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Great Lakes Burning River Pale Ale - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Burning River Pale AleGreat Lakes Burning River Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

2,657 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,657
Reviews: 989
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.11%
Wants: 98
Gots: 202 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-06-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,657 | Reviews: 989 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Ralphus:
Photo of Ralphus
3.8/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My first Great Lakes of Cleveland beer and I'm happy with it. The best before date is a little close at 12/13/10 however.

It's crystal clear. Strikingly clear even. The color is an attractive golden brown with a white head. Some lacing is left behind as the head drops to a carbonated ring around the glass.

The smell has either faded or was understated to begin with. Bread, light floral spice, caramel and pine are all that remain.

The taste is considerably larger thankfully. Sweet caramel malts and fruit are bombarded with a long drawn out earthy bitter finish. The balance is a little skewed towards the bitter end for my tastes but some will really enjoy it I'm sure.

Mouthfeel is very crisp thanks to tight carbonation. This beer would easily cut through thick cream sauces or gravy. Drinkability is good.

Ralphus, Oct 11, 2010
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice hoppy flavor,not enough head though.But a well made APA,most of their beers are well made micros.

oberon, Mar 01, 2002
Photo of RoyalT
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – This is a nice, bright orange in color with a very thick white head.

Smell – The hops are big here for an APA with massive grapefruit and a small, toasty malt compliment. The pine, citrus, and grapefruit are in perfect harmony in this hop bouquet and really this is one of the most pleasantly-balanced hop profiles I’ve ever smelled.

Taste – The hops are here at the taste as well. They show tons of depth and overshadow the malts which are quite good actually if understated. This is a strong, hoppy brew though make no mistake about that.

Mouthfeel – This is surprisingly thick, a solid medium-bodied, with little carbonation but it’s not flat. The beer has a very creamy texture but is also quite bitter throughout. If you like smooth, creamy, bitter hops then this burn’s for you.

Drinkability – This went down extremely well but it is a rather big beer so be prepared for that. This is not a light-drinker APA, it is a heavy, thick beer that is best consumed on an empty stomach. If you can take it, or if you are just a big fan of smooth, hoppy ales then you’ll love this beer.

RoyalT, Aug 27, 2011
Photo of DanGeo
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

DanGeo, Apr 26, 2014
Photo of OhioBobcat
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

OhioBobcat, Sep 26, 2013
Photo of Greenmosheen
4.75/5  rDev +19.9%

Greenmosheen, Jul 14, 2014
Photo of woodchipper
3.25/5  rDev -17.9%

woodchipper, Jun 21, 2014
Photo of sgoodship
4.43/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: Yellowish amber with a hint of haziness. Some visible carbonation pillars rising quickly. Soft white one finger head. Dissipated to a fine head throughout and leaves nice large topographical lacing.

S: Surprisingly aggressive hop nose. Fresh, floral, grapefruit and lemony. It has a strong Cascade character. A little malt sweetness but hop dominates. Malt becomes stronger and biscuity toward the end of the drink.

T: Nice clean grapefruit hop bite with a solid caramel malt backbone. This has to be pushing toward an IPA. I'm not going to complain about that! It is well done. The malt manages to hold it's own and adds levels of sweetness under the hop that make the fruitiness take on more peach type characteristics. Lovely!

M: Light body, crisp, dry mouth. Medium carbonation that is very active but not too aggressive in the mouth. Aftertaste leaves a nice hop bite on the back of the throat.

D: A very enjoyable beer. One of the better APA's I have had. I would drink another if I had one but sadly I don't. I have yet to have a bad beer from Great Lakes - gotta love that!

sgoodship, Jan 22, 2009
Photo of SkiBum22
4/5  rDev +1%

SkiBum22, Mar 05, 2014
Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #26:

Bright and clear golden-amber color; good showing of the head retention, and it stands three fingers high. Hints of caramel and flowery hop in the nose. Slick and chewy medium body. Bitty smoothness lets the grain and hop bitterness roll around on the taste buds first. Biscuity malt and a spicy, orangey hop bitterness and flavor battle it out. Hey now, these hops are at work here. Clean palate with only a quick flash of fruitiness from the alcohol. A little dry in the finish with a long trail of hop flavor.

Without a doubt, this beer displays its American Pale Ale traits; it's balanced, yet with the hops, always up front. Surpassing the benchmark is our conclusion. Proof that a Mid-American brewery can well hop a Pale Ale like the rest of them. Good use of Cascade hops!

BeerAdvocate, Sep 20, 2010
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a nice golden copper color with a sweet 1 inch head. A nice floral / citrusy hops aroma fills my nose and beckons me to take that first sip. Taste has a wonderful hops presence couple with a great biterness...a damn fine example of a APA. Some floral / piney notes come through as well. This is a awesome brew that has great drinkability. It's up there with SNPA in my book. Two thumbs up to Great Lakes Brewing for this ale. I look forward to trying some of their other offerings as well.

orbitalr0x, Aug 31, 2004
Photo of bulldogg915
2/5  rDev -49.5%

bulldogg915, Mar 06, 2014
Photo of markmo
4.75/5  rDev +19.9%

markmo, Jul 18, 2014
Photo of warnerry
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From notes; best by 3/30/11; tasted 2/15/11

A - Pours a clear golden brown with two fingers of head with decent retention.

S - Very faint hop aroma, but surprisingly little going on here.

T - Some citrus hop up front, Nicely balanced with malt. Lingering bitterness with a tea-like aspect to it.

M - Nice medium mouthfeel with good, but not overwhelming, carbonation.

O - Good pale ale. Doesn't really stand out among other pale ales, but it is well made.

warnerry, Dec 23, 2011
Photo of DWolf
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

DWolf, Jan 02, 2012
Photo of chip26
4.08/5  rDev +3%

chip26, Sep 13, 2014
Photo of Jpinoniemi
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

Jpinoniemi, Mar 30, 2014
Photo of TTripp725
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

TTripp725, Sep 23, 2013
Photo of generallee
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: It has an amber color with excellent clarity. Its head is foamy and white in color. It builds up big and thick before settling back down to a thin cap that leaves behind rings of lace on the glass.

Smell: The aroma is full of floral and piney hops over sweet bready malts.

Taste/Mouth feel: Hop bitterness has a bold presence from the start to the finish. Bready malts are just strong enough to support and add some balance to the crisp citrus and piney hops. The finish has a slow bitter hops fade. Carbonation is pleasant with a light and smooth mouth feel in the medium body.

Notes: Hop flavor is alive and strong in this Pale Ale.

generallee, Jun 03, 2008
Photo of nstroup
4.5/5  rDev +13.6%

nstroup, May 18, 2012
Photo of funkyfritos
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

funkyfritos, Aug 09, 2014
Photo of bishopdc0
3.6/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This pours a transparent amber. The head forms but quickly resides to the glasses edge.

The aroma is nice full of fresh malt toasted crystal malt make a hint of butter and citrus

The carbonation id upfront on the tongue it builds and lingers on the tongue. The taste starts malty pale and a slight butter crystal malt finish

bishopdc0, Dec 16, 2010
Photo of JonBrand
4/5  rDev +1%

JonBrand, Jun 07, 2014
Photo of badturtle
4.18/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After popping the top, my first thought was I was smelling a porter. There is a hint of chocolate and citrus, mostly orange. It has a good blast of hops. The color is dark amber. The head was small and didn't last long. I bought this on sale. The normal price is a little high. It is good, but not $8 per six pack good.

badturtle, Dec 10, 2005
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Great Lakes Burning River Pale Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 2,657 ratings.