Green Flash Imperial India Pale Ale | Green Flash Brewing Co.

1,003 Reviews
Green Flash Imperial India Pale AleGreen Flash Imperial India Pale Ale

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

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
he mountains of Summit and Nugget hops in this high gravity Imperial will thrill even the most experienced beer explorer. Savory evergreen and pineapple aromas mingle with flavors of bitter, resinous pine and grapefruit pith. A colossal rush of hoppy adventure!

Added by Terp96 on 12-02-2006

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Reviews: 1,003 | Ratings: 2,627
Photo of JBogan
3.52/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rather standard looking burnt orange with a small head and minimal lacing.

Smells of the usual citric hoppiness.

Tastes also quite like an ordinary hoppy IPA. Grapefruit is a main attraction. Somewhat bitter aftertaste, but not as offputting as some hop bombs.

Mouthfeel was nice and thick and slick. Very smooth.

Well, what is there to say. If you like rather simple beers which taste mainly of hops, then this is one which should please you.

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Photo of AJDean
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I have heard quite a bit about this brewery and was anxious to try this beer. I had this out of a 22 oz.
This poured a nice golden color with a slight haze. The smell had a wonderful hop forward character that i really enjoyed. This is a really big beer and unfortunately the abv is not masked very will. With 102 ibu's you think it would be but i think a little more malt character would have made this great. Overall i enjoyed it but I expect a little more balanced IPA.

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Photo of BrownNut
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle to nonic, served cool.

A - 3.5 - Dull gold (meh) with with thick, white, textured head (very nice).

S - 3.5 - Faint aroma. Maybe the ghost of a hop note, a rumor of a malt note.

T - 3.5 - Head doesn't taste like much of anything. Beer doesn't taste like much of anything. Mild bitterness, mostly in the aftertaste.

M - 3.5 - Light-medium body. Soft.

O - Overall this comes across as an inoffensive, mild, generic beer without much going on, that you could drink with just about any meal and not have it compete or clash with anything. Except for the aftertaste bitterness, I'd almost expect to get this in a British pub it's so mild. Not at all what I was expecting.

Went back and looked at the date. Turns out it was just over 3 months old. I guess that explains it. Lesson learned - don't trust IPAs that you order online unless the vendor is willing to tell you the bottle dating. I'll come back and re-score this after I can find a fresher bottle.

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Photo of yeahnatenelson
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours golden/orange with a large white head, eventually shrinking to nearly nothing.

Smell - citrus, buttered bread, butterscotch, whiff of ethanol.

Taste - A fair amount of citrus peel, LOTS of that buttered bread/butterscotch character. Sweet up front, then huge bittering in the finish. Boozy, dry finish.

Mouthfeel - Light bodied, moderate prickly carbonation. Good amount of alcohol bite and mild warming of the throat.

Drinkability - Not bad at all. VERY drinkable for the abv - though it doesn't hide the alcohol very well. Tastes pretty good, but at the end of the day doesn't have the dynamic flavor profile I come to expect from the style - comes off as more of a boozy IPA.

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Photo of jayhawk73
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a nice orange/tangerine color w/ a beautiful two finger head. Not much carbonation, and decent lacing. Somewhat cloudy, but fairly clear to see through. A really nice looking beer.

S- Orange, tangerine, malt, hops, something funky as well... onion??? not sure what that last thing is. Nice smelling except for that one thing. Would've been a 4.5 otherwise. Solid.

T- Pretty much the same as the nose. It doesn't taste like 101 IBU's to me. It's bitter, but not what I thought it would be. I can't figure out what that off taste is (onion, garlic?) but it really detracts from this beer. It's still tasty, but I've definitely had to lower the score because of that. Tasty, just not as good as their West Coast IPA.

M- Pretty much right with the style, not a whole lot to add to that. Definitely bitter, w/ a smoothness that shows itself in the aftertaste. This and the appearance are the strong suits of this beer for me.

O- Good solid beer that fails to meet the bar West Coast IPA has set. I'm going to have to read some other reviews to see if someone else figured out that onion/garlic smell/taste I was getting. Worth trying if you like the style. Definitely different, and not a bad effort... Just not world class.

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Photo of inlimbo77
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bomber bottle into a snifter glass. No bottle date present, as with other Green Flash stuff that we get here on East Coast.

A: Pours a hazy, yellow/orange color, thin white head, mild carbonation, head fades quickly, OK lacing on the glass.

S: Not the hoppy burst that I was expecting or had read about in other posts. Starting to think that this bottle might be out-dated. I get more malt than hops.

T: I don't get hops! I get all malt here. Some bite on the back end with mild hops. But nothing floral or citrusy. Upsetting.

M: Hardly any mouth coating here. No DIPA mouth pucker either. I understand that most DIPAs are sweeter, but this is a malt bomb. As mentioned, some bite at end.

D: I hate to say it, because I love the GF West Coast IPA, but this one is a "one and done" for me. Very unpleased. I blame the bottle dating problem, no the beer.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
3.49/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Never even heard of this brewery before but my nearby beer pimp started carrying some so I thought I'd try!
Not the most impressive looking double IPA on the block. Pours a quite pale amber with hardly any head and barely any sort of lacing anywhere.
The scent makes more of an impression. There's a strong, deep floral hop scent that also has some nice top notes of hops. Pleasing sweetnesses.
The flavors remind one of the odors. Not too shabby but there's some lack of balance. The bitter hop flavors are a bit too aggressive as it lingers in the finish for a bit too long. Reminds me a little bit of Victory's Hop Wallop but doesn't strike me as being quite as enjoyable.
This brew seems to need more or less of something to make it really sing. It should either go more over the top, to the point where you don't care about imbalance because of the strong perspective... or some more balance.There are many double IPA's out there, and well, this is one of them!

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Photo of BeerStine
3.49/5  rDev -14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

650 ml (22 oz) poured into a pint glass (several times).

A - Pours a (lightly cloudy when cold) orange with medium carbonation and an off-white foamy head. Leaves a LONG sticky lace as the beer goes down.

S -Citrusy/fruity hops smell right off the bat. The hops are followed by an interesting malt smell. I can't quite put my finger on it. Maybe a nutty and or biscuity malt smell? Not well defined.

T - Taste is much like the smell. Citrus and grapefruit tastes that cause a tingling sensation on both the sides and the front of the tongue. In addition to the hops is a prominent secondary malts taste. Once again I'm not sure what it is. Carmely, nutty, sugary? The flavors are kind of mottled together. Very little bitter lingering (especially for a DIPA).

M - Medium-heavy body almost a little creamy. Heavier than most DIPA that I've had. Medium carbonation.

D - I could drink many of these beers - but wouldn't savor them. Nothing really significantly stands out on this beer. That is, picking out individual flavors is difficult. In my opinion, a fairly simplistic beer, but defiantly drinkable.

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Photo of sacfly
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22oz, no fresh date.
Pours a clear golden color with a huge head of small/medium off white bubbles. Sharp, perfume pine/herbal aroma. A touch of lemongrass and… chives(?). Taste is smooth and well balanced between the bitter hops and sweet malt. A touch of garlic(?) in the aftertaste with a lingering clean bitterness. The garlic and chives take over as it warms. I happen to like both, but I’m not sure that is what I would go for in a beer… Odd, but enjoyable for me. Not for everyone. The label states that Summit and Nugget hops were used. I am assuming the Summit hops are giving it the onion/garlic character. I never got that from Nugget. 22oz was enough. I almost got sick of it at the end.

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Photo of chaz410
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle was bought at the awesome Common Market in Charlotte NC.
Pours a very clean amber, orange color in the body and a very thick white head.
Nose is full of hops, mild hops at that. The hop level could be a little higher for "Imperial IPA" but it is much more prominent than your normal hoppy IPA. Not much malt on the nose and a little alcohol. Hop smell is mostly piney and grassy with little grapefruit notes.
Taste is smooth and begins like an overly bitter hop profile but finishes very even, probably due to the higher alcohol content. A little tart grapefruit plus pine finish.
Pretty drinkable for an Imperial beer and an enjoyable one at that. Not much different from any respectable IIPA but good nontheless.

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had on tap at Rustico in Ballston (Arlington) VA.

Pours amber semi clear with nice lacing and small head.

The smell and taste are very different and not my favorite, but interesting. The nose hits with the citrus and grass hops and sugary malt you'd expect in smaller than hoped for doses but man there is a crazy overriding peppery and kitchen spice like thyme going on that i can't get my mind off. The taste is about the same, that peppercorn is strange, I even get a rosemary type edge, but theres some nice hop presence to throw it off a little. Bitter and dry aftertaste, but an overriding sweetness as well.

Mouth is smooth and good carbonation, the drinkability is ok, sort of weird, I could hardly get through a full pint.

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Photo of zdk9
3.47/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Tarnished copper with half a finger of head that looks like soap bubbles.

S- Very floral- lavender, caramel. Not a lot of volatile aromas that I can really get a hold on.

T- Prett harsh- not what I expected. A lot of flowery tastes, just like the smell. Some grapefruit pith. Malts taste like whole wheat soft bread crusts. Sweet orange and tangerine candy.

M- Silky and smooth. Light carbonation but I'm enjoying it. Sort of coats the mouth. But still pretty harshly bitter after that coating.

O- I wish it was a little more powerful, especially in the aroma, and a little smoother in the taste. It's rough around the edges.

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Photo of H1N1
3.46/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours amber with 2.5 fingers of thick foam. Good retention. Receded into a half finger that remained.

S- Citrusy hops. Some orange zest. A bit of pine.

T- Tasted hoppy with some definite citrus. I also tasted some juniper. Slight malty back. I can definitely taste the 9.4%.

M- Medium to full bodied. But the alcohol heat didn't hide very well.

D- I liked it, but I personally don't mind the alcohol bite. I could see how it might turn someone else off.

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Photo of thedon10
3.46/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Nice orange color, decent size head with a small amount of lacing left on the glass. When held up to the light it looks a tad more murky than most IPAs I've had

S- decent hop smell, though not as powerful as I was expecting based on green flash reputation

T- grapefruit, orange, not a super strong pine test like some other west coast IPAs. Very little malt taste this is a hop bomb for sure. The bitterness gets you on the tongue on the way down

M- I find it to be a little thick, almost like syrup but not that bad.

Definitely drinkable, though rather high in alcohol so you gotta pace yourself. It's a great DIPA, though not as piney tasting as I would have liked

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Photo of Soonami
3.45/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Green Flash Imperial IPA, despite the many reviews, is to me a pretty average IIPA. IT has a lot of tropical and dank hoppiness but also a bunch of sweet fruity flavors and biscuity malts. The color was darker than I was expecting and it was (to me) too sweet for what I consider the hallmark of the style--Pliny the Elder. I had no problem finishing the 11 oz from the bomber I split with a friend, but I would find it hard to drink much more than that due to the cloying and lingering bitterness and sweetness.

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Photo of grub
3.45/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

biegaman shared this one. thanks jan!

22oz bottle.

pours a nice golden yellow, slightly orangey, with a huge fluffy tan head that drops slowly and leaves lots of clumpy lace.

good aroma. grapefruit and tangerine. resiny. bread and cracker malt. a bit catty.

taste is ok. bready malt. bit of yeast and spice. medium bitterness level. grapefruit and a bit of tangerine. bit of a letdown.

mouthfeel is good. clingy resiny bitterness. medium-low carbonation level. medium body.

drinkability is ok. fairly well balanced. the flavour didn't really do it for me and seemed to be a bit of a letdown after the great appearance and nice aroma.

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Photo of Ego
3.45/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

double IPAs are all the rage, stealing the covers of BeerQ and Vanity Lager magazines...

light caramel color with an orange tinge, a nice, condensed white head, retention is good as well as the lacing. a nice looking beer but nothing "wows" you.

super pine, REALLY pine driven, to the point of almost smelling like a cleaning product and/or fresh cannabis (so I have heard), the malts really have to fight to be detected but some hints of sweetness escape this alcatraz of tree shaped car freshners. kind of a one trick pony, it lacks the depth of some other DIPAs

taste etc...
yep, it's bitter, the carbonation is a bit deceptive, almost prickly but a touch creamy and slick, once you get used to the bitterness it is a pretty mild ride, the alcohol is well hidden (not perfectly though). It's a bit thin but the hop oils help to smooth it out. The flavor is much like the smell, pine to the wazoo, it;s tasty enough, but doesn't distinguish itself too much from other DIPAs

not bad, worth a try but don't expect to be blown away. unless you like to suck on pine needles all the live long day (you freak you)

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Photo of DaveJanssen
3.44/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Split a 22 two ways, poured into stemless wine glasses. Reviewed 11/27/2009.

Ar: lemon, citrus, pine, resin, sweet candy, rough hop, floral, tropical fruit, pineapple, tart citrus, nondescript hop, vegetative, alcohol, slightly oxidized slightly stale abused hop presence

Ap: fine haze straw with light orange, off white head, fair retention

T: Resin, pine, strong persistent bitterness, citrus (lemon, pineapple, grapefruit), candy sweetness, rough resin burn, light alcohol, plain malt, honey/light caramel, vegetative, hints of hop funk, raw hop, tropical fruit, non-descript hop, aggressive citrus/pine hop resin, big flavor, *good sweet/hop balance

M: high fine carbonation, medium body, very resinous, resin burn and alcohol warmth (*good for 9.4%)

O: Aggressive hopping, pleasant flavor profile, a bit too resin balanced, tons of hops but rough and overdone, good flavor but flavor:resin balance is off, a better over the top IPA

*=ideas from fellow taster

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Photo of sloejams
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Being a big fan of Green Flash's West Coast IPA, picking up a bombers of these was a no brainer. Unlike the regular IPA, the balancing of this was off enough for me to be disappointed. The grapefruit ting was a bit much. Still this was a not bad offering and certainly worthy of a try. Me, I'll stick to their IPA.

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Photo of Reidrover
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz bomber. Nice slightly hazed dark orange coloured beer, with a nice looking off white frothy,thick head. Pungent hoppy aroma, transcending the usual pine..till I get a whiff of green onion! All hop. Very bitter indeed, grapefruit, pine,crab apples,thankfully none of the "green onion" makes it to the taste, but this is all mouth puckering juicy bitterness. I believe the 101 IBU! Ok mouthfeel , though the unrelenting bitterness does challenge the taste buds. Overall an OK beer..for sure a great one for hopheads. But for me it went just too far.

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

We pop the top and pour a pale, cloudy honey colored brew, with orange flecks when against the light. The head is one finger tall, white, and made up of massive bubbles. This shows lower-end retention, leaving spotty lacing around our glasses. Carbonation is medium, with a thick haze but no sediment. The beer appears sticky. The aroma is sweet with hops that are citric and floral. Sharp phenolic plastics crash in for a surprising and overdone jab. The metallics are pale, with metallics, wheat, and biting booze with warmth. Overall the beer has a very sweaty quality to the snout. Our first impression is that the flavor profile is very peculiar, and the huge booziness is not well hidden. The flavoring opens with soft pale malts and a light toast, to add grit and bitterness. Citric hops, plastics, and burnt clove add up and enhance the bitterness into a wild whirlwind of flavoring. Pine and resin bring us to the peak, where citrus rind, floral honey, and white sugar cut some of the initial power. Burnt plastics and bitter phenols continue, with a sickly sweet strawberry character. The finish is with the same floral hops, but here they take on a dirty quality. They are met by raw pine cone and more of those burnt flavors, for an almost equally as bitter finish. The aftertaste is way bitter with piney hops, pale malts, and light minerals. The body is medium, and the carbonation is light to medium. The mouth is left with a powdery coating that proves ultimately drying. There is nice creamy slurp to each sip, with a bit of a pop and puckering. The abv is up there, and the beer has okay drinkability, due in part to the bitterness and odd flavorings.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was the variety of hops. These were great, but they just got lost amongst that madness that is the rest of this beer. The aroma is so strange, with sweat, dirt, and plastics as the primary trifecta. This carries over to the mouth too, where those components present the same problem. It would have been nice to have the sweetness appear a bit sooner, to better balance the bitters, rather than having a strong one-two knockout with two separately intense flavors.

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Photo of tobelerone
3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I wasn't the biggest fan of this beer, a little disappointed after enjoying the "single" IPA so much. The hop profile here was just too weird for me to enjoy all that much. It's somewhat unique but simply not that pleasant.

The appearance of the beer is very nice...great big slowly settling head on top of a cloudy golden/apricot colored body.

Very aromatic, smells extremely hoppy, which should be no surprise if you bought this bottle. Pine and grapefruit detectable. Others have suggested marijuana, I didn't really get that too much.

The taste is enormous and not all that good, at least to my palate. A buddy who had a little bit of this bottle with me and who is much less of a hop head than I was fascinated by the flavor; I just found it to be too much to enjoy more than a few ounces. Reminded me strongly of Founder's Devil Dancer; is that the Summit Hops? Brings the onion/garlic vibe strongly. Grapefruit and to a lesser extent pine are in there too. Booze is hidden, as is any sweeter, hop-softening malt characteristics. An aspect I sometimes find to be a little much in DIPA's is really downplayed here.

I thought the mouthfeel was pretty good; med. carbonation, slightly sticky, finish not overly long. This is definitely a hophead only beer and even then, ya gotta love that onions and garlic thing to really enjoy this one. Glad I tried it, unlikely to be going back.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.42/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bottle poured into two goblets. Thanks to Nugganooch for this bottle.

Appearance - A hazy golden body topped by an ample white head. Lacing is minimal. I might even go so far as to say it's murky. Just a bit.

Smell - Not the hop bomb I was hoping/expecting. It's got a healthy dose of citrus, but it's also got a dominating sweetness and booziness right behind it. Oh man this is gonna be a big one.

Taste - Like the aroma, the citrus hops come first, but it's so sweet that they seem to take second fiddle. Caramel malts and booze are the flavors that drown out the hops. In the aftertaste are piney hops and a slightly sustained bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Not very syrupy considering the sweetness. Still a bit thick, but not as much as I expected. What's dominating is the booze. It's way too much considering that it's only 9.4%. No need for it to be this hot.

Overall - A slight disappointment. It's strange that I thought Green Flash West Coast IPA didn't have enough malt to it and this one has way too much. I'd bet a 2 part West Coast IPA and 1 part Imperial IPA combination would be spectacular.

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Photo of walshclimb
3.42/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours clear honey amberwith thick frothy head that is long lived and leaves a nice bubbly lace. Smells of floral hops, light sweet malt, and is just a little musty. The IF is well balanced between malt and bitter hops. The aftertaste is increasingly bitter and lingers for a long time. Medium bodied with a dry finish. Overall, this beer is pleasant if not terribly interesting. Clean flavor but not something I would seek out for a tasting and too strong for a session beer. For the price, buy a stone or an alesmith and you will be happier.

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Photo of Reagan1984
3.42/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served from a bomber

O.K., this beer proves the point that TOO much of a good thing becomes NOT that good.

Just so we are clear, Green Flash West Coast IPA is one of my favorite and most highly rated beers ever. I am an admitted Hop Head. Having said that, this beer is just too much and not nearly as good as the West Coast IPA version.

I tried this along with 4 other friends and it was unanimous to return quickly to the West Coast IPA.

Appearance & Aroma were almost identical to the original, but the taste left you longing for the other version.

Bright clear golden/copper in color. Thick foamy head that did settle quickly.

Extreme floral/Cascade Hop aroma that almost seems like you are rolling the hop buds in your hand.

I was turned off by what seemed to me as a high alcohol taste that lingered even beyond the hop finish. It seemed to over power the flavor profile.

Certainly had the big Hop burst of pine and citrus and almost a chewy/resin mouth feel.

There are many better DPA/ Imperial IPA's to this one.

But be sure to try the regular Green Flash West Coast IPA that is truly special.

This on the other hand, it not.

I really wanted to love it... But No.

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Green Flash Imperial India Pale Ale from Green Flash Brewing Co.
4.06 out of 5 based on 2,627 ratings.
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