1. Extreme Beer Fest tickets go on sale Sat, Sep 27 @ Noon EDT.
  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!

Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Lake Erie MonsterGreat Lakes Lake Erie Monster

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

2,149 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,149
Reviews: 640
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 11.94%
Wants: 141
Gots: 230 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  9.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

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

(Beer added by: BuckeyeNation on 06-29-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 2,149 | Reviews: 640 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In a word, balance. A full mouthfeel, and a meal in itself. Enjoyed on tap at Pizza Plant Transit, post-extreme beer fest. Orange-Peachy colour, with lace sheets. Fruity aroma.Some pineapple flavours.Complex and thorough melange of hops, a bit much to drain to cup. Very fresh.

Sammy, May 25, 2010
Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

t0rin0, Oct 08, 2012
Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -0.5%

djrn2, Jun 14, 2014
Photo of Thorpe429
3.63/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Big Hunt in Washington, DC

A: Pours a fairly-bright gold with a nice white head and some lacing as it makes its way down the glass.

S: Nice fruit in the nose with a decent amount of accompanying hop aroma. Tropical and citrus.

T: Quite a bit too sweet, IMO. There's a good amount of tropical fruit and citrus coming from the hops, but the malt in the background is a bit much.

M: A bit too sweet and heavy for a double IPA.

D: Again, a little over the top in terms of sweetness to be something I'd really want to go after for a while, but not bad in any regard.

Thorpe429, May 04, 2010
Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev -0.5%

zestar, May 10, 2014
Photo of nmann08
3/5  rDev -25.4%

nmann08, Jun 13, 2013
Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

acurtis, Aug 07, 2014
Photo of metter98
3.8/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On-tap at RFD, Washington, DC

A: The beer is clear yellowish amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down, leaving a large patch of bubbles in the center of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of sweet malts are present in the nose along with hints of citrusy hops.
T: Like the smell, this is very much a malt-forward IPA that has lots of malty sweetness along with slight bits of citrusy hops and a tad of bitterness, the latter of which gets a little stronger as the beer warms up.
M: It feels a little more than medium-bodied and somewhat crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer doesn't have much bitterness, but you can definitely perceive its strength from the strong dose of hops, which lends a caramel-like sweetness. The beer hides its alcohol very well.

metter98, May 11, 2014
Photo of brentk56
4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Arrives with a cloudy honey color and a very nice head that drapes a curtain of lace

Smell: Plenty of pith but not enough citrus

Taste: The malt, which is very significant, hardly has a chance to make its presence known before the bitter hops kick in; this beer gets very bitter and pithy by mid-palate and after the swallow, though there is a considerable malt presence all the way through

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A very nice DIPA, though it lacks a little in the citrus department; plenty of bitterness and not at all sticky

brentk56, Jul 02, 2010
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

"Ignorance breeds monsters to fill up the vacancies of the soul that are unoccupied by the verities of knowledge."

--Horace Mann

Shimmering apricot with Kruggerand gold accents and numerous strands of miniscule, slow moving bubbles. Their destination is a creamy crown of pastel orange-beige hue that filled one third of the glass on the pour. Foam persistence is remarkable and the quality and amount of lace is... good enough.

The aroma features a modest amount of the mid-range malts, but they let hops have the run of the place. Tropical fruity Simcoe was a great choice and earthy-herbal Fuggles was an odd choice. Hopefully, the Americans dominate the English on the palate.

Sorry, but Lake Erie Monster is still not my kind of DIPA. And here I thought the bottled version would be better than the tap version, which is often the case with this brewery. There's too much flavor contribution from the malt and there's too much malt in general. Looks like the masters at Great Lakes need some lessons from the masters at Surly, 3F, Bell's, etc.

If the malts were either more pale or more caramel-like (as opposed to toasted-earthy-nutty), this would be better beer. That's strictly personal preference, of course. 72 IBUs seems like a lot, but not when there are this many malt sugars to balance them out.

Specific flavors include sugar-crusted toasted grains, steely caramel, cedar chips, orange peel and pink grapefruit zest. What the hell, this big beast is improving a little as it warms and is better than my memory of the brewpub version back in '04. Therefore, the next highest taste score has been granted.

There is little question that beer from GL has a better mouthfeel when bottled. And there is *no question* in my mind that these guys are the single best mouthfeel brewery in all the land (top-3 at least). This offering is lush and plush and velvety smooth and big in all the right places. Carbonation is, as always, dead... solid... perfect.

In the end, bottled Lake Erie Monster is a little bit better than on-tap Lake Erie Monster. However, it still isn't the hop-soaked beer that I'd hoped it would be. Oh well, there's still the awesomeness of Edmund Fitzgerald and Burning River and Dortmunder Gold and Eliot Ness and Holy Moses and Blackout Stout... and on and on and on.

BuckeyeNation, Jun 29, 2010
Photo of Phyl21ca
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of SS: Poured a deep copper color ale with a big foamy head with excellent retention and some good lacing. Aroma of yellow grapefruit, floral and bitter hops is quite sublime and well balance for a style that does produce quite a lot of unbalanced beers. Taste is dominated by the yellow grapefruit characteristics of the hops with some floral malt notes and a bitter finish. Body is quite full with some great carbonation and no alcohol could be detected. Very well done for the style and something I wish I could have access to more often.

Phyl21ca, Sep 17, 2007
Photo of BEERchitect
4.22/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Isn't it about time we see a Great Lakes Imperial IPA widely distributed? Comparisons to Commodore Perry immediately come to mind.

The beer pours a deep golden, light amber color with ample carbonation and protein to build a froathy and formitable white head. Great lacing and a mild haze round out the look of the beer.

Sharp aromas of complex hop compounds (citrus, resin, garlic, grasses, and a subtle catty tone) gives a rustic and earthy twist to the otherwise clean citrusy scent. Sweeter confectionate sugars seem to have a cotton candy impact on the scent.

Flavors of those malts are ample enough to balance the hop attack. Powdered sugar flavored malts set the sweet tone while the earthy/grassy/citrusy hops leap off and garner attention from mid palate towards the finish. Alcoholic flavors of acetone capture the hop flavor but also give a nail polish-like flavor to the beer, seemingly somewhat soapy. Any esters are moderate or light and largely get lost in the hops.

Medium weighted and sweet to the palate early on. But eventually the hops and alcohols rise to the occation and provide a malty-dry feel very late in the finish. Somewhat minty and cool with the alcohols, the beer has a return bitterness in aftertaste.

Could this beer be a scaled up Commodore Perry? Very possibly so. However, the grassy/garlic/catty notes were not found in the former but are all present here.

BEERchitect, May 28, 2010
Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Texasfan549, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of mikesgroove
4.28/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this one in a trade a while back and just finally got around to trying it tonight. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 05/08/2009.

The pour was nice, Rich amber in color with a light haziness to it. A nice head of white, perhaps two inches in height rose up from the bottom of the glass and settled down with some decent lacing along the sides. Nice aroma of orange, thick, pungent and sweet with a nice malted backbone that really gave it some nice balance. Smooth, easy flavor here with all the abv non existent and really well done. Rich orange and pineapple flavors, buttery, biscuit like malt notes mid palate and a nice thick, medium feel that was accented nicely by some of the richest carbonation.

Overall very solid big IPA. Lots of well placed flavors and really smooth and very well done profile. I could drink this one again with ease.

mikesgroove, May 09, 2009
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev -0.5%

kjkinsey, Jun 15, 2012
Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%

GRG1313, Jul 18, 2013
Photo of womencantsail
2.25/5  rDev -44%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A: The pour is a dark amber color, maybe copper, with a finger's worth of moderately dense white head.

S: Um, this is a DIPA? Sweet and cracker-forward malts with some hints of oranges. Hints of pine, if you're feeling generous.

T: More of the same on the palate. A mild-to-moderate level of bitterness with plenty of biscuit and cracker malt flavor. Fairly bready with a bit of sweetness too.

M: The mouthfeel is good, at least. Medium in body with moderate carbonation.

D: This was really disappointing, I must say. Neither the nose nor the flavor were like anything you would expect from a DIPA.

womencantsail, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

ygtbsm94, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -0.5%

spycow, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of Knapp85
4.54/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This IIPA poured out as a copper color with a clear looking body to it. The head was very thick looking and white. The lacing was very good also. The smell of the beer had some big citrus aromas coming off of it. There was also some floral and sweet aromas also. The taste of the beer was very good, it had a wonderful hop flavor with some of the lemony orange citrus mixing with the sweetness of the malts . Leaves your mouth tingling and dry. The mouthfeel was medium bodied and had a good amount of lively carbonation to it. Overall I found this brew to be very good and would totally buy it again if it ever shows up at my local store. Good price and a good brew all in one.

Knapp85, Jul 01, 2011
Photo of oberon
3.6/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

One of the best breweries in American alot of the stuff I cut my teeth on back in the day was from this great brewery.Poured into a standard pint glass a slight hazed burnt orange with a clingy 1/2 finger white head that had great lasting power.Aromas were of sweet alcohol and resiny hop,neither one stood out more than the other really.Big and sweet on the palate, the alcohol dipped fruit and caramel malt flavors really was more prevailing than the resiny hop.Like alot of DIPA's this is more sweet than hop driven,its a good beer but not what Iam lookin for,bummer.

oberon, Jul 04, 2010
Photo of TMoney2591
3.58/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

I'm glad I took my time and scoured the shelves of Chevy Chase before I left, for lo, and behold: singles of Lake Erie Monster (among others, of course). Yay, I didn't have to buy a whole 4-pack. By the by, I'm cheap and tentative. My prize pours a clear apricot Jolly Rancher with a bit less than a finger of white foam on top. The nose comprises a deeply resin-y pine, heavy on the sap, a sort of mentholyptus effect, and violets. I suspect some caramel or something is hiding somewhere in there, but the 'lyptus is just too powerful, as though someone who's just devoured several cough drops is breathing heavily into my snifter. Luckily, the rest of the hoppy aromas mingle nicely with this semi-unexpected guest. The formally shy caramel shows up in the taste, though the conversation is still dominated by the pine resins. You can feel the stickiness in the taste, even before a true mouthfeel can be determined. Some citrus notes occasionally bring up new topics, but the pines and 'lypti (sure, that's the plural form...) take the ideas and run marathons. I'd rate this higher, but it all just seems overtly one-sided and overloaded with pine and fake-mint. The body is medium, with a lightly moderate carbonation and a somewhat chewy, definitely sticky feel. This one is almost there, but I think needs a tad more malt for proper balance (or something like that).

TMoney2591, Jun 20, 2010
Photo of emerge077
3.95/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Single from Before You Go Liquors, $2.99

Poured into a Duvel tulip. Frothy speckles of lace around the edges, a finger of offwhite foam initially. The head remains with a few clusters of larger bubbles on the surface. Deep glowing orange, hazy and opaque.

Initial whiff of sweet tropical fruit, mango maybe, but it's not clearly defined. There's something fresh and intoxicating about it.

Bitter and sweet flavors alternate, orange peel and grapefruit juice, the resiny bitterness builds in the finish, leaving a more grassy/herbal/pine impression. Alcohol is perceptible as it warms.

Overall not bad, didn't really blow me away, but i'd drink it again.

emerge077, Jun 13, 2010
Photo of zeff80
3.58/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a clear, golden-yellow color with a two-finger, off-white head of bubbly foam. It left sticky rings of patchy lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of citrus and pine. Some caramel aromas, too.

T - It tasted of light bitter spiciness with pine and citrus notes. A burnt toast malt backbone.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a clean finish.

O - This wasn't as good as I hoped. It is still a tasty Imperial IPA but didn't live up to my expectations.

zeff80, Aug 02, 2011
Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.26/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

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

S: The aroma contains fruity citrus, floral hops and caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts out sweet with a strong citrus sweetness followed by a strong but not over-powering hops presence. Then a hearty but not too heavy malt character comes in along with a mild alcohol sting. There’s a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly hoppy and slightly sweet.

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

O: Tasty, goes down dangerously easily, not too filling, strong kick, very good representation of style, this is a very good 2IPA to drink for a long time.

TheManiacalOne, Jul 29, 2013
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Great Lakes Lake Erie Monster from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 2,149 ratings.