He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. - Shmaltz Brewing Company

Not Rated.
He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.

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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,782 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,782
Reviews: 851
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 12.07%
Wants: 74
Gots: 112 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A Double India Pale Ale with Rye Malt brewed in tribute to Lenny Bruce (Leonard Alfred Schneider 1925-1966).

(Beer added by: mcallister on 06-07-2006)
View: Beers (26) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,782 | Reviews: 851 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of supercolter
3.13/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ok so maybe I'm just not a rye beer guy. I'm wasn't really picking up much of the hops, seeing as this was a DIPA. I don't really like the way that the two flavors mix and this beer tastes like a poorly balanced barley wine. The mouthfeel is actually quite nice. Oily and moves around well on the tongue. Drinkability is ok, but its more sessionable than anything.

Photo of kzoobrew
3.13/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Deep amber body, clear and free of any haze. Heavy four finger white head perched atop with very impressive retention. The glass is left coated with lacing.

The bottle states Lenny's was "brewed with an obscene amount of malts and hop" This definitely is coming through in the nose. First the good. Bright citrusy scents spill out of the glass. The hop selection is awesome, I love rye beers that balance the astringency with a nice citric bite. Now the bad, there is a lot of malt and not all good. Lightly toasted malt provides a pleasant base though I begin to worry by the amount of caramel I am smelling. Getting a bit to happy with caramel malt has killed many good IPA/DIPA's.

I tried to keep an open mind but my concerns were only justified. Bittersweet Lenny should just go by Sweet Lenny. The cloying caramel malt in combination with the fruitiness of hops makes for an entirely too sweet beer. The nice bit from the rye I so looked forward to is nonexistent. If only the percentage of crystal malt was cut down this would be one damn good beer.

Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. The overwhelming sweetness coats the tongue making for an inappropriately long finish.

It is sad that one ingredient can ruin a beer with so much promise. Lenny is just far too sweet to enjoy.

Photo of dancinwillie
3.15/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from a bomber, purchased at Woodmans west, Madison, WIsconsin, into a pint glass.

A: Nice pour, achieved a beautiful 2 finger head. Pours a nice dark amber color, with a light tan head. Head dissipates slowly, leaving nice lacing down the side of the glass.

S: Not much in the way of aroma, just picking up mild scent of hops.

T: Hop flavor is somewhat limited, although maybe I'm not picking up on them due to the solid malt backbone. Either way, not enough bitterness to call it a double IPA, in my opinon. That being said, this is a tasty brew, balanced, tasty, and makes you want to drink more, and more. But It might have been better marketed as an IPA, not the double.

M: Good mouthfeel, smooth and creamy.

D: I would have to rate the overall drinkability as just over average. I would drink this beer again, but not if I was in the mood for a double IPA.

One last thing: I would like to say that this is the first beer I've had from this brewery, and while I don't think it's a good example of the style, I want to stress the point that it's a good beer. Had it been sold under the
"regular" IPA label, I would have rated it higher. If you're looking for a "hop bomb", keep looking. If you're in the mood for a well balanced IPA, pick this one up, and enjoy it. I did.

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.15/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz picked up at Pilgrim's Market in CdA over the weekend... enjoyed while listening to some Carl Cox Black Rock and chilling on my hotel balcony.

Poured into my small weizen glass... 2 finger lite khaki head... good retention and lacing... the brew is a polished copper.

Nose is hop forward with a bunch of caramel maltiness to balance... citrus hops out front with more than enough malt to pull it out... big booze presence.

Hop bitterness helps balance the pretty thick malt component.. toasty and thick caramel essence.. citrus hops bite barely bite through the malts.. too syrupy... not really cloying, but just unbalanced in my mind.. Body is heavy and the carbonation is pretty high, yet gets punished by the viscosity.

This should easily be in the American BW category.. no where near... NO where near a DIPA... The rye is present yet only in hints throughout the palate and evident on the mouthfeel where a nice slickness appears.

Ehhhh... okay.. boozy and sweet.. needs alot more hoppiness... really, alot more.

4/3.5/3/3/3

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.15/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer pours quite viscously with a dark reddish hued, amber color that shows a brilliantly clear ruby tinged color when held up to the light. The beer is topped by a frothy, amber tinged, tan colored head that is initially about a finger and a half thick. I am quite happy to say that the aroma is quite hoppy. Notes of sweet oranges and a touch of pine intermingle with a big, chewy, caramelized maltiness. Quite fruity, almost a berry like note joins the citrus notes. Toasted grain notes help to dry out the aroma towards the end.

The beer is a bit sweet up front, in fact perhaps amply so, but there are lots of things to balance the sweetness out. An astringent bitterness rides throughout this beer, it is a touch harsher than I would like. Part of this is that there is a menthol like note, that seems to couple with a bit of an astringent dark grain note and a sharp note of alcohol. There is some hop flavor character here as well, it just plays second fiddle to the other notes that I have mentioned; notes of orange peel and some herbal notes are here. This beer is just unbalanced, and not in the way a double IPA should be; harsh, sharply astringent and hot. Perhaps some age will help to mellow this out, but it no longer would be a even the shade of a double IPA that it is now.

Photo of zhanson88
3.15/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours out a syrupy looking deep burnt copper color with ruby highlights. Half a finger of off-white head forms very slowly. Retention is okay, lacing is decent.

Smell: Spicy rye malt is prevalent immediately, along with caramel and toffee. Also some piney and herbal hops on the back end. Very interesting smell. Not something I'm a huge fan of though.

Taste: See smell. This beer has a very spicy character from the rye along with caramel and toffee, and on the back end some hop character. Pretty intense. I see this is kind of a love it or hate it beer. I don't hate it, but its not something I would drink more than one glass of at a time.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Medium bodied with very low carbonation. A bit syrupy. Pretty solid in this category, but it could use a bit more carbonation. Overall, this is a unique beer but not something I would go out of my way to get again.

Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.18/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

deep reddish copper color, slight haze and creamy tan head. looks dense. caramel, resiny pine, grapefruit in the nose along with some vague spice, and a hint of some dark dried fruit. big, sweet caramel malts along with a big, somewhat harsh hop bitterness along with the spiciness from the rye to balance it out. big bitter finish lingers. very thick and viscous, full-bodied, with some prickly carbonation struggling through. sticky sugars linger on the lips. a sipper. if you like a darker, spicy dipa try it.

Photo of mattcrill
3.18/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Shared this one with BA cmaruschak

Aroma: Peppery, spicy hops. Some alcohol warmth noted. Spicy and dry is definitely the dominant theme here.

Appearance: Brilliant ruby colored pour with a sudsy white 1-finger head.

Flavor: Bittering hops, peppery spiciness dominate the palate. Just a hint of some malty sweetness but this is followed by a bittering dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and oily. Almost overcarbonated.

Overall impression: A bit too unbalanced for me. Needed more of a malt presence to balance out the punishing hops and alcohol burn. Glad I split this one. Hard to finish for me. Normally I enjoy a highly hopped rye beer but this one missed it's mark for me.

Photo of Dubber55
3.2/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy brown/amber with a 1/2 finger of head

Strong smell of earthy, piney hops, booze, baked bread, grass, and booze.

This stuff tastes intense- strong hops, pine, booze, and bitterness are the initial flavors. I taste some spiciness from the rye as well. The finish has a strong bready flavor from all the malts. I might taste a hint of caramel but this beer is dominated by pine and bread.

The mouthfeel is solidly medium. A little oily and sticky from the hop oils. Slightly syrupy at times.

The flavors of this beer are really in your face- aggressively bitter, bready, and boozy. Seems pretty abrasive. Definitly could not drink more than one bottle. This stuff kills your palate. I don't like flavor profile

Photo of PintOHops
3.2/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Glass - Snifter

A - Amber with a bit of orange to it, a little cloudy but you can still see some tiny bubbles in there. Produced a 1-2 finger head, slightly off white, retention was decent. Left broken/splashy spots here & there.

S - Very sweet aroma with lots of date, plum, fig, grape, and alcohol. Soft undertones of biscuit, honey, caramel. Nice floral hops in there as well, a little dry, some oily hop notes, a bit of tree sap & soft pine. Burnt sugars with a touch of rye as it warms.

T - Alcohol is what I get most upfront, not as sweet as the aroma suggests. Lots of candied date/plum/sugary flavors, more alcohol, soft caramel & biscuit, touch of rye. Finishes with lots of burnt wood chip like flavors, lots of burnt bitterness lingers on the palate long after you taste it. Oh, and more alcohol as well.

M - Oily, almost syrupy feel, soft Co2 bite, full-bodied.

D - Not much a DIPA to me, more like an American Strong Ale, Not as complex as expected, just a smack in the face with burnt sugars, alcohol, burnt bitterness, and more alcohol. Not bad but I don't like it much, way to much alcohol for such a simple flavor & aroma. I'd pass, don't think I'll buy this one again.

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.2/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A unique color pour methingks. Copper and burnt orange, semi-clear at first, then clears up as it warmed (poured at 49 degrees, too). Very good looking head. Hilly and soft. Some lacing becomes sticky on top and on sides.

aroma is sweet and oily. A lot of resin and some alcohol make me pull back a bit, perhaps in surprise. Rye mixes with some hop juice to make a pronounced nose shocker. It's not bad, just odd.

Taste is malt, oily or syrupy, not sure which. Coating. Some hops are in here, mostly pine..not the citrus I expect from an A-IIPA.
hard to drink...didn't finish. Alcohol is too much..or perhaps it's the rye. Could be too raw at 10%.

Photo of BMMillsy
3.2/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours a light copper with white head. Aroma of spicy, caramel malts and slight pine. Taste is a bit muddled, with caramel, pine, spice, dustiness, meh. Heavy on the palate with some booze and low to medium carbonation. Hmmm.

This seems to be solid all around except for taste. Some strange funkiness to this one and was surprised at the lack of hidden alcohol. Maybe I should try this again, as I enjoy Hop Manna, but was not impressed here. Blegh. Average at best.

Photo of divineaudio
3.2/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle into a tulip.

a - pours a hazy, copper color with an inch or so of cream colored foam. head slowly calms to a thin film and leaves a few legs of lacing in the glass.

s - toffee, grapefruit, orange, grassy, slightly bready. wonderful aroma. sadly, it's all downhill from here.

t - pine resin riding a sugary sweet malt base. slightly astringent. massive bitter slap to the mouth kicks in right after the sweetness passes. doesn't reveal any of the wonderful things found in the nose, or even any rye character.

m - gooey with adequate carbonation.

o - decent overall, but honestly i'm a little disappointed. 10% abv kicks in right about halfway through the bottle so drinkability is pretty low. comes across more like a not-so-well-made barleywine more than any kind of ipa. definitely not worth $4/bottle. will be passing on this in the future.

Photo of david18
3.23/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Love the name. Love the brewery. Don't love the beer. BUt I like it. It's a little strong for a double ipa, both in abv and in taste. It's also a little more expensive than it's most direct counterparts. It's definitely a top 20 double ipa but certainly not my favorite.

Photo of Lazaro
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of chickenm
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of acurtis
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of HuntDaddy540
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of cjacobsen
3.25/5  rDev -20%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(A) Slightly cloudy orange. A burnt rust color. Some head but it diminishes rather quickly to nothing.

(S) It's sweet but a lighter sweetness, pretty hoppy. Has some decent malt in the nose.

(T) Has a brandy aged flavor to it. Quite bitter. The rye gives it a bit of a shallow flavor profile. Has a lot of dry malts and a decent batch of hops.

(M) Light to medium body. Oily.

(O) This one wasn't all that fantastic. I'm surprised it's gotten the reviews that it did, but then again, to each their own I guess. I wasn't overly impressed with this one. More of a bitter malt bomb than a hop bomb.

Photo of beerFool28607
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of IdrinkGas
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of Treb0R
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of randomjazzr
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of thegrifter
3.25/5  rDev -20%

Photo of Holland
3.25/5  rDev -20%

He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. from Shmaltz Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,782 ratings.