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Wailing Wench - Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.

Not Rated.
Wailing WenchWailing Wench

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

411 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 411
Reviews: 304
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 11.65%
Wants: 37
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd. visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: HappyHourHero on 10-23-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 411 | Reviews: 304 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Slackerville:
Photo of Slackerville
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Classified as a strong ale, Wailing Wench has a lot going on. Lots of breweries are making Cascadians and Black IPAs these days but this is a different beer. It can be summarized by a strong hop aroma, aggressive malt and ester flavors in the middle, then finishes hop bitter and alcoholic. Something for everyone and a fine beer to lay down in bottles for a few months without losing too much overall flavor.

Middle Ages has a wide range of beers with good northeast distribution in bars and 22 oz bottles. The Wench has been one of their staples for years, a great beer for those craving hops in the winter.

Slackerville, Jun 02, 2013
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to my mother in law bringing down some NY beers from Buffalo just in time for the Rose Bowl,anyways what a pour deep amber with a huge fluffy head that takes its time to settle leaving globs of lace.Aromas of citrius,pine and some butteriness in there,pretty well rounded.Big citruisy hop flavor up front but there is some great balance with a lightly sweet maltiness that kicks in late to make this a hop accented brew with a huge maltiness that almost keeps up.Mouthfeel is very creamy and how drinkable for 9% I have it nearly gone in less than ten minutes.I have been drinking a few west coast IPA's and hop tilted brews and this east coaster is the best in my opinion.

oberon, Jan 02, 2005
Photo of JMD71
3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a deep reddish, amber brown with a nice frothy head. Head ertention good & lacing throughout the glass.

Aroma: The aroma permeates with hops & malt. Really evident this is a highly hopped ale. Flowery hop aroma lends an alluring side to this.

Taste: Good malt character offset with perfect hop balance. Bittering hops cut any sweetness of the malt. Love the hops! Not too sweet, not too bitter flavor. The bitter aftertaste lingers a bit too long though....

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. Starts crisp, but finishes slightly cloying.

Drinkability: This is a good one to enjoy slowly. Not one to drink if thirsty & looking for refreshment. The flavors in this deserve to be considered slowly over time...

Comments: I enjoyed this beer & am a fan of the style. I've had better, but still enjoyable. The one downside was the overly bitter aftertase which remained longer than I would have preferred.

JMD71, Jun 03, 2006
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.38/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

An interesting label on this one to say the least. The Wench pours a deep brownish red with a nice two finger khaki head. This is one super dark double IPA that leaves nice lacing as the head recedes. Big piney/citirc hop nose with an interesting buttery caramel background.

First sip hits upfront with a nice bitter sticky pine hoppiness along with hints of citrus fruit. It's very well balanced with a nice caramel maltiness, accentuated by warm buttery notes. A damn fine double IPA that seperates itself from the pack.

There's a very nice body here along with a smooth, creamy taste that goes down easily. I could have a couple of bombers of this on the weekend and be content. Kudos to Middle Ages and to dmeadows for allowing me the opportunity to sample this one.

orbitalr0x, Feb 04, 2005
Photo of blitz134
3.6/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark amber in color, not what I was expecting, but always nice to see something new. Poured with a fairly large head, probably due to a little over aggressive pour. Head reduced to a couple of lumps and then hung around for a while. The spotted lacing on the glass was nice.

The aroma is quite powerful, I could begin to smell all the hops as soon as I barely broke the seal on the cap. The smell is over the top hops of all sorts. I pick up an overall fruity smell which tends to make me think of apricot and maybe some oranges or tangerines. There is a bit of pine and straw as well.

The taste was a bit disappointing to me. Nothing like what the smell alluded to and quite lacking in any hard hitting hop flavor. I haven’t had an IPA or Pale Ale in 2 weeks and it still doesn’t faze my taste buds with any kind of over the top bitterness. The flavor I do pick up is mainly resin in nature with pine accents, not the fruit found in the aroma. Others seems to think this one is balanced with malts better than some I2PAs. While it might be, I seem to feel that this style should be tilted more towards the bitter side of the scale. Or maybe that is what I have come to expect with this style...who knows, but I like bitterness and numb tastebuds. Alcohol nuances are nonexistent.

Mouth feel is decent, somewhere in between thin and medium, not oily typical of many I2PAs. Flavor lingers for a bit. Drinkability is decent as well due to the balanced nature.

blitz134, Jan 04, 2005
Photo of JasonA
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark scotchy carmel. Very little head, some lacing into bubbly islands of carbonation.

Smells yummy malty. Minimal hops, some ABV present.

Minimal malt. Strange hoppy middle and finish. Why is it all 'American' styles simply mean adding hops to brew styles?

ABV bite. Not balanced with the ABV vs Malt and hops. Something not right with the hop presistence.

All in all, im not sure Im qualified to review some of the MA Brews. I find my pallete cant sense out the positives that the beer typically gets from most reviewers. Im sure this has to do with not having the ability to appreciate the style. Sooo ... sorry for the low rating.

JasonA, Mar 20, 2009
Photo of xgoodyx
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

xgoodyx, Oct 29, 2012
Photo of sponberg
4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've tried this more times than I care to think about - on tap, on cask, and in growlers - and now I can write a review as I've figured the Wench out. She's an auburn beauty - no, she's not from 10 miles west of Syracuse, but she is a stunning dark ruby red with a thin persistent offwhite head. The aroma hides the bitter hop attack to come so well - faint diacetyl (to me - your diacetyl mileage may vary) with toasty, cocoa, coffee, and coarse hop notes.

I love the way this beer attacks the palate. It immediately goes for the back of the tongue and slaps it around a bit, then brings its bitter slightly roasted malty attack around to the front of the mouth for a quick tour. The bitterness is big-time in this one - if you like hop bitterness, you'll probably appreciate this beer. There is malt sweetness and a bit of diacetyl in the background, but the flavors that emerge from the melding of malt and hop - piney, bitter chocolate, faint coffee - are the real story here. Finishes bitter, slightly astringent, with faint brown sugar malty sweetness in the background. More? I've cracked another pint writing this review.

On cask, this beer is simply heaven, as the softer carbonation balances the bitterness. Well worth seeking out.

These guys... does anyone else do this much this well with the Ringwood yeast???

sponberg, Jun 10, 2004
Photo of generallee
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 1pt. 6oz bottle into a tulip glass. The label lists the abv at 8%. There is no freshness date.

Appearance: The body has a deep coppery amber color with a light haze. Its head rose up tall, thick and clingy. It had a light tan color and great retention. This all made for nice sticky lacing on the glass.

Smell: There is a bold mix of floral/citrusy hops and sweet malt with a hint of butterscotch and dark fruit.

Taste/Palate: It has a firm foundation of sweet fruity, bready and caramel maltiness with a slight touch of butterscotch. Blending into this is a firm backing of pungent floral citrus and earthy hop bitterness. It finishes with a sticky hop bitterness clinging to the palate. It feels firm and full bodied with just enough carbonation to keep it moving easily over the tongue.

Notes: This is definitely a well made and very enjoyable beer.

generallee, Apr 06, 2011
Photo of Doomcifer
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Doomcifer, Aug 01, 2014
Photo of Jason
3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Beeguy for the sample ...

22 oz brown bomber with no freshness date.

A- Big froth, lots of tan colored head and the retention is superb. The bronze tinged brown hue shows some clarity.

S- Faint buttery note and thick malt sweetness resembles cake batter. The hop aroma is quite fragrant with floral and citric tones.

T&M - Big rush of floral, sticky herbal and citric hops. Very malty with a solid body and lush crispness. Tad buttery with more herbal hop flavor in the middle. Warming alcohol and a dark fruit flavor linger throughout after each sip. Bitterness kicks in middle to end with a slow tingle and a earthy dryness.

D- Big time fall / winter ale. Sipping brew all the way. Warming and flavorful and a easy paring with some mild goat cheddar.

Jason, Nov 20, 2005
Photo of merlin48
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle courtesy of OldTex29, pours a clear copper body topped by a large almond hued head. Excellent retention is complimented by huge sheet lacing.

Aroma is bold. Caramel and toffee maltiness is met by an enormous hoppiness of orange, citrus and pine. Nice!

Medium body and carbonation.

Taste is dominated by an assertive hops bitterness that is orange, pine, and grapefruit. Maltiness is equally ambitious and serves up some chewy caramel. Finishes with a citrusrind bitterness that follows into the aftertaste.

Aggressive hoppiness here borders on the American barleywine and/or DIPA category but nicely enjoyable as an American strong ale.

merlin48, Jul 15, 2007
Photo of Billolick
4.08/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bomber bottle, no freshness dating to be found. Pours a heady shade of dark auburn, quite clear, raising a tan head. This leaves a lot of stringy lace as well as sheets of lacing. Sweat, malty and resiny nose. So far so good! medium bodied. Creamy, buttery mouthfeel. Notes of vanilla, maple, leather, just a wee bit thin on the malt, but comes through with a resiny, pine finish. Strong, flavorful, complex and well crafted ale. Well worth seeking out.

Billolick, Dec 01, 2004
Photo of warriorsoul
4.43/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to HappyHourHero for this one.
Finally getting around to this bomber...served at cellar temperature.
Pours a real dark bronze color w/ two full fingers of cloud-like tan beige head. Lacing is thick, foamy, and has nice sustaining qualities.
Aromas filled w/ caramel, butterscotch, fruity hops just begging for attention...amazing they can get lost in the plethora of scents going on here.
The taste is fantastic...a malt bomb w/ plenty of hops to keep its definition as a double. Despite all the malt, this one is not sweet at all. It's mouthfeel is fairly thick, but average for its style IMO. Nothing lingering here...just a very refreshing, bitter finish.
Alcohol does make an appearance in the end, but does not distract from the experience...actually, keeps you cogniscent of drinking too much of this gem.
Has to be one of the most drinkable IIPA's I have tried to date...gets better and better as it warms up.

warriorsoul, Apr 26, 2005
Photo of jakester
4.45/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this as a single at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. I drank it in a goblet.

Pours a beautiful garnet red with a two finger head of light tan foam. The head falls to a coating and a ring, with great lacing. Carbonation looks medium.

Aroma is earthy, fruity and spicy, with notes of molasses, vanilla, spicy hops, plums and currants. This has a wonderful smell. Alcohol comes through as it warms. Pride of Ringwood?

The flavor is WOW! Big hop bitterness, sweet, dark, rich malts, earthy/spicy hops out the ass. Starts out sweet, but quickly dries out a little. Strong vanilla, dark brown sugar, and fruits like plums and currants. There really is a lot going on here, very delicious. Aftertaste is molasses, earthy hops, and bitterness.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, with a tongue curdling hop character. Residual sweetness is medium, and the beer is medium bodied. Dries out during mid-sip.

This is one outstanding brew. Wonderful combination of flavors; great hoppiness, perfect malt backbone, nice spiciness, and well hidden alcohol. Highly recommended.

jakester, Nov 20, 2005
Photo of SkinnyElvis
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was surprised that this was classifed on BA as a strong ale and not an IPA. Has the buttery character associated with Ringwood. Fairly hoppy and smooth. Very good in a bottle but even better on draft. The Wench is a solid beer that I would recommend.

SkinnyElvis, Nov 22, 2006
Photo of virinow
3/5  rDev -24.1%

virinow, Jun 21, 2013
Photo of far333
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Caramel colored, clear liquid, with an inch-high head of light beige lumpy meringue. As the head slowly settles it leaves oily rings and legs reaching up the sides of the glass.

Full aroma of tangerine and floral hops with some malty undertones.

Perhaps the hoppiest non-IPA I've had thus far. Initial flavor is citrus hops, some pine and grapefruit rind, but not overly piney. A fine malt base rides beneath, subtle caramelly malt, some brown sugar, a cherry tang, and some smoke.

Mouthfeel is initially slick,but has a quick sparkle of carbonation following shortly afterward. Good beer, pretty drinkable for the big flavor and ABV.

far333, Feb 25, 2007
Photo of nnthom266
1.75/5  rDev -55.7%

nnthom266, Jul 01, 2012
Photo of DagFishHead
4.55/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Many thanks to HappyHourHero for getting the ball rolling on this incredible brew... and by the way, his review is right on the money.
Appearance: Rich ruby/brown with a full, tan Middle Ages head.
Smell: Mega hops, yet also quite malty... outstanding, IPA +++
Taste: Perfect balance of huge hops, huge malt, and a loving alcohol warmth. As I've said, this is a BIG beer, but with a very well controlled intensity.
Mouthfeel is huge, chewy and an absolute delight...balance, balance, balance.
Drinkability... I finished off a whole growler over about a 2 1/2 hour period and was left a little buzzed, but wanting more. This is a must try...an outstanding example of the Imperial IPA style. More than holds it's own against Rogue I2PA...looking forward to comparing to Dreadnaught.
My understanding is that this brew has a limited availability.

DagFishHead, Oct 24, 2003
Photo of IntriqKen
3.55/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Now how can you NOT try a brew with that pic on the label???
Pours a medium dark amber with a full two fingers of thick tan head that never melts...seriously...this sticky head stays forever.
Aromas are fresh hops as it should be ....fresh hops a touch of sweet malt...but a tingle of hops in the nose always.
Mouth is filled with slightly toasted amber malt that gives way to a citrus hops leaving you with a tangy dryness in the mouth for an aftertaste.
Pleasant, but unfortunately indistinct in the type of hops or the sense of citrus one feels.
I would like a bit more definition with this brew.
All in all good...could have been great with fresher, more distinct hops,.

IntriqKen, Dec 10, 2006
Photo of Andragos
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%

Andragos, Dec 12, 2012
Photo of tastybeer
4.45/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ruby red-brown with clarity. Off white/tanish head has a nice creamy +oily look to it. Lacing beigns to form right off the bat, and great retention. Aroma is a satisfying combo of juicy fresh citric, floral and piney resinous hops and buttery bread dough. Dark sweet fruits are evident with a toffee, caramel malt softness. Taste begins with resinous chewy coniferous, floral, grapefruit rinds, and earthy hops. The hops are the focus, but are back nicely by the buttery dough and slightly sweet malts. Fruit comes through in the transition to the yummy dry bitterness that lasts through the finish. I feel like I'm chewing lightly buttered hops right off the plant. Mmmm. Very easy to drink as an 8% strong ale.

A tasty awesome treat for the senses.

tastybeer, May 02, 2006
Photo of ABokononist
4.75/5  rDev +20.3%

ABokononist, Jul 16, 2012
Photo of asabreed
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: Beautiful dark amber with a frothy off-white, slightly brown or amber head leaving spotty lacing and decent full sheets of foam.

Smell: Big citrus and fruit esters. Leafy, grassy hops, grapefruit, orange, and lemon, along with a bit of granny smith apple sweetness. When it's colder the caramel malts and chocolate flavors are there, though the hops and bitterness and fruit esters dominate as it warms.

Taste: Rich and sweet and sour and bitter fruit esters, citrus, dough, caramel malts, breadiness, strawberries, granny smith apples, and finishes doughy and bitter and citrus.

Mouthfeel: Rich and creamy and medium-bodied and good overall.

Drinkability: Solid for the summer or winter months, but more like a DIPA, which strong ales sometime represent. I could easily make this a session brew, as it's flavorful as hell without being over the top.

asabreed, Sep 04, 2009
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Wailing Wench from Middle Ages Brewing Co., Ltd.
88 out of 100 based on 411 ratings.