Terrapin Rye Squared | Terrapin Beer Company

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Terrapin Rye SquaredTerrapin Rye Squared
Very Good
605 Ratings
Terrapin Rye SquaredTerrapin Rye Squared

Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company
Georgia, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
Double the malt, double the hops, and double the flavor of the original Rye Pale Ale recipe.

An "Imperial Pale Ale".

Added by Todd on 05-06-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 605 |  Reviews: 470
Photo of lightindarkness
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a little like oil, smooth and full with a deep copper hue and a nicely sitting small bubbled cream colored head.

Smells nicely of rich full malt and unmistakably of rye. Who left their Grapenuts in my beer glass? Other fruity hop juicy smells hang around, but once I noticed the rye, that's a bout all I can get.

Taste is really pretty well balanced, with plenty of rye spice, and straight up rye grain flavor to fit the name. Rye is well supported by some caramelly smoothness and darker bready flavor. Toasted grains almost have a coffee flavor at the finish, with some rich woody taste, very interesting. Hop juicy flavors add to the full near syrupy taste (but not too syrupy), with a nice round bitterness at the finish. This is one great tasting beer, if you like rye.

Smooth and full body masks moderate carbonation. Almost chewy, this has a really nice rich feel.

The more I drink the more it grows on me, and luckily I'm a big fan of rye. This is a very tasty beer that's full without being too much so. And, what? 8.5% abv? You don't even notice that.

 1,071 characters

Photo of rdickey
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Source: 12 oz. capped bottle, stamped with "best if enjoyed before VINTAGE08AA". AA?!? What are they trying to tell me?

Appearance: Pours a dark coppery amber into a tulip; rough pour produces a two-finger rocky off-white head that lingers.

Smell: As you would expect, the hop attack starts at the nose with citrus hops and rye coming through strong. Pine notes come through as it warms.

Taste: Dry citrus hops come through up front, with piney hops following. The malt sweetness provide some balance here, and the rye notes distinguish this from most aggressively hopped American pale ales.

Mouthfeel: Good, but not great. The alcohol is not terribly well hidden, which didn't bother me too much, although the finish is not crisp enough to keep the malt from being just a little bit cloying.

Drinkability: Good. There are other aggressive pale ales I would drink before this one, but the rye definitely makes it worth a try.

 931 characters

Photo of DIM
4.24/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: This was a hazy, pale amber orange color. It poured with a small off-white head that fades quickly leaving some lace in it's wake.

s: The most noticeable aromas are sweet caramel malts accented by some pungent, sour rye notes. A sharp lemony pine smell is present as well. As this one warms some alcoholic heat emerges.

t: This has the malt backbone of a DIPA. The rough simple syrup sweetness is blunted by crisp spicy rye sourness. The hops are present, but mostly in the backround. They taste of pine and, to a lesser extent, lemon zest.

m: Thick and very viscous, a nice creamy texture overall.

d: Thanks to cashew70 for the chance to try this one. This is one of the better rye beers I've tried. I'm very glad I got a 4-pack.

 737 characters

Photo of Metalmonk
4.28/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Curious to see this classified as a pale ale on BA...I would've thought for sure it'd be Double IPA, or at least IPA. Whatever...all that matters is: Is it good? [In looking back on reviews of this beer, it has since been changed.]

Pours a big burnt orange body with lots of bubbles cruising toward a thick, creamy, off-white cloud. Wide belts of lace coat the sides of the glass. Gorgeous.

Smells very nice. It smells "big", but all those big elements work off each other well. The big rye grains, the rind-like citrus of the hops, the almost boozy alcohol warmth, and I swear I'm detecting some "strange" from whatever yeast strain was used. With warming the aroma favors the alcohol a tad too much.

Flavor keeps the experience riding high...the hops are big puckery citrus, with a large dose of candied-orange sweetness, while the rye lends a much needed, much appreciated earthy starch character. The booziness of this beer has hit me harder in previous meetings...this time the warmth of the alcohol seems complementary, not cloying. The finish favors the alcohol warmth and bitter fruit tartness. Texture is slick and smooth, just a bit creamy and pretty much what I like in a ramped-up IPA (excuse me: APA).

Perhaps just a tad "hot", definitely sweet and bordering on the overall "extreme" edge for every-day drinking, but what a wonderful beer it is. Their regular Rye Pale Ale is just great, I expected this to be even better, and it was. So the name is appropriate, and the label is one of the best in beer history.

 1,530 characters

Photo of MrMonkey
4.28/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to both gford217 and sholland119 for hooking me up with bottles of this as extras!

Pours a hazy light copper with a one-finger creamy off-white head that fades slowly and leaves lots of sticky rings and sheets.

Smells like sweet caramel malt, rye bread, some spice, floral hops, orange peel, and a hint of booze.

Taste starts off with some sweet caramel and doughy pale malts with some spice in the background. This leads into some floral hops and some warming alcohol, some citrus notes, and finishes slightly bitter with some more spice coming through.

Full-bodied, creamy mouthfeel.

A wonderfully balanced beer, but it does remind you of the ABV. Great drinkability, and I definitely want another!

 712 characters

Photo of sholland119
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a Victory imperial pint glass.

A-Pours a hazy orange amber with a foamy white head. Nice stickiness and lacing.

S-Sweet malts, a nice nutty rye aroma and piney hops. Excellent.

T-Very caramelly sweet at the outset balanced by a hint of rye. Rye and hops come out more pronounced in the finish.

M-Nice carbonation, a little oily on the tongue.

D-Very nicely drinkable. Balance of malts, rye and hops is very nice.

I have gotten this a couple of times in trade and given it once. It is a really delicious beer.


 546 characters

Photo of YankChef
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2008 Vintage poured into a La Fin du Monde glass

Appearance: Clear dark amber, head that dissipates and leaves a thin wisp on top of the beer that covers it.

Smell: The first and biggest thing that stands out is hops, big time hops. Almost has the smell of simcoe but that doesnt seem appropriate here. Big time malt as well in the for of sweet maple and some very faint fruit aromas that are more of a mystery fruit.

Taste: Slightly sweet and then bitter, which then turns into an acrid unpleasant bitterness that stays with you. The alcohol is very apparent and makes this difficult to drink, however the more you drink it the flavors begin to meld and mellow a bit.

Overall: A good beer from terrapin, not for the faint of heart but good nonetheless, I wouldn't say its their best work but certainly deserving of a taste if you see some on your beer store shelf.

 869 characters

Photo of mhewes
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A : Pours a nice dark amber color with a good head

S : Bread, Citrusy Hops. Some spicyness shines through

T : Good rye flavor along with a strong hop presence. Some good spicyness going on also

M : Full bodied with good carbonation

D : Really good. Easy to drink

 266 characters

Photo of Gtreid
3.57/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Cloudy dark honey color with 1/2 inch of tan cream color head that receeded to a thin rim. Thin lacing, moderate retention.

A: Grassy and citrus hops. Honey. Roasted malts and caramel. Alcohol is also very present.

T: Hops, honey, and caramel. I am a little suprised at how prevelant the alcohol is. Not as smooth as I had hoped. Finishes bitter, with a sting.

M: Medium to heavy body, thick on the palate, little carbonation.

D: Overall, good. Kind of a strong ale/IPA, I don't know how I would classify this. But at 8.5% it is rather drinkable. Not a sessionable beer, but one I will pick up again.

 635 characters

Photo of srandycarter
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Beautiful thick head, aggressive lacing and amber dark honey color.

S - Sweet dough, citrus, something a little briny.

T - Caramel dominates the front, with sweet bread and citrus.

M - Creamy as you could want, full mouth coverage.

D - I like it.

 253 characters

Photo of HopDerek
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep reddish amber color with 1 finger of frothy tan head, which retains itself well, slowly fading to an oily layer and some sticky lacing. Smells of citrus like orange and grapefruit, freshly baked bread, and caramel...some alcohol comes through after it warms up a bit. Tastes of sweet malt, spicy bread, caramel and grapes with a nice hop presence in the back end, orange peel, grapefruit, and grass. Medium in body and somewhat syrupy with good carbonation, smooth and creamy with a good bitter finish and some alcohol warmth. A little high in alcohol, but it is an Imperial Pale Ale, so it's supposed to be. Really flavorful and nicely balanced, another great brew by the folks at Terrapin.

 704 characters

Photo of Redwood21
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: great hazy brown color with a thick creamy white head that is very sticky, gorgeous

S: This has a sweet aroma to it, almost like sweet doughy bread.

T: so creamy it hurts, its got a creamy taste, or i guess mouth feel the actual taste is a bit of sweet hops, a little ester(but far back) with an almost buttery finish. there is an almost pear apple complex as well, very faint, think crisp semi tart fruit masked by some hop sweet and a touch of hops spice to give it a tiny bite. you would never know this beer is 8.5% except for a slight alcohol presence if you chew the beer. a great sipper to easy drinker, works on both levels.

Quality beer and thankful i could trade for it. Very good

Thanks kurtissellen for the bottle

 734 characters

Photo of cjgator3
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a . The aroma is sweet malt, hints of rye and citrusy hops (most notably orange and a little grapefruit). The taste is sweet malt with a touch of rye character up front with a nice big hoppy finish with a lot of citrus. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth with the perfect amount of carbonation. Overall, Rye Squared is a very quality brew that I wish was available year round. Recommended!

 440 characters

Photo of drxandy
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

got in trade from shuajw, thanks :)
poured from 12oz to standard pint - lovely orangey brown - great 2 finger head

smells of dry hopping floral, spiciness, caramel malts

tastes great! i would buy this often if available, reminds me of a heavier rye infused version of bell's two hearted

floral hopping, citrus peel, rye spiciness, great body and yeastiness, definately the imperial version of the lesser and tastes wonderful

mouthfeel is thick and nice on the tounge

overall i find this really easy to drink, and am really glad to have tried it!

 550 characters

Photo of phishgator
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pored into a goblet. The deep amber hue was coupled with a large tight foamy head. Carbonation is quite apparent. The aroma is a blend of the rye and mixure of floral and earthy hops. The taste is lip smacking good. A fair amount grapefruit, citrus, and hop oil throughout the entire session. The body is big and chewy. After one or two its a little heavy. A great unique offering from a terrific brewery.

 405 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.87/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Acquired from mikesgroove, so a big "Thank You" goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a cloudy rusty brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a very thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of rye malts, citrus, caramel, floral hops and some spice.

T: The taste has a lot going on. There are sweet flavors of citrus and caramel; a strong floral hops bitterness; bready & spicy rye malts and a significant alcohol sting. However, it seems to me that the balance doesn't seem to quite be where it should be. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, it's a decent beer but there are certainly many others that I would pick first.

 842 characters

Photo of ckeegan04
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark orange/brown color with one finger dirty white head. Excellent lacing.

S - Spicy sweet aroma. Not near as strong of hop aroma as expected.

T - Rich spiciness that is standard in a rye beer, just a little stronger than most. Some piney hop taste as well, but dominated by the spicey and biscuity malt.

M/D - Very rich beer with a full bodied feel.

 359 characters

Photo of ncvbc
4.62/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Why I haven't tried this in a few years I have no clue. Worlds better than I remember, maybe I just didn't know what I was getting myself into then. Pours a beautiful amber with reddish hues, a medium off-white head comes up and falls to a ring. Not much lacing but it's pretty potent. Smell is fairly muted at first but grows deeper and deeper as it warms. Fresh, green citrusy hops with a spicy undertone. Light sweet malt, some bread, and a hint of alcohol. Taste is killer. I suppose the last time I had this was soon after the cap was popped in NC? I wasn't used to the big boys and this one must have just shocked me. Well damn, it's so good now. Excellent hoppy flavors meshing perfectly with malt. Definitely more hoppy than anything and the malt doesn't become thick and take away from the hop character. Quite bitter at first with sweetness in the middle and a drying finish. Orange, tangerine, pineapple, a little grapefruit. A touch of caramel and brown sugar and a wonderful bready flavor. Holy mackarel, is this my new favorite from Terrapin? Wonderfully done and a great little gem if I do say so myself. I'm glad this is local because I sent the other bottles I had out in trades and such. I really wish I had another to follow this one but unfortunately that's not the case. All I can say is I look forward to the next Side Project, anything new from Terrapin is welcomed by me...one of my favorite breweries and they just keep growing on me.

 1,459 characters

Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.42/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Terrapin Rye Squared 2008
12oz. brown bottle

A: snifter. Beautiful dark, slightly hazy, amber color. Nice white head on top with a good retention level. Fair lacing.

S: wonderful sweet citrus aroma, more orange than grapefruit. Sweet malts really come through the hoppy aroma. Some rye hints as well.

T: nice big hoppy flavor with a definite orange flavor. Some rye malts sneak in behind the sweeter malts.

M: very bold, with a solid body. Mild carbonation.

D: solid brew with a great flavor. I could drink several, but the 8.5% is limiting when it comes to putting a few back.

 583 characters

Photo of dhd1491
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very small head lying down quickly. Deep coppery gold color. Aroma is fairly subdued with some flowery hops coming through with some yeasty wheat. Flavor is powerful. Big hops but also malts and grains. Mouthfeel is heavy with some butter. Toasted bread note is not unpleasant, but not what one expects in an IPA. I can only imagine the rye has something to do with that, though I can detect no taste that I would label "rye". For an 8.5% ABV, extremely smooth; I would've guessed more like 6.5-7.0%.

Retasted 6-13-09: Didn't like it as much. Alcohol is over the top in the flavor and there is an odd sourness. Downgraded taste from 4.5 to 4.0.

 645 characters

Photo of hellcatsjg
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark and clody amber beer with a finger of off white head and a bit of lacing.

Smell: Good combination of hops. Flowery and citrusy and a bit piney scents. A light spicy aroma is in the background as well.

Taste: Starts with spiciness and pine flavors. You get the citrus next along with a good bit of sweetness and malt. Finish is nice balance of maltiness and spiciness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and good amount of carbonation. Nice flavor left after the swallow.

Drinkabiiity: Very good beer. Good complexity and nice balance of hops, malts, and spicy rye flavor. Not too heavy either, and you could have several in you desired. Good job.

 658 characters

Photo of PhillyStyle
4.4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, Vintage08AA

WOW...that was my first reaction when I first smelled the beer and then I turned and said, before even tasting it, this is going to be good.

Appearance: I poured it into a Weizen glass (I do this occasionally to really get a good look at a beer) and it gave off a hazy orange/reddish hue. The head was almost a cream color that held for a long time and a thin layer lasted through out the glass. It had a very nice cascading effect when poured into the glass and had very nice lacing through out the glass.

Smell: The aroma was very powerful with hints of citrus and hops, but I think you could really smell the malt and alcohol, which at times I thought was a little overpowering.

Taste/Mouthfeel: The beer had a very creamy texture and flavor to it and everything that you smelled, you can taste. Sweet upon first sip and really finishes strong with the hops, malt and alcohol really coming out. Very complex and I thought that the carbonation was almost unnoticeable.

Drinkability: This is my only problem with this beer. While it was very smooth and enjoyable, i am not sure that I could drink more than one at a time unless I am going to be drinking it with a very good meal. It was very rich and the alcohol was very noticeable.

Overall, this is an outstanding beer and one that I will be enjoying a lot of over the next few months. I would recommend to any beer lover.

 1,406 characters

Photo of cvstrickland
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle best-before dated "Vintage 08AA", poured into a seidel produces a sticky-looking, reddish-amber body with a half-finger of head that leaves a good deal of clingy lacing

Smells fruity and sweet with a little dry citrus;

Taste is richly sweet and malty with floral, lightly-bitter hops and a nice tanginess I suppose is from the rye, along with a whiff of alcohol.

Smooth and creamy in the mouth, very little carbonation with a sticky, pleasantly bitter, slightly evergreen finish.

Rich and delicious. Could drink a few.

 536 characters

Photo of errantnight
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Man... I'm not sure there's anything I love more than hoppy rye beers. The blend of spicy and sweet and citrus and floral and... anyway, on with the review.

Pours a hazy amber, more orange-y gold than ruby red, with a brilliant cascade of bubbles. Two fingers of creamy white head with attractive lacing and a thin film that sticks around. Meow.

Aroma is a peach-y, hoppy, malty mixture, with some noticeable alcohol.

Taste masks the alcohol entirely, a warm malty spice fills the middle, ending in a remarkably clean, citrus (grapefruit heavy) finish.

Medium to full mouth with a lifting carbonation.

If it wasn't for the slightly noticeable alcohol in the nose this beer would be pretty damn flawless.

Gimme more, just the same.

 737 characters

Photo of DefenCorps
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, 2008 vintage.

A: Deep cloudy orange with a thin, beige head

S: Hops - pine, and a little bit of citrus. Rye bread and caramel with a hint of alcohol. Delicious!

T: Moderately hoppy with pine well balanced with the caramel malt sweetness and the distinctive rye character. It starts off a little medium-bodied but the finish is a little disappointing - it just fizzles out with a mildly bitter and dry finish. A little bit more body on the finish would make this one really good.

M: The carbonation is pleasant. The finish is dry and makes you reach for another sip.

D: This one is fairly easy drinking

 619 characters

Terrapin Rye Squared from Terrapin Beer Company
Beer rating: 3.93 out of 5 with 605 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.