Lilja's Hop Nest Monster - Sand Creek Brewing Company

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Lilja's Hop Nest MonsterLilja's Hop Nest Monster

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191 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 191
Reviews: 105
rAvg: 3.34
pDev: 16.17%
Wants: 3
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sand Creek Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: feloniousmonk on 01-14-2009

Nest is NOT a typo.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 191 | Reviews: 105
Reviews by Lauthaha:
Photo of Lauthaha
4.33/5  rDev +29.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a beer mug.

Appearance: Beer pours a beautiful medium golden color. Moderate carbonation visible through the glass. Excellent head retention; after several minutes, there's still at least a finger of off-white head left. Wispy lacing, like cumulus clouds dotting the sky on a summer's day.

Smell: Very floral. Some mild bitterness. Grapefruit leaning towards clementine citrus tones. Maybe a little spice somewhere in there for good measure.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Beer is tangy at first, the citrus-type flavor shining through on impact. As the carbonation begins to bubble, a very hefty and beautiful malt character is unveiled. Moderate bitterness balanced with just the right amount of sweetness...a win win! Aftertaste is hops, but not overpowering. Darn-near perfect.

Overall: Really good for the style, very drinkable, and relatively inexpensive.

More User Reviews:
Photo of weatherdog
3.11/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass

It pours a crystal clear gold with a nice decent white head and medium lacing.

Medium light crystal malt aroma up from then going into some floral and light citrus hops. It's all around just pretty muted and very balanced. Not too impressed.

The surprising thing about the bitterness in this beer is that it comes on strong and harsh but then really dies in the aftertaste, it's something I kind of enjoy as the lasting, resiny bitterness is not my thing. Hop flavor is swayed more towards the floral with just a little bit of grapefruit coming through. Nearly non existent malt flavors but it lends a balancing sweetness at the end.

Overall it's a very average American IPA, nothing great but nothing really wrong with it, like so many of the of the hundreds or thousands of IPA's out there.

Photo of Soonami
3.9/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lilja's Hop Nest Monster is a beer I've never heard of or seen before, but a single was available at my local bottle shop, so I gave it a shot.

The beer is surprisingly pale, a hazy straw color that you would expect for find in a pilsner. The white head was frothy and irregular with really nice cling, supported by a nice stream of bubbles. The aroma was grassy and earthy more like German noble or Continental hops than American C-hops typical in IPA's with a good bit of bready malt presence, as well a the DMS aroma (canned corn, generally considered a fault, but I personally like it). On the tongue, it is surprisingly bitter, more so than I had expected. The bitterness is not in the typical pine or grapefruit (although I get some of this) it is very herbal, like bitter melon or kale. The finish is pretty sweet, which I do not normally like, but I attribute as an artifact due to the high bitterness. Though sweet, the beer is not too thick and has a pleasant, light body.

I think that this is enjoyable beer that doesn't quite fit the American Pale/IPA style. It's a bit too bitter, not enough hop flavor and aroma, sweet in the finish, however, it was a pleasure to drink and I happily drank the entire bottle's worth

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.5/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in an American pint glass)
A- This beer pours a hazy orangeish-golden body with a thick lumpy off-white head and a gentle carbonation.
S- The green piney hops have a cinnamon hint to them with a soft minty quality. There is a faint musty diaceytal butter note to the finish.
T- The dry pungent bitey hops have a cream flavor to follow them. The hops are aggressive and a bit harsh without having much hop flavor to them. There is a slight sweetness underneath that comes through when the beer opens up and some faint toasted malt that comes with them. The finish is more bitter pungent hops bite that lingers a moment.
M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a tight fizz and no alcohol heat noticed.
D- The hops are soft in aroma and flavor but full in bitterness. It made this beer a bit tough to get through but the malt offered a little support to the bitterness.

Photo of Brenden
3.68/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a clear, deep yellow that just gives the slightest hint of an orange tint in a certain light. The head pours about a finger and fades to a thick foam that leaves some firm patchy lacing behind.
This smells very much like a pils initially. There's a bit of a hops presence in there and it's clean and pretty raw with a natural earthiness. There's a faint malt as well.
The taste is like an APA with a citrus and flowery hops flavor, fairly strong but not typical of an IPA. Plenty of grapefruit and citrus rind with a little pine resin is in there with a light malt presence. Raw bitterness lingers in the finish.
There's a moderate crispness with a smooth finish in a medium body. Carbonation is light to moderate.

Photo of cokes
2.81/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hazy golden straw with a decent rise of white suds. They quickly sink towards the surface, but then stick around, lacing well.
The nose is fairly closed, but brings lemon oil, peppercorns, and a floured breadiness.
Taste follows suit. Bready upfront and throughout, dusted heavily with flour. There are minor flourishes of pear-like sweetness. Hops bring some lemon traits, but overall flavor is underdeveloped. Though there is a substancial peppery, dry hay, talc-like bitterness.
Medium bodied, with a rushing carbonation up front that wanes as it goes. The briskness of the CO2 actually plays well against the sharp bitterness, and this suffers as it fades away.
The acute dryness makes this rapidly drinkable, as one is thirstier for having taken a sip.
This could use some work.

Photo of Sammy
3.72/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Hopcat. Very hoppy, like a double IPA Light yellow body with creamy white head and lacing. Hoppy aroma, creamy mouthfeel at the beginning and then lighter as you work your way through the head. Carbonation right there, as in all the taps at Hopcat.

Photo of dirtylou
3.46/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz single - i should know better than to purchase crappy sand creek products but the label got me

appearance: very busy label with a "cheddar curtain" reference - pour is pretty nice - kind of a dull copper body but a real nice foamy white cap and full retention

smell: pretty light, bready, lemon, light hops

taste: nice and oily but with a dull hop profile - light bitterness, lemon, dough, lacks a refined definition or direction

mouthfeel: oily, medium

drinkability: good

Photo of WoodBrew
3.15/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

The beer pours a pale golden yellow color with some hop haze and a thin white head that is leaving some lace. Smells a bit on the light side, some mild floral components, a touch of breadyness. The taste is bitter with a slight sweet malt balance. I does not go over the top. transition between bitter and malty is nice. taste is floral, with a tinge of lemon peel. mouthfeel is perfect, carbonation lasts for 45 minutes through the session, great semi dry finish. Mouthfeel is medium to full body with smooth carbonation. Overall is is ok.

Photo of tempest
3.16/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Keith for sharing this. There was a doughy malt background behind standard citrus and pine hops. While this beer is technically fine (no flaws), it's also fairly unremarkable. The hops aren't very big for an IPA, this comes off more like a thick pale ale.

Photo of mikey711
3.41/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to beersis81 for the extra!

A: Bright yellow/goldish color with great transparency, tons of rising carbonation and a nice fluffy white head that leaves really great lacing. Head retention is very good as well. The only flaw was the pour had a bit too much carbonation otherwise this is very asthetically appealing

S: Very grassy and herbal, smells mostly like german hops. No citrus but there is some floralness and pine. Also a little bit of caramel is present in the background.

T: Not the mega citrus bomb that I usuall go for but the floral and herbal quality are actually quite nice. a good amount of pine is present but it has a slight astringent quality to it. A bit of sweetness is present as well too

M: Slightly rough around the edges with a bit of astringency.

D: I wouldnt want to have this on a regular basis but it was a nice change up from my usual IPA habits

Photo of Kegatron
3.58/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a clear gold, with at least 2 fingers of rich and foamy bright-white head. Retains with a thin yet creamy layer of froth that flares up quite robustly and coats the sides of the glass with some sticky patchy lacing. The aroma is floral and earthy, with some herbal accents, bitter grapefruit, and gentle spice coming out as well. Bready notes and some lighter caramel mix in with the hops, giving this a danky smelling tang in the back of the nostrils.

The taste is aggressive with hops, as resins, spice, earthy green citrus, and gritty bitter citrus rind all being very assertive and lingering strongly on the palate with an intense dry feel. The malts feel more on the Paler side here, blending with the fruitier aspects of the citrus flavors to help provide some balancing sweetness. The moutfeel is meduim bodied, with a slick and creamy texture in the mouth, keeping this easier feeling than it probably should be. Some light alcohol is present but it's less tasted than it does help strengthen the bitterness of the hops.

Well there were certainly no shortage of hops in this, even if their character was a bit all over the place at times. The aggressiveness got a little out of hand but there was just enough balance here to keep things in check and the easy body on this kept the drinkibility up for the most part.

Photo of brewbucker
4.15/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really like this new brew. It pours a light/medium hazy gold with a small head. Leaves some nice lacing as well. Aroma is mild, fresh and crisp. Light hops, pine, citrus and malts. Flavor is bitter hops, light malt and citrus zest. The mouthfeel is nice and dry. This is honestly one of the better IPA's I have had in a while. Not overpowering and very drinkable.

Photo of DaneBramage
2.84/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

L: Golden brown with a small foamy head.

S: Hoppy and citrusy.

T: mildly hoppy and citrusy but bitter. Watered-down flavor, almost a light-beer version of an IPA.

F: average.

O: The name here is misleading - not extremely hoppy and not a monster taste. Disappointing.

Photo of beerthulhu
2.58/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: A crystal clarity pumpkin orange coloring shows a light and lazy rise of effervesce. The head is frumpy and rocky of light cream coloring, standing an initial finger high. Retention was fair, as was the lacing.

S: Lemon weed best describes this, really light in strength despite its name. Lightly dried vegetation, dried citrus peel. Really disappointing in light of its name, what a farce.

T: Watery toasted grains, dried flowery citrus is quick to hit and go before returning to a weak finish. A bit more distinguishable then their argosy, but really isn’t saying to much. Dried grapefruit shows a quick flash at punch out. The strength is coarse but again as with their argosy, a wreck and like chewing raw citrus weeds. A ton of hops alone doesn’t make for a good beer, neither a snappy name.

M: The mouthful is medium, dry toasted malt with a touch of heat coming from the alcohol and warming citrus. Dried grass comes as well on the swallow.

O: Overall another bitter disorganized beer by sandcreek that is trying to be the big bully on the block in the ipa department, but needs to step back and learn some class and refinement. Its evident that they know neither so just opted for the most blunt and offensive amount of hops which im sure is someones thing. No complexity, uninteresting flavor, boring, and a hold off by purchase unless you just like to be insulted.

Photo of emerge077
3.18/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Into a tulip this pours a dull coppery orange. Bright, bleached bone white foam rests on top with some sticky lacing. Aroma is all floral with some skunk and sweet caramel malt buried underneath. Bitter and sappy, some malt meagerly appears in the middle, and the end is all harsh bitterness. Pine and chalky bitter aspirin without much else to balance it. It has medium body and a decent carb level, but far too abrasive to really enjoy it that much. Needs more malt and hop flavor to improve. It leaves me wondering how old this bottle is, it's been 6 months since the first review.

For the masochistic hop heads out there...a monster indeed.

Photo of jsh420
3.93/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours semi cloudy yellow orange with a 2 finger head that left spotted lacing

smells of some fruity hops but malts for the most part

taste is good - reminds me of a stronger snpa - richer sweeter carmel/crystal malts and fruity hops - i would rate this higher if it were a pale ale but ipa is stretch

mouthfeel is light crisp and creamy

drinkability - very good session beer although the abv is unknown

Photo of BierFan
3.28/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass. No freshness date on the bottle.

One finger of off-white head. Fine yeast particles held in suspension in a hazy apple cider colored body. Even though the head wasn't that big, it shows decent retention. Floral hop aroma, maybe a little grapefruit as well. Not a great deal of flavor. Flowery hops, hop bitterness, yeast.

Photo of estereich
3.12/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I was very excited when I poured this beer. It had a nice golden to amber color and a thick head. It also had great citrussy hop character in the nose. The first taste was nice. Slightly sweet and citrus up front, but the feel quickly faded to a hard dry bittertness, and that was about it. Subsequent sips had less of the sweetness up front and that dry bitterness became more and more pronounced. I know that IPA's are noted for their hop character, and I even consider myself somewhat of a "hop head," but this beer had no complexity of taste and little character other than the bitterness.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.3/5  rDev +28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this beer as an extra in a recent trade. I am always thrilled to try new beers, and having this one was going to be no exception. This gem of an IPA was served cold and poured into a pint glass. Consumed on 03/29/2009.

The pour was very nice. Rich medium amber in color with a nice head of white coming up and over the top. Decent settling and nice carbonation left a good amount settling down as it warmed. Rich notes of pungent pineapple and grapefruit led the way here. Subtle malts mid palate as it warms provided a nice amount of balance, and the easy, smooth character of it really showed off quite nicely. Rich hop profile here as it warms and the finish was full of orange and pineapple bite. Really nice medium body and a full, dry finish that begged me to come back for another round.

This was about as solid of an IPA as you get. Really top notch and I would go back to it anytime.

Photo of bjohn84
2.66/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Looks great with nice clarity. A solid finger of fluffy white head

S - Get the aromas of a euro lager. Nothing like I was expecting from this one

T - Dry and fairly bitter, but not a lot of flavor. Get some citrus

M - Dry and pretty light on the tongue

O - It feels like the hop blend doesn't fit the style here. Some pine, but getting mostly dry and earthy rather than the typical citrus, fruit, or floral flavors you often find

Photo of buschbeer
2.87/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I reviewed this beer last week but it is not on here. So here we go again . . .

I poured into a pint glass to an inch of white head. It is yellow in color. This is a lot lighter than expected. The smell is of weak pine. It has a bitter taste but not in a good way. Overall, it is not a good IPA.


Photo of TheBeer
3.4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad beer, but not one to seek out by any means. Labeled as a primordial extra pale india pale ale, but it tastes taste nothing like that. There is no shot of bitter hops if that is what you are seeking out in this beer. The beer is a little sweet for an IPA and it doesn't seem to come from the severe lacking presence of malts. Fairly normal smell with grapefruit and orange overtones and a slight breadiness. Taste essentially mocks the smell with a citrus fruit forward taste and a much calmer maltish on the back end. If nothing else satisfies your craving for this beer, the label will be sure to please. If you can find single bottles for $1.50 or so(maybe even $1.00(other options are better and cheaper) )then pick one up. This will not be your next holy grail of beers, but it will satisfy your craft beer desire.

Photo of Jesse13713
3.83/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Awesome bottle art. Picked up at 101 Bottles in Kent.

Appearance - A volcano of frumpy and frothy head. Whipped and scoopable on your fingers. Does not lace to the glass hardly at all. The beer itself is a sickly pale green. It looks poisonous, even venomous, in a way.

Smell - A slightly sour apple smell. A light citrus zest that is also full of hops. Quite fruity overall.

Taste - A nice burn all-throughout. Light hops with a bit of lemon juice in the background. I get some sort of odd unsweetened cotton candy taste also. Heavy in apple.

Mouthfeel and Overall - Very dry in its entirety. Low carbonation. A bit of sweetness in the end adds a different tone. This IPA has something a bit special about it, although it is hard to put my finger on. I liked this quite a bit.

Photo of weeare138
2.51/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to TomDecapolis...
Appears a hazy light gold with a small white head that fades into a mild cap. Spotty bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of cracked grain and a bit of a bland clay like aroma.
Taste...ok, talk about bland. Just not a whole lot going on in this other than the yeast.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, yeasty overkill, and grassy bitterness. I don't like it. Sorry.

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Lilja's Hop Nest Monster from Sand Creek Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 191 ratings.