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

4,870 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 4,870
Reviews: 1,095
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 11.31%
Wants: 83
Gots: 609 | 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: 4,870 | Reviews: 1,095
Photo of stonecutter2
4.56/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is what I expect from a Rye IPA, but sweet in the Sierra Nevada tradition.

Beautiful copper color, smell is a bit subdued but the flavor is exactly what I could want.

Sharp spicy bitterness starts and then develops into piney citrus hops with a bitter backbone. Delicious.

Photo of Whitley
5/5  rDev +28.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have been trying quite a few IPA's lately and although many of them are seriously great beers, I know I can always count on Sierra Nevada to give me what I am looking for. I am a huge Torpedo fan and I must say that I find the Ruthless Rye to be right up there with it and could definitely drink gallon after gallon of this stuff and be quite content, without the need to look elsewhere. Now, in my book, that is an excellent beer !!

Photo of Scrapss
4.04/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the two bottles into a monstrous Ball jar with a huge mouth

A: Clear deep brown/orange with a hint of rouge. Huge, rocky 4 finger head that settles to a slender girls pinky. Some lacing falls from the top down, some carbonation wells up from the depths of the glass.

S: Sierra Nevada yeast is buried behind that huge spicy malty rye nose. There's that slight skunky hop, like a pale Euro, that peeks around the malt. Peppery, hint-o-lemon.

T: This is gorgeous. The experience is so different with heavy rye brews, since the heat and spice comes from the rye and dominates all gentle components. But, when that initial rye spike subsides, a cascade of bitters and floral notes rushes in like a tsunami, backed up with a citrus hop note.

M: Smooth and spritely and then puckery sweet/spicy/sourness at the very edges. Creamy carbo hit with a medium body.

O: When this comes to town, better believe I'll grab a 6'er. So good, I love rye anything and this does not disappoint.

Photo of RusImpStoLuv
4.28/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Amazing Rye IPA! The color, smell, look...all say drink me. And then you do, greatness. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Perfect head that last most way throughout drinking, along with nice white bubble lacing. Great beer all around. Cheers! Side note, an odd but amazing food pairing is a nice cinnamon roll!

Photo of Ozzylizard
3.58/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

2014 vintage Bottle code 3351204 33 at 40 degrees into pint glass
Aroma light citrus
Head large (6.5 cm), white, creamy with a few large bubbles, slowly diminishing
Lacing good
Body light orange, clear
Flavor light citrus and spicey from the rye. Short lived. No alcohol, no diacetyl.
Palate medium, on the dry side, soft carbonation

A pleasant rye IPA, easy drinking

Photo of mick303
4.01/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Packaged (12/12/13) Poured into a tulip glass, a medium red crimson colour, plentiful head, and tons of lacing, outstanding looking. 4.25
S – lightly acidic, some caramel, black pepper, lemony citrus, some licorice, lemongrass, interesting funkiness and spice. The rye really takes it into unfamiliar territory but the ipa character is there with some piney and citrusy hops. 4
T – a complex malt bill is evident by the range of flavours going on here, lots of spicy rye character, mixing with spicy hops, initial touch of sweetness then goes to lots of fruity notes, lemon, orange, biscuit, pepper. A bit of sourness but the bitterness from the (cascade I assume) really helps keep this balanced. Not an overly hoppy IPA but some nice grapefruit mixed with the pepper goes quite well.
M – creamy and balanced, moderate body and fair amount of carbonation, lots of malty notes and a fair peppery feel, tart dryness on the finish keeps it light and refreshing.
--- Smell develops really nicely, taste is smooth, with complex rye spiciness, I took awhile to warm to this, the acidity initially is quite dominant, but it really lives up to the typical SN complexity, balance and depth. A lot of thought went into this and it shows well. Worth trying out, good showcase of the rye malt here. Refreshing as well as intriguing, one of the better rye beers i can remember having. Tart and spicy on the nose, flavourful and balanced body with a strong malt base, again more spicy than bitter, with a good finish to tie it together.

Photo of Richard-Carla
3.89/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I was surprised by this beer. While I really like IPAs, I've never had a rye IPA that I've really liked. And, I'm not a big Sierra Nevada fan. But, this beer challenged both of those beliefs.

After having this beer in a bar, I bought a six pack and have been enjoying it at home. The smell is a bit coppery, but the beer itself tastes great--a hoppy, balanced, bread-like taste that is easy to drink and truly enjoyable. It's not the best beer that I've ever had--by far--but it is a solid beer that I'd seek out and have again.

Photo of HarryPotHead
3.99/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy copper with thick lacy head this beer looks great. There's a faint smell of fresh baked bread on the nose so what's not to like there? Full bodied taste for the style there is just enough nuance to keep things interesting. The tug of war between malt / rye "breadiness" and hops is a draw. There is a bit of an aftertaste, but it's not unpleasant. This is an easy drinker and I could go for a couple more. Mouthfeel is spot on....creamy and rich. I picked this up as a single in a "build your own six pack" store and I'm wishing I would have grabbed a full 6 of these. Another good one from SN....not great, but VERY solid!

Photo of JayMartin73
3.94/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: Crystal clear dark amber. Nice head with light lacing.
Smell: As expected hops dominate, but taper to a sweet smell of citrus and spice.
Taste: various combinations of malt, hops and spice are most noticeable. Hints of fruit and citrus enter. Rye is not too overpowering, but noticeable in the background.
Mouth: dry feeling with long lasting aftertaste. Good carbonation.
Overall: Good beer I'll look froward to during the season is available.
- Bottled/home tasting.

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.11/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a balloon glass.

The beer is a deep semi-clear copper color. A sea-foam cream colored head sits on too and doesn't want to recede. Nice webby lacing.

The aroma is both citric and fruity. Some spicy cedar-like woodiness as well.

The beer tastes like it smells. A nice spicy, woody rye body in the beginning. Some citrus rinds blend with faint tropical sweetness afterwards, with a bitter hop finish.

Mouthfeel is creamy, medium weight.

Overall, I hesitated to buy this. As usual, Sierra Nevada made a great beer in this.

Photo of ZoomanCru
3.58/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Ruthless Rye – Rye IPA (6.6%) - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. (California)
☆☆☆½

App: Pours a solid reddish brown with some golden inclinations to the outside of the glass. Dense, creamy beige head rises one finger and retains strong. A really good looking beer. Slightest hop sediment swirling in the glass. Lacing is impeccable.

Smell: Hops dominate the aroma with a nose of grapefruit and earth, with some
slight alcoholic heat on the end. Considerable malt aromas as well come through mostly sweet with a slight toasted character.

Taste: Taste essentially follows nose, although much stronger. Foretaste is pure toasted malt which suddenly gives way to an earthy hops complexity that harmonizes nicely with the malt. Allowed to sit on the palate, the beer transitions to a more aggressive bitterness with hints of pine, and a citrus like astringency. Allowed to warm, hop bitterness mellows slightly, and the beer gains some welcome and balancing sweetness.

Mouth: Rye adds significant body to this brew which holds up well to the aggressive, drying nature of the hop profile. Alcohol is apparent and slightly drying, but heat is overall minimal. Carb is pretty heavy, but does well to compliment overall intensity.

Home tasting, 12oz bottle into Sifter. 2/18/14.

Photo of Brandegee
3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
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.

Photo of jdmorgan
3.95/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A very pleasant and fresh idea on a Rye ale. The appearance is a gold/bronze with a good head. The aroma suggested some hop presence and a bit of sweet malt as well.

The taste has a nice bite up front, owing to moderate carbonation mixed with moderate hop flavor and bitterness. As it settles into the body, you detect a thick malted rye body with the expected "spiced & peppery" tones, although not in excess. The malt body is slightly sweet and fades off into a bit of biscuit and robust hop flavor. Hop presence seems heavier in hop flavors without being overly bitter. The mouthfeel and carbonation are moderate and the alcohol content adds a touch of bite.

Overall, I found this to be a welcomed change to the beer aisle and a beer with plenty of complexity and balance. I love the use of rye malt and wouldn't hesitate to make a session of this.

Photo of vickersspitfire
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This IPA is a nice dark gold color with reddish brown hues, plenty of carbonation in its body and a light fluffy head accompanied by some thick lacing. The aroma is a bit light, but the hops do come through along with some grains and grassy smells. There are hints of grapefruit too. The bitterness hits your first and then mellows out into a nice semi sweet flavor, the hops a re well represented but not overpowering. The aftertaste is spot on for an IPA, the alcohol is present but not offensive. Over all I thought this a really good IPA.

Photo of TheMirrorOwl
3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Dark copper, clear, thick fluffy off-white head that dissipates quickly. Light lacing.

Smell: Very malty, bready rye is noticeable. Some fruity citrus, but resoundingly sweet aromas dominate.

Taste: Grapefruit leads, spice and sweet rye. Hops are mild, some pine in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, strong carbonation that dissipates as the beer sits. Long lasting flavor.

Overall: I really enjoy the malt-hop balance in this brew. The malt is sweet, but provides a nice spice from the rye and moderated well by citrus hop flavor. A very enjoyable brew.

Photo of cpetrone84
3.79/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pour is dark copper with a lot of light tan tight head. Nose is mild, pine hops, light spice, dirty wheat and some bread crust. Taste is less bready, still mild pine hop with a light spice, touch of bread through the back on a smooth light body, decent carb and light abrupt bitterness in the finish.

Photo of Bowers-Brew
4.29/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Nice 2 inch head when poured aggressively. Darker brown than expected, but I'm guessing the rye malt has something to do with that.

S - Not as hop fragrant as most IPAs. More pine than citrus. A little sweet, and a little malty.

T - Very well balanced. Hops, sweetness, and a malty backbone.

O - Sierra Nevada always makes a quality PA. This isn't a super hop intense beer (which I love), but it's still very good with a unique taste profile. Definitely something to try. Prost!

Photo of Kuaff
4.24/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cellar temerature in a mug.

Ruthless Rye presents a three-finger white head on a pure, clear amber body.

That spicy rye is totally in the aroma, along with earthy, piney hops. A touch of honey, too.

The rye combines with a fruity citrus flavor upon first taste. It's like lime to me. The finish is malty, bready, and dry, with some lingering rye spiciness. Quite good.

It's fairly full-bodied for the style, which I like.

This is a really good malt-forward IPA and it incorporates rye exceptionally well.

Photo of cxr1037
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
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

Photo of travolta
3.69/5  rDev -5.1%
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.

Photo of Act25
3.91/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Sierra Nevada is my favorite XL craft brewer.

Ruthless Rye IPA pours darker, deeper amber with bronze highlights and a tan creamy froth with retention and lacing. Rye bread as it should.

Love the smell, which is malt based toffee and caramel with pine, evergreen style hops and a bit of flowers and winter hills and forest.

Flavors follow the smell, which first w more malt tham most IPAs, which is welcome: caramel, toffee, and malt are the base one which float earthy spice of rye. The finish becomes more piney with elements of spruce, resin, and grasses with a bit of crystal sweetness. Dry finish despite being a sweeter IPA.

Medium bodied, finishing long and dry.

Winter IPA, a little sweeter and more earthy, more pine forest. Must try. Better than its reviews on BA.

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

Appearance
Deep- yet clear amber color tinted copper, medium-think head, good lacing
Smell
Pine and hops. Rye, malts and a hint of alcohol
Taste
Delicious, the bitterness kicks in, its raw and aggressive feeling but not overly so. There’s a complex blend of flavors the malt, rye, hops which makes for a really good beer
Overall
I first picked this up because, well- the package looks kick ass. I had never seen it before and they only had it by the 12 pack, so of course I bought it. Once I had my first one I was hooked and went right back out to buy another case, fearing it would be too late if I waited. I definitely recommend this, I always enjoy it.

-BeerandWhiskeyHQ.com

Photo of artoolemomo
3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- Pours up a whole bunch of head which looks to have pretty good retention as well. The head is a very light beige while the body is a medium to dark amber which appears as medium amber when held up to the light. Lacing looks as if it will be mostly sheeting.

Nose- Lots of citrus (mostly orange) from the glass. Shows light hints of pine and resin. Very clean smelling, almost soapy. The bottle shows more of a rye presence. Some caraway, something a little vegetal (think greens), and a little bit of pepper. Generally rye. Swirling shows a little bit of rye.

Taste- Slight citrus on the front but this quickly transitions into hop bitterness, grains from the rye, and strong pepper. Some pine and resin. Some orange and lemon peel. A bit of chalkiness on the finish. Fairly solid flavor profile but could use some more complexity. Had good presence and balance though. Light caramel. Solid, good beer that doesn't do anything that impressive. Some earwax and grapefruit. A little more bitter than I would like but it is well balanced by the rye notes. The somewhat dry finish also doesn't allow it to linger either.

Mouthfeel- Between light and medium bodied with appropriate carbonation. Has a little bit of zing which matches well with the rye notes. Light dry finish.

Drinkability- Fairly easygoing for an IPA and while it's not that bitter, it is pretty easy drinking for its bitterness. Standard price for Sierra Nevada beers.

Overall- Solid, good beer. No flaws but also nothing that really stands out. Definitely worth a try and this is a beer I will be purchasing again.

Photo of Badger6
3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle with the 2014 label and a Julian date of 335 (early December '13) for bottling. Poured into standard American pint.

A: dark amber color! with some carbonation visible. Nice frothy white head, receded in short order, to a nice white film on the surface. Heavy lacing.

S: Citrus nose with grassy notes. Mealtimes comes through, with some peppery spiciest.

T: Malty, lots of barley and rye combined together. Slightly sweet, but not for long. The elected IPA bitterness comes in and balances it out. Strong notes of citrus throughout. Some peppery spice, but not too much. Crisp, dry finish.

M: medium body, slightly dry, light to medium carbonation.

O: A nice IPA, very crisp and easily drinkable. Right in line with any of the other hoppier offerings from Sierra Nevada. A good beer to be enjoyed over and over again. Perfect for the transition from winter to spring.

Photo of Murphious
3.58/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Color is less red than a red ale, perhaps if a lager and red where mixed 50/50? Nice thick pale tan creamy head of at least an inch; could have been more if aggressively poured.
A bit of a citrus smell but very faint as poured into a pint glass. Piney hop aroma is less than expected and could just catch a hint of rye. Almost a wheat aroma of an average hefeweizen.
Not very bitter except at finish and even then it's slight. Citrus hint at first sip and then sweetens to a bread-like malty flavor with a little rye. Not bad and easy to drink. I would prefer more rye flavor but the low bitterness somewhat allows more flavors to be noticed. Recommended.

Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 4,870 ratings.