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Union Jack India Pale Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Union Jack India Pale AleUnion Jack India Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,262 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,262
Hads: 6,115
Avg: 4.23
pDev: 20.8%
Wants: 447
Gots: 1,271 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beerguy101 on 10-09-2003

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (83) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Union Jack India Pale Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,262 | Hads: 6,115
Photo of jdklks
3.69/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- light golden with a white head. looks more like a mix between an ipa and a lager. the head dissipates quickly an leaves a thin sticky lace. not too impressive.

S- citrus fruity hops with a minimal hint of overwhelmed malts. fruity and hoppy. cant go wrong with those two for an ipa!

T- sweeter than expected from the smell. the hop bitterness is less pronounced on the palate than in the nostril, which is disappointing. those malts that were overwhelmed in the smell put up a better fight here, but still ultimately give way to hoppiness. minimal fruity flavors. very tangy.

M- perhaps SLIGHTLY over-carbonated, but not enough to really bring it down. overall a medium bodied brew.

D- this beer drinks well, especially for a 7.5% ipa. however, i dont know how much more of this i will be buying (on the other hand, it was only 4.99 for the 6er!).

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Photo of jamdugan
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Matt Brynidlson is a master brewer. I know he's good friends with Vinnie Cilurzo of Russian River, and it shows in his ability to make an IPA. Matt started off studying hops in the lab, and later became a brewer. He knows how a West Coast IPA should taste and smell. This is one of the best IPA's you'll find on the West Coast. Much respect to the Firestone Walker crew for pushing the envelope of craft brewing in America.

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Photo of JoeySchlitz
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After drinking many 'Pliny the Younger's over the past few days I would say this is on par, maybe slightly behind. A fantastically well-balanced IPA that has a very fresh hop aroma and taste. There is a bit of bitterness on the tail end but overall a great beer, with a good malty balance to it. I definitely plan on picking up more of this for the beer closet stock.

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Photo of Troyone
4.53/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Recieved a six pack as a present and was quite impressed.

This is an off gold color in the direction of orange. The head is about a sixteenth" and an off white color. The carb action is evident and this is slightly hazy.

There is a sweet smell of a grassy citrus lemon and a mild pine with some caramel malt maybe bready.

Fills the mouth will flavors and is tight, concentrated. Citrussy lemon and mild pine with a sweet grassy carbonation and the bitterness is evident and far from intollerable. In the background the caramel malt, maybe lightly toasted, is well blended. The 7.5 abv warms the senses and adds to the citrus aftertaste with a hint of caramel malt.

This is has a medium light mouthfeel with a nice alcohol warming finish.

Excellent session IPA at 7.5 abv watch out this is good.

After visiting many Brewpubs I would have to add that this is the typical great tasting IPA that usually is the preferred out of a sampler from a mom and pop Brewpub only with 7.5... If I could give this my own classification I would put this in the Amercan Brewpub IPA catagory.

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Photo of PerzentRizen
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is definately my first Firestone Walker brew. I got this one from a trade with BrewerB thank you kind Sir. I have enjoyed it!

This was poured into a Duvel glass. This is a very clear beer with little head retention. The color is of oak/copper color - somewhat dark for the style.

The aroma is of fresh hop fullness situated on a firm malt backbone. There is no fruit detectable in this IPA - this is a stark difference between this and the last IPA I drank (Port Brewering "Wipeout IPA").

The taste is excellent with light malt followed by sharp crisp hop flavor - though not oily. This is how I've come to see great west coast IPA's - they sneak the hops in and hit you in the back of the throat. In the east they seem to punch you in the face and leave a harsher finish. I really enjoyed the crispness and refreshing quality of this beer.

Drinkability of this beer is very good. At 7.5% alcohol this is a fairly potent brew. I wouldn't want to drink too many. I could and would like one more though. Man this is one fine beer - thanks again Brian!

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Photo of RustyDiamond
3.65/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11/13/08 etched into neck of bottle. Poured into my lovely SA beer drinking glass. Opaque bright yellow with a clean looking whitish head. Tropical whiffs of tangerine, kiwi, mango. Bitter and tangy hop flavor noticed on the first sip. Fairly dry in the mouthfeel, lingering dryness on the palate. A strange flavor of tropical hop flavor and chalky hop bitterness. Certainly not bad by any means, just not I would again seek out among all the great IPAs from California.

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Photo of sonicdescent
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thank you to bring who included this, my first from FSW, as an extra!

Pours a golden hue with a nice crown and thick looking carbonation with the SA Sensory Glass.

Nose is sweet and resiny citrus hops.

Tastes, well it tastes like it smells. Damn good.

Medium/thick bodied and low to medium carbonation. A combination that works with this pronounced of a flavor.

Extremely drinkable. Too bad we don't get FSW beers here!

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Photo of ThirdLap
4.59/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Served in a Bear Republic pint glass at the proper temperature range. Probably my third Union Jack ever. Bottled 20 days before sampling... sweet! And ya can't beat $7.99 for a sixer at BevMo.

A- Pours a light golden amber with a small, short lasting off-white head. After the ring disappears, little to no lacing remains as I finish the glass. Agitation returns little to nothing.

S - Awesome. This is very remniscient of the Elder, definitely a good thing. Crisp, clean citrusy goodness.

I just inhaled an noseful of it trying to get more stuff to write about. No seriously, I did.

T - Very good. It's a straightforward, no BS west coast IPA, and an excellent example of the style. As such, the hops tip the scale over malt ever so slightly, but the balance is still there. A solid bitter finish coats the mouth.

I had my first Union Jack of the night with a couple of mild Italian sausages coated with SNPA mustard. Solid combination, and highly recommended.

M - Perhaps the only downfall is a thinner than expected body. Carbonation is just right but I could use a little more oomph in such an otherwise very well balanced beer. Save for the slight bitterness, there is a very light, crisp finish.

D - I'll be lucky if I don't drink the whole damn sixer tonight.

Matt and the boys over at FW are gonna take over the world someday. The 'Passion for the Pale' really shows with this one .

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Photo of Dmann
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a excellent example of and AIPA that actually has some balance in flavor. Pour was golden with hints of orange and a great frothy head. Smell was hoppy and had a bit of sweet citrus in the background. Taste was great, and you could go through quite a few of these and not even know it since it is so smooth. Flavor had great citrus hoppiness up front with a nice solid toasted malt backbone for balance.

I give props to Firestone for not making just another hop bomber, but actually trying to create a bit of balance and subtlety with this brew. Great stuff!

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Photo of SShelly
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a sixer to take to a party and realized I hadnt reviewed this yet...

Pours a nice light amber with decent head and 2 min. retention.

Aroma is nice citrus hops, very balanced and pleasing.

Flavor starts bitter with lots of complimenting citrus, nice malt balance makes this very drinkable. leaves a nice bitterness in the mouth.

Probably my third favorite ipa behind alesmith and stone.

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Photo of Biggness
4.09/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very clear amber with a 1/2 finger white head with some lacing. The smell is nice and big mostly dominated by a grapefruit smell from the hops. This beer has a very nice malt base to it and a nice hop profile, its not gonna wow your socks off but it is a very solid well constructed beer. The initial flavor is a kinda bready malt flavor and its immediately followed by the citrusy hop flavor. The carbonation level seems a tad low on this beer and there is a slight dry after taste. An easy drinking beer, the alcohol is well disguised I would imagine this to be a session beer but its not even close :)

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Photo of Dubbercody
3.7/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle thanks to a trade...justn.

Pretty beer, dark golden almost amber, with lots and lots of little tiny bubbles streaming up to the top of the glass. Very dense but thin head, about a finger.

Lots of scents kicking out on this one. Lots in the citrus range, also a bit of malt.

Really packs a nice punch of hops when you drink, leaves a little tingle in your mouth. Leaves a creamy sticky residue that is a nice parting gift.

Pairs very well with Hebrew National All Beef Hotdogs...with coarse stone ground mustard.

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Photo of ironlung
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Honey-orange. Not much head. It's been my experence that you can pour this beer as hard as you'd like and never overflow your pint-glass.

S: Strong citrus. All kinds of grapefruit and sweeet orange. I can also detect a slight aroma of biscut malt.

T: A nice citrus flavor abounds. Light tingly bubbles tickle your tounge. This is dead-on for an IPA, nice and strong.

M: Great coating finishes with a nice citrus bouquet.

D: This is a top-notch IPA well hopped and high on the alcohol. The fact that I can usually find sixers for around seven bucks makes this beer a winner. Great job Firestone!

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Photo of ckeegan04
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Golden orange with a one finger bubbly off-white head. Quickly fades but leaves lots of lace on the glass.

S - Big citrusy nose with hints of tropical fruit as well. Lots of grapefruit, a little apricot, and some pineapple. Very faint bready sweetness underneath.

T - Just the slightest hint of toasted bread and malty sweetness up front before the hops just take over the drink. Big, juicy citrus fruits dominate the tongue. A little on the bitter side, but purely in a good way.

M/D - Medium bodied and rather oily. Relatively easy drinking and an excellent example of a hoppy American IPA.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I used to think the lion would beat up the bear but what if the bear is actually a giant badger. That could go either way.

Pours see-through straw color. Large, pristine white head. Like most FW beers, this looks really clean.

Smells like floral hops: rose in particular, and piney hops. Very fragrant...like sticking pine needles and rose petals up my nose.

Floral and piney hops dominate over a sugary bisciuty malt. Body is light and fluffy but with substance. Really, really, really clean.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.83/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 9/16/08. Pours a clear orange with a small white head. Aroma of citrus, garlic, and grassy hops. Flavor of light citrus and wheat malt. A nicely balanced IPA. Easy drinking. This is definitely aged but I can tell that it is a solid IPA and hopefully I can get a fresh sample sometime.
7/4/8/4/15 (3.8/5)

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Photo of vacax
3.88/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Firestone-Walker pint glass.

A: Pale copper with decent looking head and some nice lacing.

S: Immediate grassy, somewhat fruity hops. Lightly scented, but interesting fruitiness smells like pears and candy apples.

T: Caramel up front with a consistent earthy hops that are moderately bitter. Not as fruity as the nose would have you believe, and not as much bite as a lot of IPAs. Similar to an ESB in some respects, but a little more hopcentric. A nice IPA, but not in the same league as Sculpin, Blind Pig, etc.

M: Medium to medium-light bodied with a robust smooth carbonation for a creamy mouthfeel.

D: A very nice and smooth IPA that I could easily session. Decently big beer at 7.5 ABV, but doesn't seem "big" at all. Very easy drinking and subdued malts/hops. Great in that respect, but at such a big ABV and at a $10/sixer price tag there are some more attractive IPAs out there (Green Flash, Stone come to mind).

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Photo of badbeer
3.76/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Orange/copper color with a white head that retains well and leaves good lacing on the glass. Grapefruit, pine, biscuit, caramel and an astringent grassy-ness in the aroma. Taste is bitter with pine, grapefruit, light lemon citrus, and a bit of lightly toasted biscuits providing a bit of a malt background. Less than medium body, dry finish, and medium carbonation. A nice, drinkable IPA that I'd enjoy from time to time. Maybe future bottles will have a better aroma, but the taste and mouthfeel was good at least. Thanks to doubleo for the bottle.

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Photo of BeerStine
3.62/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a cloudy orange with medium-light carbonation. Thin white head that disappears rather quickly. Maybe I didn't let the beer warm enough?

S - Faint fruity tangerine hops smell. As the beer warms a slight dank hop smell emerges. Mild biscuit malt smell.

T - Not much flavor on the tip of the tongue but sides of tongue picks up lots of citrusy tangerine flavor. Some lingering bitter aftertaste. Definitely more balanced (read: less hoppy) than most IPAs that I've had.

M - Medium-heavy body. Lightly carbonated.

D - In terms of ease of drinking the beer is definitely drinkable. The taste is somewhat one-dimensional for an IPA. A beer I would not mind bringing to a party and drinking a sixer of. But not a beer that I would savor and look forward to drinking.

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Photo of b3barron
3.22/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured this into a Bell's pint glass. One of a few hop-focused beers brought back to me from California. My first beer from this brewery.

A - Normal pour produces a thin one-finger, off-white head with very little retention and small traces of frothy lacing. Nice glowing orange color with reddish hues when held up to a lamp.

S - Spicy hops and Caramel Malt. Faint floral hops and a little pine.

T - Malty sweetness giving way to earthy, then piney hops. A nice bitterness balances this beer out while it hangs around through the finish and sticks to the back of my tounge. I actually get some alcohol as this warms.

M - On the fuller-bodied side for an IPA. Could perhaps use just a little more carbonation.

D - Not bad but full body and warming alcohol detracts from the drinkability in a style that I otherwise consider to be very drinkable.

I like to call these "pizza beers". They serve a purpose but would not be an IPA I would buy regularly with many better alternatives available. Glad I had a chance to try it and worth a shot.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a hazy gold with 1 1/2 fingers of poofy eggshell white head. This shrinks down into a thin yet still sturdy looking layer of retention that throws a big ole' latticework of lace up on the sides of the glass. The aroma is exceedingly floral smelling with a piney edge to it and some tingling spice coming out as well. This is balanced out by a tangy mix of citrus and caramel in the background. Solid West Coast aroma here.

The taste is floral, resinous, and spicy hops that are perfectly balanced by a silky and juicy feeling backbone of grapefruit, caramel, and bread. Finishes with a nice dry lingering bitterness and some residual sweetness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with an unbelievably smooth, creamy, and silky feel to the carbonation. I mean this stuff went down so easily and fast, I almost threw another in the fridge to make sure that I got a full handle on this for the review. Fantastic drinkibility on this one!

Wow! Talk about an underrated IPA! This was great stuff that I'm just not seeing enough talk about. Maybe if it had better distribution compared to some of Firestone Walker's other staple offerings? Anyway, I mightily enjoyed this and look forward to future bottles.

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Photo of bifrostguard
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear light amber color with a moderate off white head leaving a decent amount of lacing.

S - Citrus and floral hops with a distant malty scent in the back ground.

T - Citrus and floral hops are balanced quite nicely, leaning more towards the citrus side. Biscuity malt hold the flavors together and creates a rather enjoyable west coast IPA.

M - Somewhat thin, but still feels pretty good.

D - This is a damn fine beer, but at 7.5% it works as fast as it goes down. That being said, I could still drink a ton of this stuff.

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Photo of far333
4.42/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear pale orange colored with a beige wispy head that rises up slightly and settles down quickly, leaving a ring of lacey bubbles around the top of the glass.

Bright and inviting aroma of citrusy hops, lots of lemon and tangerine, some hints of grapefruit rind.

Flavor is mouth puckering hoppy goodness right upfront. Some slightly sweet malt fruitiness rides beneath, but there is definitely a strong punch of orange rind, resiny pine bitter, and a lemon zest finish with a hot cinnamon linger.

Even mouthfeel, just a tad slick with moderate carbonation. Very drinkable and warming, great selection from barleywinefiend. Thanks!

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Photo of ffejherb
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle into DFH specialty glass on 12/15/08.

A - Poured a clear golden amber-toned body with modest amount of carbonation and almost one finger of white head that quickly receded to a patchy film but left nice lacing around the glass.

S - Aroma is big on citrus hops with hints of grapefruit and orange, while the malt is sweet and caramely. There's alsot a smidgen of alcohol in the nose.

T - Opens with a blast of juicy citrus hops complemented by plenty of sweet caramel malt. A piney hop character emerges in the backend that is supported by some biscuity malt.

M - Medium body with oily texture and pretty smooth, soft mouthfeel with a bit of carbonation on the tongue. Finish is definitely hoppy, depositing quite a lot of bitterness on the tongue.

D - This IPA has a lot of West Coast in it, especially the big citrusy flavor. I wouldn't rank it with the big boys like Pliny or Dorado, but it's solid and sure to please the hopheads.

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Photo of kirok1999
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to rayjay for the bottle.
Pours a slightly hazy orange/gold. Lots of sticky lacing and a wispy white head.
Smells very hoppy, lots of grassy, piney, almost wheaty notes.
Tastes mildly sweet, rich malts come through and linger through the finish. Hops compete well with the malt with lots of grass, pine and some juicy citrus as well.
Very smooth and mildly carbonated. This is very juicy and rich.

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Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,262 ratings.