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Fresh Hop Pale Ale | Great Divide Brewing Company

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
91
outstanding
681 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
681
Ratings:
1,542
Avg:
4.08
pDev:
14.71%
 
 
Wants:
148
Gots:
135
For Trade:
1
Fresh Hop Pale AleFresh Hop Pale Ale
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.10%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 10-07-2005

User Reviews
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Reviews: 681 | Ratings: 1,542
Photo of woodychandler
3.35/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Say, since when did it become customary to leave this beer on the shelves for so long? I had stopped in at one of my up-and-coming bottle shops to score some CANs for a CANTrade and snagged this while I was there. I now notice a "Bottled On OCT 14 2010" stamp on the label! WTF, over?!? It's not the bottle shop's fault, per se as they are just recently stepping up their game, but their master distro must have decided to unload some outdated beers on them. Fooled me once, shame on you. Oh well, I like beer.

From the bottle: "Fresh Hop Pale Ale is brewed with fresh whole cone hops from the Pacific Northwest. We ship these "wet" hops to Denver overnight and brew shortly after harvest, imparting an intensely grassy hop aroma and citrus hop flavor in a medium-bodied ale."; "Suggested Food Pairings: Grilled trout, grilled bratwurst, garlic/ginger sweet potatoes, Epoisses (a rich, washed rind cow's milk cheese from France.)"

I loved the visual aspect of this beer! I got two-plus fingers of tawny head off of my pour, and the color was a deep-orangish/ coppery amber with NE-quality clarity. The nose had a very earthy, grassy, hay-like aspect underlain by a caramel/biscuit sweetness. I'll bet that this would have been killer, had it been fresh. I was reminded of summers in my youth, when my maternal grandparents were still largely surrounded by farms and the meadows were freshly mown and left to dry before raking. Mouthfeel was medium with an initial hit of grassy, minty hops before allowing a caramel sweetness to pop up like Whack-a-Mole. Finish had a slight hoppy bite, and again, I wept for what might have been. It was as if the Volume knob had been turned to "2", vice "11". Awww, man. The sticky lacing that appeared looked like it was going to require a jackhammer to remove later.

If it is still on their shelves on my next visit, I am going to bring this to their attention. This travesty is on their distro, not them.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.45/5  rDev +9.1%
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.

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Photo of smakawhat
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a solid good orange/amber color containing excellent lacing. Off white antique say color head. Good cascading bubbles from the bottom to top as well. Huge lacing also.

Smell of hops come up primarily at first, then a good tangerine orange on the nose, slight hard to pinpoint but a sweet citrus tangerine in my mind. slight pine/resin but very faint. Great smell nonetheless.

Taste comes off as mostly a great hoppy finish slightly bitter, sweet tangerine in the palate, but with a very wet/watery body, kind of a floral and definitely grassy afterfinish that only comes through on the finish and nowhere else it seems.

Drinkability, sure get me another no complaints!

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Photo of rab53
3.56/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Clear medium amber with a small even white head. Aroma dominated by grass and citrus pith. Not unpleasant, but not quite what I was expecting. Taste is biscuity malt and grassy hops. Very earthy overall, unlike the citrus heavy California IPAs. Easy-drinking, dangerous with the ABV. Not the best wet hop ale I've had, but one to revisit.

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Photo of GClarkage
4.77/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

01/09/06- Purchased at Sun Devil Liquors in Mesa, AZ.

Presentation- 22oz bottle with no freshness information. Poured into a chalice like glass.

Appearance- Copper colored pour with a full 3/4 inch head. Nice light rim remains for the rest of the glass. Nice sticky lace trails all over the glass.

Smell- Nice pungent hop aroma. Scents of pine needles, grapefuit and sugary goodness. Nice roasted malt scent as well.

Taste- Wondeful sweet roasted malt background with bitter pine flavored hops. Nice grapefruit flavor hidden behind the malt and pine. Sugary sweet hops and malt make this beer mouthwatering.

Mouthfeel- Rather high carbonation, sweet and sticky mouthfeel.

Drinkability- Not sure I could session a six pack of this because of the sweetness. But it's damn well one of the best if not the best pale ale I've had. Right up there with Alpha King. Borderline IPA.

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Photo of Billolick
4.33/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ouncer, notches on the label let me know this was bottled during the second week of Oct, '07 (nice to get this info) Pours typical almond amber, nice looking medium tan head, that sticks aroud for a bit then leaves tons os thick sheeting and lace on the glass.

Nose of a burlap sack of hops, with a hint of bready malt to boot.

Plenty of gritty, citric hops here, as a dedicated hop head, this one does it for me and lives up to its name. Nice! Grapefruits surrounds the taste buds and continues to the long finish. Sweet malt present but just enough for a pass at balance, ha....hops carry the freight here. Nice offering from G.D.B.C. Go get some and enjoy

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Photo of WesWes
4.48/5  rDev +9.8%
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.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
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.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Matt from Great Divide dropped this off for me to sample.
Pours a nice copper/amber color. Chunky head rising from the sides to a peak in the middle. Sticky lacing around the sides.
Smells of lots of hops and cut grass, some rosemarry as well.
Taste was more like an IPA. The hops were more grainy than other PAs, some slight caramel and nut. Kind of slick then sticky.
Bite covers most of the tongue, instead of just the sides. Crisp finish. Flavor was overpowered by the hops and 'slickness', still not bad though. Rated mostly 4s, cuz it seems less like a PA.

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Photo of tempest
3.93/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Keith for sharing a bomber. Apparently this just landed in PA - in late January. Go figure. The hops in here seem a little weak for a fresh hop beer, but that's relative. There's still a rich, perfume of juicy citrus hops with an earthy, almost dirty undertone, like the hops maybe should have been washed. Either way, this was a pretty tasty beer.

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Photo of Gavage
4.7/5  rDev +15.2%
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.

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Photo of Gobzilla
3.67/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: poured an orangish brown in color with yellow highlights and a very thin head that barely left any lacing sticking to the glass.

S: some nice citrusy hoppy notes came through on the first whiff alongside a little malty sweetness, and a bit of orange tangerine notes.

T: the orange tangerine qualities were more apparent on the palate with a very mild hop bit, a good amount of malty sweetness and piney accents.

M: the brew was medium in body with a low amount of carbonation which had piney, citrusy, mild hoppy, sweet, and very mild bitter finish.

D: the brew was really easy drinking and thought it was a solid pale ale.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a shaker pint, the beer is a bright, copper-gold coloring, crystal clear with some carbonation bubbling, and a frothy, cling, off-white head that coats the glass as you drink. Aromas of wet, green hops, with cut grass, pine tassels, a subtle pepper spicing, and resinous bitter notes. Flavors are bitter forward, with a resinous background of pine pitch and subtle caramel notes, with piney, grassy, and subtle citrus highlights of lemon and grapefruit. Very well balanced and flavorful. Smooth bodied, but kept light and crisp with the carbonation. The aftertaste is resinous and bitter, and the caramel rich notes help to balance throughout. Awesome lacing left along the glass. The finish is slightly dry, crisp, and clean. Solid beer, and ridiculously easy to drink.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Because I obviously didn't have enough hops that weekend, why not close it out with a fresh hop ale at Great Divide itself? On to the beer:

Lots of bubbles run throuigh the body of this orange colored brew. A creamy inch thick head sits on top and retains very well. The nose is "fresh", and grassy. I wasn't expecting so much grass, but that's fine. It tastes grassy too. Grassy notes with some grapefruit rind and herbal notes. Very hoppy, that's certain. It's medium bodied and somewhat creamy, rounding out what is a good fresh hop ale.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasting notes from 12/21/10
Bottled on date of October 14, 2010.
Poured in to Duvel Tulip glass.

A - Honey colour with one finger of bubbly cream coloured head.

S - Nice hop bitterness up front with earthy and citrus notes. A nice sweet malt backbone.

T - Bitter hops up front - mostly grassy with light citrus notes. A sweet caramel malt backbone.

M - light to medium body; slight chew. Medium carbonation.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.71/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Best buy Dec 30th 2013, opened Nov 20th 2013.

A - Hazy orange marmalade body. Mixed bubble white head settles into a sable crown around the rim of the glass. Surprisingly stable retention. Low lace.

S - Soft citrus, pine, melon rind, and fresh pumpkin. The pumpkin note ebbs and weaves, but when it's there it's almost musky, like scooping out a fresh pumpkin.

T - Dry cantaloupe, orange pith, vegetable funk, honey, waxy resin, and pine wood. Feels like something is off - might be a bad bottle?

M - Dry, smooth, medium-full frame. Low carbonation

O - Not terrible, but there's something either in the execution or unique to this bottle that puts the balance out of whack.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.32/5  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.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.73/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Great Divide's Fresh Hop Pale Ale, poured on tap into a pint glass. A clear orangish color with a soapy off white head and alot of lace.

Aroma pretty hoppy as one might expect. Just a hint of the underlying malt.

Flavor is marked with an intense bitterness. Grapefruit-like, but much more bitter and less sweet. Has a juiciness to it as well, though quite bitter. Earthy stinging hops steal the show.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied while being semi-viscious. Hop presence feels like the enamel on my teeth is being stripped away. Dry.

Drinkability rates pretty good. This beer is a palate crusher and very hop-forward. More like an IPA than an APA.

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

22 oz. bomber, good to see another GD beer in the Southland,

A: Pours a clear copper with a mild white head, which leaves some surprisingly good lacing.

S: Earthy pine with some lemon, raw and rustic.

T: Bitter grapefruit with a lot of lemon. Hint of ethanol on the back end with a lot of cedar oil. Nice, if not particularly expressive.

M: Soft mouthfeel on medium-bodied beer. Nice long hoppy aftertaste which is always a joy.

D: Not a standout in the wet hop beers by any means. While not a bad beer, when I can get the world class Hop Trip and High Tide or even Sierra Nevada Harvest Ale for a dollar or more less, I'm always going to go there in the future.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy golden orange color, nice carbonation, nice small off-white creamy head, lots of nice sticky lacing follows. The nose is very hoppy, some malts, good dose of citrus, and some pineyness, also some caramel. The taste is pretty hoppy for a Pale Ale, tones of malts, some citrus/pines, and caramel. The finish is slightly dry and bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is an extradinary pale ale, very tasty and hoppy, highly recommended.

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Photo of biegaman
4.1/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

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!?

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

Pours with a beautiful bronzed dark amber with a nice but not huge head.

Fresh soft hops on the nose, with a yeasty finish.

Tastes fruity of apples and cherries and lingering fresh bitterness.

Mouthfeel is great- perfect heft and nice carbonation, crisp and balanced.

Great drinkability. Nice flavors and very refreshing.

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Photo of SadMachine
4.21/5  rDev +3.2%
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 Evil_Pidde
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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!

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Photo of Gagnonsux
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The color is copper with a large, off-white head. Retention is very good. The aroma is solely of strong, delicious, citrissy hop smell. Taste is more of the same, very flavorful, yet at the same time I was a bit disapointed because the flavor wasn't much different than standard dry-hopped APAs. Freshness was perhaps a little bit more noticeable in the flavor. Bitterness was moderate. Okay, this is a great APA, but I didn't find it to be as exemplary as most other reviewers.

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Fresh Hop Pale Ale from Great Divide Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 681 ratings.