Wait! Did you see that? It was a small Green Flash of brilliance!
Note: photo is for educational purposes and not owned by beerforyourface.com
This cloudy looking brownish colored Hop Head Red does not look too beautiful. It is muddy with a tarnished head that reminds me of a fast dissolving Guinness head. But, it's flavor and mouth-feel are smooth, with a sweetness that teeters on caramel and a decent hops pop at the end. There is also a small poke of black pepper in the mix which is quite pleasant as the beer warms. I found the mixture of smooth mouth texture and crisp hops interesting and appealing.
In reality, this is a hard beer to categorize. It is a red with malt flavor that reflects it. But is has the mouth-feel of a cream ale. Yet it has a nice hops flavor at the tail end that brings a pale ale to mind. So what is it? They call it a hopy red IPA...I just call it pretty darn good beer. And I will also be buying it again.
Beer starts with a nice malt roast that brings out a sweet brown sugar like flavor. There is also a nice hops twang at the outset. The beer cleans up quickly and a nice black pepper flavor protrudes which is quite nice. If you let the beer warm a bit, the pepper really comes out. This leads into a well-rounded hops that is only slightly floral. The hops flavor builds a bit and the beer actually ends up quite hopy.
This is a situation where the beer is greater than the sum of its parts. The combination of slight caramel, nice crisp hops, smooth roasted malt, and a twinge of pepper, all come together very nicely. It is a nice effort. I would order it again...wait I just did.
Full Brewery Name: Green Flash Brewing Company
Brewery Location: greenflashbrew.com
Alcohol by Volume(ABV): 8.1
Drinkability: Moderate - Sessionable
Website: San Diego, California