Bitch Creek American Brown Ale
Grand Teton Brewing Co.

Bitch Creek American Brown AleBitch Creek American Brown Ale
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Brown Ale - American
Ranked #415
Ranked #31,332
3.76 | pDev: 13.03%
Grand Teton Brewing Co.
Idaho, United States
Very Good
Bitch Creek American Brown AleBitch Creek American Brown Ale
Notes: At Grand Teton Brewing, we are very fortunate to live in one of the greatest places on earth. The beauty, wildlife, mountains, clear water and endless activities found right here in our backyard make for an outdoor playground paradise.

One of these local landmarks is Bitch Creek. Similar to the water used in our brewing process, Bitch Creek is spring fed and flows out of the west side of the Grand Tetons. It’s a popular playground for kayakers and fishermen alike. Bitch Creek American Brown Ale is named for this local landmark. Since 2004, it’s become one of the most award-winning beers in the industry having claimed 15 gold medals at national events.

Bitch Creek perfectly balances big malt sweetness and robust hop flavor for a full bodied, satisfying mahogany ale. Like the stream for which it is named, our Bitch Creek American Brown Ale is full of character... not for the timid.


Malts: Idaho 2-Row malted barley, German Melanoidin, CaraAmber, CaraAroma & CaraMunich
Hops: Galena, Chinook, and Centennial.
Original Gravity (Plato): 15.0°
International Bitterness Units: 60
Alcohol by Volume: 6.0%
Lovibond: 18°

Formerly called "Bitch Creek ESB (Extra Special Brown)"
Reviews: 352 | Ratings: 829 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of sjdevel
sjdevel from Colorado

3.89/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Look - deep brown - nice 1-2 finger head upon pour from the 12 oz. bottle. Nice foam ring after the head receded

Smell - strong hops / pine / citrus - rich caramel and molasses

Taste - strong hop bitterness that gives way for some rich malt sweetness and molasses. Starts to dry out and more hops rush through

Feel - Seemed a bit thinner than a brown should be - carbonation stuck around without totally dissipating

Overall - A good beer - a bit too much hop bitterness. American browns are a bit hoppier than an English brown, but this is more like a lighter / hoppier robust porter. A good beer though, just did not expect it to be as bitter and hoppy as an IPA

Oct 01, 2018
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KTCamm from New Jersey

4.16/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

6/29/18...pours light brown, ring of tan foam. Nutty bready nose, slight sweetness. Smooth nutty brown flavor. Caramels, toffees. Slight bite but holds the sweetness in check. Almost seeps into a coffee flavor.

Sep 02, 2018
Photo of chinchill
chinchill from South Carolina

3.6/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle served in a Belgian snifter.

Pours very dark for style: near opaque black-red-brown body topped by a thin beige colored head. Limited retention with spotty lacing. A bit of sediment on the bottom of the bottle.
Nutty, yeasty and bready aroma with some pine and citrus peel.
Mild bitterness with a somewhat nutty flavor; bold for style, particularly in the malty finish and aftertaste.
Medium body with medium-light carbonation.

Jun 29, 2017
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Spikester from Oregon

4.12/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Clear amber brown with one fat finger of cream color head that lasts at least fifteen minutes. Great amount of lace as the level drops.
Smell is bready malt and herbal hops.
Taste is lightly roasted malt with a nice balance from the herbal hop bitterness.
Mouthfeel is medium with a good carbonation level.
Overall a very nice ESB. I would have this again. Another great find in Twin Falls, Idaho.

Nov 27, 2016
Photo of Foyle
Foyle from North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into pint glass.
A 1" cream colored head falls slowly with plenty of lacing. Color is deep coppery-brown. Aroma of pine, citrus, caramel and rich roasted malt. Flavors of caramel, molasses, toasted bread, ripe fruit, citrus. A very well balanced brew with the hops and malt both making their presence felt. Delicious.

Nov 15, 2016
Photo of stevoj
stevoj from Idaho

3.62/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice sharply bitter ale. Pours medium brown with thick fluffy beige head, lots of sticky lacing. Aroma is pine, peat, malt, hops. Taste comes on even stronger, bitterness at the forefront. Abrupt, chalky finish leaves mouth dry. Perfect imitation of this British style.

Sep 22, 2016
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.2/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A color that runs from dark copper to light brown, 1/3" off white head doesn't hold up for long. Aroma had a tiny amount of sweetness.

Taste got more substantial, kicking down some of that sweetness, a little bit of hops, a good amount of malt heft. Bitterness grew in the mouthfeel. It really isn't a traditional esb, just kind of feels like one of those hodgepodge ales with some brown and red malts, a hopping medley and whatnot.

Aug 22, 2016
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KLHBB from Colorado

3.77/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hard Rock. Pirate. Pours an opaque dark brown with one finger of head. I smell toasted malt, maybe a little coffee. Tastes of burnt toast, a hop kick up front. Lighter feel than you expect, medium carbonation and smooth going down. Good.

Jun 27, 2016
Photo of DoctorZombies
DoctorZombies from Florida

3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Amber pour with off white head; thick cap and moderately heavy lacing; good clarity. Caramel malt nose. Semi sweet caramel malt taste with some lite bitter roast. Medium lite mouthfeel and moderate plus carbonation. Ok lite bitter roast linger.

Jun 22, 2016
Photo of Impetuous
Impetuous from Montana

4.02/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

You know all those South American bands that are are taking as their inspiration 80s deathrash like early Sodom, Sepultura, and Hellhammer? Same thing here. The aesthetic is down pat. You look at this, you know what it is, you know it will be good. The name is just hokey enough to show how tr00 & kvlt they are, the colour presentation is phenomenal. It's the beer equivalent of bullet belts, denim vest covered in patches and the vintage band t shirts. It's like, black dirt mixed with some clay red. Easy to pound.

May 08, 2016
Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
1000lbgrizzly from Illinois

3.55/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Prodigious dense sand-colored head, copper cloudy body, tons of textured lace. Nose has roasted dark malt and bitter chocolate, earthy and floral hops. Flavor begins with these chocolate malts but quickly turns to acidic hops. Rife with bitterness from both the malt and hops. Profile is close to being a Baltic Porter, plus some extra hops acidity/bitterness. Feel is medium bodied and slightly mouth-coating, but every once in a while an island of chewy head breaks off and feels like swallowing a loogie- yuck.
A vision realized, but not one that I understand. Dark malts don't belong with acidic, bitter hops. It was a flavorful experience and well fleshed out, but, again, I'm confused about who would find this appealing.

Apr 27, 2016
Photo of Beginner2
Beginner2 from Illinois

3.6/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Dealing first with the way the beer tastes... this is hoppier than the style.
It also is hoppier than my palate likes.
My frequent comment on American brewers is they ought to focus on blending the malts more. Too many take the easy route to get into the game and throw in enough hops and expect there to be enough Americans to keep them in business.
I suspect this tactic was employed by this brewer.
And that is OK. The ale is a success.
But, I also hope they are learning along the way that malts provide a subtlety and are the core of the art.

Second, nobody choose this name again. I know, it a well-known angler's creek.
But just stay away from the word "bitch."
Women should feel welcome to enjoy beer, too.
And don't forget, they were the ones that brewed it in the household only a few centuries ago.

Feb 24, 2016
Photo of vfgccp
vfgccp from New York

3.3/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Was planning to just give this a tick, but the appearance took me so much by surprise that I figured I'd write a quick review.

A - Stunning. Deep chestnut brown with ruby highlights. Head pours 3 fingers high with geat retention and lace.

S - Not great. Dusty with roast malt and old walnuts. Touch of caramel.

T - Not bad. Deep roast notes with an edge of tangy char. Dry, roasted chestnut and some of that dust from the nose. Caramel, bitter greens and burnt toast finish.

M - Light body. Could use a little more carb.

O - A great looking brown that finishes par for the course.

Dec 12, 2015
Photo of jhavs
jhavs from New Hampshire

3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle received in trade poured into a snifter tasting glass.

A=.Light brown and clear with a thin tan head

S=Roasty malts is the dominant factor, some caramel and a bit of lemon peel and alcohol.

T=Malt, toasted and roasted malt flavors, a little smoky, some sweetness with a bit of alcohol warmth .

M=Moderate level of carbonation with a light to medium body.

O=A very drinkable English brown ale with a nice roasted character, smooth and fairly light bodied.

Aug 04, 2015
Photo of blindtiger24
blindtiger24 from Colorado

3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Thick head, bright white. Dark ruby, maroon color. Cocoa nibs and slight hop pine aroma. Good malt flavor - chocolate, brown sugar. Little bite from hop oils. Clean and smooth finish.

Aug 04, 2015
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum from Canada

3.64/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, procured in the cool environs of the Idaho Pour Authority in Sandpoint. Always saw this when previously visiting the Western states, but never pulled the trigger, til now.

This beer pours a somewhat hazy, dark reddish amber colour, with three fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and somewhat chunky ecru head, which leaves some thick, splattered snow rime lace around the glass as it slowly ebbs away.

It smells of bready, doughy caramel malt, a certain metallic stoniness, a hollow nuttiness, meek earthy, leafy, and piney forest floor hop notes, watery milk chocolate, and a subtle cold steely booziness. The taste is more robust bready and slightly roasted caramel malt, bittersweet cocoa powder, ethereal day-old coffee, a semi-sweet, blended nut butter thing, increasingly edgy pine needle and generic citrus pith bitters, and a still hovering, but not quite yet alit alcohol measure.

The carbonation is quite low-key in its wan frothiness, and hard to really get peeved or excited about, the body a decent middleweight, and mostly smooth, the muddled hop and alcohol astringencies making a minor dent. It finishes off-dry, mostly just sweet in malt, cocoa, nuts, and liquor alike.

Not a shabby brown ale, though I'm not altogether clear on where the Extra Special moniker comes in - is it simply the elevated ABV? Are they for some reason proud of the so-called hoppy character herein? Who knows, but I kind of tired of it towards the end, and well, that ain't special.

Aug 02, 2015
Photo of chicksdiggit
chicksdiggit from Minnesota

4.08/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Poured center from 12 oz bottle into a snifter. Dark copper with two fingers of almost a pale orange color. Thin to moderate sized bubbles in the head with thick sticky lacing. Thick retention. Large cone of slowly rising carbonation coming from the center of the glass.

S: Slightly alcoholic nose with some nail polish, but caramel and lemon as well.

T: Toasted caramel up front with buttered wheat toast. Lemon in the finish.

F: Slightly creamy but still zippy mouthfeel. Citrus bitter bite hangs around after tasting. Easy to drink.

O: Really surprised with how complex this is, and especially being an ESB. I enjoyed this the first time I had it several years ago and its still good today.

Jul 22, 2015
Photo of Libeertarian
Libeertarian from Montana

4.08/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brownish ruby, a little hazy and flecky, a little fine sediment on the bottom. Desert mud colored medium retention fluffy head. Great lacing. Spice, pine, resin, grapefruit hop aromas. About like a Cascade/Black Ale. A bit raisin like, probably from influence of caramel. Chocolate and medium roast coffee flavors incredibly well-balanced with fruity, coniferous hops. Distinct tartness throughout, very vegetal hop finish, though grapefruit still to be found. More chocolate or cocoa in the aftertaste alongside hops. Rind, pine, and black pepper retro-olfaction. Medium- to full-bodied. Not quite creamy feel with medium, fine carbonation — equal parts sudsy and prickly — and tingly mixture of astringency and warmth after each swallow. Crisp. Lightly coats the teeth and tongue. Overall, reminded me equally of a Brown, a Coffee Porter/Stout, an IPA or Cascade or Hoppy Red, and a Scotch.

Jul 03, 2015
Photo of hoptheology
hoptheology from South Dakota

3.22/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Well, it's a cool evening out and I decided to sit out on my front step to do a beer review. Lo and behold the damn mosquitoes are out in full force, even at a cool 60 degrees. So I retreated inside and I guess I'm gonna have to review this bitch (creek) from the man cave.

Appearance : Initially a three finger, receding to a two finger - khaki colored head, leaving elegant swirls of lace behind as it recedes very slowly. The body is Orange Pekoe Tea colored, perhaps with a hint of cranberry, and is 90% opaque even when held to the light.

Aroma : For a brown ale this sure does have a lot of hop action going on in the nose. I smell pine, mixed with sweet milk chocolate, and some cocoa powder and hop leaf. The milk chocolate is more apparent when held further away from the schnoz.

Taste : How do I rank thee? It's got this intense hop profile going on with tons of bitters, yet the chocolate note is on the closer side of divine. The malts are buried somewhere deep there, or perhaps I'm just not noticing them, but if I had to say anything about the malts I'd say they're barley and they're roasted. Unfortunately it's just not doing it for me here.

Feel : Creamy with substantial carbonation underneath, ending slightly cured. The lingering flavors are of pine and over-ripe grapefruit rind.

Overall : I have to sip this to keep from getting overwhelmed or possibly sick. I'm also getting a near instant headache from this brew. I am not really a fan of this marriage of chocolate and hop assault, it is too opposite and they'd do best staying in their own respective camps, not crossing enemy lines to shake hands.

I'll skip this next time and forever.

Jun 11, 2015
Photo of kitch
kitch from Hong Kong

3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A 12oz bottle that was bottled on 22 January 2015 and poured into a pint glass.

A: It poured a dark brownish red colour with a slightly less than one finger creamy brown head that dissipates in less than a minute leaving stringy lacing.
S: Sweet toasted bready malts, caramel and some dark fruits mainly plum and grape.
T: Mainly sweet caramel mixed with some citrus hoppy flavours and a small amount of dark fruits. The aftertaste also gives a small blast of alcohol.
M: Medium bodied with low to medium carbonation.
O: It was quite a nice brown ale. Maybe a tad bit sweet, but I would probably consider buying this again if I craved for some brown ale. Having said that, this is quite honestly probably the only bottle that’s made it to Hong Kong.

Apr 29, 2015
Photo of Gote
Gote from South Carolina

3.82/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I don't know about beechwood or licorice but this beer starts out with a nice aroma. I like porters and stouts and this seems quite similar. Just a little bitterness to it that might make it a bit standoffish but still a very good beer. Definitely not a summer beer but good the rest of the year.

Apr 26, 2015
Photo of hophead723
hophead723 from California

3.91/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've been striving lately to try as many new beers as I can and I have seen this one one the shelves many times so I figured I would give it a go. I love the name Bitch Creek, very intriguing. I poured from a bottle brewed on 2/11/15 into a claret glass.

Look: Pours a very dark brown that reveals itself to be a brilliant clear mahogany with a unique off white head that has a touch of beige to it. The lacing was thick and swirling.

Smell: A touch of brown sugar and roasted malts but with a distinct fruity flavor from the yeast. Sweet as well and the alcohol is subtly present.

Taste: The taste is quite similar to the smell and is roasty malt, fruity yeast, a touch of sweetness and a flourish of alcohol. I also get cavendish, beechwood, and licorice.

Feel: Quite full and medium bodied yet with a nice amount of carbonation. Definitely smooth and pleasantly coating.

Overall: This is a good one that drank quite cleanly and paired well with my hot dog and baked beans. Definitely a good option for a barbecue and certainly high quality. I would recommend this beer, especially if you are not in the mood for hops.

Mar 25, 2015
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REVZEB from Illinois

3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very dark brown with a lighter khaki head, about two fingers. Surprising amount of hops in the smell, with pine, earth tones, burnt toffee and roasted barley. This might end up being a personal preference, but this is way too hop forward to be a highly rated brown ale. Pine, grass, and earth hops are present, with some lingering citrus in with the traditional brown ale flavors that take a back seat. I'm all for experimentation, but not to the point of losing the style completely. Feel is more resinous than hoppy however, has a crispness that can be appreciated.

Mar 25, 2015
Photo of JLaw55
JLaw55 from Missouri

2.5/5  rDev -33.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

There is an odd funkiness to this one. Definitely not something I would outright buy again. Doesn't seem to really fit the style either, oddly hoppy for a brown ale. Watery mouthfeel as well.

Would Drink Again: No
Would Purchase Again: No

Jan 01, 2015
Photo of Darkmagus82
Darkmagus82 from Texas

4.02/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a deep brownish red color with a one finger head of billowy cream colored foam. The head has a fantastic level of retention, slowly fading over time to leave a fantastic level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass and on the surface of the brew.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is heaviest of a lightly toasted malt smell along with some sweeter caramel and molasses smells. Along with these aromas comes some lighter hop smells, with the hop being mainly of an earthy smell, but also containing some lighter herbal smells as well.

Taste – The taste begins with some sweeter caramel and molasses as well as some light toasted malty bready taste. Along with these flavors there is a little bit of a dark fruit flavor and a hint of a more earthy hop taste. As the taste advances the earthiness grows more intense with it being joined by some other flavors of a light grassy hop. With the earth gaining a decent intensity throughout and mixing rather nicely with the sweet and roast, one is left with a lightly dank bittered but sweeter taste to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the slightly thicker and creamier side with a carbonation level that is on the lower side. For the sweet and dankly bittered taste of the brew, the feel is really quite nice as it accentuates them nicely. Not only that, but it gives a more cask like feel to the brew, which, at least in my opinion, is the best way to enjoy an ESB.

Overall – A nice and quite enjoyable ESB with a good blend of dank earthy hop, sweet, and toasted tastes. A nice drinker overall.

Dec 21, 2014
Bitch Creek American Brown Ale from Grand Teton Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 829 ratings