Old Speckled Hen | Greene King / Morland Brewery

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Old Speckled HenOld Speckled Hen

Brewed by:
Greene King / Morland Brewery
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Quaffer on 10-23-2000

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Reviews: 923 | Ratings: 2,072
Photo of bbtkd
3.59/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Greene King Old Speckled Hen, 5.2% ABV, 42 IBU. Pours thin and orange, with a one finger white head. Nose is sweet fruit and peanuts, taste is malty sweetness, a hint of peanuts, and slightly bitter. Good mouthfeel, overall good.

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Photo of donspublic
3.87/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into Tulip, 1/2 finger off white head, so so retention, nice lacing. Clear dark amber in the glass. Sells faintly of caramel malt, floral hoppiness peaking thru. Taste initially of caramel malt sweetness along with some toffee, leads into mild bitterness, floral/grassy hops hanging around. Finish is on the dry side, extremely drinkable. Nice clean drinking beer, would grab it on tap if it was there for a break from more palate abusing beers. Want to point out this came as part of a beer club shipment and was in a brown bottle, so not seeing any of the skunkiness others have posted about

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Photo of Hopheadjeffery
3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasted in a conical pint glass from bottles, nitro cans and nitro draft. The nitro is an extremely smooth and easy drinking English pale ale. Recommended.

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Photo of BranfordBound
3.05/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.75

Clear bottle leaves a skunky aroma which is a big negative. Flavor is mostly overly sweet caramel malt notes, hints of skunk from the aroma, grain and bread, some bitterness at the end of the swallow. Very mediocre and this beer could be helped a ton by the use of some light filtering bottle like dark brown glass and better packaging.

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Photo of Mitzvahman72
2.44/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 5 | overall: 1.5

With a bold amber color with many tiny bubbles as though it came from the draft, the beer has mild caramels and biscuity flavors, all getting overpowered with the flowery hops that segway into the aftertaste. It does have a creamy pure mouthfeel, but gets more bitter with time. While the mouthfeel is fantastic, it’s too bitter to be enjoyable.

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Photo of MinerBob
3.87/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Old English Hen is a very good English Ale with a nice color and smell. Low carbonation so it has a nice mouth feel. It does have an aftertaste that is not great but still a nice beer.

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Photo of nicholas2121
4.35/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Old Speckled Hen brewed by Greene King / Morland Brewery, with an ABV of about 5.00% This English Pale Ale pours out a nice copper gold color with a smaller off white head. There is a decent amount of lacing to this ale, it is a bit thin and spoty. The smell of Specked Hen bold with sweetness possibly a caramel or peanut brittle. There is also some nice roasted grians and malts, in the smell of this brew. Really nice inviting brew. Now for the taste, it is mild but rich with flavors. This brew has a real nice balance to it. I really like how the roasted grians and malts mixed with the caramel sweetness. This is not a real hoppy brew, not saying that is a bad thing. There is nothing overpowering about this brew, it goes nice and smooth. The mouth feel of Old Speckled Hen is Mild, Roasted, Sweet, Clean and Refreshing.
This is a fine drinking English Pale Ale. Overall I'm giving Old Speckled Hen, a 4.25 out of 5. I would buy this brew again. If you are looking for something a tad bit different look this brew up. Greene King / Morland Brewery, did a nice job with this one.

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Photo of KMillard
3.66/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Out of a Nitro can: Bright Amber hue, pours and settled nicely with a thick, creamy 2 inch head and bright Amber hue. Very much like from pubs in UK. Classic UK bitter pale ale with more complexity, sweeter and darker amber hue. Superior to Bodingtons, the other nitro butter widely available in the US.

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Photo of Caveworm
4.44/5  rDev +28%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Old Speckled Hen | Greene King / Morland Brewery. Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, this brew's head is two fingers thick and off-white, with solid lacing, and a clear reddish amber body.

I smell a pleasant honey bicuit malt accented with toffee and slightly fruity yeast. Hops are rather delicate&hardly there, but this IS an English(literally) pale ale, so what elese would one expect?

Tastes like a slighty drier, yet refreshing version of the aroma. I can defintely tell this was brewed with hard water, which is not to say this is a bad thing by any means. Gives it more authenticity, IMO. I think it adds to the balancing bitterness akin to the hops mentioned on the labeling.

The mouthfeel is medium-light with mild carbonation.

Overall, I'll choose to give Old Speckled Hen | Greene King / Morland Brewery a 4.5. A sessionable UK-born pale ale that I could knock back all night at a pub, preferably the Jockey of "Shameless" lore.

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Photo of q33jeff
3/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3


On tap, Dubh Linn Square.
LOOK: Clear Amber
AROMA: light grass, hops, grains.
TASTE: Beer. Hops barley. Good balance.

Better than I remember. Easy drinking and smooth; not devoid of flavor.

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Photo of Brian_L-2056
4.16/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a definite light brown/caramel color, with a very light body head but good carbonation. Surprisingly descent lacing, disputed the lack of head. Smells kinda boozy when you first open the bottle but after u give it a little time, the spicy notes take over. Initial taste is slightly hoppy, sweet and creamy, then a slightly spicy but mild aftertaste. Overall I was totally impressed with this brew and will be looking for more

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Photo of sennoma
4.47/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A fine pale ale, not in the least bit overhopped as seems to be the trend these days. Beautifully balanced and smooth... ish. There's an edge there, but I don't know how to describe it: it's not non-smooth, it's something else (that I like). To me this is a straightforward beer: malt, hops, balance, yum.

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Photo of JakeScully
3.88/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

500ml can poured into a pint.

A very drinkable English Pale Ale. What I expect from the style, great aromas and a smooth finish. Could drink this all night long, somewhere in London. Cheers!

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Photo of SargeMcCluck
3.49/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours garnet-brown and peach with a thick, quick-dissipating head and medium lacing.

This is my go-to brew for drinking alongside meals (read: curries) back home in the UK. As such, while being nothing spectacular, it has more complexity than other widely available pub and supermarket ales. On both the nose and tongue, standard grainy malts are chased by notes sweet tobacco and toffee.

The mouthfeel has to be the downside, admittedly being quite a flat affair.

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Photo of Ferb
3.73/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This is a balanced English ale. It doesn't attack you with huge hops or espresso notes, it has a pleasant malt flavor and it was introduced to celebrate MG'S 50th anniversary. That makes it perfect to take to local British car shows. I like it. I prefer Fuller's for British ales, but this is 2/3 of the price and good enough for me with family and cheeseburgers on the deck. Cheers!

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Photo of mjurney
4.28/5  rDev +23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Copper color, crystal clear. Lots of bubble streaming. Small frothy head.

Toffee, caramel, fruity, a little earthy-herbal.

Med-roasted malts, caramel, toffee, a little nutty. Bitterness is medium, mostly tea-like, herbal, a little earthy. Finish is dry and smooth. Medium bodied, crisp, dry, highly drinkable.

It's an excellent English Pale Ale/ESB.

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Photo of twage04
4.19/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a mahogany orange brown with medium to low carbonation. Not much aroma from this bottle but taste is very smooth and flavorful. Excellent mouthfeel annd generally enjoyable to drink. Some malt and fruit but overall easy drinking fun.

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Photo of KeithTobberman
3.97/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This is a nice, very drinkable beer. The taste and smell are very smooth, and the beer is a nice, medium dark color. I hope to find this beer again for another drink date.

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Photo of brainwilson
3.77/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I have a soft spot in my heart for this beer. I drank 12 or so on Christmas day in 2006, having been dumped by my girlfriend on Christmas eve. Why would I have fond memories of this beer? I have no idea, so I decided to revisit it.

It's a pretty beer, clear, with a nice copper color. Smells good, sweet and of malts. Tastes much as it smells, with a touch of bitterness.

Verdict: not a bad beer, but best when you're heartbroken in the heart of winter.

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.77/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A; crystal clear; bronze in color; 1 finger off white head that receded to a wispy cap; OK lacing;

S: caramel, toffee, earthy, a bit of tobacco;

T: sweet caramel malt up front that fades into toffee; tobacco is very noticeable from the middle to the end; mild bitterness on the finish;

M: medium bodied; light to moderate carbonation; lightly dry finish;

O: easy drinking;

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Photo of mynie
3.36/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

How have I never had this before?

On nitro tap. Pours a light caramel color with neat, backwards cascading bubbles. Tight, white nitro head, which looks pretty on a stout but weirdly synthetic on a pale:

Smells like Bass and nitrogen. British pales always smell a little stale at first, til my nose adjusts to the sweetness.

Tastes... Like a fruitier Bass. Also like nitrogen. Little caramel, some overripe fruit, and then clean gas.

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Photo of johnnyd10vt
4.05/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not as brown as I had hoped, but a nice drinkable beer. Amber in color (should I say colour? :-) with thick white head. The smell is pure sweet caramel malt). The taste is a refreshing blend between a boring lager and an English brown, malty, sweet with just enough subtle hops to cut the sweetness. Not my normal type of beer, but I could easily drink these all night long.

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Photo of DrCruise
4.59/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

First time I've tried this ale. Fantastic from start to finish. Easy drinkability. I believe this will become one of my all time favorites, but there are a lot of beers I haven't tried yet. I will definitely share this with friends.
Sweet aroma on opening the bottle, smooth and very balanced. I have yet to pour it into a glass.

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Photo of illpass78
3.61/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Half a pint can poured into a nonic. Split with my dad over pub pizza.

Appearance: Pours a clear scarlet with a big cream head. Layers of foam billowing during the pour in Guinness-type fashion.

Aroma: Toast, biscuit, malts, lemon.

Taste: Follows the nose. On the EPA/ESB cusp. Bready, toasty, malty and bitter.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. Easy on palate.

Overall: Good, traditional British beer. Not fancy, but doesn't need to be. A peer of Belhaven and Smithwicks.

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Photo of kitschiguy
4.21/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured a 500ml bottle into a beer glass.

I'm very surprised at the average reviews for this beer.

I used to get tanked up on this beer in my local pub during my late teens and early 20's where it was available on cask. I've drank it a few times since. I was given this bottle by a supplier.

Nice light to medium-brown. Typical of the style. Good fluffy head. Hung around and left a bit of lacing.

Beautiful, complex nose with lots of biscuity malts, bread, caramel and toffee. Biscuit predominates.

Palate is very smooth and well balanced. Malty and complex with some hoppy fruits as well.

Mouth medium to full and quite creamy. Nice feel.

Overall a very good example of the style. Typical English bitter; complex malty and very well balanced. Great beer.

Highly recommended.

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Old Speckled Hen from Greene King / Morland Brewery
3.47 out of 5 based on 2,072 ratings.
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