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King Goblin | Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd

very good
162 Reviews
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King GoblinKing Goblin

Brewed by:
Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
United Kingdom (England) | website

Style: English Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by AEK on 09-26-2010

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Reviews: 162 | Ratings: 438
Photo of Lewnanny
3.7/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Super real nice beer.

IBU is probably zero. The color is a nice reddish brown color.

I really like the smell, but cannot describe it.

and the taste is absolutely nice.

I will have this one again soon.

The 500 ml bottle retailed for 4.35$ (CAD) for a ABV of 6.6%

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Photo of Curiosibeer
4.29/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Another visit to the Siegburg store, another 3 (!!) beers for the collection. Good thing is that there is always a good rotation in relation to what the man has for sale. The first choice was this beauty, the King Goblin Special Reserve. The brewers, Wychwood Brewing Company, says that is produced only during periods of full moon.
It has a beautiful ruby color, with good creamy foam. The aroma is quite hoppy, with hints of ginger and a touch of caramel. The flavor is strong, sweet-sour, fruity and well hopped. The 4 types of hops used in its manufacture are well present in this beer.
It should be served at cellar temperature, between 8 and 12 degrees, in a goblet.

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Photo of stevoj
2.84/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

I was expecting this be better than the Hobgoblin. Bland, slightly sweet and uninteresting. Decent look, as it has a nice head for an English ale, Aroma is caramel and sweet malt, taste is just faintly sweet malt. Taste dissipates quickly, some lingering candy sweetness remains. Disappointed in this.

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Photo of BranfordBound
3.72/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the 0.5L bottle into a pint glass, comes out a dark amber color, ruby highlights, nice frothy head develops that leaves some lacing. Smell is rich, lots of sweetness, deep and bold maltiness. Taste is as expected, big malty sweetness and character up front, booze soaked fruits, finishes dry and bitter but with an unexpected medicinal aftertaste. Body is too heavy and with the aftertaste this ends up as not the greatest. Regular Hobgoblin was much better. Pass!

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.84/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I thought the King Goblin was quite nice and definitely sessionable. It poured a rich amber with white head that did not lace. The scent was pretty not descript....maybe a touch of biscuit. The taste was very nicely balanced with slightly sweet malt backbone. The mouthfeel was medium in body with subtle carbonation. Overall this was a solid beer....I liked it.

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Photo of tekstr1der
4.21/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had many times, not sure how I missed reviewing. Clear copper pour with quickly disappearing off-white top. Aromas are bread and caramel. The malt makes up most of the flavor, very smooth and semi-sweet. Really balanced, with a clean, somewhat dry finish. I really like this stuff.

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Photo of LennyOvies
3.59/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

L- Filtered dark amber body, white head with low persistence.
S- Caramel burnt sugar and malts.
T- Caramel burnt sugar, roasted malts and some alcohol.
F- Medium, slightly smooth.
O- Nice beer, not much to praise.

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Photo of thehyperduck
4.01/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

500 mL bottle from the LCBO; best before Sept 4 2016 and served at cellar temperature. I've had my eye on this one for a while now, but it only recently became available locally.

Pours a deep-hued copper-amber colour, topped off with one inch of creamy, khaki-coloured head. Displays good retention; the head slowly dissipates over a period of time somewhere between five and ten minutes, eventually depositing a solid, even curtain of lacing, and also leaving behind a bubbly, foamy cap and collar. Doughy malt, toffee and Wychwood house yeast are the first things I detect on the nose, with fruity hints of plum, raisin and cherry following closely behind. The hops don't come through as clearly, but seem to have an earthy, leafy vibe to them.

Biscuity, doughy malt and brown sugar sweetness comprise a sturdy flavour backbone, with suggestions of toasted nuts, orchard fruit, dates and raisins providing added complexity. This is all appropriately balanced in the back end by a concentrated dose of tea-leafy, earthy English-style hop bitterness that continues on well into the aftertaste. This is eventually joined by a yeasty, leather-like flavour, as well as a touch of boozy-sweet warmth. It really reminds me of Hobgoblin, though definitely a bit sweeter/boozier. On the more generous side of medium-bodied, with light carbonation levels and a smooth, satisfying mouthfeel that is quite befitting of an English-style strong ale.

Final Grade: 4.01, an A-. Not bad at all - as expected, Wychwood's King Goblin really reminds me of its little brother, Hobgoblin, though this monarch of a strong ale represents an experience that is both more warming and intense, while remaining extremely well-balanced. It's a solid introductory-level English Strong Ale that I'm pleased to try - I think I still prefer its lighter relative by a small margin, but I'll certainly be buying another bottle of this in the near future. Recommended.

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Photo of TheBierdimpfe
3.3/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Veiled dark copper color with a low amount of activity. Creamy and foamy, well defined, light brown 2 finger head, lasting around 10 minutes, with some very good leggings.

Faint aromas of booze, burnt sugar, ginger, bread and butter. Flavors of ester fruits like apple, berries, and grapes with some ginger bread feel and peppercorn, roasted grains with a wood feel and herbal spices. Highly sugary but with a strong bitterness.

Slick full body with prickly carbonation. Medium to strong finish, ending with a vinous fruity earthy feel and lingering herbal spices with some ginger. Thick sugary feel of bubblegum.

Overall a little above average in quality having decent flavors that I find slightly off, and its missing some freshness from a highly boozy, but warming feel. Although well spiced and well balanced, its a little flat and very acidic.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.72/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

500ml bottle, more goblin/elven thematic renderings from this cheeky English brewery. Ooooh - brewed on a full moon, spooky!

This beer pours a clear, medium red-brick amber colour, with three fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and bubbly ecru head, which leaves some decent Swiss cheese patterned lace around the glass as it quickly and evenly subsides.

It smells of bready, doughy caramel malt, lightly biscuity toffee, a hint of treacle, zippy black orchard fruit (maybe some plum, maybe some dried cherry), a touch of that musty under the basement stairs thing, and a dark spirit type of edgy booziness. The taste is grainy and doughy caramel malt, reduced brown sugar, some mildly sozzled dark, indistinct fruitiness, a middling yeasty acridity, pithy nuts, and leafy, earthy, and somewhat grassy hop bitters.

The carbonation is quite light and hard to really corral, what with its underwhelming frothiness, the body an adequate middleweight, and generally smooth, the lame tartness of the fruit, as well as the alcohol perhaps taking things down a peg or so here. It finishes well off-dry, the sturdy caramel & friends malt sweetness carrying on like the village lush, aided (duh) by the geared-up boozy-booze.

Overall, a mostly well-made version of the style, with an elevated ABV and supportive malt structure to keep it from overstepping its bounds. As noted, this is replete with a warming, and full of old-school brewing, er, character, rendering it a suitable tipple as the days grow shorter and Hallowe'en nears.

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Photo of ChrisCage
4.42/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A- Very nice deep copper coloring with red hues in the background and super clear! The carbonation cascades to the top immediately and appears aggressive but really seems to be mellow in the end. The head is exceptional....being two fingers thick and retention is very ideal....eggshell in color! The lacing is nice as well, if not modest.....as always, the artwork, label and bottle contribute in a positive manner to the appearance.

S- The aromas are of modest booziness, bready/fruity smells of alcohol steeped berries and/or dates....somewhat tart best explains this. The alcohol is somewhat rummy yet fresh and perhaps of slight wood. Slightly caramel/molasses in sweetness with an Earthy note on the finish....interesting!

T- There is a medley of flavor happening here....toasty nuts, yeasty bread notes, slightly tart fruits, caramel sweet malts and the finish is of leafy, yet mild hop cones.....smooth Earthiness all around and the alcohol is noticeable but not offensive. Aftertaste is clean, smooth and crisp, which defies the richness of the flavor profile as it sits on the palate.

M/O- Surprisingly, this is light in body, but the flavors make it seem like more....the carbonation is plentiful, and zingy on the palate, yet maintains wee tight bubbles that once they explode, the flavors really dig into the palate! It is well noticed that this was brewed during a full moon.....think of it as a super charged Hobgoblin Ale.....excellent color, great aromas and taste make this another winner from Wychwood....thank you to the mystical world of this brewery!

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Photo of captaincoffee
3.77/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Brown with red highlights, full dense off white head which dissipates quickly, some lacing. Nose is pleasant fruity malt, not much from the hops at all. Taste has those same fruity malts, both light and dark fruit and malt coming through. Some musty and cardboard notes. Bit of sweetness gives it a bigger feel, but still not a big beer. Quite a decent beer, and better than the other Wychwood offerings, but not super special. Would certainly give this another try if I ever saw it on cask...not sure if this one is produced that way or not.

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Photo of DypsoBubble
3.58/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Quite fruity. I think there are a fair amount of esters in this...banana and pear flavours. Quite a rich mouth feel but tends to dissipate into a carbonated bitterness at the back of the tongue. The beer tastes high in alcohol and feels a bit rough round the edges. 'Rocket fuel' comes to mind. It's not subtle but it is fun.

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Photo of pcbnumber1
4.19/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle, poured into glass.

Appearance (Look): Pours a nice clear ruby red to mahogany brown, finger and half frothy head but lost quickly. Decent lacing.

Smell: Earthy. Light caramel aroma.By no means overbearing

Taste: This is where the fun starts. Gorgeous chocolate and crystal malts. Earthy hops. Not overly strong but rich and leaves a lingering delight with a drying bitterness.

Mouthfeel (Feel):Medium to full body, great carbonation. You should be sipping this one.

Overall: A stronger version of the standard brew, but remarkably smooth for all that's going on Perhaps less balanced but the blend of flavouring remains delightful. Teases you for more. One to come back to.

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Photo of drmeto
3.34/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

-pours a clear dark amber with a big,frothy, offwhite head
-medium carbonation
-moderately bitter
-light to medium body
-medium carbonation
-slight alcohol warming
Pretty Decent,mouthfeel was lacking

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Photo of Andrewharemza
4.25/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours clear ruby with huge short lasting beige head. Aroma caramel, toasty malts. Slight nutty. Taste sweet malts, toasty malts. Slight bitter finish with some toasty notes. Light body, high carbonation.

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Photo of DaveBar
4.08/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased at the LCBO for just over $3.00 for a 500ml bottle. Served at 4deg C in a draught glass.

A- Opens well and pours a 1" high white head that films out in around 2mins. Very dark brown and filtered clear

S- Yeast and cloves.

T- Bready good. Good malt backbone. Not very sweet at all. Nice brew. Cloves, cinnamon and yeast

M- A bit watery that was not expected

O- Pretty good brew. Nice blend and nothing sticks out at you. Will buy again.

Food Pairing

This wonderful little brew went well with....... BBQ'd shish kabobs! Made these ones with chicken breast cut into 1" square chunks then plum tomato, yellow onion and mushrooms.


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Photo of vladdswrath
4.32/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep red amber with smallish head that disappears quick but manages to lace the glass, although it's a pretty feeble lace. Aroma is very sweet and a hair of nuts and fruits, reminiscent of the better brown ales that I've had. Flavor wise, it's as sweet as it smells...but it's not heavy like a lot of the dessert stouts, so I feel like I could put a couple of these down and not feel sick about it later. Mouth feel is a little thin, but in this case I think it helps the brew stay out of the desert box. One of my favorites...

(Supposedly this is the same as Hobgoblin Ale, but brewed under a full moon. It's 50 cents more, but I'm glad to pay it, as I don't want to anger the moonbeams and ruin the brew.)

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.16/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wychwood King Goblin
500 ml. brown glass bottle, Best Before 31 Mar 16
£2 @ Tesco Metro, Clayton Square, Liverpool, UK

Appearance: Crystal clear light mahogany brown body with gold and orange highlights. Pillowy head of lightly yellowed off-white. Very good head retention and lacing.

Aroma: Dull fruit, perhaps a combination of apple and plum. Darkly caramelish malt. Some minor yeasty mineral like crushed granite.

Flavor: Nicely malty with a median to dark caramel component that also hints at fudge (but never quite goes there) over yeasty minerals, a hint of earthiness, and some pleasantly rounding leafy, almost minty, and subtly grassy hops. A median bitterness dries it but leaves a bit of sweet malt at the front followed by a suggestion of tarragon once the hops kick in in the finish. It lingers nicely, reminding you to have another sip.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a gentle caress of carbonation on the tongue.

Overall: Impressive. Satisfying in all aspects. Both flavorful and interesting.

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Photo of Mike_Aguirre
4.67/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Very nice English Strong Ale, complex aroma and flavour. Also very affordable and easy to get in Mexico. Pours deep amber with a very mild white foam head, strong character is present, smell and taste is malty in profile.

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Photo of scotorum
4.04/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Purchased last summer in New Jersey at my favorite beer store stop in the state, on sale for an irresistable $2.87. Since I like malty British beers generally and had already enjoyed Hobgoblin (purchased previously at the same store), I had to give this a try.

Poured from the 25.4 ounce bomber into a Victory Donnybrook Stout nonick.

a: Translucent amber with a two inch thick offwhite head which receded to thin surface foam and dense patchy lacing.

s; Caramel malt and light fruit.

t: Same as nose. The fruitiness is somewhat muted but a combination of mainly pear and apple. Sweet to dry finish.

m: Full, great body, good carbonation tingle.

o: An excellent ESB, very drinkable and full of malty goodness, with just enough slightly bitter fruit notes to keep the malt from being overly sweet. I would definitely buy this again.

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Photo of PorterPro125
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Serving Type: 500 mL Bottle

A- Pours a darkish ruby/ amber colour with 2 finger creamy head with good retention. Fair amount of lacing. Not quite transparent.

S- Very malty with sweeter notes of caramel,toffee, etc.

T- Still malty with a slight earthiness. Mild hop aroma. Pretty tame.

M- Low Carbonation with medium body.

O- Another great brew from Wynchwood. Lots of great characteristics that are typical of an English style Bitter. Malt forward but complimented nicely with a slight bitterness. Wynchwood's Hobgoblin is much more flavourful in my opinion but King Goblin is quite similar but with that added alcohol kick. I recommend.

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Photo of CincyBrewTull
3.73/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This is a malt forward beer with notes of cookie, honey, toffee, and some toasted grains. The hops is very subdued but tastes of grass and herbs. The yeast lends flavors of dough and earth. The scents of cookie, toffee, toasted grains and earth are noticeable when bringing the glass to your mouth.

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Photo of Malt_Man
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%

Served cold from 500ml bottle into pint mug.

A) Ruby red-brown, almost clear. Little bubbles, little head, only thin film and some lacing.

S) Faint smell of rubber bands. Oh no, not looking good.

T) Quite pleasant - first sensation is of a lightish ale (bear in mind this is 6.6%), then followed by a faintly warm alcohol and mild malt flavour, then slightly bittering hops on the aftertaste. Well thought out actually, although no dominating flavours.

M) Definitely more presence from the high ABV. Little carbonation, but it does cut through to balance it out. Again, well thought out and certainly more there than your average 'supermarket' beer.

O) More sophistication in there than the nose suggests. Maybe I drank it too cold to get the full effect. Would recommend as it represents value for money and offers a notch above the average English ales of 4-5% ABV.

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

We pour a brew of rich penny coloring into our Great Lakes pint glasses. It holds a half finger tall head of wet and creamy off-white foam, showing nice retention into an equally slippery film across the top of the liquid. Lacing is speckled, and while there is a rosy haze to the brew, no real sediment is appreciated. Carbonation appears to be mild. The aroma offers rich buttery diacetyls, caramel and brown English soured mash maltiness, toffee sugars, balsamic vinegar, lemon peel bitters, sticky figgy and concord grape sugars, strawberry licorice, salt lick, phenolic plastics, and cactus sap. The following flavor gives an equally rich beverage of true English proportions, giving liquid toffee sugars, grain of raw barley, steeped caramel, and dusty English pale wheatiness, violet grapes, prunes, and plums, tinny metallic yeastiness, baby’s breath weediness, lavender and chamomile florals, chai and black pepper spiciness, cloven and plastic phenolic bitterness, paint thinner and shoe polish, sunblock creaminess, ethanol, and bready honeybun sweetness. The body is full, and the carbonation is light to medium. Each sip gives okay slurp, smack, cream, and froth, with decently pleasing finishing pop. The mouth is coated in a sugary, cloying cloak, but this gives way to a slow and sweet dryness all of its own. The abv is appropriate, and the beer drinks somewhere in the middle.

Overall, if this brew is truly only brewed under a full lunar moon, then that’s awesome. This is not really of any benefit to the substance of the beer, but it is still an attractive gimmick. The sweetness is there, but unfortunately it isn’t solely in the form of fruitiness. It comes more from residual sugars and ethanol, making for a harsh-finishing beverage. Otherwise it is hearty enough, and full enough, to keep you happy and warmed throughout. Perhaps we should have waited for the full moon, so as to realized its full potential?!

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King Goblin from Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
85 out of 100 based on 162 ratings.