Red Wagon IPA | Fire Island Beer Company

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Red Wagon IPARed Wagon IPA

Brewed by:
Fire Island Beer Company
New York, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by JoeyBeerBelly on 11-07-2009

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Reviews: 53 | Ratings: 133
Photo of TheDeuce
4.3/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fire Island Red Wagon IPA… the bottle….

Appearance-Dark red to light brown color…medium head with a lock of thickness, settles down nicely.

Smell-balanced smell of hops and malt, piney bread combination, pungent aroma that stayed with me.

Taste/Mouthfeel-well balanced flavor, hops slightly win out over malt with a refreshing taste backed up nicely. Medium to heavy mouthfeel, exceptional smoothness on the way down as well. Slight fruit notes.

Overall-well done tasty IPA, goes to show that balance can take you a long way. Cheers.

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Photo of rodney45
4.3/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Dirty Hazy Amber with a medium off white head.

S: Big hop aroma, crystal malt. Has floral, as well as cinnamon notes.

T: For an IPA this is very malt heavy. It has a caramel sweetness and roasted barley profile that ends with crystal malt kick. Some amounts of floral hops in the way of citrus and grapefruit notes. Very nice satisfying finish with warming alcohol.

M: Medium to heavy, with medium carbonation. Slight bitterness, but not high.

O: Wow, I was really impressed by this beer. Great balance of flavors which is hard to find in an IPA. A little under hopped for an IPA, but I would certainly recomend this beer. Not designed for the hop head. Im surprised it hasnt gotten the accolades it deserves.

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Photo of allboutbierge
4.26/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was given this bottle by a traveling rep who promised me it was as close to brewery fresh as one could get. Perhaps this can account for my review which is more favorable than the already positive reviews on BA.

Color is a burn orange with an amber center. Carbonation is moderate, more carbonated than cask but significantly less than most other bottled IPAs. Lace retention started off heavy with a thumb width ring sticking to the top of my pint glass, but oddly, without leaving any lace below the initial ring. Flavor profile is reminiscent of a more sophisticated Cascazilla. Yes, Cascades are here and here in proportion. Malts notes of apricot and thin caramel malt strike a great balance. Entertaining and satisfying, I am impressed with this beer.

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

Clear amber color with a white head that left a good amount of lacing.
Aroma is pleasant, sweet malt and floral hops.
Taste is good, the balance is there, malty sweetness between the bitter floral and citrus hops.
Medium bodied with a crisp feel, good carbonation.
Easy enough to have a few of these, abv unkown at this time but I'd guess it's near 6%.

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Photo of Tartarus
4/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A&S: Pours a dark copper with a thin layer of head. Lots of hops in the scent with a bit of malt.

T&M: I get some nice hop bitterness up front followed by some malt flavor finishes, medium bodied mouthfeel with a good amount of carbonation.

D: Pretty drinkable IPA, hops don't kill the tastebuds and there is a good balance of malts. The only thing that's slightly concerning is the 7% abv.

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Photo of glasscleaner
3.95/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Surprisingly good find,when added to a short 6'er of Hop Devil at the local Stop+Shop market.
This "Wagon" found a smooth path between hops and malts,and many flavors emerged through its cloudy consistency.
"Red" rates on the green side of the beer rating divide,is very drinkable,add it to the roster at the beach,or wherever...

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.94/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Woah, I was shocked to see this beer only has a common rating of a "B". I haven't even tasted it yet but I can smell it, and it's great. Lots of bright citrusy and floral hops amidst a rich caramel malt base. Beyond that I get perhaps a bit of yeast, but that's it. It's quite rich and inviting.

The appearance, however, might be considered lacking. It doesn't say "bottle conditioned" or "unfiltered" on the label, but it's cloudy. That doesn't just happen, it must have been intended; and I personally don't mind a bit of yeast in my beer. For me, however, I do want to see a good head with some solid retention (that shows the quality of brewing to me), and that's not there. Ding. And DING.

I should note at this point that although it's listed as an "American IPA" on Beer Advocate, Fire Island never calls it that. It may be more of a hoppy red ale than an IPA, but that's semantics. They may have chosen the IPA designation for marketing purposes to suggest that it was hoppy and bitter. Or not.

I still don't find anything odd in the aroma, so on to the flavor. It's very much as the aroma suggests, which isn't surprising because 90% of what we "taste" is actually an olfactory perception. So, nice hops, nice malt (perhaps a bit full), and a good balance. There are some leafy, piney, and grassy hop notes that emerge across the middle, and then linger into the bitter finish. It's malty and leafy with a dusty dryness and a residual note of apple-like fruitiness. So what's missing?

The mouthfeel, not unlike the maltiness, is a bit full. I don't think it's beyond style guidelines, however, and it certainly doesn't hurt the beer on a hedonic scale.

So, it's a rich, malty and hoppy ale with a good bit of fruitiness, hop character, and a rock-solid bitterness... what's not to like? That it's not really an "IPA"? OK, I can agree with that, but it's still definitely a drinkable "B+" beer.

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Photo of projectflam86
3.88/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got the chance to try this one courtesy of JoeyBeerBelly. Thanks for the extra!

A- Pours a clear amber/copper color with a creamy white foam that leaves great lacing.

S- Some faint malt and floral hop aromas.

T- This has alot more hop bitterness than I would have expected! Sharp floral and citrus hop flavors initially with a well rounded malt center that helps to balance the finish.

M- Medium bodied with good carbonation.

D- Nice easy drinking brew.

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Photo of OneDropSoup
3.85/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to JoeyBeerBelly for the extra!

Poured into a Dogfish Head glass (tulip pint?): 3 fingers glistening, lumpy head over a deep amber body, translucent. Thick "foamcore" lacing, sticks to the glass in chunks.

Floral & grassy hops dominate the aroma, with a mild balance of caramel & graham cracker malt.

Taste is more balanced than I expected: lemony hops, earthy, zesty, but more subdued than in the smell. Also a restrained caramel, slightly toffee malt. Aftertaste definitely on the bitter end, but not knock-your-socks-off-bitter. Show tea shows up later.

Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with active carbonation.

Nothing really standing out with this one, but that in itself is kind of outstanding & I appreciate that about it. A modest IPA that knows the meaning of moderation & is very content to be what it is. One of the few IPAs that I'd consider "sessionable."

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Photo of micromaniac129
3.85/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An amber color hue thus red wagon is. On top sits a fluffy and dense off white head thats abit small. It fades to some nice lacing. Very lightly carb'd. Aroma is a mixed bag of hops and malts. Taste off sweet malts maybe even vienna since I can pick up fainted toasted malts. Hops are light. Medium weight on the palette, dry and a clean finish. This beer is pretty much just average at best.

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.83/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Growler from Half Time, Poughkeepsie.

Pours pale amber with yellow-white rocky head that clings. Caramel and red grapefruit candy nose. Yellow cake and apricot malts with hops of warm spice and some citrus. Dry, salty leave. Light-medium, slight chew, no burn.

Brewer was at the store; he said Willamette, Warrior and Cascade, so I see where the earthiness over c-hops comes from. He also said it was designed to be sessionable, and it hits that. But while the light body helps the drinkability, it is a bit thin for the flavors.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.81/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On draft. Copper in color. Earthy hop flavor, fairly restrained flavor. could use some more boldness in the hop flavor. good balance though, and hits the expectation for body.

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Photo of billab914
3.8/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Russian River tulip glass. Pours copper in color wit ha one finger white head. The head retreated to the sides of the glass but left moderate lacing.

Aroma is mildly floral with some citrus and some sweet malt. Taste is moderately hoppy with some citrus and a decent amount of malt sweetness as well. More of a sweet finish then a bitter one.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good. Overall a nice easy drinking and good tasting IPA.

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Photo of plaid75
3.77/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at T.J. Finley's, Bayshore, New York.

Poured a medium amber hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured a spicy hop and a moderate crystal malt.

The taste consisted of the same front loaded hop spice, with some pine and pepper. The malt arrived soon thereafter and was rather robust for the style. The flavors seemed a bit disjointed however.

The mouthfeel leaned slightly to the heavier side of the style.

Overall a tasty IPA.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.74/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I enjoyed this from and IPA glass by DFH bottle purchased from half time.

the color is dark amber with good clarity and thick tan off white head with fine bead. The lace creates a film and carbonation rises quickly from the nucleation site in the glass. The smell has a nice citrus aroma of west coast hops with light sweet malt and hint of yeast ester accenting. The feel is moderately bitter with a tangy hop texture and slight malt sweetness with moderate carbonation and bitterness increasing in the dry finish.

The flavor has a slightly orange rind taste with subtle caramel from the malt and good bitter tangerine accent with some mild grassy tinges and light lemon zest and toasted malt flavor. the alcohol is mild in the mostly bitter dry finish. Overall this is a solid IPA, very drinkable but is pretty familiar with citrus and bitterness dominant in the taste.

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Photo of bensamra
3.73/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Apperance is very cloudy compared to other IPA's
Smell is malty with hunts of coffee
Taste is unique
Mouthfeel is just wonderful
Drinkablility goes down with any objections

I would recommend this beer, after I first had it I was given a black and tan with this red wagon and a lion stout which I loved. It has a very malty taste and very drinkable.

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Photo of portia99
3.68/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle received from JoeyBeerBelly as winnings from the Sunday Night Football Squares Wk15. Thanks Joe! Poured into a Portsmouth goblet.

A - Pours a brilliantly clear medium amber color with a finger of white head. Foam lingers briefly and falls to a nice collar and a few loose islands on the surface. A little bit of foamy lacing is left on the glass.

S - Smells of bitterness and lots of earthy hops with some fruity aspects too. A decent amount of caramel in the background and a mild touch of phenolics that is just barely perceptable.

T - First impression is that this is a nicely balanced beer. Good malt backbone with caramel and a light sugary sweetness. Some bready and grainy aspects too. Hops are largely displayed in a full, round bitterness with a bunch of earthy flavors.

M - Medium bodied - a little bit more full than most IPA's, carbonation is of a medium level, but plenty lively and fits well here. Bitterness sits in the mouth and finds its way to all corners...and stays well past the swallow.

D - Pretty good session IPA. Definitely not a hop bomp of an IPA...good, well balanced. Enough hops to satisfy, but balance is the key word. Everything works well together, but major hopheads might be left wanting a bit more.

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.63/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a pint glass.

Appearance: straight amber with a white head poured to maybe a 1/4" off the body.

Smell: light hops, ehh...smells good but not impressing.

Taste: now this is impressing, hops, burnt caramel and slightly floral.

Mouth: medium but with a feeling of heavy goes down easier than gravity.

Overall: great everyday IPA, satisfying and full of taste. Definitely would buy it again and so should you. Salud

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Photo of Mosstrooper
3.62/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into shaker pint glass.

Appearance: Cloudy amber color with a medium, quickly dissipating off-white head that dissipates quickly and leaves a bit of lace.

Smell: Fruity sweetness, with floral hops and a slight touch of grassiness.

Taste: Begins fruity and sweet, finishing with more fruits and a touch of biscuity flavor and a touch of hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thick body with light carbonation and a sticky finish that dries out slightly toward the end.

Drinkability: A bit sweeter than I would expect from an IPA, but the sweetness and hops are still balanced rather nicely. This isn't the best IPA, but it still is good and seems to go so well with Fire Island. Wouldn't drink this much, but when I'm in Fire Island (as now), this really matches the character of the place.

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Photo of Billolick
3.58/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ouncer, w/o freshness/bottling date info. Pours clear, copper hued amber, respectable staying power noted on the oat meal head, that holds onto a thick collar. Leaves low thick sheeting and strands of lace. Faint nose of light peppery hops and perhaps a hint of vanilla. On the malty side for an "IPA", with citric, pine hints but not really showing off much of a hop presence or crunch. Decent brew, but nothing special. Better then a macro fer sure, good "IPA" for a newbie. Works as a sessioner in a pinch or in a marinade in place of an amber ale.

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Photo of WesWes
3.58/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark golden/amber color with a thick frothy off-white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a malt forward scent that boasts of pale, crystal, and biscuit malts. The hop aroma is tame at best. The taste is decent as well. It has a wonderful malt flavor that's sweet with crystal malts, but also bitter with a mild hop character. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking beer, but not the best IPA on the market.

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Photo of scootny
3.55/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice to look at with a clear fluid and a decent head with bits of lace here and there. Nose carries a good balance with sweet caramel malt underneath a solid core of pine and grapefruit. Taste is much the same with a balanced overall profile and substantial hop persona. A touch of lightly buttered bread slips in. Dry clean finish. Crisp feel has just enough weight to go with an excellent carbonation. A good solid hoppy ale.

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Photo of koopa
3.55/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle received as an extra in a trade with a generous BA thanks!

Appearance: Pours a fairly uninspired and slightly cloudy red/brown (dark fender vintage star burst) with a 1 finger soff white crown that shows moderate retention and lace.

Smell: Faint floral and earth hop aroma...leaves, grass, etc. Malt is right btw caramel and toffee.

Taste: Same as nose but with a nice herbal hop bitterness over a caramel apple.

Mouthfeel: Crisp medium body with good carbonation.

Drinkability: Not bad but the flavor profile is just too disjointed. The strong herbal bitterness over fruity caramel malt just doesn't work with the body. Tastes like a Diet Barleywine.

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Photo of tempest
3.53/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a pint at Sweet Afton in Queens. This was tasty beer, but I think the low reviews come from the relatively low bitterness for the style. I'm sure it's still around 50-60 IBU, but for a 7% IPA with considerably more bitter competition, this beer doesn't stand out. Still, there's a lovely and classic mix of citrus and pine hops - very American. It reminds me quite a bit of Harpoon IPA.

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Photo of david18
3.53/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Unfortunately had this beer after another IPA that I enjoyed more. This was a good ipa but not among my favorites. A little flat, not quite as hoppy as I'd like and lacking in the bitterness. However, definitely within style and something i'll get again if it's available somewhere else or if I can find it in a bottle.

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Red Wagon IPA from Fire Island Beer Company
3.42 out of 5 based on 133 ratings.
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