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Lilja's Hop Nest Monster - Sand Creek Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Lilja's Hop Nest MonsterLilja's Hop Nest Monster

Educational use only; do not reuse.

105 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 105
Hads: 191
Avg: 3.35
pDev: 16.12%
Wants: 3
Gots: 8 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 105 | Hads: 191
Photo of pacothrash
1.85/5  rDev -44.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

This is one of the worst beers I have ever had. It poured a piss yellow color and has a frothy very light head. I should have not paid the $8.99 price for 6 of these beers. I cannot compare this beer to any other IPA's I have every had. I enjoy a good American IPA and this does not cut it. I think I will have a Clipper City Heavy Sea's IPA after cleaning my palate with some water.

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Photo of wvsabbath
2.26/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Golden tan/yellow with a minor 1/4 inch head and some sticky lacing.

Smell - Very bland, light hop aromoa. A farmhouse, sour like flavor also. Not much else.

Taste - Starts out with a odd fruity flavor. Kinda like a mix of grapes and mango with some europeon malt. Has added sugars and plenty of lemon flavor that makes it very tart.

MOuthfeel - The strange flavor coats tounge and bitters the hell out of it. Palate gets the grape/lemon flavor and leaves it bittered and dry.

Overall - Not very good, odd flavor and no balance. Sour fruit with some lemon . Not worth the effort to crack open the bottle, avoid.

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Photo of mattcrill
2.43/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Aroma: Low levels of floral hop resins appear first. Slight smell of skunkiness and buttery-like aromas but they are faint. Still, not a good sign.

Appearance: Light straw color with a bone-white head. Appears very efferevescent in the glass.

Flavor: Nice floral hop flavors but again I get some background skunkiness and butter-like flavors. They fade in and out and I'm not sure I get them with every sip but it definitely fits in the "things that make you go hmmm" category. Finish is nice and dry. Aftertaste is bitter. Balance is to the bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Light body with high carbonation. A little slippery so if it "smells like a duck, tastes like a duck, and has the mouthfeel of a duck" it must be diacetyl.

Overall impression: A light bodied, suspicious IPA. Base beer seems ok but fermentation and packaging issues suggest otherwise. Pass next time.

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Photo of ncketchum
2.43/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Served in a Sierra Nevada imperial pint glass

A - pours a straw yellow with much carbonation, 2 fingers of white head with good retention.

S - a bit of floral hops followed by malt. nothing off-putting but nothing to write home about

T - straight bitter - not really in a good way. kind of harsh with a medicinal aftertaste

M - fair, not too thin

O - nothing that I'm going to seek out again, I might actually end up drainpouring this one... Others I know have liked it, did I get a bad bottle?

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Photo of silentjay
2.44/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

picked up a single of this on a recent trip to Michigan as this is nothing I've seen nor heard of in Massachusetts.

A quick note about the bottle: terrible, terrible label design, layout, artwork and fonts used. Way too much going on and it becomes a jumbled mess.

pours a rather clear bright yellowish copper with a dense off-white head that retains well, but leaves little lacing on the glass.

very pungent with bready malts and earthy, herbal hops dominating the nose. also a dank marijuana smell contributes a bit of the earthiness in the nose. almost reminds me of an english bitter with a bit more earthy hops added in the aroma.

taste is a bit more what I expected, but only by a bit. biscuity and white-bread tasting malts are apparent throughout though the herbal, earthy hops come through and are accompanied by a hint of piney and grassy hops as well as some bitter citrus rind.

I can't complain about the carbonation or body. almost medium bodied with an ample amount of prickly carbonation that works well to accentuate the good aspects of this beer.

not a great drinking beer for me. an odd blend of aromas and flavors seem to fight rather than work together. astringency is there throughout, though I'm not sure if its from the alcohol content or the combination of flavors.

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Photo of weeare138
2.51/5  rDev -25.1%
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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Photo of beerthulhu
2.58/5  rDev -23%
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.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.58/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Gale Sayers shaker pint glass.

Bah, it's just a stick... Anyway, this stuff pours a clear straw topped by about a finger or so of lightly off-white foam. The nose comprises sweet flowers, light lemon zest, light orange zest, and white bread. The taste...well, I think the only way I can describe it is as follows: Take an orange. Peel it. Take the shards of peel, flip them over, so that the orange side is facing away from you, then lick the side facing you. That's what this stuff tastes like, all orange resin-y and bitter. Boo this. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a wet-ish feel. Overall, the hops just didn't work in this beer (or such is my assumption as to what happened). Not a fan.

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Photo of SerialHiker
2.58/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: Pours an orangish golden color…some bubble action in the middle…transparent…some head formed, but decided not to stick around…(3.5/5)

Smell: Bitter initially…pale malts come out after…not overly floral or citrusy…grassy and sweet…after I really stick my nose in the glass, I pick up a hint of citrus, lemon maybe, but it’s only ‘cause I was really digging deep that I noticed it…definitely an “extra pale” smell…(3/5)

Taste: Floral hops and bitterness right off the bat…there is a pale malt backbone that does ride all the way through but plays a deep second to the bitter hop flavor…the extra pale malts do linger and coat the middle of my tongue, but the bitterness is dominate and takes no prisoners…there is little other flavor that bitter hops and pale malt…(2.5/5)

Mouthfeel: Light and fluffy…medium carbonation does fluff and create a bitter factory in my mouth…pale malts do run the middle of my tongue, but it’s a bitter beer…(2.5/5)

Overall: Not my favorite…the extra pale malts with overly bitter hops is one concept, I guess…the bitterness is too dominant and leaves the pale malts in the dust, creating a train wreck of flavors in my mouth…there is little else going on here, leaving me wishing there was more citrus or less floral bitterness or maybe some balance with the malt…something…as it is, it’s a beer that I’ve tried and won’t again…(2/5)

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Photo of bjohn84
2.66/5  rDev -20.6%
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

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Photo of Ryan011235
2.68/5  rDev -20%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass on 11/12/09

A - Pale yellow/gold in color. Pours a one finger head that holds at first but eventually dissipates to a thin layer which lasts throughout. Sporadic, yet solid rings of lace.

S - Over-ripe citrus: orange & lemon. Reminds me of pine-sol, having a soapy aroma to it. Hints of pine & floral hops. Slightly dry malt undertones.

T - Very similar to the nose. Hops are definitely present here, mostly orange, grapefruit & lemon. Some hints of a piney bitterness, too. Toasted bread & biscuit in there. Like the nose, it's kind of soapy.

M - Medium bodied with carbonation that seems appropriate. Finishes dry with some residual flavors lingering.

D - While this beer is far from enticing & isn't particularly good in my opinion, it is drinkable. To that end, I won't be drinking it again unless someone gave me one, or maybe if it were on draft. Maybe.

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Photo of CPeterson
2.68/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A -- A hazy golden ale which produced a good head that vanishes quickly, leaving a resinous lacing.

S -- Smells slightly acidic / citric, a touch of sour apple, and some light caramel notes.

T -- Bitter all the way through. A mild sweetness attempts to make an appearance through the middle and falls flat. Out of balance.

M -- Twangy and drying. Outrightly astringent. Nice carbonation, but the use of hops makes it heavy on the palate.

D -- I may consider trying this again in order to see the consistency of the brewer, but it wouldn't make it into regular rotation.

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Photo of gatornation
2.71/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

this ipa pours a yellow mostly clear color with a i finger white head,,,smell was biscuit ,malts slight floral hop aroma some adjunct smells ..taste was that of a slightly bitter adjunct lager,it had some hop bite with slight malts..it was well carbonated but really tasted like a budweiser ..while that not bad it is if it says its an ipa..not recommended..if you are looking for an ipa

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Photo of Bendurgin
2.71/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Got this from a generous mid-west BA. Poured in into a tulip. Pours a hazy golden honey color with a fluffy white head about the size of one finger. Good head retention. Initially it smells pretty good. Lots of citrus aromas. It really reminds me of Tropicana pineapple orange juice. After a couple whiffs I'm still trying to find some hops and eventually I find a trace of grassy hops. Unfortunately, I really had to reach for them. Tastes like it smells; citrus flavor, mostly pineapple orange juice. A little bit of hop bittering, but not as much as I'd expected. The juiciness eventually because a little sickeningly sweet. After a couple sips I felt like this was more of a fruit juice than a beer. I like fruit juice, but I wanted a beer. Fair enough mouth feel, the carbonation was good but I felt like this was heavy. Really thick and syrupy. It took me a while to drink this. Probably because it was so sweet. I generally like a good juicy IPA but this was too much. I think I would have found it more refreshing had it been a little less sweet and had a little bit more of a lighter body.

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Photo of NoLiberty
2.74/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Beastly illustration label design reminiscent of Ralph Steadman.

Pours a frothy clear brew, light golden color. Big frothy head sets up on top and drips down the sides with massive amounts of lacing and sticky wonderment. Quite an enticing appearance. Lighter than expected in color, but certainly not bad.

The aroma when cold is light, crisp, young smelling and grassy. As it warms the grassy quality actually turns more straw-like in aroma with subtle hoppy fruit characteristics. But overall this beer has a very understated hop aroma. For the name I was expecting a far greater blast on all fronts, including smell.

Taste is slightly sweet up front and immediately transitions to a flat bitterness and subtle pine quality. The flavors jump from one to the next without great softness, so the beer acquires an abrasiveness.

Light to medium body with some good feeling in the mouth. Carbonation is light but present, slightly sharp adding to the textural bite of the flavor.

Not that drinkable for an IPA and not all that satisfying on any collective front. A disjointed experiment in the extreme.

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Photo of OlRasputin989
2.74/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured into a pint glass...

A: pours a slightly hazy shade lighter than amber with a large off white rocky head that leaves lots of webbed lacing

S: aroma of lemon, orange peel, grass, and pale biscuity malt. hops aromas are much lighter than i had expected. very subdued and lacking complexity

T: a tad better than the aroma. has a sweet honey toast malt flavor with a much stronger hop presence than the nose implies. hop flavors are grass, orange peel, lemon peel, and pine sap. has a long finish of very bitter hops and biscuit-flavored malt

M: light-medium body with a medium carbonation and a resinous, very dry finish.

Overall, this beer seems to be headed in the right direction, but i'm not digging the choice of hops. They lack the grapefruity, piney, and danky weed hop characteristics I look for in world class AIPAs. That being said, I found the long hoppy finish to be displeasing. Most likely would not purchase again, unless out of options. And by options I mean Bud, Miller or Coors. Ya, thats not gonna happen. Cheers!

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Photo of BasementBer
2.75/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Light straw translucent color. Good lacing, good bone-white head retention. Little to no carbonation.

S: Grainy, some bitterness from the hops in aroma, but mostly grain and husk.

T: Has a decent pale malt body, but its swept away by the somewhat overpowering hops. A good bitter, but not the citrus i prefer in the style.

M: Bitter resin on the tongue and pockets of the mouth are enjoyable.

D: Its an ok IPA, id prefer a bit more variation than one or two different hops and the same pale malt to be sparking my interest.

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Photo of EwaldEichstaett
2.77/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A: Amazing creamy white head and excellent lacing. The beer is colored straw golden. Strangely lighter than most IPA's.

S: At first piney floral and citrusy hops... after a few minutes the smell becomes much more bitter and sharp.

T: The first taste of this beer was wonderful but after sitting for a few minutes the hops loose their depth and character. Like the smell, the taste becomes unpleasant and sharply bitter, perhaps chemically :(

M/D: feels all-right in the mouth, but I can't get over how the flavor changed so drastically... Bad bottle??

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Photo of Otesanek
2.78/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Very hazy golden glowing orange, tiny 1/2" head settles to a light fog with a solid ring, lacing is ok. The smell is nice enough, mellow sweet malt and faintly citrusy hops, kinda like a lighter version of 90 minute. Deeper inhales bring out some bitter resinous pine notes. Flavor isn't very great, unbalanced in the direction of bitterness, rather harshly so. Holding it in my mouth I really only pick up some nondescript malt sweetness and intense pine hop bitterness. The finish is grapefruit pith. Mouthfeel is average, a little high on the carbonation side given the bitterness. The drinkablity is ok, not coating or cloying, finishes clean, but the out of whack bitterness hurts the repeat performance. I've wanted to use the phrase "hopness hot-mess" for a while now, it fits this beer. "Hop Nest, hop-ness, hot mess." It seems like the bulk of the hops went in for the long boil and the finishing hops were overlooked or under represented.

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Photo of cokes
2.81/5  rDev -16.1%
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.

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Photo of PilsPony17
2.82/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a Belgian tulip.

A: A dark gold, wheat colored brew with fairly decent head. Head retention is quite good and kept up until the finish. Carbonation on the medium side of things. Unfiltered (didn't notice at first until the end) which makes this feel very promising.

S: Not too aromatic. Has a very subtle grassy aroma with a little bit of hop presence behind it.

T: Hops are right up front on the palate with a slight biscuity flavor to it. Very lemony and sharp. Hops dominate most of the taste even after the finish.

M: Smooth mouth feel and nice level of carbonation makes it a very quaffable brew.

Overall: It's a fairly average IPA. The presentation and mouthfeel of this brew is on par with what I'm looking for, but the hops dominate way too much and seems to be lacking a more malt background in that area. Aroma of the brew was less than impressive. Drinkable, but I've had better.

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Photo of jmich24
2.83/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle.

A: Light gold with orange hues. One finger head stays around for the entire glass. Nice carbonation from etched glass. Nice lacing
S: Grainy nose with light grassy hop smell.
T: Slightly sweet maltiness. Some hop bitterness more floral than anything, some pine.
M: Crisp, high carbonation, light/medium mouth feel.
D: Drinkability is fine. Just nothing outstanding going on here.

This is just not that good. Everything here is just average in terms of IPAs (My favorite Style) Will not purchase again or take a suggestion from the guy at the beer store.

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Photo of DaneBramage
2.84/5  rDev -15.2%
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.

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Photo of buschbeer
2.87/5  rDev -14.3%
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.


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Photo of BigMike
2.92/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I reviewed this a few weeks ago but it disappeared.

Pours a light golden yellow with a thin white two finger head.

Smell was floral with a light amount of citrus.

This one tasted a bit "off" to me. Light floral and citrus and a bit skunky for lack of a better word.

This is not one i would want to drink again or one that i would recommend.

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Lilja's Hop Nest Monster from Sand Creek Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 105 ratings.