Oh, the American IPA. Most craft breweries have their take on it nowadays but there are some that set the precedent or are the benchmarks. Vista, Ca. based brewery Green Flash is one of those. Unfortunately they are also one of those beers that doesn't distribute to Michigan so it's a rare treat whenever one comes my way in a beer trade or a gift. Many thanks go to Chris Owen, he of Killer's Kiss and the Hook Or Crook record label fame, for sending one my way. Now, as I sip on it (Yes, sipping and savoring because who knows when the next time one will come my way) let me share my notes about it with you.
Dark copper color and a light orange color tinged creamy head that melts a bit but still hangs tough and leaves a snowdrift effect like lacing all the way though the sipping. The label tells you that this is extravagantly hopped and if you didn't believe them the aromas that come out just from simply pouring it and letting it breathe in the glass for a few are enough to tell you they aren't lying. Big citrus scents, grapefruit along with some lime, stick out most but there are some underlying sweet caramel and bready malts that seem to set a foundation.
The flavor is one of those examples of what a stellar American IPA (be it west coast, east coast, Michigan or what ever other sub genres the style claim) is all about. Bright and bold floral hops packed with a grapefruit bite and a slight pineapple sweetness upfront that tingle and tantalize, a malt backbone taming a bit of the hop sting and nuances of almonds and fresh biscuits. The brew itself is of creamy medium body that's not too fizzy or too thick. It's finishes dry and though somewhat sticky doesn't hang for way too long like some other hop bombs of this caliber can.