Lagunitas Imperial Red Ale - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Lagunitas Imperial Red AleLagunitas Imperial Red Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

773 Reviews
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 773
Hads: 2,257
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 8.27%
Wants: 230
Gots: 309 | FT: 3
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:
Beer added by: Reidrover on 03-05-2005

54.2 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Lagunitas Imperial Red Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 773 | Hads: 2,257
Photo of brurevu
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

The beer poured a deep copper mahogany color with a substantial off white head. The aroma was of a piney and citrusy hop with a bit of toffee malt underneath. The taste followed with an initial sweet malt that quickly jumped into a mega hop dose of slight resinous pine and more citrus and tropical fruit bitterness. It leaves a burnt toffee and hop bitterness on your tongue between pulls and even has hints of floral hops as the flavor lingers. This Imperial Red Ale from Lagunitas has me back on the red ale fence. (517 characters)

Photo of hreb
4.03/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle poured in pint glass. Beer is red amber, as promised, with a thick, orange-ish head. Big, piney C-hop aroma. Could be an imperial IPA if the color didn't push into into the red ale category. Flavorwise, too, this is hop-forward, full of left coast sensibilities. Finish is pretty dry, and light. For what an imperial amber could have been, this is not too malty or syrupy. There is a little nuance of residual sweetness, but it works quite nicely here. Overall this is a well balanced West coast Red Ale and well worth enjoying. (548 characters)

Photo of DerAtomsmasher
3.94/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First beer I've had from Lagunitas that I'd have another of.

Deep caramel notes in the nose with almost none on the tongue. A slight toffee sweetness giving way to a big spicy, citrusy hop tang. (196 characters)

Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a cloudy brownish red with a one-finger off-white head. The head leaves a lot of sticky lacing.

S - Aroma of citrus, piney hops, and sweet bready malts.

T - Folows the aroma fairly close. Lots of citrus and piney hops are balanced by sweet caramel malts. The finish is pine hops and grapefruit.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Smooth and creamy mouthfeel.

O - A very above average red ale. Smooth and very well balanced. (445 characters)

Photo of Kuaff
4.45/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This one's reputation precedes it. And finally, I can experience it. At cellarish temperature. In my IPG (imperial pint glass).

Guess what? It's red. It also has a large, two~three finger light-beige head. Looks very good.

SMELLS very good. It's a typically hoppy, dank, piney, and citrusy Lagunitas scent, but, similar to Hairy Eyeball (which I adore), there is also a dimension of sweet, berry-like maltiness. Kinda like grapefruit mixed with cranberries and honey. QUITE nice to sniff.

The flavor follows suit. Vibrant (mainly citrus) fruitiness, dank and piney hops, and a honey or brown sugar thing going on. AND some real nice toast and nuttiness in the finish. Everything melds... and tastes harmoniously good.

I'm especially fond of the feel, which is admirably full. It lends support to the structure of the extensive flavor profile. Or to rephrase: it allows the flavors to stick around, unpack their complexities and make themselves comfortable on my palate.

As expected, another Lagunitas ale that rules. And this one can not only appease a hops-craving, but also placate a hankering for malts to an extent. (1,125 characters)

Photo of Bone53
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Appearance (4.5): Clear dark red color, almost brown with a creamy off white head

Smell (4.25): Pine and citrus hops along with bready and caramel malts

Taste (4.5): That bready, caramel malt hits you upfront then comes the citrusy and pine hops that linger in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel (4.5): Medium body; Silky smooth yet coats the mouth with slight bitterness

Overall (4.5): This is a textbook red ale if I've ever had one, bordering on perfection in my opinion. The flavors and the way they are balanced is superb. This and Nugget Nectar stand out above all the other red ales that ive experienced. Another amazing beer for the price. Probably towards the top of my favorite Lagunitas beers. (699 characters)

Photo of Saison_Tickets
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

Good stuff. Like the other reviewers say, healthy, full, rustic, still got the grapefruit, strawberry, other fruity and slightly tart notes. And 6.8% is sort of perfect ABV. (173 characters)

Photo of TBoneJones
4.56/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pint poured, this has a rustic copper-like body color, is clear, and has light visible carbonation and a tall off-white head. Cake-like lacing.
Smells superbly like fresh hops (tropical fruit, pineapple) some pine, and candied bread.
This tastes nice of juicy hops, and with a sweet malt to balance it out. Quite sweet, but the hop presence provides a bitter rush that balances it all out somehow. Wood, tropical citrus, pine, slight alcohol. Nice and complex, tastefully so. I normally don't go for reds, but this one I'll have again anytime.
Creamy slick mouthfeel with medium carbonation, slightly chewy too, with a bit of tart.
This was only $3.99 at my local Tom Thumb grocery store? Yes, it was.
Perfect for early Autumn, great anytime. Grab this for the weekend game-watching, cooking out, or what have you. (818 characters)

Photo of ryan1788a5
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a globe.

A: Dark red-orange color. Good clarity. Cream-colored head retains well at a half an inch. Delicate wisps of lacing.

S: Green and oily hops. Tangerine and mandarin orange. Freshly mowed lawn. Sweet malt base of bread, caramel, and candy apple. Hints of alcohol and red berries.

T: Bread crust, toast, caramel, pinch of cocoa. Hints of sweet cherry and red berries. Hops are earthy and woody with a strong resinous bitterness that really clamps down toward the back end. Quick flashes of tangerine and tropical fruits. Oily. Spicy alcohol. Woody and resinous hops own the finish with a bitterness that doesn't quit.

M: Medium-thick body. Round, firm, and creamy in texture. Slightly weighty. Acute prickling carbonation.

O: The red ale was once the darling of the craft beer movement. No more. In fact, most hardened beer geeks tend to avoid them like a plague. The style has a reputation for being bland and uninteresting these days. However, if you are going to brew a red ale and expect it to sell, this is how you do it. You make sure it's big and plenty hoppy. There is nothing bland or pedestrian about this beer. It's worth your time and money. (1,188 characters)

Photo of Fatehunter
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%

Pours a finger and half of head on a clear red colored body.
The aroma has lemon and pine, rich malt too.
The taste has a big sweetness to it, but is loaded with lemon bitterness too. A big tasting beer.
The texture is thicker.
Yum. (232 characters)

Photo of Zach136
4.08/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear red with a light caramel head with great lacing.

Aroma: Big caramel malt aroma with fruity hop burst.

Flavor: Nutty, light roast and caramel malt bill. Hop character is mostly piney with some tropical fruit and earthy hints. Medium+ intensity malt/hop flavors balance each other well.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied shortly lived finish.

Overall: A fine brew worth grabbing every fall. (404 characters)

Photo of dmgeng
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

I've enjoyed all Lagunitas but I saw this one for only $4 for a bomber and had to have it.

A - Nice ruby red color. Clear beer with white head and strong lacing.

S - Balanced hop aroma with caramel and malt. Overall soft without any harshness or alcohol.

T - Delicious mash-up of hops and malts. It has tons of flavor that coats the palate and is full of aromatics from the caramel, the malt, and the hops. The ale yeast provides a slight fruitiness and helps the hops give this full flavored beer a more well rounded profile.

M - Medium mouth-feel. The carbonation was moderate. It finishes pretty crisp with the bitterness and carbonation queuing you up for another sip.

Overall, a delicious beer that is a nice mixture of a lot of flavors that I love separately in one balanced beer. Awesome hoppy aroma, delicious flavor, great feel, appearance, and really get this beer going for gold. Though it isn't the very best beer I've ever had; I would strongly recommend trying this if you can.

Glass- Nonic Imperial Pint (1,026 characters)

Photo of Chiefy770
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

1 Pint, 6 Fluid Ounces
Bottled on July 5th, 2014
Reviewed on October 4th, 2015
Served in a Lagunitas pint glass (mason jar)

Eyes
Clear amber body. Good head, a bit off white. Left a good amount of sticky lacing.

Nose
Great amount of sweet citric hops. Subtle notes of sweet grains.

Mouth
Sweet malts and citric hops up front. The hops really gained intensity towards the finish… grapefruit and pine. The alcohol is hidden fairly well, though it breaks through in the finish. Crisp and clean. Surprisingly smooth. Warm finish. Low-moderate carbonation. Medium-full body.

Overall
Great hopped-up brew. I have a hard time considering this one a Red Ale… definitely held more characteristics of a Strong Ale… nonetheless, it is a good brew.

85 (B) (757 characters)

Photo of DKRowden
4.75/5  rDev +15.6%

Poured into a large snifter from a 22oz bomber. It has a light mahogany color with a small cream colored head. It has a sweet malty aroma with a light fruity note and a hoppy hint. It tastes great. Its very balanced with a sweet malty medium body and a light hoppy bite. It has creamy Mouthfeel. Overall it's a great red. Will definitely buy again. (348 characters)

Photo of Omnium
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber > Lagunitas Mason Pint

A - Semi-clear golden amber with a finger of frothy tan head, medium lacing.
S - Really nice aroma of a sweet lightly toasted caramel and nutty maltiness, some notes of pineapple, pear, papaya, light earthy hop notes.
T - Very nice flavor, sweet malt is there, but is balanced and is complimented by the tropical fruit notes and some underlying pine and earthiness from the hops.
M - Creamy but not thick, no trace of alcohol
O - Shouldnt be surprised that this is so good. Excellent hoppy red ale that is balanced. (546 characters)

Photo of kkleu357
4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured ruby in color and could smell a nice sweetness while pouring. Sweet hoppy aroma. Smells really nice. Bitter taste with a good amount of sweet. Really tasty. (163 characters)

Photo of HeartofMiami
3.5/5  rDev -14.8%

On tap at local Brass Tap. Usually like hoppy red ales. Disappointed overall especially compared with other Lagunitas brews. Nothing stood out except for bitterness not well balanced with caramel malt. Not sure if there may have been an issue with their lines. (264 characters)

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.34/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

From the bomber into a snifter.

A- Light cream-colored head, frothy and persistent. Reddish body with brown hues. Abundant lace. 4.25

S- Huge pine notes, lighter citrus, subtle caramel notes, and a bit of floral aroma. It smells delicious, bottom line. 4.5

T- Sweet and caramelly with a citrusy and piney underbelly. There's vanilla throughout to make this quite a a tasty treat. 4.25

M- It's imperial in body, but it sure doesn't feel like it has the booze of an imperial. It's smooth, creamy, and has a bright floral quality. There's hardly any bitterness--- the malt wins here--- except for a briefly bitter, dry finish. This drinks well. 4.5

Well hell, they say a lot of Lagunitas beers taste the same and they're right, they all taste good! I can see how this could be linked to any number of Lagunitas beers as far as taste, but so what, it's too damn good to gripe about. (883 characters)

Photo of majorbase2
4.31/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a deep, dark copperish-amber color with a huge light brown foam head, that dissipates after a bit. A ton of lacing. Aroma is remarkable; sweet caramel malts followed by some citrus hops, grapefruit, orange and a bit of sugar (can't tell if its my nose playing tricks, but the combined aromas give it a candy type smell). The taste features more malts, with sweet caramel leading the way, with some brown sugar added. Biscuit/bread malts are very present as well. Citrus shines through as it warms. Remarkably well balanced. A bit of pine sticks of the tongue as it goes down. This one is dangerously easy to drink-- I feel like I could have two more in the next hour. The alcohol is masked expertly, with very little sign of its moderate level. Not much carbonation. Overall, another solid entry from Lagunitas. Easy to drink, and a great deal for the price. Strongly recommend. (884 characters)

Photo of Franziskaner
3.9/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Amber reddish hue with excellent clarity. Brussels lacing. A half inch of khaki colored head is on top. Aroma of caramel,piney hops,and saltine crackers. The flavor is a well balanced portfolio of caramel malt and piney hops,but finishes fairly impartial and with no lingering note. The mouth is fairly dry. (313 characters)

Photo of buzzarooski
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%

Beautiful Color....Pleasing Hoppy Aroma....Smooth Drinkability followed by a Slight Bitter After Taste...Mild Carbonation...All with an Above Average "Kick" (7.8% ABV).... Everything adds up to a really good Red Ale that is a Pleasure to drink. Yes Sir May I Have Another! (272 characters)

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.27/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a balloon glass.

Look: Very deep mahogany colored body. A foamy light cream colored head stays thick for awhile, and lacing is thick and sudsy on the glass.

Aroma: Faintly fruity sweet with some cedar and pine aromas from hops.

Taste: So well balanced and blended with pear sweetness, woody, earthy cedar, and a touch of grapefruit rind bitterness in the hoppy finish.

Mouthfeel: Dry, yet creamy and smooth.

Overall: Really delicious to sip on. Very impressed with the sweetness that comes through. (515 characters)

Photo of Apellonious
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A - Poured a cloudy mohoagany head with brown highlights. One finger head that dissapates into a creamy lace.

S - Delicious. Orange/citrus. Biscuits.

T - Hops in the nose and bready malts. A Little Sumpin Sumpin with some dark fruit, and bready grains, and classic amber.

M- Carbonation is slightly on the low side with a creamy mouthfeel.

O- As far as ambers go, this is one of the best. Nice twist mixing the citrus with the classic amber flavor. (499 characters)

Photo of KTCamm
4.01/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

9/7...bomber pours. Heavy dark crimson red. Foam settles and then stays. Burnt bready malt. Pine wintergreen trees too. Taste opens caramel, malt, little sweet. Takes a right turn to push a heavy hop bitter. Hearty but drinkable. Full of flavor. (245 characters)

Photo of Nugganooch
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%

22oz bomber split in two standard pint glasses
Notes taken on 08/16/2014

A: Pours a beautiful auburn color body. A true amber that perfectly blends together red and brown tint. Nice clarity to it as well with a thick spongy mass of dark tan head. Stubborn as all get out this one hangs forever leaving the glass a sticky mess full of lacey webs.

S: Super fresh hop aromas carry a resinous punch of pine oils paired with some dank herbal elements, melon fruit, and a bit of tropical spice. I get a fistful of biscuit malt secondary to the hops with some raisin like fruity esters and light alcohol about. This smells ridiculously fresh and chalked full of pungent hops which I am loving!

T: Danky fresh nuggs! This brew boasts a big hop presence with flavors of sappy pine, tropical flowers, grapefruit, and spicy melon all the while cutting through the malt sweetness with an upper level of perceived bitterness. Light toffee and malt biscuit pairs with notes of dried fruit and cocoa in the background. Finish is dry and resinous with the alcohol kept in a good manageable condition. Feeling it with this one. Doing the happy dance.

M: Moderate filling body with ample carbonation to provide a nice bouncy feel on the palate. Upper amounts of hoppy bitters that linger long after the finish. Dry and crisp in the end.

D: This is a solid American Amber and well worth checking out for the price. Great hop flavor with a nice resinous bitter bite and plenty of malt to balance. Lagunitas kills it when I need my hop fix on a budget. This Imperial Red is far better than others priced at twice as much sitting on the shelves. Will be another go to for me no doubt. (1,691 characters)

Lagunitas Imperial Red Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 773 ratings.