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Black Wych | Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd

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Black WychBlack Wych

Brewed by:
Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
BLACK WYCH A Dark Mysterious Spellbinding Porter
BLACK WYCH spellbinding porter ,
The Black Wych has cast her spell , start with a measure of
alluring rich dark malt & allow the bitterness to creep in.
This silkily smooth porter is a force to be reckoned with.

Brewed primarily for export.

Added by the42ndtourist on 10-09-2002

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Reviews: 101 | Ratings: 187
Photo of Garin
4.01/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It pours a deep black, with a nice creamy ice cream float head that sinks slowly, leaving a very clingy lace behind. It looks great. When I poured it, I got immediate sweet fruity aromas. I also found licorice and rum.

The flavour is very lightly acidic and char/roasted up front, with a slightly perfumey but dry finish. In the middle, a slight bitterness works into a toasty/grainy feel.

In the mouth, it feels smooth and easy-drinking, with a light carbonation and a richness that doesn't add weight. I really like it.

 528 characters

Photo of IronDjinn
3.56/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally available in Cowtown, along with the Hobgoblin again.

I like the design of the bottle, the witch of the Wychwood logo on the neck label and cap, the embossed logo on the bottle, and mildy seductive witch on the label (according to individual tastes I suppose, although she does look strikingly similar to Helena Bonham Carter), holding up the toad ready for brewing whatever comes next.... The clear bottle is a bit of of turn-off though.

Poured from a 500 ml clear bottle, a dark coffee coloured body, with a small creamy beige head that settles to a thin cap and leaves some slight lacing. Dark mahogany highlights when held up to direct sunlight. Smells of light roasted malt, some licorice and coffee, a touch of chocolate, but all very faint and watered down. I tried a new bottle from the one I originally reviewed, and found it far more flavourful and robust than from my first sample. Starts out with dry roasted malts, and quickly picks up a chocolate sweetness in the middle, finishing with a sticky hybrid of sweet malt, chocolate and licorice. Dry espresso and almost a burnt character come out on the aftertaste, a little bit of charcoal. Creamy smooth mouthfeel with decent body, but light enough to make it enjoyably quaffable. I'm rather glad I went back and tried another one of these over a year later, I had picked up a sub-par bottle initially, and had all but written this stuff off. A decent stout, all things considered, even though I still have to get over the stigma of the clear bottle.

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Photo of baiser
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I gave this one a try because I enjoyed wychwood's other brews, but, this one was a bit disappointing.

Clear bottle, neat label. Poured an ink black, with a thin head which didn't last. Lots of lacing. Right away you could tell this was much thinner than what you'd expect from an UK stout. More of a dark ale than a stout.

Malty aroma, a little cocoa.

Goes down smooth, coats the tongue. Tastes of licorice, a little sour, a little...plum. Ends tasting more like chocolate. Starts malty, ends hoppy and dry.

If it were presented as an ale, would've received a few more points. Overall, disappointing as a stout, but nice to drink nonetheless. Would probably have again, just not when I'm in the mood for a nice creamy stout.

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Photo of pootz
2.92/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This beer was the odd man out in this tasting. I like stouts...figured this would be a traditional one as it’s from the UK...bzzzt wrong! I didn’t expect much with arty label and the trendoid embossed clear bottle but it wasn’t skunked. Poured a lucid dark brown instead of the expected dead black color of traditional stouts....this looks more like weak porter. The pour (and I hated to defile such trendy packaging actually opening it and drinking the artfully wrapped contents) was anticlimactic...what you saw in the bottle was what you got in the glass...low carbonation, weak nose..some coffee some malt...very weak. Stated watery for a stout...medium-light malt body outbalanced by hops..finish comes too fast with nothing left on the tongue to impress but a bit of astringency. This would be a passable mega porter if it had more malt character. Not bad but not good and the package is overstated for the contents.

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Photo of beckerboots
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured to an almost ashpalt coloured body with a thinning brown head that tried its best to linger. The hop combination seemed to take the life out of the aroma but certainly hues of burnt chocolate and nutmeg are apparent at different stages of consumption. Lack of sweetness and the less then filling feeling (too watery) left me somewhat perturbed as to why this is classified as a stout. The 4.5 ABV should have given me a clue. Not one of Wychwood Brewing's best.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.28/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This stout looks kind of like a porter, its dark dark brown/almost black rather than extremely black. The head is long lasting and leaves concentric sheets of lace behind. The aroma is strong, I opened the bottle, walked across the room, and from there I could smell the black malts and hops. The taste is is hoppier than most UK stouts, with a citrusy character. The malts are complex with quite a subdued burnt taste and a lot of chocolate characteristics. The mouthfeel is not as full as other stouts, rather on the thin side. That being said the excellent balance of this brew and the modest ABV make it very drinkable. Its not that filling.

 645 characters

Photo of Shiloh
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A better than average stout but not overly impressive.
Arrived black as coal with a short tan crown which was quickly replaced with a thick large bubbled ring and minor glass cling.
Carbonation was light and the body medium.
The taste was to the hops and ended the same with some initial malty sweetness. Dark chocolate was dominate and lingered.
Nose was a tad skunky to begin but that too was replaced with a dark chocolate like impression.
Mouthfeel was good, maybe a little syrupy like.

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Photo of canucklehead
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice label but I worry about the clear bottle. The beer itself was a
beautiful black colour with purple highlights. This stout was well made and nicely balanced with the focus on easy to drink. Not the biggest stout but with more flavour than most well known Irish pints.
I would buy this again when I need a stout that doesn't make me change to another style after one glass.

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Photo of slitherySOB
3.08/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The best I've had from Wychwood thus far. Fresh bottle, so their was no light struck aroma. Poured a vicious, tar black colour with a two finger head. The head disippated to film about halfway down the glass. Dark malt and oatmeal is smelled, with a decent hop kick. Tasted a little weaker than it smells. Little bitter hops, little sweet malt, some chocolate, and oatmeal cookies. Good, slick mouthfeel. Kind of a light oil. A decent beer.

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Photo of ToolHead
3.12/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

50 cl bottle, served in Hobgoblin glass.
Nearly black w/ moderate, tan head. Nicely hoppy, slightly roasted/burnt taste that's sadly let down by a thin, watery mouthfeel.
Gets better as it warms.
Not a very memorable stout. I've still to taste a Wychwood beer that I really like.

 284 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle - Dark black brew with a nice foamy head with medium retention. Floral aroma coming out of my glass is incredible. Taste is very sweet unlike the irish stout. This is very different and the body is very light. I'm not even sure this is a stout but overall it is not a bad beer.

 284 characters

Photo of Seumas
3.92/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This comes across as more of a porter than a stout, being just a hair light in body (and alcohol). Indeed, it drinks alot like an American porter, which follows the old English style itself.

It is a nice dark beer, but really not the absorbs-light tone I lke to see in a stout (or porter, for that matter).

I'd like to see the folks the folks in Witney ramp this one up a bit, since it's one of the few English stouts that doesn't emulate the Irish style with addition of roast barley.

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Photo of Darkale
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good, standard stout appearance. Fabulous lacing.

Spicy aroma, high in the nose and slightly musty. Chewy mouthfeel, musty like the aroma, slightly sour. Brisk and dry, astringent, and slightly sour taste.

A decent stout. A bit dry perhaps, could be sweeter, but a decent stout, nevertheless.

 299 characters

Photo of Indybeer
4.18/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle. Poured a dark black, with a massive chocolate head that slowly receded to a fine ring, lots of lacing on the glass. Aroma is a muted roated coffee. Taste is creamy smooth, and mild for a stout, but a very enjoyable drink. I was concerned about the clear glass bottle, but thankfully it has suffered no ill effects. A thoroughly enjoyable beer.

 357 characters

Photo of TerryW
2.68/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured up nice and dark with a moderate tan head. The head settled quickly to a thin film that gave up very little lace.

The smell is malty and somewhat sweet (caramel) with dark fruit. As the beer warms up it gives up burned coffee and chocolate scents.

I found this beer to be a bit one-dimensional. Big coffee flavour, some malt, but not much else. Certainly no real trace of the oats mentioned on the label. Kind of disappointing against some of the similar beers. Mildly bitter, but not overpowering.

Cool label, of course.

 537 characters

Photo of avylover
4.33/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It's black with some ruby highlights, a small brown head tops it off. A good english hoppiness is present in the aroma, along with burnt coffee and some black fruits. Taste is quite odd. Starts off with a very buttery, yet hoppy taste, then roasted malt dominates the aftertaste. If you like english bitters, you'll love this brew. A very unique stout, with a smooth mouthfeel and good stout drinkability.

 405 characters

Photo of TheDM
4.06/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew poured a medium head of fine to medium sized dark tan bubbles that left a nice lacing and a dark brown body with some carbonation rising up the side of the glass. It has very nice malty aroma and an initially mild coffee flavor but finishes with a slight bite, but still very nice all around.It was jJust a bit mild for a great stout.

 344 characters

Photo of hotstuff
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was not as strong of a stout that I have experienced in the past. This one was noticeably milder which I know is not the norm for a stout, but personally I prefer a milder tasting stout so I really enjoyed this particular one. It poured a thin head which did not last too long. It had excellent lacing to it. This particular stout is definitely one that I would enjoy drinking again sometime.

 397 characters

Photo of Maestro
4.13/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I really liked this one. I generally like stronger stouts but these guys seem to do a great job with a moderate ale. The head is thin but present throughout and leaves a nice lacing. The nose is sweet with caramel notes. But the first taste makes you well aware of the hops. The beer warms you in spite of its low alcohol content and makes it well worth the drink. Maybe a good session beer for those that are interested in that aspect. The malts become present as you move through the pint and are quite a good combination. Definitely a beer I will seek out again.

 565 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Black body with clear mahogany highlights at the base of the glass. Topped by a short, frothy, light tan head that holds fairly well and leaves some nice lace. The nose expresses a roasty malt, mild diacetyl butteriness, and some grassy and earthy hops. The body is light/medium with a very fine and mild carbonation that leaves it smooth in the mouth. The flavor starts with a charming semi-sweet chocolate note and underlying butterscotch that are soon overtaken by roastiness and then drying bitterness. It finishes dry, bitter, and fairly short with only a mild lingering roastiness. A bit one-sided but well-balanced and enjoyable; and at is moderate strength it makes a good session ale! As is the case with many English beers, this is best enjoyed at cellar temperature.

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Photo of Dogbrick
2.64/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Like the other Wychwood beers I have tried so far, this is below average. Pours a nice dark color with a slight coffee aroma but the flavor was seriously lacking. Thin and metallic and too fizzy. Maybe this is what a lightstruck Stout tastes like? Damn these clear bottles!

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Photo of StevieW
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1pt. clear bottle. Label has an alluring Witch staring back at you. I guess the spooky labels are part of this breweries appeal.

Standard dull black pour. Aptly named a "Black Wych" Creamy full rich bubbly beige head. Stayed together and fell down the glass nicely. Smell was dominated by burnt malt, bitterness, coffee smells. Taste was a bit more sweet. Some roasted chocolate malt, but again super bitter strong finish. The label says "Imported English Stout" I didn't guess it to be an Oatmeal Stout. Too much bitterness for me to think of it as an Oatmeal Stout. Nice dry finish. Medium carbonation. Just gets a bit on the thin watery side, as it nears the bottom of the glass. Still very good, tasty stout, but not as sweet and full bodied as other Oatmeal Stouts I have had.

 784 characters

Photo of Jon
3.71/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Black Wych pours, not surprisingly, a black color with a somewhat sturdy tan head. Aroma is quite funky at first (damn clear bottles), but after letting it air out, notes of oats and roasted malts are present. Taste is pretty good with hints of more roasted, burnt malt, coffee and oats. Mouthfeel is a bit thin, but overall a quaffable oatmeal stout.

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Photo of Viking
3.86/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I was a bit nervous about buying this brew - it's in one of those dreadful clear bottles. However, it couldn't have been on the store's shelf more than a few days. Who knows what the distributer did with it though...Anyhoo, nothing at all wrong with the beer. Quite enjoyable in fact!

Nice opaque dark brown body with a thick light brown head. No CO2 apparent in the body - but perhaps it's just too dark to tell. Head retention is a bit weak, but a thin lace still covers the beer to the end. Lots of lace left on the glass. Weak aroma of coffee dominates the smell. Oats are noticeable as well. Excellent taste! Rich coffee taste with roasted oats and a lingering bitterness in the finish. Mouthfeel is a bit watery, but certainly not bad. Overall a very tasty and enjoyable brew.

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Photo of inebrius
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Applesauce, a shot of wheatgrass and coffee. Breakfast for uppity junkies? Or a description of Black Wych? You decide. Ruby edged black nether a thin, tacky head. Nose of newly dug holes and seasonal transitions. Mouthfeel is a bit runny but overall a decent, drinkable brew.

 275 characters

Black Wych from Wychwood Brewery Company Ltd
3.68 out of 5 based on 187 ratings.
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