color.

Smell: Not as much nose as I expected, but it was nutty and a little fruity.

Taste: Surprising amount of taste after not detecting much in the nose, but it is a little watery and maybe that could be contributing to the weak nose. Caramel malts, earthy mild hops, grains and nuts. Flavors are balanced, but mild and not as much hop flavor as I expected.

Mouthfeel: Quite smooth.

Drinkability: Decent.

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Photo of Zorro
3/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

In the glass this is a clear red ale with an OK tan head, nothing at all special.

Smell is sweet with a lot of toasted grain aroma. Fruity and herbal scents I would normally expect from an ESB are missing.

Taste is sweet and toasted grains at the start. After a bit the hop bitterness appears. No real fruitiness here just a rather basic pale ale.

Mouthfeel is average.

A completely forgettable beer. This is a shame Stoudts makes many great beers but this isn't one of them.

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Photo of bobljr
3.83/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is the first E.S.B. I have ever tried, and I'm sure to have more.

A- At first glace it looks very appetizing with a warm amber color and a nice off white head that did fade a bit quick.

S- Very faint smell. However has a slight hopiness to it with overtones of spices.

T- Loved it! Mild hops with a bitter finish. Which is the way it's supposed to taste. Definetly reached for another one.

M- Refreshing yet warm at the same time.

D- I was surprised when my glass was empty. Goes down very easily and leaves you wanting more.

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Photo of JohnnyM2002
3.55/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a red wine glass at 45 degrees.

I was under the impression that this was a red ale - both before and after I drank one. Pours a reddish-brown with a small head. Smells of sweet malt and spice with herbal accents. Tastes sweet and of spice; a little heavy going down but it still finished very crisp. A very drinkable ESB...I'm a little torn on how to review it, though. If reviewing as an ESB, I wouldn't score it very high as the bitterness just isn't there. But if I never read the label, and assumed it was a red ale, I'd score it appropriately. So I decided to review it based purely on it's characteristics and not it's style (whew! hope that makes sense). So in summary, a rather enjoyable offering from the folks in Adamstown!

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Photo of GrandpaGeorg
4.2/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've hear others say that, as ESBs go, this one isn't as hoppy. I'm not a hops fanatic, though I love a nice hop flavor. This one delivers. Stoudt's makes some great beers, but this one is unique in their lineup--at least among those commony found. Nice red/amber color with decent head of foam; hops in the nose, but the taste is at first malt--flavorful, carmel malt--and then the hops hits you. Like a mild chili sauce that keeps delivering a punch, the hops stays with you for awhile. But it's definitely not overpowering and very drinkable. Very good.

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Photo of hopsaplenty
3.56/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz brown bottle, best before 9/13/06.

Crystal clear deep copper. Thick, dense head of off white foam that dimples profusely while settling to a thick cap with a tall, popped collar. Bands of sticky lacing rim the glass with sheets clinging as the glass is emptied. Fine lines of snaking carbonation. Aromas of caramel maltiness and spicy hops that are a touch with a bit of fruit fill the nose. A brief spicy hop flavor leads into an ample malt body before reverting back to a slightly fruity/spicy lemony hop bite. The finish is short and only moderately crisp with a light edge that is also a bit drying. Medium-light body with fine carbonation and a non-offensive mouthfeel. Overall this was decent, but did not stand out and I’d be willing to give it another try on draft.

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Photo of Toddv29424
3.45/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish copper color with a long-lasting moderate head. Smell is faint, but has notes of sweet malts. I'm not able to tease any other taste out of this brew. Taste is a lot like honey, with an all-encompassing mouthfeel of sweetness. A touch of brown sugar as well. There is a strange other taste about 3/4 of the way through that makes it a bit sour, almost like there was something wrong with the yeast, or it was contaminated. In addition to this there seems to be a lack of diversity in the beer. However it goes down easy, and thats always a good thing.

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Photo of mobyfann
3.62/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Paid $1.19 for a single in Washington, PA...

This beer pours a clear amber-brown base with a medium head, minimal retention and no lacing on the side of the glass. The aroma is a bit faint of sweet malts.

The taste reminds me of a lighter version of the German doppelbock. Sweet and a touch of toasty malt flavor. Very smooth, medium-bodied beer and maybe a bit too sweet for a session.

Final Thought: I like it but it is nothing special. Brewed from one of the greatest breweries in the country but I can't label this as an ESB, more like a "doppelbock light". I'll have a GL Moondog Ale instead...

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Photo of MuddyFeet
3.18/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap at the Kinsale in Boston with my lunch.

Is this really an ESB? Comes across much more as a red ale. Poured a reddish-orange hue in color. Decent head that never quite disappeared. Nose was very malty and slightly "green" like clover.

Flavor is very malty and sweet. Nice biscuit tones hold this beer together very well. slight hop bitterness at the very end but not quie like most other ESBs I have tasted. Full body and a bit sticky actually. A nice beer on a hot summer day.

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Photo of AltBock
3.38/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle with a slightly different picture than the one pictured on BA. Mine has an all red label with an even more beautiful lady on it. This lady has plenty of bright red flowing hair with ruby red lips and giving this sultry look. She also has a red lotis flower and a string of hops attached to her hair while she's playing with her hair in one hand while the other one is holding a gold and green horn with some bubbly beer foaming out of it. Below her is a black and white picture of Stoudt's brewery. I couldn't find a date or batch # anywhere, but this is the new label so it has to be recent. I picked this up on a recent trip to PA.

Appearance: When poured into a mug, the beer was a nice reddish-copper color with a 1 finger head of white foam. It had good retention and left some rings and very little white lace around the mug. The beer wasn't the color the beautiful lady's hair on the label, but it was pretty close.

Smell: The aroma was very subtle in caramel, toasted malt, and a hint of floral hops in the background. It had a good aroma but it was just too subtle for me.

Taste: Like the aroma, the flavors in this beer were very subtle. It had some toasted malts and a hint of caramel in the beginning and then comes this splash of subtle spicy hop bitterness at the very end. Very simple and basic taste.

Mouthfeel: I didn't care for the mouthfeel. It was very light, somewhat watery and bland and with a slight aftertaste of bitter hops. Other than the slight aftertaste of hops, it was very boring and dull.

Drinkability: It was very simple, easily drinkable, could make a session beer, but there really wasn't much going on in here. I don't think I would ever want another one of these.

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Photo of Jredner
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is malty, but ever so slightly toasty..warm smelling really whcih gives it a baked bread smell. Some herbal accented hops (I assume it is hops) are also present. Body is a rich amber and holds a thumb thick tan head that is mostly lasting. Sweet but subtle malt is even in intenisty from start to finish. Light hops ride atop and balance the malt nicely. It’s kind of plain, but in a nice, easy drinking way that I find enjoyable. The ever so slightly toasted bread/biscuit notes are just damn comforting.

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Photo of ViveLaChouffe
3.62/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep clear amber with a thin tan head. No lacing to speak of. Smells of biscuity malt, herbal hops and some faint caramel aromas.

A stab at a traditional English style ESB. Tea-like herbal hops. Small hop bite. Fruity and biscuity malt. Medium bodied. Hoppy finish and aftertaste. Hops linger on a low level. Good stuff. Tasty and easy to drink. Nice session beer.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
3.25/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle purchased for $1.49 at Hollingshead Deli in May 2006, tated in June 2006.

Pours a very reddish amber that made me think it was a red ale, not an ESB. I had to double check the bottle once I saw it listed as ESB here. Good looking for a Red Ale, surprising profile for an ESB. Nice looking off-white head of tiny bubbles fed by lazy carbonation.

Aroma is sweet- malty that is mostly caramel and somewhat bready.

Flavor is malty, with minimal bitter (it's an ESB, it needs bitter!). Not as sweet as the aroma, in fact it's almost (but not quite) dry. Metallic notes when it's cold, decreases as it warms. Kind of one-note in its simplicity.

Moderately creamy mouthfeel keeps this interesting to drink. Not a bad beer, easy drinker, but not a lot of wow factor.

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Photo of granger10
3.5/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle #2 of my ESB day. Pours a lighter red color with copper in the middle. Quite hazy, head is minimal and lacing is a bit weak.

Kind of a sweet aroma with caramel and honey but the herbal bitterness dries it out. It's nice but unfortunately there's a slight metallic or mineral or something off in here which holds the aroma from being any better.

Flavor is malt dominated. The malt profile however is quite bland with simple caramel notes being all I get. Hops lie underneath but never really expose themselves. The yeast seems to be most dominate with a bready body and maybe some spice notes.

Fairly smooth but not too exciting. It's not too bad in the end but not what I'd expect from a good ESB. More hops, better malt profile, and maybe a bit more carbonation.

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Photo of NiceGuyMike
4.1/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: Dark amber with a bit less than a finger of head. Just a bit of lacing; almost not worth mentioning.
s: On first pour I pick up on some fruity esters. That fades and leaves some toasted malts and dare I say
t: Finishes with some bitterness on the back of the tongue.
m: medium body with a good amount of fizz.
d: I'm liking this, a good session brew.

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Photo of veggiemafia
3.9/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Well done beer, but nothing too special. Great for what it is.

Reddish brown with a small white head that quickly fades.

Smell is of caramel and pale malts with a backbone of hops that keep it from being very sweet and lacking in crispness.

Taste is slightly fruity with the malt but very clean. Very well balanced and well hopped. East Kent Goldings? Tastes that way to me. Kind of a grainy, very faintly berry-like taste in the finish.

Mouthfeel is a little slick, a little watery, but not bad.

This is very easy to drink, great for a hot day, just not the most complex thing in the world, even for the style.

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Photo of IntriqKen
3.4/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Clear deep amber color with a small head after an agressive pour. Head melts quickly leaving behind very little lacing.
Aromas are faint red malt and floral hops.
Taste is initiallly sweet malt then pleasant citrus hop bitterness.
Mouthfeel is thick with carbonation, yet somehow quickly watery as you swallow.
Aftertaste seems to alternate between the malt sweetness and the hop bitterness with neither staying long enough to savor. They seem to fight without ever reaching a balance.
A nice ESB...nice and quenching but nothing great...easily forgotten.

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Photo of Phatz
3.16/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is a very easy drinking beer with little "Extra Special" about it.

Appearance: This beer pours an attractive scarlet/copper color with a decent off white head that leave a frothy cap after it fades. Medium lacing.

Smell: Very reserved caramel malt base. the hop character seems to be well muted.

Taste: This is a worthy stab at the style but quite average IMO. The sweet malt character is pleasant. It is a bit of toasted malts and caramel. It has a sharp sweet feel and need maybe a bigger hop balance. There is a subtle bitterness that comes in to play, but even the aftertaste which becomes dry has remnants of caramel lingering around.

Mouthfeel: Medium body. Decent amount of carbonation but the fell was quite malty and almost sticky.

Drinkability: I found this to be a very easy beer to put back but just as easy to forget about. Tasty and worth sampling but it had little fireworks of glamour to me.

Hope this is helpful.

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3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hats off to Stoudt's -- there is a bold freshness date on the neck of the bottle.

A - Huge 2" off-white head on top of a clear amber (scarlet!!) beer. Head has good retention and leaves a nice spiderweb of lace.

S - Rich and malty. Buttery caramel. Faint metallic aroma.

T - Malty. Prominent chocolate or caramel malt (?). Sweet. Mild nutty flavor. Faint bitterness in the finish.

M - Medium body. Low carbonation. Slight sweetness in the finish.

D - Good drinkability. Well made beer. In a blind taste, I don't know that I could pick this one out as an ESB. It shares alot of qualities of an amber ale.

Thanks to Maltygoodness for another fine PA brew!

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Photo of treehugger02010
3.79/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I thought this beer had an awsome look. I was very drinkable, but not unbeleivable. I really enjoyed this beer and would recomend it as a not so intense darker beer. It didn't really pack a punch, but I did enjoy drinking it. Then again I did have it with some rather strongly flavered food, that might have had an impact. Make your own choice.

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Photo of DogFood11
3.56/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a shiney copper, very clear body under a pretty fizzy weak head that fades and leaves occasional evidence behind.

Hops are present in the nose but tend to wafe around and don't stick in the taste too much. Sweetness is on the candy side of things. Roasted malts are ever present, little bit of acidity seems to come with the charred/roasted effect. Overall Pretty smooth mouthfeel and easily consumed without much effort. Bitter in the finish is welcomed and well put together.

Another solid offering, pretty average in the style, well balanced leaning towards bitter in the end. I'm in.

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Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.78/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle

Pours a copper color with some red hues. Has a small creamy white head that thins. Nice lacing on the glass.

Light aroma of caramel malts and a nice light floral hop scent.

Slightly sweet and malty upfront with a nicely balanced bitterness. A light hop taste is present at the end. Finishes clean. Refreshing.

Body is a little on the thin side. Average.

This is an easy drinking beer. I have gone back to this one many times over the years.

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Photo of DaggerEyes
2.73/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured out of a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Bottle was stamped with a "Best Before 7/8/06" marking.

Scarlet Lady lived up to her name and poured a scarlet hue with sublte accents of ruby. A thin head rose to the surface but quickly disappated.

Some what hoppy on the nose with some sweet malty undertones and subtle scents of rasberries.

Some what sweet on the tounge with a bit of a bitter after taste, the taste is a bit muted and monochromatic, but the rasberry characterisitcs present in the aroma cary through to the taste.

A bit thin at first, but bubbles up in your mouth and becomes a bit chewier.

Nothing really to write home about, after sampling this beer again I can say I'll probobly never drink it again...

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Photo of crwills
3.46/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pretty decent session beer.

Pours a deep red, almost brown, with a small head that fades to a bubble-cover after a minute or so. Smell is oddly yeasty with a bit of hops. Taste is mild, but not bad. Some citrusy and piney hops, which is a bit odd for the style, but OK. Smooth mouthfeel, but a dull bitter aftertaste that detracts a bit.

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Photo of tempest
3.03/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Clark's Ale House

Nice dark orange and amber body with a creamy white head and decent retention. Looks great, but smell and taste are too light. Sweet ringwood aroma with a little hops, but faint. Similar taste is nice but very light. Its hard to pick out the hops at all. Mouthfeel is watery, but it is fairly drinkable.

Does Clark's just have an old keg here? What gives?

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Stoudt's Scarlet Lady ESB from Stoudts Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.61 out of 5 with 673 ratings