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Jul 2023

Old Master Hen, Greene King

Added: Saturday, July 1st 2023

Style Strong Pale Ale ABV 7.0%

Old Master Hen, 7 per cent

This beer joins the family of “Hen” beers, based on the success of Old Speckled Hen, which was first brewed by the Morland Brewery in Abingdon. In 1979 the MG car company was celebrating its 50th anniversary and invited Morland to brew a special beer to mark the occasion.

The result was a prototype racing car with mottled bodywork that reminded people of a hen’s colouring. The car didn’t go into production but the beer, Old Speckled Hen, became Morland’s most popular brand.

The brewery was bought by Greene King in 2000 and Speckled Hen is one of its best-selling beers. It has added Old Master Hen as a result of research by head brewer Ross O’Hara who has used the finest raw materials to fashion a strong ale that’s bottle conditioned.

It’s brewed with pale malt and 8 per cent crystal malt: that’s a high level of crystal that gives the beer its amber colour and rich flavours. It has a big combination of all English hops to balance the malt notes: Challenger, First Gold, Fuggles, Goldings and Pilgrim.

The amber/deep bronze beer has butterscotch on the nose with blood orange fruit and peppery hops. The rich malty palate is balanced by orange fruit, butterscotch and spicy hops. The finish is long and bittersweet with continuing notes of butterscotch, tart fruit and peppery hops.

The beer is on sale in branches of Waitrose, £5, and can be bought from the Greene King shop, £12 for two bottles in an attractive pack. It’s recommended that one bottle should be laid down, as it will improve with age. https://shop.greeneking/products/old-master-hen


Old Master Hen, Greene King