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Wychwood Bah Humbug! (Bottle)

Brewed by Wychwood (Marstons plc)
Style: English Strong Ale
Witney, England


on tap

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RATINGS: 494   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.06   SEASONAL: Winter   EST. CALORIES: 150   ABV: 5%
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Available in 500ml pasteurised bottles.
Previously 6.0%.
NOTE: The cask version (at 4.3%) has a separate listing.

Bah Humbug is a 6% abv brew using not just the traditional malted barley and hops, but also a big sprinkling of cinnamon. The effect of the cinnamon is to give a spicy, almost banana-like flavour as often found on German wheat beers; and this blends with the sweet-honeyed flavours of the Maris Otter barley to create a beer with all the fruit flavours of mince pies, Christmas Pudding and Christmas cake all rolled into one.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
allmyvinyl (4448) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - JAN 15, 2015
500ml bottle from Beers of Europe. Pours clear red-brown, thin cream-coloured head. Aromas of dark sugar, red fruit, spice. Taste is clove and cinnamon, more dark sugar, boiled sweets. Light body, light spicy finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
deepeary (204) - Ontario, CANADA - DEC 30, 2014
Bottle from the LCBO. Pours a clear reddish brown. Nose is full of spice, cinnamon no doubt. Taste i s similarly dominated by earthy cinnamon flavour. Very festive, would go well with fruitcake. Fits the season well, but the spice is a bit too much for me, I wouldn’t drink more than one.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
MrBlueSky93 (105) - Sutton Coldfield, Staffordshire, ENGLAND - DEC 28, 2014
Bottle from Sainsbury’s Fruity and sweet on the nose. Has a typical Wychwood taste about it that crosses all of their range- in terms of the maltiness. Then comes a fruity, winter, dark fruits taste-only light though. After a strong, synthetic banana taste. For those in the UK (don’t know if those in US get these sweets) think Foam Banana’s. Then back again to the light biscuit malt. Not bad, nice in a session but the abv at 5% could be a bit high for some in a session.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
snowdog140 (50) - Coventry, West Midlands, ENGLAND - DEC 26, 2014
Beautiful red colour and a malty, hoppy aroma makes this beer a really appealing one. Malty taste continues but there’s fruity notes as well, makes it a more complex flavour and one that is much more drinkable than other fruity beers. A nice drink, recommended.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
TavernWench (7) - Berkshire, ENGLAND - DEC 26, 2014 does not count
Bottle 500ml. Clear ale with a red hue and a small off-white head. Aroma is very bready with malt, caramel and yeast notes. Cinnamon notes extremely subtle, no banana. Taste is sweet with very light bitterness of English hops. Carbonation is subtle on the palate and the texture feels watered down. One of Wychwood’s better ales but still rather bog-standard.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
tinylightsrecs (276) - - DEC 26, 2014
Bottle received as a gift. There's a nice feel of mulled spices here - very warming - a little thin perhaps but still tasty

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
beertholomeus (951) - California, USA - DEC 22, 2014
Pours a burnt amber color with an off white head. Malt, caramel, toffee, biscuit, spice, earthy, herbal and malt aroma and flavors. Medium body and low carbonation. Malt, toffee and caramel finish.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
mabuzzer (127) - - DEC 21, 2014
500ml bottle. Nutty brown colour with a quickly fading head. Sweet nose with a hint of spice. Taste is dried fruit and spices. Bit watery, but not bad

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Chad9976 (1269) - Albany, New York, USA - DEC 20, 2014
I should disclaim this review by saying I’m not sure how old this bottle was. It could be anywhere from a year to nearly two years old. Then again, it might be this year’s batch for all I know. Whatever the case may be, Wychwood Bah Humbug! is not that impressive of a beer. It’s fairly generic as far as English brews go, which is fine. But it markets itself as a Christmas beer and has no discernible spices or other seasonal character to it. Plus there’s a tanginess that doesn’t seem to be intentional

I poured a 500ml bottle into an English pint glass. I couldn’t make heads or tails of the bottling code. It cost $4.69 ($0.28 per ounce).

Appearance: Rusty orange/burnished copper hue. Mostly clear body with consistent carbonation visible. Pours to a large, off-white, foamy head which laces and retains well.

Smell: Mild nose with the typical English pub-style ale aromatics of light malt and some fruity notes.

Taste: At first sip, this would seem to be a familiar ESB or other niche British style brew. There’s a mild maltiness with notes of toast and marmalade, and that’s pretty much it. Through the middle I detect a strong tangy character. It’s possibly oxidation (which would be understandable if this is an old bottle). Not much in the way of true hop bitterness other than a slight drying sensation. I found absolute no spices in the palette, either. While not horrible, there’s little here to truly enjoy and latch onto.

Drinkability: The first thing I noticed about Wychwood Bah Humbug! was how thin and watery the mouthfeel was. It wasn’t especially crisp, though, despite the visible carbonation. It went down smoothly and left a mostly clean aftertaste. It’s not surprising the palette is so mild since the beer only weighs in at 5% ABV. Still, there’s nothing about this beer that would make me want to session it.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 10/20
drjay44 (2768) - Salida, Colorado, USA - DEC 17, 2014
500 ml. bottle. 5% ABV per the bottle. Pours a medium, well retained, ivory head, with slight lacing, over a clear dark amber (SRM 15) body.....nose is toasted malts, hints of toffee/caramel, light banana/bubblegum, herbal notes from the hops, balance to the malts....taste is light toasted malts, treacle tones, banana/bubblegum, lightly sweet, finishing with light bitterness....mouth feel, light of medium body, no alcohol, moderate carbonation. This beer is a mess. It is as if they used not only the wrong yeast, but also the wrong combination of malts. It is not Strong at 5% ABV, not English with the German type yeast notes in both aroma and flavor, and needs a thorough rework. BJCP 5/3/10/4/5

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