Golden Monkey | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

1,784 Reviews
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Golden MonkeyGolden Monkey

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Tripel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A magical, mystical Monkey whose golden sole glows with the wisdom of the ages. This radiant ale is rich in the spirited tradition of Belgian-inspired brewing. Our Golden Monkey is both playfully delightful and profoundly satisfying. Exotic spice from the East rounds out this global journey to joy. Get on board. This Monkey's bound for glory!

Added by purplehops on 09-17-2001

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Reviews: 1,784 | Ratings: 5,611
Photo of mt24turner
3.24/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Look- nice clarity with some particulates floating around, decent amount of head from the carbonation, but it dissipates quickly. leaves a little ring of lace.

Smell- spicy phenols, and fruity esters, smells like clove, tiny hint of banana, peppery spice and some caramel maltyness.

Taste- crisp and fruity to start and then comes heavy with the spice and phenolics, i get a little bubble gum and aspirin taste which im not partial to. finishes with some lingering spice and caramel. no alcohol presence in the flavor

Mouthfeel- carbonation is full and sharp, drinks like a much weaker abv

Overall- i like this beer, but it would not be my first choice for a tripel. the aspirin/bubble gum notes threw me off this one, besides that its a respectable brew.

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Photo of a0lbudman
3.24/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A-hazy dark gold with a large white head that laced the glass heavy
S-dark fruit smell with some spice
T-spicy with some warming in the aftertaste. The spice seemed to stay with you
M-medium body and medium carbonation
O-the spice was the main taste smee, and aftertaste

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Photo of facundoCNB
3.24/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A cloudy orangey yellow with a quickly dissipating finger of head. Smells of honey, tea, malty sweet. The flavor is quite herbal, black tea, honey, sweet malt with a grassy herbal overtone.
Medium in body with high carbonation.
Not really impressed by this one. Not a fan of the style in general but I feel like for the amount of excellent beers victory has year round, they should just ditch this one to have a solid lineup

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Photo of Wedgie28
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

It has a really nice color. Like you melted down your wedding band and made beer out of it. It doesn't smell really good so it's best to drink it in big gulps and not breathe through your nose while doing that. It's got something is in it like cinnamon but I don't know about herbs so it could be arsenic. All in all, it was good. But then again I've never met a beer I didn't like, scratch that, didn't drink.

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Photo of jmhart
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Shared this with Frasier433 during a Beer Thursday(TM).

750 poured into a snifter

A- Poured a hazy pale gold with a firm white head.

S- Banana and nutmeg with a yeasty sweet malt flavor underneath. Smell was good, but not as effervescent as some other terrific Tripels I've had.

T- A decent sweet/spice up front: nutmeg, clove, cinnamon and pepper. Banana and hints of lemon zest are present, all on top of a rich bready flavor, all with just the slightest hint of funk.

M- Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. I would have liked a little more to the feel of it, maybe a little creamier.

D- An average tripel, but compared to some others I've had, this leaves a little to be desired. I'd happily drink this if served it, but I probably won't pick it up again on my own.

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Photo of cwguy5
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into tulip. Sampled on 10.24.10. Reviewed from notes.

A - clear, light yellow/golden color; one finger head quickly faded
S - light, sweet with herbal notes
T - spicy and herbal tripel bodering on medicinal; long, acutely bitter finish
M - nicely carbonated and thin bodied; crisp; bitter, herbal linger lasted way too long
D - not my favorite domestic tripel; too much bitter taste and too many herbs and spice

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Photo of Suds
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a golden (yellow with shades of amber-orange) color with a uninspiring wispy head. Lots of suspended matter in this brew. For sure, it’s not particularly pretty. Aroma of alcohol, yeast, malt, and a wild background of sour-spiciness. The smell is actually pretty nice. There’s a big, intense malty sweetness. That, coupled with a sharp alcohol warming are the centerpieces of this beer. They don’t particularly blend well with the aroma. It’s a thick, syrupy brew. It’s certainly a Belgian style beer, but it doesn’t meet the bar set by the style. Generally, I’ve been very happy with Victory. Unfortunately, this one is way off the mark.

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Photo of haazer
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured bottle into chimay chalice.

A- Pours about one finger of effervescent white head, recedes fairly quickly to a ring around the glass. Bubbles racing up to the surface indicate a well carbonated brew. Color is a beautiful gold and lemon blend.

S- The complexities of tripel aroma's are there, although kind of faint. The more dominant aroma is bubble gum, clove and the famous victory yeast strain. Almost smells more like a hefeweizen then a tripel.

T- Again the complex flavors of a tripel are present like in the nose, but weak. Apple, vinegar, and some sourness is there but not stand out. Does have a bubble gum taste to this also. Lastly, wait for it...Bananas!! Although towards the back of the flavor profile, fitting for the beers name of course. The booze could be masked a little better.

M- Highlty carbonated but I don't mind all that much. Does cause air pockets to build up and induces some burping. Light to medium bodied. Seems to get thicker as you roll this in your mouth, not a lot but some viscosity.

D- An ok Tripel. Give me Westmalle any day of the week! But a good attempt from victory, their V-12 Quad hit the style waaayy better but the Tripel is harder to do. I wouldn't turn one of these down, but wouldn't down too many as you'll be on your ass. Interesting section of the Victory website is "Respect the Monkey". I think that should say something about its drinkability.

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Photo of ajm5108
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Does not carry much of the typical Belgian flavor or feel. Lots of dry grass malt, almost like a pilsner, and feels very watery. Not terrible on its own merit (though not great) it certainly is a bad example of the style.

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Photo of JISurfer
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is a seriously rich beer. Very sweet and malty. Actually a little too sweet and malty for me, and that's saying a lot. Anyone who reads my reviews would notice I like my beers big, malty, and somewhat sweet. This was was just too much for this guy. Had a nice head to it, with good retention in it.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy golden/deep yellow with a decent white foamy head and some lacing.

Spice and yeast mostly in the nose, with clove, yeast, and chemical alcohol.

Sweet grain, light sweet malt, clove, bread dough, some raw grain, and a big punch in the mouth from the alcohol. The chemical alcohol flavor is a bit to get past with this one, so much so that it affects the overall flavor/experience.

Some decent body, and appropriate carbonation.

Overall, just ok. Not tough to drink, but has some harsh edges. I can think of others of the style that I'd go to first. Try it but don't think this is a typical Belgian tripel.

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Photo of deapokid
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Reevaluating an old favorite:

Pours a hazy, golden color with heavy bubble activity and a creamy two-finger head with unbelievable staying power. A very good looking beer that can physically stand alongside its Belgian forefathers.

Scent of banana, a sweet booziness and cinnamon spice can be detected in the peculiar dessert aroma of this brew.

This is a very boozy take on the triple. Not that the ABV is higher than most of its kin, but this one seems to rely on it as a flavor characteristic. It seems to be missing the blueberry finish I distinctly remember from previous tries, instead packing a grainy dryness at the finale.

It gets much better as it warms, but the sting of alcohol seems to overwhelm the pleasant banana esthers and a nice subtle, muskiness.

The liquid itself is quite soft and smooth, but can occasionally shock the taste buds with a jolt of hard liquor strength, which also affects the drinkability considerably.

Although not a bad effort, it doesn't really stand up compared to the profound flavor profiles of La Fin Du Monde or Mad Bitch. It is sad that a beer I once cherished has fallen out of favor, but I guess it's a testament to all of the amazing brews I've had in the past couple of years.

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Photo of kenito799
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

750 ml bottle poured into tulip glasses. Bottled on 3/6/03, "it should be enjoyed within 5 yrs. of the bottling date."

Requires a vigorous pour to raise a head; even then it recedes quickly leavng a rim.Tawny orangey hazy brew. Lots of floating yeasties. Swirling raises some foam but not much. Lace doesn't stick. Generally I would say it's showing nearly four years of age.

Aroma is sweet, ripe apricots, Belgian yeast. Some warm cinnamon notes. These come through in the taste, this is a warm rich sweet brew, you feel and taste alcohol as well. It's not too complex for the style tasty in some ways, but essentially unbalanced. High alcohol limits its drinkability, and too sweet.

1/10/08 edit: Fresher bottle, actally liked it less. Too sweet, became cloying after a while, alcohol just too high. Knocking down my ratings a bit.

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Photo of jeffjeff1
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I picked this up a while ago in Fairfield, CA.

Appearance- golden color, little to no head

Smell- mostly citrus

Taste- citrus, mostly lemon

Mouthfeel- light bodied

Drinkability- I thought it was ok but probably won't have it again. But I would have it for free lol

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Photo of gonzo000
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

a. Clear golden orange color with a 2 finger head that retains rather well when poured into a pint glass.

s. Coriander and cloves - which I do not like.

t. The spices take over this beer as opposed to supporting it. If you do not like coriander, stay away.

m. Has very good mouthfeel with good carbonation - silky texture.

o. I do not like coriander and cloves, so disregard this review if you enjoy them.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into snifter.

A. A deep gold colored beer that poured a two finger head. Doesn't retain much, but does have decent lacing throughout the journey.

S. The smell is a complex mix of dark fruits, slightly overripe bananas, malt and spices.

T. It starts out on a bitter hop note, and goes into a banana bread flavor. This is followed up with a a spiciness and ends with alcohol.

M. About average carbonation, it's a medium bodied brew that ends with an alcoholic bite.

O. Overall an interesting brew that doesn't seems as well balanced between hops and malt as other tripels. The post-hop flavor is enjoyable and the spice finish is appreciated though, and I did warm up to the alcohol finish after it warmed a bit.

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Photo of bskrtz
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Served cool in glass beer goblet, on tap at The Yard House

A) Golden brass with modest white puffy head that disappears quickly. Light travels through -- there is no yeasties or sediment.

S) Sweet and spicey, with clove, banana and citrus.

T) Malty sweet caramel, mild peppery spice, apricots and raisons.

M) "Sticky" and a bit flat. This could be the result of the distance from the keg to the tap -- a long way as the beer appears to travel overhead, across the room and faraway

D) The spice, the texture and lack of effervesence (that one expects from true Belgians), put me off. One was enough for me

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Photo of ypsifly
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz brewed on 05/05/05 poured into a chalice.

Hazy yellow with a small white head that falls to a veiled ring in minutes.

Smells of spicey yeast, belgian sugars, floral hops and alcohol. Tangy overall.

Tart upfront, but then turns cloyingly sweet. Alcoholic/peppery notes towards the end. Not very smooth or balanced. Glad I only bought a single of this.

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Photo of hobbes2112
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle from $9.99 six-pack sampled in goblet

Poured a slightly hazy gold with yellow edges. Medium white head with short retention and no lacing. Smell clearly matches the Belgian Tripel style. Yeast, bread and alcohol are the main things I could pick out. Taste is more impressive than smell. I found a nice blend of soft floral and sweet malty elements with more abrasive bitter and peppery notes. Lots of yeast in the flavor too, in a pleasant way. I have had more complex examples of the style, but this is still and enjoyable beer.

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Photo of jpoder
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Though not great, it is a go to for me when I want an inexpensive tripel that is not bad.

a: golden yellow...slight haze, good white head when poured, but quickly fades

s: clove and banana with a floral tone as well

t: more clove/banana, spicy (pepper? Coriander?) sweet, but with alcohol burn slight

m: pretty even body

d: pretty good...again, a go-to cheap tripel

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Photo of snilsen13
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I find this beer to be too heavy for it's sweetness. Simply put, I served it to a friend and he didn't drink it, but was too polite to ask for something else. I tasted it again later and came to the same conclusion. If I had it in a bar, I would probably drink up, but at home I too would heitate to quaff. Too rich for my blood.

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Photo of tankg
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

If you like this style, that is ,belgian tripel, you will like this brew. It is definitely a sipping beer, I found it heavier in alcohol and lighter in drinkability than my drinking companion, fellow beer advocate bert haley...I prefer the golden carolus and the leffe blonde better - but not bad for the keystone state... salud'!!!

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.21/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy light gold in color. Plenty of haze and some yeasty chunks suspended in the glass. Smell is belgian yeast a good amount of spice there to help. The belgian yeast, not surprisingly, is dominating. Very smooth and easy drinking. Packs a hefty punch thanks to the ABV. Decent beer to have once in a while.

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Photo of Lauthaha
3.21/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a corked 25.4 ounce bottle into a 4 ounce wine glass.

Appearance: Light golden yellow, very light carbonation, thin head floating on the surface of the beer. Light ring around the edge of foam. The bubbles within float up in about 10 straight lines from the bottom to the top of the wine glass.

Smell: Beautiful floral scent to this beer. The alcohol is well-hidden here, gentle hop tones, peach and or pear accents. Really nice, especially for a Tripel!

Taste: Eh. Hops and flowers up front followed quickly by the fruitiness I detected in the scent. Aftertaste is more bitter than I would have hoped. This beer would go well with red meat and/or starchy foods in my opinion.

Mouthfeel: Quite light on the palate, only a medium-thin coating of malt character. Rinses easily. It's not bad...unfortunately, that's about all I can say for certain.

Drinkability: Nearly non-existent. If I hadn't paid nearly eight dollars for this bottle, I would probably discard what's left in the fifth. As it is, looks like I'm doomed to finish it. The alcohol (which is hiding in the scent) is overly powerful in the taste, and it takes away from what could be a very flavorful beer.

I bought this beer in a "cool label" state of mind tonight, and I probably should have gotten some recommendations instead. There are lots of better examples of monk beer, specifically Three Philosophers and Avery Brewing's "The Reverend."

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Photo of whartontallboy
3.21/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy orange/gold pour with a small white head that is pretty foamy but disappears in a snap. Smell is yeasty and spiced, maybe with a bit of anise I wasn't expecting. Taste is also yeasty with a nice touch of hops and some spices. The only way to describe the taste is "rich." It's very sugary, but the aftertaste is pleasant and leaves some lingering orange flavors which I prefer to the actual taste of the beer. The mouthfeel is creamy. For its ABV, this is a pretty drinkable beer, as it's not really all that boozy. For me, though, it's just not as good as the rest of Victory's offerings. I wish they would pull this one out of the Variety of Victories sampler case and replace it with one of their other brews. Not terrible, but I won't be seeking it out anytime soon.

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Golden Monkey from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
3.72 out of 5 based on 5,611 ratings.
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