1. The BeerAdvocate Store is back! Pre-order your stuff now. Items begin shipping Dec 15. Christmas deadline = Dec 18 @ 5pm EST.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Unplugged Smoked Rye Ale - New Glarus Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Unplugged Smoked Rye AleUnplugged Smoked Rye Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

240 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 240
Reviews: 155
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 14.92%
Wants: 33
Gots: 23 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
New Glarus Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Smoked Beer |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: beerwolf77 on 01-17-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Unplugged Smoked Rye Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 240 | Reviews: 155 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beergod1
3.93/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear amber pour with a small off white head that fades fast. Strong smokey aroma with bacon, more smoke, a touch of alcohol, and more smoke. Sweet malty caramel flavor filled with smoke and yes....Bacon.The spicy rye on the finish makes it even better. Very interesting, but after 1 beer, I had enough.

Photo of VIPbeer
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of Onenote81
2.25/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Big thanks to BeerFMAndy for another NG hookup!

Poured this one into a mug. Pours a cloudy rusty brown. This looks like I dipped my glass into the Yadkin River. Huh. Big smoky aromas - campfire, ham, bacon grease. Yowzas. Much smokier than I thought as it completely dominates the nose.

The mouth was way thin for my liking. Carbonation level was low, and there just wasn't anything to back up these unique flavors. The smokiness pervades the flavors as well, as I feel like I am drinking the dregs from a can of ham. Actually, that may be about right as the body probably matches that as well. I can't pull any rye character from this one. No spiciness; bitterness is near absent. I am not opposed to smoked beers at all, in fact, I have enjoyed them at other times, but this one just downright fell flat for me. This might as well be called New Glarus Liquid Pig. Pass.

Photo of bigfnjoe
3.7/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Victory goblet

A- pours a relatively transparent shade of a very dark amber with no head at all. The beer looks nice, but no head = no bueno

S- oh yeah, there's the smoke. And lots of it. It delivers on the name, at least

T- getting a tad bit of rye in front, and the finish is smoke...but mild smoke, not overwhelming at all. Pretty good

M- medium bodied

O- not bad at all, even as someone who isn't crazy about smoked beers

Photo of funkel81
3/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of groovy24
3/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of WastingFreetime
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Appears a deep amber color with brown highlights, has a small tan collar, no real lacing. Smells of smoke (beechwood maybe? seems similar in smoke aroma to other smoked beers that claim to use beechwood, but I might be wrong) on top of a medium strength rye aroma. I can't tease out any other particular special malt or hop aroma from the nose. On the tongue, a veil of smoke flavor hits first, than gets pushed to the sideman spotlight by a caramel malt / spicy rye malt blend of flavors. The rather dry finish also provides with a lovely array of drawn out tannic elements. Body is on the heavy side of medium thickness, yet very smooth and creamy. I feel as though I should have used a snifter (and perhaps sported a fez / smoking jacket combo) rather than a pint glass. A very nice smoked beer that doesn't let the smoke bully all the other flavors and aromas off the stage. Well done!

Photo of drabmuh
3.55/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Michael, beer served in a snifter because that's what I had in my hand. At the time of this review, this is the #21 beer on the Top Beers - Smoked Beer list.

Beer is clear, amber, with a wispy lazy white head of small bubbles, some lacing, low retention, low carbonation.

Aroma is smoke and more smoke.

Beer is medium to light in body, a little sweet up front and a dry smokey finish, not too dry but dry enough to emphasize the smoke. Beer is sort of one dimensional to me, the smoke dominates everything else, still decent though.

Photo of dcloeren
4.1/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Joshua for sharing this bottle.

Review from notes...

Poured a crisp copper bronze with a finger of off white head.

Campfire smoke dominates the nose and has a nice backbone of caramel malt, spicy rye.

Taste followed the nose but more roasted and caramel malt upfront that quickly gets encapsulated by the smoke. The rye spices come into play about half way and finishes very smooth with a very slight bitterness.

Medium to light in body. Just enough carbonation to stay relevant.

I thought this beer was amazingly well done. The smokiness never took it over the top and all though it did dominate the beer it was very tasty.

Photo of floydie83
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

Photo of freduardo
3/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of 321jeff
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of StayWhatYouAre2
2.5/5  rDev -34.6%

Photo of CWhite
5/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of jmarsh123
2.73/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours murky brown with very little head or lacing.

Very smoky aroma. Almost like apple smoked bacon. A little bit of caramel sweetness as well.

A brief bit of caramel sweetness at the beginning followed by an intense smoky bacon flavor in the aftertaste. A little bit of sugary sweetness as well.

Mouthfeel and carbonation are both on par for the style.

The smoke element is a little too strong in this. I like subtle smokiness, but this one overpowers most other flavors.

Photo of aliving1
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%

Photo of Mrpickles
2.5/5  rDev -34.6%

Photo of whartontallboy
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of ATPete
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of nataku00
2.38/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I've had this bottle for 7-8 months now after receiving it in a trade and tucking it away in a hidden place. Bottle poured into a tulip glass. Beer pours a ruby red and amber with some dark cola browns, mostly clear with no head. Light alcohol legs and minimum off white foam from swirling, and a few tiny bubbles sticking to the glass.

Nose is very smokey, applewood smoked bacon like with that hint of burnt sugar sweetness or a wet camp fire. Can't smell any of the rye component as the smoked malts are dominating.

Taste is like drinking liquid smoke. Very savory tasting, smoked bacon and ham, with minimum amount of caramelized sugar sweetness. Not too much rye or sweeter malts in this either, as the smoked malts just continue onto a medium finish, with lingering smoked meats flavor on the tongue.

Light to medium body with a light tickle of carbonation. Beer is a bit difficult to drink as it is one dimensional in the smokiness. Too bad I'm not having some bbq as this might be a decent pairing. By itself, it really is one big smoke bomb of a beer. Really fatiguing smoky flavor that I struggled to finish off by the end of the glass.

Photo of Prostman81
3.35/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poors a nice, almost ruby color, with a slight brown tint. Nice malt aroma, no hop presence, and a definite wallop of smoke.

First impression when drinking is the dominant smoke flavor. Like smoked bacon except more earthy. The smoke doesn't linger, and you can get a feel for more of the malt background, but each time you sip, that smoke just erases the palate again and puts itself firmly in place.

I rate the mouthfeel a 3....this, to me, is one heavy beer. I actually feel full after drinking just one, and then I don't want any more beer. I understand heavy beers have their place, but the heavyness along with the smoke are just too much in my opinion.

I appreciate the perspective from NG on this; the brewer wanted to make a smoke beer with rye (noted for its incredible body-enhancing properties, not its 'spiciness' as a lot of folks believe). They definitely nailed both aspects. However, this is just not something I'd drink again, or encourage the non-smoke beer initiated to try out.

Photo of CummingsK21
5/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of denimdemon
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

Photo of Montrose79
5/5  rDev +30.9%

Photo of birchholz
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Unplugged Smoked Rye Ale from New Glarus Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 240 ratings.