Union Jack India Pale Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
94
outstanding
1,348 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): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by beerguy101 on 10-09-2003

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,348
Ratings:
6,572
Avg:
4.23
pDev:
9.46%
 
 
Wants:
508
Gots:
1,677
For Trade:
13
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Reviews: 1,348 | Ratings: 6,572
Photo of Halcyondays
3.47/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle from a six-pack from BevMo Huntington Beach,

A: Pours a light orange, with a slow to form small white head, good retention, light lacing.

S: Pungent hops, mostly white grapefruit and citrus peel, light tangerine.

T: Lots of bitter melon, cantaloupe, and grapefruit upfront, with a bit of tropical fruit and caramel malt to end. Not my favourite hop profile, but very full-flavoured.

M: Crisp biting carbonation, with a lingering aftertaste, medium-bodied.

D: A pretty good IPA all-around, I won't have any problem finishing the sixer.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
3.89/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One of 24 taps at the Greenroom, Flagstaff. My second beer, the name pulled me towards it, would it be like a UK IPA, being called Union Jack?

This is an all American IPA, hops to the fore!

The deep golden orange almost headless beer stared back at me, daring me to sniff and drink it. We locked horns and the battle began.

Hops attacked my nose, with hints of citrus fruits attempting to sneek through without a safety net, I laughed and took the hits without flinching.

Do your worst American hops, I'm ready for you. The taste was a hop blend which didn't have the bitterness some US IPA's have a habit of giving you, this was easy drinking compared to many. My delicate English palate wasn't offended in the slightest. I also noticed some caramel notes trying to get out of the glass, but the hops didn't allow anything else to have a say in the flavours and wouldn't let it become truely noticable.

Not a bad experience at all, I must be getting used to all these hops I keep coming up against on my US road trip.

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Photo of Derek
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Amber with a white head, some retention, amazing lacing.

S: Great hop nose, pine, citrus rind, candied fruit, pineapple.

T: Very assertive bitterness, rind, candied pineapple, pine, warming alcohol.

M: Moderate body has some hop acidity with an off-dry finish.

D: Like hops?

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Photo of clayrock81
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured a clearish orange body with good head and lace ring around glass. Aroma is a mix of wet, soapy, citric hops and touch of bready and sweet like malts. The beer is a little fuller bodied but not chewey, goes down easy with citric hops galore, touches of sweetness from both possible caramel malt and some possible tropical/sweet fruit notes. Finishes crisp and sharp without ruining my palette and overall a really good IPA.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.1/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Medium gold with a 1.5 finger head and some lacing on the glass.

S: Grapefruit and a hint of pine. A swirl of the glass unfetters this aromatic beauty.

T: Bitter grapefruit with a medium bitter finish which lasts for a bit in the back of the mouth (I suppose that's where the beer last touched my mouth so it makes sense). Resiny and piny. I also get some spruce, or what I imagine spruce may or may not taste like (like I've even had spruce). This beer exemplifies a west coast ipa in that it is very hoppy and has a very small malt profile.

M: Light bodied, great carbonation, coats the mouth with a sticky texture.

D: I don't know what the availability of this will be, but I plan on sessioning this on a number of occasions in the future. In California the IPA market is flooded, but apparently FW isn't afraid to get their feet wet and they've suceeded in crafting a quality IPA which can stand up to the best of them.

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Photo of jzeilinger
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Pours a vibrant amber orange color with moderate amount of carbonation and very good head retention.

S - Very pronounced pine and citric grapefruit with crisp and crackery malt. Also has semi-ripe pineapple in the nose.

T - For a single IPA, VERY impressive! WOW! HUGE pineapple, pine, generous amounts of ripe grapefruit, and dry, crackery malt.

M - Finishes semi-dry and very crisp, lighter side of medium body.

D - Exceptional.

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

On Tap at Dinosaur BBQ Syracuse NY for 6$

Appearance - Clear copper colour with a large size beige coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some great lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes.

Smell - Malts, caramel, hops, grapefruit, tangerines

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel and malts mixed with hops. There is also some grapefruit/tangerines mixed with some notes of pineapple. It ends with a sweet aftertaste with a good amount of lingering hop bitterness.

Overall – Love this beer.. I had it side by side with Double Jack and preferred it. It has more of a sharp citrus/hop flavour to it. Happy to have had the chance to try them both on tap.

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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 Bitterbill
4.23/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another brew purchased at South Bay D&L. Thanks Joey!

This pours a clear gold with a 2 finger head of foam and plenty of lacing. Good head retention.

The smell is big notes of grapefruit and not much more but I like it.

The taste is very hoppy with a big bold grapefruit profile but I can taste a bit of malt in the background and it *does* take some of the edge off the bitterness. Nice medium body and carbonation, it finishes with a citric bitterness that lasts through the aftertaste. It's quite easy drinking, though I have to watch it because it isn't exactly a lightweight when it comes to the abv. This is a very nice IPA!

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.47/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep coppery amber colour with a filmy head of white. Looks pretty dark, and pretty filmy for an IPA. Lots of lacing at least. Decent, but not exciting.

Nose is very pleasant, but lacking some of the potency and sweet straight exciting complexity. Some lightly spicy pickled orange aromas, with a big malty caramel and butterscotch character
Not overdone, like diacetyl at least. Decent.

Taste is sharp and pleasantly hoppy. Pretty well done. Caramel is a bit too pronounced but it is killed by the pleasant, direct hoppiness. Feel is a little thin, but the carbonation is spot on.

Drinkable enough. Not a great IPA, but a decent one. I wanted something more, but this is good enough in its way.

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Photo of corby112
4.4/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly cloudy, dark golden orange color with tangerine edges and a two finger frothy white head that slowly settles into a lasting collar. Very good retention with rings and streaks of soapy lacing left behind.

Slightly earthy floral hop aroma that's bursting with tropical and citrus fruit sweetness before being countered by subtle sweet malt backbone. Dank, oily and resinous with fresh buds and grassy pine followed by hints of grapefruit, mango, pineapple and orange peel. Slight caramel malt presence with toffee, biscuit and graham cracker. Very inviting.

Medium bodied with a perfect balance of dank, sticky hop bitterness, sweet citrus/tropical fruit notes and a sweet malt backbone. Dry, earthy bitterness up front with a spicy/grassy flavor along with pine needle and alpha acids. This is countered mid-palate by a juicy tropical and citrus hop flavor with notes of blood orange, grapefruit, pineapple and mango. The perfect amount of fruit sweetness without taking away from the bitterness. Decent malt backbone balancing things out without interfering with the hops. Subtle caramel sweetness along with toffee, bread, biscuit and graham cracker. A little heavier and a touch more malt than most west coast IPAs but its perfectly balanced without losing the delicious, complex hop flavor. Exemplary for the style.

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Photo of Haybeerman
4.28/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Bright, clear copper/orange color. Poured a 2 finger bubbly off-white head with fair retention to a half finger even skim. Lots of sticky lacing.

S: Citrus and grapefruit with some light sweet fruits. Bready malts in the background too.

T: Consistent with smell with light fruit more decernable as pineapple and oranges. Resiny piney hops in the middle with slightly sweet crystal malt. Sharply bitter in the finish for balance. I like it a lot.

M: Medium body. Ample carbonation. Smooth and coating with a bit of lingering bitterness. Disgueses the abv well.

D: I'll say. 'Nuf said.

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Photo of Rhettroactive
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From 12oz bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 2/7/12
*From notes

-- I can't believe it took me this long to finally review FW's Union Jack. Shame on me. --

A: Hazy nectarine in color. A forceful pour yields a foamy three finger head. Quality lacing and collar follow.

S: Tight pine and generous West Coast fruit. Be sure to get this fresh to maximize your nasal enjoyment.

T: More pine and resin then a lot of West Coast AIPA's. It overwhelms the fore to mid, and the back is where the mild, chilled out fruit quality comes to relevance. Tasty stuff for sure.

M: More of a silky feel, less cream and body, more easy drinking. Would I like a bit more fluff? Sure, but it's not half bad as it is.

O: Not quite on the same level as Masala Mama or Sculpin, but damn close. Firestone Walker's Union Jack is another in a long line of delicious West Coast hop forward brews, and something that's always a pleasure to find cold in my fridge.

Recommended.

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

Poured a deep orange colr with a white head and good carbonation. Nose is big grapefruit, orange peel. Taste is chewy, acidic, caramel malt perhaps, orange peel, pine, sweet and a big hop bite on the end. Mouthfeel is acidic, tasty and sweet. Drinkability is good as usual.

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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 pat61
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A: Hazy copper gold under a 2” sudsy, persistent, lacy off white foam cap.
S: Melon, citrus and biscuit
T: Starts melon and citrus riding on biscuit to graham cracker and concluding with a well balanced citrus zest bitter finish. The bitterness is not harsh.
M: Creamy, medium body and very fine, soft carbonation.
O: A very drinkable, go to American IPA.

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Photo of beertunes
3.35/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in straight pint glass. Poured a clean and clear golden amber with about an inch of slightly off white head that dissipated very quickly and left more than moderate lacing.

A floral hop aroma, backed with some pine, hits the nose upfront. The malt that , by definition, must be in beer has no presence. Yup, you guessed it, the flavors are dominantly pine and flowers.

Body and drinkability are average for the style. Overall, while this is a very enjoyable beer, I've now had a couple and look forward to more, it's just your basic California IPA. Very tasty, worth having several of, but does not stand away from the pack.

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Photo of kscaldef
3.72/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: Golden with good clarity. Splotchy lacing.

S: Citrus and candy aromas.

T: Balance of orange and pine.

F/O: Good drinkability. Classic, but pretty restrained.

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Photo of akorsak
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to brianj555 for this bottle.

A: The IPA is a hazy tea color, somewhere on the spectrum between yellow and orange. The hazy is superficial, resulting in an ale that is tranlucent. A thick head on pour is nicely lacing around the sides of the glass.

S: The nose is piquant, thick with resiny citrus hops. Orange peel is prominent, as is grapefruit and some pine. Fantastic nose!

T: Great flavor. From the first sip, the strength of the hops is impressive. Citrus, especially orange peel, lemon and grapefruit, grabs my attention. Fruity hop flavors run rampant but never overshadow the malts. The caramel grains provide an excellent foundation. The hops, while vibrant, remain in check and prevent this from becoming a hop bomb.

M: The hops are lively but adequately restrained; they never destroy the palate.

D: Even at 7.5%, I could pound this beer all day long. Another great ale from Firestone Walker.

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Photo of wordemupg
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

355ml bottle poured into tulip 3/8/13 thanks Ian for the bottle

A golden yellow liquid with tiny bubbles feeding a thumbs width of foam that has great retention leaving several partial rings deep down the glass

S floral and tropical, mango, tangerine, pineapple and lemon with some pine and caramel popping up here and there, smells the part

T more rind and pine then in the mouth and less floral and tropical notes, no complaints but the nose had a little something over the flavor

M medium full with a nice bitter snap, very slick on the palate almost slimy and just a little sticky on the lips, lingering pine and lemon rind just keeps going

O well hidden booze and well rounded, could pass for a DIPA in my books or at least an IPA and a half, went down in no time

I have a feeling the Double Jack in my fridge is going to be a palate wrecker, I'd drink this on a regular basis if I could get my hands on it with ease

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Photo of Stevedore
4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Au Cheval in Chicago, IL. 16oz served in a shaker pint glass 10/19/2014.

A- Clear golden-copper body, one finger white head, rings upon rings of lacing. Looks like a prototypical IPA. [4.25]

S- Grainy malt, bright citrus, grapefruit and pine aromas. Smells delicious; the combination itself is not superbly complex but the aromatic hop contribution is simply excellent. Similar to that of Three Floyds' hoppy pale ales. Very aromatic and appealing. [4.25]

F- Delicious grapefruit, tangerines, oranges kick things off with a nice grainy pale malt sweetness, caramel to add some balance and complexity, finishing off with a nice mild pine bitterness. Nice complexity to this, with clean transitions and combinations of new and old flavours. As surprising as it is to judge, it seems to taste/drink better than it smells, which is saying quite a bit. [4.5]

M- Medium bodied, perfect in its substance and carbonation. Crisp, refreshing but with a nice dry pine bitterness on the backend as the citrus and grainy malts fade away into oblivion. Delicious and easy to drink. [4.25]

O- One of the best IPAs out there when I can find it on draught. Out of the bottle, this beer is decidedly less impressive but that's probably because the freshest bottles I can find are one month old. Firestone Walker really needs to figure out their distribution kinks in the Great Lakes region. [4.25]

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Photo of Immortale25
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Label says Bottled On: 10/04/12

A- Pours a clean light amber color with a 3/4 inch white head that retains well showing good foam formation before slipping down to a 1/4 inch head and sudsy, sticky lacing following behind.

S- Grassy, citric hops with a small malt background and a quick whiff of alcohol.

T- Bitter and bright hop flavor that's balanced out by the malt but it's the hops that are the main component. Sharp twangs of hop bitterness in the front and lingering in the back. Not too complex, but enjoyable. Alcohol is subdued allowing for a smooth drink. Notes of grapefruit and lemon zest.

M- Very tight but moist. Medium carbonation and a body that's a bit on the lighter side of things for the style.

O- Solid across the board. Nothing to get super fired up about but it's definitely well-done.

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

Excited for this since I love Double Jack so much.

A-Pours a completely transparent light orange color. Thousands of bubbles rise to the nice off-white head. Head is smaller and leaves excellent lacing. One of the most extensive sheets of lacing I've seen from an IPA. A very clean looking IPA.

S-Hops are very noticeable. Floral and herbal hops mostly. Pine and citrus too. I get that nice green onion smell here too. Resiny in the nose. Malt is the backing here. All hops.

T-Oh very hoppy! Hops are so fresh and grassy. Super grassy, super floral. Juicy fruits that also combine with some sturdy pine as well. Aftertaste is a bit bitter and it lasts forever. Boasts a nice malty sweetness too that helps to balance the hops. A very drinkable flavor.

M-Medium body and medium carbonation. Lightly resinous. Carbonation is tingly and nice. Dry.

O/D-Yeah, this is one hell of an IPA. Definitely has a unique hop bouquet that I really enjoy. Goes down easy. Now becomes one of the better 6-pack IPAs I have had. Just oh so solid.

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Photo of Axnjxn
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

on draft at mekong in Richmond, snifter.

dark copper color with a very nice head. smell is amazingly hoppy with piney hop goodness. taste is super fresh hops..piney..nice bitter finish. maybe the perfect normal IPA. almost full bodied but easy drinking.

overall just a world class IPA. never pass this up if its fresh!

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Photo of barczar
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a brilliantly clear golden light copper color with a solid 2 finger cream head that lingers and eventually leaves thick lacing.

Aroma is dominated by caramel malt, floral hops, and a citrus undertone. Pine, resin, and grapefruit become evident.

The flavor is initially fairly balanced between bready malt and citrus, finishing decidedly bitter. Notes of grapefruit, resin, pine, and herbal tea-like hops emerge.

Body is moderate with moderate carbonation. There's a hint of astringency and a slight alcohol warmth.

Overall, a very solid, sessionable beer, despite the abv.
Not the most complex ipa, but solid.

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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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