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Monkish Brewing Company | Surprise Party


I just moved to the UAE this past month for work. It’s an exciting and extravagant place to be — with the current and future tallest buildings in the world, white sand beaches, indoor ski resorts and camel’s milk ice cream dipped in gold. I thoroughly realized that I would be moving to the desert when I decamped from Los Angeles, and I don’t mean Jakku. I mean a craft beer desert almost as expansive as the Empty Quarter itself. 

Before you feel too sorry for me, I have found local happy hours to provide me the sweet privilege of paying $10 for a bottle of Sol or a pint of Warsteiner. Still feeling sorry for me? Well, don’t. Luckily Monkish Brewing Company gave me a sweet going away present that I smuggled in my suitcase: Surprise Party.

8.3% ABV

Brewed as a gift for the attendees of Monkish’s sixth anniversary party, Surprise Party is a good representation of what has made Monkish one of the most sought-after hopslingers in the land. Full of flavor with a good balance of chewy body and fruity hops, this Double IPA is aggressively drinkable. What sets this one out compared to other Monkish offerings is that the bitterness and spiciness of the Amarillo hops cuts through the “Hop Tag-Team Champions of the Wooooooooooooorld” combination of Galaxy and Citra, and the result is an IPA that is fruity and full-bodied, but not too sweet and still a touch bitter. It’s the Titus Andromedon of beers.

The general complaint against Monkish is that their beers are like Derek Zoolander’s looks: beautiful and powerful, but it takes a real industry expert to detect the extremely subtle differences between offerings. Being down to my last few cans of this sweet nectar, I’ve never been more appreciative of a well-crafted IPA like this. If you feel like you are taking crazy pills and are tiring of the hazy IPA trend, I implore you to load up a suitcase of these cans and come and visit me. It’s awfully dry out here in the desert, and I’m very thirsty. I’d buy you a gold-plated ice cream.

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