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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.
BA SCORE
87
very good

4,734 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 4,734
Reviews: 1,075
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 11.34%
Wants: 82
Gots: 491 | 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: 4,734 | Reviews: 1,075 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of heatherzbeer
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of bcerv-ca
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of xICooRsYIx
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of logicerror
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of newbrewer_zb
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of Wedcat
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of mattfungus
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%
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

Photo of jdibbs
2.75/5  rDev -29.1%

Photo of blakelive784
2.78/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 fl oz bottle served in a pint glass, reviewed live:

A - Pours a transparent copper/orange color, with a thin, off-white head of 1.5 fingers. Retention is poor.

S - Lemongrass, citrus, and the overly used cascade/centennial hops nose overwhelm a caramel and crystal malt foundation. I don't pick up any rye in the nose. Mild to moderate strength.

T - Still no rye at all. Classic Sierra Nevada overuse of generic cascade hops. Light caramel is overpowered by lemon and grapefruit. It's imbalanced, and I can't get any hints of rye, even when I search for it. Suffers from simplicity.

M - Medium bodied, crisp, and a bit thick. It's alright, but there's not much going on anyway.

D - Another disappointment from SN. I find this one to be imbalanced, simple, and not one I'd have again. It's an average IPA at best, and I'm not sure what they were going for with the rye, but it's a miserable failure.

Photo of Edward-Nipplebrew
2.79/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

IPA? Not Really? RyePA -Yes. Not my favorite Sierra Nevada entry but if your a fan of putting rye in beer??? Then you will love this with pastrami. What is your next spice Sierra? coriander? Stick with what you do best - seasonal entries. Not sure I would buy this one. If you are into rye this is your guy.

Photo of MatJones
2.81/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A. Like all their beers this is perfectly carbonated and a lovely dark Amber colour. 

S. Sweet piney smell but not as pronounced as an ipa. Hint of almonds and hay

T. This is my first 'ryepa'. Drunk from a half pint glass and first impressions were excellent. Definate taste of rye, malty biscuit, herbs and sweet pine. Noticed within five minutes though, that the taste lost a lot of it's complexity and the alcohol taste became a little overpowering which I was surprised with as this is only 6.6 abv.

M. A little to heavy for me. Felt the alcohol taste ruined this beer for me a little and ended up tasting like a stronger version of their excellent pale ale.

O.  Definatley an interesting beer and has done enough to make me try some other rye ipas, but felt overall this beer was a little unbalanced, alcohol taste a little overbearing. I will probably try thus beer again at some point as sierras beers are more affordable than a lot of USA to UK imports but wouldnt go out of my way to buy it over some of their other excellent beers

Photo of greentam2
2.83/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Well, I think they got the Ruthless Part right; the hops and the malt duke it out and implode with an ashen sort of bite, that keeps on biting on the backside of the taste. Had to try it, but won't try it again. I prefer an ipa with a very clean hoppy citrus taste, and all the tastes here are so mashed together, they get lost.

Photo of HoppyHomo
2.86/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a nice white head leaving my glass laced and ready to be sipped
Has a light brown appearance with hints of Orange shining through.

S: Flat hoppy smell. Nothing to astonishing; but also not overbearing

T: So-So. I felt it had a nice smooth taste at first then ends flat. Not sure if that’s the Rye coming through.

M: Smooth and pleasant

O: I haven’t really experienced many of the Rye beers, but overall I thought this was a decent pick. Not my favorite, but I wouldn’t turn it down either.

Photo of BadmouthBrews
2.88/5  rDev -25.8%

Photo of Deadhed88
2.88/5  rDev -25.8%

Photo of ChadQuest
2.88/5  rDev -25.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

medium dark amber color with some lacing. Body is clear.
The nose is not as hoppy as i was expecting really, there is more spice notes and rye character then anything else going on.
The flavors taste more like a malty rye pale ale then an IPA, and this can not be old. Bready is a strong description, earthy hops, and rye spice.
mouthfeel is medium full with a low amount of carbonation.

I have to say, i was excited for this one, but it is probably one of my less favorite of the SN beers.

Photo of bark
2.91/5  rDev -25%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

The colour is amber-brown (25 EBC), the liquid clear. IT is darker than most IPAs. The two finger head slowly sinks down, leaving little lacing on the glass.

The smell is hoppy, but not very bitter. Rustic wood-like note sand caramel, some dried citric fruits and crisp bread. Some alcohol is present. It is bit raw and harsh, but in a good way.

The taste is bitter and not-that-sweet. Distinct notes of rye crispbread and fresh oak casks. Some mature, almost dried, citric notes. Tart notes in the background. Medium body. The aftertaste is rather raw and harsh. Malty flavours, somewhat sour. Medium bitterness with a harsh alcoholic edge. The finish is sweet with raw alcoholic notes.

The carbonation is mild, the many small bubbles are smooth and short-lived. The liquid is smooth.

Way too harsh for me.

Photo of Kitt
2.91/5  rDev -25%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a weak < 1 finger head, that miraculously grew to about a two finger head in about 120 sec. Appearance, a rich, filtered, mahogany, not unlike a heavy red ale.

Aroma rather unpleasing: A spicy almost (hate to say it) feline-like odor. It must by the emphasis on rye which I guess I am not quite used to.

Taste,an initial bombardment of bitter spice hops and eclectic malts. Better than the aroma, but I still get that feeling of a nearby cat. Not like anything I have ever encountered in a brew before. The rye must be what is different to me and I have to admit - despite my colorful description - I find it somewhat pleasing. Very different. A light lingering bitter hop burning sensation brings this home as an IPA about six seconds after the initial taste.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a slight oily after-feel.

Drinkibility: The alcohol is upfront and in your face; seems more than 6.8%.

Overall, this is an interesting IPA. I like the daring ingredients. Risk takers deserve some credit for ingenuity. It won't be among my favorites but I would be willing to try it again. Just slightly above average overall. Perhaps it will grow on me as I move through the six pack but I have a funny feeling many reviewers have "brewery goggles" on this one - let's face it, if this was brewed by some rinky-dink Rhode Island brewery, well, you know what I am thinking...

Photo of Philousa
2.92/5  rDev -24.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Was excited to actually see this on the shelves, so I picked up a sixer right away. Pours a dark rust/ruby color with one finger head, which laces thinly and consistently. Aroma is all about the hops. It's well balanced and strangely familiar. I thought it smelled very similar to their Torpedo IPA, in terms of hops aroma: fresh cut grass, pungent, a bit of lemon. There's malt in there too; browned biscuit dominates the aroma. Malt & hops battle it out for aroma dominance. Who wins? (hops) Bitter caramel starts out the flavor department, turning to burnt chocolate/caramel and a woody flavor. Bitter malt turns to bitter hop oil flavor, noting that the hops are well balanced. There's a lingering familiar tart rye flavor in there as well. Feels a bit acidic but mainly balanced.

The aroma was great, but the flavor was ultimately too tart and feel too acidic. I can't see myself drinking more than one a night. There's just too much rye in there. It almost tastes like copper towards the end, and I'm not a huge fan of metallic tastes in my beer. This one coulda been a contender.

Photo of Rizalini
2.94/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into my Deschutes tulip...

A - Pours a redish/ruby color with a foamy 2 finger head that quickly fades leaving some spotty lacing.

S - The rye is very prodominant... maybe too much. It almost has a rubbery smell, like a balloon. Interesting...

T/M - The rye isn't as overwhelming in the taste as it is in the smell, but it's definately there. I do think that it overpowers the hop profile of this IPA. Medium mouthfeel, light carbonation.

O - An interesting IPA to say the least. Sadly, I'm missing that hop profile that I so look forward to in a good IPA. Glad I tried it, but will not buy again.

Photo of wrycon
2.98/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A very clear amber. Really clear - like the lovechild of an amber and a West coast IPA. A lot of rye in the nose. Smells similarly to their Northern Harvest, but with some lighter pine undertones. You can catch some citrus on the top, as well. Hmm, this is interesting. Quite thick to start with no real identity. Then the rye, grain and bread notes explode and make it taste almost like an American lager. The pine notes push their way forward on the back end and try to substantiate the IPA claim. I'm not catching much citrus, just a lot of pine and rye. It's ok, but nothing I'd regularly drink.

Like it? It's OK

Photo of StoneTSR
2.98/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

APPEARANCE: Dark brown, almost a dirty, reddish-brown. A white and half-inch thick head tops it and hangs in fairly well. Lots of bubbles quickly shooting to the surface from the bottom of the glass. Excellent lacing.

SMELL: When I first stuck my nose in I got a lot more rye, but upon my second smell the roasted (and burnt) malt dominated. The roasted smell also gives it a coffee quality.

TASTE: Roasted malt and a rye breadiness dominate. I don't get much in terms of hops, maybe a touch of lemon and maybe grapefruit, but no pine or resin. The malt and rye remain at a fairly constant level throughout the sip.

MOUTHFEEL: The Ruthless has a pretty solid sparkle and it is clearly well carbonated. That said, it should cleanse the palate a little better than it does. Instead, there is a sticky, but dry film left that doesn't do much for me.

OVERALL: I love Sierra Nevada and maybe I am grading this one on an unfair curve because of the high bar they have already set for themselves, but I was excited about this one and I am finding myself underwhelmed. Maybe since this was the first year there is still room for improvement in the future.

Photo of Skye1024
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of xdefeatsy
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of tonyshlangini
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 4,734 ratings.