Wilco Tango Foxtrot | Lagunitas Brewing Company

very good
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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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Ratings: 2,610 |  Reviews: 851
Photo of ColdPoncho
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

got this from baycat in the N00B Bif round 4

A - Clear, deep copper/ruby body, nice frothy tan head with good retention.

S - bitter citrus hops, smoked meats, rawhide, dark toasty malts. Nice smell

T - Malt forward, dry smoky flavor moving to a dry hop finish. Not bad at all, but I was expecting more of a hop presence in the taste. Not sure if this because of what I know about Lagunitas, or because of the nose. Either way, its only the slightest bit disappointing.

M - Robust, medium-big body, touch dry.

O (D) - a fine beer for sure. Not exactly what I like in an "American Strong Ale" but it's tasty and complex.

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Photo of aristeros
4.65/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased a bomber at the local Class VI on post, military parlance for "basically a liquor store." 'WTF' would properly be 'Whiskey Tango Foxtrot,' but Lagunitas routinely gets beer right, so I'm not going to dwell upon this fact. This one was worth a try at under five bucks, and I'm a brown ale fiend (this is billed as an 'imperial brown'), so here goes. Poured into a British pint glass.

Pours a red-brown, like a cola, with less than a half finder of head. Good clarity and almost no carbonation visible. Hoppy nose for a brown, with moderate citrus and light pine over biscuits and honey.

There is a fair bit of hops up front, which yields to sweet malts, with a bittersweet coffee and caramel finish. It's like a double APA was combined with a brown ale and a pinch of stout by a mad scientist. Delightfully complex.

This wasn't quite what I was after, but it did meet my expectations in terms of quality; I would have another, and enjoy how it stomped all over established beer styles and still exceeded my expectations.

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Photo of crewfan16
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured from a bomber into a pint glass. just picked it up at the local store, for 4.99 it was worth a try.

a- pours dark brown but fairly transluscent. white head rises and falls fairly quickly without much lacing. the look reminds me of a nut brown ale.

s-nose is very interesting, sort of like a dipa with some hops and malt, but not quite the intensity. some more caramel and nuttiness

t-taste seems to be on the same lines as the nose. it doesnt know if it wants to be a dipa or a black ale. there are a lot of good flavors though. bitter hops, some malty biscuit sweetness but with something darker on the finish like roasted coffee. finishes a bit towards a stout.

m-nice body with a creaminess to it. alcohal is not present and its extremely drinkable.

overall, this is a very tasty beer. I dont know quite how to classify it, but its complexity is what i enjoy. I would love to try this again, especially at this price.

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Photo of JayS2629
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark, dirty buby brown with thin layer of tan film that floats around for a while with spotty, soapy lace. The aroma is of faint citrus, soapy floral notes on top of a rich caramel and toffee backbone with hints of polished leather. The taste is hop forward with citrus, grapefruit rind and a touch of lemon up front with notes of cocoa, roasted nuts, caramel and tofee in the back. A slight herbal aftertaste on this malty, bull bodied creamy drink. Juicy, fruity, and sweet with a nice hop presense up front and especially in the aroma. Full, rich, creamy body. Interestingly balanced tipping towards malt but with a good hop kick in the front.

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Photo of almychristopher
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this beer pours a nice brownish red color with an off white head that recedes to a layer of patchy lace with time. the aroma brings a strong sweet malt with a bit of hops at the back. the sweet caramel taste of the malts is backed nicely by the rather impressive hop bitterness at the end. the full mouthfeel and good co2 make this a easy drinker, which should be expected with the rather low etoh.

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Photo of ikats
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours deep brown in color, perhaps with some ruby highlights, and a nice brown head that settles very slowly. Aroma strikes me as resinous and sticky with some malt sweetness behind it. It switches a bit in the taste. Smooth bready, malty sweetness is up-front with sticky hops taking backseat. Hops are mostly apparent in the aftertaste. The beer is medium body and quite smooth (with the exception of aftertaste which leaves bitterness in your mouth). I find this beer a bit disjointed. It doesn't quite come together for me. As a side note, the beer does not have a "freshness" date, but I do recall picking it up in CA, so it gotta be around 1 year old.

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Photo of damndirtyape
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a snifter. No date on bottle.

Appearance: Brown on the table with a off-white head. Ruby red when held up to the light. Delicate strands of lacing all over the glass with a ring of foam at the edge, but just the wisp of a foam across the top. Nice looking beer.

Smell: Perfectly blended orange citrus with a hint of grapefruit and a wonderful sweet malt at the end. Very appealing.

Taste: Hop forward, but not overpowering. Hint of citrus up front, then smooth malt sweetness to balance out all the hops, and then a bitter grapefruit finish. Malt flavor is hard to place - it's sweet, but not caramel exactly.

Mouthfeel: Just right carbonation on the tongue with a very smooth texture. Doesn't cling to the teeth at all despite being so hoppy.

Overall / Drinkability: "A Robust Malty Ale" must mean robust in the hops, but the malts here do an outstanding job balancing out the hop whollop that this brewer typically puts out. Definitely hoppy, but the hops do a good job balancing it out, making it a beer worth sipping as well as knocking back. The name of the beer drew me in originally but this is a good beer worth revisiting again and it stands all on its own as a good beer.

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Photo of WastingFreetime
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes, on tap.
A. Deep dark amber. 2 finger white fluffy head
S. Unexpectedly floral hop smell, and lots of it. More akin to what I expect from an Imperial IPA in a nose.
T. Zingy and complicated. Very complicated. 1st comes the floral hop strike, 2nd a dark malt / vienna malt cacophony. Last a strong bitter / smoked aftertaste that lasts and lasts.
M. No complaints here. Nice full body that is capable of backing up the taste.

If I happen to see some bombers of this I'll be picking it up for cellaring experiments.

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Photo of evilkalla
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving: Bomber into an ale glass.

A: Pours very clear, dark amber. There was a slight bit of head on it that receded fairly quickly. Not a lot of carbonation is visible.

S: Has a dark amber malt smell to with some hop backbone.

T: Immediate strong, red ale taste with a hop bitterness that washes over it. Pretty malty, and fairly dry. The hops leave a bitter finish which I like. Pretty good.

M: This one has a fairly hefty mouthfeel to it. Not bad at all.

O: Overall this comes across like a mashup between a red ale and an IPA. Not a bad attempt.

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Photo of SeaOfShells
4.42/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber into Duvel tulip

A: Pours a dark, clear brown that glows bright orange/red when help up to the light. One finger of off white head which quickly subsides to a thin layer on top.

S: Sweet grapefruit and pineapple and sweet, biscuity malts. Caramel and toffee are running rampant as well. Smells very much like an an IPA, very clean and sweet.

T: Up front, I'm greeted by some citrusy hop bitterness, which quickly takes a backseat to the ales robust maltiness. Finishes clean with a nice lingering bitterness. Alcohol is nowhere to be found.

M: Medium bodies with decent carbonation. Extremely smooth and pleasing.

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Photo of tlazaroff
3.91/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Beautiful dark, deep red color with a pillowy light mocha head. Perfectly clear beer with visible carbonation.

S: Caramel and toffee dominate. Fills my sinus cavity with malty goodness.

T: A bit more bitter than they lead on. The first thing I noticed was a tiny hop bite, but then the taste of caramel and bread came through. It has a feint fruit character too, banana maybe.

M: Great on the palate, medium bodied and moderately carbonated. Taste lingers along with the faint grassy hop presence.

D: Surprisingly high for a 7.83%ABV beer, though, the perfect serving is the 22oz bomber it comes in.

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Photo of mjw1200
4.29/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

All around this beer was very surprising and well done. Loved the consistency of this beer. Some chocolate caramel and fruit up front and then the chocolate and almost a roast taste linger. Love the after taste. Went down way too easy. Shared this with a buddy of mine and we were both very impressed.

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Photo of sisterray
4.26/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This at first tastes like an British Pale Ale. It specifically reminds me of Fullers London Pride (which I love). But it's much bigger. You know those terrible Cheezit commercials where kids ponder how they get so much cheese in a Cheezit, and they daydream about 2-ton blocks of cheddar falling from the sky into a single cracker? It's that kind of thing with a London Pride. Very strange. Very . . . nice.

A: Gorgeous deep red with strong brown tones. Like a garnet with heavy brown leanings.

S: Malts dominate with alcohol and hops tying for a distant second. Not especially aromatic, but the aromas that are prevalent are certainly nice. Sweet bread, some citrus, and alcohol.

T: Much stronger than the smell. Also much better. Again, it tastes a hell of a lot like a BIG London Pride. Very malty and bready but beautifully balanced by the hops and (differing from the London Pride) alcohol. The alcohol is in no way overbearing, but it's present and acts as an important cog. Because the malts are so big, I think the presence of alcohol is very important to help the hops balance the brew.

M: Creamy. Smooth. Remarkably light for as big as the flavor is.

O: If you like London Pride, and you like big flavor, I don't see how you can go wrong with this beer. I found a bomber for under $5 a Shep's on 4th, so I gave it a try, but I wasn't especially hopeful. This is the best beer I've had from Lagunitas - a brewery I consider to be, for the most part, 2nd tier. That's not a knock. I just don't think most of their brews belong up there with Stone, Cigar City, etc. This brew, however, would be a proud addition to any line up.

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Photo of budgood1
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours out of the 22 oz. bomber a dark crimson and garnet colour with a respectable beige head. nice lace. citrus hops with some brown sugar and spice in the nose. the first thing i thought when tasting was WTF?...hence the name i suppose. charred malts, cocoa, brown sugar, molasses, caramel, rye bread and grass all fight for attention under an umbrella of typical NW citrus type hops. what an unusual ale...sort of a smoked porter meets scotch ale with an IPA kick. hard to pinpoint an exact style...but american strong ale doesn't come to mind. anyway...it does taste good. this robust recovery ale has a nice mouthfeel, smooth despite the bitter (peat smoked?)malts used and the aggressive hopping. full bodied with a dry finish. love the lingering hop bitteress which actually compliments the complex malt profile quite well. and i love the drinkability because with each sip i pick up different nuances that make this an extremely interesting concoction.

overall i'm impressed with the method of perceived madness that this ale represents. whatever socio-economic ill this brew is helping me recover from, i'm a willing participant.

a definite style bender. and definitley recommended.

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Photo of shand
4.29/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a nonic.

This brew pours out a deep red color with apparent carbonation and a finger's worth of head. Retention and lacing are alright. The aroma is quite hoppy, with some slightly dank, yet delicate floral hops over a solid bready maltiness. The taste on this is quite interesting. It's got a huge malt presence balanced by a huge hop presence. The hops are always around, but the maltiness is the star of the show here for sure. And it's nothing like a hoppy barleywine, instead some prickly roasted malts backed by a touch of nuttiness take the tongue for a ride first, then the hops make their way in with just a bit of a citrus presence. They both ride the finish down hand-in-hand.

The mouthfeel is nice, it's well-carbonated and goes down fairly easily, and the drinkability is fairly good, although I doubt I'd have more than one bomber in a sitting. Overall, an interesting beer worth drinking, especially at the cheap Lagunitas pricing.

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Photo of Derek
3.62/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep amber brown with an off-white head, very thin ring of retention has a little leg.

S: Plenty of American hops in the aroma: very leafy, ganga, slightly catty, nectarine, tangerine; burnt toffee; roasted nut; field berries.

T: Tangerine, nectarine & piny resin, burnt caramel, roasted nut, black raspberry, good bitterness, slight oxidation.

M: Moderate body has a light residual sweetness, some hop acidity.

D: A decent drinker overall.

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Photo of MrVonzipper
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a nice rootbeer color. Maybe a touch of copper. Foamy light tan head. Low head retention with constant light carbonation.

Notes of caramel, nuttiness, almost meaty and fennel

Flavors notes of caramel up front, dark roasted malts then bitterness from the hops with hints of grapefruit, floral and piney notes. As it opens up a bit with temperature you get a little bit more dark malt.

Mouthfeel is full bodied with a tangy bitterness and sour. Piney and floral aftertaste with a hint of nuttiness.

Overall I was a bit surprised by it. On the label it say " A malty, Robust, Jobless Recovery Ale." I kind of thought it might be a little more Porter-like but it reminds me much more of Arrogant Bastard with the dark ale and hoppiness blend. Although it was what I was expecting it was still a pleasant surprise. Full flavored, good balance, good abv. I'd recommend a try.

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Photo of illidurit
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark ruddy brown, maybe a bit coppery, with a healthy beige head. Overt citrus hop aroma betrays the flavor, which is a melting pot of different malt characteristics. One sip there's chocolate, another there's caramel, another there's bread, another there's nuts. Just a big jumble of a beer, but it works pretty well. The hops come through firmly in the flavor but it's not a perfect marriage with the malt profile. Maybe I'm just tired of citrus hops with crystal malts.

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Photo of mater
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into Stone imperial pint glass.

A-Pours a nice reddish brown color with a 2 finger off white head and some pretty good lacing.

S-Caramel malts seem the most prevalent to me, but I'm also picking up some citrusy hops. The scents aren't very strong though.

T-Malty, but it finishes with a nice hop aftertaste. Taste pretty good. I can't detect any alcohol.

M-Lighter feeling, but it goes down pretty smooth.

O-Strange brew, but I like it. One of the few bombers I've bought multiple times. Give it a try.

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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 kone
4.76/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this on draft at a place called Dive Bar and Grille in Wexford PA. Great beer, goes with whatever you are eating. Liked it so much I stopped by Wexford Beer and put in an order for a case. Enjoy boys, there is life beyond Miller Lite!!! Orginally started with a Dale's Pale Ale, which is good in it's own right. But the Launitas WTF hit the spot and left me wanting more.

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Photo of LazyL
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear golden broen with a volumous foamy rootbeer float style head. Great thick retention. Surprise hops! Very spicy with pine notes and a touch of grapefruit peel. Fruity esters and soft honey with some warm boozy aromas. Taste, yum! Strong but nice. There is sweet roasted malts than a bitterness near the finish with a slight smokiness. A little esters and pine. The mouthfeel is very nice and this is a surprisingly easy drinker. Yet you can feel the warmth. Very well balanced. So much so that I almost graded a 5 here.
Over all very good, 7.8% WTF! Sitting on the rocks down at the harbour this beer happens to pair well with the pulled pork we are having. This is like an easy drinking barley wine with a fair helping of hops. Interesting and very tasty.

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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 heebes
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pint bottle.
Labeled as Limited Release.
Picked up in Michigan, Wolverine Market.

Pours a deep ruby brown, remains clear, has a good inch of foamy off white head. Light lacing. Nose is surprisingly robust with grassy hops, caramel malts, sweet. Taste is interesting; not overly special or standout, though hard to pin down. Full bodied, characters of a Brown and a Strong Ale. Malt forward on the palate with some hop bitterness but not much. Mouth feel is medium to light bodied, dry finish. Overall a great choice at this moment, as I was completely undecided what to have and this beer isn't even sure what it is/offers. Good balanced abv. and tasty strong brown notes.

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Photo of BrianBoruma
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle poured into a standard sized pint glass

A: Amber/ruby liquid with a one finger head of white lacy bubbles.

S: I mainly get hops, some piney notes and floral/fruity notes that I can't determine if they're yeast esters or subtle hop notes.

T: Rarely does a beer make me go WTF in a good way. This one did. I got the sensation of a jazz band passing around the solo. I'd get the sweetness of the malt and sugars playing fading into the notes of hop bitterness and then back. Finish is one of warming alcohol.

M: Medium full. Decent carbonation and a dry finish (probably from the sugar additions.)

O: Quite pleasant and would definitely recommend picking up a bottle.

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Wilco Tango Foxtrot from Lagunitas Brewing Company
3.92 out of 5 based on 2,610 ratings.
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