Brewed by Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery
Style: American Pale Ale
Barrie, Canada


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 258   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.36   EST. CALORIES: 150   ABV: 5%
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Defying real focus (how unlike us!), we had to call Hoptical Illusion an Almost Pale Ale (5% Alc./Vol. / IBU 17.5 / Colour SRM 3.44). Hoptical Illusion approaches the characteristics of a pale ale, but takes a quick u-turn at the end. At 18 IBUs versus 25 and up for English Pale Ales, we’re hoppier than most commercial beers, but not too crazy. The star of the show is the dizzying aroma of the privately grown Amarillo hop. Beyond the provocative citrus and floral essences that resonate from the Amarillo’s small, tight cone is a subtle but unique maltiness blended from amber kiln and roasted specialty malts. Finishing with a final Amarillo reference, Hoptical Illusion is a beer that doesn’t beat you over the head, steal your wallet, and jack your car. But you still wouldn’t want meet it in a dark alley.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Cletus (6354) - Connecticut, USA - JUN 13, 2010
Pours copper with a tan head. Smells of caramel, resin, hints of citrus, spicy. Tastes of earth, oranges, sweat, spicy, peppery with a tea like finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
rodenbach99 (3158) - Longueuil, Quebec, CANADA - JUN 10, 2010
Bouteille de 355ml. Bière ambrée, style amber ale. Nez houblonné, malt intéressant. La finale est houblonnée, style américain. Très beau produit.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
paco (527) - Regina, Saskatchewan, CANADA - JUN 6, 2010
Bottle from trade with cfrancis. Pours a copper color with almost no head. Nose of grapefruit hops. Some sweet malts and fruits as well. Not a whole lot of flavor. Some grapefruit bitterness and some light malts. Not much else. A slight bitter aftertaste. Well balanced. Good session beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
neuromatt (1154) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - MAY 7, 2010
12 oz bottle from LCBO, poured into an English pint. Pours hazy copper with a small frothy tan head. Head mostly fades but leaves good lace. Aroma is primarily floral with strong pine and citrus, fresh bread, nuts and a hint of banana. Flavour is fairly dry and ever so slightly sour. Finish is moderate in length and distinctively Amarillo hop. Surprisingly light in body, with a thin, oily texture and delicate carbonation. Overall, I was pleasantly surprised. This beer is all about its aroma and owes much of its success to the Amarillo hop--I wish it were more widely used! The light body and carbonation don’t quite stand up to the hopping, and the whole package feels a little funny. 2010-05-07

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
cfrancis (2355) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - MAY 1, 2010
It’s so refreshing to finally find a Canadian, nay Ontario beer that is a smooth hoppy ale. Pours a golden brown with a retaining white head. Aroma is hop and caramel. Taste is a great swell of hop bitterness that is smooth with toffee/caramel aftertastes. So well balanced, this will be a staple in my fridge.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
Atheist_Peace (947) - Halifax, Nova Scotia, CANADA - MAY 1, 2010
341ml bottle. Coppery orange pour with slightly off-white head. Very little lacing. Smells of burnt malt and sugar with some cow pattie and yeasty notes. Just plain weird and confused in the mouth. Thin, and the only impression I really got was danelion stalk with a little bitter twang. I don’t know if the name is supposed to purposefully misguide people or if these guys are still trying to get their act together.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 11/20
Bendrixian (1106) - Canadiana, Nova Scotia, CANADA - MAY 1, 2010
was surprised by the richness in colour, very brown ale like. I was expecting more citrus notes from what the name implies but it is more on the lees/clove kinda range than pinecones and spruce twigs. i don’t know what kind of hops used to make this one but it isn’t overly hoppy. i found it really light on the palate and more malted than anything. it has a good balance between malts and hops, it finishes somewhat hoppy and bitter but there is a whole period in the mid palate where i’m left wondering where all the flavours went.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 9/20
mnurda (1129) - Winnipeg, Manitoba, CANADA - APR 21, 2010
On Tap at West 50 Purhouse. Was excited to try this based on the name. But was rather disappointed. Lightly carbonated and not that hoppy.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
fullers (252) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - APR 18, 2010
Bottle LCBO OCB Sampler Pack Pours coppery brown virtually no head despite obvious carbonation. Aroma faint but pleasant with hops present. Soft mouth feel, almost buttery. Crisp with not much aftertaste. Not my favourite style of beer, but this is drinkable.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Elkas (213) - Cambridge, Ontario, CANADA - APR 11, 2010
355ml bottle from the LCBO. Pours amber, with a nice hop aroma. Good malt body, and nice hops in the finish. Not bad.

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