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Palate Wrecker | Green Flash Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
92
outstanding
727 Reviews
THE BROS
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BEER INFO

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

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Originally brewed to celebrate Hamilton's Second Anniversary

Added by seaoflament on 10-04-2008

BEER STATS
Reviews:
727
Ratings:
4,037
Avg:
4.14
pDev:
24.64%
 
 
Wants:
212
Gots:
678
For Trade:
5
User Reviews
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Reviews: 727 | Ratings: 4,037
Photo of brentk56
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a modest head that leaves some splashy lace behind

Smell: Grapefruit pith and quite a bit of caramel

Taste: Caramel malt, for a brief second, and then the hops take over bringing citrus pith initially; after the swallow, I get some onions and a return of the sugars that makes for a sweet, though balanced, finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Was really hoping for more from this beer as I love almost everything that Green Flash produces; not bad, but the onions and sweetness on the finish reduce its appeal to me

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a bright orangey color ale with a solid large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma is dominated by citrus and pine noted originating from the C-hops. Taste is also dominated loads of citrus and pine notes with a bitter finish. Malt is present though hard to decipher through al the hops with some light residual sugar. Body is quite full with great carbonation and no apparent alcohol. There is no denying that this a hop bomb though I prefer when they veered toward floral then bitterness.

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Photo of emerge077
3.98/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2nd or 3rd time drinking this, poured the 16 oz. bottle in a small 10 oz. stemmed tulip glass.

Glistening deep saturated orange, creamy dense foam, long lasting and glass-coating. Webs of intricate lacing form inside the glass.

Toasted caramel, citrus peel, pungent hop resins.

Flavors are similar, big caramel and toasty malts, smooth and buttery. Moderate hop bitterness, slick and resiny. Buttery diacetyl is present but not overly distracting. Full bodied with lower carbonation and some sticky caramel sweetness. It has an English feel, much like Schells Burton Ale. Dry bitterness lingers, reminding that it's in fact a double IPA...

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Photo of kojevergas
2.58/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottled 01/08/13. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average; Green Flash has yet to really impress me and I've heard mixed reviews about this one. 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. I've never had this before.

Served straight from the fridge but not quite as cold as the fridge usually renders beers. We'll call it sufficiently chilled. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Not paired with food.

A: Pours a four finger beige colour head of nice cream and decent thickness, and great retention (~6 minutes) for the high ABV. Body colour is a clear translucent textbook copper. Vibrant. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Par for the style, but the head is impressive for the ABV. Other than that, there's nothing unique or special here. Indistinguishable from most other beers in the style.

Sm: Pale malts, floral hops, heavy hop oil, and light hop nectar. Shockingly light; not subtle, just light. Reading the label, I'm pleased to see they describe it as "complicated." Not complex - complicated. A touch of inadvertent honesty, perhaps? It's not fresh (in spite of being a mere 3 weeks old), but it does come off as pleasant.

T: Okay...unnecessarily heavy hop bitterness is overwhelmingly dominant. A hint of buried hop nectar, a hint of very buried citrus. Corrupted oily hops really attack the palate in a most unpleasant manner. Even the pale malt body is drowned out by the assault. Sweet jesus, that is really really imbalanced. I'm forced to appreciate it; it's sort of a master class on how not to brew an IPA. Grapefruit. No yeast character - and surprisingly no alcohol - comes through. Lacks complexity. There's no subtlety here at all.

Mf: Scratchy, oily, and coarse. It's as pleasant as it sounds. Overcarbonated. Too thick for the lack of flavour. Not at all refreshing. Horrible palate presence.

Dr: This is exactly how you shouldn't go about approaching the style. It lacks the key element: balance. This represents precisely what is wrong with IPAs - especially when executed by American breweries: it's not a dicksizing competition with hop content or IBUs. A good IPA has masterful balance and is refreshing. This is neither. Drinkable, if low quality. It's more difficult to drink than your typical DIPA. Though it does hide its ABV alright. A huge disappointment from Green Flash. Maybe the brewers could drive over to Alpine and learn a thing or two about balance. Is Silva Stout as highly hyped and yet as poorly brewed as this is?

Low C-

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Photo of zeff80
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, copper color with a two-finger, tan head of bubbly foam. It left thin rings of sticky lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of citrus, grapefruit, mango and bubblegum. Some caramel aromas.

T - It tasted of sweet caramel, citrus, grapefruit and bread crust. Spicy bitterness adds balance.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a strong alcohol warmth and a dry finish.

O - This is a really tasty DIPA. Another great brew from Green Flash.

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Photo of oline73
4.46/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a finger and a half of fluffy off white head. The head hangs around very well and leaves nice lacing. This is a really good looking beer.

Smell: West coast IPA hop profile is the first thing I'm picking up. Citrus peel and pine notes from the hop bitterness. Just a touch of malt sweetness, but it's almost lost in the hops.

Taste: There is a nice malt sweetness in the background, but the hops are the reason we're all here. Bitter citrus peel hops, just a mild note of pine as well. The finish is crushingly bitter, but very good.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with fluffy carbonation and a slick finish.

Overall: This is a fantastic DIPA. It was much better than I expected. Huge fan and I would definitely have another.

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Photo of Thorpe429
2.89/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle from Rick's in Alexandria. Served in a Green Flash pint glass.

Pours a clear light copper color with a very nice off-white head. Tons of ringy lacing on the way down.

The nose carried a bit of light bready malt and some resinous hops. Very light citrus peel in the background. This is surprisingly malty. Not in the sense thy there is a strong malt presence, but just in the overall balance as there really isn't that much hop aroma there.

The flavor continues down this path. Some amber and bready malt with a heavy bitterness though not much hop flavor at all. Very unfortunate. A bit of alcohol there as well. Body is light-medium with good carbonation and pretty heavy bitterness.

I really just couldn't get into this one.

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Photo of nickfl
4.41/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours with two fingers of white foam on top of a perfectly clear, amber colored body. The head settles at a moderate pace and leaves nice, thick lace on the glass.

S - A pungent, sweaty pine hop aroma with some thick caramel malt in the background.

T - Pine hops and thick, bready malt up front. Some more pine and sweaty hop character in the middle with a touch of darker sugar. Finishes with pine, grapefruit, and strong bitterness that just manages to balance out the rich malt.

M - A fairly thick body, moderate carbonation, and a balanced finish.

D - This is a really well made, slightly dark and straight forward DIPA. The hops are pungently aromatic, but also strongly bitter which is good, since anything less would leave the thick malt cloyingly unbalanced. Nicely done, and quite drinkable for such a big beer.

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Photo of oberon
4.65/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Good to see a new Green Flash offering here in the Triad.Poured into a tulip glass nice deep burnt orange with a well defined sticky one finger white head that left multiple globs of lace as it settled slowly into a frothy mass.Sharp grapefruit hops at the onset as soon as I opened the bottle along with some booze but it's not overly sweet,just smells sticky and good.Raw hop goodness on the palate with sharp grapefruit rind and herbal notes,mild caramel sweetness underneath cant hold up to the sharp bitter hop onslaught,and amazingly the sweetness is held in check well.This is what a DIPA should be a hop explosian not a sugary sweet malt bomb,I loved it hence the perfect taste score.Best beer I have had in 2012.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, no bottle dating. Pours slightly hazy golden orange color with a nice 2 finger dense cream colored head with fantastic retention that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Some nice spotty lacing on the glass. Aromas of big orange, caramel, pine, biscuit, grapefruit, mango, floral, honey, light herbal, and a touch of alcohol. Nice and well balanced aromas with good strength. Taste of big grapefruit, pine, caramel, honey, biscuit, herbal, floral, and mango. Fairly intense pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, honey, pine, biscuit, and caramel on the finish for a good bit. Despite the intense hoppiness, there is a nice malt backbone to balance it out. Good flavor balance as well. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a creamy, sticky, and slightly slick mouthfeel. Smooth to drink but it is still a sipper. Alcohol is fairly well hidden with only a good sized warming after the finish. Overall this is an excellent and highly enjoyable DIPA. Nice malt balance and hop flavor profile.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.17/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a clear copper, topped with a thick finger of off-white head. This maintains a frothy ½ finger, ringing the sides of the glass with sticky lacing. The aroma is floral, piney, herbal, and spicy in the nose, with a zesty feeling grapefruit presence and notes of fresh backed biscuits from the malts across the back. This has some nice hoppy power to it in the nostrils.

The taste starts off with a bold hoppy blast of grapefruit, resins, and spice, which lingers hard on the finish. Soft herbal tones, light tropical fruit, and tight sweet grains help to balance out some of the aggressiveness out here but man, that spice and pine sticks to the tongue with some strength. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied and really fills the mouth with a big slick oily creaminess that moves rather easily for the size. There is a bit of light crispness to this, while the alcohol, although not stinging, does really pop the assertiveness of these hops.

My previous experience with this beer had been on cask during a visit to San Diego and I have to say that I really enjoyed this more here out of the bottle. I still feel that it’s a little too big overall but the fresh hoppy power of this wins out in the end, helping cover up the high ABV. This is a nice representation of the West Coast style.

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Photo of chinchill
3.49/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a glass snifter.

A: Pours a dark copper color with a slight yeast haze; likewise, the bottom of the bottle remains coated with a thin layer of sediment. The brew is topped with a one finger off-white that has limited retention, but it leaves lots of sticky lacing on the glass.

S: Very hop-forward, with suggestions of grapefruit rind, orange juice, and grapefruit juice; rather earthy and floral too. The rich and complex aromas of multiple hop varieties largely mask even the alcohol esters.

T: Some sweetness is there but this is very much a bitter brew, and the bitterness seems to build with repeated tasting. There is less citrus here than in the nose.

M: Full body; Medium+ carbonation; a bit harsh and acidic, presumably from the high hop load and ABV.

O: As warned, this strongly flavored beer assaults the senses and leaves a long-lasting bitter aftertaste with hints of grapefruit and pine. Quite bitter even among DIPAs. A less balanced alternative to brews like Hopslam, Stone Ruination or Hop Stoopid, all of which I definitely prefer to this strong and challenging beverage.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Green Flash Palate Wrecker
12 oz. bottle, freshness dated "03/29/13"
$5.50 @ The Beer Shoppe, Ardmore, PA

"Palate Wrecker" pours a mostly clear orange-amber body beneath a creamy head of off-white/light-khaki foam. The head retention is fair, and it leaves some nice spots and splashes of lacing about the glass.

The aroma is bold, delivering copious notes of citrus, tropical fruit, sap/resin, and soft pine/spruce that's not unlike a damp forest floor beneath tall evergreens. There's a hint of light floral-alcohol, and a delicate drip of sharp mint as well. Whatever malt that's there, it doesn't quite come through clearly, but rather acts as support for the hops.

Not surprisingly, the malt acts as support for the hops in the flavor as well. This beer is all about hops. Pacific northwest hops to be specific, and probably some high-alpha varieties as well. It's initially citrusy and pineapple-like. The citrus is like rind-like (chalky and raspy), although there are elements of grapefruit juice, and some citron and limon to it as well. I'm not sure what other fruits I might be getting, but I'm thinking tangerine, apple, and papaya. Following that you'll find the evergreens that could be pine, spruce or poplar - or even a blend - depending on where you're at in the glass. Each subsequent sip brings out more pine and sap as it builds on your palate. So note - this is not a beer to drink quickly if you want to find its complexity as it will indeed ruin your palate within the first twelve sips. The first sips will be fruity and citrusy. The next will be piney, and increasingly resinous and bitter. Following that you'll find a bit of malt, and some grass. Throughout all of that the bitterness builds to the point that you reach a threshold, and apart from the bitterness sticking at the back of your throat it hardly seems as bitter as it was on your second or third sip. By mid-glass the 9.5% alcohol by volume will have taken effect, and that throws you a bit as well. Thankfully, even though it's present throughout, it doesn't throw any harshness other than what's expected. And in all honesty, answer me this: if a beer as aggressively hopped and bitter as this was just 5% would you really want to drink it? No, I didn't think so (nor am I even sure that that's a possibility as you really need the malt and alcohol to hold the hop bitterness and flavor).

This is pretty much a special occasion beer because once you drink it you're done. Every beer you have afterward will taste different than you remember. Even food that you have will be somewhat skewed. It's an exercise in going all out. And there's a certain joy in that, but at the same time it's definitely un-balanced. It has to be. It can't be anything else. It's completely balanced towards the hop resins, for both bitterness and flavor. So how to review it number-wise? I'm not sure. I'm just going to go hedonistically and see what happens. Cheers!

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Photo of mactrail
3.44/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear, orangey amber in the wine glass. Nice head. Carbonation is a little coarse. Mouthfeel is slick. Big hop smell.

Intense hop flavor and aroma, as you might suspect. Rather dry and tends toward astringency after a few sips.

Ridiculously strongly hopped, which I guess is the point. A little sweet, and plenty of malt as well. It's a pure hop intensity, fruity and resiny. Flavor keeps going and going. It's kind of like bitter candy. Definitely too much of a good thing, though it is almost drinkable. Hot with alcohol and spicy hop acids.

I wonder if anyone at Hamilton's has tried this out in the dog bowl. From the 12 oz bottle bought at Baron's Marketplace in San Diego.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap 3/31/2012 at Track 84, in Warwick, RI served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep golden brown color, with a short dense off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick on the glass.

S: The aroma contains fruity citrus, floral hops and caramelized malts.

T: The taste starts out with a piney bite of hops bitterness followed by sweet flavors of citrus and caramel. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy and provides a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly hoppy and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, strong kick, good representation of style, although there are better 2IPA’s out there, this is still a solid beer to drink for a long time.

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Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Broad Axe Tavern, Ambler, PA

Clear amber pour, with a small white head that left some splashes of lace on the glass. As would be expected, the aroma was dominated by hops, citrus pith and pine resin, with hints of a caramel malt backbone bringing up the rear. Lots of orange and grapefruit in the taste, resin, pretty intense WC hop bitterness, with a little tropical fruit and malt sweetness to take the edge off, but the hops were clearly in charge. Maybe not as intense as their regular IIPA, though I'd like to try them back to back to test that theory. Medium body, appropriately carbonated. Maybe a little intense for greenhorns, but a good brew for hopheads.

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Photo of duceswild
3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in a trade from whatsarezaf.

Live review:
12oz bottle pours a nice golden orange with about a half finger of head. Upon opening the bottle you can smell the hops. I knew to expect a lot of hops, but WOW.

During drinking it leaves a Leaves a good lacing throughout the glass. Taste is of hops and pine. Even at 9.5% I don't get a lot of alcohol taste from this beer.

Not sure that I could correctly taste a beer properly after this one as it is a palate wrecker for sure.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.97/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a slightly hazy deep golden orange in color with light amounts of visible carbonation and some burnt orange + copper highlights. The beer has a finger tall dense foamy off-white head that very slowly reduces to a large patch of very thin film and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of citrus/orange rind hops along with some much lighter notes of pine hops and just a hint of caramel malts.

T: Light amounts of caramel malt sweetness initially but that is quickly overtaken by the flavors of the hops - citrus/orange rind and Light hints of alcohol are present in the finish along with the moderate to strong amounts of bitterness.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Light to moderate amounts of dryness in the finish.

O: As the name would indicate, this is a seriously hop heavy beer and slightly out of balance (tons of bitterness compared with just a light hint of sweetness). This is not the easiest of beers to drink both from the hop intensity and the not so hidden alcohol. Not sure I would have another of these but glad to have tried it.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Stone. I was super excited to get to try this one!

A: The pour looks innocent enough, a pale copper color with a thin layer of white foam on top.

S: This is what I expect from Green Flash, pure hops in the nose. Very citrusy, mostly grapefruit and a bit of lemon with a substantial hit of pine as well.

T: A very intense grapefruit flavor leads the charge, followed by a bit of caramel malt. The finish is quite bitter and has some very nice resinous pine character to it.

M: This is a medium to full bodied beer with a moderate level of carbonation.

D: One of the better IPAs I've had in awhile. The typical flavors you expect from a Green Flash IPA and it definitely lives up to the name. Just watch out for this one because it packs a punch.

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Photo of russpowell
4.52/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an effervescent honey color with a finger of cream colored head. Good lacing & average head retention

S: Pine, grapefruit with a little breadyness, plus some booze

T: Follows the nose, in your face hoppyness up front, along with a little dryness. Some breadyness & a touch of caramel as this warms with a ton of grapefruit. Finishes with grapefruit peel, breadyness, pineyness

MF: Fairly thick, slight carbonation, nice balance

A super DIPA, love the agressive hops & super balance lying underneath, easily one the best DIPAs I've had in a while. I've been waiting for a hop ride like this for a whilw, well done Green Flash!

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Photo of smcolw
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Forms a dome-like head that leaves some streaky lace on the glass. The liquid is actually fairly clear with an amber-orange color. It looks terrific.

Very impressive smell with a grapefruit touch. There's almost no more today aroma but that's okay.

Strong hop flavor that gives it a over-the-top bitterness. The alcohol is also large and the carbonation is accurate for the style. Overall, this is an extreme brew.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.73/5  rDev -34.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Yeah, I've heard this claim from plenty of DIPAs before... This stuff pours a clear amber-gold topped by a finger of lightly off-white foam. The nose comprises pine resin, citrus salad, and a kiss of booze. The taste finally brings the name's promise to fruition: The bitterness on display burned through my tastebuds like vikings at Lindesfarne. It was all rind, resin, oils, and whatnot, with no real hop flavors besides. An alcohol kick comes forth as well, creating a sense of vinyl/rubber when combined with the bitterness and the subsequently shell-shocked tongue. Things are too much for me, and they definitely detract from any kind of enjoyment on my part. Many pain winces were evinced. The body is a lithe medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a decidedly dry finish. Overall, I suppose this beer delivers what it promises, but that's not really a good thing...

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Photo of billab914
3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into my Devil's Backbone tulip. It poured a clear, dark copper color with a frothy white head rising well above the top of the beer. Nice lacing as I drank it.

The aroma shows a strong hoppiness to it with a resiny, orange rind and grapefruit bitterness being the dominant flavor. I get some alcohol mixing with some malty sweetness. It's definitely a hop forward beer though.

The taste has some malty, slightly caramel like flavors to it up front. midway though a very bold resiny, citrus rind, grapefruit hoppiness starts to take over and lasts through the finish. A little bit of candied orange is there as well.

The mouthfeel is a little above average with carbonation being moderate. Overall it was a pretty good beer. It had a pretty bold, bitter, resiny hoppiness to it which fit the name of the beer pretty well.

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Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 12/21/10 notes. Had on tap at Rattle n Hum in NYC.

a - Pours an amber color with one inch of white head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of citrus hops, lemon, oranges, grapefruit, and fruity malts.

t - Taste follows the nose. Lots of citrus hops and grapefruit, some bitterness up front but not as much as I expected.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation,

d - A pretty good DIPA. Lots of nice citrus hops and not too bitter. Would have again.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On draft at Churchkey in D.C.

The beer is light golden and clear with a soft white head. The aroma brings a potent dose of hops, light citrus and pine, and alcohol. Upon my first sip I decided this beer is aptly named. Massive hop character does indeed assault the palate. Alcohol presence is rather forward, and steers me clear of a second helping. This is decent, with some nice things happening, but I prefer a more elegant showcase for the hops, instead of being bombarded with an intensely hoppy alcohol bomb. Personal preference perhaps, but I feel this is middle of the road (or a slight step above) for a DIPA today.

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Palate Wrecker from Green Flash Brewing Co.
4.14 out of 5 based on 4,037 ratings.
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