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2nd June 2023

Greene King launches brand new Hen family member ‘Old Master Hen’ ale

Popular UK brewery Greene King has today announced the launch of its brand-new Old Master Hen ale, available from May 25th.

Part of the brewery’s Old Speckled Hen family, the premium ale will be available to purchase from the Greene King shop this month, and in-store and online at Waitrose from Wednesday 7th June.

Old Master Hen is brewed at 7% ABV and is bottled conditioned to mature with age. The ale is described as strong and full-bodied, with a deep amber colour, masses of characteristic toffee and fruit, notes of citrus orange, and traditional English hop bitterness.

Using the, nowadays, rarer process of bottle-conditioning, this will allow for the beer to ferment further in the bottle and bring out deeper characters in the flavours of Old Master Hen as time goes by. The small secondary fermentation creates a natural soft carbonation with smaller bubbles, making it the closest thing to having cask ale and a traditional pint in the comfort of your own home.

The name was inspired by one of Greene King’s Master Brewers, Ross O’Hara, who was tasked with creating his own personal recipe of the ultimate Old Speckled Hen family brew.

Ross O’Hara, Head of Strategy and Production for Greene King Brewery and a Master Brewer, said: “With Father’s Day just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to introduce a refreshing new addition to the Old Speckled Hen family that is a premium gift for any beer lover.

“Old Master Hen is a proud personal accomplishment and it’s been a labour of love. This ale celebrates the art of brewing, from the selection of ingredients to the process of creating a truly unique product and ultimately, how a perfectly brewed ale is, in fact, a masterpiece. This is a beer to sip and savour and we feel the name ‘Old Master Hen’ perfectly summarises an ale that has centuries of brewing expertise under its belt and is a true gift for beer enthusiasts.”

The UK’s number one premium ale, Old Speckled Hen was first brewed by the historic Morland Brewery to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the MG car factory, before handing over the reins to Greene King, who still brews the ale to this day.

More than 40 years on, this unique and distinctive family of ales continues to be finely brewed with a rich, toffee-malt taste and fruity aroma. The signature Morland symbol, featuring a drawing of 18th-century painter George Morland, still features on the Old Speckled Hen family logo, as a nod to the ale’s heritage and love of art all its many forms.

To celebrate the launch, the first 100 bottles of Old Master Hen will be released online with a special certification, RRP £10. Following this, bottles will be available from the Greene King online shop in pairs, designed to sip one and save the other, priced at £12:

Old Master Hen will also be available in-store and online at Waitrose from Wednesday 7th June.

See the full range of award-winning beers and more at the Greene King shop here:


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Notes to editors

About Greene King:

Greene King is the country’s leading pub company and brewer with c.2,600 pubs, restaurants and hotels across England, Wales and Scotland.

At Greene King we are passionate about delivering our purpose to ‘pour happiness into lives’. That’s for our customers, our team, our pub partners, our suppliers and the communities in which we live, operate and serve. Founded in 1799 with offices in Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk and Burton on Trent in Staffordshire we employ around 39,000 people across the group with four divisions: Greene King pubs, Destination Brands, Partnership and Ventures, and Brewing & Brands.

  • Greene King pubs are located where people and communities come together; pubs enjoyed in cities, towns and villages throughout the country
  • Destination Brands is a mixture of food and drink-led brands including Hungry Horse, Farmhouse Inns, Chef & Brewer, Wacky Warehouse, and Pub & Carvery, Pub & Dining and Pub & Grill
  • Partnerships & Ventures includes Pub Partners, which runs our tenanted and leased pubs business and Hive Franchise pubs, and our Ventures Brands which is made up of Metropolitan Pub Company, Hickory’s, Hotels Group and Crafted Pubs
  • Brewing & Brands covers the brewing sides of the business. Quality ales are brewed at the Westgate brewery in Bury St Edmunds and the Belhaven Brewery in Dunbar. Our industry-leading portfolio includes Greene King IPA, Old Speckled Hen, Abbot Ale, Ice Breaker and Belhaven Best and our premium beers, Level Head and Flint Eye, brewed for the modern-day drinker.

Imagery can be found here.

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