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Hop Rod Rye | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
94
outstanding
2,072 Reviews
Hop Rod RyeHop Rod Rye
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A high gravity IPA brewed with 18% rye malt. Hop Rod Rye has a floral hop aroma and subtle caramel notes with a slightly earthy and spicy rye character.

2009 California State Fair – GOLD
2003 California State Fair – GOLD
2002 Real Ale Festival (Chicago) – GOLD

Added by Quaffer on 03-27-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,072
Ratings:
4,670
Avg:
4.24
pDev:
14.62%
 
 
Wants:
273
Gots:
363
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,072 | Ratings: 4,670
Reviews by avylover:
Photo of avylover
4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a deep mahogony color with a nice healthy off white head and tons of yeast floating around in there. A smell reveals a hefty caramel maltiness with a strong hop presence in the background. Taste is fairly sweet for a beer named "Hop Rod." There are no doubt some bittering floral hops in there, but a sweet maltiness rules this ale. Great malts & great hops. My friend just mentioned "This is really good." He's right. Nice slick mouthfeel and immensley drinkable. This borderlines on the perfect strong session ale.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of TCHopCraver
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a rudy red/mahogany into an oversized wine glass. A light khaki,1 and 1/2 finger head recedes over the course of a minute to leave a thin retaining film. The lacing is sticky and thin and looks like ancient hieroglyphics.

S: Very intriguing. The combination between the hops and the rye malt produces a cranberry and fig smell that is supported by the expected citrus and floral aromas. Call me crazy, but in a way this smells like a Belgian quad with the figgy-sweetness. It has a unique aroma for an IPA, to be sure.

T: This is a really special meeting of hops, barley malt, and rye in my mouth. The cranberry and fig sweetness that I alluded to in the smell kicks off the flavor on the palate, followed by an exciting collision of the fresh hops and spicy rye malts. The finish is nice and bitter and awfully tasty. This is not your typical American IPA, but its ingenuity and creativity makes it a truly unique and great one.

M: This beer is a dancer; it's a soul's companion; you can feel it everywhere. But seriously, folks. This one really hits all the buttons of my palate. The carbonation is deliciously crisp, the barley and rye malts lend a good, full body, and the bittering hops donate a dry, bitter finish.

D: Would I have another? Yeeeaaash. If you couldn't tell, I really dig this beer. I'm not sure if it's the mood I'm in or what, but this is really striking the right chord with me right now. I read on the Great Lakes group that Bear Republic is moving into Michigan. If that is true, I would be one happy Beer Advocate.

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Photo of Gajo74
4.86/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I'm in love with this great brew and need to get more ASAP! Pours a dark copper with a modest head and a small ring like lace that retains throughout. It seems that this one is unfiltered as you can see some sediment. No problem, as it does not affect it negatively. The aroma is malty sweet with hints of caramel, chocolate, syrup, toasted bread and a tiny bit of alcohol towards the end. The taste is a malt lover's dream. A firm malt backbone with toasty bread flavors and caramel. Yet, this sweetness is never at risk of being cloying. Make no mistake about it, this one is also a bit of a hop bomb. This is evident in the finish and aftertaste which is a perfect marriage of dry, bitter and sweet. There are also elements of spice coming from the rye. I like my IPAs to have a good balance between hops and malts and I'm so impressed by the perfect balance this one has achieved. What a feel! It is full bodied and chewy yet so drinkable. I just finished it and I'm sad because I wish I had more. Reminds me a lot of dogfish head IPA 90.

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Photo of JooJooEyeballs
4.44/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Love this rye as well as Cane & Ebel.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.78/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sanguineous antique bronze. Hop Rod Rye is chock full of fine particulates which create a lovely prism for the late afternoon sun slanting through my front window and cause the beer to explode with warm color. Perched atop the liquid is a creamystiff cap of pale tangerine that only an outrageously hoppy beer could produce. A perfect, rounded mesa of heavy cream awaits disruption, but not until I spend a few more moments enjoying the beautiful array of filagreed lace that sticks with impressive tenacity to the glass.

Hops, hops and more hops. And then some more. This is one of the most hop-dominant noses on any DIPA in existence. Too often beer of this style is balanced, as if balance is the Holy Grail of all beerdom. Well screw balance. It appears as if Bear Republic has given the most hopheaded among us what we crave. If the flavor follows the nose... we have a winner. Since brown sugary grapefruit and orange practically leap out of the glass, I feel pretty safe in saying that at least one, and probably multiple, of the 'C' hops are in use.

This is my kind of DIPA. I can't figure out why it continues to be classified as an IPA with such a high ABV and such a juggernaut of a hop load. There's plenty of sweet, toasted caramel flavor that does its best to keep the hops in line. Balance, shmalance. What kicks Hop Rod into orbit is the use of a not insignificant amount of rye malt that sets it apart from just about every DIPA that I've ever had.

As far as I'm concerned, rye is an underutilized grain in brewing. In the same way that it gives bourbon its spicy kick (except for Maker's Mark and a few others that use corn, barley and wheat instead of the usual corn, barley and rye), it gives this beer an exotic, piquant spiciness that is complemented by a citrusy thwack! from the hops and a sugary pine needle bite. A long, mouthcoating finish is borne of a full, chewy mouthfeel and nearly unnoticed carbonation.

I can't say enough good things about Bear Republic. Each and every beer is top-notch and is a marvel of the brewer's art. Hop Rod Rye is an intense, fantastically delicious DIPA and instantly leaps to within sight of the summit on my 'most favored beers of all-time' list. Wow!

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Photo of oberon
4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber with a almost creamy-like head that leaves sheets of lace down the glass,the rye really comes thru in the aroma along with a dose of grapefruit these aromas melded very well together I already knew this was gonna be a hoppy brew before even tasting.Like a few of the others who reviewed this one the first few sips hit pretty hard with some bigtime bitterness but mellowed after awhile with that late rye touch making this very refreshing.Glad to get a chance to try this a very nice beer would love to have on tap again sometime.

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Photo of ddean
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A pretty, dark amber/red color. A pour from bottle to pint glass gives some intense bubbles on the side of the glass that dissipate over a couple of minutes and a thin but nice foam lacing. I would give a chance for the beer to warm up a bit so as to get a solid feel for its complex scent and flavor.

And what a sensory experience. The aroma was not as hoppy or citrusy or strong to me as others report for them, but some hops right up front, followed by a pleasant combination of roasted malt and brown sugar as the glass warmed up. Delicious taste, with sweet malt, dark cherries, a nice, balanced bite from the hops and rye. Mouthfeel is perfect, a smooth followup to the taste with a lingering, yummy hint of cherries, chocolate, and red grapefruit. (Interesting to me how reviewers will often report some similar flavors to one another, but in different orders.)

So in short, another excellent, dynamic, but well-balanced beer from The Republic of Bear. Definitely check it out if you are a fan of big but well-balanced beers.

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Photo of RoyalT
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance – This one is a beautiful cloudy brown in color and just clear enough to view the sediment floating around. The head was absolutely gorgeous! It foamed up quickly, lasted a while, and tried to leave a little lacing.

Smell – The lovely aroma of piney and floral hops are mixed with a bit of citrus and a hint of the promised rye. The fragrance is sharp yet balanced. Nicely done.

Taste – The balancing malt sticks its chest out just enough to balance. The complex hops from the nose come on wonderfully here, mixing with the subtle rye notes to form a symphony of flavors. This one does the almost impossible task of establishing a sharp, crisp, strong hop flavor then bringing it to the drinker’s lips balanced and smooth.

Mouthfeel – Crisp and sharp yet refreshing and smooth. This nearly full-bodied rye-tinted IPA is a mouthful for sure.

Drinkability – When I partake of my occasional whisky indulgence, I usually go for straight Kentucky or Tennessee rye. This ale couples that wonderful flavor with a tremendous IPA offering. Hats off!

Update – Cvschaller brought an ’04 vintage over to my place for a pizza party. I really do love this ADIPA. It’s a unique and fully satisfying take on the style.

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Photo of aszatk01
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of legalag11
5/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.46/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pretty bad ass bottle for a pretty bad ass beer. Pours a deep dark copper with magnificent rubaeous hues and a huge, fluffy, three finger beige head that never goes away. Seriously, when I finished the last sip in my glass there was still this little dollop of cream sitting in the bottom of the glass. Admittedly, I love rye beers and this is no exception. Nose is oat and bread malts with wonderful fruit esters, pine, and grapefruit. Mouthfeel is massages the tongue like the older girl who taught you how to kiss in high school. Through the wonderful physical sensation comes a hot rod load of hop bitterness, rye flavors, citrus fruit, and spice. Finishes thick and chewy. Good to the last drop like a cup of the old Maxwell House.

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Photo of ExtraStout
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into glass.

A-A very deep red almost brownish color, holding it up to the light shows off the deep red color, has a solid head and leaves a solid lacing on the glass.

S-Floral hops with an almost caramel hint, with a cross of some dark rye bread.

T-Very hoppy at first almost biting, after that there is a bit of a rye flavor that almost smooths it out. Every other sip seems to go from biting to smooth. Very interesting, just that fact makes this one of my favorite brews.

M- Again it goes from biting to smooth and vice versa. I find it quite unique.

D-Can't really go for more than one of these in a night. I actually prefer to split a bomber with a friend. It doesn't show off the 8% abv at all, seems so much less than that.

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Photo of DavyJones
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of t2grogan
3.5/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Zakk
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of jono0101
3.5/5  rDev -17.5%

Photo of brownbeer
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Amber colored with a tan head poured from a 22oz bomber.

S- Spicy nose, both from the hops and rye malt. Reminds me of a fresh Bigfoot in a lot of ways.

T- Pine resin, heavy, gourmet baked bread. A doughiness hits about mid palate before finishing dry and bitter

M- A bit of astringincy in the mouthfeel but not harsh. Becomes a bit heavier and more bitter as it warms.

D- A beer I will drink a couple of times per year(probably during cool weather) and really enjoy it.

A well structured beer that balances sweet, spicy, and bitter very well and progresses nicely. I could possibly see this one aging for a year or two.

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Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.85/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

OK first of all I am not reviewing this as an IPA. Nothing about this beer is IPA as far as I'm concerned. That noted...we will proceed.

The beer is a beautiful clear rosewood color and has a nice thin, rust-tinted head that fades to a thin layer. It leaves fragments of lace. The spicy nase gives a boquet of alefruit and fresh orange. Very inviting. The taste is a simple but lovely swirling of big ale fruit esters, perfectly proportioned rye kick, crystal malt, and herbal hop all melding together for one very co-hesive brew. I might call this an "Imperial Amber".

Mouthfeel is alive with rye and carbonation. It is a little stingy but this helps accentuate much of the flavor profile (specifically hops, rye, esters) and does much to add drinkability to what would be an otherwise oppressive full body. As beer warms and carbonation dissapates it actually gets nice and creamy. Man this beer is a journey.

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Photo of npala86
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of Tiernan
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Photo of woodchipper
1/5  rDev -76.4%

Photo of BenTherHppedThat
4/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of sgoodship
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This was my first Bear Republic brew. I loved the humorous copy about the sediment on the label. $4.99 at Binny's - great value.

A: Almost a very dark brown haziness on top that becomes a clearer dark amber at the bottom of the glass. Deep and interesting looking. Without vigorous pouring, it delivered a nice slightly off-white head that started clinging to the glass immediately. Awesome lacing throughout and a nice ring and thin head stayed the course.

S: Really big hops. Initially, it was a grassy, earthy hop but as it warmed, I got more of the grapefruit profile. There was also some caramel syrupy sweetness underlying the hops but it was not the dominant force. I think I could detect rye but the hops are so dominant that it was hard to pin-point it.

T: Good hearty taste. Pretty much as the smell. Generally, feels quite complex and deliberately hop focused. Rye ads a nice dry crispness and slight spicy bitterness to the palette along with the hop bite. Aftertaste is nice sour hop. As it warmed up, the combination of the caramel malt and the big hops was quite lovely.

M: Smooth, medium body mouthfeel with medium/low carbonation. As it warmed up, it was nice and round and thoroughly fulfilling.

D: Very drinkable. Downed it in record time. 8% ABV is hardly noticeable and therefore dangerous. Thoroughly enjoyed this. I think that this is one of my new go-to hop fixes. I love what the rye ads to the mix.

Don't know about style categorization but this has to be bordering on the DIPA. Higher ABV and a pretty deliberately aggressive hop.

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Photo of SkiBum22
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Photo of JMD71
4.1/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Cloudy, deep cppery color. Rocky, textured head. Small head lingers. Vigorous carbonation.

Aroma: Sweet, malty aroma with notes of hop. Does not smell overly hoppy.

Taste: Malty flavor balanced by a hoppy middle. Finishes quite bitter on the palette because of the hop profile, but not overly so. Bitter finish does not linger...

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, Crisp finish after a smooth middle. Tastes clean.

Drinkability: Very drinkable. Refreshing & smooth. Would need to be cautious with these due to the 8% ABV. I could drink a few..

Comment: This was a very good beer. I liked it all the way through the bomber. Nice example of the style....

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Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 2,072 ratings.