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Grumpy Monk - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Grumpy MonkGrumpy Monk

Educational use only; do not reuse.

150 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 150
Hads: 656
Avg: 3.64
pDev: 26.37%
Wants: 21
Gots: 53 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jzeilinger on 04-15-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (120) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Grumpy Monk Alström Bros
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Reviews: 150 | Hads: 656
Photo of HoppyBastard
3.96/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Shaker pint glass, "best by" date April 2015.

APPEARANCE: pours a clear, copper color with one-finger, off-white head that slowly dissipated until a thin, unbroken layer of small bubbles remained, there is significant lacing on the glass, medium carbonation.

SMELL: caramel, flowers, banana and Belgian funk.

TASTE: initially sweet roasted caramel, then a grapefruit citrus and metallic hop profile, some banana and Belgian funk.

PALATE: medium carbonation, somewhat creamy.

OVERALL: I don't have many Belgian IPA's, it's not a common style but, I enjoyed drinking this, it's a weird beer with citrus and Belgian funk but it worked for me, I would recommend to anyone who likes IPA or Belgian style beer, SA is getting more attention from me lately.

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Photo of HiWire
3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear Amber. Looks gorgeous in the glass. 1 finger head with good retention. Smells of bubblegum. Tastes sweet with a small amount that of bite. Good lacing.

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Photo of smcolw
4.23/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a light brown/dark amber color. Crystal clear. Good starting that settles to rim bubbles. Excellent lace which is a combination of blankets and ring with spider webs connecting the two.

Beyond the expected sweeter, toasty malts and the modest hop, I detect ammonia

Short-lived, richly roasted sweet malt start. The bite of straight hop bitterness kicks in quickly. The finish, though, is very complex with fresh cut flowers and dried bitter herbs. The aftertaste lingers for a very long time. Richer than average body with a matching carbonation.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.56/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap yesterday up at the Cloverleaf in Caldwell for the first time. I had no idea that this beer was retired until I looked it up here and nearly as hard to fathom was how this was classified as a Belgian IPA. The IPA portion wasn't here as the fruit and yeast were much more pronounced than in other beers of this style that I had and this felt misleadingly strong as the alcohol was much less prevalent then I my taste buds would have let me to believe.

The appearance of this beer was the best aspect of this, as it poured smooth with a small head and with an appealing raisin hue. Lots of yeast and candied plum in the taste along with the alcohol; the latter being on the edge of solvent when it came to the strength of it. As this warmed up, faint traces of grapefruit and pine kicked in but never did I think that a hop explosion would kick in. Maybe it was the roasted, sticky caramel malt that suppressed them but at least it gave this beer a good base and body at the same time.

Sure, you could enjoy a few in a session but this was one of there few beers I had lately where there was too much going on and not enough focus and clarity. Not a drain pour and not a waste, this was all over the place while not remaining stylistically true to form. Maybe I've been spoiled with all of the Ommegang offerings that have impressed me over the years but I'll give Sam Adams credit for going out on a limb with this one. Just a shame that it's retired and won't even quite get to the level where it can be more appreciated.

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Photo of joebo3001
4.5/5  rDev +23.6%

It was quite a sweet Belgian IPA. It didn't have much of a hoppy flavor throughout, but you could taste a little bit of bitters. Overall I liked it and will drink it whenever I'm looking to drink a sweeter beer

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Photo of 57md
3.71/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a copper color with golden edges. There was over a finger of head that lingered for a nice, long time. The nose had a little bit of yeast and a little bit of hops. The flavor profile is focused around the classic Belgian funk with the hoppiness definitely secondary.

This seems more like a Belgian Pale Ale than a Belgian IPA (whatever the later is anyway).

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Photo of PicoPapa
3.33/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12oz bottle from the Hopology Mix 24 pack. Pours a translucent brownish orange color with no head. No lacing. The aroma is coriander, cloves, yeast, and banana. The taste is much like the aroma. Coriander, cloves, yeast, banana, cinnamon and some light caramel. Bready. Not much of a hop presence. Light, thin mouthfeel. This seems like a produced for the masses beer that doesn't stand out all that much. Certainly the worst beer of the mix pack. Overall, very forgettable.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.22/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Best by Aug 2014 at 50 degrees into goblet
Aroma very faint spiceness but you gotta really snort it
Head average (3 cm), rocky/fizzy, off white, quickly diminishing to nothing
Lacing – none
Body orange, clear
Flavor – starts moderately sweet with coriander spice, very subdued; no hops, no malt, no alcohol, no diacetyl; ends sweet with slight alcohol burn.
Palate medium, watery, carbonation soft

A not very good attempt at a Belgium IPA, weak and watery. The only future I see for this beer is as a gateway beer, a bridge between SA and better Belgium beers.

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Photo of DrJay
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear gold with beige foam, decent head retention and some lacing. Light aroma overall -- bread and fruity/citrusy hops, light clove character. Moderate bitterness that lingered on the palate, spicy cloves, grassy and fruity hops, slight resinous quality. Medium body and CO2, decent texture with a bit of dryness. Kind of a tame beer. Decent overall with some yeast character and bitterness, but would be better if it was a bit bolder.

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Photo of farrago
3.2/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

About a finger’s worth of fairly dense foam, good retention with only moderate dimpling, the lacing is pretty thick as well if of average stickiness. Deep bronzed color, as close to light brown as orange, huge amount of particulate floating throughout the liquid, the bubble beads are few but when present they are active, looks on the “serious” side on the whole. Grainy and herbaceous nose, to the point it cloaks the sweet spices, yeast and fruitiness, minor white citrus tones, as it warms turns more floral and allows for notes of banana and cherry. Medium-bodied, it is on the dry side which takes a good bit of fluffiness out of the otherwise soft carbonation. Peppery, cut grass, dried pine sap, more dried flowers than yeast, has a vinous quality from white grape accents, supplemented by cherry and apricot fruit, the banana remains muted. Manages to cling to your mouth pores well through the finish, extending its presence. There’s nothing actively wrong with this beer but little exciting about it and it does not possess an easy, seamless flow which would make it a candidate for simple pleasurable drinking.

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Photo of Treyliff
3.57/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap at The Tap House, Huntington WV

A- Served in tulip, pours clear amber color with a two-finger creamy white head that reduces to leave thick lacing down the glass

S- Slightly phenolic Belgian yeast aromas with some subtle grassy and herbal hops

T- Herbal and grassy hop flavors follow the aromas, mid-palate kicks in with some classic Belgian yeast flavors and transitions into a dry finish with some fruity esters lingering

M- Medium body with moderate carbonation and a foamy mouthfeel and finish

O- a well balanced beer, nothing extreme, which is true to Sam Adams style. Not the best Belgian IPA I've had, but certainly worth a try

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Photo of WoodBrew
4.2/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is not my favorite style, but I think Sammy A did one heck of a job on this Monk. The beer poured a clear deep orange with think head that is leaving a very nice lace. The scent carries Belgium spice and malt with faint citrus like hops. The taste is very well balanced with just enough Belgium influence to make you aware that it is Belgian and enough hops to make it an ipa. The mouthfeel is medium in body with good carbonation. Overall this is a great BIPA in my opinion.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.32/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark amber gold with a sparse, grumpy white head. Smells like golden pear, mint and booze fumes. Oatmeal cookie.

Tastes "fuzzy," I'm guessing that's Styrian Goldings 'cause they often taste fuzzy to me...in a good way. Minty with some hot Belgian yeast spice. There's a definate steeliness to the malt which I really don't like. Thick body for 5.75%.

As with most Sam Adams it's not great of flashy but a solid example of style.

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Photo of cyclonece09
3.91/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter. Pours a dark golden color with a nice fluffy one finger head. Smells of Belgian yeast and slight earthy/grassy hops. Tastes of grassy, earthy hops and slight Belgian grain/yeast. Beer is carbonated well, goes down smoothly, light bodied. Overall, a very good beer.

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Photo of dar482
3.96/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The beer pours out in a copper color with a large yeasty white head.

The aroma has floral notes, Belgian bready yeast, caramel, along with tons of spice and dark fruit.

The flavor follows with lots of caramel sweetness with spice and pepper notes. There's some juicy plum and floral flavors. The beer ends on a dry finish.

This is fantastic beer for the style. It has a really good amount of Belgian, without much IPA notes

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Photo of BigBrewStu
3.93/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice golden color and excellent flavor. Belgian style IPA that you should try if you are a fan of either. Unique experience and an interesting coming together of yeastiness and hops. It is a favorite on my short non-dark beers list. Great nose on this beer too--enjoy!

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Photo of IchLiebeBier
3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Amber; clear; effervescent; medium head, frothy, long lasting

Aroma: Big whiff of Belgian yeast; citrus; peppery; coriander

Taste: Very reminiscent of a Trappist Ale, with Belgian yeasts dominating; starts off with Belgian yeast, then pushes into a hoppy bitter bite; finishes slighty dry and hoppy; quite good (but not quite so good as an actual Trappist)

Remarks: Did not score A, T, S, M at that time; disregard those scores

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Photo of tjsdomer2
3.95/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Golden yellow with a hazy appearance. Great lacing and good foam.

Smell: Very Belgian...wine grapes and yeast with a hint of sour orange and banana.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Head is sour grapes (no pun intended). Some bitter pine in the finish. Excellent saison/IPA flavors overall. Mouthfeel sizzles with active carbonation and yeast, but thins out in the end.

Overall: Extremely enjoyable Belgian IPA.

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Photo of JG-90
2.3/5  rDev -36.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.25

Beer is a golden orange in color, and pours a moderate sized head. Moderate lacing. Smells like booze, honey/ sweet malts, bread, banana, and slight indescript hops.

Tastes of oversweet banana, booze, sweet bread, and a small amount of orange/lemon hops. So much of a banana/bread tendency that it did not meet my expectations of a Belgium IPA. Moutfeel is light-moderate with moderate carbonation.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
2.75/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

On tap at Haven Gastropub in Pasadena, CA.

Pours a clear orange with a foamy bone head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, Belgian yeast, and nail polish remover aromas. Taste is much the same with mainly nail polish remover flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of hop and yeast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty poor beer that is pretty undrinkable with the nail polish remover aspects going on here.

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Photo of ccrida
3.46/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into my large Gulden Draak tulip, color is a clear brass with a small, cream y white head that leaves foamy lace.

Smell is earthy, herbal, light honeyed sweetness.

Taste is estery, fruity, like a wit, some banana, with a nice punch of earthy, herbal hops. A little phenolic, lingering hoppy finish.

Mouthfeel is dry, oily, medium light bodied.

Drinkability is OK, the banana esters are a bit too one-dimensional for my taste in Belgians. The continental hops are reasonably robust to meet the metrics for a BIPA, but all together, it doesn't really click for me.

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Photo of BigBarley
3.18/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a deep gold, with a touch of the brown. Nice cap of rolling white head that fluffs up and looks... Belgian.

Smells like wild yeasty goodness, a slight touch of banana and wheaty musk, and plenty of hops. Hops smell like the noble variety, but that could be interference from the biscuity malt. Reminds me of something like a pilsner with farmhouse yeast... interesting stuff.

Well... shit. That's a buzzkill. Tastes like dank hops soaked in stale hop residue, wth some sort of pine-tree farts solidified and dropped in the dry-hop. There's an unpleasant touch of the wild yeast and wheat qualities but... unpleasant isn't why I drink beer. I had high hopes for this. And am sad that this is the only one of these limited Sam IPAs I couldn't really get into.

Feel is thick but not overpowering, with decent carbonation. A little watery on the end unfortunately.

I wanted to enjoy this beer, and I enjoy everything about it but the taste. Too bad that's a huge part of the drinking experience...

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Photo of HalfFull
3.68/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle opens with a soft pop after being given a chance to warm up a bit. Carbonation does manage to cause a slow and subtle eruption of foam prior to pouring into a large wine glass. Offers a thin off white cap that drops some random lace and manages to reconstitute itself with a bit of a spin. Deep golden/light amber on the pour with just a hint of haze.

Aroma is dominated by Belgian yeast notes initially, with a firm malt backbone everpresent. Offers some earthy notes coupled with overripe fruit and a bit of pepper/coriander, along with a touch of alcohol.

Taste is lightly sweet and offers a spicy carbonated delivery. Touch of lemon and with a slight coarse and bready character. Firm carbonation yields a spritzy feel and the finish has a pleasant and unexpectedly balanced malty bitterness. Bit rich overall for an 'IPA' yet keeps it interesting as for a Belgian version thereof.

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Photo of secondtooth
4.02/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clean amber, with a thick head of off-white bubbles. Thick and beautiful lace. A on presentation!

Nose is spices, and Belgian yeast, and fruit. Good and faithful representation.

Taste is heavy on the spice, perfectly in line with the Belgian abbey tradition, but with a heavily hopped finish.

Overall, a well-done and enjoyable collision of styles. I'll enjoy this one again.

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Photo of RockyRaku
3.4/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured with a thick 3 finger deep head with tiny creamy bubbles with lots of lacing. Citric and sweet aroma flowery..sweet pipe tobacco as well. Lots of flavor with a light piney and sweetness to the flavor. I seem to pick up a smooth slight vanilla taste. The mouth fell is crisp and slightly prickly. Light/medium finish with a flavor that last a a decent while but fades smoothly. Very nice beer.

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Grumpy Monk from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
82 out of 100 based on 150 ratings.