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Sour In The Rye | The Bruery

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Sour In The RyeSour In The Rye

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States | website

Style: American Wild Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We brewed this ale with around 40% rye as a base malt and let our sour yeast and bacteria eat away at it in oak barrels for over a year creating a sour ale with a complex character of rye spice, oak and a subtle funk.

Added by womencantsail on 08-09-2009

User Reviews
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Reviews: 295 | Ratings: 2,414
Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.46/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

look: hazy orange amber with a full off white head on the pour. Messy lacing that recedes quickly.
smell: Tart and Sour. As it warms i'm getting clove and pepper. Lots happening. Tart cherry and a nice complimenting vanilla.
taste: Quite tart and funky up front. That gives way to many of the flavors in the nose, but reasserts itself in a lingering finish.
Overall: Delicious.

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Photo of uvachief
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft. Little to no head. Orange brown color. Smells of grapefruit and lemons with an orange overtone. Tastes much the same. Makes your mouth pucker and is very tart and dry. Not really my glass of beer. To each his own.

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Photo of utopiajane
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours the color of blush on an apricot. orangey but golden yellow deep inside. Graceful hues adorn the edges of the glass. Head is thin , close to tan and dissolves upon hitting the glass. Some shimmering sheeting lace to slide down the glass as you drink. Nose is fragrant with rye spice. and peaches. Pepper and airy oak. There is a touch of dry sugar scent too and a bit of bread. Taste is sour. It hits the tongue like an explosion of texture. A bright sour unripe peach. A mouthwatering acidity peaks on the palate just as the malts come to the forefront from the body of the beer like an undertow. It's a bit of a surprise actually. How deep the beer is because rye is so crisp and dry to the taste. The breaddiness on the nose develops more and more as the beer warms. The spice from the rye is quite strong and it blends with a light funk. I was expecting a lot more funk but I am glad there wasn't. Finishes with a bit of leather and a body that is surpising full yet crisp lots of fruit and a bit of pepper. carbonation is moderate but not fizzy .

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Photo of AJKing
3.16/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Looks great, clear amberish, with some red. Thin white head that fades. Smells vaguely acidic, but unremarkable. The taste is mostly sweet, with stone fruit overtones, but also features some flowery notes. I was overall unimpressed considering the massive reputation of the beer, but considering what it was I also firmly approved of the acid/sweet. If anything, I was looking for a drier finish and more sour, but that could just be personal bias.

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4.39/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Head is off white, as is the norm for this style of beer. Body is a rich Amber haze. Nose is spectacular with great dynamics. Citrus rind and and passion fruit play big. There are some phelonic breadth notes as well. With first sip you get a tongue painting sour wave. Stone sour cherry skins and wonderful full sour notes throughout. This is a sour bomb in all the right ways.

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Photo of Catracho5
4.46/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle poured into a Belgian tulip

A: Dark orange/amber color with a nice creamy bright white head, head faded after a five minutes, no lacing, not much carbonation, clear.

A: Rye spice, tart, green apples, toffee, green grapes, slight oak, smells really complex, lots of sour fruit aromas.

T: Rye spice, tart funkiness, slight oak, finishes dry, alcohol is barely noticeable, very drinkable, well balanced.

M: Medium mouthfeel with a strong dry finish

O: Very impressed, The Bruery brews really good beers and this one is no exception. If you love sours you must try this beer.

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Photo of Budinetz
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 4-15-15. Very young as far as tart flavor goes as it should be. An amazing sour over all as one of the best transitional sours if I may be so hold. Find this beer and buy two. Drink one and age one. You're Welcome.


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Photo of Neorebel
4.59/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This review is for the 2015 version, with new 'Bruery Terreux' branding. Sour in the Rye pours a beautiful auburn color with a thin head. The aroma is exciting, with cherry and apricot notes, as well as cider and vinegar. Myriad tart fruit flavors come through in the flavor, particularly a bit of pleasantly sour grapes. There is a 'flower petal' essence to it and a huge 'barnyard funk' presence. The rye grains are a unique and interesting addition that you can taste clearly. It's quite smooth and refreshing, despite it's fairly high ABV for the style. Overall, one of my favorite sours- a must try!

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Photo of TruePerception
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bruery's Sour in the Rye 2015, sour rye ale aged in oak. 7.6% ABV.

A: Head starts thin, but quickly rises to about half a finger, and then settles back to a thin ring. Slight brownish red-orange, fading to peach towards the outsides of the glass. Hazy yellow-white in the dimple. Decent sheeting, but it disappears quickly. Decent, yet thin and sluggish lacing. Thin, clear meniscus.

S: Nice multi-tonal sourness. Earthy funk, a bit of lemon, and some tartaric. Slight leather. Very light rye. Slight oak.

T/MF: Mmm. Not super aggressive. There is a sharp, warheads-like sourness up front, but it doesn't bite, and settles down to a whisper quickly enough. There's a definite peach fuzz/peach pit thing going on. Green apple and pear as it settles around the middle of the tongue. Very approachable, and yet, very sophisticated. Not the best sour I've had, but a strong showing none the less.

Poured from a 750mL bottle, into a Belgian tulip glass.

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Photo of MUTINY
4.24/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750ml into a wine glass.

A: Absolutely breathtaking. Hazy amber near the rim to bright copper by the stem. 1/2" white head recedes to nothing immediately. Zero retention & lacing.

S: Sour grapes, general major tartness, cedar, figs, white pepper, clementine (actually a surprising amount of overall citrus), baking spices. The rye is present, but really limited here to a slightly herbaceous spiciness. However, holy moly this brew has a nose.

T: Cedar & oak, sugar, a bit of sour apple & lemon/lime. Dimetapp (in a good way), more of the rye - here as more of a grassy, almost chewy element. Fig again. Honey oat bread.

M: Moderate carb & a generally light body. Fits the style quite well.

O: Monster sour. Really like it. The rye element is a fun & fitting addition.

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Photo of do_ob
4.39/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 mL bottle dated 11/05/2013. Served in a snifter. Pours a rustic orange, and settles into a murky amber once in the glass. About 1/2 a finger of bubbly white foam sits on top. Strong sour notes of rye on the nose, along with subtle hints of flowers and lemon peel. I got a bit of a malt and bread aroma in addition as it warmed. Light, carbonated mouthfeel that's a bit like a champaign/wine hybrid. There's definitely a dominating sour characteristic, along with strong notes of rye and other spice. A funky tartness sets in middleways with lemon and orange peel flavoring. A little abrasive on the finish with a lingering lemon-tart aftertaste.

Overall, quite enjoyable. This is my first sour, and what a dandy. The first couple sips made me pucker a little. Tons of flavor, though, and undeniably well-made. For the price-point, I'm not sure I'll pick this up all that often, but it's definitely worth trying at least once. Very good.

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Photo of bnes09
5/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Special beer here. Pours a brilliant caramel color with off white head and plenty of lacing. Aroma of dark fruit, hint of rye spice, oak, vanilla and malt vinegar. As it warms, aromas of small batch rye whiskey hit the nose. Assertive acidic bite hits the tongue right away. Vinegar and lactic tartness. Caramel and dates sweeten and balance. Minimal hop presence as expected. Smooth yet mildly spicy rye whiskey oak tones mellow, add complexity and blend the flavors together. Finishes with a candy like quality: molasses? As it warms finish adds sea salt characteristics tasting like salted caramel. Medium to full body. Perfect carbonation brings all the flavors to the palate one at a time then blends them all together in the finish. Slightly dry yet sticky from all the malt. Overall, not much else I can say but a flawlessly executed barrel aged sour. Would love to see what a few years of cellaring would do to this blessing from the beer gods.

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Photo of winningwes91
4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours a nice hazy yellowish orangish color. Aromas are already flying out of the bottle. Smells of tart apples, white wine, vinegar, and grapes. Taste is mouth puckering! Opens up the palate with green apple and wine. Dry, champagne-like aftertaste. Excellent stuff.

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Photo of J-Rye
4.01/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Seriously a novelty beer. The level of sourness is unparalleled in my experience, which I find to be very unbalanced, but amazingly delicious nonetheless.

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Photo of neenerzig
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured of a25.4 fl oz bottle into one of my tulip glasses, this beer pours a mostly clear, but slightly cloudy/hazy medium amber color with lots of streams of little bubbles rapidly and continuously rising to the beer's surface. Has a white head that is about 1/3 of an inch when first poured that settles to a nice thick ring lining the inside of the glass along with a lot of big swirls of surface foam. Aromas of rye and oak are certainly present along with some cherry, a nice yeasty funk , hints of apricot and peach. Has a nice funky, somewhat sour tart taste upfront that gives way to oak tannins, hints of rye and vanilla, the cherry, apricot, and peach fruitiness. Also has just a slight salty hint rounding out the taste. The different flavors blend so seamlessly together in an absolutely perfect manner! Superb! My only compliant is that I wish the sour aspect was a little more pronounced. Has a crisp, yet also smooth and creamy, slightly prickly, medium bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Has a clan and dry finish. Quite easy to drink actually, more so than I expected. Worth the fairly steep price tag in my opinion. I must get another bottle of this to age in my cellar for awhile.


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Photo of BenwayPHD
4.71/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours a hazy light brown red with a thin eggshell white head. The smell is really complex. The first two aromas are a funky sour and wood. There are various unripe fruits. Cherry, apricot, peach. The flavor follows the nose pretty closely, except the barrel is very present. This thing has wood like a french champagne. The mouthfeel is very lively and enjoyable. This is a world class beer.

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Photo of blockdude
4.63/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Another great beer from the bruery, and probably my favorite wild ale by them. This was remarkably complex, with oak, cherries, rye, and a noticeable kiwi/strawberry flavor in the finish. There are so many changing flavors with this beer, and I've had this twice after a year of aging and without a doubt this gets much better with age. I got really bad heartburn after a few glasses but I probably just need to show some restraint.

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Photo of SierraFlight
3.93/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at The Bruery poured into taster. Appearance is cloudy golden-orange with a thin white head that leaves spots on the drink down. Aroma is sour grapes, white wine vinegar, cherries, funky, tart, oaky and spicy as well thanks to the barrels and rye. Lots going on. Taste delivers on the sourness from the nose, with a forceful blast of initial tartness - citrus, cherry, grape - followed by a mellow vanilla sweetness, rye spice on the swallow, and a touch of oak bitterness in the finish. Medium body, a little creamy, moderate carbonation, long puckering dry finish.

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Photo of JPond4
5/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer was phenomenal. I was fortunate enough to get a bottle last night, and wasn't sure what to expect, but it was amazing. Do yourself a favor, and if you see it pick up a bottle.

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Photo of leroybrown10
4.41/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a bright orange with mild haze. Short white head which bubbles away quickly. No lacing at all.

Intense sour aroma. Smells of sour citrus, oak and mild vinegar.

Pleasantly tart flavors which are less intense than the aroma suggests. More sour citrus, especially lemon, as well as some tart blackberry and dark cherry. Some mild spice of pepper, coriander, and lemongrass. Barrel notes come through at the end with some oaky tannins, leather, and vanilla. Everything blends together nicely.

Tart, medium bodied mouth feel. Pleasant, crisp carbonation leaves an effervescent feeling on the tongue. Sourness causes a slight pucker.

This is an complex beer which balances and blends a variety of different elements into a excellent whole. Sourness is noticeable but not intense like say a Love Child. I suspect that cellaring this for a few years would deepen the sour flavors.

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Photo of mschantz
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tasted 2012 reserve. Beautiful orange color with good clarity with slight head. Prominent sweettart flavor with woody finish. Fruit showing through reminiscent of kiwi and lemon flavors.

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Photo of SerialTicker
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

$18 750ml or something like that. Bottled 11/05/13. BUT I had $15 off in-store and Bruery beers were all 20% off, so I basically got this for like a buck... hm. Not bad!

Appearance: Poured slowly as recommended on the bottle and got a modest, short-lived, super effervescent head that went away after a few short moments. The laser etching in my glass has a lot of bubbles coming up from it. The color is about copper brown, and there's a very slight haze as well. Wasn't expecting a great looking beer, and this one isn't, as it has no head or lacing, but it does have a very nice color.

Smell: Mm.. that cravable funk that sour lovers enjoy. Major "barnyard" funk dancing with rye notes, some caramel malts, and some fruits -- a good amount of red apple in there. Solid depth in the aroma here. A little oaky characteristics from the aging, but really pretty mellow.

Taste/feel: Pucker up, phew. This one'll make your mouth water. Like the smell, dat funk tho. The rye isn't as there as I was expecting it to be, but it's definitely got a rye-y bit of flavor. There's a lot of sour (that comes off as vinegar-like, really), some of that oak barrel woodiness, and also that apple note as well. The feel is very good, with a moderate-to-high carbonation and moderate feel. Aftertaste is a bit of that rye with loads of sour funkiness.

This is an excellent sour ale ... surprise, surprise. Very nice feel, puckering sourness, and some good complexity. I'd like to get another bottle some time and age it for about three years and see what happens to it. My bottle was relatively "fresh" at just 11 months old.

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Photo of Damian
4.71/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Drink from a 1 pint 9.4 fl. oz. bottle purchased at Craft Beer Cellar, Belmont, MA
2014 edition
Served in a tulip

The beer poured a brilliant, crystal clear, orangey-amber color and was topped by an inch tall, foamy, off white crown. Odd shaped patches of lacing trickled along the glass. The head faded to a thick, lasting ring.

The aroma was amazingly tart and complex. Almost lambic-like. Super oaky and musty with loads of funk. There was an intense dry yeasty quality as well. Notes of brett were apparent. Some fruitiness came through as well. Cherries were detectible.

The flavor profile was very similar to the nose, except perhaps a bit fruitier. Sour, funky and slightly musty with intense sour cherry notes. Touch of raspberry perhaps. Loads of brett-like tartness and oak/barrel character. The beer was anchored by a bready malt backbone which lent the beer a subtle sweetness. Lemon notes came through in the center. Crisp with a touch of vinegar-like acidity. The beer finished quite dry with notes of oak and tannins. All in all, really interesting and balanced.

The mouthfeel was impressive. Medium bodied for the style. Creamy, slick and smooth. A super fine, moderate effervescence gave the liquid a plush suppleness.

While some reviewers felt that Sour in the Rye is an overwhelmingly sour and acidic wild ale, I found it to be remarkably complex and amazingly well balanced. In fact, this is definitely one of the best wilds I have tried in quite some time. I would love to lay down a bottle or two and see how the beer ages, but my guess is that it peaks after only a year of cellaring.

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Photo of Auraan
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Poured a gorgeous translucent reddish orange body with a finger and a half of foamy pinkish head. Very nice looking. Scents of sour cherry, wild, barnyard funk, stone fruit, and sweet, tart red berries along with slight oak. Overall impression is of a nice sour aroma that is fruity and nicely funky. Very nice. Flavor begins moderately sour with notes of sour cherry, Brett funk and a bit of spicy rye, along with hints of oak. This moves into a still sour middle, with further notes of cherry, and a bit of spicy rye, with oak still present. Finish is dry and moderately high in sourness with notes of sour cherry and berries and oak. Aftertaste is sour, with notes of sour cherry, berries, especially raspberries, a bit of oak and a hint of spicy rye and grainy malt. Overall impression is of a nicely sour, dry and fruity beer with a nice oak presence and funk. Very nice and quite pleasant. Mouthfeel is medium-light bodied with moderate carbonation, and a drying, puckering feel. Quite nice and very drinkable. Overall this is a good sour ale. It has a wonderful aroma and flavor profile that is fruity, funky, oaky and slightly spicy with a nice mouthfeel that aids the drinkability. Highly recommended.

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Photo of nataku00
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Bottle poured into a tulip glass. Beer pours a hazy burnt orange, reddish hues with a mostly hazy color. Minimal head quickly dissipates but plenty of carbonation streaming up from the bottom of the glass.

Nose is acetic acid heavy, sour red berry, old oak, warm spices like cinnamon and nutmeg, brown sugar sweetness.

Taste follows nose well, hit of tart berry and cider vinegar, mellowing into spice, oak, and brown sugar sweetness. Dry finish, bit of lingering acetic acid and fruity tartness.

Medium body and heavily carbonated with fine carbonation that is very gentle on the tongue, keeping the beer very drinkable.

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Sour In The Rye from The Bruery
94 out of 100 based on 295 ratings.