Monday, September 10, 2007

LAGUNITAS' "KILL UGLY RADIO" - FRANK'S MILD YEARS

Man, that LAGUNITAS "FREAK OUT!" double IPA was really something, wasn't it? Released as an anniversary tribute last year to Frank Zappa & The Mothers of Invention's first album, it also happened to be one of the most bold & refreshing highly-hopped beers I’ve ever had, and it was mildly distressing around our house when we found out it was a one-time-only deal. So here’s Lagunitas trying to keep the Zappa magic rolling a little longer, this time with another highly-hopped IPA called KILL UGLY RADIO. You think Frank would approve? Didn’t that fella not even drink? You think Dweezil, Moon Unit and the GTOs got comped with a few bottles? Anyway, I excitedly tore this bottle open yesterday, and enjoyed it I suppose, inasmuch as I always enjoy a finely-constructed India Pale Ale. This one, I must say, is a little more “plain jane” compared to Lagunitas’ MAXIMUS or the FREAK OUT. It’s a very piney taste, missing a lot of expected citrus & missing any aroma whatsoever to boot, and malt tastes are nearly nonexistent. Hops and pine, pine and hops - yet not overwhelming in any sense, at least to those who make it their supremely dorkified passion to seek out all of these west coat IPAs. I learned it actually uses west coast hops, but I almost reckoned that this was a tribute to "the English Style" as I was enjoying it. Hunh. I suspect that it’s not even a double IPA, but is instead a single – whatever that means, right, hombre? 6.5/10.

6 comments:

Eric said...

I had read a bunch about this beer and was excited enough to pick up two bombers at City Beer a few weekends ago without having tried it first.. and I have to agree with everything you wrote wrt its English stylings. Yeah, so it was a little disappointing (for another guy ranking Moylan's Hopsickle in high regard). But I'm still telling myself, "maybe it was just the night", and so my second bomber awaits (although I hold a more tempered excitement for it). ;)

tedo said...

Jay, pretty good timing, I just got back from the store, saw this beer, remembered your review of Freak Out and grabbed this one. Looking forward to try it out, even if it is 'just' a single.

Loren said...

English? You guys are nuts. It's just a lower IBU level with mostly all Pale Malts. That's all. Think of it as Bear Rep's Extra Pale amped up. Now do you like it? I think it's Lag's best hoppy offering ever. I'd guess some Summit, Amarillo and Columbus perhaps? Either way...another great tribute to Frank.

Cheers!

Tweedy said...

This does not taste like an English IPA at all, but is the best offering I've ever had from Lagunitas. Most Lagunitas beers (including the Freak Out, which I thought completely sucked) taste unrefined or unfinished, like homebrew. This one was well balanced and crisp, with really interesting citrus hop flavors. For what it's worth, in case your curious about whether my taste is way different than the rest of the folks on this blog, I've got to go with Pliny the Elder as my favorite IPA or double IPA of all time, but close runners up include Stone Ruination, Stone 10th Anniversary, Racer 5, Green Flash Imperial and West Coast IPAs, Port Hop 15, and Three Floyds Alpha King.

Tweedy said...

Damn - forgot to mention the Moylan's Douple IPA (which I think is much better than the Hopsickle, which is fine, but doesn't crack my top 25). Go figure. I guess I like IPAs with piney, resiny, floral elements...

Anonymous said...

Have to agree with tweedy. KUR is definitely up there with Pliny, Racer 5, and Ruination. When I drink an IPA I want hops and lots more hops. In my opinion, too much malt just obscures the glory of the hop.

I'm just depressed because I can't find anymore KUR. Anyone know where you can still find it in San Diego? Please, help?!