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Brown Shugga' - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Brown Shugga'Brown Shugga'

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

4,849 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,849
Reviews: 1,485
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 208
Gots: 778 | FT: 18
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,849 | Reviews: 1,485 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rfgetz
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear coppery chestnut color, creamy off-white head, good retention and lacing. Smell is sweet carmel, brown sugar, lightly roasted nuts with a touch of dark fruit and yeast on the nose. Bold sweet carmel and brown sugar flavors with a more pronounced and bitter hop presence then the smell let on. Touches of fruit and yeast on the finish. Full bodied, heavy on the tounge, like melted carmel itself, fairly pronounced sweet and bitter aftertastes. Good beer, stops short of being cloying, but would be hard to have more than one.

Photo of Danny1217
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A nice red brown color with some thick tan foam at the top. Lots of nice lacing.
Strong hop aroma balanced by the sweet scents of caramel and yes, brown sugar.
Very thick and creamy, almost overpowering. Very bitter, but sweet at the same time. Caramel sweetness and citric bitterness. Some slight alcohol warmth. Dry finish. Powerful brew.

Brown Shugga' is an over the top beer with lots of hop bitterness as well as malty sweetness and about 10% alcohol. It manages to be balanced with all its extremities and the result is delicious.

Photo of IrishColonial
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of msinger1002
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of beergod1
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy brown-amber pour with a thin and foamy off-white head. Thin spotty lacing as well. The aroma is hoppy with sweet dark fruit and molasses coming through more as it warms. The labeling on this one really threw me off as I was expecting more of a sweet brown ale. Once my taste buds told me it was actually a Barley Wine I was able to accept the flavor. Very hoppy on the front end, along with some alcohol burn. The flavor mellows a bit as sweet malt start to seep in. The finish is round and fruity with an alcohol burn leftover. Above average, and kind of unique.

Photo of fosterific
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This was a great pour...perhaps it is part the beer too! It has a rosy color with a full head, citrus hop smell is the first thing you catch a whiff of. I was expecting this to smell like booze, but that is well balanced or well hidden. The beer is sticky and think in the mouth but the bitter citrus of the hops makes it a seem fresh.
I was very impressed, even delighted at how drinkable this strong ale was, I would probably drink more than I should if the ABV was not on the side of the bottle.

I also heard that this was a failed barley wine...not positive, but plausible.

Photo of ryan1788a5
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Darker coppery color with burnt sienna hues. Cream colored head holds fast at a quarter inch. A thin broken ring and spotty dots comprise the lacing.

S: Melon and mandarin orange, hints of dank bud, light pine, and sugary ruby red grapefruit. Sweet and substantial malt base of brown bread, caramel, crust, brown cocoa, and brown sugar.

T: Mandarin orange and melon start things off. Some more aggressive hop flavors of pine, resin, and dank weed follow quickly. Heavily toasted crust and brown bread. Dark caramel. Nutty cocoa and brown sugar. Spike of alcohol and hints of tropical ester. Bready and crusty finish with a lingering boozy taste.

M: Medium-thick body. Round, creamy, and chewy. Low scrubbing carbonation. Numbing alcohol.

O: Not bad stuff. Some more aggressive flavors at work in this beer than are found in any other Lagunitas offering. At 9.9% abv this beer means business, and it tastes like it means business too. It's the brawler of the Lagunitas portfolio. Still fun and fairly easy to drink despite its size.

Photo of TheMistler
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fairly clear brown, dark amber in color. Displays some effervescence. Off-white, millet-y, pufft head that displays good retention and leaves a very nice, nearly-solid wall of lace.

The nose was hoppier than expected, with some pine and earthy notes intermingling with some sweet, slightly bready maple and brown sugar.

Malty taste up front, nothing overwhelming, then hops. Caramel, sweet bread, undercurrent of grapefruit and a hint of pine. The taste tends more towards malt than the nose (to me) indicated, but very well balanced.

Slight alcohol warming, and an even slighter alcohol spice and antiseptic quality. I simply cannot believe this beer is 9.9% ABV. Exceptionally well hidden.

A medium to slightly thick brew with some resiny slipperiness. Creamy, but the alcohol and solid carbonation give it a crisp bite. Dangerously drinkable, although it can - probably thankfully, given the ABV - settle heavily enough to curtail any over-indulgence.

Photo of bwarren82
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%

Photo of mwar
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Slatetank
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this ale courtesy of shertz, poured chilled into my Great lakes christmas glass.

A - Garnet w/ a good deal of clarity. A thick rocky beige head. The lace is quick to collect and has a fine bead.

S - Like a pine cone with a very sap filled odor-lots of resinous hops. The scent has subtle golden delicious notes w/ a hint of tropical fruits, potent nectar.

The texture is smooth w/ an intense sweetness and full but balanced carbonation w/ the hops acidity trailing.the feel is like candy with a hop filled center. The sweetness lingers long after the ale has been swallowed.

T - almost like a sugar cookie w/ a subtle molasses and brisk balanced hoppy pine flavor which is angular jutting out of the crystal malt and a relatively strong alcohol note parallels this taste. The brown sugar gives the taste an intense caramel flavor like candy corn with a hop bitterness, it is both flavorful and balanced for a strong ale which not an ordinary trait.

D - A great ale- I enjoy it immensely, it was a pleasant nightcap for me. I could possibly handle a couple or a bomber but on this night one was plenty which is my reasoning for only above average here. This is not a boring beer - Brown Shugga: "how come you taste so good?"

Photo of ndillon45
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

You can read this beer by it's cover. Pours deep brown, caramel color with a lot of 'stuff' going on inside. Disappointingly thin head, not a whole lot of lacing going on. Aroma let's you know what you're in for, a whole lot of sweetness. Once you adjust, this one is really delicious if you have a sweet tooth. Feels good in the mouth, but not a beer I'd buy for a length session.

Photo of kmpitz2
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shared with me by clvand0. Thanks to him for that.

The beer poured a golden amber color with one finger of head that sticks around well after the pour. The nose was sweet caramel, not quite as deep as I want. Fairly one dimensional. The flavor had more hop than the nose would tell. The flavor was too sugary for me. The feel was too thin for a barleywine. I want at least a heafty moderate feel on this style. Overall, not a bad beer, but too sugary and not thick enough for me.

Photo of Jekyll
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Unique beer. Wasn't expecting the amount of hops that came with it. Poured dark copper with a couple inches of head that stayed with me pretty much the entire time. Can't quite pinpoint the smell... Not please to but not repugnant either. Don't taste brown sugar though maybe cause of the amount if hops in it though it does have a sweetness mixed with the hops that makes it quite enjoyable. Alcohol will sneak up on you as it is barely noticeable. Gonna age a few of these and see how they develop.

Photo of quang_dam
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of seanbhudson
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE:
Pours a hazy amber/copper color with a large off-white head that dissipates at an average rate. Some lacing.
SMELL:
Molasses, brown sugar and alcohol.
TASTE:
Sweet malt with a molasses flavor and hint of vanilla. There is a nice earthy bitter finish to balance it.
MOUTHFEEL:
Full bodied with a syrupy texture. Soft carbonation. Slight alcohol burn to finish.
DRINKABILITY:
At first I thought this would be too sweet but it is surprisingly smooth and the bitter finish balances it out.
NOTES: BBCSD-0812

Photo of jdense
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2007 vintage cellared bottle, poured during Twelve Beers of Christmas tasting 12/22/09.

Dark brown body, 3/4 finger tan head, nice lacing. Huge sweetness in the nose which masks the hops. Taste is sweet, with some roasted malts present, a bit too syrupy for me. Not the most drinkable of beers at this ABV and sweetness, though I must note two years of cellaring mellowed out the alcohol quite a bit. A definite late night sipper. Not for the faint of heart.

Photo of jonziefle
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From notes:

Appearance: Poured a dark red amber, with a khaki colored head. Minimal head rentention. Very clear.

Smell: Smells of damp sticky hope, very sweet and of grapes or raisins. Almost syrupy in fragrance. You can almost smell the alcohol.

Taste: Sweet and dark. Malty and a little hoppy, but not overwhelming. Taste sticks around for a while.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied beer and minimally carbonated. Feels "slick".

Drinkability: A medium bodied beer, with a sweet and heavy feel. It's a little syrupy and the booze may be limiting to drinking a lot. A good one to try though.

Photo of crbnfbr
3.84/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of BeerWhale
3.84/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours thick and caramel colored with a white head, and a strange aroma.

You can tell the increased sugar content by the sweetness on the front end of this creamy beer. The brown sugar adds a thick and smooth quality to the beer as is coats your mouth. It sits well on the tongue and the hops add a cutting, refreshing quality to the beer. After drinking your mouth feels relatively clean, when compared to something like a stout.

Overall a quality offering that has a well rounded taste and mouthfeel. Either as an introduction to craft beers or an evening session beverage, this offering is a very good example of quality craft brewing.

Photo of eatdrinknbmerry
3.84/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2007 12-oz bottle.

Fell in love with this beer when i saw the name of it. Very cool. Of all the x'mas ale labels, this is one of the more appealing ones. Nothing is more ugly than Pizza Port's Santa's Little Helper label. Anyway, to the beer.

Head: About 3/4" thick. Nice, stayed up for quite a long time.

A: caramel color.

S: A nice subtle tone of apricots, which I think smell great in beer. Gets the tongue ready for a deep-tasting ale.

T: A deliberate taste of brown sugar and slight undertone of honey or molasses. Maybe more on the molasses side since it's dark/bitter.

M: Very nice and smooth.

D: This one is much easier to drink than strong-flavored beers like Anderson Valley's Winter Solstice (2007). But I think the heavy molasses taste will make this less appealing to drink through the night.

Good beer overall, would definitely buy another 6er.

Photo of NiceTaps
3.84/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle in a tall pint glass.

A- This beer poured a dark amber color, clean and clear. It had a huge 3f head which was the color of light brown sugar, no less. It stayed fluffy and left a big lump in the center along with some lacing on the glass.

S- Floral, citrus, and pine hop aromas. The malty alcohol shows as it warms, replacing the sweetness.

T- Here come the sugary sweet caramel malts. The malt flavor is prominent, the hops dominated the smell.

M- Thick. Sugary malts keep the alcohol from coming on too strong. Smooth dry finish. Lingering malt flavor. All the carbonation must've been in the head.

O- Drinkable 10% abv strong ale. Truth in advertising, it's a sugar bomb like the name suggests.

Photo of Duhast500
3.84/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown sugar

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a Sierra Nevada Celebration pint glass.

The color is a clear amber/gold with a finger of foamy head and some slight lacing left on the glass.

The smell has a slight Christmas cookie aroma that us a little sugar and a little but dough in the nose. There is a slight ginger aroma here as well.

The taste has a sweet sugar flavor that has a hint of bread and a nice cookie flavor that is slightly mixed with ginger and brown sugar.

The feel of this beer is medium bodied and has a nice drinkable feel to it. There is a nice smoothness that has a great silky feel

Photo of MisterClean
3.84/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On Tap at Vino's Wine & Cheese in Roseville, CA.

A - Deep tan, heavy/foamy white head.

S - Raisin, cinnamon, w/ light, florar hops.

T - Cardamom, allspice, curry. Yes curry, can't describe the other pungent spice, so it's a curry. Very spicy tasting beer, very unique.

M - Very spicy tasting beer, very unique. No alcohol in taste. Are we sure this is a 9.9% ABV?

D - This is a slow-sipper and would balance best with a bland meal or appetizers.

Photo of belgbeerdrinker
3.84/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Brown Shugga' from Lagunitas Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 4,849 ratings.