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Old Speckled Hen - Greene King / Morland Brewery

Not Rated.
Old Speckled HenOld Speckled Hen

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,714 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,714
Reviews: 852
rAvg: 3.44
pDev: 16.86%
Wants: 21
Gots: 92 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Greene King / Morland Brewery visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Quaffer on 10-23-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Speckled Hen Alström Bros
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Ratings: 1,714 | Reviews: 852 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tfsimpkins
5/5  rDev +45.3%

tfsimpkins, Jul 22, 2013
Photo of beermeplease88
5/5  rDev +45.3%

beermeplease88, Sep 30, 2013
Photo of Graze
5/5  rDev +45.3%

Graze, Jul 07, 2012
Photo of putnam
5/5  rDev +45.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

"OK," I said to my friend. "Let's do English beers now."
Old Speckled was an obvious choice, and we paired it with a John Courage. It was all over as soon as the beers were set in front of us. Speckled had a "creamy" head in a way that shames all other uses of that descriptor. I dipped my finger in the foam and it was solid! Creamy, buttery, thick and highly aromatic as it offered caramel and vanilla perfume. Then, on the palate, the same notes repeated, this time with traces of maduro cigar and roasted pig fat. The finish was a battle between candy, bitter plant and ash.
Absolute perfection!

Sabina @ The Berkley Front is to blame. She's more surly than you-know-who.

putnam, Sep 11, 2003
Photo of Deiley
5/5  rDev +45.3%

Deiley, Nov 19, 2011
Photo of hiker1701a
5/5  rDev +45.3%

hiker1701a, Sep 15, 2014
Photo of monaquee
5/5  rDev +45.3%

monaquee, Jun 24, 2012
Photo of ycortez
5/5  rDev +45.3%

ycortez, May 08, 2012
Photo of BeerLover48Fan
4.93/5  rDev +43.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I tried this beer on reccomendation from Sam Matson at Red White And Brew in Florence NJ . It poured to a pint glass real smooth , Its taste is typical of the european ale's that I have tried. I am not sure about the availability elsewhere but Red White and Brew just brought it back so I know I will be buying it. It is a beer that I have told lots of people to buy and they have echoed my sentiments

BeerLover48Fan, Sep 19, 2007
Photo of Brianmerrilyn
4.78/5  rDev +39%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed pint at Kinsale Tavern on 93rd & 3rd Avenue in NYC.

Light nose, sweet caramel, Some soft vanilla tones.

Finger and half head that was thick and remained with each quaf, happy to add.

Striking red to orange (i'm colorblind)

Very balanced, creamy & smooth, resonating with caramel to open your eyes.

Brianmerrilyn, Sep 13, 2007
Photo of tyleeis
4.75/5  rDev +38.1%

tyleeis, Jul 14, 2014
Photo of Insanity55
4.75/5  rDev +38.1%

Insanity55, Apr 16, 2012
Photo of mrleebob
4.75/5  rDev +38.1%

mrleebob, Nov 12, 2013
Photo of Dapperticus
4.75/5  rDev +38.1%

Dapperticus, Aug 24, 2012
Photo of deldad
4.75/5  rDev +38.1%

deldad, Jun 05, 2012
Photo of lauries444
4.75/5  rDev +38.1%

lauries444, Jul 20, 2012
Photo of Alek
4.75/5  rDev +38.1%

Alek, Feb 28, 2013
Photo of OoReFLuXoO
4.75/5  rDev +38.1%

OoReFLuXoO, May 10, 2013
Photo of alankwak
4.65/5  rDev +35.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Deep Copper/Amber with super head retention and lacing. Nicely carbonated.

S: Lightly hopped and a bit of butterscotch.

T: Super awesome beer. Medium malt/bread flavor and a nice graininess. Great malt presence here. Butterscotch hints big time and it's good.

M: Full medium

O: High quality Ale here. That's the bottom line.

alankwak, May 07, 2011
Photo of ronniebruner
4.63/5  rDev +34.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow! This is probably the best beer Ive ever had in a can other than Guinness. The bottles are even better and would rank a quarter point higher, but the taste of this beer is velvety smooth, and you can taste the hardwork and character of this reddish color brew. If you happen to see this beer, buy it!

ronniebruner, Jul 17, 2010
Photo of ThreePistols
4.63/5  rDev +34.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Dark amber in color with a huge foamy off white, almost tan head. Sweet, fruity and floral nose. Rich and smooth. Sweet malt caramel, rich fruity flavor with a tad of hops. Heavy on the malt and light on the hops. Very drinkable!

This beer went great with my smoked sausage hoagie with grilled onions and peppers. Prosit.

For this particular style, English-style Pale Ale, Old Speckled Hen should have more hops in both the flavor and aroma for me to have given a solid "5". Nevertheless, this as a superb beer.

After reading all the not so good reviews I feel privileged to have gotten a couple sixers of Old Speckled Hen that wasn't light struck or tasted foul.

I noticed that several negative remarks pertained to this beer when the serving type was the nitro can. This only reinforces my view that beer in nitro cans should be avoided if possible.

ThreePistols, Oct 14, 2002
Photo of AtrumAnimus
4.6/5  rDev +33.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This pours a perfect amber color that has a strong long lived head that leaves thick traces down the side of the glass. The beer is effervescent and more lively than champagne. The nose is rich with hops and buttery malt tones that are truly exceptional. The flavor is refreshing with a spicy maltiness that is well balanced with strong hops and goes to a warming feeling in the stomach. The hops are just awesome. The mouthfeel is excellent as well with a nice pillowy soft body that is quickly subdued by the hops. Very bitter in the middle of the quaffed finishing even more bitter, but leaving very little aftertaste for the amount of hop flavor. I am so glad I bought a few of the 50cl bottles.

AtrumAnimus, Mar 27, 2003
Photo of jmbranum
4.55/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have seen this on the shelves but have normally passed it up due to its price. But since it is on sale, I thought I would give it a try.

Pours a very attractive light amber liquid, clear, with a slight head.

Aroma is grain laden and bready.

Flavor is very well-balanced, everything I imagine an English beer will be. Nothing dominates but instead it is a nice marriage of grain, a slight toastyness, some caramel, some hops and some herbal notes.

Very smooth medium-to-full mouthfeel.

I like it. I'm not sure it is worth what I sometimes see it priced at, but it is very good. I will buy it again if it is on sale.

jmbranum, Mar 31, 2014
Photo of drperm
4.53/5  rDev +31.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm always a bit apprehensive when it comes to the Clear Bottle - especially when said bottle has traversed the Atlantic. However, best I can tell this one *seems* to have fared decently in its evil-light-permitting glass home.

The beer pours quite handsomely into my trusty John Courage glass: bold English copper-pale-ale in tone, sharp and clear. True to form with many bottled brews of this ilk that I've had, the head billows up and then retreats to a lacing.

On the nose, I wonder if some light pollution may have had play. Not promiently, mind you, but there's a whiff of something flirting with unseemliness. More favorable notes follow: English floral yeasts, butterscotch, hay, summer wheat fields, white pepper.

I take my first sip and am greeted with a liquid embrace: fresh grain, grassy hops, caramel, toffee, quenchingly mild bitterness, and that wonderful English flower-fruit yeast goodness. Perfect.

As it coats the palate and continues on its way, it leaves a wonderful creaminess to linger behind, with a slight hoppy snap on the tail. I can only imagine what this is like with nitrogen.

This beer is pure delight, with plenty of that wonderful English subtlety that I love. Sometimes you just don't want an Imperial- anything. Sometimes a 5.something% ABV Pale Ale is exactly what is called for, and here's an acme of its genre. It is simple and light enough to make a wonderful session beer throughout the night, but complex enough to keep you interested in it the whole time. This is an all-around winner, provided that the clear glass bottle doesn't betray you.

Try with roast beef sandwiches, fish & chips, mild cheese and pickles, or your drinking buddy.

drperm, Sep 09, 2009
Photo of DmanGTR
4.53/5  rDev +31.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at the Old Toad in Rochester, NY. Review from notes.

A - poured a transparent tawny brown with reddish hues. 1 inch creamy head that kept well and decent lacing in an English pint glass

S - fruity, almost white wine like with caramel/toffee malts. Some tobacco and citrus with light hoppiness.

T - white wine fruits and smoky wood, sweet malt, some slight yeastiness and a bittersweet finish. Light touch of alcohol in the finish as well.

M - extremely smooth and medium bodied with light carbonation

D - highly sessionable and drinkable

Overall - I was quite impressed with this beer on tap. I was somewhat skeptical at first... a beer that looks orange-brown?! Then I gave it a smell.... not bad at all! Diacetyl perhaps? Well, something sweet and fruity, like a good Riesling... in any case, it was a delightful session beer that I am sure to have more of in the future. Looking forward to trying it from the bottle. Cheers to the Old Speckled Hen!

DmanGTR, Dec 27, 2008
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Old Speckled Hen from Greene King / Morland Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 1,714 ratings.