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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.
very good

1,080 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,080
Hads: 4,906
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 11.22%
Wants: 85
Gots: 641 | FT: 0
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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,080 | Hads: 4,906
Photo of towelboy02
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

A: It has a nice red amber/copper look. a white head. Sort of cloudy when swirled in a pint glass

S: a slight breaded creamy, then piney.

T: it has a rye taste as it warms up then a hoppy dry bitter at the end.

M: slight carbonation when it hits your tongue. dry towards the end.

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Photo of mac31
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

4 way IPA pack. I like the malt profile of this brew. Rye has slight spiciness and drying effect. Hops are more balanced. Ordinary brew from an
extraordinary brewery

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Photo of travolta
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Sticky leopard print lacing. Very nice head retention. A rocky and voluminous head. Brownish apricot in color.

Nose: Orange and citrus, pine and resin. Caraway and pepper in the end with a cigar humidor aroma.

Taste: Citrus up front which forms into hop bitterness, grains and black pepper. Some orange and lemon peel. Again, pine and resin. Perhaps carmel chalkiness at the end?
A dry finish.

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Photo of MRAnderson
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was an "OK" beer from the Titan out west which didn't really surprise me. I found this beer to be very mild with taste and the Rye really doesn't shine through on this beer at all. IT was not a bad beer but it was not memorable either, the beer is worth giving a try though. They could have hopped this beer out a tad more and they should have added more rye especially since the Title of the beer states this beer is all about rye...???

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Photo of Averwo
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into an IPA glass.

Dark reddish brown appearance. 2 fingers of head.

Smells is light on hops. A little malt. Kind of a light citrus smell.

Taste is very bitter and Hoppy. Grapefruit notes with caramel and a burnt dry after taste. Must be the rye. Very flavorful. You also get whiskey barrel like notes.

Mouth feel is very good. Good carbonation and very drinkable. There is a strong aftertaste of toasted hops.

This is a dark IPA that satisfies. Big on flavor. Very strange. Almost like a burnt whiskey cast IPA. Definitely something you should search out for.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sixer picked up at Rick's in Alexandria. Served in a Sierra Nevada tulip.

Pours a clear copper-garnet color with a very long-lasting, foamy off-white head. Very dense and impressive. Heavy lacing as it goes down the edges of the glass. The nose carries a good bit of rye and spice with some earthy hops in the background. Slight resin there as well.

The flavor focuses a bit too much on the rye and accompanying spice. Hop flavor is there, but comes through more as bitterness in the finish. Medium body and just a bit chewy. Dry and bitter. Drinkable, but probably not in large quantities. While I enjoy this one, it's not something I'd want to drink a bunch of, a la SNPA.

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Photo of chilly460
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Nice looking beer, pours a darker amber, quite clear with a full inch of off-white head. Fluffy head dissipates slightly but sticks around, heavy rings of lacing ring the glass.

S - The rye is quite apparent, comes in as some spiciness. Complimented well with the citrus, and bigger floral hop aroma coming through. Get a nice caramel background, malt is big in the overall profile.

T - Follows the nose pretty well, initial hit is the very floral hop taste, light tasting. The cleaner, somewhat spicy rye comes in here as well, distinct. Surprising was the big malts coming in, plenty of caramel sweetness, this beer is quite sweet overall.

M - A fairly plain mouthfeel, bit less then medium body and standard mid-carbonation.

O - I enjoyed the floral hops on this one, but to be honest the sweetness throws it off a bit as you continue working on the glass.

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Photo of Aiptasia
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed in a pint glass.

A: It pours beautifully. Perfect pour against the side of the pint yielded an impressive 2" rich tan foam head with beautiful sparkling ruby red body. Effervescence bubbling up in a beautiful constellation of rye lust.

S: Smells wonderful. Freshly mowed lawn and rye bread with a grapefruit rind smackity smack.

T: Seriously hoppy. This is a young beer in the bottle and can use a little conditioning. Was hoping for more malt, but the hops give the rye a beat down and noogies until it screams uncle. I'm going to wait another month and see how it tastes then.

M: Medium bodied, assertively carbonated. Alcohol is a non-factor.

O: Overly hoppy, needs a little bottle aging to be enjoyable. I like Rye Squared by Terrapin better.

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Photo of rfbenavi80
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Boulevard Tulip glass. Bottle was kept in fridge.

A- Pours a clear deep amber/copper color, with very frothy cream colored head that hung around awhile. When it left it there was very thick lacing on the glass.

S- Hoppy, grapefruit, and pine.

T- Grapefruit up front. Was really wanting to taste the "peppery spice" of the rye that the bottle says it has but could't quite find it. I get lots of sour citrus.

M- Light and refreshing.

O- I enjoyed it. Glad I decided to pick up a six pack of it.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

At the time of this review, this is the #17 beer on the beeradvocate.com "Top Beers - Rye Beer" list. Served from a 12 ounce bottle into a Hill Farmstead becher glass.

Beer is brown and clear with a nice tan head of small and medium bubbles, nice moderate carbonation, some lacing on the glass.

Aroma is sweet with some earthy mildly citrus hops in there. Smells nice.

Beer is medium in body with a mildly dry finish, moderate bitterness and a grainy aftertaste. The lead off is this mild spiciness from the malt and this nice body that fills out to a good hop presence, the aftertaste totally takes me out of the beer though. Not a fan of that. Otherwise it is a fine little IPA / rye beer.

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Photo of heygeebee
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Unused to style.

Pours dark gold/copper, one finger head hangs around along time. Nice. Great lacing.

Aromas are hop driven. Strong and dry.

Taste is dry and hop driven. Citrus and pine in the mix.

Mouthfeel slightly oily - not a lot of carbonation.

Overall, one of SNs better efforts. May have travelled better than others I have tried.

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Photo of icepik
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Darker amber color, very slight chill haze, light head, OK lacing.

S: Fairly light hops in the nose and about equal to the rye malt aroma.

T: Very nice nutty rye malt flavor, a bit bready, fairly strong bite of hops/rye on the finish. Bitterness lingers.

M: Solid mouth feel, soft carbonation, bitter finish.

O: Another nice offering from SN. While I feel it lacks a bit in the aroma and flavoring hops (for an IPA), it does have a strong bitterness on the finish that goes with the rye malt, which is the center of the flavor for this beer. It might even be a bit too much, depending on how much you like a pepper/bitterness finish (I like it). Its worth a try!

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Photo of jbphoto88
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ruthless Rye pours crystal clear amber with a thick bone colored and fluffy head. A pretty product that leaves a lovely sticky lace on the side of the glass.

The nose is predominately a nutty dull citrus with hints of caramelization and lemon peels. The rye is also very fragrant here and a nice touch.

The taste is good but not great. Flavorful grain roasted elements with an iced tea like hop presence. I wish the hops were more available in the flavor department but they do show up in the mouthfeel and finish.

A damn decent hop bitterness that really compliments the sweet grains happens in the mouthfeel. There is also an exclamation point of rye dryness. A solid beer but not the best rye brew or IPA but that shouldn't stop you from trying it.

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Photo of EricCioe
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours red copper with an offwhite head leaving some lace. On the nose there is earthy pine backed up behind by general spice and a little dough. On the tongue the rye sits heavily with the earthy hops filling in around it. The body is medium, very drinkable with a pleasant buzz from the combination of hops, rye, and carbonation. The finish is long on spice.

Overall, I like this beer a good deal. It's a welcome variation on the SNPA/Torpedo theme.

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Photo of ikantspel
3.67/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass

pours a clear amber color with an off khaki medium head. leaves a semi thick lacing along the glass

earthy notes alone with pine, hops, budding roses, and some sweet citrus

taste is almost similar to aroma. more toastiness though, the rye is inconspiculously absent. maybe it was there but i didnt get any of it

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Photo of morimech
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper color with two fingers of head that had good retention before settling to a thick cap. Heavy lacing is left down the glass. This beer is a looker.

I pick up mostly citrus and earthy hops in the aroma. Just a small hint of the rye. Some breadiness from the malt rounds things out.

Plenty of rye in the flavor. Not sure the citrus hops is the ideal compliment to the rye. Bitterness is high. Overall is slightly dry.

Has excellant carbonation for a hoppy, bitter brew. Plenty of body to delivery the flavor.

Another solid beer from Sierra Nevada. The flavor was just a slight letdown compared to the great rye IPAs.

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Photo of sethcroisant
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A- not much head, but what's there provides great lacing.

S- heavy on west coast hops and rye. hints of caramel

M- odd texture. a little too carbonated, but it is somewhat dense and chewy.

T- very spicy right away with plenty of rye malt and cascade hops. the alcohol sneaks in during the initial bitter bite. ends a little on the sweeter side with some caramel malt. hops oil lingers on the back of the tongue in the end, and some biscuit malts get mixed in as well.

O- no risks seem to have been taken, but it's still a good offering.

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Photo of AndyAvalanche
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass. Slightly lighter than copper in color with excellent clarity. Slightly off-white colored head that erupts pretty quickly on an only moderately agresive pour; the whole bottle couldn't be poured in on the first try and it still almost overflowed...I like that.

Smell is good. Like most IPA's it's nice and hoppy, primarlily citrus with lemon zest. Floral, grassey, earthy, and herbal. Something about it is a little unique, quite interesting, good though.

Taste is on par with the smell. I can tell this is a pretty fresh bottle. The rye malt grass stands out a litle more in the flavor profile than the smell. Other than that it's not really a whole lot different.

Mouthfeel is good. Light to medium in body with a good carbonation level. Pretty smooth, starts off only reasaonbably sweet, with a nice dry bitter finish. Really drinkable and solid like many Sierra Nevada brews.

I got a sixer of this when I got the last of the Celebration that I could, not a bad substitue I guess but with the exeption of the added rye, I don't find it all that different from a regular Sierra Nevada IPA.

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Photo of scruffwhor
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rust, copper, clear amber color. NIce two finger head that has strong retention and lacing. Like the bubbling too.

Spicey citric and earthy hop aromas with a toasted cracker and bread crust malt bill aroma.

Spicey rye and hop combo for a bitter cracker and earthy oarnge zest marmalade. The malt flavors thins from middle to the finish. The palate is resiny to start and thins out to the finish. Aftertaste is watery and bitter.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Chilling out on a weekday and Raul was simply feeling it. Raul never had one, so why not prance on a waiting gazelle? Conclusion: not bad. Not bad at all. It's not like I was expecting the prom queen after a few wine coolers, but it was tasty enough.

Raul digs it. Raul digs it enough to dig for another.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle pours a crystal clear crimson color with a dense cap of tan head. Excellent retention and lacing...a damn fine looking brew.

Earthy rye and bright, citric hops are simplistic but manage not to clash as so many hoppy rye beers that have come before. Impressive.

The rye manages a smooth, even keel while the hops drive the majority of the flavor impact...from an initial floral blast to a clean, herbal bitterness. Malts probably dont get enough credit in this beer and help provide a lightly sweet, toffee-ish backdrop that is both neutral and productive at the same time. Mouthfeel is on the thin side and a tad soapy, but those are mild complaints. One of the better rye beers I have had and a sixer didnt last too long in the fridge, another one might be soon to follow.

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Photo of Reaper16
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle served into a nonic pint glass

Pours a rusty, coppery brown color. Pretty much what you'd expect from a Rye IPA. It's very clear, very much a filtered beer. 1.5 fingers of offwhite foam leave lacing that sort of clings and drags like a person dangling from some precipice.

This beer's got a pretty nice nose on it. Spicy rye is upfront and bready, sure. But there's a good hop profile here that presents aromas of grape and passionfruit. Some general grassiness backs this up nicely. This doesn't really smell like an IPA too much, but it's a more subtle rye beer that works.

Unfortunately, that subtle nuance of the nose doesn't carry over to the palate. It's still a bit underflavored for an IPA, but there isn't much complexity to make up for it. Grassiness and rye grain spicy flavor abound. There's a small flush of grapeseed (and a trace, trace amount of like POM brand juice) but that's all the fruit that I really get. It's blunt but restrained.

The mouthfeel is pretty smooth, perhaps even undercarbonated but smooth nonetheless. It works well with the session-candidate flavor profile. Overall, this is a fine beer. It pales in comparison to Founders Red's Rye when it comes to a hoppy rye beer in six-packs, but it is a tasty option that is distributed all over the country. You can't do wrong by picking up a six-pack or a 12-pack of Ruthless Rye for your next gathering. This might just be my Super Bowl beer next weekend.

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Photo of Merkur
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at Flying Saucer in Nashville.

Beer pours a nice rich rich reddish color. Very little head.

Beer smells strongly of rye with a bit of citrusy hops.

Taste starts off a tad sweet and citrusy, followed by some bready malts on the finish.

Nice mouthfeel that is a tad thicker than most ipas.

Overall a nice Rye IPA

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served at a cool 58 or so degrees Fahrenheit
A careful pour into my Tripel Karmeliet tulip produces a two-figner thick, pale amber tinged, tan colored head that leaves some lacing stuck to the sides of my glass. The beer is a dark amber color that shows a brilliantly clear, rich amber hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells dominated by hops with notes of pine, earthy citrus, some rose like accents. This is backed by notes of caramelized malt (lots of crystal malt type notes, though this is held well in check by the dominant hops), toasted English biscuit like character, perhaps a hint of sweet tea and a solid, earthy, brown bread character that isn’t quite spicy, but is leaning in that direction. The citrus hop character has a certain “dankness” to it, rough, a little dirty, with a lot of herbaceous character, with a citrus oil character to it. The citrus and pine / herbal character mixes so well in the nose that it is hard to say which one plays the more prominent role.

The beer is fairly effervescent as it rolls across my palate, this accentuates the bitter hop notes and the earthy spiciness from the grain. Despite the dominant hop character, the earthy, brown bread and spicy rye character is really what lingers on the palate in the long finish. The grain character is quite a bit more noticeable in the flavor than it was in the nose. The hop character is still the dominant note here though and it contributes flavors of grapefruit zest, green tangelo, brighter lychee notes as well as a green herbal quality (that has a spicy undercurrent to it), definite pine and perhaps even a touch of a grassy quality (this last is quite subtle though). The spiciness here makes me thing of black pepper some how, but a lot of it is that “dirty” spicy quality that comes from Rye. The beer definitely has a viscous quality to it, and the body is best described as medium, though it is not so much as this beer is still quite quaffable.

As the beer warms up it gets a very earthy, infinitely rye like note and solid, brown-grain-bread character that becomes on par with the hop character. Because of the rye, this is definitely a very “dirty” IPA, and that is not a bad thing at all. It becomes quite a bit more complex. I could wish for some more citrus / fruit hop character, but the rye really accentuates the herbal / pine side of the hop character.

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Photo of beer348
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: nice color - reddish. Also enjoyed the label design.
S: very nice smell, probably my favorite thing about this beer
T: tastes good, crisp; what I would expect from an IPA.
M: It's great to try a new kind of beer (rye). But this tastes very much like a regular IPA.
O: For IPA fans you will like this beer. Lots of hoppy flavor. A clean , crisp drink.

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Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 1,080 ratings.