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Flying Monkeys Hoptical Illusion Almost Pale Ale - Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery

Not Rated.
Flying Monkeys Hoptical Illusion Almost Pale AleFlying Monkeys Hoptical Illusion Almost Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

218 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 218
Reviews: 101
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 10.58%
Wants: 9
Gots: 21 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
32 IBU

(Beer added by: bobsy on 05-23-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 218 | Reviews: 101 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of decimator
3.73/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle into a pint glass.

A - Poured a deep copper with amber hues. 3cm off-white head slowly dissipated. Good amount of lacing is produced.

S - Pine upfront with citrus fruit and caramel in the background.

T - Very light caramel sweetness, some citrus tang in the middle and a good dose of bitter hops that continue into the aftertaste. Flavour improves a bit as the beer warms up.

M - Average carbonation, smooth, lighter than expected, a bit watery, sticky, and the finish is dominated by the aftertaste.

D - Simple yet flavourful. Easy to drink a few in a sitting.

decimator, Nov 16, 2010
Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.74/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Not sure why this ale is dubbed "almost pale", as it is fairly dark for the style: A red amber that belies the name but looks enticing nonetheless, with a considerable quantity of rich beige foam that leaves a nice spidery lacing on a pub glass. Aroma recalls perfumed black tea, orange rind, peppercorn spice, faint pine, and sweetish caramel malts. Smells pleasantly spicy and earthy. Palate is interesting, with a mixed red, white, and green peppercorn spice and pine leading the way, followed by a subdued white grape and citrus rind fruitiness, maybe the barest hint of tropical fruit in there somewhere: This brewery likes Citra hops. A chalky mineral note only amplifies the green, earthy, spicy bitterness. Rather light-bodied and fizzy, with a herbal piney "forest floor" finish. I am somewhat conflicted about this brew. Although the peppercorn spice and pine make for a fairly unique and ultimately gratifying combination, there was a sense that more citrus and floral elements were struggling to come through, never quite making it. The malts are downplayed and perhaps nicely sessionable but the hops are not quite salient enough on the usual American pale ale dimensions of citrus and tropical fruit. Could just be me.

CalgaryFMC, Mar 21, 2014
Photo of Doomcifer
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

Doomcifer, Jun 07, 2014
Photo of djcreepshow
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

djcreepshow, Jun 02, 2014
Photo of traumaqueen
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

traumaqueen, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of randallpink
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

randallpink, Dec 15, 2013
Photo of Skwisgaar
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

Skwisgaar, Aug 05, 2013
Photo of Boozecamel
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

Boozecamel, Oct 16, 2013
Photo of butler
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

butler, Jul 10, 2014
Photo of EgadBananas
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to korguy123 for this Ontario local!

Pours a beautiful ambery bronze color. Head was a light tan, solid finger and a half, and it just coats the glass with sticky, webby lacing! Wonderful.

Plenty of juicy, sweet citrus hops comes through on the nose, and there is an ample backing malt structure holding it up nicely. Malts are nice and bready, with some caramel in there as well.

The taste has a nice bitter bite up front, moving to those juicy citrus fruits as with the aroma. Malt profile is a bit slighter than with the aroma, but pretty good nonetheless.

Feel is a bit on the lighter side, with a crisp carbonation bite.

Overall this is a good, solid APA. Drinkability is good, and I'd definitely put a few away at a time.

EgadBananas, Jun 04, 2011
Photo of DamageCase76
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

DamageCase76, Nov 03, 2013
Photo of Mr_Rocca
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

Mr_Rocca, Oct 20, 2013
Photo of tomdavistoronto
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

tomdavistoronto, Mar 24, 2013
Photo of dork2caon
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

dork2caon, Dec 24, 2012
Photo of AussieAbroad
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

AussieAbroad, Sep 08, 2013
Photo of TheBeeraholic
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

TheBeeraholic, Jun 15, 2013
Photo of bryehn
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

bryehn, Feb 05, 2014
Photo of KeeganRohovich
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

KeeganRohovich, Dec 30, 2013
Photo of outtabeer-outtahere
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

outtabeer-outtahere, Jul 04, 2014
Photo of sdm9465
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

sdm9465, Apr 20, 2014
Photo of Mack
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

Mack, Apr 28, 2013
Photo of SimonTja
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

SimonTja, May 06, 2014
Photo of thampel09
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

thampel09, May 24, 2013
Photo of pharmerdoc
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

pharmerdoc, Aug 27, 2014
Photo of biegaman
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"Illusions, Micheal! Tricks are something a whore does for money."
- GOB Bluth, Arrested Development.

Almost? Hoptical Illusion isn't even close to being pale. It is a classic, toasty mahogany stain that, despite its near flawless clarity, should not be considered anything less than deep-set with reference to colour. This looks as though it should be a most hearty and flavourful beer. And it's quite attractive too, even despite its rather inconsequential capping.

The aura of rank citrus and budding resins is definitely no misconception - that's the smell of Amarillo hops. While it is a more restrained dosage than the often typical administering of this pungent variety, a rather brawny fruitiness still protrudes. The bouquet suits well the caramel malts and naturally fruity strain of ale yeast.

The taste captures a lot more hop character than the aroma (which is funny because I believe it may be dry-hopped). Quite vivid flavours of candied grapefruit, chocolate covered orange peels and brandy-macerated plums give this a deliciously citric persona. The hops also lend a distinctly floral tinge, imparting a slight resemblance to green tea.

Those fruity and floral flavours, as well as the light biscuity and toffee-like ones of the malts, are easily appreciated because of the unusual lack of bitterness. An uncommon sweetness prevails which, along with the appropriately set level of carbonation, makes for an exceptionally sessionable ale. Hell, I'm ready for another one already!

I guess that's why they call it 'Hoptical Illusion' - it seems hoppy but it's only a measly 18 IBUs! I must confess that at first I thought the idea of marketing a beer with artisan level hopping and industrial level bitterness had 'marketing ploy' written all over it (just like the brewery's coinciding name change from 'Robert Simpson Brewery' to 'Flying Monkeys'). Turns out I was wrong - this is surprisingly good and I like it. A lot.

biegaman, Sep 02, 2009
Flying Monkeys Hoptical Illusion Almost Pale Ale from Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 218 ratings.