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Rye Hopper | French Broad Brewing Co.

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very good
135 Reviews
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Rye HopperRye Hopper

Brewed by:
French Broad Brewing Co.
North Carolina, United States

Style: Rye Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ncvbc on 09-22-2008

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 135 | Ratings: 244
Photo of mikereaser
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear brown with some nice soapy bubbles on the surface. The aroma is a nice mix of the rye, some floral hops, some lemon and some spiciness. Taste is mostly rye with a nice touch of floral hops. Bready with some light spiciness as well. The mouthfeel is pretty light and thin, almost a dry finish with the rye coming back in the finish pretty strong. I'm not a big fan of rye beers, but this one is very drinkable.

 423 characters

Photo of BeerDawgs
3.15/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - A deep copper, with some head and lace retention.

S - Amber and rye. Slight tabacco

T - Sweet, malty, maybe a little touch of bourbon? Definitely has some alcohol up front at the finish, which is surprising for an under 6% brew

M - Full bodied, lots of carbonation

O - An average rye beer.

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Photo of indiapaleale
4.2/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rye Hopper pours a much darker amber color than I was expecting. I guess I pictured a lighter rye ale, but this one is almost brown in appearance with some lighter shades of yellow and orange. The head is big and thick and slightly off white in color. Looks good!

The aroma is excellent. Lots of toasty, bready malt along with a good dose of fresh, piney hops, a bit of tobacco as well as some nice spiciness to round it out. Plenty of great stuff going on in the nose of this beer.

This is one flavorful beer. Wow. Lots of sweet malt up front combines well with the spiciness that the rye imparts. After that is a nice dose of piney, resiny hops and a touch of smokiness seems to come in as well. My tongue is dry but asking for more. Plenty of depth with this beer, I really, really like it.

Letting this one breathe a bit really brings out the flavors of this beer. If you like hops and you like what rye can do for beer, this is one you won't want to miss.

 964 characters

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

From BSP.

Served in a pint glass. Dark copper, mostly clear but a slight bit of haze. Nice little whitish head fades quickly.
Nose is hoppy. Not much of the rye there.
Taste is spicy rye, interweaving pine hops and malts, and more lingering bready rye. Nice combination of flavors.
Pretty decent mouthfeel and drinkability. Nice beer.

 335 characters

Photo of PhillyStyle
2.86/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bottle
5.9% abv
59 ibu

The beer appeared a deep, dark red, very much not what I expected, but for the better. A small off-white head was produced that was not all that well retained.

The aroma was a nice toasted rye aroma and a hint of hops, but overall, the aroma was lighter than expected.

The taste was extremely, overly bitter and there was not much rye flavor at all. Definitely reminded me of a DIPA.

The beer had a nice body to it, medium body with good carbonation.

Drinkability suffers from the bitterness. The beer also had a dry bitter aftertaste. Overall, it appears that I should give this beer another shot based on the other reviews.

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Photo of kimcgolf
3.87/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours from the bomber to a hazy copper-orange with thin off-white head that lingers well and leaves okay lacing. Aroma is mostly hoppy citrus and floral, with a hint of malty caramel. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, slightly tingly and just a shade bitter. Taste picks up the fruits of the nose and throws in a little toffee sweet malt. Finish is a fairly long, well rounded blend of the hops and malts. A nice from a new (for me) brewer.

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Photo of tastybeer
3.68/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not a bad looking brew. Woody auburn color topped by an initially large tan, finely bubbled head. Aroma is of decomposing leaves, wood, mulch mixed with cocoa, orange pulp, sweet grain and spice. Taste is interesting. Earthy cocoa + mulch, root veggies (perhaps beets and/or potatoes), rye tartness, and a little caramel. Texture is slippery smooth, undisturbed by the extra fine carbonation. All the while, various flavors slide around within a medium body. The slickness makes this go down very easy, leaving the the mouth thinly coated.

This is an interesting brew. A nice change of pace from the all the IPAs I've been drinking lately.

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Photo of wcudwight
4.01/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Amber in color with no head and no lacing. This could be more from the pour than the beer itself.
Nice aroma of earthy hops and rye.
Sweet caramel malt backbone with a healthy dose of rye. The hops are more subdued than expected given the name of the beer. But they are there and of the earthy variety. This beer is more rye heavy than hop heavy imo.
Mouthfeel is medium with a bit more sharpness from the rye which I like.
Overall it's a good beer that you should give a try if you have the chance.

 499 characters

Photo of jjayjaye
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy tea color with a nice foamy light tan head that fades fairly quickly leaving spotty patterns of Belgian lacing. The smell is an easily recognizable though timid peppery rye grain. Lightly carbonated, the mouth feel is medium bodied. Full flavored the peppery taste combine for a lively experience that finishes on the dry side. A really nice drinker and at less that 6% ABV its quite a session beer.

 414 characters

Photo of pwoods
3.94/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to JCB for this extra.

22oz. brown bomber poured into an imperial pint.

A: Pours a deep coppery amber, somewhat opaque. About a finger worth smooth head forms and holds a bit of retention. Good lacing.

S: Lots of spicy rye. Some hops come through past the rye, maybe a bit piney. Some sweetness. Really, rye dominant.

T/M: Again, lots of rye. A pleasant light sweetness from some toffee comes out, tasty. A bit nutty as well. Hops are not too big at all... not enough to be called 'hopper', that's for sure. There is a touch of bitterness as well as a bit of pine and some grassy/pollen-y hops. Body is medium to medium full and smooth and creamy.

D: Label says 5.9% ABV, about what I would have guessed. Drinkable with plenty of flavor.

 749 characters

Photo of PDXHops
3.93/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into a Duvel tulip. Kind of a copperish dark amber topped with a creamy head that's modest in size but tenacious. Plentiful streaky and splotchy lacing.

The huge rye presence in the nose works quite well with the dry and roasty malt profile. Just a hint of toffeeish sweetness. Tastes pretty much as advertised, absolutely loaded with rye that coats and lingers. It's powerful enough to limit drinkability a bit, but this is tasty stuff. Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Between the rye, the dry malt profile and the assertive pine bitterness, this stuff is downright puckering. Kind of a popcorn kernel taste in there.

Overall impression: Fans of rye should definitely seek this one out.

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Photo of alpinebryant
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark colored copper with a strong healthy light tan head.

Aroma of rich caramel, rye malt and pale malt. Nice earthy finish in the nose.

Taste is very good. This is not to be compared to some other Rye IPA's as that is not the style. For some reason I had thought it was going to be along that flavor profile. Instead there is a healthy dosing of rye, Lots of caramel flavors, earthy pale malt backbone and a subtle American Pale Ale hop flavor profile. Dry to the finish, this is a well balanced beer. Finish is very earthy and highly quaff able.

Light to medium body, high carbonation.

Overall a very tasty Rye Beer.

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Photo of M_C_Hampton
3.74/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass, dark amber brownish with a short tan light head that dissipates leaving little lacing, clear

S: spicey pepper from the rye, pine hops

T: nice rye presence without being overpowering, peppery and bready with a crisp hop finish, bitter pine resin at the end

M: thinner with lower carbonation

O: rye is present but not outlandish, balanced well with the hops but neither flavor is powerful

 439 characters

Photo of elgiacomo
4.02/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottled June 21, 2010.

Pours clear copper/amber with a one finger white head that quickly fades to a small foamy island and ring, but does leave some nice lacing.

Rye bread is heavy on the nose with a good deal of citrus, earthy, grassy, floral hops, a little caramel and toffee, good strength.

Flavor features strong grapefruit hops, a little pine and earth, caramel, and a nice wave of rye bread in the middle with its inherent spiciness that meshes well with the bitterness from the hops on the finish. Very well balanced and quite robust and flavorful.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, medium to high carbonation, a bit oily.

Wow, this one exceeded expectations, right up there with the fantastic Red's Rye from Founders. The best French Broad brew I've had to date.

 780 characters

Photo of sommersb
3.55/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this on tap at the Corsair taproom in Nashville.

A clear, dark amber colored beer with a small white head. Very hoppy aroma with a citrus character. Taste is crisp and bitter with the rye and hops dominating over the malt backbone. Medium body that finished dry and bitter.

A good beer but probably not something I'd choose again.

 336 characters

Photo of BeerImmediately
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Picked up this 22oz while in TN over Christmas.

Pours with a creamy, off-white head... not something I would've expected. Body is a very cloudy, dirty-amber. Lots of lacing. Big points on all appearance levels, esp for the style and being under 6%.

Aromas are full of bitter rye, with some sweet candy alcohol to balance. Some butter leaf lettuce, touch of pumpernickel, and a finish of soap.

Flavor is very hop-forward. The mouthfeel is creamy, and relatively light/thin compared to most rye-focused beers. Flavors have lots of floral and herbal (tobacco) qualities, along with a white pepper bite. Great dose of rye malt.

I've been on a rye love affair for the past few months, with both beer and whiskey, so maybe my review is overinflated, but if you enjoy rye and all that it brings, give this one a try... very affordable, too.

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Photo of GPHarris
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a - poured a one finger thick off-white head into a snifter that left great lacing throughout. the body was a clear and bright amber color.
s - citrus, sweet malts, rye.
t - piney and citrusy hops with a bit of spice.
m - crisp and medium.
o - solid rye beer with a lot of hop punch.

 283 characters

Photo of SilentSabre
3.35/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nice looking orange bronze body with a finger and a half craggy, foamy head that falls to a spotty blanket of frost in about a minute or so; laces the sides of the glass nicely.
Smell is nice, being comprised of rye bread and sweet, citrusy hops. There's also a touch of caramel hiding deep down, but herbal / grassy nuances dominate this one.
Flavour, too, is rye and sweet, citrusy hops with a pleasantly bitter finish.
Mouthfeel is rather average being neither offensive or spectacular. Weight is about what one would expect from something in the 5%-ish range, and carbonation is just enough to give your mouth a very gentle tickle. Certainly not my style, but a decent beer nevertheless. I would imagine the IPA crowd would like this one.

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Photo of FanofHefe
3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber with no freshness dating that pours a clear, dark amber body with a one-finger light tan head. A small amount of lacing.

The aroma is akin to an APA with some grassy/piney hop notes and a little bready malt. I got a strong scent of the rye upon the first pour, but it faded very quickly.

The flavor follows the aroma closely with a touch more of the malt flavor present than in the aroma. I also get more of the rye flavor in the taste. Fairly well blended overall.

Light texture in the mouthfeel and relatively drinkable overall. Not a show-stopper, but a decent offerning.

 584 characters

Photo of brew3crew
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks urbancaver!

A-transparent amber with white head that sticks around for a while.
S-pleasantly hoppy with a slight bit of rye. Not too much of wither and nicely balanced
T-more rye than hops for a dry crisp finish. Wish it tasted more like it smelled, hence the dip in the ratings
M-medium bodied and crisp and clean finish. Really dry finish as well
D-OK but nothing too special

 385 characters

Photo of TheHoppiest
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass. pours a hazy golden-amber, with a 1/2" foamy creme-colored head that slowly reduces with decent retention along the sides. Got this, along with all my other Asheville, NC brews, from my sister and brother-in-law during Christmas. Thanks guys!

Has a hoppy, citrus smell, with a smokey malt backbone. There's an underlying leafy, almost peaty aroma as well.

Presents bitter, mildly lemony, and somewhat sweet, with a nice citrus profile. Somewhat grassy, this is a very pleasant session style beer.

Mild to medium bodied, with a lingering bitterness after it finishes.

Like many of the Asheville beers I've had, it is more timid than it need be. Still, I would happily put another down on a warm summer day on the beach!

 769 characters

Photo of ColdPoncho
4.09/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - medium clear amber body small boring white head.

S - rye and grapefruits. Good nose.

T - bitter. Citrus. A bit of spice and grapefruit. Nice tasting. Tastes along the lines of a rye ipa.

M- pretty smooth, medium bodied.

D - quite drinkable. Tasty. Good things.

 270 characters

Photo of ncvbc
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one is a brownish hue with amber and ruby shades. Minimal head and retention isn't the greatest. Smell is nice but not what I had expected from a beer with Hopper in the name. Bigger on the malts than anything. Some caramel, chocolate, and a distinct nutty scent. Very light to no hops present, though still very enticing. Taste is much of the same. Reminds me of the malt profile of many Catawba Valley brews. A definite malt presence. Oh so yummy chocolate and caramel malt. A good nutty flavor to compliment. A hoppy flavor shows up toward the finish but could have done wonders if used a bit more liberally. Of course, there is a light spicy flavor, though like the hops not as present as I had imagined. Still, very nice and interesting to say the least. Mouthfeel lacked the bitterness that again I had expected from the name alone. Smooth, good carbonation, though lacking a certain bitterness from the "hopper" in the name. I could have a couple, if not a few, pints of this. A good beer that just didn't live up to my hop head expectations. I still want to give it another go.

 1,090 characters

Photo of StlHopHead77
3.59/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark copper body supporting just over an inch of bone white foam that recedes relatively quickly leaving some thin rings of lacing.Aroma consists predominantly of herbal spiciness,brown bread,dirt weed and mild pine.Flavor profile contains strong tea leaf hoppiness,dull citrus,blonde tobacco,aspirin and sourdough.Mouthfeel is light/medium with a rough,edged hop bitterness and an almost tinny malt finish.Lightly resinous.Overall,a mediocre hoppy rye beer in my opinion.

 480 characters

Photo of Murchmac
4.3/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Chuck! This was the pick of the litter so far.

One finger foam head, orange, dark caramel almost, cloudy.

Fresh rye, earthyness, sweet candied smell.

Smooth, rye, sweet, hoppy, resinous, piney.


Excellent beer, go on, get it...

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Rye Hopper from French Broad Brewing Co.
3.84 out of 5 based on 244 ratings.
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