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Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Undercover Investigation Shut-down AleUndercover Investigation Shut-down Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

2,787 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,787
Reviews: 724
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 9.85%
Wants: 40
Gots: 232 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.70% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
ABV varies slightly from 9.0 to 9.8
66.6 IBU

(Beer added by: GilGarp on 03-10-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,787 | Reviews: 724 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DaftCaskBC
DaftCaskBC

British Columbia (Canada)

3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: 1/2" cream coloured head that left a slight lacing over light brown liquid with excellent clarity.

S: Malt and sugar.

T: Bitter at the start, the taste of floral and pine hops in the middle, with a dry malty finish. The hops that are used do not compliment the malt very well, and they only settle down near the end of the glass as the beer becomes warmer.

M: Medium viscosity and medium level of medium carbonation.

O: Not particularly well integrated or well balanced strong ale, likely because of the combination of hops and malt that are used.

Serving type: bottle

08-08-2011 05:55:28 | More by DaftCaskBC
Photo of Phelps
Phelps

Arizona

2.17/5  rDev -46.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Served in a shaker pint at Tops.

Perfectly clear auburn with hints of burnt orange. One finger of frothy head the color of wet sand slowly fades to thick top layer, looking a little scummy.

Weird nose. Caramel, dry dog food, sweet wort. Also honey and hints of tangy apricot.

Ugh, the flavor is worse. Sweet, tangy apricot and perhaps some orange peel with floral notes give way to overly burnt caramel malt and hefty bitterness. Overly astringent and just weird. The tangy cleaning solution and burnt malt never meld.

Light yet prickly carbonation breaks into just a bit of fizz. Treacly medium body.

Weird, weird, weird. Competing flavors are fighting it out in my mouth, and I don’t appreciate it.

Serving type: on-tap

08-06-2011 06:42:18 | More by Phelps
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

Washington

3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

When it's the time for a big alcoholic beer, this is one of my favorites. Not as heavy as a barley wine, though it does have plenty of sugar. Reminds me of ginger snaps, with the molasses flavor. Clear amber with a nice head. Very rich, spicy flavor but not that thick in the mouthfeel. Lots of fruit, dried mango, bitter raisiny taste. Fair amount of hops eventually show up. Best suited for a nightcap.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2011 04:43:49 | More by mactrail
Photo of ummswimmin
ummswimmin

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a pretty good beer. There is decent body and a good mix of flavoring. I like the roasted malts and hop presence.

It is really nice just to even look at this beer. It is deep amber with really good lacing. THe lacing stays really nicely in the glass.

I'm glad I have five more of these beers to go through.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2011 00:12:26 | More by ummswimmin
Photo of Duff27
Duff27

Illinois

4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Two fingered light tan head on a dark red/brown beer. Great drink-by-drink step lacing and a nice retentive head to boot.

S- Brown sugar and citrus hops penetrate my nostrils.

T- Pungent hops, caramel malts. Cinnamon? I don't know what that is but I think I may love it. Very well hidden nearly 10%abv...dayum.

M- Medium mouthfeel, kinda creamy. Decent enough carbonation.

D/O- I don't know if I'd go so far as to say I was blown away by this beer but whatever a notch down from that is...well, say that. Thanks for the try PTMcB!

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2011 02:35:50 | More by Duff27
Photo of drpimento
drpimento

Wisconsin

2.85/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Expected better, given the ratings. Served with a fine, creamy, off white head and good lace. Color is a clear medium amber. Aroma is bright citrus, hop, a little yeast. Flavor is very intense grapefruit. Too intense for me. Body is ok and carbonation is a shade light. Finish is like flavor. Not a session for me.

Serving type: on-tap

08-01-2011 05:14:41 | More by drpimento
Photo of BigPlay1824
BigPlay1824

New York

4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a pint glass

A: Pours a nice medium brown that's quite clear, pours with a nice bubbly head that is tan and lingers nicely, leaves no lacing
S: nice scent, maltiness, slight oak/whiskey scent, possibly dark fruit
T: great taste, light whiskey, maltiness, smoked wood
M: incredibly smooth on the palate although i didnt expect it to be
O: really quite enjoyable, loved the taste and the depth, the alcohol content didnt hurt a bit either

Serving type: growler

07-28-2011 23:24:46 | More by BigPlay1824
Photo of Tree43088
Tree43088

Massachusetts

3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear copper with decent head

Smells sweet with some piney hops but citrus hops steal the show on this one. definitely some caramel malt

Sweet and citrus up front with some spices. Can definetly taste the caramel malt. Finishes with a bitter after taste but extremely smooth. It's hard to taste the alcohol on this one. There's is a slight warming sensation in my stomach but drinking wise the ale goes down very smooth.

light to medium bodied with good carbonation. Very smooth

Overall I freaking love this beer. I'm a fan of the citrus hops mixed with the malt but both are in balance and for a 10% ABV I could let this get away from me

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2011 00:32:24 | More by Tree43088
Photo of ShogoKawada
ShogoKawada

Rhode Island

4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer is like drinking a ginger snap. Lagunitas calls it (playfully) an imperial mild ale.

A- Nice copper beer with a big sticky white head. Really nice pour.

S- Resiny hops jump forward, and there's a big spicy caramel malt base behind it. Like mulling spices.

T- The immense malt hits me first- again a bit spicy, which cuts through the sweetness. The pine sap/diesel hops come through in the finish and pound the tongue into submission (in a good way). Really heavy-handed, an assault on the tongue... good thing there are nothing but tasty flavors to be found!

M- Full-bodied, complex, and rich, really a unique and hefty mouthfeel. Ample carbonation.

O- Very enjoyable. I've gone through most of the sixer in the last few days and can see myself reaching for more next time I'm at the store. I really like this beer- Lagunitas makes great strong ales.

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2011 21:49:35 | More by ShogoKawada
Photo of russwbeck
russwbeck

Virginia

3.58/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reddish brown pour with a nicely sized white head. The head both laces and is retained very well. The smell is hoppy, more of piney hops than grassy, with a caramel malt backbone. Those same piney hops start off the taste and is followed by the maltiness. Dry hops finish the taste off nicely. The beer is light with a good amount of carbonation and a very dry finish, devoid of any alcohol taste. Again a very drinkable choice!

Serving type: growler

07-25-2011 01:05:00 | More by russwbeck
Photo of 9InchNails
9InchNails

New Jersey

4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got my growler filled at Joe Canal's Liquor Outlet.

A creamy off-white head that turns into a film and then a ring around the glass. The body color is that of a copper penny. Some slow moving bubbles. Nice lacing on the glass as well.

Sweet malts mixing with some citrus and pine hops. The aroma is a little weak.

Wow! This is very tasty. Sweetness upfront, then Pine, citrus, dark fruits, caramel, chocalate, vanilla, and toffee. There is a bitter ending. I detect some booze but it highlights the flavors well, it works with it, instead of against it, like some high abv. beers.

Light to medium carbonation. Medium body that leaves the mouth a little sticky. Some alcohol heat is noticeable while going down.

What a complex brew that is so easy to drink, despite the high abv. Flavorful, feels nice and looks nice as well. I have a feeling I'm going to regret drinking this whole growler for two reasons: I'm not going to have anymore for tomorrow and this is going to give me one hell of a hangover. But, it's going to be worth it.

Serving type: growler

07-24-2011 07:52:30 | More by 9InchNails
Photo of Rutager
Rutager

British Columbia (Canada)

3.53/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance. Pours a clear, deep amber-red with a half finger of bubbly white head that leaves a little lacing.

Smell. Sweet caramel and a little bit of mixed fruits ...oranges, apples, grapes. A little sour smelling.

Taste. Sweet roasty caramel malts, A little funky and a bit of bitterness. Very little alcohol taste for the abv.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body with medium-low, but slightly prickly carbonation.

Overall. Decent tasting and really easy to drink. Abv is well hidden and the strong point of this beer for me.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2011 03:38:45 | More by Rutager
Photo of Ryan011235
Ryan011235

Ohio

3.53/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Growler poured into a mug on 4/29/11

Clear, tobacco amber. Billowy, sandy colored head. Impressive retention and pretty good clumps of lace.

The malts and hops seem balanced for Lagunitas. Dense citrus and pine. Caramel, bread and some dough; it's a sweet aroma. The flavor has some pine tar bitterness and sporadic zestiness. Solid malt base; same as the nose - caramel and bread. Between medium and full body and slick. Just below average carbonation. Noticeable alcohol. Residual bitterness and sugars.

Overall impression: pretty good, if perhaps a bit one dimensional. Tasty sipper, though.

Serving type: growler

07-21-2011 01:45:13 | More by Ryan011235
Photo of fsvan
fsvan

Tennessee

3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into New Belgium globe. 9.78% abv says the bottle.

A- Dark, copperish red. Middling amounts of head with slight lacing.

S- Soy sauce 1st and foremost. A good dose of it actually. Some caramel malt. A hint of peaty-ness to it. The soy seems to be fading a little as it warms. This is a good thing.

T- Lots of caramel malty-ness. A nice hop bitterness, but the hop flavors are overwhelmed by the malts. The caramel taste clings to the mouth, hanging around long after the beer. The alcohol is very hidden.

M- Medium bodied. Surprisingly light for the style, abv, etc.

O- This is a good, albeit unspectacular strong ale. I'm happy to have brought one back from vacation, but don't really need another.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2011 00:17:50 | More by fsvan
Photo of shand
shand

Florida

4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a nonic.

This brew pours a brilliant deep red color with a tiny head that fades quickly. The aroma is full of piney hops and sweet, nutty caramel malts. The taste is very nice, reminiscant of a very hop-forward barleywine. It's huge in all aspects, there's huge, slightly nutty caramel malts, and huge piney hops with just a bit of citrus aspect. The mouthfeel is full and coating, and the drinkability is fairly good. An enjoyable brew from Lagunitas, for sure, that straddles the line between DIPA and Barleywine.

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2011 03:10:12 | More by shand
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap in nc into a pint glass.

Rich dark brown in color and light ruby hints around the side and the bottom of the glass. Rich malty aroma, lots of caramel and hints of dee piney hops mixing in, really strong aroma here as it cuts through the air. For a beer over 9 percent it was remarkably smooth and subtle. I could have gone on drinking this one all day long, it was just that good. Huge notes of woody malts and mellow, sweet, syrup like flavor mixed with the lovely bitter piney hops

Serving type: on-tap

07-17-2011 01:28:46 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of ONUMello
ONUMello

Ohio

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

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass
A: Copper colored with a one-finger head.
S: Grapefruit, pine, toffee.
T: Similar to the smell- hops and their associated pine/citrus up front, then transitions to a bold toffee malt.
M: Fairlly smooth with a bit of a hops kick; surprisingly I'm not picking up any heat.
O: I like this. Usually I take time to contemplate the bigger beers, but this was so tasty it went down faster than it should have.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2011 02:23:15 | More by ONUMello
Photo of eclipse54
eclipse54

Minnesota

3.4/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a translucent rust color with about a two-finger's breadth of foamy, bubbly, off-white head. Lots of lacing is left behind as it takes its time settling (and I drink it). Smells of citrusy hops, grapefruit, pine, caramel, and brown sugar. Tastes of alcohol, caramel malt, sugar, and citrus. The alcohol is rather overpowering in this one, and isnt masked nearly as well as I'd hoped. Mouth is warmly thinned from the alcohol and carbonation, and finishes relatively smooth. Overall, it lives up the strong ale name, but seemed a little out of balance. I'll probably reach for something else next time, but wouldn't necessarily be disappointed if I was stuck with this.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2011 03:12:13 | More by eclipse54
Photo of d4114
d4114

California

4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Reddish copper color, very clear. 2 fingers of off white to light tan head.

S- Big sweet malt with a piney hop aroma. Also a pretty big nuttiness.

T- Nutty malt sweetness is up front across most of the palate but is balanced out by the piney hops.

M- On the lighter side of medium; Doesn't totally match the bigness of the rest of the beer.

O- Similar to a american barleywine but instead of caramel or toffee notes it has nutty notes more like a brown ale. It also has a pretty big hop presence. For almost 10% it drinks really easy and i enjoyed it quite a bit.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2011 05:28:58 | More by d4114
Photo of davey101
davey101

Connecticut

3.73/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a DFH signature glass.

A - Nice copper red body with an off white head. Great lacing and retention.

S - Piney hops and sweet malts. Smells stereotypically lagunitas.

T - Really well balanced between the hop bitterness and sweet malts. Honey, bread, caramel, grapefruit, and a hint of spice. Fairly complex and the high abv is hidden well. Smooth and medium mouth feel.

O - Tasty beer, however it reminds me a bit too much of some other lagunitas stuff.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2011 03:08:26 | More by davey101
Photo of VelvetExtract
VelvetExtract

Massachusetts

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

A-Copper color. White head with only a hint of khaki. Patchy lacing clings along the glass. The liquid is extremely clear, no sediment or haze. I enjoy looking at the deep copper hue.

S-Sweet honey and caramel sugar combines with some very juicy fruity hops. Piney hops come into contact with my nose too. Has a very rich, sweet aroma to it. Very attractive. A 4.5 easily in the aroma. This is one of those beers that begs me to continue smelling it in order to decipher its various components. Lagunitas always hits the aroma. This one is no different

T-This one has some squishy juicy fruity hoppiness to it. I also find it to have a bit of Belgian yeast to it. Rich caramel sweetness adds to the flavor. Honey comb and a bit of spice. Bit I am very happy that this one has some serious hops. The malt and the hop both choke the palate. Balanced but big. There's a lot going on here, and it all pretty hardcore.

M-Medium bodied with a chewy feel. Drying bitterness. Big feel. Alcohol sits on the tongue a bit.

O/D-I have been a bit nervous to throw out $11 to try most of Lagunitas' bigger beers. I love Little Sumpin' Sumpin', Hop Stoopid and Dogtown. I really like their IPA and Maximus. But Hairy Eyeball didn't really do it for me. I saw this as another big beer that was had to put into a specific style. But I really liked this beer. Its a beast, and one six pack will floor you with both its flavor and its ABV. Syrupy sweet but still a pretty aggressive hop attack. Lagunitas is simply one of the best breweries in the world, and they are far from overpriced. Try this.

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2011 03:31:49 | More by VelvetExtract
Photo of WoodBrew
WoodBrew

Illinois

3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

TGI Thursday!!!! Couple beers...why not. Trying the Lagunitas Undercover Investigation Shut-Down Ale...it's a mouthfull...and so is the beer! This beer can shut down evening operations quickly with its hig ABV. The appearance is good! A nice rich Amber with creamy off-white head that is lacing suburbly. The smell has a sweet malt character with hints of pine/earth. The first sip brings a wash of ABV, followed by sweet malt. The ABV numbs the tongue slightly and the sweetness holds on to the pallete. The mouthfeel was down graded just a bit due to the high ABV. Overall its a good beer...reminds me a little of the Brown Shugga that they produce(d), and the sweetness reminds me slightly of Two Brothers Cane & Ebel.

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2011 00:18:05 | More by WoodBrew
Photo of JerzDevl2000
JerzDevl2000

New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up last week since I hadn't had an American Strong Ale in quite some time. Most of the Lagunitas beers that I've had were pretty hoppy in the west coast tradition but this one was a bit more balanced than I had anticipated. I also thought that it would be a bit too strong to fully savor and sure enough, that turned out to be the case.

This poured a nice brown hue with a decent head that lasted for a little while. No lacing could be seen and there wasn't much of an aroma to this either. When I first tasted it, it felt like a Barleywine to me. Lots of rye and booze and a relatively full, balanced mouthfeel. There was just a hint of citrus up font and a large warming sensation to this too, which lingered all the way until the pine took over in the aftertaste. This wasn't something that I could get down quickly but the alcohol made me slow down and just enjoy it for what it was.

Yes, I know that this is an American Strong Ale but I didn't think that it would be overpowering. I felt the alcohol kick in pretty quickly on this and it stuck with me for a while. Unless this style is what you prefer, a six-pack of this is probably too much. By itself, this is fine after a long night will have just enough of a kick to satisfy hopheads, and differentiate it from Barleywines and other strong styles.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2011 18:18:38 | More by JerzDevl2000
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, nice to find a two dollar single in lovely Bellevue, WA, when this stuff goes for ~20 bucks a six-pack at home.

This beer pours a crystal clear medium bronze-amber hue, with
two fingers of foamy, thinly creamy off-white head, which leaves a solid paint job of lace around the glass in its wake. It smells of citrus hops right up front, and then some dark fruit, and an herbal, almost yeasty, character. The taste is bitter grapefruit and orange hops, substantial caramel and lesser toffee malt, and a menthol-like booze warming. I'm kind of wondering where the specific 72.41 IBUs absconded to, though. The carbonation is on the soft side, the body medium weight, a bit sticky, with a slight alcohol dryness cutting into the smoothness. It finishes still sweet, a bloom of booze and remnant bitter hops rounding things out.

Another decent strong ale from Lagunitas, though I'm having a harder and harder time sorting out the various incarnations. This one, I thought I had it, with the Belgian-esque nose - it was not to be. Still tasty though.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2011 01:40:28 | More by biboergosum
Photo of AAxsom
AAxsom

Texas

3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- dark amber color that looks very good. This may be a but darker than I like, but that's ok. Pours clear with just a tiny bit of head.

S- I get a good blend of hops and sweetness. Seems very balanced.

T- the fruit taste and the slightest bit of caramel on the end make this very tasty. The hops add a bit of citrus which adds to the fruity taste. I liked this much better than I anticipated.

M- the caramel and the malts left my mouth feeling a bit sticky. I definitely licked my lips several times.

O- very good effort from Lagunitas. I will drink and recommend this again. Easily my favorite of 5 new beers this evening.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2011 03:46:05 | More by AAxsom
Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,787 ratings.