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King Goblin - Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd

Not Rated.
King GoblinKing Goblin

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

156 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 156
Hads: 417
Avg: 3.77
pDev: 21.49%
Wants: 20
Gots: 71 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: AEK on 09-26-2010

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (49) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 156 | Hads: 417
Photo of Dubbledown
1.33/5  rDev -64.7%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

Poured into a 14.9 nonic. Good half-inch beige, creamy head. Dark amber color. Mouthfeel is rather thin. First taste of dark malt flavor then a watery weight. Finally, an exquisite bitterness that tastes like nettles. So long does this bitterness last, that you taste it on the sides and back of your tongue until long after this sentence is completed. What can I say? I guess I should have known that a brew named "King Goblin" wouldn't taste pleasant. There is absolutely no sweetness in this beer. Even on the fourth or fifth sip when caramel makes an appearance, it quickly dissolves into profound bitterness. So I guess those questing after the ultimate English bitter could do worse than try this Oxfordshire product. I don't like it. Drinking it is like punishment to me. I poured the last 12 oz. down the sink.

Grade F Purchased at Stoney's -- $4.99 bottle

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Photo of kojevergas
2.28/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured from a bottle into a Hoegaarden pint glass in low altitude Galway, Ireland, on December 10th, 2010.

A: Pours a dark brown with a hint of amber and an adult, thick head with some cream. Two a half finger head retains well. Moderately appealing.

Sm: Notes of toffee, cream, and a musty scent I usually associate with cask or barrel aged beers. Hoppy. Hard to discern notes with my broken nose.

Taste: Middling opening bleeds into the complicated body: stale barley jarred by hints of cream topped by a rough finish with lingering bitterness. Not the bitterness of a pale ale - it's more refined, but I don't know that it's better. The biggest problem with this beer is its balance (or lack thereof). The aftertaste is particularly foul. That said, this is a bold beer, and may satisfy fans of this style. I'm not a fan of regular hobgoblin either.

Mf: The best part of this beer. Coarse where it needs to be but the wetness is off.

Dr: This beer grows on you as you drink it, but ultimately there are better beers to be had at this price point (particularly here in Ireland). Don't write it off if you're a fan of the style, but don't expect it to lift your skirt up.

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Photo of kashmoney
2.44/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Bought a bottle at the local liquor store and poured into a standard glass.

A: Maplesyrup colored. Very little head, less than one fingerwidth.

S: Raisiny with a hint of coffee

T: Initially sweet, then overwhelming hops. Clingy aftertaste.

M: Very thin.

Drinkability: After reading the other reviews, i may have just gotten an older bottle that was not preserved well but was fairly disappointed. Wanted more complexity before the hops hit me and also more body/head.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.94/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Served in a Lagunitas mason jar.

Love the "only brewed under a full moon" schtick. This stuff pours a clear amber-russet topped by a finger of wan cream foam. The nose comprises maple syrup, light brown sugar, light red apple skin, light toasted biscuit, and the vaguest possible sense of candied orange peel. This is a strange amalgam of general fruitiness, sweetness, and spiciness. Diggin' the complexity, even if it means I can't pinpoint things entirely. The taste continues the complexity, but in a sideways direction: hints of old orange rind, dusty toasted biscuit, brown sugar, bad carrots, dark and musty greens, and grass. It's a sharply painful flavor at times, basically taking an evil mirror to the elements of the aroma. The body is a lithe medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta/kinda drying finish. Overall, this stuff just didn't do it for me. The flavors break the promises made by the smell and rub my face in their deceit.

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Photo of Sammy
2.95/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A malt job. Nothing special to look at (slight amber colour), neutral aroma, medium mouthfeel.Caramel, light toffee, light toast. Ok drinkable, but nothing special, another LCBO choice from their limited palate.Where are the nice balanced English ales?

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Photo of Zimbo
2.98/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Brownish in colour with easy easy forming rocky head which leavers some fluffy spots of lacing, this smells think with lots of cloying potential. You taste the alcohol all right but there is so little on the palate at the beginning and middle. Ends with a rather unusual unappetising sulphery dry taste.
Was hoping this beer would redeem this Tolkeinesque brewery in my eyes but it has unfortunately only reconfirmed my longstanding impressions.

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Photo of DarthKostrizer
3/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle shared by Alucard4

Look: Deep ruby red color with a 1/2 inch tan head and semi translucent with just ok retention

Smell: English malt with dark fruits and bitter hops

Taste: Very plain and boring pretty much just taste like malt caramel and toffee

Mouthfeel: Medium to thin body with mild carbonation

Overall: Boring as hell

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Photo of tut2528
3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: pours a dark caramel with slight touches of orange. moderate carbonation, about 1/2 fingers worth of of cream white head formation

S: i pick up on a strong burst of berries brings a touch of tartness that is complemented by a sweet malt backbone. thinking this one is pretty straightforward .

T: some dark fruits again here in the form of berries, a slight brown sugar note, big biscuit, touch of alcohol. i also pick up on heavy cream in the finish.

M: medium bodied, a slight tangy/berry feel is left on the palate. moderate carbonation

O: its a pretty decent beer, and a good starter for those getting into the micro/craft brews

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Photo of allergictomacros
3.11/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Clear dark amber/red with a thick, solid head.

S - Big fruit and malt aromas.

T - Lots of caramel and fairly sweet. Leaning towards the bitter side with nondescript hops. kinda fruity and a bit heavy tasting. A little bit of apple.

M - Lighter in body than expected but with a nice low carbonation level.

D - It's ok. not something I would seek out.

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Photo of sleuthdog
3.12/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into tulip
Enjoy by 11/25/12

Appearance: A murky brown color with one finger size head. Held up to the light reveals a reddish color.

Smell: A dark berry component is dominant here with a very mild hop. Some caramel and bread notes.

Taste: This follows the smell with dark berry and caramel and bread.

Mouthfeel: This has a medium body with a smooth feel. Carbonation gives a moderate tickle on the throat.

Overall: This is an ok beer with nothing standing out but still enjoyable.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.2/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours copper with a large fading head.
Nose shows banana, nutty and grainy malt and sultanas. Also a faint industrial note.
The nutty, grainy malt transfers through as a flavour along with the industrial note. Some caramel is also apparent.
Body seems pretty thin.

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Photo of hopsolutely
3.2/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A disappointing beer. Sampled this at the same time as a Hobgoblin and the latter won for complexity and balance, hand's down.

Pours a beautiful dark colour with a decent off-white head. Mouthfeel is also pleasant, silky without being too oily. Aroma is slightly nutty, but more focused on malts and grains. The taste was a disappointment, as the alcohol harshness was the clearest element. Roasted malts were present, just not at the forefront of the palate.

Perfect concept for Halloween, but probably not a beer I'll purchase again.

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Photo of bashiba
3.24/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured an almost perfect ruby/amber, crystal clear with a big sticky tan head.

I found the smell to be less inviting than the appearance, a bit tart and sourdough bready, but in sort of an off way.

I was expecting something much closer to the original HobGoblin, but this is much different. A light bready malt base with a touch of woody cedar notes and a bit of funky herbalness followed by a long earthy hop character. Good funky bitterness.

The mouthfeel is long and dry and a bit oily.

Overall not to bad, but I have had much better ESB's at much lower prices.

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Photo of dansmcd
3.29/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Ruby red ale, under a finger of creamy head with extensive beautiful lacing.

S - Very light and mild. A bit stale also. Hints of caramel and butterscotch.

T - Follows the nose, some raisin and caramel and raspberry cordial.

M - Medium carbonation, light body.

O - Probably not something Ill be on the lookout for in the future.

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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 barczar
3.32/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is 3 years old, so...

Pours a hazy copper brown with a modest cream head.

Aroma is reminiscent of cherry cough drops, with a bit of floral character.

Flavor follows suit, with more menthol and dull cherry flavor overtaking the toasted malt, into the fairly bitter, earthy, herbal, and medicinal finish.

Body is a little watery, with moderate carbonation and light alcohol warmth.

I thought age was responsible for the of flavors, but other reviews indicate otherwise. This is going to be a little difficult to enjoy.

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Photo of bark
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The colour is deep brown (39 EBC) with a tint of red; the liquid is clear. The compact three finger head is warm beige. It sinks slowly leaving lots of lacing.

The smell is a bit sour, but it is dominated by robust roasted malt sweetness. Some clean bitter flavours and hints of raisins and dried figs. Caramel in the background.

The taste is strong with a quickly passing clean bitter flavour. Some dried fruits and roasted-nutty malts. Dry notes of chocolate and raisins. The aftertaste got some matured notes of caramel, Madeira wine and nuts, clean bitter flavours, some hay, toffee. Some roasted malt sureness in the finish.

The carbonation is mild, the small bubbles are fresh. The liquid is smooth and a little sticky.

A good strong ale that probably will gain of some cellaring.

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Photo of Brewski4Drewski
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into Houblon Chouffe tulip.
A: pours light brown almost red with a reddish hue...2 finger off white head...carbonation

S: sweet smelling and a little zesty maybe, soft alcohol tones, mildly malty not like the original.

T: sweet...maybe fruity, slight hop presence, mild alcohol, nice and smooth not bad. English fa sho.

M: Medium bodied and smooth, stayed carbonated throughout

O: King Goblin is only brewed on a full moon so yeh, its kinda cool. A notch above 6.5 this King can cut loose. Not as malty as its subordinate and a nice change up from the Hobgoblin, but personally I'll let the King have his swill and drink with the grunts.

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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 ArrogantB
3.34/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle purchased for $4.99. I used to love hobgoblin back before I really got into craft and was mostly drinking British ales so i thought I'd try this for nostalgia's sake. Dark ruby red, creamy off-white head. Aroma of malt vinegar hits me almost immediately and this is what I usually pick up from British ales, not a fan. Flavor is very fruity, malty, not bad at all. Overall I wish I had my $5 back because this just isn't my cup of tea anymore.

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Photo of BGDrock
3.35/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From notes:

Appearance: amber hue; clear; head fades fast

Aroma: tough to put down; good interplay between mildly tart hops and light maltiness; slightly woody; some spice

Taste & Mouthfeel: somewhat grassy; bitter (but not the green hoppy kind) and gets more so for a lingering finish; clean with good carbonation

Overall: they definitely over-sell it a bit; this "special reserve" is not particularly interesting, but the hop profile is nice. A good Bitter but nothing more than that

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Photo of Maxwell
3.36/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours an amber red with nice amounts of carameling and some yellow along the edges. It also pours with a nice white head and good thick lacing that dissipates at a medium pace. Smells of sweet malts, almost an apple juice-like smell with a faint hint of biscuit in the back. Tastes again of sweet malts with a nice caramel backbone and an ever so slight tingle of hops on the tongue. There is a flavor in the initial swig that reminds me of sweet vegetables… Unfortunately that is the most specific I can be on the taste… Its swigs nicely on the tongue, a bit watery, but with just enough oomf to suggest its caramel flavor. Overall this is decent beer, I’m not as taken with it as I was with the HobGoblin, the wateriness of the beer is a little disappointing, though I’m sure it holds out well as an almost session-able ale.

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Photo of Drunkelstiltskin
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Imagine drinking a Newcastle Brown Ale that was crossed with an IPA. Very dark red in color, not much of a head. Tastes very rich, with caramel notes but is yet still easy to drink. Nice balance between sweet and bitter. Good beer to curl up by a fire with during the long winters up here in Vermont.

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Photo of Dentist666
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear copper beer with moderate beige head, consisting of big and small bubbles, good retention. Aroma of dark fruits, strawberries, cherry, candy sugar, raisins. Taste is full, not very complex, warming alcohol, caramel, like most of british beers, leaning to malt profile, simple unnoble bitterness, that disappoints. Liquorish palate. Low carbonation, good at winter, worse in summer. Decent english strong ale.

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Photo of beeroclock
3.41/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

a - brown, all of the colors mentioned by other people, I just don't see. If anything in this world is brown, this is it. forms a nice head and the bubbles last throughout.

s - some caramel, malt with some coffee

t - good, it's got a bit of coffee taste with a little sweetness. it has some bitter bite too. I can pick up some fruit, maybe apple. a little caramel as well

m - not overly carbonated, but it sticks to your tongue leaving a long term bitter aftertaste.

o - a good beer, but I think it's a little closer to average, maybe slightly above. My first couple of sips, I thought it was much better, but with the long aftertaste it turns to a bitter coffee. Still a decent option. I'm harsh on beer ratings, so maybe I'm rating this lower than it deserves.

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King Goblin from Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
85 out of 100 based on 156 ratings.