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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 beerthulhu
3.35/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep orange with a touch of cardinal tint. A flat buff head quickly turns to a thin skim coating. Small speckled lace. Inside a fine misty effervesce.

S: Small presence of pepper and flowery citrus. Some light dry toasted grains, not much rye spiciness or strength overall.

T: Peppery toasted grains for flavor. Dry bittering citrus, with a strong peppercorn sense. Dry hopped really well, very pronounced, with some caraway seed and solvent alcohol character that seems to distract at times. Pungent bitterness upon the swallow.

M: The mouthful is tight with a bubbly sense of carbonation. Spicy dry peppercorns and alcohol dominate with a medium body.

O: Overall a rye that delivers a strong and pronounced peppery punch, but the other rye aspects seem to be masked by the strong peppery nature and solvent like alcohol tones. Abv% feels a bit higher with a spicy dry drinkability that no doubt will limit this in numbers. 1-2 is fine with me.

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Photo of tone77
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a bronze color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of hops and citrus. Taste is delicious. Citrus and hops up front, some rye and malts at the finish, very flavorful. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall this is a quality beer worth seeking out.

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Photo of beertunes
3.48/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A complimentary sample bottle at a local bar courtesy of the local distributor. Poured into tulip. Poured an attractive reddish light mahogany (kinda copperish) with an inch and half of tan head that had good retention and very good lacing.

The aroma was very hop forward with a nice shot of Rye backing it up. Underneath, the base grains provided a solid foundation. On the tongue, The sharpness of the Rye provided a nice counter-point to SN's typical bold hoppiness.

The body was nicely full, fuller than typical for an IPA, but still wasn't heavy or filling. Drinkability was good, I'll be having a couple when it goes on tap tomorrow. Overall, a pretty nice beer. Worth trying when you see it.

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Photo of DrJay
4.11/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle marked 135012120. Sampled on January 14, 2012. It is an attractive looking beer with its medium to dark amber tone and foaming beige head. Hops are the first aroma on the nose followed by grains and a little citrus. The body falls into the medium range. The taste is really hopped up with grains and rye playing around with the palate and a sopur note of something akin to pineapple. It ends clean and crisp.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.38/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The code looks like 2006th day but the 2 looks to be crossed out so I'll go with the 6th day...Jan 6, 2012.

It pours a deep golden red with a 1 finger head of foam and excellent lacing.

The smell has some citrus hops going on with a mild rye spiciness and an ample malt backbone.

The taste has the rye at the forefront; why not, it's in the name after all. Quite spicy/peppery with citrus backing it up to the hilt. Mild use of malty backbone keeps it from being too bitter but make no mistake about it; it claims to be an IPA and an IPA it is! Delicious!

A great mouthfeel and very easy to drink, I like this one muchly and I'll be drinking this often. Well done, Sierra Nevada!

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Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Has a big grassy hop nose with rye spice. Pours brilliant amber with persistent 3” off white foam cap. A well balanced beer with rich malt, bitter hops, pepper finish, rye spice. Has the rich, full rye body. A very drinkable rye IPA.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2013 Batch opened on 1.27.13

A - Pours a clear reddish-orange with a huge foamy cream-colored head with great retention.

S - Malty, biscuity, bread, slight carmel, oranges.

T - Smooth toasted malt, bread, orange, slight grass in the finish.

D - Smooth, good carbonation with a medium body.

O - Smooth malt forward and some citrus for balance. Better than I remembered the 2012 batch.

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

Pours out a brown beer pretty much with good clarity for it being that color and a good 1.25" head consisting of tight light tan bubbles. Aroma was indeed heavy on the rye bread and with cascade hops probably.

Taste, wow, this really gets the rye content across to the drinker. Hops are there, not over the top, but definitely could be described as hoppy with mild citrus undercurrent. Pretty easy to drink, another good addition to the already hoppy SN universe, but this isn't simply a retread, it has a legitimate place, as this beer truly exhibits the rye and its customary mild spiciness, with the trademark Sierra Nevada hoppiness and earthiness.

Another good beer at a great price.

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Photo of bluejacket74
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, bottled on February 8th, 2012. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a clear amber color with about an inch off-white head that sticks around a while. There's also a decent amount of lacing. The brew smells mostly like spicy (rye) and citrusy hops, along with some caramel malt. Taste is similar to the aroma, it tastes mostly like spicy and citrusy (grapefruit) hops, with a bit of caramel and bready malt also noticeable. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a little oily and is well carbonated. It's also smooth and easy to drink. I think it's a good overall brew, at $8.99 a 6-pack I'd certainly buy it again.

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Photo of spinrsx
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle - from whole foods san francisco CA for 1.99$ - thanks to j for this one

Appearance - Clear copper colour with a large size frothy beige coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, caramel, hops, grapefruit, lemons, pine

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and the taste is made up of caramel and malts mixed with hops. It also has some piney/woody hops mixed with some light grapefruit/lemon zest and a touch of dark fruit. I can pick up on some rye but it is kind of subdued. It ends with a malty piney hop aftertaste.

Overall - I can actually taste a bit of the SN Pale Ale in this one. It's like they used the same recipe and threw in some more malts and rye. Regardless, this is a very good beer that I will buy again.

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Photo of bark
2.91/5  rDev -25.8%
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.

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Photo of scruffwhor
3.66/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rust, copper, clear amber color. NIce two finger head that has strong retention and lacing. Like the bubbling too.

Spicey citric and earthy hop aromas with a toasted cracker and bread crust malt bill aroma.

Spicey rye and hop combo for a bitter cracker and earthy oarnge zest marmalade. The malt flavors thins from middle to the finish. The palate is resiny to start and thins out to the finish. Aftertaste is watery and bitter.

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Photo of dgilks
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy amber colour with a fluffy, light tan head. Great lacing.

Floral, citrussy hops. No pine. Mild spicy rye. Sweet. Interesting but the sweetness is a little much.

Bright, tropical and floral hops dominate again with a smooth, caramel malt profile. The sweetness is quite high as is the bitterness so it ain't bad. Gets increasingly bitter in the glass.

Medium body with moderate carbonation.

I like this beer as a sessionable IPA. The sweetness counteracts enough bitterness to make this eminently drinkable though that sweetness is not quite what I want in an IPA.

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Photo of Brad007
3.72/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As a self-proclaimed fan of rye beers, I had to check this out.

Pours a dark copper color with a thick, frothy head into my glass. I was expecting something more reddish but it should do.

Pine resin from the hops mingles with sweet and spicy rye malt to create a welcoming bouquet of flavor.

Wow. Piney hops and spicy rye malt greet the tongue. The hops seem to overwhelm the spiciness, creating a weird mish-mash of flavors. I'm not complaining. It's what I expected.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering malt and hops with a good rye kick.

I like this. It's not the best but I can see myself drinking it in place of some other micro.

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Photo of sweemzander
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint.

(A)- Pours an amber color and produced a good cap of white froth. Good lacing.

(S)- A nice mildly spicy(the rye?) piney citrus with a subtle malty backbone.

(T)- Similar to the smell. A nice mildly spicy pine citrus body with subtle malt.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. Mild rye spice with a classic IPA hop and malt profile.

(D)- Overall, another solid new IPA to the Sierra Nevada portfolio

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.55/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Eh I kind of hate rye IPA's since they leave the palate so dry but this one was pretty nice.

A - Looks pretty dark, darker than a normal IPA with a good amount of sticky foam. Lacing is good too.

S - Rye really didn't stand out much in the smell maybe as a peppery aspect, strong earthy hops, good amount of bread malts too.

T - Not as bad as I expected they got the finish down without too much drying. Taste is hoppy at first then the rye clocks you pretty hard then the bread finish smooths it out.

M - Medium bodied even though balanced I still am not a huge fan.

Overall defiantly a good beer but not something I would seek out again. Was like the rye version of the "northern hemisphere IPA" which I liked a lot too. Good if you love the style.

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Photo of clayrock81
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured a reddish copper with great head and lace on top of an aroma that first strikes me as strong, piney, citric, the rye really comes out as well. Full bodied and well-balanced and just really struck a positive chord with me. The rye and some heavy, breadlike malts give beer a spicy edge and keep the abundant pine/citric hop notes from taking over my tastebuds but leave enough so I know I'm drinking a strong IPA. There is this touch of sweetness I seem to get at times as well that makes the beer more interesting. Has a great finish that is crisp and dry and I really took a shine to this Sierra Nevada offering.

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Photo of claspada
3.44/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep amber-hued body with a noted clarity and capped by a tall, off-white head. Fair smattering of lace on the way down.

Aromas begin mildly spicy, grassy, citrusy and piney. Grainy pale maltiness with a little underlying rye maltiness. Expected more from the malts given he color.

The tastes begin with grainy, pale malts with the expected spicy rye malt character. Lightly sweet upfront, a sweetness that soon fades away as the bitterness accumulates on the tongue. Citrusy flavors of pithy grapefruit and sweet orange zest. A bit more grainy on the back, with some lesser floral, grassy hop flavors. Dry, lingering finish.

The mouthfeel is mediumt to light bodied with medium carbonation. Finish is quite crisp and clean overall.

Overall, this was a nice beer but rather ordinary. I want more rye or more hops or something. It basically tastes like their standard pale ale or IPA with a little rye.

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Photo of avalon07
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a copper color and a clear consistency. There was an inch of foamy, long-lasting head. Good lacing.

S: A nice sharp aroma of citrus, malt, and hops.

T: Tasted of hops, malt, citrus, rye, and a spicy, peppery quality. Basically, this is a rye beer that's been hopped up (or an IPA that has rye added), but it's still an enjoyable flavor.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a slightly slick finish. Medium-bodied.

O: On the whole, a solid, easy to drink beer.

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

Pours a clear deep copper color with a solid one inch khaki head they leaves slight lacing.

Aroma is dominated by lemon and grapefruit, bready, toasted sweet malt, and a fairly significant amount of rye. Cola emerges as it warms, along with pine.

Flavor showcases an underlying rye presence throughout the profile, with grapefruit, citrus pith, mango, and toasted malt adding complexity into the bitter, peppery rye finish.

Body is moderate, with moderate carbonation. The finish is fairly dry.

Overall, a very nice ipa. I'm not the biggest fan of rye beers, but this has enough hop character to entertain my palate.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Pours copper color. Not much haze in the body. Off-white head is smaller but retains its form throughout. Leaves a lot of lacing.

S-Good dose of rye. Rye mixes with citrus and pine hops and is also complimented with a very bready malt. Rye is quite spicy and mixes well with the other components of the aroma. Not very intense but pretty attractive.

T-Rye is pitched perfectly. Piney and floral along with citrus in regards to the hops. Finishes very grassy and very floral. Malt is slightly overshadowed by the rye/hop combination. Moderately bitter and dry.

M-Medium body with ample amounts of carbonation. Lasting bitter aftertaste. Alcohol is masked well but becomes more noticeable as the beer slowly warms.

O/D-Pretty good. I don't even know if I really love Rye IPAs but perhaps I was expecting a bit more from this one. It isn't a disappointment. Still, its another solid addition to the juggernaut Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.91/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz single

appearance: served in a great dane imperial pint - clear copper-amber body, 1/2" thick white foam, frothy lace

smell: bready, notes of spicy rye, a touch metallic, grassy hops

taste: Pretty tasty stuff - kind of makes you wonder what this beer is capable of with Asheville water and speedy mountain logistics. Peppery, bready, spiced rye, hint of citrus, earthy with moderate bitterness, dry malt.

mouthfeel: moderate bitterness, quite spicy

overall: pretty abrasive version of the Rye-PA, good though

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.06/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Chevy Chase, about 42 days old.

Pouring a clear deep reddish brown with a dense, off-white head with excellent retention and gorgeous lacing, this is a very appealing beer. The nose has quite a prominent rye character, rather rustic, grainy, and spicy with white pepper (not caraway). This pairs very well with the pine and citrus that the hops bring to the table. The hops have a nice blend of bittering and flavor, though not quite as resiny as I'd like. Still, excellent. The palate opens with a blend of the rye flavors and the hops, rather excellently executed. Pleasing bitterness with a blend of citrus peel, pine and a little grapefruit, these flavors work very well with the peppery rye. All dark grain character appears to be quite fully fermented, lending a toasted grain flavor without any real sweetness. Drying on the finish with a blend of pine and rye, there's a little citrus sweetness to go with the pine resin. Medium light in body with creamy carbonation, this is expertly conditioned and is a treat on the palate. Highly recommended, this along with Bear Republic's Hop Rod Rye define what a hoppy rye beer can be.

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Photo of tbeckett
3.46/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from Beer Deluxe. From notes.

A - Poured really hazy. Medium brown colour. Good carbonation. Really fluffy two finger white head leaving decent lace and and rings of retention.

S - Rich malt, mild citrus, dark fruit. Mild.

T - Lot's of hop flavour, rich malt, spicy rye.

M - Spicy dryness in teh finish, good carbonation, medium body.

O/D - Pretty neat. Lot's of flavour and not bad to sit and sip but the spicy rye was a bit much. Otherwise alright.

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