The Waldos' Special Ale | Lagunitas Brewing Company

1,963 Ratings
The Waldos' Special AleThe Waldos' Special Ale

Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed for all the treasure hunters.

Herbaceous. Botanical. Dank. Resinous.

Added by largadeer on 04-21-2011

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,963 |  Reviews: 446
5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottled on 4/7/17 (097 7 Julian code) enjoyed on 5/10,11,12/17.

L: Poured to YETI. Golden amber. Head was small to medium in size with spotty lacing.

S: Initially very sharp and distinctly hoppy/fruity, with a light earthy and herbal aroma. Wonderfully strong! Tangerine, mango, apricot, peach; tropical. Halfway through gave it a good swirl in the cup and smelled some dank!

T: Great and unique; Lagunitas signature flavor but with more intensity. Came in smooth, then BAM! Lots to decipher on this one. But, surprisingly to me, based on the nose, it's not as sweet or as fruity as I thought it would be. It's richly hoppy with a nice, ripe and fruity undertone, and a very pleasant earthy bitterness. This is so good! Just a tinge of alcohol zing.

F: Great; resinous, perfect carbonation. ROBUST! Not too boozy, dangerously drinkable.

O: This is one HOSS of a beer! Not for the faint of heart. Bold but not rude in any category. 11.9 abv is very well hidden in aroma and taste, but after a few good sips you'll know it's there! This is no copycat; it stands alone as a wonderfully/perfectly engineered HOP BOMB. The hype is entertaining. The hunt is exciting. The aroma is inviting. The taste is alluring. The content is intoxicating. The experience is outstanding!!! Hate to see the bottom of the cup coming on this one. Life is good! I'm thinking to myself, does it get any better than this?

It does get better. When you have 2 Waldos' in a row, the 2nd one is super rich and creamy; it's very deep and full of intense hop flavor! This is what it's all about! Thank you Lagunitas. This may be the best DIPA experience I've ever had.

Huge props to Chelsea Food Mart/Citco for their AWESOME selection of craft!

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Photo of FFreak
4.39/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is a beast of a beer. Pours totally clear golden color with a finger of white head that persists and leaves some lace. Nice tropical fruit, pine and cannabis in the nose. Taste follows with just a little bit of alcohol in the taste. For such a big beer, it has a really nice mouth feel...not heavy or malty like you'd expect. Overall, a seriously delicious and buzzworthy beer.

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Photo of obrike
4.51/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

My goodness. Bought a sixer at Highland Market in Austin (great little bottle shop by the way). Just a fantastic DIPA. Near perfection. Dank, hoppy (excellent combo of citrus and a hint of pine), and sweet with a great finish. If you like Sucks, consider this its roided up brother.

I cannot believe it's nearly 12%!! Dangerously drinkable and so very tasty.
Another home run from one of the best breweries in the country. Getcha sum!

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Photo of cmsfish
4.76/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of MurphDog14
4.41/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of mvanaskie13
4.36/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a narrow pint glass: color is straw gold, transparent, head is brighter white with fine bubbles, some lacing and a lingering top.

Smell is big, fruity, earthy: specific aromas are pineapple, mango, mild citrus rind, then herbal, earthy and lighter pine. Woah.

Taste is quite amazing for an ale of this strength: no cloying sweetness, no mouth numbing bitterness, and little to none boozy esters - i shake my head each time i drink it. Flavors are similar to the aroma - big tropical fruit blend of pineapple, mango, citrus; back end is more herbal, earthy, pine flavors with drying bitterness. Booze esters are there but well covered by the hop strength and solid malt backbone. Malt flavor is minor with minimal toast and caramel but enough to back stop the hops.

Mouthfeel is slightly sweet at first, then a dry finish with moderate carbonation throughout. Very well done for at 11.9% abv brew - not cloying, not numbing.

Overall - a very, very good super strong IPA. Incredible hop aromas and strong flavors with easy mouthfeel - dangerous beverage.

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

Photo of dfhhead25
3.93/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of The_Snow_Bird
4.85/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a tan golden color with a large white head on top. Can smell lots of hops and citrus. This weighs 11.9% and is dangerous cause no alcohol seems present. Can taste grains with hints of pineapple, orange and lemon. Just a one of a kind IPA!!

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Photo of RichieRich1812
4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of rodlavers
4.24/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

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

Hop. Bomb.

In the West Coast hop genre, Waldo's may be king. There are very few in this style of IPA that can hang with this hop monster. The nose is juicy fruit gum, pineapple, orange, mango. The taste is all that on steroids. Tropical fruit flavors, a pungent hop bite, nice malt body, and boozy balance. This is a gem. If you can find Waldo, lock it up. Its legit.

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Photo of PSanger
4.38/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer in draft and upon being served it immediately noticed the awesome tropical fruit smells. Thought this beer was smooth and was blown away that it contains such a high alcohol content. I really enjoyed this beer and highly recommend it.

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Photo of RickyBfromCT
4.18/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of bnes09
3.92/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Deep, translucent orange color. Descent head for the strength. Dank, piney and oily aroma. Very spicy hop palate right away with pine, grapefruit and detergent. Dense bready and slightly buttery malt presence. Heavy consistency with light oil texture. Nice bubbles. Dry finish. Very solid.

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Photo of Skrat45
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jbdpsu82
4.18/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mactrail
4.06/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden color with handsome rings of foam in the New Belgium snifter. Deep and delirious hop aroma with honeysuckle in the alcohol fumes. Blazing hot, of course, but the alcohol doesn't dominate. Uncannily well balanced among the booze, the massive hops, and the sugar.

Candied grapefruit and malt and Cointreau orange liqueur. Clear and clean, it's something like a "quadrupel IPA" or a hop liqueur. This is actually quite delicious and surprisingly sippable. I have been thinking Lagunitas had lost their touch (like the nasty mess Brown Shugga has become), but this is a nice surprise. From the 12 oz bottle purchased at Elizabeth Station in Bellingham, Wash.

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Photo of jayfarley3
4.81/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.74/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of heddar33
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BMart
4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of NappyB
4.47/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of glf60
4.48/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
4.16/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy pinkish orange body, soapy frothy white head that leaves very little lace and the only remainders of the head are shallow clouds. The pungent nose turns up tons of tropical fruits like orange, grapefruit, mango, apricot, peach, as well as some stiff bread crust/caramel and an insidious undertone of alcoholic firepower. The flavor still does not reveal the near 12% hiding within, instead displaying more fruit, a bit of pine, and the hearty malts. The fruit is the most prominent but belies the bite beneath. On the first few sips it is astoundingly bitter, but as I begin my thirteenth and subsequent ounces, a pervasive sweetness grows to rival it, eventually equaling it proving to be a well engineered brew. The body is slick and somewhat astringent, barely avoiding the harsh alcohol notes with cleverly devised flavors and quick, fine carbonation.
Triple IPA indeed. And yet, the flavor was too delicate, the heat too obscured, for me to believe it. How did such clear flavors persevere through all that chaotic chemistry? Kudos to Lagunitas, this was an insanely over-the-top IPA that was somehow approachable. It didn't have the dankness I wanted, despite being very fresh, but nevertheless, it did impress.

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The Waldos' Special Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company
4.32 out of 5 based on 1,963 ratings.
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