Ski To Sea ESB
Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro

Ski To Sea ESBSki To Sea ESB
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Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro
Washington, United States
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)
3.91 | pDev: 6.91%
Dec 29, 2017
May 21, 2011
No description / notes.
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Rated: 3.5 by 1971bernat from Virginia

Dec 29, 2017
Rated: 3.27 by Noooddle from Washington

May 17, 2017
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Reviewed by ovaltine from Indiana

4.23/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
From a can dated 4/4/17 to a pint glass, my 3rd beer from BB pours a beautiful clear copper color, maybe a finger of light tan head. The aromas are heavy on the malts (with most of the malts local varieties - AWESOME), with the Fuggle hops sitting patiently in the background.

The malts are present on the taste, but the Fuggles really come, with earthy and fruity notes making this an absolute delight to drink. Superb example of the style, IMHO.
May 17, 2017
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Reviewed by Superheatnsubcool from Washington

4.19/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
From a can with a shrink wrapped label. Canned on 04/04/17, drank 04/28/17.

A: Beautiful reddish amber color, head quickly fades but leaves some lacing.

S: Great aroma from the malt bill, a hint of booze, earthy hops in the background.

T: I'm loving the blend of "Skagit Valley Copeland Pale, UK Maris Otter, French Aromatic, Skagit Valley Club Wheat, Honey Malt, Belgian Biscuit and Belgian Special B" malts. The hops are in the background just enough to make themselves known.

M: Fairly high carbonation, average mouthfeel.

O: I read that the next ingredient trend is local malts, and I'm really enjoying what's coming out of Skagit Valley. An easy drinking, balanced beer that makes me want to have another.
Apr 29, 2017
Rated: 3.84 by snohojimbo from Washington

Aug 23, 2015
Rated: 3.79 by Drknight from Virginia

Aug 09, 2015
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Reviewed by Moose90 from Washington

3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
Appearance – (3.5/5) Pours a deep and rich amber color with copper hues and edges, nice and bright, it looks deeply rich and malty. Head is tall and bright white in color, leaves behind nice layers of foam on the inside of the glass and has good head retention. Very true to the ESB style.

Aroma – (3.75/5) Smells of rich and sweet caramel malts, freshly baked bread, toasted malts, caramel sweetness. Light and bitter hop note balances the sweetness, little bit of spice here as well.

Taste – (3.75/5) Sweet malt notes initially, nice layers of caramel malt sweetness, it is bready, malty, rich and sweet. As it warms there is a nice bitter and dry hop note that helps bring a great balance to it.

Mouthfeel – (4/5) Medium bodied brew, a nice level of carbonation and drying bitterness helps to balance out the sweetness of the malt. Refreshing balance of sweet and dry, highly drinkable.

Overall – (3.75/5) This is a nice, easy drinking, approachable beer from Boundary Bay. This will taste great whether you are watching or participating in the race. The Boundary Bay Ski to Sea ESB is a great celebration of the warm weather we have been enjoying lately. Those who shy away from bitter beers can rejoice as this beer has found a great balance between bitterness and drinkability. Very nice balance of bitter and sweet. Thirst quenching and refreshing, this is a wonderful beer to commemorate the annual Ski to Sea Race, nicely done Boundary Bay!
May 18, 2015
Rated: 3.75 by mdaschaf from Indiana

Oct 30, 2014
Rated: 4 by Kurmaraja from California

Oct 13, 2014
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Reviewed by bizweasel from Washington

3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75
Can serving. Interestingly the can was short-filled, over 1/2" of room. Rip off! ;-) Actually it was a fun reminder of what craft beer in a can once was, a hap hazard operation that often required hand filling and crimping the tops also by hand (not an organized line). Oskar Blues had short filled cans 10 years ago too.

The beer. Reminded me rather of an English brown in flavor even if the color not quite that dark. Liked the nutty malty flavor, which thankfully wasn't stomped on by overexuberant wet hopping. Also enjoyed that the ABV makes this a better sessioner.

Carbonation a bit flat, perhaps consequence of that canning mishap. Drank this one at 'english' temperature too, not always possible to build a good head.
Jun 21, 2014
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Reviewed by mabermud from Washington

3.77/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
I have lived in Bellingham for seven years, and this is the first time drinking this supposedly fine beer. I am not an ESB type of guy, so take this review with a grain of salt.

A - Clear amber body with a minimal white head.
S - Bread and malt.
T - Herbal with a malt spine.
M - Medium all-around.
O - Descent offering from one of my favorite breweries in the surrounding areas.
Jun 18, 2014
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Reviewed by mactrail from Washington

4.19/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
Pours a clear amber color with a modest foam and lacing coating the Chimay chalice. Quite tangy and spritzy on the tongue. Hazelnut aroma with a fresh hay and grainy note.

This really reminds me of 2° Below Winter Ale from New Belgium. It's that same woody, musty, hazelnut flavor though less sweet in this case. Some interesting fruity notes, melon and cedar. Raspberry seeds and a smoky hint. A mineral tang for the finish. Delicious fruity hop flavor along with the subtle dark caramel malt.

This is really quite complex and interesting. Totally drinkable with a new pleasure in every sip. Now available in cans. From the 12 oz can purchased at Special Brews in Lynwood.
Jun 15, 2014
Rated: 3.5 by Kopfschuss from Oregon

Oct 07, 2013
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Reviewed by brentk56 from North Carolina

4.02/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Appearance: Pours a cystal clear amber liquid, topped by an impressive head that sticks nicely and leaves plenty of dots and shards behind

Smell: Fruity (pear and apple) with an herbacious, grassy character

Taste: The herbaciousness and the fruit combine, up front, to provide an earthy English malt character to the flavor profile but in the middle, the hops kick in (more in a brash American way) though they are appropriately English in the type of bitterness they bring for the style; nicely balanced, after the swallow, with the fruity flavors lingering in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: This is a darn nice ESB from an American brewer - something you don't get to taste very often

Thanks, kemoarps, for the opportunity
Jun 01, 2013
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Reviewed by sam_bliss from Washington

4.26/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
22 ounce bomber streams into a globe glass. Last weekend I raced the lead-off cross-country ski leg of Ski to Sea, which is an 8-person relay race from Mount Baker to Bellingham Bay. Tonight I commemorate the experience with Boundary Bay's signature special release for the annual event.

Pours an elegant cherry-amber hue sealed by a creamy yellow head that dissipates, leaving a fine ring of lacing, some spotty foam, and a scattered bubbles across the surface. A strong smell of ripe raspberries finds its way to my delighted olfactory senses before I have even leaned in to take a formal whiff. Candied red fruit and mushy pear aromas dance into the nostrils on a wave of sweet-bread malts. Bitterness arrives somewhat unexpectedly as soon as the extra-special ale touches lips. The scent features just an inkling of lemony hop, but earthy and grapefruit flavors in the front of the mouth tower over caramel malts and tart dried fruit in the body. Sweet esters to the nose become grapes to the tongue. Delicious.

Medium-roasted malt mash gives this brew a red ale-like taste. Except better. A tiny bit of alcohol adds some kick to the other refreshing aspects, rather than distracting with unnecessary warmth. Ski to Sea strikes me as an incredibly quaffable offering; a rich, pleasurable drinking experience. The mouthfeel is just right to let the fruity and malty essences of the beer take center stage. The 'bitter' of Extra Special Bitter is emphasized, in contrast to the more traditional English style, which falls far short of bitterness to our wrecked Pacific Northwest taste buds. The dirty, complex hop bouquet does not stray from the typical themes of Boundary Bay's hearty ale collection. This ESB has plenty of carbonation; it is refreshing but too flavorful to simply be a post-lawn mowing quencher. Instead, I recommend that we enjoy it with the music off and the conversation focused only on one thing: the beverage. Ski to Sea ESB is rivaled by only the Scotch Ale for Boundary Bay supremacy.
Jun 01, 2013
Rated: 3.75 by Hopmodium from Washington

May 22, 2013
Rated: 3.75 by kemoarps from Washington

May 15, 2013
Rated: 4.25 by sloelco from California

Dec 26, 2012
Rated: 4 by jpbebeau from Washington

Aug 01, 2012
Rated: 4 by Rempo from Indiana

Jul 14, 2012
Ski To Sea ESB from Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 26 ratings