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Monkey Face Porter - Cascade Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Monkey Face PorterMonkey Face Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

38 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 38
Hads: 60
Avg: 3.53
pDev: 16.15%
Wants: 1
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Cascade Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-28-2002

"This is a medium bodied robust style porter with significant roast character from chocolate and black malts. This beer finished extremely dry with a hint of the Willamette Hops used to create this perfectly balanced porter. Monkey Face Porter is perfect after a long day at the mountain or on the river!"

Grains: 2-Row, Chocolate, Crystal
Hops: Willamette
Original Gravity: 1.052
Final Gravity: 1.014
I.B.U.'s: 34
Alcohol: 5.0
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 38 | Hads: 60
Photo of Hoptometrist
4.33/5  rDev +22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Served on tap into a nonic glass.

A- Poured a dark brown with reddish hues, off-white creamy head that stuck around, and left glass coating lace.

S- Big roasted coffee and malt notes, some cocoa.

T- Big roasted coffee and malt, lots of cocoa, nutty, bready, brown sugar, and some cola notes.

M- Incredibly creamy, smooth, soft carbonation, dry, and medium bodied. Perfect mouthfeel for a porter and a little creamier than I expect for the style.

O- This is a great porter with complexity, balance, and a great mouthfeel.

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Photo of RedDiamond
4.15/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a difference a pint makes. I originally reviewed a 12 oz. bottle of Monkey Face purchased from a reputable merchant in Portland. It was awful. It was desperately wretched. It was a bottle of pain. (See below.)

Seven months later I went to the source and drank an imperial on tap at The Lodge. My impression went from, “This some repugnant shit” to “a bold brew with abundant smoke yet also a splash of cream.” Though that ridiculous monkey on a rope should be torn from the label and boiled in a vat of banana gravy, the beer itself is not nearly as bad as my initial bottled experience would have it. In fact, it’s quite good.

Monkey Face is impenetrable brown with wide swaths of lace and a solid, toasty aroma. The finish is clean, the mouthfeel is rounded, and there are no distracting or unwanted complexities. Moreover, the flavor is sustained for the duration of an imperial pint; not many porters can say the same.

In the end, this is a damn fine beer. But it’s hell in a bottle.

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Photo of ElGordo
4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark brown with scarlet highlights when held up to the light. Head is a half-inch of creamy tan goodness that subsides more quickly than I would like. Aroma is rich, full of chocolate malt, lactose sweetness, and a roasty, mocha quality. Palate is chocolatey roasted malt up front, with some more lactose sweetness. The fruity hop profile comes out mid-palate, building to a slightly bitter finish. Body is velvety smooth, could stand to be a little creamier, but still very nice. On the whole, a tasty and drinkable porter.

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Photo of slaintemhor
4/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Bailey's Taproom in Portland, OR. last Sept. The colour was basically black but with dark ruby hues when held to the light. Only a thin ribbon of tan head around the rim. The aroma was quite roasty and smoky. On the palate, lots of froth with plenty of roasted malt character, maduro tobacco, dark chocolate and a dry, lengthy finish. I wonder if it's this yummy out of the bottle.

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Photo of Docer
3.99/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Buddy Pete picked me up a growler of their Red, and a 6-pack of this porter... lover their stuff!

- Pours a nice coffee black... clear as best as I can see it at the edges of my pint glass... nice off white to mocha head.. about half a finger down to a slight slew and a ring..

- Rich chocolate malt profile... slightly sweet, roasted and a touch of coffee.... loving the smell... sweet oats, grain.

- Wonderful zingy porter... nice bitter earthy hop.. and a backdrop of sweet oats and chocolate malt... a very pleasant and drinkable porter.

- Only slightly chalky, thin to medium bodied.. slight creaminess to it....

- Super good porter... I rather like its simplicity and flavor combination... very balanced.

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Photo of BigJTrucker
3.98/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass a dark brown color, tan head settling fairly quickly to a thin layer of foam clinging to the glass. Very malty aroma, a faint bit of aroma hops as well. Taste is amazing, very dark and roasted malt flavor. Mouthfeel is fairly middle of the road, a bit thin on the finish, but just right in the moisture department. A Solid choice, and a fine example of the style. Another great Oregon beer.

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Photo of brentk56
3.97/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a fudgy brown color with a modest head that leaves a fair amount of lace behind

Smell: Roasty, with chocolate and espresso undertones; a bit oaky, too

Taste: Roasty flavors, up front, joined by a tootsie roll chocolate character through mid-palate and after the swallow; a bit of hops underneath, but chocolate, coffee and slightly smokey oak flavor dominate the profile

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Far better to my tastebuds than the overall score would indicate - seems like there may have been some changes for the better at this brewery

Thanks, Docer, for the opportunity

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.95/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown with reddish-mahogany highlights, although it appears black in the pint. The foamy tan head holds exceptionally well; eventually dropping to a creamy collar that leaves some spotty lace. The nose is distinctly mocha-ish with notes of coffee and sweet chocolate swirling amidst a toasty maltiness. It's creamy and smooth across the palate with a medium body and fine carbonation. The flavor is rich with bittersweet chocolate, deep roasted coffee, some fruit, and a lightly grassy/resinous hop flavor. It finishes dry with a lingering bitterness and roastiness. Very nice.

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Photo of NoHipTee
3.95/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Recently delighted to find this bottle in a hotel bar while in Oregon.
Light taste despite the very dark color of the beer in a glass, not heavy or very "filling" at all. The flavor was good with a very nutty while slightly bitter after taste that did not linger on the palete too long. A very drinkable dinner beer that need not be saved as an after dinner porter. The light smooth flavor would go well with anything off the barbeque but also be rich enough to be enjoyed as a stand along after dinner drink. I enjoyed the delightful deep flavors of this smooth beer. The "porter" name led me to believe that it would have a heavy after taste but it was not heavy at all. I am anxious to reccomend this beer to my local outlet.

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Photo of Reidrover
3.87/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Tasted on tap at "The Lodge" in bend , Oregon.
The beer is a nice dark brown colour, almost black like a stout.Smallish "coffee n'creme" coloured head.
The aroma is of slightly burnt malts, some dark chocolate..and a faint whiff of coffee.
I was surprised that this beer had a smokey aspect to the taste, and a dry finish. Inbetween are hints of black coffee and a slight taste of chocolate.
The mouthfeel is slightly on the thin side but overall not bad.
I liked this porter..the smokey aspect was great.
Like other Cascade lakes beers..this doesn't seem to do well in bottle..or maybe they have to be drank very fresh.

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Photo of beertunes
3.71/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I found this recently as I was digging through some old boxes. I think I got it from Chumba526 over a year ago, thanks Tyler. If someone else sent this one to me, Thank you!

Poured into straight pint glass. Poured pretty much solid black, none of the translucence that I look for, with just the thinnest ring of white head that had no retention and left some light lacing.

The aroma was was nicely bold, solid roast and, somewhat surprisingly, a solid chocolate presence. There was some nice providing a solid foundation. The flavors were the same, with the grain and roast being dominant and the chocolate having a background note.

The body was much thinner than I look for in the style. But, that thinness improved drinkability. This bottle went down quickly and I was left wanting another. Overall, a very nice brew that's probably worth some effort to try.

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Photo of ebrauser
3.7/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle to a pint glass

App: Dark cola with thin tan head. Not as much body or lacing with the head as i like

Aroma: Sweet malts, dark fruits, cherries and raisins.

Flavor: Definite smoke, but more masked by sweetness than a smoked porter. Dark fruitiness with caramel and strong coffee tones.

Mouthfeel: A little thin for a porter. Drinks a lot like cola

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Photo of constantine_272
3.7/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Exceptionally dark. Slightly cloudy. A hint of dark brown, but mostly black. Whitish cream colored foam that mostly dissipated. Left a sticky mess on the sidewalls.

S: Sweetness, malt, dark caramel, toasted chestnuts and charred oak and vanilla.

T: Roasted grain and coffee is obvious. Toasted oak is very straightforward also. Vanilla and caramel throughout. Slightly sweet with a minor bit of coconut, but finishes with some crispness but the sweetness prevails. I appreciate how the char flavor is not overpowering.

M: Medium body, not thin and not overly heavy. Medium dryness but leaves a little bit of residual sweetness as an aftertaste.

O: Overall, a solid porter. The minor coconut flavor isn't exactly my favorite beer not, but its my only real complaint about it.

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Photo of rye726
3.7/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass at cellar temp. A near black, dark brown with a silky espresso head. Nose has a good amount of chocolate along with some dark malts and nice mellow hops. Taste is well balanced. Goof beer to wash down a burger I guess. Medium body is well carbonated and drinks nicely.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.7/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

"If hooking a car battery up to a monkey's brain will help find the cure for AIDS and save somebody's life, I have two things to say... the red is positive and the black is negative."

--Nick Dipaolo

Charred walnut with bright scarlet accents when backlit with morning sunshine. One more small handful of chocolate malt and the beer would be opaque. The cappuccino colored crown is tight-bubbled and looks mighty fine. It also lays down an impressive array of finely dotted lace.

One big whiff is all it takes for the aroma to prove its worthiness. There's plenty of power and a wonderful chocolate maltiness that could just as easily be coming from an American stout. The beer smells like it will favor sweet and won't be very hoppy.

Monkey Face Porter isn't quite as impressive on the palate, but it's still good beer that goes down easily enough. The proportions of pale, chocolate and crystal malt are just about right. A little more of each would be great, however, and would add both depth and breadth to the flavor profile.

Sweetness and bitterness are pretty evenly matched. The hint of sourness flashing in at the edges isn't a problem in a beer of this style. Specifics include Baker's chocolate, dark caramel, medium-dark fruit and black tea leaves. The finish features a light char and an enjoyable amount of Willamette hop flavor and bitterness.

The mouthfeel could use more heft and more bubbles. As the beer warms... it doesn't improve much. There's definitely room for improvement here.

Monkey Face Porter does not deserve electrocution by car battery, nor is it shockingly good. It's a close second to 20 Inch Brown as CLBC's best beer. With more malt, it just might challenge for the top spot.

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Photo of jtfest
3.69/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured dark brown with a moderate but diminishing brown head. The aroma was of smoke and wood, with hints of dying campfire embers. The mouthfeel was thin and somewhat syrupy -- oddly coating the roof of my mouth without lingering on my tongue. It tasted of maple, slightly sweet, but rather under-powering, with little or no aftertaste. Once I swallowed, it was gone. Good, but -- where'd it go? It makes it easy drinking, but for a porter it left me unsatisfied.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.62/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: deep, dark brown with some red highlights and what appears to be no haze to the body. Head pours a finger of frothy tan foam. I quite like it.

Smell: lightly roasty with a bit of chocolate, caramel and toffee aromas. It's not especially complex, but solid for a porter.

Taste: flavor is a little bit more like a brown ale, with some toastiness and subtler versions of the other elements in the aroma. Vegetal hops are present, along with a bit of astringency from the roasted malts. Not bad, but it doesn't blow me away.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with a decent carbonation and a decent creaminess for the style.

Overall: this is an OK porter; I'd drink it as a house beer but I won't go out of my way to have it again.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.59/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I like the name of this beer, fo sho. 12 oz bottle without a freshness date. Pours a dark brown color with a small tan foam. Retention is below average and the lacing is decent.

Nose is pretty decent; cocoa beans, mild coffee and some milk chocolate come through. Not overly powerful, but certainly not weak. I think it smells pretty good, not unlike a Krackel candy bar.

Taste has some nice chocolate and roast components. It's a bit simple, but it certainly does the trick for a quick porter fix. Some unwanted light fruit comes in at mid-palate and finishes with a roast and mildly grassy hop bitterness. It's on the thin side for a porter, but not by too much. Not bad, the B- overall rating seems about right for this one. Thanks goes out to BA fthomasl for bringing this one back from a recent trip.

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Photo of beernut7
3.58/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a syrupy deep brown with a fluffy head. The mellow aroma is of chocolate and roasted malt. The body is smooth and properly heavy and supports a deeply roasted malt flavor. A bit of fruitiness flows through the roast and compliments the tones of chocolate. The bitterness is mild and does not interrupt a creamy finish.

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Photo of isualum12
3.52/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another new label from Cascade that I didn't reconize and it is different then the one shown here.

This is a nice beer just not overly powerful.

Appearance- Dencent carmel color head with lots of fingers on the glass. Left a light tan ring. Dark Dark brown or black beer. Looks tasty.

smell...I got NOTHING. seriously I thought maybe i needed to clear my nose and so i stepped away and then resmelled...Nothing ...all well.

Taste- This is a good smooth porter. It is a natural flavor porter that hold true to what you expect from a porter. Your not going to be blown away with flavor but you get a nice smoooth flavor out of it. Honestly I will take the smoothness over the strong porter.

mouthfeel- like I said smooth...

overall- I am impressed with this beer. At first I gave it a 3.5 and I upgraded it to a 4.0 while typing this and drinking. This is a porter I could have multipule of.

I really would like to try this beer with some different types of cheese and taste it's changes...

Cascade Lakes Brewing your really trying to steal my heart...Nice job on this beer...

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Photo of velosuds
3.5/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From notes. Original review lost due to database crash.

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a clear pint glass. No freshness date evident. Paid $1.35 at local health foods store on sale.

A-Pours a dark brown almost black hue with a one finger, creamy tan and foamy head that dissipates too quickly leaving only modest lace.

S-Rich, chocolate and coffee malts and a hint of mildly fruity hops.

T-Chocolate roasted malts, slight hop bitterness, and coffee. Taste is not robust enough.

M-Smooth, but a little thin and not enough carbonation or texture.

D-This is indeed drinkable, but it doesn't compare to Black Butte Porter, which is often on sale for $6.99 a six-pack or less in my area.

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Photo of arizcards
3.48/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Brought one back from our Oregon road trip from early May.

Beer poured a dark brown with a nice tan head. Nose is sweet, of chocolate malts and mocha. Taste is of those chocolate malts balanced by a light dose of hops. Mouthfeel is lighter than most porters. Beer has a nice creamy quality though. Drinkabilty is pretty good, this has a nice but not an overly complex flavor. It is worth a try if you have an opportunity.

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Photo of lighthabit
3.47/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had at f/stop, pours dark coffee brown lacing is good, smell is a bit absent, but has a toasty flavor that , thought not as sweet as I usually like, is a nice way to end the work day. Does coffee flavor a solid. Carbonation is just about right, makes its presence known without getting in the way. Tastes like it's gonna finish dry but doesn't. A bit thin, but I like 'em thick, so I'll give it a B on that. Not a bad intro to this brewery

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.45/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz picked up by my brother in Oregon .. pulled from the On-Deck basement cooler.. shared with a coworker ... my half from a shaker pint.

Good lite tan head.. minimal lacing.. dark like a stout.

Aroma is French roast coffee and roasted malts... dark chocolate ice cream.

lite side of medium body with above average carbonation.. could use a bit more body... flavor is slightly astrigent coffee followed my chocolate malts and lite carmel sweetness.

Complexity is more than the above review notes... I am just having a hard time picking it out.. not bad at all... just not great.

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Photo of birdypowder
3.45/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

There are better Porters in the high desert town of Bend, like Black Butte Porter from Deschutes. Monkey Face Porter, however, is a decent porter that is worth trying and purchasing on occasion.

Roasted goodness hits you first. I found enticing aromas of bakers chocolate and a hot chocolate like coco aroma. Hops contribute a slight spiciness. There were no unwanted odors.

When pouring the beer it reveals itself as dark mahogany in color but once in the glass it appears almost black though there is a slight red hue hiding amongst the blackness. The head was disappointing. It was a beautiful brown/tan color with nice small bubbles but it came and went so quickly I could hardly enjoy its presence. The beer was clear with no bits or flecks, minimal haze at most.

This is a medium bodied brew but it did not seem too thin for a porter. The flavor was good but the sweetness was very subdued by the bitterness and roast. I craved for this brew to give me a sweet kick before the roasted malts and bitterness showed up but it wasn't to be. The finish is slightly bitter and lingers, leaving impressions of bakers chocolate and roasted peanuts. After all that goes away, a slight smoke flavor lingers on. Interesting.

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Monkey Face Porter from Cascade Lakes Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 38 ratings.