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.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,217 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,217
Hads: 5,891
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 8.02%
Wants: 435
Gots: 1,092 | FT: 12
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.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,217 | Hads: 5,891
Photo of mothman
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to kbutler1 for sharing this.

Pours 1/2 finger of off white head that fades down. Leaves a slight amount of sticky lace. Color is a slightly hazed golden orange.

Aroma: Tons of citrus fruit aromas. Grapefruit and tangerines. Fresh floral hops with a small amount of bready malts.

Taste: The citrus blends a lot more here with the bready malts. Lots of floral hops. Grapefruit flavor is big.

Mouthfeel: Very bitter, but refreshing. Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. Ends very sticky.

Overall, a solid ipa that is very drinkable. I think this compares a bit to sculpin with all the fruit flavors. I dig it. (633 characters)

Photo of Billolick
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle, no freshness info offered. Pours clear lighter almond amber, dark eggshell head, fairly thin, but tightly knit and long lasting, leaving ample low sheeting and expansive lacing. Pungent hop juice nose, fruity and full of pineapple goodness. Hop saturated IPA, American in style all the way. More pineapple, resiny grapefruit notes as well, hop lovers rejoice...agressivly hopped and thoroughly deliciously crafted. A nice new addition to the neighborhood (471 characters)

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.85/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - pours a hazy straw/amber. Fluffy two fingers of creamy, sticky head, lace everywhere.

Aroma - fresh grapefruit and pine, plenty of the essentials.

Taste - big crackery malts set the initial table. They tap into the sweeter side of the hops, juicy and citrusy but ultimately relegated to background detail as the bitterness quickly overpowers. Big, intense, a touch medicinal but it's in check. The swallow is dry, intense, and the bitterness clarifies on the finish. Whew, I could use some balance but the hops here are tasty and heavy-handed.

Mouthfeel - an element of slickness alongside some good crisp carbonation. Medium body.

Drinkability - I think this is one to have with a robust dish like some three alarm chili or some spicy barbecue. Much thanks to scribe594 for sending this my way. (812 characters)

Photo of timholio
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I thought this was a British beer I had not heard of yet when I ordered it...its a CA brew. Anyway I was completely fooled and it compares well to a Fullers ESB but is milder and no 'fruity' undertone. Lots of citrus,piney, lovely hops not overpowering.

The 7.5% is surprising I would have thought it was lower. I would drink this again, even as a session beer. (363 characters)

Photo of Mistofminn
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this at a recent tasting. Thanks kbutler1 for the chance to try this want.

Clear golden in color, with a light copper tint. Off-white cap sits on top with good retention and leaves some nice lacing.

The nose is very hoppy, with citrus and floral hops dominating, but very wet and sticky, dank if you will. Only the slightest malt backbone on this one.

The taste doesn't disappoint either. Wet, piney and resiny hops. A sticky bitterness, with a lingering aftertaste. Floral and citrus hops dominate, but strong piney and resiny hops also play a role. Complex and extremely tasty, excellent stuff.

About medium in body, with a sticky bitterness, and appropriate carbonation. Drinkability is great, what an easy drinking IPA. The alcohol is a lot higher than I would have guessed, as it's completely masked by the massive hop characters.

Overall, this is easily one of my top IPA's. I would gladly have this again, and am very thankful I got to try a very fresh bottle. Thanks Kevin! (990 characters)

Photo of IrieJackalope
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked a few 12oz bottles of this up a few days back, poured into a Sam Adams Boston Lager glass. Color is fantastic. A golden orange that has been filtered clear. Hoppiness is smelt from the get go, as can be expected from any IPA on today's market. The taste is quite hoppy as well; not as floral as some of the other IPAs or DIPAs out there right now, but extremely approachable for a brew that bills itself as "aggressive." Firestone Walker normally does a good job with their brews, and this is no exception. My only gripe is that the one dimesion-ality of many of today's IPAs is beginning to grow old. Complaints aside, definitely pick this one up if you get a chance. (675 characters)

Photo of GoApps
3.91/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber. bottling date was slightly less than 2 months before I drank it.

A little lighter in color than many IPAs and filitered clear, which I'm not a huge fan of but whatever. Looked fine I guess.

Hoppy nose, smelled almost like opening a packet of hop pellets. Pine and citrus with a hint of tropicalness, I guessed that it was dry hopped with Amarillo, which it is along with about 6 other hops.

Nose carried through to palate, not a whole lot of malt presence, just tasted like a big mouthful o hops. Ample bitterness. Med/heavy body
A 1-trick pony in that this beer is just hoppy hoppy hoppy but it's one trick is a very good one.
I'm torn between B+ and A-
Glad I tried it, not sure if I would buy it often considering it was maybe 5 or 6 bucks for only 22oz and how many equally great IPAs are 8-12 bucks for a 6 pack (72oz) (839 characters)

Photo of Jayli
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired this one from dgb3 so a big THANK YOU goes out to him!

A: This beer pours a crystal clear rich burnt orange color. A one inch of sudsy white head sits on top. Head retains moderately but leaves sheets of ringed lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is of floral and piney hops in the forefront, hint of a malt backbone, and then comes a pretty decent dose of grapefuit and tangerine.

T: Taste starts with a big floral bite in the forefront. Taste then has a touch of earthy hops but mostly a nice balanced pine burst. Finish is where the grapefruit really comes in and gives you a nice bitter finish. The malt character is balanced well throughout this beer.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, crisp at first with a bit of an oily finish to it.

D: Goes down easily, well balance, great representation of the style. I could definitely see this as a go to beer for me if they distributed out this way. (909 characters)

Photo of AgentZero
3.95/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to mjl21, a generous trader who threw this in as an extra (pretty sure it was him, got my boxes mixed up so somone correct me if I'm wrong).

A - Yellowish orange with some hints or ruby red, clear with a small head that faded quickly.

S - Piney hops, bit of grapefruit, malt backbone comes through fairly nicely, carmely. Slightly grassy smell.

T - Piney off the bat, fades nicely into some carmel malts and finishes quite resiny. Malt backbone is present all the way through, and picks up steam as you go along.

M - Actually would like it a little lighter and crisper, medium bodied, a bit creamy.

D - Pretty easy drinker, not sure could session this one though as predominately piney beers tend to get somewhat hard to do after a while. Solid IPA I wouldn't mind drinking again. (793 characters)

Photo of jrallen34
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I drank this from a 22oz bomber into my Orval glass.

The beer pours a clear medium fold with a finger of white head that fades quickly.

The aroma is medium starting off with some nice grapefruit bitter citrus notes. It is balanced with some nice hops that are not to strong and have a hint of pine.

The taste starts off a little sweet but then bring a nice amount of pine, not a ton but enough to make you pucker a little. Not a huge pine fan, but this is easy to drink.

The aftertaste is very chalky, sticks way to much.

Overall, this was ok, nothing special. (568 characters)

Photo of RedBrewer83
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aggressively poured into pint glass...

A: Pours a golden yellow with hints of ruby, very clear and a huge four finger thick creamy head. Falls in pockets leaving sticky webbed lacing, really hangs on though.

S: Huge fresh cut ruby red grapefruit with some sweet caramel malt and a hint of fresh cut grass. Big nose, but not as complex as some...

T: Again, very ripe ruby red grapefruit, a little tangerine and some pine resin as well. Not overly complex but as a northwest style IPA it is very solid. The bitter hops really linger in the finish.

M: Light medium body and very crisp carbonation but not over the top. Dry bitter hop finish leaves you thirsting for more.

D: For 7.5% this is extremely drinkable and the lightness makes it go down super easy! Very nice, can see why it gets the accolades it does. (815 characters)

Photo of Daniellobo
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Surprising IPA, hefty, well rounded, bordering on a DIPA and rather memorable.

Presentation: 12 oz bottle. Old fashion English design over the image of a full pint and the name of the brew surrounded by a bear and a lion (CA and England?). Shows Alc. by Vol. (7.5%). Poured into a pint shaker glass.

A - Deep amber to amber brown pour. Generous head, fine retention and lacing.

S - Assertive hoppy aroma. Grapefruit, floral tones, malty sweetness.

T - Very rich taste, almost walking away from IPA into DIPA territory. Rich malty base, sweetness coated with a hoppy profile. Citrus notes predominate, some pine over the grapefruit and orange peel, before it goes back to the rich malt base.

M - Medium... to full body almost. Sense of stickiness with nice carbonation.

D - Hmmm, really nice. A bit much for an IPA, which maybe is why I'm liking it quite a bit. Out of style even? Sipper borderline.

Notes: Hmmm, I look forward to revisit this one. It was a single bottle and felt too good to let it go that easily. Nice surprise. (1,036 characters)

Photo of jlindros
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've been waiting to try this one for a while, and finally got it thanks to a great trader womencantsail.

A: Pours into my giant oversized snifter with a light 1/2 finger head covering of nice fluffy head that fades slowly. It's a very clear pale orange color.

N: A very nice nose. Lots of fresh hop aromas, some fresh wet hops, chewy hops, some pine, a little citrus, and after that comes some nice light malt aromas.

T: A nice chewy bitter hop taste to start. Some pine and a little citrus. The piny flavors seem to increase as it goes. A little fresh wet hop earthy hops, but not much. Some nice lightly sweet malt flavors. A great chewy hop and some juicy hops. A hint of vanilla. Reminds me a lot of two headed.

M: Decent body but a little lighter, good carbonation.

F: Somewhat bitter and gets a little more bitter on the finish. Some pale bitterness and spicy hops. A little juicy hop flavor and some sweet juices lingering. Some malts stick with it too. The bitterness lingers for a long time. This is easily becoming one of my fav IPAs. I'm glad I got a 6-pack, and I'm thinking about putting this into my regular trading schedule. Thanks a ton Andrew. (1,168 characters)

Photo of OaktownFunk
4.37/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type: 12 oz. bottle poured into pint glass

A: Beautiful honey/copper beer poured with fluffy 1" white head which quickly dissipated. Nice amount of tiny bubbles and generous lacing on sides of glass.

S: HUGE citrus aroma. Orange, grapefruit...etc. Nice floral scent mingles well with the citrus.

T: Initial hop sting on the tip of the tongue with firm yet not intrusive bitterness to finish. Moderate to dry with very little malt sweetness. I don't taste any of the alcohol at all.

M: Feels dry on my palette. Very little lingering after taste. Carbonation level is moderate to high and quite refreshing for an IPA.

D: I could drink multiple pints of this one. I really love the aroma and the citrus flavor is refreshing despite the 7.5% abv.

Overall: This is one of my favorite IPA's and luckily it is easy enough to find here in the Bay Area. I have also had this on tap at several local pubs and it always satisfies. Another gem from Firestone Walker.

Cheers! (977 characters)

Photo of unHipHopHead
4.44/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a honey/copper color with a nice one finger head.

S: Nice sweet grapefruit aroma, floral and citrus.

T: Nice and crisp, full bodied with a great hop kick and a long lasting lingering hop aftertaste. There is a nice malt backbone that rounds this beer out but it doesn't get it the way of the delicious hops.

M: coats the mouth nicely. moderate carbonation to make the hops sparkle.

D: at 7.5% one bomber of this guy and you'll be set... for a while. (462 characters)

Photo of OlieIPA
3.66/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Decided to pick up a six pack after trying this a few times on tap at a couple of local establishments. Poured into a Stella Artois glass at roughly 50 degrees.

A: A nice crisp golden body with a white fluffy head. The lacing is pretty extreme as well...engulfing the glass after each huge gulp.

S: The hop character is less floral/estery, but more bitter and straight forward...if that makes sense. Kind of reminds me of a centennial strain, or something similar to it. The malt aroma has a slightly corn-like character to it as well.

T: A very well balanced IPA...a slight sweet note seems to hit at the same time as the hops do; a beautiful and delicate balance between hop bitterness and malt flavor.

M: Medium body with mild carbonation and slight dry finish.

D: One those brews you'd shard with a non-craft drinker.

Overall: Could have more a punch, but the novelty of the beer is it's ability to hit the mediocre extremely well. A try it beer. Cheers! (965 characters)

Photo of jerlleutz
5/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

To top it all off, I got a great pour, in a clean glass, and in a kick ass restaurant.

The color and consistency were perfect, golden and attractive. Nothing about it looked weak. It owned the glass.

Same story with smell and taste, which are more or less the same thing in my book. Hoppy and wonderfully bitter, the tastes were complex, pronounced and left nothing to be desired. Every tastebud and nosebud were hit, slain, in fact.

MF: fully present, ideal carbonation, perfect.

Granted, IPAs with a profile like this one aren't for everyone. Correction, they ARE for everyone that visit this site or even gives a hoot. In light of that, I could drink this one all week.

All in all, nothing was wrong with this one, and I loved it. Delicious. (750 characters)

Photo of Sammy
3.87/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Orange aroma, thought it was Amarillo, rather commercial description: it was Simcoe bittering hops; Centennial, Cascade and Tomahawk for flavoring; aroma hops are described as a "blend of C's."

Orangey bubbly Caesar head. Hoppy for what I thought would be a British style IPA, after all the name. Very drinkable, and citrus flavour. (333 characters)

Photo of pugpresley
4.89/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I love this beer. It's brewed a 1/2 hour from my home.
If I ever win the lottery, I'm going to pay to bathe in it. It's become from favorite IPA. My reviews aren't scientific, I just know what I like. And I like this stuff. Good job Firestone, excellent. (254 characters)

Photo of NorCalYeti
4.14/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

taste- sweet hoppy character, bitter hops in the finish

color- honey-copper

clarity- clear

smell- very fragrant, grapefruit, mandarins, pine, candy

body- light weight, thirst-quenching, slight bitterness in the finish, astringent, short finish, hoppy bite at the front of the tongue

appearance- clear, white, candy-foam head, thin lace, slight carbonation

overall impression- what it lacks in character, it makes up for in aroma and drinkability

notes and comments- good tasting ipa although very light in body and intensity and not the way i prefer this style. for the price, i want a heavier more complex beer.

glassware: pint

song: cold rain and snow - 6/14/91 (672 characters)

Photo of BigBigPickle
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The only full pint of the day at Rattle n' Hum.

A: Golden copper - almost a clear, deep amber. Moderate head with no staying power. Good lacing.

S: Grapefruit and orange. Very nice floral hop bouquet.

T: Smooth - good hop balance with malt backbone. Brown sugar sweet.

M: Good bruise from hops with a nice malty, brown sugar sweetness on the lips.

D: Very drinkable sweetness with a bruising hop component make for a wonderful combination! I really like this beer. (470 characters)

Photo of wagenvolks
4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Many thanks to my friend Kyle who brought me a 12oz. bottle of this from Cali.

Pours a hazy apricot-orange hue with a mottled cap of khaki foam. Decent retention and thick lacing. Amazingly fragrant aroma, bursting with tropical fruit (pineapple, banana, mango) and citrus hops. Sweet background of caramel and pale malts provides a perfect balance to all that hoppiness.

Pine sap, grapefruit zest, and minty herbal notes coat the back and sides of the tongue with a big bitterness that lingers on into the finish. Tropical fruit cocktail and breaded malt notes tries their best to balance, but the highlight here is all hops (as it should be). Body feels slightly thin and a bit 'empty' for an IPA, but a good carbonation level dries the back of the palate. Union Jack finishes crisp and clean, and I can easily see myself having a few more of these in one sitting. Sure, there are better IPA's out there, but Firestone Walker's version does a nice job. (956 characters)

Photo of DoesntMatter46
4.62/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear pale straw color with a crisp white, two finger head that clung to the pint glass.

Gloriously piney, grapefruit-hop happiness. Very pungent, the smell hit me as soon as the cap came off. Must of have been dry hopped in obscenely amazing quantities of hops. Amazing aroma.

Not very balanced, and I love it. This is a showcase for American hop varieties. Tropical fruit, mango and pineapple are very present. A lingering grapefruit aftertaste.

Super smooth, even feel, not syrupy at all. It's hard to give a perfect 5 on mouthfeel, something about a beer's carbonation or texture would really have to jump out and grab you in order to get a 5 here.

Wow, this does not seem like a 7.5% beer, goes down easy, and can finish a pint in no time, but I want to savor every last drop of this beer.

A very special beer, one that I will buy with great regularity, and keep a vigilant look out for the release of Double Jack or any other limited release from Firestone Walker.

This beer hits everything I look for in an IPA, borderline DIPA. (1,054 characters)

Photo of brendan13
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Clear orange hued golden colour with 2cm white head that falls fairly fast. Plenty lacing.
S - Piney, citrus fruit & floral hop notes with a light toasted bread malt touch.
T - Very nice citrus fruit, piney taste balanced by a bit of toasted bread malt.
M - Lighter side of medium bodied. Slightly sticky with a lingering bitterness.
D - A very nice IPA. Something I'd drink often. (385 characters)

Photo of kaseydad
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I finally picked this up after passing it by numerous times.

Pint glass pour and I am met with a copper ale with a nice white head and major lacing throughout the session.

Aroma consists of grapefruit goodness, citrus fruits and a malty undertone.

The taste is what I expect an American IPA to taste like. Hoppy with a nice malty backbone and a lingering bitterness on the tongue. There is an orange like "squirt" after the swallow. Excellent work!

At 7.5% this is much too easy to consume as multiples are easily attainable.

Overall I wasn't expecting too much from this beer and was completely blown away by the it. I am not a huge fan of the FW beers, but this one is slowly bringing me back around for another round. This is definitely my go-to beer when all else fails! (779 characters)

Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,217 ratings.