Lagunitas Imperial Red Ale - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Lagunitas Imperial Red AleLagunitas Imperial Red Ale

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BA SCORE
92
outstanding

2,109 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,109
Reviews: 767
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 9.95%
Wants: 187
Gots: 223 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
54.2 IBU

(Beer added by: Reidrover on 03-05-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,109 | Reviews: 767 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Hoptometrist
4.43/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from the bottle into a becker glass

A- Poured a clear dark red with some light visible carbonation. One finger frothy head that left lace a lot of droppy lace.

S- Sweet grapefruit and piney hops, some spice character, sweet bready and caramel malt notes. Very sweet, bitter, and astrigent smelling beer

T- Big astrigent grapefruit, pine, and tropical hop notes. Very sweet and juicy flavor profile. Nice bready and caramel malt backbone. This is a pretty bitter beer.

M- High prickly carbonation on the finish, finishes pretty dry, pretty soft mouthfeel up front

O- This is a great Imperial Red Ale with big hop character and some nice malt to accentuate the hops. Very drinkable for 7.8 ABV. I wish I had more than one bottle.

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.4/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Black Raven pint glass. Pours a red-orange amber. Nice fine two finger light tan head with great retention and massive lacing. Continual, entertaining carbonation. Aroma of piney and citrus hops and light bready malt. Flavor follows, a well blended pine hops, sweet and caramel malt, citrus. Excellent creamy medium to heavy body. Hops are somewhat restrained, but flavorful and fresh tasting. This is a marvelous well integrated and tasty red ale.

Photo of PEIhop
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of colforbin73
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this is a yummy beer. it has the signature Lagunitas flavor which prevents this beer from standing out more against a wider flavor spectrum. i like lagunitas plenty, but there is a base flavor running through most of their beers that make their diffent brews often seem like variations on the same ale.

pours a nice oily red, almost ruby, maple syrup in color. adequate carbonation but not foamy at all. the smell is Lagunitas, i don't know if it is the yeast, or they use the same pale malt in everything, but there it is.

the taste is excellent, sumptuous, hopped-up rich red ale. piney flavors, sweet and hoppy. if an IPA is "dry" this is "wet". this is a red ale for the ipa drinker who is used to a scorched palate.

the mouthfeel is silky and the burps are tasty, bringing out the graininess of the malts.

Photo of RobertJBeer
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a sixer of 12oz bottles on 4.13.12.

A - Pours a dark, clear orange with a small thin tan head.

S - Hoppy pine, wasn't expecting that, and a nice bready malt.

T - Pine and some subtle malts.

D - Lower carbonation and a touch heavy on the body.

O - Surprised by the hop presence, but I really enjoyed this one.

Photo of BucannonXC5
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. About a finger of head. Color was a deep, dark caramel amber. Light gray lacing on the top that dissipated quickly initially, but then slowly deteriorated. Good looking cobweb film on the sides. Uneven and sporadic.

Got grapefruit hops (and a bit of lemon) on the first smell with a bitter note. Also seemed to be rye (which I only know from beer), a bit like iced tea (always my same comparison). I guess you could throw some pine in there, too.

Tasted that same rye taste. Not nearly as much as the Fox Trot, but still that iced tea feeling. Even a bit of a soapy taste. Grapefruit definitely lead the hops, but the soapy taste keeps coming in.

Medium body. Oily texture. Average carbonation. Bitter finish.

A good beer, but I have to say I was hoping for a bit more. A couple of my ratings could have changed a bit, so I went with a 4.0 for the overall.

Photo of JeffTheJuice
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of GarretD
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of Scotchboy
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a Ram pint glass.

A: Nice, mostly clear amber, small off-white head and some decent lacing.

S: Hops, with caramel malt underneath, pretty Amber-ish with a good dose of West Coast delight; grapefruit, some pint, floral notes, toffee.

T: A West Coast Amber for sure, smooth and awesomely drinkable...caramel, herbal & piney hops, lots of grapefruit, caramel and toffee, citrus and tropical fruits.

MF: Some aggressive hop notes are overwhelmed with a creamy and smooth malt backbone. Medium bodied, refreshing.

O: Definitely hop-forward with a complementary malt backbone, just balanced enough to be uber drinkable. Not sure how old this bottle is at this point but I'd still drink some if I found more around here.

Photo of gtermi
4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a very nice dark amber body with a white thin head that quickly fades. It does leave a lot of lace on the glass as it fades.

S: Just a bomb of sweet hops on the nose. It has a slight bit of alcohol and also a nice bit of grain.

T: Like the smell, you get a nice amount of hops, but then evolves into a great sweet malt.

M: There is a nice amount of crispness on the back of the throat and the tongue and goes down easy, but the dry mouthfeel takes away IMO.

O: Another great beer from Lagunitas, if you see it, get it.

Photo of kc44
4.43/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Decent little head on this one, thought it would fade away but it didn't, lacing is present but not a ton. Beautiful, beautiful clarity to this beer, but I think a redder hue could have been achieved. I can smell this one from across the room, which is just how I feel it should be with a beer like this. Piney hops, caramel sweetness, a little bit of bread and yeast, as well as plenty of spice on the aroma. Comes on pleasantly sweet before the hops assault your tongue, bitterness builds, things balance for a moment, sweetness shines through, and then bitterness returns for the finish, which could have been a touch more clean. Still, a total joyride in the flavor department. Mouthfeel is sticky, no surprise there, and this is a full figured beer, no lack of body, perhaps too much for some but I can dig it. Carbonation level is dead on. As a package, this is a knockout of an American brew. This is a great representation of what an outstanding brewery can do these days in the "go big" department. Not that it is an Imperial Stout kind of big, but the flavor is in that league. There is a time and a place to enjoy a subtle beer, just like there is for a loud bold one like this. Loved it, could have another. Three? Hard to say. This is a lot, and that is the joy of it.

Photo of SageO
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of Ryan011235
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter on 2/23/12

Clear, copper colored body with honey-brown highlights. Ample, two finger head drops slowly. The sudsy head leaves trails and pepperings of raised lace along the way (starts to form a wall halfway down). Thin layer of retention.

Oh! that wonderful hop aroma, so dank with marijuana and pine. Overtones of citric zest float about. Floral. Appropriately present malt bill of caramel and sugar cookie. This is about as perfect as it comes in my book.

The flavor is plenty hoppy while bitterness is kept in check - smooth citrus juiciness and dry pine. Modestly spicy (hop kick builds over time). Toasted sugars with hints of bread and caramel. Though not boozy, the abv is noticeable on the back end.

Medium body with a dry bite and undercurrents of grittiness. Carbonation is moderate, carrying the beer just fine, though it never is sharp or harsh. Dry finish with lingering pine and toasted notions.

I'm not convinced this lives up to my unattainable, nostalgic recollections of this beer from my Pre-BA day, but I'm so glad this got another chance at life. Thank you, Lagunitas.

Photo of sbricker
3.25/5  rDev -21.1%

Photo of Nerudamann
3.63/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Look - light brown/medium red in color, clear, with about a finger's worth of khaki-colored foam that dissipates quickly.

Smell - interesting fruity quality amidst the hop-filled aroma.

Taste - very much like the smell. It's indeed hoppy, but more in the feel than in the taste. The taste is mostly that fruity quality...maybe pomegranate? Stronger bitter aftertaste than when you feel it in the middle.

Mouthfeel - pretty well-balanced, but leans a little more on the watery side.

Overall - not a bad brew at all. Very interesting to think about, and good-tasting.

Photo of banjofred101
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of leaddog
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a light copper hue with 1/2 finger width of bubbly off-white head. Nice clarity with bubbles present.

Smell - Pine/earthy hops, citrus notes, caramel.

Taste - Nice bold earthy and pine flavours from the hops. A touch of caramel sweetness is noticeable at the end, as well as a lemony citrus flavour.

Mouthfeel - Medium-to-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Slightly creamy with a dry finish.

Overall - A nice representation of an imperial red ale by Lagunitas. Definitely a hop bomb for those who are a fan of intense hops flavour.

Photo of TravisD
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of Mick-e-d
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of rwilde
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of Samp01
4.45/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A ruby amber with a large long lasting thick foamy off white head on the pour, with good lacing throughout. Aroma of lightly toasted caramel malt, piney earthy hops, grains, spicy rye and fruity esters fill the senses. Taste is toasted caramel malt, piney earthy hops, with a bit of spicy rye grains and fruity. Palate is a med to full body, with good carbonation and a nice crisp mouth feel. Finish is toasted caramel malt, some light yeast followed by some earthy piney hops for balance, ending long dry hopped finish with some lingering nutty earthy hops. Hops are not overpowering and some pleasant sweet fruity alcohol ester come thru. Overall a very good well balanced and tasty brew with a complex nose and taste.

Photo of downtown720
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of stortore
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of shand
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into an imperial point.

Pours a hazy red color with a finger of persistent head. The aroma is part typical Lagunitas tropical fruit hop bomb, and half rich, malty base. The taste is aggressively tropical-hoppy at first, but has a sweeter, maltier finish than an IPA would have. The mouthfeel is fairly heavy and well-carbonated. Overall, this is a solid hoppy red. It's not as good as the local favourite Tocobaga, but it's still a worthy drink.

Lagunitas Imperial Red Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 2,109 ratings.