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Nimbus Old Monkeyshine - Nimbus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Nimbus Old MonkeyshineNimbus Old Monkeyshine

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BA SCORE
85
very good

181 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 181
Reviews: 90
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 12.11%
Wants: 16
Gots: 19 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Nimbus Brewing Company visit their website
Arizona, United States

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  8.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-02-2002

Our Old Monkeyshine Ale is an exceptional example of a true, traditional-style English Pub beer. Nimbus Old Monkeyshine Ale is medium bodied and possesses a distinct, dark roasted flavor. Its sweet malty taste is derived from liberal use of seven varieties of specialty malts and a touch of brown sugar. Our Old Monkeyshine Ale is dark in color, beginning with a slight caramel malt overtone and rounded with a relatively dry finish from its English Kent Goldings hops. The hops aroma is mildly subdued and the bitterness is just enough to balance the profile of this beer.

Nimbus Old Monkeyshine Ale is a true premium ale and is priced accordingly. We're so proud of this beer for its body, taste, alcohol content and drinking enjoyment, it may just become our signature beer. Be warned: its wonderful malty sweetness camouflages the 8.2% alcohol by volume content. It's a winner!
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 181 | Reviews: 90
Reviews by MAJ85:
More User Reviews:
Photo of orbitalr0x
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz stubby bottle with a psychedelic image of a human with a monky head carrying a banjo. Pours from the bottle a nice dark brown with deep garnet hues as well. A half inch of bubbly bone white head tops it off. Aromas of sweet dark fruits alongside toasty, nutty malts. Bitter hops, caramel and dark bread dough. A touch smoky as well, an interesting aroma.

First sip brings a smooth roasty caramel maltiness, which is a bit nutty as well. Hints of dark fruits and brown sugar as it makes its way down the hatch. Dark baked bread comes to mind with a bit of lingering smokiness. Finishes with a mellow herbal hop bitterness on the way down. A tasty brew and a nice change of pace.

Mouthfeel is smooth and medium bodied with a good creamy maltiness. Even at slightly over 8% alcohol, I'm finding this quite drinkable. I wouldn't mind having another. Thanks to autumnaldave for the sample, being it my first, but hopefully not last from Nimbus.

Photo of blitz134
3.63/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Luckily I put two beers in the fridge tonight...since my previous one sucked...hopefully this one from the same brewery will be good...lets see...

Cloudy dark brown, off white head. One inch thick initially but reduced to a quarter inch of dense, lumpy foam. Grips the glass well leaving a nice sheet of lace.

A nice blend of toasted nuts and malts with some chocolate mixed in. Quite inviting although a bit simple.

Taste follows suit but with less chocolate and more sweetness. Less toasted notes too now that I examine it. Would like to see this one follow the aroma a bit more. It just comes across a bit more watered down.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin but carbonation levels seem to be good. Pretty easy to drink, much more so than my previous try at this brewery. Alcohol is well hidden, basically nonexistant. I could have a couple of these in a night easily.

Photo of warriorsoul
3.94/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Solomon420 for this one...a new Nimbus beer to me.
Rust in color with very little head or lacing...quite hazy.
Sweet fig in the nose, plus tart cherries and carroway seed.
Bittersweet with a real fruity quality to it...raisins and again, cherries. The brown sugar added is barely detected, but does have a roasted flavor that finds it place in the balance.
The hops dry up the finish, but the malt really adds to its heavy mouthfeel for the style. Alcohol is very well hidden...goes down pretty easy.
Carbonation is where I like it...only adding to its drinkability.
My favorite brew from these folks to date, but still have one or two more in the cellar thanks to generous traders.
I'd give this one a try...not for everyone, but I enjoyed it.

Photo of magictrokini
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My brother in law raves about this stuff, as he is from Tucson. Pours dark brown, almost looks like a porter. Aroma of toffee and caramel, with some dried fruits. Taste is dominated by alcohol, then the sweet malt and caramel flavors come through. Earthy finish. Decent beer, don't think I could have more than 2 at one time. Like Tucson, more is not better.

Photo of chinchill
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into my new silipint.

A: Poured dark reddish-brown, with a proper, creamy tan head that lasted a good while and left good lacing. Coarse looking carbonation bubbles.

S: Smells like toasted sweet malt with hints of brown sugar and caramel.

Taste: Moderately strong flavor featuring dark malts with hints of dark fruits, caramel, and roasted nuts. Good sweet/bitter balance.

M: Medium-low carbonation works well for this full-bodied beer, Very smooth.

O: A flavorful English style pub ale with remarkably well hidden alcohol. Recommended.

Photo of Metalmonk
3.72/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a thin head that doesn't last long, vaporizing in a flash and leaving a ghostly skim across the top. Tiny islands of lace are all that's left of the head. Color is a deep milk-chocolate brown. A very brown brown ale...who woulda thunk? This label deserves special mention: banjo-wielding hillbilly chimpanzee squashing a watermelon with his feet, keeping company with a magician doing his rabbit/hat trick and a couple mannequins looking all da-da with one having a funnel for a head. Yeah, I remember my first tab of acid...

Definitely some nuttiness to the aroma, plus a hint of chocolate. There's an interesting element aside the from nuttiness, and that's a kind of earthy sweetness...fresh-picked tobacco leaf and prunes, maybe...

Flavor is bigger and bolder than most brown ales, but then so is the ABV. Dark, almost-spoiled fruits and cocoa beans wrap around unexpected tartness and chalky sweetness; vanilla just barely there; alcohol definitely not timid, but not overwhelming. Sweet, sticky finish contrasts well with the buttery-smooth mouthfeel. A weird, grassy astringency continues throughout the sipping, making the mouth pucker a bit. It's not old, because "Oct." is notched, and I'm assuming that's when it was bottled, and I'm also assuming that's not Oct. '06.

An interesting flavor, especially considering the style. The only real deterrent is the tartness, which is fine, but it creates an unwelcome pucker in the mouth...otherwise this is a real enjoyable, rather unique take on a style that could use a few cracks upside the head. Thanks to msubulldog25 (he with The Righteous Beercloset) for sending and allowing me to sample my first-ever Arizona beer.

Photo of cokes
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep garnet hued with a tight beige cap.
The nose exudes chocolate-covered raisins, brown sugar, molasses, peat smoke, sweet breads, dark rum and whole pine trees: bark, cones, needles, and sap.
Malt comes into the mouth with waves of caramel, carob, molasses, raisins, and anise. It stays powerfully sweet for several moments, the is cut by a surprising smokiness. At this point, it presents as a spot-on Wee Heavy. Hops enter next, shatter preconceptions, and boom out pine notions that are equally sappy and earthy. It concludes with a small brandy-like booze flare that is born from the raisin hues that it began with.
Medium bodied, with little carbonation to make it feel sticky at time. It seems a hair on the small side, as all this flavor would be better supported with a bit more girth.
That a small quibble, as this is utterly enjoyable, and monstrously drinkable for a beer of this strength, complexity, and uniqueness.

Photo of Bcant
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First, what is an "English Style Ale"? I would not have had to have lived in Yorkshire to know that there is no single Englihs style ale, and even if there is a typical English pub ale, say a bitter, this beer would not be it. In fact, I would argue that Old Monkeyshine more closely resembles a strong scotch ale. Getting Nimbus' taxonomy, the beer is not bad. It has a plesant deep mahagony color. The aroma is a bit sweet and alcoholic but not unapatising. Hints of rasions and caramel, finishes slightly tart. Supprisingly drinkable for its strength. It might do quite nicely on a cool desert winters night.

Photo of russpowell
4.31/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is one bigass english brown! Loved the label on the bottle!

Lugged 5 of these back to CO, well worth the effort

Pours chestnut with a 1" tan head. Pretty good lacing & good head retention.

S: Sweet malt

T: Biscuitty malt up front, then toasted malt & hints of brown sugar. Piney hops & caramel surface as it warms. Dryness permeates the middle. Finishes fruitty with a little alcohol warmth

MF: Rich, thick bodied with perfect carbonation & balance

This drinks very easy for the 8.2abv this posesses. Probably the best AZ beer I had (more reviews to follow). Will save the rest of these for the too soon cold nights that precede winter

Photo of HalfFull
3.43/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass with a deep reddish brown color and a half inch of off white head. Offers only moderate retention.

Lot of nutty roasted malts on the nose similar to many English Ales. Not as clean and crisp however, and I assume there are more unfermented sugars here which effect the volatility of the nose, and I later find, seem to mask the ABV to a large degree.

Moderate malts continue to the taste, somewhat complex with caramel, nut, brown sugar and a touch of dried fruit. A sweetness envelops it all making the flavors a bit difficult to ascertain. The same sweetness, certainly not overdone, helps give the beer a smooth feel. Finishes dry with a quick close. Good carbonation and richer in body than most ales of the style.

Photo of bashiba
4.2/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice thick dirty brown with a big light tan head, light lacing with mild retention.

Smell had a big malt and chocolate aroma with hints of toffee and molasses.

Flavor is mildy sweet with a big chocolate malt flavor along with a touch of alcohol, some mild crisp hops keep it fairly balanced and smooth.

Mouthfeel is fairly full and nice and creamy with a bit of carbonation.

Easy to drink for a big brown, pretty nice.

Photo of Solomon420
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well to be honest, at first I didnt like the taste too much. Didnt know what to make of it at first. I think I drank the first bottle too cold. The next day I drank another bottle more towards room temperature and wow, what flavour it had. Its noted as a brown ale, but if you hold it up the sunset, the colours come alive. More of a dark red/honey hue. I have to think that it was partly the mood I was in, and the setting, that allowed me to enjoy it this time. I would definately buy some more.

Photo of Jredner
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is the last of the Nimbus beers I was sent and I have to say this is a damn nice brewery and I have enjoyed the hell out of these Nimbus beers. Malty, spicy aroma with hints of tobacco, caramel and bread pudding. Deep brown with a small head, but ample lacing. Sweet caramel malt and brown sugar flavors with a hint of spice and a plesant thick breadiness. Very nicely done beer from a brewery worthy of more notice.

Photo of Arsenal04
3.46/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured mahogany with a two finger, very frothy head. Lively carbonation emanates from the body of the beer. Nose faintly picks up melted caramel and cinnamon oatmeal which disappoints only in that I would love to have had these two aromas violently collide against my senses. Hops are in the background, again faint to the nose. Raisins, cherries are dominate the taste which is accompanies the malt and finishes with a delicate touch of hops that disguises the alcohol well. What I notice is that the aftertaste is mainly caramel, which doesn't please me that much since I don't find that flavor to work well with the initial raisin/cherry taste. That said, it is a pleasure to have this after a very long day because the malt/hop balance along with the interesting flavors makes this ale symbiotically dance across my palate. Having one or two max would be a pleasure on any random weeknight; any more would be a bit risky due to the ABV. Thanks goes out again to bennetj17 for the hookup...

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.52/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a dark brown color ale with a medium dark brown foamy head with pretty god retention. Aroma contains lots of sweet roasted malt and toffee. The sweet roasted malt also dominates taste with a light hop presence at the end. Body is a bit too thin for my liking but alcohol is well hidden.

Photo of jmarsh123
2.86/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to stephenhawking for the bottle.

Pours a deep brown almost black with a small tan head that dissipates almost immediately.

Aroma is very malty with a little bit of raisin. Not many hops detectable here.

Taste follows the nose. Barely any hop presence and a big malt bill. Toasted malt hits up front, but there's a oxidized metallic finish that is off putting.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin for something of this profile with medium-low carbonation.

This one doesn't do it for me. A few flaws with not a lot of complexity going on.

Photo of uawildcat
4.47/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into an English pub glass. Poured it too cold, so I let it warm up a little bit.

A: Dark brown, a tad bit cloudy with a little head. Leaves behind a nice white head with lacing. Nothing special, but I will give it 3.5 for the lacing.

S: Smells like toasty malt and bready yeast. Only comes out once the beer is warmed up.

T: Taste is out of this world. It tastes of dark fruits upfront with a strong raisin flavor behind a toasty, toffee-like, sweet malt flavor. Yum!

M: The low level of carbonation works well for this beer, it lets the flavor really come out. It goes down very smooth. However, I do wish there was a bit more carbonation. For the amount of flavor and sweetness it is not too thick, it is medium-bodied.

O: A very tasty beer that could be drank on its own. It could go with a burger or fish and chips. Nice job Nimbus, this beer rocks.

Photo of Flashsp2
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Nimbus Old Monkeyshine into chalice

Pours a deep brown/ruby with a dense two finger tan head. Great
retention and lacing.

Aroma is richly malty, with caramels, toast, honey, dark fruits,
toffee, and earthy hops providing the finish.

Body is almost perfectly spot-on for the nose, but leans more toward
toasty malt flavor and less in the direction of caramels and dark
fruits, even though they are still present.

Body is where this beer is sort of off point. It feels a bit thin and
overly carbonated for a strong English ale. Its not terribly bad or
anything, it just doesn't fit well with the rest of the beer.

Quite drinkable. Its at that perfect spot where its strong enough to
have lots of flavor but not so over the top that it takes an hour to
drink. Well done.

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.65/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

appearance: Hazy dark bronze. Pretty fat messy off white head.
smell: butterscotch. very inviting, some dark fruit but butterscotch up front.
taste: quite different than the nose. Hint of butterscotch, not near as rich. Dry and slightly bitter finish.
overall: outstanding nose. A bit of a letdown after that.

Photo of rallison
4.06/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark brown with some nice red color thrown in. Tan head starts over an inch thick with a not too aggressive pour that settles down to a nice, semi-persistent lacing.

S: Don't get much smell at all. Nutty maybe? - best I can do.

T: Nice, rich nut flavor. Just a touch of caramel sweetness. Extremely well-balanced. For a brown, this is quite enjoyable - I don't usually go for browns. Also, sure doesn't taste like 8.2%. That could be a problem...

M: Slightly over a medium body, smooth.

D: Very drinkable. Too drinkable for the alcohol.

Photo of TucsonJames
3.96/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I think this beer is very understated. It starts out with hop notes and then complexly traverses an earthy porter finish. It is a fresh beer that could be drank year round as it is fresh, but also dark and could be appreciated in the winter time after a day working outside or by the campfire.

Photo of blackie
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mahogany colored with an off white head.

Smell is sweet and rich offset by some bitterness, pretty complex. Hints of raisins, woody/roasted, dark sugars, maybe some cherries, and some alcohol.

Carbonation is moderate and body is on the thick side.

Nice malty taste with a little more hop bite than expected, maybe too much. The alcohol is pretty well hidden, until it hits the gut. Middle of the sip is similar to the smell...with hints of raisins and sugars. Finish is of slight alcohol and hops.

Photo of Sixofsigmas
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep rich brown opaque color, nice initial head, seems to have faded to black almost(or brown as the case may be).
Nose has notes of vanilla, dark roasty malt, booze, maybe spice?
On the front end there is a sugary vanillaish brown sugar/molasses taste followed by darker malt and most definitely bourbon on the back end with a nice little boozey warmth.
Mouthfeel is unexpected. Hits you with the light body, but by the end it feels medium bodied. Not overly carbonated. Oily feel.
Drinkability is not as high as some. It's a sipper meant to be enjoyed. The high alcohol will make you pay for drinking too many of these.

Pretty impressive for the style. One of the best English strong ales I've had.

Photo of Gusler
4.27/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

"Arizona Beer fest"!
A nice deep mahogany color on the pour, the head is moderate in size, the texture spumescent, beige in color and as it dissipates the left over lace a nice coating on the glass. Floral nose, sweet malt, caramel and quite fresh and pleasing to the senses, with the start sweet and malt, the top is middling in its feel to the palate. Finish is a “Hop Heads” delight; boom right in the palate as the hops over run your taste buds, mildly acidic, dry as a desert bone aftertaste and a real treat for this old strong ale lover.

Photo of uabigdaz
4.8/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful dark brown with a tan/khaki color head that foams very nicely and leaves nice lace. Good head retention, just to my liking. Smell is slightly sweet and bitter at the same time, gives a good indication of the taste. The taste is excellently balanced. A perfect mix of malt sweetness and bitter aftertaste. Feels exceptionally smooth in your mouth with nice bitterness to balance it out. I love this beer, it is definately my favorite beer. The only problem I have with this beer is the fact that it is 8.2% ABV so you have to be careful with how much you drink, it catches up with you. This beer is definately worth a try, my favorite beer I have tried so far.

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Nimbus Old Monkeyshine from Nimbus Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 181 ratings.