Brown Shugga' | Lagunitas Brewing Company

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Brown Shugga'Brown Shugga'
BA SCORE
4.03/5
Exceptional
5,781 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): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 12-13-2001

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#3,097
Reviews:
1,618
Ratings:
5,781
pDev:
11.17%
Bros Score:
4.04
 
 
Wants:
301
Gots:
1,387
Trade:
13
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,781 |  Reviews: 1,618
Photo of Vivs85
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of Ultimate
3.94/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of jp32
3.37/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a transparent amber hue with no head, yet the carbonation still looks nice. Smells sweet and malty.

This has a very unique taste. I'm surprised at how much the brown sugar comes through in the flavor. Its syrupy sweet with a few mild hoppy notes. A strong alcohol-warming in the finish.

This is a nice medium-bodied beer. The syrupy taste doesnt transfer to a syrupy mouthfeel, which is a good thing.

Drinkability, well, its good for one or two, but I wouldnt want to drink them all night. Still a a good drinkability though considering its 9.83 abv.

 559 characters

Photo of deadliest
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of jwinship83
4.04/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle from 2010. drank my from chimay chalice.

A- this one pours out a translucent ruby red colored body with brownish highlights. the beer looks almost still. very small crown of a head that is khaki colored. little to no lacing left behind.

S- very sweet is my initial reaction. brown sugar and caramel. a little bit of nuttiness in the nose also. at the end im picking up more hops than i was expecting to find.

T- as with the nose, the taste is very sweet. it starts out with a strong brown sugar and caramel like maltiness. in the middle there is a moderate nutty flavor. earthy and piny hops finish this one off. the hops seem too assertive for what i was expecting. the alcohol is well hidden.

M- medium bodied with a low level of carbonation. aside from detracting from the appearance, the light carbonation really works for this one. palate coating and sticky. little to no warming from the alcohol.

D- the large amount of hops in this one seems out of place, but this is a brewery that loves to over-hop things. i bet this one gets even better with a few years on it. a great value at $9.99/sixer on this one. too strong to think about more than one at a time.

 1,184 characters

Photo of falloutsnow
3.79/5  rDev -6%
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 soupyman10
3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Looks very pretty, deep amber color with a nice off-white head that leaves excellent lacing. Nose is lots of sweet fruit and malt, and a good bit of alcohol too. Flavor's lots of toffee and caramel malt, very mild hop flavor. Alcohol comes through strong, overwhelming some of the other possible flavors. Some light dried fruit. Mouthfeel is solid, medium to light with good carbonation. Overall, a drinkable beer, although the alcohol flavor and general ABV is just a little too high for more than one or two.

 510 characters

Photo of DenverHopHead
3.43/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.
Appearance - deep goldish brown, little carbonation with a fairly thick white head. Lacing is coarse and sticky along back of glass!
Smell - sweet brown sugar and hops!
Taste - the sweetness from the nose is far more profound in the taste; the syrupy sweetness drowns the hops.
Feel - medium body with overt sweetness throughout.
Overall - does not come across as a barley wine or a strong ale.

 434 characters

Photo of Aaron_Kerkvliet
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of lic217
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of jooler
3.89/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Great hoppy smell and look but tastes pretty sweet with a very noticeable alcohol taste. Lagunitas sucks is a lot better

120 characters

Photo of Prospero
3.25/5  rDev -19.4%

Photo of BrownAleMale
3.66/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Gulden Draak tulip glass

Appearance- Copper in color with 2 fingers of off white head that leaves a great amount of sticky lacing.

Smell- Tons of pine and citrus.

Taste- In the front is a carmely bready malt flavor that is quickly cut down by a piney hop finish. Slight earthy tones throughout.

Mouthfeel- Very nice and thick for the style.

Overall- A very odd take on an American Strong Ale. To heavily hopped in my opinion. Various things to both love and hate about this beer.

 511 characters

Photo of bzach
3.27/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of ninaturner
3/5  rDev -25.6%

Photo of Benish
4.23/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: light copper with a very thick foamy head that dissipated slowly. Translucent with no sediment.

Smell: tons of tropical fruits with strong notes of grapefruit and orange citrus.

Taste: like a hoppy barley wine. Strong notes of grapefruit. Very resiny and especially sweet throughout. There's presence of pungent hop bitterness that compliments the malt. I wouldn't say this beer is complex but it sure is delicious.

Mouthfeel: full bodied and syrupy.

Overall: this is good stuff. I have not tried one thing from Lagunitas that was okay. Everything had been superb.

 584 characters

Photo of hopsolutely
3.7/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From notes taken at brewery yesterday, where it was listed at 9.9% ABV:

Pours a beautiful dark chocolate colour with impressive head and lacing. Thick but not oily mouthfeel, remarkably "normal" given the high ABV. Aroma of sweet, roasted malts with caramel tones and some plum or other fruitcake spices. These aromas translate into the finish, where I did not expect the almost overwhelming sweetness in the finish.

Overall struck me more as a sweet and malty barley wine rather than a strong ale. Glad to have tried it, but did not order a second.

 552 characters

Photo of coreyfmcdonald
3.27/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a brilliantly clear amber color with two fingers of dense, fluffy head. Head retention is very good, lacing is extremely good.

S: Overripe pineapple, citrus hops, and sweet sugary caramel dominate the aroma. Not great.

T: Taste is better than aroma, but still not great. Toffee and caramel sweetness are quite strong with the same overripe pineapple and a bit of piney hops. Hip bitterness remains fairly strong, but is obviously a bit faded.

M: On the thick side with fairly strong carbonation.

O: The faded hops flavor here is hard to get past. I enjoyed the malty sweetness, but I got an overripe pineapple flavor that lingered long after swallowing the beer.

 703 characters

Photo of Gatch
4.53/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Beautiful maroon-amber-brown with a creamy, foamy, light-brown head. Fits the name of the beer perfectly. Huge lace but little retention.

S: Wow. Incredible bouquet of fresh, fruity, citrusy hops and sweet, caramel, sugary malt. The dry and pungent character of the hops sticks to your nostrils but the finish brings in roasted malt. Fantastic nose.

T: Boom! Hops, malt, sugar, and booze. But those four qualities are balanced. Huge fresh, fruity hops, perfectly roasted malt, and boozy sugars that fill the mouth with flavor and warmth.

M: Incredibly smooth as expected but also creamy, sweet, and very hoppy. Alcohol presence is minimal and the carbonation is on-point.

O: I'm glad this comes in 6-packs because it gave me the opportunity to experience this beer multiple times. Each successive bottle made me appreciate it even more than the previous one. This sixth one brings out the subtle nuances that makes this beer ultimately great. Nearly perfectly executed for the style from start to finish.

Note: this review is the beer straight from the fridge poured into a pint glass. As the beer warms...in both the nose and the taste it's boozier, hoppier, maltier and more flavorful! In my opinion, this needs to be drunk fresh. Sure, it'll age well by mellowing out, but enjoy it for what it is now because the hops are so fresh and the alcohol is so hidden.

 1,371 characters

Photo of T-34-85
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Stignacious
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Chingringo
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Mikecap
4.21/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass, dark amber with a nice aroma of caramel/brown sugar, with notes of citrus and pine as well.

As far as taste goes, the west coast hops are evident, but far from overpowering and the brew goes down smooth. A bit of alcohol in the aftertaste but nothing too strong despite the 10% abv. Definitely not overly bitter or too much alcohol present in the taste.

Has a thick body, and is a nice beer that I could sip on for quite some time. Overall is amazingly drinkable and I would go back for again.

A good interpretation of the style for sure.

 581 characters

Photo of AirBob
4.36/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of grahamboudreaux
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Brown Shugga' from Lagunitas Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.03 out of 5 with 5,781 ratings
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