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Monkey King Saison, Farmhouse Ale | New Holland Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
82
good
75 Reviews
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Monkey King Saison, Farmhouse AleMonkey King Saison, Farmhouse Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
newhollandbrew.com

Style: Saison / Farmhouse Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Kerrie on 03-05-2013

BEER STATS
Reviews:
75
Ratings:
487
Avg:
3.58
pDev:
30.17%
 
 
Wants:
6
Gots:
80
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 75 | Ratings: 487
Photo of leprechaunandfatman
4.31/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very nice beer fresh from the brewery, but even nicer as the spices and fruitiness blend together. A bottle with about two years on it is just excellent!

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.86/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in an Ohio State shaker pint glass.

Despite the regal, Caesar-like bearing of the eponymous primate on the label, I feel the name (at least here on the site) could have been truncated to a more simplified version... Regardless, this stuff pours a clear brass topped by a finger of lightly off-white foam. The nose comprises orange peel, ginger, fruity Belgian yeast, coriander, very light clove, and a light dusting of confectioners' sugar. The taste brings in more of the same, with a stronger orange component (complete with added flesh), a twist or two of lemon, and a few pinches of black pepper. There's a lovely balance between fruit, yeast, and spice here, all in high concentrations. The body is a light medium, with a moderate carbonation and a dry finish. Overall, a very nice saison, one that, as [previously stated, deftly balances the fruit, the yeast, and the spice in large amounts, much like a thoroughly capable international statesman. Good times.

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Photo of Mavigo
3.81/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served in a pint glass.

A - Pours a hazy golden yellow color with a short off white head that dissipates quick, leaving small amounts of lacing.

S - Smells of wheat, lemongrass, hops, yeast, grains, citrus peels

T - Tastes quite sweet, tastes of wheat, belgian yeast, hints of fruit, like white grapes, grass, grains, stronger hoppy finish

M - Medium bodied with lots of carbonation, a bit too much but it doesn't kill the beer

O - Overall, it was alright, a fairly good saison, though I have had quite better so thus this is just another bottle to me, but I'd recommend it. Buy local everyone.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.72/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a New Holland imperial pint
6.6% ABV, Pairings: shellfish, spiced cheeses, and citrus-laced vinaigrettes.

A - Poured from a bottle that looks like it was labeled by a hoard of drunken monkeys, Monkey King's crown of lace coats the glass above it's hazed-through golden beer.

S - Spicy white pepper and lemongrass character are the forerunners the aroma, showing the beer's yeast ester components but even through it's nicely balanced citrus (and faint pine) hop and smooth malt base, it smells wholly American - not a terrible characteristic but an observation.

T - Nimble white grape notes tip-toe through the fallout of a battle between spicy white pepper and citrusy lemongrass. The yeast esters are a bit extreme, overpowering most everything else including the timidly sweet malt base.

M - Carbonation leaps across the tongue playfully, washing some of the beer's spiciness down to a lingering dry finish that trails off gently.

O - Monkey King enters with a nicely balanced aroma of yeasty spice and a balanced hop and malt body that ends up being overrun by yeast spice character in the flavor. I like my saisons to display some authority but Monkey King is almost a flagrant dictator.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.81/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The monkey king was quite nice. The beer poured a clear golden yellow with thin white head that left some head. The scent was mostly floral with subtle fresh hop backdrop. The taste was an infusion or potpourri, hop and Belgium semi sweet malt. The mouthfeel was lighter in body with good carbonation. Overall this was a tasty beer, especially in the Illinois August sun.

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Photo of Ryan_Graham
4.11/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Golden yellow color. No head. Spicy, wheaty, fruity smell that I can't really put my finger on. Wow! Great taste! Was not expecting that at all! Awesome wheat feel with a full-bodied finish. The aftertaste is solid and lays heavy on the back of the tongue. I was very surprised by this beer. It's not world class by any stretch but it's damn good nonetheless.

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Photo of breakingbland
3.94/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a goblet.

Appearance: Poured a beautiful golden color, slightly cloudy. The scant head dissipated into a ring of foam.

Aroma: Sour and funk predominate, along with some sweetness and a hint of hops. Not a strong aroma overall but very pleasant.

Taste: The taste followed the aroma but with the hops being expressed relatively more in the taste than in the aroma. Sour and hops linger.

Mouthfeel: Fine-bubbled carbonation with an overall medium body -- appropriate for this style.

Overall: This is a refreshing beer. It is quite good even though it has a fairly simple flavor profile. If there was just a bit more malt presence, this beer would approach my ideal farmhouse/saison. I will definitely look for this again.

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Photo of jtierney89
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Slightly hazy golden color with about 2 fingers of white head which becomes a thin white lace. Lots of banana on the nose, some faint earthy hop, lots of spicy yeast character. Pretty nice actually. Mild sweetness and finishes just dry enough. Sweet fruitiness rolls into a bit of spicy yeast snap and finally a dry underlying hoppiness.

Creamy and medium bodied with enough flavor to keep things interesting.

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Photo of soju6
3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a cloudy copper color with a small head that fades quickly to no lacing.

S: Has a mild malt and grain aroma with a bit of citrus and spice in the background.

T: Taste is a bit tart with a mild malt sweetness, grain and a bit of spice and fruit in the background. Mild bitterness with a lingering tart finish.

F: Moderate body, smooth with a bit of a sticky feel. Not lively as some Saisons, needs a bit of character.

O: Not a bad beer, but I was hoping a bit more.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
3.53/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on paper last night, 7/3/13.

Head was about a finger and white. Body was a hazy straw yellow. Light lace.

I smelled yeast, wheat, spices and grass.

Taste started out with yeast. Sweet wheat and sweet grass followed. There was a light spice and bitter hints.

Light-medium bodied. No residue on the tongue, slight dry finish.

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Photo of Act25
3.63/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz into pint glass, after a bit added a wedge of meyer lemon.

Maybe it was that I just cut the grass, maybe it was the fresh chard steamed with basil, tomatoe, meyer lemon and pine nuts (with a salty slice of pizza on the side). Maybe it was the summer afternoon and the fat, aggressive Arogant Bastard I nursed last night... .but I really liked this beer.

Spicy, dry, and lightly fruity, but not cloying Belgian farmhouse ale.

A: Pours a bright straw color w a modest unfiltered haze. White head, that fades, not much lacing but a great looking saison.

S: Peppery, yeast spices, malty sweetness with fruit esters. White pepper, straw, and grain followed by citrus.

T: Nice flavor arc. Starts grainy, sweet then arcs to spicy dryness w a little hop bitterness. Refreshing and zesty, white pepper, lemongrass, and light fennel dominate faint background fruit esters. A bit of barnyard hay, cut grass, and funk too.

MF: Medium bodied throughout, great summerweight feel, with a clean and crisp aftertaste.

I really liked it. Well done. Better than other American experiments in the style thus far...

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Photo of StoutHunter
3.32/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

I picked up a six pack of New Holland's Monkey King Saison last week for $10.29 at Meijers. I heard this is suppose to be like an imperial version of Golden Cap, I think Golden Cap is a pretty good Saison, so I thought I should give this one a try, so lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date, but it just showed up so it should be fairly fresh. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle in a tulip.

A- The label looks ok, but I'm not a big fan of the faded pastel colors on the label, it looks a little odd. It poured a pretty hazy golden color that took on a little bit of an orange hue when held to the light with two fingers worth of fluffy white head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and left some nice lacing behind. This is a good looking beer, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with a higher amount of medium sweetness followed by some grainy and wheat like malts with some Saison and slight Farmhouse ale like yeast aromas that seem to stick out a good deal. Up next comes a slight herbal and a medium spicy aroma followed by some citrus rind and some banana like aromas. This beer has a nice aroma that is fairly true to style and much more intense then Golden Cap, I liked it.

T- The taste seems to be not that similar to the aroma and it starts off with a medium amount of sweetness that had a honey like flavor and was followed by a large amount of yeast that imparts a medium spicy flavor along with a pretty noticeable banana flavors. Up next comes a grainy and wheaty malt like flavor On the the finish I get a slight earthy and herbal flavor followed by some lemon rinds and a lower amount of bitterness with just a little more sweetness and a banana and clove like aftertaste. This was a pretty average tasting beer, it tasted more like a below average Tripel then a Saison/Farmhouse ale.

M- Fairly smooth, a little dry, on the lighter side of being medium bodied with a slightly higher amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel was nice and it worked well with this beer.

Overall I thought this was a pretty mediocre beer and an average at best example of the style, the taste reminds me more of a poorly made Tripel then a Saison/ Farmhouse Ale, but the other aspects seems to be pretty inline with the style. This beer had ok drinkability, it was a fairly smooth and not filling, but the flavors just couldn't hold my attention and one is enough for me, I have no urge to drink another one. What I liked the most about this beer was the aroma and the appearance, they were both nice and fairly true to style. What I liked the least about this beer was the taste, I wasn't a fan of it and it wasn't as true to style as it should be. I wouldn't buy this beer again since I didn't really enjoy and I wouldn't recommend this to anyone since I don't think it does a good job at representing the style. All in all I was let down with this beer, it looked like it was going in the right direction till I got to the taste and was let down. I like Golden Cap much more then this beer, the saison and farmhouse like flavors got lost in this beer and I think Golden Cap is much more refreshing and true to style. New Holland is a solid Brewing Company, but these last couple releases from them have been disappointing, hope this isn't a sign of things to come, better luck next time guys.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.03/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Eh. This is a saison of that soapy variety that seems common amongst American brewers (but definitely not the Belgian ones). Seems to be a wad of spices thrown in there that don't really give a sharp display of flavor. Feel is good. Like I said: eh.

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Photo of Brenden
3.61/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pouring a bright dark gold with a touch of chill haze at first, Monkey King appears filtered as the haze wears off quickly to reveal complete clarity. The clean white head that develops looks a little sparsely bubbled, though retention isn't bad. It seems that the constant bubbling activity rising from the bottom of the glass may be all keeping afloat the foam that leaves thin lacing in thin spotting.
There's a lot of malty sweetness, though lemon is the main component on the nose. Yeast makes for an interesting somewhat earthy and lightly funky note. A peppery bite is present and a note of grains can be found as well.
Grains come out up front along with that unusual sort of yeast note on the palate. Lemon isn't the main element, as it is in the aroma, but it's strong. There's an odd note that at first seems almost alcoholic but backs off. A bit of herbal hops bitterness rises up with the gentle peppery bite.
The feel is light in body and there's a good crispness. Carbonation is at the right level. Dryness pulls out into the finish a bit.

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Photo of micromaniac129
4.04/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The aroma finds a good Saison and farmhouse style. Its yeasty and malty with a good spiciness. Smells dry and sweet.
It tastes good. This rustic saison also has a mildly assertive hop character to really adds depth to this saison beer. Yeasty ester gives a mild fruitiness plus pepper spices and malts.
The beer drinks dry with a sprizy brightness but by beers end it seemed to sweeten.
The color is hazy golden straw with a bright white head. Carbonation is pretty robust also.
It's a good beer and worth seeking.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.78/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

12 ounce bottle - $1.99 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a well-hazed, orange-gold body with a brief, white head tapering down to a slim layer of fizz.

Smell: Grainy-scented malted wheat with a faint honey note, big (bold) banana, drip of citrus, heavy-handed dusting of ground clove and pepper.

Taste: Full wheatiness, with a sliver of honey glazed grains. Overbearing banana firmly affixed to peppery clove buds. Squirt of harsh lemon. Perfumy element midway. Moderate hop character and bitterness. The perfumy taste rebounds the pepper, the clove and holds until the grainy, dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body, fluffy, even. Medium-plus carbonation.

Overall: I was not a fan of this new release. With its wheat qualities, punchy banana esters, and noted clove-like phenols, it really felt more like a hefe than a saison.

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Photo of BB1313
3.09/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a hazy golden with a small white head that fades very quickly and leaves little lacing. The aromas are full of green apples and a crisp pear. Hints of orange peel and lemon zest. There's a decent maltiness that lingers as well. The flavors are very earthy and rustic. There's a subtle bitterness to this one blended with some fruity notes. I can pick up some grass and just a tad of funk. There's a decent spiciness coming from the black pepper. Slightly syrupy, but finishes dry for the most part. The carbonation is very active, fluffy, creamy, syrupy. Almost feels heavy, but it's medium-bodied. Alcohol goes unnoticed.

Not bad, but nothing special. It's crisp and refreshing, but doesn't rival the better examples of the style, IMO.

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Photo of Zach136
4.15/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle, poured into a New Holland High Gravity flute.

A - Burnt orange hazy body. Thing quickly -almost instantly - dissipating head. Zero Lacing. Totally uncharacteristic head for the style.

S - Orange Juice, orange peel, and green apple. Light hint of grassy hops. Aroma is prominent, but not as much as others of the style.

T - Bitter orange, some earthy green pepper and lemon peel. No hop, funk or acidity.

M - Light body, solid carbonation, dissipating finish, refreshing.

O - Great Saison, but nothing mind blowing.

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Photo of Ernest_Hooper
3.78/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Color is a perfect gold but it appears a bit more filtered than what I prefer in saisons. Taste is quite nice and the body is full yet slightly under-carbonated. All together a solid offering from New Holland that would be right at home on a summer evening.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.06/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a blonde glass

Bright golden and orange hues with a thin white head

Smell gives banana, some citrus, and some herbaceous notes

The taste is almost exactly what a standard saison would taste like. I typically go for more effervescence and some more assertive flavors. This beer would appeal to Belgian drinkers as it definitely drinks more like a Belgian to me.

If this is your style, you can't go wrong with it. New Holland is a very solid brewery, and this delivers for a standard saison.

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Photo of tectactoe
3.62/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

New saison / farmhouse ale from New Holland... To be honest, I don't really know how to set my expectations for this one, so I'll go in with none at all. Pours a cloudy yellow color with some less-than-vibrant gold hints streaming up and down the edges. The white crown is pretty wispy and doesn't waste much time fizzling into nothing.

The nose has an aberrant, chalky kind of yeast smell to it. Familiar enough, yet different in some nebulous manner - pretty hard to hone in on exactly what is "off" about it. It has a fair helping of Belgian inspired spicing; clove and coriander, mainly. It also has a light fruit backbone that's hard to pick out and can be easily overlooked if you're sniffer's not on top of its game. Maybe some mild banana and faint apple skins in there. Mild funk and yeast aromas pander in and out, sometimes appearing stronger or weaker than before, almost in seemingly random spurts. Overall, not a huge, explosive, or complex aroma like many saisons carry, but nothing too offensive, either.

I take a taste and two things immediately come to my mind: (1) yeast and (2) bread. I don't know why. I take another sip just to be sure, and certainly enough, I taste yeast and bread. Very heavy on the yeast and emitting a strong bread-like flavor when coupled with the malt. Some light fruits meander in; apples and rotten banana. The fruits add flavor but surprisingly don't add much sweetness, if any at all.

Lots of woody funk, keeping pace with the yeast overload that was experienced first. Barnyard, wet wood, hay, with a musky and cheesy, damp cellar aftertaste. I certainly wasn't expecting this amount of funkiness, although again - it's different than your typical "Brett" funk flavors - not exactly up to par, to be honest. The finishing earthy hops ensure the beer finishes dry, funky, and with a lightly bitter aftertaste. Crispy mouth feel, medium body, ample carbonation.

Not bad, but not incredibly enjoyable, either. Lots of funk - lots more than I was expecting, anyway. But it's not the wonderful Brett-like funk that I'm used to. It's less refined and a not quite as user-friendly. Very hard to describe the exact differences, but there's still something a bit weird with it. If only my palate could talk.

 2,254 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Spicy, dry, and lightly fruity, New Holland further flirts with the Belgain styles, but with "American" character- this time, with the bone-dry Saison Farmhouse Ale.

Monkey King pours like many lighter Belgian Ales- with a bright straw color that shines through a signature unfiltered haze. Rising with a bleach-white froth, the head caps the beer confidently, constantly fueled by exuberent streams of carbonation from beneath. Light and random lacing clings to the glass ever so often.

Peppery and zesty, the beer's aroma favor the yeast spices although the beer does allow for dry malty sweetness and light fruit esters to support. White pepper, straw, and grain start the show while light apple and lemon follow close behind.

Grainy-sweet to taste, the flavor of raw barley and light malt coax the palate early, just before a turn to spicy dryness and hop bitterness. The taste of white pepper, lemongrass, and light fennel all pull ahead of the dried lime and apple esters. The earthen character of the beer grows along with assertive hop bitterness that stems from the grass and hay flavors earlier.

Medium bodied throughout, the beer slowly sheds is light sweetness and allows the dry grain character to show going into finish. Growing wood-ish bitterness, alcohol, and spice further reinforce dry textures and emphasize a clean and crisp aftertaste.

Where the beer does all that the Saison style perscribes, its much simpler, less raw and less earthy than more authentic versions. it also shows a fruitier side than those dry-spice ones of Belgium. This is what makes the beer taste "American" in the end.

 1,618 characters

Photo of barczar
3.69/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy medium golden with apricot highlights and a foamy half inch white head that dissipates somewhat quickly, leaving watery sheets of lacing.

Pear, nectarine, lemon, belgian yeast, and confectioners sugar sweetness form the initial aroma. Peach, a hint of must and earthiness accent bready malt.

Fruity flavors abound, with pear and earthy hops at the base throughout. Tart tangerine, lemon, peach, and and coriander add complexity. There's some belgian yeast esters and clove that kick in late, just before the fairly dry white pepper finish. Fairly spicy. Musty barnyard character is somewhat of an afterthought.

Body is moderate, with fairly high carbonation. There's a slight alcohol warmth.

Lots of interesting flavors going on, mostly fruity and estery. There's a bit of barnyard. The finish is a little too bitter, and a metallic note creeps in as it warms. Would be much better without that.

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Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 2/14/2013. Pours hazy golden straw color with a 1-2 finger dense and fluffy white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of lemon, pear, apple, grape, pepper, clove, wheat, straw, grass, herbal, light funk, and earthy yeast esters. Nice aromas with good balance, strength, and complexity; very pleasant. Taste of lemon, pear, apple, grape, pepper, clove, wheat, straw, grass, herbal, light funk, and earthy yeast esters. Slight earthy tartness on the finish; with lingering notes of light fruits, pepper, clove, wheat, straw, grass, herbal, light funk, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a bit. Nice balance and complexity of fruity/spicy esters; with a solid malt backbone; and zero cloying flavors present after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a lightly slick and fairly crisp mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a good saison. Good balance and complexity of fruity/spicy esters with a solid malt backbone; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Kerrie
3.73/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Found this at my singles shop and was surprised to see that no one's added it to the site yet.

A- Pours a hazy golden color with about a finger of head, little retention, and short-lived lacing.

S- Smells sort of fruity, but nothing overpowering or distinct.

T- Tastes fairly good, though it reminds me of a hefeweizen. There's a strong banana/clove aftertaste. I don't believe I've had a Saison before, so I'm not sure if that's normal.

M- Creamy mouthfeel, yet still light and refreshing.

O- I'll have to try this again in the summer. It's an enjoyable beer, and I think I'll enjoy it more outside.

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Monkey King Saison, Farmhouse Ale from New Holland Brewing Company
3.58 out of 5 based on 487 ratings.
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