Hard Times for the Lagunitas Brewing Company

by Will on November 16, 2011

The people at the Lagunitas Brewing Company want us to know that there is little if any holiday cheer warming their hearts or glowing in their faces this holiday season. It seems that this year they were unable to produce any of their famed Brown Shugga’ seasonal ale. They have instead had to make do with a stopgap seasonal ale, the “Lagunitas Sucks Holiday Ale Brown Shugga’ Substitute”. The copy on the bottom of the package takes an interesting approach to promoting the product:

This sad holiday season we didn’t have the brewing capacity to make our favorite seasonal brew, the widely feared Brown Shugga’ Ale. You see, we had a couple of really good years (thank you very much) and so heading into this season while we are awaiting the January delivery of a new brewhouse we are jammin’ along brewing 80 barrels of IPA and PILS and such every 3 hours. A couple months back we realized that since we can only brew a mere 60 barrels of Shugga’ every 5 hours, that we were seriously screwed. For every case of Shugga brewed, we’d short 3 cases of our favorite daily beers. It’s a drag. This year, we brewed something that we think is also cool and brews more like our daily brews. The new brewhouse will help insure that this kind of failure never occurs again. It’s a mess that we can not brew our Brown Shugga’ this year and we suck for not doing it. There is nothing cool about screwing up this badly and we know it. Maybe we can sue our own sorry selves. There is no joy in our hearts this holiday and the best we can hope for is a quick and merciful end. F$@& us. This totally blows.

The front artwork features their mascot dog saying, “we suck.”

Nevertheless, I was curious enough to buy the beer, and it was the last six-pack at Safeway, so apparently I wasn’t alone.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Alex April 5, 2012 at 6:10 pm

I tried it and didn’t think it was that bad, but I didn’t have the original.

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Zach May 31, 2012 at 9:20 pm

I’ve never been too partial to the Brown Shugga. I actually didn’t realize it’s a seasonal brew. You tend to see lonely six packs and stray bottles of it on corner store shelves long past the holiday season, which might have something to do with why I don’t like it. The Lagunitas IPA and their Pils, on the other hand, are both outstanding. But where the IPA is ubiquitous, the Pils is elusive. I don’t think I’ve ever seen it on draft, and it’s only once in a great while I can find a six pack at the one store I know that carries it. I hope Lagunitas is listening: Produce more Pils!

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Will June 1, 2012 at 1:01 am

Hmm. Interesting point. But why do you assume the issue is on the supply side? It seems like the problem could be that pilsner drinkers think of Lagunitas as an ale-brewing company, and snub the Pils. Also, I think in our neck of the woods a certain preference may be afforded to Trumer Pils.

Anyhow, now that I know this, I will pick up a sixpack of Lagunitas Pils next time I see one, and that will be your birthday present. Happy Birthday!

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