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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.

2,798 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,798
Reviews: 724
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 10.1%
Wants: 40
Gots: 233 | FT: 3
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: 2,798 | Reviews: 724 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Kegatron


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

12 oz stubby bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a crystal clear coppery amber with 2+ big fingers of frothy off-white head. This retains down into a thin yet creamy layer, which leaves some rich foamy lacing back. The aroma is floral, lightly resinous, and very spicy smelling. Thick roasty malts and citrus character mixes with the highter ABV to give this a sticky smelling heft in the nose.

The taste starts with a big base of dark roasted malts, which lies densely under some fairly aggressive hoppy notes of pine and spices, before ending with some lip smacking sweeter accents of toffee and toast. The mouthfeel is medium-fuller bodied with a more beefy and viscous to it but the 10% ABV is extremely well hidden. I'm getting a little bit of warmth on the breath but that's about it.

Big and ballsy beer here from Lagunitas that reminded me a good bit of Stone's Arrogant Bastard. Beefy and flavorful with a lot of presence on the palate but still really smooth for the size. I enjoyed this a lot.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2009 17:04:46 | More by Kegatron
Photo of jsh420


4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a copper amber with a 1 finger head that coated the glass with lacing

smell was strange - sour tropical fruity hops with some tang to it which i think is the alcohol

taste is very similar to Hop Stoopid but much more sweeter and a much more carmel malt taste to it as well - this beer does not mask the alcohol and i think that is a good thing - sometimes i like to be reminded i am drinking a beer not just flavored water - all in all this beer rocks

mouthfeel is medium but some how feels lighter then it is - good carbonation and a nice creamy finish

drinkability is dangerous at such a high abv - this is not a six pack i could put away on a heavy drinking night or maybe i could because i would not remember drinking the last couple

Serving type: bottle

06-27-2009 01:52:38 | More by jsh420
Photo of clayrock81


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

Poured a semi-dark brown body with sheath lacing running all down my glass and a two-finger head. A mix of earthy, piney hops and some sweet malts, like caramel, although mild. Medium to full body with a good balance between hops and malts although the malt sweetness is mild and the hops are the more powerful thing in it. Nice citric and herbal dryness, the taste is good and the mouthfeel has a nice dryness to it in the backend thanks to hop bitterness. Had a bit of creaminess/chewiness to it and I ended up chugging this; had no idea the ABV was that high until I came on this site. Nothing too outstanding but this is still another quality brew from Lagunitas and worth a try by anyone.

Serving type: on-tap

06-26-2009 19:22:46 | More by clayrock81
Photo of snaotheus


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

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a rich amber color with about a finger of quickly fading head and superb lacing. Head shrinks down to just a film and a ring, and I can see clear levels in the lacing for each sip I take.

Smells earthy, musty, sweet.

Taste is smokey molasses with sour and bitter balancing out the sweetness. Tannic aftertaste, and very late in the finish it's a pleasant smokey sour.

Mouthfeel is thick and bready (I want to use the word 'chewy'), a little sticky.

Nicely drinkable beer for 9%. I approve.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2009 02:53:23 | More by snaotheus
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly

New York

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

12oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

Mostly clear orange/amber color with an off-white head that left a bunch of lacing.
The aroma is a mix of pine and citrus, but it's mostly all hops.
The taste is full of citrus flavor with some sweet sticky pine and a bit of caramel malt thrown in.
Medium bodied with a smooth feel.
Goes down too easy for a 9% abv beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2009 22:56:42 | More by JoeyBeerBelly
Photo of WYVYRN527


4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

These guys never fail to impress me. This beer pours a slightly hazy amber with a thin white head that is more of a film on the top. Carbonation is mellow. The initial aroma is a bit faint. Piney, citrusy hops are prominent, with sweet caramel-like undertones. The flavors this beer has are great. It begins with malt flavors of caramel and bread, finishing with crisp hop flavors of lemon peel, grass, and pine. This beer is medium to full-bodied, yet very clean. Although it's high in alc, it's almost non-existent on the palate. I definitely can see why the brewery calls this an "Imperial Mild." It's almost too easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2009 22:14:48 | More by WYVYRN527
Photo of alexgash


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

12 oz. bottle.

Another American Strong Ale from Lagunitas. I think they are the masters of this style! Pours a slightly cloudy ruby red with a coppery tinge. Small, sticky, lacy, dirty white head. Nose full of tropical fruits, particularly pineapple and fruit cocktail. Whiff of cookie dough gets lost amidst resinous, piny, herbal hops.

Toasted malt mixed with piny, resinous hops. Fruit cocktail and pineapple add a little malty sweetness. A little bit of cookie dough rounds it out. Piny, herbal bitterness into the finish, with lingering fruity malt sweetness. Medium-full body with a creamy feel. Another solid American Strong Ale. Keep 'em coming!

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2009 01:11:16 | More by alexgash
Photo of Jayli


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

This beer pours a nice deep clear amber color with a one finger of off white head. Head dissapated relatively quickly leaving very little lacing to speak of. Nose is dominated by piney hops, a touch of caramel malts and a bit boozy. Taste is piney and spicey hops up front, heavier on the caramel malts in the middle, and some hops and dark fruits are detectable in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, medium carbonation, feel rather slick going down. Overall a very decent beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2009 16:11:05 | More by Jayli
Photo of yesyouam

New York

4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lagunitas Undercover Investigation Shutdown Ale is a crystal clear, rich amber ale with a dense, frothy, off-white head that thins and leaves outstanding lacing. Sweet, resiny malt and bright, fresh, wooden hops are strong and well balanced in the nose. It's medium-full bodied and silky smooth with a quick and slightly sticky finish. It tastes sweet, bitter and bold. The flavors are well balanced and blend together to provide a big, fruity (pineapple), wooden, resiny flavor. It's incredibly drinkable, even at this strength. A very solid American Strong Ale here.

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2009 03:39:31 | More by yesyouam
Photo of Durge


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

From six-pack into the pint glass, cold, this brings a dark amber brown color with a goodly, very light oatmeal colored head and decent blotchy lace. The aroma is mostly light citrus hop and brown sugar, a bit sharp but subtle and pleasant. The taste is primarily tart rhubarb citrus with caramel brown sugar malt. It's middle bodied, smooth with fair carbonation, fairly drinkable although I find it a bit more on the "rhubarb" side to invite sessioning. I also think it's a bit heavy in the sweetness, almost suggesting cotton candy at times, but it's an enjoyable refreshment, I just don't think I would pound these based on the flavor profile, interesting but not a "must have".

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2009 02:41:59 | More by Durge
Photo of TheTrevor

New York

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

This beer poured a brownish copper with a single-finger head. The smell is lots of different hops with some pine and herbal scents. The taste starts off with some sweet malt that gives away very quickly to two or three different kinds of hops. The mouthfeel is slightly thick with some moderate carbonation. The alcohol content is dangerously hidden in this beer, but it may be a bit too hoppy for some people. Personally I'm glad I snagged a bottle of it,

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2009 21:31:04 | More by TheTrevor
Photo of basscram


3.2/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a goblet glass from bottle.
Looks are Dark Golden Amber and see through, Head comes at the end of the pour and lasts for about 10 seconds. Little fizzies come from around the glass

Smells sweet like a maple syrup and goes away quickly. Can't wait to try it!

Taste is exciting, meaning very flavorful with sweetness and hoppiness. Taste lingers on the tip of the tongue and down the middle and goes away. The high abv is recognized too! On the back of the tongue, I taste some grapefruit, but a light taste as it dissipates. Don't be alarmed. After my tongue gets used to the zip of the alcohol and sweet hoppy tastes I can enjoy it a lot more. ( Not like I didn't enjoy the first few sips )

Their is that sweet taste I'm trying to think of what it is but its hard to figure it out with the hoppiness.

Lacing is minimal if any. The way it feels on my tongue is spicy and not too thick. Taste lingers on the backside of the tongue a bit after a while.

Drinkable? Yes, but not something I can gulp down. Its a sipper.

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2009 03:49:08 | More by basscram
Photo of thespaceman


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

Poured from a 12oz stubby bottle into a pint glass:

Appearance: Beautiful deep amber in color, bits of red highlights, billowing, frothy white head, with excellent lacing and retention all the way down the glass.

Smell: Loads of citrus hops up front, very resinous and piney, a bit of hop oil, some clove, orange zest and grapefruit. A small tinge of malt is detectible, bits of brown sugar and crystal malt, alot going on in the nose but smells fairly balanced with the hops doing a bit more in the aroma department.

Taste: Don't see how this could be considered a strong ale, this one is definetley along the lines of a solid DIPA. Loads of DIPA qualities up front, beautiful floral hops, very west coast style, loads of citrus and grapefruit give way to a small malt backbone, sweet on the tongue and very forgiving. Very similar to a DFH 90 Minute, balanced correctly and the malt sweetness balances such a pine-like earthy hop splash with ease. I love how this beer is very easy on the palete without going in one direction. Finishes off with a nice boozy touch yet it's hidden in here fairly well.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is medium, very nice slickness rolls over the tongue, bitterness is very prevalent when sitting in the mouth. Lots of mouthfeel qualities similar to a barleywine, viscous yet big bodied and bold.

Drinkability: How Lagunita's comes up with all these excellent beers is beyond me, but there hasn't been one beer I've tried from these guys that has been dissapointing. This shouldn't be considered a strong ale, this is a perfectly balanced DIPA with an excellent dose of pine and grapefruit for the hop heads built on a beautiful foundation of malt for the true big beer drinkers. This is dangerous might I add, this one drinks like a standard IPA with the alcohol hidden well enough to fool you. I love these creeper beers, you sip and sip until before you know it, the third one catches up and your feeling like you lost track of how many brews you really had. Another excellent offering from a brewery that should be respected and bowed down upon. Highly recommended!

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2009 02:38:34 | More by thespaceman
Photo of OldSchoolGamer


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

I am slowly becoming a Lagunitas fan, especially after having the excellent Hop Stoopid. This is a spring seasonal I believe. Anyways, here is my review:

A: Poured a clear copper color. Very soapy head that leaves light lacing on the glass. Some bubbles coming up from the bottom.

S: I smell sweet oranges. Some grassy hops, and caramel malts. Smells pretty good.

T: This tastes like an IPA crossed with a Barleywine. Not as heavy or malty as a Barleywine, and not as hoppy as an IPA. Kind of in between. I got grassy, earthy hops upfront. Some fruit like orange or mango. Then the malt character takes over. Semi-sweet caramel and some bready malts. Finish is a tad watery as the flavor doesn't stick to the palate long after the sip. Pretty good overall.

M: Medium bodied. Not cloying or syrupy at all. Finish is dry and somewhat bitter. Finish is also very clean. There is a little bit of picklyness from the alcohol. As I said before, the aftertaste is a bit watered down, but its not a big deterrant.

D: Medium body with a pretty strong alcohol content keep this beer from being an all nighter. Very tasty and pretty easy drinking. Good overall.

One of the better Lagunitas beers I have had. Its got a lot of character from both the hops and malt, but overall falls short of excellence. Worth checking out.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2009 18:35:30 | More by OldSchoolGamer
Photo of flexinwext


3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear, dark gold/brown color. Thin frothy head that sticks to the side of the glass. Aroma is of pine hops and lemon peel. At first taste this is quite the bitter brew. Tart on the tip of the tongue with a grapefruit-esque finish and after taste. I think the high ABV is hidden pretty well in this one. This one seems to cross many different style genres.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2009 00:09:23 | More by flexinwext
Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy


3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours from draft a light molasses color with
nearly no head and thus a very slight lace
effect. There was little sign of active

S: A boozy aroma combined with hints of an IPAs
pine and florals

T: Just as it smells high octane alcohol flavor
with supporting floral notes reminiscent of
a slight IPA

M: The brew was a little thin but managed to
leave a bit of a slick on the back of my

D: This is an average choice amongst American
Strongs. It's not that this choice is a
poor one but that this style is being done
really well right now by other brewers.

Serving type: on-tap

06-07-2009 02:46:39 | More by ArrogantDeadGuy
Photo of ATPete

New Jersey

4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle

72 IBU, but very malty, oh Lagunitas... you silly bastards!

Pours a deep orange brown/amber color with very good clarity and a medium sized, puffy, white head that leaves some soapy stickage on the glass. The nose tells you this is a big beer, deep milky sweet malts hit me first with an encore of bitter herbal hops, west coasty but not overkill, im not pulling a ton of citrus out of this one (or alcohol notes for that matter) more pine resin than anything. Damn, this beer is spooky drinkable for being over 9%... This beer is big, but in the most restrained kind of way, the malts get larger and more coating to the tongue as the beer warms, the sweetness (which is rather quite mild) intensifies slightly also. Im impressed. I'm almost interested to see what some age will do to this motherfu....

Serving type: bottle

06-06-2009 23:56:40 | More by ATPete
Photo of rapidsequence


3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

OK, first off, there's been several versions of this beer, this appears to be this years...
Its a twist off, which is ok, but I hate opening it with an opener and making little glass shards that almost fall in my beer.

Appearance: Hard to complain. Its a perfectly clear amber-red with a thick puffy head that lasts and lasts and leaves that heavy lacing that gets dry and sticky.

Smell: Its great. Strong fruity hops smell. Sweet candied citrus.

Taste: Hoppy, but not overly bitter. Its sweet and boozy. Fruity sweet, sugary sweet, overly sweet. The hoppiness and malt are balanced, but the sweet throws it out of whack by about halfway through the glass.

Mouthfeel: Nice sharp carbonation and a thick oily syrupy feel that I love.

Drinkability: I'll definitely drink it again (I have to admit, a bought a sixer). Its a nice beer, but its just to sweet. The smell and mouthfeel are so good, but the sweet taste becomes too much. Also, there's lots of booze in there.

What the hell is this thing anyway? Its categorized here as a strong ale, but it could be a barley wine or maybe a DIPA-- maybe not pale enough though. Whatever, its semantics. Give it a try.

Serving type: bottle

06-06-2009 02:09:32 | More by rapidsequence
Photo of Clydesdale

District of Columbia

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

A: Pours a clear, deep orange-bronze color with some tiny bubbles of carbonation. The head has a tannish tint and is moderately tall when first poured, with a thick, frothy texture. Retention is solid, with some irregular lacing.

S: Fresh hop aromas - pink grapefruit, pine, and surprisingly robust herbal notes abound. A sweet, bready malt backbone is present as well. Hints of sweet alcohol are also noticeable.

T: Sweet brown sugar up front is greeted by a firm wave of hop flavors and bitterness. Pine sap and grapefruit pith are most prominent, with some herbal hints in the background. A second dose of bready malt sweetness and an interesting yeasty character occurs after the hops make themselves known. The alcohol is flirtatious. One second it's there, the next it's gone without a trace.

M: Sticky, resiny medium-full body with light, tingly carbonation. A big wave of dryness becomes apparent at the very finish.

D: Another nice interpretation of a Strong Ale/Barleywine/DIPA from Lagunitas. Honestly, they have so many, it's a minor miracle they can manage to keep them from blending completely into one another. A strong, surprisingly drinkable big beer. Drinks more like 6.5-7% ABV, so be forewarned.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2009 22:12:03 | More by Clydesdale
Photo of natasharai


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

Appearance: Poured with a large foamy off white head consisting of large/medium bubbles that dissipated quickly leaving a lot of lacing at the top of my glass. The beer is completely clear with a dark orange gold color.

Smell: Citrus hops, very sweet malt, brown sugar, and caramelized nuts.

Taste: Citrus/floral hops, sweet oranges, brown sugar, nutty malt, a bit of an alcohol taste, and a spicy taste at the end.

Mouthfeel: Light/medium body, slightly syrupy, some hop bitterness, a small alcohol burn, and leaves mouth a bit dry.

Overall: Good drinkability, nice hop flavors and really sweet syrupy flavor/feel to balance it out. Not very complex, just hoppy and sweet, but still a pleasure to drink.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2009 04:47:16 | More by natasharai
Photo of ClockworkOrange


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

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a nonic pint glass. The ale appears a crystal clear rich crimson amber color with a finger of creamy off white foam. No lacing to speak of. Aromas and flavors consist of citrus notes like lemon, grapefruit pith, orange peel, quite bitter, sweet bready grain, and a light dose of caramel. A notch better than medium bodied and amply carbonated. Worth a shot.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2009 18:42:43 | More by ClockworkOrange
Photo of MrHungryMonkey


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

C'mon, what's up with the name? It's far too silly.

Nose is hoppy - citric, floral, and bright - with some softer malt. Smells good.

Pours a medium amber/copper color, good clarity, mild head with dogged retention. Looks good.

Hops are in charge - lots of citric and floral juices with resinous pine, herb, and spice galore; good shot of bitterness and tartness to the feel. Notes of alcohol tie in nicely with the unruly hoppage. I get some moderate pungentness before I note any malt. There is some nice sweetness to contrast - grainy malty and soft. The sweetness also goes nicely with the alcohol. Finishes fairly clean - just a hint of nutty maltiness and bitter hops. Tastes & feels good - a nice kick in the mouth on both fronts. Good drinkability.

From the name I'd guess Barleywine, because they didn't want to call it a Barleywine-style ale, but the flavor lands closer to Imperial IPA due to the soft malt and subsequent hoppy unbalance. Okay, fine, so it's an American Strong, that's cool. (I don't see any reference to them not wanting to call it a BW, I thought I had them on that one.)

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2009 01:44:58 | More by MrHungryMonkey
Photo of allergictomacros

Ontario (Canada)

4.65/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear red with an inch of sticky tan foam. Nose is tangerines, grapefruit and a hint of pine. Huge hoppy flavour right off the bat - lots of resinous grapefruit with a healthy dose of orange. There's a lot of sweetness is this one, but balances well against the ridiculous hoppiness. Body is appropriate - not too heavy and not too light with a medium-hard carbonation. I'm really liking this one - I would describe it as very smooth and very, very hoppy.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2009 23:14:11 | More by allergictomacros
Photo of organicbrewer


3.45/5  rDev -15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Twist off bottle poured into a tulip.

A-Deep copper, brilliantly clear. Low eggshell head that falls to a lace.

S-Some toasty malt. Mostly hidden behind the hops. Definetly one of the "C" hops. Not as over the top as the flavor. Kinda mild actually.

T-Full on bitterness. Some citrusy hop but very little. Very unbalanced but I think that's the point. Some toasty malt but hidden behind the hops. This beer is very much like arrogant bastard. I know this isn't oak aged but there is some oak like astringency in this.

M-Medium bodied. Medium carbonation. Bitterness is boardering on being astringent but its good.

D- at 9% alcohol and with this much bitterness I would have trouble having more than one in a sitting. That said, the beer isn't hot or offensive or anything so I guess it is pretty drinkable for the type of beer it is.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2009 19:35:21 | More by organicbrewer
Photo of GRG1313


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

ON TAP at STONE; Pours a dark honey orange color with light orange edges. A nice white head with very heavy lacing.

Assertive orange essence and orange flowers in nose, very floral and elegant with hints of apricot.

Nice balance and fruity/hop character. Fruity, stone fruit flavors with hints of malt and underlying stone fruit flavors; hints of Belgian malts but with a big grapefruit hop finish. Good with food.

Serving type: on-tap

05-25-2009 00:19:08 | More by GRG1313
Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,798 ratings.