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E. S. Bam | Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales

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E. S. BamE. S. Bam

Brewed by:
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Michigan, United States

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.70%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
E.S. Bam - Extra Special Farmhouse Ale
A Bam celebration of excess. More malt, more hops, same vivacious personality.

Seasonal released in April
4.7% Alc./Vol.

Added by Big78CJ on 02-14-2008

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Reviews: 240 | Ratings: 451
Photo of ILiveOffHops
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased this bottle at the Good Beer Store in Fryeburg, ME, after the 1st weekend of the Belgian Beer Fest @ Ebenezer's. "Orval on steroids" according to the menu at Ebenezer's.

Pours into my Ebenezer's 7th annual Belgian Beer Fest tulip a deep, murky orange with a huge chunky head leaving behind some thick sticky lacing. The high carbonation really gives the foam time to hang like dense spiderwebs on the glass. Leaves a beautiful glass behind.

The first sip is of barnyard funk and prickly carbonation. The funk is really intense. Lemongrass, phenols, Brett. If you like Orval you will love this. Really one you can savor, let warm, and try again. I would drink this again in a second for $12 / 750 ml.

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Photo of jzeilinger
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a hazy orange coppery color with a huge initial foamy head and lots of carbonation, eventually it does down and leaves a thick sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

S - Aroma is mild lemon grass, lights herbs, and alot of funky sourness.

T - "Barnyard funk" is something I don't use very often and this beer definitely has that characteristic, in a big way. Tangy sour funk hits the tongue up front and causes the tongue to salivate in a big way. Not much malt underneath to speak of, spicy, and a little herbally. The spicy/herbal side does remind me of a Belgian style IPA, with the addition of a moderate citrus bitter finish that lingers with a dry brett-like finish.

M - This beer is too thin for my liking but considering the Saison style, that's how it should be.

O - This is a well brewed beer, enjoyable, and light bodied. I would love to see JP thicken this beer up a little and up the ABV.

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Photo of ncfranklin
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle with a 04/2011 dating.

A: Murky rust brown to orange. Big light tan head that's quite frothy. Carbonation bubbles are present and adequate.

S: Belgian funk typical of a saison with fruit of apple, pear, grape, and some underlying vinegar. No hoppiness really present in the nose.

T: Surprisingly bitter. Grassy hoppiness up front, which must be quite fresh because it doesn't hold back. The funk is more of a base underneath to this, with some slight grainy qualities.

M: Medium body, with a light amount of dryness.

O: Quite hoppy Saison. The grassy qualities are strong, and mix well with the earthiness of the saison. Maybe it should have set for awhile to give it a little more balance.

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Photo of FanofHefe
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled 4-15-2011. Poured into a Duvel tulip. Cloudy, amber body with a huge 4-finger white, fluffy head -- massive carbonation. The head retains well and leaves good lacing.

Definitely has the aroma of a Saison - funky yeast is prominent with some tart apple following. Just a hint of sweet malt and a bit of hops.

Again, the flavor is typical of a saison with the expected funky yeast flavor, but a little bit of hoppiness changes the landscape a little. A bit of tart light fruit blends into the flavor.

Light to medium mouthfeel. Not my favorite JP beer, but an interesting experience nonetheless.

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Photo of PerHops
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A- Lots and lots of carbonation! Have to pour about 6 ounces (at the most) at a time. Poured into a large snifter. I would say 50/50 body to head for the first 90 seconds, or so. Head eventually settles down to about an inch of whispy foam.

S- Lemons, barnyard funk and some minerals.

T- Bone dry. A little bit of a metalic, copper flavor. Some earthy tobacco and spice notes. Nice big bitter finish. Did not expect that one.

M- Exceptional. This is how I want a sip to feel like after a long day at the "office".

O- Less sour than I was hoping. In the same breath, as good as I could have hoped it would be. This is a quality beer and very unique, at that.

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Photo of JizackFH
4.28/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this the other day while BA was down for maintenance.
Review taken from notes.

A - This beer pours a nice orangish copper color. It has a big 3-finger white head on it. The head has awesome retention, and it leaves behind a lot of sticky lace on the glass.

S - It has a nice floral hop smell up front, as well as some barnyard hay and spices. There is also a little bit of fruit and some yeastiness.

T - The tastes starts off with some nice somewhat sweet maltiness. There is a very nice hop presence , spices, and a little bit of barnyard funkiness to it. There is also a nice earthy quality to it. The finish left some lingering spice and hop bitterness in the mouth.

M - This has a medium body and medium carbonation. It goes down very easy, and has an awesome creamy feel to it. It is just so velvety and smooth. It is also earthy and has some hop bitterness to it, as well as bit of tingly spiciness. I found this to be quit refreshing.

O - This has great drinkability. It was hard to put the glass down. Overall, I thought this was a great beer, and a good representation of the style. This is a great anytime beer, but I especially think it goes well in warm weather. I definitely recommend trying it.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured out as a hazy golden yellow brew. The head was pretty vigorous and lasted quite a while. The smell of the beer was pretty sour and I guess there might have been some hops in the distance. The taste was more sour I thought than hoppy. The hops might have enhanced the tartness of the beer. The mouthfeel wasn't too bad, it felt like it was on the medium side. This was decent in my opinion.

Revisit 7-27-11: paired with a flat iron steak entive salad. It really brought this beer back to what I think it was supposedto be like. No sour quality at this point. The taste of the beer almost had an earthy vanilla flavor to it. Very impressive pairing at the Trapp Door.

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Photo of brc
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip. Half was frothy white head which stays billowy and cavernous for many minutes. Beautiful. Cloudy amber liquid with some orange color.

Smells of lemongrass, fruits and flowers - a wisp of springtime.

Tastes fairly mild for its name, though it's complex. Piney and herbal with a slightly bitter kick, with some sweetness underneath. Slightly lemony.

Dry and very filling mouthfeel.

A lovely find.

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Photo of jmunsters
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a pint glass.

A- Pours a deep amber, almost brown color. Enormous amount of head that dissipates very slowing. Lacing clings to the glass from pour through drinking.

S- Citrus: Grapefruit, a bit of lemon. Spice: Nutmeg and cloves. If you've had a Jolly Pumpkin beer before I would call it "Jolly Pumpkin spices".

T- A pretty big rush of citrus and spices up front fades to a fairly malty end. A hint of sour, but nothing at all like most of the rest of their lineup.

M- Quite thin actually. I was expecting something a bit more full from the smell and taste, but it was quite thin, well-carbonated.

O- I've enjoyed everything I've ever had from Jolly Pumpkin. I love the sour beers, but this one is not that. It is as it's billed. A citrusy and hoppy farmhouse. It's nice, and it's refreshing, but I'll probably go with another offering from them next time I'm looking for a Jolly Pumpkin brew.

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Photo of habanosdarklord
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle date of 4-15-11

Poured into a Riedel Burgundy wine glass.

Looks great for a Farmhouse. Nothing to get too excited about though. Typical, maybe darker than usual. Smells of orange orange rind, bannana, clove, malt, and some sourness. Rich, complex nose with a "fresh" sense about it. I really enjoy the aroma of Jolly beers, there is a signature smell to them that's great. Smells great for a Farmhouse. Taste is on board with the smell. Starts off with a great citrus flavor, lemon maybe. Great creamy mouthfeel, good carbonation as well. I pick up some "green" on the palate as well. By "green" I mean herb and green vegetal. Not a bad flavor though. Mostly on the finish of this beer. Slight dank note to this beer as well, along the lines of grassy. If you like farmhouse ales this is a great offering. Complex, interesting, refreshing, all around nice beer. Get it if you can.

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Photo of Naugros
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm having fun with this beer. I poured it into a tulip and it immediately turned to mostly suds. So I let it settle and came back and saw that the receding head left behind a massive amount of lace...lace isn't the right word...the head clung to everything and just settled into itself and had become dense. So I poured more in to see if it would rise about the glass rim and it rose and seemed to open like a flower due to the curvature of the glass. Really cool. I swear you could use the portion of the head stuck to the glass for spray-in insulation. The beer? Oh yeah, there's beer in here too. Hazy orangey-brown.

It smells like what they describe it to be...a mix between a saison and Belgian-style IPA. Herbs and spices dominate first...some from the hops and some from the yeast strain. Kind of like rhubarb, marjoram and black pepper. Nothing I'd ever put together in a dish, but it's intriguing here.

A citrus (bitter orange?) element that I had not got in the nose was the first thing to greet my tongue. The black pepper is still pretty prevalent as an aftertaste and the herbs still play around in the background. As with a lot of highly hopped beers, the malts are hard to pick out, but it does make a showing when you burp. This is one of my favorite methods for finding hidden flavors, mostly for its effectiveness, but also for the entertainment value. The burp gave me some light caramel against a little earthiness.

I've only had two Jolly Pumpkin Ales and this is my favorite so far. Definitely better than the La Roja. My brother kept trying to get me to try them again and my wife accidentally bought me a bottle, so what the hell? I'm glad for both.

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Photo of
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Hazy pale amber with a huge frothy white head that lasts forever. Leaves nice lacing as it drinks down.

Smell - Sour barnyard funk, lemon, spicy and grassy hops, mineral.

Mouthfeel - Well carbonated, soft, a bit chalky.

Taste - Echoes the smell, but with more hops character. Grass, spice and even a little lemon upfront, followed by nice bracing bitterness in the middle, with a soft, dry mineral finish that has a touch of tartness.

This is a great beer. It actually reminds me a little of Orval, one of my favourites.

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Photo of Gobzilla
3.66/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: poured orangish brown in color with brown highlights and had a dense 2 finger head leaving plenty of frothy lacing sticking to the glass.

S: upfront was really citrusy with some tart notes, hop character but did have some brett aroma as well. after a few whiffs I was able to sniff out some spice notes.

T: The tart flavor was more prominent on the palate alongside spice, bretty, citrusy, hoppy notes and a touch of caramel on the backend.

M: The brew was medium in body with a good amount of carbonation which had spice, bretty, citrusy, mild hoppy, tart and slight bitter dry finish.

D: it was very easy to drink considering it was an ESB but was not as hoppy as anticipated but was still decent.

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

Can’t believe I haven’t reviewed this. One of the few JP beers I’ve only had a handful of times.

Appearance – Pours a lovely golden color into my tulip with loads of white frothy head that, twenty + minutes later, still is there, and has left big chunky lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell – Lots of grassy, floral aromas mixed with spices, hops, and the typical JP funk. I love how the hops and funk mix together so well.

Taste – As the beer description states, this is like Bam Bière on steroids. More hops and malts, and it can be shown. The flavor is quite similar to the aroma, in that there is quite a bit of floral and grassy characteristics – almost dominating to be honest. There is a bitter hoppy flavor that pushes its way through as the sip continues, and then the classic JP barnyard funk of wet hay, must, and leather finishes up the flavors. Not much malt backbone in the least – mainly the dominating floral and grassy qualities mixed with the hoppy funk.

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, bubbly carbonation, finishes dry.

Overall – Another great beer from JP. While I do admit I prefer the regular Bam over this, I will still pick this up every year when it comes out because it is just so unique in how the flavor profile of barnyard funk and grassy, floral hops intermix. Cheers!

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Photo of rapidsequence
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle. $12 from Bruisin Ales.

Appearance: The body of the beer is a somewhat hazy dark orange color. The head and lacing are second to none. The thickest, creamiest, rockiest head with furry lacing all over my La Chouffe tulip.

Smell: Its got a nice tartness and barnyard funkiness with wet hay and stable aromas. Lemon and grass. Spicy yeast phenolics aren't like cloves, but almost like bandaid without seeming off. A little sweet apple and pear and a whiff of underlying pale malt.

Taste: Hops come through much more in the flavor. Grassy, spicy, and bitter. Much less funk in the flavor, but it goes well with the hops, as does the tart lemon flavor. Nice crisp, dry finish.

Mouthfeel: The beer is highly carbonated, but still soft rather than sharp. I love the dryness from high attentuation and how the carbonation and bitterness accentuate it.

Overall: This is close to being really great. I love the idea of a hoppy saison, but this one has too much bitterness, and not enough good hops flavor. The bitterness covers up the funk and tart. Good, and different, but needs a tweak.

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Photo of metter98
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy yellowish amber in color and has a moderate amount of carbonation. It poured with a finger high dense off white head that has excellent retention properties and consistently left a layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: There are moderate earthy aromas of spices and yeast in the nose along with some notes of sourness. The sour aromas become stronger as the beer warms up.
T: Like the smell, the initial taste is quite spicy; however the sourness is stronger and persists into the finish. Notes of the underlying grainy malts are also detectable.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and a bit dry on the palate with a high amount of carbonation.
O: The spiciness and dryness make the beer feel rather refreshing and the sourness adds a unique twist. Drinking a full bottle of this was a breeze.

Note: Batch 763, Bottled March 30, 2011

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Photo of ehammond1
2.9/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

On Tap

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

A hazy auburn. Bubbling white head. Nice lacing.

Incredibly tart and tangy. Spicy and biting yeast. Really nice...

...though the flavor seems off. It's way too bitter, and not in a pleasant way. It hides everything else in the beer, and I'm sure there's a lot of wonderful funk, but it's all hidden by this murky, muddy one-note, unpleasant bitterness.

Medium bodied. Highly carbonated.

Perhaps a good beer somewhere hidden behind an unpleasant, murky, dirty tasting bitterness. An unfortunate miss.

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Photo of Bendurgin
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Andy shared this one with me. Full looking honey amber colored body with a big creamy beige head. Nice retenion here. It's been sitting in the glass for a while now and I've still got a solid cap. Really nice soapy lace.

Lots of grassy hops right up front on this one. A little bit of lemon grass; certainly a bit tart in the aroma. A little bit of white pepper in the flavor but still a good amount of lemongrass and grassy hops in this.

A bit dry on the feel. Very crisp and light bodied here. But to reidderate, a little dry on the finish and a little sour. Cool beer here. I like this one is interesting to try; as are most Jolly Pumpkin beers.

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Photo of andrewinski1
3.68/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip. Nice light amber color with a touch of haze. The head is about 2 inches and leaves a lot of sticky lacing.

The aroma is slightly sweet and malty with a heavy dose of lemongrass from the extra hops and the signature Jolly Pumpkin Yeast.

The taste is full of nice peppery hoppy zestyness. The funky yeast flavor is very subdued relative to other Jolly Pumpkin beers.

This is light and crisp. This is quite refreshing on this warm summer night.

I like this one. The hops are noticeable and well integrated. Drink fresh.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.36/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Provisions

A: The beer pours a cloudy amber color with a big off-white head.

S: A mild to moderate tartness with notes of apples and lemon peel. A mild spice to the beer with a nice breadiness and sweetness. Some earthy and floral notes with just a little bit of oak character.

T: Unfortunately, the flavor is far too bitter. The bitterness and very high carbonation drown out the other flavors. Negligible tartness, which just isn't right for a Jolly Pumpkin beer. Floral and earthy tones as well as some light grass and oak.

M: Medium in body with a lot of carbonation.

O: This was a rare miss by Jolly Pumpkin to me. I don't think I'll bother with this one again.

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Photo of Kinsman
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark hazy orange body with a super sticky and rocky white head.

Slightly tart cherry note and some musty funk show off the Brett in the aroma. Spicy and a bit lemony as well.

Moving onto taste, this one take sa definite departure from the norm with a wide array flavors from all aspects of the beer. Hops provide some citrusy lemon notes white the yeast provides peppery spice and musty/earthy funk. Pale malts provide some biscuity background notes. Finishes with a slightly tart and sour note that was a bit unexpected for the style.

Mouthfeel is crisp with a rather lively carbonation. Overall, a tasty and rather unique saison. Brett character plays a much stronger role in this beer than most saisons but not enough for me to confuse this with a sour/wild ale.

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Photo of mothman
3.35/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Batch 373 - 3-17-11

Pours 1/2 finger of white head. Good retention with some lace rings. Color is a hazed autumn gold.

Aroma: Floral, herbal, and grassy. Fairly malty. Bready.

Taste: Very bready. More malts show here. Floral as well with a lot of grassy hops. Some light spices mixed in. A touch of oak as well.

Mouthfeel: Fairly bitter. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends kind of sticky.

Overall, a decent beer, but a bit to floral and bitter. Decent drinking. Doesn't really fit the saison category too well, but it's fine.

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Photo of Sammy
3.92/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A further interesting JP. Cherry smell. Good significant sourness in the taste. The smell is hay and garass. Citrus and pine. Dark brown coloured body and bresh. The famyard is in the finish.Thanks ken for sharing. Good drinkability, slight acididty but only to those novices in alcohol.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.34/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is one of the best looking pours I"ve seen. Used my Chimay glass and the head is what wowed me. Off-brown/tan, creamy, rocky, great lacing. Yum!

For a saison the aroma misses the mark, but still not bad. It's more of a sour than spice blend. Not that I mind, but when I was craving a saison, this isn't what was expected.

Not nearly as complex and delicious as Bam (but of course, not many are). I think this beer is predominately yeast, water and hops. Malt is gone after a very brief appearance by some biscuit. Some spice surfaces and is beat down by sour, same with some earthy and citrus hops.

Not a bad beer at all and quite drinkable. Misses on the style marked here

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.52/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Drank at Craft last Thursday. Pours a mixture of dark yellow and light amber with ample frothy head. Good zesty hop presence, not dry hopped ipa like, but hoppy nonetheless. Floral and mildly citrus.

Taste, hops didn't come through as much, bitterness definitely did, carbonation was up on this one. Very dry. Didn't come across anything I would call anything beyond very mildly funky or sour from this, at this point I was realizing I was having a very different beer from Jolly Pumpkin, but closer to par for everyone else. Didn't pick up really any brett from the beer. Was more like one of those imperial pilsners if anything.

At $9 a bottle, its not worth it.

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E. S. Bam from Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
3.81 out of 5 based on 451 ratings.
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