Lupu-Luau IPA | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Lupu-Luau IPALupu-Luau IPA
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Reviews: 123 | Ratings: 399

#3,046 ranked American IPA | 7.30% ABV

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Notes: Rotating availibility. The first Hawaiian Luau in 1819 bucked tradition while maintaining respect for a rich legacy, so when we set out to create this namesake IPA, we found our own way to rebel against restrictive limits of known brewing ingredients while honoring Dogfish's brewing tradition.

What began as an exploration of all things hazy and pale, Lupu-Luau morphed into a coconut-centric IPA. We combined Pils malt with flaked barley, rolled oats, and malted and raw wheat to bring the haze. Then we brought coconut to the party in 3 different ways with toasted coconut, dehydrated coconut water and an experimental hop variety that provides a unique coconut & woody aromas.
Lupu-Luau IPALupu-Luau IPA
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Reviews: 123 | Ratings: 399
Photo of DavidR_9
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle (bottled 6/24/17) into wine glass. Consumed 8/5/17

Pretty hazy yellow golden body, not much head and quickly disappears into a thin layer. But this beer smells and tastes great! Yellow golden hazy body, clear citrus and almost tangerine aromas with hints of coconut. Taste has a clear cocout presence that actually works really well with the hoppy bitterness and sweetness/citrusy notes. Finishes medium dry and lingers with a bit of hop and coconut oily feel. Very refreshing

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Photo of muchos
3.85/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

L. Light-orange with a slight haze, small sudsy head leaves a frothy ring.
S. First whiff is tropical - pineapple, orange, apricot. Second inhale is coconut right away with some over-ripe citrus. Fruity sweet.
T. Much sweeter than I expected right up front with coconut; dried apricots and bright citrus mix in, sweet coconut blasts back in before a bitter orange peel on the finish.
F. Medium body, slick feel, prickly carbonation, slowly drying finish.
O. Interesting idea, I wouldn't go out of my way for it, but it's pretty good. Cheers!

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Photo of BEERMILER12
3.94/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a golden yellow color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a thin cap that leaves streaky, spotty lacing

S: Tropical and earthy hops up front along with the toasted coconut and some bready maltiness

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with some tropical hops and goes into the coconut. Slightly toasted and bready notes in there from both the coconut and malt. Finishes with lingering coconut and some earthiness

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. On the smoother, juicer side

O: A solid IPA that definitely highlights the coconut. Easy to drink. Worth checking out, especially if you like tropical and coconut flavors

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Photo of braker649er
4.21/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Well, I lupu-liked it!

I can take or leave coconut water, generally, so I think it's to Dogfish's credit that they succeed adding dehydrated coconut water to the mix here. I think that's the biggest distinguishing ingredient, though the toasted coconut must've brought something, and the hop mix seems pretty interesting, too. And even the malt blend of pilsner and wheat--wth oats bringing smoothness--pull in intriguing aspects. Overall, though, this could've been hit or miss, and I won't be surprised by mixed reviews for the polarizing aspect of coco water's subtle saltiness. But it hit for me, not only due to originality.

L - a good hazy pale, pours with some head but disippates to look juicy. Apt.
S - I thought pineapple juice from the smell, and maybe even some hefe-spiciness something like clove. Interesting there's not much coconut on the smell--and also not power-hop. Just mostly juicy.
T - the coconut leads here. I've had other brews with coconut, and what stands out here is how this suggests the coconut water--subtle saltiness, and still balanced by tropical juice--some kind of pineapple-passionfruit flavor.
F - smooth enough. balanced.
O - It does stand out. What you'd kind of expect from a Dogfish brew--pushing boundaries that could backfire, but done with such apparent skill and eye toward refreshment that it turns out well and distinguished.

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Photo of pubscout
4.43/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lupu-Luau is a very interesting beer, and, though others in my group rejected it out of hand, I found it wonderfully refreshing, very flavorful and enjoyably complex. An array of tropical fruits are present, both in the nose and on the palate, and the pilsner malt is nicely balanced by an ever present hop bitterness. Though I'm not a "coco-nut," this coconut infused creation is done with a very deft hand and just a faint hint of sweetness. I'd buy a Lupu-Luau sixer in a heartbeat.

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Photo of Buck89
4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Fairly hazy and golden in color, with a medium-sized white head that left quickly, leaving scant laces. Tropical aromas of fresh coconut, pineapple, and mango. The taste followed closely. Plenty of fruit- papaya and pineapple with a smooth non-toasted coconut that actually melded nicely. A faint IPA-like bitter citrus hung in the back but was there throughout. Overall an interesting beer that I appreciate, but it's not my thing.

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Photo of Ohiovania
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First dogfish head beer I've really liked in a long long time. The coconut adds a hint of sweetness but the hop profile is a wonderful tropical mixture. Semi dry finish and a spot in mouthfeel.

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Photo of gatornation
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slight hazed light golden color with a fresh white head. Smell has light tropical fruit with cedar wood, very little coconut or spice. Taste has a light fruit hop with almost zero coconut with a lager wheat and oat finish. Medium carbonation with a malty wheat finish. Another terrible brew from DFH, really a single for most of the brews they make is enough,Dont bother buying this one.

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Photo of zeff80
3.62/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured a clear, golden orange color with a small, white head of foam. It smelled of coconut and wood. Some pine notes, too. Odd coconut flavor with a bitter bite.

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Photo of q33jeff
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4


bottle to snifter.

LOOK: Medium hazy yellow. Small white head.
AROMA: very faint coconut, faint citrus. nothing overpowering, so well balanced, but it is tough to make out anything specific.
TASTE: A bit more concrete. You can definitely tell this was made from coconut water; there is a light refreshing coconut taste, mild citrus, passion fruit, wheat or some other non-barley grainy finish. Gets better as you drink it.
FEEL: medium bodied but drinks like a Michelob Ultra; light to medium carbonation. Maybe a touch of "slimy", but not enough to creep you out.

Good summer option.


Glad DFH released this again in cans, but maybe winter is a bad time.
Love this as a light refreshing summer beer.


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Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Everybody loves the smell of suntan lotion. But we all know that it tastes bad. Dogfish Head Brewery has done the unthinkable. They've turned that scent of suntan lotion into something delicious and it will give you a buzz for extra measure. It's a win-win!

Hazy golden and crowned with a creamy white froth, the beer's scent is chocked full of tropical delicacies. Passionfruit, pineapple and citrus fruit aromas are all dwarfed by the overwhelming presence of coconut and vanilla. To taste, its the pastry-like breadiness, light honey and caramel that offer early introductions to the palate.

As the ale unfolds on the middle palate, its sweetness further drifts and the underlayment of malt adds a mildly toasted and nutty granola character that lies underneath the hops. Strong flavors of pineapple and passionfruit frame the tropical punch impressions but a lighter fare of grapefruit, orange and mango show more of a traditional hop blend that develops into a sharp, grassy and piney bitterness to close. Meanwhile, the strong taste of coconut and vanilla engulf the session but seems to relax as the root IPA takes hold.

Medium bodied and preferring an east coast type of balance, the stab at New England IPA yields only moderate success, but the tropical taste and roundness of the ale proves to be too seductive to discredit. Finishing with the taste of tropical fruit peels and a lemon pepper spice, the aftertaste is long and piquant with hop bitterness.

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Photo of Lucular
3.73/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Tastes just like a pina colada. The description doesn't say anything about added pineapple, but I got even more pineapple than coconut. The 7.3% alcohol comes across a little bit harsh, but hey, that seems appropriate since pina colada's have rum.

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Photo of TheWolf
3.42/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

For me the dfh yeast works well with the really aggressively hopped iPas. The bitterness of the 60, 90, 120 balances out the maltiness that the yeast/malt profile brings. However whenever they get cute with the fruity iPas, it becomes a muddled mess. Drinkable. But only once

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Photo of Benjolovesbeer
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tulip:

Bright lemony orange look with fluffy bubbly head that turns to thin lacing. Watched a small brown piece pour itself in from the bottle that sunk to the bottom. It's either a piece of coconut or piece of rat dung and very much hoping it's coconut. Either way I'm going to drink it anyway.

Aroma is hoppy but can't decipher any coconut scent

Feel is medium, bitter, and sweet.

Taste is hoppy and piney with mild coconut flavor.

Was hoping for more coconut flavor and is good for a hot summer day. But do appreciate the hoppiness.

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Photo of BB1313
3.43/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a hazy glowing golden; fluffy eggshell white head that falls leaving nice retention and sticky lacing. The aromas have mild tropical notes along with some citrus. The coconut is pretty subtle and is hard to pick up. Some fresh grass along with some crackers. Malts are there. The flavors basically follow the nose. Once again, the coconut is hard to pick up. Lots of fresh grass along with some pine. It's slightly earthy. Some grapefruit. Solid hop bitterness. The malts do their thing, but the hop bitterness seems to shine. It's not too sweet at all. Finishes dry for the most part. Alcohol goes unnoticed. Mouthfeel is very nice. It's medium-bodied with active carbonation. It's very fluffy, crisp, smooth and easy to drink.

This is a solid IPA, but the coconut seems to go unnoticed. Nothing seems artificial though. It's very clean, crisp and refreshing.

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Photo of HattedClassic
3.92/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a decent looking fuzzy white head that dissipates very quickly. The beer itself is a meh to look at since it's a yellowish orange that is hazy.

The smell and taste are fairly good. Both have strong notes of coconut that actually resemble real coconut instead of some fake artificial stuff. The hop note is moderate and comes off as a tropical mango note that combines very well with the coconut. Other than that, there isn't much else going on.

The feel is a bit weird. It's a medium bodied beer with the slightly water with weight feeling from coconut water and some tiny biting carbonation. It's not a bad feeling, just not what you might want from a beer.

Overall, this is a pretty good beer and worth getting. The feel is odd but the smell and taste note are really goo, which definitely makes this one of Dogfish Head's interesting successes.

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Photo of VeganUndead
3.52/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I guess the best way I can describe this, is take the mouthfeel of a beer, and combine that with the flavor of slightly hopped coconut water. Not bad, just odd

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Photo of Jimmys
4.24/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle. 06/24/17 bottled on.

pours fairly cloudy, but straw golden in hue. the aroma is really tropical. some coconut notes but even more pineapple notes in my opinion. minty even. finish is resinousy, but also has an assertive pine note. super drinkable and one of the better IPA's Ive had from DFH lately!

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Photo of cjgiant
4.18/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle dated 6/24 (revisit on tap 4/2019):
Pours with a more yellow than golden body. The body is hazy - a rarity for DFH in my experience. The head is fluffy to cloud-like, and craters its way back to a spotty surface-covering entity. Collar is medium thick, lacing is minor.
Revisit: more impressive/sustaining head with great lacing.

Nose generally has a light lemon-grass like aroma. Lemon zest, maybe a little lemon lime soda on the citrus end, but there's a missing tartness. The coconut is light and plays into the citrus to produce the general aroma. Nothing specifically tropical, but there is a sort of Hawaiian vibe here.
Revisit: similar notes, but the coconut is more obvious

Taste hits with the coconut up front. It is more like the nose cold, but comes out a little more distinctly as the beer warms. It's not a sweet coconut, and the toasted note actually comes to me (in some cases it seems a little like the skin is in there, oddly). I don't know the experimental hops, but they aren't very bitter, and do have a hybrid non-tart citrus/tropical aspect to them. The lemongrass impression is faint, but occurs here as well (almost like very light Sorachi hopping).

A very soft, lightly fizzy, medium to medium light feel. It's got a softness that isn't like a full blown new-wave IPA but leans there.

I thoroughly enjoy this beer - but I like coconut, and I like Sorachi Ace hops. This gives me a little of the latter and a nice, but not overwhelming, dose of the other. I can see non-coconut fans or more traditional IPA fans not gravitating towards this, but I think it's worth an experiment for anyone.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

maybe the beer geeks are over dogfish head, but they are still making some incredibly innovative and delicious beers, and this is right in line with their long history of doing that. a coconut forward ipa that is at the same time very much hop driven, but also exploding with coconut. it sounds like a gimmick, or like at the very least this would have to be pretty sweet, but thats just not the case. they use a nice cerealy pale grain base to build up the body, some oats and wheat i would think, and then they introduce coconut in a few different ways. it ends up tasting far less forced than some of the big coconut stouts do when its all said and done, and way less sweet. it also tastes really natural and authentic, like coconut flesh itself, not some coconut flavored drink or dessert or lotion or something, its honest and robust, i love it. there is a nice floral tropical element to the hops that ramps up too, and it goes great with the coconut, juicy and lightly citrusy, it certainly screams summer to me. i almost swear its sorachi ace hops, that lemon creaminess comes on for a flash, but its tough to say for sure which hops are in here. i could almost swear there are sorachi ace hops though, so distinct, but its not quite all the way there, that finishing hop complexion though seems like it for certain! probably the best integration of coconut into a lighter colored beer i have ever seen, and i commend it for that. i wish it was a little more sessionable for hot weather though. the alcohol is a little high to slam them, and all the grains give it a pretty substantial body. dry and bubbly and frothy though, it hits the feel mark pretty squarely. i like how much this is still an ipa, but the hops taste unique to me, especially with the coconut, and the vibe of this is super hawaiian and fun. good work on this one guys! ill be looking forward to my next one...

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Photo of ichorNet
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hmm, a unique new DFH IPA brewed with toasted coconut, dehydrated coconut water (which I guess is just coconut water... powder? Not sure really) and what I assume to be Yakima Ranch's HBC-472 experimental hop, aka one of the "Neomexicanus" wild varietals. I believe I've seen this hop varietal used in a Sierra Nevada beer or two before, as its description of "coconut and woody" rang a distinct bell in my head. Anyway, on to the beer at hand!

Pours a fairly hazy golden yellow-ish color with a strong head formation right off the bat and a really nice showing of chunky, consistent lace. Retention is pretty damn good, as I still got a solid finger after almost ten minutes in my glass while I sipped at it to consider and ponder this one. Some lazy streams of carbonation rise from the bottom of my glass here, as well... the haze is pretty deep but not enough so that I can't see what's going on beyond it, which is something I appreciate. This is one of those examples of a moderate/middling approach to haze working, in my opinion.

Nose is strongly peach-forward, with stiff oak tones, coconut, lime and guava/passion fruit tropical-ness as well. This positively jumps out of the glass and comes across quite impressive and confusing right off the bat. Like many DFH seasonal beers, this provoked a total "ummm... hm. O...kay, I think that's good?" from me initially, but it's grown on me quite a bit over the session I've been spending with it. This feels more fruit-forward (and stone fruit-forward at that) than the only other point of reference I really have in the tropical coconut IPA category, J Wakefield/Finback's amazing collaborative effort, Smooth Beats Miami. Whereas that beer is quite heavy on the coconut/macadamia elements in the nose, this seems to be favoring the experimental hop they used. I like both approaches a lot, honestly, though. I'm surprised this is so distinct from its only other reference point. I feel like even more could be done with this idea!

Really surprising flavors come across here, too. Deep, detailed, bready malt provides a backbone for more tannic notes, and suggestions of toasted coconut, kaffir lime, peach candy and guava. This is super-smooth and unique. Slight orange, vanilla, herbal (almost Noble-esque) hops with a moderate bitterness. The only issue I really have with this is that the bitterness isn't pushed enough and seems to rely too strongly on the one hop varietal. I find myself wishing for a little bit more punch and resin-like quality, but I figure that would be pretty tough to balance with everything else going on here, so I understand why it (likely) wasn't implemented.

Feel is medium bodied with tempered carbonation. Strongly malty, fruity and herbal flavors upfront are helped along by this disposition, but the finish seems disproportionately weighty and fails to achieve the dryness and quenching quality I prefer from my Summertime IPAs. DFH has never been extraordinarily good at normal strength IPAs (see more modern entries such as Flesh & Blood which has similar mouthfeel issues in my opinion), and this suffers from similar problems. The overall package is quite good, but dissecting it leads to some consistency problems in how the parts make up the whole. I still really enjoyed this and may seek out a few more bottles. Probably wouldn't want six of them though. As I've said in other reviews where I've come to similar conclusions... take that how you will!

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Photo of jzlyo
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Aroma is citrus/tropical fruit/zest and mild toasted coconut. The flavor is citrus, slightly sweet coconuts, malts and a mix of tart and mild hop resin in the finish.

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Photo of StoutElk_92
4.42/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottled on 06/24/17

Pours hazy gold with a dense creamy frothy white foam head. Smells like coconut, vanilla, grapefruit, pineapple, passionfruit, orange citrus, caramelized crackery malts, with floral woody earthy herbal grassy pine. Tastes like coconut, vanilla, grapefruit, pineapple, passionfruit, orange citrus, caramelized crackery malt, with bitter floral woody earthy herbal grassy pine. Feels medium bodied, creamy with smooth moderate carbonation. Overall a nice and interesting coconut IPA.

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Lupu-Luau IPA from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 399 ratings