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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.

1,246 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,246
Hads: 6,041
Avg: 4.23
pDev: 20.8%
Wants: 441
Gots: 1,208 | FT: 13
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 (88) | 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: 1,246 | Hads: 6,041
Photo of cptierney
4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A friend of mine had a large blind taste testing event for IPAs and I believe this little gem took first place. I also heard it took first at GABF making it a serious brew.

Beautiful pour into an equally beautiful North Coast nonic pint glass. One finger of quickly receding head, that left substantial lacing over the top of the clear light amber liquid.

I am immediately impressed by the citrus smell that this beer carries with it. While there is a hint on some sweet malt odor to the beer, I find that the grapefruit actually twinges my nostrils a tiny bit.

Lovely mouthfeel. A well carbonated brew that is surprisingly thin and easy to quaff, really nice.

This a beer that is thoroughly consistent. Lacking the WOW factor of heavyweights such as Furious and Sculpin, this brew is really a sleeper. The moderate malt spine of this beer holds up to a nice balance of piney and aforementioned citrusy hops. A solid drinking buddy for sure.

Excellent drinkability. While there is a heavy hop bite to this West Coast IPA, it doesn't have the oily cumulative affect of some of its peers. I'm glad I opted for a sixer.

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Photo of Derek
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Amber with a white head, some retention, amazing lacing.

S: Great hop nose, pine, citrus rind, candied fruit, pineapple.

T: Very assertive bitterness, rind, candied pineapple, pine, warming alcohol.

M: Moderate body has some hop acidity with an off-dry finish.

D: Like hops?

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Photo of Mora2000
4.42/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy golden color with a white head. Aroma is tons of citrus hops. Flavor is very hoppy but not too bitter. The predominant flavor is orange and other citrus fruits. Medium mouthfeel and very drinkable.
This is a beer that I could drink several of in one sitting, unlike some of the hoppier less-balanced versions of this style. This is a great beer.

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Photo of GJ40
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 22oz bottle purchased at Whole Foods on Westlake in Seattle. No date on the bottle.

A golden ale with the slightest haze and a small white head. Aroma is piney and citrusy hops with a touch of toasted malt and yeast. Starts with a nice citrusy bitterness but then switches to a malty and yeasty flavor. The bitterness picks up over time and the malt continues to provide a nice foundation. There's good lacing left on the glass as it empties. The consistency is moderate with a low carbonation.

I'd been meaning to try this and after I heard it won best IPA at GABF, I figured it was time. I think it's a balanced and enjoyable IPA but I wouldn't put it in the top three.

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

Poured a deep orange colr with a white head and good carbonation. Nose is big grapefruit, orange peel. Taste is chewy, acidic, caramel malt perhaps, orange peel, pine, sweet and a big hop bite on the end. Mouthfeel is acidic, tasty and sweet. Drinkability is good as usual.

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

Appearance is golden-orange with a fluffy white head that dissipates quickly, leaving spidery lacing. There is a slight chill haze that clears up as it warms.

Smells of dark, earthy, slightly resinous hops with a touch of melon. Just a hint of caramel in the background.

Tasty caramel malt blends well with earthy hops upon first sip. Hops brighten up and become citrusy/floral toward the middle. A grapefruity bitterness also shows up in the middle and lasts throughout. Warming alcohol, leafy hops, and citrus on the finish. Astrigent tea leaves in the aftertaste.

Slick and syrupy mouthfeel that coats your throat. Light carbonation and a sweet but bitter finish.

Very drinkable, complex and well-balanced IPA.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.42/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a bright, slightly darkened orange with a nice white head.

S: Lots of grapefruit, orange, and other citrus notes. Some malt sweetness far into the background.

T: Very similar to the smell. Lots of refreshing hop bitterness with a little bit of the sweet aroma working its way into the taste.

M: Medium-bodied with a little bit of chewiness.

D: Quite drinkable. A very nice IPA to quaff back all day.

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Photo of snaotheus
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into a 22oz mug

Bright golden, big poofy head and beautiful lacing. Nice looking beer. Smells piney with lots of orangey citrus.

Taste is pine and citrus with a very pleasant hoppy bitter aftertaste. Thick with malt.

Thick and chewy mouthfeel, suits the beer very well. Quite drinkable. I'm very happy.

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

A: Clear pale-amber body with golden hues. Moderate white cap, decent retention and sporadic lacing.

S: Grapefruit, fresh pine cones, light fresh flowers. Some light toasted malt and grains.

T: More of the characteristics from the nose. Vibrant hop character. Good citric-pine balance. Light malt body is a good palate for the bitterness of the hops.

M: Moderate body. Could use a little more carbonation. Somewhat rounded, resinous finish. I like it with a little more bite.

D: Overall the taste carries the day. A nice lively IPA.

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Photo of boogyman
4.62/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this at local beer store, Malt & Vine. Taps of this around the area seem to be going quick so I had to try it.

A- Poured into a pint glass a hazy dark golden color. Small head that went away quickly. Lace sticks around very nicely.

S- Nice piney smell comes out right away. I love me some hops. Orange peel with some grapefruit.

T- Hops and pine all over the place and the nose mixes in with the slight fruity notes. Very tasty.

M- Very nice. Slightly bubbly and smooth. The pine and hops masks the alcohol nicely.

D- Can I have another? I could easily drink many of these.

Overall very pleased with this brew. Go get some.

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Photo of projectflam86
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this as an extra from route66pubs. Thanks dude!

A- Pours a nice golden amber color with a thick white foam head that has some crazy retention.

S- Some nice light floral hops as well as some grapefruit and pine. A few notes of pale malt and grain are just barely noticeable.

T- Nice hoppy zing initially with citrus and pine bitterness. A nice hint of toasted malt and caramel sweetness ease the flavor into a decently balanced finish...but not too balanced. This is most certainly nice and hoppy :)

M- Medium body with the perfect amount of carbonation. Smooth feel and nice hoppy aftertaste.

D- Overall a great brew that I wish I could pick up regularly.

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Photo of nomomentwasted
4.37/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap in downtown Santa Barbara, on State Street, poured into a 12oz mug.

Appearance: Traditional IPA look of golden-orange hue with decent head and lacing. Looks very appetizing, but not to say it's head-and-shoulders better than the competition.

Smell: Whew, what a hop bill! Smells very fresh and piny, with definite Cascade notes and potentially Simcoe as well. Slight, slight citrus undertones, but the top of the bill is certainly more pine and grass. Really full nose, with just a hint of malt sweetness of the back end.

Taste: Refreshingly bitter on the front end, and then hit with a wave of pine and citrus hops, that is blunted thereafter by a nice malt presence for a hoppy IPA. Taste finishes with more of a dank, wet hoppy taste that lingers nicely. Really, really sold.

Mouthfeel: Another winner in the terms of intensity. Wet, resinous, and much like Big Eye IPA from Ballast Point in the wetter, more-lingering dankness. Very solid bitterness as well, and just ultimately refreshing.

Drinkability: The only thing about that intense mouthfeel and taste is that it does drag down the drinkability just slightly, as I wouldn't want much more than a bomber of this, at the most. But still, a very, very tasty IPA that I'm a little surprised doesn't get a bit more buzz amongst hop lovers.

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Photo of Reidrover
3.85/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle. Pretty pedestrian looking IPA. LIght orange/golden with a huge frothy off white head. Nice aromas of citrus,spruce and over ripe apricot. Nice fresh fruity IPA this one, very sweet, lemon rind, oranges, apricots and lychee. Mouth watering really.palate was on the thin side which added to drinkability in this muggy weather here in Salem. Overall a good drinkable IPA in the "old style" mould of Bridgeport IPA.

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Photo of FreightTrain
3.74/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- This is a beautiful beer. The copper/amber color is topped by a very nice off-white, perfectly proportioned head that leaves loads of sticky lacing down the glass. Very attractive.

S- The smell is average. Citrusy, piney hop fragrance that's present but doesn't go much beyond that.

T- While this is hop forward, it's also well balanced. Sometimes "balanced" is code for "I felt short-changed by this IPA in the hop department", but in this case, this just a well-rounded, tasty beer. The malt is supportive and substantive without being sugary or intrusive. Nice bitterness in the finish.

M- Good level of carbonation, not quite as full as I want it to be, but suits the beer just fine.

D- A very nice IPA. Pairs well with food, but stands up very well on its own. Very well crafted.

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Photo of RoyalT
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - This is a delicious-looking clear but heavy orange body with a nice, retentive white head that even left some lacing on the inside of my pint glass.

Smell - The rich, orange-flavored hops are big and heavy. I can pick up a solid sweetish malt base but it's the orange and to some extent pine hops that lead this beautiful bouquet.

Taste - This one is full of flavor. The hops make a magnificent transition from nose to tongue bringing out a massive array of huge hop flavors without being too bitter or harsh and the sweetness from the malts is a perfect compliment.

Mouthfeel - This is a solid medium-bodied ale that is bitter but not punishingly so and just enough carbonation to keep you interested.

Drinkability - This is both big and quaffable at the same time. The balance is superb yet the hopheads will relish the flavors. This is a winner for sure.

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Photo of Indulgence
4.48/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This stuff was super fresh, absolutely killer... the only other IPA that is better is the Yulesmith. Absolutely wonderful pine, grapefruit aromas, crisp, bright, and sublime... color of burnt orange amber, clear... taste was some apples, ruby red grapefruit, dry fruity yeast esters... head retention in my Riedel Bordeaux glass is superb... alcohol is hidden very well. It has been over a year since I last tasted this one... and I'm loving it. It's rare when a beer impresses me even more the 2nd time.

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Photo of froghop
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a very clear amber-orange with a medium size off-white head, and good lacing.

smell of grapefruit hops, citrus, some pine, some caramel, and a little roastiness in the back.

taste is creamy, grapefruit, caramel, pine, and citrus, ends very bitter.

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Photo of arizcards
4.23/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber in late May at O'Shea Brewing in Laguna Niguel for $4.28.

Beer poured a crisp and clean copper with a nice white head that is leaving lacing behind. Nose is fresh piney hops. Taste initially was melon and pineapple somewhat balanced by a fair share of malts. Finish leaves resiny hops on the palate. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, brew is decently carbonated. Overall drinkability is good. Alcohol is well hidden. This is another very good FW brew. I look forward to trying more!

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Photo of jeffjeff1
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a pretty good IPA. It was certainly refreshing because I hadnt had any beer in a while.

Appearance- dark gold, good lacing

Smell- hoppy

Taste- hops, bitter aftertaste

Mouthfeel- medium bodied

Drinkability- pretty drinkable, had it at Firestone Grill in San Luis Obispo

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Photo of mikey711
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a trade from Davexisxrabid, so much thanks goes out to this great BA.

I poured from the bottle into a perfect pint glass. It is a beautiful gold with excellent tranparency and a very bid lacy head that balloons out the glass.

While waiting for the head to settle a bit I began to smell some great caramel and pine notes. There is some biscuity aromas as well and at the very end a hint of citrus.

The first sip provided some of that biscuit detected earlier with a very nice mellow pine note to follow it up. The malts and hops are very balance here.

There was some alcohol present in the mouthfeel, but it is hidden very well by the hops. A nice change of pace beer which I could enjoy a few of in a sitting.

This is my first ever Firestone Walker beer, and it was a treat. Again thanks goes out to Dave for this great extra I had been hoping to try.

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Photo of bargerking
3.92/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I have had this both on tap and bottle plenty of times but this review was a tap pint at the brewery taproom.

Appearance is a deep copper almost brown. Smell is a major burst of pine and hops. You dont even have to put the glass up to your face for this one. Smell suggests that this beer means business. Taste is a pretty tough with hops and definatly gets the taste buds jumping. Mouthful is almost harsh and begs to be swallowed. To me, the hops are way over powering and dominate from start to finish. I know alot of people suggest citrus and other hints but the piney/resiny malt seemed to overpower everything for me. Aftertaste lingers and almost leaves your throat dry. I am not much of a Hophead but if I were, this would be a daily drinker. Its still a awesone FW beer but not my favorite... too strong of a taste for me.

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Photo of spointon
4.6/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I poured this one from a 12oz brown bottle into a DFH stemmed goblet. mucho thanks to dgb3 for trading this one to me!

A= This ale poured a very clear orange color with some hints of gold around the edges. The slightly off-white head rose about 3/4" and then quickly settled to a 1/8" cap. Loads of carbonation release but that is surely aided by the nucleation site etched into the bottom of this nifty glass. A respectable amount of wispy lace clung to my glass.

S= Smelled of caramel and biscuity malts, pine and citrus hops (more citrus than pine though), and some spicy alcohol. Fairly simple really, but very nice.

T= As the smell indicated, this was a big and fairly balanced IPA, as IPAs go. The biscuit and caramel malt character seemed to blend seemlessly with the piney base hop bitterness and the citrus and floral hop flavors. This was not a collection of seperate notes but rather a symphony of flavor. The finish was dry and showed just enough alcohol to make things spicy and interesting but was in no way hot.

MF= On the heavier side of medium bodied with a full carbonation that stopped short of being too sharp. Really wonderful.

D= I thoroughly enjoyed this beer and have come to the conclusion that it hurts me Firestone Walker is not distributed locally for me. Very tasty, very drinkable, and the ABV stays deceptively hidden. Highly recommended!

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Photo of chicagobeerriot
4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at the Oregon Brewers Festival. Pours light copper with a faint wispy head. You get a whiff of floral hops, peach and some light caramel. The taste displays an underrated characteristic in the IPA universe: balance. Some citrus tang on the tip of the tongue along with a bit of pine blends seemlessly with the vanilla and peach sweetness from the malt. A second round of hop bitterness brings things to a satisfying conclusion. This is not a hop symphony, but it doesn't need to be. This is simply a very well executed IPA where more subtle flavors are allowed to create a coherent drinking experience. If this was available in Illinois it would join the ranks of my go-to IPAs.

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

Had this one the other day with my father. Poured a gold color with white head that faded quickly and left good lacing. Smelled of citrus/pine hops and light malt. Tasted pretty much the same. Smooth, but slightly bitter/dry finish. Could easily drink more of this.

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Photo of washburnkid
4.13/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Davis Graduate.

A: one finger frothy white head dissipated to a nice cap over a good looking dark amber. Tons of cascading lace.
S: grapefruit and pine hops to boot. These aromas are very loud! There's a hint of spice and sweet caramel.
T: similar to aroma but really pine heavy. These hops are fresh and quite nice. There's a bit of caramel malt sweetness to balance.
M: lighter body with medium carbonation and a good amount of residuals despite being a bit thin.
D: not the most complicated hop profile ever, but still good and terribly drinkable and refreshing!

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Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,246 ratings.