John John Juniper | Rogue Ales

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John John JuniperJohn John Juniper

Brewed by:
Rogue Ales
Oregon, United States

Style: Herbed / Spiced Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Juniper Pale Ale aged in Spruce Gin Barrels.

11 Ingredients:
Harrington, Crystal, Triumph, C-15 & Rogue Micro Barley Farm Dare™ malts.
Styrian, Golding, Amarillo & Rogue Hopyard Willamette hops.Juniper
Berries Pacman Yeast & Free Range Coastal Water.

34 IBU
77 AA
3.2º Lovibond

Added by Parrotbeak on 04-24-2010

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 275 |  Reviews: 162
Photo of Sammy
3.62/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

yellow body with a Fancy white head. Some carbonation. Spruce confers in aromas.Not a bad drinker, like the spruce and gin was OK. Then again, nothing special particularly the juniper taste.Low carbonation.A little spicey. Thanks for sending Presario.

 251 characters

Photo of acurtis
3.16/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

John John Ale 22oz bomber shared with Jim last night. Very nice appearance, cloudy orange/copper color with bubbly white head. Interesting floral aroma that must be the juniper berries. Taste is pleasant, spicy with some hops and pine. I was worried when I saw that it was aged in gin barrels but the gin flavor is a mild under taste that didn't bother me. Wasn't bad but nothing I would have again.

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Photo of jaydoc
3.25/5  rDev -10%

Photo of GRG1313
3.16/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Juniper pale ale aged in Spruce Gin barrels. Pours a clear orange amber with a nice, firm and thick white head. Nice looking.

Lightly assertive nose, less than expected. Light green fruit character; no juniper or spruce really noticeable in the nose.

Mouthfeel is rich and a bit creamy, much nicer than most Rogues.

Flavors are subtle herbaceous character, hints of white pepper, green pepper, celery and salt, with a herb/spice finish. Hint of juniper and spruce in the flavors and a decent "green" bitter finish.

An elegant "herbaceous" drink. Pleasant. Likely very good with most food profiles.

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Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of djrn2
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of Knapp85
3.47/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was a little better than the regular Juniper Ale. The pour was orange and had some yellow highlights. The head was thin and didn't lace too much. The smell was a bit more herbal. The taste had subtle flavors of spruce and gin. Still not enough flavor for me to love this beer though. The mouthfeel wasn't much different it was medium bodied. Overall just a touch better than the original, not all in all neither make me wanna run back to the store for more.

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Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -3%

Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of BEERchitect
3.45/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Very tough is it to review the Juniper Pale as an American Pale Ale as it is much more English with the balance of sweeter malts, fruitier yeast, and more sublte earthy hops - an actually in balance, as not to showcase the hops as American Pales can. Having said that, we'll see if the lacking pine character of the Juniper Pale Ale can be compensated in this Spruce/Gin aged version...

The beer pour a copper-orange color with a light and stagnant head that retains/laces averagely... just a still and lifeless look despite the creamy-liquid head. Moderate haze shows a rusty glow.

Aromas of malt dominate with a caramel and biscuit scent. Rising and balancing notes of grasses, pine, and berries help with balance just before a thin boozy note follows.

Very sweet flavors ensue with the caramels, biscuit, and very sweet barley taste. The juniper berries give a soft fruity (mostly herbal) pine taste. But the gin begins to take hold with an bold but thin minty-piney taste. Hops take a backseat to the fruits, maybe the first flaw of the beer and an opportunity missed as this beer falls too sweet and one-dimensional in comparison to other Pale Ales- English or American.

The body is rich, sweet, and creamy- maybe too so. The still carbonation leads to a weighted beer that never dries out and leads to difficulty in drinking when the beer warms.

I appreciate the subtle nuances of the juniper, spruce, and gin in this beer but these are not bold enough. Part of the problem is the sweet/heavy texture that lacks dryness or crispness- these characteristics are why gin beverages are so great. Opportunity lost here.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.55/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A new Rogue bomber 'round these parts - don't mind if I do...what the hell? 3 bucks more than the typical offering? Ah, spirit barrel aged, I see now, sort of...

This beer pours a hazy pale straw hue, with two fingers of thin puffy white head, which leaves some sparse webbed lace around the glass as it recedes. Its smells of biscuity barley grain, lightly resinous, earthy botanicals, and green forest aromas. The taste is bready, biscuity malt, astringent spruce needles, some buttery, whiskey-like oakiness, and leafy, weedy hops. The carbonation is on the low side, the body a bit light, but smooth, and it finishes dry, earthy, mossy, and root-like, with some mild warming alcohol.

Not being a huge fan of gin, it was nice to see that the gin barrel didn't have an overpowering effect on the base pale ale. The result is an approachable herb-influenced beer, interesting in its conception, but overall, still a bit too much like consuming forest undergrowth for me to want another.

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Photo of zestar
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of mothman
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Huge off white head. Golden orange color.

Lots of berries and gin. Very pine needle like. Earthy and green. Light bitterness. Bready malts.

Very unique beer. Very surprised by this one.

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Photo of nickfl
3.9/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours with one finger of white foam on top of a somewhat cloudy, golden-copper colored body. The foam settles fairly quickly but leaves a nice pattern of lace.

S - Bready aromas of malt with some light toffee and herbal notes in the background. The juniper character may be a bit more peppery, with a hint of woodiness, but otherwise, it is quite similar to the standard Juniper pale ale.

T - Bready crusts and some honey malt flavor up front with a hint of spicy hop character. Peppery notes of clove and juniper appear in the middle along with a renewed malt richness. Finishes with a spicy note of coriander and clove as well as a little woody juniper which is complimented by a relatively light hop bitterness. Some honey malt flavor lingers on the palate along with a light herbal note, but the aftertaste fades fairly quickly.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - This beer is quite drinkable with a light herbal flavor and a well balanced malt richness that is quite similar to the standard version of Rogue's juniper pale ale. Much like the barrel aged dead guy, I don't think that this beer benefited greatly from its barrel aging. The prospect of Juniper pale ale aged in Gin barrels sounded extremely appealing, but the beer is not as boldly flavored as expected it to be. The herbal character is more complex than it is in the non barrel aged version of the beer, but the juniper seems relatively subdued with a ghostly woody character the only contribution that I can confidently trace to the barrel aging. I am glad I gave this beer a try, and some people might find more to like in it than I did, but in the end it didn't live up to my expectations.

 1,696 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.78/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 9/10/2010 at Doherty's East Ave Irish Pub, in Pawtucket, RI, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep gold color, with a short white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, floral hops, spices and some citrus.

T: The taste starts with a crisp bite of hops bitterness that isn't over-powering. Then some spice comes in along with some mildly sweet flavors of citrus and caramel. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, this is a decent beer to drink for a while if you're into the juniper flavor.

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Photo of mactrail
3.45/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Light bodied and fairly crisp. Both wood and the juniper come forward, but don't dominate the scene. Pleasant sharp mouthfeel with modest carbonation. Hoppy twang is quite nice, with a distinct bitter aftertaste. The woodiness also lingers long. Each sip, however, renews the sharp hoppy flavors and herbal taste. Some aromas of gin and tonic.

Pint glass at Pizza Port OB in San Diego. Pleasant quaff. A different kind of barrel flavor with definite tastes of the sawmill.

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Photo of smcolw
4.18/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very hazy gold color. Solid start to the head; settles slowly leaving spotty, but chunky lace on the glass.

Surprisingly mild aroma--I cannot detect any spruce or juniper berries. Initially, it reminds me of a cream ale. Ah, on the second whiff, I do get some pine and some floral hop. Still cream-ish though.

Prickly taste right on the initial sip. There's a lot of Pale Ale in this, which I think makes it a better-than-average spiced beer. All too often brewers will overemphasize the adjunct; this is far more subtle. As a pale ale it is fairly traditional, but the extra spices provide some real creativity to the brew. I find it has a strong lemon flavor with a white pepper spice. There's a hoppy black pepper touch as well. In a word--complex. Each time I sip this I get new flavor profile. Here's a beer that holds my interest throughout.

One thing I've noticed, if the review gets wordy, it deserves a superior score. Here's one to seek out for something different yet not extreme in any way.

 1,006 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.66/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

16 ounce pint - $7.00 at Taco Mac in Woodstock, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a lightly hazed, caramel-colored body with a scant coating of white fizz.

Smell: Near vacant nose, sadly. Allowed to warm, the taste eventually grows a bit, but the nose, well, the nose is still just missing. At its height, it's very mild, very meek notes of pale malts, juniper berries, and citrus.

Taste: Lightly sweet opening of pale malts with some moderate biscuit accents to it and a touch of caramel. Just as the base JPA was a bit muted in its juniper character, so is this in its gin character. Maybe it simple needs a moment to warm up. Which is fine. Take your time, John John Juniper, we've got all the time in the world. Given some minutes to awaken, light tastes of juniper berry and citrus peelings begin to emerge as well as some slight floral hints. Modest bitterness is felt. Finishes dry and curiously herbaceous.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Subtle and subdued, though pleasant enough for a pint. While not a leap forward it is certainly a step up from the unbearable inaugural beer from the John John set. But this gives me hope for the rest of the series. I'm ready for more. I feel ready!! What's next?

 1,236 characters

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"I never drink anything stronger than gin before breakfast."

--W.C. Fields

Much closer to apricot orange than lemon yellow. Multiple rush hour streams of bubbles have created a three finger crown of ivory colored foam that has plenty of interesting topography. Artistic squiggles and splotches of lace please the eye.

This version of John John Ale is essentially Juniper Pale Ale that has been aged in Rogue Spruce Gin barrels. And it smells like it. The nose is a pleasing combination of fruit, pine boughs and floral-spicy gin.

There is more juniper and gin character in this beer than in the base beer. Interestingly enough, Juniper Pale has an ABV of 5.3%, while this spirit barrel-aged beer has an ABV of 5.2%. In any case, it isn't boozy in the least.

My first impression was... meh. Second, third and fourth impressions are progressively more favorable. Gin is probably my least favorite liquor. Gin-flavored beer, when done right, isn't too bad once your taste buds become used to the idea. Drinkability over the course of 22 ounces is another matter.

The malts taste mostly pale, even though crystal and several others are present. The hops (Sterling, Amarillo, Willamette) add a fruitiness and a surprisingly tight bitter bite. The flavor spotlight is dominated, however, by juniper berries and evergreen. It's all balanced pretty damn well.

The mouthfeel is no bigger than light-medium and the bubbles are too sharp-edged and tongue tingly. Neither is a deal-breaker, but both are unusual for this brewery. Some improvement with time and warming allow a slight bump in score.

John John Ale (Spruce Gin Barrel Aged) is a semi-successful experiment if you have a thing for herbed/spiced beer. Rogue pulled it off better than most, but $8.99 for the bomber is not worth a second purchase.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.01/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It is still *$#%ing snowing (!) and I am becoming more and more anxious to leave the house, but more and more reluctant to do so. My only recourse is to hit my bomber stash and hard!

From the bottle: "Rogue Brewmaster and Rogue Master Distiller have joined forces to create John John Ale. They have taken Juniper Pale Ale and aged it in Rogue Spruce Gin Barrels."

I cannot tell you how anxious I am to try this. My former college classmate and current drinking buddy, David Atkinson, and I "discovered" the entire Rogue spirits lineup at Kramerbooks & Afterwords in DC back in August and tippled our way through the night as a result. I am still not a big liquor guy as I know that I will end up in the grave if I switch to hard liquor, but that does not mean that I do not appreciate spirits. And I love beer, as if that needed to be stated.

I got a finger of rocky, off-white head with limited retention from the pour. Color was a very cloudy orangish-amber/yellow. Nose smelled like wintergreen, like a snowy forest with pine trees in abundance. I had a Battle of the Bulge vet in last year and he said that when the heavy artillery began toppling trees in the Ardennes Forest, the scent of pine put him off of Christmas trees for life. I had no such experience and love the scent of pine, but no love for celebrating Christmas, so no trees in my house. It was hard to discern between the wood of the barrels and the minty smell of juniper, but either way, I was beginning to champ at the bit to get some on my tongue. It was initially cool and minty with a medium presence on the tongue, which was enjoyable. The finish, however, gave off an intense dill flavor which one previous reviewer referred to as "pickle-like". I have to agree there, m'man. This was definitely NOT the sum of its parts. It was not an outright fail, but nor was it a repeater, if you catch my (snow) drift.

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Photo of mikesgroove
1.7/5  rDev -52.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Long day today. Nice long session at Barleys followed by a big tasting back at the house,. What more could anyone ask for? Consumed on 07/05/2010.

What a mistake. Very seldom do I ever start off that way, but what a mistake. This one was going nowhere fast for me. The pour looked like seltzer water. Hazy lime colored with no head and tons of carbonation.

No aroma, nothing, maybe light lime? Hard to tell I let this sit for 15 minutes and still could not pick up anything out of it. Took the first sip and wondered allowed what had happened? It just seems that it was not meant to be here. No flavor. Light lime, and that's stretching it, maybe an air
freshener like quality but what happened here? Very carbonated, very light and very unmemorable.

Overall one of the worst I have had in a long time, will not be looking for this one again anytime soon.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.83/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at Cobbletsone's in York last night for my birthday. The ale was served in a standard pint.

A - A deep golden w/ mild haziness and the beer was poured with no room for a head and the glass was streaked with dried soap stains -I requested another glass and was given a fresh beer which had a proper head and appeared carbonated which the first one had not. The cap is approx 3/4 inch light tan w/ a fine bead. The lace clings moderately well in rings on the glass.

S - The smell is slightly twiggy with notes of woody hops and the aroma has mild fruity yeast esters. The more I sniff the more juniper berry aroma I get with a light grapefruit accent in the background from the hops w/ light lemon and an oaky hint from the gin barrel

M - The feel has moderate carbonation and bitterness with a slight sweetness and light spiciness, the texture is clean overall and is mildly astringent with a dry finish

T - A taste hat is crisp and slightly fruit oriented with the juniper berry flavor pretty high in the ale w/ bitterness noticeable, but moderate in the taste overall. The hops give a pleasant orange rind taste and add to the wood flavor of the gin barrel. The actual gin flavor seems to come forward in the middle as it warms slightly and adds herbal mild woody and brings out more of the aromatic juniper qualities, but in an unobtrusive way. The taste of gin essence is there as the pale finishes with a mild sweet malt flavor

D - I was pretty happy with this overall, the flavor of alcohol makes it seem stronger than 5.2% which is what was listed on the tap menu. The pale is very drinkable and refreshing for a first pint, I would order this again if I see it -an interesting concept for a spiced pale ale.

 1,737 characters

Photo of mdfb79
2.39/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a pint glass.
a - Pours a golden-amber color with one finger of off white head with nice rentention and lacing. Light carbonation evident.
s - Smells lightly of floral hops and citrus hops mostly. Not getting much pine/Juniper.
t - The pine and juniper really comes out in the taste. Not much else here and not a fan of this taste at all.
m - Light to medium body and low carbonation.
d - I was not a fan of this beer at all. I didn't think there was much to the smell, but the gni really came out in the taste, which was unfortunate. Would not buy again.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.58/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The pour is an orange-copper sort of color with a thin layer of white foam (though fizz might be more appropriate).

S: Wow, I actually got some juniper notes on this, which I never did from the Juniper Pale Ale. There's a mild spice character that you might associate with gin, as well as plenty of floral and citrus notes.

T: A light sour lemon sort of flavor along with plenty of wood and herbs. The juniper does come through, as do some floral notes, and there is a gin flavor to this beer, which I enjoy.

M: The body is medium, maybe a little thin, with a fairly lively carbonation that pricks the tongue.

D: Normally I'm not a big Rogue fan, but I do enjoy gin, so I wanted to try this. It was actually pretty nice, but not really worth what they are asking for it.

 777 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
3.28/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Gin barrel-aged beer? I'm up fer it! It pours a clear golden straw topped by a thick white froth. The nose comprises wet hay, spruce tips, pine sap, and floral hops. The taste holds notes of juniper berries and twigs, pine sap, grass, and a mild bitterness. Honestly, it seemed like some cheap gin was watered down and had hops added to it. And I wasn't all that impressed with it. The body is a light medium, with moderate carbonation and a dry finish, leading to a lingering of the taste for a bit too much time. An interesting brew, but, in my opinion, not all that great of one.

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John John Juniper from Rogue Ales
3.61 out of 5 based on 275 ratings.
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