Belated Brewmeister Monday: Lagunitas Cappuccino Stout

Posted on January 28, 2011

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I’ve been a bad, bad blogger.  I did not post a beer review on Monday, and now it’s Thursday, three days later.  This was due to the fact that I had four mid-terms this week, and spent nearly all my waking hours studying for them.  I just finished my last today, so I have time to post a review for a new brew I picked up at the local Nugget market.

This week’s malty concoction looks like a good one.  I say looks like because I haven’t drank it yet.  I always write my reviews as I am drinking them to ensure accurate, real-time reflection on the beer at hand.  Reviews are not done on tomorrow’s memory of last night’s beer.  The beer I am staring at now is Lagunitas Cappuccino Stout.  Lagunitas is a fine brewery.  I like just about everything I have tried of theirs,  Brown Shugga’ being particularly good.  The Cappuccino Stout cost me a little over $4.00, which is a pretty good deal considering it’s 1 pint-6 fluid ounces, and comes in at 8.8% alcohol by volume.  Now for the review.

Opacity: 3.8. Dark, but plenty of light passes through this brew.  I know better than to discount it based solely on its opacity, since I have been fooled before, and Lagunitas rarely disappoints.

Color: Dark brown, with plenty of amberesque red when held up to a light.  It’s a good-looking beer, though I would be happier with pitch black.  There’s an obvious bias to these reviews.  Deal with it.

Head: 4.4. Wow, this beer pours with a lovely tan head.  No ephemeral or atoll head syndrome (EHS/AHS) whatsoever.  Why can’t most beers have  a head like this beer?  Is that so much to ask?

Aroma: 3.8. Smells of slightly bitter coffee.  I am not getting much in the way of malt.  It’s definitely not bad, but not particularly noteworthy.

Flavor: 3.7. Meh.  It is slightly bitter, but not incredibly so.  It has a nice and distinct coffee flavor to it; the coffee actually transcends the nose onto the taste buds.  There is a bitter kick at the end, and it lingers for a bit.  I am not terribly happy with the taste overall.

Mouthfeel:  3.8. Low carbonation, which is generally good.  The brew would get a higher rating, but there is a bitter roughness to it that I am not particularly fond of.  It’s a distinct back-of-the-tongue pinch that is somewhat bothersome.

Finish:  3.8. Good out the nose, mediocre in the mouth.  Lingering bitterness drops away somewhat sharply, but not sharply enough for my taste.

Overall: 3.88. A disappointing brew, not in typical Lagunitas fashion.  I certainly won’t be buying it again, since I know they can do way better.  Bah, the opacity should have been fair warning enough!  Along with this stout, I also bought the Lagunitas Imperial Stout.  I have had it before and I know it is very, very good.  I may have used that as a yardstick for this beer.  My advice to Lagunitas would be to stick with the darker imperials, since they seem to know what they’re doing with those.  They should steer clear of the elitist beer flavors, i.e, cappuccino flavored beer.  Sometimes you’ve just got to keep it simple.  Too bad, it sure was a pretty beer.  Oh, and what a head!

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Posted in: Brews