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Hairy Eyeball Ale - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Hairy Eyeball AleHairy Eyeball Ale

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

1,801 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1801
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
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Ratings: 1,801 | Reviews: 837 | Show All Ratings:
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 beer-princess


3.89/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 64oz growler (with a cozy!) into newish 16oz mason jar stemware. (For transparency's sake, we didn't do a great job of washing out the moscato we had been drinking.)

A- Beer poured a nice clear velvety amber with a pretty significant opalescent head (took up the screw part of the mason jar, maybe a finger and a half of haphazard, Jackson Pollack-esque lacing).

S- Pretty wheaty, with a good amount of dark fruit, toffee, and malt.

T- Mildly bitter, cocoa up front and raisin in the back, with a smooth caramel throughout. The coffee and nuts unfurled their subtle banners in the fourth quarter.

M- A tingly creaminess, like drinking icy-hot. Consistent but light carbonation. The alcohol burns a little. It's a strong beer.

O- It's a little too bitter for my taste, but it's a good winter beer. I'm into the dark fruit. I'd get it again.

Serving type: growler

12-29-2013 23:54:49 | More by beer-princess


3.83/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From growler to elongated chalice.

A: A two finger khaki-colored, frothy/creamy head rises slowly over a clear dark brown body. Ruby edges (completely ruby colored in front of light). The head is slow rising but diminishes quickly.

S: Borderline roasted malts of chocolate, molasses, caramel, toffee and spent coffee grounds. The hops are light: Dried herbs, resin and pine. Light yeast contributions of leather and dough.

T: Follows the nose plus flavors of rendered brown sugar and an oven heated, oil conditioned baseball glove. Moderately sweet with a long flavor duration.

M: The body is medium full (if not full), thick and sticky with a syrupy, semi-cloying texture. Average carbonation.

D: A cleaner mouthfeel would have increased the drinkability and overall score. Drinks like a porter.

Serving type: growler

06-25-2010 23:14:09 | More by FeDUBBELFIST
Photo of jpmclaug

South Carolina

3.6/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a growler into a pint glass

A - brown with an orange glow, nice sized tan head, beautiful lacing

S - rich biscuity smells with a hint of caramel and butter, can't smell the hops in this at all

T - falls right in line with the smell, a bit of caramelly sweetness up front. I really can't find any specific hop flavors in this one but you can tell they are present to knock a bit of sweetness off. Might be a little bit sweeter than I like.

M - Medium bodied. Feels almost sticky at first with a creamy finish.

D - Pretty easy drinker for 8.8%. The alcohol flavors are covered up pretty well. This one is a little sweeter than I normally like. I wouldn't mind drinking this again but I won't be seeking it out.

D -

Serving type: growler

03-23-2010 00:02:57 | More by jpmclaug
Photo of SShelly


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

Big poofy white head on the pour with rediculous retention, dark amber, crystal clear beer.

Aroma has light hops with some sweet malt character.

Flavor is deeply malty with a little biscuit, some balancing bitterness with maybe a little hop flavor, finish is sweet malt that sits in the mouth.

a really great aftertaste with this beer, fairly easy drinking, not spectactular but solid.

Serving type: growler

02-07-2010 19:40:39 | More by SShelly
Photo of almychristopher

New York

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

this beer pours a hazy reddish brown color with an off white head that fades to a sheet of lace leaving rings around the glass. the aroma brings loads of roasted malt and a bit of fruit at the back, maybe some yeast esters. the taste doesn't disappoint with the sweet nearly sticky maltiness, and the fruity flavors this is a pretty flavorful beer, the alcohol and astringency at the end are there, but not bad for nearly nine percent. great carbonation, thanks to Sam the Beer Man, with their nice five beer growler line up.

Serving type: growler

08-13-2009 22:09:06 | More by almychristopher
Photo of LennyV

New York

3.25/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler purchased at halftime. Pours a Black Mahogany into my corsendonk Christmas ale glass. NIce Tan head with no lacing

Smells of malt not much else

Taste of malt wish some bitterness in the end.

This is a full bodied brew, you can see the thickness as you pour feels soft and creamy in your mouth.

Not one of my favorates, its just to malty for me

Serving type: growler

03-04-2009 03:58:25 | More by LennyV
Photo of letsgopens


4.28/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled by growler from Vintage. Another interesting selection from Lagunitas, this ASA pours deep, woody amber with some golden orange highlights. The tall, rocky cap of foam appears pale tan and holds well. Significant lace lies behind. Lots of visible rising carbonation is present.

Sweet and malty with a nutty, earthy note. Warm smelling but not terribly robust. Very pleasant though with some buttery, bitter hops. Clean and well balanced.

Sharp, crisp and full flavored with a nutty, slightly phenolic character. Caramel malt and sizable hops. Bity and generally representative of the style with some detectable booze and some citrus. Honey and some moderate fruit: apple and berry.

Smooth, juicy and clean with very fine carbonation. Plenty of warmth and a mild dryness in the finish. Medium bodied throughout. A nice selection and one of the better strong ales I've had in quite some time.

Serving type: growler

03-31-2008 06:01:00 | More by letsgopens
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
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Hairy Eyeball Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 1,801 ratings.