Hop Rod Rye
Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Hop Rod RyeHop Rod Rye
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Rye Beer
Ranked #4
Ranked #1,284
4.24 | pDev: 9.67%
Bear Republic Brewing Co.
California, United States
Hop Rod RyeHop Rod Rye
Notes: 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
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Reviews: 2,085 | Ratings: 4,748 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of mothmanscott
mothmanscott from Georgia

4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes 12/15/12: Pours a clear hazy deep amber/light brown which clears some as it warms. As the beer settles a small amount of sediment becomes evident. The pour produces a heavy finger of frothy, variously bubbled, somewhat lasting, light tan head that leaves a thin pasty wash of lace. Aroma is hop forward earthy, floral, grapefruit, pine with a fruity hint, rye bread and rye spice. Taste is nicely balanced: earthy, grapefruit, orange zest, pine: caramel malt heavy, rye spice and a hint of chocolate. Sweet, lightly bitter finish with a caramel bitter aftertaste. The 8% ABV is well hidden with pleasant warming appearances in the finish and aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium to heavy with moderate carbonation, very smooth, creamy and rich. Very, very nice.

Nov 10, 2019
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JNeakrase from California

3.96/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A really smooth, pleasant quaff. The rye gives it a spicy complexity, but it retains the fruitiness and herbal qualities of a nice brown ale. Biterness is well-balanced, making it easy to drink. Nice, silky mouth feel. Overall, a fun little beer and a nice effort for Bear Republic.

Dec 02, 2018
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Act25 from New Jersey

4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Where's this beer been hiding? I love it. Found in bomber in bodega in SF for night cap.
a) Pours a dense 1 finger cap in the smallest glass and HOLDS IT, Lasts, laces, rocks it over a hazed ice tea body.
s) IPA made more bitter, more astringent by rye. But too faint.
t) Taste is abundant. Brings intense bittering, balanced by grainy sweet, whiskey like but hiding ABV well, then cascade of hop citrus, pine, grass, earthy floor, and dank flavors. Some mollasses, dark toasted grain, long finish, with pepper, muskiness, earthiness.
f) Creamy, great mouth feel, luscious. Matches the whiskey, creamy head look.
o) Overall favorite rye (18%!) beer.

Feb 13, 2018
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stevoj from Idaho

3.91/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Draft at Rohnert Park location. Dark amber with creamy head, curtains of lacing. Malty aroma, some funky hops. Taste brings in the rye, dark bread flavors, more of the hops, and leaves with a nice lasting tingling on the tongue. Flavorful.

Jan 31, 2018
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Piercan from Wisconsin

4.94/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a momument. A hybrid of barley and roasted rye. Wlildly hoppy, pleasurably cloudy and bitter.
Eminently complex, it takes American IPAs to the pinacles of perfection.
I can't get enough of it. But lo! this one is strong. So BEWARE! and enjoy.

Aug 16, 2017
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Eamonn-Cummings3 from New York

4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Speiglau IPA glass.

Really dark amber color with a thin white head.

Aroma is lots of spicy rye and sweet malt.

Taste is a wonderful balance of spicy rye, hops and malt.

Jul 11, 2017
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Lone_Freighter from Vermont

4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The appearance was a nice hazy golden orange to amber color with a one finger white foamy head that dissipated within about thirty seconds leaving some messy lacing roaming all around the glass. The smell had a nice sweet to spicy blend of rye malt to come across in a nice sweet citrus way. The taste was mainly sweet and lightly spiced through the rye, a light citrus runs through and leads to a quick sweet dry caramel to spicy aftertaste. There is a sweet citrus finish. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a fairly decent sessionability about it. Sticky sweet malty notes run over my tongue. Overall, I say this was a pretty good DIPA.

Jun 06, 2017
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Radcpa from Washington

4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Deep amber appearance with a good tan/blond head that desipates quickly. The aroma is sweet with a faint hoppy fragrance. The taste is a very smooth fruity with a faint hoppy flavor.

Feb 11, 2017
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hman43 from North Carolina

4.31/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: It pours dark amber in color with some plum hues.

Smell: It has strong aromas of rye, dark fruits, plums, hints of caramel and low spice.

Taste: It has flavors of rye, plums, grain, earthly elements, spice, and caramel.

Feel: It has a moderate body to it with a moderately high bitter finish. It has a moderately high carbonation level as well.

Overall, this is a flavorful ipa with a complex mixture of malts and hops with rye highlights throughout the taste.

Oct 02, 2016
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Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

$ 5.40 (Including tax)/bomber ($ 0.246/oz) at Central Market, Alamo Heights, TX
Undated bomber at 42 degrees into a hand washed and dried JK snifter
Aroma – spicy, typical of rye; fades but remains
Head large (Maximum 4.2 cm, semi-aggressive pour), light tan, creamy with rocks, diminishing to a two mm ring with legs and a heaped partial layer
Lacing excellent – wide rings of tiny to small bubbles; rings connected by stalactites
Body dark amber, clear
Flavor – rye forward and malty, bitter finish; no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium, almost oily, lively carbonation

An excellent rye IPA! Cheap at twice the price!

Appearance 4.5, Aroma 4, Flavor 4.5, Palate 4.5, Overall 4.5

Sep 20, 2016
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Franziskaner from Missouri

4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep brown in color and somewhat murky in complexion. There's a sold inch of tightly packed, creamy brown head on top. The aroma is an enticing blend of piney hops and spicy rye malt. The taste is aggressively bitter piney hops with the spicy, earthy rye malt appearing in the middle of the palate. After that you get more bitter piney hops. The mouth is dangerously creamy, smooth, and quaffable considering the strength.

Aug 27, 2016
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Marius from Netherlands

3.9/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at home. Clear dark amber pour with a thin beige head. Smells like caramel, resin, grapefruit and chili peppers. Tastes like grapefruit, red peppers, spices, brown sugar. Medium bodied with medium carbonation and a smooth mouthfeel.

Aug 22, 2016
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Czequershuus from Minnesota

4.59/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a deep choclate brown with a very solid and well structured head. The aroma is replete with resin and pine, mint, violets, roses, and a touch of maple. The flavor begins soft and floral, especially redolent of violets, moving into subtle woodsy spice, baslam, sandalwood, and rich breayd, almost cookie like malts, like an oatmeal raisin cookie. The finish is solidly bitter, with resin, pine, camphor, and mint. The mouthfeel is very smooth and creamy, but never heavy. Overall this is a great beer, complex, full of unique and interesting flavors. I love the way is starts so soft and ends so bitter.

Aug 11, 2016
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TBoneJones from Texas

4.51/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Terrific rye IPA. Brown/ deep ruby pour, creamy top, citrus nose with underlying rye.
Taste is yummy citrus IPA with well-placed rye flavor. Some spicy notes and it is earthy.
Caramel malts.
Feels nearly perfect. Creamy-full and well-carbonated.
A world class rye IPA for sure.

Jul 21, 2016
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pat61 from Minnesota

4.78/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

L: Pours tea colored brown with a slight chill haze under a 3” off-white to cream colored foam cap that takes 5 minutes to reduce to ½” and coats the glass with sticky lace.

S: Rye spice and grassy resiny hops scented with a touch of a meadow smell after a soft rain blending earthiness, grass, vegetation and light floral.

T: Rich malts, biscuit and rye with a fairly assertive hop accent growing at the finish. Some grain or hop driven astringency at the finish. As it warms caramel notes become more prominent and rye flavors develop and create a strong urge for pastrami and German mustard.

F: Very creamy texture supported by soft carbonation that makes its medium body feel light and airy.

O: Loaded with layers of flavor that achieve a delightful balance.

Jun 28, 2016
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MattyG85 from Minnesota

4.49/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into an IPA glass.

Appearance: Pours a deep brownish amber red with a lot of rising bubbles. Big two finger off white head which slowly settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: An earthy and spicy hop driven aroma with a scent of rye, grass, and caramel. Earthy and floral hops with a scent of grass and pine along with subtle citrus hints. Barley malt with a big scent of rye spice along with hints of caramel, biscuit, grains, and toast with yeast. A very nice aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, an earthy and spicy hop forward taste with notes of rye, caramel, and grass. Strong hop presence with earthy and floral notes of pine resin and grass. Subtle citrus notes. Barley malt with a lot of rye spice and notes of caramel, biscuit, toast, and grains along with yeast. A very good bold taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Spicy and fairly chewy with a drying finish.

Overall: A very good twist on an IPA. Really good mix of rye and hop flavors.

Jun 23, 2016
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Tenessee_Jed1972 from New York

3.94/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Looks almost like a scotch ale after pouring. Deep, dark red color. Ruby-esque. Tastes pretty hoppy but even the hops in this IPA are dominated by the rye. Holy rye! A very enjoyable beer if you like rye/hop forward offerings.

Bought 1 bottle to try... Would buy again.


Jun 10, 2016
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Wiffler27 from North Carolina

4.24/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

pours dark amber with a thick creamy head, looks pretty good.

smell is mild yet contains sweetness and slight spice.

taste is hot and spicy, nice rye burn. full flavored beer, finishes spicy with a nice burn.

this isn't bad but i've had much more mellow rye IPAs. this may be a little more spicy and burning than i enjoy.

Jun 03, 2016
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Guppy314 from District of Columbia

4.26/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Unabashedly Hoppy, but there is also a caramel taste. It is very comparable to a HopDevil (Victory Brewing), which I felt was "crisper". Overall, its aroma is awesome, but this Hop Rod was a bit "harsh" at the end of bottle.

May 13, 2016
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Ri0 from Wisconsin

4.09/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured 12oz bottle into snifter. It has a rich, brown color similar to ice tea with a 2.5 finger sandy head. Leaves behind a pretty good amount of lacing on the glass. Rye malts and piney hops sit in the nose. A sweet, malty taste opens up and then leads into a slightly bitter hop taste, before being slashed and settled by the rye. Great taste, and kept well in check. Mouth feel is medium and stick with great carbonation. It's easy and a pleasure to drink. Overall, a well made delicious IPA with a sold spicey finish from the rye.

May 12, 2016
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BeerSamurai34 from Texas

3.89/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Just ok for me. I think this is really popular with many, but rye IPAs just are hit or miss for me. This one had good hop character, but the hop profile just didn't work with the rye for me.

May 02, 2016
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.9/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours light brown to auburn. Easily darker than most ipas. Its a heavy malt ipa. Aroma does impart notes of rye, toffee, c hops.

Taste, very good when fresh, as they get older the toffee and wood like rye malt notes become less sweet and more heavy on the mouthfeel. Fresh can have that bright feel, which is nice. The rye is minorly sweet, pepper edge to it. Strong alcohol, moderate tree and citrus notes.

Apr 18, 2016
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beercam from Washington

4.93/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Hop Rod Rye...

A Specialty Ale indeed.

Two pours of a 22 oz. into a 16 oz Fremont Brewery can pint. This bottle is very fresh, with an expiration date of late April 2016.

L: This shone with a forest-fire red upon pouring. Meanwhile, a persistent and tufty head of fine foam billowed and roiled luxuriously. The lace was mesmerizing and extensive while the liquid looked sticky and and syrupy. Supreme aesthetics here, folks.
S: It slipped by undetected by my olfactory radar at first. Slowly did I begin to discover this fruity, rye-y, quintessentially hoppy smell (pines+citrus+_), which was pungent and present and involved.
T: Rye. Right upfront. Almost a pepperyness to this rye, a bit smokey, strong, then bulldozed by a crash of adventurous hop intensity. There was a true cacophony of flavors here, perhaps descending down from the great white north, or wherever hops land is, and aqueously descends upon my tongue. This in itself was deeply disorienting, intoxicating, and along with this very strong beer, punching in at 8%... On to other reasons why I drink this beer..
F: Viscousy. Sharply carbonated at a bit below room temperature, could've, should've been colder, but it was really nice flavor wise warmer. It lingered on strongly, with physical mouth presences of pepper and something wheaty. Feel was really smoooth. This is classic, classic rye.

O: This is a courageous, successful and masterful brew of a very rye-y recipe at 18% a commercial batch. For me, beyond this level of rye proportion in a beer can taste quite sour. And I don't drink sour beers.... yet.

Try your hardest to find this beer. It's perfect. Thank you Bear Republic. Cheers!

Jan 27, 2016
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Brolo75 from California

4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a tulip

A: Pours a deep rich mahogany with a caramel colored head, some head retention, lots of lacing, decent amount of carbonation streaming off the bottom, this beer has a very rich full appearance, looks really good.

A: Lemon like citrus, hint of pine needles, rye spice, no alcohol on the nose, great balance of aromas, not too hoppy, not too spicy, smells solid.

T: Hit of lemon/grapefruit like citrus up front, spicy rye in the middle, moderate amount of citrus peel bitterness in the middle, touch of bread/biscuit from malts, adds a nice balance, big dry finish with lingering flavors of citrus and rye, very balanced, very drinkable.

M: Big mouthfeel, full, creamy, dry finish.

O: I really love this beer, first beer I have had with rye, love the balance of hops, rye, and malt, has lots of flavor, creamy mouthfeel, just overall, a world class that I especially enjoy in cooler weather.

Dec 14, 2015
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BethanyB from New York

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

Look: A slightly hazy medium copper body, witht bubbles that glom on to every inch of the glass. The substantial, creamy head is of a pale khaki color.

Smell: Strong toasted malt gives way to a sweeter caramel character as the beer warms. The rye definitely comes through on the nose, curbing the caramel sweetness, along with resinous and earthy hops. Nice balanced complexity.

Taste: The sweet caramel is evident right away, and only becomes more prominent in the finish. It is balanced by the complex hop profile, which combines herbal earthiness wth a citrus element perhaps made more obvious by the sugary base. The rye creates an element of peppery spice that works well against the softer notes.

Mouthfeel: The strong hop and malt flavors are well supported by medium body and medium carbonation . The dryness is detectable only after the swallow, at which point the tongue begins to prickle.

Overall: A tasty, well balanced beer which uses rye to bring a unique spicy kick to juxtapose the unusual sweetness. Some may be put off by the high level of caramel. For me, it verges on being slightly too sweet, but overall, I think it does well to even out the hoppy spiciness.

Nov 22, 2015
Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 4748 ratings