New English Brewing Company- San Diego (Sorrento Valley)
New English Brewing Company is located in a business park way up Sorrento Valley Road. It’s close to the end of the road, at that spot where you can park for a hike along the eastern edge of Torrey Pines State Reserve. After hiking, New English Brewing is perfect for cooling off with one of their award-winning beers.
At last month’s Los Angeles International Beer Competition New English took home awards in six beer style categories. Their Zumbar Chocolate Coffee Imperial Stout even won Best of Show. Explorer ESB, the brew I tasted during my visit, won a Silver Medal.
I’ve been drinking English and American ESBs for 30 years, so I know a good one when I taste one. After admiring its appearance and appreciating its aroma, my first sip of Explorer ESB, 5.8 ABV/43 IBUs, confirmed that this ESB is one to rave about:
Copper color with a white foam head and good retention. Aromas are caramel, mint, dark fruit, bread, with hints of apple and pear. Flavors are prune, biscuit, toast, and hop bitterness and malt sweetness are balanced. Mouthfeel is full-bodied with rich malt flavor, astringent, sweet, and has a classic bitter bite and clean, crisp finish. Overall, this beer is true to style. As an ESB lover, I approve. Great bitterness is delightful, start to finish, balanced perfectly with malt sweetness the way it should be.
Pair this brew with soft and hard cheeses like Brie, Swiss, Gouda, Colby, Asiago, etc., and you will be happy. It would also pair well with barbecued meats of any type.