Firestone Walker Wookey Jack Black Rye IPA

Firestone Walker Wookey Jack Black Rye IPA craft beer cans can
Firestone Walker Wookey Jack Black Rye IPA.

For the first time in six years, Firestone Walker’s Wookey Jack is back with a new release for the winter season. 

Wookey Jack Black Rye IPA is now rolling out to all Firestone Walker markets in six pack (12-oz. can) and draft formats. This is the first widespread release of Wookey Jack since the beer originally retired in late 2016.

“The Wookey never dies — it just hibernates,” says Firestone Walker Brewmaster Matt Brynildson. “We’ve produced periodic small-batch runs over the years, and people keep asking for more. It’s time to release it back into the wild.”

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The latest edition of Wookey Jack (8.3% ABV) remains faithful to the original recipe, the company says, which includes pearled dark malts with rye adding a rustic grain element. The hops are dank, sticky Citra and pungent Amarillo, both of which are incorporated into a dry-hop regimen.

Wookey Jack was first released by Firestone Walker in 2012.

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“At the time, there were a few beer geeks out there saying that Firestone Walker still had yet to really make a truly over-the-top hoppy IPA,” Brynildson recalls. “We took that as a challenge and Wookey Jack was going to be the answer. We dug into the hop closet and pulled out the stickiest and most pungent hops available. We found a blend that really popped and applied it liberally to the brew.”

The resulting beer was “an immediate sensation that helped drive the black IPA movement,” and that lasted for five years before succumbing to cooling demand for the style.

Over the past year, however, there has been a resurgence of appreciation for the black IPA style, the company says, which Brynildson feels best lends itself to a seasonal format. “It may not be the type of beer people want to drink year-round, but it just seems right for fall and winter,” he says.

The new Wookey Jack also marks the first time the beer has been packaged in a six pack 12-ounce can format. And gone is the former look of the original Wookey Jack, which has been replaced with a new design that reflects Brynildson’s affinity for live music and concert poster art, as rendered by artist Juan Marente (@elgrantocayo).

“We didn’t mess with the liquid, but we’ve evolved everything else, which to me makes this the best Wookey Jack ever,” Brynildson says.

This follows the recent release of Firestone Walker Oaktoberfest.

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