Bitter Monk | Anchorage Brewing Company

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96
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1,022 Ratings
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Bitter MonkBitter Monk
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Anchorage Brewing Company
Alaska, United States
anchoragebrewingcompany.com

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Belgian style double IPA with Brettanomyces. this ale is aged in french oak chardonnay barrels. Brewed with Apollo, Citra, and Simcoe hops. Dry hopped in the barrel with Citra hops. Triple fermented- First in the tank with a Belgian yeast, second in french oak chardonnay barrels with brett, and finally in the bottle with a third yeast for natural carbonation.

100 IBU

Added by sprucetip on 08-26-2011

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,022
Reviews:
269
Avg:
4.34
pDev:
9.68%
 
 
Wants:
419
Gots:
128
For Trade:
7
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,022 |  Reviews: 269
Photo of tedho21
4.84/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of scottfrie
4.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle into Portsmouth tulip. Batch 1.

A: Pours a hazy dark citrus lemon/orange color with a billowing, soft and dense off-white head that slowy faded into a fluffy film which left chunks and streaks of sticky lacing down the glass.
S: Complex hoppy notes of citrus, tropical fruits, sweet fruit nectars, tangerines, and grapefruit pith all mixed with earthy, spicy and funky notes of Belgian yeasts and brett. This is one unique smelling brew.
T: Yep, a DIPA with Belgian yeast and brett. This beer tastes like the nose with the grapefruit pith bitterness, sweet tropical fruit hoppiness, and earthy funky brett standing out the most. I do get a bit of the vinous quality of the white barrel as well. The finish is lightly beer and the aftertaste is sweet and funky.
M: Medium-full body with a drying mouthfeel that has a pleasant bitterness in the finish. The carbonation is soft and full.
O: One of the best in the style and just a phenomenal beer. The hops and the brett work wonders together. I love the bottle as well. Highly recommend and a great beer all around.

EDIT: Rarely do I buy a new beer more than once, especially one that costs between $13 to $16 a bottle. Sure I'll buy six packs of old staples (Anchor, SN) or singles of my favorites (Pliny), but I've returned to this beer four times now. I love this beer. It's awesome! I'm bumping the scores up to include more 5's.

 1,399 characters

Photo of hookahmaster12
4.81/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of jsh420
4.8/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

batch 1
july 2011

pours cloudy golden yellow with a big chunky pillowy white head that had great retention and left lacing

smell is funky hoppy evergreen citrus tropical fruit - amazing!

taste - wow - an orval ipa - it works so well - the funk of the brett stands out and cuts through all other flavors bitter fruity hops and sweet malt

mouthfeel - medium body decent carbonation - smooth and creamy - could have used more bite

overall - one if not the best belgian ipa i have had - i can only knock it .5 for price @ 15 a bottle and mouthfeel - but i would gladly buy another bottle when the newest batch comes out this year

 630 characters

Photo of mgironta
4.8/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer came out of a corked and caged bomber. The cork was pretty easy to get out and only had a slight pop. The brew poured with a gigantic head, about three fingers of pure white head that was thick and fluffy and left lots of lacing on the glass. The body was a clear, almost straw yellow with lots of active carbonation visible. I thought the color was pretty light for a Belgian IPA. The nose was all brett…not that I’m unhappy with that. It’s been awhile since I’ve had a brett beer. Wow, this was really different. The brew started with a bit of grapefruit and tart citrus with a bit of barnyard funk from the brett. It was really light (body-wise) for a Belgian IPA and the booze and IBUs are really well-balanced out by the flavors. The finish was relatively quick with a hint of citrus. The body was probably the lightest that I’ve ever had with a good dollop of carbonation. This beer was just fantastic to me. It was an easy drinker despite the ABV and was complex and quaffable. I would definitely have this bad boy again.

 1,048 characters

Photo of sjccmd
4.79/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Light orange slightly hazy body with a creamy white head. Carbonation streams up from the bottom of the glass. Incredibly stick lacing.

Wow. The aroma is incredibly fascinating. Lots of brett and hops, but they seem to compliment each other so well that it is almost hard to distinguish which is which. Bright citrus and tropical fruits. Pineapple and slightly cheesy barnyard funk. Earthy basement aroma. Incredibly floral.

WOW! I was thinking that there was no way the flavor could be as interesting as the aroma, but I was so wrong. Juicy hops, funky and earthy brett all balanced together. Crazy tropical fruit flavors that I don't even want to reduce to pineapple or mango...incredibly unique. It's pretty hard to describe this flavor. I would have never imagined brett and american hops could work together so well. Finishes with earthy and spicy with a solid hop bitterness.

Exceptionally creamy, but not heavy mouthfeel. High carbonation but not fizzy. Sticky hop resin fills out the mouth.

This is one of most unique beers I've had...even after having Love Buzz. I can't wait to see what this brewery does next.

 1,125 characters

Photo of Peter1977
4.78/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of dimitrov
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a glowing citrus yellow and orange color, with tons of haziness. Pretty.

Amazing chunky brett and citrus hop aroma. Simcoe and Citra all over this one. And the Simcoe doesn't dominate with its uber bitterness either. Soft touches. Really get the plethora of hop smells all over the place from simple grapefruit, to tropical, to piney.

Same with the taste. Lots of bretty goodness, lots of citric hop tastes, perfect amount of bitterness, lightly sour, not overpowering the hop quotient here. Has almost a chardonnay or white wine like aspect to it from the spritziness. Hid the alcohol quite well. Everything just melds so nicely, great interplay.

The most unique dipa I've ever tasted. And not just unique, its f'n awesome. Don't know how belgian it is, the yeast certainly doesn't seem belgianesque, and the hops are definitely west coast stylee.

Pricey, I mean, the beer just nailed it, but still half point deduction for the price.

 950 characters

Photo of iong516
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of mudbug
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

From the C&C Bottle (Batch number one) into a Tulip results in a slightly hazy orange body with a huge frothy, rocky head that ever so slowly settles into what looks like rounded icebergs, thick lacing sticks all over the sides, very pretty indeed!
Oh boy this one has aroma in spades, you don't have to get anywhere near the glass. Wet hay, roses, grapefruit, lemons. Not subtle in the least, mouthwatering and pungent.
Taste is complex to say the least, an astringent bitterness upfront lemon peel,grapefruit rind, unsalted cracker, the funk is subdued with a pleasant wet hay earthiness. just a hint of white wine and oak. A long lingering slightly sour bitterness ends it all, but makes you want more.
Did I mention the aroma? Oh boy I could just sniff this all night.
Juicy, what alcohol?
A Masterpiece!
Edit for 2013 edition. Perfect and consistent in every way. This is no one off wonder, it's the real deal!

 922 characters

Photo of crackshot
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of bigsquirrel
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of Beezee
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of adamdarcy
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of Beergelden
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of Spigs
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of Boozecamel
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of theminutemen
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of Rutager
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of Adriatic
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of jlira
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of THANAT0PSIS
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Anchorage Bitter Monk

A: This very American Belgian IPA from the saison kings in the north pours with an awesome, frothy, bone white, lingering head, which sits atop an almost murky orange juice-like color. Lacing is amazing, and the near turbidity cannot be stressed enough in how forward-thinking it was and how the cloudy style has come into popularity. Fantastic-looking. 5/5

A: Pithy orange juice and grapefruit, leathery funky Brett (complete with pineapple overtones) and a healthy dose of acidic stonefruit from the also buttery Chardonnay and French oak together all work in harmony. Orange peel, clove, and coriander are also present, plus a whiff of bakery. This is a masterful blending of the components at hand here. Phenomenal. 5/5

T: The Brett and barrel does dominate a bit more in the taste, upsetting the extraordinary balance the nose exhibited. That said, this is still stellar. Heavy citrus in the form of orange juice and grapefruit and even a leafy dankness not present in the aroma face quickly into a barnyard Brett and stonefruits (lots of apricot, peach, and nectarine here), then peppercorn and clove mingle flawlessly with butter and a slight acidity finishing with a pleasant and cleaning grassy bitterness as well as a touch of oaky tannin. Just a few notches below the brilliant nose. 4.5/5

M: Perfect. Simply perfect. Soft yet lively, creamy yet drinkable, smooth yet challenging; this is brewing mastery. It is refreshing but with a hint of booze and plenty of bitterness to force the drinker to sip. One of the best mouthfeels out there, a characteristic of most Anchorage beer. 5/5

O: This has been a longtime want for me, and I could not be happier to finally acquire it, and relatively fresh (Dec. 2015), too! Needless to say, it blew my expectations out of the water. In the new trend of wild hoppy beers, this still reigns completely supreme. There are few beers out there this well-put-together. Nearly flawless. Even with the hefty price tag, I will seek this out again. Ludicrously good. Pair with the equally forward-thinking Ornette Coleman's "The Shape of Jazz to Come." 4.75/5

 2,128 characters

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottle purchased at The Beer Belly in Albany, NY.

This one pours a hazy, murky pastel yellow/orange, with a half inch foamy head, and a good amount of sticky lacing.

This one smells like dry musty Brett, smarties, lemon, tangerine, orange marmalade, white wine, and pine.

This is everything I wanted it to be, a near perfect rendition of a hoppy Brett beer. The Citra hops shine through. They do more than shine through, it's a dirty Citra bomb, there's some orange, pineapple, and pine, and some really mild cattiness, with mingles well with the dusty citrus and chalky flavors of the Brett. There's some white wine flavor to it as well, some woodsy earthiness, and a chalky bitterness at the end. This is so utterly drinkable it's stupid.

This is medium bodied, with a very juicy mouthfeel, and a higher level of carbonation.

This met all of my expectations. I had been dying to try it, so I was worried it wouldn't meet expectation. It did, in a huge delicious way.

 973 characters

Photo of CraigTravor
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Bitter Monk from Anchorage Brewing Company
4.34 out of 5 based on 1,022 ratings.
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