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RATINGS: 1530   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.64   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 32   EST. CALORIES: 282   ABV: 9.4%
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With the developing interest in Belgian abbey ales and the monasteries that brew them, itís 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 Brewingís 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 ďDark Strong AleĒ, 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 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
DonutSeducer (34) - Louisville, Kentucky, USA - MAR 7, 2014
nice color, faint hint of fruits in the nose. The taste has notes of malt and very mild fruit notes. Balanced/decent

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
chrisdb (1) - Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 16, 2014 does not count
Heavey syrupy and raisin- color is right, carbonation is low and taste.... well-I donít agree with the high marks given this beer considering the aspirations ( Abbey Ale) and the price (close to $90 in PA) for those who would discount my opinion feel free to disregard it - but let me say that I have been a hobby all grain brewer for decades and have taken the road trip through Belgium and Northern France and been to many abbey breweries and craft breweries in that world. The best abbey beers a are very different in taste and appearance but they all have something in common and that is balance. An Orval that is available at the local tavern and the Westvleteren that is nearly unobtainable anywhere share this quality although they are completely different beers. Iíve enjoyed both. The North Coast Thelonius IMHO is a high alcohol, syrupy attempt at the Westy 12, and in that is a total failure in the attempt... it has the right color and is high gravity but is not clean or balanced like a Westvleteren. Iím sorry I bought a case because I really donít even want to drink it

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 7/20
jerseyjohn71 (176) - corsicana, Texas, USA - AUG 17, 2014
dark ruby, raisin, syrupy, alcohol, bread, dough, soy sauce, minimal head, clear, medium sweetness, medium body, thin feel, soft carbonation, [MR. Beer kit went wrong,,,]

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
AbbeyRoade (312) - Missouri, USA - AUG 30, 2014
Alcohol is strong but not as strong as youíd think for a 9.something% ABV. Good abbey brew but not too much on the yeasty side. A good malty note and definitely a strong ale. Not bad. Not ideal either.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
YourDarkLord (1800) - Urbana, Illinois, USA - SEP 20, 2007
Chestnut body with a fizzy, thin orange head. Aroma held notes of yeast, hops, caramel, smoke, spice, toasted almonds, and ripe fruit. Medium body with ample carbonation. The flavor was slightly tart and spicy. Didnít appeal to me.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
beachbum25 (1085) - Powellville, Maryland, USA - JAN 31, 2008
750 ML Bottle-Dark reddish brown color w/almost no head. Aroma of burnt molasis. Has a bitter, nutty flavor w/traces of burnt peat & firewood. Wasnít real crazy @ this one, had a kind of stale flavor to it. Didnít get that classic fresh, Belgian flavor. Average @ best, I wouldnít recomend it.

   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
zappafan99 (463) - ASCENSION ISLAND - AUG 3, 2008
Taste 8/8 Bottle. Looks: Deep brown with a nice lacing tan head. Aroma: Dark fruit and grain, not very aromatic for the style. Taste: Mellow, creamy. Descent must from the yeast. One dimensional.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
Edgekrusher (84) - , Alabama, USA - AUG 29, 2008
Looking at these other rankings, I must have had a bad bottle..... Pours light brown with thick foamy whitish/yellow head. Initial taste is sweet followed by a strong lingering bitterness.

   AROMA 3/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
obguthr (3782) - Staunton, Virginia, USA - NOV 13, 2009
Vinegar and date aroma. Clear chestnut color with a thick yellow head. Medium mouthfeel with alcohol obvious. Dates and some wood notes, but little discernible complexity. Disappointing and not on par with the offerings from Belgium.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Frank (2835) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAR 24, 2010
I am not sure why but it seems like thereís a lot of American brewers who are afraid to really let Belgian yeasts do their thing. There are way too many beers which seem like they are fermented too cool and thus thereís not much of the yeasty magic that makes true Belgians so great. Here we have a reddish browned colored beer w/ a thick but quickly dissipating head and a nose of mostly raisin-accented malts w/ only a bit of banana and spice in the background. It smells nice but how on earth is this supposed to compete w/ the best Belgians w/o the best Belgianís main quality? The flavor is even more in sweet and malty territory and even a bit sticky w/o the vigorous but pillowy carbonation that prevents well done Belgians from cloying. Some grassy hops and a lingering sweetness finish this out. To me, this feels like someone used a Belgian yeast and grain bill w/o finishing the job. Itís OK but disappointing pretty much across the board.

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