Hop Rod Rye
Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Hop Rod RyeHop Rod Rye
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Rye Beer
Ranked #4
Ranked #1,280
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
Reviews by PhantomVodoo:
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PhantomVodoo from Ohio

4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Somewhere between amber and copper in color with a tan head. Fair amount of sediment towards the bottom of the bomber.
Big citrus hop aroma. There's something detracting from the aroma I beleive to be the rye (I am NOT a fan of rye).

Steady, yummy citrus hop bite. Sweet roasted malts and rye also play into the bold flavor of this beer.

Good mouthfeel.
Very drinkable for a beer this heavily hopped.

Saw this as a new item at The Party Source and quickly snagged it. Hopefully we'll be seeing more of the Bear Republic around here. I very much dislike rye so I have mixed feelings about this beer, but I definitely hope to sample it again. It proved to be quite tasty and grew on me as I drank it.

If you're a rye loving hop-head this beer could be the ultimate.

Apr 12, 2003
More User Reviews:
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TCHopCraver from Michigan

4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a rudy red/mahogany into an oversized wine glass. A light khaki,1 and 1/2 finger head recedes over the course of a minute to leave a thin retaining film. The lacing is sticky and thin and looks like ancient hieroglyphics.

S: Very intriguing. The combination between the hops and the rye malt produces a cranberry and fig smell that is supported by the expected citrus and floral aromas. Call me crazy, but in a way this smells like a Belgian quad with the figgy-sweetness. It has a unique aroma for an IPA, to be sure.

T: This is a really special meeting of hops, barley malt, and rye in my mouth. The cranberry and fig sweetness that I alluded to in the smell kicks off the flavor on the palate, followed by an exciting collision of the fresh hops and spicy rye malts. The finish is nice and bitter and awfully tasty. This is not your typical American IPA, but its ingenuity and creativity makes it a truly unique and great one.

M: This beer is a dancer; it's a soul's companion; you can feel it everywhere. But seriously, folks. This one really hits all the buttons of my palate. The carbonation is deliciously crisp, the barley and rye malts lend a good, full body, and the bittering hops donate a dry, bitter finish.

D: Would I have another? Yeeeaaash. If you couldn't tell, I really dig this beer. I'm not sure if it's the mood I'm in or what, but this is really striking the right chord with me right now. I read on the Great Lakes group that Bear Republic is moving into Michigan. If that is true, I would be one happy Beer Advocate.

Mar 20, 2010
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RonaldTheriot from Louisiana

4.7/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bear Republic Hop Rod Rye has a thick, creamy, beige head and a dark amber or honey appearance with lots of thick lacing left behind and a huge amount of fine particles floating about. The aroma is of sweet, spicy bread, sugar candy, pine needles, turpentine, and nectar. Taste is of very bitter hops, sweetness, Christmas sweet bread, sugar, and citrus peel. Mouthfeel is medium to heavy and Hop Rod Rye finishes semi-dry and fairly easy drinking. Overall, this is very, very nice, and I beg you to try it.


Jun 22, 2012
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BuckeyeNation from Iowa

4.78/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sanguineous antique bronze. Hop Rod Rye is chock full of fine particulates which create a lovely prism for the late afternoon sun slanting through my front window and cause the beer to explode with warm color. Perched atop the liquid is a creamystiff cap of pale tangerine that only an outrageously hoppy beer could produce. A perfect, rounded mesa of heavy cream awaits disruption, but not until I spend a few more moments enjoying the beautiful array of filagreed lace that sticks with impressive tenacity to the glass.

Hops, hops and more hops. And then some more. This is one of the most hop-dominant noses on any DIPA in existence. Too often beer of this style is balanced, as if balance is the Holy Grail of all beerdom. Well screw balance. It appears as if Bear Republic has given the most hopheaded among us what we crave. If the flavor follows the nose... we have a winner. Since brown sugary grapefruit and orange practically leap out of the glass, I feel pretty safe in saying that at least one, and probably multiple, of the 'C' hops are in use.

This is my kind of DIPA. I can't figure out why it continues to be classified as an IPA with such a high ABV and such a juggernaut of a hop load. There's plenty of sweet, toasted caramel flavor that does its best to keep the hops in line. Balance, shmalance. What kicks Hop Rod into orbit is the use of a not insignificant amount of rye malt that sets it apart from just about every DIPA that I've ever had.

As far as I'm concerned, rye is an underutilized grain in brewing. In the same way that it gives bourbon its spicy kick (except for Maker's Mark and a few others that use corn, barley and wheat instead of the usual corn, barley and rye), it gives this beer an exotic, piquant spiciness that is complemented by a citrusy thwack! from the hops and a sugary pine needle bite. A long, mouthcoating finish is borne of a full, chewy mouthfeel and nearly unnoticed carbonation.

I can't say enough good things about Bear Republic. Each and every beer is top-notch and is a marvel of the brewer's art. Hop Rod Rye is an intense, fantastically delicious DIPA and instantly leaps to within sight of the summit on my 'most favored beers of all-time' list. Wow!

Jan 07, 2005
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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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Gajo74 from New York

4.86/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I'm in love with this great brew and need to get more ASAP! Pours a dark copper with a modest head and a small ring like lace that retains throughout. It seems that this one is unfiltered as you can see some sediment. No problem, as it does not affect it negatively. The aroma is malty sweet with hints of caramel, chocolate, syrup, toasted bread and a tiny bit of alcohol towards the end. The taste is a malt lover's dream. A firm malt backbone with toasty bread flavors and caramel. Yet, this sweetness is never at risk of being cloying. Make no mistake about it, this one is also a bit of a hop bomb. This is evident in the finish and aftertaste which is a perfect marriage of dry, bitter and sweet. There are also elements of spice coming from the rye. I like my IPAs to have a good balance between hops and malts and I'm so impressed by the perfect balance this one has achieved. What a feel! It is full bodied and chewy yet so drinkable. I just finished it and I'm sad because I wish I had more. Reminds me a lot of dogfish head IPA 90.

Jan 26, 2015
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JooJooEyeballs from Pennsylvania

4.44/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Love this rye as well as Cane & Ebel.

Dec 19, 2014
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far333 from Connecticut

4.11/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep caramel color with large particulate matter suspended and laying on the bottom. A full two inch head rises up and lingers long before slowly settling down to a oily, sticky, bumpy cap with tight webs of lace rising up the insides of the glass.

Aroma of bready malt and fresh citrus hops.

Rich flavor of citrus and pine hops. The citrus moves from subtle sweet tangerine to orange rind to grapefruit rind to piney hops. The bitterness increases in the finish and lingers. A dark and luscious malt backbone rides beneath, but I'm picking up inconsistent and faint rye notes. A peppery spice accentuates the finish.

Full and creamy mouthfeel punctuated with carbonation tingles and slight alcohol warmth. Finishes a bit dry.

Very rich, but very drinkable. Wish I had another bomber.

Feb 14, 2007
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rousee from Massachusetts

4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Beautiful murky amber with a 3mm head of apricot tinted white. The head holds extremely well. Lush velvety lace clings to sides of glass as well as the thicker lace rings spaced evenly all the way to the bottom of the glass.

S-Hoppy, malty and rye. Exactly as billed. It reminds me of the warrior or amarillo hops that are in the DFH 60 minute but they are balanced by either malt (or rye) or another kind of hops to make it not have as much bite as the forementioned brew.

T-friggin fabulous. This is just like DFH 60 min but it doesn't make me belch as much. The rye or something else that I am missing seems to temper some of the extreme hoppiness. This hoppiness is still noticeable however and it is fruity and berry-like again but tapered on the end so it mellows at the finish rather than zapping or zinging the tastebuds. The characteristics taste-wise are again as billed and almost identical to the nose-hoppy/malty with rye.

MF--smooth and non-descript. Slighly foamy, a little sticky--nothing too pronounced though.

D-Excellent. Now here is a session IPA (or tastes like it anyway)--oh maybe not its 8% ABV. They sure do a good job of not allowing that 8% to be real noticeable.

Jan 30, 2005
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SteveO1231 from Connecticut

3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Popped a 22oz. bomber.

Poured a cloudy orangy/red into my tulip glass. Very dark for a double IPA.
Very thick foamy tan head, great lacing.

Nice bitter hop scent with citrus smells.

Pretty smooth at first, the bitter hop finish really doesn't kick in until the very end. Very nice, rather thick. This one is unfiltered, lots of yeast sediment.

The bitter hoppy citrus peel finish does not linger very long on the palate making this one pretty crisp, balanced IPA. High yeast taste. Alcohol warms the belly.

Very drinkable despite high ABV.


Oct 09, 2005
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bobhits from Kentucky

4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Received in a trade from UCLABrewN84, great extra!

Rye IPAs are the way to do a darker double IPA. The more I have of these the more I like them.

The appearance is a dark amber that’s darker because of a lack of clarity, seems to work for this one. Pours a huge head that’s off white with good lacing.

Caramel malt with lots of hops and a hint of rye (what is the smell it isn’t sour and isn’t really bitter) start off the nose. Toast, and dark burnt malt hints fall into the back ground.

No clue on the age of this one, but the hops are taking a bit of a back seat here. Unlike others were the malt starts to take control the rye here really makes for an enjoyable experience. Caramel, toast, and floral citrus hops. Creates a deeper and darker flavor than most IPAs. Not the most clean tasting but the lingering confusion of flavors is more than welcome here.

Word to brewers, use rye in a black double IPA…really I’m waiting! Racer 5 is still among the best IPA’s I’ve ever had and Hop Rod is another wonderful beer from bear republic. I’m hoping this beer is a hair old and the fresher version has more hops, but either way wonderful beer!

May 14, 2011
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gfap61 from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -5.7%

May 15, 2013
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TEXTONE from Arizona

4.85/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Look-Dark Amber w. red huge very nice head retention with lacing down to the bottom of the glass
Smell-Hoppy, malty sweet hard to get a really good read on this due to smells from the restaurant.
Taste-Dark malt, hoppy as hell slight coffee flavor, many flavors just roaming all around the pallet, well balanced beer. Warm and tingly on the tongue dry crisp bitter tart aftertaste.

Jul 30, 2008
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jampics2 from Ohio

4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Luscious amber beer with a white creamy head.

Peach and grapefruit nose.

This is awesome, nice bitter taste and the rye malt really works well. A HIGHLY recommended option for those who like hoppy beers. I also recommend Founders Reds Rye for fans of the style.

Perfect carbonation, medium viscosity.

Hides APV very well, so easy to drink.

Dec 06, 2009
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dfecteau from Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Feb 13, 2015
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CONOR8832 from Texas

3.67/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Nice thick froathy tan head, dark copper in color with some redish ruby tones, not a clear beer, there are a bit of hop remenents that settle at the bottom of the glass, so you can expect a nice hoppy beer.

S - Sweet malty/carmel notes, followed up with nice earthy pine smell with a splash of citrus, mild and faded rye scent, it is there but you almost have to go searching for it.

T - Nice hop expolosion at first mixed wtih the sweetness from the malts, you taste the rye more that what you can smell, it is a good comibination of rye and hops, and the alcohol taste is present.

M - Good carbination that stays with the beer, to which acts as a trasnport for all the armomas and flavors this beer offers. IMO a little on the heavy side.

D - This is an overall good hoppy beer, not one for the record books, however I do not think my palate has had enough training to get the full effects this beer has to offer. I had a hard time trying to figure out all the flavors that I was tasting and the aromas that I was smelling. I am going to wait a few more months and give this one another shot.

Sep 06, 2010
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jl28r1 from Texas

4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Jan 19, 2013
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BJasny from Texas

4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Sep 20, 2012
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dejones from Michigan

4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Nov 17, 2013
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4.75/5  rDev +12%

Sep 19, 2012
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joeseppy from Illinois

3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour is a deep reddish copper hue with generous beige head.

Smell is muddled with biscuit, toasty caramel, piney hop and sweet malt. Not much in the way of fruit for me.

Taste has more tropical fruit coming through in the way of mangos and grapefruit rind. Malt pounds upfront, hop onslaughts the tongue with numbing sensations and rye pulls through for the finish. Tastes way better than it smells.

Medium body and velvety. Creamy as an Irish red ale. Hop has staying power much like an imperial.

Beside the aroma, a most pleasant quaff to spend time with. Priced on the higher end than others in class.

Oct 06, 2013
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ShawneeIrish from Indiana

3.75/5  rDev -11.6%

Mar 03, 2013
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TrojanRB from California

4.1/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Apr 28, 2015
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Buddance from Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev +0.2%

Jun 14, 2014
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Jstuart23 from North Carolina

4.13/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Oct 07, 2016
Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 4748 ratings