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RATINGS: 1679   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 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
jcr (2466) - Jasper, Indiana, USA - JAN 1, 2007
Thelonious Monk supposedly said that there are no wrong notes in jazz. It seems the only "wrong" notes for Monk were the ones you expected. So I expected somdething edgy in this beer — something that followed a standard line and then deviatied right to the edge of the cliff. But that isn’t part of the profile of this enjoyable, but straightforward Belgian ale. Dark ruby with beige head that reduces itself to pools of small bubbles. Sweet aroma of overripe plums, banana, caramel, earthy peat, dough. Flavor is very sweet - fruits, caramel, hazel nuts, vanilla - with only a hint of bitterness and a hint of wood. Alcohol warming in the finish. Full body, sticky mouthfeel. Lively carbonation. In the end, the sweetness overwhelms everything. And there is nothing unexpected.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
pintocb (648) - Darsville, Georgia, USA - DEC 29, 2006
Great color. Wow. Maybe the reddest beer I’ve seen. Smells of cotton candy, caramel and candy circus peanuts. (anytime I mention the peanuts my wife laughs at me.....can’t say I blame her) Full feel in the mouth. Very sweet tasting, toffee and caramel with some alcohol in the distant background. Good belgian ale.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Lumpy (1802) - Carrollton, Texas, USA - DEC 28, 2006
Bottle. Dr. Pepper body with a thick film of bubbles. Nose-pennies and grapes. Taste-metal, grapey, light hay, slightly cloying. Not bad but too much sweet and metal.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
heykevin (1281) - Decorah, Iowa, USA - DEC 27, 2006
Brilliant ruby. Sweet molasses aroma. HInt of celery and vegetal aroma. Medium-full bodied, rather sweet. Brown sugary notes, as well a touch of bitterness and some more of the same vegetal character as the aroma. Smooth and drinkable, but that vegetal note is distracting.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
heemer77 (5217) - Urbandale, Iowa, USA - DEC 27, 2006
UPDATED: DEC 28, 2006 I was very happy with this 750 ml bottle of beer. The body was dark brown and ruby with a light khaki colored head. The aroma was caramel with some sweet pears. There was also some almonds and cinnamon. The taste was almonds, toffee and some cinnamon spice. I would definitely get this again, I hope North Coast offers this in 12 oz. bottles.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
badgerben (4726) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - DEC 22, 2006
Very dark red color with a fading thin head. Sweet and spicy malt aroma. A bit of honey. Pretty sweet and rich malt taste. Sugary finish. It’s tasty, but not much depth to it.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
glkaiser (1214) - Seattle, Washington, USA - DEC 21, 2006
Bottle at Jazz Alley in Seattle while seeing one of the best guitarists around...Charlie Hunter. Dark reddish brown w/ medium head. Lots of dark fruit and brown sugar in the taste and aroma. A little yeast in the aroma. One of the better belgian style, but American, dark beers I’ve had. Doesn’t finish as strong as it could.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
mds (2250) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - DEC 18, 2006
Bottle. Red-copper with a small white head. Caramel and bread aroma along with some soft piney hops and plum alcohol. Warm fruity body with sugar and caramel flavour. Medium body. Pretty solid.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
whaleman (2178) - North Wales, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 16, 2006
Deep rufous body with a fading, modest, frothy beige head. Smells like dark candy sugar, plums, toffee, faint smoke, cinnamon spice, and alcohol. Flavor has some caramelized sweetness with light esters, toast, and lightly acidic plum notes. Malt profile is somewhat stale. Fairly tasty and drinkable overall, but not special like I would hope. Doesn’t come close to creative justice for it’s namesake. When did North Coast start mailing them in?

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
iowaherkeye (2703) - Ocean Beach, San Diego, California, USA - DEC 16, 2006
UPDATED: JUL 3, 2007 750mL corked bottle, no date. Pours a cloudy reddish brown with a one finger beige head. Aromas of candied and powdered sugar, figs, yeast, spices, a little mustiness, sweet caramel maltsand a little tart pear and apple. The flavor is much like the aroma with some alcohol and toastier malts showing up. A little tart up front, but turns more sweet and toasty through to a dry, slightly bitter finish. The body is a bit thinner than expected--medium bodied but slightly watery--with moderate carbonation. Was pretty happy with the turnout of this beer.

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