Arcadia Lake Superior ESB | Arcadia Brewing Company

Arcadia Lake Superior ESBArcadia Lake Superior ESB
Liked This Beer
3.49 w/ 64 ratings
Arcadia Lake Superior ESBArcadia Lake Superior ESB

Brewed by:
Arcadia Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Name was changed to Thunder Trail ESB ~2012, though the recipe is the same.

Added by Wildman on 10-03-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 64 |  Reviews: 60
Photo of orbitalr0x
3.41/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep opaque amber orange with a nice creamy white head. Sweet pale malty nose with hints of caramel and nuts. A spicy, herbal hoppiness....a bit grassy. Fairly subdued overall...doesn't excite me much.

First sip flows with a mix of pale maltiness...the roasted barley comes out in the middle along with a smattering of caramel. A spicy, herbal hop brings a nice wave of bitterness on the way down with a light fruitiness. A bit dry with a lingering graininess and bitterness. Not bad.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a nice healthy bubbly factor. An easy drinking brew that is fairly uncomplicated. also lacks the qualities that intice me to come back for more.

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Photo of profzoom
4.15/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Lake Superior ESB pours a cloudy dark amber with a hint of head. The smell is both sweet and bitter. The most striking thing about it is its smoothness. It enters your mouth like water, spreading its wonderful bitterness. All in all, a very enjoyable brew.

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Photo of kmpitz2
3.43/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Served at cellar temperature, as I don't want to drink anything from the fridge right now. I have had bocks and other malty treats all night and I want a little hop in my diet. The beer pours a deep copper to amber color with a finger of head that has a pretty good staying power. The nose is really nice. The hop is peppery and spicey, slightly sweet over top of a caramel malt base. I think it smells really nice. The flavor is interesting. There has this slight chemically flavor to it that really puts me off. The maly is orangey sweet and the hop just comes across as bitter to me. I can't say I like the flavor. The feel is moderate to thick wiith a nice tight carbonation. I think the flavor really ruins this one. I just don't like that flavor.

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3.39/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thickinsh looking light amber in color, creamy wisp of head. I cannot smell the beer.

This ESB is quite herbal tasting from beginning to finish. Aside from this central characteristic, it varies from start to finish. Early there is a grassy hop characteristic to accompany this. At the end there is a fizz that comes from nowhere in the swallow, and gives off the impression of Klarbrunn. Which i like, in a way. But this light herb juice thing, although a decent quaffer for me...this is an ESB, correct? I"m enjoying this, but thinking about a saison-like beverage.

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Photo of mntlover
3.23/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear medium amber color with a small tan head that doesn't last leaves some spotty lace.
Aroma is not great some malt lightly toasted, toffee mixed with herbal hops light skunkyness almost but not quite.
Taste is like the smell lightly toasted malt some caramel and toffee flavors mix with medicine like herbal hops that leaves a less then desirable medicine aftertaste. No real bitterness to be felt here just mediocre beer that is better then swill but not much else going for it.
Mouthfeel is light side of medium the carbonation adds the only zest in this brew.
Drinkability is better then swill but wouldn't recommend this one or desire to have it again not a good example of this style. Thanks to merlin48 for the sample.

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Photo of merlin48
3.17/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a hazed copper body with a small head that vanishes in seconds. Minimal patch lace. Aroma is buttery toffee with a hint of floral hops. Light to medium light body with high carbonation. Taste has a bready malt feel and some funky yeast. Minimal floral hops bitterness. Taste has a ringwood yeast note, for sure. Not very impressive.

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Photo of maxpower
3/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hazy copper-orange with a smal off white foamy head that doesn't last long, not much lacing either. Bready, buttery aromas, has butterscotch and bread flavors, it is medium bodied with a smooth and slick mouthfeel, finishes a bit sour, not all that great, where is the bitterness?

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Photo of redmosquito
3.68/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A clear amber brown, served with a nice white head that left lace all along the glass. Aroma is of malt and yeast with a mild floral hop in the background. Flavor is toffee malt with significant bitterness and toasted yeast. There is some body here and definate carbonation. This is a good example of the style

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Photo of ken3c
3.88/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thick head with huge bubbles. Hazy Reddish brown. The big bubbles stay around in full layer and stick to the glass creating beautiful patterns.

There is an aroma of bread but also of spicy hops.

Taste is quite sweet with a noticable taste of butterscotch. The finish is only slightly bitter but it lasts a while.

Medium body and low carbonation.

I know it doesn't taste bitter enough, but I like it.

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Photo of gentlebubbles
4.27/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

barely visible best-by notch on Jan. No year. Bit of sediment at the bottom. Bottle-conditioned? or merely unfiltered?

Brilliantly clear caramel with an enthusiastic fluffy white head rushing to the top of the glass during the pour, throwing off billows of sweet floral hops. The head spends itself quickly, sighing down to a light froth skimming the surface with trails of lace on the glass.

Strong bitterness embraces toasty caramel malt with lingering resin and yet more mouth-coating tingly spice. Very yum.

Mellow mouthfeel. Easy to drink. More kind like this one, please!

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Photo of soper2000
3.4/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A new tap offering at Chumley's. What kind of BA would I be if I didn't try it? Plus I could use something a tad milder after a bottle of fresh 90 minute IIPA. After a nice looking pour from my favorite barkeep, this beer arrives in front of me with a perfect 2 finger creamy off-white head guarding a copper/orange body. Smell is faint. It's hard to recognize precise aromas, but some nice malty bread scents are present. First taste reassures my nose as there is a huge bread crust taste to this brew. The bread crust eventually fades into some soft toasted malt/nutty notes with just a tad bit of hop bitterness. Not a bad ESB at all in my opinion but it's just not my style. Not a bad choice to cool down from an intense IIPA though!

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Photo of cokes
3.46/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Murky orange caramel with a clinging bone foam.
Nose of rubber and iron and oranges.
Begins with a full bready malt canvas. English muffins, dry and toasty. Glimmers of toffee sweetness. Buttery, and Ringwoodesque. Thus far, it is fairly archetypal of style. The middle, though, sees this become disjointed. Coriander? Orange peel? Acetic Acid? Green apples and pepper. This is some funky ass yeast. Then it ends, again, per style guideline and full of rusted iron bitterness and dessicated herbs. There is a bit of noticed alcohol fume on the finish. Lingering sour fruits.
Medium hewn, low carbonation.
Decent. Wrong-seeming. Weird.

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Photo of trumick
3.78/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber clear nice head that sticks around for a bit.
Smell is of carmel malts, and floral hops small amount of citrus.
Taste is a bit sweet for a bitter but nice. Sweet carmel malts that finishes with citrus hops slight yeast flavor.
Mouthfeel is medium to light bodied nice carbination.
Drinkability is high. This is a beer I will buy regularly.

I like this beer, although it is a bit sweet for the style it is still nice.

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Photo of Ahhdball
3.08/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Small white colored head tops a faded orange body that illuminates decently in the bar light.
SMelled small amounts of yeast, floral scents and lemon zest.
Tasted too smooth to be an ESB to flat for a pale and showed no signs of standing up for its style. Small amounts of honey with a little lemon and slight hints of malt and hops tried to show but nothing to write home about (so I wrote here).
Mouthfeel was abnormaly average and didn't impress. Overall i would have this again but I won't aske for it.

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Photo of sabrills70
3.35/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Color is a medium brown with lots of haze. Poured with a fairly large beige head and left good lace. Smell of slight caramel with citrus overtones. Taste is similar to smell but add the nice hop bitterness, not too much, in my opinion its just about right ( I'm not much of a hop head). Good drinkability. Not a summer lawnmower beer though. This would be good on a cold winters night, just to sit and sip. Not a great beer, but slightly better than average for the style - worth buying a sixer to keep around.

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Photo of jayb
3.3/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured out a hazy brown color. very much resembeled iced tea in its coloring. There was also plenty of yeast sediment floating around inside the glass. The head came out to be an off-white color, midly thick, but settled down quickly. low to moderate lacing. a faint smell of citrusy hops, lemon pledge? maybe its the combo of citrus and a faint hint of alcohol, Not a bad smell however. Taste corresponded with the smell, citrusy and bitter, minus the pledge though. toward the end there came a slight roasted character. Mouthfeel was light to medium, but possibly on the verge of creamy. A rather dry beer. A fine beer, but not something ill stock up on. Give it a try. good stuff.

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Photo of tavernjef
2.91/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cloudy peach-light copper color with golden hazy edges, firm finger high head of off-whiteness, good lacing in sheets and fine spotting. Aroma is of highly sour dough sweetness, nearly lambic-like with some barnyard funk which calms down after it warms a bit where it becomes more soft and toasty but that sourness of old white grapes and pale and stale orange skins keeps its presence felt. Way off in the nose. Taste is unique and pehaps not quite fitting what I would think of an ESB. Soft grains, bread crusts, floral hops, toasty middle lingering partially into the finish where it drys out with some smokey malts and corn flakes. A bit of the souring quality from the smell leaks through in certain areas which kept this from being any better on my palate. Feel is just shy of a medium body, overly sweetening with that grasp of sourness that just wasn't doing it for me. Texture was a bit weird to match flavors with as it was lambic/saison-like. Not nearly an ESB as it seemed like some blended version of a saison and a bitter.

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Photo of TheOtherMike
3.94/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I bought a six in South-Western MI and then drove about 5 hours. The beer was in the camper fridge and got fairly agitated. I only let it sit for about 2 hours before sampling. I think the taste, smell, and appearance were affected by the sediment being thoroughly dissolved in the beer, but it was still good. I may need to re-review in a few days.

Appearance - hazy, hazy, hazy. Plenty of sediment to be left in the bottle. Moderate head that dissipated fairly quickly although lacing persisted to the end. Color is orangy-gold.

Smell - appealing. Obvious fruity aroma.

Taste - a good IPA taste. Well balanced.

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Photo of nortmand
3.76/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Typically deep amber hue with an orange-white head. Nicely presented in 25 oz. mug.
Not much to the smell, not good or bad, just average. Mostly just a hint of malt aroma.
Definitely malty sweet flavor, with a mild hop-bitterness on the back of the tongue and hints of yeastiness somewhere in there.
Smooth, light mouthfeel, definitely produced for mass consumption, although I would prefer a little more hop presence.
Nicel done overall, try it on tap if you get the chance.

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Photo of GeoffRizzo
3.65/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hazy orangish-copper hue, thin amounts of sediment move throughout the glass, thin light tan head also noticeable. A delicate aroma, malts, hops, some fresh fruit also detected. Distinctive fuggle hops immediately on the tongue, label also states tettnang and Mt. Hood hops, lets not go overboard though. A quick blast of fresh fruit, in the way of grapefruit is welcomed, mild bitterness as expected. Thick and creamy malt based body, very well balanced, rather generous in the hops department. Becomes somewhat thin and faded towards the finish, leaving this ESB just above average.

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Photo of rdailey76
3.48/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer pours a really nice red to amber color, with a very minimal head. The smell is not overwhelming at all, probably just average. Can definitely pick out the the aromatic hops. Nice little hit of bitterness with hints of citrus? I could be wrong, but I get that taste. Not at all fond of the aftertaste. It just kind of lingers and begs you to take another sip to get it out of your mouth. Could probably have 3 or so with wanting to switch to something with a different style. Will try again, because the local beer shack where I picked this up at has had it sitting on the shelf for a while. Best if drank by February on the bottle and it is the beginning of April.

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Photo of cerevisiaephilus
4.08/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this at the big red beer fest after a nice discussion about it with the 'pourer' I think he was a brewer, at least he knew a lot about it. He said made with all Maris Otter and the Ringwood yeast. It definately had the distinctive ringwood buttery nose. Not super appealing. But the flavor was really nice. While there was some butteryness, there were a bunch of nice really fruity flavors, really nice pear, that made this beer not only authentic but nice and complex and tasty. A beer where a little diacetyl is quite nice.

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Photo of proc
3.85/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The more I drink the ESB style, the more I like it. This one is a very nice offering from Arcadia Brewing from Battle Creek, Michigan. Proof positive that Battle Creek can be known for more than Kellogg's Corn Flakes. Hmm, maybe a little of this Lake Superior ESB on Corn Flakes...but I digress. This one pours out to a copperish-brown in the glass with a decent-sized head. The aroma is is that of malt and bread dough. The taste is very good, with the afforementioned malt, really shinining through to a finish that is easy on the palate with just a light dose of hops.

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Photo of Sixpack595
3.28/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Copper colored with a thin, long lasting head. The roasty, malty aroma is nice. Flavor is bready and malty but there is an unpleasant metallic after taste. Creamy mouthfeel. Overall a fair brew. Not impressed with the taste, but if not for the aftertaste I could drink quite a bit of it.

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Photo of putnam
3.85/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Citrus funk to the nose.
Piles of board-like chalky, iron-dust hoppiness that parts occasionally to reveal tea ... black tea, steeped for hours with brown sugar. Very bitter and scraping tannins cleanse the finish of the artifice. I am thankful. Where's my Speckled Hen?

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Arcadia Lake Superior ESB from Arcadia Brewing Company
Beer rating: 35.9% out of 100 with 64 ratings
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