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


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 486   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.

madlizzie's rating

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
madlizzie (12) - - DEC 28, 2006
Hazy dark amber colour. Caramelly malts in the aroma - fairly rich with light pear esters. Malty body. Not thin, which is amazing for a Wychwood beer. Lots of pear, marmalade and cranberry esters. The malts are heavy and plodding, not good for a malt-accented brew. The yeast is really sludgey-tasting, too. This beer drags across the palate like Fred Flintstone driving a logging truck in the mud with a rippin’ hangover. The finish gets a touch of dryness from a shot of peppery alcohol. I understand the benefit of having a bit of booziness in a winter warmer, but against such a dull backdrop it really comes off poorly. The fact that they used the brightest malt - Maris Otter - to make this beer blows my mind.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Chad9976 (1245) - 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 (2731) - 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

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
jmagnus87 (2732) - Rockford, Illinois, USA - DEC 12, 2014
Bottle at old chicago. From notes. Caramel with something medium fruity. Cinnamon and baking spices.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
christhoel (191) - chesterfield, Derbyshire, ENGLAND - DEC 11, 2014
chocolate, cinnamon, brown, clear, white foam, light sweetness, lightly bitter, full body, slick feel, average carbonation, Chestnut red, moderate thin white head and moderate condition. Low chocolate and mulled wine spices in the nose, cinnamon and chocolate dominant in the mouth and quite dry with a spicy bitterness in the finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
jeffwren (1) - - DEC 7, 2014 does not count
Expected a more "Christmassy" beer but somehow the Cinnamon disappeared and definite banana taste. Not unlikeable but not an out and out winner

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
downatone (2) - - DEC 7, 2014 does not count
Pours well and comes out with a reddish hue. The initial taste is smooth and even a little creamy, with the middle coming across very earthy. The tail ends with a little bit of hops. All in all an interesting drink. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 8/20
George999 (131) - Colorado, USA - DEC 5, 2014
Aroma is a crisp ale, Pour from bottle is dark amber and clear, taste is bitter and a little watery and fish is tinny

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
lesifflebiere (1350) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - NOV 30, 2014
Elle est cuivrée et limpide, avec une carbonatation moyenne mais une mousse timide ; nez de baies, de sucre d’orge, et bizarrement, d’herbes et de fleurs. Bouche doucereuse, un peu bonbon, donnant dans l’eau de rose et le punch aux fruits ; épices plutôt bizarres aussi, mais surtout les notes sucrées susmentionnées, et qui sonnent un peu artificielles. Et toujours cette odeur de pissenlit... Une bonne bière, mais avec des caractéristiques qui agacent solidement.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
JorisPPattyn (8032) - Antwerpen, BELGIUM - NOV 27, 2014
Small beige head over red-amber beer. Hops, caramel, peanuts, hint at diacetyl, parsley. Don’t get the cinnamon. Bitterish, hoppy, faintly metallic and herbal flavours. Quite balanced, far from bad. Caramel retronasal, caramel glazed cookies. Again, no cinnamon (nor banana...) Light body, slight slickness, light but titillating carbonation. As said, far from bad.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
mr_h (3084) - Ayr, SCOTLAND - NOV 21, 2014
500ml bottle from Morrisons, Ayr - clear russet, fruity, caramel, cinnamon aroma, intermittent lacing, bready, caramel, cinnamon in the flavour, a nicely balanced Christmas Ale

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