Sampled: 22 oz. bottle (Full disclosure: sample provided by brewery)
Price: $7.99 bomber ($26.15 six-pack equivalent)
Description:"Double Jack IPA is our first ever Imperial IPA. It features a big malty middle to cloak the high alcohol and mouth puckering hop bitterness. Huge tangerine, grapefruit and juicy fruit aroma blossom over the herbal blue basil and malt earthiness of this aggressive beer. Best enjoyed in moderation."— Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Random thoughts:This is part of my IPAs Gone Wild! series. I've had Double Jack in my fridge for months. So why the long wait to review it? I don't drink bombers (22 oz. bottles) by myself and my wife isn't a fan of big hoppy beers. A weekend camping trip with family friends provided the occasion to crack open three long neglected bombers (the others were Stone's Arrogant Bastard Ale and Ska's True Blonde Dubbel).
The tasting: Gold in color (hazy) with a white head that dissipated slowly, leaving lots of lacing on the glass. Aroma of grapefruit and piney hops, sweet tropical fruit, cereal malt, and boozy alcohol. You could smell this beer for hours—loads of complexity! The aroma elements are present in flavor, but I also tasted tangerine. At first, the piney and grapefruit hop flavors engage in a full assault on the palate. Mid-taste, Double Jack's cereal and caramel malt backbone come through along with warming alcohol. The grapefruit hops return for an encore in the finish. It's medium bodied, with moderate carbonation, and a sticky resinous mouth feel. This is a big hoppy beer, but it's very well balanced and the hops won't destroy your palate. However, be advised to drink slowly—or the 9.5% ABV will catch up with you!
Rating: 4 star. Really Good! I want this again! Although this is part of Firestone Walker's Reserve Series, it's available year-round. I'm glad I didn't wait any longer to try Double Jack. Are you going to the Oregon Brewers Festival this coming weekend? If so, Double Jack will be served and you can get a 4 oz. taste for just $1. Don't miss this opportunity to try it!
Have you tried Double Jack? What's your favorite Double or Imperial IPA?