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

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BA SCORE
96
world-class
1,583 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:
1,583
Ratings:
10,140
Avg:
4.31
pDev:
24.83%
 
 
Wants:
644
Gots:
2,604
For Trade:
31
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,583 | Ratings: 10,140
Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.57/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A - Copper in color with crazy lacing. Nice 1/4 inch white head.

S - Big amount of grapefruit, pineapple, and orange.

T - Just like the smell with the grapefruit, pineapple, and orange right upfront. Big piney hops in the finish. Some sweet bready malts balance everything out.

M - Medium body with light carbonation. Smooth mouthfeel with great finish.

O - Fantastic DIPA! Very easy to drink. This is a winter staple in my fridge.

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Photo of Sammy
4.01/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Great hop aroma. Generous head. Above average mouthfeel. Good malt backing, caramel, a bit of fruit. Nicely carbonated. Nicely drinkable. superior IPA just the right amount of bitterness. Recent bottle from Premier Gourmet. I could have a four pack in the fridge of this.

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Photo of tjsdomer2
4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Incredible lacing. Reminds me of California Steam. Great carbonation and a copper color.

Smell: Orange zest. Some brown sugar and cinnamon. Excellent balance.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Great combination of malty brown sugar sweetness and orange bitterness. Very promising mouthfeel initially...a lot like Zombie Dust. Unfortunately, it's a bit flat in the finish.

Overall Drinkability: Worth the hype.

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Photo of Bear1964
3.4/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Pint glass, nice golden peach color with a small half finger head. Aroma was piney with some hints of pit fruit such as apricot, taste followed with a nice hop tang coating the tongue and some pit fruit sweetness. Smooth mouthfeel with some bitter notes and a refreshing finish, overall a very nice brew that I would pick up again

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Photo of IllNate
4.06/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a near clear amber with a couple fingers of white/off-white head and great retention. Has a bit of a haze to it. Smell is hoppy with mostly citrus hops, but also some floral. Good amount of malt in the background as well, pale, caramel and a hint of spicy rye. Taste follows with mostly hops, citrus, floral some pine. Maltiness is here too, with the rye playing a slightly more pronounced role. Nice complexity. Mouthfeel is bitter with a bit of spiciness, not the beer's strong point. Overall a great beer, but I've had better, not as excited as some of the reviewers.

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Photo of alex_hart
4.16/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Burnt Orange with a 1/4 finger white head that lingers for a majority of the brew. Some heavy carbonation and decent lacing.

Smell: This very well may be the best IPA/DIPA I have ever smelt before. It reminded me a lot of the whole-cone hop aroma I got from SNs Hoptimum, but with some added citrus (lemon, orange peal). It had the perfect balance between a light and full aroma that literally made me walk around looking for my girlfriend so she could smell it too.

Taste: The citrus is definitely still there, and the hops are present as well, but the alcohol seems to come forward a bit and bitterness really hits home at the front of the taste. I let it warm to the recommended temp to see if the flavor profile would change much, but it didn't seem to effect it much. Still pretty delicious though.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with good carbonation. Might even be able to describe it is a bit fluffy with the thin layer of foam being very well pronounced upon ever sip.

Overall: Once again, this is the best smelling IPA/DIPA I have ever had the opportunity to smell, and it tasted great, but it just did not quite live up to the smell. Still a high quality brew from a great brewery.

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Photo of captaincoffee
4.44/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm trying not to over-rate this beer since I recognize this is my favorite style and this beer is done exactly the way I like them. When it comes to a WC IPA, the hops on the nose is key...and this one is absolutely beautiful (I wish I knew the hops combination for homebrew purposes). Overall, an excellent WC IPA with medium white head and tons of tropical-piney hops on the nose. Solid bittering, but not overboard, which remains in balance with the malt (at least as far as the style goes). Definately a beer I will go back to many more times, and already have, in fact.
Kicking myself for missing this place on my last NoCal microbrewery tour. Now if I could just find the Brown Sugga' itself...

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Photo of TheSSG
4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick, soapy white head that has great persistence and laces wonderfully. Citrus and pine hop aroma. Amber-honey-straw color. Starts off bitter with notes of citrus, wells to a surprisingly restrained bitterness that is full of pine hops. Finish is citrus rind and a touch of malt.

I like this one. It's an excellently balanced and restrained hoppy bier. There is all the flavor and brightness of the hops without the crushing, lingering bitterness; all the good and none of the bad!

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Photo of AltBock
4.1/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. stubby bottle with a recycled paper label with a picture of a splatter of red paint. Flanking the sides of the paint splatter is the beer's specifications. Along the beer's sides is a Lagunitas dog saying "We Suck," the Government warning, and the beer's ingredients. The only thing missing from the label is a bottled date or best before date.

When poured into a Cigar City snifter, "Sucks" didn't suck. This beer was a clear and bubbly solid gold. No hidden highlights. It was pure gold! On top of this golden brew was a small 1/4 of an inch paper white head of foam. Not a dirty white. Only a pure white can sit on top of a pure gold brew. This head of foam had decent retention that left behind a small island of foam and a tiny string of foamy rings along the side.

"Sucks" loved the scent of pine. That was its favorite and it showed. Behind the wall of pine was the bitter and lightly tart citrus fruits and bitter citrus hops. The citrus fruits consisted of the usual grapefruit, lemon, orange, and a little pineapple. There was no hidden malt aroma, but I did pick up a few floral notes hiding in the back.

Like the aroma, the taste favored the pine. "Sucks" sure does love the pine. Right behind the pine tree forest was the bitter citrus fruits and dried bitter citrus hops. The citrus fruits consisted of bitter grapefruit, lemon, orange, pineapple, and even a touch of mango. After the citrus elements had their fun, they then let through some floral notes and a subtle toasted malt backbone.

This was a medium bodied Double/Imperial IPA with a good amount of carbonation and a citrus based aftertaste. I thought that was odd since this beer loved the pine. Just not in the aftertaste. You'll find grapefruit, lemon, orange, pineapple, and a few floral notes in the aftertaste. This aftertaste doesn't linger.

Well..."Sucks" doesn't suck. I'm sure I'm about the millionth person saying that, but I had to. It's gold in color and piney/hoppy at the same time. The things you want to find in a beer like this. This is an easily affordable, easy to find Double/Imperial IPA. You don't need to trade your first born to get this beer.

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Photo of HopHeadRyan
5/5  rDev +16%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My new favorite brew...this is a superbly superior libation...

On my second case of this awesome hoppy creation from Lagunitas...glad they distribute to my area in central PA....

A - nearly clear golden orange hue...creamy 1/2 inch head that fades but leaves lacing around the edges all day...

S - A beautiful bouquet of tropical fruits, pine, citrus peel, and a hint of sweet cereal grains...awesome!

T - Juicy resiny hoppiness with enough malt character to keep things in check...so balanced and easy to drink for the higher abv...its scary-good!

M - Smooth and creamy, light carbonation, almost cask-like...medium bodied but not too syrupy just the right amount..

Overall - A great beer yet again from Lagunitas...I love nearly everything I've had from their line-up. I'm a fan and you will be too...this is one of the best IPAs/DIPAs in the WORLD! Get some! Cheers!

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Photo of rodney45
4.47/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Late fall corn field at dusk. Lingering off white head.

S: heavenly, intense. Floral hops and grapefruit, with an offhand note of hemp or citrus.

T: Malt dominant up front with a big blast of munich or vienna malt. Secondary notes of citrus hops and somewhat sweet amarillo/cascade mixture that has notes of melon, and orange. Finish is dry and bitter, with reoccurring flavor profiles.

M: Moderate body, light carbonation. Bitter and no sign of alcohol ethers.

O: Look, this is a fantastic DIPA. I cant imagine anyone not enjoying this beer. Its the pinacle of a hop head's dream. I dont think this beer gets the fan fare it deserves. I'd put it on par with Pliny or Heady topper any day of the week.

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Photo of Lledd
4.19/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle straight from fridge into 12oz alchemist glass.

A: Light yellow, straw colored. Light carbonation and 1/2" head.

S: Delicious. Bright, hoppy, citrusy. Smells like an IPA.

T: Very bright and crisp. Tastes like an IPA. Sweet and subtle malt profile. It blends nicely with the hops. The malts have a taste that suggests honey, or, believe it or not, brown sugar. There's a pleasant piney flavor. The hop profile in this beer definitely says "I'm an IPA!". Not very complex, but delicious.

M: Very fine, soft carbonation. It lends to a smooth drinking experience while still highlighting the higher notes of the beer. The body isn't thick or watery. Thicker than an IPA but once again, the carbonation makes it nice. It's crisp.

O: Great beer. I'll definitely buy this again. This is a fridge staple while it's available. Very refreshing and drinkable.

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Photo of LXIXME
4.62/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Big off white head slowly recedes above a clear bright golden colored beer.

Big citrus and piney hops aroma just keeps on coming.

Lots of pine sap and citrus hops in a lightly bitter and dryish tasting ale.

A bitterish dry aftertaste with a bit of the citrus hops taste sticking around with this medium bodied drink.

A big west coast style hops taste and I like it.

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Photo of yuenglingfan101
4.99/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into the trusty pint glass. nice brownish golden color to it more like a brown sugar color. Nice lacing not to thin and not to thick. Smells like heaven and tastes very smooth for an Imperial IPA. Not a strong after taste but a well worth tasting beer. Mouth of addicting flavor and overall irresistable beer. Two thumbs for this beer

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Photo of JWU
4.43/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A- a clear gold with heavy orange hues. Bright white head, that laces very, very nicely.

S- Instantly identifiable as a Lagunitas beer. Reminds me of their IPA, but much heavier on the tropical hop notes.

T- A big bitter hit, transitions into the tropical hop notes. Grapefruit, orange, and a hint of peach and strawberry. A bit of rye spice on the back end accompnies the bitterness which makes a comeback on the back end.

M- Plenty dry without being crushingly so. Has a bit of a creamy mouthfeel, likely from the oats. Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

O- Looks great, smells great, and tastes pretty darn good.

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Photo of gpogo
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Clear copper body with small white head that leaves sparse lacing.

A- Wonderful hop aroma. Tropical fruity hops so much. Slight sweet caramel malt.

T- Spicy alcohol hit with a heavy hop flavor. Superbly tropical hop flavor. Nice bitterness throughout. The hop flavors are incredible.

M- Medium body moderate carbonation that is very biting.

D- This shit is the shit.

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Photo of McStagger
4.67/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Been hearing about this one for awhile.

A: Medium copper hue with excellent clarity. Two fingers khaki head. Stellar retention. Minimal to moderate carbonation. Definitely a good looking IPA.

S: Dank ass hops. Seriously. Reminds me so much of the Drake Pale Ale (which I love). Huge hits of tropical and stone fruit in this one. Mango, guava and apricot erupt from the glass. Bit of caramel malt in there, but the star of the show is definitely the insanely aromatic hops.

T: Juicy and dank. The malt is there, sure. Splashes of the usual caramel, touch of spice, maybe a bit of cinnamon. But these are secondary to the extremely flavorful hops. Not your usual west coast flair of grapefruit with a touch of pine. These hops are peach, guava, apricot, mango, pineapple. Extremely flavorful. Bright, ripe and juicy with enough chalky/ashy bitterness to remind you that this is indeed a DIPA. Alcohol is extremely well hidden.

M: An excellent balance of carbonation, malt body and alcohol.

O: Lagunitas absolutely killed it with this one. Seriously. Easily the best beer I've had by this accomplished brewery.

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Photo of Profchaos20
4/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle in nonic pint glass.

A - Pours a clear golden with a one finger white head and leaves nice lacing.

S - Citrusy hops. Pleasant aroma but lighter than I expected grapefruit, mango, dank hops. A litt bit of malt in there also.

T - Sweet with a little malt upfront, then a strong bit of hops kick in. Citrusy and piney are the prevalent hop flavors. Finishes with a medium to high bitterness. Also got notes of grapefruit.

M - Medium body, light to medium carbonation. Smooth

O - A good beer in it's own right but I'm a bit disappointed with this one. With all the hype it gets I was expecting more. Nothing really stood out to me just a solid all around beer.

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Photo of HugePlume
4.44/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into a pint

A: Glowing reddish amber, it seems to create light.

S: Out of sight, this might have the best nose of any non-fresh hopped IPA. It reeks of pines and fruits.

T: The nose carries through to the taste, backed by a crisp malt background. Its bitter, but not face puckering. Still can't get ofer the smell.

M: A little fizzier than expected and it finishes rather wet but leaves a nice thin layer of hop oil on your lips.

O: Fantastic DIPA, might be the best non-fresh hop IPA I have had. The nose is simply remarkable.

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Photo of WesWes
4.11/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a beautiful golden color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is excellent. It has a killer hop scent surrounded by a solid pale malt aroma. The taste is good. It has a wonderful hop flavor; bold and full of citrus notes. The malt bill provides adequate balance and a smooth pale and Munich malt flavor. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a delicious DIPA. It's true to the West coast style and highly drinkable.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.09/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a five plus finger white head that fades slowly leaving tons of lace. Crystal clear amber color. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is hemlock/pine hops, flavor is caramel and hemlock. Light lingering bitter finish. Decent Imperial IPA. $2.45 for a 12oz bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, MA.

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Photo of Givemebeer
4.89/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Possibly my favorite IPA that I've had during my recent IPA binge.

Tropical citrus smell and taste that is incredibly refreshing. Must say this is the best smelling beer I've ever had. Taste is almost as good as the smell. Being on the east coast I can't find this often, if I do come across it again I will not hesitate to buy it.

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Photo of sdsimkins
4.18/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Heard these were outstanding so I got a couple to try out

A - Pours to a golden amber, very thin white head that lasts a while, unbelievable lacing

S - overpowering smell of grapefruit, maybe apple, lots of pine accents

T - Amazing, starts with sweetness and mild hops, slowly rolls into stronger hops, pine hits are there as well

M - Mouthfeel is great, standard carbonation; not too much not too little

O - One awesome beer. Great example of what an DIPA should taste like

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Photo of LampertLand
4.31/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Lagunitas Brewing 'Sucks Brown Shugga Substitute Ale' @ 7.85% , served from a 6pack of 331 ml bottles purchased for $19

A-pour is a clear gold with a good size off white head leaving a streaky lace along the pint glass

S-citrus grapefruit and pine

T-smooth and crisp tasting IPA , sweet fruit start , bitter hop finish , well balanced

MF-mild carbonation , full bodied , nice on the palate

Ov-good/great beer , buy far the best of the beers recently sampled , I can finally say I like an DIPA , pity its a limited release and expensive , but so worth it !!

sampled alongside Deschutes 'Hop Henge' , Driftwood's 'Twenty Pounder' & Phillip's 'Amnesiac'

prost LampertLand

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Photo of beertunes
3.21/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured into straight pint glass. Poured a semi-hazy light gold color with over 1-1/2 inch of off white head that had good retention and light lacing.

The aroma was nice, lots of floral and pine hops, and an almost unnoticeable amount of malt. The flavor was the same, pine hops over most of the tongue, some floral in the middle, just a hint of citrus in the finish, and a very low malt presence.

The body was very much on the thin side of average, if it were any thinner, I would knocked some more points off. Drinkability was OK, fairly typical for style, although at below 8%abv, is this really an Imperial IPA? The low alcohol made drinking easier, but hurt the beers chances of of matching expectations. Overall, a nice enough little beer, one worth trying, but not one that matches the hype that has been thrust upon it.

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Lagunitas Sucks (Brown Shugga Substitute Ale) from Lagunitas Brewing Company
4.31 out of 5 based on 10,140 ratings.
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