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Brown Shugga' - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Brown Shugga'Brown Shugga'

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,446 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,446
Hads: 5,029
Avg: 3.99
pDev: 21.05%
Wants: 243
Gots: 884 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.99% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 12-13-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Brown Shugga' Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,446 | Hads: 5,029
Photo of RunDWP
3.83/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a golden brown into a tulip with a light orange, fluffy head. Plenty of sheeting on the glass as I sipped. Sweet, molasses aroma. Flavor is dominated by brown sugar (surprise!) and malt, with a tea-like bitternsess at the finish. Thick and rich mouthfeel. It's rather sweet, not that complex, or balanced, but somehow it's a bit addictive, and I couldn't smell or taste the alcohol. Enjoyable, change of pace brew.

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Photo of corby112
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving type: on-tap at Mad 4 Mex in Philadelphia, PA.

Pours a dark copper/ brown color with a thin off white head. Aroma is brown sugar, cinamon, hazelnut and hops. Flavor is similar to aroma with a nice balance of brown sugar, cinamon and a strong hop presence. Finishes sweet and bitter.

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Photo of Buebie
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz brown twist off bottle. Poured into an oversized snifter. Transparent reddish copper with a nice off white 2 finger head. Leaving assorted bubbles of retention. Drapes of thin lace.

Grapefruity hops at the nose with a wonderful sweet malty aroma. Touch of vanilla, orange peel, and piney hops.

Thick and creamy with a mild dose of carbonation. Sweet up front with modest amounts of grapefruity hops. Citric orange peelish flavors, burnt caramel and toffee pizza crust like doughy flavors.
Fish is sweet and smooth with a great big hop linger. Some warming at the swallow, but not enough to say, hey this is a 10% abv beer.


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Photo of gearbike
3.4/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hazy brown pour from tap. Duh. I get the name after drinking this one. Strong sugar taste as in tasting the brown sugar when baking. Has a smooth malty background. A medium to thick body and the high alcohol make this a nice warmer. Even though the flavors are complex the overall result seems a bit flat. So not really exterordanry and at the same time it would not work as a session beer do to the high sugar and alcohol.

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Photo of bbothen
3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into standard pint glass. Episode of 1981 Memphis Championship Wrestling playing in background. ~!

Pours a hazy caramel like color with a thick & fluffy 2 finger deep off white head.

Smells of sweet burnt sugar, huge sugar, fruity, boozy, maltiness.

Sweet malt overload, toasted malts & sweet caramel malt, slightly fruity, vanilla, sweet sugar.

Thick, chewy, moderate carbonation, slick, smooth, warming.

The sweetness & ABV makes this a 2 bottle max for me. Mostly from the sweetness.

An interesting brew right here. I remember enjoying it more before I reviewed it. Something to learn there? Will gladly have again.

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Photo of optiontwo
3.51/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 Oz. poured into generic pint glass

Appearance: Ruby Red/Brown color, decent carbonation and lacing, one inch head.

Smell: Smells like a nut brown to me but I know it's not. Sweet caramel and nuts in the aroma.

Taste: That's more like it. The description of this beer is right on. A good American strong ale with the sweetness of cane sugar. Sweet brown sugar flavor upfront with slight alcohol heat towards the end and finally a nice crisp hop bite. I feel as if the sweetness would be a bit cloying if it weren't for the amount of hops used. Ultimately the taste is quite nice.

Mouthfeel: Thicker than most strong ales I've tried but that's not a bad thing. Carbonation feels right.

Drinkability: Taste is sweet and crisp, mouthfeel is thick so these kind of contradict each other when it comes to drinkability, but with it being 9.5% I'd have to say that it's not very high.

Overall: Another great brew from Lagunitas that I'll definitely be picking up again.

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Photo of Morbo
3/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours copper with about an inch of fluffy almost-white head. The head lingers for a while and leaves plenty of lacing behind.

I am shocked and delighted by the hop presence in the nose. Lots of sweet pineapple, and an instant mental association is good pot. ...And I know this sounds crazy, but I get some ketchup from it as well.

Well, it is about as sweet as I had expected, considering the name. Thankfully, the hop bitterness almost balances things out. Not too complex, maple syrup and molasses pitted against citric/piney hops.

It is fairly heavy and lacking in carbonation, so it comes off as pretty syrupy. It's not quite on the level of Super Troopers maple syrup chugging, but I am definitely not running to the fridge to grab another bottle.

Booze isn't present in the flavor, but you definitely get a nice warming sensation from this one. An interesting beer, even if it isn't very complex, but it is too sweet and syrupy to be anywhere near sessionable.

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Photo of largadeer
2.79/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Clear amber-red in my tulip, nicely colored with an off-white head that dissipates quickly.

Smell: Rich, sweet and fruity. I suppose there's a trace of brown sugar, but this is more fruity and boozy than anything. Faint sourness as well, along with a bit of leafy hops.

Taste & mouthfeel: As the aroma implies, this borders on being cloyingly sweet. Heavy on the palate but somewhat muddled, the faint fruity sourness doesn't gel right with the spicy sweetness and leafy hop bite. Somewhat thin in body despite the sweetness, with a surprisingly bitter finish. Can't say that I'm a fan of this one.

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Photo of mjryan
3.52/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Deep amber coloured, with a simple white head. Good retention and some lace. Aroma is very sweet and fruity. Flavour is very sweet, with a large hop presence. Bitterness tries to balance the sweetness, but loses in the end. Has a very full body with a moderate carbonation level. This is an intensely sweet beer, which is no supprise considering its called brown sugga and says something about sweet release on the label. The large hop presence was unexpected and really this beers saving grace for me. The hops, although muted by the huge amount of residual sugar in this beer, added another layer, that kept things from getting boring or nausiating. One is good in a night. Would make a great dessert beer.

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Photo of BMoney575
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on 11-23-08

Pours a slightly hazy deep amber, not much head, and thin rings of lacing.

Smell is sweet and sugary, in a good way. A nice smoked malt aroma is hidden in the background.

Taste is sweet and roasty, with a very enjoyable hop flavor and bitterness at the end. Not overly complex, but very tasty.

Mouthfeel is good, right for the malty sweetness.

Drinkability is surprisingly good, considering the abv.

Overall, a good beer, and a smart choice for a good time.

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Photo of DaggerEyes
3.7/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Amber orange hued body. Thin light tan head.

Interesting nose...brown sugar, fruit, slight almond scent. Ameretto. Maybe a bit of orange peel. Pine sAp and pine needles. A brighter boldier hop profile than I had anticipated

Medium bodies beer with a moderate ammount of carbonation. Sweet sugary hoppy a little bit of spice.

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Photo of KeefD
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice amber color with no sediment, a two finger off white head that i had to produce with a hard pour, and some average lacing. Aroma is hoppy, notes of pine and citrus. The nose isn't all too dissimilar from the Imperial Red, maybe slightly more sweetness. Yes, this thing is sweet. Very sweet, but not drain-pouring, outrageously so. There's a nice balance between the dark sugary sweetness and bitter, citric hops. Sugar coated orange slices, hints of caramel and maple syrup. Alcohol is completely well hidden in the flavor, but it can be felt in the throat on the way down. Thick and creamy to say the least, the epitome of full-bodied. Yeah, the high ABV can be felt in the brain as the glass begins to empty. A nice brew, strong, sweet, bitter, balanced in a big way. I'm not sure how many more brews I can have tonight after this one.

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Photo of cadenwhitaker
3.6/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A sweet Two Hearted? That's what I first thought of while drinking. At first the citrus really threw me off, I was expecting something more Nutty. Halfway through the glass I got more of the sugga' (if that's what they call it) and by the finish I could feel the alcohol and less of the citrus that boned me in the beginning.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.63/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Listening to Pearl Jam..
Poured a copper color with a nice fluffly white head. Nose has a nice sweet malt with a bit of hops and alcohol. Taste is brown sugar dominance with a bit of molasses. Alcohol is very noticeable after finishing only one. There is a definite presentation of malt and has a sweet finish.

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Photo of easement
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A - Cloudy orange. Little head and very little retention.

S - molasses brown sugar. smells sweet. maybe some apples in there, too.

T - Malty and really sweet. As you drink it, it gets more sweet.

M - Light carbonation. Very syurpy. Very Thick.

D - I enjoyed it a lot at first, but then the sweetness got to be too much. It's good for one at a time. I can't imagine this being a session beer.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of GeoffM
3.63/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours very smoothly with a solid head that retains nicely. Good lacing. A lovely dark amber color.

Smell - Decently malty but also lightly sweet. Must be the brown sugar.

Taste - Gorgeous mouthfeel, nearly sticks to the tongue, but pleasantly so. Bitter with a sweet aftertaste. Hops are more apparent when first tasting, malts noticeable in the finish, which is pretty nice considering the bitterness. Alcohol is hidden pretty nicely.

Overall - Simply solid. A nice little experiment, nothing I'd go crazy over but worth giving a shot.

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Photo of rye726
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was pleasantly supprised by this beer. First off it is a great deal at under $10 a six pack. It pours a reddish copper with a silky tan head. The nose has fruity hops and rich malts. The taste has lots of caramel malts and bitter hops. The body fits the style well. A great beer from Lagunitas that strays away from their usual recipes.

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Photo of Douglas88
3.53/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from trade with Ty. Pours a light brown with little to no head. The taste is mostly a sweet smooth malt, some hops, citrus, cinnamon and apples, and some brown sugar. It's a great mix that really blends together nice. No real notice of the alcohol. An easygoing drink with a lot to like.

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Photo of Tolnik
4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this reddish copper coloration beer into a pint glass. The foam that it gave originally was good and reduced to a good head. Sugary! wow sweet malt with a hoppy aftertaste. It does leave a good warm feeling in your mouth. Great winter beer. The beer has a great carbonation and keeps it up throughout the drink.

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Photo of BrewSomerville
3.28/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Aroma: Caramel, Honey, floral, molases, brown sugar.

Looks: Orange/copper colour. Nice sized, creamy coloured head. Left some rings of lace behind.

Taste: Marmalade, carmalized sugar, burnt sugar, hot alcoholic solventy.

Mouthfeel: Big body, almost chewy. Lightly carbonated.

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Photo of Offa
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a tasty beer that is good, but a little rough, when fresh, but becomes really good when aged.

Hazy red-brown, it has a fiarly big light tan head that shrinks steadily to a thin, lasting top and leaves some decent lace.

The aroma is pungent, fruity, darkly toasty with some earthiness, wine, caramel, prunes.

The taste is a bit sweet but also with an earthy-dark toasted bite and bitterness. It has rich, aromatic, caramelly-stewed prune quality. It is fairly drinkable for the strength, the alcohol mostly adding full warmth and a bit of a spicey bite. It has a thick, oily feel.

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Photo of bushbeer75
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. brown bottle poured into a snifter

Lagunitas Brown Shugga' poured a clear red/amber color with a bubbly tan 1-finger head that dissipated to sticky lace as I consumed it. The nose is of floral hops with a bit of sweet toasted malt. Taste is of sweet caramel malt with toffee, light on the brown sugar and a little more hops than I expected. Body and mouth feel is medium with moderate carbonation. Brown Shugga' taste like a sweeter light bodied Barley Wine.

With a name like Brown Shugga' I thought I would detect more brown sugar sweetness than I did. This brew should be sipped, however, it is drinkable for its 9.9% ABV. My first brew from Lagunitas Brewing and I am impressed - have 5 more that I am looking forward to finish!

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Photo of Tolann
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Hella big thanks to Nic for granting me this bottle.

A - Cloudy golden orange. white head. Kind of makes me think of a dark apple cider color

S - sweet molasses, and some fruit. A little bit of grassy hops on the end. Definitely brown sugar in there. Kinda maybe like a barley wine.

T - Sweet and malty. it makes me think of something gooey and yummy.

M - Some carbonation. Kind of a sugary slickness to it. Tiny bit of alcohol. Some dryness at the back of my throat.

D - The name had me thinking Quaker Oatmeal sweetness but this is different and much more appropriate for my beer. Maybe some too sweet to have a few in just 1 sitting. Very enjoyable tho!

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Photo of TonyT
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into pint glass...

Poured brownish gold, one finger head.

I have to agree with other reviews, that this has a prevalent barley wine taste and feel...

Had a barley wine smell with hops coming through.

Hops hit in the front, a barley wine taste comes through in the middle and the alcohol hits in the back. Sweet taste rides throughout. The malt taste is just a bit more than the hops. But it does not allow you to forget the hops...as you start to feel that Hop dryness.

The malts mask the ABV...classic left hook, which makes this a deceivably drinkable beer..."...Don't get cocky Kid"

I recommend anyone to take this for a spin.

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Photo of atsprings
4.21/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Damn the Raleigh Flying Saucer has been getting some great stuff in lately! 2006 vintage on draft! Served a crisp dark orange with a thin diminishing head that leaves great lacing on the glass. Aroma is slight caramel and brown sugar, but a bit on the weak side. The taste is loads of brown sugar and caramel, loads of mops with the hops pushed way in the background. The beer is medium bodied and the age seems to have toned down the alcohol presence a bit. This one is certainly an enjoyable sipper.

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Brown Shugga' from Lagunitas Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 1,446 ratings.