Golden Monkey | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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Golden MonkeyGolden Monkey
5,799 Ratings
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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,799 |  Reviews: 1,828
Photo of BeerAngel
4.12/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden honey color with light bubbling making it’s way up to the small white head. The head dissipates rather quickly leaving just a thin layer. The smell is a pleasant floral/fruity ester with alcohol being noticeable. The lightly sweetened taste reveals light fruit and yeast combination blended with light hopping and finishes with a strong warming alcohol. This brew has a light bodied mouthfeel and drinks down plenty easy despite the high ABV. Nicely done! Thanks to Rostaruch for sending this to me! Cheers!

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Photo of the42ndtourist
3.47/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1) Where's the head - this is a trippel, right? I'm used to big belgian blondes with big belgian blonde heads. This barely summoned up a covering layer
2) Where's the fruit and spice flavours? All I could taste were some yeasty banana-ish flavour and lots of phenols. Some hops present, and a decent malt thickness. But it's lacking the flavour I would expect of such a strong beer.
3) Am I spoilt by Unibroue? Most certainly, yes.

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Photo of inebrius
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I like Tripels with loads of alcohol and plenty of fuzz, and while Golden Monkey is fuzzy, it's more of a big fat fuzzy belly than a sleek fuzzy arm, or a slender fuzzy ankle. It weighs just a touch heavy across the buds. A very nice nose of pear and strawberries though. And alcohol is well-masked until a pleasant finish ignition, but balance is raw and bent toward the sweet end.

Thanks Frank!

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Photo of Jarod
4.3/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It pours into the glass a peachy gold color. The head is white that seemed to stay for awhile. It left some residue but no real lace. The aroma was pretty complex. Fruits like oranges, cherries seemed to be present. Malt (yeasty, alittle) some spices hops (slight) and alcohol was present. The taste was good. It was rich full and again complex. It seemed to change as my hands warmed the glass. Temperature is a definite factor. First you notice the carbonation, then the flavors hit, the some cherries, oranges, dates, spices, malt (sweet) and the alcohol and a bit of hops. All these seem to jump around with the temperature. None of the flavors seemed to be too much. A very drinkable beer. I think this was as good as the monkey from the tap. Keeping some on had at all times.

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Photo of MJR
3.1/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a dull, gold color with a touch of orange. An off-white head starts thick and bubbly, but shrinks down to a small cap. I dumped the whole bottle, so it's a bit cloudy from the yeast dregs.

Smell: The first thing that hits me in the aroma is a musty smell...gotta love the Belgian yeast! There's a bit of spiciness, as well as a slight, fruity note.

Taste: Starts with that same musty character from the nose. Moves to a balance between spicy and fruity, then goes sour... I think I got a bad bottle...

Mouthfeel: Fairly light body with a nice crisp, dry finish.

Drinkability: I'm not really I believe I'm drinking a soured bottle. I'll have to see if I can get ahold of another bottle to compare. For now, my numbers stand...

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Photo of kelticblood
3.43/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a golden light with pieces floating around inside.Bubbles rising from the bottom to the top.The first sip really shows the ABV of this ale,extremely strong.The lace is very solid and thick like cream.The alcohol taste is somewhat overpowering making the mouthfeel harsh.The taste offers some spices I cannot place and seems acidic with some hop character and bitterness.Orange zest,coriander and lemon are noted.One of these and you'll be ready to switch to something lighter.The color definitely deceives you as far as strength.

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Photo of AsburyParkJMH
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a light golden yellow. alcohol smell is immediately apparent though not overbearing. hints of spice and citrus fruit throughout. i guess i have to be in the mood for the style, as i've had golden monkey numerous times and sometimes i can't stand it and sometimes i can't get enough. right now, i can't get enough...

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Photo of thefireman
3.72/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Once you pour this stuff you notice a lot of alcohol. I just got done with a winter activity in the snow and this beer fit the bill. very spicy, citrus like. Coriander or clove. I like to have this on hand for the opportunity to sip something nice next to the fireplace. A great Winter drink, but not more than one at a time. Tastes similar to a Belgian White I tried in Harrisburg, only with much more alcohol.If you're going to drink this beer out, make sure you can get someone else to drive.

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Photo of marc77
3.78/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark golden hue, w/ a slight haze. Moderately thick, white, well retained head leaves web like lace. Tart lemon and lime citrus and orange zest dominate the aroma, without much to back them up. Hint of spicy alcohol and trace clove. Cleanly spicy overall in aroma. Strong, almost acetic tartness hits the tongue at first, then mellows and tartness becomes akin to unripe orange and lime juice. Light curacao bitterness. Tartness partially wanes to allow residual sweetness to meld with the citric fruitness, lending an orange marmalade impression. The moderate hop bitterness accentuates the persistent tartness, lending an overall dry flavor profile. Lightly bodied. Crisp and light on the palate, and thus deceivingly quaffable. Finishes both sweet and tart, with ethanol warmth creeping up the throat. An enjoyable, albeit oddly tart pale strong. More residual sweetness and / or esters would have provided balance. Nevertheless quite tasty and dangerous.

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Photo of philipt
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've heard a lot about Victory Brewing and am excited about trying my first Victory beer. What better to start with than the critically aclaimed Golden Monkey.

Perfect golden straw appearance with stylistically appropriate large head. Sweet, spicy, fruity (apples, pears, something citrusy) flavor. Slighty tart; more than expected. 9.5% abv well hidden.

Not as "Belgian" as I hoped. Give me a Westmalle Tripel any day.

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Photo of Mick
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opaque straw/yellow color pours a good head that diminishes as the beer is drained from the glass. Flowery aroma with a subtle hint of alcohol. Smooth and creamy body with a faint alcohol yeast taste. Finishes ok as it only starts ok. Next to Lunacy this one blows.

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Photo of francisweizen
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle:
A very good stab at this style but IMHO it falls short compared to the Belgian classics! This beer poured a golden colour with a good head that was not as crazy as some of its belgian counterparts. This smelled of sugar, candy, alcohol, and many other any good Belgian style pale should! This tasted nice, but it was a little phenolic and alcoholic. The alcohol was not as well hidden as it is in other beers of this type. This had a very alcoholic mouthfeel as well and a nice warming effect to boot. A very good attempt to nail this style and very good for the price. A very drinkable Belgian style brew!
cheers victory!

750ml Bottle:
Well it happend, I got an infected bottle of this wonderful Victory ale. It looked and smelled like it should but it tasted skunky, overly sour, tart and nasty. Down the drain it went. I'd like to try a good 750 of this!

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Photo of purplehops
3.83/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Golden Monkey pours a golden amber with a white frothy head that fades fast. Plenty of yeast if you don't decant. The aroma is very fruity with notes of spice in the background. The taste is that of a Saison more than a triple (as it calls itself on the lable). It is highly carbonated with the yeast being the taste maker and the malt and spices bringing up the finish with lingering alcohol notes. The mouthfeel is warming and bubbly like that of champaign.
Golden Monkey is very drinkable but something seems to be missing. And to be honest I'm not sure what that something is. Perhaps it's a lack of complexity that keeps it from standing out from other ales. Perhaps it's to young. It is bottle conditioned and maybe another year or two of cellaring would build the complexity that it is lacking.

22oz. bottle update: 3/17/03

Just tried a 22oz. bomber (thank you Rotsaruch) that was one of the first off the bottling line (didn't even have a label). This was much fruitier than the 12oz version. Banana and caramel aromas were much more pronounced. Taste was sweeter also with flavors of honey and tangerine present along with some stronger notes of alcohol. This one is much more complex than the 12 oz. bottle. Will most likely cellar better than the 12oz bottle also.

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Photo of maxpower
4.5/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy yellow, with a thin white head that doesn't last very long, not much lacing either. Flowery yeasty aroma, sweet and malty, thick and creamy full mouthfeel, warming alcohol taste and an awesome, spicy clove flavor,a big and beautiful trippel, I need more.

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Photo of mophie
4.5/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

In the bottle, this is a terrific beer. On tap, it's exceptional (especially when the "tap" is in the Victory brewpub in Downingtown!). Beautiful Duvel-yellow in color, with a frothy white head. Aromas of sweet citrus and spice, especially coriander. Taste is a magical blend of tropical fruits and spices, again coriander, and perhaps some clove and pepper. This is really an exceptional beer.

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Photo of bmills1608
4.45/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice deep golden color, with a fluffy white head, about 2 inches thick. Carbonation bubbles present and steady traveling up the glass. Smell is clean dry and spicy, herbally with a touch of sugary malt.

The taste is strong and up-front right from the start and hits you with a banana and clove taste early. This is followed by and almost candied malt sweetness that while noticeable is not at all over the top and melds beautifully with the early spice. Overall the taste is quite delicious and mouth filling. One of those special brews that as soon as the glass hits the table, you're wanting more. Great overall flavor. The high alcohol level to me was hardly noticeable, which makes for a dangerous beast, but is a real testament to the character of this beer. While high in alcohol, so well built it is, you don't even notice it. The finish is clean but lingers, and ends dry and a bit yeasty.

I feared the Belgian styles. I was afraid that I could be opening a Pandora's box of great beer that I would then have to go and try. They got me. Great beer.

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Photo of beerluvr
2.76/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours with a firm rocky pure white head, over yeast-hazed yellow-gold liquid. Nose is spicy with some coriander notes, tart aromas also. Taste is a bit tart and sour at first, then a small amount of malt sweetness creeps forward followed by a slight dryness. Finishes a bit dry and tart...not one of the best interpretations of the style, I remember this being a little bit better tasting last time I drank it.

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Photo of doerickson
2.73/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Straw color with no head of any significance. Predominant smell is of bubble gum. Mild carbonation. Taste is overwhelmingly sweet; confectioner's sugar/cotton candy flavors are all over the place. Not very drinkable. If you're looking for a domestic tripel, there are much better choices out there.

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Photo of allboutbierge
4.2/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The only beer similiar to this i have tried was la fin du monde. I enjoy this much more, du monde is way too sweet and while the taste of this brew does have sweet properties they are balanced with the other more subtle flavors which are mellow spices and malts. I had a long day today-4 classes, work, a mid term, and a paper due. This has relaxed me nicely and im only half way through with it. I am a huge victory fan and i see this as yet another winner
drink up!

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Photo of jackndan
4.32/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Victory Rally* Monkey: Big orange color, not much head, but very nice Belgian lace sticks to the side of the glass. The aroma is very aggressive, with lots of citrus aromas. The taste is rough and nice: lots of citrus tastes, followed up by a nice bite of hops, and HUGE alcohol warmth. One of those beers that causes you to automatically relax: great taste and smooth creamy mouthfeel. I’m cellaring this thing for the 12 inches of snow I expect next February.

* review made during 2002 World Series.

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Photo of HopheadEd
4.28/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice! 750ml corked bottle, one of four I hid from my wife, for about two weeks. Definitely got better as it warmed to room temp. Nice, big head, slowly fading to a nice collar. Aroma of yeast, fruits, alcohol. Tastes of spices, hops, yeast and alcohol. Clean, dry, spicey finish. Nice triple. Good Ale.

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Photo of aaronh
4.07/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer is almost overpowering in it's youth. The bottle I had was bottled July 25, 2002, I believe. The beer pours with a nice head that produces a light lace and has a very attractive orange-yellow color. The aromas seem to be constantly changing as the beer warms. Most smells are sweet, as is the taste. My initial taste produced almost emtirely alcohol. While the beer was a little too cool, it tasted as though somehone had put a shot of Vodka in my beer. As it warmed, the alcohol nose and taste diminished, but never completely disappeared. Towards the end of the glass, the sweetness became very strong, almost overpowering. I will let the other 5 age for a while before opening another, because it is a good beer that will probably mellow with some aging.

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

Hazy, peach colored with a white head that holds fairly well, and drops to a nice creamy collar but leaves no lace. The aroma is quite full with a soft fruitiness, some orange, a sweet bready malt, a light spice and some alcohol. The body is medium with a very fine & effervescent carbonation that caresses the tongue and fills the mouth. The taste is rich and full, with candyish malt, spice - some coriander is noticeable, and finishing with a lingering spicy sweet malt. The alcohol is noticeable but not overwhelming. Very well balanced with just enough hop bitterness and spice flavor to keep the big sweet malt from getting out of hand. Not extremely complex, but big. Very rich and highly enjoyable.

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Photo of doho95fu
2.82/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

No sir - I don't like it. Had a draught at GingerMan in Greenwich and I was disappointed. I love Storm King Stout and was looking forward to trying another Victory beer. It may be that I don't have alot of experience with type of beer, but still ... I didn't like it. The taste was all over the place and I was unable to grasp anything. The color and smell were fine, decent head. I honestly couldn't wait to finish it because I was in my favorite beer bar and there were other beers waiting.... Storm King Stout is strong and tastes great, doesn't knock you over with the alcohol taste, this did for me.

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Photo of BeerManDan
4.97/5  rDev +33.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just out of this world. I like to discribe the taste and aroma, but I can't. It is just out of this world. Victory Brewing does it again. This is a must to beer lovers. I can discribe the feeling you get when drinking this beer. This has to be one of my number one beers to buy. I now have three!

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Golden Monkey from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Beer rating: 3.72 out of 5 with 5,799 ratings