Editor's Note: So many beers, so little time. One Big Bottle will spotlight the brews we're sipping, one by one.
This beer smells so vividly of clementines that you could almost be convinced that it will cure the common cold. Even if it can't, Firestone Walker's Double Jack is a stellar example of the style.
The problem with too many Double IPAs is that the balance is off; either they're sticky-sweet and heavy or so resiny-bitter that your mouth goes numb. (Disclosure: We tend to like them on the numbing side.) But Double Jack is drinkable: thirst-quenching despite its 9.5% ABV. There's enough bitterness to offset the orange-candy notes, and the finish is dry. This brewery has a way of producing remarkably clean-tasting beers, and Double Jack is no exception. This substantial ale has hints of grapefruit peel, herbs, dried mango, and floral notes, plus a little butterscotch and honey. Seek it out.
Disclosure: This bottle was provided as a press sample for review.