Wilco Tango Foxtrot | Lagunitas Brewing Company

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Wilco Tango FoxtrotWilco Tango Foxtrot

Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.85%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial Brown Ale

Added by flexabull on 03-06-2010

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Reviews: 850 | Ratings: 2,602
Photo of txbrewer
1.87/5  rDev -52.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

From their site = "A big Ol' Imperial Brown Ale to help you with your slipperly slide on into springtime. Rich, smooth, dangerous & chocolatey."

1 - Way to hoppy compared to other brown ales that I have tasted (and this was just after trying Mighty Arrow!)

2 - Rich - sure, smooth - not really, dangerous - eh, chocolatley - if you can find that through all those hops.

I had finally found some Mighty Arrow and that was all hops and not so bad. This was just not what I expected after tasting other brown ales. I need to find out which hops they used and avoid anything using the same hops in the same quantity.

Drinkable - not really, would I spend any more money on it - no.

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Photo of PorterLambic
1.95/5  rDev -50.3%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a deep red with brown throughout, clear and bright. A copious light tan head develops and leaves a lot of wonderful lacing behind.
Smell is hops. Just hops. I expect quite a bit of hop from Lagunitas but thought there might be something with it considering the label stating it is a "malty, robust" ale. Nope.
Taste is more of the same with a distinct grapefruit note added to the hops. No malt, nothing else. Disappointing.
A medium/full body with a tangy, medium effervescence up front. Slightly warming middle through finish. Hop note fades quite a bit, thankfully, in the aftertaste. Some malt almost makes it to the fore well into the aftertaste. By all my experience, this is an IPA, though a fairly dark one, not a strong ale. Scores reflect that. They would be quite a bit higher if this was labeled the IPA it so obviously resembles.

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Photo of urwithdave
1.99/5  rDev -49.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Thanks to mrstevens for sharing! Poured into my cigar city snifter.

A- Pours dark brown in color with some ruby highlights when held to the light. A 2 finger foamy head that disappears rapidly. No lacing left.

S- Faint hops. Nothing less nothing more.

T- This beer is odd. The hops are present right away, much more so than in the nose. I love hops but not these. It's almost a perfume taste. Kind of like when my wife sprays some hairspray and i walk into the room without knowing she had just sprayed it and I yawn....yeah not a good thing. It takes me a second to get past this. Some sweetness from the malts are kicking in now, but I just can't get over the perfume like taste in this beer. Not a good beer.

M- Medium bodied with decent carbonation. The aftertaste from the perfume sticks around.

D- Needless to say, I won't revisit this one.

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Photo of ElCommodoro
2.2/5  rDev -43.9%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

The appearance was good. It was a translucent dark brown colour with a thin tan head. The positive comments stop there.

It smelled like a bush. Maybe a juniper bush or a small pine tree... gross.

The taste was the same. It tastes like an evergreen bush. It covers up all the other flavour. I want to at least be warned if the hops are going to take over the flavour of a beer. This beer was described as "malty and robust." It was neither. It just tasted like hops. That's it. I love maltiness and was excited about this beer, but I can't taste anything under this intense leafy flavour. I'm so against misleading descriptions on a beer bottle. And this was the worst. Bleh. I wouldn't have bothered buying it and writing a poor review if I knew it would be a beer that I wouldn't enjoy. But the description made it sound like it was right up my alley.

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Photo of 1after909
2.3/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Was disapointed in this brew as I looked high & low to find it after hearing all the urban legends about it.

Not much of a head. Taste was did nothing for me.

Not surprised to read the reviews being mixed here.

Other much better offerings to try from Lagunitas.

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Photo of bigfnjoe
2.36/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass

A- pours a light, transparent shade of brown with a two finger light tan heads that fades quickly, and leaves spotty and cloudy lacing. Love the clarity

S- smoke, nuttiness, a little booze, wood, tobacco. Very interesting aromas that don't mesh very well together

T- very bitter, tobacco flavor in the forefront. Slight booze in the finish. Very smoky, and not in the good way. Not enjoyable at all

M- thin body, a little shocking considering everything going on here

O- I dumped half the bomber. Just not good at all

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Photo of Ego
2.43/5  rDev -38%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

audible 2 fingers of off white head crackles in the glass, dark ruby tone with ample carbonation launching itself to the top, calms down quicker than the kid on the airplane who screams the whole time you are flying... lacing and legs are ok, this seems pretty average.

mild bourbon, a touch of white pepper, nothing too upfront, mild mannered stuff.

taste etc...
sharp taste right off the boot, kind of astringent-y, bitter malt flavor is the best way I can describe it, light bodied with almost enough carbonation, the aftertaste sort of reminds me of jack daniels... but not as strong, this is just not working for me this evening

odd taste combos abound, hard to place and hard to take, don't smear the brand though, they have lots of good beers (just not this one)

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Photo of adamette
2.43/5  rDev -38%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from the 22 oz. bomber that I bought at Save-On Tobacco & Beverage in Mentor last week for $4.99 into my Cooperstown Beverage Trail pint glass. 06053911 stamped on the neck of the bottle but I found no other indication of any "best by" date anywhere else on the bottle or the label.

A Dark caramel but translucent body with some sediment floating about under a meringue like creamy, very light brown head. Look is just o.k. but I like the sediment floating around. 3.5

S Floral hops, some malt. Not that inspiring from one of my favorite California micro breweries. 3.0

T Organic, earthy, floral hops taste with a dissapointing amount of malt backdrop (the label mentions "A malty, robust jobless recovery ale" after all) and then the taste just dissapears almost with the last drop going down (almost no aftertaste!). There is a lingering hops bitterness but really this is a thin, slightly hoppy really basic tasting beer. 2.0

M Too thin for me (especially when the label mentions "robust"). Again there is not enough malt for it to be considered "malty" and the hops bitterness really isn't enough to make up for that. 2.0

D Less than fair because the taste and feel are so uninspiring. I do not think that I will buy this again. 2.5

Notes: I am a huge fan of Wilco and Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (the album) but this beer leaves a lot for me to desire. Namely, a beer that meets the description on the front of the label would have been nice. I will stick to my Hairy Eyeball, Brown Shugga' and the great "We're only in it for the money" from Lagunitas.

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Photo of RoyalT
2.48/5  rDev -36.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - This one poured a rather boring, shiny brown in color with a mediocre head.

Smell - The malt seems rather thin and phony, contrary to the promise on the label, and a bit stale.

Taste - Again the malts disappoint. It's more like a weak bitter or American brown ale than a strong ale. The malt flavor lacks depth and distinction.

Mouthfeel - This is way too thin for the style. It's not even medium-bodied by my count and is clumsy in the cheeks.

Sinkability - I think this is the first ASA that I've dumped, and this from a well-regarded brewery. Oh the shame of it.

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Photo of DoubleJ
2.51/5  rDev -36%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Fun times await beneath the crown. Pop the top of the 22 ounce bottle, and on to the beer:

Clean copper colored, the lighter side of dark. Sturdy and retaining is the head, which kicks up threads of lace to the glass. There's a fruitiness in the nose, but it appears to be from the hops. "Hop nugget juice", resin, a little metallic and faint brown sugar. Not a beer whose aromas are melded together well.

Malty and robust? Not here. In the beer world, the opposite of malty is hoppy, and hoppy is where it's at. However, the hoppy characteristics are unbalanced and not pleasant to handle. Bitter tea at the start with some metallic flavor. Resin creeps in, but otherwise the flavor repeats itself, and it is not pleasant. Maltiness is very light on the palate; we're gonna need a lot more to save this beer. Medium bodied, alcohol is hidden well (thank goodness), but that's squinting for a good quality in the context of it all.

"A Malty, Robust, Jobless Recovery Ale". If this is supposed to be the antidote to those whom are suffering in this current climate, then they're going to be in recovery mode for a long time.

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Photo of hrmhrm
2.59/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Rich red brown, nice foamy tan head.
S - Not bad
T - Tastes like they mixed their brown sugar beer, which I don't like, with something weaker.
M - Don't like that sugar taste
D - I'm not sure what drinkability means. Bud Light lost big on an advertising campaign that trumpeted its "drinkability." Would you rank a food on "eatability?" Either you can get it down the hatch, or you can't. This one went down the hatch.

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Photo of bdupree
2.64/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I had this at Lagunitas on 6/13/2010 served as "English Style WTF" from a cask. First of all, this came on a very hot day in Petaluma. The beer was served in something like a Mason jar, and it was literally warm. I've been to England and had a bunch of true Ales over there served just cool... but this just was not right. I believe the cask got to warm, so it was unfortunate for my review here.

A: Cloudy, hazy brown... looked like chocolate milk. From the temperature of serving, I think this actually started to separate and go bad.

S: Caramel, roasted malts, some hops and a hint of alcohol. Casking cranked up the ABV quite a bit on this one.

T: Sour, sour, sour. Somewhere in there I detected a nutty taste, and there was quite a lot of hop still present. Alcohol was almost overpowering as well.

M: Warm and heavy, not the best on a 90 degree day. Not the easiest thing to choke down.

D: WTF in bottle is really not bad, but in this method of cask serving I would never order another. Lagunitas might want to check out the casks on warm days out there. This was the ONLY bad beer we had at the brewery, though!

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Photo of stricklandia
2.68/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This was quite a disappointment. I've always been impressed by Lagunitas' creative releases, and was excited to try this one. But there was really nothing there.

Not much aroma to speak of. The initial taste seemed like there could be some complexities there, but then on the follow-through and finish, there was nothing. Really strange, and kind of hard to articulate. The slightly earthy and nutty tones when it first hit the tongue just disappeared, leaving a really bland mouthfeel and finish.

The beer didn't taste "off," at least in terms of being undrinkable and skunked out. It just seemed like a bland and unimpressive brew.

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Photo of beerman21
2.78/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Don't know what it is about Lagunitas Brewing Co. But all there beer just taste so damn similar, reflecting flavors from previous batchs even styles of other beers they make. Maybe its the yeast strains they use, or the malts who knows. Bought this beer and you know it taste like a lagunitas, a lighter version of brown shugga if you will. If you want to have a lagunitas try there IPA and Brown Shugga and maybe there barlywine. Other then that they all taste the same! and I've had near 80% of all there beers.

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Photo of Arithmeticus
2.81/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured in tall ale glass, basement temp

A: dark reddish brow; inert with a little bit of head
S: floral, hoppy; the smell is delicious, and full of hopped roses
T: bitter; very bitter rye(?) profile; not sweet; it's just a pile of unrelenting bitterness, without much fragrance

I'm a big Lagunitas fan, but I was disappointed in this one.

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Photo of Monkey-D-Luffy
2.81/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

L - Pours a beautiful mahogany color, hard foam head that sits around, thick lacing as it goes down

S - Malty, a whiff of hops and a backbone of dark fruits and brown sugar

T - Honestly rather off putting, reminiscent of dates and figs, slight hop bite, and a bitter funky malt on the aftertaste

F - Mouthfeel is quite thin, very lightly carbonated

O - Wow, I'm deeply saddened to say this is the first Lagunitas beer I haven't enjoyed in the least. It reminds me of a bad barleywine ale (I'm looking at you dog fish head). Not a gagger, but certainly not what you'd expect from Lagunitas. Disappointing.

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Photo of jsanford
2.85/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle poured into a Pint Glass.

A - Pours a clear, dark chestnut with a thin ivory head that settles to a thick cap.
S - Muted aromas of sweet caramel and chocolate with a slightly bitter grapefruit and pine finish.
T - Very sweet and malty, with big flavors of caramel and chocolate and more of that bitter grapefruit finish. Almost candy-like in it's sweetness, reminds me of a caramel-chocolate confection. Too sweet, not for me.
M - Slightly sticky, with a medium-full body and low carbonation.
O - Too sweet, no thanks.

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Photo of Clydesdale
2.91/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a deep, clear reddish-brown color. The ample head has a bit of a light brown hue and a dense, foamy and frothy texture. Retention is strong, with persistent sticky lacing.

S: Caramel and brown sugar in the nose. Some fruity notes, with spicy and citric hop aromas. A faint whiff of alcohol, but it seems pretty well masked for close to 8% abv.

T: Definite brown sugary malt flavor, with lesser hints of caramel. Hops are fairly flavorful, with fruity/citric and lightly piney notes. Bitterness is surprisingly restrained, especially for a strong ale from Lagunitas.

M: Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is light and fine - a bit too much so. A measured alcoholic heat into the finish.

D: This has some nice maltiness, but sort of a half-hearted overall flavor. I keep waiting for it to open up and start to wow me a little, but it isn't really happening. Not bad, but not really recommended.

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Photo of RickS95
2.95/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Mostly brown in the glass, kind of like cola. Head is thin and only there for a short period of time.

Smells like a combination of cola and licorice.

I'm a bit undecided on the taste. It's got some cola notes and some woodiness before the flowery hops take over and a resinous pine flavor finishes.

The beer was a bit strong on the palate. It seemed a bit rough around the edges and lacked character. It's not a delicate beer at all, and reminded me of an IPA.

I had this while on vacation and probably won't have it again.

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Photo of KeefD
2.95/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Listening to/watching a live version of Impossible Germany from the Sky Blue Sky DVD as I drink this. Pours a dark amber color, was hoping for a little more brown, but this'll do, no head or lacing. Aroma is mostly hops off the bat. Getting some brown malts as it warms, but still hoppy. Taste is the same. Too much hops for me. The label says "malty (and) robust," but I'm not getting a whole lot of malts, and certainly not much robustness. This is hoppy, and one-dimensional in it's malt character. There is some nice balance in there as it warms up, some sweetness starts to show through, light caramel and breadiness with maybe (just maybe) a hint of chocolate. Overall, not digging it too much. This falls under the category of the so-called "India Brown Ale" but this misses the mark when comparing to what others have done. It tastes like a typical West Coast IPA with a little chocolate malt thrown in. I really felt this was one-dimensional and unimpressive. I thought jamming to some Wilco would save the experience, but even one of my favorite bands in the world could do this beer no justice.

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Photo of Dodt
2.95/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

final of the beer trip bombers , poured from the bomber into a pint glass. nice fluffy head a deep amber color. aroma is hoppy with a bit of carmel . bit sweet in flavor with a nice crisp finish and some roasted flavors. pleasantly surprised with this beer can't wait to try other beers from lagunitas.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.96/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

1 pt 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into N'ice Chouffe stemware in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Bottle acquired at Wades Wine in Westlake Village, California. Cost was $4.49 USD plus tax. Expectations are above average given the brewery.

A: Pours a half finger head of slight cream, fair thickness, and awful retention (seven seconds max). Colour is a very dark semitransparent copper.

Sm: Chocolate, caramelized malt, cream, maybe dark plums, and yeast. The plums - or whatever fruit ester that is - are fantastic. A moderate strength aroma.

T: Cream, vanilla, dark malts, hops (unexpected), caramelized malt, and a vague hint of a fruit ester - not plums but something else. Decently balanced, but still something's off. It's built strangely, but it's still enjoyable. Very scattershot and at times seemingly arbitrary.

Mf: Smooth and wet. A biteen thin for the flavours. Adequately carbonated.

Dr: Drinkable, but largely unremarkable. I'd maybe try it on draught, but otherwise it's forgettable. A disappointment from Lagunitas.


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Photo of Rickythejeweler
3/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Transparent brown, 1 1/2 finger head, minimal lacing.

S - Unexpected hoppiness, brown sugar.

T - Piney hops upfront, brown sugar and raisons in the mid sip, ends with a malty taste.

M - Slightly over carbonated, decent mouthfeel.

D - After a 22oz. I was not really yearning for more.

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Photo of jt31914
3/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Light brown with 1/2 to 1 inch of head and nice lacing. A little bit light for my taste, especially for a strong ale.

S: Smells like mossy hoppiness; not much else there. Honestly smells like most other Lagunitas beers (ie ipas) but with darker malts.

T: Tastes like most other Lagunitas offerings too. Slight dark maltiness on palate and a little bit on finish, but mostly an odd hoppy mixture that doesn't really fit the style for me.

D/M: Pretty drinkable, but quite odd in general.

Decent beer, but probably the worst I've had from Lagunitas.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.01/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Picked up a bottle of this for around 4 bucks at Tower's in Atlanta a couple of days ago... Good price for any bomber, much less one from Lagunitas...

Well, it certainly pours beautifully... A wonderful chestnut brown topped by a thick foamy head of bone white... Held up to the light, it almost appears a slight ruby-ish color...

Not really a whole lot going on in the aroma dept... Slight caramel malts perhaps... No hop presence to speak of... I'm not really sure I'm happy with what I'm getting here... It's...just...sorta boring... Very plain and not interesting at all...

Pretty much more of the same thing here as I sip away at it... It's not offensive, mind you... It's just, again, boring... Basic malts present, nothing pops, nothing says, "Drink me!" It sort of lies there without much feeling on the palate... I guess it would be ok with a meal but alone, it's like watching paint dry... I guess for the price point, I don't feel cheated but.. I wouldn't buy this again...

A rare miss from the folks at Lagunitas...

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Wilco Tango Foxtrot from Lagunitas Brewing Company
3.92 out of 5 based on 2,602 ratings.
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