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Green Flash Le Freak | Green Flash Brewing Co.

736 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Green Flash Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Le Freak® is the first-ever hybrid ale of its kind: the convergence of a Belgian-Style Trippel with an American Imperial IPA. This zesty Amarillo dry-hopped, bottle-conditioned marvel entices with fruity Belgian yeast aromatics and a firm, dry finish. Aromas of orange and passion fruit with sweet bready malts, and flavors of orange marmalade and citrus fruit pith. Experience a legendary beer.

Added by Westsidethreat on 05-08-2007

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Reviews: 736 | Ratings: 2,351
Photo of JohnGalt1
4.55/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 from dqderrick .... This brew has been on my radar for a while.. and much thanks goes out to Derrick for the great trade... poured into my Chimay goblet.

Very pretty meringue like head.. tons of Belgian lace.. woow! no kidding.. very nice... the brew is very hazy.. golden orange.. sorta glows.

There is a ton of stuff going on in the Le Freak.. loads of esters and phenols... spicy for sure with orange peel.. very complex... slight pink bubblegum and banana.. I am very impressed at this point.. and I haven't even taken a sip... maybe a little bit of solvent alcohol.. but not bad at all and it actually lends to the overall complexity.

Flavor is remarkably complex too but is very different than the aroma.. huge expected triple flavors but punctuated with a fair amount of SoCal hoppiness. clove and white pepper.. orange and lemon.. a thorough bready sweetness that never separates but more binds everything together verging on perfectly.... the finish takes minutes.. amazing.. this reminds me of Midnight Sun Wrath but with a great "freshness" quality to it...

I've had quite a few Green Flash brews over the last year or two.. but wow.. this is far and away my favorite.. I need to get more of these in a big way.. simply a lesson in complexity and balance.. I am soooo impressed. Cheers... I wish I could get you guys locally.. but again.. Wow! Thanks Derrick!!


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Photo of stephenpcowan
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I thought this beer was outstanding at the bbf but didn't want to review it based on the overexposure of the day.

In retrospect, I probably liked this beer so much because it was so different from most belgian ales. Left alone with a bottle, the balance tilts too much to the hoppy side.

The pour is great, big beautiful fluffy head and light golden color.

The smell is primarily pine, grass and citrus notes from the hops, but there is more subdued banana and tooty-fruity.

The taste is dominated by hops all the way through. This beer could use a bit more residual sugar--the high attenuation combined with the hoppiness puts the beer out of balance for my taste. As a result I recruited my roommate for help finishing the bomber.

I would drink this beer again but I like it best in small amounts with other beers.

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

Pours translucent off-gold color with generous, pillowy white head.

Very aromatic with lemon, french bread crust, and overall bread qualities.

Early on, the Belgian bready/yeasty flavors are apparent, but then shortly after (almost concurrently) the panopoly of hops take center stage. Odd balance of the two, and I can't help but wonder if this style should not exist. As it is though, it is quite wonderful, but not something I could tolerate drinking regularly.

Good beer. Worth seeking out.

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Photo of Cresant
4.44/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this 16.9 oz. brown bottle into a Tripel Karmeliet glass. No date. The body was a bright and rich orange. Clear on the first pour. A frothy two fingers of vanilla colored head stayed. Murkier on the second pour.

Smell was Belgian yeast. Spicy banana bread. Wet cement. Fruity. Some slight dustiness. Citrus. Lots going on here!

Taste was alcohol. Green/astringent hops. Substantial. Belgian fruity/organic/yeastiness nicely juxtaposed with the scorching West Coast IPA style. Very nice. Drying finish with a lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel was zesty and full-bodied. Mouthfilling creaminess.

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Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.63/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I really can't decide whether I like this or not. I had good expectations for it going in, and it left me craving a tiny bit more.

Poured a nice hazy dark-ish yellow color with a stark white head into my DFH 22oz snifter. The nose was somewhat sweet but with highlights of citrus.

An interesting merge of two different flavors in the mouthfeel. I'm getting somewhat of a spiciness from the belgian yeast, but then back again with the hops. The candy sugar is quite evident. I'm not a huge fan of triples but the 'blending' between that style and an american IPA is appealing to me. However I am slightly unsure how to feel about this one. It's definitely worth revisiting. The style in general is a good one to try (albeit tough to find sometimes) .

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Photo of akorsak
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 650 mL bottle picked up at State Line.

A: The BIPA is an amber color, tea- or penny-colored. A steady stream of bubbles is the only disruption in the glass. A small head is attempting to lace around the edges of the glass.

S: The nose has a nice tripel profile, sweet with a blast peppery coriander. Floral hops emerge, moreso as the ale warms, releasing an intoxicating lupulin aroma that is strong but not blindly bitter.

T: The body is boozy and heat, heavy on the alcohol from the get go. The hops are just behind the alcohol, herbal and bitter. The hops blend nicely with the Belgian profile, meeting the sweetness with blinding bite. The tripel's profile is fast to fade, leaving the candi and coriander rather quickly. Bitterness is the catchphase for the finish. As I drink the ale, I appreciate the melding of flavors but some of the elements are too strong and don't always work.

M: You better like either a) blinding booze or b) blinding hops. The heat and hops are both wicked.

D: The ale is too strong to have more than one bomber. I want to love the beer, I really do. I just struggle with fact that it comes across as too big. Damn, damn, damn.

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Photo of tpd975
4.26/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a nice golden hue with a solid two finger head. Wonderful retention with some spotty lace.

S: Nice aromas of apples and touches of spice. A bit of Belgian yeast and a touch of citrus hops.

T: I really like this one. I have not really liked many of the previous attempts at this style that I have had. Nice sweet apple up front with hints of peppery spice. Touches of banana esque Belgian yeast come next. Bubblegum gets overtaken by bitter grass and grapefruit rind. Wonderful blend of Belgian Ale and West Coast IPA.

M: Medium in body with snappy carbonation. Quite bitter and dry in the finish.

D: Put the bomber down by myself without a problem. Wish I had taken this one home from Denver to share with the local tasting group.

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Photo of PatronWizard
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aaaahhh Le Freak out!

Opaque golden yeller. Good looking mushy head.

Smells like a spice beer. Freaky Spice. Or a really strong hefe. Bordering on sour.

Taste has that tea flavor kind of bitter I associate with an ESB. Overpowering, as I don't believe I taste anything else. Surprising. I thought I was opening an IPA/tripel kind of thing. Maybe I am, but it would be my least favorite so far. Not bad, just not great. Le Freak comes out at night.

So I'm not loving it, but I'll have absolutely no problem whatsoever finishing it and I do appreciate the favorable 9.2%

Overall: one timer for me

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

On Tap at Blue Palms.

A light golden color with a 2" bright white head.

Nice hop aroma, lots of citrus and pine.

Taste is almost all pine in the bitterness/hop flavor/hop aroma, my wife described it as "sprucy". there is enough malt to balance out the hops, and as it warmed I was able to get some residual sweetness . While there was a little spiciness to the flavor there wasnt much there that I would label as "belgian". Also a great sharp hop bite aftertaste that was again very piny.

Overall I will most definetly order this again if I see it on someones beer list.

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Photo of PhxHorn
4.03/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a light orange, with a fluffy white head, leaving a bunch of lacing all the way down. Smells of hops, but not much belgian content to the aroma. The initial taste is mostly of hops, but after a few swallows, the belgian character starts to make itself known. So you get the hoppy attack of grapefruit and orange, along with the more subtle peach and apricot hints. It's an intriguing combination, though overall I'd say the hoppy aspect overbalances the belgian component. Still a helluva brew.

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Photo of russpowell
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Hophead101 for this one, cheers Greg!

Pours a semi-hazed apricot with 2 fingers of fluffy cream colored head. Murks up at the bottom of the bottle, good lacing & head retention

S: Honey, pineapples, lemons, green bananas & white pepper

T: Passion fruit, pineapples, grapefruit up front, plus appleskins. More grapefruit, green bananas & noticeable but light alcohol, as as this warms. Finishes with much grapefruit, some booze, pears & apple peels, plus a touch of breadyness

MF: Syrupy, low carbonation, medium bodied with pretty good balance & warming sensations

Drinks pretty good for the style & abv, this Belgian PA certainly has a west coast slant, as you'd expect from Green Flash

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

GABF Weekend '08: I'm a'luv'n the hoppy Belgians. This one comes out with a witbier appearance- canary yellow and a firm head formation that laced well and retained to the bottom of the glass. Piercing aromas of lemons, acidic berry-like tartness, and sharp citrus-piney hops that stand out over the softer pilsner malts. Flavors are acidic of lemons, berries, white pepper, and a plethera of other fruity esters and peppery phenols. Hops (Amerillo's?) give a citric orange / grapefruit flavor swirled around strong notes of pine and lemmon grass. The hop flavor is intense, religating the malts to a backup role only. The intense hops and spices give a lot of complexity and variety. A light vineous, barrel-aged tannin quality prounounces in the finish. And so does a mild lactic astringency and a light soapy phenolic character. Otherwise a near-flawless beer.

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Photo of deereless
3.73/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Crystal clear coppery orange, cottony head, signs of layering on the glass - 4.50, S: Perhaps it is a little too cold but the aromas a more subtle than I expected, the Belgian side is what is most noticeable - orange peel, some spices - likely coriander, citrusy/lemony off the hops I assume - 3.75, T: All of a sudden this beer becomes a hop bomb, loads of piney bite, some syrupy sweetness to try and moderate the hops though in reality the hops just dominate, only the slightest sign of the Belgian makes it through all the hop juice - 3.50, M: 4.00, D: Always a fan of the IPAs, this one is a good representation of the style though the balance is a little too far skewed in the direction of the hops - 3.50

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Photo of bigkahunas4
3.53/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I've really been looking to having this - as sign the BBF - I've had a soft spot for Belgian IPAs. I found a 22 oz bomber and am going to sample it in an oversized wine glass. "01 08" was barely etched near the base of the glass - leading me to believe that was when it was brewed.

Appearance: Gave it a fairly vigorous pour to elicit in hopes of eliciting some decent head from her. The body poured a gorgeous opaque bronze with mahogany highlights. The head had some great great retention, starting at about a finger and a half, and really holding strong at about half a finger. The foam looks vintage with it's parchment coloring. Some nice suddy lacing as well.

Smell: The first draw is the comforting Belgian yeast, with hints of pepper and lemon. Upon aerating it a bit, bubblegum emerges, as well as a smoky profile much like when incense is first lit.

Taste: My first thought was "Hmm" definitely interesting, as a big hop firestorm really takes over what was a big Belgian nose. Subtle yeasts flavors really try to peak their heads up, as I can sense some citrus. Really hard to pull out much of the normal Belgian sweetness, as the hop tide really rolls in almost immediately. Hop characters are very earthy, and unlike any I've really encountered. I'm pulling out some grass and dark wood, with a light hint of grapefruit. As it's warming - I'm enjoying it more, as the hops become more fruity.

Mouthfeel: Medium body on this guy, with a touch of viscosity as it hits your tongue. The hops are extremely sticky and really coat the back of your pallete and mouth - actually leaning towards unpleasant on this.

Drinkability: Alcohol is completely muted in this 9.2% freak - however, the hop bitterness really keeps you from drinking too much of this. I'll be honest, in that I was quite disappointed. Certainly complex, and interesting, but the rave scores led me to believe that I was going to be in complete lust here due to my love of Belgians and serious hops. This is my first Green Flash tasting - so perhaps I just am not used to their hops.

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Photo of aforbes10
4.17/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big puffy whitish head on a light brown to orange body. Sticky lacing. Smells of white grapes, candi sugar, fusel alcohol (though not too much). Flavor is a fruity bitterness that transforms into a nice sweet malt and candi sugar with hot alcohol. Bitterness and a warming sensation meld in the finish and make a nice final impression. Approaching full-bodied with a hint of syrup-quality. Drinks well, and tastes good, though im not sure it's as memorable as i expected it would be.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber pours into my glass a clear golden yellow/orange hue with a creamy two fingers of foam on top and good active carbonation as well. Aromas start out with fruity yeast esters and spiciness with some clove and a touch of pepper. Big citrusy hops with orange peel accents. Quite intricate and the hop kick is quite nice.

First sip brings crisp malt upfront with a nice melding of Belgian yeast esters and fruity spiciness. Notes of clove, nutmeg and a light peppery accent. Midway through the hops kick in with a citrusy/bitter hit. Notes of orange peel and hop resins on the way down. Finishes smooth with a bit of lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, somewhat creamy and smooth. Goes down with ease for being nearly 10%. Overall, a tasty Belgian IPA for sure. I've only had a few so far but I have enjoyed them. Thanks to PatronWizard for sending this my way.

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Photo of arizcards
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bomber at AJ's at the end of September for $7.99.

Beer poured into my Duvel tulip a clear orange with an outstanding white head initially. Nose is a lovely Belgian yeast strain, light spices, and floral hops. Taste is peppery, with hints of candied sugar, finishing with a heavy dose of west coast hops that leave a resiny hop oil. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and mildly carbonated, very smooth as it glides across the palate. Overall drinkability is very good. This is a very intriguing style of beer that is a lot of fun to try. Recommended.

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

A: Poured a bright, vibrant and glowing orange, with a slight haze and was topped off by a solid 2 finger foamy, cream colored head that pitted and cratered leaving a rocky and canyon like formation. Retention was excellent while a big clumpy lacing sticks to the sides of the glass. Visible carbonation was medium.

S: a light grassiness to it, with grapefruit, pine and some tangerines. A light candi-sugar sweetness was also detected. Overall a very nice balance of showing of aroma, moderate in strength.

T: Tart tangerines and a light musky cellar yeastiness is well noted from the start. Dry citrus hopping, grassy with gets progressively bigger. Dried grapefruit with a soft dry toasted caramel malting is followed by a light peppery finish. The hoppiness of this beer is intense, yet well balanced and never obnoxious and gets progressive stronger 5-7 seconds after the swallow before succumbing. Tart with some dry tangerines and a light peppery touch and a honorable mention of yeastiness that provides soft, yet appreciable background notes.

M: light bodied, with a slightly oily texture before finishing with a big dry citrus lacing.

D: A Belgian pale with a KO for hoppiness, well crafted, well balanced, dry, and is sure to please.

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Photo of blakesell
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 22oz bottle into a beveled pint glass.

Appearance- Beer pours a hazed orange with a huge over five finger head of lightly toasted marshmallow looking foam that leaves a jumbo sized marshmallow in the center after the carbonation on the sides dies down. Lacing is ample and clings stickily to the sides of the glass.

Smell- This smells like a Belgian IPA should. Belgian yeasts and a wonderful grapefruit and citrus hop character. Lightly toasted malts and base malts round out this beer solidly and more yeasty phenolics make up the backbone. I can't wait any longer to taste it.

Taste- Wonderfully Belgian upfront with yeasty phenolics and those hops quick to follow. The hops seem a little too powerful and burn the tongue and back of the throat slightly. Alcohol is a bit overpowering and burns as well. Overall the beer tastes good though and entices me to sip further. A bit of a french toast breadiness with powdered sugar also clings to the tip of the tongue.

Mouthfeel- Yeasty, a bit astringent, mildly warming, smooth, actually pretty low in carbonation after that huge head of carbonation initially. Medium full bodied.

Drinkability- Something I wouldn't mind drinking again in the future if it were offered to me. Not bad by any stretch of the imagination.

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Photo of Afty
4.47/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Given the "Belgian-style IPA" in the name, I thought this beer would be similar to the Houblon Chouffe Doublen IPA Tripel or the Urthel Hop-It -- basically a Belgian tripel with some extra hops. But this beer is actually the opposite -- a San Diego DIPA with some spiciness from the Belgian yeast.

Both the smell and taste are dominated by the hop flavors, which are everything you expect from Green Flash. I found the Belgian yeast spiciness to be relatively subtle. An excellent beer for us hopheads.

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Photo of adamparker05
4.55/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is a nice amber, apricot-orangey color. Very hazy.

Aroma is very subtle: spicy and citrusy. Little bit of white pepper. Nice hoppiness.

Taste is very interesting. The whole "san diego imperial ale/ belgian-style trppel" mish-mash can be strange but delicious; this one delivers. Spicy citrus, red grapefruit, clove, then some sweet malty flavor, and a finish so prickly it's like pop rocks.

Dangerously drinkeable for 9.2%

Get it. Get 2 or 3. In every sip I kep tasting something different; try i cold, but let it warm up a bit and the spicy hops give way to floral hops, and a whole basket of fruits starts to develop.

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Photo of WesWes
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a beautiful golden color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It's everything a traditional west coast DIPA has, citrusy hops, pale malts, but with a touch of Belgian style yeast esters. The taste is great as well. I'm a big fan of the DIPA's with belgian yeast strains. It tastes like a top notch DIPA, but the yeast mellows the finish and adds a great deal of complexity. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an excellent beer. It's big on flavor and aroma; highly recommended!

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Photo of Kadonny
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber bottle into a Sam Adams glass.

A: A nice golden orange color with a nice off white head. Nice glass lacing.

S: Belgian spice with pepper and clove followed by spicy hops.

T: The Belgian triple comes gushing through at first with tastes of sweetness with clove, pepper, earth and banana but is quickly (and I mean quickly) overcome by the California way of doing things with the massive hops bitterness. Finish is all hops that lingers in the mouth. Wow, so different but so good.

M: Medium as it really coats and sticks. Alcohol warms, but is not offensive.

D: Medium as too many will kick your ass. Still, the bomber went down very smoothly.

Overall a great mix of the Triple and IPA that is no doubt influenced by the West Coast hop style. Very good beer that is very, very different. I enjoyed this one much more than the Hugh Malone from Allagash (but I'm a serious hophead) and is one to seek out. Green Flash just amazes me with what they are doing with their hops. Well done.

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Photo of Beaver13
2.45/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22 oz bottle. Pours a clear light copper with a creamy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is interesting and unique - grapefruits and citrus, floral hops, spices and pepper, banana, and sweet sugary malts.

The flavor is sweet gummy malt and melon followed by a big bitter hop finish - floral with some charred tar that lingers in the aftertaste. The mouthfeel is light bodied and watery.

Overall, I didn't really care for the taste profile of the hops or the balance of gummy sweetness and hops.

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Photo of BrewMonkey
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours slightly hazy orange with tons of fluffy off-white head that recedes at a snails pace leaving a good deal behind on the glass.

Some banana esters in the pour, with more of a spicy clove and peppery hop aroma. Some sweetness behind that with hints of fruit candy like starburst and a dose of malt.

First sip is pretty suprsing if you are accustomed to estery belgians with low hop profiles. The normal sweetness and bready yeast flavor are quickly dominated by suprisingly intense hop bitterness. Hop flavor is mostly floral with some peppery spice complimenting the clove from the yeast. Mouthfeel is very carbonated and dry. No real alcohol presense aside from a mild warming sensation.

Very tasty, if odd at first. Finish is quite bitter and dry, which impacts overall drinkability a tad. But its a nice belgian to savor.

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Green Flash Le Freak from Green Flash Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 736 ratings.