With a name like Undercover Investigation Shut-Down Ale, you can’t help but respect what Lagunitas Brewing Company is doing… namely, having fun with their beer. The text on the label reads, "We brewed this especially bitter ale in remembrance of the 2005 St. Patrick’s Day Massacre and in celebration of our 20-day suspension back in January of this year." Huh? It goes on… I don’t have the patience to type it all in, but someone else did.
(It kind of reminds me of the labelling on Arrogant Bastard… and that’s not the only similarity I thought of.)
This is a strong, "double IPA" style of ale… 9.9% alcohol by volume. Pretty good, not as hoppy as one would expect for the extreme IPA style.
Appearance: Clear, mahogany brown in color. Half-inch of tan head, very clean looking.
Smell: Hoppy, grassy, twiggy. Knowing Lagunitas penchant for the whole 420 thing, I want to say hempy…
Taste: Rich and malty and hoppy… reminds me of a strong ale a là Arrogant Bastard (there it is again). Not a fruity malt character, but licorice-y and a little syrupy without being overly sweet. Hops aren’t ultra extreme, but strong and a nice counterpoint to the strong ale character. A bit of heat from the alcohol.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a nice chewy factor… there’s a little hop astringency here, which seems just right.
A nice beer… a couple of these bombers and you’ll be shut down, too. Over on BeerAdvocate, they score it 85, with 100% approval all around. On RateBeer it has garnered a very respectable 3.82 out of 5, in the 95th percentile.
Being a one-off seasonal, it won’t last long… I’d pick one up for the label as well as the beer itself…