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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
90
outstanding

870 Reviews
THE BROS
99
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 870
Hads: 1,894
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 7.2%
Wants: 80
Gots: 183 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  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
Reviews: 870 | Hads: 1,894
Photo of wvsabbath
4.31/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Dark tan/ruby red with a killer 2 inch foamy head and tons of sticky lacing.

Smell - Light floral notes, tropical fruits like pineapple and peach, lemon, some grape. Malts are actually strong with some caramel and butter along with the rye at the finish.

Taste - Nice kick of bitter hops and big malts mixed with rye. Malts are huge at first, lots of carmael and rye. Bitter hops come in at the finish and are very bitter. Really sweet at the finish also, gives it a huge finish.

Mouthfeel - A real one two punch. Tounge gets malts and rye, then the hops come in and coat the palatte along with some sugars. The finish is bitter and hoppy, with some sweetness.

Overall - Really good, i must say the balance isnt its strong point, malts first, then hops, then sweetness. ALcohol is masked well. The rye works great with the malts, adds a real backbone to the hop bomb that comes after the malts. A great beer, worth a drink. (965 characters)

Photo of depechemode1983
4.61/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A - Pours out a medium mahogany red hues when held to the light. The head is tan with phenomenal retention. There's extreme lacing on this one. A half inch of foam stuck around for the entire duration of the beer consumption. Excellent.

S - Very tropical nose. Pineapple, orange, bitter grapefruit all make an appearance. Not mention an awesome piney bitterness that balances out the sweet characteristics of the nose.

T - Balanced as hell. You awesome Malt sweetness upfront with a touch fruit. Then almost immediately hit with sharp pine resin bitterness. Even at 10% ABV the alcohol stays well hidden.

M - Good god this beer is smooth. Soft, velvety, and with almost perfect carbonation it goes down like milk.

O - Worth of multiple purchases. Many actually. One of the best DIPAS I have had in my area. Just arrived too. At 8 dollars a 4 pack its a steal. Excellent quality and great first impression from He'brew. (923 characters)

Photo of jmdrpi
4.18/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle, no bottling date.

appears a deep copper color, with amber highlights. 1/2" off-white colored head. nice complex aroma, mix of caramel malt flavors and resiny hops. taste is also balanced. sweetness of sugary crystal malt and a bitter finish of piney, earthy hops. medium body, but sticky mouthfeel. good carbonation level.

overall - very tasty spin on the DIPA style. (385 characters)

Photo of Braz
4.24/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear dark amber in color with a prolific light tan head that recedes to a full cap. Very sweet aromatics of honey and caramel. Flavors of caramelised toffee. Much more sweet than bitter which surprised me a little I guess. Backside is clean and the hops start to come through a bit. Alcohol notes sneak in as well thats comparable to brandy or cognac. Body is creamy, lightly carbonated with a bittersweet finish. I also get a sort of sharp cheddar aftertaste. This is good, a sipper for sure. It's a little sweet for me and has a sticky quality, but I still enjoy this alot. The hops are here but I wish they weren't masked 'quite' so much by the heavy malts and sweetness. Very barleywine like for sure. (714 characters)

Photo of Brenden
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer shows off the tap a thick orange-brown, pretty much looking like bronze in my glass. It grows a creamy tan head to just over a finger, and the lacing it leaves behind is pretty heavy as well.
The aroma provides a good deal of strength and showcases both hops and malts while displaying a good balance, neither dominating. A distinct, almost fruity sort of note is in there under a heady spicy/earthy combo of rye.
There's an initial sweetness that comes out under a very big malty base, lots of caramel, toffee and something like dark fruits but with a distinct, not-quite-citrusy element to it. Spiciness is all over this, without ever quite getting carried away; it seems to come both from hops and from rye. Bitterness is on an even keel and adds to the flavor while being kept in check by the malts. Overall, it's also quite bready. There's a lot of transitioning in this beer, with first the sweetness, then the bread, then pine resin/leafy bitterness, then fruits, then a bit of dryness, then something not quite nutty, and it all comes together as one. Ultimately the flavors in the beer mingle nicely, giving a deep complexity and keeping each sip interesting. Alcohol warms but never dominates.
The body is thick, big but not cloyingly heavy, enough to rest a whole lot of flavor on top of without giving in. There's lots of creaminess carried through, and the crispness that starts it off never fades either. (1,428 characters)

Photo of hopsolutely
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wow - a very unique beer that I'm glad to have purchased this week in Delaware.

Bottle pours a dark amber colour, slightly hazy with a limited head that has minimal retention. Grassy, rye aroma of roasted malts with a spicy backbone. Some floral and citrus hop elements in the background add complexity. The flavour is unique, with harsher rye elements interspersed with more standard caramel and citrus notes. Lots of body, and the 10% ABV is terrifyingly well hidden until a bitter hop and alcohol warmth burn in the finish.

An excellent sipping beer that is unlike any other of this style that I've enjoyed. Definitely worth trying. (637 characters)

Photo of deuce9259
3.92/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap, poured into a pint glass.

Deep red color with a thick creamy tan head.

Nose comes off strong with malt, minimal hops.

Full bodied taste. Don't get as much of the hops as advertised. Couldn't find the IBU's listed...but maybe its lighter to me because I've been drinking other hopped up stuff lately. Very creamy and sweet. Doesn't taste like 10%.

Again I think its good..but not anything special. Taste didn't really improve over the course of the beer. I would probably prefer it to have a bit more crisp and hops to it than all of the malt and cream that I got. (575 characters)

Photo of GarthDanielson
4.01/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a tumbler pint, the beer is a dark, slightly hazy, amber-copper coloring with a thin, filmy, off-white head that quickly settles into a sparse, filmy surface coating. Aromas of roasted grain and booze initially, with a tangy malt profile that combines caramel and tropical fruits. Hints of mango and papaya. Some citrus notes, as well, with some pepper notes; no hops presence on the nose otherwise. Flavors are a blast of hops. Holy monkey! Resiny and bitter, with a strong backbone of roasted, rich grain. Very well balanced after the initial shot in the mouth. The fruit presence becomes a mid-palate highlight, leaving as quickly and sneakily as it arrives. Booze and bitter hops finish the palate, as well as clean everything up. This beer is like a tornado touching down on your tongue (in a good way). Bitter, resiny, and slightly earthy aftertaste, with a clean, slightly dry finish. The beer is robust and full in mouth. This one's a heavy hitter, and it brings the flavor with it the whole way through. (1,038 characters)

Photo of negroobserver
3.33/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Described as a Double IPA with Rye Malt
12oz bottle poured into a Sam Adams glass.

The appearance is a light coffee color. Very much like a traditional Brown Ale. Pours with a short cream colored head, which lingers on the top for a bit. Filtered. Light to moderate lacing on the glass.

The body is dense and full. Very heavy. Thick as an imperial stout or a cream ale.

Taste is at best lacking. There is essentially nothing on the front end. First impact comes from the body of the beer, which transitions into a light malty flavor and then quickly to a ver intense bitterness which coats the tongue and lingers in the mouth for at least a minute.

Aroma is malty. Sweet. A hint of sourness. Little or no hoppy aroma which is disappointing.

The beer is a bit of a shock to the taste buds but it becomes less threatening as you continue to drink. Not a bad drink but an acquired taste. I love double IPAs but this one eludes me. It doesn't come together as a whole. (970 characters)

Photo of brewdude1982
4.38/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was a 12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

This beer pours a dark amber and had a great head with great lacing. The smell is very malty upfront and then pine on the back end. The taste is much more balanced than expected and does a good job of hiding the booze which is a 10.0% beer. This beer had a great body and did not dissapoint. I would highly recommend to any double IPA fan or a rye P. A. Fan? (408 characters)

Photo of Weli
3.88/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Deep reddish copper, crystal clear with a thin off white head, subsiding to fine white lacing

S-Very malty, perhaps more malty than hoppy in the aroma, smells almost sweet like over ripe fruit or tangerines and honey

T-very sweet up front with a hint of spice from the rye, slight alcohol flavor and warm tangerine citrus hop flavor, prickly slightly bitter finish

M-Very thick somewhat cloying, low carbonation, taste lingers on the palate

O-For a double IPA it is very malty and almost candy sweet, i feel there really needs to be more aroma hops or dry hops to truly be a double IPA, As is it tastes like an American Barley Wine with a strong citrus character. Tasty, (676 characters)

Photo of bmwats
3.86/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Duvel snu-lip.

A: Very dark amber hue. Pours about a 2 finger, frothy, whit-ish head. Settles very slowly leaving a thick beer ring, and a thick foamy blanket. Thick, persistent, lacing.

S: A little hops, with a little pungency from the rye, and some indistinct Italian spice notes.

T: The hops are strong, and the rye is prevalent. Hoppy, pungent goodness. Woody, with just a touch of indistinct sweetness, and maybe a little basil.

M: Sweet and bitter, hoppy and pungent.... this thing has my palette all confused. Thoughtfully balanced, not overwhelming in any regard. That rye pungency does hang on the palette throughout.

D: Sip and enjoy. The fell will dictate it....

Atmosphere is really nice. Dark hue, thick head, and persistent lacing. Nose combines rye bread with piney hops and a little Italian spice. Strong hoppy pungent flavor. The rye and hops are both very outstanding, but there's a slight balance of indistinct sweet and spice components. Overall, this is a really good quaff. (1,036 characters)

Photo of Chris_Cali_2o9
3.68/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Sam Adams cup

A- Clear copper body with a 2" fluffy khaki head

S- Dank hops, sweet malts, alcohol tingles the nose

T- A sweet, spicet, bready, bitter red wine

M- Somewhat thick body, average carbonation

O- Very unique, the smell gives no sign of what's to come. My taste review says it all, it's like a sweet, spicy, bready, bitter red wine. When i lick my lips i taste dark fruit. I wouldn't call it great, just different. (462 characters)

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.83/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

He'brew Bittersweet Lenny's RIPA has an extremely thick, foamy, beige head, a clear, amber appearance, some tiny streaming bubbles, and a lot of thick lacing left on the glass. The aroma is of pungent, sweet malt and hops, some citrus, hop oil, underlying alcohol, and brown bread. The taste is all that, plus a strong hop bitterness, rye spice, dates, caramel, and candy sugar. Mouthfeel is medium to heavy, and He'brew Bittersweet Lenny's RIPA finishes semi-dry, pleasant, and surprisingly drinkable. This is simply a perfect beer, if there ever is one, and I recommend it in the most strenuous way! Wow!

RJT (612 characters)

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Maudite snifter. Pours a medium to dark reddish amber with a fine one finger light tan head with great retention and lacing. Nice aroma of bready malt, dark and dried stone fruit, caramel and a hint of citrus hops. Similar to a barley wine aroma. Flavor of sweet caramel malt, dark and light fruit, slight spiciness and sourness from the rye and alcohol heat. Finishes with aromatic pine and citrus hops which duke it out with the alcohol, finally winning and leaving a long herbal bitterness. Medium bodied with some creaminess. This is a very nicely made DIPA that has definitely crosses the line with barley wines, although it does have a strong IPA hop presence. Very enjoyable. (696 characters)

Photo of Offa
3.38/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I found this to be pretty good, but overall was not impressed.

Dark copper, it has a big pale tan head slowly shrinking to thin foamy top and some lace.

Aroma is sweet port/fortified wine, caramelised and candied grapefruit, caramelised toast.

Taste is raisiny bittersweet jamminess up front, sweet-spicy up front with lingering spicy bitterness behind. Otherwise, it's a bit vague and muddled, overall very sweet and spicy-bitter alcohol with little else. It tastes like a lot of other one-dimensional, run-of-the-mill DIPA types and had no real hop or malt character beyond what I've mentioned. (599 characters)

Photo of brureview
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First time tasting this excellent beer. In a tulip,the beer pours a beautiful tea color with a very small head . Wonderful plum aroma unlike other I.P.As.Smooth mouth feel.
Taste a mild plum with good bitterness and strong alcohol. Intense hops melds well
into the general presentation of the beer. An unusual and wonderful beer. (329 characters)

Photo of TexIndy
3.48/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. No dating info on bottle - they do it on the mother carton. It was a rich, dark amber with lots of carb streams. It had a small head but that's not unexpected at 10% ABV. Slight lacing with none sticking.

The aroma was heavy on dark ripe fruits, alcohol, sweet malt and not as much hops as you'd expect. Smells more like a barleywine or BSDA to me than an ADIPA. The taste was a mirror of the aroma with a very bitter taste and not much balance. Again more like BW or BSDA. Heavy mouthfeel with good carb levels and bitter aftertaste.

Overall, I just couldn't get into this one. Barely any hop taste as it was overpowered by the dark fruit and alcohol. Maybe it needed to sit longer but no way to tell since they don't code on the bottles. Avail here in TX. One and done for me. (826 characters)

Photo of gleemonger
4.28/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Slightly hazy, deep amber, with a small tan head. Plenty of lacing down the glass.

More of a sweet malty aroma than anything else, with just a touch of piney hop aroma. Would like more hop aroma - wondering if maybe this is an old bottle.

Immediately hit with pretty strong bitterness, followed by some sweet yet toasty and spicy malt. Very nice complex malt profile here. Like the nose, the hops are more in the background than I would like for the style, and don't seem all that complex. From what I could taste, though, pretty nice citrusy hop flavor. Not much of an aftertaste other than a little lingering bitterness.

Moderate body with moderate carbonation. Creamy.

Very nice, but not amazing. Would like to try it again, knowing I had a fresh batch (on tap I guess). This does taste a little like a barleywine, or a cross between a barleywine and IPA, so a little toned down, which is a plus in my book. (914 characters)

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours dark ruby with a large, lasting head.
Big resinous, hoppy aroma with loads of sweet caramel underneath. Bready and spicy notes are very noticeable.
Similar flavours, with the malt being the main show. Lots of caramel and golden syrup. Aggressive piny and resinous hops leading to a bold, sharp bitterness.
Could use more carbonation, the body feels thick and syrupy.
A crazily malty DIPA. (394 characters)

Photo of ummswimmin
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this bottle while enjoying some afternoon football and doing work for the office.

This beer went into a fatter tulip glass; almost like a goblet base. I received about two fingers of sticky foam that left some nice lacing on the glass.

I pick up a decent amount of rye and citrus hopping coming out of the mouth of the glass. There is a very nice presence to this beer.

The flavor isn't quite as balanced. I get a bunch of citrus in each drink. There is also a bit of tobacco in each sip on the end of my tongue.

Overall a new take of a DIPA. I'm glad for the different flavors. (590 characters)

Photo of KajII
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

[Suggested Glassware: Tulip Glass]

The pour was a hazy chestnut brown with a head that was on the large side of average (1-2 finger) which eventually reduced to a few puddles with a large collar and had awesome sheets of lacing that coated the entire glass.

The aroma was of a sweet dark bread malt, pine and resin hops and a doughy yeast with notes of toffee, rye and a bit of dark fruit (prunes and raisons).

The taste was strong and boldly malty with a touch of dark fruit and toffee throughout with the finish having a slight rye bread flavor and a resiny hoppy ending. The flavor lingered for a very long time after the swallow with a nice sweet hoppiness left behind.

Mouthfeel was medium in body with a dry creamy texture and a soft carbonation.

Overall an extremely tasty, fulfilling brew that reminds me more of a Barleywine than a Double IPA...

http://www.facebook.com/KAJIIsBeerReviews (902 characters)

Photo of JamesMN
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark maroon with pretty good clarity. Three finger off-white soapy head. Nice lacing.

Aroma: Bittersweet like the name. Lots of sweet orange citrus and a hint of bitterness from the hops. A little pepper or spice from the rye underneath all the citrus.

Taste: Huge hop bitterness up front. Definitely get some of the citrus from the nose along with a good amount of crystal malt to support it. The peppery flavor from the rye comes more in the aftertaste and plays nicely with a slight heat from the alcohol. Some buscuity type flavors mixed in there as well. Very entertaining palate. A lot going on, but in a nice harmony.

Mouthfeel: Effervescent. A bit creamy from the head and a little above medium bodied. This one should probably be sipped but it drinks easy for such a big beer.

Final Thoughts: I'm not a huge fan of the hop flavors and aroma in this one but it still impressed me. It's nicely complex and enjoyable. I don't know that I'll be buying it again anytime soon, but I'd recommend it to anyone who likes DIPAs. (1,043 characters)

Photo of Jeffo
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Got this one at Premiere Gourmet in Amherst, NY.

From a bottle into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Pours a small, medium looking, off-white head with decent retention, fading to a faint wisp and ring. A slightly hazy, burnt umber body with lower levels of carbonation. A splotchy wisp remains leaving touches of lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Rye malts, toffee and caramel on the nose. Light red fruits and floral notes as well. Bold nose and definitely enticing, though it could use some more hop for an IPA.

TASTE: Rye malts, toffee and caramel up front again, with lots of red fruity flavors at the swallow. Bold and persistent finish of bitter floral hops, piney flavors, and some toffee sweetness as balance. This is flavorfu, interesting, and enjoyable.

PALATE: Full body with medium levels of carbonation. Heavy, oily and thick on the palate, very creamy smooth, goes down smooth and finishes slightly mouth-coating. Lots of weight and very creamy smooth. The exact oily, mouth-coating finish too. Awesome.

OVERALL: This is excellent. It's a rye IPA, so I did find the red fruit and toffee flavors slightly different than most IPAs, but the aromas and flavors were top notch and the palate was as good as it gets. He'Brew continues to impress; let's hope they can continue to brew these great beers in mass quantities. This one was great. Highly recommended. (1,366 characters)

Photo of verset
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber color with slight reddish hues and strong caramel scent upon pour. Two finger head that fizzled down to a thin film over about 5 minutes.

Somewhat cloudy and dark for an IPA, probably due to the increased amount of malt. Strong malty taste up front followed by a nice bite of hops. Mouth is left with a sticky rye malt flavor.

The head is left as a film that looks more indicative of an ale than an IPA. Nice and low carbonation. The flavor is well balanced, but a little too malty in my opinion. I prefer a cleaner, crisper IPA.

Served in 16oz mason jar, refrigerated, pulled out for ~ 10 minutes. (612 characters)

He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. from Shmaltz Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 870 ratings.