Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale | Lagunitas Brewing Company

Undercover Investigation Shut-down AleUndercover Investigation Shut-down Ale
Liked This Beer
4.07 w/ 4,372 ratings
Undercover Investigation Shut-down AleUndercover Investigation Shut-down Ale

Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.60%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
ABV varies slightly from 9.0 to 9.8
66.6 IBU

Added by GilGarp on 03-10-2009

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Ratings: 4,372 |  Reviews: 1,038
Photo of TechMyst
2.75/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

This is the "SNEAK RELEASE" not the "12th Anniversary" edition. Wouldn't put this in the IPA or IIPA genera; I'd like it in the Strong Ale category. Yes it is a hoppy beer, but the spice profile in the malts give this a big big boost. Not as good as Mendicino's Eye of the Hawk, but better than Stone's Arrogant Bastard. A bit chalky on the palate. Nice buzz though. Good, but I wouldn't rave about it...

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Photo of tpd975
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Since Lagunitas came to Florida I have been pounding their brews one after another. What you get is great taste for four dollar a bomber.

A: Pours a nice bronze color that almost looks like an amber ale. There is a huge rocky head that puffs up nicely and hangs around for sometime. What is left makes layer after layer of lacing, some of the best I have ever seen.

S: Resiny pine. pine needles, pine cones, pine sap, pine sol. No matter how you say it the aroma is pure pine.

T: As soon as this one passes your tongue you are hit with a subtle citrus taste which is quickly overrun by a nice strong piney bitterness. The bitterness fades and is then overtaken by a wonderful caramel malty sweetness.

M: Full bodied and pretty thick.

D: Nice brew. Of course because of the 9.28 ABV you may want to pass on that second bomber.

Overall: Another great beer by Lagunitas. For $4 a bomber their beers can not be beat. I spent the day relaxing at the beach and upon coming back inside the beach house I popped this one open. It was so smooth and refreshing, I think I may now lay down and take a nap. I'm gonna throw a Maximus in the fridge, it would be perfect this evening while enjoying one of west coast Florida's most beautiful sunsets from a chaise lounger on Longboat Key. If I'm not unconscious by then I may just be inclined to drink their newest release Kill Ugly Radio, as I think about my wonderful day, and what else lies ahead during my holiday / birthday weekend at the beach.

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Photo of hijjt
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a red/amber color with a good sized tan head.

Smell: Hoppy citrus smell with a hint of banana, and a touch of alcohol.

Taste: Not nearly the bitterness of a double IPA, the hops is there, however the malty sweetness easily takes over the flavor. Citrus hoppiness and slight bitterness is quickly taken over by the strong caramel malt. The alcohol is easily masked even for its high content.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth, the carbonation is masked and doesn't overpower.

Drinkability: Good drinkability, more than expected.

Overall, I really liked it; I am not sure that it fits in the genera in which it was placed here, but definitely worth a try.

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Photo of Drew966
3.68/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lagunitas Sneak Release Undercover Investigation Shut-Down Ale pours a dark, reddish copper color with an of white head from a brown twenty two ounce bottle. The aroma is a bit milder than I would like, it is primarily hops. There is a strong hop flavor up front that fades to a strong malt flavor toward the end. Pretty decent, worth a try.

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Photo of number1bum
3.81/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber pours a nice clear copper color with a big and fluffy three finger cream colored head. Leaves a ton of lace and ample amount of stick on the sides.

Smell is hoppy but more piney than citrusy for my nose. Smell suggests to me that there will be pretty ample bitterness (the label suggests that, as well). There is some sweet caramel malt and alcohol in the nose, as well.

Taste starts off with some bitter, pine flavored hops, adds in a bit of grapefruit and citrus, and then finishes with some more hop bitterness. There is a pretty solid malt backbone (subtle caramel sweetness but really just robustly malty) to keep the hops in line for the most part. I'd consider it a bit of a little bit of a hop bomb in terms of bitterness but not in the league of a Hop Wallop by any means. Mouthfeel is medium and the carbonation is pretty crisp. Alcohol is mostly well hidden although it does come out a bit in the nose and just a touch in the taste.

Enjoyable brew for sure, but not my favorite DIPA (and I should point out that the label never refers to it as an IPA or Double IPA - only an "especially bitter ale." I'm really not even sure it's a DIPA. It shares some characteristics but it's got more malt flavor and less hop flavor than most DIPAs). Definitely worth a try though.

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Photo of shaebs99
3.83/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Overall I did enjoy this beer, but I may be biased to more hoppy DIPA's.

Poured from bomber into a tulip. Nice sized off white head over a deep rich amber. It just really looked good after the proper pour I gave it with swirling carbonation.

Aroma is mostly of citrusy grapefruit hops. Nothing really strong and overpowering. Not a hop-bomb probably will be the same for the taste.

Taste is a pretty well-balanced offering between the malt and citrusy hops. The hops win in the end, but a lot closer than most DIPA's out there

Medium bodied and smooth. Very drinkable.
Considering the price tag is a bit (in some cases quite) lower than other DIPA's definitely something I would get again.

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Photo of macster
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a brown color with some amber-orange hues. Forms a 1" frothy off-white head with decent retention of some wispy foam throughout. Minimal spotty lacing.

Nicely balanced aroma profile with competing notes of dark caramel, chocolate malt balls, raisins, spices and a touch of citrus-like hops in the background.

Medium body on the palate with a nice slick, smooth feel as it passes over the tongue.

Flavors are also very well balanced with notes of sweet caramel candy, toffee, dark fruits and toasted malt combined with a subtle spicy-citrusy hop contribution. The body and balanced flavor seems to keep the 9.9% alcohol almost unoticeable.

Perhaps not a classic but a solid, drinkable American Strong for sure.

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Photo of bluegrassbrew
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a pint glass.

Poured a very deep amber color with a long lasting white head that left good lacing.

Smell was of grapefruit and some sweet malt.

Taste was very good! Grapefruit and nice bitter hops but was balance very well by the malty sweetness.

Overall, more hoppy than malty. That is a rare occasion for a DIPA nowadays it seems. Very good. Highly recommended!

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Photo of Stoneman78
3.65/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a- pours a clear, brown hue with a creamy white head that is mostly diminishing with fair lacing throughout
s- aroma of sweet citrus hops and caramel malts
t- fairly well-balanced ale that is slightly underwhelming for a DIPA, initial flavor is of citrus and pine hops, followed by caramel/toffee malts, subtle alcohol in the finish
m- medium-bodied ale with adequate carbonation
d- Balanced and warm DIPA that is smooth drinking, the abv is very well-masked, not the hoppiest DIPA, but a solid entrant in this category

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Photo of InsolublePancake
3.85/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A- Deep copper with a decent head and good lacing

S- Extremely hoppy; smells mainly of pine with a bit of a metallic aroma. The malt is also quite evident with a nice toasty character.

T- The pine character is very prominent and pretty much dominates the taste. Not that that's necessarily a bad thing; it does taste good. The malt does a pretty good job of holding up to the hop onslaught; the ample bitterness is balanced just enough to not become overpowering.

M- Medium- full body, decent carbonation; the mouthfeel fits the beer perfectly.

D- The high alcohol definitely limits the drinkability of this bad boy. I can finish the bomber no problem, but certainly wouldn't want any more. Pretty average in this department.

This is a good, solid beer, but it failed to wow me. There's not really anything terribly unique or distinctive about it. It's still very good and pretty cheap. I may get it again if the mood strikes me. Recommended.

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Photo of ppoitras
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased as a single from Julio's, Marlboro, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1" beige head over the clear coppery amber brew. Head lasts well, with tons of sticky lace froth. Aroma is fresh citrusy hops with twinges of pine as well. Taste is ample maltiness to start, which is quickly balanced and overpowered a bit by the dominant hops flavor. Particularly the pine lingers, and there is warming after toughts as well. Mouthfeel is a bit prickly due to the strength of hops character, but this one remains plenty drinkable.

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Photo of Shaw
4.17/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep amber in color with an foamy head. This beer is much more brown than other Double IPA's I've had.

It smells powerfully of citrus hops, dried fruit and caramel. Wow.

The taste is -- of course -- big and hoppy with a strong flavor of alcohol. This is a pretty smooth Double IPA, its bitterness is not as harsh as others of the style.

With a slick mouthfeel that's just about perfect, this is quite the drinkable beer, considering its 9 percent ABV.

This is a very accomplished and polished Double IPA and a nice spin on a style that many believe has just one note.

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Photo of sloejams
3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this when it was initially released, I guess just over a year ago. It didn't seem like a DIPA to me then and it doesn't really now. I guess it leans toward the YuleSmith Winter side of DIPA, almost a Double Red. Fuck it, this is a tasty beer and that is what is important.

Characteristically, it appears very much like a red: deep amber in color with a finger head that laces quite nicely. There's a lot more malt than your traditional DIPA. There's plenty of hops there too, seems like it should be a strong ale. Again fuck it, it's a good beer. Enjoy one.

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Photo of Gavage
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear amber in color with a 1" head that lasts quite a while. Nice lacing develops during the session.

Smell: caramel, bread, and a strong hop bitterness is pleasant on the nose.

Taste: big caramel base here with some light breadiness. Pine, grapefruits, and a hint of fruit sweetness rounds it out. Alcohol is mildly noticable.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp at the start, smooth towards the finish. Long aftertaste as the bitterness is at the forefront. Medium to almost a heavy bodied beer.

Drinkability: kind of a slow sipping beer here as the alcohol is high and the bitterness is bold. Definitely worth giving this a shot.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass. The beer was crystal clear, dark copper color, thick white foam. The aroma was hoppy, actually it was just as I expected it to be (I like all the hoppy Lagunitas beers). The flavor was mostly malty as well, biting and citrus-like, very bitter in a good way. There was a significant malt base underneath the astringence, making a pleasing counterweight of sweet beneath the burn.

For $3.99 per 22oz bottle, you can't go wrong with Lagunitas.

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Photo of Mdog
3.91/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Brownish amber, nice head and retention.

Smell: Citrus, juicy sweetness.

Taste: Sweet caramel, brown sugar and then some citrus hops kick in with some bite at the end.

Mouthfeel: Smooth.

Drinkability: Nicely balanced and very tasty.

Picked this up at Casanova's in Wisconsin-if it's a DIPA I must try it. This was a tasty beer, but reminds me more of a barleywine--more sweetness and maltiness than many DIPAs but quite good.

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Photo of andrewm190
3.83/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle. Purchased in Charlottesville, VA.

This is a delicious, strongly hopped beer. The beer is strong also, in alcohol content. 9.3 percent. The hops are the first thing you notice, followed quickly by the crispy, which surrounds your tongue. Both sensations stay with you long after you have imbibed a sip. There seems to be a hint of spicy, which gets stronger as you drink.

I am personally a fan dark beers, the muddier the better. I do enjoy this beer a great deal, I recommend a try.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle purchased at LaBodega in Riverside, CA. in July 2007 for ??? (not on the bottle!).

Pours a nice dark amber with a solid off-white head on top. Aroma is a solid hop and malt mix, nothing that steps out and is unique, but a solid Double IPA/strong ale mix.

The flavor follows through, hop bitterness very satisfying, and a rich full malt profile. Malts have some rich molassas and dark German breads, but also a surprising (and pleasant) touch of sweetness. A winner. Even the little fly in the room seems to want some.

The alcohol is there, at 9.28% ABV (how precise can we be???), but it is generally very well hidden. Actually probably pretty scary how well hidden it is.

Good stuff to start the weekend after a long work week. Hopefully it's all uphill from here!

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Photo of jclzony
3.98/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle. Pours a clear dark copper with a beige head. The aroma contains a moderate amount of nice floral hops. The first sip is a little sweet, however it contains a solid caramel malt backbone that quickly turns to hops and finishes with a good strong hop flavor. Grapefruit, pine, and earthy hops carry through to the finish. The pine and grapefruit flavor lingers in the aftertaste for quite awhile. The 9.28% abv is well disguised beneath the hops. This beer exhibits a Medium body with moderate carbonation and could pack a wallop if too many are consumed.

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Photo of beerphan
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz brown bomber -> nonic
no date

Pours a clear rusted amber with a huge full fluffy almost white head. Lots of chunky cliff lace lines the glass in sporadicy lined sheets. Carbonation appears as lush tiny constant bubbles.

Nose: Citrusy and floral, with a thick toffee like malt base.

Balanced and thick, with a full creamy mouthfeel. Starts with some floral tones and a thick rich caramel biscuity malt thunderclap. Sweetness remains present as a huge hop back slap rises from the depths. More bitterness than flavor. Citrus does appear with a piney bite. Bitterness lingers for some time. Although the alcohol does provide a warming affect, it doesn't show itself in the taste.

Raw and delicious. A best choice for the price ($3.99) and the complexity. Hope i can get my hands and the real deal soon.

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Photo of mnapier
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Service Temperature, 45 degrees. Service Glass, German Balloon 16 ounces.

Purchased this in a box near the refrigerator at the Whole Foods.

On the surface this beer pours a light white head and leaves behind a random amount of lace along the glass. Swirling it around and shining a light behind it I detect strong dark orange clarity.

Moving my nose to the glass I detect some mild honey maltiness, and a strong hop piney-ness.

Overall feeling on my tounge is medium with a lingering burn and strong grapefruit / orange citrus hops.

Definitely a nice beer to drink on a mild summer day, maybe temps in the 60's.


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Photo of jdoncbus
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

**This release by Lagunitas is not the 12th Anniversary and it also has less alcohol**

22 oz. bomber poured into a pint glass. The beer has a rather dark copper tone and two-finger head. Moderate lacing.

The first thing I noticed was the sweet/sour and toasty floral aroma rounded out with a malty alcohol note. Could also make out a wood hint mixed with citrus.

The taste begins with a bold, low-end malt then leaps into the hop-scapade (orange, grapefruit) and then ends with a very pleasing finish that lingers for sometime; essentially telling you to have another sip. A very complex taste.

Mouthfeel is resiny and woody; you are left with a nice dry yet oily aftertaste .

I have recently enjoyed kicking off the night of sampling different beers with one or two of these bombers. Sure there is a decent amount of alcohol in it but the complex taste of this release allows the average Beer Advocate enthusiast to savor the beer and keep from downing it too quick. At only $3.99 a bomber - Lagunitas continually impresses me with their outstanding and consistent releases.

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Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
Beer rating: 87.1% out of 100 with 4,372 ratings
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