Young's Special London Ale
Eagle Brewery

Young's Special London AleYoung's Special London Ale
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Eagle Brewery
England, United Kingdom
Bitter - English Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)
Ranked #8
Ranked #13,641
3.95 | pDev: 11.14%
Nov 10, 2021
Jan 14, 2001
Very Good
Young's Special London AleYoung's Special London Ale
Notes: None
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4.16 by LesDewitt4beer from Minnesota on Nov 10, 2021
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
3.52/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
by JonnoWillsteed from England

An unexpected find. Despite decades of both enjoying Young's beer and living in London I'd never heard of this beer before. Stranger still was to discover it in an off-license during a weekend trip to Oxford!
L- Dark amber, clear. pours with a 3mm creamy cap.
S- Mild contemporary hops. A hint of citrus.
T- WOOO-K. Contemporary bright and zesty hops into a rich malty body > robust hoppy-dry finish.
F+O - Different. Like a hipstered trad Ale with balls. As if a statement to the real-ale/CAMRA crowd 'There's no need to fear contemporary hopping'. And then to the hipsters: 'Drinkability doesn't finish north of 5.2%'. Still, probably a bit hoppy-bright for me to make a regular.
500ml 6.4% BB: 31/3/2022 bought from the Grogshop in Jericho, Oxford.

Oct 01, 2021
4.48 by crazyspicychef from Pennsylvania on Nov 12, 2020
Photo of shambeano
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by shambeano from Australia

500ml bottle with a best before 31/10/2020. Poured into a tulip.
Look: Pours a real copper amber, with about 2 cm of fluffy white head, which falls back to about 1cm, which then hands around for a while. Looks good.
Smell: little bit of toffee, a touch of grain, some herbal and floral hop. Pleasant, but just okay for mine.
Taste: caramel and toffee, a little bit of grain again, something slightly metallic, some citrus notes, a little bit of peel, some spicy and herbal hops to round it off. Tastes good.
Feel: mid bodied, really feels like it coats the mouth. A little tingle of carbonation ant the front of the tongue, the bitterness hits the back of the throat and a dry finish afterwards.
Overall: Nice, I wasn't too keen after having a whiff, but then was pleasantly surprised by the taste.

Apr 01, 2020
3.94 by Beerasaurus from Virginia on Feb 26, 2020
3.75 by Stengelfoot from California on Feb 07, 2020
3.62 by NodakEric from Minnesota on Sep 18, 2019
4.04 by misteil from Ireland on Jul 27, 2019
Photo of matuto
3.76/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
by matuto from Brazil

500 ml bottle, exp. 09/2019.

Jul 14, 2019
4.09 by DarrellK from Florida on Jun 20, 2019
Photo of KooVee
4.77/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
by KooVee from Finland

Bottle, 2m old.

Drive-by aroma is a tantalizing mixture of unique, strong, pleasant, malt aromas and yeast esters.

Nose builds on this with notes of bread, of a dark / toasted kind, yeast-derived fruity esters, and some very British herbal/spicy hops. Or that is not quite it.. it reminds one of summer. Must be the Target in dry hopping... more usually a bittering hop.

Taste has grain... and more grain... in an extremely nice way. The hop flavour continues the floral/spicy/herbal vein. The aftertaste/feel is almost soapy, but not in an unpleasant way. Fitting moderate bitterness. Drinking more, there is a faint note of roastedness that adds suitable complexity in proportion. The yeast esters are unique in an understated way.

Overall, a perfect example of what British ale can achieve.

Jan 12, 2019
Photo of drmeto
3.87/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by drmeto from Germany

-pours a slightly hazy golden-amber with a small to medium,frothy,offwhite head
-medium to high carbonation visible
-caramel,toffee,orange,spicy,bubble gum
-toasty malt,nutty,spicy,caramel
-medium to high bitterniss for the style
-medium,velvety carbonation
-light to medium body
A really good and typically English Ale with it's toffied malt and spicy hops.
It almost reaches the levels of Fuller's ESB.

Dec 05, 2018
Photo of RichardLeahy
4.04/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by RichardLeahy from Australia

From 500 ml (or thereabouts) bottle. Different branding to that shown but appears to be the same product. L. Can't really tell. Appears appropriate. S, Some fruit, a little sweet and inviting. T. Solid fruit sweetness but with some spice and a dryer finish. Some grain/grass in the mix. You know you are drinking a beer. F. Smooth, not fizzy or too light. O. A really good beer that is appropriately rated here.

Sep 26, 2018
Photo of monkist
4.49/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by monkist from Hungary

This is definitely an ale I recommend to all! I am a fan of Fullers above all but this Young's London ESB knows something that nobody else does. Why?
Because although it is roundly malted and pleasantly rich/sweet, it is remarkably hopped and it brings you that fruity, spicy hop feeling in the nose. It tastes exciting, ranging from zestiness to bitterness to an extent that it is indeed as close as it can get to a real Lezák from Prague! Now this is amazing indeed, both worlds coming together!
I am utterly pleased and satisfied with this ESB, perhaps the best of its kind that I have ever had, even better than Fullers' ESB - and it is something indeed!
It is something Special, it is heavily recommended!

Apr 20, 2018
3.59 by TheCrowsEye from California on Dec 15, 2017
3.76 by dandy14 from Brazil on Oct 19, 2017
3.72 by BaldEagle from Finland on Sep 12, 2017
3.75 by paulish from New York on Jul 19, 2017
4.8 by cebeci88 from Turkey on May 08, 2017
3.52 by EdmundBlackadder from Ohio on Oct 13, 2016
4.41 by lelepat from Hong Kong on Jul 29, 2016
Photo of Beginner2
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
by Beginner2 from Illinois

Listed in the "1001 Beers To Drink Before You Die," this one will have to wait for my review as I can't find my notes.

Apr 30, 2016
Photo of sokol_1993
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by sokol_1993 from California

Had a 500ml bottle, bought from Villa Market in Bangkok. A beautifully crafted beer. The cover with the name of the famous locations in London is quite nice, making me missing that city a lot.

Look: Golden and lively, a lot of bubbling. Good head retention.
Smell: This is where this beer is extremely lovely. A lot of floral notes, with citrus. Faint hay smell, making it's strange that this beer is named London Ale, yet it reminds me of lying on a grass field in the spring.
Taste: Hoppier than some of the ESB that I've had, a little bit overbalancing the malt, but not too much. Again, floral and citrus notes. Spicy hoppiness at the end.
Feel: Medium body, great malt aftertaste.

Great brew, a little bit hoppy for my taste but the floral and hay notes make up for it. Will have it again.

Mar 20, 2016
Photo of Dentist666
3.78/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by Dentist666 from Russian Federation

Poured into pint.
Pours clear (but not crystal) light copper beer with good rocky off-white head, excellent retention.
Smell - toasted malts, fruitcake, notes of floral hops.
Taste - biscuity, slightly fruity & metallic, honey, unexpected alcohol hues, nice grassy hops.
Medium body, medium carbonation.
A bit harsh to be excellent.

Mar 16, 2016
3.92 by craigbelly from Iowa on Mar 13, 2016
3.63 by Humbaz from Brazil on Dec 21, 2015
2.5 by jrob21 from Georgia on Oct 29, 2015
3.75 by DamienI from Washington on Aug 26, 2015
Photo of kitschiguy
4.57/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
by kitschiguy from Hong Kong

Poured a 500ml bottle into an English pint glass.

Poured a nice reddish light brown/deep amber colour with a huge frothy white head. The head was very creamy on top with tight to medium bubbles at the sides. lasted all the way to the end with lots of lacing. Great looking beer.

The nose was complex with huge bready, toasted malts, dried fruit, fruitcake and some spice. Very nice.

Palate was complex also - very malty with lots of fruit flavours all over the mouth. Well-rounded. Medium to full-bodied. Some hoppy bitterness at the back of the tongue and sides of the mouth. Finish was fairly long, drying with some biterness.

Mouth was wonderfully smooth and full despite the fairly high level of carbonation. Very well-rounded.

Overall this is a really lovely beer. Huge flavours, complex, well-balanced and easy to drink despite being strong. It looks wonderful with a massive creamy, long-lasting head.

Despite being so easy to drink I wouldn't say this is a session beer - I felt a wonderfully warming, light-headed buzz after I'd finished it....

Truly outstanding. Highly recommended.

Jul 30, 2015
3.39 by Jugs_McGhee from Texas on Jul 28, 2015
3.49 by wretchedabyss from England on Jul 25, 2015
Photo of Andrewharemza
4.06/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Andrewharemza from Australia

Slightly hazy Amber beer with medium head and patchy lacing. Aroma of malts, fruits and yeast. Taste is malts, caramel, dried fruit and some sweet cake. Medium to light bodied. Excellent stuff.

Jul 18, 2015
3.85 by Lodisgrisen from Finland on Jul 16, 2015
3.84 by orangesol from Pennsylvania on Jun 06, 2015
3.79 by vinivini from Belarus on Jun 03, 2015
4 by steverx8 from England on May 03, 2015
3.71 by UniversitateaDeBere from Romania on Apr 09, 2015
4.19 by stephenlee from England on Mar 29, 2015
Photo of Decko
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by Decko from Australia

A - Cloudy Amber poured into an IPA glass. Head diminished but left about a finger's width in the glass. S - nice fruity aroma with hops coming through. T- beautifully balanced beer with light fruitiness and hops in just the right proportion. Hard to believe it is over 6% BV as I couldn't detect the alcohol coming through. M - again spot on with carbonation limited enough to keep a smooth almost creamy feel. O - overall this was a lovely beer which could be a great session beer even given the strength. I'll be drinking more of this.

Feb 22, 2015
Photo of SteenLarsen
4.6/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
by SteenLarsen from Brazil

My favorite English ale. Ahh those Golding hops. stars with a ligth bitter taste which turns into a comfortable but not too sweet aftertaste.

Feb 15, 2015
Young's Special London Ale from Eagle Brewery
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 458 ratings