Why we're here...

Beer culture is coming of age. At any store, restaurant, bar, or friend's house you can now find at least a few good brews. In fact, there seem to be so many new beers, breweries and bars it's difficult to separate the good, the bad, and the mediocre.

If you're going spend $10 on one beer, what should you buy? If you're going to drive 2 hours to check out a brewery, what's worth your time? If you're going to plan a Friday night, what has a good selection and friendly atmosphere? We're here to help you answer these questions.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Green Flash Hop Head

Green Flash Hop Head is a American Amber/Red Ale by the Green Flash Brewing Company of San Diego. The American Amber/Red is another distinct style from the West Coast. Just like the American IPA, West Coast brewers like to take your traditional ales and hop them up a bit. Green Flash is no different. Their IPA and DIPA are highly sought after.

In the ale category Amber/Reds are early on the road to dark beers. Pale Ales, use malts that are light in flavor and color. Moving into the Amber/Reds realm the malt flavor begins to stand out more and begins to compete more with the hops. Many well hopped Amber/Reds I've had seem to have an identity crisis.  The malt and hops flavors battle it out in your mouth for an unpleasant experience. However, there are some very good ones.

A friend bought this from the Pangaea Bottle shop. It has an ABV of 6.4%.

The beer pours a dark amber color with a foamy, medium sized, slightly off-white head that leaves lots of lacings. Be warned, this is a bottle conditioned beer so there will be yeast and a bit of hop sediment floating in the drink. What does that mean? Extra nutrients and vitamins for you. And your beer is alive.

The aroma is upfront with the sweet malts and supported by citrus and pine hops. The taste hits you with the sweet, bready malts, hints of dark fruit, and the hops, citrus, pine and a little bit of spice at the dry finish. Medium thick body, nice cabronation and rich.

This is a great example of a West Coast Red. Well balanced flavor - the malts and hops balance each other well. I suspect that the bittering hops were down played in place of dry hopping. The IBU isn't particularly high, but the hop flavor is very present. This is a Must Have It.

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