What a cool beer I have today. Named after the jazz master Thelonious Monk, this beer is a Belgian style Strong Dark Ale. Since I love both jazz AND beer, it’s only natural to combine the two. In fact, I may have to include a jazzy track that I made a few months back on this post. Actually, here it is. Enjoy!
Let’s see what we can find out about this beer…
This beer is brewed by the North Coast Brewing Company in Fort Bragg California. I do like American-brewed Belgian styles. Ommegang is fantastic beer and hopefully this one will be as well. Oh, apparently they also brew a Russian Imperial Stout called Old Rasputin. Now I am truly excited because that was a fantastic beer! The brewery opened in 1988 and has many award winning beers. Well it certainly looks great.
It pours a very dark brown leaning more towards red. It’s extremely opaque, which is just how I like it, and left about a half fingers width of head. It fell at a moderate pace leaving a small amount of lacing. This is how I think beer should look, Superb. You know the more I think about it the more I realize I think every beer looks great…they just all look so…enticing. Ah well, on to more important characteristics.
The smell is quite intriguing. It’s got this funkiness to it which is very enticing. That’s not surprising, Jazz and Funkiness go hand in hand after all. It is very malty with a hint of dark fruit, if that makes any sense. The aroma is an extremely understated one, unlike the last dark ale Belgian I’ve tried. Well on to the good part, I’m sure it will bring out some of this baby’s secrets.
Mmmm, now this is a nice dark Belgian for sure. It has an ultra-smooth texture while maintaining a very rich body. The carbonation rolls off your tongue nicely with just the right amount of bubbles for a Belgian IMAO (in my alcoholic opinion). The taste is rich and complex, definitely a muted taste accompanied by subdued malts. The gentle flavors combine to make a whole greater than the sum of all parts. I am extremely satisfied. There’s nothing like a nice full-bodied dark beauty to make you smile, and the beer’s not bad either!
Overall she is a winner, although the last Dark Ale stuck with me more than this one. This brew feels more mature and stable. The last was a free spirit comparatively, that’s not to take anything from this excellent beer however. I applaud another New York brewery for making an excellent contribution to the line of Belgian style Ales.
Until next beer this is Brian G signing out!