Why we're here...

Beer culture is coming of age. At any store, restaurant, bar, or friend's house you can now find at least a few good brews. In fact, there seem to be so many new beers, breweries and bars it's difficult to separate the good, the bad, and the mediocre.

If you're going spend $10 on one beer, what should you buy? If you're going to drive 2 hours to check out a brewery, what's worth your time? If you're going to plan a Friday night, what has a good selection and friendly atmosphere? We're here to help you answer these questions.

Friday, October 25, 2013

The Legendary Hobgoblin Strong Dark Ale

Hobgoblin is a, well I've seen it called a Northern English Brown, a Extra Special Bitter, and Strong Dark Ale. Either way, it's English and doesn't really fit into the standard American styles. It's brewed by the Wychwood Brewery of Witney, England. The brewery is named after the Wychwood Forest that is near Witney.

Hobgoblin was first brewed for a wedding in 1988. In 2003 Hobgoblin started an advertising campaign that went after the the drinkers of flavorless lagers with the slogan "What's the matter lagerboy, afraid you might taste something?"

I picked this up at BevMo. It has an ABV of 5.2%.

The aroma has soft toasted malts and whiffs of dark malts. The flavor is subtle all around with sweet malts, roasted, some nuttiness and a light bitter end. The mouthfeel is smooth and a bit creamy and a medium to light body.

Overall, this is a very good beer, but in a different context. English ales have different flavor profiles than American. Even though this ale is sold as more flavorful than a lager, compared to most American ales, its flavor is tame. It's definitely more flavorful than the lagers they challenge. That said Hobgoblin is an enjoyable, smooth, tasty beer. I like to grab a good English Ale for a break from American brews now and then. Of the English Ales out there, this is a good. It's also a REAL ale. I recommend you Try It.

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