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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.

2,767 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,767
Reviews: 723
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 10.1%
Wants: 39
Gots: 228 | 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: 2,767 | Reviews: 723 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rayjay


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

12 oz release.

Deep copper colored ale, great head and lots of legs. Close inspection reveals a haze with large particles, but far away its a virtually brite beer.

Strong ale nose, with lots of hops, some alcohol (even isopropyl), and carmel malt. Loads of fruitcake esters.

Deep strong malt flavors, with lots of carmel malts, couples with a strong hop presence. A deep rich IPA-turning-barleywine type ale. Fans of Sierra Nevada's bigger beers will like this one. Alcohol isn't as detectable here, and no heat. Finish is mild with carml sweetness and gentle lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel leans toward the creamy end, and isn't too thick or sticky.

An interesting full-flavored ale. Good to switch things up a bit. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2009 22:34:55 | More by rayjay
Photo of HopHead84


3.55/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at The Taproom during game 5 of the 2009 Lakers/Rockets playoff series.

Copper with a small head and little lacing.

The beer has a lot of sweetness in the nose. The malt is caramel, bordering on bready. Alcohol is prominent. There's not a lot of hop character, but what exists is of the grapefruit persuasion. Mostly alcohol and malt.

The flavor is sweet caramel malt. Traces of citrus hops linger within the malt and alcohol. The bitterness is aggressive, and so is the alcohol. The finish is bitter sweetness with lingering alcohol burn.

The beer is medium bodied with high carbonation. This is a decent strong ale.

Serving type: on-tap

05-13-2009 05:38:33 | More by HopHead84
Photo of BeanBone


3.78/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A beautiful red-orange body with two fingers of off-white head that leaves good lacing.

Aroma: There's a flood of hops the second the bottle is opened. The hop profile is intense and smells grapefruity, piney, and almost candied. Underneath all of this there's lots of sweet, almost syrupy, malt.

Taste: It's much the same in flavor. A hardy does of grapefruity and piney hops over a big, sweet malt backbone. Most of the alcohol is hidden rather well, and what remains is pleasant. The aftertaste keeps the hop-fest going.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full bodied with good carbonation and a little alcohol in the throat. It coats the mouth well, allowing for some great aftertaste retention.

Drinkability: Despite the high ABV and large flavor profile, this still goes back relatively fast, giving this above-average drinkability for the style.

Verdict: Since Laguintas has quite a full lineup of American Strong Ales, one would expect them to be pretty good at crafting them by now. So, it's no surprise that Shut-Down is a solid example of the style. It's may not be the most intense or interesting Strong Ale out there, but it's tasty, quite drinkable, and features an interesting focus on hops.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2009 15:46:14 | More by BeanBone
Photo of srandycarter


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

I thought the name was slightly different than the first time I tried it so I bought it thinking it was a new beer. Glad to have tried it again, though. 5.22.2011

A - Clear amber, nice near white head, fast to leave to ring. Plenty of spotty left over cling.

S - Booze and sweet malt.

T - Deep malt, hot, and pretty aggressive hops at end.

M - Medium body, creamy, good carb, nice balance with something that could be so sweet.

D - Tasty, but couldn't go too far with it.

Review from 5.12.09 a4 s3.5 t3.5 m3.5 d3.5
Breaking with traditional form here. Deep caramel, not much head, leaves a ring. Not much lacing. Not much in smell - actually almost a sea brine to the malt. Taste is malty but not much there otherwise. Average mouth and drinkability.

All, in all, a decent beer, but not much to write home about.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2009 04:26:17 | More by srandycarter
Photo of jjanega08


3.68/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A= pours a deep brown with amber highlights and a paper thin head with no lacing on it. The head quickly falls to a ring around the glass.
S= some citrus hops covered by a blanket of carmel malt. A little soapy for some reason.
T= the hops are there but covered by the carmel malt. Pretty good but not very interesting
M= very dry and a clean finish.
D= decent. Pretty average brew. Glad I got to try it but average prolly won't get it again.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2009 02:51:54 | More by jjanega08
Photo of PDXHops

South Carolina

3.05/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle, poured into a snifter.

Deep amber see-thru body. A finger of cream colored head quickly recedes to a small skim, but the lacing proves to be pretty good.

Smells very strongly of caramel malt, brown sugar and dark fruity booziness. Hops are bit players, but pine, citrus and some floral notes make an appearance. Very sweet smelling overall, though.

In the mouth, the hops seem to be primarily citrusy. Not so much grapefruit as orange and pineapple. Sweetness dominates again with loads of dark fruit and maltiness. Too much lingering sweetness for me.

Body is on the full side of medium. Moderate carbonation. The finish has lingering sticky sweetness as well as the orange and pineapple.

Overall impression: Interesting brew, but too sweet for my taste. 1 bottle was enough.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2009 15:22:58 | More by PDXHops
Photo of berkey


3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clean, lucid, caramel body with high carbonation. Large off white head with beautiful rings off bright white lacing.

Nose is very sweet. Partially because of the sugary malty alcohol sweetness but much of the sweetness is from the perfumy and fruity citrus hop aroma.

Initial flavor is also sweet but not as much as I thought it might be from the smell. Citrus hops are very much present here as well but are joined by a bit of slightly dry hoppy goodness. This additional hop flavor helps take the edge off the alcohol and keep things from getting too out of balance. Mouthfeel is surprisingly clean, half expected it to be sticky or syrupy because of the sweetness of the smell. Fairly drinkable for the style but still a little too sweet and boozy for
more than a few.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2009 08:59:08 | More by berkey
Photo of mmcary


4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am becoming a big fan of this brewery's beer. Hop Stoopid is just amazing and this one is pretty good as well.

A- Pours a deep red with a one finger head and some pretty good lacing on the glass.

S- I love the smell of this beer, citrus, hops and sugar with a hint of malt. Very similar to Hop Stoopid, but not as hoppy, a little more malt presence as well.

T- Not bad at all, alcohol up front, then the citrusy hops hit followed by a malty sugar cane taste. Very complicated, hard to describe, complex and sweet.

M- This beer is smooth, it goes down very easy, the alcohol is present and it can be a little overpowering, the hops though are fantastic.

D- The alcohol up front makes this go down a little rough. It is really tasty and I am glad I had it. Not sure if I could drink too many in a row, but for a one and done it is not bad.

So far I have had 2 from a sixer, and the second was much different than the first. The first I did not like as much, the second was sweeter, more citrus and the alcohol was in the background. I love the story behind this beer and think it is a good one to have at a bar, not a session beer, but very solid.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2009 20:30:41 | More by mmcary
Photo of MithosYggdrasil


3.28/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this quite lengthy named beer at Sugar Maple in Milwaukee, WI on 5/5/09. On-tap and poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Somewhat clear, somewhat hazy reddish brown with an offwhite head and pretty solid lacing.

Smell: Pretty intense stuff right here. Pretty sweet malts, as well. As for the smell, I smelt all sorts of citrus, with other hints such as caramel, pine and possibly a hint of cinnamon. Really, I am impressed.

Taste: I dunno, it smells better than it tastes. A bit of brown sugar and alcohol that I did not detect in the smell become present in the taste. Anyway,mot to say it isn't good, but it tastes unbalanced. The herbal hops definitely take charge, which is enjoyable to me and other hopheads, of course. However, the end taste is somewhat dry.

Mouthfeel: A bit strange, actually. Good balance, and a lot less heavy than I was expecting!

Drinkability: It's very strong and goes down fast, which is a bit dangerous, especially if you plan on taking down multiple ones. It was average, but I'd take a Censored Copper Ale or their IPA over this beer. It's still worth a shot, as you might be more impressed with the taste than I was and really love it.

Serving type: on-tap

05-08-2009 21:51:34 | More by MithosYggdrasil
Photo of KarlHungus


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

This beer pours a reddish bronze color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes slowly into a firm quarter inch of foam. The aroma is pine resin, grapefruit, and lots of caramel. The taste is like the aroma with the addition of an alcohol presence in the finish. The mouthfeel is full bodied with lively carbonation, and a velvety texture. Overall, this is a nice beer. Although I cannot find anything wrong with it I have a hard time finding what distinguishes it from other American Strong Ales. I would certainly be willing to drink this beer again, but something tells me I will quickly forget it.

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2009 21:12:12 | More by KarlHungus
Photo of belgbeerdrinker


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

a: copper color with little head, white ring around the edges, nice ring of lacing, bubbles around edges
s: mix of sweet malts and citrus hops
t: soft, sweet malts to start followed by a hop burst that finishes crisply along with some alcohol
m: soft and nearly smooth, medium body with carbonation more around the edges
d: actually a pretty smooth brew, just nothing too memorable

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2009 01:17:39 | More by belgbeerdrinker
Photo of AVDeuph


3.05/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

This is my first review, but I figured I gotta start somewhere so here goes:

A: Looks like Autumn in the 1970's. A reddish-brown with some deep, caramelized orange undertones.

S: At first the nose was rubber and alcohol, but upon some mild disturbance some good strong grapes/pencil eraser, however you look at it.

T: Alcohol is clearly present. A very bitter bite, a little overbalanced on that end. Fruitier aromas didn't quite translate to flavor they way I had hoped.

M: Well carbonated with small bubbles that mostly blend together as soon as they hit your mouth. Relatively light for a ale of this gravity.

D: For me, the alcohol is present enough that I'm conscious of it at all times. Not the best characteristic for this category.

Bottom line I liked it, but I'll keep searching out others in the style before I buy this again.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2009 04:48:21 | More by AVDeuph
Photo of Murchmac


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

Pours a little tan head, clear copper tinge with brownish highlights. It's milkshake brings all the boys to the yard.

Malty Malty coco puffs, hops on my coco puffs.

Nice malt profile, nice hops. Just get that perfect blend

Good beer, I remember it being a little maltier back in the day, but still good enough to teach us, but it has to charge.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2009 20:37:04 | More by Murchmac
Photo of Magpie14


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

A: chestnut colored ruby with a touch of orange. The whipped top hoisted a soft mocha color that laced the walls of my glass thoroughly. Overall another nice fizzy concoction by Lagunitas

S: tart fruits of apple and oranges giving way to piney hops with a strong brown sugared malt presence. Smells like it is going to have a bite...if that is possible

T: citrusy, sweet buttery brown sugar, earthy floralesque, and pine laden hops. A soft spoken spiciness is concurrent in the mix. This brew boasts a strong malt propping with a hefty sweetness that melds everything together. I get the taste of mildly tart apples sprinkled with spices and drizzled with caramel
It really reminds me of the Brown Shugga in some respects. It is sweet, malty, fruity and boasting some good hops. This brew has a good balance of flavors and is not too sweet

M: a bit sticky on the tongue and yet retains a good smooth profile. Body is a medium full and washes down in gulps if your not careful. At just over 9% the alcohol is hidden for the most part and is never an issue

D: another great drinker from Lagunitas...yum

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2009 04:48:46 | More by Magpie14
Photo of ThreeWiseMen


4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Clear orange-brown body with light carbonation. Small, foamy, off-white head sits on top. Moderate retention and lacing.

Smell: Sweet moist pine, caramel, resinous hops, spice, and grapefruit. This in an (I)IPA people, not an "American Strong Ale". Some earth and roastiness in there too. Smells pretty damn nice.

Taste: Starts out with creamy toasted malt, some caramel and citrus. Big, resinous, herbal hops take over from there (some citrus mixed in). Quite bitter. Some caramel and pine sap definitely work there way in in the middle. Finishes dry and bitter; alcohol masking is just ok.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, gooey, active, slurgy (that's not a real word, but I think it fits this beer well). Carbonation creates a nice rolling effect across the palate. Very nice mouth-coating; pungent aftertaste hangs around forever. On the full side. Once again, finishes dry and bitter.

Drinkability: Awww yes, drinkability. Wiseman Jorge and I slammed these down like water a couple weeks ago at the beach. Not as slammable as I remember, but still pretty tasty. As with most Lah-goo-knee-tuss brews, beware the ABV.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2009 04:14:01 | More by ThreeWiseMen
Photo of IMincedTheKing

New Jersey

2.98/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours amber with a finger of sturdy, ecru head.

A huge blast of sweet citrus assaults the nose, orange rind and lemon. Obviously hoppy, and the ABV is given away by a trace of alcohol.

Very little hop bitterness is present. It opens with a load of hoppy citrus and caramel malts. That gives way on the swallow to a flavor reminding me of cheap gin, and then a half-gin/half-hop aftertaste lingers. It's almost tasty, but the huge alcohol presence is unforgivable, even at 9%. The mouthfeel is chewy and syrupy with light carbonation.

I don't think I can take any more of this.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2009 06:17:44 | More by IMincedTheKing
Photo of pokesbeerdude


4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up the last six pack of this from Albertson's in Laramie, WY, on sale, for $7. Pretty good deal in my eyes.

A: Light copper, dark amber, with a tan head that only popped up to about half an inch. Receded to a film with a few bubbles, excellent lacing. Crystal clear. A few lazy bubbles moving around in there. Nice looking beer.

S: Big whiff of citrus, and pine, nice huge caramel malt smells as well, pretty "dank" smelling as well. Slight booze smell as well. Not overly WOW, but still a nice, strong smelling beer.

T: Wow, this is a lot better than I remember the first bottle, big time pine and citrus hop, lots of resins as well, malt is a lot less pronounced, sweet though, slight caramel, really a hoppy beer, but not really a lot of perceived bitterness. Really an interesting beer. I'm impressed, much more so than the first time.

M: Not as heavy as I expected, big time alcohol heat, pretty light. Somewhat dry, but definitely a hit of alcohol heat.

D: Deceptive beer, all the way around, nothing quite adds up here, great taste, but not much in the nose, weird mouthfeel, alcohol burn, but still I want to drink more of it. This beer would definitely get me in trouble. Interesting beer. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2009 03:56:33 | More by pokesbeerdude
Photo of TheNightbird


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

A- Nice dark reddish color, with a nice fingers worth of carbonation.

S- Lots of carmel and hop aroma. The hops aromas are citrus, pine and floral. There are also some lingering aromas of other fruits. Piney bitterness is also very prevalent.

T- Nice carmel profile with a balanced bitterness. Then the hops take over with a nice touch of grassy and citrus come through. The amount of alcohol is well hidden until the end, the aftertaste is mixed with hops and booze.

M- The mouthful is moderate for the amount of alcohol that is in this beer. Nice carbonation.

D- Overall this is a really nice beer, the strength of the beer could hold down the drinkability to under a six pack.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2009 23:50:04 | More by TheNightbird
Photo of Tone


3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, copper color. 1/2 inch head of a pale tan color. Good retention and good lacing. Smells of strong hops, sweet malt, hint of syrup, yeast, slight citrus, hint of roasted malt, and a hint of citrus. Fits the style of a Strong Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and thick with an average carbonation level. Wow, the body if bold, but not too complex. Strong hops up front, slight alcohol is noticeable, sweet malt, and slight yeast. Overall, good appearance, great aroma, but the blend and complexity are lacking.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2009 06:37:10 | More by Tone
Photo of SFBeerGuy


3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass form a 12oz bottle

A- Poured an mostly clear amber orange with what seemed like a bit a suspended sediment. (seemed unusual for Lagunitas) A 1/4" tan head fell quickly and left some minor lace residue, but not much.

S- Neutral sweet caramel malt nose with traces of grassy hops present.

T- Very smooth malty backbone of caramel and toast supported with a sturdy crutch of earthy, grassy hops that struggle through the mix. Not much spice - very smooth.

M- Warm and full bodied. Hop oils seem to be the only thing helping cut through this otherwise heavy ale.

D- Great nighttime drink. Probably good compliment with a dessert or ice cream. Easy to drink for 9%. Alcohol is hidden very well. Overall and very tasty brew. Mark one more for Lagunitas!!

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2009 04:12:41 | More by SFBeerGuy
Photo of surfer4life


4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A - Pours a light copper, transparent wiht a small head of off white foam. Good Lacing.

S - Good malt backbone on this one, very good sweetness coming through in the form of raisins, and citrus fruits. A good floral boquet from the hops present as well.

T - Charcoaly which combines with the hop bitterness and gives it a unique and wonderful taste. The sweetness on the finish is a bit caramel a bit vanilla and a bit honey, but the up front hoppiness and alcohol on this on is it's ticket home.

M - Mouthfeel is medium body with medium carbonation. Nice a creamy, coats the mouth well with great alcohol warming. Not to drying with a good bite at the end.

D - Very drinkable. Had it on tap a few months ago and I am pleased to say it is just as good from the bottle.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2009 04:30:28 | More by surfer4life
Photo of DavoleBomb


3.23/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter.

3.5 A: Translucent dark orange/amber color. Thick creamy head with average retention and lots of lacing. Some particulate suspended (bottle conditioned?).

4.0 S: Citrus and floral hops. Malty sweetness in the background. Very nice.

3.0 T: Big piney hop flavor. There seems to be some oaky tones as well. Citrus hop flavor follows. More bitterness than I'd like since there isn't a whole lot of malt going on. Not bad, but just okay.

3.0 M: Medium body. Good carbonation. Not as creamy as I'd like and there's a big aftertaste of tannins.

3.0 D: One's enough, but I'm not pissed I drank it.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2009 03:45:06 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of LauraAlberts

South Carolina

4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear amber with off white head

Smell: Honey, Hops

Taste: Bitter at first then honey that is refreshing then bitter again with a warm toasty finish.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, mild tannins, smooth and bitter

Drinkability: Definitely sessionable. Enjoy as a refresher after working in the yard most def.

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2009 18:11:57 | More by LauraAlberts
Photo of FatSean


4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a English-style pint glass.

Ruby-gold color, head the color of bone. The head was only a finger in height but it has hung on for several sips...slowly diminishing but not disappearing. Much of the foam seems to remain clinging to the glass.

Smells of sweet malts and tangy, orangey hops. The smell hints of complexity to come.

The hops are quite present but well balanced by the slightly weaker malt flavors. Upon finishing my sip, the sweet caramel/molasses malt flavors linger on the tounge along with the spicy alcohol. It's not till the finish that one is warned of the potency of this brew.

Mouthfeel is very nice. Solid and hearty. Perhaps a bit too syrupy, so I only gave a 4.

Drinkablity, for style, is very very good. If not for the aformentioned syrupy clinginess of the sweet malt flavors, this would be a 5.0 (as far as American Strong Ales go, anyway).

The sixer is a bit pricey by me...$10.99, but if you like strong ales you should definitely try this one.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2009 23:08:22 | More by FatSean
Photo of ironlung


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

12oz for 2 bucks from up the street. Into roor mug...

A: Perfect amber. Tiny head, leaves quick. Minmal Lace.

S:Spicy/Floral hops. Some malt sweetness. Not as strong as the hops.

T: Hoppy yet smooth. The 9% is completely hidden. Vary balanced and[too]easy to drink.

M: Somewhat crisp at first W/ lingering syrup-sweet notes.

D: This one could cause some trouble. If the label didn't say 9 I would've guessed 6. Thank god for disclosure!

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2009 23:16:30 | More by ironlung
Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 2,767 ratings.