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Terrapin Rye Pale Ale - Terrapin Beer Company

Not Rated.
Terrapin Rye Pale AleTerrapin Rye Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

767 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 767
Hads: 1,766
Avg: 3.83
pDev: 16.19%
Wants: 55
Gots: 207 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company visit their website
Georgia, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: aracauna on 09-09-2002

Brewed with 10% rye, but an APA at heart.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Terrapin Rye Pale Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 767 | Hads: 1,766
Photo of Beejay
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Apricot in color, hazy with a few floaties, off white head on top that collapses fairly quickly.

S: Grapefruit coes out first with a nice bread note following. Some orange peel, as well as a little bit of a biscuit note.

T: Hoppy, but not overly bitter. Orange, grapefruit, and lemon balm come out first. The hops are followed by a light bread taste, and the beer finishes out with the bitterness.

M: Medium light body with plenty of carbonation. There is a slight oily feel in the lingering bitterness.

O: Overall a rather lovely pale ale. Good and reliable, this could be a new go to summer bbq pale ale.

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Photo of Chickenhawk9932
3.23/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a pale copper with an off white head.

Smells of rye with citrus and floral hops. Grapefruit and lemon.

Taste is a little grapefruit and lemon giving way to a thin watery middle. Malt is elusive and the mouthfeel is lacking and taste is light. A decent beer but lacking.

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Photo of claytri
4.21/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a nice golden with a decent but small white head. The aroma is of sharp with Rye, and a bit of floral hops. The taste starts with a full rye malt taste with a bit of dark fruits coming out in the sweetness of the middle, followed quickly by a nicely bitter hops finish. The feel is robust and wet, giving it a liquid bread quality that I like in a malty rye beer. This is a very nice example of a rye ale with a lot of malt, and nice use of the hops to compliment those qualities.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.24/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Terrapin Rye Pale Ale has a thin, white head, a semi-opaque, golden appearance, with lazy bubble streams and some light lacing left on the glass. The aroma is of white bread, sweetness, and some hop oils. Taste is of white bread crust, relatively low hop bitterness, and some light rye pepperiness. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Terrapin Rye Pale Ale finishes semi-dry and easy drinking.


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Photo of HalfFull
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Single bottle poured into a pint glass, pouring clear and deep straw/golden in color with a light touch of chill haze. Half inch cap shows moderate retention and light lace.

Aroma of light citrus hops but not very pungent. Amarillo dry hops sit atop what otherwise comes across as more of an English Pale body. Taste of rye is subtle as well up front and seems to compete with other specialty malts in the mix. Yet there is a pleasant spice and graininess likely from the rye and hops as well.

Decent feel with said texture which segues to a citrus hop close. Spice, fruit and then a neutral sweetness to finish. Malt depth again comes across as more English in style but easy drinking Pale Ale nonetheless.

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Photo of brewskifan55
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked up at Sidney's Wine Cellar, Decatur Street, NOLA. Poured into a plastic go-cup during French Quarter Fest.

A: Amber, opaque, with a tan half finger head that pops out of its shell. Decent lacing

S: Hops dominate, but the rye is fighting to get to the top. Earthy, piney. Resiny.

T: Love that hop/rye mix. The rye really blends well, giving it a smooth, less bitter finish. Sessionable.

M: Light to medium with medium carbonation.

O: A decent session beer. Less hoppy than some of Terrapin's other hop bombs.

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Photo of Gristle
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Very clear amber or golden pour, at least one inch head on the beer

S: predominantly hoppy - spicy-floral, fresh citrus and wood. Neutral fruity overtone, a background scent of cereal malt later emerges

T: spicy, 'herbal' hops up front, potent but long rounded bitterness - not malt-sweet, all hop resins and acids. a ginger-snap like malt flavor shows up late

M: fairly light, fleece-soft body, fills the mouth with suds, excellent....real stealth dry

O: given time, a bunch of pleasant aromas and flavors present themselves. Love Rye beers this one is no exception.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a lightly hazed golden amber color with a one finger head of pure white foam. The head fades relatively quickly leaving a light level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is heaviest of a caramel smell mixed with some lighter grainy and moderate rye bread smells. Along with these aromas are some other lighter notes of citrus orange and a bit of grass and floral hop.

Taste – The taste begins much heavier on the rye flavor then I would have thought from the nose. While not a super rye powerhouse it does have a nice hit of it which lasts throughout the taste. At the front of the taste, there is a caramel and lighter fruit flavor of pear and some citrus. As the taste moves forward the sweetness fades a bit as some of the caramel is lost. While this occurs, some spice flavors move onto the tongue melding nicely with the rye flavors of the brew. With a bit of an herbal and grassy flavor join the taste at the end of the flavor and with the rye moving from a more smooth bready nature to a slightly more grainy flavor at the end of the taste, one is left with a nice crisp and tasty rye bread flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average to slightly thinner side with a carbonation level that is on the average side. While just a tad more carbonation would have really nicely complemented the blend of sweeter and drier rye flavors that transition throughout the taste, the slightly thinner body did just that rather well, and helped leave the nice crisp and more refreshing rye flavor on the tongue at the end of the taste.

Overall – A quite easy drinking and still very tasty rye brew that is blended nicely with sweet, spice and crisp flavors which really make for an easy drinker.

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Photo of chugalug06
3.4/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy amber colored brew with nice foamy beige head retention.

Tons of clear honeydew molon. Floral, tropical, appley. A good pale.

Snappy, distracting, wet, relaxed, crisp, apple flavors. Mild dryness, heavy carbonation, mild heavynes, smooth flavors. Light.

Definitely a good brew, but kinda on the average level. Recommended.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
4.09/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: rocky, creamy, satiny, off-white foam.... yellow-orange colored liquid... moderate haze, nearing cloudy.... nice broad bands of crystalline lace.... solid, misty cap, 1/8"

S: predominantly hoppy - a bit like dirt weed - a dried-out skunk strain... spicy-floral, fresh pine needles and wood.... neutral fruity overtone, bright berry-like bouquet.... overall, nice elements, just muddy as hell.... a background scent of cereal malt later emerges

T: spicy, 'herbal' hops up front, followed by a rush of burnt-biscuity malt... potent but rounded bitterness - pith, thyme, acidic - long-lasting... not malt-sweet, all hop resins and acids.... a ginger-snap like malt flavor shows up late

M: fairly light, fleece-soft body, perhaps some late alcohol warmth.... fills the mouth with suds and subtle resins and just evaporates off in a way.... could use just a touch of viscous roll, otherwise, excellent....real stealth dry

O: given time, a bunch of pleasant aromas and flavors present themselves, however, they don't quite explode like they beg to... all-in-all, quite 6-pack worthy

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Photo of jrenihan
3.64/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

The beer is an almost opaque amber colour. Very small white head gone quickly.

Nose contains citrus and some rye.

Taste contains juicy citrus, a bit of spicy rye and some caramel malt. I get a bit of a bubblegum flavour as well.

Medium bodied, moderately carbonated. A bit chewy.

Overall, not bad, but not something I would have again. The flavours don't work that well together.

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Photo of dank203
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice little session ale. lot of the citrusy hop with the spicy and dryness of rye. low ABV but lot of flavor, almost in IPA territory without being overly bitter. discounted, not 100% fresh but look forward to the next fresh batch and will try to pick some up then.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Best by 4th week Nov 13 bottle at 45 degrees into pint glass (Found a case in my cellar)
Aroma slightly spicy
Head large (5 cm), white, creamy slowly diminishing to 2 cm
Lacing good, many large clumps
Body light orange, slightly hazy
Flavor begins with slight spiceyness of rye, quickly ends, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate light, watery, soft carbonation

A good go-to session beer, hard to find where I live. Every time I go south of the Mason-Dixon line, I make a stop at Terrapin (it’s only 3-4 hundred miles out of my way) to visit. Great people! Great beer!

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Photo of scotorum
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best enjoyed by 2/2/14. Fun label graphic of their turtle mascot in a straw hat playing a banjo.

Ploured from the 12 oz. bottle into a tall glass tumbler.

a: Clear amber with an inch tall rocky white head which receded to thin surface foam and some patchy lacing.

s: Vaguely of mild fruit.

t: Light fruit over light to medium malt. Dry finish.

m: Light to medium.

o: A solid pale ale, tasty and easy drinking.

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Photo of tillmac62
3.38/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

BBD 4/1/14. Light amber pour with a nice head and lacing that lasts. Nose is quite nice of blended hops, mostly pine, over a slight sweetness. Light medium body with normal carbonation. The taste is lacking. Not much is going on, and what is, is somewhat weak. Rye and hop flavor are only hints and the bitterness is mild. Crisp finish. If you want a rye, go with Founders or Great Lakes.

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Photo of Act25
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Re #APAs (my 2nd favorite style after IPAs, Dales Pale and Troegs being 2 of the benchmarks)

A: The beer pours hazed bright amber w little carbonation. head settled fast but laces well and returns with a swirl.

S: Like most APAs, the hops are present but in equal balanced with pale malts and a touch of spice.

T: The taste follows the smell with a kind of bracing rye spice pepperiness and a ample bitterness into a very clean finish. Session beer for sure, a little soapy tho.

M: Lighter side of medium-bodied moderate carbonation. Easy drinking, good finish.

O: The beer is easy to drink and the rye spices up a solid American pale ale.

Terrapin Rye Pale Ale Wins a taste off over Cricket Hill American Ale , but both are surprisingly good, original and worth trying. Not nearly the tingle and the lively pine freshness of a Dales Pale.

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Photo of A_Frayed_Knot
3.14/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Was first introduced to rye ale by a guy I saw at a meetup til which we'd only been acquainted online. He said rye was not just his first choice in beer but the only one he bothered to drink where it was served around his home in Williamsburg NY. His strong opinion intrigued me but I'm rarely prompted to select a rye except when I see it, and I'm reminded of his passion for rye, and as I've enjoyed Terrapin brews in the past I figured I would reapproach it now for another sampling.

Honestly, after a couple of these last night I wondered why I found the flavor overall too "light," supposing I was used to my more hoppy preference of IPA. There is grain but not the ultimate delivery of grain. I would have rather it came across more robust. Yet this evening as I returned from work not really looking forward to polishing off another bite of it I found instead it wasn't so bad, especially with a dinner of chicken cobbler and sauteed zucchini. My conclusion is this is a beer to accompany a hot meal on a cold night, but not necessarily a "destination brew."

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Photo of stephenjmoore
3.41/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

A- Mefium golden body, very transparent, foamy off-white head.

S- Piney hops, hints of earthy rye notes, toasted and caramel malts.

T- For a rye pale ale, this one is pretty bland. Besides some slight pine notes, there is not much hop flavor. The rye comes through slightly, but is not very prominent. There are lots of toasted malts with hint of caramel,but I was expecting more rye and more hops.

M- Medium bodied, medium carbonation, somewhat creamy and frothy.

O- A miss for me. I like rye pale ales that showcase rye and hops and this one showcased neither. Really tastes like a malty English pale ale.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.26/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear copper color. The head is a rocky-looking two fingers high white shade. Really nice lacing is left down the glass, like I'd expect from the style.

S: This skews very much toward the herbal, piny, and spicy side in terms of hoppiness. A decent (if not spectacular) rye backing helps augment the subtle piny hops. Straight out of the bottle, I pick up a touch of graham cracker sweetness. Not the biggest or most spectacular aroma, but pretty enticing.

T: I'd reckon the rye malts are what I pick up the most. A slight finish of piny hops also pops up. If any beer were more for simply drinking than picking apart analytically, this is it.

M: I like the crisp, clean finish, the slender body, and how it whisks away any unnecessary sweetness...but it would do an even better job if it had a bit more carbonation. Rye malts seem to prick the tongue ever-so-slightly.

O: It's kind of mundane. It's also really easy to session and enjoy with a burger, pizza, or whatever. I probably won't buy it again, but I won't have any problems killing this 6 pack.

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Photo of rickyleepotts
2.99/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

The only beer I have had from Terrapin is the Wake-n-Bake… and it is to die for. I mean, seriously the best coffee beer I have ever had. We had it on tap on Florida, but have traded for several bottles of it since. That beer isn't on the list, which surprises me. Maybe we can score another bottle and do an "off the wall" review of it for you. It is SO good, it makes me cry I can't have a bottle every morning!

I do like rye, so this should be a good offering. I like the word "smooth" when used to explain it. They are right about the resurgence of rye whiskey. That is a hot item right now, and you can tell just walking the aisles at Total Wine & More. We landed this bottle in a trade with our good friend Ashley Bower. I hope she is drinking something good here on National IPA Day! Cheers.

In the Glass: Is this beer flat? There are no bubbles here. No head, either. If I didn't know any better, I would think this is a hoppy barleywine. It almost looks thick in the glass. There is no lace and the beer just seems to sit there waiting to be consumed. Fine, I will drink you. This is a pale ale… is there a National Pale Ale Day?

Nose: Imagine the smell of freshly baked bread, and then toss in some hops. This smells amazing. It is not an overwhelming aroma, but man… GREAT nose. I am serious, though. This smells like bread. I would even go as far as saying rye bread. See what I did there? I hope those same notes carry over to the flavor. Cheers!

Flavor: Nope. Those flavors do not carry over. Is this beer boring because I have already consumed two double Indiana pale ales this evening? I mean, I am flat out disappointed in this. I would rather sit here and smell it than drink it. It is too cold, but there is hardly any flavor whatsoever. There is a hint of bitterness as I lick my lips, but that's it. Come on Terrapin. If you can produce a beer as delicious as the Wake-n-Bake, you can surely add some energy to your rye pale ale.

Mouthfeel: It drinks like a domestic. Unless you swish it around in your mouth, don't expect much character. I am really disappointed in this. I know Ashley likes it. I hope she isn't offended when I tell her how upset I am with the flavor of this one. Try harder Terrapin! I am going to let some of this heat up a little bit before finishing my glass.

Aftertaste: The aftertaste is somewhat drying, but is leaving a lot to desire. I really wanted to be blown away with hoppy flavors here. I mean, they even call it a "hoppy pale ale". Most pale ales lack a lot of hop character, but I was hoping this would change my mind about it. I will say this would serve as a good gateway into an IPA. But this isn't something I am going to write home about.

Better yet, maybe I WILL write home and tell all my friends and family to not order this one. Boo!

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

"One of the more unique beers coming out of the South, the Terrapin Rye Pale Ale offers a new twist on a classic style. By using an exact amount of rye this beer offers a complex flavor and aroma that is in tune with your taste." Brewed in the style of an American Pale Ale with an emphasis on Rye as the specialty malt. First brewed in 2002, this is the launch beer by Athens, Georgia's Terrapin Beer Company, and has been a staple year-round beer since.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a Terrapin pint glass. Served north of 56º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a billowing creamy off-white head over a mildly hazy amber body with moderate relaxed carbonation. Retention is very good, lacing is medium-thick and sticky. This beer has a very solid appearance with no shortcomings. 4.5

(Smell) Aromas of pale malts, lightly toasted caramel malts and a touch of spicy rye grain for a bready depth. Hops are largely floral and fruity varietals with a moderate bitterness. Hints of citrus linger in the background. The hop profile is a very potent part of this beer's aroma. Balance is mildly sweet over bitter. 4

(Taste) Mildly sweet up front and continues throughout- you can certainly pull out the bready rye character that adds a touch of density to the malt profile beyond a clean pale barley malt. Hop characters are mildly fruity and subtle floral, providing a nice compliment to the rye. Bitterness is very mellow in this beer- it's not too far out of balance but a touch of extra hop bitterness could positively enhance the depth of this beer. It remains light in flavor and very drinkable, a fair craft introductory beer as well as a fair introduction to what Terrapin is capable of. If you don't like abrasively hoppy beers you may find great solace in the Rye Pale Ale. 3.75

(Mouthfeel) Malt texture is smooth, slick and a touch resinous. Carbonation adds a moderate crispness and zing to the texture. Finish is just barely dry. Body is medium+ for the style, medium overall. Alcohol presence is low. Some mild mineral characters are discernible, but don't impact the taste much. 3.5

(Overall) This is a fair introduction to what Terrapin is capable of- the malt profile is a touch more excited and rounded with the inclusion of Rye, which has been almost a trademark stamp of the brewery since. Combine this with the accessibility of floral and fruity hop notes and you have a very drinkable ale. 3.75

Terrapin Beer Company's
Terrapin Rye Pale Ale

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Photo of ZethOfTheNorth
3.53/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. Single bought at Hop City, Birmingham. Freshness date of Novermber 2013. Hm, lots of BA reviews; didn't realize this was a Terrapin flagship.

Pours a handsome bronze, very murky and opaque. Not many style points for the weak head, but nice lacing.

Smell is very floral and pleasant. A little c-hop citrus is there; so is a touch of rye spiciness. Something like maraschino cherry? Smells like an old fashioned.

The taste doesn't punch like the nose... everything is muted. No wave of bitterness or hop-forward flavors. More of a rounded, earthy flavor akin to an English IPA lightly hit with rye. That said, I'm not sure I would identify this as a rye beer if I didn't know in advance. Mouthfeel is slightly thin.

It would be one thing if hops were sacrificed to make way for the rye, but here both are muted and rounded into what amounts to a safe, inoffensive session beer, an annoying specialty of the South.

Exploring Terrapin has been an up-and-down adventure for this reviewer; the Rye PA likely isn't one I'll return to.

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Photo of dwren89
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: golden amber, more on gold side, slightly off white head, great clarity

Aroma: caramel and rye spicing, richer flavor than most pale ales, slight bitter nose, smells like caramel drizzled rye bread

Taste: caramel and toasted bread malt flavor with some slight spicy/peppery characteristics from the rye, very easy drinking, pleasingly bitter finish but not on same IBU level as IPAs, much more balanced, significant malt flavor with little hop flavor

Mouthfeel: medium-low carbonation, slight tingle on swallow, medium bodied, rich an toasty and warming in the mouth

Overall Impression: An easy drinking and balanced beer that gets most of its flavor from caramel malt character and a slight spiciness from rye malt additions. A moderately biter finish but little discernible hop flavor or aroma, this Rye Pale Ale is a good one for those who aren't hopheads but want to try a rye ale.


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Photo of 1sophrosyne1
3.28/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured into short tumbler glasses, consumed at about 45-55 degrees over 15 minutes.

Uniform, pleasing head with fair retention and lacy remains.
A translucent light amber glow.
Not much of a nose--floral rye and mild caramel.
Creamy start allows subtle hop-flint to carry the bitterness forward.
Never peaks with any powerful flavor. Stays round and earthy with a meek roasted parsnip and spice ending.
Fairly thick on the tongue with sufficient body to make it linger. As one presses out the finish between lingua and palate, a pleasant mint comes through.
Overall, a creative offering with technical merit, but rather low on style points.

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Photo of JSisk
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Being from Athens, I can say that this beer is one of Terrapins biggest sellers. With that said it is not my favorite. I prefer "Hopsecutioner" and "Golden" but this is a great beer that can be found almost everywhere in the metro Atlanta area.

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Terrapin Rye Pale Ale from Terrapin Beer Company
86 out of 100 based on 767 ratings.