Terrapin Rye Pale Ale | Terrapin Beer Company

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Terrapin Rye Pale AleTerrapin Rye Pale Ale
Very Good
1,819 Ratings
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: 1,819 |  Reviews: 776
Photo of Todd
2.98/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle. Pours a slightly cloudy, but bright, amber, topped with a decent 2 finger thick foamy head that settles to a respectable clinging lace. Touch of sweetness in the nose, with a lightly sour/rye character, and floral pith. Soft mouthfeel, light-bodied, with a touch malt body. Gentle sweetness, light hoppiness and phenols from the rye. Pithy, with a tea and bready linger. Flavor becomes quite malty and even sweeter as the beer warms. Grainy tannins in the finish, not overly pleasant ones. Balanced, but not overly impressive.

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Photo of TastyTaste
3.98/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Southernbrew for my chance to taste my first-ever beer from Georgia. Dark copper color, with a haze that is illuminated to a bright gold color. Moderate head on the pour, fades to a creamy layer after a couple seconds. Smell is very fruity and slightly piney, from the 5 varieties of hops, as the bottle says. Taste is very hop dominated, but is definitely well balanced with the sizable malt backing. Finishes slightly sweet, but it is a well rounded beer.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.5/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Modestly murky orange-gold with a small number of fine particulates. The good-sized head is the color of rich cream, possesses a creamy texture, displays a micro-pitting surface and has admirable persistence. An impressive amount of lace complete a very nice appearance.

The aroma is chock full of juicy hops, Amarillo especially (sweet orange-grapefruit hop juice is the tip-off). Amarillo is in my top three, and may just be my favorite hop, but the rest of the hop bill is no slouch either: Cascade, East Kent Goldings, Fuggles and Magnum. I'm not sure that all five were necessary, but I'm not complaining because Rye Pale Ale smells much too good. I don't appreciate any rye in the nose, but then that'd be surprising in such a hoppy beer.

Delicious! A bedrock malt structure imparts body, sweetness and little actual flavor. In other words... it's perfect. There's an impressive amount and quality of hop flavor in this beer. It isn't hoppy enough to turn off initiates (although my hop tolerance is so skewed by now that I could be way off base), but is hoppy enough to satisfy the majority of hopheads.

The flavor profile is rich, deep and multi-faceted, consisting primarily of bittersweet citrus and sugary pine. It doesn't have the bright hoppiness of some IPAs, nor the brassy bottom end hoppiness of most DIPAs, but a good middle range, mellow yet forceful, satisfying flavor that is hitting the spot right now. I still love my Amarillo, but perhaps using five varieties of hops (and five varieties of malt) wasn't such a squirrely idea after all.

Try as I might, I can't really discern the rye in this beer. There may be a little rye spiciness on the finish, but without the knowledge that malted rye was used, I would most likely have never been able to appreciate it (I love the idea of rye in beer and wish more brewers would use it, but unless a significant amount is used in a hoppy beer such as this, it doesn't make much sense). The body/mouthfeel is medium to slightly more full with a lush smoothness that is more apparent because of the low level of carbonation.

Terrapin Rye Pale Ale is a very good beer that possesses most of my favorite IPA qualities. It may not be for everyone, but I love it and wish I had a case at this very moment. And a second one for tomorrow. The terrapin/tortoise/turtle won the race, didn't he? A big Thank You to aracauna for providing.

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Photo of Backer2004
2.95/5  rDev -22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

After the bartender told me my first five choices were out, I figured this local brew would be available. Much more of a rye than an IPA, that is a bit overwhelming to the palate and nose. nice color, lacing, and carbonation, like it came from the brewery that day. A bit too havy after a long session of different beers. May be more drinkable if this was my first. Wouldn't mind trying some other Terrapin brews next time I'm in Athens.

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Photo of doubleipa
4.42/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Really should be categorized as a Rye Pale Ale, rather than an American PA, even though was judged as PA at GABF. Anyway, I think the on-tap version has a better mouthfeel and a much more pronounced rye taste and smell than the bottled version. This is one of our favorite every day beers as my wife and I both love hoppy beers. Definite grapefruit and pine smell. Pours a gold/pale amber with an off-white head. Minimal lacing.

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Photo of dgallina
4.34/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a cloudy golden straw color with medium creamy off-white head. The head dissipates quickly, leaving a sheen and moderate lace. Smells quite green, fresh, and hoppy, with grapefruit, a bit of rye, and a touch of mint. Taste begins with sweet malts, develops lots of bitter grapefruit hop coarseness, and finishes with a slightly minty and spicy rye-bread twinge. Creamy and well-carbonated medium body. Extremely crisp, fresh, and refreshing!

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Photo of ElGordo
4.07/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly cloudy peachy golden hue with a thin, half-inch head that subsides after a couple of minutes. Very nice floral hoppy aroma, with a tad of astringency. Palate is well-balanced, with fruity (grapefruit) hops melding with a light sweet malt. The rye acts to increase the bitterness towards the back of the mouth, leaving a slightly bitter aftertaste. Mouthfeel is nice and substantial, but slightly foamy. I could drink this all night. A great session beer.

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Photo of ngandhi
3.62/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Quaffable hop juice with little structure. Where are the resins? The rye, I guess, is interesting with a moderate fruitiness in the medium bodied malt to complement the citric hops. I.P.A.s are often aggressive and rye beers even more so, so I naturally expected a punch here. Instead, Terrapin Rye P.A. is about as inoffensive and crowd-pleasing as possible.

This is a basic American pale pizza ale and I don't hold that against Terrapin -- we might have misclassified it here; the brewery website markets this as an APA. It's my own fault that the "RyePA" name makes me think it's an IPA just because it rhymes. More importantly, though, they claim rye and I just don't see the point. It adds rather nice color, but there's nothing spicy about it or the unadventurous hops.

Relax, relax.

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Photo of blitz134
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an edit on 3/14/2006 to my original review made on 11/29/2004. This is much more representative of my current thoughts on this one.

Poured clear orange with a small amount of whitish head that disappeared pretty quickly. I prefer a bit more head...who doesn't. Smell was very inviting, the typical slightly fruity/flowery with piney accents. A nice aromatic blend.

Nicely hoped brew that isn't over the top, very well balanced overall. The flavor has an initial hit of grapefruit followed by the piney flavors indicated by the aroma. Finishes a bit dry from the rye. The rye works well with the hop profile. I like a dry finish in a pale ale that has some piney accents.

Good mouthfeel. Highly quaffable brew and my general session beer in Atlanta. This is what I usually pick up on tap when I'm not at a good beer bar.

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Photo of Higravity
4.57/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this beer at the Wild Goose brewery in MD where it is made under-contract for the Terrapin company.

Great beer if you like a well-balanced hoppy beer this is it. A beutiful smell of what I am guessing is some low IBU citrus hops. Has a grapefruity, citrus, piney smell that all hopheads love. The rye comes through in the taste but only as a plater to serve the juicy hops. It balances well with a medium body and I could drink this all day long and it wouldn't get old.

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Photo of SetarconeX
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

What a beer! And to think, I didn't even know Georgia did anything but Coca-cola...

There's a complexity to this one I didn't quite expect. Most noticably, this beer has a nice, robust hoppiness. That alone would be enough to recommend it, but after you've had a few sips of it, you begin to taste the rye.

And that makes all the difference. A bit of rye, underneath the already strong hops. Lovely beer.

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Photo of FormatKid
4.37/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Glad to see this beer in bottles because I enjoyed it so much when I got to try it from the tap. Even if I had to be in Atlanta to take some home.

I poured this one out into a standard tumbler pint glass. The body is an orangish shade of amber, and slightly hazy. The head starts out somewhat robust but falls rather quickly into a thin cap of foam. Sparse bottle-conditioned carbonation stumbles languidly to the top of this beer to support it.

I love the smell on this beer, crisp with a variety of hop smells. Big citrus rind and tangerine scent, smells of pine as well. The malt is solid and sweet smelling but seems to be softened up a little bit by the rye.

I’ve noticed some reviews mention that this is a lot harsher in bottled form. I don’t pick up on that myself. Possibly the initial batches were rushed out without proper time for conditioning. Initially the malts play mildy sweet and smoothly across my palate. As it crosses the middle of my tongue it seems to become a bit more tangible in it’s malt flavor. Next the hop flavors run the full circle, citrus, tangerine, pine, and grassy flavors. It finishes crisp and refreshing with just the teeny-tiniest hint of dryness. Not a single off or out of line flavor crosses my tongue from this magical little beer. The mouthfeel is a tad thin and the carbonation is very soft.

This beer is robustly hoppy, yet it still possesses a sense of mildness and balance. A beautiful thing and probably my favorite southern brewed beer. Much respect to Terrapin Beer Co. for this masterpiece.

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Photo of garthwaite
3.77/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled from a 12 oz bottle. Pours a light orange with a minimal head that dissolved to nothing within minutes. Nice hoppy aroma of pink grapefruit & grassy hop flowers. Sweet & relatively substantial malt baseline attempts to balance this well hopped ale. Moderate bitterness with lemony citrus hops in the flavor. Medium bodied, but seemed a bit undercarbonated. Finished clean & crisp, this hopped up pale is extremely drinkable.

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Photo of rajendra82
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very similar to the on-tap offering, but with the yeast filtered out. The taste is bit less hoppy, and mouthfeel a tad creamier. The bottled version allows more of the malt to shine through, but overall, the hops are still in the driver's seat here. With bottles widely available at the local package stores, we Georgians have our trade bait now.

A really attracive bottle design by the way. I see a great future ahead for Terrapin Beer Company.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.45/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A dark, orange amber brew with a nice white head that lasts for a bit, and leaves decent lacing on my glass as well. The aromas are awesome. I smell rye bread, fresh, oily hops, a few spicy hop notes, and some citrus fruits 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!

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Photo of rabidawg
4.17/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Crystal-clear copper with above-average carbonation. Medium white head and sheets of lacing.

Smell: Absolutely incredible. When cold, hops dominate in a serious way. Very citrusy and floral with grapefruit from the Cascades, orange-citrus-cannabis from the Amarillo, and big juicy Centennial notes. Rye aroma creeps in as it warms, but is never the focal point of the aroma, instead adding complexity and enjoyment. Nice malt canvas for the hop masterpiece.

Taste: Crisp and dry, with very nice hop flavor. I'd call this a pale ale along the lines of SNPA in terms of bitterness, but with more character. Rye addition gives a nice full body and a distinct dryness overall. Finishes crisp and dry, with fresh-baked Jewish rye bread lingering on and vying with the hop remainder for attention. Excellent.

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Photo of WetCoaster
3.72/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well, this doesn't happen too often: I opened my front door and lo and behold, there was a sixer of this sitting there. Wha? Turns out my neighbor knows one of the brewers and brought some back for my "expert" opinion.

Appearance: Pours a deep gold/pale amber with a small, rocky slightly off-white white head. Fair retention and no lacing. Fine active carbonation.

Smell: Powerful wave of green apple yeast esters with booming hops; pine and citrus come through. Very little, if any, malt sweetness or rye spice.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Hoptastic. The labeling says there are five kinds hops; I'd guess cascade, chinook, cascade, cascade and... oh... cascade. There is a huge piney, peppery hop spice. At the finish, there is a slight hint of caramel malt and rye wheatiness, but they barely register. The mouthfeel is light to medium with a good bit of hop oil. Dry finish. Pepper lingers long into the aftertaste.

Drinkability: Light, great hop flavor--I'll finish them off with no complaints.

A quandry, this. If this beer were a straight IPA, I'd give it mad props. But the whole selling point of this beer is its unique "RyePA" identity. In that sense, it's a bit of a letdown. I like the concept, but there's just far too much weight on the hops; the rye is all but wasted. Tasty, but a bit pointless; it's "WhyPA?"

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Photo of Southernbrew
3.8/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Orange-gold with a medium head.

Light citrus aroma, smells like an IPA, I don't really know if rye has a smell.

Medium body, crisp feel. Good carbonation, very fitting. Citrus flavors mix with a light spiciness and a slightly oily feel.

Very good beer. Easy to drink and an interesting IPA-like brew.

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Photo of aracauna
4.45/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Great big sprucey hops. Wet head clings to the glass. I guess this is what they mean by a sticky head. Nice burst of flavor from the hops followed by the malt, the rye makes an interesting character. The finish is a nice lingering hop bitterness. Perfect match for a good pizza. This is such a great beer. Sweetwater IPA just lost the ranking as my favorite GA beer.

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Terrapin Rye Pale Ale from Terrapin Beer Company
Beer rating: 3.78 out of 5 with 1,819 ratings