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Wookey Jack | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
688 Reviews
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Wookey JackWookey Jack
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by barleywinefiend on 03-11-2012

BEER STATS
Reviews:
688
Ratings:
4,572
Avg:
4.23
pDev:
22.93%
 
 
Wants:
334
Gots:
965
For Trade:
15
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Reviews: 688 | Ratings: 4,572
Photo of TCgoalie
4.07/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The smell is terrific...skunky pine heaven into my nostrils. The taste follows suit with as juxtaposition of dark toffee malts against bright lemon-lime pine. Some rye spice rounds out the deal. Medium in the mouth with moderate drying. This is a very unusual black ale due to the interesting hop varietals.

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Photo of FBarber
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a thick foamy mocha colored head. Looks more like a stout than anything - lovely for a black ale. Head dissipates but leaves lots of sticky lacing and a tun mocha colored film on top of the beer. The film sticks around until the end of the beer with sticky lacing the whole way down.

Smell is an interesting aroma of rye malts, toasted rye bread, bitter grass, pineapple and an earthy wood aroma. A touch of chocolate and spice is also noted in the aroma.

Taste is initially very strong on the rye and pumpernickel bread flavors. It seriously tastes like liquid rye bread. There is a strong bitterness from the hops that is earthy, woody and grassy. Some chocolate notes are there with a dry cocoa like character towards the back end of the flavor. The cocoa like notes with the very bitter hoppiness makes for a dry finish. The beer is surprisingly bitter up front but the lingering aftertaste is a dry sweet chocolatey one that is really nice. Very interesting flavor progression on the tongue.

Feel is medium carbonation, with a nice smooth feel on the beer. The weight is close to a DIPA but given the whole package it feels appropriate. Nice dry resinous finish.

Overall a really exemplary beer for the style. If you like rye beers you have to try this one - its pretty outstanding as rye beers go.

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Photo of BFCarr
4.46/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Even 1 year old it's good. Roasty IPA. Pours black with a good tan head. Bitter hop flavor with the roasted rye background. I think the roasted rye adds to the mouthfeel. Worthy of a try.

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

On tap at the City Tap House - Logan Square, Philadelphia. Served in a Tulip glass. Nice hoppy flavor to this one. Went down way too easily. I'll be back.

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Photo of Mosstrooper
4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22oz bottle into Duvel tulip glass.

Appearance: Pours black with a substantial brown head that has a lot of staying power. When the head finally dissipates, it leaves behind a thick ring of foam around the glass.

Smell: Spicy rye alongside herbal and piney hop aromas. Hints of pineapple.

Taste: Begins spicy before rounding to some tropical fruit flavor. Finishes with woody bitterness with a bit more rye spiciness.

Mouthfeel: Fuller in body with balanced carbonation and an oily, sticky finish. Also finishes with some warming alcohol.

Overall: An excellent beer- one of the better ones I have had of this style.

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

An absolute blueprint of what a 'black ale' or in my estimation a 'black IPA' should be like. Nose and taste of coffee roastiness and a hint of chocolate offset by a crisp citrus bitterness. Neither is overpowering, but a smooth balance ensues.

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Photo of whynot44
4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark opaque brown, basically black, with some ruby highlights against the light and a substantial foamy tan head that retreats slowly and leaves plenty of nice lacing.

The aroma at first is grapefruit and pine resin followed by rich, vaguely fruity malt - maybe dark plums or cherries.

The taste is similar with the piney/citrus hops up front and a rich malt carrying it along. lots of slightly sweet, slightly fruity malt notes with hints of toast, coffee, chocolate and pepper blending in for a really nice balance. I'm getting really fond of this style and this is an excellent example.

Mouth feel is great, full-bodies and smooth, very drinkable but great for sipping.

Altogether this is a near perfect blend of all the good things we want in a brew, excellent.

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Photo of hreb
4.44/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yeasty aroma accompanied by a serious punch of green hops. Centennial, Amarillo? [almost: website says Citra & Amarillo] Beer itself is nearly opaque black with just a tinge of reddish brown when held up to direct light. Extra large brown head. Flavor is a really smooth, almost creamy, full-on rye IPA. The robust edge in the rye flavor is complemented perfectly by the healthy IBU quotient, though I don't think there's anything roasty or otherwise blackened in the flavor to suggest the black Lovibond rating. It's even a little bit citrusy.

22oz bottle with "12/14/12 09:20" printed on the bottom left. Highly recommended. Among the best rye IPAs I've ever had. Must try side by side with Lenny's some time. (interesting side note: though this is 83% as alcoholic as Lenny's, it's about a third as viscous.)

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Photo of dbl_delta
3.9/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 11/30/15 into pint glass. Pours a dark, dark brown with a substantial tan head. Initial impression is grapefruit hops bitterness, roasted malt, and a slightly peppery rye bite. This was when it was cold. As it warms, the flavor profile changes markedly - from bitter to sweet. Alcohol is quite well hidden. Somewhat dry finish.

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Photo of dd43
4.21/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

One of the better rye based ales I've tasted. I don't always gravitate towards rye in the mash bill, but it just works exceedingly well in this beer. Robust piney hop bitterness, some roasted coffee accents on the nose, and a dark bakers chocolate flavor note are the highlights. The persistent foam cap is an added bonus. Alcohol is present but in a really appealing way, not overpowering but instead adding to the overall rich character and aroma. Drinks lighter than the appearance would suggest. I understand why this beer gets so much praise, and it deserves the hype. You won't find many black ales superior to this.

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Photo of StoutElk_92
4.49/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 11/13/15

Pours dark, almost black with a creamy khaki colored head. Smells like fresh peach, plum, nectarine, pineapple, mango, passion fruit, dark caramel, and light grassy pine. Tastes like fresh tropical and stone fruits, peach, nectarine, plum, pineapple, passion fruit, mango, bitter grassy pine, and mild dark caramel roast. Feels full-medium bodied, creamy with mild carbonation. Overall a really great black IPA.

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

Wookey Jack opens to a hoppy aroma, pink grapefruit, lemon oil, and mint mixing with lesser touches of pine resin, dandelion stem, and grapefruit rind. A good measure of orange, berry, cherry, apricot, and peach fruit esters add healthy doses of sugar, playing nicely off of the citrus-centric hops. The sugars extend into heaps of brown sugar and candi sugar, adding a crystallized super sweet rim around the edge. Small chunks of toast crust and biscuit add some earthiness, as does a very, very faint edge of ash. As a whole, the nose is very nice, though the “black” part of “black IPA” is hardly noticeable here, and the peppery rye is largely subsumed beneath the massive quantities of hops and sugars. The nose is still excellent, however, speaking to a well-made IPA that boasts a wide variety of hop aromas.

On the tongue, the first notes are of hops, which bring pink grapefruit and grapefruit rind, as well as lemon oil, eucalyptus, pine, mint, and lesser notes of dandelion stem, the flavors mainly geared toward minty and citrusy. These are met almost immediately by a wave of ash and rye, as if thick brown rye bread had been deeply toasted and sprinkled with fresh-cracked pepper. The blackness here is excellent, reminiscent of fine breads, but also containing heavy ash, bits of tobacco, black malt, and semi-burnt molasses. These black, ashy notes are strong enough that they largely take over the beer, which is impressive, given the strength of the hops. In subsequent sips, the exact same process repeats itself: an initial blast of hops, then, as the beer is held on the tongue, the black ashy flavors take over. The hops aren’t overwhelmed here, but mix with the ash (as well as the few orange-oil-and-berry fruit esters that manage to make their way through the black morass) to form a lemon-lime overtone that adds a refreshing citrusy relief to the blackness. The aftertaste is a continuation of the heavy ashy notes, with lingering bits of citrusy hops, and at least the ashy notes stay on the tongue for a very long time. Mouthfeel is a full medium to medium-full, and carbonation is medium to medium-high, fizzing up on the tongue.

Overall, this is an excellent black rye IPA, and one of the few on the market where the black, ashy notes mix well with the hops; too often they clash horribly. Well worth trying.

 2,352 characters

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

Many thanks to SammyJaxxxx for this bottle. This is one of my favorite styles, and I have been wanting to try this for some time, so it was a great and unexpected extra.

Right off the bat, this is a beautiful beer. It's dark as night, and effortlessly produces a rich head that sticks around for a bit. Aromas are spot on for a CDA -- tropical fruit, pine, and tons of roast. It tastes every bit as great as it smells, and the bomber is gone before I know it. Another quality beer from FW.

 490 characters

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

A: Pours a fairly solid brown with a beige-to-cream colored head that keeps some form. Good lacing. Mild carbonation evident.

S: Aromas of hops, pepper, floral, bread, malt, rye, caramel, and spices come through.

T: Malt, hops, floral notes, chocolate, rye, coffee, caramel, spice, and slight ginger are detected. It has a varied mix of pleasing flavors, making it an interesting take on an ale.

M: Smooth, earthy, dry. Great balance of flavors. Good bit of bitterness. Nice movement of tastes across the palate.

O: A great tasting black rye IPA (as identified on the label) with a distinct and flavorful profile. Nice touches of dryness and bitterness. The tastes are quite bold on the palate. More high quality from Firestone Walker.

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

Hit the shelves today, had to buy one, poured to pint glass the beer arrives a deep dark black color with dark brown mahagoney edges in the light. A nice 2 finger mocha head with excellent retention and leaves gobs of lacing throughout. The nose is big with citrus hops, rye spice, and a hint of roasted malts. Inviting. Similarly, the taste starts off with a big citrus hops flavor that blends to a medium bitterness, rye spice, and roasted malt. The rye and citrus work very well together and the hint of roast finishes everything off well. Good. Medium bodied and well carbonated. Overall, this is a great beer. I could drink it all day!

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

Poured 22oz into tulip

A- pours black with a nice two finger light beige head
S- piney hops, some coffee, roasted malt, some chocolate, floral (weird combo right?)
T/M-starts with a dry toasty smokiness, leads into a nice warm hop flavor complimented with some dry rye. Finishes with chocolate, coffee, and smoke like a porter. Texture is just thicker than an ipa, as expected.
O- this is one of the best black IPAs I've ever had, the smell and taste are just amazing, west coast style ipa mixed with Midwest style porter. it's flavors balance out perfectly, not too bitter, not too dry, not too roasty, and not too hoppy, very uniqueand extremely enjoyable. Got this in a trade and really wish I had access to get this again.

 727 characters

Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into 34oz mug; jet black with a huge thick fluffy tan head that sticks around forever and leaves tons of awesome lacing. Looks awesome, and as a member of one of my favorite styles, I'm excited. Smell is piney hops, some rye, and slight chocolate/coffee from the darker malts. Taste is just awesome...smooth chocolatey malts with a perfect amount of piney hop bitterness and rye spiciness. Mouthfeel is amazingly smooth...this is a nearly perfect beer. Alcohol is hidden entirely for 8.5%.

 496 characters

Photo of rapidsequence
4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle from Pints O'Plenty. A steal at $7.50.

Appearance: Black, nearly opaque except for a little bit of dark highlights when held up. Light tan head, lots of it. Excellent head retention and beautiful lacing.

Smell: Very IPA like aroma. Big, sweet citrus and tropical fruit and a touch of citra-like cattiness. A hint of spiciness and even less dark malt aromas-- just a little hint of chocolate.

Taste: Wonderfully hoppy flavor as above. Much more like a black IPA in the flavor than the smell, meaning there is some roasty and chocolate flavor. Bitterness from both the hops and dark malts are present, but restrained. Very flavorful and balanced.

Mouthfeel: Exceptionally smooth and soft, almost like a cask beer. Gets clean on the finish with some lasting sweetness and a bit of resin.

Overall: Probably the best black IPA out there.

 850 characters

Photo of mabermud
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Look: Dark brown body. Thick and creamy head that is light brown.
Smell: Some hops and some malts. Nothing discerning at this time. More hops than malts. Refreshing after smelling a Fort George Fresh IPA that is an assault on the senses with hops.
Taste: Surprisingly nice taste. Pine and not so sweet malts. With the taste, the grains are at the forefront, and the hops are in the backseat. 60/40 split. Nonetheless, this is good to go.
Feel: Medium. Not crisp. Far from astringent mouth feel at the end, but it's there.

Overall - I would like a fresh bottle. Malty goodness with hoppy niceness.

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

What a fantastic beer.
Pours dark brown with a creamy tan head.
Smell is all citrus/piney hops but with a sweet smelling twist to it.
Is this its own style? Imperial Roggen American Black Ale?
The taste is just like the smell. A sugary sweetness starts things out but the mild hop bitterness quickly takes over and lingers.
Overall a really enjoyable beer and I am just a few sips into the bottle. This is worth the price and I will most likely look for it again.

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

Poured from a bomber into a stemmed tulip glass.

A- They don't call it Black Ipa for nothing..it's dark. You can call it rick coffee brown and I can't argue, but it is dark and opaque. A solid 2-finger head that trims to a mocha colored film, nice lacing.

S- Just like a walk in the woods on a summer morning in NJ...fresh grass and pine sap. As this brew warms, the malt comes out, a little sweet and mocha. Oh, citrus, too.

T- It's hoppy, orange citrus and pine, and the rye malt balances the other sweet malt with a nice dry note. It tastes like it should. The alcohol is a bit heavy.

M- Rock solid, thick and creamy, with a bitter hop finish. The carbonation tingles as the flavor lingers.

O- After drinking many of this brew, I review as I enjoy. Rarely is my beer fridge w/o a bottle of Wookey Jack, a solid Black IPA.

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Photo of GreatStoutman
4.04/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On draft, another one of these dark shape-shifters. Been seeing more and more BIPAs, which probably means they're not cool anymore, but alas...

Look is black, with light tan head that leaves a solid lacing.

Smell starts all hops out of gates, but gives way to the malts as it warms. This seems to be consistent with BIPA.

Taste is similar to the nose in that it changes as the temp of the brew rises. Both the hop-centric version and the bready, malty version are enjoyable.

Feel is full and bubbly. Nice thick body - which as a stout guy, I really like - that carries the hoppy bitterness.

Overall, I liked this, as I have others in this style. I do find them all to be somewhat similar with not much outstanding (the exception being Project PAM), but enjoyable none the less.

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Photo of bishopdc0
3.91/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My wife brought this bottle back on a work trip to Portland, OR.

We split the bottle I in my allagash tulip she in a wine glass.

The beer is brown in color transparent as it pours. In the glass it is black with a dirty what head. The head forms immediately causing me to slow my pours. It laces very nicly and the head remains.

The smell is subtle but pleasant. I wouldn't guess from the smell that ipa or rye were involved but that doesn't make it a bad thing. I can get a spiciness and an almost grape nose. There are definitely fruity hops involved.

The taste is not at all what i expected. The carbonation intially fills my mouth. as it dissipates the spicy hops and rye flavor take over. there are other hops but they definitly take the back. the flavor finishes with a smooth bitter and dryness on the tongue that is almost smoky. Nice.

 848 characters

Photo of NWer
4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served too cold at local establishment that seems to have no trouble getting great brews.
First keg in Washington State? Incredible considering the competition. Don't know how they do it.
Nice dark pour into a stemmed glass. Virtually no head. Took a sip & decided I needed to wait for it to warm. Served way too cold. Cradling it in my hands to help it along.
Flavors definitely evolve with patience. Malt smoothness & rye up front with a nice hoppy persistence.
Well worth the effort to seek out. A fun beer. Can't wait to find it in bottles.

 545 characters

Photo of Lingenbrau
4.34/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

It pours almost pitch black with a big and sticky tan head. Smells of pine and dirt. This is a down and duuuurty ipa, and I still love it! A little metallic, very bitter, roasty. Cheers!

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Wookey Jack from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
4.23 out of 5 based on 4,572 ratings.
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