Terrapin Rye Pale Ale | Terrapin Beer Company

very good
1,812 Ratings
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Terrapin Rye Pale AleTerrapin Rye Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Terrapin Beer Company
Georgia, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed with 10% rye, but an APA at heart.

Added by aracauna on 09-09-2002

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Ratings: 1,812 |  Reviews: 773
Photo of mocktm
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite session beers from what is probably my favorite brewery. I just realized while working through a sixer that I've never actually reviewed this, so time to take care of that right quick. From bottle, best before November, into a pint.

Golden hue with a meager white head, maybe half a finger's worth. A bit of stick to it, but nothing out of the ordinary.

Distinct rye malt on the nose, paired with some complementary hop presence that contribute some herbal characteristics.

From the name "Rye Pale Ale", you get exactly what you bargained for with this one. Definitive semi-spicy Rye up front, caramel, honey and light fruit undertones, with mild hops throughout. A step off the beaten to death path of boring pale ales, a welcomed little twist.

Medium bodied, flavorful and sessionable as hell.

There aren't a lot of Rye beers on the market that I have found, but this is surely the best of those that I have. Cheers!

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Photo of FleeVT
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a slightly hazy amber that leans more towards the yellow side with a smallish white head that remains.

S: The nose has a lot of hops, grassy herbs, pine, mild citrus, and a touch of rye malts. Brilliant!

T/M: A crisp beer that is moderate in body and has a good dose of carbonation. The hops give this beer its bitters which are balanced nicely with the malts and hint of rye.

D: Definitely a nice beer for a long round. As always, I find the moderately bitter beers to be better matched with the task of thirst quenching.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Went to J. Clyde's in Birmingham as established on Beer Advocate and first beer I tried was the Terrapin Rye Pale ale. The beer was a decent copper/amber brew with limited white head, which casued me to downgrade the beer slightly. The aromas are awesome, rye bread, fresh, oily hops, a few spicy hop notes, and some citrus fruits are present as well. The taste of this brew is very well integrated. There is definately an excelent blend of flavors going on here. The mouthfeel is creamy and smooth and the drinkability is simply awesome! A very interesting RYEPA! Definitely recommed.

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Photo of metter98
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear yellowish amber in color and has no visible carbonation. It poured with a ¼-finger high head that died down but left lots of lacing running down the sides of the glass and on the surface.
S: There are aromas of citrusy hops in the nose along with notes of pale malts and hints of spices.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and has hints of spices from the rye and a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels a tad shy of medium-bodied on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is very easy to drink and the rye spices up an ordinary pale ale.

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Photo of troysoy2
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass, this is a decent looking beer. Good light copper color, half finger of off-white head, not much retention.

The smell is decently strong, and smells mildly of hops... but then there's a strange fruity spiciness to it, almost like a sour smell. And maybe I'm crazy, but banana cream? Very interesting.

The front of the taste is pretty much like your average IPA. It's surprisingly not too hop forward. The malt comes out in the middle, and then surprise! The rye aftertaste is quite nice. It adds a little something to make this otherwise average beer. Mouthfeel is also quite good. Maybe a bit too thin for me, but the carbonation is just right.

I enjoyed Terrapin's take of the RyePA. I'll have to continue sampling examples of the style to decide how it stacks up.

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Photo of iRun2Beer
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of gatornation
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a light amber color with golden tones a light head is reduced to a fresh collar..smell is hops and malt a little spice and bread..taste is smooth and creamy with light hops in the tone of grapefruit,slight mango and floral its followed by a wisp of rye mixed in with some caramel..mouth feel is crisp and tasty with just the right carbonation..this is a great and slightly different PA loved the rye although slight amount in the mix with the hops and malts..try this on for sure

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Photo of Monkeyknife
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle a clear amber gold with a rich, full white head. Sticky lacing all around.

Aroma is chocked full of fresh grapefruit and malts.

Taste is sharp with with a nice amount of citrus to it. Finish reveals a rye malty presence.

Mouthfeel is medium with moderate carbonation.

I really like this Terrapin APA. Easy to drink and enjoy.

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Photo of hopsaplenty
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle, not dating.

Pours a cloudy gold, topped with a short head of small and medium bubbles, loosely packed that quickly reduces to a short collar leaving minimum lacing. The smell is distinctly of cascade hops, juicy and bold. The taste is boldly hopped up front, but balanced with a malt sweetness in the middle finishing hoppy and clean. There are other grainy sweet notes as well, perhaps this is the rye coming through a bit. Medium bodied, light on the tongue, but not think. Vibrant carbonation bounces across the mouth. Nice overall and drinkable as well.

The neck ring says that 5 different hop varieties are used, I’ll buy that.

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Photo of G2Brew
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a straight pint glass at 45F. This is first and foremost an APA, with an understated nose and a flavor profile that highlights the grain (presumably to accentuate the rye content) and therefore minimizes the traditional APA hops profile.

A – The banjo-playing terrapin (with a stalk of rye sticking out of his mouth) on the bottle is a nice visual, signifying a laid-back, relaxed, “southern” take on a classic American style. The finger of off-white foam receded pretty quickly, leaving minimal lacing. Gold-straw color was not very clear, but maintained nice rising bubbles throughout, which kept a thin covering of foam at the top. The bubbles swirled up nicely with every sip, reinforcing the foam covering.

S – The first impression is of a straight-up but mild APA, with some pine, floral, and grassy notes underlying the citrus of the hops, and some graininess in the background. As expected, the malts and grains come through more after the first hops aroma fades. The rye affects but does not dominate the grain aroma. It lends a somewhat off-beat sense to the grains, yet never really asserts itself with a heavy rye character. It’s a subtle, yet fairly complex balance of aromas.

T – The taste is as subtle and complex as the aroma. It has a nice smoothness to it, which can be lacking in APAs. This is where the image of the reclining terrapin works, for me. This is a slow taste. If you’re out for a rush, this isn’t your beer. But this is, in my opinion, the epitome of the session beer. You can drink this all day. It’s not too strong, not too sweet, not too loud. I’m enjoying this beer on a warm (80F) spring afternoon under an umbrella in the backyard. I’d say that’s what this beer is brewed for. I had to search for the rye to find it on my palate, and even then, I wasn’t sure if I was really tasting the rye, or just some unusual complexity in the grains. For taste, this is a real winner, in my book.

M – Medium to light mouthfeel. Moderate to soft carbonation. I think the mouthfeel is in keeping with the pace of this beer. Again, if you want something that jazzes up your mouth, this isn’t it. But the dry aftertaste and soft feel make it a very pleasant beer.

D – I think the drinkability of this beer is as good as you could hope for. It’s one that I could enjoy sipping all night long. I think it would make a remarkable pairing with a good cigar, and I believe I have one in mind for the second bottle, (which I will be opening forthwith. Man, I love having a mid-week afternoon off!) This is something I will likely keep on hand – it won’t take the place of the hoppier beers that are my first zymurgological passion, but will certainly fill in nicely on a lazy afternoon like today.

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Photo of srrn
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Perfect day for this beer, 100 degrees plus. Poured a nice reddish amber color, clear, with off white head. Nice lacing on the glass. Smells of a bit of rye (I think, maybe the power of suggestion) and piney hops. Taste is very clean, piney hops, I don't get as much citrus as others seem to. Very nice bit of oily mouth feel. The bitterness lingers in a pleasant way. Nice highly drinkable beer, taste remains remarkebly consistent as it warms.

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Photo of sweemzander
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. Thanks to beerwolf77 for this one!

(A)- Pours a hazy golden orange color that produced a half finger sized gray head. Some lacing.

(S)- A pineapple citrus with some damp pine in there with an orange-like tart sweetness.

(T)- Same as the smell. An orange and pineapple citrus. A small spicy bitter kick and a subtle sweetness.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. Good citrus with a sweet background. Not much rye detected in this though considering its name.

(D)- A good beer. Refreshing with a light citrus crispness.

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Photo of Morey
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a sixer of this Georgia brewed ale on a recent trip to Palmetto, Florida.

Pours a light copper color with brilliant clarity. Head is somewhat small and disappears fairly quick.

The presence of the rye is noticable along with other grainy aromas in the smell. Very little hops in the nose.

Taste is kicked up a bit from the rye making this pale ale a little more interesting than some of the others that I've tried. Tangy carbonation.

Medium to thin mouthfeel with a carbonated bite.

I could easily see putting back a sixer of these on a warm spring/summer day.

Morey's Bottom Line: At first I was a bit let down by this beer, but after drinking a few and having the opportunity to pour it in a glass it's grown on me. Up there with some of the better pales I've tried.

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Photo of oelergud
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tall 12oz brown glass bottle, pry-off cap. Drawing of a banjo playing hillbilly terrapin on label.
Clear copper body, good carbonation. Lemon tinted small bubbled head, low retention, good lace.
Delicious hoppy caramel scent. A kick of spice.
Great flavors. Sweet malts to start quickly overwhelmed by strong hops, a note of pine and grass. Faint honey and spice from the rye. Aftertaste of long lasting hoppy pine flavors almost with a hint of vanilla.
Medium body, dry finish and some residual sugars.
Excellent drinkability.


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Photo of israel
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a ommegang tulip

A - clear amber color with very little head.

S - some spiciness along with floral hops

T - rye is evident in taste but is chased away by the hops, very nice

M - carbonation is nice and the mouthfeel seems a bit light but not bad

D - I would have another of these if I stumbled across one but I wouldn't go out of my way to find it. overall a good session beer suitable for the georgian summers.

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Photo of Mistofminn
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to beernerd81 for this one!

Pours a yellow-orange color with a slightly off white head. Retention isn't the greatest, and it shrinks to a small ring around the outside of the glass. No lacing.

The nose is spicey rye right off the bat, then come floral hops and a caramel-like malt backbone. Smells pretty good.

There really isn't anything special about this beer, nothing too unique or bold, but even so, I like it. The combination of the floral hops and the subtle malt backbone, along with the spicey rye makes for a great tasting and very refreshing beer. Of all the Georgia beers I've had so far this tops the list. Simple, yet thirst quenching and refreshing. The rye is used to near perfection, in that it isn't the focal point, but a small player in the overall taste profile.

Mouthfeel is on the light side, with a light carbonation bite. No bitter aftertaste. Drinkability is great, this is a great session beer.

Overall, a great introduction to Terrapin Beer Company. A solid, yet simple, beer. Thanks Ben!

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Photo of Onenote81
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear orange with very small head. No retention, but ok lacing for some reason. Smells of pineapple, alcohol, bread and grassy hops.

Taste is a wonderful mouthwash of hoppy goodness balanced by a slight touch of malt sweetness. Slight metallic bite, but finishes with a nice mellow breadiness. Mouthfeel is a tad on the spritzy side with medium to high carbonation, but drinkability is high nonetheless. Great APA.

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Photo of droomyster
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy, dark gold with a small but clingy head. Aromas are interesting: there's definitely a hop element on the nose but the dominant trait is remeniscent of a woodpile. Toffee notes are also there. On the palate I'm getting strong flavors of toasted English muffins and some toffee. Finishes quick and clean, with a light hint of lingering malts. That dash of malted rye makes a world of difference and makes this an exceptially satisfying pale ale.

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Photo of Grundle20
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours tangerine in color with a slight haze to it. There's a small white head that is quick to fall and there's no lacing to note.

There's a good amount of sweet caramel maltiness in the nose with only little perk up of the hops towards the end of the smell lending some apricot fruit notes. For a rye beer is not very spicy smelling.

Taste and Mouthfeel:
Again the malts really make for a sweet drinking beer. Up front there's a little carbonation tingle that quickly transitions in to a smooth middle to the beer. Towards the end a little bit of the rye can be picked up in the way of a dry finish. Aside from the initial sweetness there's really only a touch of hops towards the end of the drink again lending an apricot flavor to the beer. The finish is crisp and clean with a little bit of lingering sweetness in to the finish.

Just a tad too sweet for me to want to drink a lot of these but other than that it's a pretty tasty and agreeable beer.

Bottom Line:
I personally would have liked some more hops and a bit more of the rye character to come through but I still enjoyed this beer quite a bit, I look forward to more of their beers in the future.

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Photo of Atricapilla
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was provided to me in a plastic cup...it may have skewed the appearance a little....Anyway, was a light amber color with a fairly stiff (comparably) head that slowly went away. The aroma had a light to moderate hoppy scent, pine and a hint of citrus. Tasted good: a bit of hops with a little citrus. Slightly bitter, but also slightly sweet....goes down easily...

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Photo of Dogbrick
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Smoke Rise Bottle Shop in Stone Mountain, GA. The beer pours a mostly clear copper/amber color with a thin off-white head that dissipates steadily. Thin rings of lacing. Floral hops, malt and rye in the nose. Medium-bodied and moderately bitter with hops, grapefruit and rye flavors along with some bready malt in the background. The finish is hoppy with lingering floral notes, plus some rye and malt aftertaste. Pretty solid all around.

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Photo of Pencible
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured a slightly hazy gold with no head. It smelled strongly of cinnamon, and faintly of honey and some rye, with no real hops scent. It tasted like light citrus hops mixed with sweet honey malt, but didn't have noticeable rye flavor. It was watery with no carbonation, and had a mild bitter aftertaste. Overall this was a very clean and easy to drink beer, but it could have used a little more character (such as more prominent rye).

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Photo of CliffBrake
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy orange color with a minimal white head

Nice rye, slightly spicy aroma. Spicy, slightly sour flavor with herbal hops and a little bit of orange around the edges.

Refreshing. I bet this would be a great one in hot weather (which we are definitely not experiencing in February in New Hampshire). Quite nice just the same.

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Photo of cnagle28
3.96/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of pwoods
3.96/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to brewdlyhooked13 for this tasty extra.

12oz. brown bottled poured into a pint.

A: Pours a clear, forgettable amber. Less than 1 finger of white head with little retention. Not much lacing.

S: Nice floral hops covering this brew with a distinct rye backbone. A little bit of a tang from some grapefruit. Malts are a bit subtle but add a controlled sweetness of caramel.

T/M: Drying rye big up front. Nice citrus notes at the beginning. Plums? Malts take over in the middle with a bit of sweet caramel and an interesting biscuit-y note. Surprisingly dry finish for a pale ale. The body seems almost watery at first until the malts pop in and beef it up a bit.

D: Very drinkable. Nice twist on a classic style and I'd love to have easy access to this.. Would make an excellent session beer for cards or yard work.

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Terrapin Rye Pale Ale from Terrapin Beer Company
3.83 out of 5 based on 1,812 ratings.
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