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Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale | Lagunitas Brewing Company

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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): 9.30%

Availability: Rotating

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

Added by GilGarp on 03-10-2009

For Trade:
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Reviews: 988 | Ratings: 4,216
Photo of Proteus93
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Nice amber hue, slightly dark. Head is nice and foamy. Retention and lacing are both pretty nice. This good looking brew is off to a good start.

S: Pine, some notes of bark and maltiness. Certainly a big hop profile with just the softest sweetness.

T: Big hoppy flavour.... lots of piney tastes, some bitter citrus rind (grapefruit without the sugary flavours). Some tart fruit notes come out and make a nice addition. Quite tasty.

M + D: Sparkling and rather assertive carbonation. Medium body, with a slight bit of chewiness and a lasting flavour. This is a pretty good beer, and I would be happy to have another.

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Photo of BearsSox
3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into my Surly Darkness goblet.

Nice head, creamy, looks like froth on a cappuccino, but dlisappears quite quickly.

The smell is interesting - piney hops, some sweet caramel, and boy, some alcohol. Reminds me a bit of brandy.

Wow, this beer is something else. There is a strong hop character, but it seems as if the hops are swimming in a pool of brown sugar and bourbon. Whoo-hoo! This beer is hot. Which I like - 9.0%+ abv beer should taste that way.

I love the texture of this beer. Really fine carbonation, and the flavor seems to gently coat my tongue.

I could drink this beer a lot, but I shouldn't drink a lot of this beer, if that makes sense. It's boozey, but the flavor and smoothness make you want to pound quite a few back. Probably not a good idea.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.3/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Lagunitas- Undercover Investigation Ale

A- Golden copper, clear, with a huge thick chunky lacing head.
S- Big sweet bitter green hops, whiskey, and alc.
T- Bitter hops, slight vinegar, charcoal/ whiskey, and big hot messy booze.
M- Very alc. laden. Good thick caramelized malt and oily bitter green pine hops meld and finish this 1 off a bit smoother.

Overall- The alcohol is too present and too hot. Flavors take a back seat here. Won't have again.

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Photo of WalterSobchak
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear amber with a one finger off-white head, full cap, solid lacing.
This is a terrific smelling beer right out of the bottle getting bolder but not more complex as it warms. Strong floral hops and grapefruit are dominant.
Big bitter hops packed up front with a clean maltiness fading back into a sweet floral hops.
Warming alcohol, minimal carbonation and a buttery mouthfeel.
Love this one.

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Photo of Kraken
2.8/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed 3/24/09
Loved the story behind why this was brewed, had to pick up a 6'er. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a 16oz pint glass. Exceedingly firm pour yields 1/8 inch head, bright white in color. Head fades quickly leaving no sign of lace. Color is a clear copper amber.

Nose- Piney, pithy grapefruit. Some pronounced caramel notes. Very dry, with some brown sugar sweetness. Plenty of bitterness in the finish. Very Hot. Kind of a hopped up sugary hot mess.

Mouthfeel- Very dry, and bitter.

Drinkability- Very strong, and confused.

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Photo of pinotboy007
4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Bright, clear copper with a khaki-colored, thick, bubly head that leaves nice lacing and sip rings. Modest carbonation stream - no floaties.

S - Pine, grapefruit, oak and caramel; some peat aromas, too.

T - Nice. Much like it smells with a sweetness that seems in-check with the hop flavor, which is prominent. Alcohol follows it up.

M - Slick with a touch of creaminess as it warms; carbonation is nice making this rather refreshing.

D - Good for year 'round, I think. Probably is food friendly, too. The ABV is pushing the envelope, however.

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Photo of aforbes10
3.85/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a reddish brown with a little white foam forming on the top. Spiderweb lacing. Smells of piney hops, some hint of citrus, sweet malt. Flavor is a strong sweet hoppy smackdown with pine, cane sugar and caramel. Sticky and syrupy but in a way that makes me think of hop resins, so i guess thats ok. A bit messy and a bit over the top with the hops, though it manages to approach some kind of balance because the malt and alcohol are why out there too. This is about what I expect from Lagunitas...good, not great, but worthwhile...usually.

 543 characters

Photo of itcomesnpints
4.37/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bronze, clear, could be more head, residual glob on glass.

NW hops lay heavy oils. Strong herbal, pine aroma. Very close to a 5 for smell.

Taste is filled with hops. The bitterness might be out of your jurisdiction. Just enough malt to ensure balance. Sweet finish.

Exceptionally well-hidden abv. Creamy smooth finish.

A fantastic American Strongle Ale/DIPA that deserves more recognition than it's getting.

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

Another sugar bomb. A marshmellow merengue head floats atop a burnt amber body. The aroma is faint, but cookies and hop spice jump out the pint. The body is crisp for a heavy ale, bubbly thick syrup with plenty of residual sugar lacing. Light caramel, mineral, blood sap, and confectionary sugar. A balanced center that goes candided hop imbalance toward the end. The bubbles help to scrub out the booze. Interesting but I wont be stopping by for another.

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Photo of JRed
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear amber with fizzy white head that leaves some lacing. A strong hop presence in scent: aggressive on pine notes, some alcoholic sting, slight fruit tang. Alcoholic booze bullies around the hops in taste from start to finish. Some notes of citrus poke their heads out from the chaos and then hide when big bad ABV comes back. Hop bitterness lasts in the aftertaste. Carbonation is on the attack as well stinging the tongue until it is swallowed down. Drinkable but a bit mouthfeel can be rather annoying.

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Photo of dsa7783
3.9/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

More of an American Strong Ale than a Double IPA, this still packs a flavorful and powerful punch... Another great sample from Lagunitas...
Hints of rich malts with well-balanced hops dominate this brew along with subtle nuances of cherries and strawberries...
Rich, full-bodied, flavorful stuff with a warming alcohol glow...
Easily drinkable with the alcohol hard-to-detect...
I liked this interesting and unique brew...

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Photo of northaustin
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

i was lucky enough to have experienced this "sneak release" it was great. a nice double hopped i.p.a. a little more carbonated than i would have liked but no biggie. the story behind it is cool and i feel honored to have gotten to try it. i bought three six packs of it so if anyone wants some within the next month or so then let me know.

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Photo of indiapaleale
4.4/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Okay, whats the deal? Only 5 reviews of this stuff nationwide? I picked up an unassuming bottle in a mixed sixer not even knowing what it was and wow I am blown away!

Pours viscous, this is a high gravity beer based on its pout alone. Nice dark amber/golden color with nice carbonation and a nice looking thin white head.

Smell is super fresh hops, I was NOT expecting a super hoppy beer when I popped the cap but then again most of the Lagunitas beers seem to be slanted toward the hoppy end of the spectrum. These hops are super piney wow! Lots of resiny goodness eminates from my glass, it kills any other smells that might even be thinking of coming forward.

Wow, what a beer. Lots of piney hoppy goodness followed by some powdered sugar and caramel flavors and a nice malty backbone.

This ia very well balanced strong hoppy beer. I am very much in awe of just how good this beer was as I had no idea!

By far one of the best beer "surprises" I've had in awhile!!!

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Photo of optiontwo
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. poured into pint glass

Appearance: Clear orange with streaming lines of carbonation and a one inch white head.

Smell: Bitter citrus hops and some thick sweetness and a little bit of roasted caramel malts.

Taste: A lot sweeter than I would have expected but still with a good amount of bitter. Lots of grapefruit and pineapple flavors from the hops that almost comes of as resinous.

Mouthfeel: Not too thick and not too light.

Drinkability: Fairly high. I was surprised at how easy it was to get through this DIPA.

Overall: I'm really enjoying this one. This is something I'll definitely be picking up another six pack of.

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Photo of Buebie
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a sixer of this today. Poured from a brown 12oz stubby into a tulip.
Forming an inch of white fizzy head, settling to a colar of retention. Nice drageage of lace lines the glass walls.
The color is a darker orange copper, mostly transparent with some chill haze. Nice even carbonation rise.

The aroma is a bready sourdough with sweet caramel, pine and fruity hops, with a hint of some spicie hops.

Oooh, lala this is delicious. Hoppy up front, with a bit of carbonation zing. Sweet through the middle, citrussy rind, pine bittering into the swallow. All the while a nice bready semi sweet flavor, pairing with butter scotch sweetness.
Finishing dry, minerally and full of hop linger.

No alcahol warming at the knose or in the taste. Outstanding beer!

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Photo of rowew
4.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz short bottle, label matches the other Lagunitas offerings, including the tiny description around the label. Date code is cryptic, but this just showed up in Colorado (and I suppose with that ABV it isn't a concern).

Appearance: Clear amber in color, thin head but good lacing.

Smell: Tons of sticky hop, with quite a bit of malt sweetness. Just a bit of dark fruit. Smells like half way between a barley wine and a big double IPA.

Taste: Strong hop flavor, with a good malt backbone behind it.. again, this is about half way between a DIPA and a BW, but its very drinkable.

Overall impression: Dangerous - the alcohol definitely isn't hidden, but its smooth and flavorful - I could drink several of these, but it would probably be a bad idea.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear, bronze appearance, slim whitehead.

Mild fruit in aroma ,apple mostly, a little spicy, minor bitterness. Nice and malty. A little sour.

Tasting, it really feels like a good dark English malty mild ale, but one with a beast in it's belly. You can feel the fire coming up. Really gentle, mellow...and then a nip,a bite...a 9% mild? Here we go...

Very nice, well done, but don't think I could have more than one. Are mild supposed to be 9%?Not sure...not...sure...

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Photo of GilGarp
4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Differerent from the "Sneak relase" version in some ways. Labeled as an "imperial mild" on their website, it's best described as a very hoppy strong ale. Darker and richer than a DIPA but not as big as a barleywine.

"Limited release" on the bottle along with all the important information: O.G. 1.092, 9.03% ABV, 72.41 IBU. Strangely, all three statistics vary from what is printed on the six-pack carton.

Pours a dark amber red color with great clarity. I can even see my own fingerprints on the other side of the glass! Great sticky white head that leaves all sorts of lacing down the glass.

Aroma is very hoppy and sweet with a brown sugar quality to it. Lots of pine and honey too.

Flavor is big hoppy bitterness with a healthy dose of malty sweetness. It's almost barleywine but the hops take center stage on this one. There is lots of great west-coast style grapefrtui and piney hops in there.

Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with sweetness up front followed by a bitter dry(er) finish. Good lower level of carbonation.

Drinkability is hindered only by the strength. It's a great beer that I will probabaly be buying another sixpack of just to see how it ages.

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Photo of BeerSox
3.63/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz twist-off bottle into nonic.

Dark amber hue with a one finger off-white head that slowly settles to a thin cap. Rings of sticky lacing along the glass.

Plenty of sharp hop aroma, giving strong grapefruit-like citrus notes.

The malts are slightly thin, not adding much to the flavor. It's pretty much all hops with some strong citrus spice. Medium-full bodied with slightly lower carbonation.

A good DIPA, but seems just a little thin for the style. However, it's highly drinkable which is a little dangerous for this one considering it's 9+%ABV. Proceed with caution. Recommended.

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Photo of SaintPeter
5/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a luscious multi-finger thick tan head which dissipates slowly until it has a jagged, rocky top. Resembles a root beer float--thick and creamy! Head stays like a ice burg.

Dark cigar brown in color, oxidized copper in the light with tiny effervescent bubbles and visible floating sediment.

Wow!! Complex! Nutmeg, dried orange peels, cloves, hints of molasses, candied fruit, bourbon oak barrels, pine tar, soy sauce and a dusting of yeast.

Wow, again!! Extremely smooth throughout, buttery mouth feel. Like Heaven!

Mellow hops up front and even through the whole experience. Flavors of dark dried fruits like prunes, barley wine sweetness, luscious with a caramelized tone. Starts like a fine English ale, but never gets there, maltiness comes in later and the two unite in hop and malt matrimony. A perfect harmony of blend, the malt finishing in the end where the hops started. Hint of spice in the finish.

If I would ever want a last beer before I was executed, this would be it! Even more fragrant when you swirl and tip the sediment. You couldn't get a more perfect marriage of malt and hops in such a pleasant medium. Above and beyond! Would never be able to tell it was 9%+ it's smoothness.

A world class beer!

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Photo of beachbum1975
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On the same note as CrellMoset - thanks for the great extra beer numbeercruncher!!! I was under the impression this was an ESB after taking a brief look at the bottle. Oh well, DIPAs are some of my favs, as well!!!

22 ounce bomber poured into a standard pint glass. No freshness date to be seen... Served just above fridge temps (38 degrees in the fridge).

Pours a a slightly cloudy, rusty orange with an eggshell white 1 inch head. After the head settles, a THICK row of lacing sticks to the sides of my glass.

Sweet, carmelized malts take the front on the nose. After a deeper whiff, I snag some floral hop goodness.

Medium bodied and medium-full flavored DIPA. Sweet malts mixed with light bready yeasts are definitely playing a major role in this beer with the expected bittering and citrus hops in the background. The hops are nice... I'd guess centennial is a player as it's reminiscent of Bell's Two Hearted (and I know that beer VERY WELL). It's syrupy in body, much like Two Hearted, as well.

Overall, this was easy to put down and enjoyable. Some will argue this is a "well balanced Double IPA" and I hear ya, but I am one who wants a HOPS-forward IPA, not a MALT-forward one. But, to each their own...

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Photo of CrellMoset
3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle as an extra from numbeercruncher - thanks!!! Fantastic bonus from a great trader. Gave a portion of this one to dkachur, and poured the rest into a 22 oz. Terrapin snifter.

Appearance: Pours a hazy, tugid, dirty brown, hints of red, and a big, fluffy, foamy, Lagunitas-esque one-finger tan head that has good sticking power. The lacing eventually becomes pretty runny, evem though it's initially pretty impressive.

Aroma: Pleasant, and faint, though it's hard to pull particular notes out of it. The piney, sprucey notes and heavy, dense, thick citrus curtain, heavy on the tropical fruits and the thick, sticky, residual caramelized sugars.

Taste: Big, bold, dark, and hoppy. The malts on this one are big, heavy, thick, sticky, and roasty - relatively dry, with lots of dense caramelized sugars, complex without being distinguishable. The hoppiness is very Lagunitas-esque, as well, piney, and with heavy, dense citrus notes - tons of pineapple! - that meld well with the darker malts in a fruity, tropical punch/dark malt way. Good one-two.

Mouthfeel: Big carbonation and a medium to slightly above-medium-thickness body wth medium sized bubbles - this one's big, smooth, creamy.

Drinkability: An interesting and pleasant beer, heavy and dense with tons of residual sugar and tropical, citrusty, piney notes as many of the Lagunitas beers are ... it definitely doesn't feel like 9.28% abv, though, so I gotta give it that. Either way, I'd have liked to try this one in its fresh state - alas. Nonetheless, many, many thanks to numbeercruncher - this is a solid, tasty beer, delicious, malty, hoppy, everything a good beer should be.

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Photo of magictrokini
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Interesting beer. Pours clear mahogany with a decent, but short-lived head. Floral, hoppy aroma with pine and nuts. Leads you to believe this will be more on the Imperial Red side. Its not. Lots of malt and caramel, with some woodiness. The hops are there, but very tempered, almost run over by the malt. In the end, this is still pretty good.

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber to a pint glass th e liquid is darkish brown, with good carbonation. The head is tan tall and leave good lace.

The smell is a caramel loads of malt and a huge earthy and mild citrus hops.

The taste is good a sweet caramel malt coupled with a big bitter hoppy bite. The taste begins with a light toasty caramel and then gives way to citrus notes of grapefruit and orange and earthy notes of pine and tree bark, could be juniper.

The mouthfeel is medium thick and has good carbonation.
The drinkability is nice, worth a try for the hophead.

Prosit, MK

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.85/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a deep, rich caramel-amber color with moderate off tan head that left a sticky lacing and lasted well into the drink.

S: hoppy with dried grapefruit and pine along with dried caramel.

T: dried grapefruit, pine, and a deed dry caramel flavor. There was a lingering grassiness as well. Was not as hoppy as one expected per style and drank more like a moderate ipa at best.

M: a tad thin with a light creaminess with a strong carbonation and finishes dry.

D: The abv was fairly well hidden making this a moderate drinking dipa. Liked it, but to closely resembled their other beers to truly stand out by itself and be different.

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Undercover Investigation Shut-down Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
4.01 out of 5 based on 4,216 ratings.
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