One Big Bottle: Firestone Walker Double Jack

One Big Bottle

The brews we're sipping, one by one.

Editor's Note: So many beers, so little time. One Big Bottle will spotlight the brews we're sipping, one by one.


[Photograph: Jessica Leibowitz]

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.