Monk's Elixir (Monk's Brew) - Mikkeller ApS

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Monk's Elixir (Monk's Brew)Monk's Elixir (Monk's Brew)

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BA SCORE
87
very good

144 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 144
Hads: 357
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 10.59%
Wants: 22
Gots: 36 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website
Denmark

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-22-2008

Brewed at De Proef Brouwerij, Lochristi-Hijfte, Belgium.

Ingredients: Water, malt (pilsner and pale), candy syrup, cassonade sugar, hops (northern brewer, hallertauer and styrian goldings), ale yeast
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Reviews: 144 | Hads: 357
Photo of FLima
4.18/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown color, poured 3 fingers of head with a long retention.
Predominant sour and fruity aroma.
Caramel taste with hints of citrics, lemon type, and cherries and plum. Also, notes of licorice and fig. Mildly sour and acid. Aftertaste is a bit dry. Its 10.5% ABV is well hidden.
Light to medium body with light carbonation and small bubbles.
Really interesting and surprising beer, it smells sour but when you taste it, it is just like someone added just a few lemon drops. I hope they did not target to do a copy of Belgian Quads, which is not Mikkeller’s style, I believe they just got a base to brew something new and challenging. Definitely worth a try. (663 characters)

Photo of DoktorZee
4.27/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 333ml bottle into a tulip. Cap with a best before of 15/02/18!

A - deep brown in color with ruby highlights when viewed through light; very little head that resolves exceptionally quickly with almost no lacing.

S - lots of dark fruits on the nose: rasin and plum, with some caramel malts

T - very tasty dark fruit backbone with lots of raisin, fig and a bit of caramel in the finish. Maybe even a hint of licorice. Considerably less sweet than other Quads I've had; much more drinkable as a result. Less intense in the finish than I'd expect, but still balanced with a lot of dark fruit and spiciness lingering on the tongue.

M - much lighter mouthfeel than expected, at most it's medium bodied and not syrupy in the least; it's certainly not crisp and only has light carbonation, but it's not overly heavy.

Overall this is a really interesting Quad. In some ways it tastes a lot like a Belgian Strong Dark Ale as it lacks the sweetness I've had in other Quads, though it's certainly got the alcohol. Very tasty beer. Very highly recommended! (1,061 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

yet another brilliant and distinct beer from mikkeller, the king as far as i am concerned. this one pours really dark, chalky black in color, with some dark brown yeast floaters and a two inch white head with wonderful retention. the nose is alcoholic for sure, dark malts, but not bitter and toasty, sort of mineral rich, volcanic in some way. the yeast is spicy and bright, but not overbearing. its somehow delicate in such a massive brew. in the flavor i pick up something sweet but not sugary, kind of like the birch syrup beers, but to a lesser degree. really awesome malt profile, earthy and lighter despite its color. alcohol is invisible until it warms, and the yeast is classically belgian while also adding some interesting fruity elements to an otherwise black beer. feel is lovely too, great carbonation, velvety glide down the throat, and a full body that remains super drinkable. overall this is a perfect example of what a belgian strong dark ale can be, and its one i had no problem dirnking a 750ml of, despite its 10% abv. this was a special treat. (1,066 characters)

Photo of wordemupg
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

330ml bottle poured into tulip 1/10/12

A dark brown with a ruby glow once held to the light, enough clarity to see bubbles moving some sediment around, two fingers of beige foam hangs around long enough to leave one thick ring of lace followed by a partial, ends as a thin film

S lots of over ripe bruised fruit, plum and banana mostly, smells a little sweet with burnt brown sugar and brewers candy. I might be crazy but cinnamon and whipped cream come out after a while, booze is hard to miss and just a faint sting on the deep whiffs

T almost disappointed the cinnamon and whipped cream faded in the mouth, I almost had a banana cream pie, a little boozy even for 10% and there’s some spice I can’t place, mild earthy notes and some sweet raisins

M a little thin and the bubbles don’t give it the life I was hoping for, more heat then I like but its not out of control, just a little left behind in the mouth

O nice beer but some age would help its cause, don’t get me wrong this is solid stuff but could be great down the road. A nice mix of flavors and worth a try for sure

I can’t remember what the cost of this one was and I guess that will determine if I buy a couple to age. Not up there with the Trappist versions but a respectable beer for sure (1,272 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.79/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Congregation Ale House in Pasadena, CA.

Pours a clear dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, caramel, dark fruit, alcohol, and some slight spice aromas. Taste is much the same with a medium amount of spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a great aroma but the flavors just don’t match up very well. (569 characters)

Photo of smcolw
4.19/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Minor head but typical of the style. Some spots as lace. The color is a cloudy neutral brown.

Awesome smell of roasted malts. Comes across as molasses without being too sweet. Beautiful.

This sweet but not overwhelming. There's a touch of bittering hop that provides balance without deviating from the style. Rich as one would expect.

This is a special brew worth seeking out. (382 characters)

Photo of AgentMunky
2.86/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 750mL bottle into a St. Bernardus goblet.

A: A fizzy finger of tannish head tops tops a ruddy, opaque dark brown beer. Good lacing.

S: Not particularly impressive. Slightly (cherry) cough syrupy. Dark fruits, heavy sugars, clumsy spices.

T: Hrm. Disappointing. Highly so. I honestly don't think I can count this as a success. Lightly spicy, which is the only respite from a bland wall of heavy-sweet malt. The cough syrup doesn't particularly go away. Bah.

M: Not SO bad. I think the candy syrup kills it.

O: Poor effort. Would not have again. Not recommended and not sure I want to finish the whole beer...I'm sad, but this is Mikkeller. You lose some, you win most. :) (689 characters)

Photo of CrazyDavros
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown with a small, fading head.
Nose shows sultanas, spicy phenols, golden syrup, port notes and caramelised bananas.
Flavours include more sultanas and dried dark fruit, treacle, port, brown sugar and over-ripe banana. Also some soft booze. Pretty sweet.
Carbonation seems just a little full-on, even considering the sweetness.
Very enjoyable stuff. (362 characters)

Photo of impending
4.27/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A

750ml into a tulip. Pours an opaque walnut with garnet highlights, coffee ice cream colored towering head, nice lacing.

Aroma is of a belgian stout. Semi sweet chocolate with a nearby bowl of mixed berries and cherries and yeast, a lot of yeast. Slight roastiness.

Taste is precisely as the nose predicted but amplified. Initially low in sweetness. Pleasant long lasting yeasty mildly bitter as in unsweetened chocolate aftertaste, again quietly roasty. Alcohol is present but perfectly blended as a flavor component. Medium bodied smooth creamy mouthfeel. Shines with warmth as it sweetens and the roast peaks. delicious
cheers
jd (636 characters)

Photo of Lawl3ss
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Chilled 750 ml bottle into a shaker pint. No visible bottling date.

Look- Near opaque brown, three fingers of beige head that fall to a cap that looks suspiciously like a mini-buttermilk biscuit. Generous amount of lace, even the glass between the rings is coated with suds.

Smell- Raisin, baker's chocolate, anise, cola, raspberry-esque sour tinge.

Taste- Molasses, dark amber honey, black cherry, chocolate-dipped almonds, toasted raisins. Floury aftertaste. Very light feel, no hint of the... what? 10%? Did a double-take there, I was expecting 8 or so. In any case, you wouldn't know it. Just the right level of sweetness. As it warms, it takes on a bit of woody brandy-like character. Flavor profile is very similar to a weakly-peated Scotch Ale, but remains true to the style with touches of Belgian yeast and dark candied fruits.

Mouthfeel- Light-medium body, very, very clean for a strong dark. A bit of stick, but it's neither cloying nor boozy. Slight warming. Exceptional drinkability.

Overall- A very light, refreshing dark ale. I don't believe that's something I've thought about the style before. Simple, nothing unexpected going on, but what it does, it does with style and depth. It also goes down too easily, if anything. I'd definitely spring on the barrel-aged version if I ever see it. Highly recommended. (1,330 characters)

Photo of zaphodchak
4.24/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tiny offwhite head, deep brown body.

Nose contains dates, some plum and dark fruit.

The dates and dark fruit are present in the taste as well, along with a hint of orange on the aftertaste with a trace of booziness. Quite sweet and malty, similar to Gouden Carolus Classic. Very much a Belgian strong dark ale at heart, and i feel like it reminds me of something else, but I can't put my finger on what.

Feel is pretty nice and smooth.

Great quad, dark and full of bold dark fruit. I'd give it 6 months to tame the booziness though. (536 characters)

Photo of cvm4
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is the hardest cork I've ever tried to get out of a bottle. Say no to synthetic corks!

A - Pours a murky brown with a tan one finger head. It's not pretty to look at.

S - The smell comes off sweet. I'm getting some raisins, prunes and caramel.

T - A bit sweet and syrupy. Once that subsides, then you're left with figs/raisins/dates. The finish does last a while and so does the alcohol presence.

M - Somewhat thin and watery. Could use more substance.

O - Nothing to rave about here. Just a good mid-road quad that offers nothing new or something you can't live without. (583 characters)

Photo of tbeckett
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Beer Deluxe simply labelled Monk's Elixir. From notes.

A - Poured a very dark brown, almost black. Good carbonation, one finger of light brown head left a film of retention and spotty lace.

S - Sugar with sugar fruits. Yeast and creamy chocolate. Prune perhaps and alot more lighter dark fruits. Very neat.

T - Lot's of dark fruit, sugar, light chocolate, caramel apples, and raisins.

M - Decent carbonation, full body and a sweet finish.

O/D - A really nice Quad. Maybe too sweet but tasty all the way through and had nothing to complain about. (562 characters)

Photo of kojevergas
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

1 pint 9.4 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into me Guinness goblet at me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Mikkeller is me favourite brewery in the world and I love quads so I'm really excited for this and I have very high expectations. Labelled a "Dark Ale" on the bottle; I'll review this as a quad per the site but I'm always suspicious of Beeradvocate's categorization.

Served refrigerator cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured in a standard manner; no carbonation issues are anticipated.

I enjoyed the Mikkel-as-monk artwork on the label.

A: Pours a one finger head of nice cream, good thickness, and good retention - especially considering the high ABV and the serving vessel. Retains for at least three minutes, but I can't wait that long to try it. Colour is an extremely dark ruby-black. Nontransparent but not opaque. Floating yeast particles are visible and abundant. I'm surprised at how dark its colour is given the style.

Sm: Cherry and berry fruit esters, cream, plums, biscuity malts, clean light malts, rich cream, and complex yeast aromas. A marvellous aroma. Really gets me excited to drink it. Subtle. A mild strength aroma. I'd like it stronger; it's quite pleasant, alive, and inviting.

T: Plums, heavy raisin, dark berry esters, very restrained dark cherry (not tart at all), some light caramelization tones, clean dark malts, complex biscuity yeasts, cream, biscuit malt, a bready note (but not in a thick sense), and hints of grape. Quite complex, with some layering but not as much as I'd like. Subtle but still understated. Nicely balanced but perhaps not as full bodied a flavour profile as would be ideal. It comes off feeling a bit empty near the climax because not that much additional flavour comes through. No alcohol is detectable.

Pleasant and enjoyable. It isn't unique, but it's certainly special. A well built quadrupel, but not incredible. This might be great with some red wine aging.

I noticed towards the bottom third of the bottle that a chocolate flavour crept in. I don't know how a chocolate flavour could be connected to yeast content, but I observed and verified this phenomenon.

Mf: Delightfully creamy throughout. Very smooth and wet, rolling across the palate nicely and staying out of the way of the flavour profile. The cream in particularly is subtly complementary of the flavours without intruding on them. A bit thin.

The raisin seems to dry out the climax somewhat, a nice touch but an awkwardly executed one.

Dr/Ov: Very drinkable, especially for the ABV - which is incredibly well hidden. I would certainly have this again, preferably aged or on-draught (the former more than the latter). As noted above, red wine aging might make this great.

This drank just fine out of me Guinness goblet, but if I had it again I might go for a goblet with a wider mouth. I wouldn't recommend a snifter for this one; the aroma is nice but it isn't integral and doesn't need trapping.

(3,038 characters)

Photo of rapidsequence
3.82/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

750 ml corked, caged, foiled bottle. It was $13.49 from Beer Run. Can't find a date, but its at least a year old.

Appearance: Dark brown pour. Pretty unimpressive head, but some decent lacing.

Smell: This is a really great smelling beer. Sweet dark fruity esters, rich malt, and a bready yeastiness. The aroma rivals the very best quads.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Doesn't live up to the aroma. Feels thin and kind of fizzy. The flavors just don't open up on the palate like they should. I think the mouthfeel makes the taste suffer. A bit too boozy too.

Overall: Its a good quad, but has the above issues. Stick to St. Bernardus or Rochefort. (637 characters)

Photo of jayhawk73
4.42/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown color w/ a one finger cocoa head. Good lacing on my snifter glass. Very dark, and impossible to see through. The nose is grapes, prunes, apple, caramel malt, and some spices- really well done. The taste profile is very similar, w/ warming really bringing out the richness in this brew. Feel is medium, with malt sweetness carrying the day. No evidence of the 10% abv here, and a nice lighter than expected finish. Overall, this is a fantastic beer- although it might be more of a BSDA than a Quad. I will definitely look for this one again- I enjoyed it. Cheers. (581 characters)

Photo of mrfrancis
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a murky brownish amber with virtually no head. The thin, creamy beige mousse only survives a couple of seconds.

S: Very sweet. Aromas of raisins, prunes, candy sugar, and caramel are quite pronounced. This is a little much for my taste.

T: A sweet, syrupy entry reveals notes of caramel, candy sugar, dark chocolate, port, figs, dates, prunes, raisins, and dark bread. The finish is long and sweet with dried fruit and caramel notes underpinned by mellow alcohol.

M: Oddly light and thin in the mouth. Very oily as well. Carbonation is decidedly lacking. Alcohol presence is initially well hidden, but really comes out on the finish.

O: This is an ok quad, nothing more, nothing less. If you're a fan of the style, you may find that this is not offensive, but also offers nothing remotely new. (806 characters)

Photo of BrutalSusan
3.05/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A: deep dark brown, almost black. poured with little to no head

S: raisin and spices, very aromatic

T: raisin comes back to you in the flavor, not very complex and a bit sweet for my tastes. a touch of hop in the finish, but not enough. Baking spices.

M: the mouthfeel is very light and thin, I expect a lot more weight in a dark ale, while not necessary, the lack of weight really takes away from this one, could have helped it quite a bit.

O: Not a fan, Mikkeller is hit or miss, I find I usually hate or LOVE their beer. This one I just didn't like, won't go so far as to hate.

*As it warmed up, I got more out of it, some plum, coffee and chocolate I just wasn't getting before. Growing on me slightly, but still not something I will revisit. (751 characters)

Photo of dgilks
4.42/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown colour with deep garnet highlights. Small, creamy tan head. Fair head retention.

Really dense, dark fruit aroma with lots of date, raisin, plum, fig and berry notes. Alcohol and spice add balance and interest.

Bold and very rich with lots of dark fruit and rich malt. The bready melanoidins add depth along with some nice mild spice. Really good.

Medium-full body with moderate carbonation. Nice.

A rich Belgian strong ale with lots of great flavour. This is certainly a brooding Belgian rather than a brighter one. (530 characters)

Photo of Zraly
4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A small tasting on-tap at The Birch. Served in a small snifter.

Pours a dark garnet-brown with a touch of head. Really wonderful smell of cherries and dough -- smells like a bakery.

Rich, dark fruits predominate upfront with a touch of funk and phenols to play secondary roles. The alcohol is definitely present, as well as nut note. This reminds me a bit of a black forest cake. It tastes very good but given the weight and fairly heavy body, it is a bit think toward the end of the finish.

Overall, a really nice dessert beer. (531 characters)

Photo of whatthehull
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted sept 13th 2011 (from notes)

Tulip

A - Deep dark sludgy brown, three finger tan head and some sugar legs

S - super sweet, tons of malts, some nice yeast and a slight dark fruit

T - very sweet, raisins, dates, sour plums, alcohol, nice bitter, slight hop, great yeast, dark fruit, toastiness, huge malt and lots of earth

M - full bodied, low acidity, medium balance, nice complexity and long finish

D - very nice, boozey, very dark, lots of flavor and surprisingly easy to drink for a huge beer

Final thought - try this one for sure. Love these brewers (571 characters)

Photo of DarthKostrizer
2.43/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to RTaps and MrVonzipper for this one

Look: Dark brown in color with a 1/8 inch head and just ok retention

Smell: The nose carries some figs and plums and a artificial candy note. Which is backed up by a sweet yeast note

Taste: The beer is very dark fruit based and almost taste artificial or medicinal. The beer was overly sweet and reminded me of candied plums and sugar drenched figs. And finishes slightly funky but not the good funkyiness that is typical of belgian yeast

Mouthfeel: Medium body and medium carbonation

Overall: I am not a fan of this Quad and to be honest it might be my least favorite of the style to date (639 characters)

Photo of rtaps
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a mahogany with a good khaki head, minimal lacing and decent detention.

smell was very "hot" fruity and dark candy

taste of black licorice and fruity mix

full bodied with med-high carb

overall this was a decent beer nothing impressive. (249 characters)

Photo of eric5bellies
4.38/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank from my Gulden Draak tulip.

A - Pours the classic dark Mahogany colour with a stubborn off white two fingered head that retains very well and laces.

S - Aromas of plums and figs and a malt backbone.

T - Up front some nice bitterness followed by massive dark cherries, figs, plums and stewed dark fruits. The finish is smooth and the alcohol is so well hidden.

M - Smooth medium to full body and medium carbonation. So smooth.

O - Quads are my favourite style of beer and I'm always interested to try new ones. So often I'm disappointed, but this is superb. It is quintessentially Belgian, has all the dark fruit characteristics and hides the alcohol masterfully. A must try and drink at room temp. (708 characters)

Photo of ChugginOil
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap @ St. Charles Tap House. $3 draft Mondays. Yeah buddy.

Pours a very dark brown color with cola colored edging. Light tan creamy head leaves plenty of legs.

The nose is candy like with brown sugar, molasses, bread, and sicy yeast. Its smelling a bit sweet and definitely inviting.

The taste is sweet and dessert-like with candied fruit flavors. Caramel, brown sugar and plum. Tasty.

The mouthfeel is creamy and delicately smooth. My favorite characteristic of this beer.

Overall, this is a decent and surprisingly drinkable quad, given the ABV. Enjoyable and at $3, can't beat it. (598 characters)

Monk's Elixir (Monk's Brew) from Mikkeller ApS
87 out of 100 based on 144 ratings.