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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Reviews: 162 | Ratings: 275
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.85/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - a cloudy golden yellow, huge billows of foam halts the pour abruptly. Barely escaping a foam-over, this white rock of a foam cap slowly nestles back down into the glass, leaving just some stray dots and sprigs of lace behind. Only patience will get this first glass filled...pretty decent looking beer despite the delay.

Aroma - has a spicy, pungent sniff. Not sure what to attribute that to, but after some setup, it goes grainy with a touch of citrus color. Slowly pushing more beer into the glass as the cap settles, I begin to get some nice citrusy whiffs.

Taste - decent bready, biscuity base to the ale. The hops and juniper influence are likely overlapping in effect, but what I'm getting is some orange and light pine flavor, good restraint and balance on both. Some mild abv warmth going down, not something I'd expect from this lighter abv entry. Some resonant kind of bitterness on the aftertaste, which may be the juniper. I do pick up gin notes here; to this point I considered gin to be rather hot and tasteless, but this beer helps identify the flavor that is gin. Educational beer, hell yeah! Dry finish, gin notes lingering.

Mouthfeel - very bubbly, any pour from the bottle just creates a mountain of foam the entire way through. Fluffy and easy drinking body.

Drinkability - leave it to a beer to open my eyes to gin. I won't be hopping onto ginadvocate any time soon, but I enjoyed the beer and would have it again, and would absolutely consider it as a fun component of a pale ale / herb / spice beer tasting.

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Photo of Number45forever
3.85/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer surprised me, in a good way.

It pops loudly, seems bottle conditioned. Pours a bright yellow with a slight orange hue. Big, fluffy white head dissapates to a 1/2 finger pretty quickly.

Smells great, very piney, huge juniper (gin) notes. Smells like summer in a glass, I just love it.

Taste is somewhat more muted than the smell. Just a nice, clean pale ale with a good gin-like aftertaste. Very pleasant.

Mouthfeel, as others have noted, is extremelly dry and bright thanks to heavy carbonation. So, so drinkable. Almost explodes on the palette. Summer!

This is a really, really good beer. I'd drink this all the time, it's so damn refreshing. Give this a chance!

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.93/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a hazy golden orange, with a remarkable white 4-finger froth for a head. It takes a few minutes for the head to settle into a thick, sticky lacing.

Smell - Sour berry is the dominant aroma, and I also detect a little straw. That's about it.

Taste - Wow! An almost overwhelming berry sourness bites at the tongue then mellows out to a sweet note. Also a touch touch of spiciness. A bit of citrus bitterness comes in at the end and rides out into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Nice dry, medium body, and the carbonation is almost champagne-like. Really pops in the mouth.

Overall - This is a unique beer, and I dig that. The barrel aging takes the Juniper Pale Ale to another level, more so than the whiskey does for Dead Guy in the other John John varietal.

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Photo of Kornoms
2.99/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It has a golden-yellow, relatively opaque appearance. Surprisingly for a spiced beer, there is very little smell, with only a faint hint of juniper and hops. A fairly uncomplicated pale ale with a mild juniper taste that gives it a little it a of a rough feel.

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Photo of mrfrancis
3.41/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy amber-tinged gold with a compact, clinging white mousse.

S: Surprisingly weak in the aroma department, at least when compared to Rogue's other barrel-aged beers. Mild scents of spruce, juniper, caramel, and vanilla are all I could detect.

T: A rich, sweet entry gives way to notes of spruce, caramel, toffee, juniper berries, cream, vanilla bean, and toasted coconut. The finish is smooth and shorter than one would expect with juniper, spruce, and caramel flavors being most pronounced.

M: Medium-bodied and somewhat syrupy with mild, unobtrusive carbonation. Very drinkable, but also somewhat nondescript.

O: This is a decent barrel-aged pale ale, but there is something missing here. I was expecting a heavy gin flavor, but did not get it at all. A good effort, but somewhat lacking in my book.

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Photo of diamondc
3.48/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pale golden, hazy. Some moderate lacing and head.

S: Hard liquor aroma, lavender, and a bleach scent in there. Weird.

T: Piney, honey, woodsy. Kind of harsh. A bit salty, even. I kind of like it, even though I'm not a hard liquor person.

M: Almost like chewing on wood, not for the weak or beginning beer drinker.

O: A cool experiment in weird flavors due to the juniper berries and barrel aging. Worth a shot.

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Photo of marvin213
2.26/5  rDev -37.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Looks pretty good in terms of color--nice orange hue--and some sudsy (but not frothy) sides. Looks maybe a little thin. Smell is scary. I do get juniper and gin...and spruce pine. I get, though, a solvency. Like thinking of gin days of yore, I tend to grimace upon each whiff.

Astringent. It's crazy, and I like crazy. But it's not too tasty. The feel is the worst--like spiked Sprite. Each smell becomes menacing. Am I gin-biased? If you are, I don't recommend this one. There's a tingle, but then there's potent chemical acidifying with destruction your oro-nasal passage. I feel like I could light it on fire. We ask for this crazy shit, and we got it. This is why there's more of a return to the basics in my near future.

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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 Cyberkedi
3.42/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy amber with a fairly thick and fine-bubbled ivory head. Malty aroma has a firm honey tone but is not overly sweet. Flavor, though, is best of all - malty and rather hoppy with a decided juniper note and a sweet fruity hint. Smooth texture has average body and just a little bit of fizz. Overall, pleasant and tasty, if not outstanding.

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
3.97/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In the case of this particular barrel aged beer, one might need to have some level of appreciation of the liquor that was previous aged in the barrel. Since I love the occasional gin & tonic, I was able to appreciate this beer.

Serve on tap on 11/11/11 on Beer Geeks in Highland, IN, this beer was served with a slight head in a majestic golden color. The piney aroma is an attention getter as it certainly smells like autumn. Mouthfeel was smooth with a mild but appropriate level of carbonation. The ale flavor melted perfectly into the sournessness of gin. It was as though somebody had placed a gin & tonic in my beer. The mild sour aftertaste tickled the side of the tongue leaving remnants of the taste.

With a 5% ABV, this is very drinkable but certainly not for everybody. Gin drinkers will be more appreciative.

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Photo of OleJohnnieAle
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a cloudy golden straw with a finger white head that has decent retention. Big sheets of lacing.

S - herbal hops, fruity lavender scent

T - A sweet berry flavor followed but a spicy floral bite with a hint of vanilla. Oaky flavor comes through at the end.

M - Medium creamy body and smooth.

O- Has a unique berry flavor, good spiced beer.

Serving type: bottle into perfect pint 8.991pt6oz

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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 harrymel
2.31/5  rDev -36%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Bottled: unk

A: Golden with a finger of off-white head which falls nearly immediately to a sheet of the same. Rings of lace. Near excellent clarity.
S: wow. gin. weed. gin. really have nothing else to say here. Seriously, the only other beer I've smelled with this much weed was devil dancer.
T: Flavor is much more subtle. Pale malts, some bitter hops, some juniper. Plenty of onion and cucumber flavors. Weird, not really good. Almost has a dill pickle flavor on the finish. Fail.
M: Medium bodied with moderately hi carb.
O: Can't think of a reason to buy this again.

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Photo of goblue3509
3.71/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy yellowish orange color with a two finger frothy head which leaves a small amount of lace on the glass. The aroma is of junipers and malt. The taste starts with a juniper and pale malt taste but gives way to a slight spruce flavor. The end of the beer has a gin taste to it from the barrels. The mouthfeel is moderately carbonated. Overall as the beer went on I began to enjoy it more and more. The taste was intersting and had just enough variety to keep me interested. I would for sure pick this up again.

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Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.17/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I've been debating whether or not to try this beer for a few weeks but my buddy and I finally gave in since I'm a Pale ale guy and he loves gin.

The beer pours a hazy opaque cloudy amber color. The head is not great but it is appropriate for the style.

The aroma is very oily and meaty. I feel the gin vats are producing some strange smells (cheese) that don't mesh perfectly with the beer. It sort of burns. More than the typical pale ale hides behind the juniper. I smell pine and spicy hops. I also pick up in citric oils, pepper, tree bark and licorice. It reminds me of Bombay Sapphire Gin.

I have gin breath now. The taste is medicinal and minty. The hops are light and vegetal. The malts are good and substantial but totally overpowered.

The mouthfeel is light to medium. The malts get lost behind the juniper the hops come out strong. The finish is flavorful and not to bitter.

This is an interesting idea and I'm glad I tried it but it is entirely undrinkable and I wish I could just drink the same beer but not brewed in gin barrels.

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Photo of avalon07
4.13/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an orange color and a cloudy consistency. Some sediment. There was a big, fluffy, long-lasting head. Pretty good lacing.

S: A sharp, herbal smell (the juniper), and some malt.

T: Tasted of juniper, first and foremost, with a malty backbone and slight amount of yeast. The juniper is dominant and somewhat medicinal, but overall the flavor is enjoyable.

M: A well carbonated beer with a dry, somewhat bitter finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This is an unusual and somehow drinkable beer. It's not something I would drink on a regular basis, but it is well made.

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Photo of July2Nov
3.73/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Golden orange-yellow color with a frothy lacing.

Smell: Lighter in smell with a touch of juniper.

Taste & Mouthfeel: The Juniper hits you in the face right away, along with some acidity and carbonation. Akin to ginger, so much that it taste just like a ginger beer. Smooth all around beer. Slightly dry finish. Taste like it would have more ABV than the 5.20%.

Overall: Very pleased with this Rouge offering, but I love Gin as well and this has that quality to it with the addition of Juniper berries and what seems to be a lemon zest, bitter orange peel and a small bit of licorice in it. Pretty good!

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Photo of Stinkypuss
2.96/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Rogue John John Juniper

Pours a pale, light yellow color with a soapy head and some lace. Aroma of barrel, wet wood, vegetation, and spruce. In the taste, mild tannins on a very bland body reminiscent of crystal malts and some herbal elements. Hint of a Gin like bite and then washes to nothing. Light bodied, soft carbonation, and a semi clean finish. Overall, an interesting, delicate ale with some gin flavor and mild barrel notes.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.61/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled June 2011
A soft pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces a three finger thick, pale, off-white colored head that leave some light lacing on the sides of my glass; the beer is quite lively carbonated and would have foamed up out of the bottle after a moment or two if I gave it the chance. The beer sits in my glass with a bright copper hue that shows a brilliantly clear, gold tinged, pale copper color when held up to the light. The aroma sort of starts out perfume like with herbal notes, some bright aromatics, a touch of citrus and a sort of spicy floral character. A deeper draught of the aroma suggests at the juniper, with a sort of diluted gin like aromatic character. There is some dry, dusty malt character here as well as some more round cracker like malt notes. As the beer warms up there is a certain phenolic like note that reminds me a bit of plastic (that is not quite burning); sort of smells like what some Brettanomyces strains produce, but in this case I think it is from the gin / juniper character.

Quite fizzy as it first hits my tongue, the beer is also pretty dry and this accentuates an herbal character as well as a spicy character in the finish. The spiciness in the finish sort of reminds me a bit of ginger, but I think it is from the juniper as this is also noticeable. Lingering in the finish is a clean bitterness as well as a touch of tongue number herbal-woody leaning thing (is this from the spruce gin barrels. There is a woodiness to this beer that also gets wrapped up in a dry, hay and cracker like malt character. This definitely has overtones of gin in the flavor, luckily the alcohol is not really noticeable, but there is that definite gin-like quality to this that is sort of herbal, perhaps a touch citrus like, . This is an extremely quaffable beer, it is quite light bodied and it seems like the woody / gin notes are what keeps me from downing my glass in a sip or two on this hot summer’s day.

Not bad, I had forgotten that this was a regular strength beer, somehow despite my initial misgivings this lower gravity pale ale works pretty well with this treatment. This is quite drinkable, the fact that it finishes so dry (though it still has some texture / body to it) helps with this immensely too. Definitely worth trying.

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Photo of bruachan
3.07/5  rDev -15%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

head...meh. hazy light copper color

smells like a cascade APA with some extra pine in the nose

the flavor is where i can detect juniper (or at least where i think i can detect it). or not really: juniper's flavor just isn't so crazily different from that of hops

this beer reminds me why i rarely drink Rogue beers. not to be mean but they're often not high quality

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.82/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Naja's Place and served in a 16 ounce shaker. On to the beer:

The beer shows a light orange color with little head and a gentle splatch of lace. The aroma is like a gin and tonic with a kiss of lemon peel. Could be the juniper berries that help create a part of the distinct nose.

Its taste is very distinct. Once again, the juniper berries help create it, but the gin barrels seems to give the berries and citrus notes an extra bite in taste. This package helps make a beer that is easy to drink and surprisingly refreshing. Still, the pricetag that it commands ($8 for the pint) mean that future meetings will be scarce.

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Photo of shand
3.99/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a Sierra Nevada Hop Tulip.

The John John Hazelnut really let me down, especially with the base Hazelnut Brown Nectar being a top 5 beer for me, but I was willing to give this bad boy a try for some reason. This beer pours a pale golden color with a finger's worth of head. The aroma is very spicy, with a bit of the wood making it's way through. The taste here is surely what it says on the bottle. Spruce, juniper, and gin. It tastes a bit too alcoholic for the modest ABV, but is otherwise nice. The finish is especially deserving of note, with the ample spruce notes nicely mingling with the juniper barrels and the drying mouthfeel.

The mouthfeel is great, it's nice and juicy at first, but quickly dries out as the gin makes itself known. The drinkability is fairly good, but is impacted by the beer tasting more alcoholic than it actually is. Overall, a solid beer and better than the Hazelnut John John for sure. Recommended, but I wouldn't spend too much on it.

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Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.7/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tan and pretty hazy. Head was about a finger and fluffy, but didn't last too long. Lacing was pretty good.

Smell was amply spicy and lightly woody, with a slightly ginger aspect. Hops were brisk, but nice. Malts were also light. Definitely more of a spiced beer smell than the regular juniper ale.

Taste wise this beer is quite good, and more along the lines of what I hope for when I pay the price for a rogue ale. It's actually pretty darn good, and meets the description on the bottle in spades. Gin and spruce are obvious, and that's what I want when I buy a "spruce gin barrel aged" beer. It's also not too overdone either, the aging added just the right kick and flavor. Juniper adds a light fruitiness. Spices are very well balanced and nicely noticeable. Very good job on this one.

Feel is light, almost a summery beer, despite the aging. Light body and plenty of carbonation, combined with a lightly floral aftertaste makes for an easy drinking brew.

Overall I do like this one and recommend you try it at least once. I'll buy it again.

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Photo of dgilks
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear golden colour with a tine white head. Poor head retention. Fair lacing.

Light sweet malt with a mild herbal juniper note. Nothing special.

Silky soft malt with a bitter, herbal juniper character. I don't get the point of this beer. If you want gin, drink gin, if you want beer, drink beer.

Medium body with moderate carbonation. Fine.

This a fairly simple beer. There is plenty of juniper but the balance doesn't quite seem right.

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