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Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPASierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

4,810 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 4,810
Reviews: 1,088
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 11.31%
Wants: 83
Gots: 559 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kaseydad on 12-29-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,810 | Reviews: 1,088
Reviews by BillHilly:
More User Reviews:
Photo of MKEtoSF
5/5  rDev +28.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Love this beer, the peppery kick from the Rye adds another dimension to the IPA style.

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into signature pint glass, bottled on 12/4/2014. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy deep orange/copper color with a 2 finger dense and rocky off white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big grapefruit, tangerine, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, spicy rye, light caramel, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of citrus/pine hops and moderate rye/bready malt notes; with good strength. Taste of big grapefruit, tangerine, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, spicy rye, light caramel, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness. Good amount of pine/grassy bitterness and rye spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, lemon/orange zest, pine, spicy rye, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice balance, robustness, and complexity of citrus/pine hops and moderate rye/bready malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, fairly crisp/sticky, and lightly creamy/bready mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent rye IPA style. All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/pine hops and moderate rye/bready malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of oberon
4.11/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a nonic a clear rich copper/bronze with a large blooming head that left a few broken rings of lace behind as it settled slowly.Not as assertive in the nose as I expected,it does have a decent shot of grapefruit-like hop aromas with some mild rye spice.Much fuller flavors with a nice mix of nutty malt mixed with spicy rye and a healthy dose of citric hops,well rounded.A very solid rye offering from SN wich frakly I expected,I could drink this all day.

Photo of tectactoe
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a deep copper color, red and orange tones here and there. Nice clarity all around; very small bits of sediment hang in suspension throughout the brew. Creamy, off-white head settles to a quarter-inch quickly and leaves some nice lacing on the glass. Aroma is deep and heavy pine and hop oils, super wet, dark, and dank weed. Citrus notes bring up the rear end; tangerine, grapefruit. A little bit of dryness from the rye but not much in the aroma. The taste, however, is plentiful with rye - the large rye under body is the canvas upon which the rest of the beer lies. Hops go wild but don't overpower nor combat the rye for dominance; oily and resinous pines engulf, along with a slight white pepper spiciness. Some earthy herbal flavors pull through more and more; faint musty dirt, but not in a bad way. The citrus is a little more subdued on the palate than it was in the nose, and it takes on more of a light lemon zest flavor than the nose would lead to believe. Even in the finish, the rye is still popping and meshes with a nice yeast flavor in the aftertaste, along with some fading, dry bitterness. Medium bodied, although the mouth is somewhat thinner than expected and just a touch watery at times. Decent amount of carbonation.

What hasn't been said about Sierra Nevada already? Everything they put out it delicious. Ruthless Rye is a nice "Rye-PA" with a significant amount of rye and a nice hop profile to go along with it. Delicious stuff, here.

Photo of ExtraStout
4.48/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Ruthless Rye certainly has the look down; a body that mixes brown, orange and red is crowned with a towering head of light tan foam that has ridiculous retention and leaves behind some great lacing.

The aroma has a big dose of citrus, is a little bit spicy and has notes of caramel as well. Ruthless Rye is bright and citrus-flavored immediately, bringing the hop profile that I have come to expect from Sierra Nevada. Grapefruit, orange, hints of resin and just a touch of pine combine with considerable bitterness. The spicy, almost peppery rye flavors are noticeable without being overwhelming, with a little bit of caramel and even some powdery cocoa to back it up.

Slightly oily on the tongue with a fairly full body for an IPA. Ample carbonation gives a smooth and creamy feel.Ruthless Rye is a hoppy beer with rye in the background. If you like Sierra Nevada's other hoppy beers, then you will dig this one if you like rye.

Photo of MadScientist
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

aroma: pine and citrus with a hint of pineapple and tropical type aromas. There is some grassy notes with a light malt sweetness. There is moderate rye spiciness to the aroma.

appearance: golden orange and clear with an ivory head that forms a half inch of rocky, longlatsting head.

taste: a good deal of citrus with a lot of that spicy pepper/rye character. There is some mango towards the back mixed in with some pineapple. There is a assertive hops bitterness with just enough malt for support. The balance is very bitter. The finish is dry with a linger hop bitterness aftertaste.

mouthfeel: dry, medium full bodied with a medium high carbonation

drinkability: A very good IPA with a great rye flavor.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of Andnkuhn
4.66/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Great white head that settles (laces a little).
S: a pineapple/hoppy wild flower.
T: a wonderful toasted malt then a malt flavor ending in a clean hoppy taste.
M: A solid rye front and ending in a solid HARD hop taste.
O: It has the hit of rye up front, shortly after a heavy ale, and ends with a solid IPA KICK. A definite easy drinker for IPA fan, but enough IPA to keep us coming back when we want less than a IPA/dipa.

Photo of wrycon
2.98/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A very clear amber. Really clear - like the lovechild of an amber and a West coast IPA. A lot of rye in the nose. Smells similarly to their Northern Harvest, but with some lighter pine undertones. You can catch some citrus on the top, as well. Hmm, this is interesting. Quite thick to start with no real identity. Then the rye, grain and bread notes explode and make it taste almost like an American lager. The pine notes push their way forward on the back end and try to substantiate the IPA claim. I'm not catching much citrus, just a lot of pine and rye. It's ok, but nothing I'd regularly drink.

Like it? It's OK

Photo of steelerguy
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Amber hue, tall tan head, moderate carbonation, very clear.

S - Caramel malts, citrus hops, spicy rye.

T - Much like the smell, caramel malt, some sweetness from botht the malt and rye and some spiciness from the rye and hops. Predominately citrus hops, but a good bit of pine also. Ends with bitter kick.

M - Moderate body, some coating of the mouth from the malt and the resinous hops accentuate this. I think the carbonation is spot on but for the body, I'd like a little more alcohol to dry the palate.

O - Very good rye beer from SN, will definitely have again and I think it is a good rye beer to introduce people to the grain.

Photo of lordofthewiens
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In a pint glass the beer was a reddish amber color with a small beige head. There was a little bit of lace.

Spicy rye aroma, some caramel malt. Grassy, herbal hops. A hint of citrus.

Caramel and spicy rye taste. Resinous, piney hops. Grapefruit showed up also.

This was a very crisp, hoppy IPA. Very drinkable.

Photo of warnerry
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a beautiful clear copper with three fingers of off-white head. Head has great retention and coats the glass in lacing.

S - Spicy rye and bitter citrus really stand out. Nice bread malt aroma as well.

T - Nice peppery rye up front, quickly followed by bitter grapefruit zest. Both tastes are quite prominent, but not overpowering in the least. Bread malts and a bit of sweeter citrus come in midway, with the finish being more bitter.

M - Medium mouthfeel is somewhat resiny and finishes with a lingering dry bitterness.

O - A very tasty beer, though I prefer Founders Red's Rye by a significant margin. Still, I would have this again.

Photo of Beaver13
3.71/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

12oz beer. Pours a clear copper with a big frothy off white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is rye grains with some piney hops.

The flavor is some sweet bready malt with a big piney hop bitterness and rye spices. The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with slightly sharp carbonation.

Overall, I like it. It's a solid IPA and I like what the rye adds.

Photo of renegadeburger
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

ooooh i love this time of the year because i get to try the ruthless rye from snbc

ok here it goes picked up a fresh 6pack from my local deli on way back home from work

pours deep red color and nice white head aroma is a bit faint but getting some figs in there allong with some of the great juicy hops you would expect from sierra but also i get some spice in there kind o like nutmeg maybe its the rye?

and here we go with the taste very smooth i would say drinkable like a rye ipa but having more complexity and depth

the mouthfeel was the winner here it definitely popped out at you like a big explosion of depth but not too cloying

overall i like it and will seek it out again next year

Photo of Guden
3.04/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- Pours a solid copper color with a big fluffy off white head. Fairly clear but a bit of haze.

S- Big harsh piney nose with tons of grassiness, not very pleasant.

T- The grassiness of the nose is again the star of the flavor shining through and overwhelming the light pine of the hops. A wash of maltiness and mild bitterness wash down the grass flavor well but can't make up for it being there in the first place.

M- The medium-low body is a bit higher than expected but blends nicely with the earthy rye and grassy hops.

D- This beer suffers from an overbearing grass quality and the rye taste not shining through as much as it could. It looks beautiful but is just alright. Compared to the Founders Red Rye PA it is no where near as good.

Photo of Billolick
3.87/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cant find any freshness info on the 12 ounce bottle. Pours darker almond amber, light oatmeal head, shows some staying power and leaves respectable bands and bits of stickage. Hopped up nose with the unmistakable odor of fresh rye bread.

Rye infused IPA, with a nice load of hops crunching on the taste buds, and more rye floating just under the surface. Nice.

Although I tend not to be a huge Rye beer fan, this one is hoppy enough to keep my interest. Though still unlikely I'd purchase this one ahead of all time favorites Torpedo and/or SNPA

Photo of Homebrew35
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle date translated to jan 1 2012.

Pours a nice one and half fingers worth of a creamy kaki head. Tight bubbles cling to the glass, nice cap remains forever. Deep brown somewhat hazy body.

Smells a bit spicy, very rye like bready was, some citrus and pine like hoppyness.

Tastes quite bready, Carmel, toffee, some pepper and spice, resinous pine and earthyness on the finish.

Medium full bodied. Medium carbing. Somewhat coating with hop resins and malt dextrins.

Overall this is quite the tasty beer. Very satisfying and gives me a good idea what rye is about, flavor and mouthfeel.
$1.50 a single and winenation.

Photo of tigg924
3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

Appearance: 3/4 inch head, moderate carbonation, orange-brown in color, clear

Smell: citrus hops and rye

Taste: sweet caramel start, big time rye breadiness in the middle, citrus hops at the end

Mouthfeel: sweet start with a big bitter middle and slightly less bitter end, moderate carbonation, medium bodied

Overall: A nice dry rye ipa. Of the Sierra Nevada bitter ipas, this one is my favorite. Similar to other SN beers, but the rye shines here. Granted there are other rye IPAs and rye beers I would go to first, but I could see myself sipping on a couple of these.

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a reddish-amber color with an off-white head. The rye really stands out in the aroma, but there is also a little bit of pine and some biscuit malt notes. The flavor also has a lot of rye in it. I also get some orange and pine from the hops, as well as a little bit of biscuit and bread from the malt which keeps the bitterness low to medium. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of 1Adam12
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stumbled upon this on accident. Pours amberish. Slightly thin looking, but still looks good. Smells hoppy, and I can smell the rye on the nose. Moderately hoppy taste, followed by a bitter taste. The finish really makes the rye noticeable. The mouthfeel is sharp and very bubbly. Overall this is very tasty. Just what I'd expect from SN. Nothing too spectacular, but very solid none the less.

Edit: Holy crap, thats the first time I've ever had a review come back with a 0 rdev.

Photo of bsp77
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Nonic Imperial Pint.

Appearance: Somewhat dark copper with a nice sturdy cap and great lacing. Darker than expected but looks great, as SN beers always do.

Smell: Spicy, earthy and bready, with some orange-driven citrus.

Taste: Semi-sweet bread and toast backbone. Fairly earthy and citrusy (a little tangier than the aroma indicated), with a long pine and spice finish.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, medium body, dry finish.

Overall: While not quite the taste onslaught of some other Rye IPAs (such as Founders Red Rye and the Summit India Rye Ale from two years back), this is extremely well balanced and immensely drinkable. The best "Spring" seasonal from Sierra Nevada yet.

Photo of kingcrowing
3.3/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

Pours a deep hazy amber/ruby color with a small white head along with some light lacing. Nose is earthy and hoppy, there is certain rye astringent bitter as well.

Taste is quite sharp, a nice strong bitterness with a earthy tone and some herbal vegital bits as well. Mouthfeel is a bit light but it's easy drinking and a good spring beer even though it doesn't feel anything like spring.

Photo of RTEdmunds
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear amber color. About four centimeters of head, left pretty lacing behind. Still a nice head after a few minutes passed.

Strong rye smell right when I opened the bottle. Balanced with some citrusy aromas.

Spicy rye in the face. There's some sweetness to balance it out and notes of orange/citrus fruit zest. I can detect some piney undertones. Interesting combination of flavors, I really dig it.

Moderate carbonation and I definitely would not have guessed that it's 6.6% ABV.

If you're into rye, give this a buy. Especially if you're a fan of Sierra Nevada's Torpedo. I didn't expect to enjoy this beer so much, glad I picked it up!

Photo of jondeelee
4.26/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Ruthless Rye IPA opens to a nicely hoppy nose, pink grapefruit and grapefruit rind dominating, but supported by a nice mélange of pine, eucalyptus, mint, dandelion stem, and a touch of anise. The emphasis is clearly on hops here, and those aromas make up the greater part of the nose. There are still, however, nice aromas underneath, including an incredibly sweet candi sugar-like blast that mixes with orange, cherry, berry, and apricot fruit esters to form an almost crystallized fruit sugar extract sensation. The nose also brings a nice peppery undertone from the rye, adding a welcome layer of spice to the sugars and bitter hops. Finally, deep beneath lies a bed of toast crust, wheat bread, and Grape Nuts cereal. As a whole, the nose is excellent, bearing enough hoppy and sugary notes to make the salivary glands start flowing, and the flavors themselves nicely balanced (even if geared heavily towards the sugars and hops), and containing a fine variety of notes. This is especially impressive considering the 6.6% ABV, which would normally indicate a far lesser quality and strength of aromas.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a spicy, hoppy blast, the hops and rye fighting for attention. The hops win in the initial moments, bringing pink grapefruit and grapefruit rind, with mint, eucalyptus, dandelion stem, and pine, but the peppery rye notes keep excellent pace, coming in a close second. Sugars kick in after a second or so, adding the nice and surprisingly strong crystallized fruit extracts noted in the nose, and in the same flavors. Good touches of toast crust, wheat bread, and biscuit form an earthy layer at the bottom. In subsequent sips there is a lessening of sugary notes, the hops simply too powerful in competition, and the hops themselves lose some of their nuance as the tongue numbs under their blast, but the beer still remains tasty. The aftertaste is mainly hops, with faint lingering sugars and breads, and stays on the tongue for a good while. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is a very nice rye IPA, and for the low ABV, it’s surprising how much flavor is in here. The notes are very nicely balanced, and the beer as a whole is surprisingly tasty and smooth, even over the course of several mouthfuls. The hops are especially nice, being full and rounded and heavy in oils, which helps boost the mouthfeel. Worth trying.

Photo of dogfishandi
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, fridge temp, darkness snifter, 2012.

pours out a nice light copper, almost a touch brown and red. very nice thick creamy off white head. kept some really amazing looking retention and left some super thick lacing. lots of carbonation bubbles as well.

at first i got big doses of that classic SN sharp, dry citrus and pine. after a minute or two, the grains balance things out and mute out the hops a bit, slightly spicey rye and bready, grainy malts.

slightly dry, slightly sharp citrus, resinous pine balanced very nicely by a light caramel, slightly pungent spicey rye bready grain. just the right amount of sweetness is cut by a nice bitterness. a dry bitterness lingers.

medium bodied, super drinkable. hops are mostly felt on the palate, but there is a bit of lingering spice from the rye.

this is definatly one of the better ryPA's ive had in awhile. maybe not as good as hop rod rye but still very enjoyable. the rye is right up front, which i like, still pretty hoppy. ill be buying this again.

Photo of ehammond1
3.71/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Cask

Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Amber and copper with a hugely foaming, thick, persistent light khaki colored head that leaves the glass messy with chunks of thick lace.

Mild though pleasant aroma of simple grain and mild pine hop presence.

The flavor is nice, though not at all aggressive. The grain and bread flavors are dominant, with mild pine and just a hint of rye.

Medium bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. I have always loved the way Sierra Nevada beers feel in the mouth, and the cask only accentuates that here.

A decent rye IPA, but I don't really feel the need to revisit this one anytime soon.

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Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 4,810 ratings.