Monkeynaut IPA | Straight To Ale

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very good
95 Reviews
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Monkeynaut IPAMonkeynaut IPA
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Straight To Ale
Alabama, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.25%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Albert. Able. Gordo. Miss Baker. Bonny. Goliath. Between 1948 and 1961 these primate pioneers and others bravely went where no man had ever gone before, paving the way for manned U.S. spaceflight. This hoppy little monkey of a beer is a tribute to those Simian heroes of yesteryear. It has a citrusy, floral hop aroma, a strong malt body and a crisp finish.

Added by Todd on 04-21-2010

BEER STATS
Reviews:
95
Ratings:
535
Avg:
3.91
pDev:
29.16%
 
 
Wants:
32
Gots:
127
For Trade:
5
User Reviews
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Reviews: 95 | Ratings: 535
Photo of CNoj012
3.65/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This beer pours a slightly hazy golden amber color with a huge fluffy off white head. Retention is excellent and there are chunky spots of lacing. Smell is pretty bland. Some bready malt along with a bit of piney and floral hops and some hop spiciness as well. Taste is the same and kind of muddled with a good deal of bitterness on the back end. Feel is medium and slick. Overall not bad.

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Photo of cherotr
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass; dark amber color, 1/2 inch head, some lacing

S- standard ipa aroma. nothing over-powering.

T- better than the aroma. good hops / malt balance, lingering bitterness disappears fast. alcohol content is hidden very well

M- creamy. lightly carbonated.

O- better than just a 'good' ipa... will have one more.. now?

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass at the tap room.

Straight to Ale Monkeynaut IPA

Pours a very nice amber color with a solid copper hue. Nice thin white head forms and leaves some slight lacing. Retention is pretty low with the head going down pretty quickly.

Aroma starts off with some nice tropical fruit notes. There are piney hop resins that come up and give the brew a slight sweetness. There is an nice grapefruit rind note that underlays the pine notes to this brew

Flavor starts off with a punch to the loudmouth. There is an explosion of bitter and citrus rind with some intense and full resinous pine. This is an absolute palate wrecker in terms of bitterness. There is also some underlain caramel malt notes that give the brew some background sweetness but its bitter till the end for the most part. A robust bitterness at that. Very much an east coast style with pine and some slight citrus dryness. Mouthfeel is medium light with some nice stickynees to it but a dry bitter finish. Earthy and grassy.

Overall I was quite impressed with this places IPA. Nice East Coast flavors and great bitterness.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

not too often i get to try beer from alabama, so i was excited about this one. its a pretty basic ipa, but it tastes good. it has just a little more of a grain body and sweetness than i personally prefer in the style, but the hop complexion is robust and it works real well on the whole. orangey in color, with a fluffy head on it. the hops are very juicy, and my can was fortunately very fresh, hop aromatics radiate from this one, with grapefruit leading the way, but notes of lemon and oily bitterness as well. the taste sees the hops fall back just a little from the nose, and bitterness become a little more intense, which is fine since there is some grain sweetness here, and it balances it out pretty well. the carbonation is like a soda pop, its high enough to make the beer seem lighter than it is in terms of both body and abv, and i appreciate that. i have not had much beer from the south, especially the hoppy stuff, and while this is a step back from the best india pale ales on the market, its cool to try something like this. worth picking up if you are traveling there.

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Photo of OrestesMethuon
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

An aggressively-candied nose prepares the drinker for an IPA almost as whimsical as Straight to Ale's aesthetic choices, between the beer's name and its can-art. It's a fairly vibrant brownish-orange—almost a ruddy, unburnished bronze—but the color belies the loaded nature of the malting, which is deep and sweet, bold and robust, and to a non-trivial extent like a spoonful of oleo-saccharum and orange-oil with each sip. Indeed, there's very little bitterness with this beer: the brewers play the hops almost entirely for aroma and floral-candy flavors, with a hedge of bitter acids on a finish that's mostly sticky-sweet and only just a little citric. As it mellows, there's also a pleasant biscuity/bready note that emerges amongst Moneynaut's complex of sweet flavors.

It's thick, for sure, but it's a solid IPA: surprisingly drinkable for its heft, but otherwise neither amazing nor unsurprising—though perhaps it greets me with a modicum of disappointment, considering I'd heard a decent bit of ballyhoo down south about this beer. But it's good—even very good—despite being a bit different, and not necessarily as great, as I'd expected.

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Photo of AlexFields
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a really clear orange/amber, a bit of a head but not a huge one, nothing too exciting.

Smells of orange, citrus zest, maybe some lime. Moderate sweetness on the nose and pretty hoppy, smells like a really good IPA

Taste is a bit different, orange and lime again but considerably stronger bitterness, hints of grapefruit.

Very solid IPA, I hope Straight to Ale starts to distribute cans/bottles to Knoxville.

7.5/10

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Photo of sommersb
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasted On: 08-28-2012
Freshness: Not indicated
Packaging: 12 oz. can
Glassware: Signature glass
Purchased: Single from Publix, Huntsville

The pour yields a crazy huge off-white head, filling my glass 90% full with foam. Once I can see the beer it's a clear and bright copper color. Lacing and head retention are excellent.

Smells are big and hoppy, giving off lots of citrus and pine aromas. Other aromas include caramel malts and alcohol. The taste also dominated by the bittering hops and citrus like grapefruit. The malts make a showing, but this one is mainly focused on hops.

Body is full, but the super-high carbonation is annoying. The finish is bitter and strong and leaves tastes of earthy, piney and citrus hops.

Overall a very flavorful IPA, but this can had some quality issues marring it.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.77/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Marketed to salute all the monkeys who took the trek to outer space, laying the groundwork for human astronauts- Straight To Ale brings us... Monkeynaut! The craft beer industry is defiantly running out of creativity.

Pouring a bright amber-orange color, the look of honey comes to mind. Through its slight haze, the ale springs to life with a frothy off-white head that caps the beer and retains the session like any well-built hoppy ale should. Trailing with broken lace, the ale is certainly a handsome looking elixir.

Hop dominant aromas leap right out as the aromas are chocked full of fresh orange peels, red grapefruit, and crushed pine needles. As the malty aromas rise, they give the fruity hops a ripe and juicy scent with their own hints of caramel and honey. Light apricot gives a glimpse into tropical character and begins to highlight a biscuity British character.

Its lush taste starts off more sweet than citrus but that's all short-lived. Its medium caramel impressions greet the early palate with light toasted grain and a touch of shortbread. But the middle is all citrus as the grapefruit and vibrant orange taste is juicy but trends drier rather than sweet. Its last glimpse of sweetness captures the orange taste and is lightly marmalade-like as a result. The hops develop from fruit and into a playful grassy taste and a limey bitterness and with resinous pine flavors in finish and aftertaste.

Its crisp and clean mouthfeel starts off creamy-sweet. But once the carbonation breaks apart and the sweetness recedes, its dry malt structure perfectly supports the smooth hop bitterness for a clean and dry warmth to close.

Despite its desperate namesake, the beer is simply marvelous as it has greater balance than the typical hop-dominant varieties. This should make Monkeynaut a more friendly choice for those who are skittish around hops.

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Photo of kirok1999
3.77/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Gorillanaut's little brother. A very nice and well balanced IPA, nothing over the top and a very well balanced beer. Lightly sweet with a tasty hop bill and enough malt to make it drinkable. This would be a go to IPA if they shipped this far north. Love the stuff.

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Photo of BeerAndBourbon
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The last of my three 'bama beers from my friend's vacation. Thanks again Jen!

A. Pours a thick copper with a very small head that leaves small flecks of residual lacing.

S. I didn't detect a whole lot in the nose. Some floral hop character as well as caramel malt as it warms.

T. Raw hop bitterness upfront - tastes like a slightly subdued version of very fresh hop buds. There is a slight sweetness that mellows out the bitterness. As it warms, the sweetness shines through more. A bit of burnt orange peel as well.

M. Thick and creamy with a medium level of carbonation.

D. An IPA that isn't over the top and develops as it warms. While I wouldn't drink most IPAs all night, I could put a couple of these back happily.

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Photo of brewskifan55
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a snifter

A: Clear amber. An off-white, one finger head that dissipates to a foamy top. Curtainy lacing.

S: Picking up grapefruit, pine resin. Citrusy.

T: Smooth, sweet. The light hop bitterness is quickly replaced by a sweet malty finish. Very sessionable.

M: Medium with medium, frothy carbonation.

O: I really wasn't expecting much, but was pleasantly surprised. The hop/malt double tap really combines for a very drinkable barrel of monkeys. Would drink again.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.79/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 12oz can into a dimpled mug.

Appearance: medium orange hue with basically no haze and a moderate effervescence. Head pours a thin finger of frothy ivory foam that has decent staying power. I really like the color on this one.

Smell: very malty with an up-front caramel character and a moderate level of earthy hops. Reminds me more of an English IPA, but not bad.

Taste: caramel malt with a pretty heavy sweetness plus that earthy hop character. Bitterness is surprisingly low, at least compared to the sweetness. It's not bad, but not especially hoppy.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good level of carbonation and a good creaminess for the style.

Overall: not a bad IPA, but not one I would go out of my way to have again.

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Photo of woosterbill
3.82/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the J. Clyde into a shaker pint.

A: Clear amber body, a shade darker than medium; practically no head, but the whisp of off-white bubbles sticks around throughout. Not a great pour, but not an ugly beer.

S: Pungent piney hops dominate, backed up by some toasty malt. Decent.

T: Pine and grapefruit hops lead things off, followed by some nicely understated caramel malt. Cleanly bitter finish, with a touch of chalky yeast. Enjoyable.

M: Smooth medium body with ample, fairly lively carbonation.

D: Fairly clean and balanced. Not quite juicy enough to make me thirsty for more, but definitely not a struggle to finish.

Notes: This one was recommended to me by the bartender after he informed me that the Good People Pale Ale had kicked. While I don't think that this beer was up to the same standard as the one I wanted, it was a tasty brew nonetheless. It's great to see more quality beers coming out of Alabama.

Cheers!

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Photo of corby112
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to PALMEJ1 for sending this one.

Pours a slightly hazy, dark copper color with burnt orange edges and a two finger frothy white head that slowly settles into a thick, lasting ring. Good retention with large streaks of soapy lacing left behind.

Slightly earthy floral hop aroma with grass and resinous pine followed by subtle citrus and a sweet malt backbone. Hints of grapefruit, orange peel, biscuit, caramel and toffee provide sweetness that counters the dank, sticky hops. Nice balance in the nose but the malt character is a bit stronger than I prefer.

Full bodied with a blast of dank, sticky hops providing a decent amount of dry bitterness that lingers over the citrus fruit and sweet malt notes into a dry finish. Fresh juicy hops with earthy grass, bitter pine needle and resinous oils followed by a prominent grapefruit presence before the caramel malt sweetness comes on in the back end. A little bit of bread, biscuit and caramel rounding things out in the finish. Very faint boozy sweetness but the high ABV is well masked. There's a bit more malt flavor than I prefer, but this is an extremely drinkable beer with good hop flavor.

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Photo of kkipple
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanx to Unclejedi for this one, drunk 8.21.2010 in Buford, GA at the Meat Meet.

A. Pours a reddish walnut, with a spotty, inconsistent head, speckles of lace. Still in the glass, but it *was* from a growler...

S. Fairly standard pale-ish ale, (Cascade, Centennial?) with some decent hop character, but not West Coast at all.. more reserved and leaves room for the sweet biscuity malt. More like an Imperial APA here, but not bad.

T. Big red malt character, lots of Cascade, bitters carry on from the start to finish, sort of "standard", short and clean finish, sweet in all the good places... does not take any chances, nor does it really stick around as interesting, but is quite solid and has no off flavors. A good start, to me, but this can be made better.

M / D. Fine carbonation, even via growler, mouthfeel is medium-ish, feels bigger than it actually is... still, not hard to put back.

Monkeynaut is a fine beer, but as a flagship sort of thing, really needs to (imo) find its own character and stake a claim. It's rather pedestrian, and while there are no real flaws, it doesn't stick in your head and make you think "This is Alabama beer." Given that this is a less than year old outfit, these issues could be easily addressed. I look forward to seeing what Straight to Ale does in the future!

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Photo of MasterSki
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to the d0b for the share. Served in a FoBAB taster pint.

A - A finger-plus of creamy foam slowly settles to a cap, leaving minimal lace - nice retention. Transparent amber body with tiny bubbles visible.

S - Fairly malt-forward, with sugary and crackery notes balanced by herbs and grapefruit rind. A hint of brown sugar flavor in there as well. Definitely an East Coast IPA.

T - Taste has quite a bit of lemony citrus, as well as mild pine and herbal notes. Some sugar cookie malts balance things out before giving way to fairly high bitterness in the finish. Again, quite East Coast in terms of balance and alpha acids.

M - Smooth, creamy, medium body, with some resinous residual hop oils, and a dry, toasty finish. Pleasant moderate carbonation.

D - Solid IPA, and quite impressive for Alabama.

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Photo of Meerkey
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear, shiny bronze. Lots of thick heads, trails of lacing.

S: Very tart- grapefruit and hops. Not much there but I like it -clean and pleasant.

T: Bready malts, hope and citrus.

M: Refreshing and lingers nicely.

D: Very tasty, I'd have another. Not as bitter and citrusy and I would have expected from the smell.

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Photo of Krisp09
3.87/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: clear orange to gold in color with 2 finger thick white head. Aroma: a little citrus with sweet malt and candy smell. Taste: Orange up front and then pine on the finish. More sweetness from malt than expected. Mouthfeel: crisp with medium body. Overall: fairly well balanced tasting IPA that could use a little more hop aroma

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Photo of Buck89
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Hazy light orange-amber with a foamy white head. Fruity aroma with pineapple, orange, and pine with a little caramel. Taste follows with pineapple (!), grapefruit, pine, and earth. Muted malt presence. Dry finish. Nice IPA - this pineapple surprised me.

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Photo of chinchill
3.91/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Cypress Street pub (ATL); revised Dec 2014 with a 12 oz can.

Deep amber; clear with a good, fairly durable head.

Aroma: fruity and wonderful, with a hint of bready malts.

Flavor: fruity; low bitterness for style. Fine, fruity/hoppy, mildly bitter aftertaste.

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Photo of ronny
3.93/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into from a 12oz can into a Dolle Witte 33cl squared tulip. Nice medium honey color with about a 1" oatmeal colored head. Foam clings nicely to the glass while collapsing in the center. A nice, mostly floral aroma with a little spicy note and some alcohol. Taste is true to the American IPA style, a bit dry, somewhat crisp and hoppy throughout. I'm not too sure about the mouthfeel, there is something that seems a bit confused on the back end, but I can't quite put my finger on it.

This is nice American-style IPA and I would probably drink more of it if it were not for the price. I'll continue to support the STA folks since this is a local brew, but at premium prices, it is hard to justify every week.

But I can be coaxed into drinking several of these if someone else is buying. I do like IPA's and this is a nice version of the American style, well worth a try, in my opinion. I love the fact it is made locally, but if I had no tie to Huntsville or NASA (monkeynaut,get it?) I don't know I would buy it more than once.

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Photo of Jacurdy60
3.93/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a nice yellow brownish color with a vibrant white one finger head and good retention. Nice lacing forms a small latticework of foam. Smells of malted hops. The caramel sweetness is balanced very well with the astringent hops in the nose. Smells exceptional. Taste is a bit simple, but still satisfying. The hops overpower the malty presence I sensed in the nose, but it finishes with a crisp, well balanced flavor between hops and a touch of caramel malt as it warms up. Good, thick body and a smooth and slightly carbonated mouthfeel. Overall, it's a very good IPA. Makes me proud to be from AL.

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Photo of Roby923
3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow! This one is impressive. Lots of caramel and balanced with a pleasant hoppy taste. Canned in Birmingham. Clever 'lil can image with monkey, perhaps the same one that was in the "Temple of Doom".

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Photo of dar482
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The flavor has resinous pine, bitterness up front, a touch of grapefruit, substantial malt backbone. Lots of resin with a decent bitterness on the back end.

The beer is a fine traditional American IPA.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another excursion into the world of 'Bama brewed beer.

This has a very chewy hoppy tone to it. Pine tones are there. Bit of resin. It's a bit tight really, but I like it. Nice feel. Good drinker. Yet another good brew out of Alabama. I've got a few more from this brewery in the lineup and I'm looking forward to them.

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Monkeynaut IPA from Straight To Ale
3.91 out of 5 based on 535 ratings.
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