Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale - Lagunitas Brewing Company

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,845 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,845
Reviews: 979
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 10.07%
Wants: 101
Gots: 659 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: GilGarp on 03-10-2009

ABV varies slightly from 9.0 to 9.8
66.6 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,845 | Reviews: 979
Photo of argock
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap in a clear pint glass at Michael's Bistro (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Caramel-amber brown with healthy 1/2 finger tightly bubbled beige head which leaves nice lacing.

S: Malty aromas of toffee and raisins combine with soft earthy hops and nutty, fruity yeast

T: A fine brew that emphasizes subtlety of the malt profile... until the alcohol anvil hits you. Toffee, raisin, and date combines with earthy, mildly floral hoppiness and more of the fruity yeast before the alcohol puts its big foot forward. It lends a fruity, berry presence which doesn't hurt or help the brew thankfully.

M: Smooth and creamy due to the fine carbonation with a mildly nutty, floral hops aftertaste. Goes down very nicely despite the 9+% ABV.

D: Another winner from Lagunitas -- highly drinkable but with power in all the right places. Undercover Shutdown Ale (along with Hairy Eyeball, Brown Shugga, and Maximus (balanced DIPA)) shows that hops is not the only thing they can do well.

Photo of MNJR
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Grainy feel. Toasty caramel, lots of sweetness and prune/berry fruit, and a slight bubblegum flavor. The alcohol taste is virtually not present for such high content. Big and very flavorful. The oily hops linger after the sweetness fades. Unusual, and very good

Photo of ChugginOil
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Undercover Shutdown Ale

Served from a 12oz bottle into a Lagunitas Widemouth mason jar.

This brew appears orangish brown and has a fingers worth of off white head. Rings of lacing cling and mark the spaces between each sip.

The nose is full of those West Coast hops from head to toe. The usual malt present in brown ales is covered up by a citrus and pine bouquet.

The taste differs from the nose because it brings both IPA and brown ale characteristics to the table. First, a hoppy overload nails my palate and then slides into the nutty malt backbone shortly after. A boozy tingle wraps it up.

The mouthfeel is full-bodied and sticky. Bittersweetness is sent throughout the palate with an ample amount of carbonation.

Overall, awesome West Coast spin on a brown ale. Gotta thank good ol' reefer for making this one possible.

Photo of kshankar
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an amber with good levels of carbonation and a small tan foam that leaves plenty of lacing.

Aroma has a biscuit malt presence and plenty of floral and piney hops.

Taste is of the biscuit malts balancing with a somewhat aggressive hop profile. Well done.

Mouthfeel is buttery and creamy, and the carbonation adds a prickly sensation to it as well. Medium bodied

Drinkability is high simply because it tastes so good, but it is a bit high on the ABV.

Photo of shaunb81
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Poured a copper, almost red body with a decent white, 1" head. Medium lacing coats the glass.

Smell - It's definitely fruity (mango or peach). It's also got some sweet malty aromas, some florals and it smells a bit sour after about 10 minutes or so.

Taste - Sweet and fruity malts make it pretty yummy, but it gets a little funky after about 10 minutes. After about 10 minutes though, there wasn't much to grade.

Mouthfeel - Balanced, medium density, and a little creamy. I like it!

Overall - This will definitely put you on your ass after a few of them and it is pretty easy to do so. The hops are nice and I like the fruitiness to the brew as well. Tread carefully, though!

Photo of wagenvolks
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Karma to atsprings for bringing this bottle my way. Bomber into a pint glass.

Pours an amber/copper hue with a 1/2" light tan head. Slight carbonation rises up through the translucent brew, fueling a well-retained head that leaves decent lacing.

I wasn't expecting the aroma; a malty onslaught mixed with big-time caramel notes, a touch of English IPA-style hops, toffee, and brown sugar.

The taste is smooth and sweet, with caramel and toffee malts paving the way. It's not nearly as hoppy as I would've liked (after all, it is a DIPA), but the finish produced a decent bitterness. Body is semi-viscous and perfectly carbonated with a decent bite that makes you perk up and take note. I can't say I'd seek out this one again, as there are many, better double IPA's out there, but it does go down smoothly and drinks amazingly well.

Photo of da_beers
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Love what Lagunitas does, very excited to try this one out.

A - Pours a dark coppery amber color, beautiful chunky head of about three inches, incredible lacing coming down.

S - Sweet malts are very overpowering, not in a negative way tho. Smells almost sticky. Cedar woodiness as well as some citrus hidden away in the back.I

T - Has the distinct Lagunitas hop profile, but ends with a great sweet resiny characteristic. Malts are very present, probably its most distinct taste. Some pineapple/tropical fruit as well. Kind of a bit boozy, but not too bad.

M - Its quite smooth and buttery I would say, on the heavier side of medium bodied - you definitely know you're drinking an ale here.

O - Overall I really enjoyed this American Strong Ale. Not my favorite by Lagunitas, but that isn't saying much because they generally kick ass.

Photo of northaustin
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

i was lucky enough to have experienced this "sneak release" it was great. a nice double hopped i.p.a. a little more carbonated than i would have liked but no biggie. the story behind it is cool and i feel honored to have gotten to try it. i bought three six packs of it so if anyone wants some within the next month or so then let me know.

Photo of RonfromJersey
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Red orange body, good clarity but with a degree of thickness to it, mild but steady caronation streams, all topped by three fingers of sticy, rocky, lively froth which rose above the rim.

Aroma bursting with fresh bread, sugar cookies, apricots, and sweet alcohol.

Sticky sweet malt slathers the tongue at first. Hops build and bite with enough authority to achieve balance with that thick malt just before the swallow. Earthy and herbal hops as opposed to the typical citrus notes.

Thick and rich mouthfeel oozes throughout. Big beer with solid drinkability.

Overall a nice effort which might have veered a bit toward Old ale/Strong ale or barleywine during an eight month hiatus as it was lost in my cellar with a few friends.

Photo of Tilly
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark copper colour. Malt, some citrus and mild pine aroma.
Tastes like strong sweet malt, grapefruit just a hint of pine.
Mouth feel is mildly tart with a nice bitterness at the end.
Potent but not predictable
A great offering from Lagunitas.

Photo of hijjt
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a red/amber color with a good sized tan head.

Smell: Hoppy citrus smell with a hint of banana, and a touch of alcohol.

Taste: Not nearly the bitterness of a double IPA, the hops is there, however the malty sweetness easily takes over the flavor. Citrus hoppiness and slight bitterness is quickly taken over by the strong caramel malt. The alcohol is easily masked even for its high content.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth, the carbonation is masked and doesn't overpower.

Drinkability: Good drinkability, more than expected.

Overall, I really liked it; I am not sure that it fits in the genera in which it was placed here, but definitely worth a try.

Photo of larryarms847
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance is bright orange and looks like it packs a punch. Good amount of foam, very well carbonated, clearly.

Smells of pine, lemon zest, so basically Pinesol, but the hoppiness gives it a even balance to the citrus.

Tastes very lemony, definite pine notes, alcohol not very well hidden, but that's okay.

Mouthfeel is a fizzy alcoholic punch.

Overall one of my favorite Lagunitas choices, I buy it when I see it.

Photo of david18
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had a twelve ounce pour of this at the Amsterdam Ale HOuse on Manhattan's upper west side. Strong ales are one of my favorite beer styles but not necessarily in the summer. It's also not the best strong ale from a brewery that has a lot of different versions of the style.

Dark brown color, good carbonation, very good aroma (malty and hoppy). ABV is high but the flavor is well balanced.

Photo of bonsreeb85
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is that of a cherry cola colored liquid with crimson red along the sides of the glass and an ivory head to top it off.

The aroma factor is a big-un. Hop forward, barleywine sweetness. Tons of caramel, fruits(cherry/tangerine) leafy and citrus hops with a touch of pine.

The flavor follows the nose's lead. Very rich malt backs this insanely hopped(citrus mostly) brew. A good amount of cake sweetness in the middle, but the hops close the show and linger on the taste buds.

Medium bodied. hop oils leave it a bit slippery. moderate carbonation. nice.

Very rich, but tasty and overall quite drinkable despite high abv.

Photo of Titans77
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a pint glass. 2013 bottle.

A - Amber verging on a brown with a finger of light khaki head that vanished rather quickly.

S - toffee, caramel, and a bit of pine on the nose. More toffee than anything else. Reminds me of an english barleywine.

T - Big toffee and caramel malt base that pops just like a barleywine. Some hop bitterness on the back end in the form of earthy pine notes. Very good taste to this one.

M - Mild carbonation with a sweet finish. Again, very reminiscent of an english barleywine. A slight warming from the 9.6% abv which really feels good this time around.

O - A very good brew that showcases what Lagunitas does well. For $10 a six pack at 9.6% abv, this beer is already a steal. It seems to be more of an english barleywine to me even with the slight presence of hops. If aged, i could see this thing being a VERY good english barleywine. Ive gotten so used to high alcohol beers being masked by flavors that now that I can feel the warming again, I kinda miss that aspect. Very good brew. Pick it up if you can find it. I am going to age a couple and drink them in 6 months and 1 year to see what happens.

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4.04/5  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.

Photo of hopoilcrazy
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - Amber and transparent clarity. Two finger head dissolves to a nitre lace

S - Spicy hops, cloves, cinnamon, red apple, musty, cognac

T - Juicy hops: mango, peach, guava. Roasty malt body. Semi-dry with a lingering Columbus-y bitterness

M - Mouth watering hop oil coat. Medium body with a firm alcohol burn that does not overwhelm

Photo of DollarCan
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

nice amber orange with a frothy off white head.
Brown sugar sweetness toast and some faint fruity notes as well as some pine from hops.
sweet yet bitter at the same time. candy like sugar mixed with some hop bitterness.
some alcohol creeps into the finish, but leaves you with some hop bitterness.

Photo of whoneeds8
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Great Divide glass a transparent amber-brown with a thick froathy white head. Great head retention as it's not disappearing and great lacing. The scent is strong with carmel sweetness and some floral hops mixed in. The taste is much like a weak barley wine. There is strong carmel malts with brown sugar flavors and a nice amount of hoppy bitterness in the after taste.

Photo of MeadGuyfromMD
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Beautiful Coppery Amber color, with a fluffy, off-white head.

S - Sweet resiny hop aroma and some caramel maltiness and hint of toffee.

T - Big sweet hop and caramel flavors a tad bit of spice on the back of the tongue and a hint of citrus.

M - Nicely carbonated, light - medium. Medium body that finishes fairly clean, but the resiny feel lingers.

D - Big, strong and hoppy. I could easily have a second, but would probably stop there, not because I want to, but because I would;t be able to enjoy a third 9.75$ beer.

Overall, I really enjoy this one and would easily recommend it others.

Photo of Chiefy770
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 fluid oz brown bottle
Bottled on February 27th, 2015
Reviewed on April 23rd, 2015
Served in a Lagunitas jar

Poured a copper body with a nice amber glow. Generous off-white head, well over an inch. Ample amount of sticky white lacing clung to the sides of the glass.

Sweet notes of caramel glazed malts were the dominant character of the nose. Tangier notes of sweet citrus, think mild grapefruit and orange peel, stood out as well. Slight hint of herbs spice.

Dense hit of sweet malts up front. Caramel and molasses. Sharper notes of citrus and pine quickly cut through the malts. Finished semi-dry with a slight hint of alcohol. Medium bodied. Moderate/low carbonation.

Another great offering from Lagunitas. Price point is right around fifteen cents an ounce in the Chicago area, a heck of a value in my book.

Photo of jbone78
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had this several times, but just now got around to rating it. Pours an amber color with a frothy head. not bad. smells hoppy, but what lagunita's beers don't? with an abv over 9%, you can taste it. it is subtle, but you can tell it is stiff. I would say this one is a borderline Imperial amber, but with 9%.


Photo of ppoitras
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased as a single from Julio's, Marlboro, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1" beige head over the clear coppery amber brew. Head lasts well, with tons of sticky lace froth. Aroma is fresh citrusy hops with twinges of pine as well. Taste is ample maltiness to start, which is quickly balanced and overpowered a bit by the dominant hops flavor. Particularly the pine lingers, and there is warming after toughts as well. Mouthfeel is a bit prickly due to the strength of hops character, but this one remains plenty drinkable.

Photo of themind
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The brew is good! now I am not saying this is a legendary beer but it was good. This monster has a 9.6 ABV that is hidden well and I am now on my Secccndnddss beeeer. So I reaaaallly think you shooould try thiiis beeerrr.

Bottom Line: Shut her down and slam it!

In the word's of Rick Flair-Wooo!

Photo of mvanaskie13
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into a chalice, color is copper, head is off white to very light tan, head presents less than 1/2 inch thick then dissipates to a thing top reappearaing with some agitation.

Smell is big on the booze upfront, estery, as some have indicated a slight belgian spice profile to at as well from the hop and high abv. Very subtle malt sweetness and then big hop bitterness, mostly heavy pine and earthiness.

Taste is also boozy upfront, esters and potency, but all well balanced with the sweetness and bitterness, pine heavy flavor with some grapefruit kicking up as it warms.

Mouthfeel is actually very good for the strength, very balanced with the sweetness and dryness of the malt and hops, respectively.

Overall, great brew, again from lagunitas.

Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 3,845 ratings.