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Tropic King - Funkwerks

Not Rated.
Tropic KingTropic King

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

67 Reviews
THE BROS
88
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 67
Hads: 380
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 8.98%
Wants: 37
Gots: 60 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Funkwerks visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Saison / Farmhouse Ale |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: lackenhauser on 11-19-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 67 | Hads: 380
Photo of Thorpe429
3.71/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to fortsambo for sending this bottle out my way. Thanks also to rake for sending this in the Sour, Saison, & Funk BIF. Served in a Funkwerks tulip.

Pours a nice golden color with a thick, foamy white head and a good bit of sheety lacing on the way down. Good cap and collar throughout.

The nose has some light fruits and a bit of white pepper. Light perfume and floral hops. The hops come out a bit more in the flavor. Nice Belgian varieties. Light bready malt. Touch of earth. Body is light-medium with good carbonation. Semi-dry finish.

Nice beer. Would like a bit more yeast character for a beer of this size, but still quite good. (649 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

this beer was so far ahead of its time, its crazy. i love it, always have, although i highly suspect the recipe has changed some since the maori king listing here, which is why i review it under this heading after a long time away from this beauty. its one of the better saisons in colorado, especially for an all the time beer, and now that its available in affordable four packs, its spot on. i think some of the tropical hops have dropped out of it though, i remember it being so alive with flavors like white grape and passion fruit that comes from strains like nelson, before nelson was even part of the vernacular. its tame compared to my memory, but i have also tasted an awful lot of beer since then, and may have numbed just a bit. still really nicely flavored with one of my favorite yeasts in the country, but the hops seem a lot less pungent and fresh and juicy. the abv also seems to have creeped up a bit, originally at 7%, listed here at 7.5%, and the bottle i just drank says 8%, but the beer seems no drier perhaps some extra grain or sugar in here to spike it, maybe slow demand or something, i dont know. the beer is still amazing, soft in feel, layered in its yeast and grain interactions, and not like most american made examples of the style. this is the beer that put funkwerks on the map back when they open, and it remains one of my favorite every day saisons. i think there is some definite batch variability though... (1,444 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

While the guidelines of the Saison style say that there's an even-keel balance of fruit and spice, I find that modern versions tilt heavily toward the spice and dryness and to a lesser extend with fruit and sweetness. However, Funkwerks' Tropic King really explored that balance in seldom seen fashion any more.

Opening with that signature milky yellowish-gold hue, the ale is abundant with yeast and wheat haze, while being capped with a dense and creamy white froth. If I hadn't known better, I'd be looking at a cross section of key-lime pie- equipped with meringue and all. With retention intact, the ale trails with broken islands of lace.

Its spot-on aromas are zesty of champagne and spice- its acidity is accompanies by freshly grated white pepper, light clove and alcohol; and with only a supple backing of dry cracker maltiness and soft wheat. But that's not all- its aromas are musty with lemons, apples, and a slew of tropical fruit notes: pineapple, mango, apricot and passion fruit.

Its taste is rich with a funky-fresh flavor of rustic farmhouse earthiness and modern dry acidity- its foundation is dry with pilsner breadiness and short-lived wheat richness. 'Cause once the yeast character kicks in, the conversation is all fruit and spice in its middle palate. That ideal blend of citrus, tropical and orchard fruit seems of IPA and Tripel Ale, its peppercorn, damp hay and musty cork flavors are quintessential Saison. And that notion is further reinforced as the beer dries mercilessly in its finish and exposes its spicy flavor late.

Medium-light for Saison, its fruit-centric sweetness provides a sweeter and tarter upstart, especially as its carbonation needs a bit of a kickstart. But once the bubbles start-a-flowin', the beer is pushed off the tongue and here comes the champagne-like flavor and feel. That's when acidity, pepper, and alcohol tell the tale and make the beer a Saison and not a Tripel, Strong Golden Ale or stronger Pale Ale.

It's not your every-day Saison, but the thing about it is that it's not your every day Saison! Still, I think a hefty dose of Brettanomyces yeast could really dry this thing out for a funkier-fresher taste and texture. (2,190 characters)

Photo of mactrail
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sweet and fruity with just an edge of bitterness. Attractive amber color in the tall Blanche de Chambly glass. Nice enough head. Very pleasantly spritzy on the tongue.

A great blend of spicy and sharp textures, with a mellow and malty base. Some buttery flavors, and a bit of acidity in the aroma. Nose of apples on a hot day, the cider press with yellowjackets buzzing around. Such a nice malt flavor, like a Hefeweizen with the sweet bananas and a little touch of the Berlinerweisse. Tends toward a tart finish.

I like the slightly elevated alcohol in this, as well as the restrained Belgian flavors. Not as bitter as many Saisons. From the big bottle purchased at Grapevine Liquors in Denver. (698 characters)

Photo of russpowell
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Got this from SteveO, cheers Steve!

Pours a slightly hazed gold with2+ fingers of pearl colored head. Stellar lacing & head retention, never drops bight all the way

S: Perfumy hops & appleskins, plus pears & passion fruit

T: Follows the nose, some dryness & white pepper up front. Pears, more passion fruit & some grapefruit as this warms, I also get a faint bits of mango as this warms, slight breadyness& honey crisp apples too, pineapple as well. Finishes crisp, fruitty, dry with pineapple & passion fruit, plus a bit of pear & peppercorn

MF: Fairly subtle carbonation, light bodied; skews fruitty

Great drinkability, not a ton of sourness or funkyness, but this works well for me. This runs the gamut of fruyittyness with enough hop profile to balance this out. This is a beer I'd love to see in 4-pack offerings. Funk Werks, you are impressing the snot outta me! (874 characters)

Photo of kojevergas
3.47/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-draught into a 330ml snifter at the Funkwerks taproom. Reviewed from notes. Serving volume was 4 oz as part of a tasting flight (which as a whole was rather disappointing).

A: Pours a half finger head of slight thickness and cream, and decent retention. Colour is a cloudy peach.

Sm: Orange, mango, and light apricot. The fruit esters are really all me broken nose detects. A mild strength aroma, but a pleasant one.

T: Mango, slight orange, and a clean subtle barley foundation. To its credit, its malt-aversive. I fancy it though it isn't horribly complex. Nicely refreshing. Quite pleasant and really well balanced. Pretty well built, if strange for the style.

Mf: Smooth and wet, complementing the flavours. I'd like it better if it were crisp. It's aptly carbonated.

Dr: The high ABV isn't detectable and it's of pretty nice quality. I'd have it again, especially at this price. Quite refreshing and enjoyable all around. Certainly quaffable, but likely not sessionable. (995 characters)

Photo of stakem
3.58/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle into a couple of snifters. The brew pours a fairly clear golden color with a bit of haze to it. A solid 3 finger cap of white froth sits atop. It slowly recedes leaving patches of lace all over the glass. Streaming bubbles of carbonation maintain about a finger worth of lacing atop that is slightly off-white. A light swirl effortlessly revives a finger of yellowish stained head.

The smell of this brew initially is very yeasty. it is almost chalky with an earthy feel to it that is minorly herbal. As it opens up in the glass, it really explodes with belgian phenols. Clove and banana nearly dominate with a bit of fruit accent included. Across the back is a bit of peppery quality that mixes with a hint of sulfur.

The taste of this brew is quite spicy and herbal with a touch of bitterness. The yeasty character is right upfront tasting of clove, banana and a bit of fruit that is somewhat melon-like. There is a peppery spice through the body that finishes with some warming alcohol yet dry and crisp into the finish.

This is a medium to lighter bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is light and lively in the mouth but you really feel the full brunt of the 7.5% abv. Overall this is a pretty decent take on a saison. I would probably enjoy it more if it wasn't so spicy with as much focus on the herbal bitterness and phenols. But as-is its not bad and worth a try if you get a chance. (1,423 characters)

Photo of Billolick
4.17/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bomber bottle with brewed/bottled on dating. Purchased at the source.

Hazed and lovely lookin' under a frothy and rocky off white head that lasts nicely.

Fruity nose with ripe melon coming forward

Tasty, complex and thoroughly saison in character. Fruit, spice, yeast, crafty goodness.

Love the style and love this beer.

Please consider distribution to the NYC area (370 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
4.57/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from the bottle into an official FunkWerks globe glass.

Another great looker of a beer. An absolute orb glowing apricot body, with a middle column of small carbonation in the middle. Head rises tall, and forms such a big fluffy soapy shampoo white, mostly pinhead, and hangs and clumps on for ages. Giant clumps of white chunks and goodness. Fairly big bubbled collar also. Hot sex in a glass.

Nose is filled with a subtle sense of fruit, but also a light brett. Very dry. Hints of tropical mango and peach, spiced black pepper. Very dry, crisp and nicely balanced.

Palate hits with a lot of pepper spice. A good mix of brett like heat, peaches and fruit rush in the mid palate. Clean and dry with wonderful lively carbonation. Mild fruit character warms and comes a bit after some time but get taken over. Wonderful area spice and pepper brett combination character, downplaying some of the fruit hints. The peppery finish just goes on forever with a wonderful hint of herbal mint as it warms. Huge menthol character no doubt from the ginger (comes off more like mint to me).

If the fruit were just to pop out a bit on the palate and last then this would be just incredible. Either way it's just a fantastic beer and I am finishing this bottle in nothing flat. (1,273 characters)

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.77/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured on-tap at the brewery and served in a tulip, the beer is a hazy, copper-gold coloring, with a filmy, clingy, white head. Nose of tropical fruits, with melon, agave, apricot, and pineapple, as well as evergreen and pine notes. Flavors are a subtle fruit blend, with evergreen highlights, piney notes, and subtle roasted characteristics. Subtle fruit and tree aftertaste, with a light, smooth finish. (405 characters)

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.92/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Poured a cloudy yet golden in color with good carbonation presenting, very thick, nice white cap. Lots of lacing and bubbles on this after a few sips.

S : BIG trpoical fruit nose; truckloads of fresh mangos, pineapples, guava and oranges with some yeastiness, light spice, Earth, hay ...needless to say, very nice nose.

T : Initial bit of tropical fruit and citrus and that pretty much persists but very tame, especially after such a big nose. A little bit of spice comes to play with some Earthiness. The finish is sweet, rather dry, refreshing and "juicy".

M: Light-medium body, well carbonated for the style, a bit fo sweetness and little warmth on the palate and mouthfeel along with all of the traditional style characteristics.

O: Nice, unique and very drinkable. (776 characters)

Photo of beertunes
3.79/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to Casey, Paige, and Brian for grabbing this for me on their recent trip to GABF. Shared with OKComputer and Victor. Poured into Chimay goblet. Poured a hazy golden yellow color with about 1/2 inch of off-white head that had very good retention and OK lacing.

The aroma led off with a nice blast of yeast, which led to a pleasant fruit scent. There was just a bit of underlying spice from the yeast. The taste was basically the same, a solid foundation of expected Saison flavors, with some additional fruitiness that worked pretty well.

The body was pretty full for the style, but still managed to be crisp and dry. Drinkability was excellent, we were hoping for another bottle by the time we got done. Overall, a very, very nice brew. Bordering on a must try, if you're a trader, absolutely a must try if you see it in a bar or store. (845 characters)

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.58/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle opened on 11.25.12
Bottle thanks to rockymntnbeer78

A - Pours a cloudy, lighter orange with an explosive light tan head with good retention.

S - Fruity, lots of mango and some Belgian spice.

T - Pepper, spice, mango, tropical frutis.

D - Good carbonation with a light body.

O - Surprisingly lots of spice. Tropical fruits then follow. (346 characters)

Photo of dirtylou
4.23/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

on-tap at the brewery

Another really nice saison from Funkwerks - hopped nicely with NZ Rakau hops, peppery, ginger, tropical fruit - mango, guava, some peach. Enjoyed this more than the standard saison, though both were solid. Grabbed a bottle to bring home - good stuff (272 characters)

Photo of twiggamortis420
4.38/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750 mL courtesy of SalukiAlum pours a very hazed gold color with a massive cap of white head. Good looking beer with lots of retention and lace.

Nose is yeasty-licious with lots of tropical fruity aromas - mango, guava and pineapple.

Taste is delicious! great blend of hops and yeast. The phonics range from pepper to clove to leather. Maybe just a touch over-carbed on the mouthfeel, but otherwise I cant think of anything else to complain about. I love it when I can say I would honestly not know if a saison was American or Belgian in origin...thats the case here. Great beer. (581 characters)

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.21/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

thanks to TATURBO for grabbing this long time want from the shelves in Colorado!

poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: slightly hazy orange bodied beer with massive 3 fingers of white head from a gentile pour. The head retention is rediculous. Its literally stays around forever. Spotty lace on the glass.

Smell: Mangos and pineapples. black pepper. Lite floral and earthy hops. Wheat malts.

Taste: Starts of with a mix of mangos and pinapple. Wheat malts. Yeasty and peppery. Decent amount of bananas when the beer is cold, but seems to go away as the beer warms up. The beer also seems to loose that initially strong black pepper flavor as it warms up. Earthy, grassy, and slightly tropical hops. Really nice saison!

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. Smooth beer with little noted ABV. Well carbonated. Spot on for the beer style.

Overall: This is a really great brew made by funkworks! It delivered what was advertised by the name tropical king in the nose and flavor. Another really solid Colorado offering! (1,039 characters)

Photo of cbutova
4.11/5  rDev +2.5%

Grabbed at Funkwerks back in August personally. Had it on draft at the brewery and actually found it better out of the bottle.

A- Mostly clear mid golden pour to a few pint glasses. A white, thick creamy head forms over two fingers with good retention leaving a medium ring. Lacing is a mix of webs and spots.

S- Fruity and spicy Saison yeast and hop driven aroma. Notes of pepper, dried pineapple, mango, apricot, coriander, lemon orange zest and cooking herbs.

T- Tropical fruits up front with each sip quickly followed by the resident Saison yeast spiciness. Mango, tangerine, orange, dried pineapple leads up to peppercorn, straw, herbal, floral and zesty yeast.

MF- Light to medium bodied with a spritzy crisp and silky creamy body. Carbonation is high as it should be promoting the delicate flavors. Finishes slightly warm and medium bitterness.

Tropic indeed. Actually feels more so than the sample I had on draft at the brewery. Tropical fruits paired nicely with hefty Saison yeast. (996 characters)

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.94/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #77 (June 2013):

LOOK: Cloudy peach, healthy head and lacing

SMELL: Floral, fruity, cantaloupe, alcohol, bready

TASTE: Lively, creamy carbonation, light bodied, peaches, ginger, melon, pineapple, pear, esters, white pepper, bready, spicy, yeasty linger

We’re a bit skeptical when people slap the word “Imperial” in front of a style these days, but not with this beer. Funkwerks has done a great job in punching up the Saison style with a ton of complex fruity characters (thanks to using New Zealand Rakau hops), while keeping drinkability and finish in tact. Perhaps a bit too yeasty, but damn fine drinking here. (657 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
3.77/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Breckenridge at the Ballpark in Denver. Pours deep orange colored with a small off white head. Aroma of tropical fruits as expected, some light funk, and a hint of spice. Flavor is on the sweeter side with lots of bubble gum notes and some tropical fruits, sweet wheaty malts, and very little zesty saison like barnyard yeast going on here. Medium plus bodied and medium carbonation. Overall I found this to be only OK, but not bad. (442 characters)

Photo of jzlyo
3.67/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Aroma is malts/burnt caramel and undercurrents of toffee and fruit. The flavor is caramel, toffee, fruit, slightly cloying and a sourish/alcoholic finish. (154 characters)

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from tap into tulip at falling rock in Denver. Nice hazy hay color with big 3 finger head. Nice looking saison. Smell is typical saison peppery notes with a bit more citrus hops. Great spicey pepper and hop flavor...lots of citrus and hop but so well balanced with the saison spice. Its perfectly dry and so drinkable. Really a great saison. (348 characters)

Photo of ehammond1
4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2011)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, quirkzoo!

(Aged for 6+ months)

Slightly hazed peach and light orange in color with a thick, quickly forming, incredibly persistent, tightly bubbled near-white head, that eventually leaves thick ribbons of lace down the glass. A gorgeous, bubbly saison.

Mild fruit (citrus) notes along with earthy and slightly funky yeast. This isn't nearly as funky as Crooked Stave's offerings, but it's funky in a similar vein. There's some floral and light pepper notes as well.

The flavor is fruity and yeasty with only a mild level of moderate funk character. Moderately bitter, though marvelously drinkable.

Medium bodied with high carbonation. A very well crafted beer.

A fantastic saison, though I could use even more funk. (763 characters)

Photo of KYGunner
3.53/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The nose presents a lot of yeast tones but reveals some citrus orange and grapefruit. It also has a perfume, rose petal and spice like aroma.

The flavor starts out with cloves and peppercorns before easing into a banana and yeasty bubblegum. Not a big Saison fan and this did little to change me over. (302 characters)

Photo of arizcards
4.11/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a bottle at Total Wine in mid-November for $11.99. Rec'd at TW on 8-19-13. Not sure of the bottling date. I had sampled this at the Peoria charity beer festival in which despite my wrecked palate this beer stood up and said try me again when your palate is clean!

Beer poured golden orange with a beautiful soap bubble head that is hanging around nicely.

Nose is yeasty and dry, with some hints of mango.

Taste is mango, peach, white pepper, with a pretty dry finish.

Mouthfeel is very smooth, nicely carbonated and light on the palate.

Overall this is an outstanding brew, definitely not your classic saison but perhaps a hybrid saison-tripel. Definitely worth the splurge! (689 characters)

Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.73/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

The beer pours a light amber/golden orange with a fluffy and everlasting white head. The nose strives to be fruity and tropical, but has more bubble gummy yeast and booze that come through in the end. The beer's malty sweetness plays nicely with the fruity yeast and masks the abv well, but this beer plays the same note and never evolves into something more complex or interesting. It has a fluffy mouthfeel, one that's dominated by fruity yeast, but still has a hint of bitterness that lingers in the finish. This saison doesn't disappoint, but leaves much to be desired knowing what a few bugs and a barrel can do. (618 characters)

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Tropic King from Funkwerks
89 out of 100 based on 67 ratings.