Flying Monkeys Hoptical Illusion Almost Pale Ale - Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery
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Ratings: 212 | Reviews: 101 | Display Reviews Only:
3.65/5 rDev -3.7%
A: Pours a translucent reddish amber with a small amount of off white head. Just a little bit retains, not much lacing.
S: Light hops, somewhat sweet.
T: Light citrus, slightly sweet and finishes slightly hoppy. No real heavy flavors, reasonably well balanced.
M: Medium to light carbonation, medium body.
D: Drinks fairly easily.
Overall a decent beer, but not exactly exceptional.
02-14-2010 00:04:16 | More by seand
4.18/5 rDev +10.3%
This beer pours a dark copper with plenty of bubbles that leads to a two fingers worth of head that doesn't leave. Plenty of lacing on the glass. Smells of citrus and faint pine, with a bit of herbal tea. Tastes of caramel, citrus and pine. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and a bit airy. A very good pale ale, but not as good as their Smashbomb IPA.
07-18-2012 20:57:02 | More by slitherySOB
3.68/5 rDev -2.9%
33 cl bottel poured into my cantillon glass
A : nice dark copper red with a 1 finger white head, lots of lacing,
S : very hoppy , some toasty grains, caramel malt undertones and some citrus notes to finish it off.
T : Hoppy and malty to begin with, some citrus and pineapple , Nice bitterness . Still a very balanced beer.
M : Nice smooth mouthfeel, aftertaste is to watery , not full of flavour and disappearce fast
09-09-2010 19:20:06 | More by beerpirates
3.95/5 rDev +4.2%
Although not yet pictured on BA, this bottle features a very psychadelic funky-looking label that I initially mistook for an American import - unusual for an Ontario beer label, kudos to the Brewery for pushing the envelope on that one. The appearance of the beer when poured was also pleasing: an amber colour, one finger creamy tan head with large bubble presence and good retention. The lace slid down the glass in ribbons and a lot of it stuck to the glass. Moderate carbonation. So far, so good.
Smell and taste, however, distinguished it from its more hoppy American counterparts. Although there was a fruit zest, orange peel smell, it was generally subdued by comparison. Taste of tangerine, just a hint of grapefruit, and bitterness on the low side. Moderately hoppy presence in the mouth with a creamier texture than I expected, smooth with just a bit of spiciness in the background and a mild, earthy finish. As far as smell, taste and mouthfeel are concerned, I found it hard to decide on 3.5 or 4.0, somewhere in between would have been closer to the mark. However, since it really tasted quite good, I was more generous on that score to reflect that favourable impression.
Overall, I was pleased with this purchase. It does not match similar beers from south of the border but it stands out in Ontario as a nice alternative when the other worthier and hoppier craft brew products remain not all that accessible. Easily a session beer and something I would definitely buy again.
09-02-2009 03:36:52 | More by ThatWineGuy
3.88/5 rDev +2.4%
I bought a six pack of this before I knew that this beer would be in the OCB mix pack #4. This would make it the fourth out of the six.
Appearance: Pours with a deep amber color that is a bit darker and on the brown side. Only a pinky finger of head, but it retained exceptionally well and produced some lacing.
Smell: Nice floral and citrus hops dominate the nose, but it's not out of control like an IPA. I'm also catching the barest notes of sweet caramel malt in the background.
Taste: Starts with a bit of a floral malt taste that the carbonation seems to enhance a bit of a spicy note too. It then shifts to a more toasted grain with a touch of pine and ends, rather whimsically with a well reigned in floral hop aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: The transition between the middle and end of the beer, seems to come out of nowhere, which is odd but not unpleasant. Carbonation seems to help out the start of the beer, but not so much the end. The hoppy aftertaste is nice and subdued well enough to not linger.
Drinkability: Well, it is still a hoppy beer, but it's not out of control like an IPA. It sits well in the stomach and is surprisingly refreshing but the hops make you give this beer a bit of space. Still, I don't feel cheated out of the extra six that I have in my cellar, so I'd say it's better then average.
Final Thoughts: This beer is weird, which is really what I think the brewery was going for. I've never had a pale ale (or almost pale ale as it markets itself as) seem so whimsical and tie several characteristics you wouldn't think would work together so seamlessly. I can see this not being for everyone, but I liked it and I would recommend it.
03-26-2010 04:55:59 | More by TheHammer
4/5 rDev +5.5%
355ml bottle from a 6-pack purchased at the Wellington & Bradley LCBO. Bronze orange in colour with golden hues, a ring of cream white head, and speckled lacing on the shaker. Smell and taste are green, grassy hops, fruity and floral aromas, biscuit, caramel backbone, a bit toasty, spicy hop finish with a mild malt astringency. Almost no bitterness, which is exactly what the brewer intended. Mouthfeel is light side of medium, good hoppy bite, tangy carbonation, tartly malted aftertaste. Bursting with Amarillo qualities on the nose, yet somehow isn't bitter. Presto change-o indeed! Bottom line is, Illusion can satisfy a hop fix while still being accessible to your non-beer geek friends. In that regard, it's a rare achievement in brewing. Keep up the great work, Peter!
EDIT (May 2011): this beer has improved substantially since it was first released and is now one of the better APAs available in Ontario. Lots of grassy, floral, citrusy, and fruity hops on the nose and palate with a balancing caramel sweetness, slight trace of diacetyl, and some tea-like flavours from the malts. Body and mouthfeel seem beefed up as well, the hops are more juicy, punchy, and resinous than before. Great thirst-quenching ale.
04-12-2010 04:48:17 | More by cratez
3.55/5 rDev -6.3%
Pours a deep slightly hazy amber with a 1 finger quickly dissipating off-white head that leaves some patchy lace behind.
Piney hops, caramel, buttery malts, and a hint of vegetables in the nose, which is a bit of a turn off. Seems somewhat subdued for the style.
Herbal piney hops meshed with some toasted buttery malts, hints of caramel and a bit of biscuit. Tasty, but not overly so.
Mouthfeel is light bodied and a tad watery. Decent balance and an easy quaffer, but nothing special.
Overall, a decent brew and much better than their Confederation Ale. It's a solid alternative to macros and the generic imports, but not a standout in the style.
01-19-2010 22:36:26 | More by ludachris
4.13/5 rDev +9%
A: Beautiful rich copper with a nice frothy head of beige foam. Head dissipates to a fantastic blanket lined with sporadic bubbles, that sticks around.
S: Pine hops deliciously overpowering on the nose, presence of grapefruit, caramel-like malts, and a nutty aroma. Very rich and robust smell.
T: Pine and slightly floral hops strong upfront. Citrus notes that include grapefruit and a slight sourness. Caramel malts balance this out very nicely towards the end.
M: Very good creamy and thick mouthfeel considering the ABV. Moderate carbonation.
D: Another great offering from Flying Monkeys (although I'm still partial to the Netherworld Cascadian). One of the few great Ontario breweries, and perhaps the best in my opinion.
05-22-2011 04:19:00 | More by Digimaika2
3.9/5 rDev +2.9%
A- A cherry brown color with modest head. Slight carbonation.
S- Really couldn't pick much smell up from it. All I could detect was hops and citrus.
T- Caramel and citrus tastes lead along with hops. Secondary tastes are more pine resin and malty. More of a bittersweet aftertaste. Very pronounced pine taste after a while (almost as much as the hop taste.)
M- Good and creamy. A bit light.
D- Hits the spot and goes down easy. Light, but not weak at the same time. Wouldn't hold it's own against heavier IPA's though. Nonetheless it's still good and it would make for a good starter to warm you up to the more hop intense beers. Pretty good amount of flavor for the low ABV.
08-31-2010 21:59:14 | More by BBP
3.53/5 rDev -6.9%
First off I want to say the look on the bottle is beautiful. Nice psychedelic colours and presentation.
G: Duvel Tulip
A: Dark caramel coloured body with no head and the most minimal lacing.
S: Sweet caramel malts, biscuity, citrus and pine hops all blended well together. I do feel the aroma is quite low though
T: Same as the smell with caramel upfront and biscuity flavours. Hints of citrus and pine.
M: Medium bodied and medium-low carbonation. This beer leaves a malty finish and some dry-bitterness too.
D: Nothing offensive here, but there also isn't much that is special. Everything seems quite weak and bland. I'd much prefer to drink something else.
12-16-2009 21:11:42 | More by Long813
3.63/5 rDev -4.2%
Had this on tap at a local pub. Its not as terrible as I was expecting. Pours a clear dark amber brown. This actually had a little hop taste to it, with no shitty after taste. It needs more flavour though, but when there is no options of what to drink, you can do worse. Alright beer overall.
09-04-2010 06:06:05 | More by WeedKing4
3.9/5 rDev +2.9%
Deep copper bodied with two fingers worth of retentive beige head leaves behind a pretty lace. It smells toast, pine, citrus, and caramel. Nice caramel malt base, slightly nutty, with lemon and grapefruit in the finish. Bitterness is toward the lower end of the scale, but has a nice lingering quality to it. Medium-bodied with somewhat light carbonation. It feels smooth and leaves your mouth feeling a little bit resinous after swallowing. Having been previously disappointed by their Confederation Ale, I approached this with low expectations. This has won me over though. Monkeys aren't the only thing flying high at the old Simpson brewery.
09-20-2009 04:22:26 | More by mintjellie
3.8/5 rDev +0.3%
I saw this box sitting on the shelves, this beer called my name,I just had to buy it, the artwork is fantastic.
The beer pours a nice dark copper red with a thick off-white head, lots of lacing, very nice looking beer indeed.
Smells hoppy upfront, some toasty grains, caramel malt undertones and some citrus notes to finish it off.
Nice and malty to begin with, some breadiness and a citrus nice hop finish. Considering the name of this beer, I was expecting it would be a lot hoppier, but I was wrong. Still a very decent and balanced beer.
Nice smooth mouthfeel, and this is a highly drinkable beer which could compare to Mill street Tankhouse really well.
10-21-2009 21:33:51 | More by GodOfBeer
3.88/5 rDev +2.4%
medium dark amber colour. good amount of white head - fades quickly into a nice film.
smell was really nice, tons of grassy hops, citrus, and bit of sweet malt.
taste is crisp, malt comes through the most here with a bit of hoppiness mixed in. well balanced and very drinkable.
overall it was quite enjoyable. i only had one but would be a great session beer - definitely worth a try.
09-18-2011 04:00:54 | More by fostachild
Flying Monkeys Hoptical Illusion Almost Pale Ale from Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 212 ratings.