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

Monty Python's Holy Grail AleMonty Python's Holy Grail Ale
1,248 Ratings
Monty Python's Holy Grail AleMonty Python's Holy Grail Ale

Brewed by:
Black Sheep Brewery PLC
England, United Kingdom

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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,248 |  Reviews: 608
Photo of climax
2.48/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

The holy grail of sorts poured a bronze/honey color with a moderate head which had pretty good retention. The clarity was very good.

The nose had about as much presence as a mute man at a yelling tournament. Some euro lager tones, lighter diacetyl, and cereal grains rounded it out.

The flavor was very controversial IMO. Buttery flavors clashed with an almost berry like strangeness. It tasted a lot like alcohol tastes, without feeling like alcohol feels. I don't think that's how things were meant to be.... Watered down whiskey was the verdict.

The body was the highlight of the beer, not that that's saying much, but the sharp creamy body was nice. Other than that.... I'm not impressed. It's probably safe to say my quest for the Holy Grail ended in disappointment.

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Photo of EPseja
2.73/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from a 12oz bottle in my SABL glass at just below cellar temperature.

A - Active, bright gold pour with orange highlights. Crystal clear. Large-bubbled off-white head rising to about an inch before quickly fading to a thin mat.

S - Only a hint of the biscuity maltiness I was hoping for. Perfumey hop dominance and a hint of alcohol.

T - Sweet in the front with an ambiguous graininess. A faint vinous character in the middle, leading to a moderatly dry finish with decent bittering.

M - Super watery and thin on the way in, with a rapid and short-lived effervescence. Swallow is also thin and and a bit lackluster.

D - Over all, this beer is simply... well... simple. But not in the way that keeps the best English PAs well-rounded but still pleasing. I think that this beer's saving grace would be that it would probably be decent to pair with most foods. A fair attempt at the style, buoyed mainly by the kitsch of the name.

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Photo of B967ierhunter177
4.4/5  rDev +32.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from bottle to pint glass. Overall a terrific ale.

A: clear pale amber with small head

S: biscuit malt and honey, intriguing

T: taste of biscuits, honey, and just a touch of hop snap in the finish

M: Very smooth, medium mouthfeel. My preference

D: very drinkable, left comfortable warming and was great paired with chicken and stuffing

Would definitely recommend this ale. Great with chicken and suspecet it may be good with pork too.

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Photo of FreshHawk
3.48/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Light amber color with a modest white head. About normal retention.

S - Slight floral and apple scents with bready scents also coming through.

T - Tradition bready English malts. The hops also provide light floral and herbal flavors. The malt and hops are pretty balanced. There is also a slight hint of fruit (mostly apple) and some spice.

M - Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation.

D - This is pretty easy to drink, and it doesn't have any offensive flavors. However, it also doesn't have anything that makes me want to come back for another one.

Notes: Well balanced but fairly subtle flavors. Kind of a middle of the road beer, but it's a decent British session beer. Other than the novelty factor, I probably wouldn't search for this specifically, but it may be worth a try.

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Photo of tjd112
3.45/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I got this in a mixasix at Lakewood Spirits Unlimited. I poured this into a Sam Smith nonic. Appearance is a golden colour with fizzy white head and minimal lacing. Very grainy smell, and the taste is somewhat malty with a light hop profile. Mouthfeel is fizzy and light, and this is not one of the best pale ales I have ever tasted.

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Photo of jaycount
3.78/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Kind of a bland golden, yellowish appearance. Good lacing, good white head. Looks tasty.

S - Reminds me of a good clean lager.

T - Tasty but not alot of different flavors. Still very sessionable.

M - Standard, just enough carbonation. I like it.

D - Great. Good "standard" sessionable beer. I'll remember this one.

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Photo of boogyman
2.85/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Poured into a mug. Thin head that dissapears quickly. Few bubbles are coming from the bottom. This is definitely a clear pale ale. Don't expect much if any lacing.

S - Mostly just malts in the nose. No hops that I can detect but I slam my palate with tons of west coast IPAs to kill any chance of getting any chance to smell hops from a beer of this style.

T- Definitely wolds away in taste from any american pale. Has a decent maltyness to it. Light hop taste.

M- Has a decent fizzy bite going down. Doesn't really any lasting bite from the bitterness just a slight kick goes in and down.

D- Surprisingly refreshing drinking this beer. Compared to its american counterpart, this is definitely a lot more quaffable which isn't too surprising due to the low ABV. Overall I thought it was ok, but nothing too exciting.

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Photo of Pencible
3.38/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

This poured a clear gold with quickly dissipating off-white head. It smelled like roasted barley and nutty malt, with sweet and creamy yeast and some copper hops. It tasted like nutty and light caramel malt, with creamy yeast and some copper hops. It was watery with moderate carbonation, and had a mild bitter aftertaste. Overall this had a very basic taste, but it was clean and decent. The body was passable, so the beer was no problem to drink. However, that's not a strong compliment. Aside from the name, this beer is totally forgettable. At least it wasn't offensive to try.

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Photo of Poser
3.45/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Mellow Mushroom in Huntsville, AL.

Poured a light copper. Fairly thin head. Aroma was soft and floral. Mostly malty but a little bit of earthiness. Goes down smooth with a light sweetness and just a touch of balancing hops.

It was an easy-to-drink light pale ale. Nothing fabulous but nothing to knock down either.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.6/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours golden orange with a small white head. The aroma is very malty with some earthy hops. The flavor is traditional English malt and hops, with some fruitiness. Thin-medium carbonation and a thinner mouthfeel.

I had tried this beer once before and not liked it, but I found it pretty good the second time. Certainly not a great beer, but not a bad beer either.

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Photo of sophisticated
3.4/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A) Clear bubbly amber, small white head with little retention, lacing

S) Mild hops and malts. Slight sweet caramel and some grass.

T) Mild flavor. Pretty balanced with hops and malts. Sweet caramel, buttery, bread, grass, and a metallic/bitter taste that was rather off-putting.

MF) On the thin side, smooth

D) Alright. Maybe its the style, but I did not particularly care for it. Boring.

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Photo of mullenite
3.2/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Glassware - Imperial Pint Glass

Appearance - Amber in color with a two finger white head that settles in to a nice cap and leave a decent amount of lacing on the glass. There is visible active carbonation in the mostly clear body of the beer.

Nose - Herbal and slightly grassy hops with biscuit notes in the background. Some very light caramel malt but not as much as the CBC Tall Tale. Dominated mostly by the herbal hops (my uneducated guess would be Noble.)

Taste - Interesting taste, and a little disappointing. There is a very strong bubblegum flavor that I'm getting that does not mesh well at all with the herbal hops or biscuit flavors. I like bubblegum in my wheat beers but I'm not so sure I like it in my pale ales. (Actually, if there were diacetyl instead of bubble gum it might taste pretty damn good.) There really isn't a whole lot going on here, not complex at all and not really that good honestly.

Mouthfeel - Thinner side of medium body with good carbonation. Really nice body all around...

Overall - I would really enjoy this beer if it weren't for the bubblegum flavor, it's really off putting and not very pleasant. Really though, it's one of my favorite movies of all time so I just got it for the bottle.

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Photo of DaveFL1976
3.83/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Coasters Pub, Melbourne, FL

A pretty copper-colored body with a bright white head that unfortunately settles down a bit too quickly.
Smell is subtle and a bit bready.
Taste starts out sweet, then bready and finishes up with a tad of lemon or other tangy citrus. Nice and meaty in the body with moderate carbonation.
The whole thing is not a game changer, and it won't knock your socks off like the Killer Rabbit, but it is a solid session beer, and a nice example of an English Pale Ale. Very sessionable.

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Photo of ImusBeer
3.48/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance is a copper color, with a nice light tan head which died quick and didn't produce any lacing.

The smell of pine, hops, very light aroma. The taste of citrus mostly lemon, and a bit of bitterness at the end.

Mouthfeel was light, a bit flat. Drinkability is very good, I've had this on tap and in the Bottle, I think I perfer tap.

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Photo of katan
3.12/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz into a pint

A - Pours a light dark brown color. Very clear and filtered. Dirty white head, doesn't built to much but hangs around as a film. Light amount of bubbling.

S - Light grainy note, but overall a very sterile nose.

T - Light malt sweetness and some caramel notes. Mid-stream gets more bitter, but it leans to the malty side. Starts to finish with some yeasty and bready notes. Aftertaste is generally sweet.

M - Creamy body - sugars make it a bit thick. no carbonation bite present. Leaves behind a cloying sticky sweetness.

D - Very drinkable - sessionable for certain. Low and workable ABV. Not filling. Flavors aren't overwhelming.

Overall a bit boring,

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.49/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - beautiful honey/orange pour, a thin white head above. Decent ropy lacing with a resilient collar.

Aroma - sweet, caramelly, buttery. Essential EPA aroma at first, but it all but disappears after a minute.

Taste - light grains, a light butteriness, not as much as I was expecting. This needs to warm up, cold temps really hold back the flavors here. Thinly flavored and the carbonation making it even harder to taste, once warmed up, the grains come out better, imparting an earthy but light diacetyl flavor.

Mouthfeel - while well-carbonated, the body does well to come across as medium weight with a note of slickness.

Drinkability - an easy beer to knock back, and a fine one to toast a job well done. Thanks Lori. ;-)

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Photo of tigg924
3.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: orange-brown in color, minimal head, moderate carbonation, clear

Smell: toasted malt and grass

Taste: toasted malt, tea, honey, and biscuit

Mouthfeel: smooth, medium carbonation, light bodied

Drinkability: Good for the style but not great overall. This has a very smooth and nice biscuit taste. I could have two max.

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Photo of Baileyuk
4.16/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was not expecting as much from this beer with the cheesiness albeit somewhat entertaining label and play from Monty Python but this was a very solid beer.

Lacing was good, head was good although faded fast. Color was decent also.

Smell was the weak point, malty for sure, little hop in the smell.

Taste was way over expectations. Very clean crisp flavor, hops were decently balanced with malt and everything gelled well.

Was medium bodied and went well with the taste and style.

Very drinkable, good beer and one I avoided for a while, now with regret.

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
3.66/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle purchased at McKinnon's in Salem. Pours a crystal-clear amber body with a good inch of short-lived off-white head. Smells biscuity with hints of nut and hay. Tastes malty for sure, with hints of nut, biscuit, butter, and herbal hops. Light bodied with ample carbonation. A pleasant, drinkable, subtle brew. Not horrible, but not much going on here really. Similar to Bass in many way. Not bad.

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Photo of Mosstrooper
3.9/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into Roanoke College pint glass.

Appearance: Strawberry blonde color with a two-finger beige head that dissipates rather quickly and leaves a bit of lace.

Smell: Sweet malt and floral hops, with some phenols.

Taste: Glucose sweetness at the beginning, finishing wih a slight earthy bitterness and a lingering bready aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, with balanced carbonation.

Drinkability: Very enjoyable beer. Not too heavy on hops, very sessionable. Definitely something I'd drink again if given the chance.

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Photo of wahhmaster
3.33/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a nonic imperial pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a light brownish-orange color with a thick, fizzy head that dissipates slowly leaving spotty lacing.

Smell: Grassy, with a bit of sweetness to it as well.

Taste: Hoppy, but not overwhelmingly so. Backed by a good amount of malt as well. Surprisingly complex for something I thought was a novelty beer.

Mouthfeel: A little on the thin and overcarbonated side but it doesn't really get in the way of the beer.

Drinkability: A decent drink for something I honestly just picked up for the novelty of the label. Little did I know that someone actually put some work into making this beer tasty. Try it!!

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Photo of Blakaeris
3.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours pale orange-copper with a slight head that quickly dissipates, leaving only the slightest ring.

Aroma is pale and caramel malt, mildly fruity with apple and apricot notes.

Taste is balanced sweet caramel malt and bitter earthy hop. Hints of brown sugar, lemon, and tobacco - along with the apple and apricot fruit notes the nose led me to expect. Apple has a green sour quality. Finish is clean and crisp.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied. Slick.

Subtle interesting complexity, as I would expect from a true English pale ale. Worth a try.

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Photo of JordonHoltzman
3.69/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

first twist off bottle with a cool name and label. no freshness date.

a translucent brown color with white head that was thin and never had a chance, died quickly. white lacing only on side of the glass that i'm not drinking from.
a very earth smell with roasted coffee bean aroma and dark malts.
monty python's holy grail ale is a little than it smelled. earthy but definitely some hoppiness there too. a warm toasty flavor, slightly nutty as well. the coffee that was there in the aroma isnt really present in the taste, and by matter of opinion isn't a bad thing.
the brew is very very carbonated, really tingles the upper lip and tongue.
this is a pretty drinkable beer, overall i was pleased with this brew.

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Photo of beveritt
3.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to DoctorDog for providing this sample. I think passing beers back and forth like we do is called "enabling."

Presentation: Poured from 1 500ml brown bottle into an Imperial pint glass. Label is simple, yellow background, with some Monty Python-esque drawings. The name is listed as Holy Grail with the Gr crosses out. "Tempered over burning witches." No clear freshness date. Some sediment remains in the bottle.

Appearance: Pours with 2 fingers of light tan head. This settles to an incomplete coating of foam, leaving behind very nice lacing. The beer itself is dark amber and ever so slightly cloudy.

Smell: Butterscotch malt with slightly fruity hints of apricot and citrus.

Taste: Mild malt upfront, not as flavorful as expected from the smell. Biscuity with hints of caramel and butterscotch. Fairly strong bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Much higher than average carbonation level, especially for the style. Body is decent.

Drinkability: Not bad at all, more than just a gimmick. However, with so many different styles and brands out there, this won't be one I seek out again.

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Photo of crhensel
2.9/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

(bottle poured into pint glass) Pours a dark amber, light copper color with small quickly diminishing head. Smells of flowers with a hint of citrus. Thin drink with lively carbonation finishes slightly dull and bland. I was hoping for some of the flower and citrus to translate but it did not. Interesting choice for name and label, but there are better examples of the style out there.

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Monty Python's Holy Grail Ale from Black Sheep Brewery PLC
Beer rating: 3.32 out of 5 with 1,248 ratings
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