Nugget Nectar vs Lagunitas Imperial Red...who's had both fresh?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by SudsDoctor, Feb 5, 2013.

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  1. SudsDoctor

    SudsDoctor Zealot (528) Nov 23, 2008 New York
    Premium Member

    Early last Spring, when I had my first Lagunitas Imperial Red—ironically just a couple weeks after finishing the one six pack of Nugget Nectar I could get my hands on—I knew I'd just HAVE TO do a head-to-head comparison when NN was released this year. Same style, comparably awesome citrusy hop aroma and taste, both perfectly balanced by ample malt backbones. Little did I know before I went out to pick up a six of both beers today that Lagunitas IR is limited release only (last released in late January of 2012) and won't be released at all in 2013. I was able to get both beers, but unfortunately my comparison won't really be valid because while the NN is nice and fresh (bottled 1/24/13), the Lagunitas IR is a year old. Has anyone had them both fresh, head-to-head, at a tasting party or at a bar? If so, kindly mention which you preferred (and why). It would be much appreciated.
  2. LMT

    LMT Initiate (0) Oct 15, 2009 Virginia

    I had them both very fresh last year. Though not exactly head-to-head, I did have both in my fridge at the same time and rotated between them.

    Last year, I would have said Lagunitas IR. I thought the Lagunitas hop aroma was more piney (and more pleasing) and the mouthfeel was heavier. I also thought the hop/malt balance was better in the Lagunitas. And of course, the Lagunitas cost a couple bucks less per sixer.

    For some reason, this year's NN I feel is an improvement over last year's. I had thought that last year's NN was a bit off (can't say exactly why). I'd like to do a comparison between the two again. However, I really love both of these beers and imperial amber is a style I like a lot.

    I really want to know how Lagunitas pulls all of these great beers off at such a reasonable price (though Troegs is still one of my favorite breweries).
  3. BB1313

    BB1313 Poo-Bah (2,698) Jul 16, 2009 Ohio

    Both are great. I like Nugget Nectar alot more, but I don't consider NN an Imperial Red Ale. I know they call it an Imperial Amber.. whatever.. it's always been an IPA/DIPA to me :wink:
  4. Droogins

    Droogins Initiate (0) Sep 4, 2012 Massachusetts

    This. I'd buy Sucks and Little Sumpin Sumpin if they came in 4 packs at what they're priced now as sixers.
  5. seplo

    seplo Aspirant (271) Sep 8, 2009 Connecticut
    Beer Trader

    Had both fresh and I'd go with Nugget Nectar but Imperial RED isn't as far behind as some ppl would think....CHEERS
  6. Dools9

    Dools9 Zealot (518) Jul 5, 2011 Massachusetts

    Pretty pissed Lagunitas Imperial Red isn't going to be produced this year. I liked the Red a bit better than NN last year.
  7. wvsabbath

    wvsabbath Meyvn (1,426) Apr 29, 2010 West Virginia
    Beer Trader

    You totally said what i was thinking, the sucks this year isnt what it was last year, and this years NN is awesome. The NN is more grapefruity then last year, and not as bitter imo.
  8. Giantspace

    Giantspace Defender (674) Dec 22, 2011 Pennsylvania

    Went through 3-4 cases of red last year. Loved it. Still have my case of NN from this year.not that it's bad but its just a pretty good beer. Red by a mile. Much more hop aroma and taste and I remember it being more crisp.

  9. dougfur

    dougfur Initiate (0) Jan 24, 2011 New York

    It's nice to hear confirmation here of something I noticed, which is that last year's nugget nectar was not up to par. I've been drinking it for a few years now and was really surprised last year, when it tasted pretty...mediocre. I haven't seen it yet this year, but nice to hear it's back. It's a great beer, though I fail to see the line between "imperial amber" and just a big ipa with some color to it...
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