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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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,012 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,012
Hads: 3,062
Avg: 3.99
pDev: 11.03%
Wants: 135
Gots: 493 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-06-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Burning River Pale Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,012 | Hads: 3,062
Photo of thisisshsas
3.61/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- appears blond with a slight reddish tint.
S- citrus smell is stonger than spice smell. THe aroma is there, but it is by no means overpowering.
T- hoppy but under control flavor. creates the desire to have another one in order to be fulfilled.
M&D- swirls around the mouth to create a slight wooden flavor. A beer you could stick to all night. also a great beer to convert the bud crowd, as it is a very easy drink but still has some flavor.

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Photo of Petrislav
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle poured into pint glass.

A: Perfectly amber color, high clarity, 1 finger tan head, massive bubbles!

S: Fruity hops, weed like skunk

T: Mouthfull of cascading hops, grassy finish with grapefruit peel

M: Bitter! Medium bodied

A tasty hophead brew, smells fantastic

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Photo of lowbrau
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Straw/amber color with good carbonation and a strong head. Lacing remained on the glass throughout.

Smell: Brilliantly hoppy aroma. Floral with some citrus notes.

Taste: Sweet up front with a very faint skunkyness. Well balanced by hops in the finish. Finishes clean with a slight carbonation astringency.

Mouthfeel: Prefect level of carbonation and a creamy head.

Drinkability: Great session beer. Good taste and mouthfeel with a finish that doesn't kill your palate.

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Photo of GeorgeAldi
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear deep copper/amber color with a bubbly beige head that impales itself to the glass all the way down. Smells of citrus, light sweet fruit, slight mineral. Taste is smooth citrus with a fruity burnt sugar malt sweetness. Good balance! Twinge of hops, bit of malt leaves a hop bite at the end of every sip. Crisp carbonation, sticky, resinous mouthfeel, medium body with a semi dry finish. Good session ale here.

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Photo of EricHeff
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It pours an golden to amber color that is completely clear with a little bit of white head on top. The smell is not over powering but give hints of citrus and some piney-ness. From the first sip those citrus and pine flavors kick right in. The carbonation adds a good amount of fix to it and makes this beer extremely drinkable. Great Lakes Brewing Co. makes some amazing beers and this one is tied with Eddie Fitz for my favorite right now.

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Photo of aficionado224
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer tastes so good it's hard to put down. Full of smoky maltiness, and balanced by exactly the right amount of hoppy bitterness. It's an award-winning brew, and it certainly deserves them. Pale Ales of all types are my favorite styles, and this is one of the best examples of the style I've ever tasted, and flavor is the name of the game.

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Photo of mayor55
3/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark amber color with thick head . Poured in to a pint glass. Head over 1" thick. Leaves good rings on glass. very average, one dimensional flavor. burnt malty nose, weak on the hops. My first sampling of Great Lakes. Very average beer. Harsh bitter aftertaste.

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Photo of djwilson
4.53/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type: 12 oz bottle exp. date 7-5-07

Appearence: Poured into a pilsner glass. nice copper color thick white head forming high above the glass, head held for several minutes leaving a nice heavy belgian lace on the side of the glass, with tiny bubbles rising to the surface.

Smell: hoppy aroma with hints of citrus, light pine and very light caramel scent.

Taste: Slightly sweet on the front of the tounge, picking up hints of caramel, slighty burnt malt, finishes with a very dry hoopy finish that lingers for several minutes.

Mouthfeel: Very typical for an APA, medium body that may get gummy if served too warm, but at 45 degrees the hop flavor is really starting to explode in the back of my mouth.

Drinkability: My old stand by from GLBC, usually enjoyed from the pub on draft, but represented nicely in the bottle. This one goes down quickly do to the sweetness from the malt but nicely balaced by a slight hop kick. At 6% ABV serveral can be enjoyed without feeling the effects the next day, especially if enjoyed at 3:00 in the afternoon.

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Photo of Slar211
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle from the B-Side Liquor Lounge on Coventry, Cleveland Heights, Ohio.

Appearance: Pours dark gold and almost clear in a pint glass with a thick creamy head.

Smell: Floral hops and sweet malt, some citrus as well.

Taste: Big hops give hints of lemon and orange, balanced with just enough sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and smooth, dry enough to invite another taste.

Drinkability: This is a good one, very drinkable.

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Photo of Rainne
4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favorites. Still going from notes, but it's burned into my memory anyway.

A- Orange amber color with a sweet head and crazy good lacing.

S- Malt (caramel) with a hops presence citrus and earth.

T- Hops bitterness is the first thing I get followed by caramel malt and earthy and citrus tones hovering. Nice balance. Much like an IPA actually. Grapefruit and pine in there as well and a little bread/toast.

M- Nice. Crisp and refreshing with a great body and perfect carbonation.

D- I might like this even more than SN though it's a close race.

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Photo of StevensBrewing
2.97/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Holy Cascade! This beer is great for hopheads. It looks fine, smells better than it tastes for a small time hop guy like me. This beer is pallet scorching, so be careful if you're not used to powerful alphas. Overall is is decent for Great Lakes.

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Photo of Kicksmile67
3.37/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This was just another beer by my standards. The appearnce was nothing unique with a golden color and a moderate head. The smell was hoppy and almost bitter. The taste was mild at first with a powerful bitter finish. Dominant hop flavors overpower the other notes. The mouthfeel is caulky and thin, but is someone expected from the smell and color so not a bad trait. Over all drinkability isnt fantastic but good for a tasting with friends.

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Photo of BatsforBeer
4.14/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Golden Amber with glints of orange, head off white with good lacing. Beer is clear and not very lively

Nose: pleasant nose with overtones of hops and hint of malt and floral yeast

Taste: Initial taste is a bit malty, with the hops kicking in a bit latter. Notes of citrus are present and add to the many layers of flavor nicely. The beer balances very well and the hops flavor lingers for quite awhile, but is not over bearing.

Mouth feel: Frouthy and a bit slimly, carbonation is good.

Drinkability: This beer is extremely drinkable and is a great summer brew. I look forward to having another.

This is my first attempt at reviewing a beer, I drafted this review before reading any other reviews or the lable. Let me know your opinion or sugguestions!

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Photo of JKuras
3.47/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours an effervescent and very clear golden-amber. About an eighth inch of head that lasts for a few minutes.

Smell: First hit by malty chocolate notes and light, sweet caramel. Not too heavy. Very faint traces of citrus.

Taste: Much more bitter and hoppy than I was expecting from the smell. Some light roasted coffee flavors. Clean. The malt and bitterness of the hops come through more than anything else.

Mouthfeel: Medium mouthfeel. Slightly syrupy, creamy-smooth effervescence.

Overall: A very clean tasting brew with powerful malt and bitterness characteristics. Doesn’t have the citrus I usually associate with pale ales. Not overly complex, but well done. Might be better drinking in the fall.

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Photo of brandongoblue24
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into pint glass.

L: 2 full fingers of creamy off-white head with a fairly aggressive pour. Dwindled to a film, where it remained. A good amount of visible carbonation, with a bit of particulate floating. Color was a crystal clear golden amber.

S: Spicy, floral hops certainly lead the charge, but there is a substantial amount of grainy malts.

T: Again, the floral hops were forward, but this time there was a tiny bit of lemon/citrus added. The malt took on a biscuity flavor that I wasn't getting in the nose. Well balanced, if a little on the malty side for a pale ale. Less bitterness than I expected with 45 IBUs.

F: Medium bodied, with fairly high carbonation. A smooth, medium-dry finish. I wouldn't call it crisp per se, but certainly refreshing.

O: A clean, refreshing pale ale, with strong malt flavors and floral hops. Certainly a good showing from Great Lakes!

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Photo of rlcoffey
4.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours with a large golden tinted head, 3 fingers tall. Light copper color. Lacing all the way down the glass. Aroma is very noticable; fruity and floral. The taste is what an APA should taste like. Citrusy but not overpouring. Bitter but not "blegh" bitter. Crisp. Just a touch of the hop aftertaste left behind. The mouthfeel is not thick, not thin like water. Leaves a thin film in the mouth. This beer goes down fast. I had two down very fast.

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Photo of psyphin
4.65/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Bright copper orange with a fluffy white head with nice lacing.

S - Toasty malt breadiness and oodles of citric american hops.

T - Chewy malt middle mixes very well with the hop combination in this beer. One of the best balanced examples of a true APA and not an ipa light.

M - Perfect carbonation with a medium body.

D - Superbly sessionable pale ale that I come back to time after time.

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Photo of Buckeyes67
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love to drink this beer simply for the taste of it. It has a great appearance, smell, mouthfeel, and is very is to drink but it all comes down to the taste. I haven't tried a beer from here that wasn't of good quality. I have had a beer or two that wasn't suited to my taste but that was a style differenc not a production flaw.

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Photo of rjhaupt
3.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - On the darker side for a pale ale, amber and honey hues. Excellent head with good retention.

S - Smells heavy and musky for a pale, which to me promises a richer flavor than many pales.

T - Taste like a smoot, heavy pale. A bit watery. Good for a pale but disappointing for a Great Lakes beer. Overall feels closer to an IPA than a pale ale save for the fact that I know their IPA is an even stronger presentation of hop character.

M - Feels great, light, airy and smooth.

D - Good hot day sipping beer but a bit light on the flavor for my tastes.

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Photo of Marcrates
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a golden brown with a nice sized, bubbly head that sticks to the glass.

S - Sharp, fruity smell, with a hint of the hops to come...I'm smelling grapefruit and possibly some vanilla?

T - What a great tasting pale ale! This definitely has a strong hops bite to it, but it i balanced and not overwhelming. The after taste levels out with a nice, bread like taste.

M - Not to heavy, not too light. A very balanced feel.

D - This is very drinkable and enjoyable. Unless you despise tasting hops, this one goes down smooth and leaves you ready for another glass.

Overall - I'm very glad I decided to grab this beer from the local Kroger here in the Cincinnati area. I've heard some good things about the Great Lakes Brewing company, and this certainly didn't disappoint. This is a great example of an APA, and should be on everyone's list if you havn't tried it.

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Photo of BeerYoss
4.22/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Amber/orange, some lazy carbonation, quite clear. the off-white head fairly quickly retreats to the surface and stays there. not much lacing on the way down

S- Strong citrus and pine hop smell.

T- Strong pine hop taste. I am not a fan of super hopped piney pale ales but this one presents the hops in a very clear and strong way without blowing away the rest of the beer. quite enjoyable. something in there reminds me of apples.

M- Clean and refreshing. pretty high on the carbonation. light body, doesn't coat the mouth too much

O- Very approachable. one of my favorite pale ales. it's not trying to be anything too unique. it is just good.

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Photo of BamaWorKs
3.84/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this with the Great Lakes sampler pack, which I highly recommend. Poured from the 12oz bottle into pint glass, maintained a copper tone, with acceptable lacing and head. The aroma was strong with hints of pine and pepper. Strong flavors in this one, I feel that if you like an IPA you'll be more pleased with this than the average APA drinker. Overall very drinkable and enjoyed this one.

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Photo of MuchoCerveza
3.83/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Really enjoyed the Burning River APA, but I could have gone for more hops. The smell was nice and not overpowering and really set you up for what you were about to taste. The appearance was nice, looked like an Amber Ale but a little lighter and didn't leave a whole lot of residual head.

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Photo of NuggetNectar22
4.15/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

At least Cleveland still has the Great Lakes Brewery... This is a great tasting beer that is extremely drinkable. You can enjoy a few of these.

It has a nice amber color with a 1/2 inch head. You will taste the hops in the after taste.

Cleveland Rocks!

Enjoy - T

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Photo of Murrdogg
2.8/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at the GLBC brewery itself

A: medium-dark golden, small head

S: Strong hop smell. slight pine-y/wood in the back

T: Bitter, hoppy taste. This was not for me. The hops were deep, some citrus-y, some sweet, but was a bit overpowering for my taste. Finished even more bitter than it began

M: Somehow light, which was surprising with the robust hop presence. but much too hoppy for me

D: I was able to finish it, but the residual hop presence in the mouth along with the bitter aftertaste would keep me from ordering another one. This would probably be good with some strong dishes, heat or spice. I laughed, as it almost tasted like a decadent burning river..

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Great Lakes Burning River Pale Ale from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 1,012 ratings.