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Brown Shugga' - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Brown Shugga'Brown Shugga'

Educational use only; do not reuse.

4,911 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,911
Reviews: 1,495
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.17%
Wants: 216
Gots: 807 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,911 | Reviews: 1,495
Photo of jroberts8811
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of meathookjones
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Interesting idea with messing up a batch of barley wine and brewing it with a crap load of brown sugar. Deep reddish body with a decent sized white foamy head. Think sticky rings of lace around the glass as the head held fast. Sweet toasty malt with strong sugary notes, from all the brown sugar I am guessing. Some alcohol it noticeable and it also smells of a slight cinnamon. A touch of earthy hops round it out. An odd but pleasant smelling brew. The flavor is similar to the nose with a big sweet component from the sugars and the malts. Light fruitiness is there and a bit of alcohol and some bitter bops. Quite an interesting mix and the brown sugar is obvious. Ends on a slight alcohol bite with a touch of fruit sweetness. About a full bodies brew with a sticky feel. Pretty good stuff but I don’t think I could have another one afterwards, it would become cloying. I would have it again in the future though, good stuff.

Photo of StephRai
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of Jordy777
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of OriolesFan1008
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of ridgeline23
4.46/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of scotorum
3.87/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a Samuel Adams nonick.

a: Clear deep amber with a huge beige head which receded slowly to heavy surface foam and very dense lacing.

s: Pine. Later, some vinegar. Uh oh.

t: Funky spoiled fruit under sharp hops. Fortunately the flavor does not linger through the dry finish. OK it's almost 10% ABV and does not burn the back of the throat much. But really. that and its sexy good looks are about all it has going for it.

m: Moderate with great body,.

o: Maybe I got a bad batch. Just not going for the funky dirty feet vinegar aroma and flavor. An isovaleric acid in the hops issue? Whatever it is, it's the first bad Lagunitas I have had. Reminiscent of my first Brooklyn Monster barleywine, which was like drinking liquid dirty gym socks (fortunately later bottles of that were better).

Not the expected "sweet release" the bottle label promised by a longshot. Love the appearance, which screamed quality. All downhill from there. If it was any worse it would have been a drain pour. Actually, it may be very soon.

If the others in the sixpack are better, I'll be back to re-review.

UPDATE 11/13/13: Had a second bottle tonight and fortunately it lacked the offending vinegar aroma and taste which caused me to drainpour the last few ounces of the first. However I did still get a dirty socks odor, and yet much more caramel malt and brown sugar in the flavor. Consequently upgrading my rating, which was a: 4.75 s: 3.25 t: 2.75 m: 4.0 and overall 2.75, ave. 3.08, to the above.

UPDATE 11/21/13: Third bottle from the sixpack lacked the vinegar and sock odor. Not sure what to make of that except the added sugar may result in some instability remaining in the bottle? Anyway this was even better but I won't bother raising the rating again unless the rest of the lot proves to be as good or better than this one. Hoppier but almost as malty as slightly cheaper ales I enjoy such as Shipyard Chamberlain and Geary's Pale Ale, but the higher ABV and somewhat meatier body makes the extra couple of bucks per sixpack for Shugga worth it as a nightcap.

UPDATE 12/19/13: Can't believe I waited this long to have another from the sixpack, but unfortunately this one is similar to the first, except the vinegar/dirty feet smell and taste are subdued enough that it is not as close to being a drain pour. Still, far from the promised "Sweet release." Funny how one bottle can be ok and yet another from the very same sixpack can be so much worse.

Photo of Knoxrb12
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Rihup
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of gueuzegossage
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of dsshuck
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of cdkrenz
3.46/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

$3.99 / 1 Pint 6 Ounce Bottle
Dan's Liquor
Plover, Wisconsin

Appearance - Hazy red and orange with a touch of purple through the light. The head is a pale tan and stands about an 1/8 of an inch tall. There is some obvious yeast in this brew.

Smell - A sweet malty scent and the aroma associated normally with a good Belgian brew.

Taste - It has a pungent flavor complimented with a deep sweetness. It does however finish a little too bitter.

Mouthfeel - It is a smooth brew and the flavor if felt all over my tongue.

~ Interesting. I'd recommend it to my friends based soley on it not being an ordinary brew. This is worth a try.

Photo of sommersb
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tasted On: 01-02-2013
Freshness: Not indicated
Packaging: 12 oz. brown bottle, pry-cap
Glassware: Snifter
Purchased: Single from Brawley's Beverage, Charlotte

Pours a clear, dark amber colored beer, capped by a finger or so of off-white head. Retention is good and quite a bit of lacing sticks to my glass.

The aromas are first and foremost of citrus and piney hops, but there is also a big influence of spices, sweet malts and booze to make for a complex and pleasing nose.

The taste is pretty spot-on with the smells, starting off with caramel and bready malt flavors, then with a burst of bold hops akin to pine and grapefruit. Also features a nice amount of alcohol warmth,

Mouthfeel has a body in the medium to full range with an average amount of carbonation. The finish is assertively hoppy but is also balanced by a big malt presence.

I really liked this beer -- I'm a fan of barleywines and this ale seems very much like that style. According to the Lagunitas website, this was a failed attempt at making their Old Gnarleywine. I'm not sure what failed, but this result is a treat...recommended

Photo of leroybrown10
2.9/5  rDev -28%

Photo of Dirtinabottle
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of Beervana
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of ybnorml
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A hazey dark amber beer with orange highlights. Has a big creamy off white head and a touch of lace. There is a piney hop character to the aroma right up front. Then in the background is a sweet malty note. The flavor starts with a big rush of brown sugar sweetness on the tip of your tongue. Followed by a nice piney hop bite along the sides of your tongue and into the back of your throat. But it is that sweet sugar character that stays with you.

Photo of scottwurst
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of Hophead717
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of adam42381
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass. Bottled on October 4, 2010 per Julian dating code printed on bottle.

Appearance: Pours a clear dark amber color with ruby red highlights and a 1 finger foamy off-white head. Good head retention and nice lacing throughout.

Smell: Floral and citrus hops with hints of pineapple and black pepper.

Taste: Spices including brown sugar and black pepper up front followed by mildly sweet citrus and caramel malt in the middle and ending with pine and grapefruit at the finish. Aftertaste is bitter and somewhat peppery. Flavor is very well balanced and the spices are apparent throughout.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Hops are pretty oily.

Drinkability: High drinkability. The alcohol is extremely well hidden which could cause some issues considering it is 9.99% ABV.

Overall: Excellent beer overall. I would highly recommend this one. This is yet another great beer from Lagunitas. I'm starting to think that they can do no wrong.

Photo of johntfox
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of csustar001
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of HamGlade10
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of blabaer
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of ELECTRONICAnonymous
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

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Brown Shugga' from Lagunitas Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 4,911 ratings.