Tasting Notes: Hazy Memory IPA from Lagunitas Brewing Company

LagunitasHazyMemoryPour2For this edition of Tasting Notes, we take a break from the final, turbulent waves of the workweek so that we can lose ourselves in the idea of the approaching weekend and a Hazy Memory IPA from Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California).

Designed to be “evocative of everything [Lagunitas has] learned in hop-forward brewing,” Hazy Memory is a Hazy India Pale Ale loaded down with “oats and smooth wheatly-esque-ish-ness” and then “packed with some of the murkiest, juiciest, turbid Loral 291, Hallertau Blanc, Galaxy, and Citra Hops.” Coming in at 8% ABV and 55 IBUs, Hazy Memory IPA is “a little boozy and a little hoppy — just like a fuzzy memory of a great night long gone.”

Hazy Memory IPA was introduced back in mid-September and is still available for a limited time.  You can expect to find this One Hitter Release available in 12 oz. cans and on draft at select craft beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas’ distribution area.

Now that we all know a little bit of the story behind the beer, let’s crack open a can and get lost in a Hazy Memory with some Tasting Notes!

Tasting Notes for Hazy Memory IPA from Lagunitas Brewing Company

Appearance:  A gentle, swirling pour produces a Hazy IPA that is a deep golden yellow in color with orange highlights and capped with nearly two fingers of bright white, airy foam.  When held to direct light, the orange tones pull out of the color a bit and the yellows brighten to become more of a lemon hue.  The haze is lighter than most examples of the style these days (which we are fine with), allowing lazy beads of carbonation to be seen moving about within.  Head retention is really fantastic, eventually falling to a lasting half finger that saturates the glass with sticky, arcing lace patterns.

Aroma:  Juicy fruit notes immediately burst from the glass to greet the nose with notes of orange, grapefruit, tangerine, passion fruit, peach, pineapple and melon.  As the juiciness subsides, an undercurrent of more traditional hop characteristics surface with herbal, floral and grassy tones.  The grains give off a bit of sweetness here, but this aroma is all about those hops.

Taste:  The Citra hops are quick to take control with a citrusy, hoppy bite loaded with orange, tangerine, grapefruit and lime.  The sweeter, juicier side of the hop bill then gains traction, adding notes of peach, blueberry, gooseberry, white wine grapes, apricot, pineapple, papaya, melon and passion fruit to the mix.  The real surprise here is a traditional, almost Noble-like hop presence that offers a pretty substantial amount of floral and herbal tones alongside just a grace of pine (something you would expect from a more traditional West Coast-style IPA).  The grains keep the bitterness in check with just the right amount of balancing sweetness.

Mouthfeel:  Medium in body with a medium carbonation, this beer is smooth, creamy, and takes its time on the palate.  It does lean a bit to the hoppy/bitter side (supplying a bit more bite than other Hazy IPAs out there), but the malts do a good job in keeping the bitterness from getting too aggressive.  The 8% ABV lets you know it is there with a little building warmth in the throat.  Tangerine and lime linger in the aftertaste.

Final Thoughts: In a craft beer world heavily inundated with a ridiculous number of Hazy IPAs, Lagunitas somehow finds a subtle way to stand out from the crowd with Hazy Memory IPA.  Sure, it has all those big, fruity and juicy hop notes up front, but it does not stop there.  It goes a step further by playing the greatest hits of the hop spectrum with an infusion of piney, herbal and floral characteristics as well.  It makes for a playful experience that has all the hazy, juicy qualities people are looking for in modern IPA’s while still carrying the memory of more old school IPA styles.  This makes Hazy Memory come together as something new that is still carrying a torch for the IPAs that came before it, and – as a group of IPA drinkers that often have a “get off my lawn” mentality when it comes to Hazy/Juicy IPAs – we can get behind that idea.  Be sure to check out Hazy Memory IPA before it fades from existence.  Prost!

Lagunitas Brewing Company Begins Limited Release of Hazy Memory IPA

HazyMemory_12ozCan_082619_175x334_v01Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) has officially announced that it will begin the Limited Release of Hazy Memory IPA in mid-September.

Designed to be “evocative of everything [Lagunitas has] learned in hop-forward brewing,” Hazy Memory is a Hazy India Pale Ale loaded down with “oats and smooth wheatly-esque-ish-ness” and then “packed with some of the murkiest, juiciest, turbid Loral 291, Hallertau Blanc, Galaxy, and Citra Hops.”  Coming in at 8% ABV and 55 IBUs, Hazy Memory IPA is “a little boozy and a little hoppy — just like a fuzzy memory of a great night long gone.”

Hazy Memory IPA officially launches this week (9/16/19) and will hang around for as long as supplies last.  You can expect to find this One Hitter Release available in 12 oz. cans and on draft at select craft beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas’ distribution area.  Prost!

Vital Information for Hazy Memory IPA from Lagunitas Brewing Company

Release – Limited/One Hitter Series; mid-September 2019
Style – Hazy/Juicy India Pale Ale
ABV – 8%
IBUs – 55
Featured Hops – Loral 291, Hallertau Blanc, Galaxy & Citra
Availability – 12 oz. cans & draft
Beer Finder – https://lagunitas.com/beer-finder

Lagunitas Brewing Co. Bends Reality with Release of Phase Change Wet Hop Pale Ale

LagunitasPhaseChangeBottleLagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) has officially announced that Phase Change, a “seasonally unexpected” Wet-Hopped Juicy Ale, will arrive in June as the brewery’s latest One Hitter release.

Crafted to be the “next chapter in [Lagunitas Brewing Company’s] quest to brew wet-hop beers out of wet-hop season”, Phase Change is an unfiltered Wet Hop Pale Ale “packed full of lupulin-drenched Simcoe, Citra & Mosaic hops.”  Coming in at 7.4% ABV and 60 IBUs, Phase Change is “a juicy game changer” bursting with “seasonally unexpected wet-hop flavor.”

The time-bending wet-hop goodness found within Phase Change is made possible thanks to Lagunitas’ “new ‘hops liquification’ process that lets [the brewery] preserve and store . . . wet hops (generally only usable just after harvest), and brew a wet-hop beer a full 6 months later.”

Phase Change is scheduled to roll out in June 2019 and will hang around as long as supplies last.  You can expect to find this Limited Release offering available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select craft beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas’ distribution area.  Prost!

Vital Information for Phase Change from Lagunitas Brewing Company

Release – Limited/One Hitter Series; June 2019
Style – Wet Hop Pale Ale
ABV – 7.4%
IBUs – 60
Featured Hops – Simcoe, Citra & Mosaic 
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles & draft
Beer Finder – https://lagunitas.com/beer-finder

Tasting Notes: Secret Agenda from Lagunitas Brewing Company & Moonlight Brewing

LagunitasSecretAgendaPourX600For this installment of Tasting Notes, we covertly slip into the weekend with a little help from Secret Agenda from Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) and Moonlight Brewing (Santa Rosa, California).

Carefully crafted in Joint Session by the folks at Lagunitas and Moonlight to satisfy “the unique thirsts of Springtime”, Secret Agenda is a Pale Bock Beer that brings “each [brewery’s] time-tested secrets to the table.” Weighing in at 7.1% ABV and 46 IBUs, Secret Agenda comes together to offer its drinker “something neither [brewery] could do alone.”

Secret Agenda officially released back in late March, but a good amount of this Limited Release can still be found floating around at some of your favorite beer retailers and bars.  You can expect to find this One Hitter available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select craft beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas Brewing Company’s distribution network.

With that unclassified background information now out of the way, it is finally time to dig deep and get to the bottom of Lagunitas and Moonlight Brewing’s Secret Agenda with some Tasting Notes!

Tasting Notes for Secret Agenda from Lagunitas Brewing Company & Moonlight Brewing

Appearance:  A careful pour produces a Bock that is a deep gold in color and capped with over two fingers of ridiculously creamy foam.  When held to direct light, the golden hue brightens a smidge as it takes on a bit of a lemony yellow hue.  The beer is perfectly clear and displays a swirling mass of tiny carbonation bubbles.  Head retention is absolutely fantastic, slowly falling to a lasting 1/4 finger of rocky foam that leaves sprawling patterns of lace behind on the glass.  This is easily the most gorgeous bottled lager we have encountered this year.

Aroma:  Lightly sweet bready malts greet the nose and are supported by the lightest amount of caramel and nuttiness.  The hops then take over with a dynamic presence that is spicy, herbal and floral.  The hop aromatics bloom further to offer notes of citrus, unripened strawberries, and tropical fruit.

Taste:  An herbal tea-like quality (distinct notes of mint and lemon balm) opens the flavor profile alongside a bit of peppery spice and rose water.  The herbal tones then back off a bit to allow the hops’ fruitier qualities to come through with soft notes of grapefruit, papaya and peach. All of this hop complexity rests upon a solid foundation of malt that is bready, biscuity and kissed with just a touch of caramel.

Mouthfeel:  On the lighter side of medium in body with a medium carbonation level, this Bock is slightly creamy on the palate and incredibly clean on the finish.  The balance is impeccable, but it does teeter a bit to the hoppy side at times (this is a Lagunitas influenced beer after all).  It drinks much lighter than 7.1% ABV, but it does offer a bit of warmth in the throat near the end of the experience.  Aftertaste is a lovely lingering flourish of floral and herbal hop notes.

Final Thoughts: Built with springtime drinking in mind, Secret Agenda hits that mark squarely by achieving maximum drinkability thanks to its phenomenal level of balance. It is malty, but not at all overly sweet.  It is hoppy, but the bitterness is intentionally dialed way down.  It is beautifully complex but somehow still an all-around easy-drinker.  If that were not enough, this beer’s herbal and floral qualities seem to mimic the changing of the seasons and capture the resplendent rebirth of spring.  Secret Agenda can only be described as an experience that actually tells a story.  It is literally a taste of spring, and you need to check it out while you still have the chance.  Make it happen.  Prost!

Lagunitas Brewing Company & Moonlight Brewing Collaborate, Reveal Secret Agenda

Lagunitas_SecretAgenda_195x519Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) has officially released Secret Agenda, a Pale Bock Beer brewed in Joint Session with Moonlight Brewing (Santa Rosa, California), as the brewery’s latest Limited Release offering.

Carefully crafted by the folks at Lagunitas and Moonlight to satisfy “the unique thirsts of Springtime”, Secret Agenda is a Pale Bock Beer that brings “each [brewery’s] time-tested secrets to the table.”  Weighing in at 7.1% ABV and 46 IBUs, Secret Agenda comes together to offer its drinker “something neither [brewery] could do alone.”

Secret Agenda is rolling out now and will hang around as long as supplies last.  You can expect to find this One Hitter release available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select craft beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas Brewing Company’s distribution network.  Prost!

Vital Information for Secret Agenda from Lagunitas Brewing Company & Moonlight Brewing

Release – Limited/One Hitter Series, March 2019
Style – Pale Bock
ABV – 7.1%
IBUs – 46
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles & draft
Beer Finder – https://lagunitas.com/beer-finder

Lagunitas Dark Swan Sour Ale (2019) Returns for a Limited Time

LagunitasDarkSwanTatLagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) has officially announced that Dark Swan Sour Ale will return for a limited time in mid-February as a part of the brewery’s OneHitter Series.

Developed to be Lagunitas’ take on the beer-wine hybrid, Dark Swan is a “uniquely deep and rich purple [hued]” American Sour Ale that has been “dry-hopped with some experimental Pekko hops from the Yakima Valley, then fermented with . . . house yeast on some of Sonoma County’s-own Petite Syrah grape juice from . . . Adobe Road Winery.”  Swooping in at 7.9% ABV and 25 IBUs, Dark Swan promises to be “smooth, slightly sour, and superbly strange.”

Dark Swan is scheduled to release in mid-February and will hang around as long as supplies last.  You can expect to find this “HIIIIGHLY limited” brew available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select craft beer establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois and throughout the rest of Lagunitas Brewing Company’s distribution territory.  Prost!

Vital Information for Dark Swan Sour Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company

Release – Limited/OneHitter Series, mid-February 2019
Style – American Sour Ale
ABV – 7.9%
IBUs – 25
Featured Hops – Pekko 
Added Ingredients – Petite Syrah grape juice
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles & draft
Beer Finder – https://lagunitas.com/beer-finder

 

 

Lagunitas Willettized Coffee Stout Returns for a Limited Time

Willetized-Stout_22oz_Photo-195x725Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) has officially announced that it is putting the finishing touches on 2018 with the “hiiiiighly limited” release of Willettized Coffee Stout.

Back to tackle the peak season of “fireside-swigging and sweater-sipping”, Willettized Coffee Stout is a “big and burly stout” brewed with coffee beans from Metropolis Coffee Company and then aged for “up to 24 months” in Rye Whiskey casks sourced from Willett Distillery.  100% barrel aged and blended, Willettized (12% ABV) is a “chocolatey, coffee-y, smoky, oak-y, rye-y beast” that is “meant to be shared and/or aged . . . or not . . . whatever.”

The 2018 batch of Willettized Coffee Stout officially started rolling out in late November/early December 2018 and will hang around as long as supplies last.  You can expect to find this OneHitter Release available in 22 oz. bottles and on draft at select craft beer-focused establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas Brewing Company’s nationwide distribution territory.  Prost!

Vital Information for Willettized Coffee Stout from Lagunitas Brewing Company

Release – Limited/OneHitter Series, late November/early December 2018
Style – Imperial Stout
ABV – 12%
IBUs – 32
Added Ingredients – Coffee beans from Metropolis Coffee Company
Treatment – Aged for up to 24 months in Rye Whiskey casks sourced from Willett Distillery
Availability – 22 oz. bottles & draft
Beer Finder – https://lagunitas.com/beer-finder

 

Lagunitas Brewing Company Births a Fresh Batch of Born Yesterday Pale Ale

Lagunitas_BornYesterday12oz_2018_Web_195x519Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) has announced that the 2018 batch of Born Yesterday Pale Ale, the brewery’s “Un-Freakin-Filtered” Fresh Hop Ale, is officially hitting shelves and taps during the week of October 8.

Created as a liquid celebration of fresh hop season, Born Yesterday is an unfiltered, “newer” take on Lagunitas’ DogTown Pale Ale that features a fresh addition of “some wet, lupulin-drenched, un-kilned, whole-cone, fresh-picked-and-rushed-straight-from-Yakima hops.”  With this year’s batch boasting “11 lbs-per-barrel of Simcoe, Citra, Mosaic and Indigenous Catawampus” hops, Born Yesterday (7.2% ABV) promises to be “the freshest thing to come out this fall harvest.”

Born Yesterday is shipping now and will be available as long as supplies last.  You can expect to find this “HIIIIIGHLY” Limited Release available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select beer-friendly establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas Brewing Company’s nationwide distribution area.  Prost!

Vital Information for Born Yesterday Fresh Hop Pale Ale from Lagunitas Brewing Company

Release – Limited/One Hitter Series, October 2018
Style – Harvest Ale/American Pale Ale
ABV – 7.2%
IBUs – “HIGH”
Featured Fresh Hops –  Simcoe, Citra, Mosaic & Indigenous Catawampus
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles & draft
Beer Finder – https://lagunitas.com/beer-finder

Tasting Notes: Passion Grass from Lagunitas Brewing Company

LagunitasPassGrassPourFor this installment of Tasting Notes, we neglect some much needed yard work to instead focus our attention on Passion Grass, the new collaboration brew from Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) and Short’s Brewing Company (Bellaire, Michigan).

Released back at the start of August as a Joint Session brew that Lagunitas Brewing Company developed with their friends at Short’s Brewing Company, Passion Grass is a “smooth and slammable” West-by-Midwest Ale “with some passion fruit added for that pleasant summery tropical-ness, rounded off with a special zing of lemongrass.” Clocking in at an easy-drinking 4.6% ABV and 54 IBUs, Passion Grass is “best imbibed with your ‘buds … it’s good to have friends.”

Passion Grass is out now and available for a limited time in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft.  You can expect to find this “HIIIIGHLY limited brew” at select craft beer-focused establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas Brewing Company’s distribution area.

Now that we know who did what and why, let’s pop these bottles, hit the lounge chairs and watch the grass continue to grow while we get into these Tasting Notes!

Tasting Notes for Passion Grass from Lagunitas Brewing Company & Short’s Brewing Company

Appearance: Passion Grass pours a pale yellow in color and builds right at a finger of fluffy white foam.  When held to direct light, the color remains pale but does take on a more lemony yellow hue.  The beer has a nice clarity that displays an ample carbonation presence streaming up to feed the top cap.  Head retention is pretty fantastic, but it does eventually tighten up and condense down to a lasting, creamy half finger that casts a wide web of lace across the glass.

Aroma: Passion fruit is all over this aroma, bringing a big tropical presence that works beautifully with the juicier hop notes of citrus, pineapple and papaya.  The lemongrass then surfaces to create a tea-like character when combined with the more earthy/herbal/piney hop qualities.  Wonderfully complex here but in a way that is still incredibly inviting and alluring.

Taste: Not much unlike the nose, the flavor profile kicks off with a big, juicy burst of passion fruit and orange (both juice and zest).  A bevy of tropical hop notes then turn up in the form of guava, pineapple, papaya and grapefruit.  Pine, lemongrass and a slight herbal character combine with a coy malt presence to close out the profile by quietly tempering and taming all of that pronounced juicy sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Skirting on the lighter side of medium in body with a bright carbonation level, this beer is super refreshing and dries out lightning-quick.  Despite the fact that the malts do get a bit lost in the mix, the beer still finds a nice balance between its bitter, lightly tart, and fruity/sweet qualities.  At a wonderfully low 4.6%, the ABV’s only role here is to keep its head down and do whatever it can to ensure that the drinker enjoys a refreshing, easy-drinking experience.  Aftertaste is minimal, but pleasant notes of passion fruit and citrus do linger at times.

Final Thoughts: To put it simply, Passion Grass is a supremely easy-drinking beer that is everything you could possibly want in a summer-themed release.  Big tropical fruit notes supply a quenching and satisfying sweetness while the lemongrass and hops support with both complementary and contrasting notes that run the spectrum from added fruitiness to balancing earthiness and herbaceousness. Throw in that low ABV and this all results in a dynamic yet approachable experience completely focused on refreshment.  If you are in search of the perfect brew to enjoy at the beach, on the boat or after a hike, you really need to give the compact flavor bomb that is Passion Grass a shot.  Just make sure you snag a sixer before this beer’s limited-time run comes to an end.  Prost!

Passion Grass Debuts as New Collaboration From Lagunitas & Short’s Brewing Company

Lagunitas_Passion-Grass_12oz_v1_195x519Lagunitas Brewing Company (Petaluma, California) has officially announced the Limited Release of Passion Grass, a West By Midwest Ale brewed in collaboration with Short’s Brewing Company (Bellaire, Michigan).

Arriving as a special release, Joint Session brew that Lagunitas Brewing Company developed with their friends at Short’s Brewing Company, Passion Grass is a “smooth and slammable” West-by-Midwest Ale “with some passion fruit added for that pleasant summery tropical-ness, rounded off with a special zing of lemongrass.”  Clocking in at an easy-drinking 4.6% ABV and 54 IBUs, Passion Grass is “best imbibed with your ‘buds … it’s good to have friends.”

Passion Grass is rolling out now and will be available for a limited time.  You can expect to find this “HIIIIGHLY limited brew” available in 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles and on draft at select beer-focused establishments located in Alabama, Florida, California, Illinois, Washington and throughout the rest of Lagunitas Brewing Company’s vast distribution area.  Prost!

Vital Information for Passion Grass from Lagunitas Brewing Company & Short’s Brewing Company

Release – Limited/One Hitter Series, August 2018
Style – American Pale Ale
ABV – 4.6%
IBUs – 54
Added Ingredients – Lemongrass & Passion Fruit
Availability – 6-packs of 12 oz. bottles & draft
Beer Finder – https://lagunitas.com/beer-finder