Red Monk | Des Moines, Iowa
Places > United States > Iowa > Des Moines

Red Monk
Good based on 7 ratings
Type: Bar

210 4th St
Des Moines, Iowa United States 50309 [ print map ]
515 280 3771

Hours: Wed-Thu 8:00 PM - 2:00 AM; Fri-Sat 5:00 PM-2:00 AM

Taps: 14 | Bottles: 50-60

Red Monk

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7 reviews for Red Monk
 Ambiance  71%
 Service  71%
 Selection  66%
 Food N/A 
 Value  53%
 Overall  70%
 Rating  73%

  AMBIANCE 4/5   SERVICE 8/10   SELECTION 12/15   FOOD N/A   VALUE 7/10   OVERALL 16/20
wlajwl  (50) Quad Cities, Iowa | February 9, 2015
Seemed a bit quieter compared to downstairs. Most people around seemed to split beers to try a little of this, a little of that. Slightly expensive but pretty good quality.
  AMBIANCE 4/5   SERVICE 9/10   SELECTION 10/15   FOOD N/A   VALUE 5/10   OVERALL 15/20
DiarmaidBHK  (760) Lewisburg, Pennsylvania | August 2, 2013
Iím at a loss as to why this isnít a top ranked place for the area. Located upstairs in the royal mile building, Belgian style beer is Definielty the thing here. I thought the guy behind the beer was very personable and had a lot of passion for craft beer. The beer list doesnít have a lot of hidden gems but it has the greatest hits you would expect a Belgian bar to have.
  AMBIANCE 3/5   SERVICE 9/10   SELECTION 10/15   FOOD N/A   VALUE 7/10   OVERALL 16/20
heemer77  (219) Urbandale, Iowa | September 15, 2011
Nice small selection of Belgian and Belgian inspired beers. Quiet atmosphere compared to Royal Mail downstairs. The bartender was very nice and helpful with the beer styles. The taps seem to be pretty well kept up. Unique for Iowa, I like the concept.
  AMBIANCE 5/5   SERVICE 2/10   SELECTION 12/15   FOOD N/A   VALUE 8/10   OVERALL 15/20
adnielsen  (420) Fort Collins, Colorado | April 8, 2011
I really loved the atmosphere and the Belgian beer selection but it was somewhat nullified by an incident with one of their supposed staff members. Whitney is a girl of about 27 years of age and who made some nasty remarks to my party at the Hessen Haus. When we showed up here, she was completely hammered and went ballistic on us. The finale was when she picked up her skirt and flashed me her gonads. Wow! She then went up to the bartender and attempted to get us thrown out even though we hadnít said anything to her other than we were sorry for the incident earlier in the night. They finally got here to leave but not before mentioning that she was worth over a million. The bartender claimed that she was an employee and not an owner or relative of the owner but I really think she had to be associated with the owner in some manner. If one of their employees was that stupid drunk, yelling obscenities, and flashing what she was hiding under her skirt, I honestly canít believe that they wouldnít fire here. The bartender ended the conversation with us about Whitney by saying, "Thatís why we call her Whiskey Whitney... HEHEHE." Completely inappropriate scene, albeit entertaining. On the bright side, they had several bottle of Saison Brett.
  AMBIANCE 1/5   SERVICE 5/10   SELECTION 11/15   FOOD N/A   VALUE 3/10   OVERALL 5/20
SledgeJr  (106) Omaha, Nebraska | July 1, 2010
By virtue of being the only game in town, you are pretty much held hostage by this place. Oftentimes some great things on tap. Very small and uncomfortably crowded and hot. The arrogance of the bartenders is only exceeded by that of the clientele. Once when I was there, a small group of military people took everyone hostage with some type of impromptu ceremony and demanded that everyone stop their conversations and pay attention to whatever drunken event they were engaged in. Whoever was in charge should not have allowed this to take place.
beeronmypants  (12) Des Moines, Iowa | February 24, 2009
This is a great place to get your fix on available Belgian beers in Iowa. They have a great bottle selection but I think it is little over priced. However, they are usually one of the only places you can find this type of beer in my state. Their tap selection sucks and they over charge for a small glass. This is a bar you would want to show up early so you can really enjoy your surroundings. It is overly crowded on the weekends (which is the only time it is open) and most of the people there are the ones who drink Pirate or Lindemanís. The staff here is awesome and very knowledgeable on the beers that they have been hind the bar. Also when a specific type of beer is ordered they want to make sure you know what you are getting into so you can truly enjoy that bottle.
  AMBIANCE 4/5   SERVICE 9/10   SELECTION 7/15   FOOD N/A   VALUE 2/10   OVERALL 15/20
CanIHave4Beers  (74) Pouring Bus, Iowa | October 27, 2008
This is a particularly hard rating to make. It really depends on the night you are in there. Let me take this category by category and explain. My first thought is that this should have a perfect score for Ambiance, because it is gorgeous, stained glass with trappist beer logos, old wood, dark interior, beautiful tapestries and lighting fixtures. Just gorgeous. But they have a digital jukebox that gets turned up very very loud and there is generally some pretty horrible music blasting from the thing. Of course this only happens about every other time I am in there, and I almost only ever go on weekends, so it is horribly unpredictable. The service here is great the staff is very helpful and usually knows their beer very well. This is almost always the case, so I have no complaints here. The selection here is so two faced it is unbelievable, Sometimes it is just stocked with the most interesting hard to find and exciting Belgian beers I can think of having in or around Iowa. On a good day the selection is genuinely remarkable with real lambics, odd Saisons, de Dolle beers, then for whatever reason it just sucks for like two months, they stock the fridge with Lindemans product and Iíve even seen a few rows of miller lite in there when the selection is lacking. The value is terrible, I can hardly justify drinking here, when I do I usually donít drink more than two. I FULLY understand that these are more expensive beers, and that they are not terribly easy to come by in Iowa. But the beers are NEVER EVER served in proper glassware, everything comes with a water glass (which is fine sometimes) but if you are serving a 7 oz water glass full of 1554 for six bucks, something is amiss. The tap beer is ungodly expensive, I pay less at the maproom in downtown Chicago for a beer served in the proper glass (and usually that means more beer as well). So there Iíve said it. If you love Belgian beer, and you live in or around Des Moines, you pretty much find yourself needing to hit this up now and again. But it is a far cry from what it could very easily be.

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