Friday, August 16, 2013

Lagunitas A Little Sumpin' Wild Ale

4.6
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
Chad9976 (945) - Albany, New York, USA - AUG 16, 2013
I poured a 12oz bottle into a goblet. It was bottled on July 9. I got this at #BBC13.

Appearance: Beautiful orange hue, nearly clear body. Forms a large, ivory, frothy head which laces and retains well.

Smell: Strong floral bouquet with sweet orange citrus aroma, too.

Taste: I wasn’t quite sure what to expect out of Lagunitas A Little Sumpin’ Wild Ale. It’s brewed with Westmalle Trappist ale yeast, but it looks, smells and tastes much like a traditional West Coast-style double IPA (which is how I’d classify it). There’s definitely some subtle Belgian qualities to this that are pleasant surprises as you find them, making it even more fun to drink.

The palette begins with big citrusy hop bitterness and flavor right away. There’s a distinct sweet juicy taste as well, especially during the first half of the swig. Orange juice combined with a wildflower character. Hints of honey and wheat as well make it sweet, but tame. A big hop bite at the end, imparting a strong dry bitterness. It’s not until the finish when the Trappist yeast is noticeable. it imparts a pink bubblegum candy flavor and a hint of tartness. It’s a delicious combination to say the least. I’m not sure why more American breweries aren’t making hoppy, flowery beers with Belgian yeast. It’s such a good combination.

Drinkability: Though technically a big beer at 8.8% ABV and 72.5 IBUs, Lagunitas A Little Sumpin’ Wild Ale is amazingly drinkable. The mouthfeel is soft, smooth and comfortable with distinct crispness as it’s going down. And despite all those hops, they don’t linger and dry out the palate (though there is a slight candy aftertaste). As soon as I finished this beer I immediately wanted another one. It’s almost dangerously drinkable! 
Grade: 10/10