Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale) | Lagunitas Brewing Company

BA SCORE
96
world-class
1,605 Reviews
Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale)Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States
lagunitas.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.85%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This sad holiday season we didn’t have the brewing capacity to make our favorite seasonal brew, the widely feared BrownShugga’ Ale. You see we had a couple of really good years (thank you very much) and so heading into this season while we are awaiting the January delivery of a new brewhouse we are jammin’ along brewing 80 barrels of IPA and PILS and such every 3 hours. A couple of months back we realized that since we can only brew a mere 60 barrels of Shugga’ every 5 hours, that we were seriously screwed. For every case of Shugga’ brewed, we’d short 3 cases of our favorite daily beers. It’s a drag. This year, we brewed something that we think is also cool and brews more like our daily brews. The new brewhouse will help insure this kind of failure never happens again. It’s a mess that we can not brew our BrownShugga’ this year and we suck for not doing it. There is nothing cool about screwing this up this badly and we know it. Maybe we can sue our own sorry selves. There is no joy in our hearts this holiday and the best we can hope for is a quick and merciful end. F*@& us. This totally blows. Whatever. We freaking munch moldy donkey butt and we just want it to be all over...
So this substitute beer is a ‘Cereal Medley’ of Barley, Rye, Wheat, and Oats…. Full of complexishness from the 4 grains, and weighing in at 7.85% abv, Then joyously dry-hopped for that big aroma and resinous hop flavor.

Added by Jules11788 on 11-07-2011

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,605
Ratings:
10,206
Avg:
4.31
pDev:
9.74%
 
 
Wants:
645
Gots:
2,655
For Trade:
32
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,605 | Ratings: 10,206
Photo of BostonHops
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served in a snifter.

pours a nice golden / burnished copper shade while yielding a creamy finger or so of white head. decent retention and nice lacing evident. nose is outstanding: huge, aromatic notes of citrus and tropical hoppiness - one of the more fragrant citric / tropical aromas i've come across in either recent or not-so-recent memory - with secondary notes of pine and a pleasant malt backbone.

flavor packs more of the same with juicy citrus and tropical fruits galore, a bit of pine, and some balancing maltiness. very tasty. decent medium bodied mouthfeel with average to slightly below average carbonation.

overall, just really impressed with this beer. fantastic, wow-factor IPA. can only hope it finds its way into the regular lineup at some point.

(originally reviewed: 11-27-2011)

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Photo of Nugganooch
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First came across this fantastic brew on tap at Track 84 in Warwick RI (right by the TF Green airport) a few weeks ago. Was on business travel, read some great reviews on the place and man BA’s were spot on. There I was, a Cali native drinking yet another great Cali West Coast IPA for the first time at some New England dive. Hooked off of one sip. Had to track this down upon my return.

Christmas Day Consumption - the last of my 6er
12oz bottle w/ Pint glass

A: Pours a clear golden straw color that looks super light and bubbly leaving a small frothy white topping. Med retention with some specks of lace.

S: Aroma is killer with hops. Uber catty as fresh hop pellets. Spikes of grapefruit and tropicals. Smells so good. Begging me for sips.

T: Taste is crazy fresh hoppiness too. Pungent and catty on the palate. Super fruity with grapefruit zest, bitter melon, and guava. Malt holds a slight sugary sweetness but is practically nonexistent. Definitely not of the maltier Lagunitas standards. So tasty fresh and hoppy!

M: Super light body. A touch creamy with a nice light dry crisp finish.

D: Way too easy to drink. Was a bit better fresh on tap compared to the bottle version but still an awesome IPA either way.

Merry Effen Christmas to me! Actually this one was loved by all I shared with. Definitely looking for more and/or the re-release.

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Photo of WillCarrera
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a clear golden color, white head bubbles away quickly, lots of sticky lacing.

S- Big hop smell with strong mango aroma as well as some orange, pine, sweet honey. The aroma is big and vibrant and the fruit smells so juicy you can almost taste it. Amazing.

T- Enormous complexity on the fruit aspect, hops are leafy with pine and resin, at the same time there's a huge, juicy fruit flavor with mango, orange, pineapple and grapefruit, some earthiness in the background. Booze is pretty prominent but not overpowering. Malt is light and bready with a decent amount of sugary sweetness.

M- Medium bodied, moderate carbonation, juicy, luscious feel with a dry finish.

O- An excellent DIPA, the flavors are amazing, I almost feel like I'm stealing given that I paid around $10 for a six pack, I haven't had Brown Shugga before (I'll have to try it now) but no apologies are needed for this beer.

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Photo of robsee
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This definitely did not suck - a great strong ale / ipa.

I bought a 6 pack of this beer and it went extremely quickly.

Nice golden color, good head, nice lacing.

This one hits all the right floral / citrus / grapefruit notes in both aroma and flavor. The hop flavors just blend well together - it's basically a beer that makes you forget about complexity and concentrate on enjoying a good beer with friends.

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Photo of JayQue
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Really outstanding DIPA. Pours a mostly clear dark gold color with good bands of lacing on the pint glass. Head retention is better than average.

Aroma is awesome:, bitter hoppiness,, mangos, tangerines and some strong floral aspects as well.

Taste can't quite keep up to that first sniff, but it is a strong DIPA in any case. The floral and tropical fruit aspects, blended with a good strong bitterness, make this a winner.

Mouthfeel is rich and crisp. Just right for a DIPA. Alcohol presence is well under the annoying level.

A super DIPA.

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Photo of Hopswagger
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

P: Orange copper body with a bubbly thin top of off white clouds.

S: Super fruity and sweet. Grapefruit, blood orange, apricots, pomegranate, mango, honey dew and pineapple. Sweet candy malt and very subtle flower aroma.

T/M: Clementine oranges, ruby red grapefruit with sugar sprinkled on top, apricots, and melon. Crystallized sugar accompanied by bitter lemon/line peel and timid spices. Overall palate is big time fruity and sweet, opposed to a harsh bitterness. Sticky medium body with gentle carbonation and a smooth but dry finish.

O: All I can say is "I love this beer!" Hands down one of the best I gave had. Super excited to try the rest of the Lagunitas line up. Cheers!

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Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice glowing yellow amber color. Light creamy head. Some retention

Aroma is of bold bright citric hops, lemon and grapefruit. Some tropical flavors. Piney and starfruit. Grassy and resinous. Slight burnt dank aroma. This reminds me of a lightweight Pliny the Elder.

Bitter and sweet, like biting into a grapefruit. Nice fresh bready malt character.

Well-balanced and refreshing. Bright and aromatic. Very hop forward. Lagunita's does a fantastic job with hops.

I am not a huge fan of brown shuggah but I know a lot of people who like it so I won't knock it. Lagunita's would make a great decision if they offered this terrific IPA frequently. It's tasty, characteristic and drinkable.

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Photo of rjd722
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Look: Orange-amber body, slight haze but not completely opaque. Huge, fluffy white foam head which sticks around for a seriously long time and maintains it thickness. Nice lacing as well.

Aroma: Somewhat grassy scent, accompanied by pine and fresh citrus. Sweet malts also dominated the profile, while the hops remain relatively low-key. Interesting tropical/pine medley here.

Taste: Sweet malts and a complex citrus accompaniment (pear, orange, grapefruit, lemon). Towards the end is when you really get the full array of rye, wheat, etc.

Feel: Unbelievably smooth for a DIPA coming in at nearly 8%. Excellent balance of malts and hops, not too bitter. I could drink this one all day, every day.

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Photo of MadCat
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Nice golden color with a fluffy white head, leaves good lacing

Smell: Pine and citrus hops, a little tropical fruit and bread

Taste: More pine, citrus, and tropical fruit. A nice balance malt bill, with biscuit and caramel, a little resin on the finish

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy, medium body, good carbonation

Overall: Fantastic brew, I can see why it is highly sought after. Love the 32oz bottle. Doesn't go overboard on the hops, but it is a very nice profile, and has a good balance of malts to compliment the hops. Very well rounded beer.

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Photo of Jonny41
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

poured into pilsner glass, deep orange honey color nice foamy head that lasts well, thick lacing on glass when swirled.
Intense smell deep citrius ,grapefruit and other. Taste explosion. A little heavy like too much grape fruit "peel" but very enjoyable, second glass even better.

Slightly thick mouth feel, may want water or lite beer in between bottles but other wise a fantastic beer a top rated DIPA for me.

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Photo of zodiak3000
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Golden/Orange, not totally clear... somewhat hazy, looks very similar to Lagunitas IPA.

S- Wow. Tons of tropical fruits going on here. Somewhat floral as well. Getting blasted with mango mostly. Im guessing Simcoe/Amarillo and/or Citra in the dry hop.

T/M- Follows the nose very well. The one thing I love about Lagunitas is there ability to achieve insane hop flavor without all the bitterness. Probably tons of late kettle additions. The malt is somewhat complex as well. Rye isnt too noticeable, but the oats did create a very slight creamy mouthfeel. Drinkability is so good.

O- Very well done. Honestly could care less about Brown Shugga after trying this. Reminds me almost of a cross between the IPA, Hop Stoopid, and Waldo. Bring this one year round fellas!

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Photo of HopDiggityDawg
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Mother Earth (NC) Snifter
Nice thin head with great lacing
Smell - There is no way this beer tastes bad with a nose like this, hoppy, citrus, fruit
Taste - follows the nose - citrus, a little west coast IPA flavor
Mouthfeel - is more like a west coast IPA, resin, oil,
Overall - By far my favorite offering from lagunitas. I would never turn this one down!

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Photo of BastardKing24
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Got this from my local brew store, after reading about it, and also loving anything Lagunitas.

Pours a light gold with a huge billowing head that sticks around for a while.
Lacing is thick, very proper looking brew.

Smell is nice with dank hops and citrus, pine, pineapple, clove, malt, not the most overwhelming smell but it hits the spot for IPAs, I'm diggin it.

Taste is a huge hop presence, kinda spicy, very floral, piney, some citrus, reminds me of pliny. Alcohol is well hidden, can't taste it.

Mouthfeel is medium carbonation, with a sticky aftertaste of hops, resin sits on tongue.

Overall a fantastic beer I will seek out in the future. Get ahold of it!

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Photo of JCaweinstein
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Two finger pillowy white head with good retention. The head on this thing looks so good. Amber to orange in color and crystal clear, showing off just enough carbonation to keep the head on my beer to the bottom of my snifter.
The aromas that I pick up are all fruit related, the most obvious to me being grapefruit. I also smell hints of mango, pineapple and lemon.
It's got that great hop bitterness upfront with some of those fruit flavors showing out, mainly the grapefruit. After the hop blast I get a nice burnt toast, grainy bread taste which follows the hop bitterness nicely. It finishes with the less intense fruit flavors that makes me think of pineapple or even lemon.
This medium bodied, and has that sticky resinous feel to it that I love in my IIPA's. It finishes crisp with malty bitterness and sticks in mouth for a few minutes after every taste so I dont soon forget how good it is.
This is one of my all time favorite IPA style beers. It's crisp, clean and majorly hoppy. I also think I picked this sixer up for like ten bucks! Awesome!

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Photo of bornridiculous
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I will do my best to refrain from the avalanche of profanities that have formed in my brain as a result of drinking a six pack of this in one sitting. I do indeed love this beer.

Appearance: A bright golden color with good head retention and excellent lacing.

Smell: Holy Hops. Smooth Crisp Hops. Solid Citrus with hints of pine and just slightly resin flavored. Its like a humidor made of hop cones.

Taste: This IPA is balanced and not balanced at the same time. It almost appears that different hop characteristics come out in each sip. Fruit, Earthiness, pine, sweetness, malt, and grapefruit all come to mind.

Mouthfeel: Crisp with moderate carbonation. A real resin aftertaste that is at once satisfying without being overpowering. I liken it to a brutal IPA like Stone Ruination, but a velvet glove without the iron fist.

I keep licking my teeth to extract the hops.

Final Thought. I drank Ruination to be punished, Ghandibot to be impressed, but Sucks is now my benchmark. Fuck Brown Shuggha.

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Photo of SerialHiker
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a classic deep golden color…transparent in nature, tons of bubbles bubbling up from the bottom…luscious white head formed and remained…tons of legs all over the glass…(4/5)

Smell: Tons of citrus hops…grapefruit, orange, mandrin, those little clementines in a bag for $6.99 and pineapple…sweet, pale malt…tons of citrus hops…(4.25/5)

Taste: Wow…I have to say, I expected a way more citrus dominant flavor, but that’s not the case…starts very fresh and very citrusy, much like the nose…flavors of grapefruit, orange and pineapple all apparent…but the sweet, pale malts come through and hold their own against all comers balancing out all those hops and that’s no small feat…this could easily have been over the top hoppy and still good, but the amount of excellent malt flavor here takes this brew to another level…piney resin flavor comes toward the end and lasts throughout the after taste…(4.75/5)

Mouthfeel: Light body, light to medium carbonation…very clean break after swallowing, hints of citrus zest and piney resin linger on the palate…very light…(4/5)

Overall: This is a solid brew…very citrus hops heavy with a solid malt backbone and a piney hops finish…very flavorful…I’m not sure how this is an afterthought brew for lagunitas because it’s better than most others’ IPA attempts…a wonderful surprise I found at my local Dominick’s that I couldn’t pass up, and I’m super glad I didn’t…if you see this brew, buy it and you’ll thank me later...outstanding flavor with a high ABV (that’s only noticeable by the buzz), this is a stand-out beer that I couldn’t recommend more…(4.5/5)

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Photo of dgugliuzza
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a tulip

Long golden pour with a sizzling, bubbling head. The white head falls fast and turns into a creamy lacing. Plenty of carbonation and sticky lacing.

Smells like a tropical fruit platter. Pineapple, mango and papaya smack the nostrils. Fantastic fruity and resinous hop aroma. Sticky sweet with just a fraction of bitterness.

Taste is a tropical fruit explosion with moderate bitterness. Pineapple and mango are most evident. Clean hop finish that is much more sweet than bitter. Simply delicious.

medium bodied, creamy brew that leaves the palate wanting more. Good burst of carbonation. Insanely smooth and drinkable. It gets better and better with each sip.

Not only does this beer not suck, it is down right terrific. The tropical fruit parfait, sticky sweetness and full bodied creaminess work in perfect unison. I will certainly not miss Brown Shugga if I have a supply of these on hand. A must try. No excuses.

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Photo of TippySelenoid
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip.

It's a deep, golden color with a white head. The head doesn't last too long, but it leaves remarkable lacing. Not much for bubbles in the beer.

It's sweet, the sugars smell caramelized. There is a peppery/herbal note to the hops.

This beer has a fair amount of woody/herbal/spicy hops. The malts are sweet, but not cloying. There is a nice amount of balance between the flavors.

It's medium bodied and feels bit fizzy, but this is not bad in this beer.

This beer is a winner. I prefer this to the Brown Shugga'. This should be the new winter seasonal.

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Photo of aficionado
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brilliantly clear light gold body with 2 finger soapy white head. Loads of lacing.

Fruit bomb on the nose. Lots of fresh hops, citrus rinds, sweet pineapple candy, unripe watermelon, fresh mango, and ripe peach.

The taste is much like the nose, albiet a tad less intense. Big floral notes of tropical fruit and sweet sticky candy. Similiar to a hopped up West Coast IPA that I brewed recently with more of a rich, sweet cereal-esque malt backbone full of barley, rye, wheat, and oats.

A lot of people use resinous as a descriptor for this beer, but I get more floral, fruitiness with Lagunitas brews whereas Russian River and Alpine produce more resinous hop forward beers.

Medium body. Easy drinking yet full of flavor. This should be a year round brew. By far my favorite from Lagunitas, even topping Hop Stoopid. You can definitely sense dryhopping at its finest here.

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Photo of JohnWaynes44
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pure gold. Creamy head that held on and left a web of lacing. Citrus nose consists of pineapple, orange, and lemon grass. Juicy hops are just exploding with citrus. Pineapple stands out, but lemon and a hint of orange are there too. Malts are in the background but never come to the forefront. Bitterness lingers through the finish like drinking simple green. Feel is oily and slick.

This beer pushes the style in a way that we are not accustomed to. Typically a brewer with push a style forward, but this one takes a step back, but not in a negative way. The lack of big malt in this beer pulls it back from a DIPA in a very good way. It is a great and unique representation of the style, with a straight up juicy hop forward, bitter ale. I urge Lagunitas to make this a year round offering.

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Photo of brewcrew76
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Clear bright golden wit ha thin white head and a lot of sticky looking lace.

S - Juicy hops, grapefruit, orange, mango, tangerine.

T - Grapefruit, pineapple, very tropical fruity, hint of pine I didn't pick up in aroma. On the hoppy side but with enough sweetness to balance it out.

M - Medium body with medium carbonation and juicy lingering hops in a dry finish.

D - A great IPA that I am glad they made since I am not a fan of Brown Shugga at all.

Thanks to emerge077 for sharing a bottle before I can buy it in Milwaukee. Must pick up a 6 pack or two when it is available.

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Photo of xnicknj
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into tulip - thanks to scalene

Pours a clear auburn color with an orange hue. Frothy white head retains with a layering of white haze. Large rings of patchy film string across the glass.

Super juicy hops in the nose with an absolute explosion of fruits. Pineapple, grapefruit, tangerine, and oranges with pithy bitterness. A hint of sweetness with bready notes and slight warmth.

Really nice bitterness up front with aggressive citrus flavors. Grapefruit pith combines with orange peel and a dash of pineapple. Apricot hints with a decent malt backbone. Sweet bready notes with soft caramel. Finishes bitter and juicy with a light warmth.

Lighter medium body, well carbonated, sticky and juicy on the tongue. This is BY FAR the best beer I've ever had from Lagunitas - I want more!

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Photo of perrymarcus
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served in a snifter.

pours a nice golden / burnished copper shade while yielding a creamy finger or so of white head. decent retention and nice lacing evident.

nose is outstanding: huge, aromatic notes of citrus and tropical hoppiness - one of the more fragrant citric / tropical aromas i've come across in either recent or not-so-recent memory - with secondary notes of pine and a pleasant malt backbone.

flavor packs more of the same with juicy citrus and tropical fruits galore, a bit of pine, and some balancing maltiness. very tasty. decent medium bodied mouthfeel with average to slightly below average carbonation.

overall, just really impressed with this beer. fantastic, wow-factor IPA. can only hope it finds its way into the regular lineup at some point.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a clear golden-orange color with a finger of frothy white head atop. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind some lace.

S - Aroma is full of citrus hops and candied pineapple, grapefruit, and mango, some floral hops, and some sweet caramel malts.

T - Starts off with a strong kick of grapefruit and pineapple hops with some good bitterness and a bit of sweet caramel malts growing from the background. Through the middle, some pine and floral hops come through with some more citrus flavor and bitterness. The finish is a mix of sweet candied tropical and citrus fruits, bitterness, grassy hops, and some sweet malt.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a resiny and fairly dry finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice big hoppy DIPA with a great hop profile. I really like how strong the candied tropical fruits are.

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Photo of budgood1
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours out an ever so slightly hazed bright gold colour with a respectable off white head. there is good deal of floaties to be had, adding to the viewing pleasure. very clingy lace. massive citric pith and resiny pine hop aroma. some base biscuity and bready malt manages to peak through. bitterness whacks the tongue right away upon tasting...then some hop flavours quickly fill the void by throwing off some assorted citrus notes...mostly lemon, tangerine and grapefruit with a hint of juicy pineapple. the resiny sap nuances also add to the hop party, making for a certain brashness that is bad ass in the mouth. sturdy maltiness provides the sweet bready bass line which allows the hop shredding to shine. no real alcohol notes can be tasted, but can be perceived in the overall taste profile. this DIPA has surprising girth to it; i expected it to be more IPA than DIPA but this brings the good in the body department...full, rich and sweet despite the massive hop bitterness. the mouthfeel has a certain coarseness...not grating but a bit rough. i would guess this much higher than the 65 IBU's listed. great drinkability...this just tastes damn good for amped up hop juice!

overall i would say that this doesn't "suck" and is some damn tasty "holiday leftovers". cult status well deserved. it leaves me smiling.

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Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale) from Lagunitas Brewing Company
4.31 out of 5 based on 10,206 ratings.
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