Sunday, February 14, 2010

Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Extra! Ale

Beer: Little Sumpin' Extra! Ale
Brewed by: The Lagunitas Brewing Co., Petaluma, CA, USA
Style: American Double/Imperial IPA
ABV: 8.74%
IBUs: 72.51
Bottle: 1 pint 6 fluid oz.
Served in: Tulip glass
Place of purchase: Red Carpet Wine & Spirits, Glendale, CA
Price: $4.49

Mid-February means many things to many people. It could mean a few -- or several more -- weeks of Winter (depending on how much you believe in Puxatony Phil's weather forecasting skills); it could mean time to take advantage of President's Day sales; or it could mean, as is the case for Mugsy and Jugsy, time to celebrate the accuracy of Cupid's arrow! By that I mean, of course, Saint Valentine's Day! Given that Valentine's Day is a day for sweethearts, Jugsy and I thought it appropriate to review a beer known for its sweet taste. From Mugsy and Jugsy to all of you: Happy St. Valentine's Day!

In every proper review, your trusted husband & wife team of Beeraucrats will examine the Appearance, Aroma, Taste, Mouthfeel, Drinkability and Overall Rating of the Beer and arrive at a Total Score from 1 to 10.

Little Sumpin' Extra! Ale


Golden yellow. Slightly murky, much like a wheat beer. Some carbonation visible. Thick, frothy head that dissipates to thin, yet still sudsy head. A bit of lacing left on glass.
Jugsy: Golden amber in color with a thinnish head. Clear enough to see carbonation when held to light. Some lacing left on glass.


Very fruity. First is sweet pineapple followed by citrus. Strong smell of hops, as well. Very slight scent of yeast.
Jugsy: Fruity yeast and a touch of hops at first sniff. Apricots, citrus and pineapple scents abound. In fact, the pineapple sweetness overpowers the other scents when beer is cold. Mild scent of sourdough. As the ale warms, hop aromas come to the foreground - flowery is a given, but I think some piny hops are present, too.


Wow. This is very sweet. Hops are in the forefront but fighting to share the spotlight is the pineapple and citrus. It's so sweet that it makes me entertain the idea that they added a simple syrup or maybe just a big spoonful of brown sugar! Aftertaste is of malt. As the beer warms, the hops and malt become even more present. This is quite unusual, as most ales release additional flavors as the temperature slightly rises.
Jugsy: Hops - beautiful, aromatic HOPS! Flowery hops and sweet orange flavors explode in the first sip. Bitter, yet extremely inviting. Fruity yeast comes together with soapy hops in a sinfully good combination.


Creamy. Also, I get that coating on the tongue that one gets after eating something really sugary, like super sweet cake icing or, well, a big spoonful of sugar. Goes down very easily.
Jugsy: Creamy and slightly chewy - very smooth to drink. Carbonation mixes with the hops flavor for a tingly and bitter/flowery coating on the tongue.


I'd have no problem throwing back many of these back, let me tell you. The 8.74% ABV might come knocking at some point, but not too soon, I would hope. The extreme sweetness might become an issue at some point, however.
Jugsy: Extremely pleasant to drink. Although the ABV is high, the beer feels light and drinks light.


Mugsy: Fine beer. Would absolutely drink again any time. Fairly well balanced, if you understand that they were going for a sweet beer, which I believe they were. If that's not the case, well, then balance my be an issue. The strong pineapple scent makes it quite original in character. The folks at Lagunitas care about what they do and it's obvious in presentations like this one. Because of the sweetness, I think this would pair nicely with foods that are both sweet and sour or sweet and savory, like Thai, Chinese or glazed entrees. Have a sweet Valentine's Day!
Jugsy: Everything an Imperial IPA should be! This ale is far more complex than I can describe. All the Lagunitas brews I've ever tried have been excellent, and the Little Sumpin' Extra! Ale was just what I needed to usher in Valentine's Day! This beer makes me feel loved! Uh oh... maybe that's the 8.74% ABV talking. Then again, I am sitting a little too close to Mugsy! Happy Valentine's Day, Sweetheart!

Mugsy: 8.70

Jugsy: 8.95

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