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Hoss Rye Lager - Great Divide Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Hoss Rye LagerHoss Rye Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

430 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 430
Hads: 995
Avg: 3.78
pDev: 17.46%
Wants: 30
Gots: 78 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Märzen / Oktoberfest |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: rye726 on 08-05-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 430 | Hads: 995
Photo of allforbetterbeer
3.65/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours darker than expected with a rich and vibrant dark amber body under light foam. Smells and tastes true to style without being quite as rich and luscious as some examples. The maltiness is less than expected, the hops more, especially the bitterness. Overall this works well as an American example of the style, and the rye is a very well done component. As usual, Great Divide delivers a bold interpretation with. Professional.

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Photo of Zcrizer
3.68/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottles (Dec 2014)

Look: Orange tinted, a solid lacing on top, lots of carbonation rising.

Smell: Weaker overall than many Marzens. Slight whiff of cherry.

Taste: Solid, if not terribly distinctive. It's mid-sip flavor seems to be sweeter, more fruit-like than most.

Overall: Good representative of the style that is apparently available yearround, which is welcomed by me.

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Photo of Willster333
4.3/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very nice refreshing citrusy aroma from the beer. The taste like other reviewers have said has a bit of a caramel and strong rye taste to it. A bit sweet. My only complaint is the finish is a little flat. I think this would be a great summer beer.

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Photo of Raki
4.61/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The reason I really like this beer is its great balance of all things good (malt, rye notes, hops, and various mild background flavors), but not dominated by any one thing. Then, the "drinkability" puts the icing on the cake, with its smoothness and subdued bitterness and a really nice clean finish.

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Photo of CHickman
3.91/5  rDev +3.4%

Pours very hazy amber color with a nice thick 1 finger creamy beige head that faded slowly and left very good lacing coating the sides.

Smells of caramel, a big sweetness sugar like candied sugar and brown sugar, toasted grains, rye, funky metallic notes, pepper and wet bread which resembles cardboard. More exciting than most Oktoberfest noses, the rye is a nice spicy addition to the basic caramel nose of this style.

Tastes like rye and toasted grains up front, mixed with pepper, caramel, malt, dry grass or dry leafy hops, biscuit, light fruity notes like a lemon zest and wheat bread. The rye and spices cut through the malt and add an almost hoppy-like balance to the brew, which made it a better and more flavorful version of this style.

Mouthfeel is medium overall and yet feels watery with mild carbonation, a medium body and a nice malty semi-dry finish that trails with a nice combo of sweetness and spices. This hides the ABV completely and was easy to drink, I really like this version of a Märzen/Oktoberfest and will definitely have it again.

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Photo of majorbase2
3.95/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light copper-amber color. Very small white head with poor retention. No lacing. Aroma is very malt-forward. Sweet caramel. An unexpected amount of fruitiness (easy there, no I didn't read the label right away). Bready malts, and a bit of spice as well. The taste features, sweet, very lightly roasted malts, led by caramel. A good amount of bread malts as well, and some grain. A little bit of bitterness. Some very lightly roasted nuts that were a very nice addition to the caramel. Very very well balanced, with a good deal of sweetness that doesn't go overboard. Mouthfeel is medium bodied. A bit sticky, with makes it a little harder to gulp down. Overall this one was a pleasant surprise, after having a few letdowns from Great Divide.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.75/5  rDev -0.8%

Pours copper with a small lasting head.
Nose shows rye bready, sultanas, caramel, bready malt and hints of spicy cedar.
Creamy, nutty flavours with some bready malt too. Quite sweet.

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Photo of dcscientist
4.3/5  rDev +13.8%

What an unusual twist on a Marzen. I didn't know how much I'd like this, even though Marzens are one of my favorite styles. But man, I really dug this one. It's sweet, but the rye flavor makes it just a little different than most biscuity or malty Oktoberfests. This one, despite being in my comfort zone stylistically, definitely opened my eyes to a new flavor. I'll definitely get this again.

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Photo of WesMantooth
3.77/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I don't get the cherry or dark fruit in the flavor that the label mentions. Maybe a little in the aroma. Does pour a red-orange with very good flavor imparted by the rye as advertised. Very carmely with a crisp bite at the end. The yeast and rye together are very nice in the smell and taste. I get a little of the same malt/grain taste that the Denver Pale Ale has. This was bottled in Oct. of '13, but still very good. Will look for fresh this fall. Well done. Overall 3.75 conservatively. Great Divide continues to produce a solid lineup.

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Photo of arc3636
3.83/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours golden brown with 1 finger of white head. More malty sweetness in the nose and flavor than I'm used to in a lager. Rye, caramel, and subtle lager bitterness. This is a really impressive lighter beer. I don't normally seek out lagers, but this will be the exception.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.94/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled Jul 19 2013 at 45 degrees into standard pint glass
Aroma of malt
Head average (4 cm), off-white, creamy, slowly diminishing to an uneven layer ranging from 0 – 4 mm thick
Lacing good, forms wide nearly complete rings
Body clear medium red-orange
Flavor begins with malt sweetness and flavor with some rye spice and quickly ends on the same notes; no alcohol, no hops, no diacetyl
Palate is medium, slightly oily, soft carbonation

This is an attractive and easy drinking beer. Although this is billed as a lager, it lacks the acidity and sourness associated with lagers, perhaps because of the rye. So far, the best beer I’ve had from Great Divide.

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Photo of homebrew311
3.63/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep clear golden with some amber hues. Thin head and light lacing. Nose is malty with notes of spicy rye and neutral lager yeast. Some earthy grain notes as well. Flavor is subtle with rye malts coming forward and no hop character to speak of. A slight spiciness towards the end. Mouthfeel is light and moderately carbonated. Overall, decent flavors, well balanced, and easy drinking.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.39/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I am continuing to winnow down my backlog, especially of bottles. This one was either purchased at The Friendly Greek or dropped off by tone77, but those are really the only two possibilities.

From the bottle: "Layered"; "Crisp"; "HOSS is based on the Marzen lagers of Germany. Rich, layered malt notes, with hints of cherry and dark fruits, dominate, while the unique addition of rye imparts a slightly earthy, spicy character. Hoss finishes crisp and dry, and its brilliant red-orange color is a toast to the sunsets that make the perfect backdrop for this beer."; "Bronze Medal, Great American Beer Festival, 2009"; "Suggested Food Pairings: Veal bratwurst, barbecue chicken, carnitas (pork) tacos, Camembert cheese, German chocolate cake."

My initial, aggro pour created two fingers of dense, tawny head with moderate retention that created some great lacing as it fell. Color was a filament-bright deep-copper (SRM = > 13, < 17). Beautiful! Nose had a rich, malty scent, but I was not getting the fruitiness the label mentioned, at least, not on the nose. Mouthfeel was soft, slightly bubbly and now I did get a distinct cherry flavor on the tongue. Wild! The rye manifested itself on the dry finish, giving it an earthy balance to offset the malts. This was MUCH better than I anticipated and probably one of the best beers of the style that I have encountered. Great lacing formed as I drank through it. I would definitely be interested in having this beer again.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.39/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a dark yet clear copper color. The head is a little over a finger high, with an off-white shade. Its texture is more fluffy than creamy, but it still retains well. Nice rings of lacing are left on the glass.

S: Primarily, the aroma is caramel with some spicy rye and a touch of earthen hops. Rye comes out even more as it warms up. There isn't a whole lot to the nose, but what's there is definitely serviceable.

T: The malt backbone is stronger here. It opens faintly spicy - think rye and Centennial hops - and ends with a pleasant caramel finish. Not just caramel, but even some chocolate. A twinge of hop bitterness returns on the aftertaste. At times, it has a mineral quality to it. It's not an intense beer per se, and I wouldn't have it any other way: the hop/malt balance is delicate and defined in all the right ways.

M: It's coarse and prickly, though not out-and-out sharp. For some reason, this seems to make the body thicker than it really is. Still, this is a nice and drinkable marzen that doesn't rely on overdone carbonation to achieve that.

O: It's hard to go wrong with this brewery, and it's hard to go wrong with this beer. The rye adds a nice dimension without overpowering it. There's little wow factor here, but I'll be damned if I don't say I'm craving another one of these.

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Photo of MrBoz21
3.66/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured very bright copper/amber/gold with light tab head that quickly settled to ring. Nice fine lacing. Mild carbonation. Very pretty beer.

Aroma: Rye, right up front. Lager sulphur (which fades as glass breaths), caramel. Faint floral/noble hops.

Taste: Rye biscuit with woodsy/resiny bitter that rests in back of tongue and throat. Not complex per se, but very tasty.

Mouthfeel: Medium dry and tingly. A bit thin.

Overall: Very nice. Nice hoppy lager that is quenchable. No problem taking big, satisfying swallows. A bit thin.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.72/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a pilsner style glass.

A real nice looking body color, deep red and dark orange with a good mix of slow and fast rising and pinhead and cola sized rising bubbles. Head is light tan, only about two fingers but with a little creamy thin top.

Good sticky lager nose, a little bit of dry rye malt spicy qualities. Some faint caramel notes hide in the back as well. Pretty solid and textbook.

Palate hits with a good amount of crispness and light texture. Good hints of chocolate and caramel sensing malts it seems on the finish. Sticky lager texture but light bodied and a little wet behind the ears slightly. Muted herbality hop and crispness seems to detract from the malt bill with not as much density.

Overall it's fine and the caramel/chocolate light finish seems unique, but the beer lacks some thick backbone, and the rye angle doesn't seem as obvious on the palate as much as the nose.

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Photo of tmm313
3.84/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Clear, amber body. I only got 1/2 finger head from a pretty aggressive pour.
S- Bread, caramel, fruity - mainly apple, some pear, a little roastiness, and dank hops when you give it a swirl.
T- Follows the nose pretty closely with the addition of sour/spicy rye. Actually really fruity and sweet. Apples come through again.
M- Medium body. Slick on the tongue. Not much aftertaste.
O- I could do some damage to this beer during Oktoberfest. Everything about it is welcoming and not too overpowering. It just screams session beer! It went down like a Gatorade on a hot day. I wouldn't buy this very often, but if it were offered, I would definitely partake.

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Photo of dmfrench
3.46/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

Fruity yet dry and balanced spicy Oktoberfest hybrid.

A: Lovely hazy deep pumpkin orange body with a fleeting one finger off white head.

S: Not much, just some candied plums and faint dry malt and dusty hops.

T: Fruit forward up front without being too sweet, on candied apricot. Nice drying finish on spicy hops. Malt, of the dry biscuity variety, simply provides a foundation. There's also unfortunately something a bit off about the flavor that's hard to describe.

M: Excellent weight and carbonation.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.62/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, a single from the Whole Foods in the extreme-ish southern Denver suburbs.

This beer pours a clear, medium golden amber hue, with a measly half finger of tightly foamy, bubbly dirty white head, which leaves some decently attractive cob-webbed lace around the glass as it slowly sinks away.

It smells of grainy, slightly rye-tinged malt, a semi-sweet drupe fruitiness, a hint of raw yeast, some thin oily nuts, and a weak straw-prominent hoppiness. The taste is more somewhat watered down, lightly toasted bready caramel malt, a softly spice rye astringency, some middling black tea notes, a bit of plum and underripe apple, some obfuscated savoury spices, and earthy, kind of leafy hops.

The bubbles are pretty well subdued and out of the game, the body medium-light in weight, and smooth in the absence of any subversive encroachment. It finishes off-dry, the thin caramel malt nodding sagely at the lamely perky rye character, and faintly lingering hops.

Kind of weak for this normally heady brewery - the malt just too understated to take all that seriously. Not bad, but more summer lawn-mowing season friendly, than autumn leaf raking and pumpkin planning appropriate.

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Photo of brewskifan55
3.86/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tulip glass

A: Burnt amber. A white half finger head that turns to big bubbles. Some lacing.

S: Bready malts, rye, earthy.

T: Rich, robust. Malts slide in with light cherries and raisins. A nice rye kick. Spices. Very flavorful as it warms, invigorating the cherries.

M: Medium to heavy with kickass carbonation.

O: An excellent Octoberfest/rye ale. Recommended.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tall New Glarus Signature Pilsner Glass. Bottled on August 26, 2013.

Appearance: Pours a clear copper amber orange with a lot of rising bubbles. About two fingers of off white head that fade into a thin creamy layer. Leaves a good amount of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A toasty and bready malt driven aroma with hints of caramel and rye spice. Toasty malts with bready hints of biscuit, sweet caramel, toffee, grains, cracker, straw, yeast, and nuts. Hints of rye spicing. Subtle hints of dark fruit including fig, dates, and cherry. Subtle earthy hops in the background. A pretty solid malty Marzen style aroma.

Taste: Like the aroma, a toasty, bready, and somewhat spicy malt driven taste with good notes of caramel and rye. Upfront bready taste of toasted malts with notes of biscuit, sweet caramel, toffee, grains, toast, yeast, cracker, straw, and nut. Spicy notes of rye malt. Subtle undertones of dark fruit with notes of dark cherry, dates, and fig. Some earthy hops come through towards the finish. A pretty good malty taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, silky, and very smooth.

Overall: A very solid spin on the Marzen style. Good caramel malt taste and a nice twist from the rye and fruit undertones.

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Photo of plaid75
3.85/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a burnt coper hue with a half finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured earthy malts with a slight rye spice and grassy hop.

The taste was likewise earthy with a pleasant caramel sweetness offset by the grassy hop and zesty rye malt.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a tasty and interesting marzen.

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Photo of McStagger
3.3/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Love the name. Love the concept (Rye Marzen!).

Bottle on date is obscured, but I purchased from my local Whole Foods. Beer guy there is good about keeping stock fresh.

A: Pours a fairly dark red/bronze. Excellent clarity. Two fingers eggshell white foam. Medium bubble. Fairly rapid dissipation. Moderate lacing.

S: Lot of tart green apple. Little bit of lemon. Clean lager smell. Some spice from the rye. Slightly nutty hint.

T: Marzen roastiness comes out in the end. Flash of noble hop bitterness. Finishes with a slight edge of spiciness. Very dry, clean and crisp. Aftertaste is almost nonexistent, with slight hints of darkened fruit, the same nutinesss, and a mild herbal note.

M: Fairly light. Moderate carbonation, but it still comes across as seltzery and thin.

O: Like a green bottle beer, but with slightly more character. Would not purchase again.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.76/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Minimal carbonation after the pour. The carbonation bubbles almost entirely disappate shortly thereafter. Beautiful copper red color and brilliant clarity. I smell the bready aroma of light malt and get a bit of the spicey rye notes. The mouthfeel is moderate and tickles the taste buds on the way down. The flavor is definitely typical of an Octoberfest with the clean,crisp flavor and malty, almost nutty flavor. The nice twist would be that nice spicey rye note.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.57/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, bottled 12/6/12

appears a dark copper color, off white head. decent head retention. sweet aroma, one note. nice malty earthy flavor, smooth, easy drinking. medium body. low to medium carbonation.
overall - easy drinking nice malt flavor.

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Hoss Rye Lager from Great Divide Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 430 ratings.