1. BeerAdvocate on your phone?! True story. Try the beta now.

Hairy Eyeball Ale - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Hairy Eyeball AleHairy Eyeball Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,800 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1800
Reviews: 837
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 11.78%

Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.40% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-12-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Hairy Eyeball Ale Alström Bros
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 1,800 | Reviews: 837 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of philbe311


4.24/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - An active billowing and cascading pour yields a slightly late to develop finger and a half worth of f rich dense slightly off white colored froth with just a bit of a rocky top... Really good retention give way to a mostly full veil of lacing and fairly thick collar... The color is an equal mix of ruby red and light brown... Looks to be a bit viscous as the carbonation within struggles to rise thought there are some quicker streaks of carbonation seen deeper within... A bit of lacing clings to the sides of the glass... There's also a bit of an audible fizziness...

S - A very inviting malt forward aroma... Caramel... Figs... Brown sugar... Dark cherries... Toffee... Raisins... Sweet desert breads... There is also a subtle layer of floral hops that linger slightly beneath the surface...

T - A lot of booziness permeates the palate... This compliments the malty goodness exquisitely... All the sweet components of the aroma are plentiful... A bit of smokiness and peat reminiscent of Scotch ales... The minor hop presence adds a nice layer of depth and complexity... Each sips yields a new and subtle nuances...

M - On the fuller side of medium bodied... Uber smooth... Uber sleek... A light carbonated bite... A bit sticky... A bit chewy... A slightly astringent booziness rises on the finish and lingers with a touch of dryness... Very nice...

D - This is a very good beer... A malt bomb that leaves me wanted more... Surprisingly quaffable... I can't say a single bad thing about the beer itself... Also a bargain given the sub $6/bomber price tag... My only minor complaint is that this one comes in bombers... It's a lot a beer for one person... I would certainly buy a lot more if this were available in 12oz bottles...

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2014 01:56:36 | More by philbe311
Photo of StonedTrippin


3.85/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

awfully good beer for the price right here, under 5 bucks a bottle, this strong, impressive from the brewery who always frustrates me with the same yeast profile. its not so evident in this one, more of a belgian or a high gravity ale yeast profile, clean and highly attenuated stuff, not the usual from these guys, finally. not as dark as expected on color, looks like an english nut brown, smallish head too is short lived. the nose is caramel heavy, with some cherry and banana yeast notes, as well as some medium roast cocoa and a little residual sugar. the flavor is beautifully rich, a nice juxtaposition to its appearance, with heavy burn or burning sugar flavors and a vanilla candy finish. great bubbles and i can still taste the grain, which makes this for me. confused on the yeast front, which is better than the typical lagunitas safe realm, but its undecided. shockingly strong, i would have guessed 7% abv before i saw the label. not sure how they can keep putting out beer this good for such a fair price, but the more of these bombers the better. great stuff, really.

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2014 03:47:33 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of Franziskaner


3.73/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Mahogany brown color with a trace of beige head. Brussels lacing. Good clarity. Lush dark malt flavor with a very smooth and bone dry body. This starts off a bit on the sweet side and is quickly put in check by the faint bittering hops. This the most reserved bit of hopping by Lagunitas. Aroma of sweet dark malt is a bit reserved.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2014 00:16:17 | More by Franziskaner
Photo of TreyIsWilson


3.79/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours a dark amber with a thin whie head. Nice amount of sticky lacing.

S - Sweet caramel malts, toffee, and brown sugar.

T - Follows the nose. Sweet caramel malts upfront followed by brown sugar, dark fruits, and bread. Finish has a light hop bitterness with some alcohol warmth.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Sticky dry finish.

O - A nice strong ale. Solid and enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2014 01:57:41 | More by TreyIsWilson
Photo of Jonada

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with 1 finger of a very light tan head. Body is clear with moderate amounts of visible carbonation.

Smell: Bready malt, toffee, brown sugar, dark fruit, floral hops.

Taste: Big sweet maltiness, brown bread, floral hops, raisins, slight nutiness. Huge malt bomb, but balanced out really well with a slight hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Fuller end of medium bodied with a slightly sticky mouthfeel. Carbonation is medium

Overall: Really good beer and a good value as well.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2014 05:37:09 | More by Jonada
Photo of ExtraStout


4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

After my first sip, the first thought I had was "this reminds me of Brown Shugga." Which I suspected, and then confirmed, is made by the same brewery. Not a knock on the brew, by any means.

Pours a dark ruddy amber. Small white head vanishes quickly, leaving a thin whit ecrust behind.

Smells sweet and fruity. Mostly citrus and malt, but definitely some tropical overtones.

Taste is robust and definitely packs an alcohol wallop. There's even a slight burn. Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated and light, despite the heavy alcohol. Lots of sweet malt, some grapefruit hops, and tons of juicy citrus and tropical fruit.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2014 17:15:12 | More by ExtraStout
Photo of tone77


3.31/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a brown 22 oz. bottle. Has a dark brown color with a 1 inch head. Smell is mild, a bit of malts. Taste is alcohol, malts, some sweetness, boozy, a touch if breadiness. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall isn't bad, but a bit disappointing.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2014 01:05:20 | More by tone77
Photo of stuppy


3.94/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Copper to dark amber in color, pours with medium low tan head, fades quickly with just some around edges of glass, very clear

Aroma: Malty sweet aroma, toffee, caramel, some bread notes, alcohol

Flavor: Malty sweet in beginning, bread, some light dark fruits, toffee, medium bitterness that doesn't linger, some alcohol warmth

Mouthfeel: medium full body, medium carbonation,

Overall: Malty sweet bread and toffee taste and aroma that balances with an appropriate bitterness. Good version of strong ale and price point was good. A bit boozy, will have again.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2014 00:43:42 | More by stuppy
Photo of Thomahs

New York

3.64/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Really nice strong ale from Lagunitas. The price point for a bomber is lowww, in the $5 range. That said, it is a really smooth, strong, beer. Perfect for a cold night.

Aroma - hmm. Malty, toffee, caramel, grains grains grains.

Taste - Sweet, molasses, brown sugar, bready, sweeet again.

Mouthfeel - well carbonated, sticky, thick, but not overly so.

Again, a high quality beer, nothing to sniff at, and for the price, at the top of it's range. Bravo.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2014 02:01:05 | More by Thomahs
Photo of Emnmarko


4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A- Pours with a khaki two finger head. Dark amber in color. Clear and with ample carbonation. The thick creamy head lingers on and on. Lacing is heavy from the tight cap that remains to the end.

S- Bready malts and bitter hops compete for supremacy. Fresh baked nut bread.

T- Sweet bready malts hit first. Very sweet and strong. Next a caramel flavor joins the party along with a dark fruit/brown sugar. The bitterness from the hops balances this brew effectively throughout. In the middle a nice warming alcohol feel comes on and hangs out. The end is a muted version of everything before. Very nice.

M- Medium to heavy bodied as expected. A little waxy feeling here.

O- This is a fine example of a strong ale. Sweets balanced with bitterness. Very complex ale that's a pleasure to drink. Go get ya one, you won't be disappointed.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2014 00:35:30 | More by Emnmarko
Photo of GOBLIN


4.01/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lagunitas Hairy Eyeball

Is that like a crazy eye or what ?

On tap poured into pint glass

A: Deep mahogany in color but also has a ruby red glow. Beers that glow are always a treat.

S: Cherries, grapes and something else I can't put my finger on. Slightly boozy on the nose. Fruit punch/juice may be that scent I'm detecting.

T: Nice subtle hop presence along with cherries, caramel, figs too maybe. The slight boozy scent doesn't show up to much in the taste other than a nice warming finish. Yep, fruit punch.

M: Full bodied, reminds me of a barleywine . . . Drink slow.

O: Lagunitas always does a stellar job with any style they tackle. I like this alot.

Serving type: on-tap

03-08-2014 05:04:17 | More by GOBLIN
Photo of draheim


3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz into a tulip. Pours a deep mahogany w/ a frothy eggshell head, nice sticky lacing.

Aroma is big toffee and caramel, brown sugar, molasses. Smells sugary and sweet, some floral hops do their thing in the background.

Taste is rich and malty, lots of residual sugars here. Almost a barleywine, also kind of a winter warmer. But there's bitterness here too, and everything seems to work pretty well together. Just a nice sipping beer for a cold rainy night.

Mouthfeel is smooth and slick, coating. Medium body.

Overall a solid if unremarkable strong ale from Lagunitas. Enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2014 04:15:48 | More by draheim
Photo of greentam2


4.56/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A great darker, but not too dark ale, with a very clean taste, and notes of chocolate and cloves in the aftertaste. Fresh, but with some profound depth to the mid-taste, this beer is clearly crafted to be enjoyed by beer connoisseur. Would drink this anytime!

Serving type: nitro-bottle

03-06-2014 04:08:54 | More by greentam2
Photo of BeerKangaroo


3.79/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Its an American Strong Ale, so it goes into a pint glass.

A: semi-dark brown colored body with a thin less than a half fingered white foamy head that ends up leaving a very good drastic clingy lacing to the glass

S: very sweet roasted caramel malts

T: exceptionally sweet, bready, and sticky in the flavoring; super sweet sticky caramel aftertaste with a dry sweet finish

M: it sits about a medium on the body with a decent sessionable aspect to it; the carbonation is decent for the style and for me as its semi smooth and barely anything harsh

O: American Strong Ale by style - hey way to go Lagunitas, I'd have this one again as its good for the style and for me.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2014 04:26:18 | More by BeerKangaroo
Photo of Tuey13


4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful mahogany color with a one finger tan head.
The smell is very sweet caramel and roasted malts.. a bit of spice and citrus.
Tastes very rich and sweet... a little hop notes on the back end a some alcohol burn as well. Not very bitter to me... but just a trace of hops. Very well balanced. Some may say this is too sweet, but i enjoy that now and then. I thought that it took on a more roasted taste as it warmed and more of the hops came through. But strangely the alcohol taste almost disappeared.
This is a great beer to have tonight during this winter storm with the wind howling outside. Hurry spring!! lol


Serving type: bottle

03-03-2014 08:29:26 | More by Tuey13
Photo of Maxwell


3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The beer pours a deep, rich mahogany with hints of rich amber, ruby, and brown. The beers with a head of medium sized, off-white/nearly-yellow bubbles that sit a healthy fingers width above the beer once they settle down, and leave a nice medium width lacing along the sides of the glass. In body, the beer is nearly too dark to see through, but is crystal clear and clean of any sediment or particles. On the nose, the beer smells tamely of toffee and caramel malt. There are touches of biscuits and rustic bread thrown in, but overall the nose is subtle sweet malt, which is surprising given the ABV. On the tongue, the beer tastes sweet, nearly cloying, with a fizzle of hot booze on the edges. Dark fruit sweetness is very prominent from the malts, and subtle acidity does work its way into the corners of the mouth, but bitterness is subtle to none-existent in the mouth. In flavor, the beer begins as rich toffee and bread malt, working its way towards oatmeal bread, then caramel. Sweeter caramel and booze enter towards the finish and carry a middling-length finish of raisin bread and caramel, almost like a bread pudding. The aftertaste is light, spicy booze and sweet malt caramel. A touch of stale bread runs across the palate. In the mouth, the beer feels on the plus side of medium in body, with a middling carbonation that does put a nice tickle on the tongue. Mouthfeel is crisp, slightly syrupy, and a bit prickly. When the beer leaves, the mouth is left sticky with malt sweetness and a little river of saliva in the cheeks. Overall, this is a nice simple strong ale/barleywine/old ale/what is the difference between those styles, really? This beer treads on the maltier side of the tracks, and carries a supreme drinkability, which is dangerous given the ABV. It doesn’t hit me over the head with any intense or decadent flavors, but merely provides good flavor and warmth to the belly. This is a perfect sipper after dinner, as it will not weigh the belly down too much. A nice beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2014 03:54:09 | More by Maxwell
Photo of stakem


3.09/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bomber into a snifter. The brew appears a clear burnt copper color with yellowish head about 2 fingers strong. As the cap fades, it leaves patchy lace on the glass.

The smell includes notes of minerals initially that gives way to a blend of fruity alcohol/hops. More whifs reveal some burnt grain aspect. Overall the nose is a bit strange.

The taste is sweet with a perfume-like alcohol feel overtop herbal hops and minerals like the nose suggested. The flavor is a bit disjointed and not that good.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. Meh its an ok offering, I remember now why I havent bothered writing a formal review when I had it before.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2014 13:54:31 | More by stakem
Photo of Flopjack


3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle into snifter

Appearance - A mixture of rich dark brown and amber when light shines through, 1/2 finger off white head,

Smell - Roasty, malty, dried prunes, sweet.

Taste - At first it's a subtle tartness that is quickly blanketed by flavors of dried prunes and dark grapes. The middle brings forth a subtle sweetness that is blanketed by roasty character. Semi sweet chocolate, subtle coffee and just a touch of bread. Alcohol becomes a bit more noticeable as it warms.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied, medium carbonation, crisp.

Overall - Good beer. Lots of interesting characteristics. Fruity but not citrus, roasty but not overwhelming. Seek one out and see for yourself. Wasn't sure what to expect, but I'm not dissipointed.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2014 03:20:01 | More by Flopjack
Photo of Ohmmygawd


3.44/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle to glass.

A- Dark brown with a hint of red. I saw mahogany on here and agreed. Dark stained mahogany or rosewood.

S- Alcohol kick with a rich plum following.

T- Starts with a deep dark malt flavor and finishes with a little hint of sweetness.

M- High gravity and leaves a little tingle on the tongue.

O- Nice beer, deep and rich but really only one note. The ABV doesn't need to be this high for a beer like this and actually kinda hurts it. I really like how the color sets it apart from other strong ales.

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2014 21:55:47 | More by Ohmmygawd


3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured bomber into a polak style beer glass.
A: Deep, dark but transparent mahogany.
S: Rich malt, dried fruits, slight alcohol, pine.
T: Complex; strong malt backbone, alcohol but not overpowering, dried fruit, pine.
M: Full-bodied; creamy mouthfeel.
O: Fairly complex and rewarding. A different direction than the hop heavy, yet delicious, offerings from Lagunitas. The bready aftertaste and alcohol linger, but are not overpowering. 9.4%ABV. Give this brew a try!

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2014 00:01:46 | More by JOHNKNEEGEEZ
Photo of MadCat

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Nice amber brown color, some tan head, leaves good lacing

Smell: Dark fruits, caramel malts

Taste: Dark fruits, prunes and cherries, caramel malts, some hop bite

Mouthfeel: Medium body, good carbonation

Overall: Very interesting brew, tasty. Very unique

Serving type: growler

02-20-2014 00:43:42 | More by MadCat
Photo of jdhowe


3.46/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to MagicTacoSinus for sharing this. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a clear burgundy with 1/2 finger of straw-colored head. Head quickly dissipates to a thin ring. Very slight sticky lacing.

S: Caramel, red ale malt aromas, cherry cough syrup, light cinnamon and plenty of all spice, a syrupy malt sweetness, prunes, and a hint of brown sugar.

T/M: Thick and syrupy, yet still medium mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Red ale and amber malt flavors, a slight herbaceous note, medicinal cherry cough syrup, the typical Lagunitas hop bite, caramel, and an earthy finish with lots of alcohol heat.

O: Just okay. This beer is huge and not screwing around, but it's just a little too medicinal and syrupy for what it is, probably as a consequence of its ABV. I probably will not revisit this one.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2014 10:21:31 | More by jdhowe
Photo of mc4z


3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle. Pours a dark amber with good lacing. The smell is light coffee and sweet cream. The taste is super roasty with chocolate and coffee notes followed by a creamy after taste. This beer feels smooth and hides the alcohol well. Overall I was quite surprised by the flavor on this one and I liked it better than most Lagunitas strong ales.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 23:58:26 | More by mc4z
Photo of GPHarris


4.25/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

a - poured a two-fingers thick creamy tan head into a snifter that left great lacing and sheeting throughout. the body was a bright mahogany.
s - caramel and toffee with piney hops.
t - piney and floral hops with some dark fruit flavors to balance it out.
m - medium and creamy.
o - another winner from lagunitas and at this price it's hard to beat.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 17:22:40 | More by GPHarris
Photo of FFreak


4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a beautiful clear slightly redish brown with about an inch light brown head that drops slowly to a white ring.

Aroma is luscious caramel and brown sugar.

Taste is sweet and rich with a nicely balanced bitterness.

Great mouthfeel.

Overall a very enjoyable strong brown ale. Can't beat the price point at $5.99 for a 22oz bomber.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2014 01:58:13 | More by FFreak
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Hairy Eyeball Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 1,800 ratings.