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Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
88
very good
1,113 Reviews
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,113
Ratings:
5,048
Avg:
3.92
pDev:
11.22%
 
 
Wants:
98
Gots:
754
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Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPASierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kaseydad on 12-29-2011

User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,113 | Ratings: 5,048
Photo of mattfungus
2.75/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 3.5

During this time of year (winter) there are a lot of heavy hitters, winter brews, double ipas and everything seems to be a bit overdone. i start longing for something that doesn't taste like malted brandy.

Finally, here is something that has its own unique flavor. This RyePA has a nice sea foam colored head and dark amber color. The foam quickly dissipates, however each time it lands on your tongue another blanket of foam is formed on it and it effervesces off of it.

It has that pepperiness of rye, but something different too. The malt swirls across your tongue and there is a heavy bitter finish that lingers in your mouth like their celebration's bitter, and it just keeps sitting there.

Easiest way to get rid of it is to have another mouthful and enjoy the wave of savory flavor that hits.

I think that it would go good with a jack, brick, asiago, pecorino romano or parmesean cheese, especially the jack or pecorino. I also think something sweet like figs, raisins or grapes might be good to wash off the bitterness.

On second review and on the third bottle I had to re-rate it. It is so bitter at the end that I had to give it away. The bitterness would just not go away. blah

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Photo of scot_chale
4.37/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

A- Beautiful copper/amber/orange body with 2 fingers of heavy white foam and very active carbonation flying around. Lacing is solid and the head hangs out.

S- the peppery, spicy, bready character comes out with some citrusy hop notes and some yeast but it's faint. the overall aroma is pungent and inviting.

T- total herbal hops. it's floral yet spicy and mean. it's very cool. challenging, in a good way. you get a bit of that rye malt when the hop bomb fades.

M- very hard carbonation bite on the tongue. it's dry, medium bodied, and clean.

O- holy cow. this is ruthless rye 2013. it's spicy, hoppy, bitter, complex, and everything that makes the american IPA a neverending adventure in beer. I'll keep this around for brewing sessions. Skol.

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Photo of CA_brewster
4.53/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The appearance of this beer is spectacular. Crystal clear deep amber color with a good finger and a half of head. The aroma on this beer is nice and hoppy with the spicyness of the rye coming through. The rye gives a very unique malt backbone to this beer. It's great, as a IPA lover I am really enjoying this. Pick some up if you get a chance.

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Photo of JohnF
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Very tasty rye IPA. The best part for me is the mouth feel if I leave it linger for a bit; the time in the mouth gives time for the rye fullness to be noticed.

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Photo of Grugalug
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass.

A-Pours a deep amber color with an impressive 2.5 fingers of head. It sticks around for a while and leaves some really nice lacing. Looks really great.

S-Quite Interesting. Strong presence of malt, especially the rye. The hops are noticeably more prominent, with the dominant aroma being citrus and earthy qualities. Just a bit of pine. Very nice overall.

T-An explosion of earthiness coming from the hops and the malt. You get this really interesting earthy quality from the rye and from the hops as well. A bit of citrus, mostly grapefruit, to balance this out. Hop bitterness is pungent but not overwhelming at all. Unique and satisfying.

M-Full-bodied. Has a thickness to it that is an interesting counterpoint to the strong hop character. Goes down easily and just enough carbonation.

O-A very unique IPA that allows malt and hop character to coexist beautifully. Would be a great beer for any season and yet another impressive offering from Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of OrtheusMaximusRex
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A= clear, brown, tinge of red, nice slightly off white head with decent retention
S= heavy hops, some sweetness from the malt and rye
T= this is where Rye IPAs really shine for me. I love the pepper notes in the finish with Rye IPAs
M= a great balance, sweet, but not too much, matches with the hops profile and the spiciness of the rye
O= 4.3

i really enjoy rye IPAs and this is a great example. The rye gives a beer a complexity and depth I feel that results in wanting another. I did a side by side with Ruthless and River Ryed from Sierra Nev. last spring and they were very close, color very close, ruthless with maybe slightly more red tinge on the edges, the smell and taste were also close but there was a distinction in the Ruthless, just something a bit more in the layering. They use overlapping but different hops with Ruthless I think having 1 extra variety, maybe this is the difference.

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Photo of Mechphisto
4.07/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very pleasant beer! I could make this one of my standard go-tos.

A- Rich and dark amber. The head was a nice toasty tan and lasted forever! The lacing was significant.

S- Hoppy, smooth (if you can use that word for smell... but it just seemed to have a "smooth" aroma), nutty. I couldn't sense any floral or citrus, but then, I've not been too good an those scents.

T- Toasty! Not cloying, but rather "full" flavored without being too bitter. Just enough of a bitterness to let you know you're drinking a beer worth drinking. Nutty. I couldn't tell a difference from it being a rye, though.

M- A slight sharpness of the carbonation. A little more than I prefer. But it's countered very nicely by its richness (without being too much so). Not at all chewy, and not not of an aftertaste (good).

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Photo of GNWBC
3.4/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Not a fan of IPA's but they are growing on me slowly, picked this over the SA alpine Spring.
P: pours a sexy reddish copper color with a decent head and nice lacing that lasts all the way down.

S: lots of sweet rye, roasty and sweet

T: you get a awesome citrusy hoppy note up front and as it settles the rye spiyness comes out with the sweet malt

MF: for being so hoppy it goes down clean, almost no resin lasting in the mouth.

OA: a good way to bring in spring, nice and refreshing while enjoying some good weather! and a grilled bbq chicken pizza.

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Photo of cxr1037
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Got a six pack of this about a week ago from Trader Joe's. Here's a review!

APPEARANCE: Clear, dark reddish amber. SRM 22ish. Solid, yellow-white head that retreats quickly to about a cm all around. According to the website, this beer uses 2-row pale, caramel, and chocolate malts (along with the rye, of course), which would explain the darker color. Looks like an amber ale.

AROMA: Floral hops and rye dominate. There are obvious malts, a little black pepper, and some phenols. There's also a momentary awareness of fruit - I get banana and cherry - but it's mostly fleeting.

TASTE: The rye takes over, bringing along it's signature spiciness. The hops feel subdued, but they're in there, contributing mostly floral notes but with some pine mixed in. There's more of that fruit again - this time more banana esters, like something from a hefeweizen.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-bodied, with good, strong carbonation. I can feel the rye lingering in the back of my palate. Quite pleasant.

OVERALL: This is a fine Rye IPA, perhaps one of my favorites, though I'm not a huge fan of the style. A lot of Rye IPAs seem to struggle with the balance between rye and hops, but I think Sierra Nevada walks the line quite well. I would have liked a little more hop character in this one; it's finished with Citra (and Chinook and "experimental variety"), but I think it would benefit from more tropical hop flavors. Perhaps Motueka? All in all, I'd buy this again.

85/100

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Photo of kevINSIGHT
3.03/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not a bad beer, but I was hoping for a lot more. Way less hoppy than most IPA's I've had. After liking Kind Ryed (Otter Creek) so much I had my hopes up for Sierra Nevada's Rye IPA and it tasted like a very ordinary beer.
Color was coppery and clear. Not a very foamy head but still a lot of fizz to the tongue. I tasted more malt than hops which was disappointing when expecting the hop bite of an IPA.

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Photo of r0gueleader
4.24/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is an amber/copper color with a nice froth. Smells of hops galore. Fruity undertone (cranberry?). A great amount of hops at first taste. Tons of character in this IPA, but a very smooth at the same time. The hints of rye are perfectly placed and not overpowering, and leaves a nice aftertaste. A fantastic spring IPA.

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Photo of kcrosson492
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Bottle #3 in my Trader Joe's surprise pack. I think this is the one I have been most excited for thus far!

A-The bottle rocks, fields, farms, and a female grim reaper!?

S-Tasty rye IPA smell mmm!

T-Has a delicious taste that is very hoppy.

M-Full flavored IPA

O-I would buy this beer again and again...deliciouso!

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Photo of Brandegee
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pour into pint glass...about two fingers of foam that subsides into a persistent layer and lacing. An immediate waft of hop aroma hits during the pour and persists in the first taste. It's accompanied by a strong rye smell and the rye flavor is what dominates the tasting. This is a pretty raucous beer. Sometimes the rye and hop flavors fight a little and the finish is sharply bitter. But it's a pleasant beer and surprisingly drinkable.

If someone were to make a high gravity bitter, only with rye, this is sort of how I would imagine it. The hop aromas and higher ABV give it a nice edge. I would buy this again.

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Photo of fezmeister
3.3/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Coppery with some sticky-looking lacing. Nose has the usual hops scents one expects from Sierra Nevada, but with a lot of stinky floral and rye overtones...floral almost the the point of a resinous cannibus bud smell. Hoppy, a little citrus (orange, grapefruit), pepper, and a lot of rye. Drinkable, but a touch of stickiness would leave me to hesitate to drink two in a row. Nice overall, but not the best in the genre, or from the brewery.

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Photo of Beerdregs
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Excellent clarity. Amber orange color with two finger slightly off white rocky head.

S: Some roasty malts with a citrus hop aroma.

T: Moderate malty sweetness with lingering bitterness from the hops. Cannot really perceive so called peppery rye notes. I don't know if I would be able to tell the difference between this and torpedo.

M: Resinous mouthfeel from ample hopping. Moderate/heavy carbonation.

O: This is a great beer and very quaffable but would maybe enjoy more rye. It certainly isn't "ruthless" in its utilization of rye.

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Photo of PatDreadful
3.45/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a DFH Chalice.

Appearance: Looks great with a nice light brown color that is completely transparent. The egg sheall colored head is large and maintains throughout the session. Very nice.

Smell: There is the typical SN hop bill that I've grown to love. Lush tropical citrus with a touch of piney notes to really keep everything grounded. The rye provides an earthy spice that only serves to enhance the pine notes. Again, very well done.

Taste: Ah, that is what I'm looking for. The citrus hits you up front with grapefruit dominating which gives way to that wonderful piney spice acheived through the hops and the rye and then all of the sudden, it is gone. The flavor loses steam half way through my swallow and I am just left with a lingering taste of mild malt. No spice and certainly no hops. This is a huge dissapointment.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light body with medium carbonation. Very good for the style but I could have used just a bit more in the way of carbonation

I was left underwhelmed by the hops in this beer. It certainly wasn't bad but I think there are much better rye options and certainly much better pale ale options out there.

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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 ranger60
3.71/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had a 5 oz sample on draft at Tap Room in Warren, NJ.

Appearance: crystal clear...dark golden, not quite amber, tight head.

Smell: not strong, but picking up the pepper notes and maybe some citrus?

Taste: the rye comes through, as do the pepper notes.

Mouthfeel: pleasant level of carbonation, and good overall.

Overall: I like it; not having had many rye IPAs, not sure how this stacks up, but it is flavorful and pleasant.

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Photo of BeerRefugee
3.43/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light copper color. Moderate off-white head with good retention and moderate lacing. Medium rye and herbal hops in the aroma. Flavor is mild caramel malt, grassy and piney hops and a moderate dose of rye. The spiciness of the rye and bitterness of the hops predominate--I would have liked a bit more malt for some sweetness and balance. This is a beer that couldn't really decide what it wants to be--it needs more hops and rye to be a really aggressive rye IPA. Or it needs more caramel sweetness to be a more "mainstream" beer. Instead, they split the difference and the result, while good, is not as good as it could have been.

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Photo of mikehblack
3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Sierra Nevada balloon glass.

A- Pours a very clear dark orange, burnt amber color. Big white head leaving tons of lacing on the glass.

S- Piney hops, spice, breadiness

T- Big hop presence with tons of rye spicy character. The rye flavor rests on the tongue with a little bite.

M- Clean, well-carbonated. Drinks very easily.

O- Quite a tasty beer from a style I am not too familiar of. Think I will enjoy this as the new seasonal.

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Photo of Algebrew
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: A lightly hazy, caramel-orange color with a one finger, fine foam head which left a decent lace webbing.

Smell: The citrus hops come through on a mild note accompanied with a nice, spicy twang. A touch of light fruit, malt, and grain are present as well.

Taste: The beginning comes through with a touch of spicy citrus hops; the middle accentuates the beginning flavors and brings it to a peak; the end rolls out into a spicy, bitter, and soft wheat finish.

Mouthfeel: A bubbly, rugged, bitter IPA. Smooth, yet mildly thick - a bit defensive.

Overall: A strange IPA. It brings a good twist to the style, it carries true to its name with an excellent ruthlessness.

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Photo of SiriusBock
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: thick head with steady legs
S: smells like Cali hops all the way. Fresh. As it got warmer, I smelled malt and rye like when I am boiling wort

T: acidic, hoppy, strong without tasting alcoholic. Good fresh taste. The rye doesn't really stand out.
M: probably the weakest point. There wasn't anything remarkable happening here.
Overall I have it a good grade. Great IPA and honestly, awesome fantasy label!

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Photo of roundthewaygirls
3.62/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

poured into a tulip glass

A: burnt sienna color. ruby shine when held up to the light. complex color. hazy. carbonation. a finger of frothy head quickly dissipates. nice lacing. (nice bottle art as well. reaping the harvest. shit is deep.)

S: the rye has a robust presence, balanced with citrus notes. something at the bottom is slightly resinous or woody.

T: the rye is very well blended with the citrus malts. the malts aren't particularly discernible but they compensate for the dryness of the rye. the effect is very refreshing. peppery. hops on the finish. well balanced.

M: medium bodied. moderately carbonated. refreshing. crisp going down.

O: when i saw this beer, i knew i would have to compare it with founders red's rye pa. while not as bold or original, this beer is completely satisfying and refreshing. the substitution of rye for predominant hops separates this beer from any other sierra nevada beer i've had.

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Photo of Rantingfury
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I opened up the bottle and poured into my favorite truncated cone shaped glass. It has a nice rich amber color with a nice thick tan head. The beer showed a bit of lacing. I took in a nose full of aroma, detecting the piney and citrus notes of the hops. The aroma wasn't strong like other ipas, but pleasing none the less. The peppery notes of the rye come out in the flavor nicely at first, then fade to the citrus and pine of the hops. As for mouthfeel, this is a good full body brew. The carbonation gave a nice impression to the bready feel.
I was reluctant to buy this at first as rye isn't too popular in the south for brew, bread, or liqueurs, but an inner voice kept up and I decided to try it. This beer broke my expectations. I expected the hops bitterness and the sourness of the rye to clash, but it didn't. I like IPA, and this beer doesn't quite deserve the moniker. I do like and recommend this beer. It's a cold day and this spicy beer made it more tolerable.

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Photo of ZachHodgson
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.25

A - Aged copper with an average head that persists nicely with excellent lacing
S - Malty backbone the overtones of lemon and grapefruit
T - Similar to the aroma but with a nice lingering piney bitterness and a spicy finish from the rye.
M - Solid but not overwhelming
O - This is yet another solid offering from Sierra Nevada. As easy as it is to overlook these guys and pass them off as old hat, they still know how to innovate and have plenty of surprises up their sleeves. This is my first rye and I like what I'm drinking so far. The combination of rye malt and hops is quite nice. Love the artwork.

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Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 1,113 ratings.