Beer Review: Java the Stout (Jackie O’s Brewery)

Beer Review: Java the Stout (Jackie O’s Brewery)

Java the Stout Can Art

What better beer to review on Black Friday than a stout, and a Star Wars related / themed stout at that! There is a long history of Star Wars themed beers on the blog, you can find them if you use our search feature and type in STAR WARS, or see the list below:

I love doing pop culture related and themed beer reviews. Its much more fun than just doing a review of IPA #29292821 or Pale Ale #TK-422 (…do any of my Star Wars fans get that reference?). I have done quite a few to say the least; stemming from Back to the Future, to Spaceballs, to Scrooged, to Simpsons references, to Star Wars, to pro wrestling… to just about everything under the sun (or suns if you live on Tatooine). I’ll provide a link to most at the end of the review here.

There is always a bevy of pop culture related beers in the craft beer industry. From can art to names to logos, to even brewery names, they are often puns or quotes or pictures of different movies, characters, etc. Just this month alone I did a review with a Godfather pun (The Growfather), a Panda / Mandalorian cross review (The Pandalorian) and a Simpsons beer – I Voted for Kodos (and soon to be reviewed – I Voted for Kang).

As always, if you know of any Star Wars, or pop culture themed beers that you know of, or would like to see me review, or have access to, always get ahold of me, and I will gladly do a trade, or buy, or try to find said beer to review here on the blog.

For this beer, we have quite a bit to break down I think. First, lets start with the can art:

Java the Stout (by Jackie O’s) can art

There is a LOT going on here in this picture. Obviously, front center is Jabba the Hutt flying in / on Vader’s Advanced Tie X1 (oh yea… I went full nerd on that). In the background you have a ton of TIEs (TIE LN – the generic TIE Fighters from A New Hope) and X-Wings and lots and lots of lasers. You also have a Star Destroyer being blown up, as well as the Death Star II being blown up. There is also the Cloud City from Bespin (Empire Strikes Back) with what I assume is Godzilla or some other kind of giant reptile creature scaling it. The Milenium Falcon can also be seen in the background near the Death Star. I also spy a giant Moth / butterfly creature, I’m not sure what this is or what its a reference too, so I am a bit fuzzy and curious about that one. Apparently the lasers that are destroying the Star Destroyer stem straight from the eyes of the moth / butterfly creature, so maybe there’s some kind of reference out there that I’m missing (most likely).

Now, lets move onto discussing just who the “Java” is in reference too…

Jabba the Hutt (from Wookiepedia)

To quote the Wookiepedia:

If I told you half the things I’ve heard about this Jabba the Hutt, you’d probably short-circuit!“―C-3PO[src]

Jabba Desilijic Tiure, more commonly referred to as Jabba the Hutt or simply Jabba, and formally styled as His Excellency Jabba Desilijic Tiure of Nal Hutta, Eminence of Tatooine, was a Hutt gangster and crime lord, as well as a member of the Grand Hutt Council, who operated and led a criminal empire from his palace on the Outer Rim world of Tatooine. Jabba was a major figure on Tatooine, where he controlled the bulk of the trafficking in illegal goods, piracy and slavery that generated most of the planet’s wealth. He was also highly influential in the entire Outer Rim as one of its most powerful crime lords.

During the Clone Wars, Jabba’s influence and power over the Outer Rim, specifically its hyperlanes, was sought by both the Galactic Republic and the Confederacy of Independent Systems, who both courted Jabba’s approval. When Rotta, Jabba’s son, was kidnapped, the crime lord promised his support to whoever returned his son. When the Separatists were revealed to have orchestrated Rotta’s kidnapping, Jabba pledged his support to the Republic.

Jabba continued to operate in the Outer Rim after the end of the Clone Wars and the rise of the Galactic Empire, preserving his power base, despite the interference of Darth Sidious, the Galactic Emperor. After the destruction of the Death Star by the Rebel Alliance, the Emperor sent Darth Vader to negotiate a deal with Jabba to secure raw materials for Imperial military production. Jabba’s alliance with the Empire allowed him and the Hutts to survive the Imperial crackdown against criminal elements in the Outer Rim, as well as rid the Hutt of his competitors.

After the smuggler Han Solo failed to repay him for lost cargo, Jabba placed a high price on his head. Solo was eventually delivered to him by one of his bounty huntersBoba Fett, as a gift from Darth Vader. However, this capture brought him to the attention of Jedi Knight Luke Skywalker, who sought to rescue his friend from Jabba’s imprisonment. As he attempted to execute the Jedi and his allies in the Great Pit of Carkoon, Jabba was choked to death by Leia Organa. With the Hutts unable to decide who would inherit Jabba’s criminal ventures, many of his slaves, including the Niktos, were free, and his palace was abandoned after the droid pool was deactivated.

Source: Jabba the Hutt – Wookiepedia Page

And that was just the brief of him, not the entirety of the article. Click the link above (at the source) to read his full entry! But, for a quick gist of him – Jabba the Hutt is the one who had Boba Fett capture Han Solo and with Darth Vader using Han Solo as a trap for Luke, got him frozen in carbonite, and then delivered to Jabba where he kept him as a ‘prize’ in his audience chamber. This set off the key events of the end of Empire Strikes Back and the beginning of Return of the Jedi. Jabba the Hutt was also the one who sent Greedo after Han Solo in A New Hope. (He’s also the feature of the full length Clone Wars movie, as well as makes an appearance in The Phantom Menace, as well as in several other mediums and stories in Star Wars EU [Expanded Universe]. To sum him up – he is the ‘Don’ or ‘Godfather’ or ‘Capo’ of his crime family.)

Ok, whew, that was all a lot to digest; especially if you’re not a nerd. (And really, if you’re not, why are you still reading all this gibberish? Its gotta be pretty much nonsensical to you by this point!) I think we have a good basis now, from the can art, to the backstory of Jabba the Hutt, so lets move on to the beer and the brewery.

Jackie O’s Brewpub

On my trip out to Indianapolis and back, on Day Six of my trip, I stopped at Jackie O’s Brewpub outside of Athens Ohio. Everything being different due to COVID-19 and the pandemic, only the beer garden outside was used for drinking and sitting. I got a flight while there, as well as picked up the mix – a – six to take home (which this was a part of).

Untappd has this to say about Jackie O’s: Jackie O’s Brewery is a micro brewery from Athens Ohio, established in 2005, and has 675 unique beers and 738K+ ratings, with a global average rating of 4.02. The Untappd description reads: Established in 2005, Jackie O’s Brewery has evolved over the years to include an experimental Brewpub, Public House Restaurant, Production Brewery & Taproom, Bake Shop and the Barrel Ridge Farm – all of which are located in Athens, Ohio / Southeastern, Ohio. Jackie O’s specializes in brewing techniques that revive traditional methods and also incorporate contemporary elements and influences. We strive to brew one of the most diverse beer portfolios in the country, with a detailed and unique focus on barrel & wood aged beers, wild ales, and blending. It is liked by 17K+.

This was one of the top recommended breweries for me to visit on my trip, alongside Sun King Brewery in Indianapolis, Levity Brewing in Indiana Pennsylvania, and Urban Artifact in Cincinnati. The flight of beers I had at the brewpub didn’t disappoint, neither did any of the beers I took home (including this one).

So… we discussed the can art… the legacy and origins and reason for the “Java the Stout” (Jabba the Hutt), the brewery – Jackie O’s, whats left to discuss before actually reviewing the beer?

Ah…. the when / where I drank it. So Wednesday, the night before Thanksgiving, due to the mandate that no on-site alcohol sales could be made at bars and breweries in Pennsylvania after 5PM by Governor Wolfe, I met my friend Drew at his place to do some Friendsgiving Drinking. We also did a stream for the night for his streaming page – Knights of Nostalgia. We streamed Secret of Mana on…. his brand new Playstation 5. Yes, this was the first time he was getting to play the system (as well as myself), and… the first game we test drove it with was an old SNES remastered game. Ironic? Or just funny? I’ll let you be the judge. But, I will say, the controller for the PS5 was very cool, and the game was a lot of fun (this was the second part of our series of playing the game, as its a long RPG, it will take us several sittings and streams to beat it).

During the stream – I started with Java the Stout, progressed to a blueberry pancake Double IPA (DIPA) by Decadent Ales, and finished off the night with a bottle of Yuengling’s Hershey’s Porter.

Finally… ok… finally… I think we have all of our Padawans in a row… I think we can get on to reviewing the beer!

Java the Stout by Jackie O’s Brewery

Beer: Java the Stout
Brewery: Jackie O’s Brewery
Style: Stout – Coffee
ABV: 6.5%
IBU: None
Untappd Description: A caramel centered Stout accentuated by Ridge Runner coffee. Instead of simply adding coffee to a stout, we build a stout around the coffee. Course ground coffee beans are added in the conditioning tank. The beans add a robust roasted character and turn this Stout fully opaque. Our best selling seasonal since 2008!

Oh gorgeous, beautiful stouts, how I love thee. Dark and black as my soul and heart, yet so inviting… as … not my soul. Java the Stout is typical in that its like most other stouts; dark black – Razor Ramon hair black, but with a beautiful creamy off-white foamy head. Great carbonation on the beer, and nice lacing on the glass. This is ‘typical stout black’ but as always – thats a good thing here. The foam head is almost more brown than white, but I would still probably label it as ‘off white’, but the bubbles are varied and different size, always a sign of a quality crafted beer.

Aroma is a dark, roasted, coffee heavy, caramel, chocolate, heavy hard hitting powerful… the list of descriptors can almost go on and on here. This is pound for pound one of the best (non – pastry stout) smelling stouts I’ve had in a long time, if not ever. And I’m not even a coffee fan. Maybe its just the ‘hotness’ of drinking coffee, I dunno, but I do not like coffee, but I don’t mind coffee in my beers one bit (in fact, I tend to love coffee stouts). Coffee is pound for pound what you get most out of the nose on this, but there is notes of caramel malt, chocolate, roasted malts, and the faintest hint of vanilla.

From first sip to holding the glass (or can) over your mouth to make sure every last drop falls into your gullet, this is one fantastic beer. Every drop is to be savored, just like its color, its black gold. I’ll be like one of those millennial Instagrammers “this is fire” with lots of fire emojis and beers, or fire – beer – fire alternating emojis… or whatever. But this is just an amazing, fantastic beer. You got a fair bit going on, but its pretty straight forward too. This is a coffee stout. A coffee beer, through, and through, and through. The coffee is very good, and strong, but there are also other notes hiding around the edges of the coffee too that can’t be ignored. The roasted malts provide a strong backbone to the beer, giving it a strong caramel note and finish to it, and helps take off some of the edge of the coffee flavor without removing the coffee flavor. More like melding it together, taking a frayed edge and making it smooth and run seamlessly into the next. The malt backbone is strong and gives a wonderful, full heavy mouthfeel, with no off flavors, no cloying, no clingyness, nothing to detract or take away from the beer. There is some notes of chocolate as well, in my tastes, though I think it becomes more milder as you drink, and this could be from the malt, but not 100% sure. There is also a bit of smoothness to it, possibly vanilla, but again, not 100% sure. Regardless, the flavors that surround the coffee flavor works together well, and lifts up the coffee notes, not detracts from, or over complicates the beer. I really like the way the malt and the coffee work in this beer and I think thats the strongest reason why the beer is just so good, everything accentuates / accompanies / emphasizes and works together to attain a great tasting beer. Also at 6.5% its strong in taste, but not strong in ABV or alcohol, so it doesn’t taste boozy or overpowering, and won’t leave you drunk or getting there by the end of the first can. Perfect campfire beer, or perfect Netflix and chill, or Disney+ and watching The Mandalorian beer….

My Untappd Rating: ****.25
Global Untappd Rating: 3.93 (as of 11.28.20)

Ok, lets break down some of the nerdy pop culture beers I’ve reviewed:

Star Wars:

Space Balls:

Game of Thrones:

The Simpsons:

Back to the Future:


Pro Wrestling:

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles:


Search for ‘Star Wars’ on The Beer Thrillers

Thanks for reading!


-B. Kline

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