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Union Jack India Pale Ale - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

4,902 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,902
Reviews: 1,144
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 9.67%
Wants: 322
Gots: 495 | FT: 8
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: GClarkage on 08-14-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Union Jack India Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,902 | Reviews: 1,144 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of appenzeller
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Pours a light red amber, excellent clarity. Thin head with a light pour. Aroma is hops all the way! Taste is a pure hop trip from start to finish, very bright and citrus like, smooth and subtle underlying breadiness and malts. This is a super selection for someone wanting a hops fix, a fine beer that I would have again when the hop bug bites.

appenzeller, Jul 15, 2010
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.03/5  rDev -5%

A: clear, light yellow hue with a moderate sized head. average retention with very little lacing.

S: hops, grapefruit with subtle malt in the background.

T: very tasty beer. There is a strong malt backbone to support the hop bill. This is well balanced, though I personally prefer more of a hip forward beer and less of a malt presence.

M: full bodied. Good feel.

D: pretty good. This doesn't compare to the elite IPAs out there, but it's enjoyable and worth trying.

Huhzubendah, Jul 13, 2010
Photo of flagmantho
3.95/5  rDev -6.8%

Poured from 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: crystal-clear body with a rich orange hue and two solid fingers of ivory head. Pretty solid.

Smell: big hops; citrusy up front followed by an earthiness and a funkiness. Some sweetish malt comes through, but this is giving every indication of being a good old fashioned West Coast IPA.

Taste: solid, tasty IPA. Hops trend way more toward citrus and pine at first, then change over to funk toward the middle. The finish is quite bitter indeed. The caramelly malt flavors provide a light backdrop to all these ops. A tasty beer; I'm surprised this isn't classified as a double IPA with its ABV and high hoppiness.

Mouthfeel: medium or so bodied; not a whole lot of carbonation. Feel works for the style but isn't notably impressive.

Drinkability: drinkability is quite good. The hops keep it refreshing, although as I said this thing could be considered a double.

flagmantho, Jul 06, 2010
Photo of DovaliHops
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%

I was SO happy when I got home after purchasing a sixer of Union Jack, that it was bottled only 4 days ago! That's awesome! This fresh IPA pours an almost clear amber/golden color with a big white head that diminishes quickly. Smell is very hoppy with some sweet citrus scents. A bit of a floral smell as well. Lots of orange. The taste is delicious! I could have told you this was bottled less than a week ago, even if I hadn't looked at the date (due to the fact that it tastes like the time I had it on tap at the brewery). Never has it ever come from the bottle better than it has tonight. The mouthfeel is just perfect for an IPA...sometimes you get an IPA that has too light of a mouthfeel, but this one is awesome. The drinkability is extremely high. Drank 4 of these last night along with some BMC (don't judge me, I was playing beer pong). I was sure to save one of these fresh ones to write a review on. Firestone has made me VERY happy after drinking this and trying Parabola. Awesome job FW!

DovaliHops, Jul 04, 2010
Photo of weazal
3.7/5  rDev -12.7%

SMELL: Of course the hops dominate, but in a mellower, fruitier way that reminds you of apples and then pineapple. It's real pleasant and unique.

TASTE: Immediate onslaught of bitter hobs and sharp carbonation. Despite continual bitterness, the flavor is surprisingly restrained. Some mellow fruit / apple character is present. There's more body than you'd typically expect with an IPA and it finishes with the lingering hoppy bitterness and also whiskey like sharpness.

weazal, Jun 29, 2010
Photo of bbkd3b
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%

Served at a bar near the beach. Poured on-tap into a pint glass.

A: Pours a nice, golden-rod color. Nice bubbling appearance with a 1-finger that, surprisingly, didn't stick around as long as I would've wanted. Decent lacing, though.

S: Pine notes up-front. Gives the impression that it'll be bitter, or at least have a bite. Hoppy all-around.

T: Excellent overall. Hops with a citrus background (grapefruit broke through especially), some apple. Underneath was a sweetness, kind of like biscuits. Well-executed.

M: Syrupy, dry, but a considering the carbonation, it seemed a bit flat. Decent.

D: Very drinkable. It's limited distribution makes it hard to find, but buy a couple if you do find it! Well worth-it.

Overall/notes: A very well-made IPA. The tap was probably a bit too cold, which might explain why I found it so flat, but what can you do? Has enough balance that the hoppiness never takes over. My sister tried it, and she isn't exactly a hops-oriented person, but she found it quite drinkable. That alone makes me want to recommend to anyone for a try. If you're on the coast or have an opportunity to trade for it, take it. It won't disappoint!

bbkd3b, Jun 28, 2010
Photo of argock
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%

Served on-tap in a clear pint glass at Michael's Bistro (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Clear orange-amber with 1-finger wheat-colored head with good retention and lacing.

S: Delicious tropical, fruity hops aromas with solid pale and lightly toasted caramel malt

T: Clean flavor that still tastes like a filtered, streamlined Celebration Ale with tropical, pine, and citrus grapefruit hops balanced with pale and mildly toasted caramel malt.

M: Incredibly smooth and one of the fastest pints around. Slicky and flavorful with low carbonation and great grapefruot aftertaste.

D: One of the most drinkable IPAs around. Rivals Two Hearted Ale as the most drinkable IPA on-tap. Smooth, crisp, with exceptional body and feel.

argock, Jun 27, 2010
Photo of ChadQuest
3.53/5  rDev -16.7%

This is a very good IPA. Thanks to Grabbin2nd for this. i really enjoyed it.

Big protiens in the head leaving very large carb bubbles, very big bubbles, im surprised how big they are. bone white on a beautiful orange-amber body.

Great citrus aroma that is so juicy you could bite it. juicy, juicy, juicy tangerine.

Juicy. you knew i'd say it here too, but it is. i can tell this is fresh as the brightness is great. tropical citrus with out some of the harsher bitterness. a great compliment of a caramel is noticable, probally because they went a reasonable distance with the hops, enough to kick you but yet keep a semi-balance going on. this is good stuff.

ChadQuest, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of obywan59
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Pouring into my Guiness pint glass, I got a beautiful, transparent, light amber brew with a 2-finger white head that left moderate lacing.

I get hops first, wonderful floral hops, then a sweet malty aroma that I'd associate with a sticky brew. Some citrusy grapefruit as well.

Rather a sweet, malty brew. High on caramel, again reminding me of more stidky offerings. A nice floral taste in the back of the mouth.

Moderately thick. Not as sticky as the aroma and taste might suggest. Call it lightly sticky. Great flavor retention.

Nicely drinkable. I think the thickness and the ABV slowed me down just a bit.

obywan59, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of Augustiner719
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass:

Appearance; Pours a nice orange, yelowish slightly hazy color with a big fluffy just off white head that has lots of tiny bubbles. Nice hop haze and sunset orange yellow color.

Smell: Smells like a DIPA for sure. Has the sweet sticky pine, grapefruit, also some caramalized mango in there. Very very nice.

Taste: Has a huge body to this. This has to be a DIPA for sure. Its got a big hop attack followed by a huge malt profile with loads and loads of caramely biscuity malts to balance out the intense hops. Just a little weak in the mid palate but has a big initial attack and a strong finish that goes unbalanced because of the hollow midpalate.

Mouthfeel: Perfect carbonation. Not spritzy and has a great coating effect that leaves the sweet caramel spiked with grapefruit juice in your mouth for minutes.

Drinkability: For an american IPA, its just average. The abv is too high for me and i would just as soon pick this to be a DIPA. not a session beer and really should have the abv toned down a bit or else call it a dipa. only reason its getting this high a drinkabilty is because its delicious.

Augustiner719, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of crossovert
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%

Bottle says 03/15/10.

Pours a nice orangeish gold with a creamy. bubbly white head.

It does have a nice scent, high on citrus and some sugary malt.

Mmm, this one tastes delicious. Nice grapefruit rind is accented by some spicy/herbal character with a nice bitterness. Some pine creeps in in the aftertaste. I love these hops.

A solid west coast IPA in my book.

crossovert, Jun 21, 2010
Photo of Stigs
4.1/5  rDev -3.3%

12oz bottle as an extra from BA user monsterzero...served in a standard pint glass

A - pours with almost half an inch of tight, creamy & forthy slightly off-white colored foam. the beer is clear, golden in color. leaves behind a thin wall of lace throughout most of the drink.

S - strong floral and piney hops...quite juicy and with a subtle spiciness. rounded out a bit by some light caramel malts, finishes with sweet hops, predominantly floral. very nice.

T - loads of piney and grassy hops, very up front and pungent, quite bitter. glided along underneath with some sweet caramel malts which come through very forcefully (yet nicely) every few sips. finishes with lingering pine bitterness and a light spice.

M - very thick and syrupy body for the style...carbonation is present but nicely playful in the background. very oily going down but finishes clean with a waining bitterness.

D - solid IPA, very well done if you are into piney and grassy hops. strong and assertive flavors but with a bit of balance. would go very well with some spicy Thai or Asian cuisine. well done here.

Stigs, Jun 20, 2010
Photo of metter98
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%

A: The beer is crystal clear deep amber in color with no visible carbonation. There is a thin layer of bubbles on the surface.
S: There is a moderate, pleasant aroma of piney hops in the nose.
T: There is a good amount of bitterness from the hops, but this is not overpowering due to a good balance with the underlying malts. There are some notes of caramel malts.
M: It feels medium-bodied and very crisp on the palate; there is some dryness in the finish.
D: The beer is very easy to drink and the alcohol is well hidden. I would definitely have another of these.

metter98, Jun 17, 2010
Photo of canucklehead
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%

This is one top notch IPA with lots of hops and lots of balance in the finish . I hardly noticed the high ABV ( tastes like an IPA not a DIPA) as the beer was smooth and refined. The hops were west coast but not too piney . Like the DBA this is what FWB do best , a flavourful ale with lots of drinkability and complexity

canucklehead, Jun 15, 2010
Photo of beerdrifter
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%

Picked this up at a great beer store, Tops Liquor, while at a conference in Phoenix. Nice clear, orange-copper pour with a great fluffy off-white head and nice lacing. Huge floral nose with lots of fresh hops and caramel. The balance on this beer is incredible. Perfect mesh between bitter hops and sweet malts. Lots of citrusy grapefruit and sweet caramel with a perfect bitter hop tang. The mouthfeel is well balanced as well with a good mix of crisp dryness and a touch of chewy sweetness. Rediculously drinkable. This is another top notch beer from one of my favorite breweries. Never disappointed!

beerdrifter, Jun 14, 2010
Photo of brewerburgundy
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%

12oz bottle, Sam Adams glass, bottled on date of 5/21/10.

This is a fine looking IPA. The body is deep copper even in the thin base of the Sam Adams glass and the soapy sudsy eggshell head has already left a nice ring of lace.

Aromas jump out of the bottle at you, an assurance that this beer will live up to the buzz. The smell leans towards the pine, mango, and weed side of the hop world. I immediately found peach as well, and some grapefruit deeper in. I may already agree that this is one of the finest and most under the radar American IPAs. Malt is apparent but so is its west coast dryness.

The flavor is about as impressive as the aroma. A hefty bitterness is accompanied by more of a grapefruit profile. This isn't to say that the pine isn't backing that grapefruit pith up real well and that I don't taste orange, peach, mango, papaya, and alcohol.

This is a dry IPA, I prefer them that way. The balance between some body, some carbonation, and alcohol/level of dryness is quite good.

I am so glad that Union Jack has lived up to my personal expectations. I think that I focus slightly more on aroma with IPA/DIPAs and this beer delivers. The 7.5% ABV is in the upper range for the style but doesn't really hurt drinkability because the aroma and flavor are so damn good. Take you time and enjoy it. You'll get your hop fix.

brewerburgundy, Jun 14, 2010
Photo of velosuds
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%

Poured from a 22 oz bomber into a clear pint glass. No freshness date apparent. Purchased for $5.39.

A-Poured a hazy golden-amber hue with a one finger off white head that receded quickly into a modest lace.

S-A very fragrant IPA. Piney and citrus hops, especially grapefruit are prominent and inviting.

T-Hoppy bitterness is very citric, especially grapefruit and lemony esters. There is also a pleasant, bready malt backbone providing a nice, but faint balance.

M-Very smooth and well balanced. Nice carbonation level.

D-Very drinkable at 7.5% ABV. Alcohol content is not noticeable. A good IPA, but not remarkable. I would drink think this more if it were available in 12 oz. six packs.

velosuds, Jun 13, 2010
Photo of Parrotbeak
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%

Received as a generous extra from chswimmer.
Light amber with a thin white head that fades quickly, becoming patchy.
Smell is spicey, bready malts with some piney, floral hops. Hints of cinnamon,pineapple, peach, and mango.
Taste is malty up front, with some dry, piney hops following. Malts carry to the finish, which is slightly bitter from the hops. Some grassy notes in there as well.
Mouthfeel is crisp, with a clean finish. Light body, with a moderate level of carbonation.
Drinkability is very good. The alcohol is well-concealed. Very well-rounded IPA.

Parrotbeak, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of colts9016
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%

Poured into a pint glass at 40 degrees

Appearance: A one finger frothy light tan head that has descent retention. The color of the beer medium amber color with orange copper highlights. The clarity of the beer is clear clear with a touch of haziness. There is some effervescence in the beer.

Nose: A good malty nose with toast, caramel, and yeast. There is a nice floral ester, pine, and grapefruit. In the background of the beer is some phenols and solvents.

Taste: A very ripe hop flavor. The hop flavor is floral bouquet, pine, lemon, grapefruit and orange. There is a very good malt base. The malt is toasty and caramel flavor. There are notes of yeast, phenols, and solvents.

The mouth feel of the beer is astringent, dry, and carbonated.

Overall: The body of the beer is medium and the finish is medium full. This is one of the beers that I have tried from Firestone Walker. This is also, one of the better IPA's that I have tasted.

colts9016, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of womencantsail
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%

A: The pour is a typical looking amber color with a rather fluffy and large white head and some nice lacing on the glass.

S: Plenty of citrusy hops in the nose. I pick up a lot of grapefruit and perhaps a bit of orange as well. Not really too much malt there, but a bit of breadiness.

T: The flavor is essentially a continuation of the nose. Plenty of sharp and juicy grapefruit with a bread-like malt flavor in the background. A mild, resinous bitterness on the back end.

M: Medium in body with ample carbonation and a very crisp finish.

D: One of the best regular IPAs out there and a stand-by of mine. Very refreshing and easy to drink.

womencantsail, Jun 10, 2010
Photo of StJamesGate
4.28/5  rDev +0.9%

On tap at the East v West Coast IPA Challenge, Rattle N Hum, NYC.

Pours a pale lively tangerine with a rocky white head that leaves fine-tooled lace. Fresh orange juice and fuchsia blossom nose - big and bright. Light Seville orange malts struggle to appear past juicy orange whip and birch hops. Long aspirin finish. Medium and fizzy.

Opens and mellows as it warms - toasted granola malts step up and the bitterness fades.

This IPA does a couple of things I've never seen before: it gets a tightrope balance between sweet citrus and astringent bitterness. Then it totally morphs from a Cali IPA to almost an English one. If I had to find fault, it's a little too prickly.

Mercurial and well-constructed; I see why it keeps winning medals.

StJamesGate, Jun 09, 2010
Photo of Walken
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%

Firestone Walker: Union Jack IPA (Bottled: 04/27/10) (Tasted 05/31/10)
12 oz. bottle, poured into a cervoise goblet.

Appearance: Ever so slightly hazed, near brilliant copper colored beer pours into the glass with a small initial head that stays pretty squat, fading down into a film, with some great looking lacing, fluffy bubbles, mounted on a ring of foam around the edges of the glass, that stays intact to the bottom of the glass
Odor: Citrus hops on the nose, juicy grapefruit with hints of orange and juicy fruit gum (Thanks Centennial!)
Consistency: Solid, light end of medium bodied with a high flying but oh-so-mellow carbonation that merely massages the tongue. Hops add a great feel to this beer, oily, slightly fruity.
Taste: This is a hell of an IPA right here, there's no denying that. Hop flavors run all over the place, each of the dry hops come through and shine through. Simcoe and Chinook throw the yin and yang of rough and clean herbal hop bitterness, Amarillo throws orange sap and rind, C's throw the standard grapefruit flavor in the background to round things out. Malt is there for support and nothing else, clean biscuit and dark bread. Finish is off-dry with a load of hop oils holding their initial flavors on the tongue.

Glad this is available somewhat locally now, delicious IPA, exceptionally crafted beer overall! Get it!

Walken, May 31, 2010
Photo of MetalHopHead6
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%

Union Jack IPA is bready, balance, and funky.

It poured a little lighter in color than I like, pale amber, with a massive white head that left rings of thick sticky lace. Many IPAs are bitter but bland; Union Jack has a ton of complex flavor, with a bit of citrus and an abundance of earthy/grassy flavor followed by my favorite pale ale characteristic: funk. This had plenty of funk. The feel was thick, chewy, and bready.

After a very long hot weather bike ride, Union Jack IPA was a perfect relax-and-enjoy-the-world experience.

MetalHopHead6, May 30, 2010
Photo of tchenery
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Beer looks an amazing deep orange color. It has a nice lengthy head, which leaves lacing all down the glass.

It smells amazing. I could smell the beer from where I was sitting as I poured it without having to stick my nose in the glass. Pretty standard IPA smell, but just a LOT of it. Very floral, almost bubble-gummy.

It tastes amazing. It has a very smooth, silky start of malt that edges towards the bitter and hops and finishes very dry and crisp.

Amazing beer. I haven't had one from Firestone yet that wasn't though, so no surprises there.

tchenery, May 28, 2010
Photo of msubulldog25
4.08/5  rDev -3.8%

Pint glass (too frosty) poured at Rocco's Bar, Portland. Allowed to sit/warm for about ten minutes.

A: Clear pour with plenty of streaming carbonation cutting through a field of butterscotch/copper orange. Head is short, but epitomizes creamy whiteness; a million flecks of lace speckle the glass.

S: Powerful citrus, a blend of grapefruit and orange, marries with hearty evergreen - maybe a tad on the soapy/perfumed side. Takes some time to develop, but plenty strong once it does.

T: Like the nose, this flexes its muscles right away: pithy, almostly tingly, citrus zest; resinous and juicy needles; and under-coating of thick caramel and candied fruits.

M: A bit on the zesty side, yet not over-carbonated. Body carries some weight, medium-to-heavy feel, with a coating finish of bitter pith and pine.

D: Though categorized as a 'regular' American IPA, this toes a fine line toward being 'Imperial'. It's easy enough to drink one of, but midway through the second you may start to regret it. Or you'll feel so good you just don't care. Til tomorrow... Very worthy...

msubulldog25, May 27, 2010
Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 4,902 ratings.