Red Wagon IPA - Fire Island Beer Company

Not Rated.
Red Wagon IPARed Wagon IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

121 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 121
Reviews: 51
rAvg: 3.44
pDev: 15.41%
Wants: 1
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Fire Island Beer Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: JoeyBeerBelly on 11-07-2009

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 121 | Reviews: 51
Reviews by AdamPenna:
Photo of AdamPenna
2.41/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a pint glass at local Irish pub sort of place by a guy named Todd, who made a point of remembering my name as I left. Nice touch even if it felt a little false since we didn't exchange more than a few perfunctory words. Amber color, slight head, and a very little lacing (lame lacing). The first of the twi I drank was less impressive than the second, whose head stood up better than the first, and whose lacing was even better. Go figure. Slight hoppiness in the nose. Mouthfeel was watery. Ok, and the only IPA on tap. About to enjoy an Old Rasputin. Let's see.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Billolick
3.58/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ouncer, w/o freshness/bottling date info. Pours clear, copper hued amber, respectable staying power noted on the oat meal head, that holds onto a thick collar. Leaves low thick sheeting and strands of lace. Faint nose of light peppery hops and perhaps a hint of vanilla. On the malty side for an "IPA", with citric, pine hints but not really showing off much of a hop presence or crunch. Decent brew, but nothing special. Better then a macro fer sure, good "IPA" for a newbie. Works as a sessioner in a pinch or in a marinade in place of an amber ale.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.94/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Woah, I was shocked to see this beer only has a common rating of a "B". I haven't even tasted it yet but I can smell it, and it's great. Lots of bright citrusy and floral hops amidst a rich caramel malt base. Beyond that I get perhaps a bit of yeast, but that's it. It's quite rich and inviting.

The appearance, however, might be considered lacking. It doesn't say "bottle conditioned" or "unfiltered" on the label, but it's cloudy. That doesn't just happen, it must have been intended; and I personally don't mind a bit of yeast in my beer. For me, however, I do want to see a good head with some solid retention (that shows the quality of brewing to me), and that's not there. Ding. And DING.

I should note at this point that although it's listed as an "American IPA" on Beer Advocate, Fire Island never calls it that. It may be more of a hoppy red ale than an IPA, but that's semantics. They may have chosen the IPA designation for marketing purposes to suggest that it was hoppy and bitter. Or not.

I still don't find anything odd in the aroma, so on to the flavor. It's very much as the aroma suggests, which isn't surprising because 90% of what we "taste" is actually an olfactory perception. So, nice hops, nice malt (perhaps a bit full), and a good balance. There are some leafy, piney, and grassy hop notes that emerge across the middle, and then linger into the bitter finish. It's malty and leafy with a dusty dryness and a residual note of apple-like fruitiness. So what's missing?

The mouthfeel, not unlike the maltiness, is a bit full. I don't think it's beyond style guidelines, however, and it certainly doesn't hurt the beer on a hedonic scale.

So, it's a rich, malty and hoppy ale with a good bit of fruitiness, hop character, and a rock-solid bitterness... what's not to like? That it's not really an "IPA"? OK, I can agree with that, but it's still definitely a drinkable "B+" beer.

Photo of socon67
3.33/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours orange with a healthy foam head. Lively foam on top.

S - Smells of malt and sugar. For an IPA this really has no hoppy presence in the smell.

T - Nice balance from the sweet malts and hops. Not bitter on the back end.

M - Medium bodied. The ABV is masked fiarly well.

O - A kinda interesting IPA that doesn't go for the hoppy bitterness. Probably works well as a gateway to craft.

Photo of tempest
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a pint at Sweet Afton in Queens. This was tasty beer, but I think the low reviews come from the relatively low bitterness for the style. I'm sure it's still around 50-60 IBU, but for a 7% IPA with considerably more bitter competition, this beer doesn't stand out. Still, there's a lovely and classic mix of citrus and pine hops - very American. It reminds me quite a bit of Harpoon IPA.

Photo of Ralphs66
2.44/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Asked my girlfriend to order this for me while I ran off to the men's room, so it was sitting and waiting for me when I head at all, and very minimal lacing. Smell was virtually non existent. At least, I expected a little hoppiness. Taste, unfortunately, followed smell and there was, well...nothing! Brown water with some moderate carbonation. I left it to warm a bit, as it was probably too cold coming out of the tap....but it didn't get any better. In fact, it didn't change at all. Disappointing night cap...

Photo of Gmann
3.46/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an exceptionally clear copper color with a tight and clingy egg-shell colored head. The aroma is of a caramel malt and light floral hops. The aroma is quite light for an AIPA. The taste is of caramel malt, a bit bready, with a floral hop presense, lightly bitter. The flavor is quite neutral. Nice moderate feel with plenty of fizzy carbonation; finishes slightly bitter. This is a good brew but borders more on the APA style. The hop profile really isn't up to snuff for an AIPA, the hops get lost in the malt. As an APA this is pretty tasty. I marked it lower based on the AIPA style. Its worth a purchase. This is quite balanced and very drinkable.

Photo of scootny
3.55/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice to look at with a clear fluid and a decent head with bits of lace here and there. Nose carries a good balance with sweet caramel malt underneath a solid core of pine and grapefruit. Taste is much the same with a balanced overall profile and substantial hop persona. A touch of lightly buttered bread slips in. Dry clean finish. Crisp feel has just enough weight to go with an excellent carbonation. A good solid hoppy ale.

Photo of mikesgroove
3.06/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

amber in color, light copper tone to it with a nice head of white on top that lasted for a good few minutes before settling down into nothing. Light citrus hops, well balanced against a solid malty back drop, really well done as it seemed to come together perfectly, Crisp, clean, light on the palate, this was asessionable, beer drinkers IPA that could be thrown down with great ease.

Very light and very drinkable

Photo of metter98
3.28/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: The beer is clear amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head.
S: There are aromas of alcohol and caramel malts in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and also has a light amount of bitterness. Some alcohol is present, although it’s not as strong compared to the smell.
M: It feels medium-bodied and relatively crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. The hops make your tongue tingle a bit towards the finish.
O: This beer seems to taste more like a hybrid between an amber ale and an IPA. Some alcohol is noticeable in the smell and taste, which somewhat reduces the drinkability.

Photo of errantnight
2.54/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear amber with moderate lacing and reasonable retention.

Aroma is flat, some creaky old hops, a bit of citrus but mainly earth and mint and just a touch of diacetyl around the edge.

Fortunately the butter is virtually undetectable on the palate and there's a pleasing balance and some reasonable caramel malt character. Under the category of IPAs which aim for balance it's appropriately bitter to balance the sweetness, but the hop character is miniscule.

The body feels right, nice crisp lift to the finish that turns this from a chore to a mere disappointment.

Mislabeled in today's day and age (or in need of a reformulation) and brewing process needs a touch of work, but it wouldn't be painful if I had to choose this to avoid going macro.

Photo of bensamra
3.73/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Apperance is very cloudy compared to other IPA's
Smell is malty with hunts of coffee
Taste is unique
Mouthfeel is just wonderful
Drinkablility goes down with any objections

I would recommend this beer, after I first had it I was given a black and tan with this red wagon and a lion stout which I loved. It has a very malty taste and very drinkable.

Photo of plaid75
3.77/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at T.J. Finley's, Bayshore, New York.

Poured a medium amber hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a spicy hop and a moderate crystal malt.

The taste consisted of the same front loaded hop spice, with some pine and pepper. The malt arrived soon thereafter and was rather robust for the style. The flavors seemed a bit disjointed however.

The mouthfeel leaned slightly to the heavier side of the style.

Overall a tasty IPA.

Photo of DrDemento456
3.28/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - A touch hazy so it must be unfiltered with a light amber body and a 1/4 inch of head that turns to a thick lace ring. A nice sticky lacing.

S - Yep as suspected malt forward with slight bursts of pine and citrus hops. Does smell balanced.

T - Malt and hops are pretty balanced. Can't say the hops are too aggressive or the malt being too sweet and bready. Not bad. Slight linger of bitterness on the palate.

M - Light to medium quite good for the ABV.

Overall not as clean and refreshing as most of my favorite IPA's but not muddled and overly bitter like some I have had. Good beer but I couldn't see myself getting it again.

Photo of david18
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Unfortunately had this beer after another IPA that I enjoyed more. This was a good ipa but not among my favorites. A little flat, not quite as hoppy as I'd like and lacking in the bitterness. However, definitely within style and something i'll get again if it's available somewhere else or if I can find it in a bottle.

Photo of donkeyrunner
3.51/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was recommended to me by Dave, owner of Bellport Beer & Soda. Good pick.

Odd color, sort of a sepia influenced orange. 2 finger off-white head leaves a thin retention that still manages to stick some lace onto the glass.

Rich toasted malt aroma with some English yeast type fruity esters and of all things...marshmallow. There's some floral citrus hop in there somewhere but it's certainly not IPA worthy. Taste is chunky, robust malt with underlying orange marmalade and swamp hop bitter. Again, not IPA worthy.

It's no Red Rocket or Nugget Nectar but if you switch the style to say ESB, it's dead on. I like it regardless of false advertising.

Photo of TheDeuce
4.3/5  rDev +25%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fire Island Red Wagon IPA… the bottle….

Appearance-Dark red to light brown color…medium head with a lock of thickness, settles down nicely.

Smell-balanced smell of hops and malt, piney bread combination, pungent aroma that stayed with me.

Taste/Mouthfeel-well balanced flavor, hops slightly win out over malt with a refreshing taste backed up nicely. Medium to heavy mouthfeel, exceptional smoothness on the way down as well. Slight fruit notes.

Overall-well done tasty IPA, goes to show that balance can take you a long way. Cheers.

Photo of OneDropSoup
3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to JoeyBeerBelly for the extra!

Poured into a Dogfish Head glass (tulip pint?): 3 fingers glistening, lumpy head over a deep amber body, translucent. Thick "foamcore" lacing, sticks to the glass in chunks.

Floral & grassy hops dominate the aroma, with a mild balance of caramel & graham cracker malt.

Taste is more balanced than I expected: lemony hops, earthy, zesty, but more subdued than in the smell. Also a restrained caramel, slightly toffee malt. Aftertaste definitely on the bitter end, but not knock-your-socks-off-bitter. Show tea shows up later.

Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with active carbonation.

Nothing really standing out with this one, but that in itself is kind of outstanding & I appreciate that about it. A modest IPA that knows the meaning of moderation & is very content to be what it is. One of the few IPAs that I'd consider "sessionable."

Photo of TBRich
2.68/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Not awful, but nothing special in any way.

Photo of anotherpg
3.23/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 12 oz bottle. Begins with a light lace head, which disappears quickly. Amber in color. Smells and tastes more of grapefruit than anything else. Drinks clean without being overstated on hopes. Not a big IPA by any standards but a solid beer that I would guess is better on tap.

Photo of womencantsail
3.16/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Drew for this tick.

A: The pour is a hazy dark orange color with a finger's worth of off-white foam.

S: A definite harshness to the nose. There's some solventy/bleach character to it along with acidic grapefruit juice, and some caramel malt.

T: The flavor is pretty bitter, which is nice enough, along with citrus peel in terms of the hops. The malt is there too, and provides what is overall a pretty substantial sweetness.

M: The body and carbonation are both medium.

D: Not a terribly good example of an IPA. At least the flavor was an improvement over the nose.

Photo of portia99
3.68/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle received from JoeyBeerBelly as winnings from the Sunday Night Football Squares Wk15. Thanks Joe! Poured into a Portsmouth goblet.

A - Pours a brilliantly clear medium amber color with a finger of white head. Foam lingers briefly and falls to a nice collar and a few loose islands on the surface. A little bit of foamy lacing is left on the glass.

S - Smells of bitterness and lots of earthy hops with some fruity aspects too. A decent amount of caramel in the background and a mild touch of phenolics that is just barely perceptable.

T - First impression is that this is a nicely balanced beer. Good malt backbone with caramel and a light sugary sweetness. Some bready and grainy aspects too. Hops are largely displayed in a full, round bitterness with a bunch of earthy flavors.

M - Medium bodied - a little bit more full than most IPA's, carbonation is of a medium level, but plenty lively and fits well here. Bitterness sits in the mouth and finds its way to all corners...and stays well past the swallow.

D - Pretty good session IPA. Definitely not a hop bomp of an IPA...good, well balanced. Enough hops to satisfy, but balance is the key word. Everything works well together, but major hopheads might be left wanting a bit more.

Photo of oregonskibum
3.23/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

A: Color is dark orange, fading to a burnt yellow along the edges. Pours with a 1/2 inch off-white head, some lacing along the glass as the head slowly resides.

S: Citrus, floral, maybe a little pine from the hops, but generally mild for a IPA. Caramal and faint hints of brown sugar are also present, in equal proportion to the hop aromas. Not bad, but no remarkable for a 7.0% IPA.

T: Lots of bready malts and caramal flavors come close to overwhelming the citrus hops flavors. A little on the sweet side with a fairly low level of bitterness. Finish is likely the best part of the beer. Reminds me of a light colored amber more than an IPA.

M: Medium carbonation, medium body. Fairly crisp and inline with style.

D: Not bad, but not that good either. I'm not sure what they were trying to achieve, but it lacked the bitterness to balance out the malts. Maybe it would be worth trying fresh on tap, but I doubt I hunt this one down again.

Photo of projectflam86
3.88/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got the chance to try this one courtesy of JoeyBeerBelly. Thanks for the extra!

A- Pours a clear amber/copper color with a creamy white foam that leaves great lacing.

S- Some faint malt and floral hop aromas.

T- This has alot more hop bitterness than I would have expected! Sharp floral and citrus hop flavors initially with a well rounded malt center that helps to balance the finish.

M- Medium bodied with good carbonation.

D- Nice easy drinking brew.

Photo of njtmayhem
3.04/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not the best or worst IPA I have had but def not something I'll buy again.

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Red Wagon IPA from Fire Island Beer Company
79 out of 100 based on 121 ratings.