Golden Monkey | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

1,786 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: 1,786 | Ratings: 5,613
Photo of skybluewater
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nearly clear gold color. Some lace, but not much. Smells a bit spicy, with a little clove especially. Tastes of orange, with some spiciness, such as clove.

This is a pretty good little beer (although perhaps one best enjoyed infrequently). Very potent, with a warming quality that's perfect on a cold night here in the nation's icebox.

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Photo of walleye
3.35/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

from the bottle. poured a cloudy golden to honey with a white head. aroma,spicey, lemon orange rinds, cinnamon, yeast, whet, musty, and hints of alcohol. flavor, fruity, orange, dryness, some sourness, honey, spices. lemon. not to bad but I think I should of had this earlier was bottled july 20th of 04

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Photo of CBFanWish
4.47/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A belgian style tripel is one of those beers that often is an aquired taste. The complexity is often too sophisticated for the average joe six pack. I'm not saying that the average guy is unsophisticated, I'm saying that one really has to train his or her taste buds for something of this caliber. It's like going from a Daisy bb gun to a .50 cal. It just doesn't work. But once you have learned to appreciate one of these beers, it's love.
Golden Monkey, by Victory is an excellent example of one of these beers. Pouring a orange hue with flakes floating through it and a slight, modest head, this appears to be a specail treat.
The aroma is that of banana and white grape juice along with mild floral accents. It really gives the sences something to look forward to.
The taste is super complex. Banana, sugars, grapes, with a mild bitterness that really brings things together.
I am in love.

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Photo of ggroller
3.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. brown bottle.

The beer in the glass looks like a cross between orange juice and apricot juice with pulp dispersed throughout. The head is a little on the weak side with little lacing as I drink. The beer smells inviting and seems true to a Triple but the taste tells otherwise. This is too sweet for a triple in my opinion but yet a good tasting beer. You can definitely taste the alchohol in this one. Mouthfeel is not true to a Triple either. It's too thick and sweet but yet very drinkable in my opinion. I gave this one a 4 based upon it's merits as a beer, not because it is true to it's style.

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Photo of ism
4.19/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

3-month old 12oz pours a deep apricot, cloudy. A sunshine-hued head has abundant carbonation jumping, subsiding with very little little lace after a good retention. Aromatics released were a mix of various things -- fruity, spicey, mostly. Initial carbonation in the mouth is teasingly fizzy, subsiding slowly to the fullness in the mouth. Malt up front, with hops to balance, releasing fruits and spices on the way down. Alcohol is just noticeable, but well-masked by the flavor. Smooth going down, with unique candylike flavors. Definitely a unique brew, and the amazingness is due to that. Seems to be a great choice for those seguing late winter/early spring months. I must have one more. But just one more.
10-month old 750mL with cork. Pours golden, yeasty cloudy, leaving decent spotty lace. Good fruity, yeasty, spicey flavor, like I remembered. This remains a unique brew that makes each time I drink it a special time, but doesn't encourage me to drink it more often than a truly special brew does. Age doesn't seem to improve it as much as other tripels, but it's hard to imagine how much better it could be. It deserves the original rating I gave it more than 1 year ago.

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Photo of barknee
4.22/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Chilled the 750 ML bottle, (bottled on 10/10/02) to proper temperature and poured to produce a vigorous head (as instructed on the label.) Its color, a warm mocha almost as fluffy as meringue. This brew is slightly cloudy, the color of clover honey and has a light carbonation. The nose offers up essences of honeyed oranges and malted milk chocolate augmented with a malty-nuttiness-absolutly delicious! The yeast is fresh, young and clean on the nose. There is a pleasantly complex citric element to the taste, akin to key limes, but not overstated, definitely subdued as this acidic element makes this brew crisp, bright, and refreshing. The after taste lasts easily for several minutes! For a brew with some weight and character, it is quite drinkable en-mass. Never noticeable, the alcohol is buried well beneath the massive flavors imbedded well within this brew. The mouth feel is a tad lean for the style, but this is by no means a criticism whatsoever, as this is the only thing that I could find even remotely debatable. A fantastic, glorious, blockbuster beverage!! Bravo Victory!! Again!!

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Photo of bashiba
3.6/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice slightly cloudy golden yellow with a thin white line of head.

Smelled slightly sweet with hints of wheat, yeast, and honey.

Taste is suprisingly mild for a tripel. A nice slightly sweet yeastyness with a little bit of wheaty flavor. A little Underwhelming for a tripel.

Mouthfeel was full and thick with a slight warming.

Drinkability is pretty good as there is no off flavors and not to much of the high abv is noticeable, goes down pretty good.

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Photo of Bones54
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours golden in color, a bit cloudy, with a very thin white head. The head has poor retention, but the beer does have considerable carbonation.
The Golden Monkey has an unimpressive, yet refreshing bouquet smell.
This trppel has a hoppy taste, yet not as strong as on might expect. The alcohol content definately makes its way through the taste. The beer however is not heavy on the palate, and goes down rather smoothly.
There are a lot of othrs in this category that I would buy before this one, however for the price I would buy Victory's trippel again when strapped and looking for a trippel.

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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 granger10
3.11/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Whoa this is a big, thick triple. Kind of odd. Pours a brilliant golden color with a medium bubbly head and lots of bubbles rising to the top. Smell is a bit odd, with spices and yeast along with a funk kind of smell that hits after a sec. Taste is really sweet in the malt department. Spices hit, and they seem different that other spices I have experienced in beers. There might have been some pepper and maybe some Belgian candi sugar, but there are other spices in there that I couldn't put my finger on. The spices seem too step too far and mask any delicacies this triple might have. The sweetness from the malts is also overbearing. Gets cloying after a while. The yeast notes toward the finish are the only thing saving this beer but its almost too late. Dont get me wrong, this beer wasn't horrible, im kinda not in the best mood right now and coming from Victory I was expecting more.

still much thanks to felonius phil for the sample

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Photo of RBorsato
4.35/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Solid golden with a full white head with lots of floating sediment. Fruity (almost orange) aroma with light spicy (black pepper) notes. Very fruity version of the style with a strong malt backing and lots of spice. Medium-full (leans medium) bodied, spicy and strong but hides the ABV well.

Per label: "Tripel Ale - Ale Brewed With Spices"

Per Victory website:
Malts: 2 row German malt
Hops: European whole flowers
Yeast: imported, of Belgian origin

Bottled: 10/08/02
Tasted: 12/08/04


Tasting #2: Aged Bottle (Higher Alcohol version)

A bit more Peach-ish Orange Gold in color. A lot like the above '02' version in aroma and flavor. Hides alcohol very well if it is really 11% as indicated on the bottle.

Per Label: 11% ABV

Enjoy by: 03/24/00 ('98' emb on bottom)
Tasted: 12/02/05

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Photo of AlexJ
4.15/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

OK, maybe I shouldn't have drank this 750 by myself, I did it in the name of research dammit! Pours a hazy golden orange with dense white head. Aroma is packed with fruity, yeasty spicy notes that tell me this will be good. Initially sweet/sour with a nice balance of fruit and spice. Alcohol is evident and warming. Just a tad too carbonated, I prefer a softer mouthfeel in a triple. Towards the end of the bottle I'm picking up on a slightly astringant metallic taste(is it the beer or is it me?). Overall a nice beer, I believe would definately benefit from ageing.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.35/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled June 2004, Sampled December 2004
This beer pours a lightly hazy gold color and is topped by a frothy white head. The aroma is fruity with yeast notes and spice notes too, I get notes of lemon, banana, fresh herbs, and candied orange peel. The aroma is actually quite intriguing, and I definitely like trying to pick out the various components of it.

The beer starts sweet, but finishes with an herbal dryness. This beer has a nice meld of flavors, with none of the spices being too dominant. This beer tastes a bit of orange, but has lots of other flavors going on that I cannot quite pick out; perhaps some vanilla, wild flower nectar, clove, and banana. It picks up some yeasty notes when I pour the rest of the contents of the bottle in.

This is quite a bit more enjoyable than I was expecting, most American interpretations of Belgian beers use too many spices, in fact much of the Belgian character is really derived from their yeast and not spices. That being said I do like the mix of spices and fermentation characteristics found in this beer.

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Photo of watermelonman
3.55/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This poured to a bight gold with a medium head. It's leaving a nice looking thin lace behind.

The smell is sweet and consists of alcohol and esters. The taste is fairly good, with citrus joining the esters.

The mouthfeel is pretty sharp, and the alcoholic content is definitely apparent.

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Photo of Jacobob10
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottled on Aug 11, 2004. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a goblet. Cloudy orange color with a very small head that lacks retention and lacing. Bready malts with light hops and slightly fruity. Very sweet and acidic flavor. Light to medium bodied with a heavy alcoholic finish. Wow, this beer is STRONG! Not a bad offer from Victory, but there are much better examples out there for this particular style, and much better products produced by this brewery as well. Skip over this one and go straight for an authentic Belgian strong ale.

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Photo of HardTarget
4.06/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Standard brown 12 oz bottle with date bottled (Sept. 17, 04) and abv (9.5%- Holy Moley!)
Aroma: Deep, rich Belgium in a bottle yeasts, fruits (ripe peach, orange, lemon, banana), and spices (pepper, sage?). Intoxicating aroma, I just want to smell this monkey, SMELL HIM, LOVE HIM!
Appearance: A serious layer of yeast noted at the bottom of the bottle. A careful pour left most of it behind. Gorgeous peach color with a collar of off white, head is a bit overstated; bubbles. It is quite hazy, looks as thick as honey. Left a spot or two of, again, lace is too strong, bubbles on the glass.
Flavor: Fruity. Light fruits, apricots, lemon. Sweet, candy like, but with a quick rising bitter at the end that keeps it far short of cloy. Spicy, strong pepper and a hit of coriander. The alcohol comes in much later, almost a memory of an alcoholic taste more than the taste itself, a drying deep in the aftertaste if that makes sense (and in typical fashion, I don’t care if it doesn’t).
Mouthfeel: Heavy body with a little chew; mouth-coating. Carbonation is on the low side, not flat, but not lively.
Overall Impression: The beer makes an impact! Strong alcohol, but hidden alcoholic tastes. Firm spices with sweet strong fruit tastes. This is a memory maker, but it would be a devastating session beer at 9.5%. I acquired the bottle in a trade and am shamed to say I’ve forgotten with who (beermail me for appropriate citation and thanks). If you live in a monkey infested area, I recommend catching one and giving him a good home.

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Photo of rajendra82
3.9/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another result of a great trade from clvand0, the label indicated that this beer was bottled Nov 11, 2003. The appearance was picture perfect for a Tripel, with hazy pale body, and a pillowing tall head.

The aroma was very inviting, with banana esters, pale malts, and spices creating a sweet smell. The alcohol was evident on the nose in a perfumey kind of way.

The taste was a bit too spice driven for full enjoyment of this beer. Instead of serving as an enhancement, the spices masked the underlying light fruity flavors. The banana and lemon flavors were in the background, and the pepper and coriander flavors in the foreground. The candi sugar presence was also noticeable, especially as the beer warmed up.

The mouthfeel was airy and creamy, and the alcohol was most evident here in the form of a burn. Aftertaste was the lingering spices and astringent lemon peel, with deep lasting warmth in the belly. The after aftertaste (i.e., burps) was a revisit to the spice rack.

A raw and rollicking Tripel, but not for those who dislike things spiced up.

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Photo of BrewMaster
3.77/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured from a 12 oz bottle. Labeled "bottled on February 19th 2004." The beer is a cloudy orange color with almost no head. In the beer there are chunks of sediment settling to the bottom. The head can be brought up with some swirling, but it settles down again quickly.

Smell: Very citrusy with the sweet scent of tangelo and lemon blossoms. Sweet light malt aroma too.

Taste: Light maltiness, citrus, sweet apple, caramel with a hop bitternes in the middle of it all. The flavor is lacking a bit of the spiciness one expects from a good tripel. Strawberry seed aftertaste.

Mouthfeel. It is aggressive on the palate with a sandy feel.

Drinkability: This beer gets better as it warms up. It is not a tremendous tripel, but it is certainly worht a try.

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Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy yellow. Invigorating spicy taste. Yeasty, lemony. below average tripel.Crisp and fresh on-tap at the Blue Tusk in Syracuse. Thought it might be better in the bottle but was partially wrong:Had a bottle a year and a half later, too yeasty and thinnish. Good level of carbonation.

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Photo of ncbrewerbun
4.05/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 oz. bottle...I didn't notice any dates.

The beer poured a pale yellow with a slight chill haze. There was a small white head that lasted a short time.

Interesting spices in the aroma....pepper, some phenols, a sweetness from the malt. The flavor matched the aroma with the spiciness (mainly pepper) along with some citrus (orange) tempered with a soft malty sweetness.

An enjoyable Belgian Tripel.

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Photo of donnebaby
4.35/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Somewhat opaque, dark, dark orange body, with a haze top that bubbled down from a dry, sticky foam. Nose is wheaty malt with touches of witbier and apples and grapes.

That witbier citrus coriander dominates the palate. Overall sweet, reminding of honey. The 9.5% is imperceptible! And it's not even THAT sweet or spiced or having anything that's blatantly covering up the booze. Cool. An interesting hop texture mixes over the sweetness in the aftertaste, which is also sweet, like candy apple. Lightly spicey. Developed and balanced--and even seemingly light.

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Photo of clvand0
2.63/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer pours a cloudy golden color with a small white head that leaves a little lacing on the glass. The aroma is spicy and full of citrus notes with a little sweetness. The flavor is spicy and a sweet citrus. I did not like the taste, as the one I had was very sour and unenjoyable. Usually I like Victory products, but this one didn't do it for me.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
3.78/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The Monkey pours out a cloudy sunshine yellow color with a 1/2" white head. The nose is of honey, some clove and light citrus. The smell is a bit weak IMHO.

The first sip is quite heavy with a blend of citrus fruits, cloves and spices. A unique, refreshing and not overpowering taste here. Fresh honey comes through as well adding to the overall sweetness.

Mouthfeel is think and chewy, even a bit syrupy. The drinkability is pretty good as well. However I don't think I could have more than two of these at a time...flavor wise, for me, this is a brew to enjoy every now and again.

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Photo of santoslhalper
4.12/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Came in a 12 oz. bottle. Great picture of the "golden monkey" on the front with a nice little story explaining him. Bottled 9/17/04. Pours a nice tangerine haze with a one finger head. Head goes quick with not much lacing. Vrey fizzing looking.

Smells sweet and lemony with almost no alcohol smell (suprising considering the 9.5 ABV). A very belgian-esqe nose.

Taste follows the smell with one big difference. ALCOHOL!! The 9.5 comes shining through now. Nice amount of hops balance it out. The sweet, almost sugary taste helps bring it down smooth. Feels a little fizzy in the mouth for a triple. Highly drinkable based on how complex it is. Lots of flavors bombard the mouth as you get further into the beer. Be careful with this though, it could end badly.

Another good offering from Victory, though certainly not their best. I personally enjoyed Weyerbacher's Merry Monks Ale more than this tripel. But this one has more of a Belgian quality to it, which is very nice. A very good beer definitly worth a shot.

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Photo of beerceller99
4.17/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle pours a clear straw colored liquid with a minimal head. Has a grainy, spicy sweet bread smell. It is medium bodied with sweet and spicy flavors of butterscotch, vanilla, lemongrass, and black pepper. Finishes with a tangy alcohol taste. A pretty good triple for sure.

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Golden Monkey from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
3.72 out of 5 based on 5,613 ratings.
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