overall
72
72
style
Brewed by Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery
Style: American Pale Ale
Barrie, Canada

bottled
available

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 352   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.36/5   EST. CALORIES: 150   ABV: 5%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
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.

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3.1
cyrenaica (1159) - Milton, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 2, 2009
355ml bottle
5.0% ABV
I tried this beer on October 14, 2009 afgter purchasing a 6 pack from one of my local LCBO outlets. The beer poured a translucent red into the glass with a huge rocky off-white head that lasted a while. The aroma was weakly hoppy with a definite malt presence. The mouthfeel was weak-bodied, almost watery with a low level of carbonation. The flavour was mildly malty with a good hoppy finish. A hoppier flavour profile would have been nice.

4.2
JesseM (1158) - Margaritaville, Ontario, CANADA - JUL 17, 2009
UPDATED: MAY 15, 2010 On tap at the KW OCB/ribfest. Pours a nice slightly hazy dark amber. Very nice aroma here, ample hoppy goodness matched perfectly with some toffee malts and dry earthy aspects. Flavour is a bit of a mixed bag, a tad watery with some mild malty sweetness, very dry on the finish but in a hoppy way, not earthy. Lacks balance. Palate is light as I was led to expect. Almost seems like a mild ale to me. A bit rough around the edges at this point, but it’s still extremely sessionable and tasty, and a huge step up IMO from the Roberty Simpson days. I look forward to buying this at the LCBO. In bottle form it’s just as good, and has a remarkable amount of hop activity without the IBU’s being there, which I can appreciate. Very well done. EDIT: Hop activity seems to have been tweaked lately for the better. On tap I get a very pleasant cannabis-like quality. This truly is one of the single best things being made in our otherwise cowardly and boring provincial brewing scene.

3.8
HeistAlmighty (1156) - Saint John, New Brunswick, CANADA - JAN 23, 2013
355ml bottle. Deep red amber colour. Another in a mini series i've been on with red/amber ales hopped like an IPA. Nice balance between the aggressive hop and caramel malt. Overall, a good balance. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

3.2
TipsyMcStager (1139) - Calgary, Alberta, CANADA - SEP 29, 2011
Doesn’t really feel like a pale. Pours slightly cloudy copper with thin head. Aroma is caramel malty with marginal hops. Full bodied, caramel and sweetness. Some hops in the finish. Cool bottle - if you look close there looks like some freaky midgets and shit being chased by a sea monster.

3.4
venom666 (1130) - Elche, Alicante, SPAIN - JAN 16, 2018
Pours a clean deep amber color with medium beige head. Aroma is bready and citrusy, with sweet malts, slightly caramel and grass notes. Taste follows the nose, citrusy, floral, grassy, bready and malty, finishing with a moderate bitter aftertaste.

3.5
kaserov (1108) - Oviedo, SPAIN - SEP 22, 2016
Color ámbar oscuro, translúcido, con capa de espuma blanca de un dedo de grosor (buena retención). Carbonatación media. Aroma a malta, un mínimo de cítrico y algo tostado. No se capta mucho lúpulo ni en aroma ni en sabor. El sabor vuelve a ser maltoso, algo tostado, ligeramente cítrico. Muy rica, algo lejos de lo que venden (recuerda más a una buena Amber Ale), pero disfrutable.

3.7
dandeman (1104) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - DEC 23, 2012
Tasted Feb 2012. Aroma: Hoppy with lemon, green grass and flower accents. Very pleasant nose. Appearance: Typical brown, very clear. Beautiful long lasting creamy head with good lacing. Taste: Attack is all hop flowers with a lot of greenery accents. Malt, with it’s caramel and a bit of smoky notes, is taking over after. Finish is all bitterness. A very good ’’almost’’ pale ale? Naaa! Pale ale to me.

2.5
Atheist_Peace (1042) - 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.

3.3
jksipa (1036) - Newmarket, Ontario, CANADA - SEP 5, 2013
Bottle from the Beer Store. Pours a slight hazy amber with a small off white head. Nose is mostly caramel and citrus. Lightly hopped for a low level of bitterness. More grassy than anything. Light to medium body that is quite drinkable. A pale ale designed not to offend anyone.

3.3
Powertrip (1000) - Calgary, Alberta, CANADA - SEP 25, 2012
Single bottle purchased from Zyn Liquor in Calgary, AB on 09/01/2012. Colour: Medium brown/orange with low white lacing. Nose: Very brown grain dominant with a mix of dirty dish towel. More swirling brings out seashore lake water. Where are the distinct hops? Taste: medium-light sweet, medium bitter, medium-light sour. If not for a slight caramel underlay, this one would have been more hop forward I’m sure. That said, the hops are present but not dominant and show a real vegetative earthy character. There is a some more brown grain (rice) late.


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