Shipyard Monkey Fist IPA | Shipyard Brewing Co.

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Shipyard Monkey Fist IPAShipyard Monkey Fist IPA

Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Co.
Maine, United States

Style: English India Pale Ale (IPA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by puboflyons on 04-25-2012

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Reviews: 148 | Ratings: 1,016
Photo of Plissken
1.3/5  rDev -62.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

As a few other have said it had a very medicinal taste, a mediocre IPA mixed with dish detergent water. I hope it was a bad batch. But then again some people have different palates than others and it may not agree with mine. Not for me but I will say that I love the label!

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Photo of twiggamortis420
2.09/5  rDev -39.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.75

22 oz bomber pours a hazed copper color with a frothy khaki head. Nice retention and lace...pretty good looking brew.

Nose is toasty malt, astringent alcohol and toffee. Not a good combo, IMHO. The hops are herbal to the point of medicinal.

Taste is a watery toffee maltiness blended with grassy, herbal hop bitterness that belies an almost eucalyptus-esque medicinal flavor...and it lingers. Who from Shipyard thought this was a good idea? That is the ultimate tastes like caramelized nail polish remover. Ridiculous that Shipyard can make a buck off this, shame on me for not doing any research before dropping $3.99 on this abomination. Terrible. Drain pour...and I dont do many of those.

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Photo of DavidLosAngeles323
2.3/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2

I bought 2 six packs of this brew. I will admit the reason was because of the picture, it's totally awesome come on a monkey... though I shortly did wish I would of have just gotten a couple beers instead. The smell is so strong of hops and berries it's not a good smell. The flavor was absolutely bitter more like a nasty wine than an ipa. Had it a bottle and glass both were bad. I would pass on this brew any day and go with a normal favorite.

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Photo of beerthulhu
2.39/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Burnt orange coloring in the vessel with a strong sense of carbonation. The head is buff with pale yellowish tones, one finger high, and shows a moderate to good retention. Lacing is generous.

S: Aroma of sweet toffee and citrus mingle, some smore crackers, a lot of sweet character, with some dried honey toast and a spiciness of spruce. Buttered grains add sweetness.

T: The flavor was not as sweet nor complex as the nose. A bit coarse in delivery with no spectrum, was just a strong punch of hop bitterness that suffered from linear perception and a very, washy backing. The malt and body was really washy and thin, no malt support what-so-ever and finishes off like water. The hops are bittery dry, flowery citrus, but not in a tasty or appreciative way, just blunt, arrogant and straightforward like the drunken uncle with no sense of refinement.

M: Mouthful of course suffered the same fate as the flavor, a complete wash out, dry, bitter from the hops but ultimately ends in a washed out state of affair.

O: Overall washy body, lack of malt support and no spectrum of hop flavors or distinction makes this a complete bust. You just cant haphazardly throw a bunch of hops in a kettle and expect the beer fairies to wave thier magic wand and produce a good ipa. No malt support, no spectrum of flavor, washy, and a complete acceptable drain pour. I dont like to dish out the disrespect to often due to my love of beer, but the 2.0s are what beers like this are meant for. The visual and sweet smelling nose was one of the few decent points about this mess, it falls off a cliff there-after.

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Photo of khooke
2.42/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

From bottle, poured into pint glass.

A: golden orange/amber. pours with thin 1/2 finger head. leaves evenly dispersed lacing from head

S: pineapple, apple, fresh cut grass

T: malty, quite bitter, no aftertaste sweetness like from other American IPAs. Bitter lingers too much in mouth. Unplaceable funkiness in flavor, almost unpleasant - like just gone off sliced sandwich meat

M: bitterness is lasting from first taste through to aftertaste. lingers in mouth

Overall:ok, not great. Funkiness is kind of unpleasant. I wonder if the one I had had not travelled well? Would be prepared to try another one. The fruity notes in the aroma I loved, but the taste just didn't match up with the smell.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
2.42/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

12 oz bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A: Pours a very murky dark copper color. The head is a fairly pretty one finger offwhite color with nicely even texturing and lacing. Retention isn't great, though.

S: At first, it seems like it has an okay amount of hops, both grapefruity and piny/peppery. After a while, the malt aroma pops up with strong caramel, biscuit, toffee, and even brown sugar. Malty, but actually pretty solid. Has Shipyard done it? Have they actually brewed a decent American IPA?

T: The malt backbone is not too bad here - a bit sweet, but it features nice flavors of brown sugar, nuts, and toffee; kind of like a strong ale in a way. However, the overuse of both crystal malts and buttery yeast hurts its quality. The finish is very bitter without any distinct hop flavors - actually, it might be a bit plasticky in flavor. If the malt profile hinders things, then the generic finishing bitterness ruins things utterly. Meh.

M: A bit on the coarse side through the maltiness, the carbonation, and the hop bitterness. The malts really prick the tongue in a slightly unpleasant way, and the hops are too astringent for their lack of flavors. At least it's not undrinkable.

O: I half-hoped for a okay American IPA here, what I got was a blah English strong ale. A pairing with sharp cheddar cheese could make this one more palatable, but I don't care to drink it again to find out. Seriously brewers, us IPA drinkers don't want generic bitterness and massive amounts of crystal malt in the name of 'balance', we want complex hop flavors with a nonintrusive malt backbone. Next!

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Photo of TBCE
2.43/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Tried this brew a couple times. Just plain don't think to highly of it. Very hoppy and dry, not necessarily a bad thing, but it got a burnt flavor to it that lingers.

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Photo of stickydankhop
2.44/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Ordered on tap from Seadogs Orlando. Flavor profile is too malty dumped with bitter hops enough to cause a gag reflex. My inexperienced friend took one drink and lost all ambitions to drink beer that night.

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Photo of scotorum
2.48/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

My experience was similar to one of the reviewers below who I think compared the taste to what one might imagine the taste when drinking nail polish remover.

I don't know what happened to this brew but it was so weirdly chemical-tasting that I drainpiped its butt after a few toxic sips. I speculated to myself that the monkey mentioned in the name might have just removed polish from her nails before thrusting her fist into the vat.

Perhaps that's how this one ages. More likely, there was a bad batch. All I know is it was unpalatable.

I didn't do my review in the usual BA format because I didn't want to belabor this tragedy, just explain why I gave it the lowest rating of anything I've reviewed so far on BA. I may eventually at least sip another to confirm whether I just got real unlucky with this particular example, which seems likely since most others here who have tried it have not been nearly as distressed by the taste.

Shipyard, I LOVE your Prelude and Chamberlain ales. But WT Monkey Fist F?

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Photo of vicg12
2.72/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Not a very good IPA. The malts and the hops clash terribly, big let down on this beer. Head is good, two finger. Nice copper color, and pretty nice lacing. The biggest let down is just the taste. This beer is just a sub-standard IPA all around. It's almost not an IPA, although I'm not sure what I would call it. Starts off with a strong malty taste then abruptly ends and finishes with a gross, grasses, moldy hop taste. FAIL Shipyard.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.84/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Lagunitas mason jar.

Sounds like what I call my--

We interrupt this poor, crude joke for a semi-serious review. This stuff pours a lightly hazy auburn-amber topped by a finger of off-cream foam. The nose comprises pine sap, mild menthol, light Connecticut tobacco, rubber, and a touch of sweet toffee. The taste focuses on the pine, the tobacco, and the toffee, though some vinyl pops its head in from time to time as well. The body is a light-leaning medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a drying finish. Overall, this IPA seems to wanna try too hard, but instead ends up failing more than anything. The hops are strong, but they're dirty- and rubbery-tasting, making the whole experience a generally negative one.

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Photo of BostonHops
2.86/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

22oz bottle served in a pint glass.

pours a mostly clear, gold / medium amber tone while yielding about a 1" off-white head; average retention and lacing for the style. nose is middling with subdued notes of citric hops and a touch of pine, then malt. not quite up to par with what one tends to look for in a top-notch IPA.

flavor follows with more of the same. not bad by any means, just sort of 'meh'... some citrus and grassy hops, caramel malt in the background, maybe a hint of pine. medium bodied mouthfeel with average carbonation.

overall? ho-hum. again, not a terrible beer just not as vibrant and flavorful as i was hoping; in a style brimming with top notch offerings i find this one to be a little lackluster.

 724 characters

Photo of BeTheBall
2.96/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a dark copper color with ample head and carbonation. Smell was both bready and hoppy at the same time? Taste was slightly bitter, with earthy overtones that mute the hops for me to some degree. IMO it should feature hops more, but my taste is for that West Coast IPA profile. Mouthfeel was good.

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Photo of jdhilt
2.96/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours a two-finger off-white head that fades slowly leaving a good lace. Clear amber color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Grapefruit hop nose and flavor is grapefruit with hints of caramel, a lingering, bitter finish. $5.00 for a 22oz bottle from Market Basket Concord, NH.

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Photo of DovaliHops
2.96/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden amber color with a small white head that disappears quickly. Scent what I was expecting from a Shipyard beer...a whole lotta nothin. It blew me away when I tried XXXX IPA on draft and could hardly detect any hop profile. This one struggles with the same issues. Somewhat spicy notes that unfortunately remind me of Pumpkin Head. Light caramel malt. Taste is a notch up above the nose, but not much. This really isn't that good. Just bland with a drop of hop resin and a dash of lemon juice for the citrus. The lingering bitter flavor is the best part of this IPA. Mouthfeel is light bodied and nicely carbonated. Drinkability is mediocre, as it is tolerable...but would much rather drink at least 20 other IPAs that I can grab at my local BevMo (and I live in Fresno, where we get the shittiest distribution out of anyone). Overall, the spice notes remind me of Pumpkin Head, and the hops are extremely lacking. Shipyard disappoints, once again. Disclaimer: I really root for this brewery, as I try everything they put out with hopes that they step up their game. I really like Smashed Pumpkin, and that's about it. C'mon Shipyard!

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Photo of cbutova
2.98/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Best by February 2015.

A- 12oz bottle poured to a goblet with a copper-orange body. An off-white cap forms with a thick creamy consistency up to about one finger. Pretty good retention as a frothy island and medium ring deposit spotty lace with some webs.

S- Hops forward but medium caramelized malts and sweetness poke through. Bitter orange peel hops are the emphasis with earthy and herbal hints as well. Something comes of as very slightly metallic.

T- The theme of bitter orange zest citrus hops continues on here as well as the backing of them by medium Crystal grains that lend a light sweetness. Grapefruit pith, floral, pine resin with the yeast bringing light fruit notes.

MF- Medium thickness with a puffy, frothy texture with any agitation of the beer. Carbonation at a moderate level and the beer ends with a high bitterness relative to the body and flavor.

IPAs with caramel malt character can be good but this one is only decent. The heavily bitter citrus pith hops clash a bit with the sweetness and flavor of the grains. Just doesn't come off all that clean and seems a bit abrasive.

 1,105 characters

Photo of rdilauro
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I try to make a habit in not reviewing any beer that I dislike or have nothing good to say about it.
I've enjoyed my Shipyard brews in the past so I was anxious to give this one a try.

It poured a bit of a rusty golden amber with small average head. There was a definite aroma of hops with this one. With my first sip, I could feel and see Hops.... but as the beer finished, that bitterness turned me into a flowered fruity sweetness. Not that the beer was sweet, but it was too fruity for my inkling.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

On-tap 5/18/2012 at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub, in Pawtucket, RI served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep golden brown color with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thin on the glass.

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

T: The taste starts out with a harsh bitterness that lacks the hops flavor that an IPA should have. Then a hearty malt character comes in along with some caramel and citrus sweetness but there’s not much balance. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Crisp but not smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Not very tasty, doesn’t go down well, not too filling, decent kick, not the best representation of style, this is flat out not a very good beer.

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Photo of JamesMN
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Best buy date on bottle: December 2012.

Appearance: Super hazy orange glowing hue with a two finger soapy off-white head.

Aroma: Really sweet hops with a candy-like astringency with a bit of lemon peel. Caramel malt under all that hop funk.

Taste: Incredibly bitter from start to finish with no regard for your palate. Not getting any real hop flavor in there, just bitterness. Not really enough malt to back up the hops. Just a hint of caramel and crystal barley. Pretty watery for 6.9% ABV as well.

Mouthfeel: Just above thin in body with somewhat excessive carbonation and decent drinkability.

Final Thoughts: Somehow the brewers at Shipyard have managed to extract all the bitterness from their hops without any of the flavor that makes hopheads rejoice. Would I drink it again? No.

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Photo of BeerKangaroo
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Into a pint glass:

A: copper colored body yielding a one finger white head. Some sporadic ringy lacing was left. There was some light carbonation moving at a moderate pace.

S: spicy hops with some citrus in the back.

T: wasn't any different from the smell.

M: medium, sticky aftertaste and a bitter finish. The carbonation had about an average sort of feel on the mouth.

O: this beer was about an average IPA. Nothing special, but nothing bad.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.01/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap today at the Portland Pie Co.
Comes to the table a deep amber color with a decent sized off white head that shows moderate retention and lacing. Smells of bitter citrus with a bit of butterscotch and a caramel. Wow the flavor is something else all right. Intensely bitter citrus with lots of sweet caramel and butterscotch. Medium to thin body with a moderate level of carbonation and a bitter harsh citrus did I say bitter mouthfeel. I really don't know why this company is still in business. This is an aggressively bitter IPA reminiscent of the mid 90's when micros were trying to one up each other in the IBU wars. Very harsh bitterness with lots of astringency to go around too much buttery ringwood character and not enough hop aroma. Late hops should be used more here as well as a diacetyl rest.

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Photo of TOhoy
3.01/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Being that I live in California and the IPAs here are extremely bitter, I've become a bit bias with IPAs. I expect a nice hoppy beer! This beer was a major let down! Not the usually IPA I'm used too. It was closer to a bud light the a nice hoppy/ bitter west coast IPA.

 269 characters

Photo of AngryPenguinBrewCo
3.03/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap in a Leinenkugel's (of all things) pint glass.

A- Copper color with a thin foamy head that did not last very long.

S- Resiny with some hop bitterness

T- Overwhelming earthy pine and resin flavors. Lack of any real malt character to balance the sharp bite, no citrus undertones.

M- Medium carbonation, relatively bitter and mild alcohol presence.

O- I personally prefer more of a citrus hop presence, or some sort of balance. Its hard for me to fairly rate a beer with such a heavy pine flavor, and I am not sure how fresh the keg I sampled was. Seems to be well executed for what it was and I was not able to detect any real "off flavors".

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Photo of beergoot
3.06/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Honey-colored body with a thick, sticky white head. Heavy caramel aroma, almost butterscotch-like; faint spiciness beneath it all. More deep caramel in the flavor with a strong hop bitterness from the middle and building up in the aftertaste. Medium bodied; semi-dry finish.

This IPA is all over the place and not necessarily for the better. Looks great but smells funky and tastes even stranger. Too much caramel/butterscotch malt flavor overall. I won't say there is any bacterial infection with this, but the butterscotch tones are definitely upfront. It does hit you with a strong hop bitterness but there is very little hop aroma per se. Strange, since the listed hops on the bottle label (Cascade, Warrior, and Glacier) don't leave any real fruity or citrusy notes in either taste or smell. Drinkable but probably not a 'go-to' IPA for most.

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Photo of sfprint
3.08/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Reddish orange, little rising carbonation or head. transparent
S: Amber warmth but mild to moderately hoppy, there's also a weird molassas/cough medicine sort of smell
T: Bitter tang in the aftertaste, it's mostly just bitter with a semi dirty hop flavor (german style). Not sweet, piney or citrusy. :(
M: Mouth puckering with little carbonation.
O: Okay. Lacks most of the qualities I like in an IPA, but still okay

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Shipyard Monkey Fist IPA from Shipyard Brewing Co.
3.45 out of 5 based on 1,016 ratings.
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