Union Jack India Pale Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 3,935 | Reviews: 1,079 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by rickyleepotts:
3.56/5 rDev -16.2%
look: 2.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75
We didn't plan on reviewing two beers today, but when I tore off a page in my daily beer calendar, we didn't have a choice. As I was standing there trying to figure out what beer we were going to review today, I was trying to decide between Racer 5 and Firestone Walker Union Jack IPA. Sure enough, I picked Racer 5 only to find Union Jack IPA on the calendar! So I figured we would review two beers today. The Racer 5 is an American IPA and the Union Jack is… an American IPA. It will be fun to see how they stack up and how they compare. I already know I LOVE the Racer 5, so I am curious to see what the Firestone tastes like. I have had it before, but I spend more time focused on the limited release beers from Firestone Walker. We have a bottle of Sucaba (formerly known as Abacus) in the fridge, too! Oh, and a few bottles of their Anniversary Ale in the cellar. As a matter of fact, we are headed (thanks to Dakine) to a tapping of the Anniversary Ale at the Skeptical Chymist soon.)
I might like hops, but reviewing two of these in one day might be too much. Good luck tasting dinner! If you like hops, toady is your lucky day here on 1001 Bottles!
In the Glass: Sheryl said, "This looks like the last one." It does… sort of. This isn't as impressive in regards to color, but the head is sticking around for a few minutes. It also produces a much thicker/heavier lace. I like a beer that laces well. Is that the right way to say that? Anyway, the beer appears thinner in the glass, but the head is getting me excited.
Nose: That is what an IPA should smell like! I like beers that have a lot of citrus in the aroma, but this guy smells like the woods. I am talking pine cones, dirt, musk, and more. There are two major types of India pale ales… I sometimes have a hard time picking a favorite. I am really digging the aroma on this one, though. Firestone Walker has made a name for big barrel aged beer, but hopefully their IPA will impress me.
Flavor: There are too many bubbles up front, and the finish is too thin. But that is more mouthfeel than anything. The flavor is weak on the front of the palate, and then the expected American IPA hop flavors take over toward the back of the tongue. As with the Racer 5, you would never know this has such a high ABV. Yesterday I was talking with someone that ages a few bottles of IPA each year. They are low ABV beers, too. He said they get better with time. With an ABV this high, maybe time would mellow down the flavors and the bubbles would subside. For me, this is too carbonated to really enjoy.
Mouthfeel: The first thing to hit your mouth is bubbles. From the second this goes in, bubbles take over. Then it mellows out on the back of the tongue, but at first you don't expect so much carbonation. The finish is nice, as it begins to mellow, it doesn't become thick… but it becomes drinkable. The aftertaste is my favorite part about this beer.
Aftertaste: The dryness starts as soon as you swallow, but not as dry as the Racer 5. It has a nice subtle dryness that reminds me of a handful of rye beers I have recently had. As you swallow, the aftertaste morphs into an earthy flavor that some might dislike. It's coming from the hops, and offers no citrus notes… just that musky flavor that I was smelling earlier.
This is a good IPA, but not one I would order again unless it was the only thing on tap besides Bud Light. There are a lot better beers out there in this stye. I will just stick to the big BA beers from Firestone Walker. Oh, BA means barrel aged. Sorry!
Serving type: bottle
02-27-2013 22:07:29 | More by rickyleepotts
More User Reviews:
4.44/5 rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Aroma starts off with noticeable grapefruit and biscuit malt. Taste tends to the citrus/pine side more with a definite bitter bite which doesn't linger too long. On the back a toasted biscuit malt makes a presence to offer some balance. This reminds of torpedo except a notch above, but simply for subjective reasons. Definitely one of the best ipas ive tried.
Serving type: bottle
03-07-2014 00:49:38 | More by CTbrew32
4.3/5 rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Excellent gold colored body with a foamy, thick white head; minor lacing on the glass. Beautifully enticing fruit and citrus aroma; musk melon and lemon; light biscuit malt scent. Fruity esters, lightly toasted grain, and subtly piercing hop bitterness dance together with the flavor. Medium bodied; crisp and mostly dry finish.
This brew comes across very well-balanced, packed with amazing aromas and nearly unforgettable flavors. The only weakness was a relatively mediocre appearance, but who cares too much about that minor nag when the key components of scent and taste are so topnotch? Yep, this will be on my short-list for tasty, affordable, big flavor/big hopped IPAs.
Serving type: bottle
03-06-2014 02:40:14 | More by beergoot
Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 3,935 ratings.