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Wytchmaker Rye IPA | Jester King Brewery

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Wytchmaker Rye IPAWytchmaker Rye IPA

Brewed by:
Jester King Brewery
Texas, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This version of Wytchmaker has been permanently supplanted by the farmhouse version - http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/24018/74714

Added by ckeegan04 on 10-27-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 132 | Ratings: 262
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
1.78/5  rDev -54.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Over carbonated pour, lots of head gushing everywhere. Amber colored beer, actually left a decent amount of lace, but how could it not with that much bursting from the seams. Aroma, a little rye, almost no hops, not pleasant by any stretch of the imagination.

Taste, damn, all or most of the carbonation is gone. Definitely more akin to an English rye ipa than anything made in America. I realize its from Texas, so I'll cut them some slack, since I can't think of anything hoppy from there, and they're usually a few years/decades behind curves and trends. Pretty much a rye malt bomb that is pretty flat by the time it settles down.

Out of over 100 different beers during the March Madness tasting, this one was my vote for absolute worst, and even at that, I think it made everyone's bottom 5.

Not good.

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Photo of ReyG006
2.4/5  rDev -38.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A- Brownish and bubbly! Pours a giant frothy head, lacing is very patchy.

S- Rye, spicy and a belgian pale esque.

M- Has a very carbonated feel to it.

T- The rye is strong and lingers throughout the beer and then some, and there is lots of it. Spices are a strong component of this beer as well. As the beer warms the faintest hint of hops come in at the finish, I feel that the rye/spice completely washes them out otherwise.

O- This one left me burping quite a bit. Doesn't taste like an ipa to me, the rye is a bit over done imo. I've had a few rye ipa's and pales but I definitely would not recommend this one.

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Photo of bisonkron
2.53/5  rDev -35.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: The color is a great deep golden color. Cloudy, 1 inch head with long retention.

S: The rye really pops here. The hops are nice and grassy. Sweet smelling too.

T: The rye really pops out in the taste as well. Its got a hop kick to it, but nothing spectacular. Sweet. muted overall.

M: Light carbonation, a little watery in mount-feel. slight silkiness which i like.

O: Won't really grab this one again if there is anything decent on tap.

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Photo of smakawhat
2.69/5  rDev -31%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

ooop.. didn't realize they were not making this anymore. I am not seeing any bottle dating. Poured into a nonic pint glass.

Overly carbonated head which is off white actually forms very uniform but too much. Styrofoamy consistency and very large bubbles. Body color is a chestnut brown amber, kind of opaque and lifeless. Laces well when it takes forever to settle down.

Nose feels fairly spiced rye malt going, clean with a noticeable pine push. Is that brett I smell? Mushy over ripe sense of sour orange bitter slightly. Not too bad, but I am wondering where this is going?

Palate is incredibly sharp and jagged. Tin and metallic tasting rye spice, and a very fleeting palate. Body is very weak and wet with virtually no finish except some faint tobasco quick hot hop sense. Heavily fizzy also matching the appearance and greatly exaggerating the metal and ferrous angle.

Overall it starts off tolerable, but as it continues it becomes more and more undrinkable. This didn't get it done for me, seems like a strange saison hybrid more than anything.

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Photo of drewone
2.74/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pour into snifter, but than shift to pint glass. On the neck of the bottle are 190 11, 15 30 L

High carbonation. Hear it at opening and pours a huge frothy head - settles after a minute or two.

Nice deep golden color, some haze.

Smell is totally disappointing - very little hops (is this a older bottle and they have just faded? - I know they just arrived in CA within the last week or 2, but...) Overwhelmed by a smell that is yeasty? reminds me of home brew - the less successful batches.

Smell effects the taste - if I don't breath I enjoy the taste. Again very little hops - rye is very dominate (which is nice) and so is the yeast. Ends with a spiciness - nice.

Mouth feel reminds me of a triple.

Def disappointed - had high hopes, great label - not sure what to make of this - bad/old bottle or just not what i was thinking it was going to be?.

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Photo of BrewerB
2.91/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

miikezombie hooked me up with this beer in a recent trade. Had sampled it at GABF but didn't have an opportunity to fully review it.

Pouring into an SF Beer Week tulip. Opening the bottle yielded a louder than normal 'pfft' tipping its hand to a well-carbonated brew. Generous amount of off-white foam persists atop a hazy medium-orange. Foam eventually begins spewing out of the bottle like a volcano.

Aroma includes citrus, pine needles, spices. Slight honey-like sweetness.

Floral hops combining with a light cinnamon spice. Moderately bitter.

Light in body with a moderate high to high level of carbonation.

With the extra levels of carbonation, light body, and unique malt/hop profile I'm not sure this beer fits well into the IPA style. That said, as it's classified as such, I'm rating it according to style. A decent tasting beer but nowhere near a good IPA.

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Photo of kscaldef
2.99/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml received in a trade with tjmodica, couldn't find any date on the bottle.

A: Ridiculous head. Poured into an imperial pint glass, I got about 1/3 beer and 2/3 head, even pouring down the side. Lots of active bubbles. Once the head finally recedes, there's nice lacing remaining.

S: Not a whole lot of hops aroma, mostly earthy and spicy with just a tiny bit of tropical fruit.

T: Nice malty complexity from the rye: earthy, a little sweet. Not much of a hop note here either, other than a grassy mild bitterness.

M: Slightly bitter, a bit astringent and mouth-coating. Not as much carbonation apparent in the mouthfeel as the head and bubble might have suggested.

O: A decent beer, but didn't wow me. Kinda wondering about the age of this bottle as I'm not getting much of the notes I'd expect from the hops bill.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.06/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle shared by Thorpe429. Thanks Mike!

The beer is light orange with a thin, white head that leaves some decent lacing on the glass. The aroma brings hops, malt, and various spices. The flavor brings a slighty off putting sulfur ethanol taste. The rye component is there, but gets overshadowed by spices, off flavors, and a dank, musty character. The finish is rather dry. Overall, I found this brew to be mediocre.

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Photo of HardTarget
3.12/5  rDev -20%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Four fingers of head on the first pour, while the rest of the bottle went slow motion gusher on the counter. Very over carbonated. Once the foam settled to a liquid, it was light amber with thick yellow edges. Foam left plenty of lacing, but the first impression wasn't great.

Smell: Powdery, perfumed, and a little under-attenuated. Little bit of the rye comes through the leafy hops and English yeast.

Taste: A mild total package for everything that's going on. Hops are there but aren't strong or bitter. The malt tastes a little worty, with the earthy rye playing it's part. The package comes across as more English than American IPA, although the hops flavors are more citric than earthy.

Mouthfeel: After all the dramatics of the gush, the beer is fairly low carbonized, bordering on flat. Body is medium and slightly oily.

Overall: My first taste of JK, and given they just won a lawsuit v. the TABC, I'm inclined to like them a lot. Unfortunately, this beer doesn't give me a lot to work with in sharing the love. I got a full 4 fingers of foam on the second pour as well, and the bottle managed to gush twice on me. I think it was bottled under-attenuated letting the yeast continue to feast. A little scary as it can lead to bottle bombs.
Hoping for better results in the Stout.

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Photo of Lunch
3.16/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750ml bottle courtesy of the Counselor Thorpe429, thanks Mike!

Poured into my goddamn Jester King snifter as I will drink this beer out of no other vessel. Looks a bit dark for an IPA, but I'll attribute that to the rye. Smells malty with some earthy hops, but knowing that this bottle is pretty fresh is a real disappointment to me. Smell is balanced as is the taste. Rye is certainly there, but where the fuck are the hops? Mouthfeel is perhaps a touch thick, but I like it.

Best part of this was the bottle art, but this is certainly a drinkable beverage.

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Photo of youradhere
3.18/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours clear bright amber, thick ample white head. Smell is citrus and pineapple, some pine. Taste is apple, some slight pine, floral notes, really muted and subdued, almost like a weak juice. Mouthfeel is slick and slippery, carbonation is medium and prickly. Overall not really impressed, a decent English bitter at best but not an IPA in the sense that most are used to. Decent beer none the less.

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Photo of JonathanCrites
3.2/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had this on tap at the Flying Saucer in Houston.

A - Poured a very dark copper. Was dark in the bar but it almost looked like a black/Cascadian IPA.

S - Lots of hop aroma, mostly pine and green grass smells with a little bit of rye coming through.

T - Hops carry through from the aroma into the taste. Hops are strong all the way through with a little balance from the rye. I love rye ales and wished it came through a little more in this ale.

M - Clean mouthfeel, medium body and a clinging hop finish.

D - Good drinkable IPA, I wish it could have a little more of the rye.

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Photo of maximum12
3.22/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks again to smithjl10 for sending me a box full of rye, which included this attractive little number. 750 ML bottle with, I must say, a very nice label. Two tulips readied for beer.

The pop tops with an explosion that would do a rocketry hobbyist proud. Putting down the opener is a mistake: the foam bubbles out the top like a rabid Old Yeller. The pour is time-consuming. Pour. Wait for head to fall. Pour. Rinse & repeat. Eventually, I do get to enjoy the beer. Reddish orange, & did I mention the head? Wildly overcarbonated. Nose brings orange, citrus, & a dry breadiness. Hops are stronger than expected. Wytchmaker Rye IPA hides the saison behind it’s back. But it arrives in the taste, a mild but insistent character that is hard to define: funky, but barely, maybe hay, definitely farmish. The hops so apparent in the nose are barely visible; pine & citrus, kind of. Rye is subdued too, faintly bready & spicy in the back. Lots of quiet mixed together to produce a whisper. Easy to sip. Overcarbonated.

Overall this isn’t quite what I hoped. The rye is standing next to invisible, the hops are in hiding, & all that’s left is a vague impression of faint saison. If it weren't for the distinctive label I'd swear this was the farmhouse version. Just OK

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Photo of kbutler1
3.3/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle. Thanks to Caleb. Really cool and creepy label all at the same time. Poured a slightly murky copper amber color with a light tan head. Sweet apricot and orange notes in the nose. Really don’t pick up any rye at all. Light mouthfeel with carbonation. Slightly sweet start with citrus and a touch of tropical fruit notes. I like the aroma better than the taste. The light mouthfeel to me isn’t all that appealing.

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Photo of jmarsh123
3.31/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours a light copper/gold with a big creamy off-white head. This one gushed a bit.

Citrus/lemon with a touch of spiciness which I'm assuming is from the rye.

Starts off with a slight citrus flavor with a little subtle spiciness throughout. Finishes bitter and dry.

Mouthfeel is too light. Carbonation levels are good, but the mouthfeel detracts.

Flavors are ok, but nothing special. A bit thicker body and they may come through a bit better. Nothing off about this one, just nothing great either.

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Photo of peacebone116
3.32/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the 750-mL bottle into a tulip. (Number on the pic of the barrel is 0008022.) Bottle actually lists the brew at 6.8%, 1.0625 OG.

A: Hazy dark copper body with prolific, soapy head.

N: Citrus and sour-apple...like old homebrew.

T/M: The taste is good with lots of citrus and pine notes (but they are somewhat faded...not sure if this is an older bottle). Their is the taste of wild yeast, like funky homebrew, with this one. I do not really pick up any of the rye flavor. This beer is dry with a light to medium mouthfeel with heavy carbonation.

Overall, I understand that this is a bottle conditioned beer and that I may have an older version of what should be an IPA. But, I am just not that stoked with this beer. The hop flavors are good, the body is where it should be, but the yeast really took off and is a bit wild here. The beer is very carbonated and prickly on the tongue.

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Photo of zeff80
3.33/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a cloudy, orange/bronze color with a huge foamy head. It was foaming over. It left sudsy trails of lace when it finally receded.

S - It smelled strongly of rye and spices. Some bready malt aromas.

T - It tasted of peppery spices and rye. Bready malt and some caramel. It was kinda all over the place.

M - It was crisp, sharp and a smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is an okay IPA. It seemed a little unbalanced with the rye.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.35/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to xpimptastikx for this one. Poured from a 750ml capped bottle into Lost Abbey stemware. Reviewed from notes.

A: Standard pour yields a .5 finger coarse, white, and slightly powdery head with decent retention. Beer is a clear orange. Lacing is stringy, patchy, and web-like with great cling. Attractive.

S: Pine, sap, and grassy hoppiness with a slight balance of cane sugar. Moderately aromatic and very clean and crisp. Appropriate for the style with a very pure scent.

T: Citrus and pine hop bitterness at the start with some slight caramel and cane sugar malt sweetness coming in towards the middle for balance. Sap and pine hop finish with a similar aftertaste. Good flavor but pretty pedestrian and a bit muted overall.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth in the mouth with some nice crisp bubbles here and there. Oily and silky going down. Finish is dry and with a sticky aftertaste. I'd appreciate a bit more carbonation for the style but this is solid.

O: My first offering from Jester King doesn't dissapoint. This is an overall very solid IPA that more than holds its own in such a flooded category. Worth a try.

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Photo of chicano4craft
3.35/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to slimchill for the chance to try this one.

Pours a copper,amber color with a hugh head. The sudsy white head was half my glass and took forever to settle. It actually became quite comical.

Nose is pretty subtle. Some earthiness from the rye. Spice and suprisingly yeasty. Oxidation? Kind of disappointing considering the recipe.

Taste is a let down. Some rye comes across with a dry bitterness. Hops and rye don't contribute anything distinctive, I just know their there.

Mouthfeel isn't good. Overcarbonated with a tongue raking dry finish.

Overall...I wanted to like this beer but couldn't find a reason. Oh well,still a cool label.

So after i posted my review the guys from Jester King contacted me and offered to send me a new bottle. How cool is that! he second bottle was exactly what I was hoping for. Mouthfeel was much better and allowed the rye to do it's part. I've changed my scoring to reflect the second bottle.

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Photo of ghostwalker
3.4/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I wonder if this may be a bit infected. Head is just too, too much. Not falling off at all, but growing to do a slow motion explode from the bottle neck. I had to fill a second glass to avoid a huge mess. Cloudy orange-red-brown body.

Nose is tart rye and malt. Not getting as many hops as I expected. No serious infection evident in the nose, though there is a bit of funk. Maybe this is drinkable after all.

Flavor is actually pretty good. The rye spicyness is there. The finish is tart and I guess you could call it citrusy, but I would say it's a one-dimensional bitterness without the desirable characteristics I look for in my favorite types of hops. Tasty, but I was hoping for more. Ruthless Rye is better.

Mouthfeel is the strongest category for this one. Effervescent, zesty, palate scouring.

Overall it's OK. It's good, not great. The bad points I noted above keep me from wanting more. Here's hoping I have a better experience with Black Metal.

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Photo of crusian
3.46/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Original rating: 4, 4, 2, 2, 2 D+

Pint from the Meddlesome Moth in Dallas... reviewing from my notes, so apologies for the shortness.

pours a darker amber color with a 2 finger head, man I wish they would learn how to pour a pint here.
heavy cascade on the nose, about smacks me in the face.
tastes like hop pellets... seems like they are trying too hard with this one. Too much. Not saying it is too hoppy, just saying that there were too many pellets used... I think they may want to try some extract on this one, as the mouthfeel was overly thick and has the grainy pellet feel/taste to it. Maybe this keg was one of the last filled?

Edit: review from bottle from local shop.
Pours with 2 fingers of head , nice dark amber color. Not much on the nose... the aroma hops were beautiful on the batch 1 Tap, but not so much anymore. Glad they fixed the recipe though, taste is MUCH better. Bit of sweetness on the front end, nice rye in the middle and bitter finish. With the hop profile, it is more mouth puckering bitter than I expected, but not overwhelmingly so. Makes me wonder when it was brewed/bottled. Did this sit a while waiting for approval? This has all my favorite hops, but none of the aroma of them. If anything I smell the warrior hops, and that's about it.
Nice mouthfeel, overall they have improved for sure. Went from a D+ for me to a B- the grittiness is definitely gone... but seems not that fresh to me...

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Photo of drabmuh
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Thorpe, I'm a sucker for rye IPAs, very excited about this one.

Beer has a head to it, big white head that rests on a hazy amber beer. Some lacing, carbonation moderate to low.

Aroma should be hoppier but after some consideration I find some citrus hop character in there a mix with the malt bill aromas. I hope it's not too heavy.

Light on flavors, especially in the hop department, could have gone more aggressive with such a pronounced malt bill, could have gotten away with more hop flavor. The hops that are there are citrusy and the bitterness is mild. There is an interesting malt bill overall but it ends a little astringently.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.51/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to wagenvolks for getting a fresh bottle of this out my way. Served in a Captain Lawrence tulip.

Pours a medium golden color with a tall, tall white head. Good stability and retention time, and then really great lacing as it falls down. The nose brings some light caramel with a bit of floral and citrus character. Light hops, but what's there is nice. The taste is similar but pulls back further. There's some floral notes and a bit of light spice on top of a bready body. Medium body and a nice bitter and spicy finish. Not super awesome, but glad to try this.

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Photo of GrumpyJunglist
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle poured into a duvel tulip

A: pours a dark murky brown color, with an incredible amount of head on this one, and it takes forever for this one to settle down.

S: Smells kind of funky, no real big hop scent present, its there but subtle along with a little rye aroma.

T: Rye up front, a little spice, with a hop aftertaste that lingers.

M: for all the head on this beer its not overly carbonated taste wise, actually kind of smooth.

O: The beer was pretty good, but my god the massive amount of head on this beer was annoying, it overflowed my glass twice.

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Photo of vickersspitfire
3.57/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very strong hop aromas, lots of citrus fruits like orange grape fruit and spice aromas are very present. It has a very thick tan head, its bubbly and last quite a long time, its body is a dark copper/amber color and is very hazy with lots of carbonation; lots of lacing. It’s crisp when it first hits your mouth and it has a heavy mouth feel to it. It bitter and the hops are present but not overwhelming. It’s very spicy and really warms up your tongue. There’s a slight hop flavor in the aftertaste, but the alcohol is hidden very well.

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Wytchmaker Rye IPA from Jester King Brewery
3.9 out of 5 based on 262 ratings.
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