Contest: Monkey Tales from Victory Brewing Company

gm-logo_tulipVictory Brewing Company (Downingtown, Pennsylvania) recently launched the “Monkey Tales” social media contest to learn the Golden Monkey fueled memories of their fans and hook them up with some sweet schwag in the process.

Not only is Golden Monkey Belgian-style Tripel the most popular brand at Victory Brewing, but it has also been a ubiquitous, go-to offering for craft beer lovers since it launched in 1997.  Brewed with whole flower European hops, imported malts and Belgian yeast, fans have gravitated to this beer again and again to revel in an experience that is “playfully delightful and profoundly satisfying.”

Since they have enjoyed countless memorable experiences with a Golden Monkey in-hand, the folks at Victory Brewing Company realized that their fans must have their fair share as well.  With that thought, the Monkey Tales social media contest was born.  Whether it be “in the form of personal anecdotes, extraordinary observations or epic memories,” the brewery wants to hear your Golden Monkey story in the form of imaginative photo and video submissions.  All you have to do is document your personal attachment to this delicious craft beer and submit it to www.RespectTheMonkey.com by October 10, 2016 (click here to do so).  

“My Golden Monkey tale will be different from what others have experienced because I see the monkey through a slightly different lens,” said Founder and Brewmaster, Bill
Covaleski. “However, we all have fallen in love with the spirit and the soul of this
delicious and powerful ale because it resonates with so many craft beer fans. I can’t
wait to see what this contest will bring.”

To find a winner, Victory Brewing will use a panel of six judges over the time span of October 11 – October 14 to select five photo and five video finalists.  Each submission will be judged utilizing the following parameters: originality (25%), creativity of presentation (25%), appropriateness to the ‘Monkey Tales’ theme (30%) and positive public appeal through likes, shares and comments (20%).  Once the ten finalists are selected, the fans of Victory Brewing Company will then vote to name the Grand Prize Winner for photo and the Grand Prize Winner for video.  Winners will be announced on October 29 and will be eligible to receive prize packs featuring “rare, exclusive Golden Monkey memorabilia ranging from autographed banners to Golden Monkey posters.”  Click here to read up on the full list of rules and dates.

Get to work on those photos and videos, and be sure to have them ready for submission by October 10.  If you need some inspiration or just want to make a new memory, you can find Golden Monkey Belgian-style Tripel on shelves year-round in Alabama, Florida and throughout Victory’s distribution footprint.  Look for it at craft beer-friendly establishments on draft, in 6-packs of 12 oz. cans or bottles for the suggested retail price of $11.99 or in 750ml bottles for the suggest retail price of $9.99 (price may vary upon location).  Prost!

Vital Information on Golden Monkey Belgian-style Tripel from Victory Brewing Company

Style – Tripel
Availability – Year-round
ABV – 9.5%
Malt – Imported 2-row
Hops – Whole flower European hops and coriander seed
Packaging – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles, 6-packs of 12 oz. cans, 750 ml caged-and-corked bottles, & draft
Serving Suggestions: 

  • Have the ale chilled below 45° F
  • Have clean, wide-mouth glasses or chalices ready
  • Tilt bottle slowly into glass making certain that pour is sufficiently vigorous to raise a foamy head.
  • Try to avoid pouring the last dregs as the yeast sediment is not the most favorable part of this beer.
  • Savor the experience slowly as the ale warms

Selene Saison to Make its Debut for Victory Brewing

selenesaison_750mlbottle_rctransVictory Brewing Company (Downingtown, Pennsylvania) announced this week that they are set to launch their newest specialty offering, Selene Saison.

As the sister beer to Helios Belgian Farmhouse Ale from Victory Brewing, Selene Saison has arrived to explore the darker side of the Saison style.  This Dark Saison leads with notes of “chocolate and clove funk, while rye blends with herbal and spicy whole flower East Kent Goldings hops to produce a smooth finish.”  In order to add even more dynamic depth to the brew, fermentation is achieved with Blaugies and two strains of the wild Brettanomyces yeast.  All of this comes together to create a wonderfully “complex and captivating celestial ale.”

“When we were dreaming up Selene Saison we had a great canvas in Helios Ale. Because Farmhouse-styles focus on individuality, we had a lot of creative license to make an enjoyable, yet completely unique, Saison. We wanted to showcase the dark side foil against the sunny side of Helios which resulted in a delicious, wild-fermented celebration of the season for all to enjoy,” says Bill Covaleski, Founder and Brewmaster of Victory Brewing Company.

Selene Saison is officially available now at craft beer establishments in Alabama, Florida and throughout Victory’s 35 state distribution area.  Look for this one on shelves in 750 ml bottles for the suggested retail price of $9 per bottle (price may vary upon location) and pouring on draft.  Get your bottles while you can because Selene Saison will only be hanging around while supplies last.  Prost!

Vital Information on Selene Saison from Victory Brewing Company

Availability – Limited/Specialty, available September 1st
Style – Dark Saison/Farmhouse-style Ale
ABV – 7.5%
Malts – Pilsner, Pale Chocolate, Rye & Chocolate
Hops – East Kent Goldings
Packaging – 750 ml bottles (suggested retail price of $9) and on draft
Fun Fact – Helios is named for the Greek God of the Sun.  His sister is Selene, Goddess of the Moon. 

Victory Brewing Festbier returns for its 20th Season

fb_12ozbottle_webtransVictory Brewing Company (Downingtown, Pennsylvania) announced this week that Festbier Oktoberfest Amber Lager is officially ready to make its seasonal return to shelves and taps.

The origin of Festbier dates back to 1996 when it was the first beer ever brewed by Victory Brewing Company.  Twenty years later, this Oktoberfest Amber Lager continues to celebrate the brewery’s rich tradition of German-style offerings.  Festbier starts with Two-Row Vienna and Munich German malts that undergo a decoction brewing process, “a traditional technique in central European brewing which produces the deliciously malty flavors for which German beers are best known.”  This treatment gives the beer an impressive, full body and “subtly sweet” malt character.  Whole flower German hops provide the level of balance needed for such a full-flavored, smooth brew.

“Festbier has a special place in my heart, as it expresses the purpose of beer, as a source of comfort and conviviality, so well,” said Founder and Brewmaster, Bill Covaleski. “It was the very first beer we ever brewed at Victory. We knew we wanted to create a true Oktoberfest lager and the pride I have in that first beer still powers me, and all our brewers, to continue to create good, thoughtfully crafted beers that will not only quench the thirst of our fans, but make every dinner, party or chat with a friend over a pint that much more enjoyable.”

Festbier is a seasonal release that is available now and will be hanging around through the autumn months.  You can find this offering on draft and in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles for the suggested retail price of $9.99 (price may vary upon location).  Pick up your sixer at craft beer retailers in Alabama, Florida and throughout Victory Brewing’s distribution footprint.  Prost!

Vital Information for Festbier Oktoberfest Amber Lager from Victory Brewing Company

Availability – Seasonal, late summer through autumn
ABV – 5.6%
Malts – Imported 2 row Vienna & Munich German malts
Hops – Whole flower German hops
Packaging – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft

Tasting Notes: Berliner Weisse with Elderflower from Victory Brewing

BWwElderVBCWith these insanely hot days still lingering into September, this segment of Tasting Notes is all about refreshment by taking a look at Blackboard #3: Berliner Weisse with Elderflower from Victory Brewing Company (Downingtown, Pennsylvania).

Berliner Weisse with Elderflower is the third installment in Victory Brewing’s Blackboard series, a new lineup that “unifies craft beer with market-fresh culinary inspirations similar to specials found on a blackboard in restaurants.”  Just as the very descriptive name implies, this Berliner is a “wheat ale brewed with Hallertauer Hallertau hops” and infused with the essence of elderflower.  Floral, earthy, lightly tart and crisp, this brew is all about easy drinking refreshment.  You can find Blackboard #3: Berliner Weisse with Elderflower now through September in Alabama, Florida and throughout Victory’s 37 state distribution footprint.  Look for this one at craft beer-friendly establishments in 4-packs of 12 oz. bottles for the suggested retail price of $9.99 (price may vary upon location).  You now have the details, and I’d like a beer.  Let’s get into some Tasting Notes!

Tasting Notes for Blackboard #3: Berliner Weisse with Elderflower from Victory Brewing Company

Appearance: Berliner Weisse with Elderflower hits the glass as a pale, lemony yellow in color that has a fair amount of haze to it.  Held to the light, the yellows brighten a touch but remain pretty consistent.  Carbonation activity is high and makes haste throughout the body. The pour produced a little over a finger of white head that fades quickly to a pencil-thin ring that hugs the edge of the glass.  There is very little lace to note or mention.  This is pretty much exactly what one might expect to see when a Berliner is put in front of them.

Aroma: Things begin here with all of the aromas synonymous with American-made Berliners these days.  An earthy and grainy wheat presence leads the way for the twang and tartness of the lacto.  What allows this beer to stand apart is the lightly sweet and floral notes blooming from that elderflower addition.  It may be subtle, but it provides just enough unique qualities to pique the interest of the drinker.  This brew certainly has my attention.

Taste: A spot on portrayal of a Berliner Weisse here as well.  The lemony, tart character of the lacto grabs your tastebuds right out of the gate.  The wheat provides a solid base of grain, but it gracefully keeps the malt levels light and even.  The floral and lightly sweet elderflower provides a kiss of dynamics that also lends a touch of honeysuckle and vanilla notes.  The flavors start expected and finish surprising.  In doing so, the taste comes together as alluring and satisfying.

Mouthfeel: Light in body with a high carbonation level to it, this brew is effortlessly easy drinking.  It is tart on the palate, and it dries out crisp and clean.  I was a bit worried about the slightly higher than normal (for the style) 5.2% ABV, but it is completely hidden from sight.  The aftertaste is all tart lemon and floral tones.

Final Thoughts: It is not at all surprising that the German beer style-lovin’ brewers at Victory Brewing Company nailed a Berliner Weisse, but I’ll just go ahead and say for the record that this is truly a fantastic representation.  The base beer is absolutely on point and the decision to include elderflower was a perfect choice to complement every aspect of the beer.  The floral notes work in harmony with the tart citrus, and the light sweetness draws out earthy tones and that lovely, subtle vanilla presence.  Blackboard #3: Berliner Weisse with Elderflower is quietly complex and incredibly satisfying thanks to the massive amount of drinkability it possesses.  Simply put: a beautiful beer that is a ridiculously good choice in a summer release for both the brewer and the drinker.  Prost!

Sour Monkey returns for Victory Brewing Company

SM_750Bottle_RC(RGB)Victory Brewing Company (Downingtown, Pennsylvania) announced this week that Sour Monkey Sour Brett Tripel is returning to craft beer shelves this month.

It may be the sister beer to the Victory Brewing staple Golden Monkey Belgian-style Tripel, but Sour Monkey Sour Brett Tripel has certainly made a name for itself since it debuted back in 2015.  This offering starts with that Tripel base of whole flower hops, Pilsner malts and coriander, and even gets a primary fermentation with the Westmalle yeast strain that is so present and beloved in Golden Monkey.  Sour Monkey then sees a secondary fermentation with brettanomyces and other “non-standard yeast varieties” to achieve its sharp tart note and signature funkiness.  This offering comes together as a  9.5% ABV ale that is sure to challenge and delight your palate with each sip taken.

Sour Monkey is available for a limited time in 750 ml bottles for the suggested retail price of $9 (price may vary upon location).  Look for this offering to turn up any day now at select craft beer-friendly establishments in Alabama, Florida and throughout Victory’s 37 state distribution area.  Sour Ales are ridiculously popular right now, so be sure to snag yourself a bottle of Sour Monkey before it disappears with a quickness.  Prost!

Vital Information on Sour Monkey Sour Brett Tripel from Victory Brewing Company

Release – Seasonal, August 2016 release
ABV – 9.5%
Hops – Whole Flower Tettnang Tettnang
Malt – Pilsner
Packaging – 750 ml bottles for suggested retail price of $9

Tasting Notes: Cage Radler from Victory Brewing Company

CageRadlerlogoNow that things have gotten settled with the establishment of this site, it is finally time to get into a little Tasting Notes action thanks to Cage Radler from Victory Brewing Company (Downingtown, Pennsylvania).

Before we get to the sampling of this tasty liquid, we should probably cover some background information on Cage Radler.  This offering is Victory Brewing’s take on the historic beer cocktail that combines fine German-style beer with citrus soda or juice.  Cage Radler starts with a base of a Light Lager and adds “fresh lemon” to take things to another level of quenching drinkability.  The finished beer comes in at a more than sessionable 3% ABV that is absolutely the perfect call for warm weather drinking.  You can find Cage Radler in 6-packs of 12 oz. cans (suggested retail price of $9.99) and in 12 oz. bottles found exclusively in Victory’s Summer Selection’s Variety 12- Pack.  This offering is available in Alabama, Florida and throughout Victory Brewing’s 37 state distribution footprint all summer long.  Now that we have that covered, let’s get to the fun part and jot down some Tasting Notes!

Tasting Notes for Cage Radler from Victory Brewing Company

Appearance: Cage Radler pours up a very hazy, matte yellow in color.  When held to the light, the yellows brighten a bit but still holds the haze and pale appearance.  To put the look in perspective, this brew is a bit lighter in color than say a traditional German wheat beer, but it definitely displays the cloudiness with pride and great form.  Through that haze, you can spot a lively and speedy carbonation activity streaming throughout the body.  The pour produced a loose finger of bright white foam that quickly withdraws to a much tighter, thin top cap.  Spots of lace do find some stick from time to time, but most of it just slowly slips back into that cap.  This Radler certainly looks great and just as I hoped it would.

Aroma: The aromatic notes kicking around in here are light, but still present and discernible nonetheless. The first note that grabs you is a clean lemon juice aroma with just a touch of sugar.  Basically, it is coming across as a really nice and freshly squeezed lemonade.  The malts and hops are muted, but you can find some Pilsner graininess hiding behind that lemon.  On just scent alone, this offering is hinting at being an incredibly nice balance of beer to soda-like qualities.

Flavor: First thing I can say about this beer is that it is quite clean in flavor and completely lives up to what one would expect from a Radler.  That lemonade note spotted in the aroma definitely translates to the taste with lovely lemon and citrus notes attacking the tongue.  It does push the boundaries of sweetness from time to time, but it holds the line and absolutely crushes it when it comes to refreshment.  That Pils base is no slouch either, coming in to level off the sweetness with some grain and a nice earthy hoppiness to lend a grace of bitterness.  Fantastically put together here by going with a straight forward flavor profile that strives for refreshment with just the right amount of complexity to be found if you want to look for it.

Mouthfeel: Cage Radler is wonderfully light and easy drinking, but still somehow avoids feeling watered down or resembling the lemon-flavored malternatives out there.  The carbonation level is high and up there to boost that quenching ability.  This offering may be sweet at times, but it dries out quickly and cleanly.  Aftertaste is all lemonade and/or lemon-lime soda.

Final Thoughts:  If the German-style lovin’ brewers at Victory Brewing Company are going to tackle a Radler, you just know that they are going to do it right.  In all categories, Cage Radler just comes together as liquid perfection when it comes to summer drinking.  It has just enough ABV to give you that reassurance that you are definitely sipping on a well-crafted beer, but it remains easy drinking and soda-like enough to be the highly drinkable and quenching beverage you need to beat the heat.  The name of the game when developing a Radler is satisfying drinkability.  With that said, Cage Radler absolutely has that game down.  This offering is spot on for the “style”, and it just might be one of best American-made representations out there in cans these days.  Get you some while you can! Prost!

Victory Brewing releases Berliner Weisse with Elderflower

BWwElderVBCVictory Brewing Company (Downingtown, PA) recently announced the release of Berliner Weisse with Elderflower as the latest offering in the brewery’s Blackboard Series.

Berliner Weisse with Elderflower is the third official release in Victory Brewing’s Blackboard Series, a new set of releases that “alternates innovative creations every three months, encouraging craft beer fans to taste what the brewers are cooking up with fresh and surprising ingredients.”  Just as the name suggests, this offering starts with a base of a tart wheat beer that is then amped up with a culinary inspired addition of elderflowers.  Keeping with the theme of the German style, Berliner Weisse with Elderflower has been brewed with Hallertauer Hallertau hops to produce “woody, spicy and vanilla notes over a floral, mildly sweet finish.”

“Like a special at your favorite restaurant or brewpub, the Blackboard Series brings our fans into the creative space our Brewers and Chefs share, offering them the opportunity to enjoy a brew made with fresh seasonal ingredients that takes them down exciting, unexpected pathways of flavor,” said Victory’s Founder and Brewmaster, Bill Covaleski. “Combining tradition and ingenuity is a founding principle at Victory we are quite proud of. The Blackboard Series is a vivid, and delicious, example of what we do here all the time.”

Berliner Weisse with Elderflower is a limited release that is available now in 4-packs of 12 oz. bottles for the suggested retail price of $9.99.  Look for this one at craft beer friendly establishments in Alabama, Florida and throughout Victory Brewing Company’s 37 state distribution footprint. Prost!

Vital Information on Berliner Weisse with Elderflower from Victory Brewing Company

ABV – 5.2%
Malts – Pilsner, Wheat, Unmalted Wheat
Hops – Hallertauer Hallertau
Brewery Description – “Pale in color with a noticeable haze, this Berliner Weisse pours with fluffy white foam. Malt aromas combine with woody, spicy, and vanilla notes. Tart and sour flavors balance well with a floral, mildly sweet finish.”