Bitter
Ridgeway Brewing

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Style:
Bitter - English
Ranked #50
ABV:
4%
Score:
84
Ranked #31,892
Avg:
3.76 | pDev: 11.17%
Reviews:
79
Ratings:
98
From:
Ridgeway Brewing
 
England, United Kingdom
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  1
Gots
  0
SCORE
84
Good
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Reviews: 79 | Ratings: 98 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by yemenmocha:
Photo of yemenmocha
yemenmocha from Arizona

4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours yellow to slight gold with touch of amber, nice contrasting white head.

Nose is clean, ligt citrus, mellow.

Palate is a light bodied, crisp, gently balanced bitter that is very sessionable. None of the flavor components are in your face. Nothing is out of place.

An easygoing ale that I could drink just about any time of day.

Apr 18, 2008
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
oberon from North Carolina

4.02/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a light golden with a small white head that was gone pretty quickly,aromas are Gldings hop driven quite herbal and minty with a lighlty sweet brown suger malt note as well.A nice bitter here subtly complex a good mix of toasted grain quite dry malt base with a nice herbal quality in the finish that lingers nicely.A touch of mineral adds to the depth of this beer,it gldes down smooth and would be the perfect sociable pint ale.Iam sure a gem on cask,quite nice I would buy again for sure.

Nov 10, 2005
Photo of ADR
ADR from Pennsylvania

3.43/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Light golden brown color, slightly opaque in presentation. Big fuzzy head is pillow-like and rises to over an inch. Laces in dots and small strings. Sharp aroma, weedy, maybe a touch skunked. Mouthfeel is light and gets lighter, carbonation is higher than I like it. Malt profile is quite brief, astringent lemon tones take over, senses of pepper, arugala, even cilantro. Finishes thinner but with a lot of the excessive carbonation still in effect. I like softer Bitters, I figure concessions are made to bottle condition and ship, but this comes off as a little gassy and strident.

Sep 15, 2005
Photo of bditty187
bditty187 from Nebraska

4.09/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I swirled the yeast in the bottle resulting in a cloudy, golden-amber hued beer. Massive white head, at the apex the foam was four fingers tall. Thankfully, the head subsided to a more manageable two fingers of head after a few moments. The head retention wasn’t all that impressive. Sadly, there was no subsequent lacing. Bummer. Overall, I like the appearance.

Lovely nose, perfumed flowers with faint citrus notes and lemongrass. I absolutely love the malt aromas. Maris Otter malt is a gift from the beer gods. Biscuits and caramel, the aromas are very rich and deep. The nose isn’t balanced as the malt steals the show but I detect the hops in the background. The aromas are wonderful and yet so simple. Hops and malt… and little else, it’s terrific. Moderate potency and it says all the right things. Inviting!

The palate is a perfect replica of the nose. Lemongrass and citrusy hops with a tickle of flowers; light bitterness. However, the biscuits and caramel grains are so very tasty. The finish isn’t all the good though; it is kind of flat and metallic. While it is not a negative it doesn’t allow the lovely maltiness to linger. The aftertaste is a mix of flowers and lemongrass. For an English Bitter I really like this beer.

Medium/medium-light in body, low but natural carbonation, the mouthfeel is quite agreeable. It is relaxing but not sluggish.

Well, this is very easy to drink. At 4% I could session with this beer easily. I wonder if I can get this in Omaha. I’ve seen other Ridgeway beers. Anyway, I really like the simplicity this beer offers. It really hit the spot. Thank you Daniel for the bottle, I liked it a plenty.

May 19, 2006
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
TheLongBeachBum from California

3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 500ml brown glass bottle with a wide body and thin proboscis-like neck. Sealed with a metallic green crown cap and labeled as “Ridgeway Bitter bottle conditioned ale”. Alc. 4% Vol. My bottle is just as the one pictured in the BA Avatar.

Appearance: Superb presentation, glowing soft orange amber body with some light brown tissue. Massive off-white head rises prominently and leaves some spectacular looking lacing. Excellent catwalk looks.

Nose: Gorgeous nose, sweet malts, hints of Devon toffee and teasing bitterness of the English kind. Monkey nut pockets here and there.

Taste: Gentle malt tingling with some residual cold tea to line the cheeks. Sharp angles in this one, the malts and hops are in two camps, both joined together by a dry bitter finish with hints of nuttiness. Splashes of lemon and tobacco leaves ridge the back of this brew. English bitterness rides from start to finish.

Mouthfeel: Soft conditioning throughout, Cask-like almost, light body with a satisfying feel. Low feel but high body, if you know what I mean.

Drinkability: A quaffing Pale Ale that holds no qualms or grudges, easy to put down and easier to pick up again.

Overall: A very interesting English Pale Ale; the Marris Otter Malt is no surprise but the mix of Challenger and Boadicea hops most certainly is. Solid stuff.

Aug 13, 2006
Photo of putnam
putnam from Michigan

4.25/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tawny orange with a nice, crispy rock of foam. Leafy notes reminiscent of mint, epazote and sorrel top off zesty, succulent impressions of cherry, tangerine, orange and caramel. Windy, carnival fizz -- ambitious if impermanent -- splatters noisy fresh and preserved fruit flavors along with oatmeal cookie. Airy, light and dry. Champagne physique. Toasted nuts and fruits for flavor. Bitterness is earthy and permanent. Hot weather Bitter for sure. I like the terroir.

Aug 04, 2005
Photo of Shiredave
Shiredave from New York

3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hand drawn at Mahars in Albany. Ivanhoe soon to follow.
Bright golden amber color with a tall, dense white head which left thick trails of lace.
Malty aromas of melon and wet grass, very soft and subdued.
Flavor and body are light even at cellar temps. Light caramel notes up front followed by strong earthy hop dryness. The firm bittering seems a bit strong compared to most of the other traditional English Bitters Iv tried, but the malt comes thru enough to keep it interesting.
A bit watery as per style, with very chalky dryness on the finish. A classic session bitter served the way it was brewed to be.

Mar 06, 2005
Photo of UnionMade
UnionMade from New York

3.46/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from the engine at Moan & Dove.
Clear, bright gold, a couple stray bubbles half-heartedly trying to form the semblance of a collar, leaving the beer entirely naked after a couple sips. Nearly no aroma, probably due to the lack of head. A vague floral, melon-ish fruity whiff. What is there is decent enough. The flavor opens with a mild, very easy drinking pale maltiness. Toasty, with a touch of minerally flavor and a bit of bacterial funkiness. Slightly infected cask? Subtle, melon-like fruit, easing into a passive, floral hop finish. That bit of funkiness isn't bad, but the slight, vague sourness in the finish kinda ruins the drinkability for me. It's such a delicate beer that it overpowers the other flavors very easily. Great carbonation level, just a soft sparkle, pleasant when coupled with the light body. Smooth drinkin' stuff. Light, yet flavorful, this is what session ale is all about. I just wish it were a bit cleaner. I'll definitely try it again next time I see it.

Dec 24, 2005
Photo of Bitterbill
Bitterbill from Wyoming

3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle, and yeah, 4.0%abv Bitter so that make it an official Session beer. Label has this on it: BBF 24 6 10 so I'm thinking that translates to best before June 24, 2010.

A slightly hazy light gold colour with about an inch of foam. There's not much of any bubble activity.

The smell is a nice balance between sweet malts and light citrus hops(the label says Challenger & Boadicea, the latter I've never heard of) Bottom line re the smell is that it smells very much a brew coming from the UK. I'm expecting good things with the taste.

The taste has a very nice hoppy bitter flavour that is countered by some sweetish notes from the malt and a light fruitiness that I'm guessing is very cherry like. I notice it more when I swish the beer in my mouth but without swishing, it is still there. I'm liking this English Bitter. Plenty of flavour for the abv.

It borders on medium bodied but I'd still call it light, the carbonation is medium..could be restrained just a tad more but works. Good mouthfeel.

Drinkability? Great drinkability and why the hell not! Low in alcohol and plenty of flavour. What's not to like? I wish I had picked up more than 1 bottle.

May 16, 2010
Photo of RBorsato
RBorsato from Virginia

4.2/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice clear light gold color with a nice white head and very active carbonation. Prominent grassy and flowery hop aromas. Nicely balanced but definitely more English hoppy than English malty. Light bodied with a nicely balanced dry bitter hop finish.

Gone too quickly ... A good example of the style that I would love to try on cask when in England.

Label states: "Bottle Conditioned" & "Whole Leaf Hops" & "Marris Otter Malt" & "Challenger and Boadicea Hops"

(11.2 oz. /330 ml)

Jul 07, 2006
Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
OldFrothingSlosh from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle. $4.99 at OUAV. "BBF 28 05 06" on the side.

Clear light yellow-gold in color. Beefy white head that sat up and left nice, thick rings of lace. Aromas are sweet with a bit of skunk and earthen-grassy bitterness. Flavor is dry and somewhat bitter. There a subtle base of malt sweetness...a toasted brown sugar flavor. Finishes dry and has a good dose of bitterness on the palate. Thin, but not to the point of being watery. Drinkable.

Dec 08, 2005
Photo of cichief
cichief from Virginia

3.38/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on draft at Max's in Baltimore, MD.

A- pours a nie gold in color with a thin white head.

S- very little in the nose, just a hint of malt.

T- malty, muted hops, probably served too cold.

M- not bad, well carbonated, medium body.

D- I would probably prefer this more if it were fresher.

Apr 21, 2007
Photo of Reidrover
Reidrover from Oregon

3.56/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Served from a 500 ml English looking bottle. In appearance this is a dark golden ale with a large off white frothy head. Aroma is rather subdued, slightly earthy, maltiness, some tinges of hoppiness. Malty , earthy tastes dominate, then a slight hoppy tatse and a longer lasting hop after tate, perhaps from the fresh hops. Pretty thin on the palte, well carbonated. A good drinkable bitter, but at the price we pay over here i could not say it was a session ale..but if in Oxford this would keep my intrest for several pints.

May 27, 2006
Photo of kmo1030
kmo1030 from Massachusetts

3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

amber with a thick sudsy head.
the aroma is predominantly spiced almost tropical fruity citrus with toffee and caramel.
very tropical fruity taste, mango, peach, pinapple. it's actually vaguely belgian tasting. it's subtly spiced with baking spices. a little bit of toffee follows the fruit. the hops come in at the back with a minty floral hoppiness.
light medium bodied with fairly strong carbonation.
good drinkability, a unique, but pleasant bitter.

Jul 13, 2006
Photo of WesWes
WesWes from New York

4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a golden color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a nice pale malt (Maris Otter) scent along with some light bitterness and a mild yeast fruitiness. The taste is good. It has a very dry bitter flavor that boasts of Maris Otter malts and leaf hops. It goes down easy with a bit of fruitiness and a wet cardboard finish. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate/good carbonation. This is a good English bitter. It's bitter, but nothing too intense as well as having a good malt base; well balanced.

Aug 28, 2005
Photo of EPICAC
EPICAC from Massachusetts

4.04/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear copper with excellent clarity. It has a foamy white head that thins to a patchy layer and eventually disappears.

Smell: Sweet fruity aroma with notes of malt and hops.

Taste: An initial sweetness fades into toasty malt flavors. This finish is tart and fruity with moderate bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Moderate carbonation, smooth and light-bodied with a light dryness in the finish.

Drinkability: Really easy to drink. The flavors are good but not overpowering and the alcohol content is low.

Overall): This is just what I was wanting tonight, a flavorful beer that's not overpowering and not high in alcohol.

May 18, 2006
Photo of gueuzeonhigh
gueuzeonhigh from Maine

3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer seems to fit the English bitter style reasonable well.
It is a light bodied, and light flavored beer.
Has a hops bitterness to the flavor without much more complexity. This beer would be a fine summer's day refresher-- served slightly chilled-- or even cold. The traditionally low ABV makes the beer quite drinkable. The mouthfeel is cordial but the beer itself is light bodied so it didn't make much of an impression on me.

I could however quaff a few pints of this and enjoy the experience. Furthermore I wouldn't be welded to my seat in the way the higher ABV beers and many of the more robust flavored beers affect me (and probably anyone else).

The beer has a very light nose- emitting a tad of hops and not much else.

All in all-- I don't have any complaints-- it's not particularly memorable, but there aren't too many bones to pick with in the English bitter style.

Perhaps the only issue is $6 a pint... there are a lot of fine beers out there on which I can drop $6.. so this one has a lot of competition.

Apr 18, 2010
Photo of NJpadreFan
NJpadreFan from New Jersey

4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ridgeway Bitter

Served up at Monk's in Philadelphia

Appearance- caramel brown with a med/high head.
Smell- malty with a little caramel hints.
Taste- very malty, slighty sweet yet not overpowering.
Mouthfeel- slighty weak on the malt and hops no bitterness.

Overall- a very good beer yet not as strong as it should be. Fullers ESB much better!

Jul 14, 2005
Photo of cypressbob
cypressbob from Northern Ireland

3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

275ml bottle

Pours with a slight hazy amber body, fairly good foamy head, some retention and little lacing

Smell, hints of fresh english hops, some hint of wheat

Taste, dry and some hint of english hops, perhaps goldings, some wheat, slight hint of yeast, lasting hop bitterness on the finish

A pretty good ale, i'd like to try this on cask

Dec 10, 2004
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation from Iowa

4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sun-faded tangerine with a fine yeasty haze visible only with bright sunlight. There's actually more head than beer in the glass immediately after the pour, presumably due to a generous number of bottle-conditioned bubbles. And what a good looking lid it is too. Eggshell with a faint orange tint, fluffy (yet firm enough to be rocky) and sticky enough to lay down scads of lace.

My impression of English bitters is that they're fairly well-balanced with a nod toward the hoppy side of things... and that is just how Ridgeway Bitter smells. I've run across Challenger hops many times, but never Boadicea (a new aphid-resistant strain). Even though the aroma is on the mild side, enough of the lemon peel, lemongrass and lemon pepperiness of the hops comes through for me to find plenty of enjoyment.

Simply delicious. Sometimes it's hard for me to put my big beer love aside and appreciate a lowercase beer such as Ridgeway Bitter. I didn't have any trouble at all recognizing the beauty of Bluebird Bitter and I'm not having the least bit of difficulty here either. The key, I believe, is that both are clean and hop-focused.

The flavor is basically a reprise of the aroma. A sufficient amount of Maris Otter malt provides an understated hint of sweetness and coddles the suprising bitterness of the veddy, veddy English hops. If Boadicea is the cause of this wonderful grassy pepperiness, then count me among its admirers. What the hell do aphids know anyway?

This is scrupulously clean beer that is one of the best true session ales that I've had in a long, long time. The body/mouthfeel is unapologetically light, but still manages to fill the mouth with each upending of the glass. An energetic amount of carbonation helps in that regard and is a perfect match for the rest of the beer's attributes.

While I don't love Ridgeway Bitter as much as I love Ridgeway IPA (once a hophead, always a hophead), it's a beautiful beer that is the very definition of the English bitter style, at least as I understand it. I would dearly love to work my way through a succession of pints, on-cask of course, during a warm sunny afternoon in Oxfordshire.

Oct 05, 2006
Photo of Sammy
Sammy from Canada (ON)

2.79/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A light yellow colored beer at Monk's. Hops there, and the dryness of the leaf. Nutty aroma, perhaps the glass had just been in chlorine. Taste rather off, strange hops and herbal flavor of a tea I could not finish. The sweetness of honey and malt did not redeem it.

May 13, 2005
Photo of claytri
claytri from Maryland

3.45/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured a lifeless copper with an off white head. The aroma was simply of light malt. The taste was of light sweet malt with a hint of better in the finish. The feel was medium and dry. This one started off a bit weak, but as I drank it grew on me and was suprisingly good, a very delicate beer.

May 02, 2007
Photo of Stimack
Stimack from New York

3.72/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this on cask the other night. The brew was pulled to vibrant golden color with a fairly dense white head that had pretty good retention and left a fair amount of lacing. This is a very malty beer, it definitely seems to dominate but I am able to pick up scents of hops with an earthy/grass like note that really co-mingle very nicely. The tastes are highlighted by a malty caramel flavor that is strongly accented by a hop taste that seems to linger a bit. Nice brew, one I would get again, but not one that I would classify as exceptional..

Mar 14, 2005
Photo of TheJudge
TheJudge from New York

3.5/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On cask at the gingerman in NYC, a nice light orange color, small head that holds OK. Good hoppiness in the smell, some undertone of malt. Nice. Disappointing taste. Very thin. Needed alot more body. I would have another, but with 60 choices on tap, not here.

May 16, 2005
Photo of gentlebubbles
gentlebubbles from Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

NERAX 2005

Clear light gold with low white head.

Sweet almond scent.

Bready malts with the subtle nuttiness of almonds lightly toasted in butter. Some grassy bite in the finish appears after a minute.

Slick mouthfeel with low carbonation. A pleasant, light-bodied quaffable session ale.

Apr 28, 2005
Bitter from Ridgeway Brewing
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 98 ratings