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400 Pound Monkey - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
400 Pound Monkey400 Pound Monkey

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,890 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,890
Reviews: 518
rAvg: 3.57
pDev: 15.69%
Wants: 51
Gots: 182 | 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
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Ratings: 1,890 | Reviews: 518 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BlackBearForge
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on March 9, 2011

400 Pound Monkey is golden amber beer, more yellow than copper with a crisp white cap of foam that falls quickly leaving moderate lacing.

The aroma has nice bready malt with an earthy hop aroma, quite pleasant.

The flavor has bready somewhat biscuity malt, not too sweet balanced with the aforementioned earthy English style hopping. Some fruity esters are present that work nicely with the other flavor characteristics. Culminates in a lingering bitterness on the finish that really brings things together.

Mouthfeel is nicely medium, carbonation is moderate which seems appropriate.

A very nice English style IPA, laid back and mellow but full of flavor nonetheless. Makes a pleasant change from the American style IPAs I've been drinking (won't convert me however!). Definitely recomended.

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass, the beer is a brighter, crystal clear tan-gold coloring with a foamy, light bubbled, white head that starts at a healthy 2 inches and eventually settles into a film. Aromas of light hoppiness combined with a sweet caramel and citrus/tangerine character that is intriguing. Bitter and peppery hop forward flavor with the citrus providing a decent backseat balance. Good lacing on the glass, the beer has a slick, almost oily feel in mouth. Peppered hop aftertaste with a dry, bitter finish. Very true to the style...you could do a lot worse than this tasty brew!

Photo of haazer
3.18/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into pint glass

A- Pours about 1/4 inch of white head on top of a slightly turbid yellow/orange brew. Lively carbonation as bubbles rise to the top. Head retains for some time, pour seemed to suggest it would fade quickly.

S- Smell is a decent combination of pale...carmel malts? It seems as though both were used. Hops are faint at this point. Checking the bottling date this was done on 4/22/10, almost a year from today. Some bready notes round out nose.

T- Suprisingly the hops are present in the taste. Flavor leads in with a crisp citrus bite, in between a bready caramel tastes. A hint of lemon. Then there is a half decent bittering finish. A little bit of an awkward aftertaste though...

M- Body is heavier than light but not quite medium. This is a fairly smooth english IPA, but the carbonation is felt on the tongue. Its balanced quite well.

O- I thought this was above average. Fairly drinkable, and abv not noticeable, at least after one.

Photo of VanHopper69
3.65/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured from the growler dark straw color. Head was about two fingers, but dissipated quickly to just a thin layer. Surprisingly heavy lacing left all the way down the pint glass.

S - The smell was kinda funky. Not at all what I was expecting from an IPA. No citrus or floral. This one was very herbal and grassy. Almost bordering on musty.

T - Despite my hesitation to try a taste of the beer after what I thought was an off smell, the beer was a nice balance between that somewhat subdued malts and the unusual hops.

M - Carbonation may have saved this beer from falling into the mediocre category for me. It added a lightness to the feel. Had this one been heavy, I don’t think I would have finished it.

O - I’m going to reserve my judgment for another day on this one. It was good enough to keep me interested, but not to the point that I’ll run right out to fill the growler again. Maybe next time I’ll try to find it in a bottle and see if that makes a difference.

Photo of Brunite
4.22/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear golden honey color with an off-white head with good persistence

S - Nicely hoppy nose that is lightly citrus-y with some faint pine notes.

T - This is an extremely citrusy, juicy, beer. Lots of fruitiness with some mild biscuit notes. Good balance.

M - Nice balanced. Nice carbonation. Medium body.

O - A nicely balanced, fruity, juicy beer. Fine session beer.

Photo of biegaman
3.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

400 Pound Monkey has one of the neatest names and label art I've come across in a while; the beer itself ain't so bad looking either. A polished, heated honey-golden tone, the beer looks like it'd make a hell of an amulet, like something Indiana Jones might go searching for. Its head isn't much but leaves a lacing that'd probably make sense to a hieroglyphicist.

The aroma is chalk full of pungent hoppiness. Notes of ganja, candied citrus, grass clippings and pine bark comprise a pretty full hop bouquet by any standards. Toasted biscuity maltiness provides the perfect background accompaniment. The beer may be an 'English'-style IPA but it borrows at least some of its character from the country of its birth.

The wafer-y, biscuity maltiness drinks like a liquid honeycomb toffee, albeit not quite so sweet, that is armored in a dry, splintering pine bark and tiny pellets of grapefruit. A trace of a certain illegal, herbal substance is tasted, but only so much so as to give off an earthy vibe and not dominate the taste, which is submerged ankle high in lemon juice acidity.

Both the sip and the finish are a mouthful; while hops don't dominate as they do in many American IPAs, they were nevertheless used liberally. The malts, likewise, are vividly toasty and chewy. Their sweetness, however, is cut short by a citric pithiness, a drying and weedy hop astringency that leaves an almost bubblegum-y aftertaste.

400 Pound Monkey is another solid IPA in a long lineup of solid American IPAs. While there may not be much to distinguish it from the pack, there is every reason in the world to buy it again: unrestrained hoppiness, balancing maltiness, solid flavor, gratifying and refreshing drinkability. In fact, the only problem with it is that after one you want at least two more!

Photo of DesMoinesMike
3.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had this one at the bar a few times; so when I heard the Left Hand was pulling out of Iowa I grabbed a six-er because I've had good experiences with this brew. From the bottle it seems subdued, like more of a 320 lb monkey that's waking up from a nap.

It's a orange-brown color like a green tea. The white foam starts as a thin finger and turns to a ring in about 2 minutes. The aroma has some citrus over the hops with perhaps a hint of wood. The taste has lemon up front with a touch of pine. The hoppiness I give a 5.5 out of 10, it starts decent but fades quick. It goes down good and the aftertaste is just slightly tart.

Overall it seems like the bottled version is wimpy compared to the tap. But without a bar in the state to serve it, my taste buds will not soon be satisfied.

Photo of richkrull
4.15/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Buddy brought this one over to try.

Poured a hazy golden amber color with a good amount of white head on it. Smell was very good - nice hops, some bready and floral notes as well. Taste was great, solid bitter hop flavor throughout with some bready malt coming through. Light to medium mouthfeel, this beer went down nice and smooth. Would definitely go for it again sometime - I like this one quite a bit.

Photo of techfed87
3.65/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a good-sized head. Color is amber. Smell is quite fruity, grapefruit and hops are strong in it.

First sip is, considering the big flavor portfolio, a bit light. Then again, being used to the American IPA standard, it shouldn't be a surprise that although less hoppy, this IPA still has certain qualities that aren't apparent in other. There's a balance with the malt and the hops that make this one of the most well-balanced IPA's that I tried.

Left Hand really does know what they're doing in the brews that they make. Try this one if you have the chance.

Photo of shaunb81
4.08/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I'm a huge fan of IPA and APA and I was looking to try something a little different. So, here it goes....

Appearance - Poured an amber/gold color with a very little head. Head was bright yellowish and was barely 1/4". Very light lacing. Not impressed so far.

Smell - Can't quite put my "nose" on the hops. I smell floral, but also a sweetness. Very aromatic, but not powerful like most pale ales that I've had. Let's see what we have here...

Taste - The pale ale definitely comes through here. Obviously dry-hopped and bitter, not as bitter as an IPA, but just as enjoyable. Very balanced.

Mouthfeel - This beer sticks to every part of the inside of my mouth. That's a good thing. Carbonation is perfect and while I swig this beer, I enjoy it even more.

Overall - I like this beer. I would drink it as much as I would any of my favorite pale ales. It's a little different, because it seems a bit lighter than other IPA's. I suggest you go buy this and see for yourself. This beer is flavorful, somewhat light (NOT WATERED DOWN!!), but it still grabs your taste buds and squeezes them till you beg for more.

Photo of NordeastBrewer77
3.95/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a pale golden color with a small white head that ran quickly to lace. Retention was very... 'english'

The aroma was mildly bready with earthy hops dancing in the background. Clean grains and a touch of minerals in noticed as the brew warms.

The taste is where this beer gets ya.... A nice clean profile with a hint of light caramel malts and a touch of toasted bread. This is followed immediately by a grassy, garden fresh hop flavor that's a nice change from many American made IPAs. The finish is clean and dry with a nice lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel's a tad bubbly for and 'English style', but it works with this one.... Light and dry, very clean. Surprisingly cool and refreshing for a beer approaching 7%.

Overall, this ones a winner. I'll definitely buy this again!

Photo of rawfish
3.08/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a slightly hazy golden copper with a one and a half finger frothy white head, rather poor retention but all kinds of webbing and lacing on the glass.

Odd smell, not too familiar with the English IPA variety but I don't think any other beer smells quite like this. Earthy, grassy pungent hops that picks up a good amount of wet soil and garden weeds. Slight citrus and caramel malt, actually quite humid and musty. I also sense some calm shells and sea salt.

Taste has a citrus and grassy hop profile, citrus was quite unexpected yet still muted and earthy. This gives way to some caramel malts, for balance, not very bready, slightly sweet and adequate. Dries nicely with appreciable bitterness on the end of the drink.

Average carbonation and body. Dries nicely with lingering bitterness, but honestly all IPAs do that. Ho-hum.

All over the map with this one, takes a better palate than mine to sense the subtle nature of of this brew, I felt the taste was a bit airy at times with hop bitterness running the show. Tastes a bit different than it smells. Not bad but minor league as far as IPAs go.

Photo of yemenmocha
3.53/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy off-golden color with medium sized head. mixed citrus and cakebread on the nose. Some of that cakebread quality is present on the palate too with a nicely balanced bitterness. A mineral component is there too . Easy drinking and a refreshing change from so many American IPA .

Photo of tlazaroff
2.9/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A: A hazy apricot color of orange with a slightly off-white colored head. Nice thin lacing sticks to the glass.

S: On the nose, I get citrus, floral, and a tiny tiny bit of toastyness - it's slightly sweet smelling.

T: Its bitter, but not overly-so. Defiantly an English style IPA. Nothing of note about the taste other than orange flavors and a small sweetness that is left after the swallow.

M: Watery, low carbonation, slick. Overall - not good.

D: Despite it's flaws, it is a highly drinkable beer.

Photo of JerzDevl2000
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up in Totowa last week since I never tried it before and I like most of Left Hand's offerings. I was expecting a hob bomb out of this but sure enough, I was pleasantly surprised at how good and drinkable this beer was. It's probably because something like this isn't popular compared to the IPA's popular on the West Coast, but it makes for a beer that goes down just a bit easier!

Nice golden hue to this with a fluffy head and lots of carbonation. The aroma was quite strong too as I could smell this as soon as I opened it up. Mouthfeel and lacing were nice as well as this was balanced and left rings as I worked my way down the glass. Some pine and citrus in the hops here, an earthy undertone, and the consistency of resin all combined to make this very mellow and easygoing, given this style of beer that this fell under.

While this isn't a session beer, I could have easily had a few in a sitting since it wasn't that strong and didn't leave me puckering up after each sip. Having the bottling date legible in English on the side was also good even though this was a bit older than I would have liked to have seen. Pleasant surprises are one of the aspects of trying new beers that I love and this certainly fell under that category. I"m surprised this isn't rated higher on here!

Photo of WVRadar
3.3/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottled on date on front label of bottle. 1/2 inch fizzy white head on a clear, sparkling pale amber body, lots of tiny bubbles rising to the surface. Head quickly dissipated to a thin layer on the top. Good lacing. Moderately hoppy, citrus aroma. Initial taste was moderately bitter, heavy hops in the finish. Mouthfeel was medium creamy, not as fizzy as I expected. Not a big fan of IPAs, one was enough for me.

Photo of blittle
1.25/5  rDev -65%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

A - dark amber to copper in color

S - I actually thought this beer was skunked. Rancid as if maybe it had gotten too warm at some point during storage/shipment

T - I sent the beer back. The skunky smell carried through to the mouth. A very metallic, sulfuric aftertaste. The kind waitress informed me that after being tasted by someone that knows better, this was actually how the beer was supposed to taste. Really?

M - Carbonation average for an ale. Strong biscuity dry afterfeel.

O - Never again. One of the worst beer tasting experiences ever.

Photo of WoodBrew
3.4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I tried this beer for the second time....and found it to be much better than what I originally rated it below. My initial rating was a 2.78. I think is good....still not as good as Bass, but much better than how I reviewed it below and if available I would drink this again.

Its dinner time for the kids and we have been all over the Bourbonais and Chicago area this morning and afternoon. My daughter placed 10th over all at her State gymnastics meet for her age group...SWEET! Buddy brought this beer over and decided to try it tonight...wish I didnt. I really dont think I like this beer. Its a cloudy golden thin white head and decent lacing. Not much smell and the taste is all English style....but it is not as good as BASS. Anyway....good luck if you try this one...its not for me!

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.45/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A drfty-hazy, golden blond color. full of life, white foamy that seperates and fades in moderate fashion.

Minty, resinous and piney hop, citric and tangy with a strange musty aroma that seems to be coming from the yeast.

A snappy-medium feeling malt, crispy and slightly sharp hop feel with all kinds of erratic tangy notes that seem to strange along with a funky and out of place yeastie effect.

besides it's strange and "off" flavors from dead yeast this one is pretty much normal

Photo of ProfessorHomer
4.25/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Bright, clear golden blondie color - a very pretty American style! Good head, average retention. Good lacing.

S: Some interesting, delicate floral hoppy notes (like an IPA, but more subtle), alcohol, some malt.

T: Wow - was I surprised! Starts out hoppy like an IPA, slides nicely into delicate caramelly malts, an alcohol tinge and nice, long, balanced mellow & wet lingertaste. Complex series of events going on here! Nice water.

MF: Clean, crisp, creamy & refreshing.

Overall: This sure ain't no English IPA (and I sure do love those English Pale Ales) - this is its blondie sexy, full-bodied, full-flavored floozy American (hoppier) version that unabashedly flaunts full-frontal strong alcohol with your overwhelmed tastebuds. Had me at first sip! I sure ain't no hophead but I sure so recognize a very, very good beer. I wuz taken with this one! Very Recommended!

Photo of l33tNinjaPirate
1.63/5  rDev -54.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Bottled: 02/01/2011

Appearance - Coppery. Little head that dissipates very quickly.

Smell: Smells like a fermenting dumpster and some malt.

Taste: Again, garbage juice. This beer has an overwhelming funk. I seriously gagged a couple times. As far as beer flavor go, crisp with an unusually chalky and dark malt character compared to the color.

Mouthfeel: Watery IPA.

Drinkability: I'd rather be drinking a macrobrew.

Personal critique: I bought and opened the beer without any preconceptions and was throughly disappointed. I came to BA expecting it to get a slamming but it seems other people like it. I love IPAs but I'd rather be drinking a PBR or High Life than this. Maybe I got a shitty bottle, even though it's a one and a quarter month old and I got it refrigerated from a specialty beer store. I'm just happy I *sip&gag* was able to distract myself with this review while drinking the beer.

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

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. The bottle bears a date stamp of 11/8/10. Pours a hazy golden yellow, with a thin soapy head.

Has a faint toffee malt smell, but not much else is going on aroma-wise.

Starts quite bitter, with a faint toffee malt sweetness beneath. The bitterness clenches the tongue, fading at the back of the tongue. Good, but not terribly complex.

Medium-bodied, with a dry finish.

Easy drinking, this is the third decent beer I've had from the Left Hand missed 12 pack. A good 12 pack to pick up if you're having people over for a casual evening of games and brews, and want something that will taste good but not overtax the pallates of your guests.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.55/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Left Hand 400 Pound Monkey

Appearance: A clear deep-gold body with an orange cast beneath a short head of bright white foam. Head retention is excellent, and the lacing is above average, leaving some nice rings of thin lace about the glass.

Smell: Not as distinctively hoppy as one might expect, however it is surprisingly fruity: tangerine, apricot, perhaps papaya or mango. It's a little grassy as well. The tropical character is odd... maybe the name has something to do with it?

Taste: Fruitiness and grassy/raspy hops upfront. Somewhat sugary/biscuity malt rises as it warms. Solid bitterness. Finishes dry with some almost spruce-like hops left lingering.

Mouthfeel: Medium-Full. Moderate carbonation level.

Drinkability: There's an interesting yeasty fruitiness to it, and as an English style IPA it can get away with less hops in the nose and flavor, but it somehow seems off. I suspect it's fermented a bit high in temperature.

Photo of beerdown77
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours hazy light orange with 1 1/2 fingers of foamy head and some lacing. The nose is light hops with a stronger sweet malty smell to follow. The taste is very bitter with a hint of honey up front.This reminds me of an English bitter. 400 Pound Monkey is tasty, but pretty bitter. I would like a little more malt balance. The body is medium but overall easy to drink. This is a good beer for a change, I usually like American IPA. This is similar to Goose Island Honker's Ale, only more bold. The box says "earth and herbal". I would agree with that...maybe aged, wet hops...very earthy.

Photo of jar2574
3.33/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle. Thin head dissolves quickly. Orange-yellow colored beer. Smells of fruity hops. Orange citrus smell predominates. Taste is also orange flavored hops. A very mild bitter hop kick, but nothing like a hoppy IPA or Czech pilsner. Mouthfeel is average, average carbonation and density and smoothness. Drinkability is ok, about average. I'm not craving another but I wouldn't pass on having it again.

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