Victory Reveals Seven Secrets of Golden Monkey & Invites Fans to Vote for Favorite Monkey Tale Finalist

Golden Monkey fans have supported, and love, the all-seeing, all-knowing, mystically spirited, metallic simian since its introduction in 1997 and have made it Victory Brewing Company’s number one selling brand ever since. In honor of the mystical monkey, Victory invites fans to vote for finalists in the ‘Monkey Tales’ contest at, choosing creative or funny anecdotes, enlightening observations or extraordinary memories relating to the enjoyment of Golden Monkey. One photo grand prize winner will be announced on October 29, 2016.

Appropriately, the history of the Golden Monkey traces back to a celebratory occasion when Ron Barchet, Co-Founder and Brewmaster of Victory Brewing Company, and his wife were expecting their third child and wanted a great beer to cheer the occasion. It seemed only appropriate that Victory would rise to the occasion and so the smooth Belgian-style tripel, Golden Monkey, was born.

Below Ron Barchet reveals seven secrets of the Golden Monkey:

  1. It had a name before it was born

Victory Co-Founder and Brewmaster, Bill Covaleski, conjured up the Golden Monkey name long before it was brewed. Usually, it’s the other way around: marry the name with the beer. “But Bill really cracks up when he sees monkeys, and somehow he came up with this clever and strange name—and it just fit,” Ron added.

  1. Perfection pursued for 10 years

Ron tinkered with the recipe continuously for about 10 years for it to become the Monkey you know and love. Turns out, the original yeast from Belgium was good, but it wasn’t reliable, resulting in too much sweetness. In 2004, Ron was in Belgium and got his hands on one of his favorite brews, and that yeast became the inspiration for Golden Monkey. “That yeast worked so well to maintain flavor and make it a dryer, less sweet beer, just as I’d suspected,” Ron said. “We continued to work on it and since around 2008, the formula’s been the same.”

  1. The Monkey and the Vine are just fine

Wine enthusiasts who claim not to like beer tend to enjoy Golden Monkey. Ron gives credit to one of their philosophies as brewers: drinkability. “We’re attenuating the beers (which is the percentage that measures the conversion of sugars into alcohol and carbon dioxide by the fermentation process), so there’s not a lot of sweetness and carbs left,” Ron explained. “Most have a final gravity on the low side because most of the sugars have been fermented out. That makes for an easy drinking beer.”

  1. Its takes a really big tank to hold the Monkey

Golden Monkey is a bold beer coming in at 9.5% ABV. Thanks to the way it ferments the yeast—very vigorously—Victory had to purchase tanks to accommodate the 25–30 feet of foam. “That’s about 20 percent bigger than we need for other beers,” Ron laughed. “And that nets the same amount of beer. Completely worth it.”

  1. Increase in population since the birth of the Monkey

Legend has it that the enjoyment of Golden Monkey has lead to an increase in population. Ron had some fun with math to see if he could ballpark Monkey-related births. “Even if just 1 out of 100,000 bottles results in a bundle of joy, that’s more than 100 births a year!” Consume The Monkey responsibly.

  1. The Monkey is omni-present

Golden Monkey is available year-round in three different formats and on tap including 12 oz. bottles, 12 oz. cans and 750 ml caged and corked bottles. It’s on draft at Victory’s three brewpubs—Downingtown, Parkesburg and Kennett Square—and at fine establishments near you. “We decided to can Golden Monkey because it’s really popular down south. It’s sold in convenience stores, and they prefer cans to stock their shelves. It’s turned out to be a really popular way to drink The Monkey—perfect for camping and other outdoor activities.”

  1. The Monkey lives on and on and on…

Although the recipe has remained virtually the same since 2008, Victory finds new ways to experiment with Golden Monkey. In 2013, the golden elixir was aged in white wine barrels for three months and introduced as White Monkey. A seasonal iteration, Sour Monkey, is a sour Brett tripel, available in 750 ml caged and corked bottles. It’s a tasteful, tart twist with a citrus-laden tang. “We love sours, and this was a natural match,” Ron noted. “It brings a tart acidity and is an interesting combo.”

2 Responses to Victory Reveals Seven Secrets of Golden Monkey & Invites Fans to Vote for Favorite Monkey Tale Finalist

  1. Jessica Kemp July 28, 2018 at 1:32 AM #

    Golden Monkey is by far our favorite beer but crazy difficult to get a hold of where we live (Johnson City, TN.) While the drive to Asheville, NC or Boone, NC can be pleasant, it’s quite the hike to attain a beer you truly enjoy. Please bring the monkey and Victory Brews back to Holston Brewing, we can almost guarantee it’s a market worth “tapping” again.

    • Administrator August 3, 2018 at 9:11 AM #

      Hey Jessica!

      Any friend of Golden Monkey is a friend of ours! We’re sorry you’re having a hard time finding it and appreciate the dedication you’ve given us. Thanks for the support! We’ll bring this feedback to our team.

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European Tradition.


American Ingenuity.

The Victory Brewing Story

The story of Victory Brewing Company starts on a school bus in 1973 when fifth-graders Ron Barchet and Bill Covaleski stepped aboard, on their way to a new school. The two became fast friends and remained so, even as they grew up and went to college on opposite coasts. Just months out of college, Bill’s appreciation of good beer and access to his father’s home brewing equipment inspired him to explore the hobby. That same year (1985), Bill gave Ron a home brewing kit as a Christmas gift. With that, both Bill and Ron developed their love of the craft…
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