Bah Humbug | Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd

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Bah HumbugBah Humbug

Brewed by:
Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by UnionMade on 12-18-2003

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Reviews: 236 | Ratings: 373
Photo of Viggo
1.65/5  rDev -53%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Pours a clear amber/brown, huge thick off white head forms, great retention, excellent lacing. Smell is pretty powerful, vanilla and spice, caramel, very malty, sweet and heavy on the cinnamon. Taste is strange, apples and spice, tons of cinnamon, some vanilla, almost a bourbon smell/flavour to it. Mouthfeel is light bodied with low carbonation, spices coat the mouth. Not sure I like this, way too overspiced. Probably the most unappealing beer I've ever come into contact with. Could only take a couple sips before it went down the drain.

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Photo of Melvintrude
1.9/5  rDev -45.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2

Had this at a local tasting (Wychwood is my local brewery)

Very unpleasant and artificial . Trying very hard for that Christmas taste, but confused and sickly, strong cinnamon and even aniseed.

Watery mouth feel, no body at all.

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Photo of grub
2.13/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

pours a nice ruby red with a full inch of fluffy head. the head is very slow to drop and leaves lots of lace behind.

aroma is nice. rye bread. a hint of spice. slightly roasty.

taste is odd. ashy roastyness. bit of malt. lots of spice, mostly cinnamon. turns lagery in the finish and leaves an unpleasant aftertaste. seems to get worse with each taste.

mouthfeel isn't great. very astringent. odd clinging unpleasant mouthfeel.

drinkability is not so good. can't say i'll be going back for more of this one.

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Photo of jujubeast6000
2.24/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed 11/19/2007 (bottle):

Pours a clear brown color, big foamy head, big bubbles, some lacing, but quickly diminishing. Malty sweet, somewhat nutty aroma. Maybe tree bark or fruit rinds, not very pleasant. Slight bitter beginning taste, nutty middle taste, clean aftertaste. Somewhat watery. That same rind aroma is present in the taste, almost a smoky smell. Quickly diminishing in flavor. Some spices, maybe pumpkin or fall-like. Okay.

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Photo of TheHammer
2.26/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Appearance: Good finger of head that laces and retains well. The body is a a cross between ruby red and cinnamon brown. Steady carbonation is nice.

Smell: A detect a hint of spicing, which would lean me towards them not going overboard with a bit of light caramel malt and some fruitier apple and pear notes. Nothing bad, but not quite what I would expect from a beer that would typically have a lot of spice.

Taste: Starts with a dull malt with some dry spicing that quickly turns oddly dry, bitter mashup of various spices, hops and the kitchen sink which isn't anywhere near as good as it sounds. The worst part about it is that there doesn't seem to be any really sweeter elements that would compliment the spicing. I thought maybe I served it too cold, but warming didn't help it's case at all.

Mouthfeel: That kick doesn't transition well at all, and it leaves a subtle dryness that does the beer no favours. The carbonation is there, but it doesn't really accentuate anything. Thankfully it doesn't leave too much of an aftertaste for very long.

Drinkability: Even as an occasional winter drinker, I can't see wanting to drink this again. I mean, sure you CAN drink it, it's not unbearable, but there is too much of the wrong kind of volume to this beer to make it worthwhile. Saving grace is that it sits down.

Final Thoughts: Bah Humbug indeed, this beer is a surprising disappointment from Wychwood. I mean, there isn't a lot here I can recommend other then the beer and the bottle looks nice. Nowhere near as good as Hobgoblin or Fiddler's Elbow (which seems to have disappeared in Ontario and from their website). You'll want to pass.

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Photo of FernMaster
2.27/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Is it appropriate to say Bah Humbug to a beer titled Bah Humbug?

I opened this beer because today was a miserably cold day and a winter warmer sounded like a good idea. A winter warmer would probably be a great thing for a day like this, however this wouldn't be the beer I'd recommend.

The pour of Bah Humbug was something bad. There was no head, which naturally leads to no lacing. The smell is perplexing, an oddity of flavors. Multiple fruits are present as is some yeast and it kind of smells like a Brown Ale to me actually. These fruit flavors, maybe grape, oranges and the yeasts, possibly some sort nut don't blend well together at all. It's like the line-up of a drive in movie theater, both of the features may be good, but the juxtaposition is non-appealing. It looks septic kind of too. A morbid, rancid caramel color. The taste is a combination of all the flavors you get on the nose and a few others that don't work as well. I don't have a cute metaphor for how this doesn't work. The problem is all the spices in the beer are conflicting for your attention with the fruit flavors and everything else in the beer. I can't decipher everything in one drink either, each gulp seems to have a different play to it and if this was a beer where the flavor was good I could enjoy that fact, but in this it's too bad. I really like Wychwood, Hobgoblin is one of my favorite beers, Bah Humbug is not. I, for a fact, will never buy this beer again.

Ignore this entire review if it was intentionally bad and naming it Bah Humbug was some sort of avant-garde humor.

Update: Drain Pour!

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Photo of cfrancis
2.31/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Rather disappointed in this beer. Aroma is non-existent. Colour is orange amber with slightly off white head. Taste is fairly bland. Some spice and malt in the taste. With the flavours coming out mostly in the aftertaste the initial mouthfeel is non existent. Overall this beer is lackluster and I really won't revisit this next year.

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Photo of CortexBomb
2.36/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours out deep red with not a lot of head, just a thin ring. On the plus side, because of the oversized bottle it does fill my Imperial Pint glass. Smell is softly hoppy and that's really seasonal aspect that I'm able to pick up, which means it is knocked down.

Flavour starts out with a hop wave and then tries to dish up some slight spice action...but they are so slight that this beer should hardly qualify as a warmer. Some nuttiness in between, but nothing overly impressive. Finish is not even that hoppy, not really that much of anything. This is really not even doing it for me as a pale, and as a warmer I expect quite a lot more.

Mouth, thin, but this style of beer usually isn't that thick. Despite the lightness of them in the flavour, the hops do lend some action, so I'll leave it at average. Drinkability, well, it's decent, but I wasn't anticipating each sip.

Overall, this is horribly overpriced for what you get. Thoroughly undistinct flavour, not enough spices, not enough hops, lacking almost everywhere.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
2.58/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Appearance - Pours relatively clear and reddish copper in color with a sandstone one finger head that displays sub-par retention, resulting in a broken layer of surface suds. Lacing is small and spotty with fair stick.

Smell - Fair aroma with hints of toffee, lighter caramel and an artificial banana character, like runts.

Taste - Severely disappointing. Muted notes of toffee, lightly roasted malt and fruity esters. Cardboard staleness. Finish is mostly flavorless, though a vague mineral character seems to linger.

Mouthfeel - Thin and watery with light carbonation.

Overall - Going off the only info I could find regarding Wychwood's bottling date, apparently the A3EFG code corresponds to it having been been brewed sometime in 2013. Considering how muted and watery this beer is, I'd say that's probably likely, and I'd venture to guess somewhere around 15 months old; not good for a beer that's only 5% ABV. A shame I hadn't caught this before I bought it.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
2.58/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Got this as a joke gift from one of my Aunts last Christmas. This one was pretty disappointing to me. I see it had pretty good reviews here but I had trouble finishing it. Seemed like it was unbalanced and was hard to even finish. The taste was very bland and paltry as well. I would not want to try this one again.

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Photo of jazzyjeff13
2.61/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A 500ml bottle with a BB of Oct 2012. The rear label mentions the addition of cinammon during the brewing process.

Poured into a tulip pint glass. A bright coppery-amber hue with medium carbonation and faint visible sediment. Produces a decent head of creamy off-white foam that lasts for a minute or so before collapsing. Aroma is very sweet, with an intense hit of ripe bananas. Warm, fruity notes with cinammon and brown sugar. A whiff of alcohol in the background.

Tastes of sweet, fruity malt with a dominant banana note. A subtle warming hint of cinammon/spice along with toffee/caramel and yeast. A harsh stewed hop bitterness upon swallowing, and a background note of alcohol. Mouthfeel is smooth and tingly, but thin. Pretty astringent; dries the palate thoroughly. Aftertaste of fruity bananas and a harsh bitter note.

Bah! Not good at all - this could ruin your Christmas! A vile, cloying aroma of bananas pervades this ale. Too sweet, with an unbalanced fruitiness that lacks balance from the malt. Finishes with a harsh stewed bitterness that is equally unpleasant. The spice is also rather lacklustre. In short, not much to enjoy here. There are other beers out there - give this a miss. Bah Humbug indeed!

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
2.72/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

served in a tall glass.

A - murky brown color with a small off-white head that flattened out, leaving very little lace.

S - sweet malt and spiced aroma.

T - sweetness of caramel malt with a hint of spices, very slight bitterness on the finish.

M - medium bodied and somewhat flat.

D - I had a difficult time with this one, as it wasn't anything special to me, just another English Ale.

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Photo of CRJMellor
2.73/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a dark amber hue with some copper tinges and a medium tan head with litle staying power.
Aroma of sweet, deep caramel candy and a spicy almost hazelnut kind of note. Odd aroma here can'tquite place it, maybe lime or something, very strange
Flavor has a hint of nutmeg with some bready tones a a sweet but decidely dull caramel note. A bland bittering plays on the home stretch but just doesn't have any oomph or really redeeming qualities.
Mouthfeel is thin and watery with no kind of real ale body in the mouth. Slightly off-putting and out of place spiciness really makes this a rather strangely constructed brew.
Drinkability is below average. I wish these breweries would just leave ths beers in their markets on draught but I guess if folks like me keep buying and trying they can mae money, but this beer was a real snoozer, nothing offensive just completely bland and rather odd.

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Photo of Vancer
2.75/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Quick notes: Semi-hazy amber / orange with tan head, some lacing. Malty aroma with some spice notes, manly cinnamon. But the taste, what a letdown – ya have earthy notes, along with some phenolic aftertastes, not real good.

Dry and medium bodied, just not heavy enough, needs more malt and spices. Way to expensive for what you get. One 500ml bottle will do it for me.

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Photo of Barleymeister
2.86/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 1 | overall: 3

The only reason that I am reviewing this Wychwood offering is that it is the first one that I even noticed I was drinking. As worthy of recognition. I guess you could call this a review relative to their other offerings. Despite the alluring graphics and cheeky titling, all of their other brews have been in the vane of Watney's Red Barrel - a beer that Brits scorned, so I'm told, and was utterly forgettable and relegated to export consumption only. As moderately watery as the Bah Humbug is - and that is typical of Wychwood - the flavor was actually pleasant. It was at least a reasonable facsimilie of my beloved Bass Ale, the fact that this formerly bedrock brew has now been whored out and is now brewed in.... Syracuse, notwithstanding (why, oh WHY?).

There's really not that much to say about it other than it tasted nice and I could see buying it by the case for general every day consumption.... or for pouring over the heads of people I sort of like at parties. Their other offerings would be reserved for people I don't care that much for, if you were wondering. A special occasion holiday once a year offering, it is not. Not even close. NOT EVEN. A decent drink, it is.

If it were down to this or a can of Bud, I might even fight you for it.

Na zdraví!

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Photo of budgood1
2.88/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

pours out of the half litre bottle a clear garnet colour with a short lived light tan head. little retention and lace. the aroma reminds me a bit of red wine...quite fruity with hints of x-mas spice. the taste profile is mish mash of toasted maltiness with fruity undertones and accents of nutmeg and cinnamon spice. it's a little flat on the tongue, which reduces the overall enjoyment of the various flavours. there is some residual bitterness from the hopping, which gives it a bit of balance and character. the mouthfeel is on the light side as is the overall body, which gives it a touch of drinkability. this concoction is a bit mundane for a spiced x-mas ale, but pleasant enough i suppose.

overall, the first thing that is evident is that this bottle is past its prime and i'm sure a brewery fresh pint would be rather festive to drink. that being said, i'm drinking this on March 31st during a raging blizzard when Spring is supposed to be springing and to that i say....BAH HUMBUG!!!!

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Photo of Top_Jimmy
2.89/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I grabbed a handfull of these leading up to Christmas but did not crack one until today. It pours a nice ruby red with oinly a minimal head. While drinking some lacing remains but nothing to drastic.

Mouthfeel seems watery without the body that some other Wychwood beers present. Carbonation is mild as well.

Smells is a mild malt, a hint of spice, overall nothing very prominent.

Taste is milder than I expected. Same mild spice, slight hop, no real sweet taste at all as I had expected. Finishes with a hoppy after taste.

Overall, I probably wouldn't buy this beer again but it is drinkable. Just an average beer and a slight let down from its apperance and packaging.

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Photo of nighthawk
2.89/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

500mL bottle (this one's a brown glass bottle), with best before date printed on back label. Poured into a snifter.

Small tawny film of head retains well, sitting atop a rust coloured body that has orange hues near the bottom, turning chocolate brown near the top of the glass. Patches of lace stick here and there

Very mild aroma with some ephemeral white grape and pear smells alongside some caramel and hints of cinnamon.

Brown sugar and caramel form the bulk of the taste here, with the same mild fruity qualities of grape, pear and apple. Cracker-like malts in the background and a bit of soft cinnamon.

Mouthfeel seems dreadfully thin, watery even. Carbonation is smooth. Slight stickiness on the finish, and sweet through and through.

It's not a bad beer by any stretch of the imagination, but it's pretty mediocre. Worth a try, nice and malty on a grey late autumn day, but just not quite robust enough.

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Photo of shamus
2.9/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A Christmas ale? Bah. Humbug! this tastes like cough syrup. I think it's supposed to taste like liquefied Christmas cake. if that is true then it is a raging success. It's alright. I don't hate it. It's a novelty beer. The label said it had cinnamon in it but that particular spice doesn't come through enough for my liking. Maybe this would taste good mulled. I bet it would. Mulling

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Photo of JohnfromDublin
2.91/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I tasted a bottle of Bah Humbug on 8th December, 2008 (best by Jul 09). ABV listed as 5% in a brown bottle with Scrooge on the front label.

It looked decent enough; a dark ruby brew (slightly hazy) with a nice head with a yellowish tinge. The aroma was a bit curious, maybe on account of the cinnamon that is contained, but a lot of sweetness there.

The taste was (for me) overpoweringly bubblegum sweet with a cloying nature to it. Maybe a background of sour cherry there but the sweetness was too much. Mouthfeel was syrupy to boot.

I was quite disappointed in this beer. I note that there seems to be quite a variation in the scoring on BA. Maybe the 6% brew was better?

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Photo of 1759Girl
2.93/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance>The beer poured a nice red colour, with a gorgeous haze, and a light head that lingered a spell, with not too much lacing.
Scent>Very sweet aroma, honey and pears, perhaps?
Taste> applecider start, that was followed by a mouthful of hops and cloves, with a cinnamon and pine hang.
Mouthfeel> light bodied, not overly carbonated; felt like a cask ale, and very british ale mouf-feel.
Drinkability> too clove and piney for my liking, but a fellow taster thought it was divine, so I guess I have to give it average drinkability.

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Photo of bashiba
2.97/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a hazy amber with a little bit of white head.

Smell was very fruity with a bit of a hazelnut odor.

Taste had a mild semi sweet fruitiness to it with a bit of a metalic copper flavor, a slight hop finish rounds it out a bit.

Mouthfeel was on the thin side.

Overall a pretty average offering.

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Photo of brentk56
2.97/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy mahogany with a large bubbled ecru head that leaves a few shards of lace

Smell: Well there is some caramel in there clearly, and butterscotch for those who like diacetyl, but the overall aroma is ruined by DMS (cooked vegetables)

Taste: The caramel flavor predominates up front, although it gets a bit dirty (if that makes sense) by mid-palate; after the swallow, the flavors tend to fade

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: The off flavors here just make this one disappointing

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Photo of oracle
3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

beer poured a medium copper, with thin pancake head that didn't stick around for long but left a small-to-medium amount of lacing.

Smell was thin and winey with a very faint sourness to it.

Tasted pretty much like it smelled. Notes of rye and raisons in the flavor with a definative wine-like sourness in the finish.

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Photo of JDV
3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Maroon colored poor with a short lived head. Smell was of sweet and sourish malt. Taste was slightly sweet and tart, with a light bitter kick in the finish. Kind of like slighly burnt caramel, and reminded me almost of an ESB. Perhaps the faintest touch of alcohol in the flavor. This one grew on me as I drank it, and I upped it from 2.5 to 3 overall.

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Bah Humbug from Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
3.51 out of 5 based on 373 ratings.
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