Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Lagunitas Little Sumpin' Sumpin'

7.5% ABV
64.20 IBU

With a name like Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ how could you resist? The name inspires your curiosity atoms to bounce around inside your cranium until you reach a breaking point. You are forced to make the purchase to prevent further brain damage from the kamikaze curiosity atoms. And that my friends is what happens when you can’t decide whether you want to try a new beer or not. With Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ in hand I inspect the packaging for any clues as to what style of brew this is supposed to be. With no indication of the style on the packaging, I have to use my powers of deductive reasoning. Based on the ABV and IBU it appears to be in line with an IPA.

The Little Sumpin’ poured with a super fluffy mushroom cloud for a head. The nose offered fruity notes with hints of citrus mixed in. This was a unique fruity aroma and is not something I’ve experienced before in anything that was not specifically a fruit beer. I took the time to enjoy the fruity aroma extensively before diving into the drink. The brew starts with a bit of malty caramel and then rounds out into a very nice bitter finish. The bitterness is the real star in the brew as it is very crisp and well blended without being overpowering. I didn’t pick up much in the way of hop flavor which is somewhat disappointing given the wonderful aroma I experienced beforehand. I enjoyed this brew very much and I was impressed by how well the bitterness blended with the malt backbone of the brew. I’m updating this to the FatCat’s Epic Brews list so check it out at the top of the page.

The question remains, what the hell style is this? This is a pet peeve of mine when beer companies fail to identify the style of beer on their packaging. As a consumer this vagueness makes me infinitely more likely to skip the offering all together. Why would I buy something when I have no clue of what to expect? I know this is an age of Craft Beer Enlightenment where beer companies refuse to be limited by “styles”. Ok that is fine with me but tell me what you are trying to accomplish. An IPA with roast malt, a wheat IPA, a brown ale with Belgian yeast, etc. After the tasting I’m thinking this is an IPA. Rate Beer categorizes it as an IPA and BeerAdvocate categorizes it as an American Pale Wheat. The Lagunitas website describes the brew as, “Cripsy Wheat and Pale Malt flavors with a Big Round & Juicy Hop Finish.” Based on the taste I would not have pinned this as a wheat beer so I’m not convinced a significant amount of wheat malt was used. In my opinion this is not a type of wheat beer. This brings us back to a good ol’ IPA, I guess that will have to do.



  1. Who cares what style it is? Do you like drinking it? I do. I don't think Lagunitas worries a whole lot about styles.

  2. I don't really care if they conform to a style, I just want to have an idea of what I'm buying. It's like going to a restaurant and the menu is one word, "Food". I just think it's silly for brewers to alienate themselves from potential customers by not providing pertinent information about the type of beer they're trying to sell.