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


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 351   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.36/5   EST. CALORIES: 150   ABV: 5%
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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BelgieFan's rating

BelgieFan (3) - - DEC 29, 2012
If you like hops, this is a great beer! Fun marketing materials, too (beer packaging, beer cap liner, etc.).

Sircatis (283) - FRANCE - JUN 14, 2017
Découverte dans la Saveur Box. Bière ambrée au nez malté et caramel. Bouche épicée et maltée. Bonne bière.

MarcoBasile (273) - DENMARK - JUN 11, 2017
I’m having my first beer from Flying Monkeys outta Ontario, Canada. This is their Hoptical Illusion, a beer they describe as ’Almost Pale Ale’. It comes in at 5% ABV. It pours a very very deep golden colored body – it almost looks brown/red-ish. I do not recall ever to have had a pale ale this dark. Well, Hoptical illusion it is then. The aroma is fairly malty. I guess that’s expected given the color. There’s not much of a hoppyness coming through on the aroma. It’s just malts and a very slight roasted note. The taste is quite thin at first, a bland watery taste, but then comes the sweetness from the malts and some earthyness. There’s a very subtle pine bitterness coming through towards the end. It’s piney and at the same time it’s not. It’s weird. I would say that this is leaning towards being a hoppy brown ale. I would guess that’s why they’re calling it ’almost’ pale ale. It’s decent nontheless.

ConJoJohn (18) - Halifax, Nova Scotia, CANADA - JUN 10, 2017
Slightly malt-forward aroma, mostly balanced. Nothing too strong. Small head with minimal lacing. Coloured a deep amber. Taste is very balanced, perhaps to a fault. Very drinkable, but not very distinguished in any regard. A bit malt heavy for a pale ale. Also slightly more viscous than a pale ale. I suppose the gimmick of this beer is a milder hoppiness than an a pale ale, but isn’t that what a pale ale is to an IPA? I’m not sure I understand the point of this lol. I could easily mistake this for a bitter, if not for the slightly pronounced hoppiness. Poured from a bottle into a tumbler.

javiercrasher (527) - Granada, SPAIN - JUN 10, 2017
APA de perfil maltoso. Algo de fruta en nariz y más caramelo en boca. Buen cuerpo, algo de resina y regusto amargo. Canned 19/04/2017

TBone (17434) - Pori, FINLAND - JUN 9, 2017
Bottled 355ml (Beer Republic, bottled 02/2017)
Deep chestnut coor, small beige head. Maltyness, menthol hops in the nose. Light-bodied, a bit fizzy. Malty, nutty, even a bit bready and caramelly. Not this is not pale ale by flavour either. It’s has kind of ESB character.

Calisky (2916) - ALSACE, FRANCE - JUN 9, 2017
Couleur ambrée claire, légère mousse beige. Nez malté céréales, fruité raisin. Gout malté céréales, houblonné citronné avec note pamplemoussse voir exotiques puis longue amertume sur le citronné résineux. Bon corps . Classique mais efficace

Gangstergafje (1097) - Capelle aan den IJssel, NETHERLANDS - JUN 8, 2017
08-06-2017; bottle; at home (bought at Saveur Bière, as part of their June discovery box). The looks of the beer are fine. The beer looks like any APA. The colour is a nice dark orange amber. The beer is crystal clear. On top of the brew a nice layer of rough, slightly offwhite foam is formed. The majority of the foam collapses rather quickly, leaving a very scarce drape. So, no bad looks, but quite regular. The smell of the beer is nice. There is a nice rather sweet but also slightly spicy malt aroma at first. It reminds me a bit of pumpkin ale...but there’s no pumpkin in this. It is sweeter than most beers. There is also a touch of caramel and syrup. Not bad. On top of this there are lovely hop aromas. I smell some nice citrusy fruity aromas, but even more floral aromas. They also give a certain sweetness to the beer and a richness. There is a slightly resinous touch to it to. The taste has the same features. That same sweet and slightly spicy malt aroma, with touches of toast and caramel and the same mainly floral and slightly citrus hops. There is again something that reminds me of pumpkin ale. I love pumpkin ale, so this association ain’t bad. The hops give nice bitters and slight sours, whilst the malts provide sweetness. All is in quite good balance. Not bad. The palate of the beer is fine. Medium body, smooth and rather low carbonation. The finish of the beer is not that long and a bit thin, with some caramel and toasted malts and floral hops. All in all, surely a nice beer...but it misses a tiny bit of specialness. But, it is easy drinkable and tasty, so I wouldn’t mind having it again.

Lore (2664) - Budapest, HUNGARY - JUN 4, 2017
clear amber colour, large and stable beige-ish off-white head; aroma of moderate grapefruit, orange zest oils, toasted rye bread and floral honey; taste is practically the same with similarly moderate intensity; correct ale

sam_taylor (13) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - APR 14, 2017
Smells foul, and appearance is an eye sore. THis beer is tough to drink and has a bitter finish.

ametras (1574) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 25, 2017
473ml can. Clear reddish copper with a foamy off-white head. Flavors are bread, dust, earth, toffee and nuts with woodsy and fruity notes. Light to medium body, moderate carbonation, smooth texture.

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