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Rye Hopper - French Broad Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Rye HopperRye Hopper

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

134 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 134
Hads: 239
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 6.98%
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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 134 | Hads: 239
Photo of dirtylou
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
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 (756 characters)

Photo of taylorhamrick
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
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. (1,577 characters)

Photo of mntlover
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice hazy copper color with a off white colored head that falls to scum. Some light lace around my glass.

Aroma is lightly toasted rye bread, light orange peel, spicy hops. Some sugary notes mingled through out might be pine hints besides the spicy hops.

Taste is nice better then the nose by a nose. Taste is toasted rye bread nice lightly sour rye notes. Light fruity and lightly tart orange peel notes, hints of grapefruit also. Hops are mixture or blended in with rye minty hints spicy touches and light pine resin hints all mingled together nicely. Some nice sugary notes mixed in also.

Mouthfeel is good solid medium pushing to heavy. Carbonation is lightly peppy but not over done seems to compliment the brew very well.

Drinkability is good very enjoyable nice rye notes nice hops that blend with the fruitiness. Want to thank merlin48 for lending me this one. (880 characters)

Photo of jjayjaye
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy tea color with a nice foamy light tan head that fades fairly quickly leaving spotty patterns of Belgian lacing. The smell is an easily recognizable though timid peppery rye grain. Lightly carbonated, the mouth feel is medium bodied. Full flavored the peppery taste combine for a lively experience that finishes on the dry side. A really nice drinker and at less that 6% ABV its quite a session beer. (414 characters)

Photo of LauraAlberts
4.42/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Cloudy burnt orange/brown - nice head retention

Smell: Cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin spice

Taste: hops, cinnamon, coriander, nutmeg - similar to an American Wild Ale - very tannic

Mouthfeel: My favorite part Very tannic, Smooth - the rye dries the palate out so you're ready for another sip or another bite of food. The hops add a nice bitterness.

Drinkability: Sipper by far, this beer has a lot hidden within. A stellar beer from a growing beer company. I highly recommend. (488 characters)

Photo of cvstrickland
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The 22-ounce bomber bottle with the presence of both rye and hops denoted on the label is an easy sell to someone like me who happens to love both! Decrowned and poured into my DFH shaped pint glass, Rye Hopper Ale is clear copper in color with a huge ivory cap of foam atop. The head is persistent and fine-bubbled, and as it slowly relaxes, copious lacing remains plastered onto the sides of the drinking vessel.

The smell is richly bready and grainy brown-sugar sweet with just a spritz of citrusy hops. The rye malt is front-and-center in the aroma profile; the effect of that placement is husky-scratchy, syrupy and mouth-wateringly savory. A more toasted effect gains purchase as the drink warms.

The taste is more sugary-rich and bready rye a-go-go. The maltiness is mouth-filling and sweet with a branlike, peppery rye backing. Mild herbal hoppiness arises in the finish but is quite subdued, and really does more flavoring and balancing in the brew than it does any real embittering.

The drink is surprisingly fullish-in body with a silky syrupiness nicely complemented by fine-grained carbonation. Plenty drinkable. (1,128 characters)

Photo of PhillyStyle
2.86/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bottle
5.9% abv
59 ibu

The beer appeared a deep, dark red, very much not what I expected, but for the better. A small off-white head was produced that was not all that well retained.

The aroma was a nice toasted rye aroma and a hint of hops, but overall, the aroma was lighter than expected.

The taste was extremely, overly bitter and there was not much rye flavor at all. Definitely reminded me of a DIPA.

The beer had a nice body to it, medium body with good carbonation.

Drinkability suffers from the bitterness. The beer also had a dry bitter aftertaste. Overall, it appears that I should give this beer another shot based on the other reviews. (658 characters)

Photo of dashirey
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
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!! (1,081 characters)

Photo of aubuc1
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

draft poured in to a shaker pint glass.

pors a light amber with a steady off white head.

smell is sweet piney and bitter.

taste is smooth chalky bitter. not as clean as i hoped.

mouthfeel is good and beer is pretty drinkable.

an above average beer. (254 characters)

Photo of DefenCorps
4.18/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thank you, Mike. You've hooked me up with a good number of good beers

A: Crystal clear deep amber with a large, off-white head, leaving nice lace as it slowly recedes

S: Nice, spicy rye character to open things off with a pleasing citrus/orange hop aroma. The combination is quite enjoyable, and the mild caramel sweetness balances things quite nicely.

T: The spicy rye character is beautiful. Crisp, and with the mild caramel sweetness, this is very tasty. The hop character lends a mild bitterness along with the spiciness, along with some juicy hop character. Finishes dry and spicy

M: Fairly light, crisp carbonation and an excellent finish

D: Very very drinkable, the bomber's gone in 15 minutes (705 characters)

Photo of merlin48
4.13/5  rDev +6.7%
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! (824 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Lightly hazed, mahogany-hued body with a small-sized, ivory-hued head.

Smell: A scent of slightly toasted, nicely spicy rye bread, citrus-minded hops, and a few oh-so lonely drops of pristine caramel.

Taste: Sweetened, lightly toasted malts with a meager hint of dry caramel. Ah, there's my spicy-tasting, damn-near peppery rye. Earthy, lightly citrusy hops with a moderate amount of bitterness spurred on by the endearingly spicy rye qualities. Becomes increasingly dry approaching the finish. Touches of spice and earthiness linger into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: "What some rye? 'Course ya do." Rye Hopper maintains a more than pleasant balance between the sweetish malts and the spicy rye and bitter hops. Pleasantly drinkable and good expression of rye in beer, though, I will admit, I'm a bit partial to Terrapin's Rye Squared. (898 characters)

Photo of oberon
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
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 ! (628 characters)

Photo of Bartrob6
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured 22oz bottle into pint glass. gorgeous reddish/orange color, very clear. small head with good lacing.

smells nice with good amount of rye and a little citrus hops and earthiness too.

very nice spicy rye flavor in this beer. some sweetness and the bitterness balances it out nicely.

great mouthfeel for this beer. very smooth. not to much carbonation.

I could definitely drink this all night.

highly recommended. good beer at a good price. (449 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Gorgeous orange-bronze with radiant tangerine highlights. A sturdy chunk of sandstone colored foam occupies the upper quarter of the pint glass and looks damn good doing so. The head becomes softly rocky as it melts and is beginning to lay down thick sheets of finely pocked lace that stick like glue.

Rye Hopper smells like rye and hops. Imagine that. The intense earthiness of the rye malt is dominant, yet the fruity qualities of the hops shine through as well. Too bad FBBC isn't more specific in telling us what ingredients are used. (edit: Amarillo hops. No wonder I like it.)

This is delicious beer. My suggestion is to drink it fresh while the hops are still going strong. The malt-hop balance is exceptional at the moment, something that probably won't be true after several months. 59 IBUs seems about right, although I might have guessed a handful higher.

Anyone who thinks that rye malt and American hops is a fantastic combination should find plenty to like in Rye Hopper. I'm seriously considering a taste score of 4.5, and might get there by the bottom of the bomber. Each mouthful is a slam-bang mouth party of sweet, bitter, spicy and earthy. Flavors include rye toast (complete with caraway seeds), bitter grasses, citrus peel and a pleasing tannic woodiness.

The mouthfeel keeps the quality meter on 'high'. This is amazingly full beer for an ABV of 5.9%. Each sip (okay, gulp) fills the mouth on contact, which is always the hallmark of a well-brewed ale. The carbonation is p... e... r... f... e... c... t.

Even though I've only had two of their offerings to date, I am supremely impressed with French Broad Brewing Company. Altbier was delicious and drinkable. Rye Hopper is even more so. If you love rye beer and hops as much as I do, then you owe it to yourself to acquire a bomber as soon as possible. It looks like North Carolina is rapidly becoming a hotbed of great craft beer. Thanks Rbald42. (1,928 characters)

Photo of pwoods
3.94/5  rDev +1.8%
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. (749 characters)

Photo of tastybeer
3.68/5  rDev -4.9%
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. (640 characters)

Photo of wedge
4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hazy copper hue with a short, creamy head. Rye grain is forefront in the aroma...sweet, woody, and earthy. Some chocolate as it warms. Hops are grassy with a good bit of citrus pulp. Spicy rye and sweet caramel flavors. Not a hell of a lot of flavor from the hops, but a nice balancing bitterness that works well with the spicy qualities. This is getting chocolaty the longer it sits in my glass. Medium bodied and creamy smooth which thickens it up a tad.

Better than anything else I've had from French Broad. I like it. (522 characters)

Photo of rajendra82
3.63/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is the first French Broad (love the name) beer I have ever picked up. The Rye Hopper was poured into a standard pint glass, and it looked darker than I was expecting. The body was a deep shade of copper and clear, and the head atop was foamy. I did not see any carbonation streamers. The smell was sweet and fruity, which is odd for a beer named Rye Hopper. The taste was also sweet and mildly bitter. The bready taste was followed by a bit of spiciness. The body was soft, but this beer lacked the carbonation to make it feel creamy. Easy to drink for sure, but not the most memorable beer made with Rye. (610 characters)

Photo of shivtim
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From BSP.

Served in a pint glass. Dark copper, mostly clear but a slight bit of haze. Nice little whitish head fades quickly.
Nose is hoppy. Not much of the rye there.
Taste is spicy rye, interweaving pine hops and malts, and more lingering bready rye. Nice combination of flavors.
Pretty decent mouthfeel and drinkability. Nice beer. (335 characters)

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.26/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at the Brick Store Pub in Decatur GA. The beer was hazy dark copper color, thick rich looking off-white head, lots of wet lacing on the glass. Spicy rye and earthy hops in the aroma. The taste had a nice bite of rye and bitter hops, caramel malt througout but the spiciness sets the overall tone. Very good, as drinkable as any rye beer I've had to date. (372 characters)

Photo of glid02
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
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. (962 characters)

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another solid beer from French Broad. So nice to see these available in Atlanta now. Pours a slightly hazy dark amber with very little head and relatively low carbonation, but with some scant lacing left behind as the beer is drained. Smells of spicy rye, piney hops, and a touch of malt. Fairly well balanced in the nose. I wouldn't call the taste balanced, but it's delicious nonetheless. Starts with a bang, with a big blast of rye and piney hops intermingled to create a quite spicy, dry, bitter, prickly mouthfull. I like it, and the rye and the hops work well together. Bone dry with very little noticeable malt makes this almost tannic, and approaches rye whiskey in its flavor profile, without the burn. Big and spicy in the mouth, this one surprised me when I poured it after working in the yard expecting a lawnmower beer. That it is not. My only real complaint is that it's a bit one-dimensional, but this is one of the better beers out there for showcasing the beauty of rye, so I'll forgive it its singlemindedness. Nice, I'll be buying this again. (1,061 characters)

Photo of beer2day
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours amber with little to no head. Decent lacing. Minimal carbonation.

Nose hints at rye and hops, but not as strong as I would like. Somewhat flowery, but very mild. Some breadiness as well, but not yeasty.

Malty sweet on the hit, but the rye zing quickly kicks in. Nice dry rye finish. Mouthfeel is just chewy enough for the style.

Overall, very good and worth seeking out if you like rye's. (398 characters)

Photo of atsprings
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a Duvel snifter pours a crisp copper with a decent cream head. Aroma is a nice bit of rye with citrus hops right behind. The taste is a nice sharp rye bite balanced nicely with citrus hops. The beer is light and smooth with decent carbonation, very refreshing. This is certainly a great beer, one I'd love to see around this area as long as the price isn't jacked up by the distributor. (403 characters)

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