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Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

4,376 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 4,376
Reviews: 1,043
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 11.57%
Wants: 66
Gots: 289 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kaseydad on 12-29-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,376 | Reviews: 1,043 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of NatetheGreat
NatetheGreat

Nevada

4.19/5  rDev +7.7%

This IPA is a beauty: deep amber with hues of mahogany and red beneath a huge, tight, white head. Sweet aroma of honeyed fruit, grapefruit and pine noticeable; very enticing aroma. taste begins sweet with a burst of hops bringing the palate to life; finishes with a spicy, peppery note. smooth mouthfeel with a substantial body, alcohol warmth comes through, especially as the beer warms.

this is a very fine IPA; I think I prefer it to SN torpedo IPA, because of the complexity. cheers!

02-13-2013 14:57:08 | More by NatetheGreat
Photo of bum732
bum732

Lesotho

4.18/5  rDev +7.5%

S: Very dank smelling, rye apparent, some grapefruit and some pine.

L: Crystal clear mahogeny, off-white head that dissipates. Good lacing.

T: Spicy and quite bitter overall. Medium high bitterness leading to a dry spiciness. Lots of grassy and citrus notes. Finishes quite dry with lots of hops.

M: Medium body, medium high carbonation.

Solid. Almost like torpedo with rye added. Really enjoyed this beer.

03-08-2012 03:31:03 | More by bum732
Photo of flexabull
flexabull

California

4.18/5  rDev +7.5%

The artwork on this one is great.

Pours a bright and crystal clear amber color with a huge off white head. Looks wonderful in the glass.

Aromas are typical for Sierra IPAs. Grassy, resin like, with some hard candies, and is quite floral. Smells like a fresh hop beer.

Taste is malty sweet up front, notes of hard candies, tea, and some grainy spice. Finish is resiny, earthy, pine like, lightly bitter, with some citrus, and fresh floral hops. People that want hoppy citrus flavors in their IPA might not care for this, but I like the raw earthy hop and rye notes.

Mouthfeel is full, smooth, and very well carbonated.

Overall, an excellent new offering from Sierra. I know it's another "IPA", but this is different. Reminds me of some of the Harvest beers, but with more graininess, and nice spicy rye notes. Very drinkable and enjoyable.

12-31-2011 01:45:13 | More by flexabull
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank

Pennsylvania

4.18/5  rDev +7.5%

I had this on tap at Brass Rail Deli in Campbelltown -served in a standard pint.

The color is resplendent shade of deep copper with great clarity and visibly carbonated with rapidly rising fine bubbles and pale tan cap w/ ultra fine bead. The lace is sticky and it is a pleasure to look upon in the glass. The smell has a fruity tangy yeast ester with a citrusy hop smell that is very pleasant and mild caramel odor from the malt with light pine accent from the hops. the feel is a true west coast IPA in that it has a nice malt backbone but the rye is giving a toasty edge which absorbs some of the hop acidity - the balance is toward the hop with a nice bite yet there is some oily texture and a nice dry spicy finish with mild sweet accents.

The flavor is toasty and fruity with a light sweet taste up front w/ rye giving a light nuttiness and slight caramel leads to an orange and tangerine citrus flavor w/ light pine notes adding depth to the hop character. the pine takes the wheel and steers into hoppy rye territory fast with a spicy/fruity and mildly earthy hop flavor which pairs well with the rye. There is a lot of different flavor components overlapping which I really enjoy with juicy tangy citrus a focal point that blends very nicely with the toasted grain elements. The malt doesn't really distract from the tropical fruit notes which come forward mildly as it warms. There is an ample amount of bitterness in the finish.

Overall I love a good rye and this has it all -the finesse and flavor that coexist in a hoppy rye beer. It is smooth enough to be drinkable and bold enough to excite the palate, Kudos to Sierra Nevada.

01-19-2012 14:58:55 | More by Slatetank
Photo of wl0307
wl0307

United Kingdom (England)

4.18/5  rDev +7.5%

(2013 Version) Coming in a 12 FL. OZ. short brown bottle, no freshness info. is printed on the label or bottle, apart from a number 302311159; served faintly chilled (10 centigrade?) in a tall tumbler. Notes: The back label states the beer is “brewed with rustic grains for refined flavors – combining the peppery spice of rye and the bright citrusy flavours of whole-cone hops to create a complex ale for the tumultuous transition to Spring”.

Appearance: pours an almost clear, dark amber or even tawny colour, coming with rather lively fizziness and a thick and tight light beige froth settling slowly to a thin cap to last.
Smell: pungently citrusy and spicy at the same time, on top of mildly caramely/toffee-ish pale malts and bitter oranges; given a good swirl, interestingly, the camouflaged resinous, piney and flowery aroma of hops gets freed up in the air, yet soon suppressed again by the frothy head... Very nice, but not conventional for Sierra Nevada’s beers.
Taste: bitter-sweet orangey-citric and zesty initially, with a touch of overripe fruity esters, then turning peppery and chalky bitter in the middle, as deepening tannic bitterness and a nicely rounded semi-nutty and semi-sprigy elements of malts (and rye?) chimes in; the finish is soothingly warming (for a 6.6%abv. beer?), showing aromatic flowery undertones of hops and a decent level of tangy bitterness, somewhat dry as well.
Mouthfeel & Overall: well-attenuated, dry-ish on the palate, the fizziness is not as sharp in the mouth as it appears in the eyes, medium-bodied, with an usual warming kick for the alc. level, and very very satisfying at the end of each sip; this American IPA, brewed using rye and whole cone hops on top of quality malts, has indeed an "usual" (which I can't explain, maybe just for the sake of saying something...!!) element to it, but not quite in the way as I expected really. Interestingly, the citrusy-peppery hop quality, the juicy crystal malts, and the well-tuned attenuation altogether give me an impression of a stronger type of Kentish Pale Ale brewed with Kentish citrusy hops and spicy Styrian Goldings even! This has to be my very first rye-related beer, and I’d say, well done!

06-13-2013 19:32:04 | More by wl0307
Photo of MichPaul
MichPaul

Michigan

4.18/5  rDev +7.5%

I had great anticipation for this beer, from hearing the ravings on the forum. So my expectations were very high. I was only slightly disappointed. I guess I just expected a big, almost Barleywine taste to it, but it was a little bit more tame than I was hoping especially with the word "Ruthless" in the title. Don't get me wrong I was only slightly let down. This beer actually drank spectacular and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Poured a nice clear, dark amber color with a nice thick head. Lots of lacing was apparent all the way down the glass to the very end.
This was not a big bitter beer and went down really easy. I would easily pick up a six pack of this next time it is in season.

04-16-2012 00:21:47 | More by MichPaul
Photo of matjack85
matjack85

Illinois

4.16/5  rDev +6.9%

I picked this up at Trader Joe's cause they let you buy one bottle at a time instead of the whole 6 pack. $1.50 for a 12oz brown bottle with no freshness date, but the neck label says 2013 Ruthless Rye and this is only February of '13 so it can't be more than 2 months old.

The beer poured a clear copper color with a half finger of white head. The head lasted a little over a minute, but even after it receded it left a thin layer of foam on top. Lots of slippery lacing that slid down the glass with each sip, but nothing that would cling to the glass.

Very mild smell. Some earthy hops, light malt, and a touch of spicy rye.

Thankfully, the flavor is a little more robust. Nice, but not overpowering grapefruit/pine hop flavor balanced with a good dose of caramel malt. Bitterness is low for an IPA at just 55 IBU's, but the rye gives it a nice spicy finish. Very tasty.

Creamy smooth mouthfeel with medium body and medium carbonation.

I like this one enough to go back and get the other 5 bottles.

02-20-2013 12:23:57 | More by matjack85
Photo of hail_seitan
hail_seitan

Massachusetts

4.16/5  rDev +6.9%

Poured from bottle into a pint glass.

A - Wonderful amber, almost tigereye, color. The head is thick and foamy and clings to the sides of the glass.

S - Pine, black pepper, and grapefruit. A burnt sugar sweet scent intensifies as the beer warms up.

T - First citrus and resin. Then a caramel sweetness from the malt. The finish is spicy from the rye with not too much lingering bitterness.

M - Appropriately thick and creamy for the style with moderate carbonation.

O - A wonderful beer I always look forward to come springtime. The blend of spice and bitterness with just enough heft in the body makes it a ideal brew for an overcast 50-degree spring day. Kudos to Sierra Nevada for the great label artwork, too.

04-05-2014 18:01:38 | More by hail_seitan
Photo of msondel
msondel

Massachusetts

4.16/5  rDev +6.9%

I'm a big fan of Sierra Nevada and haven't tasted one I wouldn't buy again. I don't taste much of the pepper they describe in this one or know why this would be considered a "transition to Spring" as it says on the bottle. It tastes similar to their normal IPA, but with a little less flavor. Still a great beer (great head, color, smell), but wouldn't put it in front of their other IPAs because it doesn't have the same level of taste.

02-21-2013 23:46:19 | More by msondel
Photo of Sark
Sark

Montana

4.16/5  rDev +6.9%

Appearance- not sure how I screwed up the pour, (maybe the altitude?) but this came with a monster head, the golden orange amber was a sight to behold

Smell- does Sierra Nevada use cascade in every beer of theirs? Super-citrusy with a spiced rye side.

Taste- a bold sweetness well balanced by the hop oils but not oily. A light toastiness makes the bulk but light fruit flavors become noticeable.

Mouthfeel- mellow medium bodied, the malt smoothness is accentuated by a kick in hop crisp at the end.

Overall- Sierra Nevada kicks out another solid one. The rye isn't under nor over-played and keeps things complex.

01-29-2013 04:20:40 | More by Sark
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

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.

01-18-2012 21:20:34 | More by oberon
Photo of weonfire
weonfire

Illinois

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

I had this on tap at Patrick Osheas in Louisville, KY poured into a Irish Pint Glass.

A - Very frothy tremendous head. Head lasted a full 10-15 minutes which i found to be a negative. Copper color.
S - Smells like a lot of hops Not sure of the IBU but I think it would be high. Very good dose of citrus and pepper.
T - Taste of carmel. I may be off but I don't taste any rye. I may be confusing the bitterness in for some of the rye taste. Again tastes like high IBU.
M - The bitter taste stays with you all the way down your throat and into the proceeding nest few minutes.
O - Descent IPA. I wish I could decipher the rye more- but that might be my own fault. I would order this again.

02-01-2013 14:54:36 | More by weonfire
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a deep crystal clear copper, with 2 fingers of slightly off-white head. This retains with a big frothy dollop in the middle of the glass, drenching the sides with a heavy latticework of sticky lace. This has quite the robust look to it. Wow, the rye has a huge presence here, with a bold spicy graininess that just drives the nose forward. This mixes with underlying notes of caramel and citrus to really impart a rich spicy twang, with some leafy floral edges that lend this a bit of airiness in the nostrils as well.

The taste really had some kick to it, with that rye being just as bold here and sticking to a fresh citric bitterness, propelling spice and pith out into the mouth. A caramel sweetness hangs on the edges, barely getting the hops balanced out before a final wave of rye swoops in to finish this dry and spicy. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and feels equal parts crisp and smooth in the mouth, thanks to a good bit of oily slickness to the carbonation that really keeps this sleek feeling.

This is about as good of a Rye beer as I’ve had in a while. This just has a perfect amount of rye here, working with that bright feeling IPA base to really give this a crisp and flavorful bite. This was so easy drinking as well, especially considering the higher ABV and the overall intensity of the flavors. SN really nailed this. I think I’m going to go have another…

02-02-2012 15:08:41 | More by Kegatron
Photo of Topher78
Topher78

California

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Upon pouring this beer left a fingers worth of a off white head and had reasonably good lacing. The color of this beer was perplexing, from different angles it had very different and unique colors. From table level it looked mahogany, from over top it looked slightly red and from an angle it looked more amber in color. Well, whatever color is was it had a beautiful aroma to it. Strong peppery notes mixed very well with sweet citrusy hop notes. From the first sip you can tell you're drinking a rye beer; the spiciness of the rye added a big kick to the malt and worked very well with this beers hop imparted bitterness. This beer finished very clean and dry on the palate, which left you wanting more.

01-19-2012 09:10:42 | More by Topher78
Photo of musicforairports
musicforairports

New York

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

12oz bottled Jan. 10, reviewed Jan. 24.

A true amber color, Jurassic Park style. Clear. Big head goes quickly and leaves some lacing.

Smell is a lightly dank citrus profile and some bread.

Flavor starts and ends with the rye -- nice and spicy, bread-like, notes of pumpernickel and pepper. A typical Sierra Nevada citrus hop profile asserts itself as well. I really like the rye flavor in this one--it's impossible to miss, but smoother than some.

Mouthfeel is medium and somewhat creamy. Enough, but not too much. Sierra Nevada does this category well.

This is a good beer, and it uses rye very well. The hops compliment the smooth rye character nicely. For the price, I'll buy a lot of 12-packs of this.

01-25-2012 00:44:00 | More by musicforairports
Photo of david18
david18

New York

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

I've been drinking a lot of this while it was on tap at my local beer bar. Sierra Nevada has not been known for IPA's, I guess since they're so well known for the pale. Then came the Torpedo, which was good but I think this is one of their best beers.

Appearance was typical of an IPA. Dark pale, good carbonation, very inviting looking.

Aroma was almost perfect. Great hops balanced with the malt and alcohol.

Flavor as well was a great balance of bitterness, hop flavor, malt and alcohol.

Great IPA, that I highly recommend.

03-22-2012 19:00:33 | More by david18
Photo of dfillius
dfillius

Michigan

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Poured into a pint glass
A: Moderate to aggressive pour yields 1 finger of pillowy off-white head with soft peaks and great retention! Ideal head. Hazy crimson orange liquid is also spot on.
S: Centennial hops, rye tang, light citrus hops. Very nice. Only down side is slight unfermented wort aroma.
T: Delicate but assertive hops and bitterness grows with each sip. Good enough malt backbone but great hop strength. A tad boozy on the finish.
M: Chewy, moderately strong bitterness. Definitely a palate wrecker by the end. A tad warm for me also at the end.
O: Better enough than Glissade to replace it? Maybe. I preferred the lightness of Glissade for the season it is released in. But that is not something I can rate this beer based on. I would buy this again and order another. A solid offering.

10-21-2012 15:28:02 | More by dfillius
Photo of david131
david131

California

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

A- Pours a burnt orange with some ruby red hues. The bone white head is creamy and leaves some nice lacing.

S- My first impression when pouring this was that of smelled like marijuana. As I get into it I get pepper, citrus, caramel, rye, and that typical Sierra Nevada-ness we all know and love.

T- Herbs, rye, caramel, black pepper, and citrus rind. The finish is bready and spicy. Has a strong Sierra Nevada finish. Very enjoyable.

M- Spicy and bitter. There is some lingering bitterness on the finish.

O- A very enjoyable offering from the brewery. Similar to Founders' Red's Rye, just a little less rich. A perfect beer for spring.

02-06-2012 05:15:42 | More by david131
Photo of DemoniChris
DemoniChris

Nebraska

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

06-21-2013 15:56:24 | More by DemoniChris
Photo of micromaniac129
micromaniac129

Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Deep amber color with a desent size head. The head is beige, solid and lingers for quite some time with sheets of stickly lacing covering the glass.
The rye malt aroma is quite potent but is nicely balanced with a bright citrus hop bouquet.
SN must use an abundance of rye malts because "it's in there". Very spicy and slick and smooth. Hops try to balance but don't, although they have a nice citrus taste.
Drinks smooth and yet course and husky,
This definitely ruthless and would take awhile to warm up to.

01-26-2013 13:27:28 | More by micromaniac129
Photo of JEdmund
JEdmund

Kansas

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Rusty red color, medium head, clear. Foam cap sticks around and clings to the glass.

Smell hits me while pouring the beer. Big hops and some of it reminds me of the fruitiness found in Celebration Ale. I think I'm also getting rye, as there is another hint of grain involved.

Taste really builds on itself and finishes stronger than it starts, but I'm struck by how well balanced it is for an IpA. I'm not surprised by how perfect the body and carbonation are; SN always nails it. I get the rye the most in the finish where a rustic grain bite complements the hop  bitterness. It's not a hop bomb, but it has plenty of bitterness and is a real pleasure to drink. Hop characteristics are slightly fruity and herbal.

With every new release by Sierra Nevada, I'm further convinced these guys are the best American craft brewers. Ruthless Rye is a success and my favorite rye ale to date. I like it more than the beer it replaces--Glissade--but I would still be happy to see that beer return one day. Will have to buy more of this before it's gone!

Per website:
Bittering hops: Bravo
Aroma hops: Chinook and experimental
Dry hops: Chinook, Citra, and experimental
Malts: Pale, Rye, Caramel, Chocolate
IBUs: 55

02-05-2012 23:35:01 | More by JEdmund
Photo of lovindahops
lovindahops

New York

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Another delicious seasonal from Sierra Nevada. Good change up from them

A- ruthless rye pours a reddish amber with clear vision through the glass. A thin, thin level of white foam floats on the top of the glass with some web like lacing that stayed around the edges of the glass

S- a clear cut blast of rye malt with spicy and peppery blasts of the theme. And these properties are pretty strong. What's even better is there is a fair citric hop presence that really becomes even similar to a pine scent. All these scents blend well. Impressive.

T- The rye is immediately at the forefront with a follow up of simultaneous pine, citric, and mango hop profile. The rye flavors even circle back to make another appearance. Really one of the stronger rye beers that pushes the spicy components with a hop presence

M- great feel from all the properties meshing on the pallet. The feel is smooth but full of flavor

O- Ruthless rye is very rare as far as a rye ipa goes IMO. Great rye flavors that mesh well with the spicy and bitter hop taste. I will always come back for this one

02-18-2012 03:09:06 | More by lovindahops
Photo of DrJay
DrJay

Massachusetts

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Clear and coppery with a thick yellow/beige cap. Good head retention, foamy lacing. Citrusy hop aroma, grassy and a bit spicy, slightly nutty and sugary malts. Sturdy pine resin bitterness, dry nuttiness, spicy and citrusy, a bit oily and grassy with some burnt sugar in the finish. Medium bodied, carbonation was a little creamy, light dryness from the grains, nice texture overall. A solid offering that's full of rye and hops. Recommended.

01-29-2012 23:15:52 | More by DrJay
Photo of Jmamay22
Jmamay22

New York

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

This Rye IPA pours a deep amber with a thick rocky ecru colored head. The foam refuses to to die down no doubt due to the sticky hops. The scent is a piney grapefruit that is expected from a west coast IPA and it is a delightful bouquet.

The taste is similar, but the rye plays a larger part adding a spices finish. It is a great progression of flavor from sweet caramel malt to a resinous piney hop bit punctuated by the rye. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and a slight rich creaminess that adds to the character of the brew.

All around great beer, but I was sad to see it replace Glissade. I suppose hops are in.

01-15-2012 21:30:15 | More by Jmamay22
Photo of HopsKeepDroppin
HopsKeepDroppin

Texas

4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Poured out of 12oz bottle into maudite snifter.

A- Deep copper color with two fingers of fluffy off-white head. Lacing all over.

S- Overwhelmingly grassy and citrus notes from the hops make for a very pleasant nose.

T- Grassy hops right up front with a little bit of citrus to it. The rye takes care of the bitterness and leaves you a beer with really nice hop flavor that finishes with a bready/rye flavor.

M- Light bodied, carbonation is alright. Nothing crazy.

O- Very nice offering from Sierra Nevada. I would absolutely pick up another sixer.

01-13-2012 05:39:46 | More by HopsKeepDroppin
Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 4,376 ratings.