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Fresh Hop Pale Ale - Great Divide Brewing Company

Fresh Hop Pale AleFresh Hop Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,221 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1221
Reviews: 656
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 9.78%


Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 10-07-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,221 | Reviews: 656 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

SIgnificant grapefruit C hop aroma, quick fading head, lots of lace. Bitter like an ESB dying but very drinkable on a scorching Saturday. Drying aftertaste, tasty complex bitterness,like the hops, citrus, well malted, well carbonated. Some of the fresh homebrewed taste from this sub-style.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2006 04:43:11 | More by Sammy
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.8/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Best by 12/29/13.

Pours a clear orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, citrus zest, and herbal hop aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus zest and earthy herbal hop flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a sightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a nice fresh hop profile but the mouthfeel is a bit thicker than what I was expecting.

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2013 01:59:04 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bright brassy orange with butterscotch trim. I expected to see hop flecks, but the initial pour is as clear as a bell (perhaps the good stuff is hiding at the bottom of the bottle). The lovely looking liquid is topped with a thick, creamy cap of lemon mousse that melts into a semi-stiff mesa over time. Sticky bridges connect head and glass, leaving a wonderful array of lace when they break.

The nose is a citrusy symphony of grapefruit, orange and lemon zest. The brewery wouldn't divulge the hop bill, they would only say that the hops are all American varieties. I'm guessing Cascade and Amarillo... or Centennial and Simcoe... hell, I don't know. The very best thing about the nose is that there's none of that pesky malt to get in the way of the lupulin love.

I had little doubt that a fresh hop pale ale, brewed with some of my favorites little green cones, created by one of the best breweries in the country, would be fabulously delicous. Fresh Hop Pale Ale is exactly that. I also expected it to be more IPA-like than APA-like, but Great Divide managed to keep it solidly within the bounds of the stated style.

There's just enough pale malt to keep the mouthfeel from losing its composure and no more. Sweetness is at a minimum, other than a light stickiness on the finish. Fresh Hop's raison d'etre is citric hops and lots of them. This is one of the brightest, purest, most freshly hoppy pale ales that I've ever had (from a bottle). I'm glad that I got a chance to sample it while it's still young.

While it isn't quite a wrecker of palates, it certainly does scratch that hophead itch that is ever-present in my brain and on my tongue. I love the way that each mouthful explodes with citrus zesty splendor and leaves echo upon echo of sticky hoppy resinousness. Pine sap is becoming a bigger contributor to the flavor landscape as the beer warms.

The mouthfeel doesn't quite achieve IPA-like fullness, but then this isn't an IPA. It's most certainly a big APA though. I'm sure that it's difficult to brew a silky smooth beer with this much hoppy resinous and I'm not sure that I'd even want such a thing. A little mouth and tongue abuse goes with the territory when there are this many alpha acids flying around.

Great Divide Fresh Hop Pale Ale is pretty close to the beer that I thought it would be. It's a showcase for the (warning: bias ahead) best, most delicious hop varieties in the world. I can't think of one thing that I'd change about this ale; something that I don't say all that often. It's a damn shame, given the nature of the fresh hop style, that beer this good can only be released once each year.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2006 22:41:09 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.68/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice copper tone, with a good sized head that has some nice clumping and staying power as well as some decent lacing throughout. Smell is wonderfully hopped, like a pine cone dipped in orange juice! Fantastic full hoppy smell. Taste is right up with the smell. Full on hops from the gate. Piney, very grassy and citus, AWESOME. Very smooth with a nice dry aftertaste that begs you to come back for more.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2006 00:09:05 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Pours a fairly clear dark golden color with a solid head that hangs around for the duration and leaves patterns of lace all over the glass

Smell: Predominately piney with a touch of citrus

Taste: Starts with a wallop of piney flavor with a solid amount of caramel malt underneath; after the swallow, the pine flavor builds into a resinous wonder on the tongue - long-lasting and bitter

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied (almost sticky) with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: It doesn't get much better than this for a hophead

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2006 22:17:58 | More by brentk56
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BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Aah, the ever illusive Fresh Hop Ale. Even a few trips to Denver never afforded me the opportunity to drink this well famed beer.

Begins promising enough with a deep golden, lightly amber color, very well headed and retains equally as well.

Fresh aromas of citrus, pine, and crisp maltiness jump right out immediately. Obviously a lot going on in the hop profile which easily dominated any malt or yeast character.

Flavors are almost all American, citrus hops focusing on grapefruit, orange rinds, and a lot of other citrus character. Fresh and somewhat floral and perfumy at times as well. The malts struggle to balance the beer, but adds little sweetness and a fair amount of caramel, bready maltiness to balance. No estery fruitiness or phenolic character, making this beer purely and simply all about the hops.

The body is relativel light due to the well attenuated malt character, dryness of the hops, and soft carbonation that lifts the beer off the toung--making the beer very drinkable and enjoyable. Though the hop dryness is presant, the beer has a juicy, mouthwatering quality that is rarely found in such dry beers.

Fresh is definately the key to the beer. A complete joy to drink. Sessionable for any time of the year. Why is it rotational only? Thanks for sharing Gary, I wouldn't have done it.

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2008 14:42:54 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

3.3/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up at State Line Liquors yesterday. Poured into a Stone IRS tulip.

Pours a moderate copper color with a single-finger white head after a fairly hard pour. A bit of lacing remains on the edges of the glass; mostly spotty. Nose is light floral and citrus hops with a bit of earth. Light caramel malt. The taste is mildly hoppy with a bit of green character and some floral hops. Slightly bitter mouthfeel and a bit dry. Good drinkability and a pretty nice beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2010 02:00:57 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

4.18/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear golden yellow in color with some amber highlights. It poured with a finger high frothy beige head that quickly faded away but left lacy patterns of bubbles on the surface. A light amount of carbonation is visible.
S: There are aromas of grassy and pine resin hops in the nose.
T: The overall taste has a moderate to high amount of bitterness from the hops, although the underlying malts provide some balance; it's very similar to the smell with some additional flavors of citrus.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
D: The beer is very drinkable because the bitterness is not overpowering in any way.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2010 01:48:39 | More by metter98
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazed, caramel-hued body with a smallish, frothed, white head. Slight speckling of lace on the way down.

Smell: Pleasing, vibrant aroma of fresh-cut grasses, sliced pink grapefruits, and processed pine wood planks, all interspersed with rich, toasty caramel notes.

Taste: Pale and caramel maltiness with a meager handful of toasted bread crusts and sweet tastes of brown sugar and caramelized sugars, though, it's brief and sets up a nice launch pad to catapult the hops. Grassy, earthy, pine blossoms, citrusy (even citric) with a moderate amount of hop bitterness -- it's bold and assertive without becoming overbearing, instead maintaining a constant balance with the malts. A touch of acidity. As is the norm for me, the back half is predominately bitter, though the malts really do their best to counter-assault the hops. Finishes dry and bittersweet with the malts and hops still duking it out in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A nice treat! Paired well the Pinback tune "Offline P.K." and "Soaked". The beer presented a more than sturdy malt base and plenty of hop flavor and bitterness without the ponderous, heavy DIPA body and subsequent, downright bothersome alcohol content, which keeps this brew surprisingly drinkable. Of note, however, is the fact that though the Great Divide's Espresso Yeti and Saison I recently purchased had "bottled on" dates, the Fresh Hop Pale Ale is curiously missing it, though it is of the new label styling. Still though, it's one I cheerfully recommend.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2009 23:25:27 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

4.55/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A nice offering found here in Greensboro,poured a rich copper with a fluffy 2 finger head that left a nice sheet of lace behind as it settles.The label says whole hop cones are shipped wet overnight to Denver to be brewed the very next day after being shipped and let me tell ya the aroma of this baby shows it.Intense grassy,piney,resiny goodness smacks you in the face and the aromas just continue to linger well after being poured.The big dose of fresh hops are not overpowering in this brew yeah its big and resiny but there is a sweet caramel malt backbone that holds up extremely well.At 55 IBU's its not insanely bitter but the freshness of the hops makes it immensley flavorful,I will be getting more of this very very soon for sure.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2005 22:43:59 | More by oberon
Photo of TMoney2591
TMoney2591

Illinois

3.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a tumbler at The Tribes.

The Accidental Highway to Hell Tour continues! This stop pours a clear straw-amber topped by a finger of white foam. The nose comprises pine, lemon zest, light caramel, light biscuit, and grass. The taste brings in more of the same, but with more biscuit and some light celery (or some form of cellulose, anyway) in the back. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation, a smooth feel, and a kinda dry finish. Overall, a solid, if not wholly distinctive, fresh hop brew. Good times.

Serving type: on-tap

11-09-2011 03:53:09 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of feloniousmonk
feloniousmonk

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful crimson/copper color, clear, with ample froth atop....very nice.

Nose is super-fresh hops, dripping with resins and oils, vibrant, floral, akin to rolling in the dirt of a pine forest in springtime. Can't tell you what hops they are, but they are shining bright, and screaming loud.

Taste: fresh, again, alive, and fairly forward with the hops, though they fade soon after boarding the palate. With each new meeting on the mouth, they storm the tongue anew, very alert and lively. Tas-tee!!

Medium-bodied, nicely textured, excellent balance (no, this is no punishingly hoppy beer, this has proper malt base, does not shred the senses with bitterness), long, fruity, moderately bitter finish.

Another very well-done beer in the Great Divide bomber series. And a fine example of the "style", such as it is...

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2005 05:26:52 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.68/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The color is deep amber with an orange tint. It has a thick off-white head, which fades but not too quickly and leaves decent lace.

S: Strong hop aroma with a heavy dose of citrus along with it. You can also smell the alcohol a bit.

T: As indicated in the name of the beer, a very intense and decently bitter hops flavor hits you right away and remains dominant throughout. There is some malt and citrus that follow to help balance it out, but as sweetness fades, the hops return to stay in a bitter after-taste.

M: Very crisp, medium body with medium carbonation and the more you drink it, the smoother it gets.

D: As stated above, the beer seems smoother as you drink more of it. If you combine that with the fact that it’s not very filling, the beer is pretty drinkable as long as you’re down with the hop taste. I’m not sure how many I could drink at a time; since I only have the one 22 oz. bottle, but I’m sure I could put away a decent amount. Overall this is a good beer, but not for beginners. I find it a bit stronger than other beers that I’ve had of this style.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2006 05:46:15 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of emerge077
emerge077

Illinois

3.48/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Review from notes, consumed Dec. 23rd. 22 oz. bottle.

Pours with a huge four finger head and sticky lace at the edges. It's a deep orange color, with plenty of visible carbonation and ok head retention. Slightly funky yeast aroma, malt sweetness, and a vague grassy quality. Not the fresh hop character I was hoping for. Sweet malty butterscotch taste, mildly bitter with some earthy, aspirin-like hops in the aftertaste. Creamy texture from mild carbonation, and sort of filling. One bomber is drinkable, but it's slightly too heavy for a session. Overall it reminded me more of SNPA than a wet-hopped ale, probably won't revisit unless it was fresh on tap...

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2008 01:07:48 | More by emerge077
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

4.2/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a honey-hued bronze with loads of effervescence & 3+ fingers pillowy pearl-colored head. Superior head retention & lacing

S: Grapefruitty & metallic hops, plus some breadyness as this warms up.

T: Grapefruitty & lemony hops, slight honey notes & bit of cakeyness up front. As this warms, I get bready notes, caramel & then more grapefruitty hops. Finishes with a bit of boozey warmth, grapefruitty + lemony hops, & dry bready notes

MF: Medium-bodied with lively carbonation, & very good balance

Drinks easy, not as impressed as the last 2 vintages, but nothing to sneeze at, one to look forward to every harvest!

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2007 04:56:56 | More by russpowell
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The beer pours a dark gold color with a towering white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a rich and complex malt scent that is comprised of pale, carapils, and bisquit malts. It has a nice bisquity aroma that balances well with the hops. The hop aroma is very nice. It has a grassy hop scent that is bitter and rich, but not over the top. The taste is great. It has a well balanced attack of malt and hops. It has a light crystal and bisquit malt flavor along with a bitter, citrus hop finish. This beer is incredibly smooth and easy drinking. It has tremendous mouthfeel. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a near perfect beer. I like everything about it. Just another great beer from Great Divide.

Serving type: on-tap

01-19-2006 02:03:30 | More by WesWes
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.45/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

At the time of my review the #3 APA on beeradvocate, served on tap at a local beer bar. Here we go! Beer is light amber and clear with a nice head that leaves some lacing on the glass. Carbonation appears low.

Aroma is pretty hop forward overall, nice.

Beer is piny in the mid palate, midly sweet on the onset but that is not distracting from the moderate bitterness at the back. Its well put together with good palate connectivity. The finish is nice. Overall its a medium bodied APA with a wet finish. The hop resin stays in your mouth for a minute but there's no after taste. Its a nice hot day beer.

Serving type: on-tap

11-20-2010 00:42:19 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a clear orange color with a decent-sized white head. The aroma is full of papaya, orange and orange, with some biscuit malt. The tropical fruit hop aroma is very fresh and dominates the smell. Very nice. The flavor also features a lot of tropical fruit. I get some nice pineapple and papaya notes, with a low amount of bitterness. The biscuit malt is also present, but it takes a back seat to the fresh hops. The alcohol is very well hidden. Medium, soft mouthfeel and low to medium carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2011 01:54:04 | More by Mora2000
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

4.4/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Amber color with a long lasting one-finger head. Leaves nice lacing.

S - Hops hops and more hops.

T - Grassy and hoppy with a hint of citrus. Also, a little malt flavor.

M - Crisp and dry. Medium-bodied.

S - A very good APA. The fresh hops make it quite good.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2006 02:38:24 | More by zeff80
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a brilliantly clear, bright, full copper color; it is well carbonated and forms a frothy, pale tan colored head. The aroma is enticingly hoppy with a resinous aroma of grapefruit, apricots, tangerine and a bit of pine and grassy notes. The aroma is quite nice with a serious sticky hop presence. The beer is fairly dry, but the malt in combination with the hops gives this beer a sticky sweet citrus character without being overly sweet or full on the palate. The flavor has solid notes of resinous pine as well as an equal amount of citrus and fruit; like grapefruit, apricot and peach.

The beer finishes with a solid bitterness, which does not particularly linger too long. The finish is quite smooth, it really just begs for taking another sip. The overall hoppiness and carbonation of this brew gives it a peppery bite as the beer sits in my mouth. This beer is really quite nice, perhaps the most flavorful Pale Ale I have ever had. The fresh, vibrant hop character is really nice and this beer is still fairly smooth without that intense grassy character I have had in other fresh hop beers.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2005 04:54:15 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours slightly hazed orange/amber with a fairly thick head that descends to a lasting cover.

The smell is grassy, piney, citrusy.

The taste is of slight sweetness soon overtaken by oily, fresh hops. Fresh-cut grass, pine and orange citrus run the show. Sweet malt lies underneath to keep it all together and balanced. The fresh leafy, piney, citrusy hops seem just ripened. Medium bodied. Pushes the hop limits of an APA - could be confused for an IPA.

Fresh, tasty, crisp and very smooth. If you like hoppy pale ales - this one's for you!

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2006 18:54:11 | More by jwc215
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear amber with an off white head. Nose is reaching out to me even as I pour. Just getting it anywhere in the vicinity of my nose is giving me something. Upon close review, it is - surprise - very strong with the hops and that expected pine-like fragrance. Flavor is a strong, bitter hop influenced ride. A hopheads liquid paradise. Feel is thick from the high amount of hops and it holds a decent carbonation. Even though it is so pungent with the hops, it is still extremely drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2007 13:19:00 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

Ohio

4.93/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Copper amber body with a fine bubbled off white cream head leaves wide bands of lacing evenly down my Duvel chalice as the head floats above the rim. Aroma: Great pine cone and citrus hop aromatics also packs some floral tones mixed with a sugary slightly fruit malt base that pair well with the grassiness of the hop additions. Taste: Hop bitterness very welcoming grapefruit and grassy hop flavors are streaking across the palate semi sweet bready notes help balance finishes with a touch of caramelized citrus peels that reminds me of well done Orange chicken from a chinese restaurant. Mouthfeel: Medium bodied slight oily texture from the lucious loads of wet hops used may be the best pale ale I've tasted yet. Drinkability: 22oz. is effortless loads of flavor very refreshing brew, Great Divide has found a friend in the hop.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2005 14:25:04 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

4.75/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: pours a slightly hazy orange color with a thick two finger head that lasts nicely.Decent lacing paints the glass.

Smell: copious amounts of grapefruit citrus, ripe fruits, and pine bitterness.

Taste: caramel, pears, apples, green grapes, grapefruits, and pine bitterness. This is a wonderfully well balanced pale ale that is bold in the flavor profile. It's nice to have a fresh hop ale that isn't DIPA.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp throughout. Aftertaste is pleasantly full flavored citrus, ripe fruits, and bitterness.

Drinkability: this is an exceptional pale ale that can be quaffed all day long without developing boredom or laying flat on the floor. Absolutely great beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2007 18:25:29 | More by Gavage
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy with an orange-amber color. Steady head that remains throughout the tasting. Lace is left as a ring after each sip.

Excellent fresh malt flavor with an aromatic flowery hop background. Attractive.

Strong peppery hop flavor. The only demerit comes from the thin body. The carbonation is okay. Spicy aftertaste that lasts a long time.

This is one of GD's best beers.

Serving type: on-tap

10-24-2012 16:42:31 | More by smcolw
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Fresh Hop Pale Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,221 ratings.