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

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Green Flash Hop Head Red Ale
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very good

2,877 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,877
Reviews: 906
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 11.08%
Wants: 89
Gots: 219 | 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:
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 added by: sleazo on 03-06-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,877 | Reviews: 906 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of chaz410
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this bottle at the flying saucer in charlotte nc.
Pours a hazy dark amber with a thick kakhi head.
SMells of piney hops and some citrus notes over some toasted bready malts and slight caramel character.
Taste of lots of biscuity notes and some caramel sweetness with a lot of piney hop bitterness. Finishes pretty dry with a slight nutty sweetness.
Easy drinking but unique enough to want to savor.

chaz410, Aug 16, 2010
Photo of MysticRuler
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a beutiful cloudy brick color.Nice foamy head with delicate lacing. Nose is a strong hoppy smell. not unlike their West Coast IPA. This is obviously a blend of styles as they've brought IPA like hoppiness to the often moribund Red Ale category. As with all blends however, there are compromises. This is especially notable in the maltiness which tends to neutralize the complexity that is so successful in the WCIPA. Still, it is an excellent looking beer which elevates the often lame Red Ale to a higher status. While I'd choose the WCIPA over this one, it's still a damn fine effort.

MysticRuler, Aug 14, 2010
Photo of VelvetExtract
4.05/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Dark red with a creamy head.

S-Amarillo hops. Some sweetness as well.

T-Citrusy hops. Grassy lingering taste. Well Balanced malt. Quite bitter.

M-Medium bodied. Well carbonated.

D-A fairly drinkable beer.

All aspects of this beer were solid yet unspectacular. Glad I tried it but would pick other Green Flash brews over this one if I had the choice.

VelvetExtract, Aug 13, 2010
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.53/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

In a pint glass the beer was a red/brown color with a medium-sized tan head.
It had a sweet malt and floral aroma, a little muted.
Sweet malt, grapefruit, and pine aroma. Again, not real strong.
Hoppy mouthfeel.
A red IPA, as the label succintly suggested.

lordofthewiens, Aug 12, 2010
Photo of StJamesGate
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 660ml bottle at the GBBF.

Pours deep amber with chunky sediment and a cream white head that clings and clumps. Intoxicating honeysuckle floral nose. Cherry/fruit jam malts, a bitter nettle bite, and an orange citrus hops kick. Medium, oily and chewy.

So nice! Drinks way hoppier than the 45 IBUs. Might not quite be up to Rocket Red, though....

StJamesGate, Aug 09, 2010
Photo of farrago
4.18/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big, whipped up head passing two fingers, mixture of all bubble sizes, craters as much as dimples, basic tan to eggshell white color, better retention than you'd think given the larger bubbles, plenty of small splashes of lacing here and there. Nicely rich amber color, fully opaque, slightly more orange at the rims, tiny beads here and there, looks like there could be a catfish living in there. The nose has a welcome relaxed quality about it, semi-laconic unfolding of malts, caramel and milk chocolate segueing into pine, sweet and sour grapefruit to orange citrus, spring blossoms and a croissant, danish flakiness, the green nature of the hops bristles without lunging for your jugular. Medium-bodied, the carbonation adds a slow churn that allows for both palate pressure and measured pacing forward. This is a dry and hoppy beer, no doubt, simply not out to bludgeon you with the fact, gets grassy and piney while always leaving room for chocolate, toffee, bread and caramel. Orange to white grapefruit citrus is tight and lean, neither decisively sweet nor sour. The apricot, peach, nectarine, pineapple, green apple fruit ekes out a marginal presence, not a focal point. it's not keenly balanced but better for it, particularly with the general lack of pushiness. A hop head beer that you don't have to be a hop head to enjoy.

farrago, Aug 04, 2010
Photo of Soonami
4.38/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hop Head Red is a beautiful red beer! It pours a bright, gorgeous garnet with a dusty voluminous head that billows out of the glass and clings to the glass like rock climber holding on to its life. The aroma is very fruity like apricots and mangos with a touch of caramel malt. HHR is smooth with a touch of toasted malt in the front of the mouth with a firm bitterness that follows. The resinous hops clings on the tongue after the silky beer is long gone.

This is a wonderful beer and I can only imagine how good it would be fresh from the source or on tap.

Soonami, Aug 03, 2010
Photo of Star80
4.63/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is one of those wow beers. I cracked open the bottle, poured into my Sam Adams glass, loved the scarlet red opaque translucent glow, after of course being greeted by a nice floral, citrusy, resinous Amarillo hop whiffs!Call it a wow beer cause I couldn't stop saying, wow, this is nice! How nice! The only other beer that I know uses Amarillos like this is Gumballhead, they are a nice, fruity hop, grapefruity hop, with a slightly spicey edge to them. This beer has a great balance to it for such a hoppy ale, due to the reddish malts, which add a touch of sweetness. Beer has a thick, rocky head with lacing that sticks all of over the glass. The beer is not so much just another big IPA, but complex, red ale. The mouthfeel is very full with oilyness from all the drop hopping. I can't say these are extremely drinkable at 6.4 abv cause there is a thickness to this one....you owe yourself a six pack of these now.

Star80, Jul 30, 2010
Photo of railcaider
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I wasn't quite sure what to expect from this beer because the label described it as cross between an American amber ale and an IPA. It draws from both of these styles but doesn't really qualify as either, which is a little disappointing.

When poured into a glass, this beer has a brick-red color that's pleasing to the eye. The head is off white and very bubbly, with good retention. After pouring it into a glass, the most prominent smell is a pungent pine resin aroma. There are also citrus and sweet fruit aromas.

The bitter taste is as strong as that of an IPA, and during a sip it gradually gets stronger until it peaks on the aftertaste. It reminded me of some of the hoppier Stone beers. Very active carbonation gives this beer a prickly mouthfeel.

As I mentioned before, this beer has an identity crisis. It's either an extremely hoppy American red ale or an IPA with a strange flavor profile. Neither of these would be a bad thing, especially because these two styles have a lot in common, but by straddling them both this beer ends up a bit bland. I'd like to have it again, but since Green Flash already makes a really nice IPA I'd probably just be content with that.

railcaider, Jul 30, 2010
Photo of 3HovsepiansBrews
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- A pretty red/brown with a cream colored head.

S- Great smell of piney hops possibly amarillo.

T- Nice hop bitterness from beginning to end, with a light refreshing malty sweetness somewhere in the middle. The aftertaste is all bitter from the hops.

M- A lot of sudsy carbonation, with a crisp finish.

D- The fact that the hoppiness sits on your tongue prevents you from knocking back a few, but one or two would not be a problem at all.

3HovsepiansBrews, Jul 29, 2010
Photo of klikger
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into SA perfect pint

A - Dark red & cloudy. A small amount of head sticks to the sides of the glass as it's sipped. Several yeast floaters hang out around the bottom of the glass.

S - Large amounts of caramel tempered by some floral hops

T - Piny hops and lots of malt up front. A decent amount of yeast and some spice (vague notes of pepper & cinnamon) appear midway. The sweetness of the malts couples with a powerfully bitter hop finish; both elements remain on the tongue for some time.

M - Pretty chewy for a hoppy beer, not that this is a negative. Modestly carbonated, this beer turns slightly syrupy as it warms.

D - Pretty good, but the sweetness keeps it from being a knockout for me.

klikger, Jul 28, 2010
Photo of bridgetowhophead
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Widmer pint glass.

A: Standard pour produced a puffy two-finger head that settled to a white cap with good retention and lacing. Dark mahogany color; little visible carbonation.

S: The amarillo hops are definitely there, along with a caramel malt aroma and a whiff of citrus. A bit underwhelming next to the taste, but gets stronger as it warms.

T: This is officially the standard by which I will judge all other red ales. The hop and malt flavors are perfectly integrated. Starts out with smooth caramel malt and finishes with a bitter hoppy zing.

M: Coats the mouth with a resiny glaze. Exceptional body. Lingering hop taste.

Bought a single; beginning to think I should've got the 6-pack. This and their West Coast IPA make a great tag team.

bridgetowhophead, Jul 27, 2010
Photo of cysiam
4.95/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is probably the best red ale I've ever had, but that's probably because it has more in common with an IPA than a typical red.

A- A deep red with just a slight touch of brown. A nice head that left a small amount of lace down the glass.

S- Hops. Grapefruit, citrus and a bit of pine.

T- The sweetness of the caramel comes through but it's not overwhelming. The hop notes are definitely around to balance things out.

D- Dry finish to compliment the sweetness. Quite drinkable.

cysiam, Jul 16, 2010
Photo of tchenery
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer glows. It's the first red ale I have ever seen that is a true bright red. It's kind of a dark red apple color.

It smells fantastic and it's all hops. True to the label it must be loaded.

The taste throws you off because it's a new one. It's very heavy caramel malt flavored but that's followed right up with a floral hop taste that doesn't go away and changes into a strange piney, buttery flavor that is actually very pleasant.

Mouthfeel is a bit dry on the end but the beer is silky throughout.

Excellent beer, a must try if you haven't yet.

tchenery, Jul 15, 2010
Photo of rarbring
4.38/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A red clear beer with hints of brown, an off-white head leaving lacing.

Some sweetness, and then lots of citric and floral hop smells. Yummy.

An initial toffee sweetness, then grape-fruit and lemon, pine resin, fresh grass. and the taste stays, and goes on.

Medium low carbonation, a good dry feeling.

If the color wasn't red it could have been a DIPA for my behalf.

rarbring, Jul 10, 2010
Photo of bark
3.83/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The colour is brown-red; the low head is warm white. Some lacing occurs.

The smell is hoppy with American citric flavours. There are lots of malty notes, too. It is not overly bitter, but there is a slight metallic note.

At first, the citric hops dominate the taste. Then, lots of malt comes through. Some lightly roasted caramel flavours, raisins and a fine sweetness. Hints of meat and lemon peels. The aftertaste is fruity with notes of fine bread and caramelized sugar. The finish is bitter and sweet with notes of dried fruits.

The carbonation is mild; the bubbles are small. The liquid is smooth.

A highly hopped amber ale that lacked the dusty notes that I sometimes find in amber ales.

bark, Jul 06, 2010
Photo of scottyshades
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Scored one of these from my bro, along with some other west coast goodies.

A: Pours an awesome deep garnet color with a frothy eggshell colored head. Real "to style".

S: Wow, "real" fruit is the first thing that comes to mind...lots of malts right off the bat give some caramel, brown sugar, toffee, and slightly bready flavors. The hops give out some grapefruit, apple, pear, and overall, a general orchard fruit flavor.

T: Mostly malty goodness, but there is a good deal of hops that help balance. The flavor is a little bland or watery, or at least less flavorful than I generally like, but still has some complexity. Malts give a faint bready, caramel, and toffee flavor. Hops add some delicate orchard fruit aspect.

MF/D: Highly carbonated despite the medium body. Slight bitter kick to it, but not too bad at all, and definitely less so than their West Coast IPA.

Notes: Very nice amber ale, and exceptionally easy to drink

scottyshades, Jun 28, 2010
Photo of Jeffo
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this at the Cracked Kettle in Amsterdam.

From a bottle into a snifter.

APPEARANCE: Pours a three finger thicker looking off-white head with great retention. Higher levels of carbonation evident and maroon or rosewood red in color. Head slowly recedes to a thick healthy foam cap and leaves some immediate lacing. A good film sticks around and leaves lots of nice lacing down the glass. Very nice looking brew.

SMELL: A bit of caramel malt, but more pine and floral notes with touches of citrus and grapefruit. Some hits of berries too. Quite nice and plenty bold enough.

TASTE: Some caramel malt and hints of those berries up front, followed by some light pine notes and flowers. Big bitter and piney finish moves into a long and very bold aftertaste. More bitter than I expected from the 45 IBU.

PALATE: Medium body and carbonation, and very creamy smooth on the palate. Goes down smooth, slightly oily, and finishes nicely mouth-coating.

OVERALL: A really solid offering from Green Flash. A red ale combined with some IPA qualities. This one is plenty hoppy with more bitterness than the IBU suggested. One I'd have again for sure.

Jeffo, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of snogglethorpe
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An absolutely beautiful ruby-red color, with a shortish and short-lived head that leaves a thick lacing.

The taste leaves no doubt who made this beer, and is dominated by American hops, quite bitter (in a delicious way), with a citrusy tinge (though not to the same degree as their purer American IPAs). Despite the "variation on a theme of IPA" character, the hoppiness is moderated by a strong roasted grain flavor. Unlike some other reviewers, I didn't really taste much in the way of sweetness.

The result is really good, an amalgam of bold flavors vying for your attention, and playing off each other. It's maybe a bit more interesting than Green Flash's pure IPAs, maintaining much of the bitter citrusy goodness of the American hops but going beyond that as well.

The mouthfeel is medium thick, very slightly oily, with a good and refreshing amount of carbonation.

I think this is a really nice beer.

snogglethorpe, Jun 23, 2010
Photo of clayrock81
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a tawny 1-finger head that dies slowly on top of a reddish brown body. More hoppy than malty in the aroma; leafy, citric hops are prevelant but still some mild caramel sweet malt in there as well. If you want an IPA/hop fix with your reds go w/ this beer b/c while their is mild sweet malt and a biscuity/breadiness there for a slightly chewey medium body, there is a distinct hop bite that is sharp and leads to a real dry finish. A good beer but it's more of a "mild IPA" than a red/amble ale.

clayrock81, Jun 18, 2010
Photo of Tucquan
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on 2010-06-13 in Lynchburg, VA

A - Hazy mahogany with a 1 finger, tan head

S - Hop oils, pine, citrus, citrus, rich malt

T - Roasted grain, grapefruit, caramel, plenty of bitterness. Finishes nicely dry with lingering bitterness. Delicious

M - Light to medium with medium plus carbonation. Refreshing on the pallete

D - Very drinkable with the good taste, lightish mouthfeel and a dry, flavorful finish. One of the better well-hopped red ales. The bottle says they used Amarillo hops for the dry hopping. Comparable to a Founders Centenial IPA.

Tucquan, Jun 13, 2010
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.33/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a nonic)
A- This beer has a slightly dense clear deep auburn colored body and a rocky tanish beige head that last a good bit.
S- The caramel rich malt aroma is followed by a green mellow slightly fruity pungent hops with a grassy note.
T- The big green herbal Northwest hops flavor is followed by a dry roasted malt and some dry biscuit malt notes that turn bready as it warms. The finish is a mellow but big pungent hops flavor without any bitter hops bite. The hops linger for just a bit. M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a soft fizzy prick that blend with and boost the hops flavor.
D- The nice complexity of malt and big full green hops makes this big beer very drinkable. The fruity sweetness compliments the hops but the dry malt flavors keep it crisp with a nice depth.

rhoadsrage, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of missingsense
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Slightly hazy deep amber with a thick tan head. Stays pretty thick w/ great lacing.

S: Nice pine, floral, and grapefruit aromas balanced w/ some softer berry smells.

T&M: Medium-bodied w/ a tingly sensation from carbonation. Very good soft malts up front, with a substantial hop bite in the finish. Lingering spiciness. Only downside is that the hop aftertaste is not as complex as some.

D: For a red ale, it definitely has character. Not very sessionable, though, because the hops dried out my mouth after a glass. However, I would buy it again, for sure.

missingsense, Jun 12, 2010
Photo of Prostman81
3.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love Green Flash's IPA, so was eager to try out this offering. The name of the beer pretty much says it all, it is a red ale by birth, but seems to have had some minglings with an IPA. The malt profile of this one is very complex. At first the caramel sweetness is experienced with a nice medium body, and then leaves a roasted bordering on astringent finish. Meanwhile, you're nose is treated to the citric aroma of the hops, and get some balance with a good bittering charge in there as well. I don't get much actual hop flavor, but I think it is because the malt is just winning out on that front.

Overall, a very solid beer from G.F. Not sure I would seek this out over the IPA, but I am very impressed with the great blending of malt flavors here. If you're at all curious, don't hesistate to give this one a try.

Prostman81, Jun 03, 2010
Photo of JDH2000
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured into generic pint glass with a nice rich, dark red with about a finger of head. Head thins out but nice lacing on the glass.

S-Smell is dominated by piny hops, but some hint of the caramel malts.

T-Nice and hoppy, but balanced by the subtle sweetness of the malts.

M-perfect carbonation with a nice crispness.

D-great refreshment on a hot day. A nice switch from the IPA's I've been addicted to lately (while still staying with hoppy beers).

JDH2000, Jun 03, 2010
Green Flash Hop Head Red Ale from Green Flash Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 2,877 ratings.