Monty Python's Holy Grail Ale | Black Sheep Brewery PLC

BA SCORE
77
okay
1,239 Ratings
THE BROS
83
good
Read the review
Monty Python's Holy Grail AleMonty Python's Holy Grail Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Black Sheep Brewery PLC
England, United Kingdom
blacksheepbrewery.com

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by stcules on 05-24-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,239
Reviews:
608
Avg:
3.38
pDev:
16.86%
 
 
Wants:
32
Gots:
139
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,239 |  Reviews: 608
Photo of yourunclewalt
3.13/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear dirty golden / straw body supporting an off-white, tannish one and a half-finger head. Minimal carbonation, no sedement.

S - Very harsh, almost phenolic smells that roll back to betray an almost overly yeasty / bready character. Sour apple finishes. Not terribly looking forward to this, but we'll see.

T - Very tart, again with the sour apples. After that comes the yeast, prominent but not overpowering. Finishes with a snappy, bitter hop note. Malts are nowhere to be found for this reviewer.

M - Thin and watery with a subtly spiked carbonated kicker.

D - I guess it's a solid English brew; characteristically bitter (no offense) and the sour apple notes give it a little spice (unless I just happened to get a bad bottle). Nothing wrong with it, but nothing terribly memorable besides the gimmicky label, which, to be fair, is most of the reason this was bought.

 899 characters

Photo of scottblaze
4.1/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

1 pt .9 fl. oz heavy duty, dark brown bottle. No date that I could find.

A. Poured hazy amber, nice head w/fair retention and lacing.

S. Very slight acedic but flowery aroma

T. Moderately malty sweet and nice hop balance. Nice bittery finish

M. Creamy smooth nice easy carbonation.

Anything Monty Python gets my attention. Getting past that, this was a delightful beginnning to the end of a warm day. Paid $3.99, I suppose was worth the price of admission. Wish I had another one..bummer.

 493 characters

Photo of micahgoldfus
2.65/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I have to admit it, like many others, I bought this beer just because of the name. Looked fine, a light amber color. Two finger thick foamy white head that did not go away. Small was soft grainy malt with a honey-like sweetness to it, but with an earth tone as well. The taste was a mix of grain and wheat malt with a touch of honey and caramel, with a hoppy bite at the end. Even with that complexity, I still came away with the feeling that the flavor was a little macro, a little thin. Above average carbonation and a runny mouthfeel. Somewhat of a session beer, worth a try for the gimmick, but if you want a pale ale, I would sample others.

 645 characters

Photo of 1Paradisebrew
3.65/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Being a Monty Python fan I have to admit that when I saw this beer I had to try it.
After popping the top I was quite pleased with the carbonation and the foamy head.
having a love for english ales I would say that this one was rather satisfing and enjoyable. Smooth and malty with a dry hoppiness.

 300 characters

Photo of SilentSabre
3.4/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I have seen this all over the place for several years, and now that I work for the company the distributes this, I felt I should give it a go. It poured up rather average looking for an English Pale Ale, with a nice looking white foamy head. Smell was earthy hops with a caramel-like malty note, but otherwise, rather average for the style. Taste was more malty than hoppy, which I enjoyed somewhat. Almost thirst quenching. Mouthfeel wasn't out of the ordinary, but this was very drinkable. I could see myself buying this again.

 529 characters

Photo of rkuhnel
3.65/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the bottle this poured a orange to brown color with a big foamy head that left lots of big lacing rings. Nose of sweet malts and a creamy mouthfeel. Flavor is again sweet malts, and finish is slightly bitter. Nothing fancy here bout overall a decent brew.

 260 characters

Photo of cichief
3.6/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from draft into a pint glass at Frisco's Grille, Columbia, MD.

A- Pours a light brown, with a dark tan head.

S- Malty, sweet, with a earthy scent.

T- Very sweet with a dryish, hop finish.

M- Very carbonated, thin taste on the tongue.

D- An okay beer, nothing to seek out.

 293 characters

Photo of MrMcGibblets
2.29/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

this bottle must have been old...obviously it was bought for the name/label. poured a light hazy straw/apricot color. off aromas-fishy, funky. also some vegetal and petrol notes. taste was dry, thin, and sour. light and spritzy mouthfeel. drinkability would be fine at this abv but this one had gone bad. i don't imagine they intended to make beer that smelled/tasted like this.

 378 characters

Photo of albern
3.57/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I kind of like this beer for its malty, burnt wheat flavor, nice carbonation, and hint of fruitiness. The beer pours a nice amber with a frothy head that dissipates quickly. The lacing is not great. The smell is the low point of this beer. Musty, macro, maybe a little sour smelling, but the flavor compensates. My second criticism is that this beer is a little lighter bodied than I would liked. The malty flavor is quite good, however. This is not a sweet beer by any stretch but there are some sweet notes in the malt. This isn't a dry ale either, but it does have some dry notes as well. The hops are completely subdued and the aftertaste is where you might find them hiding. There is a burnt taste in the malts but it is quite pleasant. This beer might not be to everyone's liking but it is quite good and I would revisit it under the right circumstances.

Re-visit November 2009: I'm adding points to this one. I must have had a bad bottle because the nose is at worst inoffensive, but has some plum and grape skin aromas. It's quite nice. The taste is also quite nice. It is certainly a light beer, a tad watery, nothing outstanding, but certainly a respectable beer.

 1,175 characters

Photo of vanrassel
3.53/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out of a 500 mL bottle with a smooth, creamy head over a slightly hazed copper body. The smell was herbal and earthy, with some fruity esters (apple) and burnt caramel.

The taste started surprisingly bitter and hoppy, but sweet malt balanced it out. The hoppiness became less pronounced as the beer went down. Moderate carbonation and medium body — overall a decent beer, but Black Sheep Ale is a far better choice from this brewery.

 454 characters

Photo of bobhits
2.11/5  rDev -37.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Aight this beer looks like it's got potential. Then you smell it...it's like smelling a bud. Then you taste it and you get that same awful flavor.

If you want an American macro you can get one for a lot less. My friend and I both had to force this down as we didn't want to waste a beer. Looking back we should have just put this in the sink (had it last night).

It's a fuzzy yellow beer...do NOT waste your time or money. The only reason to have this beer would be to display the bottle if you've got a collection of beer bottles. The name is pretty cool.

 563 characters

Photo of Shadman
2.81/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Hopefully the smell of burning witches isn't imparted on the beer.

Very nice looking ale, a hazy copper color with a very thick, foamy white head that takes it's time receded to a small white cap. I noticed lacing clinging to the sides of my ale glass all the way to the top.

almost a malt vinegar smell, the kind you get from rotting crap apples. Some malt sweetness in there as well.


Big blast of hop bitterness right away. The apple-like malt follows quickly. Found it was more carbonated than I expected, Hop finish that resembles an IPA at the end. Maybe a touch on the sour side as well.

a bit fizzy, especially at the initial swig stage.

An OK ale, I’ll be spending my $$$ on others

 708 characters

Photo of Bookseeb
3.46/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Copper in appearance with a thick creamy head that stays awhile. Smell of slight malt, but not much else. Taste is slightly sweet with a hoppy bite to it. Mouthfeel is light - medium. Probably one I wouldn't readily try again, it has the hoppiness but it's not one that finishes clean.

 285 characters

Photo of daliandragon
2.58/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I've always seen this beer as more a gimmick than anything else but have also respected the Black Sheep name and since nothing else stuck out today at the store I decided to go for it. Decent off-white head retention on top of a golden amber body. A surprising waft of sweet apple hits the nose along with a little hop and not much else; almost more of a cider smell.

My first sip shows a large malt profile and strong toasted notes drowning out the fruit and hops I was expecting to at least detect. Metal also sounds in early and often, which is unfortunate, almost like the knights soaked their swords in this beer for a week before it was bottled, not cool. The aftertaste in particular is rubbish. I really wanted to like this beer but I wont be dropping four bucks on this stinker again.

 797 characters

Photo of mithrascruor
3.91/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16.9 oz. bottle poured into a mug.

Appearance: Pours a nice copper color with a thick frothy white head that laces the glass nicely.

Smell: Honestly, not much smell. But there's a bit of apples and grains, slightly sweet.

Taste: Well-balanced flavor with some apples and grains. Good semi-sweet malt base with an appropriate amount of mildly bitter hops.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, light- to medium-bodied and with a nice crisp carbonation.

Drinkability: Low ABV and generally easy to drink.

A nice English pale ale that is pretty tasty. I thought it might be a bit gimmicky with the name and all, but it's definitely a solid beer. A bit on the pricey side, but I'll probably have this again at some point

 715 characters

Photo of liquidnoise
3.37/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Drank it strait from the bottle.

Smelled like beer. Nothing really stuck out.

Mushrooms were prevalant, but this beer otherwise tasted pretty average. I've had better.

I should have guessed a beer named "Monty Python" would be more of a gimmick than a master crafted brew. This beer really didn't appeal to me at all. I probably would have rather had a decent American Macro. I tried to rate it as fairly as possible given my dislike for it. I suggest something else.

 476 characters

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I loved the movie, I can't say the same thing about the beer...

Pours a clear copper color with a tan head that went down pretty fast and left a trace of lace.

It smells good, as good as any English Pale Ale I've ever smelled before.

I liked the taste, sweet, light, crisp and refreshing.

It has a good mouthfeel, right on the carbination and no bitterness.

I could have a few of these in a sitting, it's not filling and the low abv won't slow you down.

Overall I would say this is just a "good" beer, hence the reason I gave it all 4's but like I said up front I thought the movie was a whole heck of a lot better.

 633 characters

Photo of jasonjlewis
3.33/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A decent stab at the english pale ale style. Not great, though. and slightly above average taste. Mouthfeel is poor and there is little carbonation on the palate. This beer had a thick frothy head though and it made me look forward to drinking it, but the beer itself was just decent. Not much to it. No frills, but not bad. I want a little more flavor for a session beer. This is a beer to chug in my opinion. It is very very light.

 433 characters

Photo of TrojanMan
3.38/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

It's a good beer disguised behind a campy label.
Drink this one a little bit colder than you would a comparable ale. There's so much flavor here that it's tough to tackle quickly. Drinking it a little on the cold side "stretches" the experience as you let it warm in your mouth. I just find it a little easier to appreciate that way.

Pour into a pint glass, the head is thick and rich, perhaps one finger high and tapers off to leave pockets of floating yeast/head floatsam. Very little lacing and little stickage to the glass but the floating pockets remained throughout the entire drink. Interesting and pretty nice.

The scent is mild but complex. It's not going to attack your nostrils but there's a lot of information there if you choose to try to pick it out. It has a good bit of sweetness and a mild fruity aroma. Hop presense is very subdued but still noticable.

The flavor is smooth and very drinkable and somewhat of a cross between a sweet but thin malt base and a slightly-floral, mildly-bitter, almost-but-not-quite-Belgian yeast tang. Somewhere in the middle it transitions through a few flavors very quickly and ends up leaving a mild, slightly fuity aftertaste.

Smooth mouth to it with a nice, very balanced feel. Virtually no grittiness but not too thin either. Color and appearance are likewise very balanced. This is almost the ideal English ale with the only exceptions being a relative lack of bitterness and perhaps a tad too much malt sweetness.


I had some Town House crackers and pepper jack cheese on hand so I tried that with it and it went pretty well. Just make sure it's a mild pepper jack with a real creamy cheese base. Too much spice would ruin it. If I had my choice of foods... potato soup. F'real. Creamy and coating with some mild spice and a nice starchy base. The ale is a little on the sweet side and I think it'd be the perfect balance/compliment. Just an idea...

Again, good brew, nicely balanced and thoroughly English. If you like English ales, make sure this one is on your list. If you're not a big fan of English ale then I would say that you can afford to miss out on this one considering the relatively high price tag.

The bottle is worth collecting!

 2,223 characters

Photo of nesta
4.08/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I'd heard of this, and heard it was good....figured I'd find out, even though it was a silly looking bottle. What could I expect, though? It was made to commemorate Monty Python, after all.

The price was about at the same level as Samuel Smith...about 3.49 for slightly more than a pint. It was refrigerated when I purchased it, but by the time I got home it was perfect serving temperature.

I decanted it into a mug. It was a pleasant copper color with a healthy, strong light biege head to it. It had a nice malty aroma with a nice, light hop smell.

The flavor was good, definitely above average, but nothing spectacular to write home about. Similar to Bass, but richer. It was a bit maltier and slightly nicer hop flavors and aromas than Bass has. It was about what I expected but exactly what I wanted, a tasty beer that was of good quality and would relax me after a day at work, but still very refreshing (today was our first really warm day this year, at 76 degrees farenheit...not exactly sweat inducing weather, but I wanted something to quench my thirst regardless!)

I would recommend this beer, particularly to those just getting interested in better beers than the majority of what you find at the grocery store. I would definitely consider using this for a black and tan in place of Bass Pale Ale. Its quite possible that I will this St. Patrick's Day.

All in all its tasty and I'll probably buy it again, particularly when I want something refreshing, but I don't see it making its way into common rotation in my beer consumption.

 1,559 characters

Photo of gmfessen
3.58/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a light amber color with a two-finger, off-white, thick head. Smell is not overwhelming but pleasant, with a slight sweetness and bit of hops. The flavor has a sweet fruitiness about it but is well balanced by a moderate hop profile. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with little carbonation. This is a drinkable beer, not bad but nothing outstanding either.

 405 characters

Photo of rohrbachsfan
4.2/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance Bottle: The label alone is worth the price of the beer and a must have for any Monty Python fan. Label jokingly states "tempered over burning witches".

Appearance Beer: The beer poured a rich amber yellow and had a good head.

Smell: It had a malt aroma and hops presence.

Taste: Malt with medium hop bitterness with lots of buttery aftertones (common to English style ales).

Mouthfeel. Smooth and warming. A little dry afterwards.

Drinkability: Nice flavorful ale that goes down easy.

 512 characters

Photo of theopholis
3.23/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance- Pours a light amber color. Good, off-white head with little staying power or lacing. Pretty clear.

Aroma- Mostly malt sweetness with just enough hops to make it interesting. .

Taste- Nice balance of malt sweetness and bittering and flavoring hops. Maybe just a hint of pine.

Mouthfeel- Medium body. Carbonation level pretty decent, but it goes flat very quickly. Clings to the mouth nicely.

Drinkability- Not great, but worth trying. There's nothing objectionable about it, it's just not superb. An average English pale ale.

 549 characters

Photo of chilidog
3.86/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As per my BA Mag I enjoy the beer adds as I do the entire mag. Saw the Eurobrew add. Saw the Holy Grail beer glass. Oh ya! Gotta have. Gotta find beer. Local special beer store got it in just as I was inquiring on it. The two became one...here's the review.

Appearance I bumped up for the glass effort. It poured a pale golden heavy straw color. Fair carbonation, not much head or lace.

The aroma was slight sweet malty grass.

The taste carried mild hop, good malt balance, citric of lemon grass and alittle pine.

The mouthfeel was smooth, slick, citric tart. Ok finish

Drinkable yes, anytime in my new, very fragle, but very cool glass. A nice touch indeed!!

 675 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
3.29/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a clear nice amber with a huge white head, very slow fade to leave a nice half inch lace filled head. Lots of carbonation. No real gooey glass clinging lace on this. Left a clean glass. Not a whole lot of smell here, what is there is a bready, yeasty smell from the malts, but again not real strong. Pretty typical for the style. Taste fared the same, not strong, not bad at all, pretty average. Some bready and grain tastes, but that was about it, nothing to make it stand out in a crowd. It did have a nice smooth feel, crisp, light, dare I say refreshing, and excellent session beer. All and all this was a typical sessionable english brown ale, more notable for the name then whats in the bottle. A good one off try for the novelity if nothing else.

 760 characters

Monty Python's Holy Grail Ale from Black Sheep Brewery PLC
3.38 out of 5 based on 1,239 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe