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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.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

1,798 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,798
Reviews: 854
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 11.82%
Wants: 77
Gots: 129 | 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:
Beer added by: mcallister on 06-07-2006

A Double India Pale Ale with Rye Malt brewed in tribute to Lenny Bruce (Leonard Alfred Schneider 1925-1966).
View: Beers (26) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,798 | Reviews: 854 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of StoutHunter
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a bottle of Shmaltz's He'brew Bittersweet Lenny's RIPA a couple days ago for $2.79 at The Lager Mill. I was looking to try something new and different and since I have never had this beer or any beer from Shmaltz Brewing Company I decided to give this beer a chance, so lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A- I like the label on this beer, it's got an old school movie theater theme that goes well with the people that this beer is dedicated to, I like it. It poured a nice brown color that took on a nice and bright ruby/copper color when held to the light. It had three and half fingers worth of fluffy tan head that died down to a thick ring that stayed till the end and left lots of nice rings of lacing. This is a really good looking beer, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with some hops up front that impart a really nice aroma that is half pine and half citrus, with pineapple, grapefruit, and pine sticking out the most. Next comes the malts which have a higher amount of sweetness and imparts some grainy and bready aromas, that are quickly followed by a good amount of rye that adds a nice spicey aroma and make for some good complexity. This was a very nice smelling RIPA, I got lots of hops and lots of rye, just what I want from the style.

T- The taste seems to be a little different from the aroma. It starts off with a pretty large amount of hops that are floral, piney, and slightly citrusy, the citrus didn't show up as much as I would like, and it's the piney hops that stick out the most and are followed by a large amount of sharp bitterness. Next comes some malts and rye that imparts a light bready flavor followed by a good amount of spicy rye flavors. The aftertaste had a bitter pine taste along with spicy rye flavors and I only got a slight alcohol flavor. This was a good tasting and intense RIPA, but I wish the citrus hops showed up a little more in the flavor.

M- Not too smooth, slightly creamy, a little dry, on the medium side of being full bodied, and it had a nice amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel was good and worked well with this beer, I wish it was a little smoother, but other than that I wouldn't change anything.

Overall I thought that this was a good beer and good example of a Double RIPA, it had lots of rye and hops just as I would expect, it was very true to style. This beer had ok drinkability, it wasn't that smooth so it was a sipper, but it had enough flavor to hold my attention, one is the perfect amount with this beer, just sip and and enjoy the intense flavors. What I liked most about this beer was the appearance and aroma, they were both very good and were better then I expected. What I liked least about this beer was the lack of citrus hops in the flavor, if the citrus showed up as much as it did in the aroma it would be pretty damn good. I would buy this beer again when i'm in the mood for an intense beer, it's a little pricey, but worth it, it would be nice to have every once in a while, if you like bitter and intense beers then this is for sure worth a try. This beer made for a good first impression of Shmaltz, I didn't know what to expect from the brewery or this beer, but I ended up being pleasantly surprised. This is the only Double RIPA that I have had but it made for a good first example and I would like to try more of this style and more beers from this brewery, good job guys, this is a good beer.

Photo of jlindros
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice rising head of 1.5 fingers that fills my SA Perfect Pint glass perfectly, then fades slowly. The beer is a very clear honey amber orange color.

N: A nice hoppy aroma hits first, with a little citrus, some chewy hops, little floral fruity hop, and touch of spicy hops. WIth that is a slight malty base with a little sweet malt aroma and a light but there rye aroma with some fruitiness and spicy aromas.

T: Semi bitter at first, with lots of chewy hops, some citrus, spicy and earthy hops, a little nougat flavor. Some chewy malts with that with some malty sweetness. The rye is a lot less than I expected but there, adding a slight spicy and fruity flavor. The bitterness is pretty prevalent though. A slight syrupy sweetness comes through with all of it.

M: Medium body, slight syrupy feel, and good carbonation.

F: Still pretty bitter with a lingering spicy bitterness, both from hops and the rye which seems to come out a bit more on the finish accentuated by the bitterness. Long chewy hops and earthy hop tones. Some sticky sweetness as well. The hops leave a citrus with some sweet flavors combined for a sweet orange drink like taste. A lingering sticky sweetness which masks the alcohol well, that and the hop bitterness.

Photo of MarkSCCOT
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass. Thanks to JPCleary for letting me know this beer was available.

A. Poured a beautiful dark amber with a sustained head that leaves good belgian lacing.

S. Clear strong hops malt and alcohol odor. I am a novice with hop boombs like this so it was quite noticeable.

T. Beautiful malty taste with a balanced hops. The alcohol at first leaves a sharp aftertaste which quickly acclimates as you continue.

M. First there is a lingering hops taste, but this quickly dissipates.

D. Good, although since we have few "illegal" high alcohol beers here in SC (At least until the cap is officially popped, 5 days and counting), this beer definitely packs a wallop. Definitely will return to it. Since this is my first high gravity beer, I will cellar some and review again in 6 months.

Photo of jar2574
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a 22 oz bottle. There's plenty of booze in there, at 10% alcohol by volume.

Tan head that rises up slowly rather than bubbly and fizzy. Orange-red beer.

Smells sweet like honey and hoppy too. Very pleasant aroma.

A very, very good IPA. There's only a touch of the overwhelming piney flavor I dislike in other IPA's. Instead, you have a better mix of malts with hops and a sweetness. The sweetness honestly predominates, which is odd for a beer, especially an IPA.

Very cool mouthfeel. Thick but smooth and creamy. A touch of alcohol on the tongue, but much less than you'd think for 10%.

This is very nice. The mouthfeel, texture, taste and smell make you think you're drinking a honeyed hop mixture, with some malts thrown in to make it extra smooth.

Photo of hoegaardenhero
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: pours a thick murky amber/red with fluffly bubbly off-white head and great movement

s: great flowery hops and citrusy hops with some spicey maltiness

t: a little disappointing after how powerful the fragrance was but still good. first hints of caramely malts followed by a big fruity/bitter hop punch; enough for most hopheads

m: light carbonation and really creamy and smooth

d: a good beer with a really strong hop presence that at the same time isn't overbearing; maybe it could bring out some more hop complexities but overall quite good

Photo of Cylinsier
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
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.

Photo of jimmah120
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into wine glass

Giant off-white head, clear amber-red body with lots of rising bubbles. Smell is warm rye, alcohol, piney hops, citrus, grass. First thing I notice is a very creamy feel, then bitter oily hops. They weren't lying about using a lot of hops and malt. There's a lot of flavor here: piney hop resin, nutty/toasted malt, darker notes of clove and spice, citrus fruit, and lots of warm alcohol. Loses half a point on mouthfeel because of how abrasive the oil and alcohol is.

This is a terrific, stong, flavorful beer. Not something I'd drink all the time, but was excellent to try.

Photo of Durge
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A dark copper-brown color with a somewhat whispy head and reasonable lacing. It has a nice sweet malty aroma that includes some butterscotch, pine hops along with alcohol presence. It immediately impresses you with its slick thick body with plenty of alcohol evident while providing lots of sweet citrus hops too. Very hardy with a licorice finish. Quite an experience in flavors, robust and enjoyable but probably not something I would drink in mass quantities. One to be savored more slowly I think, but you could manage a few of these to preserve the taste sensation. Very nice effort again from this fine brewery.

Photo of WhiteOak
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- Bright, brilliant copper. Dark tan head is of a coarse bubbly foam.

S- Pina colada/pineapple/coconut, Fir bud resin, fruits, malt, faint banana.

T- The RIPA attacks with big, concentrated, rich, round slightly sweet malt. The mid palate is of sweet vanilla cupcake. Then the citric hops roll in big-time for the long finish.

M- Creamy, viscous, oily, and slightly sticky. The CO2 is perfect here. A kick of ethanol heat accompanies this brew's every move.

D- The hop dryness regulated the drinkability for me, but not the rich structure.

Photo of DrJay
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear, coppery amber with a fluffy, light brown/beige head. Good head retention and clumpy rings of foam stuck to the glass. Malty aroma with lots of spicy rye, caramel, gingerbread, and citrusy hops. Moderate bitterness with a nice balance between malt (spicy, chocolatey rye) and citrusy grapefruit hoppiness. Finishes with some dryness and spice. Medium to full bodied with lowish carbonation. The texture's a little oily and there's a pleasant warmth in the finish. Very enjoyable.

Photo of Crossmd
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured 41 degrees Fahrenheit into a Dogfish Head bulb glass.

Pours a deep red amber with a one finger tan colored head rising late to the surface.

Smells of a pungent grain, rye, toffee, and caramel. Projected very well.

Taste is an intense blend of hops and grain with an early attack of bitters that blend into a rush of caramel and rye. Tastes very much like it smells. Intensely long finish and

Mouthfeel consists primarily of more spice than effervescence. It doesn't feel lacking though because the flavor takes center stage - leading me to believe that any more effervescence would just be overkill/compete with the flavor profile.

Overall, incredibly flavorful with intense projections in the nose and the taste that don't have ready equals that come to mind. In looking at it? I guess it's an IPA..it's obviously pretty unconventional though. This will not sit well with everyone, and is really I think a beer drinker's beer at the end of the day. Balanced and uniquely crafted.

91.

Photo of dmamiano
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured from a bomber while sitting on a patio on Hilton head Island. Nice amber with a one finger head and left over lacing. Hazy slightly, but expected with all the residuals.
Big malty nose with a nice mix of piney citrus hops. Grassy a bit but nice.
Taste is huge...thick on the tongue with tons of sweetness. Well balanced with the tons of hops balancing nicely

Photo of edmundfitzoil
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bittersweet Lenny's RIPA purchased at Total Wines here in town and poured into a tulip glass from a brown glass 22 oz. bottle.

The beer poured a heavily red tinged deep copper with an inch of tan, medium bubbled head. The nose featured big, piney hoppiness with hints and glimpses of citrus and a little alcoholic spice at the finish.

The flavor is not like any other DIPA that I've gotten to yet. The beer begins with a big, intense hop bitterness (as expected with this style) and transitions to a mellow undwelling maltiness that is enriched by the presence and light spiciness of the rye. The piney hops rear up again then just before the finish, and are replaced by the ever so quick presence of that 10% abv. It's about as drinkable as any higher alcohol beer can beer and does seem to resemble some of the American Barley wines that I've tried.

Like I said above, this is a unique double IPA, but it's a very good one and one that I wouldn't mind picking up again if the mood for such a beer struck me.

Photo of Pooba001
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer pours with nice head a dark woodsy brown color, just light of mahogany. Head doesn't stick around terribly long, but OK for a 10% ABV IPA. First note of aroma is they spicy rye grain, then grassy hops with floral and light citrus notes. Hints of toffee and faint alcohol are also present.

Cirtus and grassy hops contend with a rich, spicy rye malt flavor on the palate. Alcohol is expectedly perceptable. My hallmark for this style is Bear Republic's Hop Rod Rye, and this isn't quite the beer that HRR is, but its very good in its own right.

Mothfeel is good for what this beer intends to be, slightly astringent. Drinkability is nice for the ABV and style as well, sure its my first beer of the night, but still, it went pretty quick, and I know I could go for another.

Photo of SonictheBeerhog
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of aerozeppl
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Super dark copper color. A finger of white head with nice lacing from the top down.

S: Malt and rye. All of their beers tend to be a little on the malty side so why should their DIPA be any different? Rye is in the back but definitely there.

T: Nice mix of sweetness and hops up front. Rye in the middle before finishing with a sharp hop bitterness.

M: Medium mouthfeel. Nothing good or bad really.

D: Rye DIPA? Nice. Totally different beer. Better than I thought it was going to be.

Photo of plumcrazyfx
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I stayed away from the Hebrew stuff because I thought it was a bit corny - but these guys can brew. I poured this into a Duvel tulip where it developed a nice head that decreased to a 1/8" throughout with very nice lacing. A sweet, pungent hops aroma takes over. The taste is much the same with a sweet malt/bitter hops mix that finishes with a bit of rounding from the rye. I find I really like beers with rye and this one was no exception. The mouthfeel on this one is slick, and has a great body that hold up well to the weight of the bitterness. I could have as many of these as I could before I fell down. The mouthfeel, rye, and bitterness hide the 10% very well. I found it to be very like one of my favorites - Bells Oracle but with a little darker character from the rye. All in all, a great beer.

Photo of derkfromwi
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Thick, frothy one inch off-white head, clear red-tinted copper color, good carbonation, lots of really good lacing

S: Really nice blend of stuff going on here, sweet malts first for me, some rye, then hops underneath and at end

T: Sweetness first, that leads into rye and citrus bitterness, some spicy booziness, and a bit of hops, nicely balanced

M: Thick and creamy, light to medium carbonation, piquant flavor

O: Good stuff, appropriately titled, good blend of malts and hops, pleasantly balanced and complex

Photo of honkey
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Usually I am not too big into the DIPA's but this was a gift to me. Trying my best to review to the style and not be subjective...
Poured from a bottle. Not seeing a frreshness date, although, thie seems to be fairly fresh.

Appearance- Beautiful thick lasting head. Leaves a nice lace as it disappears. Dark copper color. Very appealing.

Smell- floral, citrus, almost a spicy aroma as well... Probably from the rye

Taste- clean bitterness up front with a complex malty sweetness that follows. This is where my dislike for DIPA's comes from. I wish there was more hops flavor and less maltiness. It is followed by a slight bit of alcohol, but not too much and not hot.

Mouthfeel- quite thick. I prefer a bit drier, but for a DIPA it is much better than others, but I could still use a drier drink.
Drinkability- at 10% it is a sipper for sure. If it was more dry, I think the drinkability would be a bit better. Again, better than most other DIPA's.

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nearly opaque honey golden with a fine-bubbled yellowish beige head. Hoppy, lemony aroma is surprisingly sweet and has a hint of honey. Flavor is somewhat sweet and somewhat hop-bitter with a strong tone of citrus - equal parts lemon and orange - and a firm tone of honey, along with a sweet but not cloying undertone. Texture is silky smooth with some fizz and tingle.

Photo of GoodBeerTire
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice orange amber. Small head, but nice and creamy.

The smell was not overpowering at all, but quite pleasant. Could defitely pick up on some nice citrusy hops, malt, caramel, & rye.

I really enjoyed the flavor of this one. Hoppy, but seemed nicely balanced with the malt. The rye comes in later, and with the citrus hops leaves a nice aftertaste. It had a nice alchohol warmth, but I had a hard time tasting any booziness (and at 10%, that's a nice bonus).

Mouthfeel is nice & creamy. Carbonation is just about perfect for me.

Drinkability is very good for a 10% ale. I could have started another bomber, but didn't want to nap the entire day away.

When I see this one again, I will get another or 2. Nice offering from He'Brew.

Photo of uberabr
4.14/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Crystal clear copper red with a one-finger creamy off-white head. Some hop oil up top and some decent lace.

Smell- Highly complex and very well rounded. A light fruity hop with sweet candy and estery malts. Caramel, honey, popcorn butter, biscuits, and subtle satayed vegetables with hints of lemon juice and black pepper. Fresh cherry blossoms and spices complement the candy backbone well. Very nice.

Taste- Buttery and bitter. The butter diacetyl is heavy and somewhat cloyingly so, but it's balanced well enough by the bitterness. The malt is otherwise enjoyable, with loads of fruity esters- cherries, plums, watermellon- along with a roasted nuttyness and some syrupy molasses. The bitter backbone is of rich high-alpha hop varieties, creating a deep, woodsy pine with subtle hints of grapefruit and a definite rye bread aftertaste.

All in all an extremely complex and moderately well-rounded brew. The only thing I don't like is the overdone diacetyl malt, which adds to an oily mouthfeel. Other than that, it's highly drinkable.

Photo of soupyman10
4.14/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a glass of this on tap at the Pizzeria Paradiso in Georgetown. Very solid beer, if not mind-blowing (and the first He'Brew I've had). Pour was mediocre, very weak head but a nice deep amber color. No lacing. Nose was nicely balanced, with some solid citrus and grapefruit. Flavor is similar - solid mix of fruity citrus and caramel. Light alcohol. Body's fine, with good carbonation. Besides the mediocre appearance, this is a nice brew with a great flavor.

Photo of saintwarrick
4.14/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Have always seen this brew but never grabbed it until now. Didn't really read up on it until after I bought it, so this one had me by surprise.

Pours a cloudy amber or copper with a big head that coats the glass. Aroma is big and complex. Malty and thick like maple syrup with some molasses mixed in, but there is also with a big, piney hoppiness that jumps out too. Taste is just like the label suggests: bittersweet. Heavy thick chocolate thickness hits the tongue followed by some massive hoppiness that brings on the bitterness, almost medicine-like. Big alcohol character, not overwhelming, but it ain't hiding either. The rye is there throughout lending some darker grain and bread-like flavor to the brew. That is what makes this brew stand out from other DIPAs.

Wow, an extremely complex and dangerous brew. Though I was buying an average IPA only to find out it had rye and was also a DIPA. I'm pleasantly surprised, this brew was well worth any gamble (and also quite affordable). A unique treat I am more than willing to sample again.

Photo of rawfish
4.14/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Viscous, smooth pour results in a billowing parchment paper colored head rising above a dark copper body. Maximum head size is three fingers but it settles quickly leaving a few chunky rings of lace.

Thick malt, molasses, cake batter, grape skins and rye meld together balanced by equally punchy grapefruit, pine resin and hemp seed hops. Alcohol rises but is well integrated with the sweet malt and earthy hops.

Thick malt borders barelywine standards, complexities of toast, molasses, toffee and a good rye edge. The fruity esters carried by the rye and yeast complement the snappy hops, yellow citrus, bright pine. Sticky malt layers the resiny feel of this beer leading to a bitterness of average strength but enduring.

Hefty body to say the least, adequate carbonation and lifted further by the bright hops. MAlt is sticky but creates a pleasant mouthcoating and the alcohol is complementary instead of abrasive.

This beer has some weight, a huge sticky DIPA. Great use of bright hops to keep it in balance and the rye adds a substantial edge with the berry and fruity esters it coaxes out. A real treat, glad this comes in a 12oz offering.

He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. from Shmaltz Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 1,798 ratings.