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Charkoota Rye - New Holland Brewing Company

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Charkoota RyeCharkoota Rye

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224 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 224
Reviews: 130
rAvg: 3.56
pDev: 20.79%
Wants: 15
Gots: 10 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
New Holland Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Smoked Beer |  7.79% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Charkoota Rye - Smoked Doppelbock Lager

Charkoota Rye is a Smoked Rye Dopplebock. Charkoota Rye's malty backbone is derived from a blend of rye and four other malts, including malted barley smoked over cherry wood by our very own brewers, John and Jeff.

Its smoke-forward body is balanced with tones of deep mollasses and caramel, with a crisp, clean lager finish.

19° Plato, Alc. 7.75% by Vol.

(Beer added by: Deuane on 01-04-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 224 | Reviews: 130 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of doppelbockrob


4.83/5  rDev +35.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Dark brown appearance that is standard of a good doppelbock. Little head that dissipated rather quickly.

The aroma of the smoky malt was rather pungent and I could not smell much else. It smelled delightful.

The taste was wonderful. First, a rush of roasted malts, followed by toffee, a very subtle taste of hops and a smooth smoky finish.
Not too smoky and rather balanced.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2010 17:01:35 | More by doppelbockrob
Photo of BuckeyeNation


4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gorgeous garnet red with topaz accents. An increasingly high-altitude pour produced a thick slice of sand colored suds that doesn't have much interesting surface topography and doesn't leave much lace. Oh well, the color of the beer more than makes up for it.

Since the brewery calls this offering a Smoked Doppelbock Lager, then that's what it is. On the other hand, there's easily enough pungent smokiness for rauchbier to be a style consideration. An underlying dark maltiness is appreciated as well.

To state the obvious, Charkoota Rye is good beer if you enjoy doppelbocks, smoked malt and rye malt. I'm not always 100% thrilled with the first, but those last two... definitely onboard. The beer benefits by being on the sweet side, while stopping well short of cloying.

Specifics include darkest caramel, pumpernickel toast, a dollop of molasses, and an ideal amount of sweet wood smoke. I'm reminded of Islay Scotch, but it's probably the fact that that spirit contains peat-smoked barley. A certain earthy tanginess brings the comparison home to an even greater extent.

NHBC did a commendable job using cherry wood smoke as an accent (a heavy accent) rather than making it the 800 lb. gorilla of the flavor profile. This is a well put together large lager that hides all (or at least most) evidence of its ABV on the taste buds. The central nervous system is another matter.

Even though there isn't much carbonation, the mouthfeel easily keeps pace. It's silky smooth and has a light lip stickiness that is enjoyable to anyone who loves bigger beer.

In lesser hands, a smoked rye doppelbock with rye malt might have been a mess. New Holland has the chops to carry it off and has a winner with this multi-faceted lager. If they haven't already, the brewery needs to give serious consideration to seasonal release. Crisp afternoons, burning autumn leaves, college football games... and a bomber of Charkoota Rye.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2010 14:30:57 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of CampusCrew


4.15/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

appearance: dark brown, fluffy haad, nice lacing

smell: loads of smoke, BBQ, bacon aroma

taste: nice, not smoke dominant. it's pungent, but balanced with the beer.

mouthfeel: medium bodied

drinkability: decent selection. would try again, probably one of the best smoked beers I have had.

Serving type: bottle

06-11-2010 02:41:35 | More by CampusCrew
Photo of silver0rlead

North Carolina

3.9/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pouts a deep brown, almost black color with a thin tan head that retains OK. The aroma has a nice bacon scent upfront, along with some rye, dark fruits, caramel and licorice, soy sauce and a bit of alcohol. The taste has a more subdued smoke character than the aroma, along with some caramel and toffee sweetness, some fig and date, licorice, a rye sharpness and a little soy sauce. The mouthfeel is a little ligher than expected but no unpleasant, and drinkability is good for a high alcohol smoked beer. Pretty solid smoked beer here, nothing mind blowing but worth a purchase.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2010 03:51:41 | More by silver0rlead
Photo of BEERchitect


3.85/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A very sweet, malty, and smokey beer that evokes the pairing of great Bar-B-Que.

The pour brings a rustic brown color with moderate haze, great lightly tanned head formatioh, great lacing and retention. This is one handsome looking beer.

Aromas of smoke and molassas hit the nose immediately. Rich malt sweetness allows for deep caramels, toast, molassas, and brown sugars to thrive in flavor and smell. Rye grains begin with a richly robust malt character and a sharp spiciness leading directly to the hop additions. At mid-palate, the malts waiver just a bit allowing for the spicy rye to linger along with the citrucy and piney hop flavors and bitterness. You don't see that in many Dopplebocks.

The beer starts off sweet, and remains sweet because of the low hop character. Residual sweetness lingers on the mouth surfaces and keeps the beer from the malty-drying finish that classic Dopplebocks do. Still, a pleasure to drink.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2010 03:42:59 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of SykDoc


4.22/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. It pours a pleasant brown color that looks ruby when held to the light. A 1/8 inch tan head forms and reduces quickly to a uniquely active lacing around the edges with carbonation readiliy visible.

The aroma is primarily a caramel malt sweetness combined with smoke. Not complex, but good.

The taste is a quick sweetness followed immediately by smoky goodness that slowly fades to another caramel malt sweetness.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied. The carbonation is a bit high and may detract slightly. It seems to go down cleanly and leaves a uniquely smoky aftertaste, which almost has a texture.

Overall, this beer is definitely drinkable but the flavor and smokiness may be too much for the palate if I had more than 1. Definitely worth getting again for a good change of pace.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2010 00:05:15 | More by SykDoc
Photo of Mora2000


4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to blutt59 for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a dark, brownish-red with a cream colored head. The aroma is smoky and smells somewhat like burnt plastic. The flavor is roasted malt, meaty BBQ smoke and some chocolate. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. An interesting doppelbock that I hope to try again.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2010 22:06:55 | More by Mora2000
Photo of cantloveemall


1.6/5  rDev -55.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Was interested in trying another beer with Rye so decided on this, boy was that a mistake.

A - dark amber, thin brown head

S - Like bacon, not in a good way

T - I don't understand why I finished this, I guess because I felt ashamed for paying as much as I did for it

M - Average mouthfeel, I guess you can't mess that up too bad.

D - I mean, unless you're the kind of weirdo that actually wants to DRINK things that taste like bacon this is not drinkable at all.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2010 01:17:11 | More by cantloveemall
Photo of brewdlyhooked13


4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - pours a dark amber, burgundy hues in the glass. A thin, light mocha head on top, any lacing slides down the glass.

Aroma - huge smoky nose, wow. Maybe a hint of malt, good luck finding it with any regularity though. Rauchbier intensity smoke here.

Taste - sweet, malty grain has more impact here than on the nose. Still, this is very smoky stuff, a definite Liquid Smoke angle going on. A tasty woodiness in there too. Swallow and aftertaste are clean.

Mouthfeel - smooth, evenly carbonated, solid body for a doppel.

Drinkability - a definite rauch-doppel hybrid. Good beer, but limited appeal despite. I would like to try this with some smoked pulled pork or even brisket.

Serving type: bottle

02-16-2010 22:52:51 | More by brewdlyhooked13
Photo of TMoney2591


3.95/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in an Ayinger Celebrator Dopplebock glass.

Pours a deep, mostly clear dark brown, with ruby tints evident when light is present. The soapy head dissipates rather quickly, leaving a weak bit of lacing. The nose showcases a battle between smokiness and sweetness (sorta syrupy). The taste shows that smokiness has the upper hand, giving a campfire-side impression for the tongue. That sweetness, though, remains in the back, keeping that initial conflict alive on the tongue. The moderate body slickly passes through the body, allowing for a fairly high drinkability (especially if, if you're like me, you enjoy a good smoky beer).

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2010 00:47:33 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of WakeandBake


3.05/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz Bomber. A clear dark blood red pour with a very small short lasting soapy head , some spotty lacing , light carbonation . Aroma smells like a campfire , lots of wood smoke , a light sweetness and a a bit of spice. Flavor is of artifical liquid smoke , bacon grease , dry wood and dusty grain , long salty ham like finish , slick mouthfeel with an oily texture, full body , not what I would call sessionable at all . I was really looking forward to trying this, Someone must like this somewhere right ? I love you guys at New Holland and love your other beers but this one is just not for me , sorry .

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2010 18:52:19 | More by WakeandBake
Photo of prototypic


3.25/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Charkoota Rye is a cherry stained brown color. It's mostly clear and has a nice burgundy tint with backlighting. A modest off-white head covers the top. It doesn't quite rise to a finger deep and disappears very quickly. Lacing was very light. Not bad, but not great.

The nose is rather weak and uninspiring. It's simply not very aromatic. There's a bit of a light smoky scent that's noted throughout. It smells nice and malty. I was expecting it to have a spicy edge, but I'm not getting that. I'm hopeful that rye has a stronger impact on the flavor. Alcohol is blended well and isn't noticeable. Overall, it smells very average. Perhaps more strength would help.

The flavor is better than the nose suggests. It has a nice, sweet malty base. There is a slight sugary flavor. The smoked flavor is the driving force of the flavor. It complements the malts nicely. A slight spicy flavor is present from the rye. It's somewhat subtle, and frankly, doesn't work very well with the smoked flavor. They don't gel well together. It tastes a little yeasty on the tail. Alcohol never is much of a factor. It's mildly noticeable in flavor on the finish. It's above average, but a far cry from great.

Charkoota Rye has a light medium body. It's too light and never has a smooth or plush feel to it. Carbonation is very light. I wouldn't complain if a few more bubbles were present. Pretty average. Drinkability is rather average, as well. The flavor's alright, but doesn't do much for me. I'll probably finish the bomber, but I wouldn't pick up another.

New Holland is one brewery that's been hit and miss for me. Charkoota Rye belongs with the latter. The nose is weak, the flavor's jumbled and never comes together, and it's too thin. Despite all that, it's still not terrible beer. It's just not very good either. If you're big into smoke flavored beers, then this may be for you. Otherwise, take a pass.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2010 02:23:00 | More by prototypic
Photo of Jameyd33


4.47/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reddish brown in color; very appealing. Smell is amazing: distinct smoke smells with a hint of bacon. Tastes great. Smoke flavor, subtle chocolate. I love Rye. This wouldbe great with a burger, steak, chicken, anything off the grill. Would definitely get more of this and other brews.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2010 21:47:44 | More by Jameyd33
Photo of beer2day

North Carolina

3.95/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep caramel red. Very nice complex color. Very little head, no retention, and no lacing. But I really like the color.

Big, smoky nose. Molasses, caramel, brown sugar, and smokehouse bacon are all there. Very nice, if you are a smoke fan.

Tad sweet, even sugary, on the hit. Smoke quickly takes over and dominates the rest of the way through. Nice dry hops creep into the finish, but the sweetness from the molasses and smoke overpower their attempt at bitterness. Again, if you like smoke then this is a good presentation.

Feel is actually a tad thin for all of the flavors that accompany this drink. Slightly syrupy at times. Surprisingly easy to drink, for 8%, for this smoke-fiend.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2009 02:06:29 | More by beer2day
Photo of maximum12


3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Love rye, love New Holland, so this one sounds like a winner before the cap is popped...

Pours out a tame, almost headless burgundy with some great highlights around the edges. The lack of head is clearly not due to missing carbonation, which is readily in evidence bubbling up continuously through the brew. Smell is wild, the sweet malts of the doppel clashing mightily with the smooth rye, with a clear piggy tone underneath.

Charkoota is one messed up doppelbock, & I mean that kindly. In this corner we have the smoked malts, which gain the upper hand upon the first sip. Subsequent shots are necessary to discern anything else, but the second reveals that the other malts are offsetting the smokiness to some degree, the sweetness tamping it down nicely. The rye is a distant player, present but scarcely accounted for.

Drinkability is the weakest point of the brew, because really, I can't think of many folks that would want much of a smoky doppelbock. I mean, it's good, & I'm enjoying it, but half the bomber will be plenty, thank you.

Very good, very odd, very original. This was an experiment that could have gone horribly wrong, but the balance here is good & leaves one wondering whether this is a smoked doppelbock or doppelbock with a bit of smoke. Nicely done.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2009 02:55:30 | More by maximum12
Photo of meatyard


3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours out a clear, dark, ruby/brown with a small whitish head that falls quickly to a cover, that eventually vanishes, leaving no lacing. It's amply carbonated though.
The smell is BBQ smoked, that's about all.
The taste is smoky and malty, in the finish there is a taste thay may be some rye. There is a bit of sweetness but not overly so.
Mouthfeel seems light at first sip but rounds out more in the medium range. Carbonation level stays actively high throughout the bottle.
Drinkability is like a lot of strong or unusual beers in that 1 bottle, this at 22 oz., is plenty. I think it hid the ABV level quite nicely.

This DB doesn't conform all that exactly to style, yet is interesting as a smoked DB, especially if smoky beers interest you which they do me. I think it would suit many as a dinner pairing with particular foods more than a straight up drinking beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2009 21:43:03 | More by meatyard
Photo of kingcrowing


3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into a snifter.

Pours a very dark brown/ruby slightly translucent with a very thin lacing and no head. Nose is so smoke with hints of bacon.

Taste is smooth and crisp... then bam! Smoked bacon all over your palate! Really cool beer and if you like bacon, you'll love it!

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2009 20:18:14 | More by kingcrowing
Photo of rhoadsrage


2.38/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

(Served in a tulip glass)
A- The dense brown body glows a slight brownish-red glow when held to the light. There is a thin tan head that fades to a ring quickly.
S- The full aroma of plastic band-aids dominates with some notes of dark brown malt coming through when the beer is warm
T- The taste of big band-aids has a hint of bacon without the sweetness to support it. There is a faint chocolate malt that comes through when my tongue gets used to the band-aid. The finish is watery with a roasted bitterness and faint chocolate note lingering after each sip.
M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with no alcohol heat.
D- I like smoked beers that put some beer flavors with the smoke. This beer is all smoke and all band-aids with other flavors buried. It was tough to get through a full bottle.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2009 23:00:17 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of david131


3.1/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- A deep brown amber liquid that looks pretty thick and syrupy. It looks fairly lifeless, even after a good swirl. No head what-so-ever.

S- Smoke, rye, syrup, hickory? All I can really think of is barbecue sauce.

T- Remarkably sweet at first. Lots of smoke and caramel. This is barbecue sauce beer. It is not terrible... just remarkably different. I give it a 3.5 for trying.

M- Syrupy and smooth, but severely lacking in carbonation.

D- I give it credit for trying and the alcohol is well hidden. It is just something that does not belong in a bomber, or if it is- just plan on sharing with a friend. Would probably make a good marinade as well.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2009 03:03:06 | More by david131
Photo of BMoney575


3.03/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled on 11-27-09

Pours a very plain-looking deep red color, with almost no head and absolutely no lacing.

Smell is extreme smokiness, and not much else. Very smoked meat, a cross between bacon and beef jerky.

Taste is bitter meat beer. Ultra-smoky, with a bitter boozy kick. The aftertaste is all barbecue sauce (Gordon is a fag).

Mouthfeel is extremely thin, carbonation is low.

Drinkability is poor, the flavors are odd and off-putting.

Overall, I'd give an A+ for trying something different, but this is just too much.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2009 03:01:52 | More by BMoney575
Photo of sweemzander


2.73/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. No bottled date.

(A)- Pours a clear dark brown color that produced a minimal tan head that dissipated quickly.

(S)- Tons of hickory smoke in front of nuances like raisin, spice, and bread.

(T)- Again, tons of hickory smoke, but not much else. Kinda thin. Very sugary sweet too. Bread-like.

(M)- Good carbonation. Very one dimensional and straightforward. Smoky? yes, but not much else to offer you. Kinda bland and thin. Way too sweet.

(D)- Good smoke flavor & aroma, but where is the rest? Too sugary sweet. This would be great to cook with though. It says pairs well with pork; I would agree with that.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2009 16:33:47 | More by sweemzander
Photo of techfed87


3.55/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Came from a 22 oz. bottle from the local specialty store. Poured into an English style pint glass. Poured a very dark brown/amber red. A thin level of head came up for a few seconds, then dissipated quickly thereafter. With no head, almost impossible to gather a real scent from it.

Has a very full body flavor to it, can definitely pick up on big roast flavors with the first sip. Charcoally in a very nice way. Has a pretty nice body below the major flavor.

Rye is all over the body of the beer, however what makes it special is what they did with that rye. Compared to other Rye beers that are out on the market. This gives a twist to the style that makes it all worth while.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2009 00:31:44 | More by techfed87
Photo of BeerFMAndy


3.1/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle split and poured into a Sierra Nevada Imperial Pint. 22 degrees Plato, 8.17% ABV, no date.

Thank you Sweemzander for sharing this bottle!

A - Poured a clear dark mahogany color with a low tan head. Good retention which eventually left a ring of foam and a layer.

S - A big hickory smoked nose with a tiny malt presence in the background. Almost 100% smoke aroma. Nothing else really comes through cause it's overpowered. Decent through, the smoke smells good. I just wish there was something to back it up.

T - More hickory smoke. A good malt backbone is present behind but almost indistinguishable from the smoke flavor. The smoke isn't overpowering the palate, its a good level, but it just dominates everything else besides a lingering sugary sweetness which is no surprise from New Holland.

M - Dry and smoky with a very sweet feel. Medium-bodied and plain. A light carbonation finish to it.

D - Not bad. The smoke flavor is actually at a really good level as it's flavorful and not overpowering the senses, it's just not matched in careful consideration by malts or rye. It's another sugary and fairly one-dimensional beer from New Holland. They suggest that it be paired with pork and I think that would be really good with this beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2009 17:56:25 | More by BeerFMAndy
Photo of Bighuge


4.28/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear dark cherrywood appearance. Bubbly beige head caps it off. Loods very inviting...Aroma is quite nice. Just what I was expecting...rich malt mixed with some thick smoke. Smoke and malt enter the mouth side by side with a lot of authority. They work together quite nicely. The malts are fairly rich. The smokiness is really the main player. The rye doesn't contribute much to the flavor in my opinion. The mouthfeel is nice and round. Full body. Low carbonation, which is good. Quality stuff here. Very enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2009 00:06:52 | More by Bighuge
Photo of tipnsip


1.93/5  rDev -45.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

I picked up a 22 oz. bomber at an area Binny's. I was excited to try something new (or at least new to me) from one of my favorite brewers - New Holland.

Loved the flying pig on the bottle ... it poured dark & inviting into a pint glass ... the aroma wasn't very strong but seemed "ok".

First sips can be deceiving ... even a second sip can fail to reveal what a brew can truly offer. So I went for a third taste, and unfortunately Charkoota Rye was my first dissapointment from New Holland.

At first, it exhibits fairly typical dopplebock flavors, then a mild touch of sweetness glances over the tongue ... and then that's where things went south. The smoke flavor was almost chemical-like - harsh, caustic, synthetic. The finish was dry & somewhat spicy but mainly tasted like liquid smoke.

The only way I found it somewhat drinkable was by drinking it along with eating fatty fried chicken thighs. The richness of the dark meat & fat mellowed the harsh smoke flavor from this beer. IMO this would be great for marinating pork, or if you're inclined to drink it be sure to have something to eat along with it that has deep rich flavor. Whether it's cheese or meat, this beer needs something to balance its flavors.

I understand ... smoked beer is an art and it's easy to over-do it. New Holland makes fantastic beers ... but this one is just kinda nasty.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2009 23:23:37 | More by tipnsip
Charkoota Rye from New Holland Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 224 ratings.