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Shipyard Monkey Fist IPA - Shipyard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Shipyard Monkey Fist IPAShipyard Monkey Fist IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

802 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 802
Reviews: 128
rAvg: 3.34
pDev: 15.57%
Wants: 8
Gots: 102 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Co. visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: puboflyons on 04-25-2012)
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Ratings: 802 | Reviews: 128 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RblWthACoz
3.5/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is pretty tangy and citric-centric IPA. The hop tones aren't as prevalent as I would like and the whole thing comes out as unbalanced and not as good as an IPA should be. Decent to drink and comes out as drinkable, but not really all that great. Once and that's it for me.

Photo of Slatetank
3.19/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I poured this chilled into a mug from a 12oz brown botttle

The color is deep amber with significant haze and thick cream with very good retention and fine bead. The smell is very piney/fruity with slight hint yeast with citrus accent, there is a light band-aid tinge. The feel is tangy, astringent with medicinal and high amount of carbonations with malt support and light spicy dry finish.

This has more of an English IPA flavor with yeast tangy aspect both fruity and piney up front in the hop flavors yet slight caramel from the malt with astringency and medicinal qualities coming through near the end and grassy pine tinged hop flavor leading to a more astringent and band-aid-like flavor near the end. The beer is not horrible but not great, just consider the source and I give it a fair rating since I am familiar with the brand so I did not expect a west-coast hop bomb, but it has a lot of off flavors so only try this if you are curious

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.6/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shipyard Monkey Fist IPA, Shipyard Brewing Company, Portland, Maine.

I haven't anything from Shipyard in quite a long time. What caused me to buy this one? Maybe it's the Monkey. Everyone loves monkeys, and I'm certainly not immune. Although it's a bit too pervasive in the beer world. There are actually two beers out there called "Monkey Knife Fight IPA". I'm not sure which one is supposed to be "the good one". But, back to Shipyard…

Hazy, coppery/amber coloring, big, white head, slims down slowly, leaves lace.

Aroma: Particularly pungent hoppiness, plenty of grapefruit, citrus, pine, all the usual suspects. Aggressive, lively, likable.

Taste: In the mouth, all that and more. Bitter, even tart, hop attack fairly pummels the palate. The mouthfeel and the texture is a bit too thin to sustain the assault, however. It all comes of as watery, to it's disadvantage. There's a funky twist to this, something from the yeast, as well as hops, perhaps. Here's a bottle where I could use some gobbledygook, for I'd love any kind of additional information.

A bit too acerbic and astringent in the finish. Lighter than medium bodied. hmmm, it's not bad, really, but I'm having a hard time liking it.

Photo of beernads
3/5  rDev -10.2%

Photo of mactrail
3.2/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear amber in the tall glass with a big head. A light floral scent with some lime peel. Hops in the nose with more of a resin smell. Quite light bodied with lots of carbonation. Very tart on the tongue and a little woody or astringent.

Very distinct grapefruit in this one, though less of the terminally bitter peel. Citric and slightly sweet to complete the grapefruit flavor. The aftertaste is just like chewing on grapefruit section membranes, and lasts long after you've finished sipping.

To me, it's more drinkable than a lot of IPAs, but it's a lighter style for sure. An unusual variation that wears thin for me. 22 oz bottle from Litticker's in Ocean Beach.

Photo of DrunkinYogi
3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of drewone
2.75/5  rDev -17.7%

Photo of smcolw
3.95/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rocky thick head that leaves extensive streaky lace. Dirty copper color.

Excellent fresh, raw and floral hop aroma--very inviting. Pale malt base nose.

Lots of raw hop bite almost immediately on tongue. Neutral body, with an above average carbonation level. An IPA lovers' IPA. Long aftertaste of peppery bitterness.

Photo of dbrauneis
3.2/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a murky medium golden orange in color with some creamsicle colored highlights and light to moderate amounts of gentle visible carbonation. The beer has a three quarter finger tall slightly creamy beige head that slowly fades to a very thin film covering the entire surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate amounts of yeasty (Belgian) aromas with much lighter amounts of citrus hops and pine hops.

T: Starts out with a moderate amount of pale malts and just a bit of sweetness. Next there are light to moderate amounts of citrus/lemon and pine hops. Moderate amounts of lingering bitterness. Moderate amounts of yeast as well.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly sticky in the finish.

O: This is an OK beer but tastes a little more like a Belgian IPA than an American IPA - though that might be because of the yeastiness.

Photo of Billolick
3.4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle, "best enjoyed before" dating notched onto the side of the label.

Pour is clear and lighter amber, under a moderate eggshell head. leaves fine strands of lace on the glass.

Bready nose, I also pick up some nutty notes, tea and some herbal hoppy notes, quite the complex nose!

On the palate, its more tea, more herbal notes, some mint. Also a hint of soap and some vegatal slightly off putting notes.

Ehh, some thing definatly seems off here. With so many quality IPA's out there I doubt I'd go for this one again.

Photo of LXIXME
3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of mdaschaf
3.1/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had on tap at Flatbread Pizza in Portsmouth NH.

A: Monkey fist was a dark amber/copper color with a small off-white head that had decent retention and left some thin lacing.

S: A little bit of citrus, rather nondescript though, a little orange. There was some caramel and a little bit of bread.

T: Not as hop forward as I was hoping, they seemed a little faded really. The caramel was forward with the light citrus and grass taking a back seat.

M: Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

O: Was hoping for a bit better, it was just ok. Have had pale ales that are hoppier, including one earlier the same day I had this beer.

Photo of DoubleJ
3.95/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In a late breaking move, I have decided to taste anotehr beer during this beautiful afternoon. Monkey Fist, eh? That's an odd name for a beer, but I'm hoping the beer itself isn't. Labled with a best before date of December 2012. On to the beer:

Bronzed orange color with some bubbles running through. Hues of yelow at point of the color. As for that white puffy thing known as head, it's alright. It drops and stabilizes to a ½ inch ring of lace. The aroma may not scream typical IPA, but it sure is fun to whiff. You do get a splash of piney hops and some pleasant caramel, but what's surprising is the kick of peach-cranberry juice. And more of it. Is this an IPA with fruit by any chance? The label doesn't list a summary of itself, but I'm off to guess it out.

The taste doesn't make itself to be as fun as the aroma...initially. That said, it still is a fine choice to drink, and it only take a little time before that potential is realized. First comes tofee crisp and little resin. Then comes a strong fruity presence, similar to that cranberry-peach concoation from the aroma. The bitterness, bringing along with it some clean pine, start to creep in and finally wipe the palate clean of any lingering fruit or malt. The body is almost medium with some good, crisp carbonation, and a drinkability that also ranks well.

I like that. Ok, now I have the courage to research this beer. According to Shipyard's website, there is no added fruit to the beer, and Monkey Fist is named after a type of knot tied on a rope (my brother may know that). A bit of a pleasant surprise from Shipyard.

Photo of Zorro
3.5/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear deeply amber colored beer with a small yellowish white head. This is on the dark end of IPA Orange.

Smell is malty and a little medicinal with a smoky scent a little like smoked beer. Herbal hop with a slight orange aroma to it. Lesser scents of tea and wood.

Starts out Woody with a mild bitter bite. Strong tea flavor. Bitter orange flavor with a slight burnt sugar taste. Malt flavor is slightly burnt caramel.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall this is an OK beer that is on medium end of the IPA Spectrum. Didn't blow me away but I will finish the bomber.

Photo of jdhilt
2.95/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours a two-finger off-white head that fades slowly leaving a good lace. Clear amber color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Grapefruit hop nose and flavor is grapefruit with hints of caramel, a lingering, bitter finish. $5.00 for a 22oz bottle from Market Basket Concord, NH.

Photo of biegaman
3.38/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Monkey Fist has a great label but it's nothing compared to the beer itself; this IPA is an incandescent golden tone, with a caramelly, maple syrup complexion but shimmering flaxen-yellow highlights. Its head is thin but scattershots all over the glass. With an appearance like this you can't go wrong, right? Well...

The aroma is what I'd charitably call "peculiar". It smells something like a lemon- or pine-scented cleaning product. The citric oils and tree resins are expected - desired, actually - in an IPA but their presence in this bouquet is a little reminiscent of something from the Pine-Sol product line.

The flavour makes that turn to the unfavourable all but definite; the notion of lemon- and pine-scented cleaning product gets a little too real on the palate. It goes from mildly appealing to somewhat concerning - did this come from under the brewery's kitchen sink? Even the malts taste coated in a combination of honey and industrial-strength alcohol-based solvent.

Surprisingly, my palate adjusted to what turns out to be an alright, if unusual IPA. That said, others will be unable to look beyond the Pine-Sol semblance. But if viewed simply as an ultra-earthy - the ultra-ist possible short of chewing a mouthful of dead leaves and twigs - it's not at all out of line with the style's profile (though that detergent-like taste is downright nauseating).

Shipyard has yet to truly 'wow' me but they make some very good beers; I expected a lot more from Monkey Fist. It's a somewhat bizarre IPA that ironically makes the drinker feel like they're part of a science experiment - will I wake up tomorrow with a tail or an eleventh toe? Maybe Monkey's Fist is the lab monkeys' revenge? Either way, Maine offers far better IPAs than this.

Photo of Kelp
3/5  rDev -10.2%

Photo of dmorgan310
3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of plaid75
4.35/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a medium copper hue with a one finger frothy white head. There was very good retention and lacing.

The smell was dominated by a sharp peppery hop.

The taste was likewise hop driven with forceful peppery and balmy piney hops. Soft buttery malts detected as well Thankfully the house yeast did not dominate here.

The mouthfeel typical of the style.

Overall an excellent clean IPA. Substantial in body and flavor. Likely Shipyard's greatest beer to date. The name is a bit juvenile however.

Photo of beerthulhu
2.33/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Burnt orange coloring in the vessel with a strong sense of carbonation. The head is buff with pale yellowish tones, one finger high, and shows a moderate to good retention. Lacing is generous.

S: Aroma of sweet toffee and citrus mingle, some smore crackers, a lot of sweet character, with some dried honey toast and a spiciness of spruce. Buttered grains add sweetness.

T: The flavor was not as sweet nor complex as the nose. A bit coarse in delivery with no spectrum, was just a strong punch of hop bitterness that suffered from linear perception and a very, washy backing. The malt and body was really washy and thin, no malt support what-so-ever and finishes off like water. The hops are bittery dry, flowery citrus, but not in a tasty or appreciative way, just blunt, arrogant and straightforward like the drunken uncle with no sense of refinement.

M: Mouthful of course suffered the same fate as the flavor, a complete wash out, dry, bitter from the hops but ultimately ends in a washed out state of affair.

O: Overall washy body, lack of malt support and no spectrum of hop flavors or distinction makes this a complete bust. You just cant haphazardly throw a bunch of hops in a kettle and expect the beer fairies to wave thier magic wand and produce a good ipa. No malt support, no spectrum of flavor, washy, and a complete acceptable drain pour. I dont like to dish out the disrespect to often due to my love of beer, but the 2.0s are what beers like this are meant for. The visual and sweet smelling nose was one of the few decent points about this mess, it falls off a cliff there-after.

Photo of liamt07
2.75/5  rDev -17.7%

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.65/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into a true pint, the beer is a deep, vibrant, copper-orange coloring with a chunky, frothy, uneven half inch of off-white head. Aromas of buttery biscuits and toast in the background giving rise to a citrus heavy hops presence, with a wet grass character, as well. Some caramel highlights on the nose, also. Flavors are roasted, with a strong caramel malt backbone that is quickly overwhelmed with a blast of wet, fresh hops that are resiny and peppery spiced. Strong and effervescent citrus characters of very tart grapefruit clean the palate and awaken the tastebuds. Very tasty and very well balanced. The increased carbonation and sharp citrus notes give the mouthfeel a bit of a thin, sharp kick towards the end of the palate. The aftertaste is tart and bitter grapefruit, as well as a good presence of hops that now display some cedar and pine characteristics. Quick, bitter, and resiny finish lets you know exactly what you've been drinking. Good, tasty beer.

Photo of Cynic-ale
3.25/5  rDev -2.7%

Photo of johnnnniee
2.98/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap today at the Portland Pie Co.
Comes to the table a deep amber color with a decent sized off white head that shows moderate retention and lacing. Smells of bitter citrus with a bit of butterscotch and a caramel. Wow the flavor is something else all right. Intensely bitter citrus with lots of sweet caramel and butterscotch. Medium to thin body with a moderate level of carbonation and a bitter harsh citrus did I say bitter mouthfeel. I really don't know why this company is still in business. This is an aggressively bitter IPA reminiscent of the mid 90's when micros were trying to one up each other in the IBU wars. Very harsh bitterness with lots of astringency to go around too much buttery ringwood character and not enough hop aroma. Late hops should be used more here as well as a diacetyl rest.

Photo of Boone757
3.5/5  rDev +4.8%

Shipyard Monkey Fist IPA from Shipyard Brewing Co.
77 out of 100 based on 802 ratings.