Arcadia Thunder Trail | Arcadia Brewing Company

122 Ratings
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Arcadia Thunder TrailArcadia Thunder Trail

Brewed by:
Arcadia Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Formerly called Arcadia Lake Superior ESB.

Thunder Trail stays true to our English brewing heritage. With a strong backbone of Maris Otter and Crystal malts, this Extra Special Bitter is balanced by earthy, spicy, English hops Our Ringwood yeast strain imparts a distinctly fruity character that is accented by dry-hopping with a modest amount of palisade hops. We hope you enjoy this quality session ale - wherever the trail may take you.

Added by StoutHunter on 04-19-2013

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 122 |  Reviews: 26
Photo of coffeegsp
4.65/5  rDev +32.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appley (tart), hops with nice bitter aftertaste. Sweet, carbonated and full. Surprisingly rich in the beginning, weak hops at the end.

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Photo of BierStein711
4.63/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottle poured into shaker pint.

Dark brownish amber body, with standard off-white head, moderate carbonation.

The mouthfeel is perfect, you are drinking a beer here.

Smells of minerals and dark fruit.

Taste: raisins, chalk, and a mineral finish. This is a blanced ESB!!

Overall, this is an American version of a classic English beer style. I'd buy a sixer. Perfect drink for a colder winter day.

 400 characters

Photo of Surfacetension
4.35/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BBlov
4.25/5  rDev +21.4%

Photo of Billet
4.05/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This beer poured into a globe glass with a nice thick and foamy light tan head. It settled to a very nice reddish amber color with a thin tan head. The smell is grassy with lightly toasted malts. The taste is nice, it tasted like a cross between a pale ale and an amber ale. The malts come through first with a lightly toasted flavor. The finish is malty with a very slight hop bitterness. It is medium bodied as it should be. A very well done ESB.

 448 characters

Photo of Mark88
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Photo of Gemini6
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Photo of salinasa
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Photo of mrfrancis
3.96/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A gentle pour reveals a murky brownish amber liquid with a thick, imposing, pillowy off-white head that takes forever to settle.

S: Aromas of chalk, talc, herbs, black pepper, leather, tobacco, caramel, biscuit, and crackers are present on the nose.

T: Notes of bitter orange, lemon, lime, herbs, minerals, crackers, biscuits, tobacco, black pepper, leather, grass, brown butter, chalk, caramel, almond nougat, and toffee swirl across the palate. The finish is gentle and longer than expected with a nice blend of malt and hop flavors. Notes of pepper, mild citrus, tobacco, leather, caramel, toffee, and nougat linger in the mouth as the beer goes down the throat.

M: Medium in body and mildly resinous. Carbonation is airy, active, and a bit more delicate than I would typically expect of this kind of ale. Super easy to drink, but not even remotely close to being a session beer.

O: I am pleasantly surprised by this ale. Arcadia seems to do British and Irish ales quite well and this ESB ticks all of the boxes for me. I am a bit surprised that I ended up liking this beer as much as I do because I am quite familiar with this style (it being one of my favorites), and in my opinion, many American craft brewers do not do it justice. Arcadia, however, is a welcome exception. Definitely check this one out if you are a fan of British ales and are tired of the seemingly never changing imports.

 1,404 characters

Photo of SBrouse90
3.94/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a very good beer.

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Photo of plunderspunk
3.94/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased this after having read the packaging...not sure about ESB's, but wanted to try it. I was immediately surprised at the nice color and staying power of the froth. A little bit scotchy in front with some fruitiness, and a nice , slightly hoppy aftertaste, with no bitterness, in spite of the style. A nice brew for lunch time, and if you're wanting to be productive after, it's 6% ABV rating allows you to. Or have a second, and take a nice nap (: My wife even liked it, and she usually dislikes heavier, sweeter beers. With brews like this, Arcadia is fast becoming my go-to place for great ale!

 603 characters

Photo of JDoHo
3.81/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75


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Photo of WestwardHo
3.8/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Photo of outdoor7or24
3.8/5  rDev +8.6%

Photo of Dustin_A_Stoutdrinker
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a perfect pint.

3.75 A: Lightly hazed dark orange color. Two fingers of frothy off-white head. Retention is about average or a touch better and a short ring of lacing is left.

3.75 S: Toasty, grainy malts to start things off. Plentiful caramel with hints of toffee. Just a faint touch of yeastiness. Simple, yet so very pleasant.

3.75 T: Taste mirrors the nose. Toastiness is the foremost flavor. Graininess, a few layers of caramel, and toffee follow. Again just a touch of bready yeastiness.

3.75 M: Medium body. Mild chewiness from the yeast. Good creaminess. Solid here.

3.75 D: A well rounded beer for sure. Not a ton of complexity, but the flavors are in perfect proportion.

 697 characters

Photo of MacStinson
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of TastyAdventure
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice malty, biscuit flavor. Slight cider taste in back. For some reason bottle was nearly a gusher, producing giant head. A bit dry and slightly bitter harsh finish

 164 characters

Photo of gulogulo
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of ryanpj
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of BrewLip6
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of WesMantooth
3.73/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the brew pub. A beautiful copper pour with a large light beige foamy head.

Really nice, clean toasted malts with a touch of caramel sweetness. A slight hop bitterness. The fruit notes may be lacking a tad, but this beer is pretty much on point. Very drinkable.

 273 characters

Photo of Walnut
3.73/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Sour in a way that is not appropriate for the style, and a thin body. Not recommended, unless you can get it for $5 a six pack (like I did).

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Photo of breakingbland
3.71/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Poured from the bottle with only a slight head that settled into a ring of foam. The beer itself is a clear golden red.

Aroma: Roasty and sweet with a hint of hay/grass.

Taste: The taste follows the aroma with the addition of slight sourness. There is a suggestion of burnt toast. The hops presence is slight and accentuates as the beer lingers. The flavor profile has some interesting components that I can't fully identify.

Mouthfeel: Medium to medium-light body. The carbonation seemed a little light.

Overall: This is a very enjoyable beer having a nice malt/hops balance. It is a good example of this style.

 628 characters

Photo of afinepilsner
3.69/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

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Arcadia Thunder Trail from Arcadia Brewing Company
3.5 out of 5 based on 122 ratings.
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