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

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He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.
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BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,771 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,771
Reviews: 851
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 12.07%
Wants: 71
Gots: 107 | 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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,771 | Reviews: 851 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Keffa
3.98/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Live review.

Poured into my Ephemere tulip.

A: Pours a dark amberish orange, very small light tan head, nice legs, but no real lacing and settles to a small ring.

S: Holy hops! Beautiful aroma, juicy tropical fruits, pine, caramel, a little spiciness. After it opens up a little, it gets to be more caramel than anything. Reminds me A LOT of fresh Bigfoot.

T: Again, hops start things out. Pine and grapefruit rind up front, then turns into caramel and alcohol. Some spiciness from the rye. Alcohol and sweetness take over with a little bitterness.

M: A little thin for such a big beer, slick and coating on the palate and finishes pretty clean.

O: Pretty good. I don't think I'd have called it a DIPA, but more or less a really hoppy Barleywine. The hops are very prominent, but the hops are muscled out of the way by the huge caramel sweetness and alcohol.

Pretty good beer. Bet it would age pretty well too.

Keffa, Jun 17, 2011
Photo of Cylinsier
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz.

Pours hazy reddish amber, gold tinted white head is a half inch thick, dissipates a bit but slowly and retains as a solid film.

Smells of rich caramel, sour apple, noticeable rye and hints of pine hop.

Tastes of potent bitter hops with a bit of caramel sweetness following. Mostly the hops.

Medium body with soft thorough carbonation.

Delicious and very bitter, a hop head's dream. I just wish the taste had a little more of the dimension that the nose hinted at, but really I can't complain. It's quite good and this coming from a reforming hop avoider.

Cylinsier, Jun 04, 2011
Photo of bayougutter
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter with a generous pour and it produced a creamy off white two inch head that settled but stayed a long time. really good lacing. This is what what a beer is supposed to look like! Smell is hoppy at first then melds to semi sweet malts with some fruit in there as well. Very aromatic with the rye coming thru as well. Taste is a hoppy maltness all at once then the rye and a little bitterness at the end. Got better as it warmed. Mouthfeel was creamy and heavy. It coated the entire mouth. Overal a very good example of a Rye DIPA. I wish I would have bought more. Worhty of a try.

bayougutter, May 31, 2011
Photo of Thickfreakness
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Really strong Mahogany color pours into my tulip glass... thick bright head floats on top and leaves a ton of sticky lacing! Lots of carbonation!

S- Strong notes of caramel, bready yeast, and sweet malts. Subtle hints of pine and citrus. More mango and pineapple than orange and grapefruit! Smells more like a Barleywine than a IIPA!

T- Really bready, yeasty and sweet at first, then the citrus bomb hits! Nice lemon pith, orange zest and mango battle with the strong malty tones. A nice spicyness that probably comes from the rye. Unusual... but loving it!

M- Really coats the tongue with rye bread and caramel. Nice bitterness with a strong lemon peel bite. Just a fabulous blend of bitter and sweet shifting back and forth.

O- I can't wait to check this one out again with some age on it. Wish they would barrel age this one! Not one trace of alcohol... drinks really easy! This would be insane with a nice Roast Beef Sandwich on rye with Horseradish Mayo!!!

Thickfreakness, May 30, 2011
Photo of DelMontiac
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Brown 12oz bottle, Anchor pint glass, and a smiley face bottle opener. After finishing out the last of this sixer, figured I know all I need to know now. Yep.

Pours an iced tea color with a glorious two finger eggshell head which hangs on forever. Seriously, the foam is some of the creamiest I've had. After sitting for nearly five minutes, it's still right at the rim of the glass. Put your ear up to it...nothing not a sound. Still an inch left on the last drink. The lace is nearly a solid wall of consistent micro bubbles with bulging tiers left with each drink.

Aromas are grapefruit peel hoppiness and baker's yeast with a sweet caramel tone and an almost nutmeg spice.

There is a rather large hop wallop from start to finish that keeps on giving. This overpowers the bready caramel malt character for me and only allows for a flash in the pan appearance of that spiciness that rye is known for. As good as it is, it might actually be better with the hop reins pulled back a bit. (There, I said it.)

Love the feel. REALLY creamy for a DIPA. The head says it all. Quite dreamy.

I was on the fence with this one at first. It either grew on me, or it improved with a few months on it. Didn't take notes with the first ones.

DelMontiac, May 29, 2011
Photo of korguy123
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz into tulip.

A- slightly hazzy toffee/apple cider colored pour. Three finger creamy head. Carbonation shooting up the sides of the glass. Lacing is awesome.

S- Very bready and yeasty. The rye is very forward. Brown sugar, slight cherries and apples. Hops are very muted.

T- Toasted malts, brown sugar and rye bread all take over the taste. Hop bitterness lingers and kicks your tongue at the back. It almost tastes like it could be a dessert.

M- Medium bodied. Creamy and chewy, alcohol is slightly warming, carbonation tickles the tongue.

O- Excellent representation, love the sweetness and the breadiness the rye adds to this. Wish it was a little more hop forward.

korguy123, May 20, 2011
Photo of machostacos
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

A: Amber orange, very clear with tons of bubbles screaming up from the bottom of the glass. Thick, creamy tan head shows excellent retention. Beautiful lacing. Nothing wrong here!

S: Sweet toffee and toasted caramel malts. Some brown sugar in there as well. Lots of lovely, spicy hop notes as well as spice from the rye. A little whiff of alcohol. This is definitely a malt-forward DIPA.

T: There's the hops! Great initial kick from some very spicy herbal and citrus hops with a solid bitterness, followed immediately by a full, round malt profile - caramel and toffee. Finishes smooth and nicely balanced with a lingering bitterness. This is fantastic.

M: Full, smooth, somewhat creamy and chewy. Perfect carbonation (on the medium-low side.) Very nice.

O: A very solid Rye IPA, and the first Rye DIPA I've had. Did a side-by-side with this and Founders Red's Rye, and while I admit I prefer the Red's Rye, this is right up there with my favorite Rye beers. A joy to sip!

machostacos, May 16, 2011
Photo of shaunb81
4.65/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Pours a beautiful, copper body with a nice 1", cream head. Heavy lacing throughout the glass.

Smell - Strong spicy hops here, some sweet malts detected, and I also get a little citrus.

Taste - Sweet on the front and super, long-lasting, bitter hops. I really like this beer.

Mouthfeel - Mild carbonation and I LOVE the creamy density of the brew. Perfect IPA for me.

Overall - Can't say that I've had a better IPA, but I know I have a lot to go. I recommend this to ANY hop head.

shaunb81, May 15, 2011
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.63/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Notes from 5/10/11
Served in Duvel tulip at 45F.

A - Medium amber colour with two fingers of bubbly off-white head. Translucent.

S - Some hop bitterness is evident up front, followed by a significant caramel sweetness and some spiciness.

T - Good bitterness up front with lots of spiciness, followed by a good caramel sweetness in the middle. The finish is bitter and dry. Some piney notes come through at times but overall, not a lot of flavour comes through from the hops.

M - Medium body with a really good chew. Light carbonation.

TheSevenDuffs, May 14, 2011
Photo of jdhilt
3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours five+ finger white head that fades very slowly, leaving a good lace. Almost clear red/amber color. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Grapefruit hop nose. Flavor is grapefruit with a good caramel backing. Decent DIPA. $3.79 for a 12 oz bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma.

jdhilt, May 12, 2011
Photo of AnPiobaire
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This R.I.P.A. was poured into a goblet and poured a nice amber gold with cream colored head and nice lacing.

Initial nosing was malty almost bread like sweetness that was slowly overtaken by the floral hop notes.

The taste starts off with a rich sweetness that blends nicely with the hoppiness of an IPA. Both combine nicely to bring about a very enjoyable palate experience, that finishes with a subtle citrus finish. Niceky balanced.

The mouthfeel is thicker then most IPA's and for me that's wonderful. It has a chewiness and richness that works well.

Overall this was a very nice brew and not being an overt hop head I found this brew to be an extremely pleasant IPA. One that I would reccomend highly. Enjoy!!!

AnPiobaire, May 12, 2011
Photo of sweemzander
2.17/5  rDev -46.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22oz. bottle poured into a tulip. Thanks to cjacobsen for sharing!

(A)- Pours a hazy orange color. Produced a light cap of off-white froth. Some lace.

(S)- A musty/malty carraway seed spice aroma. Some piney citrus.

(T)- Very bitter and malty with a carraway-seed-like spice. Some citrus, but very faint.

(M)- A decent carbonation level. Very bitter and disjointed. Malty and spicy yet even rather thin considering the style it is.

(D)- Not what I expected. Very bitter and spicy but that is pretty much what it offers. Overall, just very confusing and disjointed for a beer under this style.

sweemzander, May 08, 2011
Photo of Nerudamann
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into an oversized wine glass.

Look - deep amber color, a little murky, with about a finger or two's wroth of off-white foam that dissipates slowly.

Smell - I can smell the sweetness of the malts and the bitter aroma of the hops, with the latter prevailing by a bit.

Taste and Mouthfeel - rather malty in the beginning, with subtle sweet hints, but mostly a warty type of taste. That fades slowly into a bitterness toward the end of the middle and well into its presence in the finish. Amazing how long the bitterness waits! Texture is very well-balanced.

Overall - Very good brew with a very interesting tasting range.

Nerudamann, May 07, 2011
Photo of DoctorDog
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: From a 12 oz. bottle into a nonic.

A- Pours a deep amber/copper and clear. Pours with ~2 fingers of tan head, which fades slowly to a thin cap. Plenty of sticky lacing.

S- A bit of piney hops, then a surprisingly sugary sweet, caramel malt aroma takes over.

T- Spicy/peppery, grapefruit hop bitterness. Caramel maltiness, hints of dark fruits, and a solidly candy sweet finish. Slight touch of alcohol.

M- Moderate carbonation and a medium full feel.

O- Very good. Easy drinking for it's heft, and an overall pleaser.

Future outlook: This one is worthy of trying again. Seems like I'm enjoying the RIPA's that I've tried...time to find some more.

DoctorDog, May 07, 2011
Photo of backfat
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into probably my favorite pieces of glassware: long stemmed tulip that was a gift from newrbrewr. Alabama dixieland delight blaring in the backround.

Looks great. It's a translucent copper with a frothy tannish head.Thick and luscious looking. I love rye beers so this may be an easy one.

First smell is blasting with rye and malt. I love it. Very sweet hops on the nose, like candied sugar hops. Some dark bread, a bit of metal, and caramel.

First taste is sweet. Made me say mmm. It's bitter, creamy, and filling, but a little too filling. I am glad I didn't buy the whole four pack just because it is a chewy one. A bit of alcohol on the back of the tongue. Whoa...I just found out this thing was 10%. Very "warming." Whew, I can feel this one getting to me. I will be buying this again. It's like bigfoot meets red's rye meets arrogant bastard. Nicely done.

backfat, May 06, 2011
Photo of chinchill
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in pint glass

clear dark amber with off-white head. Unusual red tint.

Hoppy aroma with a hint of fruitiness. Generous use of malt is obvious in the flavor but largely masked in the aroma. Nice, if a bit bitter, finish and aftertaste. High ABV largely hidden.

M - full bodied. Sticky (and real sticky if not in your mouth)

O - An extreme IPA; plenty of hops; plenty of malt; plenty of flavor. Perhaps too aggressive.

chinchill, May 02, 2011
Photo of doucmehu
4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel tulip.

Nice rich creamy light-tan head, about 2 fingers. Color is a nice reddish amber with plenty of carbonation. Foam settles to a thin coating, with minimal lacing.

Nose is full of sweet malts and hops. I get plenty of dried/overripe fruit, caramel, orange zest and juicy hops. Quite a bit going on here.

Taste is very bold and flavorful. This is certainly a big beer, more than I was expecting to be honest. My first impressions are of barleywine-like malts, then the somewhat floral yet sweet hops come in but don't hold up their end of the fight until the end. More of the dried fruit and a bit of Belgian style yeast. Finish is quite hops bitter, which is a pleasant detour from the sweet malty goodness.

Mouthfeel is somewhat heavy for a "DIPA," with a slightly noticeable alcohol burn that sticks around. Carbonation is strong for the viscosity, and seems to last.

Overall - This beer is really excellent, and right up my alley. I found it to be quite similar to 90-Minute, but with a little less cloying malt and more hop bitterness. I really can't knock any facet of this one, and I will for sure buy more (soon).

doucmehu, Apr 27, 2011
Photo of azdback
4.13/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my newly aquirred Spaten glass. A deep orange color. Head is a fat two fingers and just a hint darker than bright white. The head is also very creamy in appearance and the lace looks like it's gonna stick around, but doesn't.... at first. After the glass is empty the lace is looking a bit impressive.

Smell is of sugary malts, citrus hops and alcohol. A bit earthy.

This tastes alot better than the smell. It has the hop biterness of a pink grapefruit followed immediately by the sweet malts. There is some dark grain flavors and a bit of yeast. All followed by the suttle alcohol warminess.

The mouth is much better as it warms. At first sip I thought it was a bit watery, but it has filled out quite a bit over the last half an hour. It is rich and sweet. Almost has the sneaky mouthfeel of a barleywine. The alcohol is fairly well masked.

Overall I really enjoyed this beer. I have recently discovered the Rye ale (Hop Rod Rye, Rye Squared) and really like the style. I recommend you pick up a sixer of this if you get the chance.

azdback, Apr 14, 2011
Photo of GoldenChild
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: served in chalice - nice clear amber-copper body, frothy white head with sticky lacing.

S: Pine sap, sticky grapefruit, orange, amd caramel.

T: really nice and superbly balanced - bitter ruby red, sticky pine sap, citrus hops, some spice from the rye, sweet dark fruits, caramel, and alcohol follows up in the rear. Very nice.

M: slighlty sticky, not too heavy, smooth and complex.

O: Great beer love the rye pa's never tried a DRPA before. Got a great deal on it it was 5.78 and he sold it to me for 2.00.

GoldenChild, Apr 06, 2011
Photo of output01x
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A modest pour yields a 1.5-finger creamy tan-colored head. It recedes over time but keeps a nice coating over the beer. The body is an amber-copper with a strong amount of rising bubbles. The lacing is thick and covers the glass well.

Floral and citrus hops aromas mingle nicely with a warm bready malt note. A little spiciness is also detected and the overall impression is a full, well-rounded, flavorful DIPA. Very much so looking forward to the first sip.

Spicy hops strike the tongue at the beginning of the sip and slowly mellow as the roasted malt flavor takes over. Then a decent piny bitterness followed by an alcohol warmth strikes from the back of the mouth but does not overpower the other flavors that linger. The alcohol is very light and is more like an 8% (as opposed to the 10% ABV of this beer).

Full bodied and slightly creamy, this beer definitely coats your mouth well and sticks to the tongue nicely. The moderate carbonation keeps the drinkability up but does not hinder the tasting.

output01x, Apr 04, 2011
Photo of CrookedStill
4.08/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark & cloudy mahogany with a two finger head that lingers. Almost resembles iced tea.

Very spicy aroma with bitterness behind that, but just barely. I thought the hops would be more present but it's still pleasant.

Much sweeter than I had anticipated. The sweetness lingers for a few seconds mixed with traces of the rye spice that's followed by hints of bitterness that quickly fades with an alcohol warmth. The 10% is just faintly present but the malt sweetness is the most prominent while not being cloy. Very easy to drink. I just wish the hops were more present to lend a bit more balance.

Good carbonation and very thick, almost chewy. Really covers the tongue.

This is one of the best IIPA's I've had. There's no "freshness" date on the bottle so I'm not sure how long it was on the shelves before I got to it. That may explain the lack of hops but it's still a beer that's easy to enjoy. Think it's time for another.

CrookedStill, Apr 02, 2011
Photo of Kegatron
3.98/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Very foamy pour on this guy but once things settle down, things stabilizes into a crystal clear copper with 2 ½ thick fingers of foamy off-white head. This eventually retains with a tight finger that soaps the sides of the glass with robust foamy swathes of lacing. The aroma smells leafy and spicy, with a ripe fruity dankness. Rye sits with a dry breadiness in the back of nostrils along with some sweeter caramel tanginess.

The taste is sweet with toasted bread and caramel up front, being balanced out by the bitterness of grapefruit and pithy citrus rind. Spicy dark rye character sits along the back of the profile, where it lingers in the finish with resins and a kiss of sweet alcohol. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, maybe a touch heftier, with a softer feeling carbonation that is undercut by some smooth underlying slickness. That 10% ABV is mostly dealt with well here, keeping the heat under control and adding some size to the body and a little extra sweetness and spice to the profiles.

This is definitely one of the better widely available rye beers out there and I love the use of it in the DIPA style here, as those rye flavors just really matched up nicely with the aggressive of the hops and that warm spicy sweetness of the alcohol. I need to go back to this one more often.

Kegatron, Apr 01, 2011
Photo of theboozecruise
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into an imperial pint glass.

It's a clear amber color with a huge off-white head. Perfect pour, the beer + head crowned at the top of the pint.

The aroma is hoppy with pine bitterness but also sweet with caramel flavors. It has a bit of a barleywine smell to it, which is a good thing!

Great flavor to it! A beautiful combo of malt and hops that embodies the aroma. A cascade of flavor combining the piney hops with caramel malts. The high abv is hardly noticeable.

Great mouthfeel too, chewy even. Well carbonated and delicious.

Easily an A beer in my book.

theboozecruise, Apr 01, 2011
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.

zhanson88, Mar 28, 2011
Photo of twiggamortis420
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle pours a hazed red color with a very large, long-lasting tan head. Dense and creamy foam sticks to the glass with ease, a good looker here.

Nose is dark bready rye with burnt caramel malt and some flowery hops. Lots of balance on the nose here.

Taste shows off more of the hoppier side of the brew, with citric and herbal bitterness. Sweet malty caramel and plenty of alcohol. Pretty rich beer, I think it drinks more like a barleywine than an IIPA. The rye adds a zestiness and bready aspect that gives the beer more of a malty feel to it. Mouthfeel is plenty full and biting. Call it a rye beer, barleywine or an IIPA - it is a pretty tasty beer in any category.

twiggamortis420, Mar 20, 2011
He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. from Shmaltz Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,771 ratings.