Merry Monks' Ale - Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Merry Monks' AleMerry Monks' Ale

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very good

1,915 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,915
Reviews: 735
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 14.29%
Wants: 46
Gots: 252 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Weyerbacher Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Tripel |  9.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Merry Monks, 9.3% ABV, is a Belgian-style Tripel. Pilsner malt combined with an Abbey yeast strain yields a remarkable and complex flavor packed with notes of spice, banana and pear. Nicely balanced, with a moderate to dry finish.

Merry Monks is bottle conditioned which imparts a special effervescence to the beer and a creamier carbonation. The ongoing fermentation inside the bottle will change the character of the beer as it ages and you’ll find it becomes dryer with age. You may want to lay down a few bottles for future evaluation. We suggest storing at cellar temperatures (around 55°F) and away from light.

This brew is available year-round. Keep your eye out for Merry Monks in 25 oz. cork-and-cage champagne bottles for an exceptional experience!

(Beer added by: SheepNutz on 09-13-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,915 | Reviews: 735 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of guinnessfan
3/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle given by a buddy who loves everything Weyerbacher.

A: Pours a clouded golden color, with an orange hue. Nice head quickly dissapates to nothing. No lacing but lots of little yeasties.

S: Boozy, with a slight citrus scent. Mild spice and honey.

T: Boozy, again. Sweet and cloying. Too astringent.

M: Big, full beer with good carbonation.

D: Not very good. One and done.

Once again, another Weyerbacher beer that is too big for its britches. Everything they do is way too strong.

Photo of stonewall2
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a 12 oz. bottle bought at a chain retailer.

Pretty golden color. Mild spicy aroma with a hint of fruitiness.

Note, I ALWAYS pour into a cold wet glass (chilled with ice and water), this minimizes head / foaming, which I don't much care for, and keeps the beer from becoming instantly room temperature.

Nice, mild but confident golden Belgian taste. I get a little bit of pineapple and banana. Refreshing, a little dry, warm alcohol, with an easy lingering and pleasant aftertaste.

Good carbonation, enjoyable mouthfeel. A very very drinkable beer, I wish it had less alcohol, I could drink more of it. AT $10.50 for a six pack, this could easily become a regular. One of the un-rateable characteristics is "Value". This is a good beer, for the money a damned good beer.

Photo of cooncat
3.63/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Serving from a variety pack of Weyerbacher "Big Beers", all 12 oz. bottles, and all well within freshness dates. I must say up front that Belgians are not one of my favorite styles, and thus reviewing them is not my strong suit. However, let me give it a try:

The pour produces a bright, clear golden-orange colored beer, capped with a nice foamy eggshell colored head. The head soon reduces to just a cap, but that lasts to the bottom. Minimal lacing is evident.

The nose is very light, which surprised me. It is malty and has notes of citric acids in it; perhaps some lemongrass as well. The taste is typical of Belgians, though not overpoweringly so. The spiciness noticed in a lot of other Belgians is somewhat diminished, which is a good thing in my book, because I'm personally not a fan of those spices. As I make my way through the beer, I'm wondering where this 9.3% abv is and if it will be noticed. I can't say that it makes a statement, but after you finish the beer, you definitely can feel its effects. Nicely carbonated to be very refreshing, and, chilled, quite quaffable. A nice Summer evening offering I'd enjoy again.


Photo of flexabull
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bright gold color with a nice white head.

Aromas are of spice and bubble gum.

Taste is bright, spicy, dry, and tart. This is a pretty lively and strong flavored beer. There is a sweet malty undertone, with a dry biting finish. Pretty nice Tripel.

Mouthfeel is good... well carbonated, full, and rounded.

Drinkability is good. This is a nice Tripel, but it almost reminds me more of Belgian Strong Pale Ale.

Bottle courtesy of Alkey. Thanks again!

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I really liked this beer. Got this at McKean and Charles in Waldoboro. Todd (the beer guy) is very helpful. Anyway, I digress. The beer was poured into a snifter, and was a golden color with virtually no head. It had a fruity, spicy aroma, with a little alcohol coming through. The taste was similar, although I couldn't detect the alcohol that I thought I had smelled. I thought this to be a good example of a tripel, and would happily drink more of them.

Photo of billybob
3.23/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours a opaque golden color, three finger white head fades quickly to a ring on the glass.aromas of pear, apple, sugar, and alcohol. taste sugary, fruity sweet, strong alcohol finish. mouthfeel light, poor carbonation almost flat. not a session beer, good for maybe one or two, maybe some aging might take off some of the rough edges and mellow it out.

Photo of geexploitation
2.95/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours perfectly clear and golden with almost no head -- just a bright white ring around the sides of the beer. Without much head, the aroma is pretty slight. Agitation yields pear fruits, white candi sugar and earthy, subdued hops. Very sweet (with some vanilla flavor) to start off with, along with a green apple fruitiness and fresh dough flavor. Hop bitterness is not nearly developed enough to balance things out. Mouthfeel is poor for the style: very sticky and sweet, with none of that Belgian dryness the style needs. I can't think of a single reason to choose this over a more authentic, actually Belgian tripel. It's way too sweet and thick for the style... and even if you wanna throw style out the window, it's just cloying and untasty.

Photo of TheDragonTony
4.08/5  rDev +6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Orangish gold with barely little head, with decent lacing. Occasionally some sediment is visible initially (in other pours I've had that though I didn't notice it this time).

S: I get orange in the smell as well as the colour of the beer. Along with that there is more citrus and an estery alcohol to it.

T: Fruity and estery. I get everything from the smell here as well as a little malt and yeast. It is a pleasure to drink

M: Crisp and clean, with more carbonation than I normally like in a beer, but it works for this beer (and this style in general)

D: I enjoy a Tripel every once in a while, but they are too sweet for me to drink a lot of. This is as drinkable as any that I've tired though... I will definitely have to get a few more to enjoy in the summer heat.

Note: I do not generally comment on the freshness dating (or lack thereof) on the beers that I'm drinking but in the case of the beers from this case I will make an exception. There is non freshness date on these bottles, however, there is a very clear best before stamp on the case and it claims that I should have drank this by 02/03/07. I can only guess that Weyerbacher puts the date on the case because they are from PA and we here (generally) have to buy by the case, still it would be nice if it was on the bottle.

Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz brown bottle from Florian's. Cloudy (though surprisingly clear for the style IMO) orange-yellow body with almost no head. Smells like orange, apricot, with hints of spice and alcohol. Tastes like orange, pith, spice, with bits of banana and nut and hints of alcohol on the finish. Lighter in body than expected, and thus very pleasant and easy to drink for a 9.3%abv tripel. The alcohol could be a bit better hidden, but other than that ihis is a pleasant drinkable ale.

Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Hazy gold brew with a faint pinkish tint. Large frothy head that leaves only flecks of lacing.

S - Alcohol is fairly strong on the nose, yet not pungent - just present, followed by candied sugars, spices: coriander, nutmeg, anise and others I can't pick out. In spite of the alcohol presence, this is a nice aroma.

T - Nutmeg, lemon flesh, coriander, licorice, light malt and mild candied sugars. A bit of anise and biscuits in the aftertaste. Alcohol, though detectable, is less of a factor in the flavor.

M - Smooth, a bit thin, pretty refreshing, in the finish there is a touch of alcohol burn, but nothing bad - more of a character flaw.

D - Did Weyerbacher change the recipe? Or have my tastes evolved that much? I remember having this before and thinking that it was absurdly sour, lemony and rather unpleasant. This time I am finding it to be exceptionally pleasant. It takes like a tripel this time and not like a lemonstrosity. Had with dark chocolate truffles and chedder cheese - certainly not an ideal pairing, but it was still very good.

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a light, washed out apricot with a slight haze. I didn’t give it a very hard pour, so there’s no head to speak of. That’s probably my fault.

Smells of sweet and doughy, much like pastries that delightfully reminds me of Westvleteren, but it reminds me a lot of a creamy lager. Nice. There’s also a sweet marshmallow and peach beneath.

Tastes exactly like the smell but with a touch of dry spicy yeast that blends rather well with the rest. Its sweetness then drops out focusing more on the dryness of the yeast. The transition here is really great and fantastically drinkable.

Feels a touch on the heavy side, but really clean. The carbonation adds just a slight bit of thickness.

Wow. Considering this one’s price and availability on top of its sheer awesomeness, this one’s amazing.

Photo of beace
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer just speaks to me, The head is huge after the intial pour and slowly disapates. Egg shell colored head that is tight and not too airy. The golden straw color is pleasent. The smell of apples, pears, oranges, yeast, and alcohol. Very fruity with a sturdy malt backbone, subtle english hops peak through in the nose. The taste is very similar to the nose. There is a spicy chracter that emerges a little bit past the middle of the taste. The complexity of flavors and levels that exsist in this amazing ale are wonderful . The ABV is hidden very well and the alcohol that is present is at a perfect level. Very easy to get lost in this superb beer. On a critical note this brew lacks sexy bands of belgium lace.

Photo of psinderson
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into pint glass.

Appearance: Clear dark amber...a bit like apple jiuce. Thin white head.

Smell: Very sweet..honey and brown sugar. Some yeasty aroma, too.

Taste: Sweet and malty up front. Grapes in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Nice medium body with good carbonation.

Drinkability: This beer hides it's ABV very well making it somewhat dangerous if you're not careful.

Photo of Contra
4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love Beer Advocate's feature of being able to review a beer as many times as you want. I've reviewed Merry Monks before, and since I bought a 6 pack, I just had to review it.

12 oz. bottle - pilsner glass

Pouring it slowly to avoid too thick of a head, carbonation starts to rush up to the top once the beer settles. Golden color, light covering of head, and well carbonated.

The aroma pretty much gives a clue to how the beer tastes before taking a sip. Reminds me of mead. After taking a sip, there are other complexities which come through. It is not exceptionally complex, but the flavor is full, and the typical banana/white wine taste of a Tripel shine through. At least that's what tripels generally remind me of.

The mouthfeel is not something which draws attention, which is great with a beer with 9.3% abv. Unlike many beers, even simpler beers, there is not an aftertaste or a change in the palate. I can imagine drinking quite a few of these without trouble.

Overall, an excellent example of a Tripel. I do have to say that I've had bottles in the past which had a bit of a sour taste, so it is possible, as with any beer, that a single bottle is not representative of the actual beer. I prefer Merry Monks to the aged Prophecy, although I generally prefer the other aged beers from Weyerbacher over their standard issue counterparts. Do not hesitate to try this beer.

Photo of stereosforgeeks
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - A nice clear golden color with a creamy white head. No lacing.

Aroma - Sweet fruits (grapes, bananas) with candy sugars. Some yeast and bread notes. Mild spices.

Tastes - Acidic grapes and bananas. Mild malts. Breads and yeast flavors.

Mouthfeel - Full body, creamy texture.

Drinkability - A nice sweet and fruity tripel.

Photo of rohrbachsfan
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Golden yellow, slightly hazy from yeast (bottle conditioned).

Smell: Strong alcohol and sweet malt.

Taste: Cidery and sweet with a strong alcohol taste.

Mouthfeel: Creamy with lots of crisp carbonation.

Drinkability: Very sweet ale, but very enjoyable. Goes down smooth and packs a punch. Liked this much more than Middle Ages's Tripel Crown.

Photo of kpantz
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Executive Summary: Not Weyerbacher's best offering, but it's one that's crafted with skill and deserves to be in their year-round lineup.

Appearance: Pours a hazy straw golden color with a finger thick white head that gradually pulls back to a film. Not too much in the way of lacing.

Smell: The usual estery, banana, bubble gum aroma you get with Tripels. No spicy elements to speak of in the nose, a la Victory's Golden Monkey or most of the Belgian Tripels.

Taste: Belgian yeast contributes a lot of flavor to this one. The pilsener malt is evident, as are the Saaz/Styrian Goldings hops (if that's what's in here). This is pretty down-the-middle for the style, especially so if you confine the comparison to the US interpretations. As the beer warms, some spice notes make it into the palate.

Mouthfeel: A little more carbonation than I'd like for a Tripel. Moderately light body and a slight stickiness to it.

Drinkability: This is a very moderate Tripel, so I'm going to rate drinkability high here. It has nice flavors and isn't overbearing in any particular dimension. Alcohol, while high, is well hidden.

Photo of DrJay
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear gold with a fluffy, bright white head that fell quickly to a long-lasting ring. Some spotty lacing. Aromas of bready malt, light yeast, cloves, fruit, lemon, and alcohol - pretty well put together. The flavour starts out with ripe fruit and bread, but everything falls away by the mid, leaving a bit of lemon, clove and alcohol in the finish. The body's on the full side, just a bit sticky, with fairly low carbonation given the big head produced during the pour. Pretty easy to drink. The alcohol presence is warming, the fruit character decent. Not bad at all.

Photo of phisig137
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Undated bottle pours a slightly hazy golden straw color, with a one finger head. Decent retention leaves nice lacing and a thin blanket over top of the glass.

Aroma is almost Hefe like with strong banana aromas, and huge yeasty esters. Big time ripe fruits show up here, such as lemons, apples, pears, pinapple and banana. Slight alcohol aroma as well.

Flavor is again quite filled with fruity esters, and backed by a cloying malty sweetness. Candi sugar also appears to be present, with some warmth on the finish. Mouthfeel is slick and smooth. Drinkability is hampered by low carbonation and cloying sweetness.

Not a bad triple, but not a great one either. The sweetness is a bit much and I find that that oak aging helps this a bit (as seen in Prophecy). Not very complex, this one could se a bit of help. Either way, I still love the Weyerbacher products.... Give this one a shot, it's worth the $2 or so that a bottle costs.

Photo of Neehan
4.08/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle into chalice.

This poured a golden straw with a very thin head (almost non-existent) but what is present swirls within the glass and is active. The smell is of fruits and spices as one would expect but with some mild smokiness to compliment the malty sugars. This smokiness is not present in the taste, but the spices come through with more strength with fruits, mainly pears and apples. Active carbonation in the mouthfeel but very smooth. Goes down well with enough complexity to keep you tasting, making me want to have more than one.

Photo of EVLguy
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It's good stuff, but a little too sweet.

Appearance: Lightly golden with a slight amount of haze from sediment. Pours a thin head which soon becomes nothing.

Smell: This may be the first beer I've had that smells better than it tastes. Reminds me of banana pudding.

Taste: Banana flavor follows from the smell as well as some citrus and vanilla. It's delicious, but a tad over sweet for me.

Mouthfeel: Smooth as hell and creamy. Kinda thick, especially after it's warmed up a little. Might be too syrupy for some.

Drinkability: While the Merry Monk's Ale tastes damn good, I think after 2 or 3 glasses the sheer sweetness of this beer could get overwhelming.

Merry Monks would make a great 750ml or 22oz bottle, but all I've ever seen of this is 6 packs which I don't see myself buying again.

Photo of cichief
3.1/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Merry Monks poured hazy and a deep apricot color, with a good, thick head. The nose was spicy, with banana odor. The beer came on full force, but there was a strong alcohol flavor in the aftertaste. The beer was fizzy in the mouth. I am not sure I would drink many of these in a session.

Photo of Westsidethreat
3.03/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a fizzy off white head which settles down to a film after a while. Body is a cloudy dull copper/peach with a lot of bubble activity.

S: Waft of bananas is powerful even a foot away from the glass. One can also find grass clippings, dandelions, vanilla, cloves and peach.

T: Starts pungently banana with really strong floral/hay/grass aspects. Overspicing attacks the tip of the tongue with ruthless abandon. Fruit flavors come next starting with tangerine then moving from marmalade to peach, apricot to pineapple and finishes with more banana. Finishes bizarrely grainy for a tripel.

M: Thin and hard.

D: Not a huge fan of tripels and definately not a fan of this one. Abbrasive and off balance. I finished this beer but won't be drinking it again.

Photo of jhicks12
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Serving Type: !2oz Bottle
Appearnace: Hazy golden color with some stuff floating around but that dissapeared shotly after finishing the pour.

Smell: Slightly medicinal, but then note of malt and an some lemon citrus notes.

Taste: A sweet malty intial taste and picking up some citrus as well.

Mouthfeel: Medium body mouth feel and a sharp carbonation fiz.

Drinkability: To me I can drink a few of these. Not the greatest at judging Belgian styles yet, still a novice with the belgian styles. I will buy a few more of these, drink a few fresh and cellar a few as well

Photo of Enola
2.63/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Chimay goblet.

Light yellow in color with virtually no head. The smell is like lemongrass. The taste is quite strong. The alcohol is prominate and the beer has a witbier-like taste. Mouthfeel is fizzy, and the alcohol puts forth a nice burn. But overall, this is not particularly my favorite of the Belgian beers I have tried. I may come back to this once I get accustomed to the style.

Merry Monks' Ale from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 1,915 ratings.