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Green Flash Hop Head Red Ale - Green Flash Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Green Flash Hop Head Red AleGreen Flash Hop Head Red Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

955 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 955
Hads: 3,340
Avg: 4
pDev: 10.75%
Wants: 152
Gots: 497 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Green Flash Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  8.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: sleazo on 03-06-2007

In 2011 the recipe was altered to bump the IBU’s from 55 to 70; ABV also increased from 6.4% to 7.0%. In 2014 the ABV increased to 8.1%.

A luscious beauty, Hop Head Red® exudes resinous hoppy qualities from Amarillo, Warrior and Nugget to overtake the full-bodied depths of a caramel malt base. Captivating and seductive floral aromas and alluring hop flavors are the result of dry hopping with mountains of Amarillo. The blissful union of Double India Pale and Red Ale make Hop Head Red an unforgettable obsession. Experience love at first sip. Every time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Green Flash Hop Head Red Ale Alström Bros
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Reviews: 955 | Hads: 3,340
Photo of Sammy
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Grapefruit aroma fom the fragrant amarillo. Initially big head. Smooth easy drinking, I can just picture the guzzlers downing 6-paks. A nice bitterness that is left on the aftertaste. Well balanced at 45 IBU.A fresh and bold taste, can use to transition to craft.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.07/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4


On tap at Green Flash Brewing Company in San Diego, CA.

Pours a clear amber with a foamy orange-tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, citrus fruit, citrus zest, and alcohol. Taste is much the same with a medium amount of hop bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a great aroma and tasty flavor.

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: two finger off white head with nice lacing on a hazy deep amber body.

S: earth and grapefruit hops. Caramel malt base is nicely represented. Hops are a little musty

T: the hops are again earthy with some citrus and a nice dose of pine and grass greatest in the finish. The caramel malts base is best noticed up front.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: a nice beer. Very drinkable and flavorful. Nice contribution to flavor and both feel from the malts.

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Photo of metter98
3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: It poured deep amber in color with a finger-sized head. A light level of carbonation is visible and there is a good amount of head retention.
S: The aroma is mainly dominated by piney hops; there are some notes of caramel malts and floral hops in the background.
T: There's a good balance in the taste between the flavors of hops and malts. Like the smell, piney hops stand out but these are subdued by flavors of caramel malts.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and rather crisp.
D: This beer can be considered sessionable given its low alcohol content.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.65/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a bright red amber ipa with a 2 inch white head. smells like a west coast ipa, extremely hoppy with a touch of malty sweetness. taste is much sweeter than the nose, with a rather heavy feeling sucrose element. very little bitterness for such a hoppy beer, more resin like and sticky. mouthfeel is pretty good, plenty bubbly and medium bodied. overall a good ipa, but because of the sweetness i wouldnt want to drink them all night.

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Photo of brentk56
4.08/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a very hazy russet color; the ecru head sits permanently atop the liquid and leaves quite a few strands of lace behind and a curtain at the base

Smell: Strong caramel malt elements combine with a resinous hop character

Taste: Opens with a blend of the caramel malt and the resinous hops with the hoppy character building through mid-palate and into the finish; aspirin-like bitterness in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: While I am not the biggest fan of Amarillo hops, this is one of the better Red IPAs I have encountered as the balance is excellent; Green Flash is one of the kings of the west coast style and this beer is no different

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.81/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Is it an American IPA? Is it an American Amber Ale? The lines blur with this very hoppy Red Ale and appeal to those who like the hearty malt flavor of Ambers but think that higher hop additions would better offset the sweetness typically associated with Amber Ales.

The deep amber ale opens with a hazy red rusty hue and quickly builds a sturdy and slightly yellowish head. With great retention and lace, the beer sings the praises of hop-heavy ales.

Sharp aromas of pine, grapefruit, and fresh-cut grasses dominate the nose while the toasted barley malt supports the hops in a very IPA kind of way. With little influence from fruity esters or spicy phenols, the beer carries a clean malt and hop conversation through and through.

And so go the flavors- hop dominant with the early taste of spruce, white grapefruit (pith and pulp), and a grassy herbal taste that develops into a resiny bitterness at finish. Meanwhile, the medium toast flavor of barley brings about mild caramel sweetness, bread crust savory notes, and with a clean, fresh baked barley taste not only support the hops but add greater balance than the nose suggests.

Medium in body, the beer feels lighter on the tongue because of the creamy carbonation, higher attenuation, and hop derived dryness late. The beer really lightens considerably as the resiny hop bitterness closes the beer, and without watering causes a very high rate of drinkability to occur.

For one, I appreciate a well balanced amber ale, but these more hoppy versions appeal much better to me as the hop-forward nature of the beers give more intrigue and better offset the caramel sweetness and weight of most beers of the style.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a somewhat-hazed amber with a nice off-white head.

S: Lots of pine and citrus hops explode atop an understated caramel malt base.

T: Pine, citrus, and earthy hops with the pine really taking the forefront. A very nice caramel/amber base providing a bit of sweetness.

M: Moderate body with a nice dryness.

D: A very delicious example of the style. Fairly-nice complexity in an emerging style that is one of my favorites.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.92/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a deep amber color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some very good lacing. Aroma of earthy hops with some citrus and resin is quite nice. Taste is totally dominated by hops with some resin and citrus hops though notes of earthy hops are really powerful. Body is quite full with good carbonation. Not bad though grapefruit notes of Amarillo were not as dominant as I had expected.

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Photo of biboergosum
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber, another souvenir from the Great Cross-border Beer Pilgrimage of 2010...

This beer pours a dark, murky russet hue, with two fingers of thick, foamy light beige head, with leaves a commendable latticework of lace around the glass as it duly recedes. It smells of grapefruit, toasted caramel malt, nougat, and some light pine/grassy hops. The taste is creamy roasted caramel malt, and bitter grapefruit and pine oils. The carbonation is on the low side, the body north of medium weight, smooth, and somewhat crisp. It finishes off-dry, the biscuity caramel malt still in a dance of death with the resinous citrus and pine hops.

Definitely a mish-mash of styles, a decent red ale hopped to the nuts. Tasty stuff.

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Photo of emerge077
4.22/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fresh shipment finally arrived in Chicago, thanks EehaiCJ for the single!

Dark jeweled amber with a reddish tint, tons of intricate lacing. Fresh leafy botanical nose, candied hop sweetness with underlying toffee. Really different from the bottle I had earlier this year that was older. Much more vibrant and like a fresh IPA. Some citrus, but not what I expected from an all Amarillo beer. Really nice firm bitterness, with a lingering trace of sweet caramel malt. Good balance and session worthy. Get it fresh!

01-26-2009 - bottle

B+ / 3.9
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | drink: 4

Six-pack from Rudy's in LaSalle, IL. Undated bottle, inside the holder is printed 03-08.

Billowing tan head that puffs up above the rim of the pint glass. Creamy texture to the surface, and and intricate ring of lace inside the rim. Slightly hazed reddish amber, micro-sediment in suspension. Traces of citrus in the aroma, rounded and pleasant malt dominates, leading me to believe this isn't a "just born" beer. No punchy Amarillo citrus that I was craving...However it isn't completely lost. There's a firm hop bitterness in the flavor, again traces of citrus, light sweetness of bready malt lingers. Good feel from steady carbonation, and perfect for a session. I've got to track down a fresh bottle, and then re-rate...

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Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a very dark, red color with a two-finger, thick head of tan foam. It was fairly long lasting and left some sticky rings of lace.

S - It smelled of citrus, pine and strong grapefruit notes.

T - Good bitter hop bite of citrus, grapefruit and pine. Then there's a strong roasty character, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry, clean finish.

O - This is an outstanding red ale. I really was impressed with this one, although it really could just be called an IPA.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.45/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Glowing rust orange with influences from brick red and bronze. A considerable yeastiness adds visual interest and the caramel colored cap is exceptional as well. It looks like coral (not the color, but the creature) and is absolutely slathering the glass with some of the most gorgeous lace that I've seen in quite some time. What a looker!

The nose is as expected... as long as one expects a well-crafted, caramel malt-intensive, Amarillo dry-hopped American red ale. Since this bottle can't be more than a few months old, the hops should still be kickin'. It smells like it anyway. Let's go with candied orange peel and musky peach skins dipped in melted caramel.

Hop Head Red Ale is aptly named. I may have had a hoppier red over the years, but at the moment, none are coming to mind. The 45 IBUs seem like 75 at least. Bottom line: if you aren't hop-crazy or think all beer has to be balanced, buy something else.

There's just enough caramel malt to avoid being overpowered by the aggressive alpha acid attack. Other than an early glimmer of sweetness, it's nothing but floor-to-ceiling resinous bitterness. In other words, be prepared to have your tongue roughed up. Orange peel is probably the most dominant top note, along with spruce sap.

The mouthfeel is more than solid. The beer isn't huge (no surprise given the 6.0% ABV), but it's becoming increasingly silky smooth as the ounces rush by. As silky smooth as a beer this bitter can be, anyway. The next highest score is oh so tempting.

Green Flash seems to specialize in hop-soaked beer. Extra Pale Ale, West Coast IPA and Imperial IPA are great. Nut Brown, Ruby Red and Trippel... not so much. Hop Head Red is the best one yet. It's a tour de force of flavor and bitterness that every hophead should seek out. Highly recommended.

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Photo of oberon
3.68/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I always look forward to a good hoppy amber/red ale and Green Flash is the shiznit so I really was happy to pick up a few of these bottles yesterday here in Greensboro.Poured into a standard pint glass a clear deep bronze borderline amber color with a thick fluffy two finger slight off white head that never totally settled,deep chocolate notes in the nose with a some herbal hop but the malt to me is stronger than the hop presence.I love the Amarillo hop and this was dry hopped with it but in all honesty it doesnt play a huge impact flavor wise at least in my mind,its deeply chocolaty with a leafy herbal hop presence finish dry and prety earthy.Its a decent brew but maybe a bit underwhelming.

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Photo of nickfl
4.09/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - One and a half fingers of light brown foam on top of a slightly hazy, brown body with amber highlights. The foam exhibits good retention and leaves nice, thick lace.

S - A strong aroma of pine hops mixed with toasted malt and light caramel. The hop character darkens as a result of its interaction with the malt and produces some spicy notes and sweaty sock aromas.

T - Thick, nutty malt up front with notes of light, sweet caramel and mild roast. Some hop flavor appears in the middle and increases towards the finish with grassy notes and a hint of pine. The finish is full of grassy hops and caramel malt with assertive, sharp bitterness that balances the sweetness nicely. Lingering hop flavors interact with the malt in the aftertaste to form cigar tobacco notes with some lingering, acidic citrus hop flavor.

M - Medium body, moderately low carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - A nice west coast red ale. The hop aroma is great, but the flavor is a bit subdued. Great malt character and a balanced finish. My only complaint is that the citrus character in the finish leaves a cloying acidity that sticks on the palate long after the beer is gone. A nice beer that I would certainly drink again, though I can't help but think that it could be better if it was fresher.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.42/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A hazy amber (although more red to it than anything) color with a nice white foam and great lacing.

S: A great combination of caramel maltiness and hops. The hop aroma is primarily grapefruit.

T: Again, the combination of the malty/caramel sweetness and the citrus hops is great. The hop presence is much greater than in other reds that I've had, and I'm appreciating it.

M: Medium body and quite crisp.

D: I drank several of these, and with good reason. This beer borders on a red IPA, and I found it to be incredibly enjoyable.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.73/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle - $2.49 at Charlie's Beer and Wine in Marietta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a clear, amber-hued body with a tall, richly foamy, light beige head with gobs and gobs of lacing.

Smell: Floral, citric, dankly resinous hops well ahead of the toasty, bready malts (also some toasted grains and toasted raw sugars) and the enduring scent of brewed black tea.

Taste: A sweet pop of bready malts, moderately toasty that drops off to reveal a staunch graininess. The sweetness is akin to a hint of creme brulee tops. Then, in come the hops with citric tangerines, grapefruits, resins, and florals. Medium-high bitterness. Dry, citric, resinous, citrusy, bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied (just barely). Medium carbonation.

Overall: It's an IPA, it's red, and it's hoppy -- folks are into that these days, right? It's also a tad expensive, but some folks don't seem to mind that either.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.5/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a hazy amber with a big ole' poof of off-white foamy head. A fantastic looking layer of creamy retention naturally produces just massive rings of thick, sticky lacing down the sides of the glass. The aroma is fresh, tingling Amarillo hops greeting the nose first, followed by grapefruit and other citrus notes, and some mellow bready sweetness.

The taste is just as tremendous, with a well balanced mix of resinous hop bitterness, tangy citrus, and caramel sweetness. Everything just flows togeather great and evens each other out. Even the finish is a well balanced with equal parts sweetness and bitter notes. I think that I would definitley put this in the "Hoppy" Red Ale category, as the richness of the malts really stood against all that Amarillo dry hopping. The mouthfeel has a light medium body with a "oh so smooth" creamy and easydrinking feel.

Wow! I think a found a new session beer (even at 6%). This was just fantastic, with full rich flavors (including great hop bitterness) and was drinkable as heck! I drank this so fast, that I was almost done with it before I realized that I hadn't even reviewed the body yet. Very nicely done Green Flash and thanks for bottling this. Great stuff!

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Photo of mactrail
3.38/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a distinct ruby red color. More on the Hawaiian Punch end of the spectrum than coppery. Nice head on the stuff. Interesting malty nose, a hint of citrus.

Some sweet malt with a fruity touch. Maybe it's the power of suggestion, but it tastes like cherries and underripe pineapple. Resiny hops take over the flavors. Moderately bitter. Rich and sharp with a malty undertone.

On the whole, this seems to marry some the less attractive aspects of a Red Ale with an anemic IPA. However, the manageable bitterness along with the nice sudsy mouthfeel makes it quite drinkable. From the 12 oz bottle bought at Best Damn in San Diego.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.47/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.25

12 oz bottle served into a generic hefeweissbier glass in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live.

A: Pours a three finger head of nice thickness, okay cream, and respectable retention. Colour is a semitransparent copper-amber.

Sm: Bittering hops are all me broken nose detects.

T: Bittering hops are tamed, which I like. Caramel is in there as well. Moderately complex, but more importantly balanced. I like it.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Complements the flavour of the body in a general sense.

Dr: Very drinkable, above average ABV, and fairly priced. I'd certainly have it again if it were on draught.

04/23/15 Nutshell impressions:

Appearance is decent, playing to the ostensible imperial red elements with an amber-hued body colour. The head suggests overcarbonation, but has decent creaminess and thickness. Not a bad looking beer by any means, but far from unique or special.

Aroma immediately betrays this beer's obvious overhoppiness, with scattered notes of cotton candy, floral hops, and vague fruit. Sweet caramalt and generic pale malt add little, and I even find the beginnings of candi sugar notes. Not a pleasant aroma by any means. Aromatic intensity is moderate to high.

Taste is as obnoxiously aggressive and off-the-mark as the aroma, if not moreso. Soapiness indicates too much time spent in primary. The hop profile is lacking, bringing only underwhelming notes of imbalanced floral hops, caramalt, pale malts, vague fruit, cotton candy, and candi sugar. Too sweet but also strangely resinous to no good effect.

Texture is coating. Medium-bodied and overcarbonated. Artificial presence on the palate. Poorly executed. There's no harmony of texture to taste.

Overall, it's not a gestalt beer and offers nothing of interest within its style. More garbage from one of the USA's most misguided breweries. I'd avoid this; it's a poorly executed beer even outside of style conventions - let alone as an imperial IPA or red ale.

D+ (2.47)

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.7/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a bright reddish brown color, with a thin off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of floral hops, caramelized malts and citrus.

T: The taste is bitter up front with a decently strong floral hoppiness. There are sweet flavors of caramel and citrus that comes in next to balance things out. The malt character is hearty. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good representation of style, I've had better hoppy red beers but this is still a good beer to drink for a while.

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Photo of drewone
4.12/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip.

Deep amber orange, nice head with a sticky lacing.

Smell hits you the minute you crack the bottle - full on hop goodness - a lot of citrusy grassy piney smells.

First wave is a rush of hops, than a mellow malt taste ending with a balanced bitterness.

Creamy mouthfell, good amount of carbonation but smooth.

Even though the hops rock through, in the end a little on the sweet side, a nice change from a straight up IPA.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.47/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Much thanks to mughugger for sharing this beer. Poured cold into a goblet and allowed to warm.
A - A deep hazed copper almost blood red w/ a thick inch of light ecru w/ an ultra fine bead. There is a moderate amount of lace.

S - Luscious pine w/ crisp caramel sweet scents citrusy grapefruit hops and pine needles soaked in candy sugar aroma

M - A crisp piney, malty w/ bitter and slightly warming feel w/ NW hop bitter fade and subtle fruity sweetness.

T - A great deal of fresh hop flavor w/ plenty of pungent aroma w/ dry crisp bitterness and pinchy sharp grapefruity flavor w/ a nice fruity maltiness backing the hop acidity and keeping it from being unbalanced w/ a candy like malt. The edges are dry and there is a biscuit element in the toasted malt flavors

D - Fine, fine red w/ plenty of hoppiness deserving of the name and very easy to drink. This is a top notch Red ale and I wouldn't hesitate to grab it if I see again

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Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at TJ's, Paoli, PA

Reddish-copper pour with a small cap of bubbly white head that receded to a thin layer and left a bit of lacing on the glass. Lots of citrus and pine hops in the nose, with a definite malty sweetness in the background. My taste buds scream "WEST COAST!" upon the first sip, grapefruit and pine hop elements obvious, but quickly balanced out by a generous caramel maltiness that reminds you that this is not actually an IPA; sweet and bitter duke it out for the session, and perhaps the hops win overall, but not by much. Medium body, a bit resinous, but nothing a few sips of palate-cleansing water can't cure. Very good overall.

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

Pours orange/chestnut with 2 fingers of tan head. Good head retention & lacing, the sugary crystals cling to the top of the glass

S: Piney hops & biscuitty malt

T: Piney hops, biscuitty malt, a bit of booze & some grainyness up front. Caramel, brown sugar, herbal, orangey,& grapefruitty hops as this warms. Finishes with leafy hops, orange slices,

MF: Chewy, light carbonation, skews hoppy

Drinks good, but I think this one either over power me or my taste buds after about 4. Super amber! If they used different hops to dry hop, I'm sure this would score higher (for me)

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Green Flash Hop Head Red Ale from Green Flash Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 955 ratings.