Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter) | Wells & Young's Ltd

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Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter)Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter)
Very Good
920 Ratings
Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter)Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter)

Brewed by:
Wells & Young's Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Export version

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 920 |  Reviews: 441
Reviews by kkipple:
Photo of kkipple
4.13/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What's this? An English ESB, from England, in a can? Heavens rejoice! Grabbed on from Bruisin' Ales for a measly $2.25 for a 440ml / 14.9 ounce can. I've had this before (mostly on draft at the Brick Store, where it is a fixture) and have always enjoyed it. Let's see how the can treatment goes.

A. Basically, Bombardier is the bitter you've always wanted. This is a gorgeous clear chestnut-rust colored beer with a huge, dirty white head that majestically settles down to cover the surface. Yes, George, there is lace.

S. Easy malt (Maris Otter?) and light sweetness along with a stuffy, dry, toasty note that inspires. Some hops are here but reserved. There is also a sharp, almost cheesy, thing going on that I suspect is also hop-related. I like it. It all works wonderfully and is highly characterful.

T. Everything else follows - easy drinkability, some fine fruity, starchy esters, a wonderful and demonstrably "across the pond" malt bill that accents gently sweet and toasted malts. Add to this some hedgerow noble hops, a distinctly Earl Grey tea flavor and a wonderfully smooth and enjoyable mouthfeel and you have one of the best ESBs I've had. The can reads: "brewed with natural mineral water", and I think you can get some of that character here, still.

M / O. If you asked me if I wanted an English Bitter on any normal day, I might say okay, but if you asked me anytime if I wanted a Well's Bombardier, I would always say YES.

As an aside, I think the can is the correct delivery method for this beer. It's cheaper than the bottle and has a freshness date! (mine says 01/28/12). All hail Bombardier!

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More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice ruby color with a creamy well sestained head that leaves a small amount of lacing,aroma is subtle on the malty side with touch of fruit and biscuit.Taste is mellow but with some nice flavors,malt tilted for sure with some flavors of dried fruit and some metallic notes in the finish.I could drink these all night and it has a pretty cool looking bottle to boot,thank you Liquid Solutions!

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Photo of RoyalT
3.83/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – Clear, light brown body with a big, volcanic head that went down slowly and laced the glass.

Smell – There’s definitely a big maltiness to this nose. There’s a touch of hops as well, but the heavy, caramel-laden malt aroma dominates.

Taste – The caramel comes out a little bit more in the taste. The malt though is there, in accordance with the style. There is some hoppy bitterness for balance.

Mouthfeel – Little carbonation, but very creamy and chewy.

Drinkability – I thought that this was the ale’s strong suit. This went down exceptionally well. It is smooth, creamy, sweet, and a joy to knock down.

Comments – I tend to like a heavy bitterness to my ESBs, although it is not necessarily a requirement of the style. I wouldn’t favor this one from a personal standpoint, but many fans of the style will enjoy The Bombardier. If you like your ESBs smooth, a little on the lighter side, and not overpowering (read, “anti-Rogue Brutal Bitter") then give this a try.

 1,006 characters

Photo of BRB1978
4.34/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Tiernan
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mahogany pour, tan to black with little head. Malt sweetnes on the nose with little other hints as to flavor. A tasty ESB and a very even brew. A nice well rounded malt character with a nice subtle hop finish. The body is slight and nearly thin, though the style seems to demand it. For this reason I cannot judge negatively on lack of texture. Over all this is a good drinkin' brew with moderate ABV and a really casual flavor and feel. I like it.

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Photo of tbryan5
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of LegalAlienBC
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of markallmon
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of bellce0
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
3.59/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a light golden brown that sets up a 2+ finger head of fluffy off-white foam, which very slowly collapses on itself and leaves plenty of lace rings around the glass. Held to a full-spectrum light, beer is a vibrant orange-red and clear.

S - Lightly toasted, bready malt mixed in with bitter flowering hops. Nose really has to be coaxed out of the glass. This is not a beer that you smell before you taste.

T - Gently toasted malts, light caramel, and simple fruit-like sugar up front. Definitive earthy hops show up in the finish to clear the sweetness / malts away and switch the focus. There's almost a hint of black pepper in the back end.

M - Somewhat fizzy and crisp. Above moderate, pushing full carbonation. Rather thin, but not watery. Body is on the light side. Finish snaps off the back of the tongue rather quickly, leaving a dry, refreshing impression.

O - This is a good beer to have with lunch - it would compliment most sandwiches well, such as a roast beef and cheddar with a soft horseradish sauce, or even fish-n-chips with a tasty, tangy tartar sauce. More hop-forward than the typical English brew, but not an American hopfest, either - it's an interesting juxtaposition of lightly toasted malts against straightforward bittering hops that delivers both sides of the coin.

 1,347 characters

Photo of kaiyote
3.81/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Photo of merlin48
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear mahogany body is topped by a one finger beige head. Good retention and some sheets of lacing on the glass. Aroma of toasty bready crystal malts and floral and spicy hops. Light medium body, medium carbonation, and some mineral on the palate. Taste is very much like the aroma. Bready and toasty malt, bitter unripe pears, slight nuttiness, and a pervasive floral and spicy hop bitterness. A pretty good English Bitter here.

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Photo of Billolick
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mid sized bottle, some sort of dating perhaps etched onto the bottle. Pours dark amber, with a medium tan head, that shows retention then goes to a thin film and leaves nice and plentiful stringy lacing. Nose is nutty and malty. Pleasant British ale, bready malts, smooth and highly drinkable. Brit ales have been getting a lack of respect in my beer world, this one reminds me of the simple pleasures and understated elegance of the brews from England.

 453 characters

Photo of Guinnsslvr
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of StupidlyBrave
4.6/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of kaneel
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of GreenMountainBoy
4.25/5  rDev +12.1%

Photo of olradetbalder
3/5  rDev -20.8%

Photo of tummy345
3.31/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Smooth and refreshing

21 characters

Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.27/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a nonic glass. A dark, russet-amber hue, with a half inch of off-white head. Decent retention, a bit of lacing.

Nose is malt, caramel, herbal hops, dark fruits. Very inviting.

A somewhat sweet, but refreshing bitter ale. Not exceptionally bitter (only for a moment at the end), but very smooth and drinkable. I can certainly see having a few of these in an evening.

Mouthfeel is right on the mark for the style, medium body with a touch of creamyness. The carbonation is light, providing slight bursts of malty goodness.

More than makes up for their IPA; a fine pale ale, not overly strong so as to allow for sessions. Good stuff.

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Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
3.3/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A Keep The Glass beer at the Winking Lizard in scenic (sarcasm) Bedford Heights, Ohio.

A seared copper in color, with a scant off-white layer of lace that really didn't do much (possibly a dirty glass?). Aromas are difficult to detect. There's some sweetness here, along with a dash of bread dough and fruity esters. Flavor is rather tame. Nothing here to sit me upright in my chair. Some bitterness, but not nearly as much as other ESB's I've had. Finish has a dash of roasted malt and toffee, without any pronounced drying effect. Fuller in the mouthfeel than expected or (IMHO) desired. Modestly drinkable, though I'd reach for Fuller's ESB if offered alongside.

Cool glass, though, to add to my collection.

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Photo of warseahawk03
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of innominat
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Runofthemiller
4/5  rDev +5.5%

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Wells Bombardier (English Premium Bitter) from Wells & Young's Ltd
Beer rating: 3.79 out of 5 with 920 ratings