Union Jack India Pale Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

1,348 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): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by beerguy101 on 10-09-2003

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Reviews: 1,348 | Ratings: 6,572
Photo of ThePold
4.92/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

From a can 85 days old into a DFH IPA glass. This particular beer was close to its end days, and didn't have a lot of head, but I've had many fresher with a frothy top. Color is lighter than some IPAs , dark gold rather than coppery. Taste is still great, but sharper than Two Hearted and not as sharp as Stone.

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Photo of matcris
4.11/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A very clear, amber/orange, fast bubbles rising, and a half finger of soapy white head that fades quickly to a ring. Very minor lacing. Aroma is tropical fruits, stone fruits, a little pine, citrus rind, and a touch of caramel. Lots of tropical fruit and stone fruit in the flavor, as well as mild caramel. You can just sit and try to put your finger on all the individual fruit notes that come out of this one. Feel is very dry, full carbonation, and medium body. Good brew.

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Photo of snowmageddon
4.18/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle dated 7/19/16.

A: pours a frothy off-white head that leaves plenty of lacing. The beer has wonderful clarity. Nice golden orange pour.
S: big west -coast piney hops, tangerine, citrus
T: bright orange, grapefruit citrus notes are prominent. Hops are assertive, especially on the end. Finishes quickly
M: medium-high carbonation, medium body.
O: really great beer. This bottle has almost 6 months on it, and it is still exceptional. One more example of FW's mastery of IPA.

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Photo of lwcreasy
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A slightly cloudy amber color in the body, with a dense, off-white head of an inch or an inch-and-half. Thick lacing, and a glorious ring crowns the brew as it falls, encircling an amber lake and ensorcelling this drinker. Time to put a nose in.

Delicious zest of varied citrus and a fresh, piney hop aroma on a rising, subtle backbone of crackery malt and spice. Wonderful sweet tangerine, and sharper lemon are the stars, and continue to increase for a while. The aroma seems endless. Some other fruit seems to be flitting in the background. Can't make it out, except for a slight, banana-like ester presence. This balances nice with the dominant citrus and pine impression. Glorious, glorious West Coast aroma.

Wonderful pine quality exercises the tongue straight out of the gate. Orange rind on the back half of the sip, as it glides down with that back-end bitterness. Sprightly, crackery, lively malt increases its influence slightly with more exposure of the beer to the tongue, but gives in to a wonderful, hoppy hoppy hop dance every time. Still seems to be just enough as counterpoint to a wonderful, medium + bitterness and a clean, but pungently hoppy, finish.

Medium to medium-light body. Very drinkable with a slight creaminess in the feel that serves as a fantastic sleight-of-hand for a cutting mid-palate rush of carbonation and liveliness.

The standard-bearing west coaster!

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Photo of shiu-chan
4.49/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle to pint glass, light translucent amber pour with one inch head dissipating slowly. Nice lacing that retains.
Hoppy, piney, grapefruit peels and buttersotch.
Medium to full bodied richness with sweet malt, citrus and piney bitterness. Medium carbonation.
Overall, an above average IPA.

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Photo of joaopmgoncalves
4.24/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured to a teku glass.

A: The body is yellow to orange with some relative opaqueness. The head created when pouring was two fingers thick but after a while it transformed itself to a very minimal head but with good retention now. Lots of lacing.
S: The aroma has a very soft profile of pine followed by pineapple and a good hop profile. Since the pine characteristic has been softened here, the aroma is really good. There's some sweetness coming in but I cant't find where from.
T: The taste has some minor sweetness from the malts but then it's a bit acidic and bitter with some pine, pineapple and hops. I was expecting a bit more here.
M: The body is medium to medium high. The carbonation is a bit excessive but the bitterness profile is really good because it leaves a lot of hop flavor that's really fantastic.
O: It's only my third Firestone but I was indeed expecting a bit more here, even though the beer is of course a lot above the average. Since it's an IPA and it was bought online shipping from Belgium to Portugal, I should try it again soon.

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Photo of KatyBeerGuy
4.11/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from can into tulip. One finger head dissipated quickly. Nice aroma of pine and I detect some sweet corn for some reason. Very nice initial sip, leading Ng to a wonderful nderful middle and finish. Hoppy, citrusy with the right amount of bitter. Don't detect the juicy orange I sometimes get with sculpin or stone. I'll finish the six pack happily, but not my Fave IPA.

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Photo of craftbeersweden
3.81/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Really like this!

Clear golden with a white head that leaves thick lacing on the glass.

Caramel malt, citrus, floral hops, pine, resin and grapefruit.
Great mouthfeel. Thick and soft.. Medium to high carbonation. Dry and bitter ending.

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Photo of MeanMotaScootah
3.71/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On the pour very little aroma - some sweet malt and earthy hop is present. Taste is very thick, toasted caramel/butterscotch, sweet malt backbone with earthy/piney hops. There is a thick pine resin hops character throughout this beer that might be very attractive to some hop heads but for the average beer consumer might be construed as offensive. This is a very well crafted IPA that I would argue falls under the DIPA style. This is basically an English bitter on steroids.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.44/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a two finger white head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Crystal clear amber color. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Grapefruit hop nose, flavor is grapefruit hops and some caramel. Lingering bitter aftertaste. $2.65 for a 12oz bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, MA.

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Photo of 81tillinfinity
4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

3 week old can. Upfront citrus and a bit of earthy hop tones a great beer obviously. I appreciate the higher abv and lower price In my region. No need to elaborate further a must try.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

When you want to push the limits of ordinary single ipa, here is where the line is drawn at 7.5%. An amber like color, this is a professional looking beer, replete with 3/5" white head. Nice dry hop aroma, FW distribution is always a little weird, seemingly getting the beer fresh, you need to be far away from Paso Robles. Plenty of old bottles on shelves near CA.

Taste hits all the right notes, a little bit of toasted pale malt, a little bit of caramel, plenty of hops, assertive bitterness, ample pine notes. Good dry finish. Good price, still in 6 packs.

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Photo of AZBeerDude72
4.36/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a rich golden color with minor foam and slight lacing. Smells of citrus, hops, some floral notes also. Taste is a nice hit of bitterness with a good hops flavor and pine, also lemon and herb like essence, finalizing with a dry finish. Very clean and enjoyable beer.

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Photo of mbrando33
4.83/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pretty darn close to a perfect beer, in my book. Excellent hops with an amazing balance. This is the IPA that could convert a great many people to try more IPA's. Firestone has made some fine beers over the years and this one is right up there with their best.

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Photo of NicolasBird
4.39/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours on the darker yellow side for an IPA, two finger head and pretty clear. Smell is slightly piney, with some fruity notes. Feel is medium-light, and carbonated perfectly. Taste is fantastic. First thing that hits me is a little pine, which fades to a fruity taste, then leaves a nice bitterness on the back end of your tongue. This is a bitter IPA, but nothing too intense. It is perfectly balanced in my opinion. This beer is decently priced and available most places here where I live in UT. Very solid beer, yummy.

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Photo of SteelPenguin
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I picked this up as an afterthought when I was in Vermont a couple of weeks ago.

Slightly fruity with just enough bitterness to balance out the fruit. Easy to drink. Makes me wish it was available in NE Ohio.

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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 josanguapo
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From Beergium. Kin Teku glass. Watching Los Soprano 2x04. Very fruity (pineapple) with the adequate amount of bitterness to compensate. Improves the more you drink

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Photo of fscottkey
3.13/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: [4.00] There is a canned on date (06/01/2016). The can also lists the ABV (7.5%). The beer is a light honey color. It forms 1/2 a finger of white head. The head has some longevity and it sticks like crazy to the glass.

S: [3.50] Pineapple, dank resin, lemon rind.

T: [2.75] Pine, tart lemon rind, astringent bitter flavor.

M: [3.50] Good mouthfeel. Nice heft and carbonation. The lingering over-bitterness is a problem on the finish.

O: [3.00] This beer features a flavor that is similar to orange juice after brushing your teeth. It is overly astringent and bitter with nothing to lighten the blow. I am not a fan of the taste.

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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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Photo of dsa7783
4.46/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle copped at Cloverleaf Tavern. Copper hue with moderate head. Strong hop presence with a well-balanced malt backbone. Excellent rendition of the style. Strong pine aroma with equal flavor. Drinkable and at the same time refreshing.

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Photo of biegaman
4.13/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Ironic for a beer named Union Jack to have a glistening golden complexion that kind of mimics that of a setting sun. But it still looks mighty and triumphant - bold, blistered highlights shine on while bubbles tirelessly build upon their castle made out of sturdy, ivory white foam. If this is half as good as it looks I'll still be pleased.

Given the name you'd expect an English-leaning IPA - the aroma suggests otherwise. The bouquet is crammed with Pacific Northwest hops. Notes of lemon, pineapple, papaya and pine all rise above the beer's ultra-bready, biscuity malt base. Good thing for the citrus and sweetness because there's an herbal dimension that's so strong as to almost be medicinal.

From first sip right through to finish, alpha acids are hard at work scrubbing away at all that toasted, caramelly maltiness. While many IPAs hint at citrus, there's a tangibly pulpy 'fresh-squeezed' flavour to this one. Notes of orange and grapefruit juice help cut through some of that bitter, 'green', herbal cough remedy note mentioned already.

And while there is four pounds of hops per barrel (which is a lot) most comes in the form of late addition and dry hopping. So contrary to how it may sound, this combination of tree roots and fruit piths blend beautifully with the bakers confectionery and makes for an immensely pleasant beer (provided you sign off on the 7.5% alcohol and 70 IBU).

Sounds odd to say, but Union Jack damn well should be the flagship beer of this American brewery! Firestone Walker kind of made a name for themselves by differentiating with brands like DBA, their Anniversary Series releases and more recently the blended sours made at their Barrelworks location. But their IPA is still up there with the best of them.

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Photo of TrueOregonian
4.44/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L- Poured with 1 inch head that dissipates slowly.
A lighter golden color with a good amount of carbonation.

S- floral, citrus mainly

T- floral is at the forefront, pine, citrus, very well put together. Alot of ipa's with floral tastes being the predominant flavor is just not as well done as this beer is.
Perfectly balanced.

F- dry finish with that floral flavor left on the lips.

Overall- world class beer. If you can find this beer in your area pick it up.

bottled 05/10/2016
Opened 7/30/2016
Amazing flavors still at 3 months

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Photo of jrsqc7
3.53/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Great looking lacy legs

Very underwhelming aroma. To this nose that's been broken several times and enjoyed the scent of thousands of smokes it is.... there but hardly noticeable.

It tastes like a stereotypical ipa. Nothing amazing here. Ignore the hype.

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Photo of laketang
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

poured from a 12 oz. can
clear amber with a large white head
pine, earthy, some citrus, grapefruit
smooth bitterness, nice hop flavor
medium finish, medium finish
great beer for me, worthy of the price.

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Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
4.23 out of 5 based on 6,572 ratings.
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