Mangrove Jacks Juicy Session IPA Review

Mangrove Jacks Juicy Session IPA Review

A big juicy IPA that wrote it's own review.

Mangrove Jacks Juicy Session IPA Review – this brew is described as soft and refreshing with a smooth mouthfeel and it certainly hasn’t failed to deliver.


The cold filled pouch comes with Citra hops and M44 West Coast Yeast offering big juicy aromas and flavours with a well-balanced bitterness.


It’s fair to say that the Craft Series Juicy Session IPA is near the top of the list as one of the best home brew kit beers I have made. The comments from my friends and neighbors were of the same sentiment and the batch disappeared quickly.

The End Product

Living up to it’s name, one of the most defining factors of the Mangrove Jack’s Craft Series Juicy Session IPA are the BIG juicy aromas.

Unsurprisingly the juicy notes come through early in the taste and the tropical fruits have pride of place in the flavour.

The bitterness rating on the packet is 3/5 and come through nicely on the back of the juicy flavours. With an international bitterness rating (IBU) of 22-28 the outcome is well and truly ‘playing in the safe zone’ for bitterness. The beer pours with big head and has a beautiful rich caramel tone for colour. 

The instructions suggest leaving the beer for a minimum of three weeks before drinking. I tried my first one at four weeks and I found the brew was much nicer closer to the six-to-eight week mark.

At four weeks the brew was still nice, but the fruit flavours and bitterness felt a little more bolder. 

Once the beer had matured a little more, the flavours and bitterness felt as though they rounded off and mellowed together for a smoother taste. If you can wait a little longer, I think it’s worth it. 

Mangrove Jacks Juicy Session IPA Review

Mangrove Jacks Juicy Session IPA Review: What the packet says

ABV Approx: 4.8%

Bitterness: 3/5

IBU: 22-28

Makes: 23L

Mangrove Jacks Craft Series Juicy Session IPA pouch Instructions.

As a note one of the variable options for brewers is the choice between dextrose or liquid malt (which is purchased separately from the kit). I used the Black Rock Light Liquid Malt (based on availability at the time) which will have supported the smoothness of the end-product and I bottle into amber 750ml crown top bottles with carbonation drops.


The brewing process.

The Mangrove Jack’s Juicy Session IPA is from their craft series which means the kit comes with hops (Citra) and premium yeast (M44 West Coast). The brew was enjoyable to make and there were two specific instructions I noted. Otherwise the process was as you would expect from a kit beer.

Temperature Range.

The suggested temperature range for fermenting the brew was between 20-25 degrees celsius which is a narrower range than we often see on standard kit beers.

I did note that the the temperature range on the instructions varied slightly from the recommended 18-23 degree celcius temperature range on the yeast.   

I made this brew in the middle of winter. I used a heat pad on a time to maintain the temperature at the lower end of the range throughout the brew and the temperature control was definitely an important factor in the end-product.

Dry Hopping.

The instructions are very specific about when to add the hop pallets for the dry hopping process, based on elapsed time and specific gravity (SG) measurement.

The SG had reached 1.024 at seven days and then 1.020 at nine days when I added the hops and the brew still had signs of active fermentation although I expect we were in the mid-late stages by then.   

Typically, I use a hop bag when brewing to contain the particles from the hops. The instructions encourage the hops to be placed in loose to improve the transfer of flavour and aromas being absorbed into the brew but do articulate that the trade-off to this choice is the likelihood of some hop particles in the end-product. 

If you follow the suggestions on the instructions to place the hops in the brew loose, I would strongly suggest using a sediment filter on your bottling bucket.   

Home Brew Republic Brew Review Mangrove Jacks Craft Series Juicy Session IPA

My Takeouts.

One of the points I found the most interesting was the specific instruction on when to add the dry hops to the Mangrove Jack’s Craft Series Juicy Session IPA. 

I ‘ve always known the basic concept of adding hops in early for flavour or late for armoa. I did some more reading on this topic and it turns out brewers can extract surprisingly different aromas, flavours and appearances by varying where dry hops are added in the different stages of active fermentation or once fermentation is complete. 

I have always maintained that brewing with home brew kits leaves a lot of room to experiment and create tailored beers and dry hops are one of the bigger opportunities kit brewers have.

The article on dry hopping during active fermentation is a good guide.


How Yeast Impacts Dry Hopping.

The line of thought is that yeast strains don’t limit themselves to just metabolising sugars. They can act on other compounds, including those found in hop oils. And, one organic compound can chemically change another. Thus how adding hops at different stages of fermentation can have differing resuts.


Dry hopping and bitterness.

Another interesting point promoted in the article was the suggestion that dry hopping can raise the pH level and the higher the pH level the higher the perception of bitterness.

Both interesting elements to experiment with in the future.




So, for the Mangrove Jacks Juicy Session IPA Review, that would be a solid 9/10 on the Brew Quality Scale from me and definitely a crowd pleaser I will be making again.

If you brew a batch yourself make sure you note the temperature ranges on the instructions and when to add the dry hops. 


Cheers, Russell