Review: Flying Monkeys' Netherworld Cascadian Dark Ale

Review: Flying Monkeys' Netherworld Cascadian Dark Ale by Cody La Bière

When I started my "Beer of the Night" piece 5 years ago, I never thought I would end up trying so many different beers.

One brewery that I wish I would see more beers from is from Barrie, Ontario craft brewer Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery. After trying their Almost Pale Ale earlier this year, I could tell that their beer is going to catch on. Then earlier this year, their Smashbomb IPA was temporarily banned by the LCBO as the LCBO believed it was attractive to minors.

Tonight's selection is Flying Monkeys' Netherworld Cascadian Dark Ale. I was hoping that their Smashbomb IPA would make its way into Manitoba, but I'm very interested on trying this beer, as it is the first Black IPA I have ever tried.

Appearance: One thing that's awesome about Flying Monkeys' beers is that every one of their beers has very creative artwork. In this case, it appears it's a bunch of green ghouls rising from the dead, brewing something (beer?) out of personal belongings like paintings, a stereo and TV.. that doesn't sound like an appetizing beer ;)

The beer itself pours a very thick & dark (near black) colour, almost creamy. It's very reminiscent to Okanagan's Brewmaster Black Lager, or like a porter. The head is a slightly burnt caramel in appearance and doesn't seem to be going anywhere.

Aroma: It's a mixture of molasses, roasted coffee beans and hops. Very reminiscent to Okanagan Brewmaster Black Lager to me.

Taste: As soon as it hits the tongue, it has a roasted dark malt taste to it. Honestly, one would not think that this is in any way related to an India Pale Ale. Reminiscent of coffee in most of my favourite porters and stouts. It leaves a bit of the roasted maltiness lingering on your tongue long after you swallow. As said before, reminiscent to Okanagan's Brewmaster beer.

Overall thoughts: The beer is 6% ABV, and is around $2.20 before tax. When I bought this, I had absolutely no idea what to expect. I thought that maybe it was a pumpkin ale, or a regular dark ale. It's a Black IPA, it does have hints of what one would consider in an IPA.. in the aroma, but taste wise.. it's reminiscent of a porter, stout or Black Lager. Considering it's Halloween time, it's a perfect time to try this. I may pick up a 6 of this on Halloween day to relax to, as this will be the first Halloween since 2006 that I'm not doing anything, and even then - I first tried Big Rock Espresso Stout then.

Happy Halloween!

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