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Old Crafty Hen | Greene King / Morland Brewery

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Old Crafty HenOld Crafty Hen
BA SCORE
3.72/5
Good
277 Ratings
Old Crafty HenOld Crafty Hen
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Greene King / Morland Brewery
England, United Kingdom
greenekingbeers.co.uk

Style: English Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A strong fine ale combines the malty taste with a smooth raisin finish.

Challenger provides a key herbal dry hop character, First Gold and Goldings give some citrus fruit and crystal malt provides warming toffee in the main beer of this blended ale. The use of some old 5X 12% ale adds dried fruit and raisin and produces a complex flavoured and richly satisfying ale. The tradition of brewing a Strong Suffolk Ale and maturing in Oak Vats is one that unlike other UK brewers, GK have continued - the practice is mentioned in 1810 in connection with GK.

Added by GreenCard on 10-17-2008

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#26,008
Reviews:
91
Ratings:
277
pDev:
13.44%
Bros Score:
3.91
 
 
Wants:
12
Gots:
53
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 277 |  Reviews: 91
Photo of Demonic1783
5/5  rDev +34.4%

Photo of BOSSTRECENTODUE
5/5  rDev +34.4%

Photo of blueberryann
5/5  rDev +34.4%

Photo of Declanmeehan
4.87/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of monkist
4.74/5  rDev +27.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had the pleasure to taste a terribly good classic, Old Crafty Hen. Known and tried Old Speckled Hen but it is nothing in comparison with the ole Crafty.
It is an oak-aged vintage the bottle tells you as if it was some sort of a whiskey - and in a way nothing could be more spot on! Looks and feels like a bourbon or at least something beyond your average ale, and to a mortal like me it is still a mystery how they are able to produce this kind of taste. Guess aging it in specific barrels for excessive periods of time does the trick.
Raisin, cherry, sherry and above all, malts dominate is taste and in what a way! This is extremely good, really overwhelming - as I am typing these lines drinking it I need to keep focusing on staying put. It is THAT much outstanding.
A classic indeed. Full stop.

 801 characters

Photo of beerinabottle
4.64/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Giuseppina
4.58/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Look: fantastic mahogany colour, thick head that disappears quite fast.

Smell: malty, faint but pleasant.

Taste: here this beer really shine, full very round deep malty taste, in the aftertaste you can really feel the aging, almost wine-like.

Feel: smooth, very pleasant.

Overall: one of the best beers I've ever tried.

 323 characters

Photo of Hefebossen
4.5/5  rDev +21%

Photo of TeachChefs
4.5/5  rDev +21%

Photo of WGO
4.5/5  rDev +21%

Photo of bigbeerfan
4.5/5  rDev +21%

Photo of kvnstfrd
4.5/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a dark, amber color with a frothy, long-lasting head with plenty of lacing.

Aroma: Raisins, spicy hops and cereal grains with a woody aroma.

Taste: Initial taste is brandy-like with dark fruits, oak and a subtle taste of liquorice while on the palate. Aftertaste is a perfect blend of sweet, dark fruit flavors and a dry bitter. Mouth-feel is medium with almost no detectable carbonation. A smooth and buttery swallow.

This is a difficult-to-find brew that I've been hunting for 3 or 4 years. I am happy to report that it has been well worth the hunt and the wait. This one just might make it into my top-10 list!

 634 characters

Photo of deldad
4.5/5  rDev +21%

Photo of BlackHaddock
4.47/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It is a sunny yet cold Sunday afternoon in Shropshire and I want a decent pint before my Sunday Lunch. I have choosen this beer from my stash.

The clear 500ml bottle was poured into my 'La Chouffe' tulip glass three times (to catch the aromas and force a good head out of the beer). It had almost a year left of its life, so was fairly fresh when reviewed.

The beer poured a deep rich amber and on each occasion had a well formed off-white foaming head. On each pour the head fell away to a thinner covering and some laceing on the glass.

Oak aged beers always remind me of coal fires and childhood Christmas's, the aromas in this one followed the same trend. A warm and comforting smell, a 'Sod the Credit Crunch', 'Balls to the Recession' type of richness only the well off can have. This is a boardroom of the rich beer.

The taste also brings back memories of sitting round the fire and warmth. A deep malty richness and depth of the body give this beer a really good glow and feel.

The 6.5% is well hidden within the brew and even though it is a mix of two beers (Old Speckled Hen and Old 5X), the blender has got it just about perfect. This is the best GK beer I've ever had.

One small note, 'Old 5X' isn't sold, it is a 12% Oak aged (3 years) brew that is blended into other GK beers.

 1,296 characters

Photo of Taxi_Driver
4.44/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of tonton
4.4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Having this beer now at Trafalgar Pub in Wanchai.

Poured from a 50cl clear bottle into an English pint. Beautiful golden ale with a gorgeous 2" white head.

Smell - nice, common pale ale smell.
Taste - Banana, walnut, malt, hops.
Mouth - Moderate to high carbonation, nice linger on the tongue.

Overall - Excellent example of a strong English Ale. Recommended!

 362 characters

Photo of Bogdawg
4.35/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of pkalix
4.34/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

nice copper color, clear, little head on top; smells of sweet malts.
tastes of sweet malts, lots of caramel; a lot like some of these other versions of english beer i've been having lately with the sweetness in the middle. nice, mellow taste, easy to drink with a higher abv at 6.5%
overall, i like the style and i like the taste. lots of character and easy to drink a few in succession. i like the malitness and want to know how these english beers get this particular taste which no one else seems to be able to produce. the closest thing to them are the german commercial caramel-y beers like the oktoberfests, but these have totally different twists which i really enjoy. anybody know?

 689 characters

Photo of GregBlatz
4.33/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A - Deep amber color. Head laces the glass. White head with a bit of tan.

S - Slightly metallic. Rich butterscotch and raisin aroma. A lot of esters and diacytel.

T - Very toffee like and a lot of caramel. Nice bitterness to smooth it out.

F - A bit of a chewiness.

O - wow, this is a nice English beer with all of the flavors I was hoping for

 353 characters

Photo of Huffs
4.26/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a pint glass and developed a nice creamy, biscuit colored head which lasted and laced reasonably well. Appearance was clear, amber / ruby color with a light aroma of cream and toffee. Taste had notes of caramel, toffee and vanilla with a light, bitter aftertaste. Mouthfeel was full and creamy. Classic English Ale.

 327 characters

Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Aroma: Light fruity esters, herbal, earthy hops, malty sweetness. Appearance: brilliant copper brown, ½” off-white head dissipates to a film but provides delicate lacing. Flavor: Moderate high British hops supported by the malt backbone. The British hops are features and the malt and hop flavors work well together through the finish and into the after taste. The malts suggest nutty, toffee and come out and become more apparent as the beer warms. Mouthfeel: medium low body and carbonation, medium warming, clean. Overall Impression: This does not have the hick chewiness and complex fruity esters that you often associate with old ales but the finely tuned balance between the hops and the malt make up for the lack of dark dried fruit, sherry like qualities.

 767 characters

Photo of mtrain237
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%

Photo of John_Squires
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%

Photo of wcjensen
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Radome
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%

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Old Crafty Hen from Greene King / Morland Brewery
Beer rating: 3.72 out of 5 with 277 ratings
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