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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.

1,867 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,867
Reviews: 518
rAvg: 3.57
pDev: 15.41%
Wants: 54
Gots: 181 | 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: 1,867 | Reviews: 518 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Bouleboubier
4.1/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Have to say I was a tad surprised. Don't expect your "typical" (powerfully-hopped, American/west coast) IPA. This is a well-done, straight-up, American version of an English IPA.

Extremely clear yellow-gold. Starts with a medium-tight head. Random sticky drapes of lace. Wow, really clear.

Pungent, hearty hop aroma and a strong crusty bread presence in the smell.

Didn't know this was done in the English style (helps to read the label and all its fine print), but recognized it quick enough. Great interpretation. Spot on with the bready malt character. Naturally, this is a bit bolder all around - earthy, noble hops kicked up a couple notches, more concentrated thickness in the malt and body. Definitely drinks heavier than a true English version, but it doesn't strike me as 6.7% going down. That said, the level of alcohol build of the body compliment each other perfectly.

Had a couple of "eh" beers from Left Hand, so I didn't know what I was in for. Now that I've had this and the Sawtooth in the past week, I'd say LH can do English ales well and I'd drink this particular beer anytime.

Bouleboubier, Jul 03, 2010
Photo of mentor
3.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a two finger light tan head over a clear straw-copper liquid. Smells fruity (marachino cherry and fruit loops cereal) and bubblegum from hops. Some biscuity malt goodness, which could actually be from a quality base grain, rather than a small amount of specialty grain.

Tastes more fruity than hop bitter or malt, but the hop flavor does not dominate. Fairly well balanced. Hop and ester fruity comes across as fruit loops cereal with some woody and tangerine. Malt is mild caramel and some toast. Hop bitter is flat, like tannic without the acrid bite. Mild drying acid from carbonation helps the hop bitter dry out the finish.

This is enjoyable and fairly well english style. Not my favorite style, but I'd be ok having another. Light body with some dextrin presence and modest carbonation.

mentor, Jul 03, 2010
Photo of zoso1967
3.58/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer pours a bronze toned light amber color and has a nice frothy white head that sticks to the glass like crazy. The aroma is full of herbal and floral hops, as well as some lemon notes. It also carries a bit of grainy pale malt sweetness. The flavor is once again dominated by a mix of earthy herbal, floral and lemony hops that seem to be well blended. The malt character seems a bit off and is quite grainy. This beer may be a little bit too bitter for relatively small malt backbone I am detecting. In the finish there is a very interesting buttery, nutty sort of flavor that is quite nice. The body is on the lighter side of medium, and the mouthfeel is actually a little bit watery with a very dry finish. Quite drinkable and refreshing. Not too shabby.

zoso1967, Jun 30, 2010
Photo of LesStewart
2.7/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The monkey is one of those beers you're going to love or hate and it turns on it's present and full presentation of grassy citrus sharpness and how you dig that. It's color is nice with a quickly deminishing head, and it's aroma is pleasant with citrus. I'm not one for tartness or too much grassyness, so i didn't love the taste or the aftertaste that sticks with you for a few.

LesStewart, Jun 30, 2010
Photo of TheJollyHop
4.22/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear, deep orange amber, with scents of caramel, perfume, yellow roses, wet grass, bread, and tropical fruits.

Head exhibits a thick finger's worth of pillowy mousse like texture; clingy lace.

Flavor showcases orange, peach, bread, caramel, grassy notes, subtle nuttiness, with a sweet finish. There is a long lasting tingle of bitterness. This brew is very well balanced. A medium to high carbonation with a prominent fruity and floral flavor, and a faint lime flavor on the finish. Earthy hop flavor, reminiscent of sauteed spinach and kale.

Medium body, smooth on the tongue front to back, with some tongue drying. Crisp, green grapes mingle with wet grass.
Great example of an English IPA. Would make a stellar session brew if the ABV was slightly lower.

TheJollyHop, Jun 28, 2010
Photo of muttyd
3.28/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Amber/orange clear body. Thin white head.

S - Grapefruit & citrus mostly. Some diacetyl/butterscotch aromas.

T - The hop flavor follows the nose. Mostly grapefruit/citrus hops, but they take a backseat to the strong toffee malt forward base.

M - Chewy body with a dry hop finish. Moderate carbonation and alcohol well hidden.

D - I like this beer, but not something I would go out of my way to pick up again.

muttyd, Jun 28, 2010
Photo of brewdoc75
3.33/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tuliped pint glass

A: Yellow with orange tint. A nice, 1 inch head dies down fast to a lace. Stronger carbonation than I'd expect for the style. Doesn't look like an English IPA. Maybe a really light American IPA, but still missing a little color.

S: Lots of grapefruit on the nose. Some floral and grassy component as well. Maybe a hint of lemon rind. The malts are nil with just a hint of honey sweetness in the nose.

T: Lots of citrus hops. A little one dimensional in that I really only get grapefruit. There is some lemon/grapefruit rind notes as well. What is really unfortunate is the lack of maltiness. An English IPA should have some malt character with maybe some breadiness and at least some malty backbone. This is as about as light as they come in the malt department. I really only get a tiny bit of honey/grainy sweetness behind the hop onslaught. Don't get me wrong, I know IPAs should be hop forward. At the same time they should have the malts to back it up a little. A little unbalanced, even for an IPA.

M: Light/medium. Crisp. Finishes a little sticky but definitely solid. Again, maybe a touch too much carbonation.

D: Really a solid beer. Not an English IPA based on the flavor profile. Could fit as a hybrid English/American IPA, but the lack of malt character throws me off on this one. I'd like to try this again on tap to see if my review changes. With the plethora of IPA choices out there, I think I'll pass on this if I see it again at the store.

brewdoc75, Jun 26, 2010
Photo of EgadBananas
4.35/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy yellow/orange in color, big fluffy two finger head. Looks a bit more like a hefeweizen.

The smell is slightly crisp, with a solid, up-front malty aroma, with hints of citrus. Since this is an EIPA, I would imagine this to be a tad more malty than a typical IPA. Still very good.

The taste was shocking, much different than the smell. It's sort of zesty, with a lot of citrus, and a slight hop bitterness that shows up in the end and lingers for a few seconds. Very impressed, it was delicious.

The feel is pleasant and crisp. Light to medium bodied.

Definitely a good drinker, but I probably couldn't session it very well. I'll be revisiting this one often.

EgadBananas, Jun 26, 2010
Photo of Mcculler
4.3/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden color with amber highlights - paler than most IPAs these days - with good 1 inch head that recedes to the rim leaving only minimal lacing.

Lemon, pine, earth, sulfur, mineral, and butter on the nose - interesting mix of American and British characteristics.

Similar taste x 10. Chamomile, heather, lemon balm, pine, earth, sulfur and mineral. Caramel sweetness more apparent as the beer warms. Grapefruit and herbal bitterness in the finish.

Slick, pretty mouthfeel - a little oily, nicely balanced by tight, moderate carbonation.

A beautiful, thoughtful beer - and also drinkable for ABV. Love it.

Mcculler, Jun 25, 2010
Photo of jdense
3.7/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle from By the Bottle, Vancouver, WA., poured into shaker pint glass 6.23.2010.

Clear deep gold body, a finger and a half of lingering white creamy head, surprisingly minimal lacing, multiple streams of carbonation rising from bottom of glass. Nose is nicely balanced, sweetish malts, along with grassy and resiny hops. Taste is malt forward but with a significant grassy hop middle leading to a sweetish bitter finish. Light-medium mouthfeel, not sticky, with good effervescence. Pretty drinkable though I was surprised how noticeable the alcohol was. Not as hop aggressive as PNW and SD style IPAs, but a nice interpretation, attempt to create 'officer quality' EIPA. Worth a try, though I think the hops have faded a bit in this three month old bottle.

jdense, Jun 24, 2010
Photo of Billolick
3.95/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, sixers available at DeCiccio's in Ardsley, NY. Bottled on dating (04 15 10) on the front label.
Pours clear on the golden side of amber. Near white head, leaving typical fine lace and better looking extensive strands after a solid swig. Nice mixed citric/light malt nose. Easy drinking and enjoyable EIPA. Ample but toned down citric hops, riding upon a solid and smooth malty base. Nice job here by Left Hand

Billolick, Jun 22, 2010
Photo of mavbrew
3.45/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Burnt golden yellow in color, pours a white, one finger head that dissipates quickly.

S: A very floral scent coming from the beer. Definite hoppy characteristics and a hint of citrus.

T: Very earthy taste with a hint of hops, not as prominent as the smell, but still there. There is a bit of a fruity aftertaste.

M: Medium bodied with a bit of carbonation, fairly smooth.

D: Easy and smooth to drink, not as hoppy as I hoped or typically drink, but overall a good IPA.

mavbrew, Jun 21, 2010
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.2/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap 6/19/10 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI, served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep gold color, with a large foamy white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of citrus, grassy hops and light caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts with sweet flavors of citrus, honey and spices. The hops presence isn't as strong as it is in the smell but it's still fairly strong. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy and provides a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Very tasty, goes down quite easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer that has enough flavor and substance to make it worth drinking for a long time.

TheManiacalOne, Jun 21, 2010
Photo of seh410
3.55/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I had this from a cask last night at the Left Hand/Lake Placid Dueling Beer Dinner at Cambridge Common Restaurant. Great event!

Appearance: 2 fingers of fluffy, bubbly, off-white head. Beer is clear and amber in color → head leaves lacing

Aroma: Sweet, malty, with a little citrus and yeast in the background

Taste: It's surprisingly sweet and mild for an IPA. I taste caramel undertones and a distinct earthiness. The hoppy bite only reveals itself at the end, and it isn't super bitter, which I personally appreciate.

Mouthfeel: Deliciously creamy - I had it on cask, so there was very little carbonation

Drinkability: Definitely drinkable. I thought I hated IPAs, and I enjoyed this beer.

seh410, Jun 17, 2010
Photo of htomsirveaux
3.35/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle tried 8 Jun 2010. Bottled 04/15/10.

Served in the Twisted Pine shaker pint. Medium creamy white tight head. Medium carbonation. Clear golden color. Aroma is strongly of resin when the bottle is first opened but fades relatively quickly when poured, just a faint sweet yeasty bready aroma with a touch of resin. Starts somwehat resiny, touch of caramel sweetness. Not overly bitter, but becomes more astringent as it warms. Ethanol is warming in the finish. Aspirin is dominant in the aftertaste. Medium body.

Have encountered the aspirin astringency in IPAs relatively frequently as of late.

htomsirveaux, Jun 17, 2010
Photo of auxiliary
3.73/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

appearance - Light amber copper color, nice white head, with a little lace.

smell - Sweet malt smell.

taste - Upfront malt, followed by hops, and then some bitterness at the end.

mouthfeel - Medium body.

drinkability - Little to hoppy for me, over all seems to be a good IPA

auxiliary, Jun 16, 2010
Photo of emmasdad
3.58/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours from the bottle a nice medium golden color, with a good white head. Aromas of green apple, floral hops and earthy malt. On the palate I get some fruity pear, a little hay and the barest hint of malt. Medium bodied with a nice lingering bitterness.

emmasdad, Jun 16, 2010
Photo of jdhilt
3.1/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a two finger white head that fades quickly to a thin layer leaving a good lace. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Clear pale amber color. Nose is light grapefruit hops. Flavor is sweet grapefruit with a lingering hoppy aftertaste. $2.15 for a 12oz bottle from Colonial Spirits, Acton, MA.

jdhilt, Jun 14, 2010
Photo of hopstradamus
3.03/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A. This beer was bright and clear with slightly less than average carbonation.

S. Bready and sweet with a slight floral aroma. The hop aroma is less than expected.

T. Dry and a little astringent, this beer had an aftertaste I cannot quite place. Strong bitterness from the hops but only average in terms of aroma hops. The bready taste from the malt tries to balance the hops but its not quite sweet enough to balance them completly.

M. Decent mouthfeel; it is neither chewy or thin. Its both light and smooth.

D. This beer was a little dry for my taste, but other than that is was good, and easy to drink.

hopstradamus, Jun 14, 2010
Photo of MetalHopHead6
3.33/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Left Hand Brewing 400 Pound Monkey is malty, metallic, and bready.

It poured light straw, the color of a lager, with a short white head. One slight thin rings of lace clung to the top of the glass. The flavor was extremely malty sweet, in the manner of an English Ale, with a long-lingering metallic after-taste. The feel was very thick, chewy, and bready, with a surprising amount of bitterness following the malty flavor.

400 Pound Monkey has the look and flavor of a Maibock followed by the the feel of an IPA. It's too bland and metallic to recommend, but has a pretty good mouthfeel that makes it an enjoyable, if not remarkable, experience.

MetalHopHead6, Jun 13, 2010
Photo of erikwibaeus
4.18/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A great beer that I got the chance to taste this brew at Oliver Twist when it first got in to Sweden. Its a great beer with nice top, foam sits for a moment to the go down in about 10. I can warmly recommend this one to everyone that likes a good EIPA.

erikwibaeus, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of Reaper16
4.35/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle, dated 04/15/10, served into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass. Thanks for the extra, FernMaster.

Pours a, well, it is yellow. Around the color of a lighter maibock. The white head only gets to one finger at the most. Lacing is, thankfully, more then adequate.

Clean, floral hops flood the nose. A kiss of peach and an accent of lemongrass make for a more assertive nose than I would have figured from an English IPA. Cracker malt is substantial enough to provide a balanced foil to the hops.

The hops are less assertive on the palate than they were in the nose but that is OK - this is an English IPA after all. Grassy, floral, honeysuckle flavors emerge from these Kent Goldings. With warmth the hops take on more of a tea leaf taste. The malt flavors are creamy and bready. The finish is pleasantly bitter before fading to a lasting malt flavor.

This beer is perhaps not carbonated enough; it is a bit too slick for my tastes. The body itself is lightly creamy, which works with the malt flavors. As far as drinkability goes, this is an imminently drinkable session choice for a summer day spent outdoors.

I wasn't blown away by 400-Pound Monkey by any means, but I rate to style and I consider this one of the best English IPAs I've ever had. This is a wonderful choice for when you want the lightness and refreshment of a pilsner but would also prefer the malt flavors of an English ale.

Reaper16, Jun 10, 2010
Photo of DmanGTR
4.2/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Review from notes on 4/6/10. A very nice extra in a trade.

A - clear, dark tangerine orange. Well formed white head. Laces nicely. 4.5

S - Earthy, piney, hint of lemon. But more earthiness than anything else. Floral and pungent. Hint of sulphur. 3.5

T - Estery, cereal grains, but relatively clean. Bitterness is pronounced but not overwhelming. Deep, earthy and a faint pine/grassiness. 4.5

M - Crisp, dry, clean, bubbly. I approve. 4.5

D - Wow this was excellent. Tastes and drinks very well. 4.0

DmanGTR, Jun 09, 2010
Photo of ommegangpbr
3.28/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Apparently, the story behind the name of this beer is along the lines of "any monkey can throw four hundred pounds of hops" into a kettle. That may be true but monkeys may have chosen the hops to use in this beer. The finish in this is overtly bitter, like the kind of bitter one might find in a cask ale, except that it doesn't seem to work very well here. It's a metallic, top note bitterness that kind of stabs at the palate. Soured grapefruit bitter.
Regarding the mouthfeel, one of the first words to pop into my head was "chalky". It's not necessarily offputting but anything that remotely triggers memories of milk of magnesia is not likely to be a terribly positive thing.
Scents are very characteristic, IPA scents and they are inviting. More of a lemon zest citrus profile. Earthy. Malt backbone is decent in this but Left Hand's site toots its own horn a bit too much in that vein.
For something that's supposed to be striving for balance I don't find a whole lot of balance here. The metallic hop quality throws everything else off. This needs some work.

ommegangpbr, Jun 09, 2010
Photo of Pencible
3.73/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This poured a nearly clear light copper with some off-white head.
S: It smelled like caramel malt and bready yeast, with light copper and lemon hops.
T: It tasted like fresh barley malt and bready yeast, with copper hops and some caramel. It had a smooth bittersweet aftertaste.
M: It was somewhat thick with a little carbonation.
D: For some reason I was expecting a powerful hoppy IPA, but this is much more true to the traditional English IPA (or even just an English Ale). It was really balanced and easy to drink, with more malt than hops. But I couldn't shake the thought that it tasted like a 2 year old American IPA (when in fact it was only 2 months old). Not bad, but I was disappointed.

Pencible, Jun 08, 2010
400 Pound Monkey from Left Hand Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 1,867 ratings.