Lagunitas Brewing, Wilco Tango Foxtrot

Lagunitas Brewing
Grade: C

Brewed as a follow up to the previous "Correction Ale" brewed in honor of our economy tanking, Lagunitas had planned on this beer being named "Recovery Ale." However as things progressed and the release date of the beer approached, recovery still seemed a long way off. Hence the re-name: Wilco Tango Foxtrot, or WTF for short. In keeping with this expression of economic frustration, 22oz bottles of this beer sold for a mere $4 to $5, keeping it very much in the reach of all those out of work beer lovers.

A beautiful auburn-red ale sits underneath a foamy tan head, and leaves some very nice lacing on the glass. The aroma from a foot away is hops, hops, hops. When you stick your nose into the glass however, the sweeter caramels and biscuit come through. The mouthfeel meanders around medium, leaning a little into the heavy side. Roast comes through quite predominately, aided by some very aggressive bitterness from the hops. It almost is too much, the roast and bitterness get together and gang up on the lighter, more delicate hop flavors. Even the maltier notes get a little lost.

As I drink this, I'm starting to notice the caramels from the malts. There is a bit of sweetness there, and maybe a little heat from alcohol. But each time I'm done taking a sip that incredible acrid bitterness lingers on my tongue, leaving me with a not so great flavor in my mouth. I can see this beer being very good, if only the hops were more in the flavor area and less in the bitterness area. It seems like the roasted malts are doing the job of bittering this beer just fine without the hops. As it is however, it's too imbalanced for me. WTF indeed.


Pat Wood said...

I'm a big Lagunita's fan myself, just recently tried their "Undercover Investigation Shutdown" Ale, it was pretty good. While I've only had a taste of Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, I would definitely have to agree with you on the after taste... would have been much more enjoy able without it.

Mike R Lynch said...

Thanks for the comment! I agree with Undercover, I just had a few with my friends last night. I was a little caught off guard by the 9.75% abv though!

Pat Wood said...

Haha, I know exactly what you mean! It wasn't until I was placing them in the fridge that I realized that they were a strong 9.75%. One of the biggest things I noticed about the "U.I.S" Ale was that it hid that high alcohol % really well. It tricked me into drinking it like as if it were a 5% beer rather then an almost 10%. I'm a bit embarrassed to admit it, but 3 of these and a Stone Cali-Belgique knocked me out of commission for the rest of the night, definitely had an interesting morning.