Monks' Ale | Abbey Beverage Company (Monastery of Christ in the Desert)

Monks' AleMonks' Ale
167 Ratings
Monks' AleMonks' Ale

Brewed by:
Abbey Beverage Company (Monastery of Christ in the Desert)
New Mexico, United States

Style: Belgian Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Monks’ Ale is distinctly fruity and spicy. The yeast lends a note of clove and in combination with the malt, hints of plum and apricot. The malt itself provides a honeyish quality up front, a round fullness in the middle, and the hops, together with our pure brewing water, lend a clean, dry finish.

18 IBU

Added by Domingo on 04-24-2007

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 167 |  Reviews: 77
Photo of rorjets
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of CreekyJarls
3.25/5  rDev -7.1%

Photo of BrewAskew
4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out to a frothy buff head with good retention and a bright copper color. Aroma is cloves, spices and bubblegum and caramelized malts. Flavor is much like the aroma, with a grainy, biscuity finish. Mouthfeel is light-medium and "smooth". Overall a very good beer.

 268 characters

Photo of MDM
3.25/5  rDev -7.1%

Photo of b2611
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of apasternak
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Photo of purvis_drew
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Jame515
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of mhaugo
2.34/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle decanted into a tulip glass. 5.1% ABV.
Appearance: The color of an aging penny. Overcast inside. It’s got the suggestion of a head that never really becomes one. The cloudiness clears up as it gets closer to room temperature (2.5/5).
Aroma: Prunes and figs. There’s some bready malt back there too. Sadly, I’m getting a lot of “wet cardboard” as well, which tells me its oxidized (2.25/5).
Taste: Oh, boy… is this oxidized and infected? It’s got a wild yeast dryness to it. I get some raisins, some plums, and maybe some vegetables too? I swear I taste a little bit of carrot and cabbage. This is all followed by a harsh bitterness. I guess this could be an early hop charge, but I’m not entirely certain it was intentional. It tastes out of place, as does everything else (2.25/5).
Mouthfeel: Light body, light carbonation. Very thin and slightly astringent (2.5/5).
Overall: So, this is probably another victim of poor retailer storage, but I’m guessing there are problems with this beer that predate the distributor. It doesn’t taste to style, nor does it taste like something I’d ever want to drink again. It’s just generally unpleasant. This is the first beer I’ve had from the Monastery of Christ in the Desert, but after this one I’m not sure I’ll be racing out to get any others (2.25/5).

 1,342 characters

Photo of Gagnonsux
3.25/5  rDev -7.1%

Photo of lancecenter
2.53/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

750 mL bottle purchased at the local HEB.

A - translucent copper color, a couple fingers of head, average retention and lacing.

S - typical Belgian profile, just muted. Phenols, cloves, bananas, and pepper.

T/M - and this is where it falls apart. The taste kind of follows the nose, but there's just not much there. Way too watery and not enough carbonation.

O - I see why this stuff is so cheap now. I thought I'd rather have a bad Belgian over a good adjunct, but I'm not so sure anymore.

 495 characters

Photo of Tiernan
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of brutalist
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of BradShook
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of kjkinsey
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Dactrius
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of bmwats
3.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a footed tulip.

A: Dark amber hue. Pours a 1 finger, tight, foamy, white head. Settles quickly leaving a thick beer ring. Thick beer ring lacing.

S: Grass, a little citrus zest, a slight hop, a touch of honey, and coriander.

T: Cardboard, lightly sweetened hop, coriander, and pepper. A bit of a butterscotch or caramel, but very light.

M: Earthy and grainy. A little shallow. Synthetically sweet feeling finish.

D: Session.

Atmosphere is pretty solid. Dark hue, tight foamy head, and plenty of thick persistent lacing. Nose is grassy more than grainy, accentuated with a little citrus zest, hop, honey, and coriander. Cardboard and white bread, with a slight sweet hop bite, and spice. Overall, this is a pretty good quaff.

 762 characters

Photo of Ryanm1
3.5/5  rDev 0%

Photo of drinkAK
2.75/5  rDev -21.4%

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.54/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Kind of orange-tan with a little haze, 1/2 finger head that left an off-white sheen and some decent lacing.

Aroma is pretty yeasty, along with fruity, and with a touch of caramel malt.

Flavor is very Belgian yeast forward, with a pretty good fruitiness, some clove, some pepper, and some non-distinct spices, The malt base provides a solid background for the other flavors, lending a nice caramel malt/bread/light toast note.

Body is very full and rich, and leaves a malt base/caramel malt/Belgian yeast blend of aftertastes.

It's an interesting brew, and was certainly worth the price. I'd have it again.

 611 characters

Photo of zenithberwyn
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Bockrules
3.79/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from the bottle into tulip glass

A - Pours a hazy golden amber capped by a dense, creamy tannish head. Numerous columns of small bubbles are seen rising up through the glass. Head stays intact all the way down the glass and leaves behind splotches of lacing on the top half of the glass and a thick complete ring of tiny bubbles on the bottom half.

S - A mild apple cider spice upon opening the bottle. In the glass a bit more green apple yeast notes come out on an inviting caramel and biscuit background.

T - Caramel malt upfront. The body is an intriguing blend of yeast and light apple notes on a light caramel and biscuit backbone. More caramel and a flash of green apple as the beer passes over the back of the tongue leads to a bitter caramel granny smith apple finish.

M - On the slightly heavy of light bodied with ample carbonation. Seems to suite the style well enough and is a tad bit fizzy as the beer goes down.

Monks Ale came in a summer beer pack I purchased at World Market a few years ago for $7.50 (12 beers). Given the low price tag and how well this beer seems to have held up, I'm going to go ahead and pull the trigger on a 4 overall. The green apple and caramel flavors are unique to me and I like the somewhat light body and darker color. This may not be the best crafted beer, but it is interesting, unique, and possibly cheap enough for me to consider getting it again.

 1,411 characters

Photo of Dweedlebug
3/5  rDev -14.3%

Photo of gleemonger
4/5  rDev +14.3%

Photo of Oakenator
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a dark amber to brown with a finger of head. Head lingers a bit and leaves nice spotted lacing on the glass.

S: Malty.

T: Definitely a good amount of malting in this beer but also getting some molasses on the finish. Flavor of an Belgian Dubbel without the ABV.

M: Good heft to this brew for a 5.1 - really nice flavor.

O: Good beer.

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Monks' Ale from Abbey Beverage Company (Monastery of Christ in the Desert)
Beer rating: 3.5 out of 5 with 167 ratings
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