Lagunitas: Undercover Shut-Down Ale

From the Brewery: IMG_2661 IMG_2662

“We brewed this especially bitter ale in remembrance of the 2005 St Patrick’s Day Massacre and in commemoration of our 20-day suspension that followed. The ABC conducted an undercover investigation of our brewery, finding us guilty of operating a “Disorderly House.” We did the crime. We did the time. We got the bragging rights.” 9.6% ABV American Strong Ale

Purchased from BevMo in Fresno, California.

The Pour: IMG_2663

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter. The color is deep reddish-brown, with slightly hazy visibility, similar to iced tea. A large, puffy, off-white head is poured, which dissipates quickly to a wispy covering. Moderate lacing is left on the glass, and light carbonation is visible.

The Nose: IMG_2664

Sweet caramel malts and molasses attempt to be the main aromas, but they are invaded by dark fruit notes and dark, resinous hops. All of the aromas seem melded together, none being distinctive from another. I also get spice notes and alcohol undertones.

The Mouth: IMG_2665

Medium-rich bodied, going down with a punch of alcohol burn and hop bitterness. The sweet caramel malts are the main flavor, with molasses and dark fruit also present. The level of sweetness is incredibly high, and it leaves a clinging, syrupy coat over my teeth. Some dank hop bitterness is introduced to balance things out, but the cloying sweetness is too much. Light alcohol is noticeable with the hops in the aftertaste.

Final Thoughts: IMG_2666

As I worked through my six-pack of this brew, I kept thinking to myself that I was just on the verge of really liking it. It offers plenty of flavor, both intense sweetness and solid bitterness. However, the overall flavor profile and mouthfeel really prevented me from coming around. The syrupy sweetness is just too much, even with a healthy amount of bittering hops. While not lacking in flavor, the taste just isn’t for me. It’s just one of those beers that I think I’m supposed to like, but just don’t. 5.5/10.

Lagunitas Brewing Company – Petaluma, California

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1 Response to Lagunitas: Undercover Shut-Down Ale

  1. Pingback: Lagunitas: Lucky 13 | Toby's Beer Reviews

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