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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 williamjbauer
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap served in a pint glass

A - Clear hay in color with a 2 finger khaki head with poor head retention and minimal lacing.

S - Grassy sweet hay and citrus hops

T - Earthy grassy subtle flavors dominated by citrus hops a little sweet malt.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation

O - Haven't had many Ryes so I don't know how well this would stand to the competition but it wasn't my favorite beer.

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Photo of hophugger
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Happy, Happy, Happy. This is another great beer from Sierra Nevada. Pours a nice off brown color with a good head. The taste is great with hops, pine and some citrus together. This beer has the right amount of sweetness to balance everything out properly. The finish is of bitter hops, but is very pleasant and definitely a go to beer. I like it !!

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Photo of vickersspitfire
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
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.

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Photo of cbutova
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a few bottles of this so far.

A- Pours with a dark red body and a frothy white head. About a finger in size with pretty nice retention. Big bubbly ring leaves some decent spots of lace.

S- Rye and IPA. A pretty big rye presence with notes of citrus, pine and floral hops. Some caramel as well.

T- A challenge to describe for some reason. Notes of bread, dark fruit, caramel malts, rye and hops. The hops and rye combine to create a sharp bitter spicy feel. Other hop hints of citrus, floral and quite a bit of pine.

MF- Creamy and highly carbonated body. Sharp bitterness and carbonation hits the palate.

I like this but something about the combination of flavors just doesn't really work. The hops and rye seem bit too spicy or sharp somehow.

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Photo of Reidrover
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz single from "Lifesource",Salem. OR. $1.59 I really dig the label on this one. Appearance? Slightly murky amber with a nice big frothy,thick eggshell white head. Aroma..slightly pungent hop,slight toasted cereal malt, spiciness that might be rye. Flavour again has the slightly pungent hop and a nice thick coffee/roasty malt and indeed a fair rye spice about it. OK mouth-feel though not out of the ordinary. A good beer but not stellar.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: bottle from Capone's bottle shop, Norristown, PA

Broke one of these open to enjoy whilst producing a homebrew of my own. Pouring into a pint glass reveals a darker amber liquid, perfectly clear, with a small bubbly off-white head that recedes to a small ringlet. Very little carbonation to be seen. Aroma is grainy with a pronounced crisp hop scent. Taste is grainy, a bit skunky I think, but well within the threshold of tolerance, hop bitterness--pine and citrus notes--subdued malts, and a definite bready rye quality that comes in at least mid-palate. Quite bitter in the aftertaste; grapefruit pith. Fairly easy to drink. Pretty nice overall.

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Photo of tittymcj
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Drank at a bar in Altoona, Pennsylvania.

Good looking beer. Nice and frothy, lots of head. Solid color and clarity.

Very smooth, if I remember correctly. Not a lot of bite, but not overbearing with the malty flavors. Very well balanced.

I'd recommend for being a good beer, but not particularly impressive on any front.

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Photo of beerlust
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Another Sierra Nevada seasonal favorite of mine, along with the fall and Christmas beers. Nice bite and
kind of flowery taste. Not overpowering, but not for sissies, either. It's a little less rough than the Torpedo. Extremely affordable way to get
your hop fix, like their Celebration Ale.

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Photo of Finatic
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a chilled Odell's Myrcenary pint glass.

A: Pours a dark reddish hue with a nice white head that recedes slowly.

S: Piney aroma right off the bat that SN is famous for. Some mild malt also and some citrus(Grapefruit),

T: Tastes like it smells, albeit some small traces of rye on the palate as well.

M: Medium carbonation and medium body.

O: Average offering from SN, would rather have a torpedo.

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Photo of LiquidBread219
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A= Poured chest-nut brown/copper in color nice foamy white head that stuck around for awhile and left some really nice lacing.

S= Rye comes out of the nose and is pretty strong, I also picked up on some hops and a little bit of citrus notes.

T= Toasted rye is the main flavor in this one. I was surprised on how much hops came out in the flavor it was pretty hoppy which surprised me nicely.

M= Very clean crisp beer, good carbonation

O= Overall I enjoyed this beer wasn't to much to it but it still was a great beer and really enjoyed it.

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Photo of jacket_fan
3.51/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured aggressively from a growler to a pint glass.

Dark color with a full 2 finger head. Lots of carbonation in the lacing.

Earthy, straw aroma

Slaps the back of my mouth with a strong bite, which must be the rye. Not a lot of experience with rye beers. This one leaves an aftertaste on the tongue and back of the mouth. Not bad for a strong beer but caught me off guard.

A strong, aggressive taste. I will need to explore the rye beers more. Will look forward to finishing this growler to see if this style grows on me.

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Photo of zhanson88
3.51/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours an amber-copper color with moderate carbonation, and a good 3/4" of white head that has nice retention and lacing. 4

Smell: Has a very bready malt smell and maybe a hint of spiciness from the rye malt. Some citrus and pine notes come across for the hop character.

Taste: Similar to the smell. Very bready in malt character, with lighter caramel-type notes. Hops come across more strongly in the flavor than in the aroma - citrus, pine and florals.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Light-medium bodied with moderate fine carbonation, very nice. Overall, a decent, fairly unique IPA. Not quite the hop bomb I was expecting, but still decent.

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Photo of muletrane
3.51/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 1/3/12

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a nonic.

A: Pours a dark amber colour. 2 fingers of white pillowy head. Good retention and lacing.

S: Alot of bready rye notes dominate. Some floral hops mixed in as well.

T: Some floral hop notes up front and then comes some big rye flavor. Finish is very dry with some lingering rye notes.

M: Lively carbonation and a slightly heavy body. Very dry almost leathery feel.

Overall this a good beer. Nice flavor and aroma. Mouthfeel was a little to leathery for my tastes.

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Photo of ponbon63
3.51/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

To start I'm a big fan of rye IPA's. As long as they're decent, they almost always look and smell amazing.

T: I thought this was a fairly mild flavored rye. Not nearly as bitter as some i've had and not quite as fulfilling. Although I've had rye's with slightly better flavor than this beer, it definitely works well as a session beer.

O: Overall I'd say this beer is not the most memorable rye you could have, but is by no means bad in any way. This beer lands somewhere tasty slightly above average for the category.

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Photo of EspressoGuy
3.52/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: buckwheat honey
S: floral, spicy (cardamom) but also slightly medicinal/plastic
T: full, rich, noticeable bitterness, not much hop aroma/flavour, clean fresh maltiness; well balanced; bitterness lingers
M: tons or richness
O: a bold direct "masculine" beer that would probably be better enjoyed with food.

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Photo of theteleman
3.52/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Pretty darn hoppy with a nice rye bite to it. If you like west coast style IPA's(very prevalent hop flavors) you'll enjoy this brew. Mouthfeel is pretty thin, but leaves the palate with a nice rye taste, real crisp. Enjoyed this brew with some spicy shrimp and veggies and it tasted great.

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Photo of laintringulis
3.52/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a cooper/ruby/orange translucent color with large beige head that fades quickly to a small fuzzy ring. It just looks thin in my pub glass.

S: strong citrus hops; slight earthy/grassy smell. Vague smells of rye and hay.

T:Very malty caramel-like flavors on the front with a moderate citrus(Mostly grapefruit, a little pineapple)hop in the middle, and a light amount of grassy rye. Pleasant dry finish of hops. I wish I found this to taste as good as it smells.

M: Light bodied; not watery or thin. Leave a general stickiness in your mouth that I just don't find pleasant. The dry finish of the hops is nice, but the stickiness is bothersome to me.

O: Not a bad rye beer, but I prefer stronger more "in your face rye" and a heavier body. The stickiness of this really detracts from the taste. I'll stick to the many other Sierra brews that I love.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a clear brown color ale with a rather large foamy head with good retention and some good lacing. Aroma of medium spicy rye malt notes with some bitter and light citrusy hoppy notes. Taste is a very drinkable mix between some peppery and spicy rye malt notes with a bitter and light citrus hoppy finish. Body is about average with good carbonation. Well brewed with no flaws though not as powerful as expected.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to korguy123 for this bottle. Dates 1353. December 19/11. Poured in to tulip glass.

A - Medium copper colour with a half finger of cream coloured head.

S - Grapefruit and pine aromas up front that accompany a nice hop bitterness. Some floral and spicy/peppery notes are evident in the background along with a slight caramel sweetness.

T - A sharp bitterness up front with big spicy/peppery malt flavours. Some citrus and pine flavours are evident, but not to the degree that I expected given the nose. The spicy rye flaovurs really steal the show here.

M - Medium body with moderate carbonation.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear orange amber with a good tannish head... nice sheets of lace.

The nose on this one seems pretty mild... pale malts... a bit bready.. grassy hops... no yeastiness to speak of... pretty clean and again, mild.

Flavor mirrors the aroma with a bit of minerally fruitiness on finish that I am having a hard time pinning down... earthy and grassy hoppiness...

Medium body with smooth everpresent small bubble carbonation.. very drinkable given the ABV... I would probably get bored after a bottle or three, but I will pick this one up again.


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Photo of buschbeer
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle
Served in a perfect pint glass

A - It pours dark amber in color. It has about two inches of beige head.

S - I can definitely tell there is rye in there. It almost comes across as skunky.

T - The rye really stands out. I get some breadiness in the middle, and it finishes with rye and some bitterness.

M - Medium

O - I'm not sold on this one. I'm usually a fan of Sierra Nevada. It doesn't quite stack up to the other rye beers I have had.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

4.0 A: Nearly clear dark orange amber color. Two fingers of creamy off-white head. Retention is average with a good bit of lacing left.

3.5 S: Plenty of earthy spicy rye. Hints of smoke and toasted malt. Hops are floral and earthy. Pleasant and quite interesting.

3.5 T: Again, lots of earthy spicy rye. Mild bitterness. Herbal and earthy hop flavor. Again I'm picking up a light smokiness and a stronger toastiness.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Lightly creamy and smooth.

3.5 D: Tasty beer. I'm a big fan of rye and I like the smokiness that this beer has. It's a good combination.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Again, a big thank you to output01x for providing this beer.

An average pour netted a finger and a half of vanilla colored, creamy head. Body is a nice copper color, with a light stream of bubbles rushing upward. Lacing tries and fails to hang on to the side of the glass.

Good smell. Pine and grapefruit are first up, with rye bread, pepper and a hint of wood following up.

Rye sits on your tongue and stews until pine explodes in your mouth. The bitterness from this sticks around until rye comes back in and finishes off with a spiced bread flavor. Was hoping for a little grapefruit in there, but nothing doing.

THis one is medium bodied and a little sticky. Leaves a lasting mild bitter.

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Photo of untitledeuphoria
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2014 Ruthless, 01/28/14 packaging date, consumed from a flare pilsner glass.

A: Pours a very attractive deep copper coloring, with a solid one and half finger of off white (dusty) head that slowly fades to a cap and leaves moderate lacing.

S: Malt with slight toffee? notes, and very slight... at least to me... basic citrus. Overall, the smell is very subdued, even immediately after an aggressive pour.

T: Rye! ...then some more Rye, slowly followed by orange zest, and finishes dry and bitter, with a lingering taste of pepper.

M: Medium body, light carbonation, coats the mouth with a light resin stick. Alcohol warmth is apparent after half a bottle or so.

O: One of those "have to be in the mood for it" beers. It is a beer I enjoy on colder, poor weather days where the spice and alcohol warmth acts as a pick me up, without knocking me out. Each time I have this beer it tends to be a one and done, not to be paired with other beers and definitely not to be sessioned. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys experimental IPAs, but would not go out of my way for.

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Photo of phishsihq
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA pours a deep copper color, topped by a big off-colored white head and decent lacing. Soft citrus notes quickly give way to peppery aromas and hints of rye. As with the nose, citrus hop flavors open up the pallet before being overtaken by spicy rye flavors. The rye starts mellow at first but slowly rises throughout the finish. Medium bodied and carbonated, Ruthless Rye is an interesting take on an IPA, and was much better then we were expecting (we are not the biggest rye fans)!


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