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Rye Hopper - French Broad Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Rye HopperRye Hopper

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

134 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 134
Hads: 241
Avg: 3.84
pDev: 13.28%
Wants: 15
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
French Broad Brewing Co. visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
Rye Beer |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ncvbc on 09-22-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 134 | Hads: 241
Reviews by taylorhamrick:
Photo of taylorhamrick
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber color, moving a bit to brown, slightly hazy with a huge head, kind of off-white/yellow colored. It looks a little loosely packed, but it stays around, leaving nice lacing. Though eventually, it sort of collapses to a pillowy mass and then sort of disappears slowly. The smell comes across with mostly powdery malts, and quite a bit of rye. Like rye bread, a little spicy, a little earthy. There also seems to be some spiciness and leafy-earthiness from the hops as well. Otherwise, their presence is mild in the smell. Something smells a little like cinnamon in here as well, a little spicier though. The taste comes across with a kick of herbs, like herb bread, with cloves, and a bit of mint, some basil, maybe a taste of garlic, actually there seems to be a little heat to it. Very interesting. Then there's a kind of toasty malt presence, with a bit of sweetness, liek caramellized sugars. I can also sense a bit of an estery presence, but it's barely there. There's quite a bit going on here - I'm not so sure I have anything to compare it to, but I'm really enjoying it. The body is nice and full, almost chewy from the proteins in the rye. Makes it almost hard to swallow. The alcohol warms a little, but isn't really noticeable. The carbonation hardly bites, but you can feel it there, helping to rush the beer down. Really enjoyable. It's a bit out of the ordinary - not because of some strange ingredient, but just because I haven't really tasted anything quite like it, and worth a shot if you can get it. I could see myself purchasing this again.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have enjoyed the French Broad beers I have had and this is no different.Poured into a imperial nonic a dull slightly hazed deep bronze with a creamy/frothy 1/2 finger head that settled very slowly leaving shotty lace behind in its wake.Nice sharp citric aromas imparted by the rye and healthy does of hops.Flavors are nice but dont hit home as much as many of the american style like Founders Red Rye,Bear Republic Hop Rod etc...,but there is a light sharpness to it and a decent citric bite.A smooth near creamy mouthfeel makes the beer feel like it glides down the throat,a solid brew,I would buy again.

Lets go Red Wings !

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Photo of tbryan5
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of jbrnrdn
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of merlin48
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Twenty-two ounce bottle pours a hazy, burnished copper body with a two finger khaki head. Good retention and very sticky lacing drapes the glass.

Aroma is a bit subdued, but boasts some sweet citrus(pink grapefruit), spicy rye, and earthy and leafy pinecone.

Very good mouthfeel is creamy and smooth, with a medium body and carbonation.

Taste is interesting. Earthy, spicy, and peppery rye malt is the star here, but the hops stand out, as well. Pine and grapefruit notes weave in and out. Just a touch of caramel to keep things interesting. A touch of toasted rye bread and hops earthiness at the finish.

I'm very partial to a well done rye ale and this one hits the mark on all accounts. It's a bit too filling to want more than one at a single sitting, but this is my favorite French Broad product to date. Well done!

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Photo of juicebox
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of chinchill
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shared 22oz bomber shared with 2 friends. Served in large wine glass.

A: Pours with a very attractive copper brown color; sparkling clear with barely visible fine carbonation. A small white head reduced to a ring that left little lacing behind.

S: There's rye in the nose, and plenty of sweet malt, but the hops come through first and foremost, making this pleasantly citrusy.

T: This is a rye pale ale with a strong malt base and enough rye to significantly modify the flavor. There's plenty of hops in the flavor, like a typical Amer. PA, and the hops are the main contributor to the fine and lasting finish.

M: very good carbonation level; medium body

D: A good bomber to share; plenty of flavor but not extreme.

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Photo of ByTor2112
3.78/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Asheville Pizza.
Poured up a light brown, almost copper color, with some reddish hues escaping with the light.
No head, minimal lacing.
Aroma- malty with some very faint piney hops notes.
Mouthfeel- I found this to be rather bold in the flavor profile- mlaty with some caramel, hops are medium but the Rye, oh the Rye doth give this one an edge! me likey! Finishes with a bit of a medicinal bitterness. I'll agree with the previous review this one does not get crazy with the hops but the Rye really makes it a bit more aggressive on the palate. I could session this one but it feels like it might have an ABV of at least 6.5%. Good brew

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Photo of glid02
4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Brick Store in Atlanta.

Pours a hazy copper color with a one-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a patchy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of grassy hops and robust caramel malts with a hint of spiciness from the rye.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Caramel malt flavors up front are soon joined by grassy and piney hop flavors. Near the end of the sip a good amount of spiciness kicks in before a solidly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a very nice thickness with solid carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I had no problem finishing my glass and could have a few of these.

Overall this is a good and hoppy rye beer (as the name would suggest) that does a good job of integrating the rye. It falls short of the best rye beers out there, but is still worth a shot.

Note: I tried this side by side with the bottle version and the tap version is thicker with a cleaner hop flavor. Definitely try on-tap if possible.

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Photo of sgttibbs
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.66/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a dark caramel body that is crystal clear with a slow carbonation of bubbles that feed a bubbly beige head.

S- The light aroma of soft herbal pungent hops is soft and finishes with a plastic aroma that grows as the beer warms. The hop aroma does not grow as it warms.

T- The dry biscuit toasted notes give way to a green spicy hop flavor that compliments a spicy rye note aswell. There is a soft but full vegital pungency and a green grapefruit pith note that lingers. Some citrus notes come through in the hops as the beer opens.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a soft fizzy hint in the finish.

O- This beer has a nice malt flavor with some good soft rye spice to compliment the hops, but the only real hops flavor is a strong pungent bitterness and not a lot of hop flavor and aroma.

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Photo of pwoods
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to JCB for this extra.

22oz. brown bomber poured into an imperial pint.

A: Pours a deep coppery amber, somewhat opaque. About a finger worth smooth head forms and holds a bit of retention. Good lacing.

S: Lots of spicy rye. Some hops come through past the rye, maybe a bit piney. Some sweetness. Really, rye dominant.

T/M: Again, lots of rye. A pleasant light sweetness from some toffee comes out, tasty. A bit nutty as well. Hops are not too big at all... not enough to be called 'hopper', that's for sure. There is a touch of bitterness as well as a bit of pine and some grassy/pollen-y hops. Body is medium to medium full and smooth and creamy.

D: Label says 5.9% ABV, about what I would have guessed. Drinkable with plenty of flavor.

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Photo of LXIXME
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of Brenden
3.57/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a 750 after enjoying this beer on tap at the brewpub.

The color is a deep gold verging on more of a pale amber. A soft, fluffy but sturdy little white head forms, fading to a foam that leaves light, spotty lacing.
The smell is a clean balance of hops (citrus), caramel malts, and rye bread.
The taste is where this one differs from the tap; not only is it not as well balanced, the rye is tangy with an astringent, metallic tinge that makes for a bad aftertaste. I don't know what happened here, but it was in a bottle from the brewery itself and one from a local store.
The body is medium and carbonation is moderate. There's a nice smoothness after an initial crisp nip.
This is still a good beer if you can try to get over that aftertaste, but I'd recommend it from the tap.

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Photo of dashirey
4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I purchased this bomber at the brewery on a recent trip to Asheville. We enjoy some local bluegrass while sampling some beers, but brought this one home to PA.

A - This beer poured darker than I expected - deep amber and even close to brown in some spots. A small off-white head with little retention, but a good amount of lacing present on the glass.

S - I really like the smell on this one. Some toastiness, rye, and hops - that's what I got from it. Not much more to go one about here.

T/M - Again really nice, nothing overwhelming, but just straight forward good. Some sweet notes with a good dose of rye followed closely by the hops - some citrus and some pine. The aftertaste hangs on after the beer is gone. There is a pretty big prickly sensation on the tongue from this one at first, but that mellows quickly and the carbonation is very well done.

D - Easy to drink and could have a few more. I hope this isn't taken the wrong way. Nothing spectacular, but just a good all-around beer that I would love to have on hand! I will definitely pick more up next time in NC!!

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Photo of whitekiboko
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of mdaschaf
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from notes 4/8/11. Thanks to mikesgroove for this bottle!

A: Pours a clear amber/copper color with a very nice 2.5 finger off white head. Nice retention and rings of lacing left behind.

S: Light pine hops, a little bit of citrus. A good bit of spicy rye and some bready malt.

T: Not as much rye translated to the flavor profile but there is a little kick upfront. Drinks more like a pale ale though. Nice hop flavor with some citrus, mostly grapefruit. There is a little caramel malt on the backend.

M: Medium bodied, crisp and little lighter than expected. Carbonation level is very nice.

O: A solid beer, would have liked a little more rye spice in the flavor profile, but I liked it. A nice first beer for me from French Broad.

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Photo of tastybeer
3.68/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not a bad looking brew. Woody auburn color topped by an initially large tan, finely bubbled head. Aroma is of decomposing leaves, wood, mulch mixed with cocoa, orange pulp, sweet grain and spice. Taste is interesting. Earthy cocoa + mulch, root veggies (perhaps beets and/or potatoes), rye tartness, and a little caramel. Texture is slippery smooth, undisturbed by the extra fine carbonation. All the while, various flavors slide around within a medium body. The slickness makes this go down very easy, leaving the the mouth thinly coated.

This is an interesting brew. A nice change of pace from the all the IPAs I've been drinking lately.

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Photo of Jonmoore89
4.4/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a lively dark copper with a finger and a half head. Retained its light amberish head very well. Appears to be very carbonated.
The Aroma was sweet, malty, carmely greatness.
I interpreted the flavor as starting off with hints of carmel and malt, and then finishing with a citrusy hoppy bitterness.
The mouthfeel was heavy and highly carbonated.
Overall the rye hopper was a beer very different from what I'm used to and pleasantly surprising. The bitter sweet flavor was a winner for me.

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Photo of allthatAles
4.2/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour: Deep red with khaki head. head breaks down but only to a thick lacing the head over.

Nose: bready fruit malts, rye spice notes blend with hop profile, and lightest touch of bittersweet cream at the end

Mouth: you can hardly tell its 59 IBUs the spice of the rye are either dominant or blended to a level where hops an rye are nearly indistinguishable. bit of fruit then spicy bread to hops to that bittersweet cream advertised in the nose.

This is my first french broad and pretty damn tasty. i think this does well as the 'medium' of the genre. would lend its self to an american session beer, though purists will whine due to the 5.9% ABV, too hard core you know.

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Photo of Sammy
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fresh bottle from Bruisin' Ales. Pours medium yellow, with initial foamy head that settles into lots of lace. Fresh hoppy malty aroma that includes some rye bread. Taste is, with middling mouthfeel, a fairly bitter high IBU ale that is blended with the rye for flavour. Drying finish. Very drinkable.

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Photo of tdm168
4.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Village Draft House in Raleigh

Arrived a dark amber with little head. Smells of roasted malts and peppery rye. Taste is predominantly rye, but with a nice malt balance. The rye sits on the tongue and offers a good bite, but isn't overpowering. Reminds me of a good pastrami sandwich. Medium bodied and well carbonated. I don't think I could have too many of these at once, but this one was good.

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Photo of ElGordo
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got a draft pint at the CNN Center Taco Mac during a work conference. Pours an amber-orange color, topped by a bit of creamy white head that leaves a bit of pretty lacing on the glass. Aroma is heavy on the malt and rye - slightly tangy, with a touch of caramel and some citrusy hops.
Palate is up front with the rye and barley malt - a blend of mild caramel sweetness and spicy, tangy rye. The hops come through mid-palate, giving a flourish of pine and/or grapefruit before yielding again to the spiciness of the rye on the finish.
Body is light but substantial enough to carry the flavor. Nicely drinkable. I'm impressed with this offering - not a knockout by any means, but a solid, quaffable ale that takes advantage of the rye quality. I should seek out more rye beers - this is interesting.

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Photo of Snow81
2.5/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy muddy orange

Head: Light tan head that dissipates quickly

Smell: Funk and big bright hops

Taste: Funk! I have now had a total of four different beers with this odd note and can’t pin point the flavor name, anyways there’s also a bit of bitterness I get in the back

Weight: Medium body with a low carbonation

Finish: Funk on the finish with a hint of bitter and the rye sticks on the end

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Photo of dirtylou
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber, $4.25 at bruisin ales, brought back via NW airlines

appearance: poured into an imperial pint...great looking brew - rich amber body with a full creamy, frothy beige cap and fluffy retention. very nice indeed

smell: aroma is fairly hop-driven, pine and citrus play equal parts, definitely some nice spicy rye notes in the background, a touch metallic, but very solid

taste: in my limited experience, this is my favorite french broad offering. the balance between bitter hop and spicy rye is wonderful and its got just enough bite to justify the addition of rye to what seems like could have been a great base-APA as well.

mouthfeel: creamy and medium bodied, nice spicy dry finish

drinkability: a bomber of a spicy rye is hard for any man

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Rye Hopper from French Broad Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 134 ratings.