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Hobgoblin | Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd

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Very Good
2,636 Ratings

Brewed by:
Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-15-2002

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Ratings: 2,636 |  Reviews: 1,096
Photo of AApparel
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of Limbshot
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of OzmanBey
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of Joaco
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of TwoForty
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of jamesgt
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of cools007
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of monkist
4.99/5  rDev +32.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A smoove one, I must say. Very English, but it is the icing on the whole English cake perhaps.
Pouring it into a glass you get an almost black beer with great lacing, then you start reading the label that says "traditionally crafted legendary ruby beer" so you start looking for the color, hold it against the light and there you go!
You get a very English impressions in the nose, but very good ones: strong malts and English hops. London Pride squared or multiplied way more - and its flavor follows! Breathtaking that you get exactly the same taste as you get in the smell! And it is hop witchcraft, hop alchemy that you are dealing with, and this Hobgoblin is one of a kind! Had King Goblin from them but it was far from this one. This is just A-MA-ZING-LY hoppy, very unusual from an English Ale or an ESB. This is an ESB but as in an English Sly Bastard! because it proves you wrong. Proves you that English beers can also punch you in the face with their good old hops. This Hobgoblin is exceptional. Overjoyed to drink it.

 1,031 characters

Photo of ichakarov
4.98/5  rDev +32.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I really enjoyed this ruby fantastic beer!Thank you!

52 characters

Photo of Lollydog
4.96/5  rDev +31.9%

Photo of Thewargod
4.94/5  rDev +31.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of Santosizer
4.85/5  rDev +29%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Soooo glad I found this on tap at a local ale house. I've had this before in the bottle and just forgot how much I loved it. When I asked the bartender for my usual drink, he told me it was out, but he had something along the lines and showed me the Hobgoblin behind him. I immediately had to have this.

Appearance - pours a dark red ruby color, with a mild thick head. You can definitely float a quarter on top of this head.

Smell - Nice and malty.

Taste - The head is very frothy, nutty and wonderfully refreshing. The head first hits the palate and gives off this faint chocolate taste. The beer itself is malty, a little bitter with hops, hints of fruit and coffee undertones. Just the right amount of everything for me.

Mouthfeel - The head melts in the mouth and fuses with the ale. It makes this smooth, silky and refreshing texture.

Drinkability - Wonderful, everything is so greatly balanced with it's own uniqueness from other English Dark Ales. This is like an EDA milked right from a unicorn by Da Vinci with a choir of baby angelic angels serenading in the background.

Overall - One of the best Dark English Ales I've had.

Serving type: bottle

 1,164 characters

Photo of gbarbee
4.82/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great beer overall. First time I had this this beer was in an "izakaya" style restaurant with some great sashimi.

My initial impression was surprise at the smooth character with chocolate and nutty hints.

Appearance: Light brown.
Smell: Clean and light.
Taste: Hint of chocolate and nuts
Mouthfeel: Smooth and light
Drinkability: Overall, great beer.

 353 characters

Photo of MN_Beer
4.81/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

One of my favorites. A true classic and a go-to beer. Everything an English ale should be.

91 characters

Photo of bendythumb
4.81/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

To aptly summarize my review below -- this is probably the closest thing to a perfect beer for my palate!

The experience of Hobgoblin begins with the bottle itself -- a traditional, old-fashioned bottle shape with majestic, fantasy-themed artwork combined with beautiful typography that suits the aesthetic of the brew within.

When poured into glass, the brew is a very dark and burnt red; a colour combination between amber and ember. A small amount of head is present. When held up to light, the red essence within the brew glows within a brown shell -- like the fire within a goblin's forge.

The smell is fairly weak - but notes of chocolate, yeast and malts are present in the nose. The subdued smell of the brew stands juxtaposed to the taste of it; a clever trick played upon human tasters by the goblin brewmasters.

Drunk extremely cold, a strong taste of yeast and malt is present, with moderate notes of chocolate and toffee. As she warms, a cornucopia of flavours explodes with every sip. Sweet fruity overtones perfectly balance the heavy richness of the malts. While I usually dislike a strong yeast presence, the brew offsets a heavy yeast presence with these fresh, sugary notes.

The mouthfeel of the beer is magnificent. It can be best described as heavy (yet not thick), with a moderate amount of carbonation and a hefty amount of crispness. I love the thick, almost sludgy consistency of a stout; but this type of mouthfeel isn't perfect for every occasion. While this brew goes down as easy as a pilsner, the explosion of taste and heaviness of flavour is a definite sign that you're drinking a true brew.

Overall, Hobgoblin is akin to a symphony composed by Beethoven; a perfect balanced brew for any occasion. The traditional and fantasy-themed aesthetic of the beer fits the brew itself perfectly. In an era where American adjunct lagers run rampant, and the hyper-corporate macrobreweries create millions of bottles of tasteless pseudobeer for the unthinking masses, Hobgoblin stands in stark contrast to brews drunk by filthy casuals. Get ready to hold hands with goblins and dance around their goblin-sized campfire!

 2,162 characters

Photo of VolcomBrewer
4.8/5  rDev +27.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I have heard only good about this ale, and being an English-loving ale drinker myself, I needed to try it. So I went ahead and picked up some pint bottles.

A: Pours a ruby hued brown. Creamy tan head that lasts and lasts. Laces very, very nicely.

S: Smells of sweet malts, toffee, and nice floral hops fill my nose. I'm very excited for the first drink.

T: My mouth is filled with joy. Sweet toffee-like flavors with some fruitiness and hop bitterness which isn't too bitter. It flows oh so well throughout my palate. Finishes with a complex mix of sweet and bitter that slowly fades into a dry finish, leaving you wanting more.

M: Smooth, Creamy, light carbonation. Along with the lasting flavors of sweet and bitter, it feels like heaven in your mouth.

D: Smooth and easy to drink. Perfect beer with dinner, Cigar and session afterwords. I could drink these to the end of time and never get disappointed.

This honestly has to be my favorite of English beers thus far...and top 5 overall for sure!

 1,004 characters

Photo of Trod
4.78/5  rDev +27.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Ruggin_Diego
4.76/5  rDev +26.6%

Photo of Meyers1023
4.75/5  rDev +26.3%

Photo of Jacobus79
4.75/5  rDev +26.3%

Photo of jaredtp
4.75/5  rDev +26.3%

Photo of Cybr
4.75/5  rDev +26.3%

Excellent beer. Unique and full of character. Better on tap or bottled to the canned version.

94 characters

Photo of vlodko62
4.75/5  rDev +26.3%

Photo of Tom_Servo
4.75/5  rDev +26.3%

Hobgoblin from Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
Beer rating: 3.76 out of 5 with 2,636 ratings
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