Lilja's Hop Nest Monster | Sand Creek Brewing Company

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Lilja's Hop Nest MonsterLilja's Hop Nest Monster

Brewed by:
Sand Creek Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Nest is NOT a typo.

Added by feloniousmonk on 01-14-2009

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Reviews: 105 | Ratings: 192
Photo of Cresant
4.42/5  rDev +31.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured this 12 oz. brown bottle into a Sam Adams glass. No date. The body was clear pale yellow with a creamy white head. The tall head left significant lacing.

Smell was citrusy, spicy, and sweet. There was a nice grassy hops aroma.

Taste exceeded expectations. There was a nice grassy bitterness that lingered a long time. Sweet but more than enough bitterness. Tropical fruit and apricots. Citrus rind bitterness. Super tasty.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied with adequate carbonation.

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Photo of Lauthaha
4.33/5  rDev +29.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a beer mug.

Appearance: Beer pours a beautiful medium golden color. Moderate carbonation visible through the glass. Excellent head retention; after several minutes, there's still at least a finger of off-white head left. Wispy lacing, like cumulus clouds dotting the sky on a summer's day.

Smell: Very floral. Some mild bitterness. Grapefruit leaning towards clementine citrus tones. Maybe a little spice somewhere in there for good measure.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Beer is tangy at first, the citrus-type flavor shining through on impact. As the carbonation begins to bubble, a very hefty and beautiful malt character is unveiled. Moderate bitterness balanced with just the right amount of sweetness...a win win! Aftertaste is hops, but not overpowering. Darn-near perfect.

Overall: Really good for the style, very drinkable, and relatively inexpensive.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.3/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this beer as an extra in a recent trade. I am always thrilled to try new beers, and having this one was going to be no exception. This gem of an IPA was served cold and poured into a pint glass. Consumed on 03/29/2009.

The pour was very nice. Rich medium amber in color with a nice head of white coming up and over the top. Decent settling and nice carbonation left a good amount settling down as it warmed. Rich notes of pungent pineapple and grapefruit led the way here. Subtle malts mid palate as it warms provided a nice amount of balance, and the easy, smooth character of it really showed off quite nicely. Rich hop profile here as it warms and the finish was full of orange and pineapple bite. Really nice medium body and a full, dry finish that begged me to come back for another round.

This was about as solid of an IPA as you get. Really top notch and I would go back to it anytime.

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Photo of WakeandBake
4.3/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A pale golden straw color body , fluffy 3 finger white head,some jagged lacing left with average to lively carbonation. Aroma is like pine tree meets pineapple,kind of sweet citrusy spruce , nice. Flavor is of citrus and floral hops, a nice level of bitterness, the malt seems to hide untill you let it warm a bit, a nice pale toasty malt background , slightly oily texture , crisp fresh mouthfeel with a long resiny bitter aftertaste . This seems quite sessionable , I only bought one but would have have drank 3 or 4 if I had them . Much better than expected , I would buy this again . A solid IPA

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Photo of DMXLOX22
4.28/5  rDev +27.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Just spotted this beer at my local fav quick beer stop. Loved the bottle and design.

Appearance: Very cloudy with a awesome looking light brown metallic coloring. had a great white foamy lacing and head.

Smell: almost cirtrusy scent with a strong hop smell.

Taste: almost a bit too good to describe. Heavy hop flavoring fills the majority of my first encounter. As I went through I noticed a bit of lemon and light orange flavor hidden behind a strong hop finish.

Mouthfeel: Dry and crisp, but something I could see myself getting used to it.

Drinkability: If your an amatuer at this, your'll notice it quickly. Def. not a beer you would want to chug at a incredible rate. I def. recommand this though.

My final thought: I liked this beer to a great degree and I would enjoy this on a daily basis, but something tells me this isn't made for a beer you would consider a first choice when your out drinking.

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Photo of wheatyweiss
4.2/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into an imperial with no freshness date. The clerk told me it's only been there a few weeks, we'll see.

Pours a light, murky honey with a decent head that recedes to a thin film and ring. Laces OK. Leaves a decent ring of sticky foam after every sip.

Aroma is earthy, piney and floral hops with a nice sweet crackery, bready malt backing. A bit of butter and sweet cream on the nose.

Flavor begins with sweet bready malt. Creamy and substantial. Middle is hops, full of earthy piney flavors, grapefruit and light citrus flavors. Finishes dry with the pine sap, hop flavor lingering through the finish. Slightly boozey on the finish. The hops and malt are balanced well and make for a nice drinking beer.

Mouthfeel is medium with soft carbonation and a slightly oily tongue feel.

Very nice APA, I would drink it again if I could find it.

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Photo of brewbucker
4.15/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really like this new brew. It pours a light/medium hazy gold with a small head. Leaves some nice lacing as well. Aroma is mild, fresh and crisp. Light hops, pine, citrus and malts. Flavor is bitter hops, light malt and citrus zest. The mouthfeel is nice and dry. This is honestly one of the better IPA's I have had in a while. Not overpowering and very drinkable.

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Photo of thebrood1987
4.08/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Definitely smelling some mild fruity smells mixed with light herbal and pretty much overall mildly floral smelling. You instantly get a hop bite with not much malt at all and a very sharp almost metallica bitterness.

The bitterness is really nice in this beer and a nice herbal floral hop flavor accompanies it. Some citrus and orange flavors in there as well but the malt is pretty tame an maybe a tad grainy. It still tastes rather well made though.

A bitter floral IPA that has some off flavors to me but all in all a good IPA if you want some a good hoppy bitterness. Definitely was surprised with how nice the IBU's came out on this one...especially for not having that strong of a smell. I guess thats because they do not dry hop the beer.

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Photo of BMoney575
4/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on 2-13-10

Pours a hazy orange/yellow color, with a thin white head and even thinner lacing.

Smell is all hops, slightly earthy and citrusy. Very fresh smelling, and quite enjoyable.

Taste is exactly like the smell, a decent malt character backed up by big hop flavors. Fruity and grassy with a bitter kick in the finish.

Mouthfeel is what you'd expect for the style, creamy but still light, with a carbonation to keep the hops tart.

Drinkability is very good, if you're in the mood for hoppy and bitter.

Overall, a great IPA that I'll definitely be trying again.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"Men heap together the mistakes of their lives, and create a monster they call Destiny."

--John Oliver Hobbes

Polished 24-karat gold with sunshine colored highlights. A vigorous pour produced four full fingers of eggshell colored foam that has a mousse-like texture. The lid melts in attractive fashion and is leaving the glass festooned with a generous amount of delicate lace.

The nose is more Imperial pils than American IPA, thanks to a musky-earthy grassiness reminiscent of Saaz and its ilk. One source says that Amarillo hops are in use. It's odd that their typical orange zestiness isn't apparent. Warming makes things more pungent and more pleasing.

Lilja's Hop Nest Monster tastes like an IPA... to which one or more of the German/Czech nobles were added. Classic Saaz flavor. It's also pretty hoppy-bitter, so this must be a fairly fresh bottle. Some sort of dating would still be nice (for all craft beer).

It looks and smells and tastes like nothing darker than pale malt is present. That allows the focus to be where the focus should be in an IPA. Hop flavor is clean and pithy and biting. It's mostly white grapefruit pith, with bitter grasses and lemon zest close behind. I'd love to know the hop bill.

The mouthful is more APA than IPA. On second thought, a more full creaminess would require more malt, and that would not be a good thing. Actually, it's fine the way it is. Sparkly carbonation adds just the right amount of mouth energy.

Lilja's Hop Nest Monster isn't as good as Sand Creek's best beer (Wild Ride IPA), but it's a wonderful effort in its own right. It you like the European hops as much as the American ones, give this one a go... and satiate your inner hop monster.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not much to go on, here. On the label, the beer name is splayed over a painting of a roaring T-Rex, with this extra verbiage: "A Primordial Extra Pale Ale", "India Pale Ale", & "Bold, Brazen Beer Brewed Behind the Cheddar Curtain."
Okay! Well, let's check it out!

Very hazed,thick and clouded, golden hue, creamy white rocky head.

Snappy citric aroma, bright and pithy, lemon and orange...nice.

Taste: the hops are happily at play here.Very bright and lively. Puts me in mind of a fresh, fruity IPA like Bell's Two Hearted Ale. Nothing wrong with that.

Medium body, well balanced, mellow mouthfeel, long hoppy finish.

Good drinking IPA, really delivers.
Nice work, Lilja, whoeveryou are.

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Photo of jsh420
3.93/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours semi cloudy yellow orange with a 2 finger head that left spotted lacing

smells of some fruity hops but malts for the most part

taste is good - reminds me of a stronger snpa - richer sweeter carmel/crystal malts and fruity hops - i would rate this higher if it were a pale ale but ipa is stretch

mouthfeel is light crisp and creamy

drinkability - very good session beer although the abv is unknown

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Photo of hattingc
3.91/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden colored and thick. Strong malt and floral hops. Strong taste of malt and a good finish. Need to love malt to like this brew.

Good beer to try to see if you like strong hop beer. Medium bodied, pretty soft. Not a bad IPA at all.

I had it in a bottle...

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Photo of Soonami
3.9/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lilja's Hop Nest Monster is a beer I've never heard of or seen before, but a single was available at my local bottle shop, so I gave it a shot.

The beer is surprisingly pale, a hazy straw color that you would expect for find in a pilsner. The white head was frothy and irregular with really nice cling, supported by a nice stream of bubbles. The aroma was grassy and earthy more like German noble or Continental hops than American C-hops typical in IPA's with a good bit of bready malt presence, as well a the DMS aroma (canned corn, generally considered a fault, but I personally like it). On the tongue, it is surprisingly bitter, more so than I had expected. The bitterness is not in the typical pine or grapefruit (although I get some of this) it is very herbal, like bitter melon or kale. The finish is pretty sweet, which I do not normally like, but I attribute as an artifact due to the high bitterness. Though sweet, the beer is not too thick and has a pleasant, light body.

I think that this is enjoyable beer that doesn't quite fit the American Pale/IPA style. It's a bit too bitter, not enough hop flavor and aroma, sweet in the finish, however, it was a pleasure to drink and I happily drank the entire bottle's worth

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Photo of Wasatch
3.88/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to beerbeagle for this brew.

Pours a nice cloudy golden yellow/orange color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy off-white head, with some nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is slightly hoppy, with some malts, citrus, slight pines. The taste is hoppy/malty balance, with some citrus, and slightly piney. Medium body. Drinkable, not a bad IPA at all, my first from this brewery, Thanks Randall.

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Photo of Tballz420
3.86/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Golden colored brew, pillowy white head, somewhat hazy. Good amount of lace. Nose is light malts and floral hops. Same with the taste, sweet malt front with 2-3 hop varieties, both floral and bittering. Just a touch of spice from the alcohol. Medium bodied, pretty soft. Not a bad IPA at all.

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Photo of sholland119
3.85/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Golden but extremely hazy. If you poured it next to a hefeweizen, I am not sure you could tell the difference. Nice head and lots of sticky lacing.

S-Grassy hops, a light sourness and a pleasant maltiness. A little light on the hop character.

T-Unusual but tasty. Lots of earthy hops from the start to finish. Citrus hops peek in at the very end. Little malt presence, no surprise given the color.

M-Creamy and medium bodied. The suspended yeast really gives this a nice, though unexpected mouthfeel.

D-Yeah, this is a nice change of pace IPA. Unconventional, not just another IPA. I liked it.


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Photo of Jesse13713
3.83/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Awesome bottle art. Picked up at 101 Bottles in Kent.

Appearance - A volcano of frumpy and frothy head. Whipped and scoopable on your fingers. Does not lace to the glass hardly at all. The beer itself is a sickly pale green. It looks poisonous, even venomous, in a way.

Smell - A slightly sour apple smell. A light citrus zest that is also full of hops. Quite fruity overall.

Taste - A nice burn all-throughout. Light hops with a bit of lemon juice in the background. I get some sort of odd unsweetened cotton candy taste also. Heavy in apple.

Mouthfeel and Overall - Very dry in its entirety. Low carbonation. A bit of sweetness in the end adds a different tone. This IPA has something a bit special about it, although it is hard to put my finger on. I liked this quite a bit.

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Photo of htomsirveaux
3.82/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle tried 24 Oct 2011. Courtesy of R&S, thank you! Served in the Bright Brewing shaker pint.

Medium sized lacy off white head. Moderate carbonation. Clear golden in color. Aroma of light resin and sweet grains. Starts quite similar with and addition of a little orange. Sweet throughout. Medium body, slightly warming ethanol. Mild lingering citric bitterness. Well balanced.

Not an in your face IPA, but tasty.

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Photo of brentk56
3.81/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden color with a massive head that just sits there and does a nice job on that lace front, when asked

Smell: Biscuity malt and piney hops interplay with one another (not the greatest aromatic combination)

Taste: Biscuity malt, up front, that grows even sweeter before the pine, pith and bitter grassy flavors (vaguely Germanic) enter the fray; after the swallow, the bitter flavors continue to develop, though the malt bill never backs down

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Certainly a different sort of a beer for the style and not all to my liking, but still a worthwhile effort

Thanks, brewandbbq, for the opportunity

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Photo of Augustiner719
3.78/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured from a 12oz bottle into my SA perfect pint.

Pours a slightly orange, mostly honey yellow color with some hop haze and a big fluffy head. very pale for and IPA, very nice head retention. Smells a bit on the light side, some mild floral components, a touch of breadyness. Flavor is spot on for this ipa. really has a nice balance without going over the top. transition between bitter and malty is nice. taste is floral, with a tinge of lemon peel. mouthfeel is perfect, carbonation lasts for 45 minutes through the session, great semi dry finish. Drinkability is spot on too, great session beer for sure.

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Photo of TastyTaste
3.77/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pale body, small head. Taste and smell have a grainy malt component not really wanted/ expected in the style. Certainly delivers hop bitterness if that's what you are looking for, but not a very well rounded experience. The grassy-grainy malt of euro lager is certainly unexpected for the style. The hop are large, but not overpowering. A decent IPA, flirting with the DIPA range of bitterness and strength.

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Photo of farrago
3.75/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Two plus finger of bone white head, thick coating of delicate microfoam with excellent retention, more cratering than dimpling, sticky lacing stains the glass walls almost completely. Somewhat dark golden color that flirts with amber, no visible bubbles but there are some floaties in there. Broadly arrayed nose, curious lactic notes alongside an otherwise conservative orange, lemon citrus, pine cone, dried flowers base and a smattering of apricot, peach, yellow apple scents, small amount of brown sugar and caramel makes for a soft landing. Medium-bodied, the gentle and mostly fluffy carbonation acts as a counterbalance to grass, hay, herb elements. Touch of pepperiness enlivens the middle while the apricot, peach, pear, apple fruit swell to fill in most blanks. Dries through the finish. No one element leaps out at you but it coheres as a basic “fastball down the middle” IPA that is drinkable, if not memorable. [Note that the bottle says brewed by Pangaea Brewing Company, not Sand Creek Brewing Company although it may be contract produced at the latter, dunno.]

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Photo of Tone
3.74/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, golden color. 1/2 inch head of a white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of citrus hops, sweet malt, slight pine, and floral hops. Fits the style of an American IPA. Mouth feel is smooth and clean with an average carbonation level. There is a noticeably high bitterness level. Tastes of floral hops, citrus hops, sweet malt, and a hint of pine. Overall, not too complex, but great appearance, and good blend.

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Photo of kegger22
3.73/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a hazy, medium yellow with a moderate head that quickly faded to barely a skin. The aroma was that slightly skunked, lagerish smell. The taste was not skunky at all, though. It was not particularly malty, more citrus with a pine after taste. The feel was medium bodied with good carbonation. Drinkability was also good. Hop Nest Monster was a pleasant surprise as I was not familiar with the brewery and just taking a flier on this one. This was a better beer than the rating indicated, but it suffered from appearance and aroma scores

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Lilja's Hop Nest Monster from Sand Creek Brewing Company
3.35 out of 5 based on 192 ratings.
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