Wychwood

WYCHWOOD BREWERY

“Wychwood Brewery is an English brewery founded by Paddy Glenny in 1983, and located in the town of Witney, Oxfordshire in theUnited Kingdom. It is now owned by Refresh UK, a subsidiary of Marston’s. The company’s flagship brand is Hobgoblin, a 5.2%abv ale, described by Wychwood as a “Ruby ale”

www.wychwood.co.uk

Year-Round/Seasonals:

BAH HUMBUG: 82 Points

I dislike Christmas too!

I dislike Christmas too!

This Christmas Ale is released seasonally in December in 500 ml. bottles.

Brewer’s Description: “At least you can take refuge from the Christmas shopping with this rich, fruity spiced ale guaranteed to make even the most seasoned party pooper smile.”

My Description: Most Christmas Ales are winter warmers and strong stouts, which make for good sippers. Wychwood’s version is a lot lighter, which won’t necessarily warm you up but makes for a good Christmas session beer. It pours a good sized, light beige colored head with a slightly weak retention level and it leaves behind little lacing. The aroma is pleasant but not too exciting with notes of toffee and bread along with a deep malt presence. Bah Humbug is medium bodied with a slightly lower carbonation level and a semi-dry finish. The flavor profile begins with a noticeable malt backbone along with notes of toffee, cinnamon, and hints of dark fruits and bananas. The aftertaste is minimally bitter and rather bland. The flavor notes in this beer feel thin and fade too quickly. It is best served around 50°F and pairs nicely with roasted duck, baked ham, or pumpkin pie.

ABV: 5%  Color: Light Garnet  Sweetness: 2.5/10  Bitterness: 2/10

GINGER BEARD: 67 Points

Weak Representation

Weak Representation

This Ginger Beer is available seasonally in 500 ml. bottles.

Brewers’ Description: “Back off it’s Ginger Beard, he’s a fiery character and his beer is no different. This amber ale is infused with fiery root ginger to deliver a spicy finish with a bit of bite. Try it if you dare!”

My Description: This beer may be smooth and easy drinking but that is because it is low in alcohol and tastes like a soda. It begins with a good sized, off-white colored head that fades to a thin film leaving behind a minimal amount of lacing. The aroma is dominated by a big ginger candy note that is accompanied by a hint of malt and English hops. It almost smells soda like which is a slight turn off. Ginger Beard is light/medium bodied with a moderate carbonation level and a semi-dry finish. The flavor profile is decent enough with notes of pale malts, herbal notes, and of course ginger but it all tastes like a liquid candy. This ale is on the sweeter side with a hint of bitterness in the finish and a touch of spice. Overall, this beer is more of a novelty for those with a sweet tooth. It is best served around 45°F and pairs nicely with baked ham or smoked pork shoulder.

ABV: 4.2%  Color: Orange Amber  Sweetness: 3/10  Bitterness: 2/10

HOBGOBLIN: 78 Points

Flagship Ale

Flagship Ale

This English Style ESB is available year-round in 500 ml. bottles.

Brewer’s Description: “Traditionally craft brewed with Chocolate & Crystal malts and a blend of Styrian, Goldings & Fuggles hops to produce a full-bodied, Ruby beer that delivers a delicious chocolate toffee malt flavour, balanced with a rounded moderate bitterness and an overall fruity, mischievous character. What’s the matter Lagerboys… Afraid you might taste something?”

My Description: This beer is smooth, easy drinking, and has its moments but for a flagship beer this is not very memorable. It begins with a good sized, beige colored head that lasts for a good amount of time and leaves behind a noticeable amount of lacing. The aroma is off putting for me at least, there are notes of roasted malt and an underlying caramel presence but there is something else in there that I did not enjoy. I don’t think the aroma notes blended cleanly together. Hobgoblin is medium bodied with a moderate carbonation level and a dry finish. The body and flavor profile is somewhat thin and not very exciting. Roasted notes and caramel are apparent along with a slightly toasted flavor note. A touch of fruit can be detected from time to time and the aftertaste is slightly bitter. I wasn’t necessarily expecting tons of hop flavors but was hoping for at least some hop notes. The bitterness can be detected but hardly any hop flavors came through. It is best served around 50°F and pairs nicely with beef stew, grilled sausage, or char-grilled vegetables.

ABV: 5.2%  Color: Reddish/Brown  Sweetness: 2/10  Bitterness: 2.5/10

SCARECROW: 75 Points

Nothing scary here

Nothing scary here

This English Pale Ale is available year-round in 500 ml. bottles.

Brewer’s Description: “Scarecrow is a wonderfully refreshing Golden Ale evoking lazy, hazy days of summer in golden meadows & ripe barleyfields. A winning combination of tart citric fruit flavours perfectly balanced by a rich biscuity maltiness and rounded off with a spicy bittersweet finish.”

My Description: Scarecrow is smooth and refreshing but does not separate itself from other average pale ales. It pours a good sized, white colored head with a decent retention level and it leaves behind a minimal amount of lacing. The aroma is on the light side with notes of pale malts, honey, and a hint of floral hops; it is nothing special but doesn’t turn you away either. Scarecrow is medium bodied with a moderate carbonation level and a dry finish. This ale has a good balance of flavors, it is slightly bitter but a good amount of malt sweetness comes through also. Flavor notes consist of pale malts and biscuit as well as some mineral notes and a hint of hops. Once it warms up a bit, a citric acid note comes through on the finish that is not very pleasing. It is best served around 45°F and pairs nicely with fish & chips, mushroom burgers, or a sausage pizza.

ABV: 4.7%  Color: Golden  Sweetness: 2.5/10  Bitterness: 2.5/10

WYCHCRAFT: 83 Points

The Blonde Witch

The Blonde Wych

This English Blonde Ale is available sporadically is 500 ml. bottles.

Brewer’s Description: “A pale golden potion with delicate red hues, WychCraft has a heady burst of fresh citrus aroma derived from three infusions of Styrian golding hops. A sprig of gentle warming malty flavour finishes with a dry biscuit note and a counterpoise of bitterness.
WychCraft’s innovative new recipe includes adding three infusions of Styrian Goldings hops to the copper, to create a highly aromatic brew, bursting with succulent citrus and lime hop character. A light base of delicately flavoured English Fuggles hops, and the use of a lager malt, help retain the signature hop character and create a wonderfully aromatic and fragrant summertime beer. Beguiling to the end.”

My Description: This makes for a great pub ale because it is low in alcohol, easy drinking, and the taste isn’t half bad either. It pours a decent, white colored head that fades rather quickly to a thin film that holds a few minutes leaving behind a minimal amount of lacing. The aroma smells fairly nice with pale malt notes taking center stage accompanied by hints of honey and noble hops. Wychcraft is medium bodied with a moderate carbonation level and a semi-dry finish. The flavor profile follows the nose closely with pale malts dominating with noticeable honey notes, some biscuit notes, and a faint lemon note that develops as the beer warms. The aftertaste is minimally bitter but enough to balance out this ale. A times this beer can be a bit dull but it doesn’t get boring. It is best served around 45°F and pairs nicely with fish & chips, grilled white fish, or roasted potatoes.

ABV: 4.5%  Color: Gold/Orange Hues  Sweetness: 2.5/10  Bitterness: 2.5/10