Beer of the Week: Firestone Walker Wookey Jack

By Iron Chef Leftovers

To celebrate National IPA day on August 2nd, I decided to crack a bottle of Firestone Walker Wookey Jack, combining a couple of my favorite offshoots of the IPA style – black IPA’s and Rye IPA’s. It is a big beer coming in at 60 IBU and 8.5% alcohol and is available in 22 oz. bottles and on tap in Washington. My beer was from a 22 oz. bottle.

From the Firestone website:

Wookey Jack is our first foray into the dark outer world of black IPAs. Rich dark malts and spicy rye careen into bold citrus laden hops creating a new dimension in IPA flavor. This brew has been left unfiltered and unfined to retain all of its texture and character. At 60 IBUs, Wookey Jack is gnarly on the outside yet complex and refined on the inside.

This beer pours jet black with a cream colored head – looks like a stout and you would probably guess that if you didn’t know what you were drinking. You would definitely know it when you smelled it though – lots of hops on the nose with hints of malt. The initial sip brings roasted malt on the palate with some caramel which gives way to floral and fruity notes with just a smattering of hops. The finish fades nicely into a mild bitterness.

Pleasant to drink but the rye is lost in the mix until the beer warms slightly. At about 50 degrees, the hop finish yields to a strong hit of rye a few seconds later. Reminded me of toasted pumpernickel bread as it warmed, with the addition of hops.

The beer is enjoyable but it just feels like it is trying to be too much at once. I would love to see Firestone produce a Black IPA and a Rye IPA separately just to see what the part taste like.

Firestone Walker Wookey Jack IPA gets itself 3 Kashyyyks out of 5.

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