Brown Shugga' | Lagunitas Brewing Company

BA SCORE
90
outstanding
5,685 Ratings
Brown Shugga'Brown Shugga'
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States
lagunitas.com

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 12-13-2001

BEER STATS
Ratings:
5,685
Reviews:
1,591
Avg:
4
pDev:
11.25%
 
 
Wants:
299
Gots:
1,336
For Trade:
13
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,685 |  Reviews: 1,591
Photo of aubzachsyd
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of therobot
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Rich amber color

S: Sharp smell, citrus and sweet with a trace of booziness

T: Has a mild bitterness up-front and a nice sweet after-taste can definitely taste the sugar

M: mildly thick and moderately carbonated

D: I would give it pretty good marks on drink-ability, a little sweet for my taste.

Overall I liked it, as I seem to with all of Lagunitas offerings I have tried. Less than most, but it grew on me as I finished the bottle.

 445 characters

Photo of jhartley
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tulip. Julian dating 281 5 (October 8, 2015)
Pours a nice dark amber-red-brwon with a lot of off white head. My glass is full of lacing....ridiculous!
Getting a nice hoppy aroma, not what I was expecting, although I don't really know what I was expecting...Sour lemon and pine dominating.
Taste...Clean hops taste up front with pine and a citrus bite; maltiness comes in at the end to round that out and then leaves a nice bitterness behind on the palate.
Mouth feel is...well I guess medium. Not a hint of the 9.8% abv that's listed on the label. Honestly I had no idea it had that high of an abv, either.
Overall, I never really looked into it or had plans of buying it, so when I had to complete a mix-a-six I saw this on the shelf and grabbed one. I liked it, but not enough to really go and look for it again; just satisfied with it to have had it this one time. Reminds me of Arrogant Bastard a little, just not hoppy enough. This isn't a bad beer by any means; I won't be rating low, it's like I said I won't really be seeking this one out again.

 1,088 characters

Photo of SteveO1231
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Grabbed a six pack a BevMo! Was a spicy meatball at $8.99

Pours A reddish brown with a little tan head on top. Bright orange highlights. Nice slow carbonation. Nice bubbly lacing.

Sweet malt aroma with hints of grapelike fruits. I can smell the alcohol.

Sticky on the palate. Light sweet flavor of caramel, bitter citrus finish that clings to the tongue. The ABV warms my belly.

Very smooth and drinkablr despite giantic ABV, could be trouble.

Cheers!

 467 characters

Photo of Bitter_Echo
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very clear, dark, tannic oxidized rust color, very appealing. Smells not very hop forward, but malt, sweet, bread and grain and some caramel, but some noticeable alcohol and pine like hop notes. Tastes very sweet and malty and not at all bitter at first, the bitterness only emerging after a time (like their sumpin') and this tends to modulate the loudness of the bitterness overall. Nice late hop echo coming in later. Mouthfeel and carbonation is moderate fussy and just about right. Overall, another very good Lagunitas offering, although I don't like as much the loud malt notes in the beginning that really mute the effects of the hops...I want the hops right THEIR!

 680 characters

Photo of S-Taylor
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.25

Photo of hoody711
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My first Brown Shugga. It will be hard to be unbiased - the hype surrounding this beer as well as my intense love for anything from Petaluma.

A - poured into my tulip. A nice reddish brown with a 3 finger pearl head. Nice lacing, as you would expect. These guys are pros, after all.

S - definitely has that token Lagunitas smell. Citrus hops up front, but there is plenty of sweet malty goodness, and, brace yourself, brown sugar, at the end. Boozy as well. Smells great. (After warming, almost all malts. Citrus is basically gone, just a whiff.)

T - sweet citrus/sugar --> resiny bitterness --> strong bready malts. The alcohol is strong on this one at the end, and leaves behind a decent burn. It's good, but I'm not in love.

M - medium, definitely not heavy. The carbonation is good. See above re: alcohol burn. Despite this, good drinkability.

O - blah, I'm disappointed. I was hoping that this would rank up there with Sucks for me. I have such a soft spot for the citrus IPAs. Obviously, this is not one of those. It is good, complex, and gets better as it warms. Definitely worth trying, especially if you like the strong ales.

Edited after warming to room temp.

 1,183 characters

Photo of elliott1184
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of lhaqq
3.78/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Orange/light copper slightly cloudy body with little white head.
S: Not too much of a smell. Some candy sugar but also some bitterness from the hops.
T: Tastes like a decent IPA meets a triple, sans most of the sweetness of the triple. Has the bitterness of an IPA but just tastes heavier, and more sugary.
M: Compact lively carbonation. Still feels light in the mouth despite the heavy taste.
D: Dangerous, I think. My friend said she could taste the alcohol, but I thought it was pretty well masked. At least according to the server, the abv is actually 12% which, if true, is even more impressive given the lack of alcohol taste and the often overly sweet concomitant flavor.

 681 characters

Photo of schoon
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Uconnelmo
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Nordlius
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of morrowd3
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of HermitDan
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of hendryxdp
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of IAmAPenguin
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Aroma - Fresh hops with a clear brown sugar, cinnamon spice, toffee and molasses.
Appearance - Very reddish, crimson color with almost no foam and standard lacing.
Taste- Very crisp, malty flavors with notes of caramelized sugar, burnt caramel, toffee and thin molasses. Finish is smooth with herby hops. Overall, this is interesting. Its dark and malty flavors but its actually really easy drinking and thin. I don't get any alcohol at all which makes this one really dangerously easy drinking. Not a bad beer at all.

 520 characters

Photo of almostjay
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of yancot
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Mikeypnh
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of swanfungus
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Jsalz21
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of falloutsnow
3.79/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From: Piccadilly on Neil, Champaign, IL
Date: None on bottle, released in early winter 2012
Glass: Tulip

Lagunitas' Brown Shugga' is a strongly hoppy (US west coast style) ale with more caramel flavor than most DIPAs offer. While it could easily qualify as one, it instead lands in the "strong ale" catch-all, equally fine. The beer is quite drinkable, but I found it to be a somewhat generic version of the "highly hopped, high ethanol" west coast style beers I've had in the past. Thus, while tasty, I was never surprised or stricken with the particular character that defines this beer relative to others. Might I try it again when very fresh? Sure.

Pours approximately a 1cm tall head of dirty white bubbles, small in size, with average retention of one to two minutes. The head, as it falls, leaves some thick washes of lace along the innards of the glass, a variety of solid walls of sticky foam to mixed spiderweb-like patterns. The head eventually wastes away to a fine cap of foam atop the body of the beer. The body itself is a strong copper-orange color, with light bringing out brighter orange-yellow hues. The beer is somewhat hazy (perhaps 30% opaque), but carbonation is still readily visible through it, quite actively rising from the center of the glass.

Aroma of fairly substantial caramel and its attendant sweetness, though I wouldn't describe it as reminding me of brown sugar. This is joined to some tropical fruit and mild citrus, from ale yeast or hops, who knows. There's also mild pepperiness and faint ethanol lingering in the background. In general, pleasing and appetizing, if not particularly unique.

In general, this tastes pleasant if you appreciate US west coast-style, well-hopped beers (and I do), with a substantial malt backbone, but it's also not particularly different from many others in the same hop intensity and ethanol content categories. Front of palate is of heavy caramel sweetness with hints of hop or yeast-derived fruit esters and minor bitterness. Mid-palate finds the hops slightly taking the main focus, with bitterness, grapefruit, woodsy/herbal, and mild tropical fruit all being as though filtered through a screen of caramel sweetness and flavor. Back of palate notices sweet, heavy caramel notes, ethanol, and herbal/woodsy/green hop flavors with strong bitterness. Aftertaste focuses on bitterness, mild caramel sweetness, and lingering ethanol.

Beer is medium-bodied, with carbonation of medium to medium-low intensity, leading to a beer that is slightly foamy on the palate, but never quite fizzy. Ethanol is felt primarily in the nostrils after each sip, slightly burning the back of the throat as well. Closes out semi-dry, with modest residual stickiness along the palate.

 2,741 characters

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.8/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

What a pleasant beer. And talk about unique. . . if BA had a originality category, this would get a 5.

Pours out a reddish brown color. Beige head, about 5/8". Good lace. Aroma is sweet, like brown shugga!

The alcohol is extremely well hidden. You get a hop blast somehow, which I didn't expect in a beer with so much "brown shugga" in it. But it isn't over the top sweet that is a turn off. Had some bitterness to pair with it.

Easily Lagunitas's most original work. A great brewery, a real good beer.

Its not as good as Hop Stoopid or their Pale, but its in good company with all their others. . .

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.8/5  rDev -5%

Pours a half finger of head on a clear straw colored body.
The aroma has a mild grass and floral smell, with some lemon in the background.
The taste is bursting with flavors: lemon, grapefruit, brown sugar, strong caramel and anise. Great..
The texture is crisper.
Almost too drinkable for the high ABV.

 303 characters

Brown Shugga' from Lagunitas Brewing Company
4 out of 5 based on 5,685 ratings.
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