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Monk's Brew (Red Wine Barrel Aged With Raspberries) - Mikkeller ApS

Not Rated.
Monk's Brew (Red Wine Barrel Aged With Raspberries)Monk's Brew (Red Wine Barrel Aged With Raspberries)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

43 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 43
Hads: 158
Avg: 3.96
pDev: 24.24%
Wants: 6
Gots: 26 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Mikkeller ApS visit their website

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MasterSki on 07-16-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 43 | Hads: 158
Photo of UCLABrewN84
2.98/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to wethorseblanket for sharing this one at Benny’s tasting.

Pours a murky reddish-brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of malt, moldy raspberries, earth, funk, and wet cardboard. Taste is much the same with a distinct weed flavor as well. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty average beer that tastes better than it smells but it’s still not very appealing.

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Photo of metter98
3.99/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is very hazy brown in color and has some yest particles visible near the bottom of the glass. It poured with a thin beige head that died down a bit, leaving a thin head covering the surface.
S: Moderate aromas of dark malts and raspberries are present in the nose - the raspberries remind me of a linzertort.
T: The taste has flavors of sweet raspberry purée along with notes of dark malts and hints of red wine.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a little tart and dry on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is rather easy to drink because it hides its alcohol very well. The raspberries and wine barrel aging make it taste unlike most other quads.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.01/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

this is extraordinary, but much much different than the regular monks brew, which I recall being so luxurious and rich, I think the acid of the wine barrels cuts through some of that delicacy, but its still lovely in this version. pours a red tinted brown color, syrupy looking in texture with a decent tan head that fades out relatively quickly. the nose is pucker, almost sour, wine tannins and acid, raspberry jam, Belgian yeast. the flavor hits hard, tart as hell from the berries, which are really fresh like all of mikkellers fruited beers. the yeast is robust, and its hard to tell if red or white wine barrels were used, but I kind of think maybe a blend of both, because this has some features of both. honestly, the fruit and barrel treatment almost overwhelm my favorite features of the regular monks brew, the rich chocolate malt interacting with that huge Belgian yeast. the feel here is acidic and thick, carbonation lacking just a bit, but it still feels like something fancy, which I cant really describe but I like it a lot. overall a clever beer, that's been turned totally upside down in this variation. the fruit adds a lot, good stuff. booze is invisible, look out.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.42/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Raspberries? red wine barrels? quadruple ales? There's going to be a sensory overload, coming right up...

Dark brown and with a purpleish tint, you can tell just from the color of the beer that it has some dark secrets. As the firm semi-spritzy, semi-creamy head form, even it conveys burgundy tint. Solid retention and broken lace is the constant reminder of the wine and berry infusion that decorates the beer.

Aromas are absolutely mouthwatering (I'm not sure if astringency is relegated to mouthfeel only) as the sharp and juicy berry and vinous scent puckers the jowls and whets the whistle. The backdrop of Belgian strong dark ale is easily dwarfed in favor of the fruit additions and barrel aging. Port wine, sherry, and raspberry extract come to mind much more quickly than does any beer.

Where the beer provides the tepid underlying maltiness that houses the carbonation and grounds the finesse esters and spices, the beer enjoys the beating that it takes by the brunt of sheer raspberry puree- so rich are the fruit flavor that it conjures memories of prune juice, lemon, dates and figs. Currant, red grape, black plumb, sweet tobacco, apple, and blackberry notes only add to the fruity matrix. With no hop bitterness in sight, the beer relies on the fruit and barrel tannin to balance the malt and fruit; which it does to perfection. Surprisingly, the sweetness of the beer is thin and terse, relying on the fruit acidity to carry the beer from early palate and into its extended aftertaste.

Full bodied to start, the beer's creamy carbonation and fully malted textures derive a very dessert-like experience. But just when you expect the dripping weight of residual sweetness to coax the palate, there's instead a thin and acidic sweetness that prefers a balance of dry merlot. With all those fruity acids, woody tannin, and vinous dryness going on, the beer is every bit as complex in texture as it is to taste.

Where I was luke-warm in my affection for the regular Monk's Brew, this version is seductive and as guilty of a sin for me as beer gets. I know not to become enamored by the fruit, or the barrel aging, or the wine influence. But as a culinary delight, I simply cannot help myself. This is an extraordinary fruit beer that begs a pairing of chocolate truffles.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
3.99/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. 375 ml bottle.

A - Pours a dark reddish with a solid 2-inch off-white head which yields splotches and spots of lace.

S - Fresh raspberries, woody/earthy, yeast, mild funk, dates/figs/raisins, vinous.

T - Tart, raspberries, oaky wood, earthy yeast, red grape skin and must.

M - Moderate body and carbonation. Finishes dry, slightly sweet, fruity, oak tannin.

O: Enjoyed. Not overly sweet with a nice balance of raspberries, funk and "quad-like" notes.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.42/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

375ml green glass bottle with very faded label and foiled over pressure cap served into an Antwerp beer passion weekend 2011 stemglass in me friend Bo's gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Acquired at Wally's Wine yesterday. I'm really excited as Mikkeller is my favourite brewery in the world and I love quads (if this is, in fact, a quad). The barrel aging sounds fantastic.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm considerably over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a one finger khaki colour head of nice thickness, good cream, and impressive retention considering the high ABV. Colour is a nontransaprent extremely dark caramel-fig brown with ruby hues. Opaque. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. It's appealing in a general sense. Lacing is decent.

Sm: Heavy raspberry and slight tart fruits, with even some questionable syrupy fruit notes. Lychees come through. Red wine. Tannins. Plum. Yeast. Sour yeast/bacteria. Pleasant plentiful fig. Heavy sugars, with slight caramelization. It's a strong, very fruit forward aroma. I'm not sure if it will taste good or bad based on the aroma - it could go in either direction. It's bold, in any case - and that commands some respect.

T: Heavy fruit joins with some biscuit and light dark malt to form the body. Tartness is good but not overdone. The lychee sort of tanks the balance for me; it's too sweet. Red wine comes through on the fringe, rounding out the profile nicely and lending needed consistency. Some hints of sour yeast and bacteria here and there, but nothing puckerworthy. Light bright plum. Bright fig. It's strange to taste a quad where the fig and plum notes aren't dark; I'd prefer them to be so. Alcohol is very well hidden. Malts are well chosen. Hopping is light yet complementary, lending some nice floral and light vague fruit tones. Caramel aids it. It's certainly complex and features some subtlety, but the flavours feel a bit shallow. It's a strange quad, but I do like it.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Moderate on the palate. Carbonation is spot on. Neither too thick nor too thin, though some of the fruit flavours (especially the lychee) do evoke a syrupy vibe.

Dr: Drinkable. Worth the price and quite enjoyable - even unique within the style. The tartness was a welcome surprise. Mikkel's certainly made his stamp here, but I do prefer well-executed traditional quads. This would likely improve with age. The red wine is also surprisingly timid compared to Mikkel's other red wine barrel aged offerings. This will make you re-examine quads, but it's not fantastic. Just another solid brew from Mikkeller that pushes boundaries. Hides its ABV very well.


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Photo of dbrauneis
3.84/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a murky brown in color with light amounts of visible carbonation, moderate amounts of visible sediment in suspension, and some reddish highlights. The beer has a half finger tall sudsy dark beige head that reduces to a thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a medium sized patch of medium thickness of larger bubbles and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of red wine, tart raspberries, and some lighter notes of Belgian yeast.

T: Upfront there are moderate to strong flavors of tart raspberries (like ones that had been soaked in red wine) and red wine. Lighter notes of dark fruit sweetness with a touch of plum and fig and a solid malty body. Very light notes of oak with a moderate hint of alcohol in the finish.

M: Medium bodied with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. Light amounts of acidic prickliness.

O: Easier to drink than I was expecting and the alcohol is well hidden - I thought there was going to be a fair amount of alcohol warming based on the smell and style. Nice complexity but not quite the combination of flavors that I was expecting for a Quad... Definitely interesting.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shared by Darrell. Thanks man.

The beer is dark brown with a lasting beige collar. The aroma is heavy on the raspberries, with additional notes of chocolate covered raisins, cherries. Chocolate and cherries. Raspberries too. Medium bodied with moderately low carbonation. Pretty sweet. A bit syrupy. Not getting a lot of wine characteristics.

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Photo of dcmchew
4.53/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Says it's red & white wine barreled, but i guess this is the entry.
Pours muddy dark ruby-brown, a slim cap of beige foam that lasts for a very long time.
Smell hits you with alcoholic raspberry jam, with a bit of tartness and backed by lots of Belgian sugary malts, with tons of molasses, caramel, faint butterscotch and spices. Of course, lots of fig and raisin, extra musty red grapes and some mild oaky barrel. This should be hell-a tasty.
Big mix of dark malts and fresh raspberries in the front, sourness battling it out with heavy quad dark malts, backed by caramel, some faint roast, very faint chocolate and heavy molasses. Red wine (with an extra crisp edge, i guess from the white wine barrel) mostly, mixed with dry dark fruit (fig and raisin, duh), juicy plum and forest berries. Fruitiness is so overwhelming that the barrel notes are barely felt, some oak, wet stave, very old wood. Some barnyard funk around also. Spiciness also, with faint vanilla and the Belgian-type clove, some candi sugar, faint licorice and aromatic herbs, like plantain. Finish has acetic vinegar, "twigy" white wine, green hay and alcohol, that go through to the aftertaste and set up camp, along with berry fruitiness.
Medium (maybe a bit light) bodied, medium prickly carbonation. Alcohol is felt from start to finish (more and more), boozy, yes, but manages to perfectly blend red wine with Belgian quad.
Really something else. At last i feel like i pay (handsomely) for a Mikkeller and it delivers entirely. Huge complexity, maybe a bit too much at times, trying to dazzle you.

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Photo of liamt07
3.71/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Jon, 375ml into a tulip.

Deep brown, with an offwhite head. Bubbles are all that retain. Huge raspberry notes, almost like a jam or raspberry puree, some barrel character, peripheral balsamic notes, acidic with a touch of alcohol. Palate has the raspberry upfront before some barrel and vinous character, and some herbal qualities on the back end. Tart finish with more alcohol. Medium full feel, raspberry tartness and tannins in the finish. Interesting, but this one didn't come together on the whole.

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Photo of Tone
4.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark purple color. 1/3 inch head of an off-pink color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of alcohol, hint of liquor, raspberries, sweet malt, dry hops, and dark fruit/wine. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. There is also a noticeable tartness. Fits the style of a Quadruple. Tastes of raspberries, citrus, slight syrup, hint of hop, alcohol, slight grass, hint of earthy malt, and hint of wine. Overall, strong tartness, strong body, but alcohol not too strong. Great blend, body, aroma, and complexity.

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Photo of aasher
4.04/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one pours a medium bodied raisin brown in color with only a slight off white lacing around my glass. The nose is certainly different. It features a sweet, jammy red raspberry upfront followed by raisins, prunes, plum, and a dark and bready Belgian malt. That's about as complex as the nose can be for this style. It's really impressive. The flavors are a nice mix too. There is some tart raspberry with some fruity sweetness upfront with bready malt, red grape character, some prune, and almost some raisin bread. It's enough to make you think about each sip. It really is pretty complex. It drinks a little light in body for the style. I like this one. It isn't spectacular but for $10.99 for a 375ml I can't complain at all.

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Photo of barczar
4.16/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I love raspberry! Very tart raspberry aroma, nice funkiness, with a great raspberry tartness and acetic character. Smells like olives, strangely. Good barrel character.

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Photo of Brenden
4.45/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is dark brown and thick, with red-brown highlights at the edges. The brown head grows to an impressive height and thickness, has good retention, and leaves sticky patches and spots of lacing in good quantity.
The smell is potent out of the bottle. The first hit is tart and tangy raspberry but very much like red wine, vinous and ripe with tannins as expected. The initial smell (though not the look) tells me something like Flanders red, then it immediately gives more of an impression of brown ale character more like an Oud Bruin, but there's more to it. The heavy malts base, seeming addition of candi sugars, and light notes of a Belgian yeast strain make it earthier with a subtle sweetness playing well and allowing the tartness to set the stage. It gets mellower as well as more flavorful and complex as it sits and the sweetness mingles even more. The entire way there's a prominent barley-like, possibly roasted dark malts overtone. Alcohol is masked like I've ever smelled or tasted any beer with an ABV this high to manage; this is one of few beers with which it is simply impossible from the aroma or flavor to know it's got a 10% ABV. It does warm, though, and the drinker should be careful with this one.
The feel isn't bad, moderate carbonation setting the tone in a medium body with a consistent crispness.

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Photo of mrfrancis
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a murky brownish amber with a creamy, lingering khaki head.

S: Aromas of caramel, red raspberry, plum, black cherry, oak, and dark chocolate fill the nose.

T: Notes of plum, raisin, fig, dark chocolate, black cherry, oak, caramel, toffee, woody spices, and red raspberry fill the mouth. The finish is prickly and dry with robust notes of plums, black cherry, red raspberry, and oak.

M: Medium in body, chewy, and a bit dry for the style. Carbonation is active, but very restrained. Alcohol presence is subdued.

O: Of the three Monk's Brew variations that I've tried to this point, this one is by far the best. The addition of raspberries and aging in wine barrels give this beer a very distinct aroma and taste that I'm finding difficult to compare to anything else. I really like it. Recommended.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.32/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark black with a touch of brown around the edges and a finger of frothy khaki-brown head. Fades normal.

S - Sweet dark caramel malts, plums, raisins, other dark fruits, raspberries, oak, red wine, Belgian yeast, clove and other spices, candi sugars, some booze.

T - Sweet dark caramel malts, lots of raspberries, plums, raisins, dates, other dark fruits, oak, vanilla, red wine, some sourness and sour cherry, Belgian yeasts, clove, other spices, candi sugars, some booze.

M - Full bodied, moderate carbonation. Smooth with a sweet, spicy, lightly sour, and warming finish.

D - Really nicely balanced Quad with a great mouthfeel. Raspberries and red wine add some great complexity.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7 fl oz bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present, but I know this beer is over a year old by now, since it has been over a year since I reviewed the other one, Mikkeller Monk's Brew (Bourbon Barrel Aged). Expectations are fairly high, since I remember enjoying that beer.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter.

A - Pours a dark muddy mahogany colored body with three big fluffy fingers of thick beige head. Fat sheets of lacing. Dark brown speckles where the yeast collected at the bottom of the bottle. Has a pinkish sort of tint to it when swirled and held to the light.

S - Smell is very nice and has a lot going on. Fresh authentic raspberries are apparent, along with dark raisins, dates, figs, woodsy barrel character, musty yeast, caramel malt, slight notes of funk, & some creaminess. Very musty, with some vinous character imparted from the wine barrel aging. Very nice.

T - Tart juicy authentic raspberries come through nicely on the taste, also. I haven't had many raspberry beers, but this one makes good use of them. Woodsy, oaky, and earthy afterwards. Notes of caramel and toffee. Lightly vinous and tart, with a wine-like dry pucker on the end.

M - Feel finishes dry and lightly sticky. Tart with some raspberry lingering on the finish. Medium bodied with good carbonation.

Overall, another nice beer from Mikkeller, I am glad I finally got around to picking this one up. A very nice showcase for the raspberries and the red wine barrel aging, vastly different from it's bourbon barrel aged counterpart. Both are recommended if they are still available to you.

Mikkeller Monk's Brew (Red Wine Barrel Aged With Raspberries) ---4/5.

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Photo of adamette
4.28/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Live review. Poured from the 12.7 oz. bottle that I bought at Save-On in Mentor for $12.99 last week. 4401204 stamped on the top of the cap, over the gold foil which covers the cap. I am not sure what that might mean or if it is even significant. Poured into a clean, clear glass.

A Murky dark black cherry body that does not let light through but there are edges of dark black cherry. On top of that body is a significant 3 inch light brown head with only moderate pour that lingers for 3 minutes. Additionally, a LOT of sediment in the bottom of the bottle makes it even more murky as you get closer to the bottom of the bottle. Great look. 4.5

S Sweet malt with raspberries. I expected this given the style and the inclusion of raspberries. I guess it is even more sweet with a "deeper" raspberry smell than I might have guessed. The smell is magnetic! 4.0

T Wow, there is so much going on with the taste of this beer....where to start?
First is a Kriek like tartness, the middle is a very sweet malt, there is a sense of red wine also in the middle and then a finish of some heat (alcohol). The raspberry is certainly there too but not like a raspberry from, say, Lindeman's Framboise (a kind of candy or fruit punch raspberry) but more of (like mentioned already) a tart Kriek like raspberry. This might be the most dynamic tasting beer that I have ever tasted! It is nothing if not challenging and complex. 4.5

M The kriek tartness, the significant malt sweetness, the sense of red wine and the heat of the alcohol all drive up the mouthfeel for me. The beer dances across my tongue in a symphony of tastes. 4.5

D/O Drinkability is not that good. The huge ABV and "big" tastes means that I could only ever have one of these in an evening (as I will this evening). Additionally, it costs more than $1 per ounce so that drives down the drinkability for me. Overall this is a very interesting beer. I suspect, though, that only beer geeks (like me) would be interested since it is so
1. expensive and
2. complex, challenging rating: 4.0

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Photo of brewcrew76
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Murky brownish, ruby red with a thin tan head that quickly settles to a ring of foam.

S - Raspberries, almost like raspberry preserves, oak tannins, hint of chocolate and caramel along with some red wine notes.

T - Tart raspberry with some red wine acidity followed by caramel and chocolate. Almost reminds me a raspberry, caramel fudge brownie. Oak and wine tannins linger in the finish.

M - Medium to full body, well carbonated. Finishes dry reminding me of a red wine.

D - Nice balance of sweet and tart. Would pair nicely with dessert. Reminds me of a stout raspberry brownie pairing from Matt Van Wyk and Flossmoor at an early Brewpub Shootout

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Photo of stumac
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Drinking this with my corn dog Amanda. Pours up dark cloudy brown. No lacing, nice long lasting off white head. Nose is must, plums, cellared yeast, slight dark malts, subtle toffee. Flavor is big sour tart raspberries, subtle dark sweet malts, nice kiss of hop balance. Big white wine in the finish. Medium body, crispy Belgium carbo. Nice job

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Photo of brystmar
3.49/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown-red body, almost purple. Tons of tan head billows up, outlasting its welcome and leaving behind sticky lace.

Smells like raspberry concentrate. Just like peeling off the metal end cap from a frozen juice container. Lacks the fresh raspberry character from superior sours.

Raspberry concentrate dominates the flavor profile. Highly concentrated, minimal wine barrel presence. This is MUCH better than the last Mikkeller sour I had (Sur Monk, which is godawful), still lacks refinement compared to the best of style. Glad I tried it, won't seek it out again.

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Photo of peabody
4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a nice dark brown with lots of nice off-white bubbles that lace the glass. Good looking pour.
Smell is raspberry and lemon peel with a strong yeast that burns the nose. Can't smell the alcohol.
Taste is raspberry and sugar malts with Belgian spices and a slight hint of alcohol.
Mouthfeel is very clean at first then turns into a pretty sticky malt feel.
Overall this is good but the cost of the thing is a bit much. Other than that, pretty good.

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Photo of coreyfmcdonald
2.35/5  rDev -40.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

A: Pours a dark ruby color with three fingers of light tan head. Recedes to a half finger of head quickly, then slowly down to a thick film. Very nice looking beer.

S: Loads of sweet raspberry purée, a bit overwhelming at first. Behind that I get a bit of prunes and spice, but it's barely detectable behind the sugary sweetness. I wait for the beer to warm to see if anything else comes out, but I'm pretty much left with overwhelming sweet raspberry with an almost undetectable Quad base underneath

T: Similar to the aroma, I get a ton of sweet raspberry purée with a bit of dark fruit underneath, but way in the background. The beer gets a bit better as it warms, but the sugary raspberry purée is far too strong for my taste.

M: On the thick side with creamy carbonation.

O: The raspberry purée is way too strong in this beer. It's basically like mixing a sweet raspberry lambic with a Quad. I like the idea, but the raspberry needs to be tuned way, way down. I get basically no quad characteristics behind the sugary raspberry.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a dark, ruby hue to it. Large reddish tan head that takes some time to go down. Very good-looking beer. Scent is quite vinous. Tart red wine aroma with some strong, fresh tart raspberries in the nose. Dark fruits from the base beer, but the raspberries take over. A ton of oak and wine aromas. Very interesting aroma. Taste has some rich, dark fruits at first. Sweet chocolate with some oak and dark fruits, then it becomes tart raspberries. Smooth chocolatey rich beginning, with a tart raspberry, wine-like finish. Some warming booze in the finish as well. The quad is there, but there is also a huge, tart raspberry flavor. I was worried about this one having a slight medicinal flavor, but none whatsoever. Mouthfeel has some nice carbonation, possibly just a tad bit too much. Full bodied with a tart, lip smacking finish. Drinkability is fairly high. Overall, this is one unique beer. This is better than the wine versions of the other dark mikkeller beer.

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Photo of BarryMFBurton
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

I rarely buy Mikkeller beers because of the price, but sometimes I slip up and get a bottle; fortunately, I’m usually happy with the purchase once it’s all said and done. This one stuck out to me because of the raspberries – I love that flavor in Belgian beers.

A: Coffee brown body that’s not cloudy, but almost too dark to see through; held up to the light, it shines with a slight ruby color. The head is fizzy and slick, a collection of wet, brown bubbles that fall away almost as soon as they appear; still, there’s some churning activity above the nucleation site.

S: There’s that raspberry – sweet and pungent at the top of the nose. It’s a fresh, tangy fruitiness juxtaposed against the backdrop of thick molasses, candi sugar, burnt caramel, and raisin, more typical elements of a big Belgian quad like this; in addition, the barrel-aging seems to have added a straw-like oxidative scent to it, elevating these darker aromas to a character not unlike a dry sherry. Barrel wood comes through as a light cedar note over it all, as well.

T: Sour in such a big way that the first sip took me completely by surprise: it opens with a tart raspberry flavor, peaking with an acetic tinge before ending bitter and a leafy like raw, unripe berries. Such a complex fruit flavor dominates the palate, but some thick residual sugars come through in the back of the palate – toffee, mostly, but with hints of soil and hazelnut. Finishes with the puckering effect of sour fruit, though the taste of charred barrel wood remains on the tongue for just as long.

M: Feels like a beer with about 6% alcohol; no way this has a double-digit ABV. Goes down with no lingering warmth, a subtle carbonation, and just a touch of heavy thickness.

O: This beer is about strange contrasts, like fruit vs. char and acidity vs. thick sweetness. It will certainly go down in my book as an interesting beer, and delicious, at that – its palate is strange, sweet, and within a few sips, addictive.

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Monk's Brew (Red Wine Barrel Aged With Raspberries) from Mikkeller ApS
88 out of 100 based on 43 ratings.