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Fresh Hop Pale Ale - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Fresh Hop Pale AleFresh Hop Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

678 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 678
Hads: 1,517
Avg: 4.08
pDev: 14.46%
Wants: 141
Gots: 127 | FT: 2
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:
Beer added by: Todd on 10-07-2005

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Fresh Hop Pale Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 678 | Hads: 1,517
Photo of goochpunch
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Updated 11/3/07

Pours an amber copper with a slight haze to it and scant bubbles climbing to the top. Head is thinnish but clings to the glass well. Nose is all hops. Big fresh hops throwing out pungent aromas of grapefruit rind, pine sap, and fresh mowed grass. Malt is there slinkin in the back with its sweet body. Slight alcohol tinge in the nose. Flavor starts briefly with the classic pale malts and its bready sweetness, but doesn't stay in the focus too long before the hops come in. The hops bring huge flavors of sweet red grapefruit, followed by green and oily flavors of pine sap and grass. Malt really thins out here, and I wish that it would hold a steadier base for the hops. Lots of pine comes out in the finish. Mouthfeel is pretty light in weight. At first the carbonation is pretty lively, but as I drink this, it becomes smoother and creamier.

I used to really love this, but after having had Sierra Nevada's Harvest this year, I really needed to reevaluate this offering from Great Divide. Just doesn't offer the great malty caramel backing which SN's does. Just a bit thin and one-dimensional. Still a really good beer, but for the price, you can certainly get a better wet hop beer.

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Photo of Matthew
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a 22oz bomber a orange/amber color with a pretty sizable frothy white head that slowly dissapates to leave a small covering.
Aroma is of fruity hops, mostly orange peel, slightly earthy, grassy and a malty sweetness surrounds the prominate hoppy smell.
Very smooth tasting beer, very balanced. Light earthy hops with undertones of a orange bite against a back drop of semi sweet malt backbone.
Mid level carbonation.
This beer is very drinkable, very tasty, alcohol is nearly unperceivable. This can easily become a session beer.

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Photo of biking4beer
4.01/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber poured into a pint tumbler.

smooth foamy 1-1/2 finger head that had a slight browning too it. Beer was a crystal clear golden brown/amber co. Slight orange hues. Looked very tasty.

I don't know if my sniffer was a little off last night, but I didn't smell very many distinguishing aromas. Slight grassy smell to the hops. Possibly some citrus. This one didn't jump up and smack my olfactories like I thought it might.

With the first sip there was a a nice sweety malty taste at the tip of the tongue that had a nice transition to bittering hops in the back of the tongue. Again, as far as very specific flavors are concerned, nothing really jumped out, but this was still a tasty beer. Definitely a fresh tasting beer as the overnighted hops would imply.

Mouthfeel was nice. Just the right amount of carbonation to go with this beer. Nice and smooth. With the fairly low ABV, I could drink this one all night. I wanted another bomber immediately after I had finished the first. But alas, I had only bought one.

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Photo of MuddyFeet
3.35/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured with a frosting-like head that never uite went away. Fairly clear and brown. Nose is hoppy but comes across as very evergreen and wet sod. Flavor is full of citrus and pine but leaning more to the grapefruit and lemons than Christmas. Malts are very subdued and overpowered by the hops. Medium mouthfeel with an oily texture from the hops that lingers surprisingly briefly. Fine and drinkable but a bit off-balance to really enjoy.

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Photo of Sammy
3.87/5  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.

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Photo of DaveFL1976
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice amber/honey body with a light tan, fluffy head that sticks to the side and remains topping the beer for quite a while.
Nose is citrusy, cascade hops with a bit of a sweet malt backbone.
Pretty nicely balanced. More so than I expected. Lots of aroma hops are to be found, and a decent amount of bittering hops, but the sweetness of the malt nicely compliments the hops.
Medium mouthfeel, but a bit stickier than I'd like and great drinkability. For $3.99 per bomber, this is one great value for money brew.

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Photo of Gaisgeil
4.02/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a fairly clear golden brown in color with a loose off-white head to compliment. Nose is very inviting, it smells fresh, hence the name I suppose. Lots of fruity/citrusy notes, not very piney at all. Taste is lighter than expected, fruity, hints of lemon and grapefruit, a good amount of esters. Fairly light and crisp. Mouthfeel is quite a bit lighter than I expected. Very drinkable however, I would sample this again.


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Photo of Erdinger2003
4.6/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The head is foamy and a learge until it falls thin and leaves a nice bit of lacing behind it as it goes. The color is brown to gold and clear, very inviting.

The smell is very hoppy and aromatic, has amarillo and cascade hops and is very fruity with some mellow lemon and orange.

The taste is predominetly amarillo hops with lots of bitter taste and a little fruitiness of lemon and orange.

Mouthfeel is smooth and feels nice on the palate.

I will buy this more often because it is so good. I love amarillo hops and this is a little better than Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of arizcards
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bomber from AJ's in late February for $5.99.

Beer poured a golden orange with a nice sustaining white head that is leaving a splotchy lacing behind. Nose initially was off floral hops but as the beer warms the maltiness has become primary. Taste is a hint of citrus rinds, malts, with a blast of the lovely piney simcoe hops to finish. Mouthfeel is very full for the style with a nice creamy finish. Drinkability is near perfect. This is one of the best APA's I have ever enjoyed!

Picked up a bomber at AJ's in mid-October 2007 for $6.99. Not much has changed since my first try of this. This is one fine APA!

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Photo of WeisGuy
4.48/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a - pours a rust/burnt orange color, slightly cloudy, gigantic billowing off-white head with good retention, great lacing, a truly beautiful beer!

s - big hops, very citrusy, mostly lemon, lots of pine too, very intense aroma

t - much like the aroma, very intense hop bitterness, you can tell a difference with the fresh hops they use, sweet bitterness on the finish that lingers, very dry on the finish too

m - medium-bodied but very crisp, ample carbonation, very dry finish

d - quite drinkable, though the bitterness might be a little hard on the palate to drink too much

I really enjoyed this beer. I've been looking for it for awhile at stores that seem to carry most other Great Divide brews, and finally found it in a store that only carried Fresh Hop and one other. The fresh hops add a distinct taste to this beer that I really like. I'll be venturing back to the store to buy a few more bombers very soon.

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Photo of Illinick
3.87/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber from D's.
A: Amber and copper in color with slight hints of reddish-orange hues. Sticky and clumpy slightly off white head that clumps around for the duration of the brew. Good lacing throughout. Last pour is full of sediment.
S: Grassy, piney, musty earth, and hops at first quaff. Upon further smelling some malt scents and some citrus and lemon zest come out with slight herbal notes.
T: The first sip is a doozy. Piney and grassy hops with definate bitter grapefruit and citrus peel flavors. Herbal flavors and a definate malt presence in the middle to the end. Some tart citrus peel and some zest in there too. The grapefruit, grass, and fresh hops dominate.
MF: A bit chewy and mouthfilling
Overall: A solid brew with some intense up front flavors. Takes a few sips to really taste the quality of the brew, but I don't mind the continuous sipping. A nice, fresh APA.

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Photo of RedHaze
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a orange/amber with a two finger head that fades slowly to a rocky cap and thick ring, leaving behind clumps of foam on my glass. The initial pour was pretty clear, but when I poured the second half of the bomber their was plenty of sediment in the beer.

Smell; pine resin and orange peel hops dominate the nose up front. A nice, solid caramel malt presence gives a good balance to the smell.

Taste; as expected the hops are right there in your face, but manage to keep from becoming overwhelming. The malts are there just enough to add a bit of sweetness, that seems to set you up for the next bit of hop bitterness in the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, and is just about what I would hope for in the style.

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Photo of meathookjones
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Murky amber with a full frothy white head. Excellent hoppiness comes through in the aroma. Great floral and citric bitter notes nice and juicy with hops. Flavor starts with some lightly bitter citric hops notes before some smooth toasty malt sets in. Some light caramel provides a sweet touch to it. Finish is lightly bitter and hoppy. The aroma was great with the hops juiciness but the taste was a bit of a let down from that but still good. Solid body with good carbonation. I could have drunk a few of these.

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Photo of froggyfrog
4.38/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 once brown bottle with no apparent freshness dating. Serving vessel = snifter.

The golden nectar meets the bowl of the glass in a rush. The glass quickly fills with fuzzy orange gold and red hues. An army of tiny carbonation bubbles fuels a short-lived eggshell head. The glass begins to sweat as the ale, chilled to 45 degrees Fahrenheit, makes itself at home.

The bouquet feels somewhat faded, perhaps due to the passage of undocumented amounts of time. Discernable scents are toasted white bread masking a creamy buttermilk aroma; alcohol, cut grass and essential hop oils.

The taste is toasty at first with a solid pale ale malt profile. Then in march the citrus centric hops. Also present on the palate is a continuation of the grass-like hoppy flavors evident in the bouquet.

Mouthfeel is moderately oily with a slick finish.

Surprisingly quaffable for the level of bitterness, this is a solid straightforward American Pale Ale.

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Photo of hopsaplenty
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz brown bottle, no date info.

Hazed and fiery copper. The head is a fluffy eggshell foam that slowly settles to a skim coat. Strands of sticky lacing cling to the sides. Citrus rind bitterness with a fresh cut grass undercurrent, there is also a bright, clean note clearly present. Boldly bitter upfront, sharp but not too sharp citrus rind. Solid malt body works to support the hops and provides a counterbalancing sweetness. The finish is bitey, rindy, and lingers a long while. There is an almost salty component. Medium body, light mouthfeel, moderate carbonation and smooth. Not bad overall, enjoyable and drinkable, but it seemed as though there was something lacking, something that would have made this clearly standout from among the other pale ales.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.42/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this bomber up at Murray's Wine & Spirits in Milwaukee, WI on Saturday. Pours into my glass a deep clear peach/orange with a nice off white creamy, bubbly head on top. Inticing...yes. Aromas of yep, fresh hops! Big, green, herbal, citric hops waft up into my nose with a side order of caramelly sweet maltiness. This is simply delightful with lupulin oils and orange and grapefruit zest.

First sip brings a crystal, caramel slightly buscuity malt, which quickly gives way to a rush of herbally, citrusy hop flavors. Bright and bold like rubbing a fresh hop cone between your fingers. Flows down with a solid bitterness that never becomes overpowering. A wonderfully hoppy, tasty APA from a brewery that knows their hops!

Mouthfeel is smooth, medium bodied with good carbonation. This is a damn drinkable, sessionable brew for sure. I wish I had local access to it as it would be a staple in my fridge. If you're a hophead or ya like APA's...get yours hands on this beer! Yet another winner from Great Divide...keep them coming!

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Photo of Crosling
3.82/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Copper with orange highlights. The nose piney, lemony, floral, citric, caramelly and very fresh. Lovely aromas. Great hop flavor but very little bitterness. Pacific Northwest Hops. Very grassy with leaves, citrus notes, pine sap, light fruitiness and caramel. This is a very well rounded Pale Ale. This isn’t a big beer at all, just a plain n’ simple medium bodied, lightly hopped (for the style) american pale ale.

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Photo of RedwoodGeorge
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a cloudy golden orange with two fingers of tight bubbled off-white head. The crown dies down after a while and leaves no lacing to speak of...

The nose is full of fresh green hops with an interesting mix of new mown lawn and citrus oil. Not much malt to find in the aroma.

The flavor is very impressive - a surprisingly strong malt base with flavors of golden browned biscuits and sweet grain. The hops are, as you'd expect, bold but not overpowering. Lots and lots of citrus in this puppy but no bitterness. A bit of pine and pepper but mostly a very fresh, clear hop note straight out of the Pacific Northwest. There's a certain resinous 'oily' note that can only come from fresh green hops.

Mouthfeel is good - it's medium bodied with enough carbonation to clear the palate. Hop oils are quite apparent on the tongue but bitterness isn't nearly as strong as one would expect - still enough for a good finish.

This is a very drinkable beer and I'm looking forward to finding some fresh next fall. What impresses me is just how good this tastes when it's certainly "past it's prime" at six months old. The hop flavors are still clear and clean with no apparent degradation. If a fresher bottle tastes better than this it would be a treasure.

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Photo of DrJay
4.52/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Crystal clear amber/orange with a frothy, off-white head. Great retention and lots of clumpy lace. The hop aroma is very smooth and completely without harshness, very delicate for the amount - plenty of grapefruit and grassy character. There's also a bit of caramel and honey behind all the hops. Very balanced flavour with Just enough maltiness to keep the hops in check. Bitterness is solid, but not overdone. Green, grassy, and grapefruit hops are everywhere in the flavour - they linger long into the finish along with a hint of caramel. Slightly drying and creamy texture - there's a bit of powdery character from the hops. Carbonation and body are just on the light side of medium. There's a hint of warmth as well. This beer is highly quaffable. I can imagine drinking pint after pint of this.

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Photo of Viggo
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. Pours a clear orange/brown, medium sized white head, lots of sticky lace and great retention. Smell is citrus hops, caramel, floral hops, more hops, some more caramel, excellent, and superbly balanced. Taste is caramel up front, followed by an extreme citrus and floral hop hit, lots of hoppage in the finish, clean bitterness thats just right. Great floral/citrus aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium to light bodied with low carbonation. Amazing, best pale ale I've ever had, hands down. Malt and hops are perfectly balanced, a superb sipper, would love to stock up on this. Thanks DrJay!!!

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Photo of sopor
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light golden, slightly hazy amber with an active dimpled head leaving splotchy rings of lace. Smells slightly of caramel with bready biscuit cereal notes and a hint of husky grains, kissed with hops.

Sweet malt hits the tongue, but is quickly overcome by assertive hops. Hops come in resinous, fresh, akin to chewing on a green pinecone, with touches of herbs and grassy earth. Biscuity and bready malt is light and subdued compared to the hops. Aftertaste is dry, resinous hops, and a touch of dry cereal malt. A bit heavy on the hops, almost IPA.

Moderate body, delicate carbonation. Pleasant, easy drinking, but not out of the ordinary. Pretty drinkable, a bit hoppy, but it is a "fresh hop pale ale", so I really shouldn't use strict APA guidelines (hah).

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Photo of Domingo
4.09/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Picked up the last one of these I encountered at my local shop just in time for the UFC.
Pours a yellow-orange color. Of note, this is "just" an uber-hoppy APA and not an IPA, so you'll notice a lighter color. For something this hoppy, I actually expected clouds, but it's relatively clear, actually.
The smell is that of fresh hops (like you didn't expect that!). The main thing I noticed is that even though it's claim to fame is the hop character, there is a little malt and even a little bit of a caramel backing.
Flavor is VERY smooth. Alcohol sweetness is non-existant, but a malty sweetness is definitely. The hops offer flavor, but they aren't as overpoweringly bitter as some of GD's other brews. I'd actually say this is more drinkable just because of the lower alcohol and less potent flavor.
Pretty good beer for just relaxing.

(2006 Note: While on tap I think this beer was much like last year's, the bottled version's hop potency is DIPA level. Makes for a unique experience because the alcohol isn't there. I don't think it's as easy drinking as before, but for a hop kick it's nearly unmatched)

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.7/5  rDev -9.3%
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.

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Photo of Bighuge
4.57/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Hazed orange. Thin, tight ivroy white head. Good retention and intricate lace properties. Great aroma of fresh hops, orange marmalade based malt derivatives and grassy, pungent hop oils. This all follows through on the buds. Bright citric hop tones of grapefruit and lemon peel. Grassy. Very fresh tasting even though this is months old. Malt provides a solid backbone and is toffeeish and caramelly in nature. Some of that marmalade character comes through as well. Medium bodied and moderately carbonated. Yet another nice accomplishment by Great Divide. They have been impressing the hell out of me over the past year or so.

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Photo of silver0rlead
4.42/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy amber (possible "hop haze") with a nice thick beige head that retains well. The aroma just jumps out at you with huge, juicy citrus and floral hops, some sweet caramel, toasted bread, fruity esters and a hint of ethanol. The taste starts off with an agressive hoppiness, citrusy and floral (very fresh and green tasting), followed by a caramel sweetness, fruity esters and toasted bread. The mouthfeel is medium with moderate carbonation and drinkability is excellent. An excellent APA, just bursting with fresh hop flavor and a crisp finish that balances the beer well...something to seek out for sure.

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Fresh Hop Pale Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 678 ratings.