West Coast IPA | Green Flash Brewing Co.

1,880 Reviews
West Coast IPAWest Coast IPA

Brewed by:
Green Flash Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
As craft beer pioneers, we embarked on an expedition to brew the benchmark West Coast IPA. We ventured into the unknown and struck gold, discovering a tantalizing menagerie of hops. Simcoe for tropical and grapefruit zest, Columbus for hop pungency, Centennial for pine notes, Citra for citrus zest and Cascade for floral aroma are layered throughout the brewing process. West Coast IPA® exemplifies the Green Flash spirit of adventure and discovery.

95 IBU

Prior to 2014 7.3% ABV
2014 and later 8.1% ABV

Added by xlperro on 03-26-2005

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Reviews: 1,880 | Ratings: 7,859
Photo of soupyman10
4.11/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Was pretty excited to see this one in my local's fridge; didn't think we got Green Flash stuff out here, and I'd been hearing a fair bit about it on the boards. Looks excellent. Huge, frothy head that takes its time dissolving, over a nice amber beer. Excellent lacing. Looks exactly how an IPA should. Nose is great as well. Extremely spicy hops, both piney and fruity. Light toffee malt, but this is unquestionably a malty brew. Aromas are maybe a touch mild. Flavor's a hop bomb, and it's a total surprise given the fairly smooth nose. Huge drying hops up front, and this one is just hoppy as hell throughout. Drying, piney, hoppy bitterness all over the place. Light breadiness. Maybe a hint of malt in the background. Honestly, it might be a touch unbalanced for me, with the hops overwhelming just a bit too much to make it a masterpiece. Feel is excellent, with great body and good carbonation. The drinkability takes a slight hit because of the huge hopiness, but it's still one I would definitely enjoy again.

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Photo of Doomcifer
3.94/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A vigorous pour produced an almost non existent head on this beer. Strange. Cloudy, copper colored. Smells extremely floral, citrusy, and tropical. Flavor is more citrus hops, very balanced, fruity, pineapples, strong grapefruit presence, strong bitter finish that lingers on the pallette. Very tasty IPA. Mouthfeel has a good body but my beer is pretty flat. I think I got a dud bottle. Going to have to grab another one. Extremely tasty IPA though and would be excellent with some carbonation and a head atop the brew. Extremely drinkable IPA.

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Photo of PhxHorn
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Papago's in Scottsdale, AZ. Color is a deep yellow with a minimal head. Smells strongly of citrus, but the taste is a bit two-dimensional. Strongly bitter, with a narrow range of citrus flavor, but it just doesn't quite achieve the level of multiple citrus flavor that the best San Diego IPS get. Still a very good beer, and quite drinkable.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Tally Ho in Bethlehem, PA, served in a pint glass

A: Hazed dark amber/copper color with a thick, retentive white head that leaves thick sticky clumps of lacing.
S: Strong, sweet hoppy smell, very citrusy and grapefruit.
T: Body has strong slightly sweet malt background and then tons of citrus and grapefruit hop bite. Very smooth, creamy body with perfect carbonation. However, the sweetness and citrus cover leave the finish lacking in bittnerness which makes this very drinkable, but not quite what expected for the style.

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Photo of WillieMoe
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was extremely excited when I saw this in the beer cooler at Bauer Wine and Spirits.

A- This b-e-a-u-tiful looking brew! Pours a delightful orange amber color, with a cloudiness, as bits float around in there. Absolutely gorgeous.

S- A full fledged olfactory assault, as you are hit with the wonderful aroma of those citrusy west coast hops, balanced nicely with the malt.

T- After looking at and smelling this one, I couldn't wait to dive in. Trust me there is no subtlety to the hop taste here, you immediately feel them, as the wooded, piney, hops dance around your palate. Not much going on here but the hops, that's for sure,as they pack a punch!

M- Coats the tongue with that dry, sort of sticky film, and leaves a bitter atste in your mouth.

This is definitely in the upper echelon of IPAs, but may be a bit too bitter and hoppy for some, but for a hophead like me, it's like liquid heaven.

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Photo of Damian
4.7/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Drank from a 12 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a tumbler
Thanks to my roommate Mel for treating me to this!

Poured a slightly hazed, deep and dark copper-amber color. The dense, rocky, off-white, three-finger head left thick blankets of lacing all down the glass. Very impressive.

The aroma was simply outstanding. Hoppy to the extreme with a touch of sweetness. Uber citrusy with notes of candied oranges and tropical fruits (mango and pineapple). As the beer warmed, an odd "sea-like" aroma came out as well. Maybe it was the artwork on the bottle that got me thinking about the ocean.

Seeing as this beer is called a "West Coast IPA," I expected a completely unbalanced hop bomb. What I got instead was a smooth and incredibly flavorful hop monster with just enough malt balance to keep things in check. The flavor was quite similar to the aroma. A touch of caramel malt sweetness came through up front before the hop attack began. A generous assortment of hops created an array of flavors. Strong notes of oranges and grapefruits were apparent along with some peaches and apricots. Tropical fruits were noticeable as well. The finish was ultra piney, dry and bitter with an even bigger, resiny aftertaste. Close to palate shredding, but not quite. As the beer warmed, the bitterness in this brew really made its presence known.

The mouthfeel was simply outstanding. Medium bodied with a fine, moderate carbonation. Ultra creamy and smooth in a way that is usually found only in much "bigger" brews. Fluffy and silky on the palate. Practically cloud-like. I really loved so many aspects of this brew, but nothing could compare to this.

The beer had just enough balance to both satisfy the seasoned hophead and appease those who like a slightly more malty rich IPA. Toward the end of the glass however, the bitterness really came out in this brew. The final few sips were even a bit difficult to put down. As for the 7% ABV however, it was rather well hidden.

Overall, this is an outstanding IPA that definitely teeters on being a double IPA. If it came in a fancier bottle and was more difficult to find, I think people would make a much bigger fuss about it.

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Photo of DrunkenMaster
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Coronado Brewery. Golden with a an average white head. The aroma is lemon, grapefruit, orange, pine and spicy hops. Almost smells like Fruit Loops. The taste is similiar to the aroma. Dry and bitter throughout with a heavy bitter finish. This is a very flavorful beer.

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Photo of prototypic
4.59/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: It pours a nice, light copper color. It's very clear and has an immaculate, off-white colored head that stands three fingers tall. It's very slow to recede and leaves a ton of lace sticking to the glass.

Smell: The nose is exceptional. Truly a model for west coast IPAs. Loads of citrus grapefruit and pineapple give it a very sweet and enticing smell. Hops are very piney and citric in character. There's some malt in there, but it's mostly drowned by the strong citrus and hop aromas. There's a little yeastiness. It's not really complex. Rather, it's straight forward and a damn fine smelling IPA.

Taste: The taste doesn't quite live up to the nose, but it's not far behind. It's citrusy sweet. Notes of grapefruit, pineapple, and mango are present. Hops are strong, piney, and bitter. It really hits on all cylinders in the hop department. Extremely flavorful. There's little in the malt department. Perhaps some faint pale malt notes. But, they do little to balance the bitter hop flavor, which is fine by me. It finishes dry and bitter with a touch of residual yeastiness.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's light bodied, leaning medium. Very smooth and drinkable. Not quite creamy. It goes down a little too easy. Carbonation is right on target. Drinkability is very high. Personally, I could session this beer all night. With abv at 7%, it's not so high that drinkability is really limited in any material way.

What's not to love about this beer? Nothing. Green Flash has brewed what may well be the standard for west coast IPAs. It's a very refreshing and drinkable beer that commands a lot of respect. Highly recommended.

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Photo of TeddyBG
4.48/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into pint glass.

A: burnt copper color with unfiltered cloudiness. Decent off-white head that fades. Very good lacing all the way down.

S: Floral and citrusy hop smell but not as strong as the flavor suggests.

T: Very good! Strong upfront citrusy flavor with a good caramel malt taste in the middle. Great balance. Slight hop bitterness in the end, but not overpowering.

M: Dances on the tongue and the hop bitterness finish is probably one of the best of this style. Just enough and it does not overpower the rest of the experience.

D: Certainly will enjoy another one tonight, but with this ABV that will be all. Really the only detractor to this one.

Side note: Totally agree with the previous poster's comments about West Coast IPA's having their own sub-category. I think I may be turning into a West Coast IPA snob, which could be a problem on the banking account. Had this on tap (Moe's tavern) as well, and I was worried that the bottle serving type would be a let down. Fortunately, I was wrong, which in my opinion makes this even a better beer. As of right now, this one is my favorite.

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Photo of jamiejohnson
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favorite IPAs. Maybe this West Coast tag should become a formal sub-style. I've had IPA's that overwhelm with hops with little malt taste before and they didn't work. This one performs majestically. I'm assuming these are Cascade hops in this aromatic flavor blaster? I wish they had two versions of this, one with low alcohol so I could drink several of these at a session. Piney citrusy heaven this one is, at least to me.

Open me up,
Breathe me in.
Drink me once
Drink me again

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Photo of pinotboy007
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Purchased from Total Wine, Chantilly, VA; there were many solid BA reviews so I decided to try it.

A - very nice burnt copper sort of look; one-inch head settles down with superb rings of lacing. Lots of floaties and the head comes back nicely with a swirl.

S - Fresh cut wet grass, citrus and hops.

T - Bitter hops. . . and more hops with grapefruit and white pepper. Nothing subtle here - this is a hop assault. The hop finish lasts for minutes, which is what I suppose this style is all about. I sometimes think brewmasters hide flaws in their ales with dominating hops, akin to the way some winemakers over-oak their reds and whites.

M - Decent creaminess and weight. The carbonation is perfect; as this warms it seems to improve.

D - I'd buy it again but admit my palate is simply either not ready for this or it's not my preferred style. Don't get me wrong, I love hops but one should be able to detect something more.

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Photo of WeisGuy
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a - pours a hazy darker golden color, one-inch white head with good retention and awesome lacing

s - very intense citrus aromas, lots of grapefruit, orange and lemon, some mango and other tropical fruits as well, lighter hints of piney hops as well, not much malt to be found in this nose, West Coast IPA indeed

t - big grapefruit flavors up front, midpalate is orange and other citrus mixed with a mild malty backbone, finish has a strong piney hop presence with some lemon squeezed on top, very bitter and dry on the finish, light lingering malt as well along with the lemon and bitterness, not much alcohol evident, this is a true hopbomb

m - medium-to-full-bodied, good amount of carbonation, pretty dry on the finish

d - for a hophead like myself, this is pretty drinkable, but it's definitely hard on the palate with its intense bitterness

I've had this many times before but I'm only now getting around to reviewing it. True to its name, this is a great west coast style IPA. It was a staple in my fridge in California last summer, and has become the same now that Green Flash is now available in NC. It's great to see Green Flash getting a wider distribution.

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Photo of IBUnit63
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep, natural honey color...almost copper. Bready, dulce de leche-colored head with ample lacing.

Oily hops - very viscous on nose balanced with natural sweetness of malt. Tangy citrus is surprisingly overpowered with earthiness.

Very tangy hop presence is more grassy and earthy than floral. Backbone of malt provides depth. Not as much citrus as expected.

Mouthfeel not necessarily unbalanced but fairly straightforward - it's a hop bomb. Long, earthy finish.

This drinks well; would drink even better with a little more grapefruit in the hop profile - its absence was a bit of a surprise. All in all, good stuff!

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Photo of nrbw23
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a slightly hazy copper color with a nice foamy head that had great retention and then formed a layer of bubbles atop the brew. The head also left a great amount of lacing.

S- Very nice. Tons and tons of hops. From citrus hops, floral hops and piney hops. Smells really great.

T- Starts out nice and sweet with a grapefruit taste, then here comes the piney hops and bitterness.

M- Medium in body, smooth, creamy and a little sticky.

D- Excellent brew, very crisp and easy to drink.

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Photo of grub
4.54/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

seaoflament hooked me up with this as a bonus in a recent trade. can't say enough about a guy who basically doubled what he was supposed to send me. big thanks carlos!

12oz bottle. sampled june 7/08.

pours orangey copper colour with a small dense white head. the head drops fast and leaves spotty lace.

wow, aroma is excellent. bit of alcohol. powdery hops. pine, grapefruit, orange. bit of tangerine. caramel. white bread and crackers.

taste is great. medium bitterness level. light alcohol. white bread and cracker. pine. grapefruit. bit of orange and tangerine. light caramel.

mouthfeel is great. medium well integrated carbonation. medium body.

drinkability is great. excellent balance. great hop depth. really liked this one.

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Photo of SurlyDuff
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Copper brown ipa with a nice frothy head and sticky crusty lacing that grabs onto the glass.

Aroma is of huge piney dry bitter ipa. Grapefruit and even more pine punch through. Bitter citrus pith.

Big medium dry mouthfeel. It would be the perfect candidate to IIPA-cize. If just enough malt could be added to boost up the alcohol, without compromising the big hop flavor this would be an A+ IIPA.

One of the hoppiest ipa's I've had. Big west coast hops and did I say pine? Resiny and oily. Yummers.

It's not a session or pounding beer, definitly a slow drinker as it has a a really strong personality.

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Photo of jackorain
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Poured into my SA glass. Slightly cloudy amber to copper color. 1 inch off-white head with very good retention and fantastic lacing.

S-Citrus and pine hops galore. Very resinous pine back by freshly peeled grapefruit. There is a slight biscuit malt aroma that shows up late.

T-This baby is all about the hops. Citrus, pine, green, oily hops throughout. Long lasting bitterness. very good.

M-oily, mouthcoating medium body. Intense tingle throughout the mouth from the hops.

D-the 1st one deadens the taste buds so more can easily be had. Don't move on to something less hoppy or it will taste like malt water due to yout destroyed taste buds.

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Photo of iceball585
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Golden brown color, cloudy, thin white head that faded to a thin ring

S- Lemons, oranges, light floral hops, pale malts, hint of pine auroma

T- Strong citrus flavor, grassy, earthy hops, pine, grapefruit, light malts

M- Medium body, low/medium carbonation, strong bitterness, dry finish

D- Over all great IPA

I would recommend this beer to anyone who is a true IPA lover. Great auroma and flavors.

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Photo of tdrshayden
4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly hazy copper color with moderate head.
Aromas of hops, with grapefruit and citrus notes with Just a hint of malt to hang in there.
The flavor is well-balanced with the aggressive hops shining through. the finish is pretty long and dry. A nice West coast IPA that I am quite fond of.

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Photo of SLeffler27
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

After reading about this one in the Brewing News National IPA Competition, I was pleasantly surprised to discover it residing on the shelves near me. After snarfing a six-pack, the first bottle flowed into a humble pint glass, and a firm, off-white head rose above the orange-toned amber ale, leaving a sticky lace calling card.

The usual suspects of citrus and pine are loiter among a sweet and floral bunch of hooligans.

The bitterness of this beer flashes across the tongue, but is not over the top as is often found with this style. The refreshing and complex interplay of citrus and pine oils upsurge and climax with the sweet perfume of tropical flowers. This IPA truly showcases the complexity celebrated by this style.

A palate-cleansing elixir certainly betrays some alcohol and carbonation.

Occasionally, as with this beer, reality supports the hype. Take this six-pack, with a few close friends and watch the sun settle down below the horizon in hopes of spotting that elusive green flash.

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Photo of Bierguy5
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, 7% ABV. Slightly hazy copper color. Nice size off-white fluffy head. Very nice retention.

Nose full of hops, grapefruit and orange zest, with a bit of pine resin. A hint of the malt in the nose as well. Very nice aroma.

Fair amount of malt up front with just a bit of sweetness. Good blast of floral, citrusy hops. Very juicy, but then fades into a long, lingering resiny finish. Dreis as it finishes.

Good body and carbonation. This is pretty much what I expected. Very good.

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours a copper color with a nice frothy inch and a half off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty good. The aroma is mainly citrusy (grapefruit) and piney hops, with a bit of caramel malt too. Taste is similar to the aroma, it's mostly grapefruit and pine hops along with some bready and caramel malt. There's also a nice lingering bitter hoppy aftertaste. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's chewy and oily with low carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's easy to drink and enjoyable. Overall I think this is a pretty decent IPA, I'd pick it up again.

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Photo of jbphoto88
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An warm orange beer with yellow highlights and a delicate tan head that thins but never disappears. A very nice display of bubbles can be seen as the brew is quite clear, almost to the point of being to thin.

The scent suggests otherwise. Very bold hoppy notes with citrus and pine battling over subtle malts.

The taste starts sweet but moves to a lemony grapefruit sour and a hop spice bitter bite. There is a nice astringency that leaves your tongue puckered but also with a warm malt flavor that coats the top of your licker and carries on down your throat.

Wonderful medium bodied American IPA. It has all the flavors and smells of an imperial but not so much that it hammers you over the head with hops. Easy to drink and hard not to enjoy.

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Photo of dill
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a really nice IPA. The bitterness reaches a high peak but mellows out to reveal a nice oakiness. Tastes great cold and is quite easy to drink. Goes well with some spicy Mexican food. Not my favorite IPA, but a very nice beer that has some unique characteristics.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Hogtownharry: Poured a deep cloudy copper color ale with a good size foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of bitter and citrus hops is dominating with a nice malt base also noticeable. Taste is a mix between some citrus and bitter pacific hops with a neutral but still perceptible malt base. Full body with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. While this is a very enjoyable IPA, I would have enjoyed it a bit more if the presence of floral and grapefruit hops would have been more discernable.

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West Coast IPA from Green Flash Brewing Co.
4.19 out of 5 based on 7,859 ratings.
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