Union Jack India Pale Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
1,322 Reviews
Union Jack India Pale AleUnion Jack India Pale Ale
BEER INFO

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

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:
1,322
Ratings:
6,433
Avg:
4.23
pDev:
20.8%
 
 
Wants:
491
Gots:
1,584
For Trade:
13
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Reviews: 1,322 | Ratings: 6,433
Photo of weizenbob
3.68/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I received this 12 ounce bottle as an extra in a trade with Azurescens. Thanks Dan. This is IPA is bottle dated 8/17/10 so I expect the hops to have fallen off the table by now. The alcohol content is listed as a moderately high 7.5% ABV so perhaps the malt bill has held up. Let's see.

An aggressive pour into a goblet yields a frothy off-white two finger-high head. The beer is maize colored and quite clear. Head retention is very good and spotty lacing lines the sides of the goblet.

The instant the seal was cracked on the cap the aromatics of this beer began to manifest. Hops are fairly weak in the equation, but are noted none the less by a bit of grapefruit essence. Tropical fruits are noted as well as a healthy yeastiness. There is some tangerine and a mild caramel scent.

The taste is something else altogether. There an earthy maltiness up front with a rye-like grainy character. Fruit juices taste and feel literal, like somebody squeezed a fresh orange into this beer. There is a slight caramel sweetness attached to a very mellow alcohol note. As expected, the hops have long since clocked out with the exception of some mild lingering bitterness on the backend and aftertaste of this brew. It's something altogether different than an IPA at this point, but still enjoyable for what it is.

The beer is medium bodied. The carbonation seemed pretty active at first but is actually relatively low. The alcohol adds a smooth character that helps everything go down smoothly. This is what one should expect an IPA to feel like in the mouth.

As the bitterness has subsided and the alcohol mellowed, this six-month-old bottle of Union Jack is pretty easy drinking. There is a healthy malt base for this beer to stand on and the alcohol is well hidden in the taste. This is one I'll want to revisit fresh.

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The Two-Schlitz ScaleĀ™: (see my profile for an explanation)
It's not really fair to put an out of date IPA up against any beer so I'm going to forgo the Two-Schlitz scale for this review. This was a tasty brew but I'm sure it's much different when consumed fresh.

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Photo of BucBasil
4.27/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap at Blue Palms Brewhouse in Hollywood, under the name "Blue Palms IPA"

A: Typical golden and clear. Head was slightly offwhite, 2 fingers, and with moderate retention.

S: Balanced, faint but solid overall aroma with fruity tones - light fruits and some citrus with the rind.

T: Very balanced. Not so in your face. Nice bready malt character with nutty notes and various fruity undertones. Prominent citrus notes with a hint of pine freshness in the back. Not too dry. Very solid beer.

Notes: Excellent beer and very drinkable while watching a game or hanging out with some buddies.

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Photo of dbmernin83
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bright golden amber, thick head, great lacing.

Grapefruit hops on the nose with some malty sweetness and a touch of alcohol

Holy grapefruit bomb! A citrus hop 2 by 4 slaps the taste buds followed by a nice, sweet malt massage.

Full mouthfeel, not too heavy, but has a nice light filling creaminess.

This is one of my go-to IPAs. Availability plus deliciousness, keeps me coming back time after time. A staple in the diet of any hophead.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
3.83/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into pint glass. Medium orange color. Large white foamy head. Aroma is grapefruity and floral. A medium bodied IPA. Malts are nutty and slightly sweet. Hops are grapefruity and piney. A nicely balanced IPA. Slightly more fruity than bitter. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and dry. Aftertaste is slightly bitter. Overall, decent IPA.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured on-tap at the Yardhouse in Rancho Cucamonga, CA. The beer was served in a pint glass, and poured a light brown color, with orage highlights and no head. Sweet, hoppy aroma, with light orange essence. Middle and rear tongue hops flavors, balanced of bitter and smooth. Cedar and sweet characteristics, also. The beer has a steady flow of carbonation that keeps the beer light despite it's creamy body. Hoppy green aftertaste and smooth finish make it very easy to drink.

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Photo of NWer
4.62/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into the bottom of a Samuel Smith's pint glass.
Beautiful clear golden with abundant head that held well before leaving behind a nice lace.
The smell was overpowering and unexpected. I don't remember such a powerful introduction from any beer before.
The flavors are very pronounced with the citrus feel you expect from a top notch West coast IPA.
This delivers.
In spades.

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Photo of veinless
4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours crystal-clear light amber, with white foamy, creamy head on top that laces averagely.

Smells of pine, and some citrus, with noticeable mango at the tailend, very pleasant overall. There is some malty sweetness as well, giving it nice balance.

Taste is fantastic, with mango coming out strong with the resin and sweet malt. Little bit of orange is great too.

Mouthfeel is very, very silky smooth, with carbonation not very present, but still enough. Drinkability is great too, alcohol being unnoticeable. Nice tropical IPA makes you want more the more you drink.

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Photo of modernartblues
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from Notes

Poured into a Duvel Tulip, thanks to cduckett16 for the extra!

A: 2.5" creamy white head, nice carbonation as the bubbles fly up from the bottom, head retention is good as is lacing, standard golden amber body with no haze....very pretty

N: oh yes, love this one, oranges, pine, and other tropical fruits dominate....just love the blast of hopiness

T: oranges, grapefruit, pineapple, piney bitter finish, but balanced well with a touch of malt sweetness (is this the dreaded caramel malt backbone that buckeyenation always fears?)....overall though, really solid....

M: nice carbonation makes this one play across the palate nicely

D: excellent, see a sixer in my future

Though this isn't my absolute favorite IPA, it's def. worth seeking out.

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Photo of brew3crew
3.53/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- a golden amber color
S-citrus hops with some grapefruit. maybe it just wasnt as fresh as i wanted it
T-tastes a little stale and not as hoppy as i expected.
M-smooth with a lingering hop bitterness
D-not bad, especially consider abv and all

This may have been a bad bottle, but it was disapointing

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Photo of JayQue
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My first Firestone Walker beer. If the expensive Firestone anniversary beer I bought is at least as good as this one, it is worth the price!!!

Pours a hazy dark gold/light copper color. Big frothy white head, very good head retention and thick lacing. A good looking beer.

Aroma is citrus hops and floral hops, pronounced, impressive, very nice.

Flavor is outstanding. The floral hops were more prominent in the nose that the taste. There is a nice mixture of powerful citrus hops with enough caramel malt to add richness in the taste. This is not balanced..it is a hop bomb with the malt just adding another dimension to an awesome beer.

Mouthfeel is crisp and rich. The malt adds to the richness. No hint of the alcohol.

Drinkability is very good. I shared the bomber, could have drank it all myself.

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Photo of Neecee513
4.34/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into pint glass

A: Amber; nice, beady head w/ good retention

S: Citrus hop, pleasant, sweet

T: Moderate bitterness

M: Moderate carbonation, smooth finish, not dry

D: I absolutely loved this beer!! Not over bitter, with a good malt backbone. Pleasant all around!

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Photo of bosco7
4.45/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pale color with a head that is sustained.

Grapefruit, pine, mango juice in the nose. Nice and dank.

Above average hop flavors here. Similar to Pliny the Elder in hop character (but not as overwhelmingly awesome). Pine, mango, and grapefruit. Bitterness is bracing but balanced with a sweet and very clean malt profile. Very nice

Mouthfeel is a little fuller than I was anticipating but it is definitely not cloying or sticky like some breweries make their IPAs. Overall a very fine beer with plenty of hop complexity that is very drinkable. I think this beer gives Pliny a run for the money. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
3.9/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Union Jack has a brass colored body and an off-white head. The head is thick and tightly bubbled, and boasts great retention. The lacing is also very good, as it coats my glass in sheets.

The scent is dominated by citrus hops, with grapefruit being the dominant fruit. Underneath that lurks a little bit of a malt base.

Union Jack's flavor leans primarily on bright, citrus flavored hops, which is exactly what it should do. It features flavors of grapefruit, orange and some generic fruit notes in addition. The malt bill doesn't do much to balance out the hops, but it does allow for a little bit of a backbone, with lightly toasted caramel flavors.

Union Jack is probably on the full-bodied end of the spectrum.

Union Jack is a solid IPA overall, and I'm glad I got to try it on-tap instead of in a bottle.

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Photo of bum732
4.42/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

S: Bold citrus bouquet, orange, grapefruit, mango, classic west coast hops, slight dark breadiness.

L: Brilliant clear amber yellow, decent head that dissipates, good lacing.

T: Crisp citrusy hops with a firm soft bready sweet backbone. Medium-high bitterness finishing with a hoppy dryness. Very clean.

M: Medium-full body. Medium carbonation, alcohol slightly present.

A great, clean west coast IPA. Just really fantastic.

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Photo of spree92
4.57/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. into Kilkenny pint glass.
First thing that hit my nose was apple. I was pleasantly surprised. Maybe the smallest carbonation bubbles I've seen in an IPA. Golden-amber with a beautiful, sticky head. Bitter, but not over-powering.
This is one of the better IPAs I have had in a while.

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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.

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Photo of billab914
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Oberon pint glass. It poured a clear amber color with a thin but bubbly white head to it. The head settled down after a minute and it left a modest amount of lacing on the glass as I drank it.

The aroma has a good mix of malts and hops. Some nice citrusy hops come through and mix with a sweeter, malty, slightly caramely flavor. More malt forward then most West Coast IPA's, but I think it works well for it.

The taste also has a very nice mix of hoppy and malty flavors. A brighter, floral, citrusy, hoppy flavor comes through very nicely. The sweeter, malty flavors are also very present throughout the flavor. The sweeter malt really keeps things in relative balance for the style.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, it was a very nice IPA. I really liked the more malt forward and sweeter notes it added to the bright hoppiness. Very nice beer overall.

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Photo of rtepiak
4.27/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a wonderful ipa with a brisk quality but a distinct bitter orange marmalade malt quality that hides deep in the back ground. Pine and orange nose with nice balance. Intense hopped fresh taste from a fresh keg flavor. Nice white head with a clear golden color. An ipa that would be good fresh and a year old but not for those that expect a earthy resin like quality pine. Its a one dimensional in that aspect. Although very solid AIPA.

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Photo of Chizoad
4.42/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm definitely getting spoiled when I thought this was average when I first tasted it. It's not average in the least. Pretty outstanding offering, and was like an oasis in a desert of bad beer when I had a pint of it.

Typical IPA appearance. I just never find these to be outstanding looking beers. All you can really tell is that it's not necessarily bad. Clear amber with a nice cap of foam. The usual.

Very good and interesting aroma. Obvious malts, citrus hops, and as one friend pointed out, lychee in the nose.

The beer is bitter and sweet in just the right proportions. Extremely well balanced. Resin in the hops, but that citrus is present still.

Nice carbonation and medium body. Bitterness never clings, leading to a very drinkable IPA.

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Photo of gopens44
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - A touch darker than straw colored, but still in the ballpark. A good 1" of foamy head with awesome retention.

S - Citrus, earthy, bold and no nonsense!

T - Not too bitter, a little sweet and a ton of grapefruit. Again, this is a no nonsense IPA that is everything that is good about an IPA

M - Creamy with low carbonation. A slight bit dry and no discernible aftertaste.

I may have found my favorite IPA! This creation is just splendid. Sad that it took me a while to discover it, but now that I have, it'll be in my fridge early and often!

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Photo of DNICE555
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Diomede for the bottle!

A - Light copper body with good clarity. Nice white head with great lacing.

S - Fresh Citrus Hops and a good malt aroma in the backround.

T - Awesome. Hops, citrus, malt, this is a tasty beverage.

M - Great feel to it. Fresh, balanced, so tasty.

D - All the way from CA to CT this beer is still very fresh tasting. Wish this was readily available on the east coast. What a great beer.

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Photo of silentjay
4.09/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a crystal clear orangey copper with a nice almost white head that retains well and laces okay.

nice aroma. lots of pine, grass, and orangey citrus. good mix of hops. some soft malts in the background, maybe.

very piney again in flavor, and bitter. citrus zest and some unripened tropical fruit (pineapple) that adds some tartness. nice. pretty strong flavors that have this bordering on DIPA territory. malts are subtle, but caramelly sweet.

mouthfeel is about where it should be with a light/medium body and plenty of resin left behind on the finish.

drinks pretty well. a bit strong for the style (which i dont mind) but the alcohol is integrated well.

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Photo of notsoprobeer
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a goldish orange with a white head that dissipated slowly and left nice lacing. Aroma is mostly piney hops with some citrus. Flavor is piney hops with caramel malts. I like this beer's stronger malt profile. The 7.5% ABV provides a nice kick. Body is medium and it has a bit of a creamy mouth feel, but not to the extent of of Solace or Pale 31.

Another great beer from Firestone Walker. While I liked Union Jack, I thought Solace and Pale 31 were even better.

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Photo of JThysens
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was fantastic. It was a bitter smelling regular IPA without the smack in the mouth afterward. it was very surprising. I do like the bitterness in most IPA's but I like the abundance of flowery and fruity flavors most. This had all the flavor and punch of a normal IPA but didnt have the big kick in the end. one of my new favorite IPA's for sure.

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Photo of grittybrews
4.49/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Poured a ruddy orange-amber into a pint glass with a finger of fluffy white head. Very nice aroma of citrus and sweet caramel.

Moderate carbonation with a prickly, full mouthfeel that's just a touch resinous. Hoppy blast up front with pine, grass, and citrus followed by a sold caramel malt backbone. Pleasantly bitter grapefruit finish.

Extremely balanced and very drinkable. Impressive IPA from Firestone Walker -- wish I hadn't waited so long to try this one!

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Union Jack India Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,322 ratings.
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