1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

7,518 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 7,518
Reviews: 1,284
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 9.63%
Wants: 369
Gots: 888 | FT: 22
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:
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 added by: Jules11788 on 11-07-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale) Alström Bros
Ratings: 7,518 | Reviews: 1,284 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of scottyshades
4.93/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a semi hazy amber color with a frothy/creamy white cap. Retention is excellent.

S: Wow, did not expect this! The aroma is mostly citrus, tropical fruit (pineapple, maybe mango), and sweetish. Kind of similar to Sculpin to me. Very impressive and nicely balanced.

T: Hop bomb...pineapple, grapefuit, mango, orange. There is a sweetness that balances the bitterness of the hops and strikes a real nice balance. This is the best beer that is widely available by far.

MF/D: Medium body (thought this was a single IPA at first), semi-aggressive carbonation, and a clean citrus finish.

Notes: Sorry Brown Shugga', move over for your replacement

scottyshades, Jan 11, 2012
Photo of Nordstrand
4.93/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Good god people - Lagunitas makes an awesome IPA and pretty damn good Pils but this is something special.

A: Yellowish gold, mild head - nothing special

S: A barrel of wet hops in the heart of a pine forest

T: Imagine you're Jew from the book of Exodus - you've been trying to get out of the desert for 39 years and 364 days and finally realize you've found the promised land. Taste like that would feel.

M: Crisp and amazing

O: Overwhelming hops taken to a sophisticated level. Try and get your hands on some!

Nordstrand, Dec 10, 2011
Photo of paultierney1
4.93/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Brothers: Are you kidding me? There's a 9 point difference between you and us and you're on the wrong side of history. SUCKS is amazing. And factoring in the very reasonable price and the fact that it can ACTUALLY BE FOUND on shelves, it's one of the best. The nose: 5. Taste 5. For hopheads, the battle is between Enjoy By and Sucks. And I'm from the Midwest. California: we give up!! You win. (Hate to say it.)

paultierney1, Mar 11, 2013
Photo of MaineBrewing
4.93/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - poured a clear golden color,slight orange hue. 2 finger light head with some large bubbles. Head lasted for a few mins, then died to a nice frothy cap. Sticky lacing lasts throughout.

S - ridiculous amount of hops in the nose, almost smells like I would imagine the color green smells. Smells like sticking my nose in a bag of hop pellets before throwing them in the kettle. Piney, citrus, resinous, bright, and floral mmmm. That's it. Sweetness too, but not really much malt, no yeast or alcohol bouquet. So delicous smelling, and very intense hopppiness, straight up 5 on this aspect.

T - Great taste, very bright, citrusy, piney flavoring hops dominate, slight cereal malt backbone to keep it all in check, finishes with only an ever so slight bitterness that actually grows in intensity after it lingers for a few. Very clean taste, not getting any yeast profile or even any alcohol, just amazing hop character with a good balance of sweet malt.

M - medium body, there's a lot of carbonation but at the same time it is very smooth. Finishes very crisp. Very quenching and enjoyable.

O - overal to be blunt, hands down better than Maximus and should replace it in their year round lineup. I don't care if it's been brewed since 96, this is a better DIPA and I want more. top of my list of DIPAs so far.

MaineBrewing, Apr 07, 2013
Photo of MJKerr
4.93/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Pours out beautifully clear gold with a thick tight soapy head that clings to the glass with webby lacing. Smell is a huge hit of citrus and pine, with just a hint of hay. Taste is all citrus and pine. Massive orange, grapefruit pith and lemon zest. Full and silky smooth but still refreshing. Very clean and tasty. A nice change of pace from other West Coast DIPAs that tend to be much maltier.

MJKerr, Mar 19, 2014
Photo of distvan
4.93/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Nice copper color with good amount of white bubbly head that sticks around.

S: orange, pineapple, honey citrus smell with subtle scents of hops in the background.

T: tastes sweet and not overly bitter. Very smooth and drinksable

M: Medium bodied tith good level of carbonation.

O: One of the most enjoyable iipa I've ever had. It's dangerously drinkable

Serving type: bottle

distvan, Feb 05, 2012
Photo of PJL234506
4.92/5  rDev +12.8%

PJL234506, Aug 24, 2014
Photo of wpb109
4.92/5  rDev +12.8%

wpb109, Saturday at 06:34 PM
Photo of Rwarner367
4.92/5  rDev +12.8%

Rwarner367, Sep 07, 2014
Photo of Rage-83
4.92/5  rDev +12.8%

Rage-83, Aug 31, 2014
Photo of Chief1178
4.92/5  rDev +12.8%

Chief1178, Sep 21, 2014
Photo of Kisejohn
4.91/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Lagunitas Sucks 12 ounce bottle

Aroma: Huge citrus nose. Grapefruit, lemons, some pine. A slight malty sweetness present.

Appearance: golden, clear with one finger of head.

Flavor: Grapefruit and lemons predominate. Some malty sweetness to balance. Bitter finish that lingers. Exceeded my expectations.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly light for a nearly 8 percent ABV beer. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Lagunitas excels at hop forward beers and Sucks is one of the Crown Jewels. I bought two six packs and will be back to get more before its gone. Highly recommended for all hop heads. Buy it while you can!

Kisejohn, Feb 05, 2013
Photo of reebtaerG
4.91/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured 12oz bottle into new Belguim globe glass

A-wonderful golden color with a one finger head that stays nice lacing

S-in your face aromas soon as you crack open the bottle. They are floral hops, grapefruit, mango and straw

T-taste is like the aromas but with the right amount

M-well balance full body with good carbonation leave the tongue wanting more.

O-I was surprised with this DIPA wished that I tried it sooner. Great price for $10!

reebtaerG, Jan 01, 2014
Photo of RAlmeida77
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Finally had a chance to try this beer as it's very hard to get in Massachusetts. Picked up a six pack and had one as soon as I got home.

Upon opening and pouring, I found the color to be lighter than I expected. A golden-amber hue with a nice head. The aroma from the glass was outstanding. It was like nothing I've ever smelled in an IPA before. Fruity and pleasant. This was very unique. First sip was everything I'd imagined and then some. This beer tastes as unique as it smells. Fruity, malty, hoppy and delicious. It is so easy to drink. Very easy to drink quite a few of these at once.

Overall, this beer has soared to #1 on my list of favorites. I hope it's easier to find as I'm sure the demand is there.

For any IPA lover, this is a MUST try!!!

RAlmeida77, Feb 12, 2014
Photo of seydou
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Yellowy, see-through, little head, BUBBLY! The smell hits you big time from opening the bottle, bright, floral, hoppy, enticing. Best smelling beer I've had. Tastes hop-heavy, pleasant bitter, CLEAN, floral, citrus-y, maybe even ginger. Beautiful. Nice and bubbly on the tongue too. One of my favorites.

seydou, Feb 07, 2014
Photo of Bailarge
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I tried this on the recommendation of my friend jastack. I'm very glad I did. I can't speak much for the color since I have only been drinking it out of the bottle. But the smell is amazing. Truly smells like Christmas. Almost reminds me of a Christmas Tree. Once I drank it I knew it would be a favorite. Has a perfect hoppy taste that's not too overbearing but just right. It reminds me of a 90 minute, but smoother. It goes down very smooth. I brought it to my brother-in-law's house last weekend. He drinks one of two things, whiskey or cheap beer. The only time he tries anything good is if I'm around. He couldn't get enough of the stuff. It's amazing, and I only hope that they keep it around for years to come.

Bailarge, Dec 09, 2011
Photo of ThePaleRider
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A - Bright amber/orange in color with a thick 3 finger head. Never seen a beer put off this much carbonation, pretty amazing as the thick head never recedes.

S - Lots of pine. Very dank marijuana type of smell. Smells very oily and thick. Mostly pine with a little orange peel in the back end.

T - Like a shot of pine and bitter citrus peels to the tongue. Very bitter, but remains smooth at the same time. Is my mind playing tricks on me? Simply an amazing IPA. They threw the malts into hiding just like a good IPA should. Hops right up front and a very smooth after taste. Bravo!!!

M - Very bitter up front with no alcohol to speak of. Lots and lots of carbonation keep this thing fresh to the end. Not as oily as I expected. Leaves your mouth dry and crazing more.

O - Amazing beer that needs to be available year round!

ThePaleRider, Jan 29, 2013
Photo of PJHOY
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%

PJHOY, Jan 27, 2013
Photo of Gjadey
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%

Gjadey, Friday at 10:19 PM
Photo of Aaron_Ramson
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 5

Smells and tastes the way pipe tobacco smells: fragrant, smokey, floral, peppery; tobacco leaf all the way through. Deep caramel flavors are there to balance the intense hop bomb. Back end bitterness is slightly subdued; emphasis is squarely on the forward hop flavor. Extremely drinkable with very little booziness, there's nothing that Sucks about this except the fact that it's a limited release.

Aaron_Ramson, Jan 26, 2014
Photo of kbnooshay
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am so happy to acquired some of this. It is flying off the shelves here in Crotchfester NY.

Poured a clear golden orange color with with a one and a half finger width head that shrunk down within the minute.

The nose is a huge BLAST of tropical sweet fruity hop aromas! There is a dash of pine hop flavor in there too.

Taste is everything I could have hoped from in this beer. Bitterness is relatively low at 63 when you consider how much fresh n' juicy hop flavor is involved. Citrusy and fruity hops dominate with not much detectable malt flavor! That is fine by me. Such an amazing hop profile. This is better than the Pliny I had a month ago!

Feel is moderate to thick because its so sticky! There is a decent amount of carbonation to balance that out.

Theres no way they won't make this again. Amazing.

kbnooshay, Dec 25, 2011
Photo of Moshulu
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%

Moshulu, Sep 18, 2014
Photo of Omnium
4.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Served into a standard 16oz pint.
A - Nearly clear golden yellow, two fingers of fluffy white head that fades fast, a little lacing.
S - Good lord, this smells like everything you'd want. Pineapple, grapefruit, orange, mangos all over the place papaya, fresh lemon, sweet pine, light floral hops underneath that cascades into an immensely fresh smelling beer.
T - Tastes as every bit good as it does smell. You get a serious mango flavor from this, lighter biscuty malt, sweet acidic hop flavors, lemongrass, pine and citrus, so unbelievably good.
M - Medium feel, balanced carbonization, a bit of the ibu in the end.

O - Each time I drink this, I like it more, Note that its full flavors come out above cool, i'd say somewhere around 45-50. Full bodied lush hop bomb that is bursting with juicy fruit flavor that is sure to make any hop head satisfied. Lagunitas blew it out of the park with this seasonal brew. Makes 2013's Hopslam, and Pliny taste like absolute piss.

UPDATE: Very good like last year, a little more pine and citrus instead of mango, but still packed with tropical notes, the aroma is STILL the best thing in the world.
This is the best beer to me. I enjoy every moment of it.

Omnium, Feb 09, 2014
Photo of M_C_Hampton
4.89/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A: poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass, honey amber colored with a huge fluffy white head that lingers leaving great lacing, clear

S: amazing citrus hops, grapefruit, lemon, orange, pine, mango, papaya, like fruit coctail

T: excellent flavors of above mentioned fruit, finish is pine resin and drier, initial flavors are quite sweet

M: creamy for the style, medium bodied, alcohol well hidden, good carbonation

O: This is an excellent DIPA. It's very easy to drain a glass of this. The fruit smells and flavors are fabulous. There's also a great background story behind this beer along with it's hilarous name. Buy extra if you can find it.

M_C_Hampton, Mar 14, 2013
Photo of Givemebeer
4.89/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Possibly my favorite IPA that I've had during my recent IPA binge.

Tropical citrus smell and taste that is incredibly refreshing. Must say this is the best smelling beer I've ever had. Taste is almost as good as the smell. Being on the east coast I can't find this often, if I do come across it again I will not hesitate to buy it.

Givemebeer, Apr 15, 2013
Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale) from Lagunitas Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 7,518 ratings.