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Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

very good
694 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.10%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
"An imperial india pale ale"

Added by BuckeyeNation on 06-29-2004

User Reviews
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Reviews: 694 | Ratings: 2,535
Photo of BNLTandem
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look - I don't see the haze others see. Pours beautiful, crystal copper color. Moderate short lived head with minimal lace. Poured from the bottle into a sorta pilsner glass.
Smell- OK, to be honest it smells like the Buffalo wings sitting in front of me. So...4 by default.
Taste - pretty good. Still a tiny bit of residual sweetness, and some Malt left to balance the nice aromatic floral and citrus notes. No overwhelmingly stupid hop bomb. Way better balance than the competition.
Feel - sits on the upper pallet forever. The bitterness lingers in a palpable way..but not so much that this is a test of one's fortitude.
Overall - I like this quite a lot. I know they didn't mean it to be a session IPA, but it's a pretty drinkable imperial. I'm enjoying it very much.

Note: just poured the end of the bottle...now it's totally hazy. Looks like a German hefeweisen now...little trub in the bottle I guess.

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Photo of CountryRebel001
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Nice hazy copper look. Smells like dank peach and other tropical fruits. Has a very sweet, fruity smell. Taste very sweet, fruity, with a bitter bite at the end. Moderate carbonation, with a very thick mouthfill. Very good, different iipa and at 9.1% abv very drinkable. Was a good change from all the same ipa's out there but a little too fruity for me to drink very often. Overall I would buy again, just not anytime soon.

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Photo of cheer4beer_
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

It pours with a small head, has an amebr hue and has a slight bit of cludyness when put up to the light. I get a bready nose from the beer but a citrus taste up front that isn't present in the smell. I also detect pine and malt flavors on the back end with an ether aftertaste. It feels the carbonation on the tongue and has a heavy mouthfeel.

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Photo of Act25
4.14/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Blown away by this candy bomb of an imperial beer!

A: Pours a very cloudy honey body and a sticky dense head that constantly laces.
S: Core pith, less citrus flesh, more earth.

T: Ass kicker. Malt overwhelmed by piney, pithy, intense, bitter and yet honeyed and flowershop hops.

F: Thick, weighty, stick, full body with moderate carbonation

O: If you like them chewy and over-whelming, this is it. A monster is correct! Great brewer. Their Commodor Perry on steroids.

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Photo of mvanaskie13
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into standard ping glass: color is light amber, head is off white and presents thin about 1/4 inch then dissipates to a ring, a little opaque.

Smell is fruitier esters and some citrus hops then some lighter toasted and light caramel malts.

Taste is similar to the aroma, with fruity forward flavors, they seem to be more fermentation derived with an estery quality, then transition to some subtle fruity hop like citrus rinds and lighter malt flavors.

Mouthfeel is very nice for a 9+% abv beer, some biting hop bitterness and lighter lingering sweetness.

Overall, a good beer, straightforward in its desire to be fruity from fermentation through hops, maybe a bit too sweet for my preference at this strength.

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Photo of Tonyjenlasc
4.24/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Candied orange, mangos,sweet malts, grapefruits, hints of tropical/citrus, some floral notes. Super scary easy drinking for 9.1%. Get no hints of booze at all. A great offering from Great Lakes.

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Photo of jwwjd
4.24/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had on draught in a 12 ounce chalice.

Lingering head with a nice coppery color. A very aromatic brew that hides the high abv very well. I found it to be very balanced and would seek this beer out if it was available in my state.

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Photo of AndrewMichael
3.56/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into my Dogfish Head stemmed glass. I noticed some sediment on the bottom, something just seemed a little off and funky about this particular bottle. I would definitely like to try this beer again, as I was not getting the tropical citrus as described in the label, and missed the freshness date by only 2 days.

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Photo of HorseheadsHopHead
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 bottle into a stem glass. Best by 10/04/15.

LOOK: Hazy copper with a thin off white head. Lots of bubbles.

SMELL: Hops, but lots of malt and sweetness. Peach, nectarine, mango, apricot, passionfruit, strawberry, and some other odd tropical fruit, (Kumquat? Dragonfruit?) candied grapefruit peel, honey and bread.

TASTE: Malty yet fruity. Biscuits, bread, and honey upfront, followed by mango, apricot, passionfruit, and grapefruit, and pine. Finishes only lightly bitter. Super smooth.

FEEL: The fuller side of medium, with light fizzy carbonation. Fairly creamy.

OVERALL: Fairly nice, but I wish it would fresher. I can tell the hops have diminished greatly. Would buy again, though, especially if it were fresher.

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Photo of RJIV
3.44/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Sweet smell emanates from the glass.
Taste follows through. No citrus or dank hop qualities coming through. Sweetness is cloying and overpowering.
Most DIPA's will have the sweetness mask a high ABV, not the case with this one. The beer finishes on a high alcohol note that only gets progressively worse as the beer warms up. This leaves a burning aftertaste.

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Photo of LanceA
3.69/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy amber with mild carbonation. Big creamy head. Mild nose of citrus, peach, and pine. It sounds weird, but to me there is a faint chalky odor. Tastes first of citrus, and then very mild bitterness. Short finish. Mild bitterness in the aftertaste. On the whole, a balanced IPA--definitely not a "hop bomb."

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Photo of Hibernator
4.29/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster
12 oz. brown bottle
Please enjoy by 10/06/15
Served in a Smuttynose tulip glass

* Steelers vs. Patriots game, kick off to 2015 NFL Season *

Pours a hazy golden orange with an impressive head. Killer sticky lacings clinging all over to the sides of the glassware.

Inviting nose with whiffs of freshly chopped citrus fruits.

Sweet caramel malt backbone with a splendid hop profile punch on the finish. Hints of lime, orange and pineapple. The great part is the finish, which is smooth and leaves you wanting another fresh sip. The 9.1% ABV is ridiculously deceiving.

Big fan of Great Lakes Brewing and this beer was a treat. Time to open another freshy.

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Photo of zac16125
3.52/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle
best before: 9/25/15

A: Golden orange and quite hazy, small white colored head dissipates quickly but leaves a good amount of lacing. 3.75

S: Lots of citrus, mostly orange and grapefruit, some sweet malts, not a lot else; its ok but I don’t love it. 3.5

T: Piney and citrus rind bitterness, balancing malt sweetness, a bit of booze. 3.5

M/D: Fuller side of medium body, carbonation appropriate, ABV noticeable at times but not significantly, drinkability is fair. 3.5

O: Pretty disappointing, I generally am a big fan of Great Lakes but this is pretty average. 3.5

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Photo of car2052
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a tulip glass.

A: Pours a nice burnt orange with a 1/2 inch of off-white head. Slight haze coming out of the freezer.
S: Floral hops, vanilla, mango, pineapple, and orange.
T: Nice orange-grapefruit profile. Subtle sweetness. Lacks a significant hop punch. Slight tropical flavors as well. Alcohol does not seem to be very present.
M: Medium
O: More on the malty side. Highly drinkable. Not necessarily a hop bomb.

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Photo of MacMalt
4.04/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into IPA glass. The color is a rich, orange-honey with a thick, foamy milk colored head and generous lacing. The smell not very hop forward; rather, I'm getting a lot of malt with some sweet fruitiness and pine. Not what I expected from an "Imperial" IPA. The taste is also sweeter than I anticipated with a sweet berry and significant maltiness. It's tangy more than hoppy. It sweetens as it warms. This is a medium-bodied ale with pleasant carbonation and a very nice mouth feel. Overall, this ale was very different from what I expected but I really enjoyed it. It's rather unique.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
4.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a lovely copper with a dense, off-white and creamy head that leaves lots of lacing down the glass.
The aroma is tropical fruit, orange juice and sweet candied fruit.
The taste is sweet and juicy with mango and orange up front followed by a middle biscuit-y sweetness and a lingering, resinous finish. Just a hint of the alcohol adds a pleasing warmth.
Mouthfeel is medium and smooth.
Quite enjoyed this brew.

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Photo of Roguer
3.87/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Lovely looking brew: light golden-orange color, nearly transparent, with a modest head.

Aroma reveals that this is a strong brew, with plenty of pale malt sweetness, pine, and juicy ruby red grapefruit. Perhaps a touch of mango as well.

Flavor follows in spades. Malt profile asserts itself heavily - not a surprise at 9.1%. Tons of residual sugars. Throughout, pine, mango, and mandarin orange provide a healthy hop rider to the malt base.

Smooth, thick, and syrupy; really bordering on TIPA territory.

This is the kind of DIPA with such a strong malt backbone that it can weather a few months of age without significant impact. My bottle was one month out from the Best By date, and while I'm sure it affected the aroma, the beer was still very tasty and completely drinkable.

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Photo of Roby923
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Rich honey color. Strong alcohol smell definitely not hiding the over 9 ABV here. More sweet than bitter. Was expecting a 'beastly hop attack' but this never came.

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Photo of AllDayIPA23
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

This was a good beer, but I don't have any interest in purchasing another. Everything I have tried from Great Lakes had been good, but this beer has got to be my least favorite.

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Photo of GregA135
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I remember tasting this IPA for the first time and was taken back by taste and hoppiness of this beer. A very smooth and crisp IPA. Good hops and a sweet malt backbone, a great summer beer. Enjoyed this IPA!

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Photo of jds16
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy orange-amber, lingering one finger head. Aroma of tropical fruit, honey, and alcohol. Tastes sweeter than most DIPA, but not cloying. This beer improves significantly as it warms up. Waves of tropical fruits, light caramel sweetness, and a bit of alcohol on the back end. Malty for a DIPA, but it works. Sticky, chewy mouthfeel.

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Photo of rjd722
4.02/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my snifter, dark amber (slight gold hints) color with a nice white foam head that quickly fades - great lacing though. Big malty, earthy aroma complimented by hops. For a 9.1% ABV this beer is nice and juicy, with big malt tones and tropical hops. There is a bit of a bite and the mouthfeel is slightly "sticky". I've had a few Imperials that haven't been able to mask the boozy taste but this one does a nice job of it. Interesting level of sweetness combined with bitterness in the aftertaste; certainly a nice Imperial.

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Photo of Buck89
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Hazy amber color with a bright white head that was short-lived. Aromas of orange, berry, bread and caramel. On the first sip, I get mainly a berry-like taste followed by citrus and a significant malt presence. Alcohol is noticeable but on par with most DIPAs I've had, Slightly sticky finish.

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Photo of Sintech
3.81/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz Bottle.

I get a lot of malt flavor and quite a bit of alcohol bite. Is this supposed to be a more balanced version of an DIPA? Either way this one missed the mark...


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Photo of jmdrpi
3.99/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft, served in a tall Great Lakes glass.

Clear dark golden in color, white head. Head fades. Nice strong earthy and floral hop aroma. Just enough malt body in the flavor of the taste. Medium bodied, mouthfeel is a bit sticky.

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Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 694 ratings.