1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Brown Shugga' - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Brown Shugga'Brown Shugga'

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,707 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,707
Reviews: 1,298
rAvg: 4.02
pDev: 11.69%
Wants: 147
Gots: 246 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.99% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 12-13-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Brown Shugga' Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,707 | Reviews: 1,298 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of theshawn
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

theshawn, Feb 22, 2013
Photo of atorres600
4.9/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

this is my new fav beer from lagunitas. i really like what they did here with this brew. I adore the blends of barley and brown sugar used in this beer. I think it has a GREAT taste and ratio. great job highly recommended !! i have a 6er in the fridge at all times now ... till it runs out !

atorres600, Dec 24, 2010
Photo of beerguru14
3.55/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pour, Color, & Aroma:
I loved the story on this beer. How it was a last ditch effort to save their Barley Wine from having to be dumped (take note Dogfish Head) so they added heaps of brown sugar creating this American Strong Ale. My one reservation when trying this beer was the high ABV. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a beer with high alcohol, but not very often. I still find that the alcohol tends to mask a lot of the flavors in a beer that I enjoy; however, it is the holidays, so why not give this one a try.

Pouring the beer I got exactly what I was expecting, a beer that was a nice caramel/deep amber color. The beer was crystal clear and very bubbly. The head was a soft off white color and laced the glass perfectly.

The first aroma I got was a surprising grape, immediately followed by solid grapefruit and orange fruit aromas. The complex aromas really developed themselves the more I whiffed away catching caramel, whip cream, and molasses.

Phenomenal! Does this beer really pack a 9.9% ABV? I really didn't taste much of the alcohol at all. My initial thoughts on the flavor is that it is intensely hoppy, a nice citrus earthy hoppy flavor. A smooth creaminess flowed through topped off with a sweet sugar taste that lingered briefly, but was quickly washed away by the alcohol (finally!). There is also a nice tannin flavor similar to a dark cherry with a bit of marshmallow at the very end.

Finish & Body:
The finish was very sweet. I felt that I had just finished eating a warm sugar cookie. I really had mixed feelings with the body of this beer. The body was a little heavy and sweet, almost syrupy. Again, the alcohol in the beer did not warm me up as much as expected; however, it was still slightly there.

Final Thoughts:
For a beer with such a high ABV the drinkability of the beer is outrageous! I can easily see myself getting into a little bit of trouble with this brew. I am not a fan of really high ABV beers, but this one would do the trick for me. Lastly, if you are not a big fan of really hoppy beers, this may be one to try due to the intense sweetness. Prost!

beerguru14, Jul 26, 2011
Photo of martinjohnson23
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

martinjohnson23, Nov 20, 2013
Photo of BNEBobl
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

BNEBobl, Jan 02, 2013
Photo of Organic_Sam
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Organic_Sam, Sep 03, 2013
Photo of srpres
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

srpres, Sep 11, 2013
Photo of johnchen1229
3.96/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a brown, clear liquid. A thin head gives way to occasional lacing along the sides. Good lace retention.

Smell: I accidentally snorted a small amount of beer trying to write this section. Wheaty, malty, sweet tones dominate the somewhat subdued smell. Very little hoppiness or bitterness.

T: Chemicals and sweet malt, boozy finish. A sweet beer with a hoppy, boozy aftertaste.

M: Creamy, slightly fizzy but not much carbonation. Sweetness and alcoholic flavors wrap around the tongue and cover the mouth, leaving a bitter aftertaste.

O: Not a huge fan of the way the hops showed up at the end, giving a bitter aftertaste. Very pleasant beer that is very nice to drink. Not much weaknesses, but could be better.

johnchen1229, Jan 22, 2014
Photo of flynnc
4.35/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

How come you taste so good. I cannot place why I have not reviewed this beer yet. This must be my fifth sixer in the past year. And by far one of my favorites. I will not lie, the awesomeness by volume is what drew me to this beer the first time. It is by far the taste that kept me coming back. I almost gave a poor review this time, due to the fact that I drank it straight from the fridge, however this beer is certainly served best cool not cold. The sweetness, a factor I typically do not agree with is the factor that makes this beer so intriguing to me. I thoroughly enjoy the heavy mouthfeel, the heavy alcohol and the dirty finish this beer gives me. That damn dog has done it again and I want it to do it again and again. I rate this one the top of my list right next to 1554, but remember to pack a toothbrush if you aren't drinking it at home. The alcohol is too high for you to drive home and the stoutness of the ale will make your teeth feeling like they are wearing sweaters the next morning. Like the bottle says: Life is uncertain: Don't sip!

flynnc, Mar 25, 2010
Photo of KelOne333
4.75/5  rDev +18.2%

KelOne333, Nov 09, 2012
Photo of drdan21
4.34/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance Hard to tell, it was in a bottle.

Smell Very pleasant, sugar smell definitely present with the background of maple syrup

Taste brown sugar definitely present, a bit of spice and slight burnt flavor

Mouthfeel Very comforting and smooth, creamy like

Overall this is an excellent ale. I enjoy beer in both quantity and quality and this is one for quality. Due to the alcoholic content, one or two is enough

drdan21, Apr 06, 2014
Photo of dglgmut
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

dglgmut, Dec 06, 2012
Photo of TheSpecialK
4/5  rDev -0.5%

TheSpecialK, Nov 11, 2012
Photo of TimD
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

TimD, Nov 17, 2012
Photo of grodan
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%

grodan, Nov 13, 2013
Photo of Melllamanda
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

Melllamanda, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of BrewDrinkRepeat
3.68/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a brilliant red copper. Tall off-white head that lingers a long time.

S: Strong malt aroma, with a definite nose of brown sugar as expected. No discernable hop aroma (which would be out of place for this beer anyway).

T: Tastes big and sweet, slightly cloying. No forward hop bitterness, but a definite tingle at the back of my throat so I know they're there. The impression of brown sugar lingers after the swallow.

M: This is a rich beer -- not thick like as tout, but definitely a big mouthfeel. Very similar to other beers where sugar is added to boost the fermentables. Pleasant alcohol warmth that get somewhat less pleasant as the beer warms up.

D: Considering the sweetness this is a surprisingly drinkable beer. That been said, I probably would not buy another one -- not so much because of any real faults in this beer, but this style doesn't appeal to me that much. I found myself not wanting to finish it after I poured the second half of the 22oz. bomber. (I might like it more in a 12oz. bottle.)

BrewDrinkRepeat, Mar 06, 2007
Photo of CupOfFoam
4/5  rDev -0.5%

CupOfFoam, Nov 26, 2012
Photo of Vitar
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

Vitar, Jan 25, 2013
Photo of misterhilleke
3.48/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A = pours a deep, coppery, reddish brown that forms a 2.5 finger head which lasted a good while, not much lacing at all though, appearance of low carbonation to be expected for the style

S = very strong dark fruit, spiced, definitely sweet, some toasty malts as well

T = big toasty malt and caramel, brown sugar is definitely present but balanced by hop bitterness

M = fairly thick and chewy but again to be expected, low carbonation, very smooth

D = i gave this one a lower rating here just because i didn't particularly love it. it's a good example of the style but i felt there were too many strong sensations competing to really enjoy it, definitely worth trying at the very least

misterhilleke, Nov 16, 2010
Photo of HopToIt420
4.7/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brown Shugga' is a real winner. Aside from packing a punch at nearly 10% abv the flavor of this beer makes it a star. Smooth nutty malt base and a piney hop finish shine with a nose of hazelnuts and eucalyptus. Great beer with venison or any roasted gamy meats.

HopToIt420, Dec 15, 2012
Photo of JayDub667
5/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

As I said in my profile, I'm a simple beer lover. Don't care about the lace, head, color... I will say it looks beautiful in a frosty mug. Nice amber with not too much of a head. The taste is amazing. Hoppy, spicy, and sweet all at the same time. Goes down smooth and leaves your taste buds begging for more. You can taste the alcohol but, even at 9.9%, it's nowhere near as prominent as a lot of beers near this potency. Great tasting beer that packs one hell of a punch. I drank 3 last night and felt like I downed 7 or 8 MGD's. I would HIGHLY recommend this incredible, delicious beer.

JayDub667, Nov 19, 2012
Photo of
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

You rated this beer. Add a review.

, Nov 22, 2012
Photo of terribleone
4.75/5  rDev +18.2%

terribleone, Nov 23, 2012
Photo of Wendigo
4.75/5  rDev +18.2%

Wendigo, Jan 30, 2013
Brown Shugga' from Lagunitas Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 3,707 ratings.