Lagunitas The Waldos Special Ale, what’s that all about? It’s a double India Pale Ale it seems from this famed California and now Illinois brewer. They call it part of their 2016 “One Hitter Series” but it has been around since 2011. Then too, with all the rantings and ravings beer geeks have done about it, I wouldn’t be surprised to see it back in 2017.
I couldn’t even find the stuff myself until late May when it arrived on tap at my local Taco Mac, and then I was all over it. Now that I did I’m late to the party with my thoughts, and certainly this beer has been reviewed to death. You do though certainly want to know what the Bruguru thinks of this beer though, don’t you? Of course you do.
Lagunitas says about the beer:
In 1971, the Waldos met one afteroon at 4:20 in the front courtyard of their school near the statue of Louis Pasteur. They set out in a '66 Impala armed with a "treasure map" on a journey to find a secret garden near Point Reyes. They met there at the same time every day and continued their quest. They never found the secret garden....But they keep lookin'. The dankest and hoppiest beer ever brewed at Lagunitas was made with help of the Waldos for all treasure hunters.
Whatever that means. Lagunitas recommends The Waldos Special Ale with beer-battered Twinkies con queso, and suggests you google “Waldos 420” if you want to know more. I Binged the term rather than Googled it and got the same result: a website devoted to a hippy group from the 70s who claim to have coined the term 420 as a euphemism for marijuana. I didn’t find any beer-battered Twinkies con queso, but with all the pot references on the site I’m sure the Waldos ate them all.
Lagunitas The Waldos Special Ale has an alcohol content of 11.5% by volume with “100+” IBUs. Sadly, it looks like the days of Lagunitas as a bargain basement beer may be coming to a close, at least for some of their brews. I paid $6 for an 11-ounce glass at Taco Mac; in bygone days I would have got a full 20-ounce mug. Truth be told, I’m not sure I’d want to drink 20 ounces of an 11.5 percent beer, but there you go. A 6-pack of bottles runs $11.99 here in Georgia.
My glass of Lagunitas The Waldos Special Ale arrived a bright orange amber color with a thick creamy head of foam and a Whoa! complex and alluring pine needle resin, citrus and passion fruit nose. Taking a sip, the beer produces a thin malty caramel layer as I sip, then light melon fruit but then becomes very resiny, finishing long and dry and bitter and very herbal indeed.
Definitely a hopheads delight, Lagunitas The Waldos Special Ale has one foot in the classic DIPA camp with its resinous, piney and citrus notes and the other in the modern tropical fruit loop world. I can see what all the hype is about, and I’ll be on the lookout for more next year. Now if only I had some beer-battered Twinkies con queso....
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.