on tap

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RATINGS: 1708   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.65/5   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 32   EST. CALORIES: 282   ABV: 9.4%
With the developing interest in Belgian abbey ales and the monasteries that brew them, it’s time to remind the world that here in the U.S., we have a Monk of our own. Jazz icon Thelonious Monk is the inspiration for North Coast Brewing’s new Belgian-style abbey ale called, appropriately enough, Brother Thelonious. The beer is being released in conjunction with the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz (www.monkinstitute.org), and the brewery will make a contribution to the Institute for every case sold to support jazz education.
2013 vintage - 9.4% abv Like a Belgian “Dark Strong Ale”, the beer is rich and robust with an ABV of 9%. The package is a 750 ml bottle with a traditional cork and wire finish and features a label picturing the jazz master himself.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
SledgeJr (3577) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - MAY 26, 2007
On tap at the SF Rogue Public House. Pours a dark amber with a thick yellow head. No aroma that I can identify. This is a thick beer. Has a huge smoke flavor at first- very peaty. Amazing smoke flavor with a quick finish. This seems like it is huge in alcohol, even for 9%!

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
BustedFlat (554) - Edina, Minnesota, USA - MAY 24, 2007
25 ounce bottle. Trappist glass. Cloudy Mahogany with brown quickly diminishing head. Aroma was sweet malt and caramel. Taste was fairly complex with notes of dark fruit, brown sugar tobacco and sweet malts. Lightly spiced with a touch of bitterness on the finish. Bitterness increases as it warms. I should like this one more. An interesting mix of flavors, but it just didn’t mix well for my taste. B for effort.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
mlist55 (210) - media, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 23, 2007
Deep, dark ruby in color. Sparkling in clarity with a lasting tan head. Complex fruity aroma. Thick, rich flavor.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
biggcb (464) - Harleysville, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 22, 2007
Bottle. Pours a dark brown with some slightly reddish highlights. No real head to speak of. Aroma is Belgian yeast, dark fruits, banana and molasses. Flavor also holds onto the Belgian yeast, semi-sweet, dark fruits, yeast and a hearty dose of malts. Very drinkable. Alcohol is pretty well hidden.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
GriffinAvenue (396) - Winchester, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 20, 2007
Bottle. Brown-red in coloring. No head and very smooth pour. No carbonation or activity of any kind on surface or below - looks like a frozen, chilly pond. Sweet, sugary, faint yeasty scent. Very dry. Quick evaporation of lightly acidic flavoring hits the tongue and disappears. Pleasing and refined, esp given that the body isn’t heavy. Good show.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
jdhunt76 (56) - Winter Springs, Florida, USA - MAY 17, 2007
Bottle. Pours a dark brown with auburn highlights. This bottle had a strong pungent twinge at the beginning, with an aftertaste that improved as it lingered. As it breathed, it amoothed out a good bit, and the good flavors which were originally only in the aftertaste took center stage. Rich forest flavors of nuts ( especially hazelnut and dark walnut), toffee and bittersweet chocolate. The flavor is so full and robust that the alcohol is barely noticeable in the palate, though by the end of the bottle you certainly know you have been drinking a 9% Belgian. Overall, once the initial off-flavors had dissipated, a satisfying example of a Belgian brown. I would like to try this again some day and see if the off-flavors were perhaps just the result of a bad bottle. I also enjoyed the Thelonius Monk/ Monk brew play on words.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Mangino (1027) - Mississippi, USA - MAY 15, 2007
Bottle- Dark brown no head aroma is nicely balanced, flavor is balanced as well. Some dark fruit overall malty and sweet. Cool idea behind the brew too.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
lgklotet (432) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - MAY 15, 2007
Bottle, 750 ml. About a year old. Wonderful balance of Belgian yeasts, lots of plummy malt and I believe some North Coast house character (might be the hops talking here). This was amazing! Kicking myself hard for not buying more than one..

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
thegreenrooster (4003) - St.louis, Missouri, USA - MAY 11, 2007
Pour is a dark brown with a large tan head. Aroma is nice with some candi sugar and dark fruit. Flavor is bready malts and brown sugar with some notes of molasses and plum. A very good rep of the style, nothing really to put this in the excellent catagory but it is still pretty decent if you can find it.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - MAY 10, 2007
UPDATED: APR 20, 2011 Outstanding concept from a fine brewery, but not a superlative beer. Shouldn’t it be just a bit more quirky for Monk? I mean, maybe a Belgian sour or something. I digress. For the style, this isn’t bad, with candied malts dominating and an aggressive presence of figs and molasses. A bit unbalanced and thin on the mouthfeel but good enough. I’m definitely saving the bottle though.

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