Old Speckled Hen is considered a very good classic English strong ale, which means that it's amber (not black like a stout), somewhat bitter, fruity, and estery. Unlike pale ales, it's also hoppy and malty. Those who prefer a lager probably won't like it. It's available around the world, and in fact, last night I had a pint on draft in Singapore.

The name has an interesting origin. From the Morland Brewery (Suffolk, England) web site:

In 1927, MG produced an unusual one-off saloon. Canvas-covered, painted gold and flecked with black, it was used as a factory vehicle - fondly called the "Old Speckled 'un" by local residents. Typical of names passed by word of mouth, this changed over time to the "Old Speckled Hen." As the 50th anniversary of the MG car factory approached, MG asked Morland, to produce a special ale to celebrate the event and "Old Speckled Hen" was born.

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