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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.
very good

3,085 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,085
Reviews: 931
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 11.08%
Wants: 108
Gots: 308 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,085 | Reviews: 931 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of stakem
4.1/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an amber color that for the most part would have been clear but a slightly ignorant pour made the yeast come up a bit from the bottom of the bottle and cloud the clarity up a bit. Almost a full 2 finger head sits on top of this brew with fair retension and a bold amount of lace all over the place. Sweet malt aroma is paired nicely with citrus and floral hops. Taste is what the nose leads on, a nice mix of both malt sweetness and hop bitterness in the finish. Linger bitter taste is somewhat resinous and warming. Lightly carbed and a med to light feel. Very nice brew.

Photo of jamie2dope
4.23/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Always love a good amber or red ale. This one has a very nice rose color, with not a whole lot of heading. From the nose, one can smell the Amarillo hops (one of my favorites), and some caramel. Taste is damn, very hoppy, much hoppier than I was expecting. I love hoppy beers like this that are really really bitter. This one is dry, hoppy, and did I mention hoppy? Mouthfeel is about medium, with the malt barely noticeable (at least for me). Drinkability is pretty damn awesome, but it will kill your taste buds without a doubt. This was a really nice surprise from Green Flash. It totally exceeded my expectations, and went particularly well with some jalapeno stuffed olives. Cheers

Photo of dirtylou
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz single, shipped by Bort. enjoy this beer, but closest distribution is Chicago

appearance: poured into my tyranena pint, murky dark amber body, light beige lace...has a pulpy look to it

smell: thick waves of caramel, potentially faded hops - rustic pine, bitter ruby red, orange peel.

taste: dig hoppy ambers - along with the Ale Asylum and Troegs varieties, this ranks as a favorite. Flavor profile showcases lots of hop bitterness - pine, grapefruit peel, orange peel. well balanced with a ton of caramel and strong toasted malt backbone

mouthfeel: moderate bitterness, slick and pulpy

drinkability: good

Photo of aggiearcher13
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy orange-red glow, about an inch of pale head that hangs around and leaves very nice lacing.

S: Quite the powerful aroma. Caramel malts are there, but hops dominate. Orange and apricot.

T: Hops dominate big time. Seems like a lot more than 45 IBUs. Not terrifically balanced, but it is called "hop head red" so I can't knock it. There is some caramel sweetness as well, but mostly a wonderful bitterness.

M: Very smooth, great body.

D: Pretty high. It's super tasty and relatively low ABV, a nice little combination.

Photo of nickfl
4.09/5  rDev +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.

Photo of GbVDave
4.47/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into two pint glasses. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Pours a crystal clear, deep reddish amber with a 1 1/2 finger head that is a light orange/khaki color. Retention is good and some pretty and sticky lace patterns were left behind.

S: Excellent Amarillo hop aroma. This blends amazingly well with the smell of sweet and plentiful caramel malt. Hints of grapefruit and pineapple, as well.

T: Exactly as above, save for a piney hop flavor that becomes readily apparent as it comes up to temp.

M: Loads of juicy tropical fruit, dry Amarillo hops, and sweetness from the caramel. Medium bodied and very sticky. Finishes dry and spicy as it trails off.

D: Another fantastic Green Flash year-rounder. These west coast folks really know what they're doing with the hops!

Photo of portia99
4.17/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours a hazy dark amber with red highlights when held to the light. A thin head of off white bubbles barely makes an appearance and galls to an uneven collar around the glass.

S - Lots of fresh citrusy grapefruit, some oranges, a slight grassiness and a bit of tropical fruits. Bready malt sits in the background under the hops and also provides a bit of caramel sweetness, but subdued.

T - Quite hoppy and bitter, very nice. Good malt backbone, lots of bready, biscuity flavors there. Hops are heavy on grapefruity citrus. More malt character than I expected, and the hops are a focused bitter and have less flavor than I expected - but are still quite a large part of the flavor profile, but the bitterness is the center of attention.

M - Medium bodied with good levels of carbonation, in other words on the high side...lots of prickly bubbles on the tongue. Bitterness fills the mouth completely.

D - Good and hoppy amber ale. Sharply bitter which tastes really good, but makes it hard to put down a lot of these. Very enjoyable beer, but I think in smaller quantities...but I wouldn't mind having another one soon.

Photo of reustyMMX
3.8/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Reddish Amber, clear, well carbonated.

S: Hoppy but not overpowering

T: Well balanced, hoppy up front but fading to a subtle malty and dry finish

M: Pretty average, not thin but certainly not chewy

D: A nice beer, but I would probably try something else for a second drink.

Photo of Vonerichs
4.23/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep and clear red-orange with a huge fluffy white head. Loads of lacing trails the liquid.

Piney and spicey hops are the main smell with a caramel malt backbone. Same goes for the taste. This is extremely hoppy and crisp, with the main notes being piney, spiced, and a hint of citrus. The malt is heavy but warranted. After all, this is a red ale.

Medium bodied, crisp, and slightly dry. It is puckering as well.

This is delicious and fresh tasting. Alcohol is not noticable at all. This is one of the better red ales out there.

Photo of robbyc1
3.73/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beautiful garnet brownish red, clear with tight white head and solid lacing.

Spicy hop nose amarillo gives it a rye like nose

Good malt backbone to offset the hops, lighter feel than expected, good carbonation, nice drinker, but better with a spicy dinner than alone.

Photo of Florida9
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Bronze, approaching brown, in color. A good two fingers of tannish head on an aggressive pour from the bottle. Decent lacing.

S: Malt quickly overpowered by pine and citrus hops.

T: A good dose of sweet, earthy, caramel malt followed by the freshness of lively piney hops. A moderate bitterness that grows after the swallow.

M: Medium, maybe a little heavier than medium. Heavier carbonation, but the carbonation seeks to "lighten" the beer and activate the hops.

D: Very good red ale. Tasty and I like the heavy hand on the hops as most red ales fall into the "malty" category. If I didn't know any better, I'd say this one could pass for an IPA.

Photo of paco1029384756
4.27/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep amber color with a small sticky white head.

Scent of bitter, piny, resiny hops, a hint of caramel, some sugar, and light raspberry. Great scent, strong hop presence with a nice hint of sweetness.

Taste bitter piny, resiny hops, caramel, and some earth. Simple and effective, this is a tasty Red Ale.

Mouthfeel is medium light bodied with a good bite of carbonation.

Photo of jwinship83
4.46/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle drank from my sierra nevada hop tulip glass.

A- this one pours a beautiful ruby red colored body with a finger of bright white head on top. head lasts a while and leaves behind solid rings of lacing. perfect.

S- caramel malts upfront with an intensely hoppy finish. full of citrus and pine.

T- jut like the smell, this one starts with somewhat sweet caramel and toffee like malts, and is finished with a massive helping of citrus and piny hops.

M- medium bodied and well carbonated.

D- very easy to sit back and enjoy a few of these. the bottle suggests that this is like a red IPA, and i think theyre dead on. check this out of you get the chance. i dont think it gets the respect it deserves.

Photo of drabmuh
3.95/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on draft at Churchkey in D.C. Beer is copper, clear, thin white head clings to the glass edge of the beer but leaves very little lacing. Carbonation is low. A little disappointing in appearance, lets see if the rest makes up for it.

High malt aroma, low hops. There is some alcohol or solvency in the aroma and the nature of the hops is citrus. Interestingly smelling, a slight deduction for the solvent though.

HOLY SHIT! This beer is DRY! I coughed after I drank it. I was not expecting that, how interesting. Hops are way more presents in this beer than the aroma would indicate. Drinkability of this beer is high (especially if you like dry beers). The dryness is so great that is interrupts my enjoyment of it, but I see hwat they are doing with it. There is an unfortunate aftertaste as well though. Another slight deduction. Check it out if you like hoppy reds that are dry, otherwise avoid.

Photo of taxguyjase
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer looked intriguing before I even opened it, as it was a red ale that was hoppy. Given it came from Green Flash, I figured it was going to be pretty good. The brew pours a sturdy red, darker than most red ales you'll come across, and a nice, foamy auburn head. The aroma is a nice blend of hop and malt. Not as robust and hoppy as you'd expect in an IPA, but definitely hop-worthy and fragrant. The first taste was where I really really enjoyed the beer - citrus hoppiness, but not overly bitter; malty, but not what you'd expect in a red. Good body, not heavy at all. The bitterness of the hops mixed with the smoothness of the red made for an excellent combination. I would definitely get this beer again, since it's an awesome blend of two styles I really enjoy.

Appearance - 4.0/5.0 - sturdy red, darker than normal red, auburn head
Smell - 4.0/5.0 - a nice blend of hop and malt, not overly strong but fragrant
Taste - 4.5/5.0 - definitely hoppy, but not overly bitter, malt flavor there - medium body, flavors of an IPA, but definitely a red
Feel - 4.0/5.0 - bitterness of ipa with smoothness of red, really good, lingering bitterness
Drinkability - 4.5/5.0 - would definitely have again, a good alternative to an straight IPA

Photo of irishkyle21
4.42/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a fluffy of white head. Lots of lacing and the foams holds up for most of the drinking experience. Has a hazy amber color.

Smells great, lots of hops up front, pine, hop resins, grapefruit and a bit of caramel malt.

This is one great tasting red. Pine, citrus, the malts there but the hops just over power everything (I mean that in a good way). Should of bought more.

Photo of Durge
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Happily encountered at the Flying Saucer in Carlotte, NC, this great brew shows a dark brown root beer-ish color with a slight orange hint. The head is a very substantial light tan bit of topography that collapses into a thick lace. The aroma brings a very nice citrus pine blend over the sweet malt, very enticing. The first swig is WOW with crisp citrus bite that settles into some of that green pine that was evidenced in the aroma. The malt is a more bready variety and the woodsy pine really grows, taking on a medicinal tingle that is very likeable. The carbonation is lively and tasteful in a solid mid-bodied brew that is refreshing and dangerously drinkable. The hops are just lovely here as they settle in a dry sheen on your tongue with a pleasant horshound sort of sweetness. This is my style of red ale! Sweet and bitter married and mellowed, yet lively. Beautiful!

Photo of NorCalYeti
3.78/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

taste- sweet malt

color- deep red copper

clarity- clear

smell- fresh hops, grapefruit, sweet malt

body- medium weight, smooth mouthfeel, alcoholic

appearance- nice color, off-white creamy relatively flat head, nice lace

overall impression- good beer, i don't consider it a red...maybe more like an esb

glassware: pint

Photo of sml505
4.29/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear med to dark amber. High carb. Light, lasting tan head

S - Rich malts of grain, toast, caramel, grassy, citrus hops.

T - Sweet and follows arorma. Chewy malts and nice bitter finish

M/ D - Medium, chewy mouthfeel. Great malts and nice fuity hop bitterness. Closer to APA, but tasty!

Photo of BlueBloodBrew
4.8/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle served in an oversized wineglass. This is a terrific all around hopy beer. This beer has a great citrusy start followed by a distinctive bitter ending.

A - The beer poured a very clear dark amber almost caramel color with a two finger head. The beer is low carbonation with allows you to reap all of the liquid flavors.

S - On the nose there is an immediate sense of citrus, a bit of grapefruit, floral scents, and perhaps some herbal undertones.

T - The taste is citrus on the front end upon entry and a hard kick of bitterness at the ending. There is a very eclectic balance reached between the citrus and the bitterness of the enormous hops in this beer. Greenflash did an extraordinary job of reaching the right balance of citrusy flavors and the bitterness of the hops.

M - This beer has a good medium to light body that also provides a distinctive smooth quality.

D - This beer is very drinkable. I could down a sixer (or two) without even thinking much about it.

Photo of kingcrowing
3.63/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured in a 12oz tumbler.

Pours a dark gold/brown with a nice small light brown head. There's a ton of sediment in here so be warned (I usually pour aggressively on hoppy beers so I get a nice fluffy head), I got a ton of floaties in this, and I'm not a fan of that. has very nice lacing.

Taste is very bitter and and hoppy. Some citrus, grapefruit. This really seems like a dark IPA. Awesome beer, I'd seek this out on tap.

Photo of rapidsequence
4.24/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle

Appearance: Looks like iced tea, but has tons of dead yeast bodies floating in it. That doesnt really bother me, but clear is nicer for a beer defined by its color.

Smell: Lots of sweet citrusy and floral hops. Very malty.

Taste: Sweet caramel malt initially, then huge hops flavor followed by a long nive bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Very full for a 6% red ale. A little foamy and almost creamy.

Drinkability: This is a great hoppy red with good malt backbone. Its almost like a low alcohol barleywine. Really nice stuff.

Photo of hiikeeba
3.19/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Labels coming off the bottles make this look cheap. Decant, decant decant. First bottle I poured up made this look like a snow globe! Second bottle was more carefully poured, yielding a clear, dark amber beer with, because of the careful pouring, a thin off white head that dissipated quickly.

S - Raisin and dried fruit notes, hints of pipe tobacco.

T - Some dark caramel flavor, with some roasted notes. Finishes with a lackluster peppery hop bitterness. With a name like Hop Head, I would expect a bit more.

M - Good mouthfeel, and strong carbonation

D - An okay beer, but a bit disapointing.

Photo of Docer
3.95/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Grabbed a 6-pack from New Seasons... I love the West Coast IPA so I thought I'd give another favorite style of mine a try from them. I don't see any freshness dating on their brews which I wish they would do... and I know many grocers like Fred Meyers and QFC do not handle their beers very well i.e. leaving them outside under the sun on pallets etc.

- Nice thick molasses of a look, hazy brown, thick, foggy.. thin mocha head... left a ton of lace-maker on top. Muddy water.

- Thick caramel nose... strange because when I cracked the bottle I got nothing but zesty Amarillo in the nose. Sweet murky sugar water.. bitter punch in the face..

- Did not expect the flavor and mildness I have received. I expected something more like the Raven Mad Imperial Red... but didn't get that. Nice mild caramel malt with a big hit of tea... grassy and piney hop... smooth creamy brown sugar.. and light... like a mass produced iced tea.. but a fine craft beer.

- Bit chewy and dry... little oil, but not much.. nice aftertaste..

- A very drinkable red ale... and different.. almost could be dubbed a west coast red ale.. although all the reds I have had like this are only from CA... OR reds are much different and not so caramelized.

Photo of RobH
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

Had this one right after finishing a Sierra Nevada Kellerweis. It may have taken 1/3 of the glass for my palate to acclimate to the much hoppier profile of this beer. I generally prefer a more malt to hop balanced Amber/Red Ale.

That said:

A: Attractive deep red. Clear and inviting.

S: Hops. And more hops. This is definitely going to be a hop experience.

T: Hops up front. Bitter for sure compared with the Kellerweis (of course). Hop bite, too. As the beer warmed and my palate acclimated, the malt bill started to shine through. A much better beer for me when not "refrigerator cold". Evolved into a very nice beer.

M: Lively hops on the palate. Medium-bodied.

Overall: Suggest letting it warm a bit from the refrigerator. A very well-made beer, and truly a hop head's Red Ale. For me, while I did like it and will have it again, it doesn't have the quaffability of other Ambers/Reds such as Anderson Valley Boont Amber or even Bell's Amber Ale.


Green Flash Hop Head Red Ale from Green Flash Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 3,085 ratings.