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Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale) - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale)Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

8,496 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,496
Reviews: 1,362
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 9.89%
Wants: 455
Gots: 1,329 | FT: 26
Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  7.85% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jules11788 on 11-07-2011

This sad holiday season we didn’t have the brewing capacity to make our favorite seasonal brew, the widely feared BrownShugga’ Ale. You see we had a couple of really good years (thank you very much) and so heading into this season while we are awaiting the January delivery of a new brewhouse we are jammin’ along brewing 80 barrels of IPA and PILS and such every 3 hours. A couple of months back we realized that since we can only brew a mere 60 barrels of Shugga’ every 5 hours, that we were seriously screwed. For every case of Shugga’ brewed, we’d short 3 cases of our favorite daily beers. It’s a drag. This year, we brewed something that we think is also cool and brews more like our daily brews. The new brewhouse will help insure this kind of failure never happens again. It’s a mess that we can not brew our BrownShugga’ this year and we suck for not doing it. There is nothing cool about screwing this up this badly and we know it. Maybe we can sue our own sorry selves. There is no joy in our hearts this holiday and the best we can hope for is a quick and merciful end. F*@& us. This totally blows. Whatever. We freaking munch moldy donkey butt and we just want it to be all over...
So this substitute beer is a ‘Cereal Medley’ of Barley, Rye, Wheat, and Oats…. Full of complexishness from the 4 grains, and weighing in at 7.85% abv, Then joyously dry-hopped for that big aroma and resinous hop flavor.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 8,496 | Reviews: 1,362 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Tucquan:
Photo of Tucquan
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Had this in a bottle on 2012-01-05 in Columbia, PA, on-tap on 2013-01-12 in Reading, PA at Canal Street Pub, on 2014-01-11 on-tap at The Fridge in Lancaster, PA and on 2014-11-07 in a quart bottle in Columbia, PA (very fresh and enjoyable).

A - Very clear straw-orange with a 2-finger pillowy white head and decent lacing.

S - Equal doses of mango and pine and throw in some oily hop bud fumes and you'll know how good this smells. Not quite in Heady-Topper league but getting there.

T - Hop forward featuring pine first then a touch of pale malt, pineapple, grapefruit flesh, some mint, very ripe melon, and oodles of gooey hop bud oils. It's like you dropped a handful of hop cones in a blender with some water, a piece of bread, a thin slice of honeydew melon and a whole grapfruit and liquified it. Where's the alcohol? It must be hiding behind the hop cones. Lingering flavor of dank hop buds, spice/pepper and grapefruit bitterness. Bold. Reminds me a bit of a Fat Head's Head Hunter in its dankness, barely supported by the malt. I'm glad there is some residual sweetness to support the 63 IBUs.

M - Medium body and carbonation. Smooth, resinous and quite prickly. More substantial than a Head Hunter.

O - see notes below from 2012, 2013, and 2014

From 2012: Looks like we have a winner. I can't think of a reason Lagunitas wouldn't want to keep this in regular rotation. It was interesting to learn in a BA forum post from Lagunitas that their very best crop of hops had been used for this brew and future batches couldn't help but be a bit different and the beer would likely appear under a new name.

From 2013: The hop aroma and flavor dropped off fairly quickly (within 6 weeks) in the first and second releases so it is important to drink this fresh.

From 2014-01-11: This is a very flavorful brew with a bold, dank hop presence. Not as bitter as a Head Hunter and not quite as much caramel. I had them side-by-side and prefer the Head Hunter, which is also a bit brighter and a tad less dank. The sweetness on Sucks comes more from the ripe tropical fruit/melon side. I think the 2014 is just about as good as the original 2012 version although my tastes have shifted in the last couple of years so the amount of dankness exhibited by this brew is less desirable to me than it was 2 years ago. Even so, I'm glad to know this will become a more regular release as the new brewery comes online in Chicago.

From: 2014-11-07 This batch isn't as dank as the batch from last January and I'm enjoying it more. There's still plenty of hop flavor; no doubt. It may be a touch sweeter too, which helps emphasize the fruit flavor. I'm digging the quart bottle for sure! Flashback to a time when it was common to buy beer (70's) in quarts. This is ever-so-much better in the quart format than anything I was having then except; for Ballantine IPA into 1972. That was good stuff too.

More User Reviews:
Photo of TimZebGir
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Jungle in the summer,
Mango plantation someone smoking,
Marijuana on the porch,
The sweetness puts feet on the ground,
The hops take me away.

A: Pours a clear amber with a very thick head, that retains very well, receding almost like soap bubbles (3/3)
S: Mango and pine dominate with a good deal of floral and marijuana notes speckled throughout (10/12)
T: Sweetness in the beginning with a tropical fruit basket toward the end: mango, stone fruit, and a little grapefruit (18/20)
M: Starts very wet and sweet with a medium amount of dryness on finish (5/5)
O: One of my favorite IPAs, and certainly my favorite for what it is: a well-balanced sweetness to complement the hoppy character. Could certainly drink every day. (9/10)
45/50

Photo of largadeer
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle into a tulip. According to the Julian date on the bottle neck, this is about 3 weeks old.

Clear, bright orange with a golden tint. The head is sticky, lasting.

Following the trend of the last few Lagunitas IPAs, this has a big mouthwatering dry hop presence. Heavy on the tropical fruit, it brings to mind guava, pineapple and melon, with faint honeysuckle behind the bold fruit notes. Sweetness is moderate, and integrates nicely with the hops.

The palate is a slight letdown from the great aroma, but that's not to say it isn't good. It's quite subdued and dry; it could actually use a touch more sweetness to highlight the fruitiness of the hops. Citrus is dominant, pineappe in particular with more grapefruit toward the finish. There's a slight chalkiness to the mouthfeel, but it's a minor detraction to an otherwise very clean beer. Remarkably easy to drink, the malt doesn't lend much heft and bitterness is fairy mild.

Overall this doesn't quite live up to some of the draft-only specialties Lagunitas did last year (Waldos, SF Fusion), but it's a damn good beer and an outstanding value.

Photo of tectactoe
4.36/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a pale, golden straw color with a very nice amount of clarity - only a very, very subtle amount of haze in the middle of the beer, but you can definitely see right through this one. Volatile on the pour, producing a gigantic, fluffy white head that lasts seemingly for days and leaves behind some fat lacing.

The aroma is fantastic, a convolution of wonderful hop aromas; light pine, heavy citrus, pineapple, pears, orange zest, and various other tropical fruits. Very juicy and fruity on the nose, broken up only by the slight pine, resin, and leafy notes that play just a bit-part here.

The taste is jam packed with many different things, even some things that weren't so detectable on the nose. Pine and resin are the first thing to hit your palate, but the profile quickly transforms; citrus, pineapple, pears, toast and crackers, buttery bread, slight onion, a touch of herbal tea and a faint hint of alcohol near the finish.

Bitterness is high, but tamed, expected, and welcomed. The malt flavors combine well with the hop profile and turn this beer into a very drinkable IPA. Slightly sweet finish, a bit dry and finishing with a faint bitterness over the fading malt construction. Medium bodied with a heavy dose of carbonation that really snaps the tongue at times.

Delicious beer, right here. Lagunitas knows their way around an IPA (see: Hop Stoopid) and this beer is no exception. A wonderfully fruity nose and a well-balanced body, complete with heavy hop bitterness and dry, bready malt, this IPA is sure to please any hop head. Wish it were more readily available.

Photo of brentk56
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color (looks like a pils) with a creamy cap that leaves a few shards behind

Smell: Floral citrus, with pineapple and ruby red grapefruit tones

Taste: A hop bomb from the get-go, with citrusy flavors redolent of ruby red grapefruit and pineapple; slightly sugary, after the swallow, but the hops return to provide a bitter, citrusy finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate, but crisp, carbonation

Overall: The malts provide a neutral backdrop for the hops to work their magic and that is a great thing for a Double IPA to accomplish

Photo of dmgeng
4.77/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I love everything from Lagunitas and anything in a 32oz bottle is worth a try!

A - Beautiful color somewhere between gold and orange. Fluffy bright white head and lacing that tracks down the side of the beer.

S - Great hop aroma with predominantly citrus but definitely some tropical fruits and some of the dankness that I've grown to love. Really just a hop showcase and really no other aromas.

T - Lots of hop flavor ranging from the orange-like citrus to tropical fruit to herbal wrapped up in one beautiful package. The beer has a very subtle malt flavor in the middle with a nice middle finish and a perfect bitterness. There is also a light acidity from the carbonation that helps make the hops come alive. It's a very tasty IIPA as far as flavor.

M - Medium mouth-feel. The carbonation was strong trying to make up for the increase in body but it added an almost acidic hint which to my palate made the flavors seem like they were popping on your tongue. It finishes pretty crisp with the bitterness and carbonation queuing you up for another sip (since there is 32oz).

Overall, a delicious DIPA that drinks more like an IPA than a DIPA but with all the hops of the imperial. This Lagunitas' offering is very similar to their IPA and their "Hop Stoopid" ale but has a twist of its own hop greatness. I strongly recommend this and definitely look forward to getting this again next year.

Glass- 20oz craft pub glass

Photo of oberon
4.45/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I like this offering more than Brown Shugga I gotta say.Poured into an imperial nonic a clear rich light to medium golden with a creamy 1/2 finger white head atop.Big pith citric hops in the nose,the aromas really jump out at ya,pine lends more hop complexity,a sweetish malt base is also well represented,light sugary sweet alcohol as well.To me this is almost DIPAish on the palate,big citric juicy hops over top of a sugary sweet base,the good thing here is the hops are much bigger than the sweetness.This is a great beer,maybe a DIPA mini-me,this is some good hop juice here.

Photo of don1481
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of mojohawk21
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of aszatk01
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of DanGeo
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of ExtraStout
3.95/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appears a light light peachy apricot with a hint of ruby to it. It almost looks like an apricot sucking candy. There's a very fluffy head, about half an inch, that is covering it entirely. I'm a bit surprised that a double IPA is coming in this light in color.

Smells Wonderful. Crazy tropical fruits here: pineapple, mango, and a little tangerine. Really nice and not too overpowering.

Taste is much more subtle than its nose. Extremely clean - maybe too much? I wish that its flavors were stronger.

Its mouthfeel is very crisp and short-lived. Here and gone in a second.

A good beer but definitely not what everyone is making it out to be. This is far from a Pliny and no where near a Heady Topper in my opinion. At the same time, I'd also rather have a Brown Sugga.

Photo of t2grogan
3.5/5  rDev -19.5%

Photo of Diana
1/5  rDev -77%

Photo of OhioBobcat
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of MadScientist
4.62/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: A golden beer with good clarity. A good head stand of mostly creamy, compact bubbles with a few big ones as well. The head is persistent

S: The huge citrus hops aroma ranks right up there with some of the best that I've had like Heady Topper, Ithaca IPA and Hoptimum. The hops aroma is strongly of citrus, pineapple and some mango along with a moderate herbaceous note from the dry hopping. There is a moderately light malt sweetness and a light alcohol aroma.

T: A very strong hops bitterness with a whole lot of hop flavor that reflects the aroma with strong citrus and pineapple moderate mango and grassy notes. The malt gives a clean, moderately-light sweetness. The balance is very bitter but not aggressively so. The finish is dry and the aftertaste is of a lingering hops bitterness.

M Medium bodied with moderate carbonation and a bit of creaminess.

O: One heck of Double IPA, just a work of art. A happy, hoppy accident for certain!

Photo of CavemanRamblin
4/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Zakk
3.5/5  rDev -19.5%

Photo of jono0101
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of brownbeer
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of npala86
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of jonpne
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of hbensinger
4.36/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle.

A- Pours a very light golden color with a thin white foam head that leaves a few rings of lace.

S- Great floral and tropical smells in the nose.

T- A good deal of bitterness upfront with a nice smooth fruity hop flavor present throughout. Pear, pinneapple, lemon, and red grapefruit all make an appearance. The finish is slightly sweet and actually balances this brew quite nicely. The hop flavor isn't as pungent as the nose lead me to believe but I enjoy the complexity more than an all out one dimensional hop bomb. Even at nearly 8% the alcohol doesn't show up much at all in the flavor profile.

M- Light bodied with good carbonation.

O- This was quite a tasty brew and I'm lucky to have gotten some when I did as they were unable to brew it this year.

Photo of Schlais
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of Tedwarhc
5/5  rDev +14.9%

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Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale) from Lagunitas Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 8,496 ratings.