Fuller's Special Edition ESB (Red Diamond)

Fuller's Special Edition ESB (Red Diamond)

Rated 3.420 by BeerPals
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Brewed by Fuller, Smith and Turner Public Limited Company / Fuller's Brewery

Chiswick, London, United Kingdom

Style:  Extra Special Bitter

6.3% Alcohol by Volume

43 International Bittering Units

Availability of this beer is unknown

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Notes from John Keeling, Head Brewer, Fuller’s Griffin Brewery, Chiswick The story of Extra Special Extra Special Bitter (ESESB) - Project code name: Thriller Beer We were developing ideas for a new beer to celebrate Fullers 160th anniversary (this year). We wanted to do an enhanced version of ESB, possibly in both bottle and cask. The bottle would have to be bottle-conditioned, as we feel that is best for flavour, and it seemed that a special version of our most famous beer for Michael Jackson and the Rare Beer Club would fit the bill! We decided to go ahead and produce it a bit ahead of our original plan, and have the bottled version shipped to the states for the club in December. We also decided to release this brew as a cask beer here in England, in September 2005, as the official beer to celebrate our 160th. Whilst this beer was to be special, it still was to be ESB. We therefore kept the original ESB recipe: 91.5% pale ale malt (optic barley variety), 3.5% crystal malt and 5% flake maize, but we decided to push this to the limits and produce a stronger than normal version. We managed to push the gravity from 1054 to 1060, and the alcohol to 6.1%. This should rise to maybe as high as 6.3%, because it is bottle-conditioned. We also changed the hops to 100% Goldings, and doubled the late copper hopping rate. This resulted in a bitterness of 42.55 (the normal ESB target is 34). After fermentation we then dry hopped the ESB in the maturation tank with Goldings. We left the beer in tank for 3 months, and bottled the beer with a count of 0.5 million yeast cells. From the above analysis you can see why the beer will taste hoppier and more bitter than normal. However the beer has a reasonably high gravity of 13.9 to balance this. As with all bottle conditioned beers, it will change and mature during its life. Our “1845” beer normally lasts two years, and many people say that our 1997 Vintage Ale is still at its best. Who knows how long this beer will take to reach its peak – will you have the patience to do the research?

ID: 19908 Last updated 11 months ago Added to database 14 years ago

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Overall Rank4887
Overall Percentile89.2
Style Rank58 of 701
Style Percentile91.7
Lowest Score3.4
Highest Score4.7
Average Score4.050
Weighted Score3.420
Standard Deviation0.000

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2 Member Reviews

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  • STOUTLOVER72 2327 reviews
    rated 3.4 14 years ago

    Aroma: 7 | Appearance: 6 | Mouthfeel: 6 | Flavor: 8 | Overall: 7

    Bottle #00859 - Interesting beer here. While I'm a big fan of Fullers ESB, I wasn't sure what to expect here. Aroma was hopped but very malt forward. Appearance was amber in color with nice conditioning. Mouthfeel was a bit thick for me but still enjoyable. Flavors were oaky, and earthy and a bit salty which I found enjoyable. Overall, I'd say this is a decent beer.

  • ORVALPLEASE 351 reviews
    rated 4.7 14 years ago

    Aroma: 10 | Appearance: 10 | Mouthfeel: 9 | Flavor: 8 | Overall: 10

    Being a big fan of the regular Fuller's ESB I was extremely excited to receive 6 numbered bottles of this beer from Michael Jackson's Rare Beer Club. It was a beautiful amber color with a full creamy head on the pour from bottle #2690. The nose was obviously very hoppy (42.55 IBU) but had a heavy malt presence too. Slight hint of apples also seemed to be present. Very rich flavors on the palate, sweet malt - almost syrupy - stood up fairly well to the extreme, acidic bitterness of the hops. Very strong, bitter aftertaste that lasts until you brush your teeth the next morning. Excellent beer - a new favorite.

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