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

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Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale)Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale)

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8,342 Ratings
very good

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Ratings: 8,342
Reviews: 1,331
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 10.11%
Wants: 437
Gots: 1,201 | 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
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Ratings: 8,342 | Reviews: 1,331 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of captainbearcat
5/5  rDev +14.9%

Photo of Belittle
4/5  rDev -8%

Photo of Noelito76
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of Hugonaut13
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of JKV96
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of FrankHammer
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of Bouleboubier
4.51/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

had this on tap a few times over the past couple years - first time in bottle - on tap seems to be, unsurprisingly, the way to go....

A: poured into a balloon glass... tall almost 2" white head.... clear yellow-gold liquid, maybe a faint haze... this is the proper color for an IPA.... smattered strands of lace, holds a decent cap

S: pineapple, grass (lawn), fruit sugars, subtle pine, slight burnt/caramelized bread crust... background punch of mellow, medicinal booze.... as good as it gets with (familiar) aromas like this

T: mildly spicy (clove?) sugar cookie, washed out with a piña colada-like alcohol.... drying warmth of alcohol in the finish with enough sticky residual resins and sugars to compliment.... granola with dried apricot(?) and grassy aftertaste.... really, it just smacks palate all over with the taste of fresh hop flower oils.... a touch of perfumy vinyl does creep in after long.

M: soft, sudsy kiss of foam... open, airy mellow booze up front, keeping on the outsides, followed by the smooth, slightly slick core of its body.... drop-off finish, flat dry.... incredibly moreish, as if you feel like you didn't take a big enough sip each time

O: easily the best beer I've had by Lagunitas... sure does make up for whatever issue they had with Brown Shugga.... excellent balance between hops, malt, and booze.... well done!

Photo of snaotheus
4.33/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

Pours clear yellow with very little head and a significant amount of slow active carbonation. Smell is overwhelmingly hoppy. Smells nice and fresh. Lemony.

Taste is sweet and hoppy. Honey and hops. Love it.

Mouthfeel is medium and pleasant. Overall, very nice.

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.08/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lagunitas Sucks, bottle bought as part of a six-pack at Nolita Mart for $13.99.

Appearance: Not too different from the tap or growler versions. One solid finger of snow-capped head that dies fairly soon, leaving a rim and some decent lacing. Good carbonation, you can see the bubbles going up. Transparent amber shiny color.

Smell: Richer than the tap, with sour apple, a bit of fresh warm (but crystal-clear) urine. Fruit cake, sugar and all that delectable citrusness (pineapple, pomelo). No bitterness on the nose. Piney, soapy.

Taste: A bit faded, but carries echoes of beers such as Heady Topper. Ton of hops come through here, after hiding on the nose. Pine, resin, whole-cone hop. That aromatic Christmas-tree forest at Rock Springs in Decatur. Pineapple syrup.

Overall: Rating goes up here because this is SO ridiculously drinkable. If I didn’t hav to worry about a beer belly, I would pound a sixer of this (wait, I did pound a growler!). Refreshing, flavorful, easy-but-complex… very damn nice, and the bottled version is best.

Photo of Mattias
4/5  rDev -8%

Photo of ralphw56
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.2/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this beer up at the Kirkwood Spec's a couple days ago and laughed out load when I read the label as it is a testament to the goofy TABC laws and that they had to get this new label pushed through in addition to sucking up the lack of time. I can definitely relate to the lack of time, fella's, so let's give this one a shot:

Appearance: Pours a light yellow with a mild orangish tint to it that has a small 1/4" head of active white bubbles after a pretty aggressive pour and then they faded back into the beer within 20-30 seconds. There is no lacing left after drinking, so there isn't much to set this beer apart except that it is pretty clear.

Aroma: The aroma is showcasing mostly American hops with the required citrus, but there is also a pretty defined "catty" aspect to them. There are also some buttery and toasty malts in here to round things out. The hops are running this beer, but the blend is good, so it isn't a detractor so far.

Taste: The flavor is also very hoppy, but there is definitely enough malt in here to keep the beer palatable. One thing that I like about this beer in the flavor is that there is enough going on in the water chemistry to support a beer like this. I know that there are some "stoopidly" hoppy beers to come out of California, but this is one of the ones that works the best with the water to not make it harsh in the finish The mouthfeel is medium to slightly full because there is light carbonation for what it could be. Overall the finish is balanced slightly toward the hops, but there is significant malt in there to keep things in check.

Opinion: This is a good beer, no doubt. The balance is boldly hoppy enough and yet balanced enough to make me think that this is an altered version of their very successful Hop Stoopid. I like that Lagunitas seems to have a grasp of how to make a balanced beer, and it seems that only Great Divide is one of the other breweries that showcase hops, yet can still make a palatable beer. I am not saying the typical "hop bombs" suck, but it is good to get one that has some balance in the finish. This is a good beer overall, and I would recommend it whether you like DIPA's or not as this is a well blended brew.

Photo of Arsenal0328
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of gillagorilla
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle from

A: The lacing from the initial 2 inch head is astounding. One of the best lacing I have seen. The residual head is just a nice solid film with clusters of bigger bubbles. It has a nice cloudy, golden amber color.

S: The smell on this is extremely floral and piney. I'm not getting much citrus. This is one of the few IPAs that I have had that is quite floral. It smells like a well-tended garden that has been freshly mown and has the scent of pre/post rainstorm.

T: The taste is predominately piney with a nice floral hoppy aftertaste. It is hard to get floral flavors due to the strength of pine flavors, but the aftertaste is quite floral, but mild as I would expect from such an aftertaste. It is a very linear and balanced profile throughout its course during the sip/swallow: pine and hops all the way.

M: This is quite crisp with lots of bubbles floating around in there.

O: Contrary to the title of this IPA, it is top-notch and Lagunitas does not suck at all, especially since this has year-round availability. Glad this was my first Lagunitas beer, and it would seem that they know their way around IPAs. I will definitely be getting this again. Sucks is a must try for anyone that says they like IPAs.

Photo of ryanpj
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of BigTrubble
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of ralerwen
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of Jamison85
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of jjanega08
4.75/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

No freshness dating

A= Pours a beautiful bright yellow color. A little more orange than your crayola yellow. Actually looks like urine after a long night of drinking. The head is a small little guy that rises to a finger and falls fast into oblivion. A ring is left around the glass and some sketchy lacing is found on the side of the glass.

S= From the moment I cracked the bottle I could smell a beautiful hop bouquet. A tropical fruit bomb for sure. Tons of pineapple and mango in it. Dig a little deeper and you find fresh green hop resin. Smells like a fresh hopped beer acutally. No lie this smells like your hands after you roll hops in them. Not much maltyness to notice but it does contribute to the hoppy sweetness.

T= Just like the aroma. It's soooo good. There is an immediate punch of hops with a knock down drag out tropical fruit flavor to it. Tons of mango and pineapple. This then gives way to a solid buiscuit flavor. Straight dry buiscuit. Almost like a cracker flavor before the hops finish it out nice and dry. There is a sweetness that comes in through the middle but it finishes rather dry. This for sure has three distinct flavor points to it however. Really a fine IPA.

M= Perfection. Just enough carbonation to keep your tongue scrubbed.

O= One hell of a beer. I will be buying a lot more of this. I don't know why it took me so long to buy one sixer. I love lagunitas for all they do... Maybe not their RIS but everything else is top notch. This beer propells them deeper into my favorites category. Loving this beer.

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

12oz bottle into a tulip pours a crystal-clear, golden color w/ minimal white head, lazy carbonation.

Aroma is delicious tropical juicy citrus hops. How is this not an IPA?

Taste is grassy, piney, citrusy - classic Lagunitas super-dry-hopped deliciousness. Again, how is this not an IPA? Clean pale malt, bright West Coast hoppiness. Delicious, refreshing.

Overall this is up there with Hop Stoopid and Little Sumpin' Sumpin' as one of my favorite Lagunitas beers. They do not suck. Outstanding.

Photo of ryan1788a5
3.9/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a light golden color with brilliant clarity. Rocky, bubbly white head reaches its apex at about two inches and doesn't even think about budging. Excellent retention. Lacing is clumpy and very sticky.

S: Smells like a Lagunitas beer: bursting with citrusy and tropical hops, with some of those juicy/candied and floral elements as well. Pineapple, mandarin orange, and a dank hop scent are most apparent. Doughy malt base.

T: A quick burst of pineapple, orange, and mango on the attack is quickly snuffed out by a tide of pine resin and grapefruit bitterness. Pithy and dank hop flavors follow, along with fruity and juicy tastes. Malt base is doughy and slightly sweet. Finishes with grapefruit bitterness and some fading tropical fruits.

M: Medium bodied. Full and smooth on the palate. Ample carbonation helps to round it out and add a refreshing aspect.

O: Nothing about this beer is bad. In fact, it's a very good beer, all told. It just feels a little monotonous at this point. It's like listening to a great song over and over again until you get sick of it. This beer just feels like every other beer Lagunitas has done.

Notes: I realize that this is just a stand-in for Brown Shugga', but come on Lagunitas. Get a little creative. Brew me something besides a mash-up of every other IPA you've ever done. Not what I'm looking for in the dead of winter either. Poor choice for a winter seasonal, even if it is temporary. Lagunitas sucks. (insert smiley emoticon here)

Photo of Mdog
4.1/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear gold, good head.

Smell: Big citrus aroma.

Taste: Nice hoppy flavor. Does have a solid bready base before sweet grapefruit hops and a bitter finish. Not too bitter though.

Drinkability: Hits the spot for hops cravings and great Lagunitas pricing.

Picked up a 6er to try and was pretty impressed. I like Lagunitas in that they use a lot of hops and their prices are low. This one fits the bill, it's not mind-blowing but it's a nice DIPA on the lighter side of the style and has some pretty good balance.

Photo of tykechandler
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of Bartos
4.33/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle

A - mostly clear, golden color. Nice thick, white head of foam. Moderate amount of lacing as the head dissipates

S - massive aromas of pine and tropical fruit. Sweet and bitter. Strong bottom notes of hops

T - aggressive front taste of bitter hops, followed by a smooth citrus and pine hop flavor mingling with sweet malt. Surprisingly cleaner and crisp finish with only mild bitter aftertaste of hop oil

M - slightly less carbonated than your average IPA. Medium bodies. Nice finish with mild lingering hop oil coating the tongue

O - a nice IPA, especially considering how widely it's distro is. Enjoyable as either a session beer or something to linger over

Photo of fthegiants
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale) from Lagunitas Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 8,342 ratings.