Monk's Blood - 21st Amendment Brewery

Not Rated.
Monk's BloodMonk's Blood

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

509 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 509
Hads: 1,330
Avg: 3.8
pDev: 21.32%
Wants: 82
Gots: 183 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
21st Amendment Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.30% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: taxguyjase on 09-10-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 509 | Hads: 1,330
Photo of rapidsequence
1.4/5  rDev -63.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

12 oz can.

Appearance: Looks pretty good. A clear, dark ruby, almost purple. The head is light brown without much retention. Good looking beer I guess, but not for a Belgian dark.

Smell: Ugh. Is this a sour. Smells like vinegar. Sour cherries and vinegar.

Taste: Tart and vinegary. I get the sense that there's an ok beer behind it all.

Mouthfeel: Cant even tell. I need to wash my mouth out.

Drinkability: Pouring it. I tried to give it chance and kept tasting it over an hour or so. This seems like a different beer than what everyone else is reviewing, so I assume this is a bad can. How "can" that be?

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Photo of rudzud
1.53/5  rDev -59.7%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

A - Murkey rust color with hardly any head that immediately disappeared with hardly any lacing.

S - Has to be a bad can or something. Just smells, well, rotten. Can't pick up anything other than an offputting smell. Wow.

T - If I pinch my nose I can drink this. Not because the taste is bad, but because of the smell coming off it. I can pick up yeast, carmal, and some weird fruityness.

M - Smooth with little carbonation. Ugh, the smell.

D - Just cant get past the smell. Its horrific! Definate drain pour this can is. Very shocked. I was pretty sure I had drank this before and liked it so I went after a lone can of this. Just must have been a rotten can. This should be much lower rated, but I remember how good this was. Would probably be mostly 4's or so if I had a different can.

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Photo of emsroth
1.99/5  rDev -47.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

12oz can

App: Deep red-hued mahogany. Fairly cloudy. Fluffy tan head, but minimal lace.

Smell: Really not much going on here despite all of the ingredients. Some caramel, some roast malt, some herbal hops, and strong alcohol, but all this only if i dive my nose deep into the glass.

Taste: Again, not much going on here. Starts slightly fruity with a strong alcoholic bite. Ends with a solid earthiness from the herbal hops and coffee/toffee roasted malts.

Rather watery, slippery mouthfeel.

I wanted to like this beer. It sounded so good!

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Photo of Blackboardbrewing
2.11/5  rDev -44.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2.5

A complete mess in a can. No direction or idealistic approach. Ugh.

Was really looking forward to can release given recipe and idea...horrendous execution and still contract brewed! Why!? Done supporting this movement.

Boozy, hazy, iPad like with some cinnamon added. Painful to finish, first dump of 2012!

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Photo of ccrida
2.11/5  rDev -44.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

On draught at the Collins Pub, served in a small chalice, Monk's Blood is dark ruby with a small off-white head that leaves very light nice lace.

Smell is rich, sweet, dates and prune. Some is off, what is the FG of this, like 1.040??

Taste is similar, too sweet though for my taste in the style, and lacking esters. The alcohol creeps out a bit too much.

Mouthfeel is semi-dry, medium bodied, lacking digestibility.

Drinkability is on the lower side style wise. I knew I'd had this before and didn't like it, and am wondering why I bothered again. Fail.

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Photo of Pahn
2.32/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12oz can into a tulip.

Appearance: Careful pour yields a one and a half inch, bubbly, off-white head that dissipates slowly leaving splotchy lacing. Pours hazy dark amber, and leaves sparse lacing.

Smell: Dull, 1-note malt sweetness. Smells like a bad Euro pale lager. Probably should give it a 1.

Taste: Mildly sugary, with a kind of tangy and sour flavor that manages to have almost no character at all. Finish a little dry. At first there's some apple up front, which comes to be a little dominant as the beer warms (in other words, the beer starts to taste a bit like apple juice). There's some alcohol heat in the finish. Too often tastes like it smells (bad). Occasionally has a decent, sweet taste reminiscent of okay Belgian ales.

Mouthfeel: Rather carbonated, and between light and medium bodied (closer to light). Most sips are decidedly chalky, which is pretty disgusting.

Drinkability: This beer is unremarkable and unpleasant. I've had it twice to make sure. The second can was difficult to finish.

One of the worst Belgian style beers I've ever had. Worse than Leffe Blonde (which I hate), and insultingly priced at $3 a can--I wouldn't pay $3 for a 6pack of this. In fact, had I gotten this as a 4- or 6-pack, I would probably have sent most of it back to the brewery with an angry letter.

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Photo of samie85
2.45/5  rDev -35.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Reviewed from notes; originally 6/11/11.

A-Pours a ruby-hued brown color with two fingers of off white head.

S-Smells of vanilla and cinnamon spices with oaky and dark fruit notes.

T-Cinnamon and very overpowering dark fruit notes with some cheap cognac notes.

M-Medium bodied with very drying and hot alcohol notes that linger in the mouth and throat; low level of carbonation.

D-Pretty rough, and very alcoholic beer that's just not my thing.

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Photo of herman77
2.46/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

A: Pours an odd dark burgundy color. Very hazy appearance when held up to a light. Minimal off white head that dies off quickly. No lacing.

S: Doesn't have much of a nose. What is there is an odd sour smell with dark fruits/figs. It also has a very weird damp cardboard smell.

T: Dark fruits, cherries and figs. A little earthiness in the mix too. Slightly sour grape taste near the finish. A slight spice to it too, probably from the cinnamon. Slight alcohol ting at the end. Odd taste that was off putting at first, but it grew on me a little by the end.

M/D: Medium to lighter mouthfeel. Somewhat smooth, carbonation is average. Drinkability isn't the best, it just doesn't do much for me. Its worth a try, but I won't be trying this again.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
2.55/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from a 12oz. can into a Blue Point snifter.

A: Standard pour creates a 1 finger light brown coarse head with rather poor retention. Brew is a clear, deep, almost opaque amber. Lacing is stringy and sparse.

S: Nose is sweet vanilla, figs, grape, can't detect the cinnamon or the oak that is claimed here.

T: Opens very sweet. Grapes, booze, a bit of spice. Gets a bit syrupy towards the middle and the end and just kind of dissipates. No evolution of flavor here although there is a slight sweet and tart kick just as it finishes.

M: Light to medium bodied, relatively coarse for the style as a result of high carbonation here. Finishes relatively messy but the aftertaste is not overwhelming which is a plus.

D: Light bodied and not overwhelmingly complex, this is not close to a good representation of the style. Its not bad by any means but I expect a lot more complexity and exhilaration from a BSDA. No Belgian yeast flavor or nose, no complex fruitness, no life in this one. I'm not gonna have this one again.

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Photo of GRG1313
2.58/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Copper brown with red tints and a nice lighter khaki head.

Nose is big, full and rich bananas. Smells Belgian and would so identify in a blind tasting based on smell, although there is some fig and cinnamon character present.

Mouthfeel is medium thin but well balanced.

Flavors are rich and assertive but very sweet in all respects. Huge sugar front palate that goes to a sweet coffee/light carmel but retaining the sugar character and sweetness right through the palate and into the finish.

Finish is a nice toast/coffee/carmel bitter that end with a grapefruit skin oil character but with the sugar being so strong it lingers in your mouth.

Too sweet to drink and almost too sweet to even sip for my taste.

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Photo of zeledonia
2.58/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a deep, dark amber brown. Shows reddish when held to the light. A decent but not amazing amount of off-white head that recedes rather quickly but leaves good lacing.

Smell is a whole lotta sweet malt, figs, some Belgian-y yeast, and a bit of spice. Solid, but not super complex. Good enough that I'm definitely excited to taste it, but not so good that I'm convinced it'll be delicious. There's something hiding there in the background that doesn't feel quite right - an over-sweetness, or a touch of unpleasant bitter.

Taste is not so good. It starts out well enough, with caramel malts, brown sugar, some dark fruit. But then a sharpness comes in, a bit of acrid bitterness, that really doesn't go well with the other flavors in the beer. This flavor dominates the finish, and lingers beyond its welcome. Very un-smooth. And sadly, as it warms up and I taste it more, it just gets worse. This is the second beer I've had recently that reminded me of cough syrup. Fortunately, there are some good tastes in there, and the bad ones aren't totally overpowering.

Mouthfeel is okay; a bit syrupy, medium-bodied, light on the carbonation, holds the flavors in the mouth well. The only problem is, those flavors it holds in the mouth (especially the finish) are just bad.

This came damn near to being a drain-pour (in fact, I drain-poured the last quarter - a first for me). I continued on with the beer more to document exactly why I dislike it. Blech. The bitterness in the latter half of the flavor really kills this beer. I do NOT plan on drinking this again.

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Photo of Mcculler
2.58/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours from the can a muddy, reddish brown with a pretty, foamy head that leaves traces of chunky lacing.

Smells of cherry cola, overripe banana peel, and alcohol.

Tastes of cherries, a little vinegar (which I dig), overripe banana peel, with a little solvent.

Medium carbonation, so so in the mouth.

Belgian abbey- style ale in a can? Cool! Unfortunately, the flaws and in this beer make it a one time pour.

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Photo of Reagan1984
2.58/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured into my tulip glass and a 2 finger thick light tan head formed, then almost immediately faded. The beer is a deep ruby color. No lacing to speak of.

Aroma is sweet like molasses and also smells a little like red wine.

Wow, this is sweet. There's a rough bitterness to this at the end. Certainly lots of dark fruits. Can't say that I get much cinnamon or vanilla. Certainly plenty of sweetness that could be from the figs. I get beets believe it or not. Molasses.

Thick bodied and almost cloying.

Not really excited by this. Don't find it very drinkable at all. I have one can left and I will cellar that for at least a year.. (just because it can't get much worse)

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Photo of maximum12
2.6/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Well, great packaging, & good to see another brewery come into Minnesota, especially another in cans.

Pours a deep, hard ruby red, so dark it's almost brown, spilling out of that little stubby black can. Smell is...lacking. Not bad. There's just less coming off the brew than any other beer I've ever had. Odd.

I feel like I've been on a run of beers that took a hard veer off into the weird side, & Monk's Blood is no exception. Taste is saccharin sweet, infused with raw, rough dark fruits, a few sour raisins tossed into the mix. The aftertaste is faintly sour, & not in a real good way. Glad there's only 12 oz. of this in my pint glass, it's going to take a while to get through this, & I'm not eager for another.

All in all a disappointment. I'm not sure what the brewer was going for, but this is just a sweet mess without many endearing qualities to it. After trying the 21st IPA with similar results, I'm going to take a pass on further brews from the brewery.

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Photo of balzern
2.61/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- Red/ brown with a white head. Faded pretty fast.

S- Vanilla, chocolate, dark fruits, and oak. Cherry too but mostly dark fruits. Kinda pruney plum smell.

T- Like a dark fruit cocktail with dark chocolate shavings. I didn't get much Belgian from this beer but did get a ton of the dark fruits. The alcohol was really evident in this and had a burn to it which I did not care for.

M- Moderately carbonated and crisp.

O- I did not enjoy this beer and will not get it again. The kicker for me - the alochol was too in my face and the burn was annoying.

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Photo of oregonskibum
2.74/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz can into a small snifter glass.

A: Color is a dark brown with a strong red/amber tint. I wouldn't go so far as to call it blood, but there's definitely some red tints. Head is a thin tan color that disappeared quickly, leaving a ring around the edge of the glass and quite a bit of lacing.

S: Noticed raisins, earthy spices, and alcohol on first smell. Some sour notes as well, along with other dark fruit flavors (prunes).

T: Weird. Taste is all over the place. Raisins and prunes. Some sweetness (brown sugar), light spices, bready notes, lightly sour at times, etc. Odd finish with some slight heat from alcohol. As it warms, picking up some apple too.

M: Mouthfeel is oily, almost cloying. Very low carbonation.

D: It was certainly complex, but not necessarily enjoyable. Perhaps it's a style thing, but I'm not sure that I'll buy this again.

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Photo of impending
2.74/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz can into a tulip. Pours a deep red, nearly opaque in the glass. Short lived minor head, minor lacing.

Very sweet aroma, strong rotten banana esters atop the vanilla and figs. Hints of airplane model glue yet invitingly mysterious.

Dark fruits nicely dominate the initial flavor. The oak, cinnamon and vanilla are barely perceptible. Fleeting taste of a zinc slug. The phenolic solvents come back strong on the aftertaste, this is its major weakness. Medium bodied mouthfeel.


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Photo of TheSixthRing
2.75/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - Pours a deep auburn brown with light tan finger width head. Retention is average, leaving behind a thin but consistent lace. There's a considerable amount of sediment throughout.

Smell - Notes of brown sugar and clove; Belgian yeast; almost a 'rum and coke' aroma.

Taste - Sweet and sugary. Notes of dried fruit; fig, raisin and prune. Slightly sour. Plenty of alcohol burn in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Full body; slightly syrupy. Decent carbonation.

Overall - Too sweet and sugary. If I had to describe this in10 words or less it'd be 'A sugary, fruity rum and coke'. Lots of alcohol burn on the back end.

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Photo of whiterabbit
2.75/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

A - pours a darker brown slight ruby when held to light. Some dark gold. Nice looking in glass.

S - raisin, plum, spice. Good, nothing jumps out.

T - alcohol, some raisin, some grape, mostly alcohol

M - again alcohol. Not well hidden, warming, but not inviting

O - to each his own, totally missed the mark for me. Far better and enjoyable Belgians out there. Dispite some cellering, a boozy mess. Lacked depth, flavor, and body. Will have another down the road to see if opinion changes, and if so, will edit post.

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Photo of DefenCorps
2.81/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

mmmm... canned BSDA. Thank you, Peter!

A deep ruby red with a really dense and creamy light-brown head, this beer is quite gorgeous. With nice, red highlights, this is really a beautiful beer. The nose? Not so much. Plenty of adjuncts atop a very big and sweet beer, this is a touch disappointing. The dried fig character is immediately noticeable, along with the vanilla, some raisin character and a touch of alcohol. The cinnamon doesn't really jump out and the oak is noticeable as a mildly woody character. There's also a touch of chocolate syrup and some raisins. Decent.

Jesus Christ, what is this shit? Well, that was my initial reaction, but as I revisit this, what I'm struck by is the massive fig character of this beer, just so in your face. With a big fruity character, there's also some cherry juice and a mild tartness. Oak and vanilla appear mid-palate with a moderate grainy astringency. Quite cola-like, this is drying on the finish with a blend of cherry juice and figs, this is not particularly exciting. Medium-light in body with a high level of carbonation, this is a passable attempt at a Belgian dark, but it lacks nuance, complexity and enjoyability.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
2.86/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Pours a murky dark brown color. Head is frothy and of regular stature. Head retains well and leaves consistent lacing rings.

S-Whoa big banana notes. Also some underlying cherry notes. Smells like a mixture between banana bread and cherry lozenges. Lightly oaked too. A unusual and enticing nose with plenty going on.

T-The artificial cherry flavor leaves a grimace on my face. Not too much hoppiness. The complexity is lost in the cherry cough-syrup maelstrom. Plums and figs come out too. Spices linger. Oak is masked more than in the nose. Not a big fan of the overly stressed cherry flavor.

M-Full bodied. Moderate carbonation. A bit sticky.

O/D-Not a fan of this beer. I haven't come across a brew with that artificial fruit flavor that I have enjoyed. Not my style. Glad I only bought one can. I did not enjoy this beer but I can understand why some people may. Once again, just not for me.

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Photo of Ryan011235
2.88/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a Duvel tulip on 10/21/11

I don't know how old this is; been in the fridge for quite a while.

Medium ruby-hued; not as dark as, say, grape juice. Two finger head drops over several minutes leaving a thinner patch of foam. Some bands of lace remain.

Dry erase marker. Dark cherry scratch-n-sniff. Car air freshener spray. Fruit esters and notions of juice. Nips of plum. As it warms - straight up cherry soda with hints of dry spice. Strange aromas. Strangely alluring.

Huh. Tastes just as strange but not as strangely pleasant. Starts off dry with hints of spices. The middle is more fleshed out with notes of grains, nondescript dark fruit and a dusting of cocoa. Herbal notions, especially as it gets warmer. Finishes dry, more so than the at the start, but it's a accompanied by something that resembles aerosol spray accidentally catching your tongue.

Medium feel and a tad juicy, despite the dryness. Nimble enough carbonation seems well suited to the overall feel. The abv isn't standoffish.

Overall impression - not great by any means, but it's not terrible either. Consider the brewery.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
2.88/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed on 4/15/2010. Can. Pours a clear dark brown with a small white head. Aroma of sugary malt, soda, vegetal spices. Flavor of sweet, candy-like malt (like Sour patch kids), super sweet with some fruity notes. Very sugary and a touch of sour. Wow, really weird quad. Nothing really comes out except the sugary sweet candy-like notes. Sugar bomb.

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Photo of 4000qtrap
2.92/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Source/serving: 12oz. can, no expiration date.
Smell: ripe fruits like cherries and figs, and little yeasty, sour, cidery and vanilla.
Taste: Like a black forest cake. Initially sour but then becomes quite sweet with some cherry and ripe fruits along with brow sugar, but then this is partially balanced out by bitterness. However, a third, very interesting wave of dark chocolate dries the palette up nicely. Medium body. Finish lingers for a very long time and is really delicious, chocolate, bitter, and cherry. Unfortunately however, as the beer warms it loses much of the interesting character except for the sweetness and becomes quite cloying. However, its quite tasty cold.

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Photo of moorerm04
2.96/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A- Can poured into a standard pint glass. Nice rusty amber color, with 1-1-/2 finger off white head that quickly dissipated. Zero lacing left on the glass as the head fell.
S- Standard Abby aroma's dark dried fruit, some spicy notes from the yeast, sweet, fruity, hint of oak and vanilla. Pleasant smelling beer!
T- something is off... I found this beer very astringent! I get roasted malt, dark fruits, a little warmth from the alcohol, there is oak and vanilla present as well.
M- nice bite from the carbonation. Not evervecent like a saison or blonde but done well.
O- I have had this beer in years past and it has always been a pleaser for me until this year. I had to grab a 4 pack since it wasn't available in 2013. I don't know if 21st just dropped the ball or I got a bad 4 pack. This beer tasted like a crappy home brewed Abby. I don't know if they fermented warm, if the mash PH was off or if the oak was over done. Astringent , tannins, I don't know but it wasn't the beer I remember in the past.

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Monk's Blood from 21st Amendment Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 509 ratings.