Flying Monkeys The Matador v.2: El Toro Bravo


10.1% ABV / 33 IBUs / $10.95 per 750mL bottle 


Umber-red w/ half finger off-white head. High Medium carbonation – looks like a Doppelbock


(Cold): Citus (blood orange), cedar and toffee (dark)

(Medium): Cherry wine and more cedar 

(Warm): Cedar resin.


Bitter (indistinct), fig/raisin, citrus (more lime), spice (cracked pepper), herbal hop character (slight mint). As beer warms, a familiar barley wine note of Buckley’s appears. Melon (cantaloupe). Alcohol is present but not overwhelming.


As suspected on purchase, Flying Monkeys appears to have created a ‘rye wine’. A very unique higher-alcohol product which I personally think would be more food friendly than the traditional barley wine. When cold, the beer could almost be confused for a Doppelbock, but comes into its own around mid-temperature. The only real complaint is the rather extreme cedar influence at room temp. Perhaps this would improve with age. 

SCORE: 8.5


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