It seems like Lagunitas Brewing Company is constantly embroiled in controversy. Many of these controversies are started by founder Tony Magee, who is never afraid to speak his mind, especially on twitter. In late 2013 he called out Sam Adams, claiming their new Rebel IPA was an attempt to attack Lagunitas’ marketshare and take over their draft lines. A more recent dispute focused on beer labels. It began when Lagunitas filed a lawsuit against Sierra Nevada over the label of their new IPA. I won’t get into the details, but the suit was dropped after an outcry on social media by craft beer fans. While the brewery has been the center of many squabbles over the years, they also make a number of delicious beers. One of their newest year-round releases is DayTime, a session IPA. Why did they decide to brew a sessionable version of their ubiquitous IPA? DayTime was brewed for the times when you want a beer but still have to be productive, the situation that calls for lower alcohol session beers. Lagunitas DayTime is available year round on draft and in 12 oz. bottles.
Lagunitas DayTime pours straw gold with a moderate white head. The scent is amazing, tons of citrus and fruity hops. It smells so good that my wife was sitting next to me on the couch and commented that the aroma was making her salivate. The hops come through in the flavor, notes of lemon, orange, pine and mango. The issue I have is with the balance, there is very little malt or body, it’s almost all hops. The bitterness is present, but pretty mild for a beer labeled as an IPA. The beer goes down easy, crushable at 4.65% ABV. I guess I could see knocking a few of these back on the porch in the summer, but I expected more from Lagunitas. I’ve had a number of other session IPAs that have great hop flavor and aroma without completely abandoning balance. Hoppy Boston score: 3.5/5.
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