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Fresh Hop Pale Ale - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Fresh Hop Pale AleFresh Hop Pale Ale

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

1,252 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,252
Reviews: 657
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 9.8%
Wants: 120
Gots: 41 | FT: 1
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: 1,252 | Reviews: 657 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lazjuarez
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Poured from a bottle (650ml) into a tumbler. Bottle dated: Oct 17 2011

A: Pours a dark golden color with a burnt orange hue. About 1 1/2 fingers worth of an off white foamy head which dissipates rather slowly, but leaves great sticky lacing behind. Carbonation is coming off the bottom of the glass, very nice looking APA.

S: As soon as I opened it, my nose was overwhelmed with big citrus notes, lemon zest, and Lemongrass. Almost like fresh cut grass. Small piney resin and medium to light maltiness in the background as well

T: Taste follows the bouquet, middle of the tongue is where the hops make a presence, but then the malts come in and balance everything, making for a very quaffable beer.

M: Mouthfeel is medium; Carbonation is refreshing and well balanced. The piney resin along with the biscuity malts, give for a great medium bodied, but non-aggressive APA.

lazjuarez, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of Onenote81
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Thanks to Kiefdog for this beer in a recent trade! Much appreciated...

Pours a darker gold with a nice foamy white head. Great lacing. Smells really hoppy for an APA. Nice floral tones and some definitive citrus. I could easily mistake this for an IPA.

Nice crips hop bitterness. A little too bitter for an APA. Lacks some of the sweet balance that this style is know for. Is there such a thing as an imperial APA? If so, this is it. Slight roasty flavor mixed in as well. I like this. Recommend.

Onenote81, Jan 26, 2009
Photo of THORN
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Bottle poured into Pint Glass
A: Copper brown. Half inch head retained. Beautiful sticky lacing left in splotches around the glass. Nice CO2 trails from bottom of glass.
S: Very sweet start followed by Piney citrus filled hops.
T: Not nearly as sweet as I was expecting by the smell. Piney hops creep in and dominate the flavor profile. Leaves a resiny aftertaste on tongue, a pleasant one that is.
M: Light on tongue, kind of more bare than I was hoping for.
D: Of the fresh hops I have enjoyed this season it is by far one of the most drinkable. The hops don't tear apart your palette, but dominate a large portion of the flavor profile.

THORN, Nov 08, 2009
Photo of biegaman
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

This is indeed pale, but not to say colourless. Its lucid, brassy tone catches the light and reverts it in even brighter, sharper rays. Small spurts of lackadaisical bubbles do just as much to catch the eye. Its well lathered head is both filmy and bubbly; despite the apparent weariness of the carbonation the bubbles turn out to be surprisingly industrious.

This smell of grassy, vinous hops has a curiously sedative quality to it. There are, I'm told, sound scientific explanations for this - none of which interest me. All I care is that this bouquet has enough citrus to give it a dynamic tang (it does) and enough sweet, biscuity maltiness to engage the other half of my beer-related appetite (that too, it also has).

Similarly, the taste also satiates both my penchants for solid, sessionable pale ales. It has a sufficient amount of lightly herbal, citrus smacked hops to satisfy my itch for lupullin, while at the same time it has plenty of caramel and biscuits to gratify my affection for malts. The hints of lemon grass are equally appreciated as those of toffee. Yum!

Perhaps the most important aspect to a successful pale ale is balance - Great Divide has struck a resonance between yin and yang that would impress any Chinese zen master (maybe that's where the brewery get's its name?) One person could call this ultra hoppy and another super malty, neither opinion would be wrong. It's like an Escher painting.

Fresh Hop Pale Ale would make a great girlfriend: it looks nice, it smells nice, all its parts are well proportioned and it's incredibly easy to get along with. The only problem would be that, given the nature of the beer and the fact that only freshly-harvested hops are used, you'd really only get to see her once a year. Hmm, perhaps then she'd make a better affair!?

biegaman, Dec 16, 2009
Photo of Oxymoron
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Fresh hopped beers can be tricky as they can vary year to year. Fresh Hop is pretty consistent though IMO. Pours a mostly clear, light amber to orange in color. A good soft white head with good retention and lacing through out.

The nose has a great hop aroma but with my experience doesn't have that distinct "wet" hop aroma. The hops really come out with a mostly citrus and grassy aroma. Some minor grapefruit and a touch of mineral notes. The malt is non-descript mostly but some nice kettle caramel notes are there. Very clean yeast.

The taste is similar. The hops are well balanced with a nice bitterness that lingers but lets the citrus and pine really come out in the finish. Some sweetness but limited malt backing in the taste. The body does balance the hops nicely though. There is more of a distinct freshness that is more in tune with the fresh hop idea, at least in the taste. Very clean yeast and finishes nicely.

The body is moderate and balanced well. The carbonation is right on. Overall a very enjoyable seasonal beer. Great hop presence that isn't over the top. Some minor character flaws but very drinkable.

Oxymoron, Nov 10, 2008
Photo of grittybrews
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Bottled 10/2010, consumed 01/2011, so not overly fresh.

Poured a vivid orange-amber into a tulip with two fingers of sticky, bright white head that left a good amount of dotty lacing. Somewhat gentle floral aroma with hints of toffee and pine.

Moderate carbonation and a full, slightly slick mouthfeel. I'm guessing the hops had faded a bit with this bottle, and the initial flavors were dominated by a mild caramel sweetness, biscuit, and a hint of apricot. Not overly bitter with a nice floral/pine crispness on the finish.

Well-balanced pale ale; would love to try this one again fresh.

grittybrews, Jan 30, 2011
Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

A: The beer pours pale copper, slightly hazy. The white large rich head is sparkeling and sure takes its time to dissipate, leaving lots of lacings.

S: Smells of clean caramell malt and american floral hops; there's mainly citric notes but also a hint of pine. Some bitter hops in there as well.

T: Bitter and floral notes up front - same citric and piney notes like in the smell. The hops are nicely balanced by the malt.

M: The after-taste is not to short and holds a nice dry bitterness. The body is medium and the carbonation is rich with lots of small bubbles.

D: A nice APA with a little of everything nice. The fresh hops sure makes a good impression. I like the size of the bottle; 650 ml - a lot of liquid to enjoy!

Evil_Pidde, Dec 29, 2009
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

A: Clear, light orange. The head is small and generates a bit of random lacing.

S: Very fresh aroma of hops and pine.

T: Really tasty and fresh. Not too sweet, a little bit sticky with a pine resin flavor. Bitterness is minimal, but this is an APA, not an IPA or DIPA.

M: Very smooth drinking with any alcohol flavor masked by a fresh hop profile.

D: Excellent beer. I'm glad I was able to sample a fresh bottle. This would certainly be amazing on draft.

Huhzubendah, Nov 29, 2010
Photo of koopa
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Had this one on tap yesterday at the Copper Mine Pub's 2nd Anniversary Party.

Appearance: Pours a light copper with a 1 finger white crown that displays some retention and lace.

Smell: Nice amount of fresh herbal hops and some citrus hop notes over a fairly neutral malt.

Taste: Same as the nose but the citrus makes a bit more of an appearnace. Never over powering but down right full flavored without the bitterness typically associated with a hoppy brew.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a light spritzy carbonation.

Drinkability: Sessionable.

koopa, Nov 07, 2010
Photo of Seanibus
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

This is a good, study, no-frills ale. refreshing and hoppy without trying to blow your head off with a massive hop bomb.

Pours orangy and slightly hazy with a fluffy white head that dissolves quickly to abundant lacing. The aroma is fresh and summery, slightly grassy. The flavor is mild and hoppy, with lots of gentle grass character and just a bit of pale malt to keep it all together. the bitterness sneaks up slowly and manifests high in the mouth, with a fresh, almost minty character. The mouthfeel is light and refreshing.

This is not a classic beer. It is not a fancy beer. But it is strong enough to satisfy a hophead and mild enough to keep everyone else interested.

Seanibus, Apr 08, 2009
Photo of Reagan1984
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Ale poured with a thin but fairly thick one finger head that did stay one the scene for quite some time. The beer was a medium amber color almost like a dark honey and has some gold notes to the color. Slightly hazy with no visible carbonation.

Aroma is very citrus like and of fresh hops. Also very slightly spicy.

Taste is very well balanced and if anything focuses more on the raw/fresh hop flavor. This, of course, is not a bad thing to me.

This is a Pale Ale for Hop heads, which means that I like it. There is some malt goodness early in the flavor profile that is taken over by the hop bitterness that lingers a bit then fades nicely. I have to give them some bonus points for imagination here. They took an APA and hopped it up without making it into a mock IPA. It really does not have much lingering hop bitterness at all. (On an IPA level anyway)

Almost a brown bread like finish to the flavor that is accompanied by some hop goodness.

Mouth feel is fairly light and this beer is very drinkable.

If you want to begin the journey of taking someone from APA and introduce them to IPA's start with this as a gateway beer. This is a nice place to introduce people to the flavor and bitterness of fresh hops.

I like this and would gladly enjoy another.

Reagan1984, Jul 07, 2008
Photo of isaiahcutright
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

P: Pours a light amber with a brilliant white 2 finger head.

S: lots of floral hops grassy overall delightful.

Taste: smooth a nice bitterness bite a touch of sweetness.

Mouthfeel: A nice overall smoothness to this fresh hopped pale ale.

Overall: another solid brew from the Great Divide folks just a great drinking beer if only we could have this fresh all year.

isaiahcutright, Jan 11, 2012
Photo of homebrewhawk
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

2008 version. 22oz. bomber served in a shaker pint glass. Poured a dark copper with a fine bubbled off white head. Big piney hop aroma. Pretty good initial hop blast. Decent malt base with a little sweetness. Smooth mouthfeel, not that mouth puckering dryness you get in some hoppy beer. Maybe a little one dimensional, but if you like hops that's a good dimension.

homebrewhawk, Oct 27, 2008
Photo of wvsabbath
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Serving Type - 22oz bottle

Appearance - Tanish/brown with a nice 1 inch creamy head and lots of sticky lacing.

Smell - Great fresh, strong hop aroma soon as bottle is opened. Very dank, with a grassy note, pine, lemon and spices. Some malty carmael along with pale malts, and a little sugar also.

Taste - Classic dry, fresh hops mixed with pale malts. Bitter, sweet and piney. Loads of lemon, farmhouse/grassy. Added sugars give it nice sweetness. Very herbal, with some citric flavor. Malts are bold, caramel and pale flavored. Not much alcohol presence at all.

Mouthfeel - Dry bitterness coats tounge with the fresh hops. Malts add the caramel and pale follow up. Palate gets more of the same with lots of pine and herbal, and sugars. Aftertaste is dry, bitter, malty and sweet.

Overall - A well done, tasty beer. Love the 1 2 punch of hops, then malts. Very balanced and easy to drink. Good price, easy enough to find, worth the purchase for sure.

wvsabbath, Oct 23, 2012
Photo of yesyouam
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Great Divide Fresh Hop Pale Ale is a pretty clear light amber ale with a dense white head that has outstanding retention and lacing. It has a very grassy aroma with notes of grain and flowers. It's pretty light bodied and quite slick. The finish is dry and clean. It has a perfectly balanced flavor with a biscuity malt tone and a grassy bitterness. It almost seems a touch sweet right before the finish. The grassy bitterness lingers for a little while. This is very smooth and refreshing. This bottle is nine months old, so I'd really like to try it fresh at some point.

yesyouam, Jun 27, 2010
Photo of rajendra82
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%

Out of the 22 oz. bomber, this Pale Ale came out clear and bubbly, and readily formed a three finger thick head, which looked quite nice atop the pale amber colored body. The aroma was typical of the “C” hopped west coast products, with a leafy and citric hop profile. The hops were backed by the scent of sweet and partially caramelized malt. While not overly strong, especially considering the presence of the words Fresh Hop in the name, the smell was spot on for an American Pale Ale. The taste was well balanced between sweet toffee-ish malt and spicy dry hop oils. Not a lot of bitterness was present, except for a little grapefruit rind like flourish at the end of each sip. Feeling a bit thicker on the tongue than a run of the mill Pale Ale, this was highly quaffable, while not being watery. A well made beer, which was not quire the showcase of hops I was hoping it would be. The quality was however so good, it kept my disappointment from creeping into the score.

rajendra82, Nov 06, 2006
Photo of rkarimi
4.09/5  rDev +0.2%

rkarimi, Jun 07, 2012
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.08/5  rDev 0%

Pours a nice looking orange/amber color into my east end pint glass. A large fluffy cualiflower head retains very well leaving good lacing.

Nose is very soapy floral hops, with a little bit of rock candy like maltiness.

Wow! This is one hoppy pale! Big hoppy bitterness. Piney and flowery west coast hop flavors right out of the gate. A good crisp malt profile through the middle before hop resins come back and the bitterness begins to rise quickly. Bitterness rises and peaks right at the finish with a bone dry bite. Nice floral hops, (im thinking cascades here) and a good dryness linger on in the finish. Hard to beleive there is only 55 IBUs here.

Mouthfeel is right where it should be, good carbonation, and a good dry finish. A near perfect viscosity, and good slick feel.

Drinkability is pretty good, but this one has just a touch too much unchecked bitterness for a pale. A bit of a malt boost here might make this beer a pale for the ages.

Overall a great pale. Like i said, a little boost in the sweetness of the malt profile could do wonders here IMO. But besides that, still a very desireable pale ale.

AKBelgianBeast, Jan 30, 2009
Photo of hustlemuscle
4.08/5  rDev 0%

Put this cloudy, sort of muddy looking beer bam, right in the kisser. Huge grassy fresh hops greet the nose, and then beat on your toungue when you take quaff. Big hops for a pale ale. The hop bitterness makes this a lip smacker and taste bud killa. A damn fine beer from a damn fine brewery.

hustlemuscle, Jan 05, 2006
Photo of geexploitation
4.08/5  rDev 0%

Pours crystal clear and bright, golden amber with a frothy pure white head. Very pretty. The nose is big-time citrusy American hops with some soft green edges, laid on a foundation of evocative caramel malts. On the palate, scratchy hop oils and brilliant orange marmalade flavors come up first, followed by a softened malt sweetness. Lots of bitterness toward the end, with active hop tingles left on the tongue. Overall, this is a great beer. Everything is balanced, smooth as possible given all the hops that were thrown in, and well-integrated. Very well done.

geexploitation, Nov 06, 2007
Photo of DaveFL1976
4.08/5  rDev 0%

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.

DaveFL1976, Jul 20, 2006
Photo of PatrickJR
4.08/5  rDev 0%

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

A - Clear, coppery/light amber in color. Nearly four fingers of off white, slightly tan head rise with great retention. Lots of lacing as well.

S - Very leafy, "green" aromas emerge first. Grassy, somewhat earthy notes are most prevalent with citrus taking a backseat in comparison to similar brews. Lots of herbal and tea-like aromas, though hard to pin down specifics. Faint breadiness in the background.

T - Lots of herbal and floral flavors hit early palate. Grass, tea, and bay leaves all stand out. Mid palate reveals earthier flavors akin to bark and roots, though these are still somewhat obscured by the lingering leafiness. Late palate furthers these earthy flavors, at times becoming a little onion or chive-like. Some citrus is evident also, a mild mixture of grapefruit and lemon peel. Bitterness grows to a moderate amount in the aftertaste. There's a soft bready sweetness underneath all the hops providing a bit of respite.

M - Not bad, but a little lacking. Carbonation is somewhere on the light end of moderate. Fresh Hop Pale Ale has a medium-light body. There's a marginal "flat-ish" quality during some sips which makes the overall experience strange. In fact, as the beer has warmed, the sweetness pulls through more and there's no bubbly to cut through it. I vote to crisp this brew up just a bit.

D - Good drinking stuff. The hop flavors are noticable but they aren't overwhelming. Overall the beer is decently balanced and a pretty good showcase for hops.

PatrickJR, Jan 23, 2010
Photo of TheCrowsNest
4.08/5  rDev 0%

Aroma...
Great Divide's Fresh Hop opens up with a very light citrus scent that coats a delicate caramel backbone.

Appearance...
A brilliantly clear copper that affirms suspicions that dry hopping was avoided here because they used wet hops (this statement could very well be false). Long lasting head. Very little lacing.

Flavor...
A delicate grapefruit flavor starts out and fades into fleeting bitterness. There's about as much malt in the taste as there was in the aroma - you know it's there but it's not the focus.

Mouthfeel...
Medium-light bodied with shmedium carbonation.

Overall...
Fresh Hop is a sessionable pale ale that will also please the discerning beer lover out there. In a world of fist-to-mouth IIIIPA's (yeah, four Is) this is a nice break that offers a rare opportunity to reflect on the complexity that can be found in a pale ale.

TheCrowsNest, Jan 24, 2012
Photo of Atlas1
4.08/5  rDev 0%

Grabbed the last bomber of this at Chevy Chase today and ran open to drink it. I've been looking all over for this but just keep missing it. Not tonight. Tonight it's mine.

Pours a good looking golden amber color with a healthy two-finger head that has serious longevity. The foam eventually breaks up into juicy clumps and leaves a lot of sticky residue on the sides of the glass as it recedes. Bueno. The nose is fresh and fruity, with elements of grass and strawberries thrown in for good measure. Not so much pine in the aroma as I'd expected, but plenty of citrus scents. It tastes, however, a bit denser than what the nose might have suggested. Thick and heavier than I thought it would be, but super smooth. Kind of sweet and juicy up front, with a bit more pine and hoppy bitterness in the finish. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy.

I could drink this all day long. It may not be my favorite IPA of all time, but it's mighty tasty. And at 6.10% ABV, it's not going to knock you out after just one. A session beer? Sure, if I could find it on tap, why not. And I'd love to find it on tap. Another outstanding effort from the gang at Great Divide.

Atlas1, Jan 19, 2008
Photo of Domingo
4.08/5  rDev 0%

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)

Domingo, Feb 07, 2006
Fresh Hop Pale Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,252 ratings.