Ahhh, Lagunitas. This brewery continues to impress me more and more. Like a crowning baby it brings me excitement and joy as it wedges its way into my life as a member of my list of top tier brewers. Thank you, beer uterus, for delivering me Lagunitas.
I have not been a big fan of these light, session IPA’s. I was first turned off them when I was let down by Founders’ “All Day IPA”. I prefer tongue-humping flavor; intense, explosive hoppiness; thick, creamy texture and a high alcohol content so I can cope with my awesome life. Perhaps my expectations were low when I poured this. Perhaps my palate just needs a departure from the imperials. But I was pleasantly surprised by it on almost every level.
DayTime Ale pours a clear, light gold. It looks like an inexpensive lager. No surprise there. There’s a nice cottony head that lingers for quite a bit longer than I expected, though. As is the case with a few ex-girlfriends, the head is quite a memorable and stand-out characteristic. The odor is strong, hoppy, fresh, and piney. What is this beer doing smelling so good? This beer is naughty! It is watery, as I expected, and feels soft and very wet in the mouth. And it has a fairly strong hoppy bite. Surprise again! It has a strong flavor of wheat bread, white grapes, lemon juice, and fresh pine. It leaves a rather tenacious bitter aftertaste that is nice at first, but overstays its welcome. Awwww. But, alas! After the bitterness clears it leaves behind a sugary bubblegum flavor as an apology! I forgive you, DayTime Ale. Let’s hug it out and have another… or 5.
For a light, day IPA I am quite impressed, just in case you couldn’t tell. This is excellent for lighter fare beer drinking. It is more flavorful and hoppy than it has a right to be, and there’s nothing wrong with that at all. And now I think I should revisit the Founders All Day IPA (and others).