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Union Jack India Pale Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
1,335 Reviews
Union Jack India Pale AleUnion Jack India Pale Ale
BEER INFO

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

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,335
Ratings:
6,484
Avg:
4.23
pDev:
20.8%
 
 
Wants:
492
Gots:
1,621
For Trade:
13
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Reviews: 1,335 | Ratings: 6,484
Photo of UMNbeerhunter
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into my Surly Darkness tulip.

Pours a frothy off white head that dissipates quickly leaving little lacing.

Smells of citrus with malts as the backbone.

Taste is a nice mix of malts and hops. The hops doesn't have a super over pouring control over the sweet malts but more of a delicate balance in which the hops gradually wins over leaving a slight bitterness on the tongue and a tingling on the roof of the mouth.

Drinks very well. I wish I could have this on a regular basis as a nightly sipper when I'm watching tv or hanging out with the old lady. True there are better IPA's out there but this one is definitely up there with the best of them.

 673 characters

Photo of MbpBugeye
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks again Fletcher! If Firestone can't be distributed in Ohio I'm glad they at least started to show up in Colorado. Bomber dated 07/14/11 poured into a New Belgium globe.

Appearance
Lots of interrupted and splotchy lacing. The beer is quite red, making the label of the beer quite appropriate. It has good clarity with stunning amber hues shining through on the highlights.

Aroma
This aroma is where its at! It reminds me why I liked Double Jack so much the couple times I was able to get baby pours. Big, juicy, wet citrus bomb. Its very sweet and candied smelling, actually its extremely candied smelling. Mentioning cotton candy would not be a far-fetched idea. The aroma is mostly orange, grapefruit and fresh cut, sappy spruce pine bough. There is an assertive grassiness that can be found amongst it all.

Taste
Not as spectacular as the aroma, but this is a really good IPA no doubt. The flavor is just as huge and in your face as the aroma. The taste just suffers a bit from the extremely candied and sweetened flavors of the citrus and piney hops. It takes on a syrupy feel and flavor rather than a lighter, juicy one. Lots of tangerine, rind and all, cotton candy and a sappy pine flavor that tries to lend bitterness. The finish does have a long lingering, syrupy bitterness.

Mouthfeel
High carbonation hurts this one. It is very resinous and sticky. The beer doesn't want to leave the palate.

Overall
A really good IPA, especially in the aroma department.

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Photo of kirok1999
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to rayjay for the bottle.
Pours a slightly hazy orange/gold. Lots of sticky lacing and a wispy white head.
Smells very hoppy, lots of grassy, piney, almost wheaty notes.
Tastes mildly sweet, rich malts come through and linger through the finish. Hops compete well with the malt with lots of grass, pine and some juicy citrus as well.
Very smooth and mildly carbonated. This is very juicy and rich.

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Photo of Augustiner719
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass:

Appearance; Pours a nice orange, yelowish slightly hazy color with a big fluffy just off white head that has lots of tiny bubbles. Nice hop haze and sunset orange yellow color.

Smell: Smells like a DIPA for sure. Has the sweet sticky pine, grapefruit, also some caramalized mango in there. Very very nice.

Taste: Has a huge body to this. This has to be a DIPA for sure. Its got a big hop attack followed by a huge malt profile with loads and loads of caramely biscuity malts to balance out the intense hops. Just a little weak in the mid palate but has a big initial attack and a strong finish that goes unbalanced because of the hollow midpalate.

Mouthfeel: Perfect carbonation. Not spritzy and has a great coating effect that leaves the sweet caramel spiked with grapefruit juice in your mouth for minutes.

Drinkability: For an american IPA, its just average. The abv is too high for me and i would just as soon pick this to be a DIPA. not a session beer and really should have the abv toned down a bit or else call it a dipa. only reason its getting this high a drinkabilty is because its delicious.

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Photo of scootpolute
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz brown bottle...

Appearance: golden/copper beer with a patchy cream off-white foam head that clings to the sides of the glass.

Smell: Not the crazy, 'HOP-FEST' I was expecting (maybe I haven't fully recovered from my cold/flu...what better medicine, eh?!!)...Very pronounced grapefruit hop aromas, spicy with background sweet malts and a faint bready grain aroma.

Taste: Smooth...hoppy kick, leads to a dull-numb taste?!

Mouthfeel is ultra-smooth and creamy with a malty thick full-body. The initial taste is an absolute hop assualt on the palate! A spicy, stinging and salty plethora of citric nuances literally overwhelm the senses. Earth, leaf and grass flavours pull-thru, then are followed by an alcohol presence and spiciness. The malt in this beer is definately present but gets its ass fiercly kicked by the hops. Malt includes some toasted, slightly bready and light honey flavours with an even malt sweetness...It hardly balances the beer, but does keep it somewhat control. Beer finishes with residual hop spice and malt sweetness, which tends to linger for some time.

O: A great beer for all the hop-heads out there...pretty smooth...good 'drinking' beer...could have many of these in a row without having regrets!!

For what it is, it's crafted to near perfection. A "Wow!" beer for sure. 7.5 % abv.

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Photo of russpowell
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Strange name for an AIPA, cheers to Wasatch for this one!

Pours an effervescent honey with 1 finger of beige head. Very good head retention & lacing

S: Piney & citrussy

T: Grapefruit, breadyness & tangerines up front. leafy hops & pineyness dominate as this warms, plus just a whisper of booze, honey malts & apricots. Finishes piney with a touch of breadyness, earthy hops & pineapple

MF: Medium bodied, soft carbonation, plus great balance

Drinks easy for the style & ABV, a good AIPA that verges on the edge of greatness

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Photo of rorykanderson
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great beer that brings all the characteristics of an awesome IPA to the table - piney aroma; taste of tropical fruit like mango, pineapple and more traditional orange. Caramel, bready malt brings the citrus flavors back to the ranch and a slow-building bitterness brings about a welcomed balance. A great beer that's even more impressive when you taste how different Union Jack is from its session-able brother Easy Jack. Clearly a ton of effort was put into differentiating the two and neither seem like lighter or heftier clones of one another.

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Photo of cocogan
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Visual: Pale gold in color, little head that dissipated fairly quickly. some lacing left on glass.

Nose: Yes, that is what an ipa should smell like. Big pineapple citrus aroma,along with a sticky pine/floral hop character.

Taste: Hop resin taste and bitterness conquers the taste buds. A dried apple and lime flavor complements a lingering alcohol warmness.

Mouth: Medium body. Subtle back end foaminess.

Overall: A good ipa. Great aroma.

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Photo of Libeertarian
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From notes taken 03/03/16:

Semi-clear golden amber in glass. Foamy, soapy head tan in color with good retention. Fairly clean smelling, but not weak. Citrus oils mostly, resin and pine in the background. A little biscuity malt aroma as well. Somewhat crackery, somewhat tart, and incredibly citric throughout, especially oranges. Resin and pine again, peppercorn in the back. Perfect bitterness to it. If I wanted a new beer drinker to have a representative West-Coast IPA, this would definitely be an option. Medium-bodied and almost syrupy but for the prickly and then creamy suds, crisp.

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Photo of jpro
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Firestone Walker Union Jack IPA
A: light copper; tapioca head ; rings of lace
S: bready; citrus rind; light zest and crust
T: typical English ipa; citrus peel / light grapefruit; doughy; a touch of spice
M: moderate feel; higher carbo
O: a nice English ipa

(from phone notes)

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Photo of Bendurgin
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip. This one pours a clear golden straw color with about an inch of creamy white head. Real good looking.

Tropical passion fruits with a nice bitter hop finish and a little bit of caramel malts in the background. Nice bitter hop flavor throughout the drink. Hints of sweet malts in the background with some tropical fruits.

Light body with sharp carbonation. Overall this one is pretty tasty. Real enjoyable.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle to a snifter, thanks Gobzilla for this extra!

A: Nice amber orange color with a great sudsy head that lingers. Great.

S: Light hops up front with a buttery tinge, followed by a toffee like malt aroma.

T: Well balanced. Some hops that lead to a sweetness of caramelly malt, some citrus and just a tinge of bitterness at the finish. I'm thinking maybe there should be more hops, perhaps this is a bit old? Wouldn't be surprised if it's supposed to be like this, and tastes good, but I would love more hops.

M: Medium, smooth with good carbonation.

D: Very good IPA, solid easy drinker.

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Photo of Antnego
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at La Puerta in San Diego. Nice two-finger head, crisp light golden color. Grapefruity and piney hops blended with moderately strong malt. Grapefruit and floral notes on the nose. I just wish the smell didn't fade so quickly. Overall, a very good beer.

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Photo of lunarbrew
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Excellent looking beer. Pours clear amber with about 2 fingers of fluffy eggshell head. Very inviting. The nose is very clear, crisp, simple, and big. I smell fresh cut pineapple, flowers, and pine. I didn't really expect the flavor after smelling the beer. Pretty typical west-coast hop flavor. A dry ipa, which isn't terribly balanced. I like the juiciness of the beer, but I was looking for more sweetness. Hop resin lingers on the tongue. The body is medium and highly carbonated. Leaves a little weight after the finish. Overall, a very good beer. Not a great beer, but it's very good.

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Photo of yesyouam
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Firestone Walker Union Jack IPA is a hazy, golden ale with a thin, dense, white head that has great retention and lacing. It has a huge, fruity hop aroma. It smells a touch sweet with otes of orange and caramel. It's pretty full bodied and quite smooth. The finish is a little loose and dusty. It has plenty of hop flavor but it's not very bitter. There is a sort of caramelized flavor to it, like toffee. The flavors don't fuse completely, but all of the different tastes I get out of this are good ones. A little bitterness lingers after the swallow. This is a pretty solid double IPA. It certainly beats most beers.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to huadog for this one. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a fluffy, powdery 1.5 finger white head with good retention. Beer is a clear pale peach bronze. Lacing is patchy and stringy with good stick. Good looking beer.

Nose is sweet citrus, papaya, pine sap, and fresh pulp hoppiness. Aromatic and very appropriate for the style.

Opens citrus, papaya, caramel, brown sugar, and hop bitterness. Sappy and resiny hop presence towards the middle with a resin and amber end and finish. Aftertaste is rather sweet with a significant malt presence. Decent.

Light bodied with ample carbonation. Prickly and bubbly in the mouth and crisp and refreshing going down. Finish is dry with a lingering aftertaste. Super drinkable.

An ipa that is light on the tropical fruit presence but big on manga and papaya pulp characteristics, this one lies in a style that I'm not usually too fond of. However, this is a solid beer because of the incredible mouthfeel and the great balance overall. Worth a try.

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Photo of Fatehunter
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A half finger of head on a hazy, medium straw colored body.
The aroma is a nice lemon, orange and honey mixture.
The taste is a moderate lemon bitterness ebbing towards a mildly sweet finish. It's simple but complex.
The texture is crisp with moderate carbonation and medium body.
A really smooth and good IPA.

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Photo of Ek0nomik
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured In: Snifter
Attained through a trade.

Unfortunately I don't see a bottling date.

Appearance: Pours an amber and carrot orange color with a nice finger of oily looking head. The head retention isn't particularly wonderful. It disappears quite quickly and I'm left with just a few oily looking bubbles resting on the top. I gave the beer a few swirls in my snifter and it looks like the head retention is going to be quite nice. There aren't any thick sheets, but some nice thin streaks and some small dots are covering the glass. The beer is slightly effervescent, and I'm expecting the beer to have a nice low to medium amount of carbonation that gives the beer a nice smooth feeling.

Smell: The nose isn't a hop bomb. This is a well balanced IPA. A nice caramel malt sweetness comes through on the nose. It's hand in hand with some herbal earthy hop notes like pine, soil and grass. The citrus note that I'm picking up is a little bit of mango and grapefruit. Perhaps this is an older bottle, but I was hoping for a little more hop in the nose. Maybe it had it at one point.

Taste: The palate follows suite with the nose in that it's a well balanced IPA. Well, perhaps I'm biased in calling it biased. The hop profile is definitely here. But, it isn't completely overtaking the beer. There is a very nice malt presence here.

The first flavor that crosses the palate is sweet pale caramel malt. The malt backbone that's present is enough to handle a larger load of hops. I could see this being turned into an IIPA quite easily. There's quite a bit of bitterness from the hops, but nothing unusual for the style. The hop flavors then cross the palate. It's a mixture of earthy and citrus hops. The same lot found in the nose: mango, a little pine, some grass, and a little bit of grapefruit. The grapefruit flavor is much more prominent on the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: This is a medium bodied beer, right down the center. The carbonation was actually a dash too high in my opinion. The more the beer warmed up and lost some of its carbonation it became better. It needed a little time for the mouthfeel to hit its prime.

Drinkability: A well put together beer from Firestone Walker. A nice malt backbone and a nice amount of hops. This was exactly the beer I was looking for on a Friday night.

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Photo of musicforairports
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottled Oct. 26, reviewed Dec. 6.

Straw-golden, light and very clear. Nice head and some lacing.

Smells mostly of citrus peel--lemon, grapefruit, orange.

Flavor is bright and fruity, with notes of lemon, orange, mango, papaya, grapefruit, etc. The citrus flavors are bright and bitter, but a candy-like sweetness is also evident. A bit one-dimensional, with very little malt here.

Mouthfeel is thin-medium and nicely carbonated.

Overall this is a good IPA with a bright citrus-peel flavor that reminds me of a handful of other IPAs (Southern Tier and Clipper City come to mind). I generally prefer something with a more varied and complex hop flavor, but I'd definitely drink this one again. Glad Firestone Walker finally hit this area.

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Photo of BitterPachyderm
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

from solomon420 via the mystery box-thanks!!

12 oz. bottle, no freshness, poured into my SN glass...

A-very lively 3 fingers of creamy foam...very sustainable. burnt orange body, almost golden, very ipa

S-very citrusy with some hops, spicy and peppery nose...very ipa

T-solid hop profile, bitter, lots of citrus with some buttery undertones...very ipa

M- slick and oily, a little low on carbonation

D-another superdrinkable ipa

my appreciation has grown so much in such a short time for ipas...i need to go back and review some again, possibly the Sweetwater...it deserves a better score from me!

 603 characters

Photo of LennyOvies
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

L- Tanned yellow body, rich creamy white head.
S- Citrus bomb with hops. Orange, tangerine, pineapple, grapefruit.
T- Hoppy citrus mix. Orange, pineapple, grapefruit, malt, pine.
F- Light, easy drink.
O- This was an 8 month old bottle which, for an IPA, held up incredibly well. Would love to have this fresh.

 309 characters

Photo of Hendry
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper colored in hue and crystal clear, there wasn't much of a head but what was there left decent lacing. While this isn't a tropical assault on the nostrils when taking in the aroma, there are most certainly some piney grapefruit and naval orange peel overtones in there amongst the malt backdrop..

Over the palate Union Jack dances gracefully with some subtle citrus that you pick up in the nose, carbonation that does this IPA justice, some oily resins that are present, and there is a pleasant and relatively long lasting aftertaste. There is a delightful light graham cracker flavor mixed with the hoppiness of this IPA that makes Union Jack vey appealing. The malt bill is rather steep but not unlike otherers in the AIPA style.

A well balanced IPA and a rewarding choice especially at the price point,but the malt content is a bit high for true hop bomb lovers.Double Jack gets it done for real hop hounds.

 917 characters

Photo of Seanstoppable
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a nice amber color with some decent head. Definite citrusy smell, accompanied with a citrusy flavor. Also prevalent in the taste is a nice amount of hops, and a bit of a creamy taste, but also a bitter finish.

Really good mouthfeel, and very drinkable. One of the better beverages I have tried during this California visit.

 331 characters

Photo of Floydster
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle that was given to for free from Stan at Lone Hill Liquor a few weeks ago, thanks to him for being so generous, this was the first time I had seen this brew, glad this replaced the lager

A-Golden orange with some red highlights, 3/4 inch soapy white head, stuck around for close to five minutes, some retention and decent lacing at the beginning

S-Pine hoppiness, floral, citrus inclduing grapefruit, lemon, and tangerines, evident malt backbone, but hops overpowered the rest

T-Surprisingly the malt was the first thing I tasted, then there was a big pine hoppiness presence, followed by a bitter finish that was full of resin, taste did not change much as it warmed, some citrus towards the end with some grapefruit, this one smelled like a double IPA but did not taste like one, hops dominated this beer, flavor was very enjoyable

M-Bitter and dry mouthfeel, medium bodied, nice level of carbonation, sensation was a bit harsh at times, dryness lingered along with the aftertaste

D-Could drink a few bottles of this but it is almost strong enough to be a DIPA, a bit heavy at times, ABV is above average for its style, smooth though

Firestone makes another good beer, will be drinking many six packs of this in the future, one of the stronger California IPAs I have tasted, look forward to trying this on tap, recommended for any hopheads out there

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Photo of greengorilla
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this from a six pack I bought in Virginia. I poured it from a bottle into a stemless wine glass. It was a pretty amber color with a good head. The smell was great. It has a nice grapefruit aroma. The taste is pretty good, but actually a little bit too bitter in my opinion. If they marketed it as a double IPA, it would be spot on. Overall, I liked it, but I would not put it near the top of my favorite IPAs.

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Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
4.23 out of 5 based on 6,484 ratings.
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