Hobgoblin by Wychwood Brewery
One of the most well known Ales amongst drinkers, Wychwood Brewery's Hobgoblin delivers in taste and quality, while very reasonable when it comes to price.
Brewery: Wychwood Brewery
This Beer needs no introduction. Probably one of the most popular and earliest beneficianary of the Real Ale boom that has swept across the United Kingdom in the last few years. Wychwood Brewery's Hobgoblin at 5.2% ABV, is stronger than you're average popular Ale. However, even the drinkers who prefer their three or four percent beers are happy to go up the weight and drink this rather fine Ale.
Pouring this, the first thing you notice about the aroma is that it's pretty lively. Sweet, hints of plum with the alcohol just seeping through after. Just from the smell, this beer has balls. Deep, ruby red colour that is threatening to transform into browns, with a nice one to two finger head.
And now the taste. First initial flavours are spice with a malty middle play finishing up with a light bitterness that prolongs just enough without outstaying it's welcome. Great stuff. Along with the spice, there is a nice fruit pudding element that develops into a nice malty finish.
In bottle form, Hobgoblin is not a Real Ale per-se, but pasteurized. But don't let that put you off. In this format, care and quality has been into the production and end destination of this beer as what it would be if it was to be put in cask.
Along with the main flavours of this medium bodied Real Ale, the taste gives a hearty, warming flavour in the mouth. What I love about Hobgoblin is the outstanding quality of the beer. It's so beautifully balanced. Everything is such great value for money.
I cannot rate highly this beer. One of the superstars of the Real Ale world. This is one of the atypical 500 Beers you have to try before you die. Hobgoblin is definitely a gateway beer to what's great and good about the world of ales.
See: Ruby, Brown
Smell: Ripe Fruit
Taste: Malty, Fruit, Raisins