1. The BeerAdvocate Store is back! Pre-order your stuff now. Items begin shipping Dec 15. Christmas deadline = Dec 18 @ 5pm EST.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

400 Pound Monkey - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
400 Pound Monkey400 Pound Monkey

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

1,890 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,890
Reviews: 518
rAvg: 3.57
pDev: 15.69%
Wants: 51
Gots: 183 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
English India Pale Ale (IPA) |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: garcia2a on 09-03-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of 400 Pound Monkey Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,890 | Reviews: 518 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of chocosushi
3.33/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz ->

A ~ Pale caramel with no real (lasting) head to speak of.

S ~ OLD biscuits, dried apricots, english hops (Kent?)

T ~ Dry grass and more stale biscuit leading into caramel malt, hard toffee, and dead pine-needles... Black tea & toast on the finish

M ~ The feel f this one is actually pretty good considering the style. Nice & prickly with good hop oils going on that arren't outshining the sweet toasty malt flavors.

D ~ Acquired in a 2 for 2 trade with a friend. Not fantastic but a good effort from Left hand. Recommend trying but not seeking out.

Photo of GossageBrewery
3.9/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this English IPA from a bottle into a pint glass. It poured a nice pale amber color. Very good clarity. This IPA produced a nice white head and very good head retention. The aroma was a nice hoppy, herbal and pepper mix. There was some lacing left on the glass. The taste of the beer has a very malty bread like base that is full of fresh hop bitterness. This IPA is a very good classic rep of the style. This beer is medium in body, and has a dry finish.

Photo of sergeantstogie
2.13/5  rDev -40.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

I stopped into 99 Bottles in Federal Way in the mood for stouts on a rainy day and after having found the Left Hand Milk Stout I was looking for, when I saw the 400 Pound Monkey, I had to try one. I noticed right away that it was listed as an English IPA so I was anxious to try a more traditional take on all the Amazing and over the top American IPAs I have been marinating in since I arrived in the Pacific Northwest on vacation. To clarify, I did not drink this on my "stout night." I saved it for tonight; An IPA night. This was my first beer of the evening.

The Monkey poured a brilliantly clear and beautiful gold color and with the help of a vigorous end to my pour I got about 2/3 of an inch of clean white head. The head quickly dissipated.

The smell of the Monkey smelled like...a monkey. It smelled like a dirty old wash rag. I would have chocked it up to a dirty pint glass, but I used a clean pint glass, rinsed it and dried it myself right before the pour. It smelled like old keg beer. No strong hops aroma. No citrus, no pine, no dank, just old stale "beer smell."

Since I mentioned "old stale beer smell" the bottle date is hard to read. The is clearly _ _ 11 91 _ _. So I don't know how to guess at it's age which may be a huge factor.

The taste was just as bad as the smell. There was nothing that made me think it was infected or even truly old for that matter. It just tasted like week old beer from a frat party keg. The malt backbone was only slightly sweet and what hops I did find were earthy and so under done I was shocked the label said IPA at all.

I really wanted to like this beer. But I hated it. No fear, Left Hand did a solid enough job on the Milk Stout to have me coming back to them, just not for the Monkey.

Photo of DelMontiac
3.98/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottled on 04/12/11.

Golden in color and very clear. Two fingers worth of white foam is gone within a couple of minutes leaving very scant lace.

Aromas are floral hops, caramel malt, bisquit dough, and a bit of fresh cut grass. There is a buttery kind of character about this.

Enjoyable flavors of buttery bisquits, sweet malt, grassy/floral hop bitters, with a citrus zing. Good balance.

Carbonation and body make for a great mouthfeel and drinkability. Not excellent, but good.

Real good beer overall. No flash or wows, just a solid enjoyable brew. Could be a good icebreaker for a non-crafter.

Photo of dleemiller
4.05/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I found this beer somewhat unremarkable when I tried it from a bottle. Later, I visited the Left Hand taproom in Longmont, CO and found the cask version on tap. Wow! what a difference. It had acquired a delightfully silky mouthfeel and a soft head. At 6.7% and a fourty-five minute drive home, I had to drink far less than I would have liked.

Photo of brewcrew76
3.6/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Clear deep golden with a thin white head that doesn't stick around.

S - Light floral hops, maybe a touch grassy balanced with bready malts.

T - Floral hops jump out with some grassy spice and some bready malts. Definitely hop dominant in flavor. A little more bitter than I was expecting.

M - On the thin side with good carbonation and a long lasting dry finish.

D - A solid English IPA.

Photo of daveytheformer
3.75/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours golden yellow with a white head that fades to some sticky lacing.

Smells like spice and citrus hops followed by a big bready maltiness.

Tastes very bready with a mild herbal hop flavor followed by a nice quick sharp bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium with decent carbonation.

Overall is a good beer. I could drink a few of these in a row for sure.

Photo of drowninginhops
3.75/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes
A: Pours a nice slightly hazy, gold with a 1/2 inch head which dissipates quickly. The lacing is fantastic.

S: Citrus hops , sweet Sweet malts.

T: I personally want more hops here. Nice grapefruit and citrus tastes.

M: Medium in body with moderate carbonation

O: Well made IPA but requires more hops in my opinion.

Photo of stercomm
3.28/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle

A - Very light golden in color, very clear, slight white head, medium lacing on glass.

S - Get some mint and a yeasty malt.

T - Grapefruit on the front with a hint of mint, finishes with a real biscuity taste with some maltiness thrown in, a bit bitter on the after finish.

M - Medium bodied very slight carbonation

D - not a bad brew, could definitely be a session beer.

Photo of JRed
2.98/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Transparent golden in body topped by white bubbly head. Smells of some lightly toasted malts, corn sugar, and sour grain. Lemon, citrus rind, grass, bitter and dry, finishes sour grain. Light in body with high carbonation. A bit offensive and unsatisfying in all aspects.

Photo of PorterForMe
3.28/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a nice, barely hazy gold with a 1/2 inch head which dies quickly. The lacing is fantastic for a single IPA though

S: Sweet malts with fairly faint citrusy hop notes

T: Even though it's an IPA, I want more hops here. Sweet grapefruit hoppiness is followed by faint alcohol. I get a weird malty aftertaste akin to plain cheerios. The bitterness lingers a little too long on the palate without any support

M: medium bodied for an IPA and decent carbonation

O: Fairly good overall. Nothing special. NEEDS MORE HOPS!

Photo of mdaschaf
3.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Spider889 for giving me this one!

A: Pours very slightly hazy orange/copper color with a nice one finger tight, foamy head - white in color. Great retention and left behind some nice rings of lacing.

S: Light citrus hops with a grassy component as well. Light caramel and some grain also. As it warms a slightly off-putting aroma develops.

T: Light citrus and grass upfront, light malt sweetness. After this upfront flavor, there is a slight metallic/oxidized flavor. It kills flavor profile as this is all I can taste on the finish.

M: Medium bodied with high carbonation.

O: Looked good and initially smelled good, and even the upfront flavor was good. The finish just threw it all off.

Photo of avalon07
3.65/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a golden yellow color and a clear texture. There was a half inch of quickly dissipating head. Very good lacing.

S: A sweet, surprisingly fruity aroma, with traces of grapefruit and hops.

T: Tasted of hops, grapefruit, and that bready quality you get with English IPAs. There's also a graininess that appears. The flavor here is alternately good and kind of off-putting. Very odd.

M: An average amount of carbonation with a smooth finish. Light-bodied.

O: This is a strange version of an English IPA. It's hard to pin down. It's not a horrible beer, but neither is it a brilliant one.

Photo of ChopperSmith
3.73/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Part of a mixed six-pack sampler from Left Hand Brewing.

Appearance: Clear amber with one finger of off-white foam that receded quickly but l good lacing.

Smell: Floral citrus and pine hops, but not overpowering. Some sweet malts in the mix.

Taste: Bitter hops up front with a little malt sweetness after, but finishes with a bitter aftertaste. Hops taste like Cascade, with pine and grapefruit most prominent. Slightly bready and sweet malts, but not quite enough to balance the hops.

Mouth feel: Medium bodied with good carbonation.

Overall: A decent IPA with good hops flavors and bitterness. I like the ABV for sessions, and this tastes really refreshing ice cold. I would definitely have one again, and would like to try it on tap sometime.

Photo of feylure
3.63/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 4/12/2011

Got this as part of a 12 beer mix-pack from Left Hand. Cheers to that!

Appearance is lovely. Clear, medium gold sheen with not a ton of carbonation, but just enough to keep some bubble around the rim.

Smells of light caramel and hoppy notes. A little bit of floral notes. Just a great smell.

Taste is a well balanced, hoppy and malty mix. It's mouthfeel is full the whole time, and it goes down quite easily and smoothly. Basically this drink goes down well.

Overall, it's a good beer, and I have no doubt that I'll be seeing it again!

Photo of uabjeff
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a cloudy, light amber color with a two finger white head that dissipates somewhat slowly and leaves a thin cap that lingers throughout. It also leaves some spotty lacing. It smells largely of hops, floral and herbal, but some bready sweetness there as well. Tastes nice, more malt than I would have expected, but still very much on the hoppy side. The malty, caramel flavor gives over quickly to the floral hops and finishes semi-dry with a nice lingering bitterness. It feels good on the tongue, on the thin side of medium-bodied. Overall, this one is a really nice beer, very drinkable. Well done, Left Hand!

Photo of mikesgroove
3.98/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

bright, orange tinted honey colored amber being presented in front of me. Very hazy, with the cloudiness no doubt due to the unfiltered nature of it. A nice white head of foam, perhaps two fingers high then came over the top and settled down gradually to just a thin film of lace.

There was a nice floral hoppiness, somewhat muted hints of orange and lemongrass with a touch of pine. Decent malt base was apparent as the aroma of bread came through nicely. The flavor followed much of the same, owing that nice light floral hoppiness, but never having enough of it to really push it all the way forward. Nice little bite of bitter on the back of the tongue, and a slightly fruit finish, with apples coming through very clearly, especially in the aftertaste. The Mouthfeel was a little thin, maybe a touch watery, but had more then decent carbonation. A bit of a slickness to it as well. Superbly session able though as this was a very easy drinker and I could have thrown this one down all night long to be honest.

Photo of bdeck02
5/5  rDev +40.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

In my hand now on a warm evening on the patio at The Old Monk in east Dallas. Sun is setting and beating on my back. This one happens to be offered up as a cask conditioned special on the menu. I love Left Hand, so I couldn't pass this up. Definitely love to see something possibly different than your one in a million IPA in that this is strictly an English style IPA. Served in DFH tulip glass.

A - Hazy, sunset bronze. Translucent when help up to the setting sun. One large finger of dense vanilla milk shake looking head that may be disappearing at a turtle's pace.

S - Like I stuck my head in a fresh bag of the freshest semi-wet herbal hops and sweet yellow cake batter... in that order. LUSH! Anyone who's ever held fresh, whole cone hops to their face would appreciate this one.

T - Like no other IPA. It separates itself from the ubiquitous bunch. It's as though they carefully thought out and crafted every single IBU as though it were a brush stroke creating an artistic masterpiece in my mouth. The many colors of hop and malt brush strokes are thrilling! Even better as it warms closer to 50-55F. The 6.7% ABV is only noticed upon exhaling through the nostrils in a way that is subtle, exciting and whimsical. One the malt side of things, the Munich make their presence known and loved. Each malt can be detected in this one, which is not all that easy to do when crafting an IPA when the hops traditionally dominate. Base level sweetness is there from the Crystal and 2-row. The body is brought on by the wheat malt. Perfect malt profile.

M - LUSH! Slightly snappy dry at the finish, however.

Overall - You had better go to your local craft beer store or pub and snag this up before I do. If they don't have it, perform unmentionable favors for your local beer store guy in order to get some. Not sure what's so particularly English about this one other than the use of the Boadicea Hops which are relatively unknown other than they are named for a Celtic/England warrior queen. Similar to Czech Saaz in profile from what I can discern. Anywho, rockin' brew, y'all!

Photo of claytong
3.13/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

the hops were a bit strange. i was also hoping for more of a malt character.
a not so nice earthy taste. generally i like earth tones so not sure why not this time. it was a bit medally as well so perhaps that was my problem with it. cool label though

Photo of FickleBeast
2.83/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Bottled 3/10/11.

Pours a hazy orange color with a thin ring of foam, even after a vigorous pour. Aroma is musty, earthy hops.

First sip is... too much of an unpleasant earthy hop flavor. There is just something about the hop flavor that I find very off-putting. It reminds me of mulch, or rotting leaves. And I think it overwhelms any malt flavor, although you can tell there is a lot of residual sweetness there to attempt to balance this brew. Mouthfeel is viscous, sweet.

Sorry, but this one is a complete miss for me. This is the 3rd one I've had out of the 6'er, and I've felt the same about each one.

Photo of WesWes
3.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a pale gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a tame malt scent that boasts of pale and biscuit malts along with a noble hop aroma. The taste is good. It has an easy drinking pale malt flavor that goes down easy with a moderate hop bitterness and a nice biscuit malt finish. The mouthfeel is decent. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an above average beer, but nothing to get too excited about.

Photo of SkeeterHawk
3.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I finally decided to give this beer a shot. Let's see what it has to offer:

Appearance: Pours a pretty clear golden color with a small 1/8" cap of fizzy white foam on top, but a little of it is starting to stick as the beer is swirled. There are quite a few bubbles rising, so the head stays about the same for a few solid minutes. After drinking, the beer leaves a pretty decent amount of lace on the glass and the head never seems to want to completely disappear.

Aroma: From the pour, I could already pick up the hops, but after the pour, they were more muted than I expected from the first smell. The hops are still the bigger player in the aroma, but the malt is contributing lots of toasty notes that seem like British malts...appropriately so. The hops are more grassy than floral, but they are well blended. A little unusual for a British style, but still the blend seems appropriate.

Taste: The flavor is much more British IPA than I thought it would be from the aroma. The hop profile seems different too in that it is coming across much more floral on the palate. The malts are there, but they are taking a back-seat until the very finish. The hops lead the balance, but there is enough malt to give it some substance in the end. You are left with hops to linger and a subtle light caramel flavor to linger.

Opinion: Overall this is a pretty good beer and it does justice to the style. As I mentioned, the hops are a little unusual, though they seem like the appropriate regional hops, they just don't normally appear in this style, so I don't think that it is the spawn of a clone-brew...at least not one I am familiar with. Either way, I have a 6-pack of this beer, and I will gladly drink it. Though I will spread these out as I doubt that I can do more than a couple in one sitting.

Photo of ngeunit1
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

- Pours a bright clear golden-orange color with a finger of frothy white head atop. The head fades down to a thick ring around the glass leaving behind some nice lacing in the process.

S - Aroma is full of piney/grassy hops and slightly sweet bready malts. Some very light citrus/fruit aroma in the background.

T - Starts off with some piney hops and some bready malts. There is a bit of yeast and some citrus in the background. Through the middle, some bitterness comes though alongside some yeast and stronger bread flavors. The finish is a mix of some bready malt, some earthy hops, and a touch of bitterness that lingers.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth and crisp, with just a bit of bitterness in the finish.

D - Very drinkable. The flavors blend nicely, but there could be a bit more of them. I like the bit of fruit flavor and the bready malts though.

Photo of MichialTanner1
2.53/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A fan of Left Hand's Sawtooth ESB, I decided to pick up a 6 of this at Spec's in Austin.

It pours a clear, light, brownish-orange, a little darker than most American IPAs--a decent looking beer. A heavy pour only got me about 1/4 to 1/2" on the head.

Now, there is something to the smell and taste of this one that doesn't sit well for me. Whereas a good IPA tends to have that refreshing aroma of fresh-cut grass or juniper, this one reminds me of moist grass that has been left in the catcher for a couple of days. It has a funk to it like it is starting to turn sour and unfortunately, this carries over to the taste.

There are some interesting IPAesque qualities to the taste, but they are snuffed out by that "funky monkey" essence. Maybe this is typical for the English style or maybe I have an untrained taste for it--either way, I'm not crazy about this one.

I'll drink another one and try to taste and smell harder. But I'm guessing there will be 4 of these left for my nephews when they come to visit this summer, indiscriminately drinking any and all beer in the fridge.

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.05/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Coppery-tan and mostly clear, with a touch of haze. Head was minimal and lacing is small and patchy.

Smell is pretty malty, with a slight funk and a little bit of hops/grapefruit.

Taste is very malty, some caramel, some grassy hops, a little sweetness, and more funk, which doesn't seem to add much but seems kind of strange.

Feel is medium bodied without much carbonation, and moderately dry.

Overall I am not that fond of this one.

400 Pound Monkey from Left Hand Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 1,890 ratings.