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Golden Monkey | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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1,770 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: 1,770 | Ratings: 5,531
Photo of jujubeast6000
3.26/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed 1/20/2006 (12oz bottle from Spec's):

Pours a golden yellow color body, with a good sized head. Has an aroma of flowers, some perfume, and some alcohol in the nose. A nice taste of flowers, some raisin, fizzy palate, and a medium-strong alcohol taste.

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Photo of alkemy
3.26/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy, golden yellow with a big and bubbly white head out of a caged 750. Definitely yeasty in the aroma. Also sweet bread, some banana, and caramelized sugars. Apple, banana, and grape along with some spiciness in the flavor...oh yeah, there's also plenty of alcohol to taste. This beer just wasn't a big hit with me. It had great creamy feel, but really for a big beer, there wasn't a lot going on.

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Photo of jettjon
3.26/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From a 12 oz. bottle marked "Enjoy by Sept 15 2013" into my Sam Adams glass (thanks, guys!). It's a bright golden color with a few yeasties and lively carbonation. Thick creamy white head fueled by lively carbonation remains solid all the way to the bottom. Nice looking brew! Nose of spicy coriander and clove, as expected. No real alcohol on the nose, which is somewhat surprising considering 9.5% ABV. In the mouth, it's crisp and clean with spicy hops up front, balanced only slightly against a malt backbone. The whole deal is quickly overshadowed by assertive alcohol, biting, boozy, and slightly astringent. Mouth is bubbly and crisp, which mainly serves to intensify the alcohol burn. Very high carbonation doesn't detract unless you have a problem with that sort of thing. Drinkability is OK but sadly the strong alcohol presence detracts.

Overall: Decent taste overall, overly boozy for a tripel. Certainly a far cry from the best of the style.

On a side note, I made the mistake of not checking the ABV on these before drinking five. As a general rule, it's always nice to know what you're up against in the alcohol content department before embarking upon a "session."

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Photo of kingcrowing
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a chalice.

There is a ton of sediment in this bottle and it got really mixed up even on a really gentle pour, I had like 3/4oz left that was all sediment, so be careful.

Pours a golden wheaty color thats very cloudy with a very thing but creamy head. Nose is sweet, spicy and a bit boozy.

Woo... taste is also boozy, very sweet and sharp. Lots of spices and a bit of earthy hoppiness and a little malty. It's ok but not nearly as good as say a Westmalle tripel. Worth trying but not the best example of the style.

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Photo of GreatPondBrewer
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer did not impress me at all. I poured a foggy, light golden with not head to speak of. The smell was lightly sweet with a mix of yeast and roasted corn. Pretty standard aromas for a Belgian(or Belgian knock-off). The taste was very, very sweet with very obvious notes of apricot, plumb and white grapes. There was a pretty apparent alcohol taste as well which I would have been ohk with had the flavor been more complex. The mouthfeel was thin, but overly sweet as if I was drinking sugar water, which resulted in a sticky effect on my lips. I will not buy this beer again.

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Photo of Absumaster
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Orange golden beer with very little head and some easy-going gas rising to the top.

Smell is alcoholic and malty that is also husky and straw-like. I pick up some fruity whiffs.

Taste is light malty with some spicy and fruity notes, the yeast adds a solvent taste. Mouthfeel is thin like a lot of sugar was used. Bitterness was low. This beer has very little character, the yeast profile is not spectaculair, hops are invisible and body is empty.

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Photo of StlHopHead77
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was my first tripel.I had it for the first time at Creation in Charlotte,NC.

A-Pours a hazy,yellow with a fleeting,modest white head and some lacing.Some active carbonation is visible.

S-Ripe bananas,custard apple,cloves and Belgian yeast.White pepper spice and pale,toasty malt.ABV is hinted at in the nose.

T-Sweet,spicy and fruity.Spice and fruit keep ABV in the background until the finish.

M-This beer is crisp and medium bodied with a dry and warm(ABV) finish.

D-I've found that the this beer's drinkability can be a problem,in the sense that I can drink 3 or 4 without considering the ABV.

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Photo of thecarster1
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

a- bottle poured into a pint, two finger creamy head that fades pretty quick, clear bright honey coloring, ring around the glass, nice lacing that stays the whole drink, great monkey logo.

s- big nose, super spicy, slight banana, no alcoholy esters, almost like a hefe.

t- big, spicy, banana, huff of alcohol on the backend, not quite as strong as i expected, once again kinda like a hefe.

m- decent medium body.

d- i'm not a fan of big beers like this, but i definately didn't hate it, i'll have it again, just a tad strong though, no session for this bad boy, the monkey will get you..

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Photo of Buebie
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a tulip.

Appearance is a hazy unfiltered wheat like visual. 2 finger fluffy white head.
Smell is chemical bleac? Fruity overtones with a sweet bread like smell.
grassy hop aroma, spices, cinnemon?

Taste is sweet upfront with a floral hoppieness, orange peel, hops, strange over powering spice.
Carbonation overload.
Mouthfeel is thin and carbonated.

Interesting brew that packs a punch, but the smell is chemically and really turned me off.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden with a short head for the style and no lacing. The smell is a little sharp from alcohol, and with a trace of the typical Belgian yeast aromas. The taste is a little better, especially as it warms. Definite alcohol, but also some banana and clove- very restrained, though. Mouthfeel is a little sticky, but the body is appropriate. Not bad in its own right, except that its a little hot. The problem is that there are plenty of better tripels out there.

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Photo of leantom
3.25/5  rDev -12.6%

The golden monkey. Have heard mixed things about it. Here goes:

A: Very uninspiring. Pours a clear yellow (far clearer than most tripels - was this not bottle-conditioned or something) with a medium-sized head that disappears immediately. Little lacing, especially for a tripel. Not good. 2/5

S: Smell makes up for the appearance somewhat. Clove, banana, white pepper, various spices (extremely spicy beer), etc. However, the bready smell is somewhat lacking. I'm beginning to think that the beer is not bottle-conditioned despite being a tripel. 3.5/5.0

T: Taste is OK, but come on, Allagash, Unibroue and Weyerbacher all make much better tripels. No breadiness, but has banana, candied sugar, clove, coriander and an array of spices. Good on the spices, bad on the breadiness. Really should do a better job bottle-conditioning this beer. 3.25/5.00

M: Just OK. Again, lack of breadiness makes this tripel lacking. 3.5/5.0

O: Just meh. Really disappointing for its style. 3.25/5.00

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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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Golden Monkey from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
3.72 out of 5 based on 5,531 ratings.
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