Ruthless Rye IPA
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Ruthless Rye IPARuthless Rye IPA
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Rye Beer
Ranked #42
Ranked #14,817
3.91 | pDev: 11.25%
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States
Very Good
Ruthless Rye IPARuthless Rye IPA
Notes: Rugged and resilient, rye has been a staple grain for ages and its spicy black pepper-like flavor has been prized by distillers and brewers for centuries. Rye thrives in the harshest conditions and comes to life in Ruthless, a rugged IPA with fruity, citrus and herbal hop notes countered by the dry spiciness of the rye. Holding a steadfast balance between contrasting malt and hop character, Ruthless is bold enough to inspire even the most brazen hop head to bear down and embrace the flavor.
Reviews: 1,174 | Ratings: 5,255 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by gQQgsJr:
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gQQgsJr from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +2.3%

Apr 07, 2012
More User Reviews:
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OldSwampy from Virginia

4.19/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Copper color, maybe reddish copper; head minimal and off white. Nose, a balanced hops blend, calm floral notes over some toasty maltiness. Taste: this is nicely balanced between hops and malts. Grows smoothly; the multiple malts and hops involved are so nicely balanced. Mouthfeel quite creamy for the style, also grows and subsides smoothly. For an IPA with the word "ruthless" in the name, this is so smooth & balanced. The hops are obvious yet somehow are never overwhelming. Given that the rye is significant to the identity of this beer, its unique aspects are nicely blended with the other ingredients & flavors. Well done.

Bottle poured into a nonic glass.

Apr 23, 2016
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MidwestMaverick from Minnesota

4.75/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

The only reason I don't give this beer a perfect 5 is because I didn't actually see God, and ya gotta leave room for perfect. That said, for those who like a nice full bodied, hop forward, west coast IPA, it's pretty hard to beat this. I feel like it's balanced for it's style in that it has a nice rich mouth feel and full body, yet the flavor is all hops, without getting over the top and into imperial IPA territory. I feel like the rye must contribute more to that body than the flavor, adding a subtle peppery note without the syrupy sweetness often found in more 'balanced' IPAs. Hopefully they keep putting this out. Gets me through the second half of these looong midwest winters.

Plus, you gotta dig that label art.

Mar 19, 2013
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burnerfinger from Texas

4.7/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured from the 12 oz bottle into my new belgium goblet:

A: dark oragnish hue - maxi head with sticky generous lacing. head settles to a thick tocky layer:

S: pure HOPS. very nice indeed.

T: malt takes a backseat to the piney hopiness. LOVE this

M good body, generous ABV well hidden. medium carbonation

D: low score here, this rich and thick brew is NOT to be guzzled. but it's GREAT!!!

Feb 25, 2012
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HorseheadsHophead from New York

3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Clear dark amber/light brown with a creamy off white head. Long lasting retention, and sheets of lacing.

S: Toasted rye bread, black pepper, fennel, cumin, grapefruit peel, ruby red grapefruit flesh, and pine needle.

T: Grapefruit zest and flesh upfront, juicy and citrusy, followed by a large malt backbone of toasty pumpernickel bread with herbs and spices. Cumin, fennel, black pepper and chive. Plentiful rye flavor. Finishes lightly dry and moderately bitter, piney with lingering resin and citrus pith.

F: Medium, creamy carbonation, slick and slightly oily--finishes dry with a slight lingering stickiness.

O: Excellent rye IPA! A perfect blend of West Coast IPA with massive rye flavor.

Sep 28, 2018
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Chcshammonde from California

4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice rye ipa. Sierra doesn't miss too often (if ever) in my book and this one follows that trend. Very drinkable and you really notice the spice of the rye, but its quite well balanced.

May 17, 2015
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JohnF from Pennsylvania

4.22/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Very tasty rye IPA. The best part for me is the mouth feel if I leave it linger for a bit; the time in the mouth gives time for the rye fullness to be noticed.

Apr 03, 2015
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Benjolovesbeer from Michigan

3.86/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip, copper, dark amber color. Fluffy cream head.
Taste is mildly to medium centennial, citrus hops notes. They use whole cone hops so on some sips it does have some bite but mostly mild. Bold and spicy rye flavor with a boost of hops and dry finish.
It's a perfect beer for the month of November, March, and April during a thunderstorm or bitter cold day, thus ruthless rye drink it when there's a storm.

Dec 02, 2016
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MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle, from the Fall Pack. Bottled on '07/13/18'.
Clear, medium amber brown colored body. One finger, slightly off white head settles to interrupted cap and ring. Leaves behind some larger spots of lacing.
Spicy in the aroma, with slight citrus and malts.
Taste expresses the spicy side of the rye, along with the floral and fruity hops, and the solid lightly roasted malts.
Medium to full mouth feel. Good carbonation with slightly felt tongue burn. Has a full after taste of the rye spice and the hops.
Another one of the beers that I bought on a regular basis when available in its own packaging. One of the first rye influenced beers I tried, along with Founders Red's Rye. Both of which are no longer available as a stand alone packaged beer. I like the rye spiciness. This bottling reminds me of what I enjoyed from years past. Smooth, well balanced, full of flavors, with the spicy kick. Awesome to be able to enjoy again. If you like the rye component in a IPA beer, I heartily recommend this one.

Aug 19, 2018
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superspak from Ohio

4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into signature pint glass, bottled on 12/4/2014. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy deep orange/copper color with a 2 finger dense and rocky off white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big grapefruit, tangerine, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, spicy rye, light caramel, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of citrus/pine hops and moderate rye/bready malt notes; with good strength. Taste of big grapefruit, tangerine, lemon zest, orange peel, pine, floral, grass, spicy rye, light caramel, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness. Good amount of pine/grassy bitterness and rye spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, lemon/orange zest, pine, spicy rye, toasted bread, and floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Damn nice balance, robustness, and complexity of citrus/pine hops and moderate rye/bready malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, fairly crisp/sticky, and lightly creamy/bready mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent rye IPA style. All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/pine hops and moderate rye/bready malt flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

Mar 07, 2015
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mac31 from California

3.69/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

4 way IPA pack. I like the malt profile of this brew. Rye has slight spiciness and drying effect. Hops are more balanced. Ordinary brew from an
extraordinary brewery

May 29, 2015
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MKEtoSF from California

5/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Love this beer, the peppery kick from the Rye adds another dimension to the IPA style.

Feb 01, 2015
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jwhancher from Pennsylvania

4.63/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bought a single bottle from Total Wine in DE. Had this on tap a few weeks ago and really dug it. Wanted to try it again in the comfort of my home.

A: Pours a clear dark copper with nice frothy head that's long lasting.

S: Spicy, peppery, citrus & pine hops. Has that signature Sierra hop character with a spice-like quality I'm assuming is coming from the rye malt.

T: Quite a wallop at first with the spice & pepper notes! A nice burst of hop character. Some caramel sweetness that helps round out the aggressive hop flavor.

M: Strikingly bitter at first that softens into a mellower malt flavor. Feels medium to medium-full with the sticky hop residue seemingly weighing it down.

O: I think SN hit another home run with this one. The rye character lends an interesting note. This is easily now one of my favorite SN beers. I would place this one next to Celebration, Pale Ale, and Bigfoot. Great effort - I dig this one a lot!

Feb 29, 2012
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FlatRabbitRed from Arizona

4.63/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Sierra Nevada leads the craft brew industry, not because of popularity ...because of they're delivery! This is the best rye beer I have ever had, I find rye beers to be an acquired taste, they have a funky bite to them, and until now I did not see how they could be balanced well enough to be properly enjoyed.

Great bronze color, nice rye taste ....(more like a pumpernickel taste ) roasted caramel tones, and what you would expect from Sierra Nevada hop profile ....bold but well balanced.

This is a must try beer if you have not done so.

Mar 12, 2013
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sagefool from North Carolina

4.7/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just saw this at the grocery, in between my standby Torpedo IPA and a shelf down from the Ranger.

My. Lord.

I'm a Hophead by definition. My other non-hoppy "go-tos" are Spaten Optimator and Negro Modelo, mainly because it's a long drive to anything better. I used to be DFH all the way, but the price tends to get in the way.

I thought Torpedo was the best thing Sierra Nevada had going (big fan of their Kellerweizen, as well).

This is the IPA I have been searching for. It's just incredible. Great pour into a pilsner glass with a 2" head that slowly dissipated.

Strong hops up front, with a peppery finish on the back end. Doesn't leave you with that bloated feel you get when you've had too many of the Torpedo.

Malts are in the background, where I like them. Haven't had any spicy food with this yet, but I believe this beer can hold its own.

My new "King of the IPAs".

Feb 02, 2012
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thegodfather2701 from North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Poured rather hard into my Sam Smith's imperial pint glass. Pours a clear copper with a thick white head. There is some cascading and some nice lacing left on the glass.

S-Stong nose for sure; consisting of citrus hops-grapefruit and some pineapple along with some alcohol sweetness. Smells fantastic.

T-Citrus hops upfront giving a great grapefruit and lemon zest flavor followed by a spicy and somewhat bready and caramel malt backbone. There is a lingering bitterness. The rye gives it a nice balance and enhances complexity. Tastes great.

M-Somewhat slick, yet thick with a nice touch of carbonation.

D-Nice complexity and flavor make this a session beer all the way even though the abv. is slightly above average.

Overall, this beer is great. I know some people are disappointed that it replaced Glissade, but if you have the ability to create IPAs (I know this is technically a Rye Beer but its hoppy like an ipa) that taste this good, why not do it and make it available to the masses. I personally prefer it over Glissade and love it. Another great beer from a great brewery.

Jan 13, 2012
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dustinjkline from Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Jun 26, 2014
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Gonzoillini from Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Apr 05, 2013
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mrfreakybig from New York

3.5/5  rDev -10.5%

Feb 04, 2012
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cadaugherty from Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

May 09, 2013
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tbone1384 from Wyoming

4.14/5  rDev +5.9%

Nov 03, 2012
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adamf880 from Washington

5/5  rDev +27.9%

Jan 21, 2012
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deadonhisfeet from Kentucky

3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from my growler into a Duvel tulip. The beer is beautiful looking. It is clear and copper-colored with a huge head like a snowdrift. I don't know if bottles of this pour quite as well, but if they do then bravo. The nose is a bit subdued (not surprised considering that head), but I'm getting faint notes of fresh flowers and pine.

Nice, crisp rye flavor accompanied by a pretty aggressive hop profile. It's aggressive, but not overdone. I think hopheads must really like this beer. I wish it had a tiny bit more malt presence, but it's very good. The beer has a medium body and a really dry finish. If I was forced to compare this to my favorite rye beer (Founders Red's Rye), I would have to say this one comes up a bit short, but it's still excellent. I could drink this often and not get tired of it.

Mar 26, 2012
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Kmccabe33 from Georgia

3.75/5  rDev -4.1%

Jun 12, 2012
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mbacon3227 from Alabama

4.5/5  rDev +15.1%

Mar 08, 2012
Ruthless Rye IPA from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 5255 ratings