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The Waldos' Special Ale | Lagunitas Brewing Company

345 Reviews
The Waldos' Special AleThe Waldos' Special Ale

Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by largadeer on 04-21-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 345 | Ratings: 1,622
Photo of ivehadthatbrew
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Look (4): A pretty amber/golden hue that is slightly hazy. A nice white frothy head that slowly disipates and sticks quite a bit to the edges of the glass.

Smell (4.5): An amazingly intoxicating tropical aroma is coming off this. The kind of tropical smells that remind of you fresh pineapples, mangos and oranges! There's a bit of piney caramel perhaps too. Easily one of the best IPA's I've ever smelled.

Taste (4): All of those tropical smells are in your face and very delicious upon the first sip. Then the maltInes that's in there helps with that huge bitterness a bit, but I'd still say this is more on the unbalanced, but delicious side.

Mouthfeel (4.25): Silky with a crispness that is also deceptively smooth. One of the better IPA's I've had mouthfeel wise. Medium plus to full bodied, a big lingering earwax like aftertaste kind of makes this taste a step back.

Overall (4): Call me a horrible person, but I want to age at least one of the bottles I got this year. I'm excited to see how it will turn out in a year from now!

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Photo of Thecalmdrinker
5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Amazing brew! It's definitely one of the best IPA's I've tried!

L: A little bit hazy, with an "orangy", honey kind of color.

S: Amazingly dank! I get Mango, peaches, pine, Pineapple, Apricot, and a little bit of orange.

T: It follows the smell very well. You get all of what I pointed out above. It's sweet and bitter at the same time, which I personally love. It's balanced, but still strong. It is heavy with Lagunitas signature taste.

F: The mouthfeel is Medium heavy. It's very sticky, and it has medium to low carbonation.

O: It's easily a world class beer, with a low price and huge distribution. What more would you want. I recommend it to anyone who like Imperial IPA's.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well here it is, the first uploaded perfect score (there are more coming though).

Now, right off the bat, I want to say that I feel that this, PTY and Boneyard's Notorious are probably indistinguishable from each other when drank blindly. So why does this get a perfect score? Well, because its a world class beer, that is in a very convenient format (6 pack/12 oz beers) with an amazing price ($10.99/6 pack). Basically, unlike 90% of beeradvocate, I reward for producing something on a large scale instead of small batch bullshit.

With that said, let's begin substantively speaking.

Pours a dark golden color mixed with amber and orange, with amazing clarity and a small 1/2" white head that quickly moves downward due to the massive hop oils in this one.

Sure enough, this smells of perfection, a massive degree of late stage hops here of different, pungent varieties bringing the citrus, pine, juniper, tropical fruit vibe all over it. Super dank and resinous without being heavy or bitter.

Taste is perfect as well, perhaps a tad sweeter than Boneyard/PTY, but again, doubt I could tell blind. Hides alcohol amazingly, bitterness in check relatively speaking. So much vegetal hop mouthfeel, no heat. Peach also in here apparently flavor wise (not actual fruit). Smell's like the art teacher's office/jacket. Lots of pineapple like juice to it.

Now to try and buy as much of this as I can find.

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Photo of beantown_hopster
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

cracked for the sox patriots day game which is currently tied up, based juiced, kimbrell on the mound throwing 98. tensions are high.

L - a moderately translucent deep orange color, retains a slight head that lines the snifter. very nice.

S - the nose is outstanding! citrus and floral.

T - at first I thought it was too piney, odd since the nose was so citrus to me. as I got more into it you started peeling the layers of this beer like an onion, the floral and piney resin are on top but underneath there is the citrus, mango , sticky sweetness. A bitter aftertaste lingers.

MF - Low carb, full, rich, quite good for an 11abv beer.

O - A solid spring sipper that creeps up on you at 11% since its sticky, sweet and rich. There's so much going here, the sweet, the citrus, the pine/dank resin. It's... intense. I'll thoroughly enjoy the six pack throughout the spring, it being the "one hitter" series is kind of correct as I can't imagine putting down more than one in a sitting! Great beer though.

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Photo of Onemoresolo
4.6/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle dated 090 6 (March 30th, 2016) Poured into a fluted wine glass, since that seems to be what's clean and appropriate.

Look: Slightly hazy bright coppery orange. It glows!

Smell: Intense! I get whiffs of peaches, mangoes, citrus, pineapple, guava, cantaloupe, floral, and pine. Very dense.

Taste: All the above, plus a pronounced grapefruit flavor on the finish. Like the nose, this is flavor dense. There's a lot happening here, but it's cohesive and absolutely freakin' delicious. Not much in the way of malt, but it's definitely a hop head's (pipe?) dream.

Feel: Approaching full bodied and sticky as hell, this goes down smooth! Just enough prickly carbonation to make this 11.5% beer go down like juice. Mmm!

Overall: This beer is ridiculous! It is so friggin' dense with flavors and aromas that all work so well together. I will enjoy the heck out of this 6pk and anxiously await its return next year.

This is obviously a specialty beer @ 11.5%ABV, and I've rated it as such. As someone who generally prefers 5%-7%ABV brews, this was a rich and tasty treat. That said, I highly recommended this if you come across it in the cooler of your local store!

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Photo of Buck89
4.34/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Hazy orange-amber color. Big smells of cannabis, citrus, cigar ash, earth, caramel. Huge dank, sticky, hoppy taste: resin, orange, pine, ash, earth, spicy rye, pine. Full-bodied but not sweet. great huge IIPA.

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Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.4/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Look is a lighter amber color. Very clear with an inch frothy white head.

The aroma is lots of tropical pineapple with notes of bubble gum. Smells intensely delicious.

Taste matches aroma. HUGE hop flavor. Bubblegum and citrus and pineapple. absolutely amazing.

Such a intense awesome beer. Tastes amazing.

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Photo of JISurfer
4.52/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Easily my favorite beer from Lagunitas. I like my IIPAs floral, citrusy, and piney. This hits on them all. Hope to find it on tap around here at some point. Nice to see that it's easy to find too.

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Photo of seagullbeer
4.88/5  rDev +13%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

L- Nice orange with a some haze

S- If pine trees had fruit. You can smell a little bit of the 11.5%

T- Peachytropicalpinedank

F- Nice sweet pucker. Sugar and alcohol are strong but very well balanced.

O- Try this beer. With all the double, triple, imperial, mongo IPAs out there there is just a top tier of amazingly well balanced 10%+ beers that can juggle over the top hop flavors, IBU, sweetness and alcohol. The Pliny the Youngerkids. Destinguishing between them and saying this is the best beer in the world is kinda silly. This is one of those bonkers hyuge IPAs. Only complaint is a little bit of alcohol on the nose but it isn't a big

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Photo of gustavmahler-09
4.72/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours dark golden, with one finger of head. Smell explodes while pouring and goes straight up the nose. Pine, lemons, lawn clippings, oranges and some sweeter fruit I can't name. One of the strongest smells I've had. Taste fulfills the promise of the smell. Strong pine, citrus flavors, and a slight taste and feel of honey that reminds me of Hopslam. Taste lingers delightfully. Feels very smooth and creamy, and the alcohol is not very obvious, so be careful. A great, delicious IPA.

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Photo of MisSigsFan
4.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Cracked this bad boy open and I'm immediately greeted with an outstanding aroma. Poured into my Lost Abbey teku. Pours a slightly cloudy golden color with a frothy white head. The smell is huge mango, guava, pineapple, and dank hops. Very sweet smelling as well. Taste is equally aromatic. Insane amount of tropical fruitiness. Really dank and slightly oniony. Not boozy at all. This is like Sucks on steroids. Mouthfeel is stickier than the stickiest icky. Carbonation is slightly low, but it works very well for the style. Overall, an absolutely world class Triple IPA. I grabbed a single yesterday and after having that one I had to go find a shop selling 6ers. At $13 to $14 this is one hell of a deal. Lagunitas is just killing it with the hops.

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Photo of Allaboutthosehops
5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow. Regardless of the Abv, this beer smells and tastes amazing! The smell is so fresh and hoppy with big citrus notes. The taste is undoubtedly hoppy, but not bitter. There is also a dank sweetness of tropical fruit, with a crisp finish that makes you want to go in for another sip. The consistency is impressive at 11% and not too thick. This is hands down one of the best beers that I've ever had, and ranks with the best, without all the hype. The beer speaks for itself. If you like IPAs you have to try this.

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Photo of K-Dog
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Everything about this beer is fantastic. Great orange and copper look to it. Citrusy smell and if you smell it close enough has a slight weed like aroma. Taste is just awesome especially for 11.5 percent. Most ipas of this strength taste more like a barley wine with devil dancer and double crooked tree coming to mind. Some how lagunitas made this beast to still taste like an ipa. And the price 11.99 a sixer are you kidding me. Hopslam cost 16.99 a sixer of you lucky. This is a much better value for such a superior beer. Hopefully this a yearly regular release. By this while u can. A word of caution. This is a dangerous beer. Drank 3 last night in about an hour and a half and woke up this morning with one of the worst hangovers I've had in quite awhile. You have been warned.

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Photo of OrangeMen
4.21/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2016 release
~2 weeks since bottling

Appearance- Pours a deep golden, slight orange color. Clean and transparent. Half finger of white colored head, dissipates quickly. Lots of sticky alcohol legs and spotty head lacing.

Aroma- Sugary sweet tropical fruits, pineapple, mango. Tons of peach. Melon, and bright citrus notes. Substantial malty sweetness, sugary, slight alcohol.

Taste- Sweet melon, peach, pineapple, orange juice. Huge punch of dank, herbal hops, bitter and lingers far in the aftertaste. Syrupy sweetness and sugary malts. But the dank hops really fight it off to create a good balance.

Feel- For the style its a full feel, syrupy and sticky sweet, heavy in the mouth. Lower carbonation.

Overall- Intense and flavorful beer. Such a huge punch of bitterness, dankness. But in comes the sweet tropical notes and citrus, with a balancing malt body and sugary sweetness. Really glad i got to try this.

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Photo of NiceTaps
4.05/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle in a tulip glass.

Pours a translucent golden copper color, nearly clear. A fluffy head, slightly off-white, fades quickly and leaves small patches of lacing.

Smells of pine syrup, tropical fruits, and alcohol. In accordance with the name, the Waldos are definitely meeting at 420, ;-).

Pine resin and tropical fruit juice to start. Then some citrus to finish, slightly candied.

It's a full bodied brew although not malt heavy. Dry hoppy, not overly bitter. No alcohol burn. The flavors hang around for a while.

Leave it to Lags to get it right: a DIPA with flavor and feel without the sweet and booze bomb traits. Nice!

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Photo of superspak
4.32/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 3/28/2016. Pours slightly hazy golden orange color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense and fluffy off white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of huge mango, melon, peach, pineapple, passion fruit, papaya, grapefruit, tangerine, lemon zest, orange peel, citrus rind, light pepper, pine, honey, spicy rye, bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Incredible aromas with awesome complexity and balance of juicy/dank citrus/tropical/pine hops and moderate bready malt notes; with great strength. Taste of huge mango, melon, peach, pineapple, passion fruit, papaya, grapefruit, tangerine, lemon zest, orange peel, citrus rind, light pepper, pine, honey, spicy rye, bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Good amount of pine/citrus rind/spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of mango, melon, peach, pineapple, passion fruit, papaya, grapefruit, tangerine, lemon/orange rind, pine, spicy rye, bread, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of juicy/dank citrus/tropical/pine hops and moderate bready malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and minimal astringent hop flavors after the finish. Moderate dryness from bitterness that increases through the glass. Medium carbonation and medium-full body; with a very smooth, sticky/resinous, and lightly creamy/grainy/bready balanced mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a light warmth lingering after the finish. Overall this is an incredible big imperial IPA! All around fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of juicy/dank citrus/tropical/pine hops and moderate bready malt flavors; and very smooth and dangerously easy to drink for the huge ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of jdhops
4.69/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Bottled March 28. Poured into a tulip glass.

L: Pours a deep clear golden with a short off-white head that quickly disappears. Splotchy lacing. Lots of tiny bubbles heading upward.

S: Very freshly mowed lawn with some apricot. The freshness of the smell is truly incredible for a bottled beer.

T: Citrus, apricot, mango, pine up front. A hint of alcohol in the middle, and drying at the end. Minimal bitterness. The alcohol isn't totally hidden, but I can't believe it's 11.5%.

F: Medium, a bit sticky. Plenty of carbonation.

O: Just outstanding. Fresh and flavorful, with its own identity.

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Photo of ocelot2500
4.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours a hazy peach color with a tight, white head that leaves little bits of lacing.

Smells of bright, piny, and tropical hops.

Tastes of juicy hops layered over a well done malt backbone. Hops lead off with notes of grapefruit. pineapple, mango, apricot, and pine notes. Fairly bitter. Malts come next and add syrupy sweetness along with some caramel. Sweetness definitely balances out the bitterness. More hops add towards the end with more of a pine and herbal character. Finishes with a lingering, piny bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium-full with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is a tasty DIPA and is very close to perfect in my book.

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Photo of Wiffler27
4.7/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

pours amber with a solid head. somewhat clear, not hazy.

smell is fantastic! creamy dank hops. this is nice. 420

very bitter yet velvety smooth feel. creamy for a dIPA, notes of alcohol as well. dankness is the best word for this, but of course that's what they're going for! tons of bitterness and fruitiness to this. very very good. like a fruity juicy version of Ruination.

this is really damn good. i could not drink a bunch of these (most people couldn't/wouldn't) because of the high abv but it's a beast of a dIPA.

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Photo of Lingenbrau
4.16/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Daaaang! Golden copper, bursting with citrus and sweet aroma. Taste juicy with lots of citrus, some mango and a touch of pine, along with that signature Lagunitas flavor. Smooth, creamy and velvety feel with just a touch of alcohol warmth. Cheers!

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.47/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into an oversized tulip.

Copper and orange hazy body. Super frothy head, rings and rings of lace. Film over the body. Looking good.

This smells like a juice bomb. Pineapple, passionfruit, semi-ripe mango. Bitter and resinous on top of everything. Light onion and catty notes become more apparent but aren't in the offensive category. Overall, juicy and delicious.

Veers more into grapefruit territory on the taste but damn it's delicious. Still has some sweet mango in the mix, orange juice and some dank weed in the finish.

Let's just talk about the ABV. I know it's high cuz I've heard things but I wouldn't know from drinking this. Hardly detectable. Still has an incredibly juicy character to it, plus it's bitter and resinous and dank weed-like. How Sway?!? I don't got the answers!

I'm feeling this. Beeg time. $11 sixer? Good looks, Heineken!

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Photo of twizzard
4.81/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

What an absolute dank, weedy, juice bomb. And 11.5% ABV....are you kidding me?! I passed on it originally when my local recommended it but now I have to load the boat! The absolute best Lagunitas, hands down

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Photo of imstimpy
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

My first taste was straight from the bottle in my workshop. I'll properly pour and review the beer soon.
For now, I can confirm it is impressively hoptastic. As with all Lagunitas, the bottle humor is great- I think they list "hops" in the ingredient list six or seven times.

The first taste had a touch of lime and a lot of hop. The lime faded to the hops after a few sips. My first guess at IBUs would have it well north of 100, but it isn't too sharp.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
4.1/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear amber color. The head is two fingers high and white in shade. Retention isn't particularly good, and the texture becomes rougher the longer it sits. Some streaks of lacing also stick to the glass.

Let's cut to the chase: this is aggressive, over-the-top, and beastly - I feel like the aroma just punched me in the face with peach, tangerine, grapefruit, guava, and weed. Does this have Mosaic? If it doesn't, I'll eat a hat. When combined with the textbook Lagunitas character, it really seems dank as hell. It's 11.5%, so there's also a hefty caramel sweetness. I just love how big and unsubtle it smells.

It tastes weed-like at first. This dankness slowly subsides, being replaced by notes of tangerine, peach, pineapple, and grapefruit. The finish is faintly boozy, about what I'd expect from something so massive. The maltiness is every bit as sweet and heavy as I expected (although it never overpowers the hop profile by any stretch). It has that classic "boozy pineapple juice" vibe many mega IPAs feature. Plus, it's so damn OTT, it's charming.

Big and thick, the finish is just light enough to make it drink a little easier than it could have otherwise. It's still a sipper up in this realm of gravity, though. The texture is slightly syrupy and the carbonation is lowish. All told, it pairs up with the flavor profile very well.

I'm a big fan of subtlety, nuance, and delicacy - and then something like this comes across along. Those three terms are pretty much the opposite of what this beer is about. And hell, that's why I love this one so much. One is enough, but one is far more satisfying than 3 mediocre IPAs in a row.

4.1/5: Drink this instead of the bong water

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Photo of StoutElk_92
4.42/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear bright amber orange with a frothy off-white head. Smells like caramel, honey, papaya, dank guava, passionfruit, pineapple, bitter citrus, with fresh pine and earthy grass. Tastes like sweet caramel honey malt, bitter pine, grapefruit, orange citrus, pineapple, big papaya, onion, with fresh dank earthy grass. Feels light bodied, slick with moderate carbonation. Overall a nice malty DIPA.

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The Waldos' Special Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 345 ratings.
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