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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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

2,660 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,660
Reviews: 889
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.11%
Wants: 79
Gots: 145 | FT: 2
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: 2,660 | Reviews: 889 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SaCkErZ9


4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Dark ruby in color with an off white head. About two fingers in size, and dense.

Hoppy aroma like an IPA. This is certainly on the hoppy side of the category, as the label suggests. Citrus hops, orange and lemon peel. Plenty of that amber ale, caramel and biscuit mnalt to support the large hop aroma.

Tea taste immediately. Hop bite in the back as well. A touch of biscuitiness, but the overall flavor to me seems to be fresh brewed tea. Not bad.

Medium body with a lovely hop bitterness. This one is almost like Big Hoppy from Terrapin, except better, and more tame, and less alcoholic. That makes no sense, but whatever. A very good beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2008 23:13:15 | More by SaCkErZ9
Photo of HopEnthusiast


3.73/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark red color with very good head retention and lacing. The beer is pretty malty and roasty smelling on the nose, with a hint of hoppy bitterness. The flavors of the hops are more noticeable. The beer has the roasty/malty qualities I expect in a red ale, married with the hoppiness of a good IPA. Not bad at all. The beer is surprisingly soft on the palate, and I get almost a creamy mouthfeel on the finish. The finish is impressively long and bitter.

Serving type: on-tap

11-09-2008 01:52:53 | More by HopEnthusiast
Photo of dfillius


2.85/5  rDev -28%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Served in a tumbler. I do not like reds typically, but I'm giving this one a shot since I love Green Flash's IPA and DIPA.

A: Aggressive pour yields 2/3 finger eggshell colored head with good retention. Cloudy dark reddish-brown.

S: Dank and citrus hops. Slight sweetness. Smells like an IPA with no malty "redness".

T: Grapefruity hops and flat, slightly bland or metallic malt. This is just like reds I'm not a fan of with a lot of hops added in. It doesn't cover up the red flavor. Bummer.

M: Unpleasant and clashy, like hoppy dishwater unfortunately.

D: I'm intrigued to take sips because Green Flash couldn't have made something I dislike this much could they? They did :-(

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2008 18:27:36 | More by dfillius
Photo of Mit

Ontario (Canada)

3.68/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

So...I saw this sitting on the shelf at the store and my first thought was..."But I was gonna get Barley wines today. But it has Hop in the title....Barley Wines can wait till it gets colder..."


Appearance was a very nice deep red that had a nice head but it rapidly dissipated(sp). Not much left after about a min or so.

Smell was very earthy and bitter. The hops pretty much jumped up my nose at this point and I was pretty excited from the smell alone. Hoppy aroma ringed by a slightly sweet maltiness.

First sip punched me in the face with hoppiness and I was in love. Subsequent tastes yielded a softer side that consisted of some sweetness and citrus type notes, but those wrapped up quickly when the hoppy bitterness overtook them. Very hoppy and almost overpowering at times. Don't get me wrong I still loved it but I think you have to be a "hop head" to really enjoy and appreciate this beers complexities.

Mouth feel was nice..somewhat thicker as one would expect with a higher abv beer.

Drinkability was a little lessened I felt simply due to the strong hops. I may only be able to tolerate 3 or 4 before moving onto something a little less intense.

Overall a damn fine beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2008 04:17:13 | More by Mit
Photo of sethmeister

New Hampshire

4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle, no freshness date.

Pours deep reddish brown, every so slightly hazed. Rocky light tan head, sticky fluffy foam laces the glass.

Scent is strong grapefruit, citrus hops and a touch of pine resin.

Taste is strong grapefruit hops, a touch of resinous pine. Oily and juicy. Very bitter. Big sweet caramel malt underneath the hops is noticeable even when the beer is cold. Bitterness and sweetness are in balance and there's a sweet fruitiness in there as well.

Mouth is oily and slippery.

Drinkability is good

A delicious hop-juice brew.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2008 06:44:34 | More by sethmeister
Photo of brewcrew76


4.28/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Copper, ruby red with 2 fingers tan head and sticky lacing.

S - Resiny, pine and citrus hops with some sweet caramel.

T - Sweet malt to start with some biscuit and caramel followed by resiny, piney hops and some lingering bitter citrus hops.

M - Smooth and creamy, slightly light of medium on the mouthfeel with a resiny dry finish.

D - Hoppy for an amber but like this take on the style. Very easy to drink if you like your hops.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2008 00:01:20 | More by brewcrew76
Photo of johnnnniee

New Hampshire

3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in trade from TexIndy, thanks for the opportunity.

Pours a slightly cloudy deep red amber color with a two finger fluffy off white head that leaves lots of lace on the ride down the glass. Lots of floaties in this one, hop residue maybe? Smells of citrus hops and a bit of caramel. Tastes of citrus and pine and a little malt shows through here too. Definitely a hop forward brew with a lingering bitterness in the aftertaste. Resinous oily mouthfeel. Medium body, ample carbonation. Great hop juice. I enjoyed it.

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2008 22:57:38 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of BarleyMine


4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a reddish, carmely color with a thin head. The nose is of hops, malts tones, a slight carmel sweetness and mango notes. This brew has an initial taste of hoppy bitterness that tastes like (what I imagine) fresh hop juice would taste like. And finishes with a citrus peel note. It's full bodied with crisp carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

10-25-2008 04:32:27 | More by BarleyMine
Photo of RonfromJersey

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Extreme haze, with floaties. Dark amber color. Thick slab of rugged oatmeal colored foam. Good lacing.

Big citrus and pine nose. Love amarillo. Very inviting.

Thick slather of semi-sweet malt down the center of the tongue. Bitter bracing hops crash the sides. Slow fade more than a big climax bite.

Mouthfeel starts solid medium, but peters out late. Good drinkability overall.

Enjoyable but not overwhelming. Needed a bigger finish. West Coast IPA remains the Green Flash fav.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2008 04:05:35 | More by RonfromJersey
Photo of rtratzlaff

North Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hop Head Red pours a deep dark cloudy ruby red with an off white two finger hed that leaves good lacing down the glass.

The aromas are caramel matched with a grapefruit hop character from the amarillo.

Taste is a bit different with a medicinal herbal flavor when the hops are working against such a strong caramel malt backbone. Strong brewed unsweetened tea flavors flash across the tongue and stick around for quite a while. The hops are resinous as the lable states with a good long lasting bitterness on the tongue.

Moderate carbonation and a medium mouthfeel create a very drinkable brew. I understand why this won gold for the style at this year's GABF.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2008 17:24:46 | More by rtratzlaff
Photo of smcolw


4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a beautiful looking beer. A moderate head that lasts forever. It leaves chunky lace on the glass. The color deep amber and clear.

Like opening the hop pellet drawer at the homebrew shop--floral and spicy. There is no other smell here

The brew is more hoppy than the smell. Lip-puckering aftertaste that lasts seemingly forever. Relatively thin body which leads to a lighter malt flavor than the coloring would suggest. Balanced, this is not!

As a hop head, I love these style beers.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2008 18:31:40 | More by smcolw
Photo of glid02


4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this at the Big Hunt in Washington DC.

Pours a cloudy dark copper color with a two-finger off-white head. The head dissipates slowly into a patchy layer of bubbles on top and a thick ring around the glass. Lacing is pretty sticky.

Smells good. Lots of sweet malt with a good deal of spicy pine and citrus aromas. Not nearly as intense as their IPA, but still a lot of hoppiness for an amber.

Tastes similar to how it smells. A lot of sweet malt up front, followed shortly by a mild piney flavor that goes with a slight vanilla taste. There's a bit of citrus flavor at the end that hits right before a solid amount of bitterness.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a very good thickness and the carbonation is not too much nor too little.

Drinkability is good. There's nothing that stands out in this beer that makes it hard to drink. Everything works very well together, and I could definitely have another of these.

Overall this is a very good amber ale. As the name implies, it's certainly hoppier than most, but there's also a solid malt backbone to this beer. Worth a shot.

Serving type: on-tap

10-19-2008 18:05:39 | More by glid02
Photo of ccrida


4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ml bottle poured into my Gulden Draak tulip, Hop Head Red is a is a murky dark auburn with a very large khhaki head that leaves heavy, very attractive lace.

Smell is incredible, I fucking love these red IPAs, and this one is so suculent and resiny, spicy, sour citrus, gingerbread, a little sap, wow. I'm an unabashed Belgian (blonde) whore, but these hoppy red's are by far my favorite beers, period!

sweet, cane sugar and very tropical fruits, papaya and cantaloupe, floral and perfume like, lots of lavender, wow! If my wife were wearing this...wait, I'm already a dirt-ball!

Taste is good, but not as robust or stimulating as the aroma, a little sour citrus but mostly spicy and grassy, and a bit of toasted malt. Frankly, it's good, but a bit of a let down after the aroma, a bit flaccid.

Mouthfeel is oily and viscous, with a decent carbonation but seemingly heavier body.

Drinkability is pretty good, by the smell alone, this is one of my favorite beers of all time! Unfortunetly, the taste is not as satisfying, and while it packs a big punch in a small package, it's not my ideal for the hoppy red, which is big, bright resiny hop aroma and flavor. Still, it's cheap and fresh.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2008 06:30:11 | More by ccrida
Photo of gau8a


4.97/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

this was recommended to me by a sales associate at a local table & vine after i was looking for green flash west coast ipa, which was sold out. being somewhat reluctant to try this brew i'm glad i did! the smell alone told me that this was going to be a great ride. the taste was even better. it is hoppy...but not offensive. this is ,to me a masterpiece!

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2008 22:02:17 | More by gau8a


4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Nearly two inches of bready tan head turns rocky as bubbles pop leaving scattered lace. Body is a brick reddish brown. Nose is full of crisp citrusy hops with orange rind and a hint of piney sweetness. Initially enters the mouth with a sweetsmooth almost creamy feel. A layer of malt comes through to add depth and nice balance. Then the hops show up to add a nice little even bitter bite which hangs on nicely to the back of the tongue. Hop feel is more on the citrus side but does have a rustic feel also. Mouthfeel is bold and thick leaving you wanting the next sip. Wonderfully drinkable. I could use a fridge full of this.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2008 19:38:59 | More by SPLITGRIN
Photo of philbe311


4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very good brew... Tasted during a recent visit to the Brickskeller in DC...

A - Slight head of a standard pour quickly fades, leaving a redish amber colored brew with good carbonation... Good lacing throughout the session...

S - A great example of a mix of extreme sweetness and hoppiness... Caramel and hops mix to create an excellent aroma... Possibly and hint of nut as well...

T - Exactly as expected after the aroma... Great mix of roasted malt and caramel flavor are first, but is quickly followed by the hits of both citrusy and piney hops...

M - Light to medium bodied... Smooth... Not oily as I expected...Biting carbanation...

D - Highly drinkable... A terrific brew... At 6%, I would still consider this highly sessionable...

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2008 18:01:42 | More by philbe311
Photo of Wasatch


4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to mikereaser for this brew.

Pours a nice hazy golden amber color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy tan head, with some very nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is hoppy with a nice balance of malt, with some nice citrus/pine notes. The taste is hoppy, slightly sweet, malty, nice citrus/pine notes. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is another awesome GF brew.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2008 23:27:01 | More by Wasatch
Photo of daliandragon

North Carolina

4.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been looking to trying something from these SD guys' for a while and I have to say, this looks terrific. Very dense tight head and thick, sticky lace all over the place. The body is an opaque light brown with strong streaks of orange. The nose is a complex mix of sweet malt and tangy pine and citrus and other mixed fruit. Looking very good early.

This is quality stuff. A layered melange of tasty West Coast hops and deep chocolate and caramel malts with plenty of balance and a smooth, creamy finish. This is a hand grenade of flavor that
pops in about the third second.

This is a terrific beer, the best I've had in a while, and worth trying for anyone who appreciates well balanced, brilliantly crafted brew. Looking forward to more Green Flash stuff soon.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2008 00:52:57 | More by daliandragon
Photo of HopDerek


4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Kegatron for this birthday gift.

Pours a burnt orange/copper color with a few floaties. Two fingers of fluffy tan froth has great retention and provides excellent sticky lacing. Smells of dried grass, pine needles, caramel, citrus rind, and ripe fruits. Tastes of grapefruit and orange peel up front with a nice caramel malt backbone and a dry bitter pine finish. Medium in body with good carbonation. Smooth and sticky with great balance and a nice hop kick. Sweet with a dry and bitter finish. An excellent red ale, made West Coast style.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2008 23:13:02 | More by HopDerek
Photo of IBUnit63


4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Into BMS mug during Talladega on the tube and SIRIUS...

Pours a deep, dark amber color with nice cinnamon/capuccino head into BMS mug.

Grapefruit hops mesh nicely on the nose with copious amber/caramel malt in Beautiful Chemistry. No disconnects here - this one is synced up extremely well so that all ingredients complement each other.

Crisp, clean citrus/floral and a little grassy hop texture balances overabundant, woody yet slightly sweet malt profile. Nice!

For all this malt it's very clean on the palate. Finish is full and strong as expected with such a malty offering but the citrus from the hoppiness gives a nice tangy kicker.

Sessionable as all get-up. Drinkability is off the charts for something so big. Amazing!

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2008 10:52:47 | More by IBUnit63
Photo of joe1510


4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz Stubby

Russpowell sent me this hoppy red in a recent trade, thanks again Wolf! Hop Head Red pours mildly hazy amber with ruby highlights when backlit. A stream or two of carbonation curl slowly to the surface. A standard pour produced two fingers of ecru head that became meringue-like as it sat and left sticky drink lines all over the place.

Big sweet caramel is the first thing to jump out of the glass but is quickly rivaled by resinous hop goodness. The resin qualities of the hops seem to pull out ahead as this beer warms slightly. There's some lightly toasted breadiness in the far back and tea leaf like hoppiness floating through here and there.

The caramel seems to stand out in the flavor first and foremost but the resinous hops quickly catch up. Caramel comes big upfront but fades as the resin drops mid palate and leads through the finish. The tea leaf like hoppiness shows up occasionally, which leads me to believe this beer has been sitting for a little bit. This is a good red with a respectable hop presence.

Hop Head red is medium bodied with a surprising silkiness that I thoroughly enjoy. The carbonation is soft while the hops end up leaving some chaos in their wake with a growing bitterness.

This would be a highly sessionable red for me if available in my area. One bottle of this hoppy red in a sitting isn't enough.

I always enjoy a hoppy red and this didn't disappoint. I may have to try and get my hands on a few more of these soon. Thanks for the bottle Russ!

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2008 04:09:50 | More by joe1510
Photo of Bitterbill


4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this bottle in a trade with russpowell. Thanks Russ!

This pours a hazy red colour with close to a 2 finger head of foam. Nice lacing.

The smell is a nice mix of sweet and bitter. Good caramel malt and pine and citrus hops.

The taste follows the nose...strong flavours of both caramel malt sweetness and ample hoppiness with pine being primary and citrus being secondary and I notice some roastiness and some grain after the first couple of sips. Very close to being balanced but the pine just edges out the malt.

The mouthfeel is solidly medium as is the carbonation, and it finishes with some roasted malt goodness and just a touch of pine. Nice. Nice and very drinkable. Btw, head retention is quite good as is the lacing.

Bottom line: This is definitely one of the better Red/Amber Ales I've tasted to date. I'd like another please. ;^)

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2008 19:45:50 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of Gavage

New Jersey

4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a hazy reddish amber color. 1/2" head falls quickly to a thick surface foam. Nice lacing develops.

Smell: caramel, ripe fruits, and grapefruit are easy to detect.

Taste: caramel, grapefruit, lemon zest, ripe red apples, and a hint of pine. There is a grainy malt profile here too. Bitterness is upfront but well balanced with the caramel.

Mouthfeel: crisp at the start, smoother and dry towards the finish. Medium bodied. Aftertaste is long on the bitterness.

Drinkability: easy to quaff this one. Nice hearty red ale that everyone should drink.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2008 16:02:41 | More by Gavage
Photo of Proteus93


4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A really nice pour. Deep golden red, with a soft rolling head that leaves a huge wall of lacing behind. A bit of haziness from fine sediment that appears to be in stasis.

S: Orange and grapefruit rind, even a light splash of lemon rind in there, as well. While the hop aromas are quite strong, there is a notable malt backbone that provides a nice balance.

T: Citrus and an earthiness. A bit of a caramel flavour comes through over over the middle of the mouth, finishing with a solid bittering. A little astringency, perhaps.

M + D: A full bodied brew, by all means. It almost goes a little heavy and doesn't seem to lighten up on the finish, making it feel a little weighty. This isn't a horrible attribute, but it was a little bit unusual, I found. That said, I could do another - the hop presence does do a number on the palate, though. Not one to try another tasting after!

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2008 01:33:41 | More by Proteus93
Photo of prototypic


4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: It pours a hazy, really attractive deep red color. The head is really impressive. It easily stands two and a half fingers tall and is a light caramel color. Retention was excellent and thick sheets of lace lined the glass. Really impressive.

Smell: The nose is just as impressive. There's some initial citrus orange and pinepple aromas. Caramel malts are sweet and prevalent. It is very hoppy in a very west coast way. Very piney and citric in character. Interestingly enough, the malts don't smell like they've diluted the hoppy character of this beer too much. That's a plus. I'm hoping in holds true in the flavor profile. I like the idea of a hopped up red ale.

Taste: It's definitely got a lot of flavor, but it's not quite as good as the nose suggested. Initial orange and pineapple flavors are sweet, but are not as prevalent here as in smell. Caramel malts are sweet and give this beer a very solid base. Hops are mostly citric and piney. They do have a nice bitter taste, but it is muted a little by the malts. It's actually pretty well balanced and very nice in a red ale. I'm just appreciating such a nice hop flavor in a beer of this style. It finishes sweet and a little bitter.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's got a medium body and is smooth. Carbonation is active and high which keeps it from reaching a creamy or silky level. But, it goes down easy. Drinkability is very high. I'm really enjoying this and would love to have a few more. Can't get much better than that.

Hop Head Red's a hell of a good beer. One of the better and more interesting red ales I've had. Something about the fine hop flavor kept me wishing for a little more bitterness. But, it's very tasty and enjoyable as it stands. Definitely recommended.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2008 01:24:31 | More by prototypic
Green Flash Hop Head Red Ale from Green Flash Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 2,660 ratings.