Lucky 13.alt | Lagunitas Brewing Company

very good
268 Reviews
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Lucky 13.altLucky 13.alt

Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial Blonde Ale

O.G. 1.085
76.92 IBU

Added by MADhombrewer on 06-23-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 268 | Ratings: 873
Photo of drabmuh
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

At the time of this review, this is the #17 Altbier on the beeradvocate best of lists. Served in a tumbler.

Beer is yellow with a mild haze, lazy head, some lacing, low carbonation.

Aroma is hoppier than expected, mildly pine.

Beer is light in body, dare I say thin, with a mild yeast presence, weak on the lead off, and a dry mildly bitter finish, pine hops on the middle. Decent, I enjoyed it and would have it again.

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Photo of Mdog
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Gold, good head.

Smell: Malt, toffee, pine, kind of reminds me of a piney ESB. A little oxidation too?

Taste: Piney, citrusy, juicy tasting. A bit of toffee comes through, so it's not all hops.

Drinkability: Another variation of hoppy beer from Lagunitas. Easy to try them since they're so cheap.

I haven't had the regular 13th anniversary since I don't like reds. But picked this up since it was nicely priced. The smell reminded me a little of an ESB, but the taste was more of a IPA variation. Another pretty good beer from Lagunitas.

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Photo of welldigger888
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice golden crystal clear hue with a pillowy white head with outstanding lace.

At room temp this billows wonderous hops,west coast style with grapefruit and piney resonius dank. The C's hops for sure.With a maltiness that holds up to the hop ill with a nice caramel sweet maltiness.

A swell bitterness up front that plays well with the maltiness and dank hop profile.

Seems spot on for carbonation and quality beer.

Oh my I like this brew!

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Photo of JizackFH
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - This beer pours a nice clear orangish amber color. It has a little more than 2-fingers of off-white head resting on top. The head has excellent retention, and it leaves behind a nice sheet of sticky lace on the glass.

S - The nose has a nice bit of bready malt and caramel in the forefront. There is a nice piney hop aroma as well. Also, I am getting some scents of fruit, honey, and some citrus.

T - The taste starts off with a sweet caramel maltiness. That is immediately followed by a nice piney hop flavor/bitterness. There are some nice flavors of honey, grapefruit, and just a touch of booze. The finish leaves some lingering sweetness and piney hop bitterness on the palate.

M - This has a medium body and good carbonation. It goes down easy and has a nice smooth feel to it. There is a good amount of sweetness and piney hop bitterness that balance each other out. There is just a touch of booze on the back end.

O - This has good drinkability. The flavor is nice and goes down easy. I would have no problem having a few glasses of this. Overall, I really enjoyed this beer. It is like a red ale and IPA all in one. Another solid beer from Lagunitas. Check it out.

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Photo of bensbeers
3.74/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a bright amber color with a huge, caramel head. Left a good layer of lacing along the glass and held a nice later of foam throughout.

Nose was full of orange peel, honey and a hint of spice.

Taste has a nice mellow hoppiness which is well balanced by the smooth malts that you taste when it first enters your mouth. I also noticed some grassy notes and citrus also.

Mouthfeel was very smooth; not too much carbonation. The bitterness from the hops lingers long after you drink.

Overall pretty good. I liked most the taste. full of flavor and the sweet malts were definitely offset by the bitter hope. Not my favorite Lagunitas brew, but definitely one to enjoy as a treat once in awhile. Can't see myself drinking more than 22 oz.'s of it, though

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Photo of Reidrover
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle from "Habits" in S.Salem. $3.69 Clear and darkish golden beer with a huge,thick and frothy off white head. Extremely pungent hop aromas,resiny and deeply herbal..some caramel malts also appear. Taste is well balanced with a huge chewy caramel/toffee malt presense and an equally terrific dank resiny hop over load..a titanic clash!..hops win in the end though. Ok on the palate..the two immense competitors meld well. A good beer but not one of Lagunitas best.

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Photo of katan
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz into a pint

A - Pours a light golden brown color. Very clear, translucent. Lots of pearly white head.

S - West coast hops, citrus, a little bit of pine. Underneath it all is just a little bit of caramel sweetness.

T - Starts off night and malty up front, caramel, a little bit of nuttiness. Mid stream brings on a solid hopping profile, a little bit of deep citrus hopping. Finishes with a solid bitter finish and a bit of grapefruit on the tongue.

M - Full bodied beer, balancing and even stronger carbonation. A little bit cloying in the finish.

O/D - An interesting but not particularly easy to drink beer. The heft sits on stomach pretty hard. The west coast hopping starts to leave a pretty harsh bitterness. ABV is high enough to get you.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of DrewShal9
3.76/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A; orangey copper with a white head
S: upfront sweet honey with citrus that gravitates to a slight malt and a hint of booze.
T: citrusy, sweet orange blossom honey, little going of booze on that finish
M: lightly carbonated yet smooth with a lighter body
O: very drinkable and very dangerous. I enjoyed this and wish I could try the original of the lucky 13. Definitely would like to get more of this!

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Photo of bushbeer75
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

1pt. 6fl. oz. brown bottle

Lagunitas Lucky 13.alt [blond girl on label] poured a light auburn/amber color into my snifter. A 1-finger off-white bubbly head was produced and shortly shrunk to craggy lacing. The nose is malt based with some citrus and floral notes. The taste is slightly different compared to the nose and has dominant hop flavors of flowery grapefruit and orange along with mild notes of caramel malt. The mouth feel is medium bodied with medium carbonation.

Lagunitas comes through again with a beer that is full flavored, hoppy and reasonably priced...way to go!

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Photo of womencantsail
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer pours amber in color with a slightly off-white head.

S: A malt driven beer with lots of caramel and toffee. There's a nice hoppiness, too with some citrus and floral notes. A bit more malt in the form of bread. There's an almost candy sweetness and a bit of fruit.

T: Lots of toffee, brown sugar, and caramel malt character, which is nice. More sweetness from the candy/sugar, and some red fruits (grapes and berries?). Still some hop notes with mild citrus, and a mild bitterness.

M: The body is medium with a medium carbonation.

O: Lagunitas makes some fine ales, and this was one of them.

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Photo of hoptualBrew
3.79/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Split this bomber with my buddy, both poured aggressively into our fine glassware.

Bright copper in color with streaming bubbles rising to the surface seen in this translucent brew. Creamy off white head tops it all off and is complimented by nice legs, but little lacing to the glass.

Roasted biscuit malts, nutty undertones, and earthy piney hops in the nose. My buddy said it smells like a Christmas tree with hops as ornaments. On the palate is alot of piney citric hops with a sweet malty caramel nut backbone.

Rich mouthfeel in this combination malt & hop bomb. Expansive hops & great carbonation explode the flavor! Not overly bitter, but has a really nice slightly dry mouthfeel out back.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.79/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance- Pours a clear golden amber color with a two finger white head. The head has a good level of retention, slowly fading over time to leave a nice level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell- The aroma of the beer is a mix of sweet and hoppy. The sweet is a blend of tropical fruits and a large dose of caramel with the hoppy being of a predominant grapefruit and citrus aroma.

Taste- The flavor starts out rather sweet with a strong caramel and brown sugar flavor mixed with some tropical fruit flavors. A citrus hop flavor is present upfront which grows stronger as the flavor advances more toward the end. Along with the increase in the citrus hop comes an increase in the sweeter more sugary flavors of caramel and brown sugar all at the expanse of some of the fruit. In the end the still very sweet flavor is met by some more hop of a pine and a floral nature which in the end leave a rather sugary hopped but pleasant flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the brew was average in thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that was rather average as well. Both suited the mix of sweet and hoppy flavors rather nicely and made for a rather easy drinker even at 8.8 % abv.

Overall- A rather sweet but tasty, none the less, IPA with an easy drinking style. While not quite up to the traditional Lucky 13 it was an interesting take, and is well worth the try if you get a chance.

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Photo of Stephen_Hawkings_Drool
3.8/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle poured into a pint glass

My wife gave me this as a Christmas stocking stuffer last year and I decided to cellar it based on some reviews I read at the time. I had planned on cellaring it for a lasted 11 months.

A: Copper, 2" head with decent stamina
S: Honey, Bread Pudding, Citrus and Agave Nectar
T: Grapefruit, Sourdough Bread, Molasses and a lingering bitterness that breaks up the cloyingly sweetness
M: If you think it's thick after it's been freshly bottled, wait a year. Not terrible, but if reduced by half I'd imagine it'd be a nice alternative to syrup for your waffles.
O: I really enjoyed this, but am going to find a fresh bottle to allow myself an honest comparison. Being a chef, all I could think about while drinking it was using it to braise a pork belly. I like cheese toast.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of tastybeer
3.82/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pretty glowing warm orange color with a finger high head comprised of tight orange tinted bubbles. Spotty bits of lace.

S: Big fruit, pine, and herbal notes in the aroma. Really brightly stinky. Mouth watering fruit, reminiscent of some kind of peach and berry pie filling, mid-cooking, with fermented cranberries and candied blood orange. Tea-like and herbal aromas are floating around...basil comes to mind.

T: This beer is loaded. Blasts of fruit (as in the aroma but somehow bigger), embedded in tasty bread malty goodness. Brisk bitter hops are sprinkled throughout and certainly stir things up.

M: Syrupy, thick bodied, sticky-gooey texture. A little over the top I think but not unpleasant. This feels like a big beer for sure.

O: Good beer indeed.

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Photo of Phelps
3.82/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big bottle poured into a goblet. Lagunitas calls this one an imperial blonde ale.

Murky tangerine, capped with a wispy head of very light tan that quickly fizzles away to a thin ring.

Very malty nose. Sweet caramel, toasted biscuits, overripe oranges, some grapefruit peel, candy sugar.

Similarity in the flavor. Begins with candy sugar and candied grapefruit peel. The swallow brings a swig of caramel and toasted biscuits. Lingering toastiness and burnt sugar notes between sips. Far from blonde ale, this tastes to me like a malty east coast-style IPA — surprising from this west coast brewery.

High, almost painful pinching carbonation in a fairly viscous medium-light body. Moderate bitterness, just a hint of booze behind the bright, sugary flavors. At 8.9 percent ABV, this is an impressive feat.

Call it a blonde ale; call it an IPA; call it what you want. This 13th anniversary ale is tasty stuff, and at $5 per bomber, the price is very right.

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Photo of rajendra82
3.82/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The amber colored body was clear, and the head was foamy, and two fingers thick. The aroma was laden with tropical fruits like papaya, mango, and guava. The taste was not quite as sweet as the aroma hinted at. I got a more bittersweet, bready taste, rather than the tropical blast. The alcohol was warm and up front. The body was medium thick and somewhat astringent. This was a nice IPA/DIPA, but somewhat more interesting malt choices would have improved the beer.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.83/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Came out looking like the regular Lucky 13, red with good clarity, small head. Aroma was one of the biggest changes, gone is the massive hoppy aroma, yet still the biggest for anything qualifying under the alt. banner.

What is lacks in hoppiness of the original, it makes up for in smoothness/drinkability. Great at hiding the alcohol in a big beer. Better than the original. Bitterness held at bay right where it should be, strong, but not for the sake of touting some absurd ibu#. Otherwise, same amount of caramel and red malts.

Lagunitas always delivers big hoppy beers at a great price, no difference here.

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Photo of Sammy
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sips of malt and sips of hops. A great marriage. Above average mouthfeel. Lasting generous white head on cloudy golden body.Apricot and grapefruit citrus, bread and alcohol. Very drinkable, a wonderful accompanyment to supper. Good for west coast spin on style.

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Photo of StoutHunter
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked up a bottle a couple weeks ago of Lagunitas Lucky 13.alt for $4.99 at The Lager Mill. Lagunitas hasn't let me down yet and I thought the original Lucky 13 was pretty good so I am interested to see how this one turns out, so lets give it a go. No visible bottling date. Poured from a brown 22oz bomber into a snifter.

A- The label on this beer looks OK and it's pretty much the same as Lucky 13, the only difference I can tell is that the chick has blond hair instead of red. It poured a slightly orangish golden yellow color with two and a half fingers worth of fluffy and sticky white head that died down to a thick ring that stayed till the end.

S- The first thing I pick up is pretty dominating citrus hop aroma with some blood oranges sticking out the most along with some mango, grapefruit, and pineapple, it's a pretty nice mix of citrus fruits. I also pick up some sweet caramel malts that help give the aroma a little balance, the hops stick out the most, but the caramel malt base is still apparent.

T- Just like the aroma the hops are the first thing I pick up and they have a nice hoppy citrus fruit flavor with all the fruits showing up that I picked up in the aroma, it seems like grapefruit sticks out the most when it comes to flavor. After the hops comes that sweet caramel malt base that had a medium amount of sweetness to it and a really slight grainy flavor. The finish was a little piny and it had a medium amount of bitterness with a slight citrus aftertaste.

M- Smooth, slightly sticky, medium bodied, with carbonation on the high side of medium. The mouthfeel suits this beer well.

Overall I thought this was a great beer that was very well done. I know Lagunitas loves to heavily hop there beers and this one was no different, I thought the Alt. version went better with the citrus hops then the red version, it was almost like drinking a pretty strong and super hoppyl IPA. What I liked most about this beer was the aroma and flavor, the aroma had a real nice mix of citrus fruits, and the flavor was pretty damn good too. There wasn't anything that I didn't really like about this beer but it could have been a little less sweet and sticky. This beer has pretty good drinkability, I don't think I will have any problem taking out this bomber by myself, it seems like this would make a great summertime beer. I would for sure buy this beer again when looking for a nice hoppy beer and I would recommend this to anybody whole likes an aggressive amount of hops in their beer. I like this beer more then the red version and it is up there as one of the better beer from Lagunitas. Lagunitas makes some high quality beers for a low price and this beer is no different, I have yet to be let down with any brew I have tried from them, they are one hell of a brewing company. Edit, after this brew warmed up a little bit it got much more bitter and harder to finish, so I am taking that in to account.

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Photo of Etan
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a Libbey stout glass.

A: Pours a golden-amber with a nice white head. Great lacing and retention.

S: Huge tropical hops and light malt sweetness in the nose. Perfumy papaya and strawberry.

T: Boozy tropical and citric hops over a strong pale malt base. Mango, orange, papaya, solvent alcohol.

M: Decent carbonation, medium-bodied.

O: Great showcase for Lagunitas' hop usage, but doesn't really seem that different from a DIPA to me.

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Photo of jimmah120
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber into mason jar.

Look is a pale yellow orange with rising bubbles and a frothy head. Smell is light earthy hops, light malt, grain, grass, touch of lemon and spice. Bitter citrus hops up front, sweet ripened fruit, alcohol, grassy finish. Drinks like a higher ABV IPA(~7%), not a stong ale; i.e. lighter feel. Sweetness in the middle is mildly cloying, finishes pleasantly bitter.

Overall, it's very well made and tasty, just doesn't leave much of an impression. Not disappointed that it's a one-off. Maybe I'm being harsh, I did enjoy it.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap at TJ'S Everyday in Paoli, PA, (hey, that rhymes)

I missed this guy last year when it came out. I saw it on the shelves and on tap all over but did not indulge, glad to see it back. In the tulip glass Lucky 13.alt looks light amber in color with some faint sunset orange in the mix. It's not exactly blond looking, the skim of foam on top was off white and sparse, minimal lace.

Smell on this sucka was pungent with florals, a dash of perfume. A bready yeast base with some caramel poking out. The hops are there but subdued, less so than a regular lucky. I guess the yeast strain used is English or German in origin, based on the alt in the name. Some orange pokes through with faint pine with warming.

With being 8.9%, the alcohol is incredibly hidden. Not a bitter beer, the hops are earthy with some slight pine and orange. I get some caramel in the middle with some butterscotch. The yeast brings out a biscuit flavor that really sticks and hits the spot. Basically, a less hoppy version of 13 with different yeast. Imperial Blond Ale, yes, I kind of see it.

Feel on lucky 13 is a medium build and is not to thick. It's easy to take down and not overly sweet and not boggled down with malt. This one is good for a go.

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Photo of biegaman
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Lucky 13.alt is not quite as blonde as the Betty Page on its label, but it does have a nice golden-ish hue and perfect clarity, certainly good looking enough for a pin-up poster. Its head is substantial but gives out in some parts, the resulting pattern is eccentric and irregularly shaped, appearing like some kind of slide of a brain membrane or something.

Lagunitas has not only found their own voice through the years, they've also found a smell. It's a hoppy one, for sure, showcasing the customary citrus shavings and a splash of acidity, but with an herbal, somewhat ganja-like 'house' character to it. This same smell laces most of their brands, except Lucky 13.alt seems to have a little extra orange juice flavouring.

Altbier may have been the last of the old-world styles for an American brewer to double up (I'm not sure we can expect an imperial Berliner Weiss or Gose anytime soon). The case could certainly be made that bulking up the well balanced, clean, smooth, well-attenuated ale would means that it's no longer an altbier. And they certainly wouldn't be wrong...

This doesn't taste much at all like what you'd find in Germany - it tastes plenty like what you'd find in Northern California. It has the lightly fruity, firm and grainy maltiness, distinct toasty and caramel flavours of a Steam beer (which in all fairness is itself a type of altbier). Of course there's been lots of bitter, grassy, citrusy hops thrown in there too.

The alcohol is undetected, but the mouthfeel is noticeably thinned out; toasty maltiness is lost in all these fruity esters. The hoppiness makes for a most 'unclean' beer, notes of over-ripe mango and under-ripe peach and sugary pineapple reproducing on the finish like a kind of bacterial growth. They do so with lots of acidity but, curiously, not much bitterness.

I might be jaded by the stream of Lagunitas offerings, each being so predictably similar in character to the last, except that I don't think I'll ever tire of their brand of uber-hoppy, fully flavoured, ludicrously drinkable beer. Nor would I ever want to stop supporting a brewery that offers said ales with such clever packaging at such reasonable prices.

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Photo of Lawl3ss
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Lightly chilled 22 oz. bomber into an imperial shaker pint. Bottling date reads May 1st.

Look- Clear pale amber with four fingers of soapy foam. Good retention, plenty of lace.

Smell- Citrus and vanilla, very fresh, light, floral, some pepper, a little sweetness. Crusty bread comes out as it warms, and agitation brings out more lemon. Very nice. When I say fresh, it's rather like opening a vacuum packet of Simcoe or something, it smells *fresh*.

Taste- More restrained than the aroma indicates. 75+ IBU? Wouldn't know it. Mango, pine, apricot, nutty malt; almost juicelike but not quite. Finishes pretty clean, just a hint of grass and Italian bread.

Mouthfeel- Medium-full body, smooth carbonation. Dry finish, no hint of alcohol. Easy drinking for the style.

Overall- Alright, but something of a letdown after the aroma. Booze is under wraps, but so is just about everything else- it's not bad by any means, but very plain. Fine enough, but in the end, it's a pretty generic Lagunitas brew. I'd probably pass on it in favor of one of their other fine offerings with more punch.

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Photo of Jeriba
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber poured into a shaker pint.

A - Yellow-orange with cream colored foam. A bit of lacing on the glass.

S - Hops, mostly: citrus and a hint of floral.

T - Lemon and a hint of bready malt, with some clove and licorice on the finish.

M - Smooth, creamy mouthfeel, but not lacking in carbonation. Not overly full or heavy.

D - A bomber size is just about perfect for this beer. I will probably pick this one up again if I see it.

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Lucky 13.alt from Lagunitas Brewing Company
3.97 out of 5 based on 873 ratings.
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