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Hop Rod Rye - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Hop Rod RyeHop Rod Rye

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,400 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,400
Reviews: 2,040
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 235
Gots: 235 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  8.00% ABV

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

(Beer added by: Quaffer on 03-27-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,400 | Reviews: 2,040 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Redrover
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz brown bomber with a nice & informative label. My wife & I split this big boy.

Beer poured a very dark bronze with a fluffy off-white head. Nice lacing.

Nice aroma of pine, fresh citrus and a bit of dinner roll smell. Yummy!

Taste is bitter yet balanced by some sweetness that comes in during the after taste. Lots of pine and grapefruit taste in the forefront. I’m not sure what the rye adds, but the beer is tasty. More caramel and alcohol emerges as you work through the beer.

Nice smooth mouth with a very nice level of carbonation. A little tongue numbing at time. Easy to drink but the high ABV would keep this from being a session beer.

My first beer from this brewery and it is a winner! I will look for more from these artists.

Photo of goodbyeohio
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

pours crimson and fizzy with a light tan head of substance and character.

aroma is dangerously overwhelming with hops. mild buttery notes, but nothing can compare to the almighty hop gods making their presence known through the neck of this bottle.

tastes hoppy. bitter. mouth-puckering. the appeal to this beer is the rye background, which gives the hops a much higher ground to attack from. rye itself contributes a base spice here which launches my taste buds into orbit. and then a blueberry note.. from where? a hophead's delight.

i've sometimes been adverse to crazy hops but the complexity here helps me to appreciate it.

Photo of drunkmonk
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber. Dark rusty copper appearance. Off white/tan head quickly dissapears to just a slight rim around my pint glass. Very attractive beer, but much darker as I would expect for an APA.

Piney and citrusy notes balence well with some malt presence as well. Slightly sweet malt flavors with just a little rye present to start with a nice dry, hoppy finish. The rye presence is there, but not as prevelant as I was expecting. The mouthfeel is much thinner than what I imagined when admiring this beer's appearance.

Just the right amount of bitterness to keep this beer very drinkable. The alchol is very well hidden, but comes more to the forefront as it warms. Very nice take on the style. Recommended

Photo of jsprain1
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours much darker than I expected. Reddish-brown with a thin head to it.
S- Some of the hoppy rye ales I've had haven't worked because they work against each other instead of with each other. This was a nice combination though. I got a bit more rye on the nose, really got a fair amount of a spicy tangy quality. There's a bit of a piney hop aroma as well.
T- I'm quite pleased that the hops didn't overwhelm the rye character. I muted pine flavor is definitely there but it works in tandem with the rye. Fairly well balanced.
M- Sticky, low on the carbonation. Substantive body. Hides the alcohol well.
O- A good effort that I enjoyed quite much. I wouldn't necessarily put it in the very upper levels of beerdom, but it is still definitely worth a try.

Photo of jminsc76
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a large foamy head atop a reddish/amber body. The head is big and takes a while to dissipate, leaving some nice lacing.

Aromas of pine, citrus, oranges, and roasted rye. Very fruity, almost sweet.

Flavors of hops, a little grapefruit, some maltiness, but devoid of the slightly caramel flavors I taste in Racer X or Green Flash's West Coast I.P.A. Packed with flavor and enjoyable bitterness.

Mouthfeel is thin and the alcohol burns slightly, but nothing overwhelming. Almost exhibits a meaty consistency across the palate.

Overall, while I do enjoy this beer, I prefer the Racer 5 more. This doesn't have the refreshment that other IPAs have, and I cannot figure out why. I like the rye aspect, but when it comes to IPAs I much prefer ones that are less induced with it, and have less of a sour and heavy feel. I can see why it is as highly rated as it is, and I will return again, but it is not among my favorites.

Photo of AwYeh
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a slightly hazy, dark crimson color, with a finger of bubbly, off-white head. Good lacing and moderate head retention.

S: Sweet and hoppy; some of the rye is detectable, adding a spicy, sweet aroma to the mix, though most of what I'm smelling is orange, pineapple, and grapefruit citrus hops.

T: Rye is immediately noticeable here, accented by the previously mentioned citrus hops. Outstanding finish; rye and hop bitterness start things off before giving way to a lingering, sticky, citrus hop flavor.

M: Medium/thick-bodied with light/moderate carbonation. Smooth and slightly creamy, with a sticky palate coating on the finish.

D: This goes down quite easy; the complex and enjoyable flavor keep it interesting for the whole glass. Will definitely have this again.

Photo of tut2528
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: pours a deep brown in color that turns to a slight orange brown when held up to the light. It creates about 1 fingers worth of head formation that is cream white. great lacing.

S: pretty well balanced… slight caramel malt backbone, nice mixture of rye and hops, citrus fruits are the main players in the brew

T: very similar to the nose and just as equally balanced. Caramel backbone, big rye and hops, some slight citrus and grapefruit and alcohol is slightly noticed. The finish has a nice creaminess that draws away some the hop bitterness

M: medium bodied which is spot on for this brew. It leaves a hoppy dryness on the palate and nice carbonation.

O: solid brew all the way around. It has a nice balance in both the nose and in the taste and has the right amount of complexity for this style.

Photo of BARFLYB
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thank you Bear Republic for putting these out in 12oz bottles, i've been waiting to review this because im leary on the freshness of bombers.

A- Hop Rod Rye is darker than your average IPA. This has a dark copper look almost looking like a lager. A nice one inch of off white foam rises up & sticks around a bit before settling down. OK lacing.

S- A delicate balance of hops, rye and malt, well balanced. The hops give off a slight citrus vibe while some sweet malt gives off caramel, not overkill though. Some light spice blends well with the rye.

T- This fresh bottle displays all the ingredients in one swig. I get the citrus hops backed by the malt followed by rye. The rye is not as prominent as I remember it from bombers years ago, but a good amount is here. Getting some toasted bread from the malts plus grains.

M- A pronounced medium feel from this, HRR is a bit thicker than your average IPA as well. The carb addition is not high and melds well within the body. The finish is spicy with a soft bitterness and dryness.

D- Not sessionable, but I would do 2-3 12oz in a night if I focused on it. Now that these come in a smaller package, I will be bying more of it on a semi regular basis here and there. Im not blown away by HRR, but this is a damn fine bier.

Photo of BearslikeBeers
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark gold color with a small white head that laces up the side of the glass. The smell is nice, fresh, hoppy and almost a little starchy at the end. It smells very rich for lack of a better term. The beer is initially sweet and a little fruity up front, less carbonated than most IPAs, and then the real profile starts to set in. The rye is very rich and malty but the hops really define the aftertaste. Very dry and very bitter finish. A little flat and syrupy but a really nice balance of the rye and the hops definitely would purchase this one again.

Photo of goatgoat
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip. A deep burnished copper that almost, but doesn't quite show brown. A nice thick tan head that leaves wonderful lace.

Aroma is predominately citrus, with a hint of pine. It hits the mouth surprisingly thick. Nicely hopped, a good bitterness that's not harsh and has an odd complexity probably from the rye.

I like the edge that the rye brings, I just enjoy my IPAs a bit drier.

Photo of Pleepleus
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

First had this one from a bomber that a friend brought over for a MNF tasting. From bomber to pint glass pured a red caramel cloudy color with a solid lasting layer of cream colored foamy head. Had a nice hop and malt balance in the smell. Heavy hop flavor up front with a nice malty balance. I taste a trace of copper which is the only downside to this one. The feel was smooth and quite drinkable for an 8% APV. I had this on tap a week later and the metalic taste was not evident in the draft version.

Photo of rudzud
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up at Julio's. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a deep, dark burnt copper colour with a big almost 3 finger fluffy light brownish white head that leaves massive clumps of side lacing and slips down to leave a quarter inch blanket.

S - Nice clean hop aromas. With just a hint of rye.

T - Kinda like the nose. Good malts and bitter hop notes with a light rye spice at the end.

M - Nice amount of carbonation but its still a sipper thanks to the higher ABV.

O - Yeah, have yet to have a bad Bear Republic beer. Didnt enjoy as much as som eof their other ales though.

Photo of fizzyfred
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours an almost grayish brown color with a nice small head. Lots of hops aroma, grassy and citrusy. The taste is unique in that the hops way out in front but it still has some balance. The rye really gives the beer that dry base that accentuates the hop flavor. It tastes light in your mouth with a slight hop bitterness on the way down. As intense as this beer is, it is well crafted all around.

Photo of longpondbeerman
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another trip to Half Time Beverages in Poughkeepsie and a whole new slew of beers to review. First the Hop Rod Rye, which poured a luscious deep and clear mahogony from the 22 oz. bomber, bearing (pardon the pun) a quintessential Healdsburg hot rod on the label. To top it off there was a thick pearl-white head that receded slowly into a lovely and sticky lace. The folks in Sonoma are not prevaricating--the hops are front and center in the aroma, but still balanced with an overlay of malts (is this the rye?). Yes, I think so, and perhaps that's the reason for the slight smoky tinge in the taste. Oh, the hops are still most evident, but the Bear Republic brewers manage to get in a coal or two somewhere in the process (though not as prevalent here as in the Red Rocket). The mouthfeel is creamy and bubbly. I like this stuff.

Photo of sisuspeed
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark caramel brown with a thin white head on top. Some lacing left behind.

Sweet malts mix with slightly bitter rye notes on the nose. A little bit of grassiness and some caramel. Aroma seems somewhat muted, could be a little stronger. No bottling date is given, so its hard to tell how old this bottle is.

Creamy, malty, hops mixed with rye. The taste is much like the aroma, but stronger. Again, caramel malts come through. Hops add bitterness and a slight amount of citrus. The overall flavor reminds me a bit of Arrogant Bastard, but not quite as fresh and tasty. Still good though.

Mouthfeel is smooth, creamy and lightly carbonated with lingering bitterness. Very well done, but doesn't really come across as an IPA.

Drinkability is quite good. This beer goes down really quickly and the ABV is unnoticeable. Nothing is standout about the flavor, but it still tastes good and the body is elegant.

Overall, this is a tasty Rye IPA. Everything about this beer is good, with the body probably being the best aspect. Racer 5 is still my fave Bear Republic beer, but the Hop Rod Rye is another good addition to their lineup. Worth checking out.

Photo of ChugginOil
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

When poured, a honey brown brew settles a dark hazelnut brown that is almost opaque. Less than a fingers worth of off white head sits and dissipates quickly, leaving bubble rings along the glass.

The nose offers a combination of pine scented hop oils and some apricot is evident as well. There is a bit of a sweet malt scent behind it all.

The taste sweet up front and a bit malty but immediately kicks in a bitter hop sensation. There is a pleasant pine flavor along with a nice caramel topped hop addition.

The mouthfeel is crisp and bitter with enough carbonation to donate to the hop kick. Pretty full as well.

Overall, this is a pleasant brew and getting better as it warms. Yum

Photo of ccs
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark amber with a slightly off-white head. Lacing left along the glass all the way down. Smells of malt and caramel. Taste is a little surprising, since very little hops is detectable in aroma, but it is very much a hoppy beverage. Carbonation was a little choopy, making for an odd over-carbonated mouthfeel. But, overall, the bomber was gone in less than an hour...and I will be getting another next week.

Photo of FattyJLE
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

S - Complex aroma of tropical fruits, pineapple, dried fruit, lemon peel, and sweet caramel malts.

A - Pours an almost clear, deep copper/iced-tea color with a substantial half-inch, beige head and delicate lacing.

T - Rye is quite pronounced. Spicy with earthy, piney and a slight citrus peel hop profile. Very well balanced. Finished dry with a pleasant spicy rye characteristic. For 8% I could barely detect the presence of alcohol.

M - Medium bodied. Moderately carbonated. A little low on the carbonation for my taste.

O - A unique and tasty offering. Definitely a great representation of a rye beer. Had I not known the ABV beforehand, I'd even say it was sessionable; however, this beer is deceptive and will definitely creep up on you after a few. And I would recommend having quite a few. Well done.

Photo of fastsrt
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle in pint glass

A: dark amber brown, fluffy head, lacing,

S: bright citrus hops, spicy, smells fresh

T: hops and rye malts blend together for some spice,

M: lighter body, expected a real heavy beer almost like double ipa.

D: easy drinker any time of the year. will drink often.

Photo of photomike
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours really, really beautifully into a pint glass. 2 finger tan head that looks pretty much exactly like an english muffin on top of my beer.

Smell is rather light. Malt, vanilla and a bit of whiskey, presumably from the rye.

This is a really tasty beer. Not quite as hoppy as I had imagined it would be, but it was stored unrefrigerated at BevMo for an indeterminable amount of time. Still, the foremost flavor here is hops. Bitter, but not as west-coasty as some of the reviews here imply. The taste is less citrusy or piney than it is oaky or woody...again, I think the rye is at work here. Quite balanced, this isn't overly sweet and not the least bit alcoholic tasting. Very interesting, very complex. I wish my palate was refined enough to pick everything out here.

This is a ridiculously smooth beer at 8%, and somewhat chewy. Very nice.

I can and would drink a lot of this stuff in one sitting. The chewiness might be a bit much after a while, but two bombers of this is not the least bit intimidating.

Photo of instrumentality
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Tall, fluffy, relatively static head that stuck to the glass as it descended ever so slightly, floating on a clear caramel-brown body.

Odor: Hops. Just hops. A bit piney, a bit bready.

Taste: Again, the predominant flavor was hops; it tastes like it smells. However, it was actually pretty mild and not too bitter. Slightly buttery, slightly carmelly, but hard to place in general.

Mouthfeel: Mildy bitter but no intrusive carbonation or alcohol burn. Overall, very smooth.

Drinkability: Pretty mild, easy to drink - seems like a good compromise between an IPA and a more standard ale, as the rye seems to make it a bit richer while the hops aren't as intense as they would be in the average IPA.

Photo of jph424
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Brown with hints of red

S - Hops, caramel, smells delicious

T - sweetness up front, can definitely taste the rye, strong floral hoppy bitterness on the finish. Bigtime malt backbone to support it.

M - Terrificly thick

D - Very tasty brew. 1 bomber would probably be my limit though as the ABV and powerful flavor would probably be too much to have a few.

Photo of uustal
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very nice ruby red with a bit of a purplish hue in there as well. Slight off-white head. Aroma of pine hops, hints of citrus and big bready and caramel notes. Flavor beings with bittering pine hops before moving to to sweeter grapefruit notes. Huge, thick caramel malt comes next and stays until the finish. Hints of black cherry and raisin as well add to this really big malt that battles with, but complements this well-hopped brew. Spiciness and more bittering pine hops finish this one out with some rye shining through late and more as it warms. Really thick, substantial, yet drying mouthfeel.

Photo of bulletrain76
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle. Dark brown, head laces. Mango, grapefruit, and nice bready malt in the aroma. Lots of bitter hops in the flavor, but there is a really nice, full malt backbone that makes this stand out for me. I can't really tell if its the rye, but the malt element is superior for an IPA. Medium and smooth body. Great balance and variety of full flavors. (4.2) Rerate: Deep reddish-brown with a massive meringue-like head that leaves dense lace; I really can't fault anything there. Spiced bread and lots of hops in the nose, with a vivid fruity kick. The flavor has a sweet toasty, spicy and raisiny malt character that it cut by a ton of hop bitterness. The rye seems to add that something extra that sets this apart from your normal IIPA. This has proven itself as one of my favorites of the big, hoppy style.
Rerate: The hops are good, but perspective has shown that while this is really good, its not really mindblowing stuff.

Photo of xanok
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Hard to believe that when just looking for something interesting in Mass a couple weeks ago, I unintentionally picked up the #62 beer in the world. 12oz bottle poured into a tulip.

A-Deep amber red, almost brown. Head is a light tan that dissipates quickly.

S-Caramel, malts, pine, and rye with strong hoppiness. Noticeable citrus as well.

T-Follows the nose here. Malts and rye dominate with a bitter, lingering hop finish.

M-Medium, maybe even full bodied. Medium carb. As mentioned, it has a lingering aftertaste which is just awesome. Overall pretty smooth.

D-ABV is barely noticeable and it goes down smooth.

Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 4,400 ratings.