Union Jack India Pale Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

1,339 Reviews
Union Jack India Pale AleUnion Jack India Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by beerguy101 on 10-09-2003

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Reviews: 1,339 | Ratings: 6,513
Photo of jerlleutz
5/5  rDev +18.2%
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.

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Photo of at7000
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of the best IPAs I have tried. Screw all those malt bomb IPAs, this one is a nice dry, crisp, pale, non-syrupy one. More like a traditional IPA. Again, screw all this trendy 'tons of malt' in an IPA which just ends up in a chaotic, thick, syrup-like mess.

This one is all pine resin and grapefruit. No sweetness or dark syrup. As in a "True IPA"

This IPA is one of the few fit to fly the Union Jack.

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Photo of chrisgalvin
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Every time we drive down to Santa Barbara we have to stop at the Firestone Walker Brewing Co. brewery and have a few of these - and a Red Nectar. Perfectly balance of hops and malt and mouthfeel and overall just a really nice, somewhat 7.5%, "session" beer. The brewery dudes are cool too. Always a good time at this place when drinking these.

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Photo of
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

While I readily admit I'm no expert, this is my absolute favorite beer. It tastes great, with a lot of complexity, though again, I won't pretend to be able to explain it. The smell contains elements of citrus and pineapple, just like the taste. Color is a deep amber, and very woody color. When poured into a glass, head holds on throughout the serving. Very thick initially, and though it thins out as time passes, it will hang on for quite some time.

This is my first review. and I honestly hope it helps, as I absolutely love this beer.

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Photo of mevett89
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Poured with a white, 1 cm head - fine bubbles. It is light amber in color.

Smell: Citrus, and with a nice pine, or juniper fragrance. There is a hint of sweetness.

Taste: The pine and citrus notes come to the fore in tasting, but are backed up and nicely balanced with a sweet, slight chewiness. The aftertaste is sweet and chewy, but also bitter.

Mouth-Feel: Effervescent with good carbonation, the beer coats your tongue without weighing it down.

Overall: This is my favorite IPA to date. It is not overloaded with hop bitterness like so many I have tasted. The hops are in the forefront, but are showcased very nicely and are balanced out just enough by a cracker taste from the malt. In short - it tastes great!

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Photo of Mike_Aguirre
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Outstanding IPA, I bought it once and then hurried back to the craft beer store in Mexico to get the rest of the stock. It´s just delicious and smells great, it´s a pineapple citrusy IPA.

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Photo of Bernardkowalski
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Absolutely one of my favorite beers!! honestly can go good with anything, but you are better off enjoying this beer by itself. it has so much too offer, such great combination between the yeast and malt's making this an outstanding brew. you can put this on my list of top beers.

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Photo of adrian23
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Nice bitterness on the tongue. Fresh hop fragrance. Medium thin body. Hop flavor stays on the palette long after swallowing. Not too overbearing. Smooth drinkability for a 7.5.

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Photo of jallison86
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My favorite beer right now. It's got the hoppiness you'd expect from a good IPA plus some maltiness to balance it out. Not strongly citrusy like some IPA's, which makes it a great go-to for any occasion. Cannot recommend highly enough!

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Photo of Extol
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - clear gold in color, amazing retention along the glass and a small head that doesn't go away. Smell - hoppy, fruity, a tad piney. Nice balance. Taste - this is where the magic happens. It follow the nose but this is insane. The fruitiness comes through and the hops take a back seat and it is very smooth and dangerous. Overall - tastes amazing. Looks amazing. Is amazing. Believe the hype on this. Girlfriend hasn't tried this yet but I am sure she'll say it smells but tastes good. ;)

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Photo of capehaze
5/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Best IPA I've ever had the pleasure of drinking. One sniff and you know right away you're about to drink true greatness. To the best of my knowledge, only Ale Smith can brew IPAs of this quality. And this IPA leaves every Ale Smith IPA in the dust. Quite simply: This is the IPA of our dreams, realized and brewed to perfection. And I'm a DogfishHead 60" IPA guy.:)

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Photo of Its_A_Dry_heat
4.99/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hands down my favorite IPA. I was extremely excited to see it appear at my local grocery store. You would never guess the ABV because of how smooth it is. Pours a beautiful amber color with a frothy head. The hops are there but toned down, and the beer finishes citrusy. Unlike many other IPAs, this is fantastic on a hot summer day. Must try!!'

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Photo of WalterHeisenberg
4.98/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Poured into giant beer mug
A: Hazy yellow. Nice foamyfat head. Good lacing. Some carbonation.head dies to a foamy cap. In my opinion a sign of quality.
S: malty citrus hoppy orange lemon bready! Smells good
T:Orang citrus hoppy first bready maltycitrusy finishes malty bready bitter orande rind Minimal bitterness.Very nicely balanced. Lingering bitter aftertast.Smooth rich tasty. No hint whatsoever ever of the 7.5%. Nice!
M:Thick smooth
O:Nice high abv!looks tasty IS mighty tasty. I feel like this drinks big more like a a DIPA Verybalanced. Not a hop bomb or maybe the bitter is well balanced.but really excellent smooth smooth smooth. A bit spendy but you what you pay for.Can't wait to get ahold of a double jack !!

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Photo of Fatjack
4.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is hands-down my favorite IPA and I like IPA's. There is a superb balance here. There's a fog of sweetness that sits on your tongue after the lovely hop bitterness diminishes away.

The only problem with this beer is that if it's available I'm going to get it even places that have over 400 beers available... if they have this one then those other 399 beers will not be considered as options.

Aroma is of citrus hops, goes down smoothly, mouthfeel is a tad thick, but not overly so.

Overall this is one perfect IPA in my opinion. If you've not tried it you are missing out.

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Photo of JEdmund
4.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Golden orange color, slight chill haze, good amount of bubbles streaming that keep the thick foamy head alive. (Not the thickest, long-lasting-est head I've seen, hence the 4.5.)

Killer aroma! Super bright and citrusy all the way. Orange, apricot, mango—all with a slight sugar coating. Just perfect.

Flavor is equally as impressive. Spot-on body and carbonation. This is just hitting all the right notes. Big hops yet not tongue-strippingly bitter. Good biscuit malt balance. Really fantastic flavor all around.

Top tier American IPA. I’d be hard pressed to think of a better example. Really, really good.

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Photo of stewart124
4.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours orange in color with just a slight off-white head and visible carbonation. Lacing forms as this goes down.

Pungent grapefruit in the nose with a very aromatic juicy fruit.

More citrus and plenty of bready characters in the taste. Perfectly blended without being too bitter in the background. This is so easy to drink and sneaky because that 7.5%abv is hidden. Lots of pine in the background with a chewy overall malt bill. Medium to full bodied and very little in the way of residual sweetness left over.

Finishes dry and just begs for another sip. Outstanding!

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Photo of Chas58
4.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Weyerbacher Tulip glass

A. A beautiful hazy dark yellow with a nice substantial head that leaves a gentle lacing on the glass. 

S. A strong piney aroma, with a floral scent that lingers. This is the aroma that makes you want to stick your nose in the glass and inhale. So sweet and pleasing. No alcohol hint whatsoever, really surprising for a 7.5. 

T. A crisp and pleasing taste with a good amount of carbonation that stings at the tongue. Really pleasing. 

M. A crisp initial mouthfeel gives way to a very lingering resiny stickiness that allows the great taste to permeate. Very pleasant taste makes you want to keep drinking. 

O. The brilliance of the great west coast IPAs is the hoppiness without the heavy maltiness. This does it as well as any I have tried. I always try to keeps a great American IPA in the fridge, and this is one that meets that. FW makes such a great IPA that makes you want to drink more. The lingering mouthfeel may make you stop, but boy is this special. 

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Photo of Ryan_Graham
4.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours golden yellow with little head that fades quickly. The smell is complex. Smokey. Sweet. Fruity. Almost smells like pepperoni. My first impression of the taste was "whoa." I thought the smell was complex.. Jesus Christ this beer has a taste you could write a book about. Very sour on the back of the tongue. Leaves a strong aftertaste on its way down. Wow. So different. Great balance. Almost a perfect beer.

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Photo of NT101
4.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Citrus aroma prevalent upon opening the growler. Intensified with pour. Clear golden orange color. Good lacing, head maintained.

Balanced malt & hop bitter. Rivals Hop Stoopid as a favorite in the house. Apparently Firestone Walker has entered Western New York market.

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Photo of thebrood1987
4.95/5  rDev +17%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The smell on this is just unreal. Lemon pine-sol (in a really delicious way) fruity tartness with some grapefruit in there as well. Hands down one of the best smelling beers I've had. It sorta reminds me of how Lagunitas Hop Stoopid smells but this has more of a lemon pine smell.

You get such a crisp pleasant bite of hops right up front and then with a cracker malt on the middle of the taste and ending with a piney bitterness that lingers for quite some time. The malt washes some of the bitterness away after a while but still gets that residual you just had a strong IPA taste.

Its very juicy and like an IPA nectar as well. Its tart and makes your mouth pucker. This beer is extremely top notch and anybody searching for an amazing IPA should definitely see this one out. I like this one better than their double IPA.

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Photo of BoneyLee
4.94/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

before I say a word, let's disclose I've sampled many dozens of these. But for the sake of creating a proper review...

Poured from their 12 oz bottle into a pint at home.

A: looks as good as any craft ipa with a pedigree. certainly won't slow me down from grabbing it!

S: must be their hop mixture, because this is a familiar great smelling beer common in the west coast ipas.

T: At 7.5%, a beer that tastes this good can be hazardous to one's health (and marriage). All taste is a matter of, well, taste, but this beer strikes a perfect balance of up front citrus hops and quick clean finish. So refreshing, a true 12-month beer.

M: carbonation just right. never gave a it a thought until right now. awfully chuggable!

O: This beer is part of a new generation of craft ipas that border on 2xipa status but go down like a session beer. fellow hopheads, be warned, your sessions shall be short should you get sucked into this beer as a regular as I have! If you can find it at your store fresh (less than 3 months old) go for the case, it is a winner.

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Photo of dnoto
4.94/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Since IPAs are my favorite beers... I really enjoyed this one. I typically drink Stone and Luganitas, but this is a good one and I have tried a lot of IPAs. The taste is well balanced and the hops are well balanced and not overwhelming. I really enjoyed this IPA beer and recommend it for others to try.

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Photo of inacht10
4.94/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Note to self - this beer is awesome
Note to self - this beer is awesome
Note to self - this beer is awesome
Note to self - this beer is awesome
Note to self - this beer is awesome
Note to self - this beer is awesome
Note to self - this beer is awesome
Note to self - this beer is awesome
Note to self - this beer is awesome

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Photo of Brisket
4.93/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A- Clear orangish color with 2 fingers of head and heavy lacing.

S- Strong hop aroma, mostly citrus. Bready yeast. Good hop background in the smell.

T- Similar to the smell wonderful taste citrus hop forward with a solid malt background.

O- One of the best. Firestone makes excellent beers.

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Photo of CrazyP
4.92/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Served from a bottle (no date). Nice orange color, clear, with a 1-inch frothy head that dissipates down to 1/2 inch but then stays there. Lots of bubbles.

S - Citrusy hops - grapefruit, some pine. A fairly simple, but pleasant aroma.

T - Wow... For an IPA this has really smooth bitterness. More grapefruit and citrus flavor from the hops. Malt balances out the hops nicely, without being sweet. Goes down really nicely!

M - Dry but not overly so. Has a nice smooth mouthfeel from beginning to end. Light body.

O - Outstanding IPA, probably the best I've had. Flavors are simple but beautifully done. This goes down really easy without any lingering bitterness or dryness that some IPAs have.

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Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
4.23 out of 5 based on 6,513 ratings.
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