400 Pound Monkey - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
400 Pound Monkey400 Pound Monkey

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2,024 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,024
Reviews: 559
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 15.64%
Wants: 63
Gots: 328 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
English India Pale Ale (IPA) |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: garcia2a on 09-03-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,024 | Reviews: 559
Photo of jjanega08
3.44/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A= the pour produces a light amber color with a decent one finger head. The heads retention is pretty solid however and holds a little bit of a sticky lacing on the side of the glass.

S= A nice earthy hoppiness to it. Maybe a little too citrusy and grapefuity for an English IPA. There is a nice floral smell to it as well.

T= The taste is a mix of American hops and English hops in flavor. There is a definite earthy spicy hop flavor dominating the taste. There is also a little bit of a pine grapefruit taste to it you associate more with American IPAs. The finish is biscuty and doughy with a decent amount of bitterness.

M= Light carbonation and a little too lasting in the finish for the English style.

D= A decent IPA and when reviewing I wanted to keep in mind that this is the English style rather than the American. I however found this beer to be a mix of the two sort of. There was a lot of piney citrus hops as well as some of the earthy spicy hops you find in an English IPA. Decent but a little off style.

Photo of mdwalsh
2.96/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Big white head, 2 fingers and very fluffy. The beer is a pale golden orange and very clear. Lots of active carbonation. It's leaving barely any lace though, and the head, while a nice texture, doesn't have much dexterity to it.

S: Very aromatic. As soon as I pour it filled the area with a floral and citrus burst. Unfortunately, that aroma fades fast. It leaves behind something mildly herbal, but also a little solventy or metallic?

T: The taste, like the aroma was nice up front, but quickly takes a turn for no. The herbal floral taste just comes across as metallic and tinny to me, not appetizing at all.

M: The mouthfeel is alright, for all the carbonation this thing had by appearance, it feels sort of flat.

D: I'm glad I only got a single.

Photo of katan
3.84/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz into a pint

A - Pours a straight brown color. Clear, obviously well filtered. Head formation is light, only a film builds. Lightly bubbling, betraying a light carbonation.

S - Overall, a restrained nose. Light amounts of 2-row and some english noble hops. More on the sweet side, rather than the grassy earthy IPA.

T - Starts off with a smooth, sweet caramel malt flavor - seemingly very malt strong. It gets whammied in the mid-stream be a hefty hop flavor, grassy, puckering, bitter. Finishes with more of the malt flavors, more of a toffee and almost buttery hit.

M - Smooth, creamy. Moderate body - coating and thick, but not driven by carbonation. Finishes with a hefty bitterness and a clinging oily texture.

D - Very easy drinking. Smooth and sweet - ABV is pretty potent, but well hidden. Perhaps on the low side for the style. Not filling. Flavors are not overwhelming - but this much bitterness can get to you in a session.

Photo of kylehayworth
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Translucent gold the head is a bright white, which builds and fades rather quickly.

S: Malty nose with some mild hop presence.

T: I get more sweet malt then anything, maybe a touch of hop somewhere, but not much. A mild bitterness at the tail end.

M/D: Good mouth feel, slightly dry. I couldn't get much from this beer, it seemed a little bland. Maybe the composition was to balanced, that nothing really stuck out.

Photo of tr4nc3d
2.65/5  rDev -26%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 fl oz bottled on 3/9/10 poured into my pint glass

Pours a very light orange/golden color with a one and a half inch slightly off-white head. Good head retention with a very thin layer staying atop afloat of the beer. Lacing is very noticeable on this.

The aroma was really not what I except from an IPA(English one either). I mainly smelled that of cracker like malts, hay, and a funky barnyard smell. I'm pretty sure the bottle did not go bad either. In fact this smells like a Kolsch sytle beer instead of an IPA.

The taste is that of slightly sweet upfront with grains and cracker like malts, slight sweetness in the end with toffee. I swear this could pass for a kolsch style beer.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with high carbonation.

Overall I was disappointed with this English IPA as it did not resemble one at all. There are WAY better beers out there which do this style justice than this one. One example is "Meantime IPA", try that instead of wasting your money on this Monkey.

Photo of Parrotbeak
3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Golden in color, with a thin white head that thins out a bit but remains full.
Smell is malts with a hint of ginger, and some ample hops. Faint pineapple and orange.
Taste is bitter hops up front with the malts coming halfway and carrying to the finish. Same hint of ginger with the malts. Some faint citrus tones come in around the middle, most prominently orange.
Mouthfeel is fairly crisp, with a somewhat dry finish. Light body. A little bit watery.
Easy enough IPA to drink, and there are certain aspects to this one that make it interesting.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 ounce bottle picked up at Abe's in my mixed sixer. Bottled 3-10-10. Uncapped and poured into my shaker glass. The pour yields an ultra clear golden ale with about a finger or two of quickly fading off white foam. The head does leave a respectable lace in its wake. The aromas and flavors consist of toasted bread, bread, and more bread, caramel malts, citrus-y lemon, a bit of dank skunkiness. Medium bodied with ample carbonation. Pretty clean drinking. Not bad overall. Give it a shot if ya dig an English IPA.

Photo of homebrew311
3.36/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a SA sensory glass. I must comment that Left Hand's new artwork scheme is awesome and it certainly sold me on this beer (Fade to Black comes to mind as well).

A: Pours a crystal clear golden with a nice frothy 2 finger head, nice retention and some lacing

S: notes of bread, yeast, caramel, maybe a touch of diacetyl on the end, all of this dominates the hop profile which adds some notes of pine and citrus, bready malts take center stage

T: hops and caramel malts up front, the hops are subtle and integrate well with the malt profile, there is a touch of bitterness at the end, but over all, the malt profile keeps the hops in check. The diacetyl doesn't come through as much on the palate. This beer is well balanced and is a decent example of an English IPA

mf: medium carbonation, light body

D: this is easy drinking and the abv is undetectable. Lots of nice things going on but it leans heavily to the malts

Photo of berpwillie
2.66/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours a crystal clear golden yellow color with almost no head and very lite carbonation. there was a very vague hop flavor and smell nothing great. i must say i wasn't impressed with this beer at all. let down would probably be a better term. to me this beer tasted very "miller liteish". it was just a very dull beer.

Photo of argock
3.53/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap in a clear pint glass at Mellow Mushroom (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Bright golden with thin tightly bubbled nearly white head and decent lacing.

S: Very fruity with some pineapple and mango followd with tealike biscuity notes

T: Very fruity and not hoppy in a typical sense. I don't find the herbal blast that usually accompanies this style, but the hoppiness and overall impression is of a fruity-hoppy brew with clean, slightly dry finish.

M: Medium bodied with clean finish and soft fruity aftertaste.

D: A pretty good brew and not what I was expecting with the fruity notes leading the way.

Photo of beerthulhu
3.73/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a brilliant golden-orange with a thin, frothy, eggshell white head that was moderately retaining but left some good stickage behind for a lacing. Visible carbonation was extremely light with a sporadic show of lazy straggling micro-bubbles that were few and far apart.

S: Light orange grind with a soft flowery scent appears on the nose. The strength was extremely light, perhaps so much so it was hardly a factor. Unless you spent the better part of 5 minutes with your nose buried in this, you are most likely gonna leave without any real appreciation. A soft flowery lemon scent concludes things here.

T: The flavor starts out with a sweet graininess and highlights of lemony flowery hops which pretty much made up for the lackluster aroma. A nice level of bitterness moves in mid-way through the experience with fresh barley, dry husky grains and a appreciable lemony dry and grassy hopping that sticks around after the swallow. A nice lightly toasty malting rounds things out along with an otherwise pretty impressive show of hops per style.

M: The mouthful was dry, fairly bitter that turns creamy upon the hold with a good release of carbonation. Light bodied and smooth on the swallow leaving a good deal of bittering citrus and grass hops behind.

D: Drinkability was good, light bodied with a decent level of hoppiness, and worthy of a six-pack purchase.

Photo of portia99
3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle (bottled 2/24/10) poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

A - Pours a crystal clear bright golden color with a thin cap of white foam. The head lasts for only a short time and then falls to a thick coolar with not a trace of lacing left behind.

S - Bready malt dominates the aroma with light earthy hops contributing but definitely not in a strong way. A bit apple cider vinegar creeps in to the aroma too - a bit odd. Overall balanced towards the malt.

T - Sweet malt hits strongest and makes the first impression. Earthy and grassy hops with a tinge of citrusy flavors too. Very bready in character overall. Bitterness is crisp and plenty there...malt and hops complement each other fairly well in this one.

M - Medium bodied with carbonation a bit on the high side. Body is a little bit heavy for the style. Bitterness lingers in the mouth after the swallow with touches of malt and hops at times. A bit slick on the tongue.

D - A good session IPA...for those that prefer their IPA's balanced/maltier, this is a good example. If you lean towards the big citrusy, hoppy west coast IPA's, you'll probably be left wanting more. I could easily drink a couple more of these, but probably would choose something else if other options are available.

Photo of brownbeer
2.74/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours a nice orange-gold color, very clear, with a white crown.

The aroma isn't very good. The somewhat doughy malts and grassy hops are the ok part. Then, I get something that smells almost vegetal, moldy, and of buttered popcorn. Really not very appetizing.

A grainy taste comes through and finishes with an astringent bitterness that I can live with. I can't get past the burnt popcorn aspect of the taste. It just seems like something's wrong to me. Or maybe it's just bad beer. I had little inspiration to finish the glass. Disappointing.

Photo of maltlikker
3.33/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Golden honey color with a rocky eggshell colored head that shows decent retention. Lacing is minimal.

Light grassy herbal aroma with a slight breadiness.

Piney citrus flavor with less malt backbone than I expected and a herbal/medicinal aftertaste.

Body seems slick, and was lighter than I was expecting. Not bad, but all told seemed a bit unbalanced.

3.63/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass.

short head retention, and good lacing.

A= Looks a bit like a pale ale, clear with an amber hue.

S= Smells good. . .mmm. . . yeast.

T= Good taste, not overly strong, but doesn't last long on the plate.

M= A foamy mouthfeel, washes out quickly

D= A solid drinkable beer, drank it rather quickly.

Overall: Good beer, not quite like Stone's Cali-Belgique, but a rather enjoyable brew.

Photo of meeekyh
4.14/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The first time I saw this beer I thought of Victory's Golden Monkey. I know it is the label but I must also admit a weakness for the GM. The beer pours from the 12 oz bottle into the footed pilsner provided by my host(ess) to reveal a heady elixir of the brown variety. It is a nice color but not of the normal hue. The head itself is bone-white and thick with much evidence of its existence after it departs.

Smell is a departure from the usual American IPA (likely because its not an American IPA). There seems a bit more nuance in the grain and a better balance. Not that American IPAs lack for depth of character when done right, but the latter qualification is fewer and farther between than you might imagine. I note hearty grains and hops and attention to detail.

There is a full palate of bitter flavors, the beer style not the actual flavor (as a full palate of an individual flavor is ridiculous) and a hefty dose of hops to boot. I like the homage to the conceptual birth of the style and feel it is well represented, though not archetypal.

Feel is full and round much like the taste, though without the sharpness. Carbonation is fuller than I would actually expect from the style but well within parameters.

Drinkability is good, maybe better, but the haze prevents a true estimation...

Overall I like the beer. It is full in more ways than most styles could hope for and has a hoppy depth to yearn and strive for. Go for the Old Country style and depth, go for a beer that makes you appreciate the art.


Photo of aubuc1
3.6/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured in to a tulip pint glass.

Pours a very clear deep yellow with a steady stream of carbonation and steady white head.

Smell is a slightly sweet, grassy, pineapple and citrus with a little biscuit.

Taste is very biscuity with a snappy, dry, bitter finish. Not bad.

Mouthfeel is good.

Drinkability is pretty good. I am not sure of the date of this, it could be better if fresh.

Photo of bluemoonswoon
3.28/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

An interesting beer to come across these days. An English IPA done by a relatively west coast American brewery? Let's see what happens.

A: Pours out a crystal clear tawny golden honey/ambery orange. Head is loose and sticks around the circle of the class in thin wisps of lace.

S: Give it that old-traditional English IPA aroma, heavy on the malt bill with heavier touches of orange blossoms and light, minimally floral hops. More malt than anything, more of a watery aroma than I was anticipating really.

T/MF: Rich and chewy maltiness to open. Smooth on the tongue leaves absolutely no drying or sticky sensation on the tongue, really only a slight tingle on either side of the tongue. Slightly peaty but I feel like that might be a little bit left over from the previous beer in my glass, if not it still seems to complement the beer. This beer is a testament to understatements; there are touches of honey and orange blossom mixed within the strong malt bill, a slight smokiness to close things out that I enjoy even if it is unintentional.

D: Good on a hot day and feels much smaller than nearly seven percent. It nearly daces on the tongue and feels light enough to be sessionable even though it doesn't even come close. An interesting beer, but really not my style. Good on a hot day and after cooking a large meal, but other than that a little ho-hum.

Photo of jkrich
3.9/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle with freshness date: one of the most unique bottle labels I have seen. This IPA is equally unique. The pour is a clear, golden color with a fluffy, sustained white head that recedes slowly revealing plenty of intricate lacing. The aroma is sweet, herbal and earthy. The taste begins with a faintly sweet tea flavor with a hint of bitterness on the tongue. The ale is somewhat dry and refreshing. The hop flavors are different from what I am accustomed to experiencing either american or english. It all seems to come together for a rather light, refreshing ale. The carbonation is very subdued and the body is light, but not watery.
This is certainly a boldly different take on the IPA. The high ABV and sweet mouthfeel make this one good for only a couple.

Photo of smcolw
3.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours to a rocky white head of two fingers thick. Leaves some ring lace on the glass. The slightest of chill hazes to the otherwise light amber color.

The smell is a blend of pale ale malts and some grapefruit-aroma hop. This is a mild aroma compared to most IPA's--closer to a regular pale ale.

This is a well balanced IPA. It starts with a soft, dry, mildly grainy malt flavor. In the swallow and aftertaste, the hop takes over and dominates with a peppery spice. The body is similar to skim milk; the carbonation is below average giving it a thicker mouthfeel.

Photo of HURTemHIZZY
3.6/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very light golden copper color, with a 2 finger white head that dissipates fairly quickly. Leaves average amounts of lacing behind.

Smell is noticeably different from american ipas, with more malt and less hops. Caramel malts flow into a citrus hop character, with no noticeable floral cascade aroma that is so common in american ipas.

Taste follows suit pretty much exactly. The malted barley really shows in this brew, and accents the hops fairly well. Not as hoppy as I prefer, but a decent english ipa.

Nice level of carbonation at first, btu teh carbonation really dies out towards the end of the brew.

Photo of CaptainIPA
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

P: Presented in a 12 oz., brown bottle with illegible freshness dating. Very cool label illustration. Poured into a Hennepin flute.

A: Brassy in color, with an off-white head that quickly fades to a rimming of foam.

S: Sweet aromas of caramel malts and grassy grains with a touch of subdued hops in background.

T: The Monkey exhibits an herbal earthiness that's markedly different from American-style IPAs. The initial maltiness yields to a variety of flavors including green tea, honey and hops. As the beer warms the balance swings back to malt. Nicely balanced and a good change of pace from the standard full-frontal hop assault.

M: Creamy mouthfeel with a grainy dryness in the finish.

D: Good drinkability coupled with an interesting complexity as the Monkey warms.

Photo of farrago
3.02/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Little below a finger's worth of bleached white foam, enough larger bubbles interspersed to create some dimpling and hamper retention, decently thick lacing though. Light orangish-yellow hue with some gauziness, only a few bubbles seem to move within the liquid. Lemon and orange citrus upfront in the nose, sourdough and black bread notes, peppery, green and herbaceous hops, in spite of this above average concentration in the apricot, nectarine fruit scents. Medium-bodied, dry and almost grainy in texture, pumpernickel and rye, hops have plenty of edge and nervosity, only offer traces of citrus, pine or florality. The malts hard to discern, perhaps cocoa powder evident. Carbonation tries to add some fluffiness and diminish the bite of the hops, this to middling success. Not sure what was supposed to go on here or if it was achieved.

Photo of Natural510
3.25/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a golden-copper color with flaccid look (minimal head and scant lacing).
Scent is surprisingly muted for an IPA. I'm getting a bit of sweet malt but not much else.
Breaded malt, sweet cherry-caramel flavors, acidic bite, pine hops make up the flavor. A bit of a mish-mash, but it comes together fairly well. ABV strength is apparent and adds a booziness to the drink.
Full in body...a bit too full for the British style.
A bit sweet, not quite as bitter as one would expect, and somewhat hot from the alcohol. Not a complete failure, but not something I'd drink again, either.

Photo of JamesS
2.95/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a very pale golden color (more "lager" than "pale ale") with a bit of decent initial head, and no lacing. Some slight bitterness in the noes with a little malt sweetness. Huge grapefruit flavor from the hops, with a decent bitter aftertaste; some nice malt body, but not well balanced between the hops and with the hops and malts. Goes down fairly smooth, but only an average IPA.

400 Pound Monkey from Left Hand Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 2,024 ratings.