Next up, Lagunitas Sucks Holiday Ale (Brown Shugga’ Substitute).
This time of year we usually get Lagunitas Brown Shugga’, which actually started as a botched batch of Lagunitas’ Olde GnarleyWine. In an attempt to rescue the GnarleyWine, they dumped in a shyte-load of brown sugar. That didn’t work, so they released it as Brown Shugga’. It ended up so popular that Lagunitas now makes it every year.
However, this year they did not have the brewing capacity to make it. So you get what we have here. Ugh. Between this and their infamous pot bust, it sounds like they run a real tight ship at Lagunitas.*
It pours a clear, straw color, with a lovely bubble bath looking head. As with most Lagunitas beers, you can’t swing a cat without hitting hops up in here. It has a real hefty citrusy smell and taste, with slight pine. But it isn’t so abusive that your tongue feels like Carlo Rizzi after a Sonny Corleone garbage can lid beat-down.
Apparently they used barley, rye, wheat, and oats, which probably helps balance this hoppy bastard. And it has just the right amount of sweetness. Unfortunately, the only thing holiday about this beer is the roadkill Santa on the label (or maybe it’s a Santa cookie…who knows). But it is a pleasant hop bomb. So, I say get some before it runs out.
The Haybag: I miss Brown Shugga’, but I really like this beer. Lagunitas definitely does not suck. Although, I have a feeling your bubble bath reference is going to get you into “hot water” with Pretension Ombudsman.
*I give Lagunitas a hard time, but they are one of my favorite breweries. I have enjoyed about every beer I have ever had from them, and they are always reasonably-priced. Oh, and their Hop Stoopid is really hard to beat.