Waldo's Special Ale - Lagunitas Brewing Company
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Ratings: 290 | Reviews: 58 | Display Reviews Only:
3.03/5 rDev -29.9%
Was excited to try this given its placement among the Top 50 DIPAs as well as its very-limited-edition status – I didn’t think it left the state of California -- and managed to have a pour last week at The Blind Tiger.
Appearance: Very dark for a double IPA, more of an amber hue than one would expect.
Smell: Malty, sweet, barleywine-esque.
Taste: This is a barleywine masquerading as a DIPA. While it certainly has a robust, full, malty flavor, almost none of the characteristics I look for in a DIPA are present, and the sweetness of the malt totally dominates any hop flavors that might be present.
Mouthfeel: Again, this is a heavy beer, highly carbonated and very much drinks like a 10.5% beer.
Overall: This might be the first beer I’ve ever had from Lagunitas that didn’t blow me away. I’ve also mellowed on barleywines some, and so some bias may be present, but given that this beer is being called a DIPA it definitely missed the mark for me.
04-30-2013 14:41:55 | More by LarryK
3.04/5 rDev -29.6%
Pours a dark copper color with mahogany edges and a one finger, frothy off-white head that slowly settles into a lasting ring. Glass is left coated with streaks of soapy lacing. Looks great!
Dank floral hop aroma with a decent balance of tropical fruit, earthy grass and sweet malt. Malt presence is a bit stronger than expected with lots of caramel and toffee sweetness along with some dark fruit and cracker.
Full bodied and surprisignly malty for the style. Again, there is a lot of caramel sweetness along with fig, vinous fruit and biscuit. The strong malt character takes away from the hops too much for my liking. Also, the hop profile is kind of one dimensional with dry bitterness lingering throughout. Needs some sweetness to cut through. All dry, earthy bitterness with prominent grass and pine needle flavors. Lacks balance and complexity. A rare miss from Lagunitas.
11-14-2013 01:40:44 | More by corby112
3.26/5 rDev -24.5%
On tap at Hamilton's Tavern. Served in a bar chalice glass. Dark orange/amber and very hazy, a thin line of off white foam. Good retention and nice rings of lacing left on the glass.
Caramel malt, deeper notes of toffee and red fruit. Hops are dank with copious amounts of pine, canned peaches and orange citrus. Huge sweetness and booze on the back end.
Much like the nose, heavy honey bread, caramel and heavy doses of vinous fruit. Malt dominance is briefly cut by the pine and resiny forward hops that have a dull background of citrus and a grassy edge. One dimensional hops aren't enough to balance the sweetness and a medium bitterness and hot alcohol wash out through the finish.
Burdensome body with average carbonation. This beer should not be this boozy with the amount of malt that is here, also lacks drying. More bright flavors and bitterness would be useful.
Call me naive, I didn't know Waldo's Special was the Lagunitas 4.20 beer. So this DIPA is a month old, I just thought Lagunitas + IPA = winner. A big bodied and boozy DIPA, one dimensional profile and sluggish body doesn't help it either. Maybe if it wasn't 90+ degrees out I would like it more. Had to pass the glass around to get this one finished
05-12-2014 00:04:20 | More by rawfish
3.38/5 rDev -21.8%
On tap at Beer Revolution in Oakland.
A - Nice warm brown with a warmed single finger head that departed quickly.
S - Hopsextravaganza. That good. This baby is loaded with piney strength. Think boreal forest.
T - really heavy hitter with lots of weight. This is not a beer for the delicate palette. Lots of malt and lots of hops. Doesn't hold a candle to the Hop Stoopid, which is just a much nicer, more balanced beer without the kick in the arse.
M - heavy. maybe a touch syrup-y. Felt slightly under carbonated.
O - Let me start by saying that Lagunitas is my favorite brewery. This beer feels slightly overdone. Too much, too think, too big for my taste even as an imperial IPA. Sorry Lagunitas, I think this one isn't as desirable as many others you brew.
04-22-2011 04:33:08 | More by lechroy
3.53/5 rDev -18.3%
On tap at the Parish Publick House in Santa Cruz. Poured into a nice Sierra Nevada tulip glass. Bright tangerine color with a thick off-white head. Aroma is sweet and succulent with lots of caramel, orange, and lesser notes of stone fruit. Flavor is much the same. Rather sweet and sticky with rich caramel malts along with the sweet fruitiness of the aroma. Thick and slightly boozy. A dry DIPA with this hop character would be good, and a barleywine with this malt character would be good. But I don't want both in one beer. It's not bad at all. It's just too sweet for me. A definite improvement on some of their previous unbearable IPAs though.
05-21-2011 07:54:07 | More by illidurit
3.58/5 rDev -17.1%
Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA
Clear dark, burnt orange. Creamy, near-white head. A sticky beer.
Sweet crystal and caramel malts, biting citrus character, and some pine. Very hoppy, but also balanced by lots of sweet malt character as well.
The flavor is similar to the aroma. Sweet caramel and pine notes combine nicely, with biting, stinging citrus notes. Sweet biscuits and floral.
Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.
Tasty, but I wish Churchill's had served this beer a couple months earlier, as this beer was brewed to be enjoyed on 4/20. Perhaps I would have enjoyed it more if I'd had it 2 more months fresh.
06-08-2013 15:29:04 | More by ehammond1
3.66/5 rDev -15.3%
Served on-draught into a pilsner glass last night at Sunset Beer Co. Cost was $8.00. Reviewed from notes. Expectations were high given the brewery and this beer's current ratings.
A: Pours a half finger head of beige colour, decent cream, pretty decent thickness, and awful (~10 second) retention. Body colour is a clear tropical orange-amber. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. An arresting attractive vibrant hue. I can't wait try it. A damned impressive appearance for the style - excluding the lack of good retention.
Sm: Tropical fruit - including juicy citrus. Evocative floral hop character. Complex and deep. Quite inviting. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable. Light oily hop character. Some grapefruit zest. A moderate strength aroma. Some subtlety. A lovely aroma overall for an (imperial) IPA.
T: Lots of juicy citrus fruit and floral hop character. Gushing fruit - mango, tangerine, clementine, bright currant. Alcohol is noticeable but it isn't hot or boozy. Just a touch imbalanced. The usual distinctive Lagunitas hop oil note is present, but a bit more tame than I expected - certainly more restrained than in Sucks or IPA. There's a lot of flavour here. Adequate pale malts provide needed countering sweetness and a strong body. Nectary and sugary. Not piney at all. I'd prefer it with more oily character. Tasty, but the lack of balance is far from ideal. Not a lot of depth or subtlety, but good complexity. I'd like to see them bring the ABV down while retaining the flavours.
Mf: Smooth and wet. Lightly oily. Clean. Crisp. Good presence on the palate. Good thickness. Good carbonation. Smacky.
Dr: I had high expectations for this one, and while it doesn't disappoint, it also doesn't impress. Quite downable even if the noticeable alcohol does bring drinkability down a bit. Another good but not great beer from Lagunitas. I'd get it again, but honestly I may prefer Lagunitas IPA just for simple easy drinking. I wouldn't want more than three of these in a single night. Not worth seeking out, but very worthwhile if you chance across it.
05-23-2013 20:49:23 | More by kojevergas
3.68/5 rDev -14.8%
On tap at Beer Revolution. Pours a clear, light amber with a two finger white head that has very good retention and leaves a huge amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma is huge weed, some orange peel, grapefruit, and some light caramel malt. Definitely the dankest smelling beer that I've had. The initial taste is relatively sweet with dank hops. There is also some light floral hops, grapefruit, as well as some apricot. A bit of caramel malt as well. The finish is dry with a decent bitterness. Full bodied. Medium carbonation. Overall a pretty enjoyable beer. They certainly succeeded in creating a really dank beer for 4/20.
05-03-2011 08:21:04 | More by jethrodium
3.79/5 rDev -12.3%
Appearance- Received with about half a finger's worth of head which has okay retention. The head is pure cotton white while the body is a pale to medium amber which appears as a pale amber in the light. Some lacingis left behind.
Nose- Starts off with a pretty even blend of citrus (orange, lemon, and grapefruit), peaches, slight hints of cherry, and caramel that tends toward a slightly burnt quality. Slight grassiness; dank. As it opens up, peach takes over and at points, it smells like freshly sliced peaches. Some honey, floral notes. Tropical fruits as well. Swirling reveals light grassiness and some herbal qualities.
Taste- This appears to be a mix of the newer style of IIPAs and the old style: a blend of bright citrus (orange and lemon), matchstick, tropical fruits, and a good amount of pine and resin on the finish. Some earwax, woodiness, and cracked pepper. Some cherry but none of the dominant peach of the nose and that's a shame. The more and more I drink this, the more it tastes old school. It's almost ashy and burnt from the profusion of pine, resin, and woodiness. This will definitely hit the spot with hopheads but for fans of Sucks, this might be a turn off. Beers like that have definitely changed my palate and have made beers like this one less enjoyable. Most fruit notes fade into the background as straight up lupulin takes over the palate. A solid, good beer and pretty good for the style that it is but I just can't rank it as highly as many others have. Too much of an earwax beer for me and something I would have loved 5 years ago. I'm very glad that I didn't get a growler of this last week.
Mouthfeel- Between light and medium bodied with appropriate carbonation. Maybe a little zing.
Drinkability- A bit of a task for me because of its focus on the more bitter hops but still pretty drinkable for such a beer. Four dollars is okay for a 12 oz pour of an imperial but seems a little expensive for a Lagunitas brew. But this is Apex and I don't think this is ever bottled.
Overall- A solid, good beer which would probably be great if the strong peach of the nose had any presence on the flavor profile. It would also be nice if there were more caramel and malt to balance out the sometimes simplistic hop presence. Still worth a try but I probably wouldn't get this again.
04-28-2014 20:29:48 | More by artoolemomo
Waldo's Special Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 290 ratings.