Flying Monkeys Shoulders Of Giants | Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery

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Flying Monkeys Shoulders Of GiantsFlying Monkeys Shoulders Of Giants

Brewed by:
Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery
Ontario, Canada

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Sammy on 03-07-2014

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
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Reviews: 21 | Ratings: 58
Photo of BlurryVisi0n
4.16/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip glass from a 750ml bomber.

Appearance: Gold to amber body with medium bubbles to the frame. White head with a slight orange tint to it rose maybe two finger's length with an easy pour. Looks very delicious right off the bat,

Smell: Malt and floral scent which comes off smooth.

Taste: Complex malts and hit of a floral feel. Obviously it's bitter but so well rounded and smooth it's hard just to take just one sip.

Mouth: Sticky but not overly sticky, after-taste changes as you get closer to the end. Bitter and sour finish but still caries sweet textures.

Overall: Good brew which if I do ever see on the shelf again I would grab again, get's better as it warms up and honestly consider myself lucky that I even found it. Enjoy always in a glass. Salud!

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Photo of WoodBrew
4.01/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I bought a bottle of this treat from the beer store just down the road. It poured a clear copper with white head that is leaving a spotty lace. The scent has citrus and pine bitterness. The taste is bitter through with citrus flare and pine. The Mouthfeel is fuller in body with good carbonation. Overall this is a solid beer.

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Photo of superspak
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750 ml bottle into tulip glass, no bottle dating. Pours hazy deep orange/copper color with a 2 finger dense and rocky off white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Thick soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of big apricot, pineapple, peach, grapefruit, tangerine, passion fruit, mango, papaya, lemon/orange peel, citrus rind, pepper, pine, caramel, toasted biscuit, light nuttiness, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of juicy citrus/tropical/earthy hops and moderate dark/bready malt sweetness; with great strength. Taste of big apricot, pineapple, peach, grapefruit, tangerine, passion fruit, mango, papaya, lemon/orange peel, citrus rind, pepper, pine, caramel, toasted biscuit, light nuttiness, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Moderate pine/herbal/spicy/citrus rind bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of apricot, pineapple, peach, grapefruit, tangerine, passion fruit, mango, papaya, lemon/orange rind, pepper, pine, caramel, toasted biscuit, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Very nice complexity, robustness, and balance of juicy citrus/tropical/earthy hops and moderate dark/bready malt sweetness; with a great malt/bitterness balance, and slight lingering hop astringency after the finish. Light-moderate dryness from bitterness, increasing through the glass. Medium carbonation and medium-full body; with a smooth, sticky/resinous, moderately creamy/bready, and slightly slick/syrupy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warmth lingering after the finish. Overall this is a very nice DIPA. All around nice complexity, robustness, and balance of juicy citrus/tropical/earthy hops and moderate dark/bready malt sweetness; very smooth and easy to sip on for the big ABV. This was pretty much American barelywine territory on flavors; but was still very juicy and aggressively bitter on hop flavors. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.99/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle poured into a tulip. A dark hazy ruddy orange-bronze color with three fingers of sturdy frothy beige head, rich and meringue-like. Inviting. Leaves a nice band of soapy lace.

Heady aroma of toffee pudding, pretzels, canned peaches and apricots, tangerines, grapefruit, tamarind, a whiff of cognac. Hops and malts getting equal play here. More sweetness on the nose than expected.

If the aroma did not trip your beer style sensor the flavor will. Tastes like a barleywine truth be told. Rich malts galore recall toffee and raisins and exert an influence right into the finish. Yes, there is nevertheless an IPA level of hopping. Fruit flavors range from peach, mango, green grapes, and pineapple to tangerine and orange ... The latter is particularly perceptible in the finish for some reason. A peppery spice recalls this brewery's standard IPA offering and provides a welcome reprieve from the sweetness, which is beginning to enter molasses territory. Alcohol is initially well-concealed although a slow burn starts to build over time. Pine needles peek out through the fruits and spice.

Body is medium thick, does not reach syrupy territory. Prickly carbonation and it works. Finish recalls more orchard fruit, citrus rind, and iced tea. Is that a hint of walnut? Finishes sweet considering the high caliber hop bill. Have to say, I'm digging it despite the identity crisis. A true heavyweight with an ABV that might sneak up on ya and plenty of complexity to plumb. Is everything ... you know ... integrated? More or less. Stylistic multiple personality disorder is not off-putting when the brew tastes good. If I have a complaint its that the sweetness does become cloying unless one shares the bomber.

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Photo of dcmchew
4.13/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark amber, really hazy, with a poor off-white frothy head.
Smells really sweet and fruity hoppy, like a good American barleywine. Lots of mushy peach, apricot, tangerine jam, overripe mango, persimmon, white raisin, pineapple syrup, light grapefruit, all sitting on really big sticky caramel and sweet malty shoulders (wink wink). Hints of brandy from the alcohol, but subtle.
Starts with big boozy fruitiness, really juicy and sweet. Imagine dumping a bucket of mashed overripe peaches, red apples, tangerines, pineapple, some bits of mango and grapefruit, sweet white grapes over a thick, gloopy canvas of caramel and sweet malt. Might seem diabetes-inducing at first, but the hops follow up with a really big resiny bitterness, rough and grassy, with some dry alcohol to help contain the front part of the taste. A nice light dank spiciness is more than welcome.
Medium sticky body, low carbonation, with a really subtle prickle. Aftertaste is fruity malty sweet, lots of tangerine, grapefruit syrup, stone fruit jam, caramel, faint honey, mild bitter hop. Would've been better with less lingering sweetness, for me.
This reminded me of a slightly lighter Majsgoop, so pretty much a really hoppy barleywine. Sweet, but not grossly so, bitter, but just enough to contain the abv, a really tasty monster of a beer that got lost in the wrong style, flavor profile-wise. Yum!

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Photo of Jeffo
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got a bottle of this from the LCBO in Waterloo. Was happy to see it, as these guys always come up with something worth the time and effort. Price tag is always high, but it’s always fun enough to try once.

From a 750 into a snifter
IBU: 86

APPEARANCE: Pours a three finger, medium looking, creamy, off-white head with very good retention. Hazy dark safety or gamboge orange with no visible carbonation evident. Head slowly fades to a foamy cap and leaves lots of nice lacing down the glass. A splotchy wisp and creamy ring remain and sheets the sides of the glass as it empties. Looks great.

SMELL: Pale malts, lots of grapefruit, some orange peel, with light notes of lemon and pineapple on the nose. Fruity for sure, and plenty bold and enticing.

TASTE: Pale malts and sweet caramel and toffee up front, then a good shot of floral hop flavors at the swallow. A spicy alcohol kick as well. Medium but lingering finish of sweet caramel, toffee, spicy cloves, some light grapefruit and orange, as well as some decent alcohol. A bit of hop bitterness offers just enough balance to the sweet flavors. Quite a good amount of sweetness and spicy booze. The bitterness is there and balances the brew, but it lacks a bit of the hop flavors you’d expect from the DIPA style. Doesn’t quite match the hoppy profile of the nose either.

PALATE: Fuller body, plenty of body, thicker, creamy on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes a touch mouth-coating. Some heat at the swallow and some spicy alcohol lingers. Big and thick, though perhaps too much so for the style. Still, I’m a fan.

OVERALL: This is actually quite an enjoyable beer and I gladly shared it with nobody. It's very hard to score appropriately, because as far as the DIPA style goes, it’s too sweet, boozy and full bodied perhaps. The finishing gravity is probably far outside the range for the style, and all the characteristics put it more firmly in the barleywine category. The aroma and flavor profile don’t really match either. I would gladly drink this again and would enjoy it as a hoppy barleywine, but not as double IPA. Give it a go if you’re looking for a big, hoppy, high FG brew. Recommended.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Bottle: Poured an amber color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of caramelized sugar with loads of citrus hoppy notes with some nice floral notes. Taste is also dominated by some sweet caramelized malt with some dominant citrus hoppy notes with nice flora undertone touch and some light booze is also noticeable. Body is pretty full with good carbonation with some alcohol being apparent. Nice hops flavours but a bit too sweet for my own taste.

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Photo of Lunardr0ne
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%

750ml bottle bought from the LCBO.

Appearance - a little hazy orange with a lot of white foam. Takes a while to settle down and leaves a good bit of lacing on the glass.

Smell - sweet malts, grapefruit, tangerine/orange and a little bit of alcohol.

Taste - starts off with piney hops and grapefruit, soon sweet caramelly malts and slightly over ripe tangerine take over. Finishes with a bitter sweet tangerine and a hint of alcohol.

Mouthfeel - medium body, carbonation feels spot on for this.

Overall - Surprisingly drinkable, but a bit too sweet for my taste. It was enjoyable but I wouldn't want another one anytime soon. Will definately try FM's other seasonal offerings though.

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Photo of leaddog
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%

Appearance - Pours a copper orange with two fingers of bubbly foamy white head.

Smell - sweet caramel malts, grassy/citrus hops, pineapple, grapefruit peel, and hint of orange.

Taste - Sweet caramel malts followed by a nice punch of grassy/citrus hops then goes into the pineapple, grapefruit peel, and hint of orange.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Finishes very sweet.

Overall - An IIPA that has a good hop profile, however, I find the finish to be a little sweet for an IIPA. The malts take over quite a bit in the taste. I was hoping to see the citrus hops shine through in the taste. Alas, the ingredients in this one don't seem to work cohesively with one another. A few minor tweaks will make this one more true to the style.

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Photo of allergictomacros
2.75/5  rDev -27.6%

750 ml bottle.

Pours a lightly hazed orange with a thick, heavy head. Big whiff of hops - tangerine/orange for the most part, some grapefruit.. Very sweet, floral tones. Really heavy body without much carbonation.

Too sweet and cloying. Ends on too much apple. Lot of malt in this that sticks to the throat. To put it succintly: big malt and hop bomb. I want to like it, but I just can't. Too big. Unbalanced.

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Photo of mick303
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%

From large 750 ml bottle into a tulip glass. Pours yields a nutty amber beer, with a gentle off white creamy head, great lacing and retention.

S - hop forward would be putting it mildly, this has intense resiny, and spicy pine aromas, ruby grapefruit, some supple caramel, almost a spiced maple syrup character with a some big resins coming through, tarry and a touch astringent.

T - start has a big pine resin kick, sticky and sappy, spicy chilis also come forward with a vegetal and earthy component, robust citric grapefruit with a cutting acidity, then it gets a bit more tropical with pineapple and guava fruitiness and some florals before a spicy peppery zip toward the finish. Overall, a very forwardly hopped beer, stringent pine and resin character, some restrained citrus develops, remarkably though it is quite drinkable and grows really nicely on you.

M - very big, a bit too syrupy really, it has some gentle rolling carbonation to hold it together but you do get quite a bit of a slick caramel to balance out the high bitterness, which is done decently well, it is quite drinkable considering the strength, and leave a lingering bitter finish.

Well, this beer certainly has a lot of personality. No shortage of that or of hops. It is certainly nowhere near the most drinkable dipa I have enjoyed it works decently well delivering a big hop punch and also remaining crisp on the finish. I feel like if it were balanced a little better and toned done one notch it would really impress, but as is some of the alcohol and resiny astringency come through a bit. I would like to see Flying Monkeys have a regular DIPA in their lineup, and this is a good starting point but it needs to be tweaked to restrain some of the harsher aspects. Still this will satisfy any hop itch you are currently experiencing.

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Photo of DenisKolkin
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%

750 ml bottle served fairly cool into a pint glass (unfortunately). Purchased from LCBO for just under $10 CDN.

Appearance - Big rich copper colored beer with a significant fluffy off-white / beige head of at least two fingers. Great retention time. The beer is semi-transparent and leaves behind a swath of lacing clinging tightly to the glass.

Smell - Not as potent as I thought, but a nice balance of caramel and some tropical fruitiness namely some pineapple and mango mixture. Bold, yet refined I like the delicate balance this one gives off.

Taste - A Shoulders of Giants this is... Big rich tropical and malt bomb with plenty of flavor. Bitterness is high, but not extreme. Plenty of pineapple and a candied caramel sweetness found. After repeat sips the massive flavor in the middle rips shudders down your tongue. Intense

Mouthfeel - Very smooth, huge body and a bit syrupy. Reaching cloying at times is the sweetness, which makes it a bit overwhelming beyond the first few sips. Nonetheless because of the tropical nature, the overall feel isn't quite too filling.

Overall - A very good, double IPA, but I think what drags this down is the perceived weight on how the body is so substantial compared with the flavors and aromas itself. They are intense but the mouthfeel overcompensates for that. Still quite delicious and worth a try.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle, lots of slick Canadiana imagery and odes to those hop-head brewers that have come before on our vast, shared continent. Funny enough musings under the cap, too (Jesus is coming... look busy!), though as I took a mere moment to enjoy this, the damned bomber took the opportunity to overflow onto the table all by itself - not fucking cool, dudes.

This beer pours a hazy, yet bright medium bronzed amber hue, with three fat-ass fingers of puffy, densely foamy, and rocky tan head, which leaves some decent cobwebbed lace around the glass as it lazily recedes.

It smells of bitter floral, grassy, leafy, and resinous pine hops straight-off, following tightly by a crusty caramel/toffee sweetness, further pineapple, kiwi, and clementine fruity notes, and a heady floor cleaner alcoholic acridity. The taste is more malty up front - grainy, crackery, and caramel-basted, this one is, with a fairly dry white grapefruit and pedestrian orange citrus twinge, still pungent pine resin and other forest floor detritus green astringencies, a now muddled tropical fruit addendum, and a building upon itself floral, perfumed booziness.

The bubbles are actually quite intense, in a middling frothy sort of manner, the body a sturdy medium-heavy weight, and smooth, as if through a veil, one made of heat and hops. It finishes off-dry, the ubiquitous hops still informing all (beyond the lingering caramel/toffee/butterscotch malt) - I'm talking the inherent fruitiness, and simmering floral, and duly burgeoning warmth.

More than resting on the proverbial titular perch, this offering rises to the dubious heights of another well-worn trope - Icarus. My wings may not be melting, but the too big for its britches ABV seems an apt metaphor here. Lots going on, but nothing really connecting, meshing, or balancing really, even though all the metrics are there, in spades. A bit of a shame, that.

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Photo of bylerteck
3.27/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 3

Friend bought me this as a birthday gift. Bottled May 2014.

A - Nice pillowy thick head of two fingers with very small bubbles. Mild haze and mild carbonation with a burnt orange colour. Good retention at a finger with good walls of lace. You can't ask for more.

S - Nice DIPA smell. Some booze and boozy pineapple. Huge citrus, good malt backbone too. Nice surprise with this one, it's got a great balance with that really pungent malty note I like in the style.

T - Sweet fruits, good malt notes, some booze, a bit of an eggy note, lot's of boozy pineapple and syrupy fruits with some wood too.

M - Nice gripping bitterness, a bit harsh like some other FM DIPAs. Decent carbonation, lighter body than expected.

O/D - This was an OK DIPA from FM. In line with their harshness when attempting the style, but this was the least offensive of the bunch. Mouthfeel is way off and probably wouldn't revisit.

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Photo of DaveBar
3.89/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Purchased at the LCBO for around $10.00 for a 750ml bottle. Served at 4deg C in a tulip.

A- Opens well and pours a nice head that lasts surpisingly long.... around 3mins until film. VERY dark and partically filtered.

S- Very good. Lots of hops and malt tones.

T- Grapefruit and malt. Straight out. Malty as malty does. Super malt. Did I say malt? Calm down guys. So much so that it overpowers all hops. Too bad.

M- Pretty good. Nice carbonation for a high alcohol beer. Tart as ususal.

O- Pretty good. Won't buy again though. Just a malt bomb with hops.

Food Pairing

This ok beer went well with... lamb kabobs!


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Photo of spinrsx
3.94/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml Bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for $10

Appearance - Copper colour with an average size off-white coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for around 4-5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Caramel, malts, breads/grains, hops, pineapple, apricot

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel, malts, and hops. There is also some sugary sweet pineapple, apricot, and mango. It ends with a malty sweet yet resiny bitter aftertaste.

Overall - Kind of like an Imperial amber in some ways.. like a troegs nugget nectar. It's pretty sweet but not over the top. Lots of good flavour, just not something that makes it stands out from similar beers. Decent, but at $10 a pop, this won't be something I buy again.

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Photo of SebD
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: It has a nice deep hazy orange color to it. It has a nice off-white head that dies down moderately slow and leaves some nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of citrus, grapefruit, bitter pine resins, some grassiness and sweet caramelly malts.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has some citrus, light grapefruit, alot of bitter pine resins, some grassiness and sweet caramelly malts.

Mouthfeel: It has a low-medium carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied by good flavors and aromas.

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Photo of BeerWatcher
4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark copper. Moderate slightly off-white head. Glass is awash in lacing as drunk. Aromas are some caramel, some red fruit peels, citrus, and definite pine notes. Tastes are of bitter citrus hops, with hints of toffee and molasses. Slightly metallic. Overall, this would hold its own against any Imperial IPA I’ve had. Bitter and slightly boozy...the way I like it.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a glowing, slightly hazed reddish orange. A compact foam lasts a long time, emitting a lot of lace on the glass. The aroma is citrusy hops, cotton candy and doughy malts, A big wall of grapefruit, lemon, cantaloupe, mango hop flavors mix with an astringent, prominent booziness. The mouthfeel is creamy and full bodied. Moderate bitterness intersperses with alcohol heat in the long finish.

A nice DIPA with a great hop profile. perhaps could be 'juicier' and the alcohol needs to be tamed, even at the expense of ABV. Stil definitely worth trying, I'll be seeking it out on tap to compare.

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Photo of thehyperduck
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle picked up at the LCBO; bottled on May 6 2014. Served slightly chilled.

Pours a clear orange-amber colour, the liquid itself saturated with countless streams of bubbles which lazily wind their way to the surface. Once there, they work to reinforce over two fingers of lofty, fluffy, eggshell-white head, which remains in place for over five minutes until it gradually wilts into a lumpy cap and collar. Multiple rings of beautiful lacing coat the glass; this is a great-looking beer any way you slice it. The aroma is quite fruity, combining notes of candied orange, apricot, grapefruit and pine resin, as well as caramel and a pronounced, boozy raisin sweetness.

It took me a few sips to decide whether or not I liked this one - the flavours are generally well-balanced for a DIPA, but there are no particular stand-out features here. Caramel sweetness and toasted malts are soon overwhelmed by notes of grapefruit and candied orange. Minor hints of apricot, mango and pineapple also come through, but it is the citrus (and the resiny, piney bitterness of the finish) that occupies the bulk of my palate's attention. Finishes with a slight boozy sweetness, which just barely manages to overshadow the lingering hop bitterness. Approaching full-bodied, but a little too light to earn the distinction - this is a smooth-drinking strong ale, with mild carbonation and a somewhat slick, oily feel on the palate. 750 mL of this is pushing the limit of what a reasonable person might want in a sitting, but the flavour profile is agreeable enough that I don't anticipate too much difficulty finishing off the bottle. It would have made more sense to share this with someone.

Final Grade: 3.8, a B+. Shoulders of Giants is a good DIPA, but not an outstanding one. Like most of FM's high-diesel offerings (at least, the ones I've tried), this is an unabashed hop bomb with a noticeable alcohol kick to it - not a beer for the faint-hearted. At 10 bucks a pop, this isn't a cheap tipple, and for that reason I don't think I'd recommend this to anyone who isn't already an existing fan of FM's dalliances into high-abv-hop-bomb territory (think Imperial Red-on-Red, or Super Collider), or people otherwise curious about the style. I like it, but I doubt I'll be back for more any time soon, as this one is a bit too boozy for my tastes.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.41/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottling date is smudged. Can make out "Feb" but not a day.

A - Poured a translucent amber colour with a big layer of cream coloured head.

S - A big caramel sweetness is noticeable up front. The hop aromas aren't as prominent as I expected, but there were some tropical fruit and dank aromas present. Not specifically getting the pineapple that the label mentions but there is some grapefruit coming through.

T - A sharp bitterness up front with a big sweet caramel malt backbone. Some grapefruit and lighter tropical fruit notes present.

M - Medium body with some nice stickiness. Lots of hop oils are present. Light carbonation. A nice mouth feel.

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Flying Monkeys Shoulders Of Giants from Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery
3.8 out of 5 based on 58 ratings.
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