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Hop Rod Rye - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Hop Rod RyeHop Rod Rye

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,048 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4048
Reviews: 2021
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 9.67%

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
Ratings: 4,048 | Reviews: 2,021 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of PrivateEquity


4.72/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Very solid lacing and frothy head. Deep brown color with hoppy haze.

S - Strong herbal hoppy aroma.

T - I love malty IPA's and this does not disappoint. Rye maltiness works well with the hop profile. Bitter aftertaste is just right. Taste of roast tea and grapefruit.

M - just a very solid mouthfeel. Right amount of body, right amount of carbonation

O - Absolutely fantastic IPA. Huge hoppiness dwells swelly well with rye spicyness

Serving type: on-tap

08-06-2011 01:16:09 | More by PrivateEquity
Photo of avaldivia


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

On tap at Bear Republic Brew Pub.

A: Light brown/ amberish color with a very nice thick head that left great lacing all the way down. Looking at this, my initial thought would not be an IPA but an Amber.

S: Citrus at first but then the rye comes along with a bit of caramel malt.

T: Hop kick on the first sip but then you get a rye spiciness, and a bit of caramel to finish. Awesome.

M: Thick and heavy on he tongue. Very good carbonation.

O: Absolutely awesome. I really like this beer. It is different from any IPA I have tried. This is one I look forward to order quite often.

Serving type: on-tap

07-28-2011 15:44:47 | More by avaldivia
Photo of DaftCaskBC

British Columbia (Canada)

4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at St Augustines in Vancouver.

A: An inviting semi-transparent brown liquid with 1/4" cream coloured head that left a nice lacing.

S: Has quite a yeasty smell that is rather prominent.

T: Began bitter on the tongue which turned into a sweet and malty finish.

M: Thick viscosity with a medium to low level of fine carbonation.

O: Interesting IPA made with 20% rye malt.

Serving type: on-tap

07-21-2011 07:23:48 | More by DaftCaskBC
Photo of DCon


4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this on-tap @ the iTap House in Chesterfield, MO for $3 (usually 6, but Monday night is Half off the Tap night here). Tapped into an Schlafly Pint Glass from the crazy rasta Tap.

Aroma- Starts off with a huge citrus hop aroma with a grapefruit background. Has hints of rye while keep the nose down even longer. Nice grains and very earthy. Nice IPA smells!

Appearance- Received with a 1 finger of frothy, off white head that stayed for a while. Body was a deep brown/amber color with tons of lace that follows through.

Flavor- In the beginning, has talent to be one of the best IPA's and then has too much grain and rye flavor... Wish they could have just stuck with the original IPA ingredients but they went out of their way to brew this with rye. Very interesting. Has tons of character and sweetness to the ending bitterness.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied, smooth, and has a nice, consistent taste all the way through!

Overall Impression- All around IPA, fantastic, gotta try! What else do I have to say? I'm ready to have ANYTHING from the Bear Republic Brewing Co. in bottle. Haven't seen anything yet but looking.

Serving type: on-tap

06-08-2011 05:57:47 | More by DCon
Photo of afksports

New York

3.98/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the very first beers I had on my little Top100 quest (based on the top American beers from last August), this fine American IPA from Bear Republic in California was a good introduction to the craft beer community. Hop Rod Rye. With a flaming car on the front. Sexy.

Almost red from the tap, the murky amber body has a bit of head that lingers around just enough to keep you drinking. On the nose the head produces fermented rye, malt, and pine hops - with just a touch of citrus and sugar. The taste is composed of the same elements. While enjoying them it's easy to forget about the 8.0% alcohol you're imbibing. HRR leads with pine trees and grassy hops, comes through in the middle and back with rye and bittering hops, and all the while has a malty sweetness to cover it up and push through the alcohol.

Overall the medium bodied brew is a solid IPA, and a solid offering for rye lovers that's available in half the bodegas in New York City. That's a feat to accomplish, and although my rating may be slightly affected by my anti-rye bias, I should still salute Bear Republic for this hot rod of a beer.

Serving type: on-tap

05-25-2011 02:36:06 | More by afksports
Photo of Hoptometrist


4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap into a shaker glass at the Bear Republic Brewpub

A- Pours a medium brown color with one finger of creamy head

S- Rye, citrus, pine, and floral aromas. Great balance in the aroma

T- Packs a pretty big hop punch, rye, lots of spice, earthy notes, caramel, and finishes with citrus hops

M- Creamy and smooth, finishes dry

O- A hop monster with a nice malt backbone and lots of spice.

Serving type: on-tap

05-19-2011 03:09:53 | More by Hoptometrist
Photo of dbmernin83


4.83/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a very deep, dark amber with lacing you would normally find in a lingerie shop.
Smell of hops, rye and malt
Delicious. This is what beer should taste like. Nice hop front paired nicely with rye, malt sweetness and a lingering rye finish.
Good carbonation. Rich body.
This beer is perfect. A manly beer. Full of flavor, balanced a d highly drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

05-14-2011 23:10:13 | More by dbmernin83
Photo of FickleBeast

New Jersey

4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at the George St ale house in New Brunswick, NJ

Arrives in a frosted pint glass. Copper colored with a neat half fnger of foam on top. Initially aroma is dull due to the temperature.

Nice spicy rye flavor punctuated by a sharp, crisp, hop bite. This beer has a great combination of spicy rye, caramel malt, evergreen hop flavor, and a huge bitter bite. Truly complex and changing as it warms.

All the flavors work well together and complement each other. The hop flavor is the real star here, and there is just enough sweetness to prevent this from being an unbalanced palate wrecker. World class.

Serving type: on-tap

04-18-2011 22:45:18 | More by FickleBeast
Photo of yeahnatenelson


3.93/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance -- Pours a dark rosy amber hue akin to a red grape with a tuft of creamy beige head. A whitewash of lace coats the glass as the beer goes down. It certainly makes an impression.

Smell -- Grapefruit rind, pine resin, toasted malt, a modicum of caramel sweetness, and a waft of rye.

Taste -- The hop character is a great balance of juicy grapefruit and pine reisn. Malt base is that of golden toast, wild flower honey, with the sweetness definitely understated and in even keel with the rest of the beer. The rye is certainly spicy, but not in overabundance - it puts a nice slant on the other components.

Mouthfeel -- A hair above medium-bodied with mild carbonation, nearly creamy - a miss.

Overall -- I see the appeal, and honestly, the biggest complaint about this beer - the mouthfeel - could just as easily be the fault of the bar I drank it in. Very much a rye IPA, meaning that it's more of an American IPA with rye spiciness added versus a hop-forward rye beer.

Glad I finally found this on tap as every single bottle I've ever seen of this has been coated in dust. IPA with dust? Cannot trust.

Serving type: on-tap

03-30-2011 02:25:48 | More by yeahnatenelson
Photo of xnicknj


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

on tap at khyber in philly. served in pint glass.

Pours an almost clear deep orange with caramel and burnt tones. A frothed white head bubbles up and leaves rings of lacing while retaining wisps of film.

A nice punch of citrus hops and fruit along with a dash of rye spiciness. Softer caramel notes with a bit of sweetness.

Plenty of hop bitterness up front with citrus and faint bit of acidity. Recognizable rye notes mix in with the spicy hops. Bitter throughout with a nice caramel sweetness to provide the backbone. Finishes dry with almost no alcohol presence.

Medium body and carbonation, sticky and dry on the tongue. Smooth, easy drinking, pleasant flavor, undetectable alcohol. I usually avoid this in bottle form because of the lack of freshness dates, but this is an easy pick on tap.

Serving type: on-tap

03-02-2011 04:39:13 | More by xnicknj
Photo of TCgoalie


4.65/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Excited to see this on tap at Hopcat on 2/25/11.

A tulip glass full of HRR reveals a dark brownish-red color which shows some light through the other side of the glass. The lacing is spotty despite the absence of a sustaining head.

The smell is malty with a prevalent rye spice. A good deal of grapefruit comes through along with some pine.

There is plenty of rye that balances the malts in the forefront. Suddenly, a large dose of grapefruit comes through. I'm a sucker for grapefruit hops, and this really hits the spot. A bit of pine comes through as well, likely due to the multiple hops used.

My mouth is satisfied by the smooth full feeling of this brew. The low carbonation with the full mouthfeel creates a soft character.

This is the best rye beer I've ever had. It may be tough to drink throughout the night, but the 12oz I just had was not enough.

Serving type: on-tap

02-27-2011 18:43:51 | More by TCgoalie
Photo of rsdaugherty


4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

on-tap into pint glass at Yard House downtown Denver
A - Dusty light khaki head, glass clear deep red/brown slightly purple color... beautiful and making me thirsty 5
S - Floral & citrus with a slight spice & pine accents 4
T - solidly smooth beer, very slightly sweet start, progress to rye/hop then straw with a moderately bitter finish all in great balance 4.5
M - I enjoyed the moderate carbonation with an overall light mouthfeel for the appearance 4.5
D - a very enjoyable IPA/rye beer, I certainly will be consuming more of this 5
Makes me wonder what other Bear Republic beers I am missing.
This is truly a world-class beer, Bravo BR!

Serving type: on-tap

02-25-2011 00:22:49 | More by rsdaugherty
Photo of Rayek


4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Yard House in Denver, CO. Served in a shaker pint glass.

A: Deep copper with good clarity. A small cream cap is fairly dense and has excellent retention all the way down the glass. Leaves bits of lace.

S: A powerful nose of citrus brings grapefruit and lemon to the forefront. The rye adds a caraway seed like herbal twist to the mix.

T: Quite bitter. Grapefruit and lemon constitute the bitter flavors. The rye adds a slightly sour earthy bite. Toasted bread flavors are along for the ride as well. Finishes with a long lasting citrus bitterness.

M: The medium body is slightly dry.

D: This was the first beer I had after a month long hiatus. I'm really glad I picked it.

Serving type: on-tap

02-03-2011 02:00:30 | More by Rayek
Photo of Axic10

New Jersey

4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Jekyll and Hyde's in Erie, PA

Appearance: Amber with a finger of slightly khaki head.

Smell: Bitter hops, floral citrus, bready malt and some rye on the nose.

Taste: Nice bitter hoppiness and crisp grapefruit mixed with sweet biscuit malt and rye.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and crisp.

Drinkability: I often overlook this beer, but it is a very good rye beer. Definitely need to drink more of it.

Serving type: on-tap

12-31-2010 22:35:18 | More by Axic10
Photo of DeanMoriarty


4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this on draft at the Chowder House in Point Arena, Ca for $3.00 served in a pint glass.

A: Pours a deep brown/cherry hue with an insane head that sticks around for a while, leaving a thick coat of lace in my glass from start to finish.

S: Roasted grain, sweet chocolate malt, earthy moss, and burnt biscuits. Solid but wish there was a greater hop presence (I was drinking Eel River IPA just before this one and there is no comparison in hoppiness).

T: Similar to the nose in every aspect except that the hop presence is much more prevalent - resinous moss and earthy flavors. The rye is very noticeable as well. Finishes and ends with oily hoppy goodness like a proper IPA should.

M: Medium-bodied but on its way to being full-bodied, very clean and dry, the carbonation is perfect for the style and there is a major lingering oily bitterness
from the hops.

D: A very drinkable IPA, but the heaviness of it gets to me after a couple. Not one I would post up on all night, but good for a couple no doubt.

Serving type: on-tap

12-22-2010 17:32:19 | More by DeanMoriarty
Photo of adam42381


4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at the Taphouse Grill at Ghent in Norfolk, VA on Saturday.

Appearance: Pours a deep caramel brown with ruby highlights and a 2 finger foamy off-white head. Excellent head retention and lacing.

Smell: Caramel malt and citrus hops.

Taste: Caramel malt up front followed by citrus hops in the middle and bitter rye at the finish. Nice bitter aftertaste. Absolutely delicious.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a decent amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: Excellent drinkability. You could knock back a few of these over the course of an evening.

Overall: Probably the best IPA I've ever tasted. I just wish we could get it down here in Florida. This would be my go to beer. If you see it, try it.

Note: This review may not be precise as I didn't write down any notes while drinking. This was, however, my first beer of the evening and I think I remember everything correctly.

Serving type: on-tap

10-05-2010 14:14:46 | More by adam42381
Photo of IronLover


4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep orange to amber red and hazy with a healthy off-white head that reduces to a steady white cap. Lots of sticky lacings. Big floral, piney hop aroma wiht a hint of orange citrus. Medium body, very smooth feel. A brief sweet malty flavor that is quickly overrun by hop flavor. However, the sett malt remains beneath the hop character throughout. Floral and piney hop flavors take over every available taste bud. Finishes with a nice combination of malty sweetness and hop bitterness and a bit of an alcoholic aftertaste.

Serving type: on-tap

10-02-2010 05:15:05 | More by IronLover
Photo of CampusCrew


4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hd this in Fort Worth Flying Saucer which i heard was the orignal pub to start.

The long awaited sample of this beer finally happened. it did not dissapoint. it poured a dark sopperish color. nice glows. Had a nice creamy head and huge lacing.Light on the nose but did have some citrus aromas, This is a balanced IPA and very hefty on the the body.

Serving type: on-tap

09-14-2010 23:07:31 | More by CampusCrew
Photo of Bonis


4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - By the time this one got to me, the head was almost gone but a thin layer remained. Looks almost like a brown ale, a little hazy though. Leaves a good lacing, common for the style.

Smell - This one smells awesome. Some citrusy resiny hops. I'm getting a lot of caramel malts, not what I normally smell in an IPA. I don't smell rye, then again that's not a familiar smell to me.

Taste - Reminds me of the smell. A strong citrus hop presence, but well balanced by a rich caramel malty taste. This is amazingly tasty at 8%. I don't get much alcohol at all, but the flavors do explode in your mouth. It's a really great tasting beer.

Mouthfeel - This is a full flavor blast in your mouth, what's not to like about the way that feels? Pretty crisp on the back end and the flavors linger for a while, which I like.

Drink - Well, this is a freakin intesne brew, so I wouldn't suggest trying to handle more than 2 or 3 of these in a night. I prefer to drink one at a time myself. This beer is highly recommended.

Serving type: on-tap

08-16-2010 06:09:09 | More by Bonis
Photo of koopa

New Jersey

4.03/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one many times over the years but figured I'd review the sample I had on tap at the Copper Mine Pub in North Arlington NJ last Sunday.

Appearance: Pours a deep mahogany with a massive khaki crown that shows good retention and lace.

Smell: Loads of citrus and some faint pine notes from the hops plus plenty of rye goodness.

Taste: Same as nose.

Mouthfeel: On the heavy side of medium bodied with good carbonation.

Drinkability: Goes down pretty well despite the massive hopping and the 8% abv. Always a treat.

Serving type: on-tap

07-01-2010 00:45:29 | More by koopa
Photo of hooliganlife


3.85/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

at prime bar. glass was chilled, waited for it to warm up.

pour was dark brown and black, very thick in appearance and a creamy head with heavy lacing.

scents were faint, not sure if the temp of the beer affected this, however i let it warm and not much changed. mainly floral and citrus with hints of spice.

i usually have this from the bottle. on tap, i was getting lots of earthy resin hop flavors. an intense bitterness between the hops and the rye.

very full bodied, a bit heavy over all. but all in a good way. mild to moderate carbonation.

this was good, but not something i would want many of. i far prefer this out of a bottle.

Serving type: on-tap

06-16-2010 01:45:18 | More by hooliganlife
Photo of snogglethorpe


3.25/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Despite the name, there's absolutely no hint of rye flavor. I really like the taste of rye in beer, so was disappointed to discover this.

Beyond that, it's not bad, but not really great either. There's some nice hop flavor in there, but none of the forwardness and bold flavors one usually expects from an American IPA, and no obvious subtlety to compensate for that lack. It just didn't seem very interesting.

Serving type: on-tap

05-08-2010 01:44:42 | More by snogglethorpe
Photo of wingman14


4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice dark red with a tall off white head. The smell was really hoppy with some sweet notes mixed with a malty tone. The taste starts hoppy with a citrus kick, stays nice and smooth then finishes with a bitter kick that is both malty with the rye and hoppy. This one has a nice mouthfeel, a heavy medium, very substantial beer, but not overwhelming. It was hard to believe this was 8%, but the kick came later. Nice deep flavors, great balance, definitely a beer to try.

Serving type: on-tap

05-07-2010 23:59:14 | More by wingman14
Photo of BuckeyeOne


4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the Eastside Tavern in Olympia. I've had this in bottle many times without a review. Decided to review after having this on tap.

I'd had Racer 5 many times from the bottle and on tap and it's one of my favorite IPAs (if not beers). I couldn't help comparing Hop Rod Rye to Racer 5 when trying this. However, they are definitely different beers. This beer is a bit more malty than the Racer 5, though the hop bitterness (citrus and fresh grapefruit) breaks through with a vengence after the caramel malt takes the first swing. This describes both the nose and the flavor.

The mouthfeel is just a bit syrupy. The aftertaste is bitter, bitter, bitter --- but in a good way.

I didn't find the Hop Rod as drinkable as the Racer 5 due to the caramel malt presence. Too many of these and I tire of the sweetness. But it's very good. Better than most. It just doesn't compare to the Racer 5 for me and, given the choice, I'd almost always pick up the Racer 5.

Serving type: on-tap

04-19-2010 21:45:23 | More by BuckeyeOne
Photo of JunkYardJake


4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On-Tap at McCleary's Public House in Marietta.
Served to me in a pint glass with a small head that laced extremely well. Deep, dark amber color with good clarity. Looks more like an red ale then a pale. Smell is large and lovely. Huge hop aromas, floral and piney. Complex palate with a strong malt base and a dry bitter finish. Spicy rye and citric grapefruit hops battle for flavor dominance. I hate to spoil it, but the hops win. Simply put, it's an amazing IPA. My current favorite IPA.

Serving type: on-tap

04-18-2010 16:31:22 | More by JunkYardJake
Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 4,048 ratings.