English Style IPA – American: Left Hand 400 Pound Monkey

This mid-week offering is an English IPA, brewed in America by Left Hand Brewing in Colorado. It goes by the name of 400 Pound Monkey. I think Left Hand wanted to try to bring it back to the basics with this IPA, as there’s a hell of a lot of American Style, super Hoppy offerings in their market.

Let’s start with Left Hand‘s description of the brew:

Why does the world need another IPA? Because this one ain’t like them others. We use hops of a different color, earthy and herbal, well-balanced by bready malt. The result? An English-style IPA that separates itself from the ubiquitous bunch. Cartloads of bitter monkeys flinging wasteful amounts of bananas into the jungle … we’re so done with that.
This description has so much bravado it’s unreal! Whilst I do love American Style IPA’s, sometimes it’s nice to have a English Style one! I think both styles of IPA are great in their different ways though, and wish that Left Hand did an easily obtainable Year Round American Style IPA to compare side by side. Next time I see Warrior IPA, I’ll have to compare the two!
I usually start with Hops when doing a big, American IPA  but seeing as this is an English Style one let’s start with the Malt! Pale 2-row, Crystal, Munich and Malted Wheat. The 2-Row makes up a lot of this base. As for the Hops, surprisingly we’ve got no traditional Fuggles in here but the hop bill is impressive! Magnum, Boadicea and Sovereign Hops are used.
When you pour this beer, it’s dark Orange with a Medium White head. The head fades very quickly leaving some dotty lacing on the side of the glass and a thin white ring around the glass. On the nose there’s a lot of Orangy Citrus, Bready notes and biscuity aromas. When you first taste this beer, on the palate you get some Caramel, Biscuit and then an almost Rye like flavour followed by a Resinous Pine Finish. Left Hand have done really well with this style, and it seems like an American take on the base ingredients for a modern English IPA. The Balance in English IPA’s is always important, and it’s been done very well in this beer, Rich Malt flavours, Slightly Citrus and Piney hops with pronounced Yeast notes. The beer is very smooth and drinkable, and I’d say the Carbonation is high for this style. It finishes Medium-Dry. All in all a great Year Round offering and something I would definitely grab when I see it!
Unfortunately 400 Pound Monkey seems to be out of stock everywhere at the moment, but keep checking the below:
EST. CALORIES: 204   ABV: 6.8%
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