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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.

673 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 673
Hads: 1,470
Avg: 4.09
pDev: 14.18%
Wants: 140
Gots: 105 | 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:
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: 673 | Hads: 1,470
Photo of rawfish
3.76/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Clear brassy hue, a off white head that can reach easily three fingers high with average retention. Lacing left behind is terrific, pillowy and with great coverage.

Pungent herbal, grassy and dank pine needle hops with a malty backbone of raw grain, stale bread. Very raw and earthy, the aroma is slightly above average in power for a pale.

Steady bready and cracker malt, thin but enough to support a wave of pine, fresh cut grass and dank herbal hop flavors. Bitterness is toned and lifting leading to a drying feeling, stickiness with a pine aftertaste.

Good body and carbonation. Alcohol is well hidden. Dries pretty well. Drinkable and smooth.

All in all this is a solid drink, malts are raw and earthy and I expected a bit more boldness from a fresh hop beer. We can't forget that this is only a pale ale so it competes well for the style.

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Photo of Fcolle2
4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear amber in color with a one finger off white head that retains nicely

Smell has some good hop aromas. Big grassy herbal aromas forward with some citrus near the end. There is some light pine aromas near the end along with a mildly sweet caramel malt aroma.

Taste follows the nose with more good fresh hop flavors forward. More herbal and grassy hop flavors followed by a very mild piney hop bitterness. Malt is very subtle and has a very mild sweetness near the end.

Mouthfeel is great lots of hopy oils and a medium body gives this a moderate sticky thickness. Carbonation is mild and gives it a soft feel.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.81/5  rDev -6.8%
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.

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Photo of SFACRKnight
4.31/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 22oz bomber into, once again, the nb globe.
Pours a deep gold with thick white foam, good carbonation rising up from the bottom of the glass, head recedes back to an easy half inch of thick foam. Lots of pine and dank resin on the nose, some bread, a touch of citrus and grass. Flavors follow the nose. Bready malt backbone, just enough to support the hops that dominate the flavor. I get thick, resinous pine hops with a bit of citrus as well. Great hop presence in this beer. Mouthfeel is dry, yet oily and sticky from the hops. Overall, out of the fresh hopped beers this year, this is hands down the best.

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Photo of MoorBeerPlz
3.76/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a New Belgium globe glass.

A: Poured a clear, gold/orange/copper with about 2 fingers of foamy off white head. This dropped back to light lacing, a foam ring and sticky foam on the sides of the glass.

S: Some hops, malts, grapefruit and maybe some other citrus, hay/freshly mowed grass. I detected just a hint of pine at the end of the first whiff.

T: Hops up front followed quickly by the citrus and malt backbone. With that, a sourness and a grass-like flavor as the beer warmed in the glass. Drinks pretty clean with a dryer, bitter finish. Spicy??? Though I tasted that, not too sure. No alcohol taste detected.

M: Light to medium body with a dry finish, leaving a hoppy, spicy taste on the back of the tongue. Carbonation was good, not too much, not too little.

O: Decent take on the pale ale from Great Divide. Very drinkable, finishes well and it's definitely something I would have no problems buying again.


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Photo of Walletsworth
4.37/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up this bad boy while in Spokane, WA at a great liquor store called Total Wine & More. Pours a hazy orange with a tremendous amount of head. Terrific lacing and retention. Smells of citrus and a liitle pine in there as well. I also caught some caramel which really came out in the taste. It had a lot of citrus with some pine but the caramel taste and feel we're what sold me.

One amazing beer. Definately will have again.

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Photo of xGrapeApe
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Head- large, frothy, off-white, diminishing
Lacing- fair
Body- clear to slightly cloudy
Particles- very light clouding
Color- deep straw yellow-light orange
Malt- light, bready, grain, hay, cereal
Hops- average, grass, citrus, pine, grapefruit
Yeast- light
Duration- average
Sweet- light, bread, cereal
Acidic- light, citrus, grapefruit
Bitter- moderate, grass, pine, resin
Body- medium
Texture- average
Carbonation- moderate
Finish- lightly bitter, astringent, metallic
O= The relatively light body showcases the hops wonderfully, they are certainly in the foreground but by no means overpowering or overly bitter. Very drinkable and flavorful. No complaints to be had.

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Photo of SebD
3.99/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: It has a nice clear golden/orange color to it. It has a nice off-white head that dies down moderately slow and leaves some nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of citrus, pine, floral hops and some caramelly malts.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has some citrus, piney resins, floral hops, bready malts and some sweet caramel.

Mouthfeel: It has a low carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good flavors and aromas.

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Photo of RockAZ
4.46/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just tapped the keg yesterday, May 8th and the paper ring says it was kegged Oct 31 - so it might be a little old to be calling Fresh Hop but I will review it anyways as I liked it very much. Beautiful color, nice carbonation that has some thickness to the foam - coats the glass with lacing patterns. Not a strong scent from it, but what there little there is, is very pleasing. Is 6.1% a session IPA? Well, compared to what I usually drink it is, ...

I like the mouthfeel, it does flow over the tongue and leave some pleasant bitterness followed by dryness in the back corners of the mouth. Only 55 IBU's? Well, I think it is pretty well balanced, recommend you try it on draft. There has always been a "metallic" aftertaste in the bottle versions of this, IMHO.

Later EDIT: discussed this with a couple of friends and they are confirming that the October batches are selling for huge discounts on both keg and bottle - don't let the hype on "Fresh" sway you, the 1/6bbl costs me $40 which is a screaming deal on any IPA of quality. I hear the former $12-13 bombers are going for $3-4, which again, is a heck of a deal on a marvelous beer!

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Photo of BritCvS
4.66/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Fast becoming my favorite. Waited for it to become a little warmer from the fridge. Bomber, poured into a Riedel glass.

A: Outstanding head, rich, thick. Amazing belgian lace. A rich brown, ever so slightly cloudy. Really looks like an excellent British bitter.

S: Grass, freshness, citrus. A little tiny bit of pine. Lovely.

T: Superb taste, warm malts balanced with amazing hops. Perfect.

M: not too much carbonation. Long, long flavor. Great hoppiness. Easy malts.

O: Wonderful. Do try it.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a bomber of this for 5 bucks a the house of 1,000 beers. With the great reviews I expect it to be well worth it even though its from October (5 months old.
A - Quite a great appearance a touch darker than I expected for a pale ale but still very clear and mega carbonated making for excellent lacing and a never ending head.
S - Smell is fresh piney hops, some cracker malts, and a touch of pale malts.
T - Very good the hops haven't backed off maybe a bit but it's still very earthy and bitter. The malts seem to balanced good it even borderlines on a IPA with the aggressive hopping.
M - Light to medium, ABV is well hidden. Halfway through the glass it's very balanced and enjoyable.
Overall far from the best fresh hop ales but I believe this may be one of the best pale ale fresh hopped ales I ever drank. Pity it cost 10-13 dollars fresh or I would love to get it again. If you see it now discounted for as cheap as I got it give it a try!

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Photo of M_C_Hampton
3.99/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: poured from a 22 oz bottle (bottle 10/4/12) into a pint glass, orange amber colored with a huge yellow white head that lingers leaving some lacing, slight haze

S: grassy, citrus hops, grapefruit

T: nice bitter notes without being overpowering, litttle sweetness from malt, grapefruit peel

M: LOTS of carbonation makes this on e kind of sudsy, medium body, nice bitter hop aftertaste, dry finish

O: a nice APA with good bitterness that isn't overly obtrusive or complicated

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Photo of mactrail
3.95/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Handsome amber in the glass with a touch of burnt orange. Nice lacing and pleasantly carbonated.

Flavor and mouthfeel are more like a DIPA. Big and rich with malt. Tangy and winey. The hops are resiny and aromatic, but not as bitter as you might expect in a Pale Ale. Sweet and malty on the tongue, but it dries out in the aftertaste. A great mouthful of flavor and a bigger, better brew than most APAs.

On tap at Zero One in San Angelo, Texas [Transcribed notes from 11/13/2012 tasting].

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Photo of UnderPressure
4.32/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Very slightly hazy dark orange beer everlasting three-quarter inch head. pretty decent lacing

intense hop aroma very fruity grapefruit and green and sweet aroma

very great and intense hop flavor and extremely hop forward flavored beer pretty high bitterness really great flavor relatively light beer with a lasting bitter dry finish

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Photo of Drnkmunky
4.79/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

If you like hoppy beer without excessiveness, this is a good one.

Got it in a bomber. Clear deep golden color. Very fragrant nose. Mouth feel is light to medium. Hoppy up front with nice piny finish. Leaves slight hoppy aftertaste.

It's name serves it right. Not quite the stone drink by freshness, but close.

I'm a fan, and I'm just getting to like IPAs.

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Photo of CHickman
4.69/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Pours a very hazy gold orange color with a creamy 2 finger off white head that faded slowly and left a creamy layer on top, very good foamy lacing that left rings as it went down. Looks more IPA than APA, which must be from the hops.

Smells of fresh piney and citrus hops, grapefruit, caramel, biscuit, grass, orange peel, herbs and light floral hops. Fresh and hoppy, it's more IPA than pale ale and I'm loving it. Just enough malt backbone in the nose to make this almost perfect.

Tastes as good as it smells, with fresh piney hops, citrus hops, grapefruit, lemon zest, caramel, biscuit, breadcrust, grass, orange peel, herbs, tea leaf, flowers and light floral hops. The fresh hops are potent and delicious, with a sweet and bitter variety that seems to cover all hops type and flavors; in short, it was extremely tasty and one of the best tasting pales ales that I've ever had. A notch below Zombie Dust and a notch above Sierra Nevada Pale Ale.

Mouthfeel is smooth and almost crisp, with a medium body, light zesty carbonation and a bitter finish which was on the light bitter side, full of fresh piney and citrus hops with a nice balanced mix of bready malts and juicy hop sweetness. A top notch pale ale that was incredibly easy to drink and could be great on its own or paired with food. Overall it was fantastic, very easy to drink and really smooth.

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Photo of SHODriver
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: pours a nice golden hue with a two finger dense white head that retains very well
S: smells of citrus with grapefruit leading the way, a bit of pine and grassyness and a bit of pale malt and caramel in the nose
T: earthy and grassy with some citrus and pine a bit of caramel sweetness comes through as well. the swallow brings more earthyness and pine
M: medium feel in the mouth with nice and soft carb which his perfect
O: Probably one of the best fresh hop ales I've had. It's about two months old so I imagine this was orgasmic when fresh.

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Photo of SadMachine
4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Reviewed from notes from 1/9/13

A- Pours a slightly hazy golden/straw color with a small to medium sided head with decent retention.

S- The aroma is very grassy and piney, with a bit of freshly baked bread. A hint of caramel malt appears as it warms. Overall a very clean, fresh, and refreshing aroma.

T- The taste follows the aroma very closely, with dank/grassy hops taking the forefront, a healthy dose of pine and toasted bread in the middle (as well as caramel malt as it warms), and a snapping, yet refreshing bite of hop bitterness in the finish.

M- The mouthfeel is medium with good carbonation.

O- This is one of the best APAs I've had to date!

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Photo of TBoneJones
3.74/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pure copper, head is basic and recedes quickly. Little evidence of carbonation. Lacing nice though.
Smells light and fresh of some piney hops and fruit notes non-descript, but nice. Maybe berry. Sweet malts barely detected.
Fruity hop mix, apricot, pine, not musty or anything earthy, clean tasting yet balanced with a malt presence that doesn't dominate anywhere (which I like). Beer lives well up to its name. Just not standing out to me as memorable either. I recall liking this even more when I tried it a year ago or so. And this is a fresh bottle as it labeled as being bottled on 10/04/12, and I'm drinking it on 10/24/12 (months late in posting this obviously).
Carbonation feels nice, medium even though it has a thinner appearance to me. Fruit is more subdued than i like, but a slight tropical bitter hop lingers, dry finish, but not strong, crisp.
Overall this beer works as a fine IPA, a clean example, not complex in my opinion , but well-made nonetheless. Until I try some of this brewery's acclaimed stouts, a couple of which I'm still aging a bit, this is about my favorite beer of theirs to date.

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Photo of rangerred
3.72/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass out of a 22oz bomber.

Pours a light copper with a slight chill haze. Just a very thin white head that fades rather quickly. Very little lacing left on the glass.

Aroma of pine with a touch of citrus thrown in. A little bit of bread from the malt but flowers and grapefruit really dominate.

The hop flavors are not quite as prominent in the taste compared to the aroma but they are still the number one feature of the beer. More malt sneaks in in the way of wheat bread and a little dark caramel but it is just barely enough to balance the hops. Bitterness is on the high side leading to a fairly dry finish with just a little stickyness.

Overall, a good APA but a little too average. Even with it being fresh hopped there just isn't a whole lot here that really sticks out to set this beer apart from the thousands like it out there.

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

Poured from bomber into tulip glass, clear orange in color with 2 finger head and nice lacing around the glass. Bottle date 10/2012.

I don't pick up any hops, rather sweet malt, bready character with orange rind. Kind of disappointed the beer doesn't have more hop character.

Beer is tasting more on the sweet side, slightly syrupy. The caramel malts overwhelm the hop character of this beer. Unbalanced, too much malt. It has a soft feel too it and finishes clean.

Medium bodied beer, very easy drinking, smooth and soft yet effervescent.

I had big expectations given the experiences with Great Divide. It's a good beer but there are better choices. Nothing stood out as far as complexity with aroma or flavor. Maybe I had an off bottle.

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Photo of jondeelee
4.42/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fresh Hop Pale Ale opens to a bright, citrusy, piney hoppy nose that makes immediately apparent the freshness of the hops that went into the beer. Layers of pink grapefruit, grapefruit rind, grass, pine resin, sweet rosewater, mint, and eucalyptus rest in light, but finely nuanced layers atop a bed of lovely malts. These latter ingredients bring pleasant sugars to the mix, including brown sugars, and an assortment of sweet fruit esters: orange, berry, cherry, apricot. So sweet are these sugars that there seems to be even a touch of candi sugar. Toast crust and wet wheat add a bit of earthiness. As a whole, this is an excellent nose, far outreaching the expected volumes of aroma that usually come from such a light beer (6.1% ABV). The aromas do focus mainly on hops (perhaps a 60/40 split), but the malts are present in enough quantity to nicely balance the beer out.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a lovely hop blast: grapefruit, grapefruit rind, pine resin, eucalyptus, mint, dandelion stem, grass, and rosewater flow over the tastebuds. The hops are geared more toward the bitter end of the spectrum, but not overly so, the 55 IBUs providing a near-perfect balance between flavor and bitterness, and the hop flavors themselves featuring an excellent array of tones. Sweet brown sugar, candi sugar, and fruit esters (orange, apricot, berry, cherry) help keep the hops from overpowering everything, and a nice array of toast crust, biscuit, and cereal from the grains adds earthiness. The aftertaste is a long-lingering hop burn, being perhaps slightly more bitter than was present in the main mouthful. Mouthfeel is a slightly oily medium-light to medium, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is excellent beer, and it’s amazing to see what Great Divide can do to a pale ale: the difference between this and a standard offering in the style is akin to the difference between Michelangelo and a talented high school student. The sheer variety and potency of flavors in here is impressive, made all the more so by the light ABV and the mid-range IBUs. Well worth trying.

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Photo of Googs
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a RR pint glass. Bottled 10.5.2012

A: Fluffy white head. An inch head that dissolves in minutes to a small layer of medium sized bubbles. Golden/copper in color. How I like my pale ales/IPAs to look.

S: Floral and fresh hops

T: Nice pale malts accompanied by floral, grassy, citrusy hops. Ends fairly bitter. A refreshing brew.

M: Smooth and a bit creamy. Good level of carbonation on this one. An easy drinker with bitterness that stays on the palate

O: A nice fresh hop pale ale that went well with the spicy chinese food I was eating. I'd have this again and I'm looking forward to having it on draft. I enjoyed this year's Founders Harvest ale better though.

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.32/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours clear copper with minimal head. Aroma slams with grassy, piney hops. Taste follows, with this one highlighting the hops foe sure. Interestingly there is a massive malt backbone to this, and it doesn't take away from the grapefruit and aromatic hops. Excellent pale with medium carbonation and slick palate. Malty sweetness really comes out as it warms up. Good stuff.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.7/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from tap into a sampler tumbler. Poured golden yellow-orange with a half finger off-white head that subsided to a minimal amount slowly. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, earth, earth hop, spice, and spicy hop. The flavor was of sweet malt, earth, earth hop, citrus, citrus hop, and spice. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a pretty decent brew. The hoppiness aspect going on here really carried on throughout the entire glass in both the aroma and flavor. The flavor was fairly well balanced and inviting. If I hadn’t been on a ticking spree this day I likely would have had a full pint of this one without hesitation. Definitely worth your time trying if you have not done so before.

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Fresh Hop Pale Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 673 ratings.