In its first year open to the public, 1996, Victory Brewing produced 1,725 barrels of beer year and simultaneously operated a 144-seat restaurant with a 700-foot bar in what was once a Pepperidge Farm factory.

It has progressed quite a bit since that first year and in 2015 produced over 141,000 barrels, which were distributed in 35 countries and nine countries.

Sour Monkey is a twist on the brewery’s year-round favorite, Golden Monkey. Using hallertrau and Tettnanger hops, pilsner malt and coriander seed. The beer then spends a good amount of time with multiple fermentations using three different yeasts, brettanomyces, lactobacillus and Westmalle bacteria producing a tart, sour and yeasty brew.

The beverage pours a light golden color with ample carbonation, a half finger of head and light, spotty lacing. Aromas are lemony with touches of assorted citrus, light sweetness and some composted grass and hay.

Taste is full of lemon with a background of lemon peel. There is a pronounced bitterness that comes forth from the hops and the malt presence is balanced decently. Mouth feel is tangy and fizzy, almost like a lemonhead candy, only with a bit less sourness than said candy.

Victory Sour Monkey
BREWERY: Victory Brewing
LOCATION: Downington, Pa.
STYLE: Tripel
ABV: 9.5 percent
IBU: n/a
PRICE: $1.83 (Six-packs of 12-ounce bottles, $9.99)
AVAILABLE IN: 12-ounce bottles
Overall, a good job with the brettanomyces and overall sour effect. Citrus is prevalent and malt backbone keeps up quite well. Nice feel of a Belgian tripel in the background. A little more sourness and some more pronounced boldness of flavors would have elevated this one to the next level.
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