Bitter Monk | Anchorage Brewing Company

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96
world-class
1,024 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:
1,024
Reviews:
270
Avg:
4.34
pDev:
9.68%
 
 
Wants:
420
Gots:
130
For Trade:
8
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,024 |  Reviews: 270
Photo of pathman
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of JamLand
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ADTaber
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of ColForbinBC
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of Dave_Treat
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of rjp217
4.54/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of egrace84
4/5  rDev -7.8%

Photo of maximum12
4.35/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 1, July 2011, finally reached this neck of the woods recently, & just had to give it a whirl. Big 750 ML bottle split in two.

Poured to leave a good 3-4 ounces in the bottle to avoid whatever dead yeasties may be lurking, the beer is 70% opaque orange, fizzy. Nose comes off a different IPA trail, huge & juicy light fruits, light funk, touch of wine. Nice.

Bitter Monk strikes a blow for the unique: second night in a row I've had a beer like nothing I've encountered before. Bitterness & funk vie for the mantle of Top Runway Chef: wow. Hard to know where to start. Slap-happy bitterness pummels the tongue. Mild funkiness twines its way in & complements. Light, citrusy fruit, lovely drying wood, slippery shot of vinous quality. Distinct pine leaves a nice lasting impression as the door hits me in the ass. Dead on. Something this weird shouldn't be this easy to drink.

Bloody excellent beer. I don't know anything about this brewery, but this is simply fantastic. Gorgeously complex, but even better, complex in a way that all the tastes complement one another continually. Wow.

 1,096 characters

Photo of Gotti311
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of crobinso
4.28/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of markgugs
3.75/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.08/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

25.4oz bottle poured into a Duvel Tulip Glass.
Batch 1

A - Pours a cloudy medium orange with a two finger yellowish head. Spots of lacing are left on the glass.

S - Yeast, citrus - mostly lemons.

T - Hoppy citrus, slight pine, and still some yeast in the background.

D - Tons of carbonation, lighter body.

O - Nice since the yeast wasn't overpowering. Another winner for Anchorage brewing.

 395 characters

Photo of champ103
3.06/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours nearly perfectly clear. A bit of haze forms. A two finger white head forms with excellent retention. Lots of spiderweb looking lace is left all the way down the glass.
S: Very soapy hops up front. Almost dish detergent like. Very phenolic, grassy, spicy, citrusy. Lots of hops.
T: Again lots of hops. Soapy, slick, resiny. Plenty of grassy hops. Alcohol and bitterness in the finish.
M/D: A medium body. Sticky, soapy, resiny, oily. There is heat from the alcohol, but not over barring. Still a slow sipper.

Certainly enjoyably. Just to much soapy hops for my liking. I wish more barrel and Bretty yeast would come out. A one time purchase.

 650 characters

Photo of drummermattie02
4/5  rDev -7.8%

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 Lone_Freighter
4/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearance has a hazy yellow somewhat dark orange colored body with a half finger white foamy head that dies at a moderate pace, light somewhat foamy lacing graces the sides of the glass. The smell has some orange up front, somewhat grassy peppery lemon/citrus thing goin’ on in the background, light yeastiness comes forth after some warming. The taste is bittersweet through the previously noted flavors and an added hop note with some grapefruit coming in and punching my tastebuds, citrusy aftertaste, super dry finish. On the palate, she sits about a medium for the most part - hinging on a slight possibility to light, sessionable - maybe. Carbonation seems pretty good for the Belgian IPA style and for me as there’s an adequate harshness and yet its not overbearing whatsoever. Overall, this one is very well done and I would love to have it again with food or just sittin’ on my back porch as a summer sipper.

 928 characters

Photo of n2185
4.72/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

A: Pours a slightly hazy yellow-gold with two fingers of white head that fades into a nice cap with decent lacing.

S: Sour candy--like lemon drops--hit first with pineapple and orange citrus notes following. Belgian spices, sweet hay, Chardonnay, and a bit of barnyard mustiness come through as well. Smells amazing.

T: There's a lot going on here--tart and sour fruit, musty and funky barnyard flavors, resinous pine hop notes, Belgian spices, grapefruit and citrus rind, Chardonnay, and a moderately bitter and lightly boozy finish.

M: Body is on the lighter side of moderate with lowish carbonation, this beer avoids being watery and has a slick feel--quite drinkable.

O: A damn good beer, overall. So much going on in this beer and it all works well together. I might like a little more carbonation and a little less bitterness, but those are nitpicks.

 869 characters

Photo of jrallen34
3.75/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.38/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

God, this was a great beer!
A golden color that was a little bit hazy. Thick white head that lasted forever. Very well carbonated; a lot of bubbles.

Sweet malt aroma. Also citrus, grape, and fruit.

Exciting taste. Some biscuity malt. Grapefruit, grapes, tropical fruit. A little oak.

Complex mouthfeel. Hoppy, malty, and fruity all at the same time.

Easily one of the best IPAs I've tried.

 393 characters

Photo of Rutager
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of ovaltine
4.44/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: cloudy, golden-hued beer with 2+ fingers of white head. Gorgeous.

Smell: Brett right up front and in your face, oak, esters, and citrusy hops.

Taste: Brett again, but the Citra hops really come through as this warms. The oak/Chardonnay dries it out and reduces any alcohol heat in this 9% ABV beverage to nearly unnoticeable levels.

Feel: bubbly Brett effervescence with the dryness of the Chardonnay. Outstanding.

Overall: I've had this for a month+, but couldn't hold out any longer. There's a reason this a Top 250 beer - it's truly world class.

 564 characters

Photo of MSandahl23
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Photo of claspada
3.38/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a bright hazy ripe lemon yellow with 2 inches of fluffy/bubbly white head that slowly recedes leaving sticky soapy/bubbly lacing along the goblet.

Aromas begin with a ton of sour citrus smells, could be hops and/or could be Brett yeast. Further examination leads me to believe it is the Brett as the sourness become more predominant. In the background you get some tropical and citrus hops but the Brett owns the show here. Lighter earthy/oakiness continues to emerge as well.

After the aromas the tastes are a bit surprising. The flavors are more akin to a DIPA than a Belgian Brett sour beer. Lots of bitter pithy lemony citrus and grapefruit hops initially assault the palate. As it warms you get a little more of the underlying vinous white grape, pear and lighter generic sour Brett flavors. Just like the nose the earthy and oaky flavors emerge as you continue to sip. Extreme bitterness dominates the show however and takes away from the delicate flavors imparted from the barrel and the Brett that I wish were more in the forefront.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with medium to higher carbonation. Finish is quite bitter, which is expected for 100 IBU, but the Brett sourness helps to balance the intensely bitter citrus hops. Finish is dry as as bone thanks to the ample hopping and Brett yeast fermentation. As it warms the bitterness becomes way too overbearing for me to enjoy and the Brett loses the balance that existed when it was at a slightly cooler temperature.

Overall this was definitely an experience for sure. The flavors and aromas were so contradictory and yet complemented each other quite well. My only issue was that I wish I consume this during the warmer months as I would have enjoyed it much more on a nice warm day. If you love sour beers and really bitter DIPAs you will love this. If you dislike either pass. I am on the fence as I like both but I think I prefer them separate. Still a high quality beer as this obviously took a lot of thought and care to craft such an intricate brew. If you can afford the elevated price tag, it's worth a go.

 2,098 characters

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.48/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked up this bomber in Joliet, about $14. We haven't seen distribution of Anchorage in OH yet so I was glad to grab one.

It pours pale orange with a touch of haze and a beautiful head, rocky and pillowy with a touch of lace here and there. The nose is very nice too, pungent hops and bret. I'm not sure how old this bottle is but the hops still seem fresh.

Lots of citrus flavor in the start of each sip, with a bitter funkiness behind. Dry aftertaste with lingering acrid bitterness, delicious. Strong carbonation, with a peppery bite on my tongue. This tastes a lot better than I expected, possibly my favorite "Belgian" IPA.

 635 characters

Photo of threedaggers
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

Bitter Monk from Anchorage Brewing Company
4.34 out of 5 based on 1,024 ratings.
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