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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.

4,379 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,379
Reviews: 2,039
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 225
Gots: 230 | FT: 3
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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Hop Rod Rye Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,379 | Reviews: 2,039 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jordoo
4.72/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bomber poored into oversized beer mug.

Huge everlasing fluffy off white head on this one. Deep hazzey Orangish colored brew. Man this looks amazing. Smells super hopy, piney/floral/citrus and possibly rye not sure. Hard to pick up on the malts hint of bready/carmalized malt. Wow this is a full bodied IPA that hitts hard and non stop with hops. Superior bitterness after the citrus up front and a rye ending for sure. I wouldn't say that the malts ballance this baby but they are definitaly there. Mouth feel is very good it just coats the palet wonderfully leaving a lasting aftertaste stuck to it. Can't imagine getting another 22oz of this down but the drinkability is still good for what it is.

jordoo, Jun 07, 2008
Photo of BamaBeerBuff
4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A deep amber with some light orange highlights. The head is large, creamy, and slightly tan in color--this isn't going anywhere. Thick rings of creamy lace all the way down the glass. A very pretty beer.

S: Bursting with citrus hops--grapefruit and orange. Some faint earthy, grainy malt, too. Really an excellent and rich aroma.

T&M: Some faint initial bready malt followed by a (C)ascade of bitter citrus flavor. Rye comes in later and is prevalent in the finish, giving some spicy bitterness on the back end. Body is slightly on the heavy side of medium, with light, crisp carbonation that adds well to the flavor.

D: Hop Rod Rye is an excellent IPA. The only thing hurting drinkability is the slightly heavier body and the 8% ABV.

BamaBeerBuff, Jun 07, 2008
Photo of AmishT
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep amber/crimson in color with a great off-white, foamy head that isn't goin anywhere fast. A nice cap in the head formed after it had receded a bit. I like this. Good lacing left behind.

S - Citrus hops dominate, with a biscuity malt in the background Very bold aromas. Very inviting.

T&M - Delicious, balanced flavor. Spicy hops are very prevalent; they may be balanced just a bit by a faint bready malt backbone. Low carbonation, which allows the flavors to emerge. An earthy bitter aftertaste is also prominent. Smooth. Medium bodied. O man, the flavors settle really well on the tongue.

D - The dry, earthy aftertaste really sets up another sip. Great flavor. Unfortunately, I think the drinkability diminished a little bit as I continued drinking. Also, the last glass I had of it out of the bomber was not anywhere near as enjoyable as the first.

AmishT, Jun 07, 2008
Photo of BoitSansSoif
4.7/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Poured a dark reddish-brown amber with thick, creamy, light-beige head. Decent retention and very nice, intricate lacing.
S-Light sweet malt foundation, citrusy hops, light pine, rye, apple, grape, hints of dark, dry fruits.
T-Upfront slightly sweet roasted malt w/hoppy tones of citrus (mandarin and grapefruit plus a hint of resin), and light bitter rye flour. In midpalate, fruit esters emerge, including apple and grape.
M&D-Medium bodied with dry finish that really balances harmoniously with the slightly sweet palate. This is an excellent IPA...best I've had in a long time.

BoitSansSoif, May 31, 2008
Photo of jophish17
4.63/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber purchased at Total Wine in Greenville, SC.. but only because Green's was out =/

Aroma: It smells wonderful, super rich in hops! As the bottle indicates, the 90+ IBUs are the centerpiece of this beer, and very little else can be picked up by the nose.

Appearance:: a dark amber body with a beautiful finger of head. Retention is just ok, but the lacing makes up for it!

Feel: Seems to have less carbonation than my first sampling a few months ago, but it still goes down smooth with the hops biting the palate. Not too thick, not too thin.. a nice body that is just right for an IPA

Taste: WOW!! Few beers can match the taste of Hop Rod, which is likely my favorite IPA. The loads of mouthwatering, bitter hops are equaled out just enough by the rye malt to keep a nice balance as the beer goes down.

Drinkablility: Very hard to judge.. I could have one just about every day, but not more than one in a day, at least not in the bomber variety, as it is a very big beer that takes a lot out of me. But oh my is it worth it!

Few beers can live up to the standard that Hop Rod Rye creates in terms of brutal hoppiness with balancing malt character. Highly recommended beer!

jophish17, May 30, 2008
Photo of becktone
4.8/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Eye: Killer cascading head. Awesome lacing, the head itself is very creamy in appearance and has some good retention. Color is brown with garnet highlights. Looks great, what can I say. You don't see too many of these, that just about perfect.

Nose: Green and very hoppy. Just what I expect from an IPA. Citrus fruity hop aroma. Real good aroma, some malt under the hops, the presence of them is detectable, however, its not potent enough to describe subtle nuances in it... some dark fruits and slight chocolate and perhaps some caramel nutty aromas, after more inspection.

Tongue: Alcohol is detectable and adds another dimension to the flavor. Roasted grain is notable in the flavor. Hops there, up front but not in your face. Dark fruit also in the flavor of this beer. Green hop flavor melds with alcohol, to me the two are almost inseparable in this beer, they meld together. Hops are floral in flavor, but citrus in aroma.

Mouthfeel and Drinkabilty: Heavy in body. Moderate in carbonation. Has an overall nice feel, nothing special, nice long lasting finish leaving flavor in the mouth that is as alive as the beer itself. This is one that I will easily buy again, however, since there are many more to try it might be awhile. This is one killer IPA, no doubt about it.

becktone, May 27, 2008
Photo of JonathanL7890
4.68/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I picked up a case of bombers. Can't believe Bear Republic beer going for 3.49 a bottle, esp an 8%!!! Even if it is mediocre that's an excellent deal.

Poured into a pint glass... 3 finger head...Oops it's overflowing I run to the sink... Well I guess a 3+ finger head.
Head is a stiff rocky one.
It takes awhile to die down.
Aroma is. Wow nice fruity nose. pungent and powerful.
Taste -- excellent , good super strong hoppy citrus, grapefruity and a bit lemon. Rye gives the malt a bit of a sharpness (I love Rye!!!).
Mouthfeel: very nice. I'm going up to my scores and bumping them up at least 1 notch. I love this beer!!!
Drinkability: hmmm this is my 3rd beer tonight and I better quit after this if I want to be somewhat functional tomorrow. I have to drop drinkability a notch.
Overall -- I love this beer. Rye and tons of hops -- how can this be wrong?

JonathanL7890, May 24, 2008
Photo of ibbjamin
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Paid $3.99 for a bomber from BevMo in Gilroy, CA. Poured into a pint glass with 2 pours.

This beer pours thick and creamy leaving a 2+ inch light tan frothy head that drops very slowly down to about 1 finger. I've never seen an IPA look quite like this one. Carbonation bubbles in the beer are minimal despite the large head. A dark amber copper color that is nearing opaque. Very thick marbled lacing.

Floral, citrus and pine hops noted in the nose. Some balanced malt along for the ride as well.

Taste is refreshing and light, but not light in a bad way. This beer is very well balanced which I could detect in the nose before it even hit the mouth, but taste definitely confirms this. All I can say is this is a tasty one!

Creamy, medium body, nicely carbonated. I could drink this one all night and I wouldn't even know it was 8% until I felt if after a few pints.

Highly recommended. Among my top 2-3 IPAs currently.

ibbjamin, May 23, 2008
Photo of khiasmus
4.53/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber into my glass with as much head as you could ever want, depending entirely upon the pour. Laces perfectly on the sides of the glass with a sticky spiderweb. This beer could not be more beautiful.
A deep malt backbone is evident, with absurd hopping that is balanced between resiny pine and a bit of citrus, but is clearly of a few hop varieties. Alcohol is also evident in the nose.
Initially sweet malt, a fine, balanced flavor, finishing in intense hops and a bit of alcohol. There are hints of fruitiness and a bit of honey-sweetness. Astounding.
Silky-smooth with medium carbonation and intense bitterness bringing an astringency, as well as a hint of warming in the finish.
This beer is extremely drinkable, especially for the alcohol content and intensity of the flavor. This has become my go-to beer when I want a hop fix. Highly recommended.

khiasmus, May 23, 2008
Photo of ruckzuck
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up while visiting home.

A - deep, murky red brown that lets some light through. Off-white head

S - massive citrus hops with some pine and sweet malt and some rye. Hints of alcohol as well

T - oh man let's talk about this citrus hop flavor and how awesome it is when it explodes in your mouth upon first sip. Wow. Excellent. There are hints of sweet malt and rye, but the hop flavor dominates (wow Hop Rod Rye is hoppy??? Who knew?). Aftertaste is bitter yet fruity and really enjoyable

M - solid bodied with good carbonation. It sort of coats the mouth and tongue and all around rules.

D - oh hell yes this is drinkable. This flavor is just completely awesome. Really enjoy this. Would buy it often if I could get it where I'm living now (DO YOU HEAR THAT BEAR REPUBLIC? JOIN US IN GA ALREADY!) Check it out!

ruckzuck, May 20, 2008
Photo of gford217
3.98/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber courtesy of deepsouth poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a deep mahogany that shines amber when held up to light. Big two inch head upon pouring shows great retention and lacing. This is a very nice looking beer.

S: Big resiny pine hop smell along with the rye malts in there as well. Also some fruity hops with grapefruit.

T: Very interesting taste that I think can be attributed a little bit to the rye. There's definitely the huge blast of pine hoppiness in there with a significant citrus presence as well, but the rye really adds something interesting. A bit of malts in there but it's really the hop bitterness that runs the show.

M: Fairly creamy and thick mouthfeel with strong carbonation.

D: This one is fairly drinkable but the bitterness is pretty strong and I'd be hard pressed to get through a whole bomber.

gford217, May 19, 2008
Photo of Tilley4
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A million thanks to naproxen for this killer brew...what a hookup!!

Into the Duvel tulip goes this dark glowing red liquid that forms a 3 finger head that lingers... And lingers.... And lingers...

Very pungent aroma of sticky oily hops and that familiar biting rye smell... This just smells delicious... On with it...

Man, this is good.... Really good...loads of oily sticky hoppy goodness complements the rye in this beautifully... Scary drinkability with this one as well.. My first Bear Republic brew and its a jim dandy...I'd have to say that this is one of the top 3 IPAs I've ever had...

Tilley4, May 18, 2008
Photo of brdc
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Large capped bottle, poured into a tulip.

It has a very good looking, if different appearance from most IPAs/DIPAs, reddish brown, closer to red, reasonably clear until you pour the sediment at the end of the second serving; voluminous light tan head, eventually dropping into a long lasting collar, with decent lacing.
Aroma is heavily hopped as expected, fruity and piney, but there is also a malty sweetness making its presence noticeable.
Fuller bodied than I expected, limiting its drinkability somewhat, it is a hop assault as expected; quite bitter and fruity, piney, but some sweet malts and a faint spiciness can be noticed from time to time. Quite interesting, if not my style.

brdc, May 16, 2008
Photo of Kadonny
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I thought I had reviewed this before, but alas I did not. I have just tapped this beer at home, so my review will be based on the tap version. So I poured from my tap into a imperial pint glass.

A: A deep reddish brown color but still it allows light to filter through. Nice carbonation with a single finger reddish white head that produces great lacing.

S: Massive hop smell with citrus fruits and earthy pine. A nice little sweet malt smell can be detected also. Really no hint of rye on the nose.

T: Wham, hit me with hops (as I expect from Bear Republic) of orange, grapefruit and pine needles. A very deep hop flavor. There is a more earthy flavor than a normal IPA that must be the rye. From that point a nice sweetness hits the mouth midstream, with alomost dark sweet dried fruits that lends to a perfect balance with the massive hops. The finish is the earthy bitter hops finish that I love as it lingers on in the mouth for quite awhile. Awesome.

M: Medium to heavy mouthfeel. Alcohol is well hidden but there is still a sticky resiny feel. If you like a full bodied beer, this beer is for you. I love it.

D: Very high, in fact I gave it a perfect 5. You can drink this beer all night long. The 8% will eventually catch up to you, but you would never know it was that high going down. I could drink this beer any day at any time.

Overall this is quickly becoming one of my favorite beers ever. I'm going to throw it in my top 5 for sure, it's even better fresh on tap. If you don't have access to this beer, then you are missing out. This is just a notch below perfect to me, right up there with Nugget Nectar and that's saying something.

Cheers to Bear Republic, they are making kick ass beers, keep them coming!

Kadonny, May 15, 2008
Photo of csmiley
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours on the darker side of reddish brown. It really looks like an attractive red or amber ale. Head short and tight, topping out at just over half inch. Retention was good. Lacing was quite impressive.

S - The aroma starts out with some fruit hops (orange with grapefruit mixed in). Midway, some wood and tobacco show up but get balanced quickly with caramel-like sweetness. Just a hint of alcohol and charcoal on the end make for a nice aroma overall.

T - Sticks with the hop theme in the flavor and tosses in some fruity goodness right from the start. It is about even between orange and grapefruit. Once the hop flavor has the chance to fade, some sweet flavors start to make themselves known. Caramel, honey, and maple come to mind. Flavor is finished off with some bread and earthy flavors (could be pine but hard to pinpoint).

M - Medium bodied with good carbonation. Smooth from start to finish with an aftertaste that is bitter and sticks around for a while.

D - Drinkability is quite good. The alcohol is hard to detect. It is easy on the palate but still has a nice bitter IPA finish to it. I would have no problem drinking a couple more of these. Worth a try.

csmiley, May 14, 2008
Photo of blackheartbilly
4.7/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I bought this brew initially because of the cool hot rod bottle. It has become my go-to beer to bring to any occasion.

A: gorgeous bronze/amber, medium carbonation with a smal lacy head

S: The smell that I love in an strong American IPA, piney/hoppy.

T: AMAZING, great balance, has that aggressive hop presence but one of the few I have tried in this style that I notice the malt balance.

M: Perfect amount of carbonation, and has a wonderful aftertaste.

D: This is the best example of this style I have had to date. I buy time and time again, its a go to brew! I don't notice Rye but it is still the best American IPA, in my opinion. Defintely try it once, you will go back!

blackheartbilly, May 13, 2008
Photo of fitzy84
3.5/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Moan and Dove. The drink had a dark amberish appearance with a generally thin head and decent lacing. Aromas were mixtures of malts, florals and some woody, almost raisin-like smells. Taste-wise, I sensed the malts more, leading to an overall sweet taste. Good, medium body also. I enjoyed this, but I think I was not as amazed as some people have with this drink. It was just above average for me.

fitzy84, May 12, 2008
Photo of oelergud
4.55/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Tall brown glass bottle. 1 pint 6oz, pry-off cap and a black label showing an old fashioned hot rod.
Ruby bronze body with lots of carbonation and a huge tan head of small to medium bubbles. Great retention and lace.
Great hoppy pine scent with fresh harsh grass.
Hoppy pine hop oilish flavor, harsh and strong with an underlying malt note that just barely pokes through. The aftertaste has a hint of licorice but is otherwise dominated by caramel covered hop cones, very good.
Full body with good coating and residual sugars.
Very drinkable, delicious and full of flavor.


oelergud, May 11, 2008
Photo of indiapaleale
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is responsible for my fascination with what rye can do for a beer...especially when an absolute boatload of hops are also included.

Pours a dark ruby red almost brown color. Its nice and clean and definitely still fresh! The head is BIG, rich and foamy. Its 3-4 fingers in thickness and is very slow to seep back into the delicious liquid from which it came.

The smell is exceptionally fresh and hoppy. Lots of floral scents coming from the head on this beer. Along with the big hop presence is some malty sweet aromas and a slight hint of the moderately high alcohol content.

A nice big swig makes my mouth very happy. There is lots of hop bitterness matched with malty sweetness and that distinct spiciness that only rye malt can provide. That spiciness hits your tongue and the back of your throat in a very interesting way. Its kind of drying and provides a nice little kick. Its also the taste that lingers longest after you've swallowed.

This is a nicely balanced strong IPA. The rye is a great feature with this beer and the hoppiness this one provides will certainly not let down any hopheads.

indiapaleale, May 10, 2008
Photo of TheEremite
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

What a beautiful beer. Red/Brown with about 1/4 inch of light tan, frothy, creamy head that lasts to the bottom of the glass and leaves thick rings the whole way down. Smells of hoppy (amarillo?) sweetness, malty and toasty. Very well ballanced bitterness, creamy but not heavy. Slight bitter prick in the aftertaste but overall very clean and drinkable. I'll take 2... or 3.

TheEremite, May 09, 2008
Photo of Med
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep amber color with a ruby tinge and a generous white head. Leaves a fair amount of lacing behind. Very appetizing.

S - The hops really shine with a pine aroma and some citrus, but there is malt underneath and a bready smell.

T - Mmmm. The hops show more of the citrus character in the taste leaving a bitter finish that lasts a long time. Balance is surprisingly good. This isn't the hop bomb I for some reason expected.

M - This is where I think the rye makes a huge difference. The mouthfeel is full and creamy and wonderful.

D - Easily went through a bomber. Can I have another?

Med, May 09, 2008
Photo of BBM
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a lightly cloudy amber color with a sudsy white head. Aroma is bready and slightly sweet (vanilla).

The rye character is well represented here, and mixes nicely with the citrus/pine hop profile. I'm a fan of rye beers, and this one seems to be on target. It is bitter to be sure, but nothing overwhelming. Dry finish. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and well carbonated. An easy drinking Rye-PA.

BBM, May 08, 2008
Photo of hdofu
4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow this was not what I was expecting at all. IT has an intense hops smell that fills your nostrils when This beer is a deep brown with a thick sand/tan head. It has an intense bitter hoppy taste with a sweet finish. The feel is smooth and sudsy feel. Has a pleasant bitter taste very much like Sierra Nevada's ESB. All and all a very drinkable bitter ESB

hdofu, May 08, 2008
Photo of Traquairlover
4.38/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22-oz bomber poured into pint glasses.

A = Dark reddish amber, small yellowish of-white head of small and large bubbles, leaves good lacing on glass.

S = Great complex mix of citrus and pine hops with a strong maple syrup malt scent underneath with even a mixture of sweet cinnamon sugar.

T = Quite bitter but also with flavorful balanced mix of hops flavors including grapefruit rind and pine needles together with cinnamon buns, long dry, bitter finish.

M = Medium bodied, smooth carbonation, very good mouthcoating.

D = Good drinkability. This is a great bitter IPA with a lot of balance in the tastes. Well worth drinking. A nice meaty beer.

Traquairlover, May 07, 2008
Photo of HopDerek
4.63/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark red with amber highlights and thick foamy cream colored head with long lasting retention and great sticky lacing. Smells of spicy hops, fruit, caramel, bread, grapefruit, and pine. Tastes of bitter pine right from the start with a great wave of sweet caramel and a bready backbone. Spices mesh it all together with a citrus and grassy dry finish. Medium in body with lots of carbonation, but perfect for this beer. Semi syrupy and sticky with a great balance of bitter and sweet. One fantasticly hoppy but balanced beer, very refreshing and easy to drink, not just for hopheads.

HopDerek, May 06, 2008
Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 4,379 ratings.