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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.

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,743 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,743
Reviews: 850
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 12.07%
Wants: 72
Gots: 104 | FT: 5
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: 1,743 | Reviews: 850 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RunDWP
3.05/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

I've never seen Lenny Bruce perform. From what I've read, he was ahead of his time, pushing the boundaries of what was thought to be good taste in his time, and never afraid to take risks or possibly ""step over the line". In that spirit comes Bittersweet Lenny RIPA On Rye from He'Brew.

Unfortunately, like a comedian who simply swears too much and uses shock value of profanity to make up for poor punch lines, this brew simply didn't have the proper level of restraint, nuance, and balance to work for me.

I started by pouring it into my tulip, and appreciated the dark brown liquid with a slight head of white foam floating on top. There was lots of sheeting action on the glass. I have a weak nose, but couldn't pick up much aroma for all the strong flavors I was about to encounter, a little hop aroma, a little malt aroma, not much else. The flavor was strong, the flavor was aggressive, the flavor was a little shocking, and unfortunately, the flavor was not all that enjoyable. There was a lot of malt in there, with a bitter rye note, that seemed to overwhelm a lot of piney, grapefruity hops. I was surprised to see the malt overwhelm the hops is what the bottle said was a double IPA. Now there is nothing wrong with breaking the rules, but if you're going to break them, something good should come out of it. That didn't happen here.

With all that malt, the mouthfeel was one of the high points of this brew, with a luxerious, creamy texture. But I found this too strong, aggressive and unbalanced to be very drinkable.

I can appreciate what He'Brew was trying to accomplish here, but these type of beers work not because of the aggressive flavors, but because care is taken to balance and blend the aggressive flavors, and that is missing here.

RunDWP, Jan 22, 2009
Photo of akorsak
3.03/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This is a bomber of RIPA from Shmaltz. It is near room temperature (as this is the last of the bottle I opened 2 hours ago).

Appearance: For a DIPA, the ale is very dark, more similar to an amber. There is a nice ring of head that laces.

Smell: Malts that remind me of a barleywine are the first that I detect. Very sweet and malted-up, this beer is no regular DIPA, as there is no hop presence in the nose.

Taste: The rye adds a very nice touch up front, a change of pace in terms of malts. From there though, the malts spiral out of control and dominate the beer. There is a distinct barleywine aftertaste that lasts a long time. Again, there is some hop bitterness, but nowhere near that amounts I expected.

Mouthfeel: The flavors are too powerful and do not subside. This is not for the faint of heart.

Drinkability. Trust me, one bomber is enough.

akorsak, Jul 04, 2006
Photo of alesaram
3/5  rDev -26.1%

alesaram, Oct 20, 2012
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

RBassSFHOPit2ME, May 09, 2014
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

JT99125, Oct 26, 2013
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

xxcarpxx, Dec 24, 2011
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

100200300, Jul 24, 2013
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

Hophead717, Nov 22, 2011
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

jocain916, Jul 17, 2012
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

coz, Jul 09, 2012
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

jk3, Mar 07, 2013
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

Jimbodini, Mar 21, 2014
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

jenray, Dec 10, 2011
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

chadwicktorres, Sep 16, 2014
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

illini4x4, Mar 19, 2012
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

b1515152004, Jun 15, 2013
Photo of BigJiMo
3/5  rDev -26.1%

BigJiMo, Jul 26, 2012
Photo of Willywong1962
3/5  rDev -26.1%

Willywong1962, May 10, 2012
Photo of Nichols33
3/5  rDev -26.1%

Nichols33, Aug 27, 2014
Photo of TimH
3/5  rDev -26.1%

TimH, May 19, 2012
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3/5  rDev -26.1%

Rihup, Jun 04, 2013
Photo of vbiliyar
3/5  rDev -26.1%

vbiliyar, Apr 13, 2012
Photo of szmnnl99
3/5  rDev -26.1%

szmnnl99, Jun 03, 2013
Photo of mattwjones
2.98/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I poured this beer into a 22 oz. wine glass. The color was amber and there was a 1 finger head. I could tell that this was a syrupy beer from the way it hit the glass. The aroma was very malty and caramel like. To me the taste of this beer was a big disappointment. The malt wore the pants in the hops-malt relationship. I was turned off by the imbalance of flavor. The mouthfeel was of little surprise and it was syrupy as I expected. The drinkability of this beer was decent considering the rather high ABV.

I am glad to have tried this beer, but I would not buy it again.

mattwjones, May 26, 2009
Photo of RJLarse
2.93/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I bought a bomber of He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. in a grocery store. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours a bright copper color and is clear. It appears thick as it pours from the bottle. A beige head forms, and changes to white lace as it breaks down. Bubbles rise slowly through the beer, adding to the perceived thickness of the beer.

Smell is fermented fruity aroma, like prunes or burned apricots, with a little lighter fluid aroma.

The taste is pretty good, a caramel flavor, with some rye presence, a little alcohol heat, and a bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is thick and cloying. A bitter film is present after the swallow.

Not the most drinkable brew, but few DIPAs are. This one is long on alcohol and bitterness. I can't say I'm surprised, but this is a one time experience for me.

RJLarse, Nov 17, 2008
He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. from Shmaltz Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,743 ratings.