He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. | Shmaltz Brewing Company

1,997 Ratings
He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.

Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A Double India Pale Ale with Rye Malt brewed in tribute to Lenny Bruce (Leonard Alfred Schneider 1925-1966).

Added by mcallister on 06-07-2006

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 902 | Ratings: 1,997
Photo of mikeg67
4.4/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle. Pours dark amber with tall, long lasting, fluffy off-white head and nice lacing. Aroma is of caramel malt, citrusy hops and ripe fruit. Body is full and slightly crisp. Citrusy, herbal hops, caramel malt and tropical fruit fill the mouth. Finish is long, huge, and dry. Outstanding brew.

 307 characters

Photo of MonkeyboyATL
4.41/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Doesn't look like an IPA and I didn't get much of anything distinctive in tha aroma. Taste however, is fantastic. I understand that there can be a pretty wide range of taste within a particular style, but DIPA? Really? Not just an American strong ale? Oh well, awesome beer that you should definitely try. A sipper.

 316 characters

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

Very dark for an IPA with very little head. Tastes like dessert. Like brown sugar and tons of malt. I get how some feel this beer has barleywine qualities. Wish the hops stood out a little more prominently but still for all it is a fantastic brew.

 248 characters

Photo of Act25
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If you're celebrating Lenny Bruce, this RIPA (rest in peace ale/ rye IPA) is a tribute. It's dank, dirty and frank.
12oz bottle. A nice tribute to Lenny Bruce, he of the inspiration for so many of today's more edgy comics.

A) The beer pours a hazed, dark reddish amber color, with 2 fingers of thick, foamy, off-white head, which laces and lasts less for me than others.

S) Lenny has a big aura and aroma, it smells of acrid pine resin hops, bready, thick caramel malt, a bit of Belgian yeast, and a dank, cellar mystery along with the alcohol heat.

T) The taste equally big, with that dank, cellar dominating after a dry grapefruit hops, and dry pine woody start.
Brings a robust spiciness, from the rye, and bready caramel malt balanced by strong alcohol acrid pepper notes, like a bar drink, and finally, landing back in the cellar with a lingering dank hop bitterness.
F) The feel is balanced and big, with good creamy main notes, balanced by oily counter notes.

Crazy-big DIPA, thick, sticky, and a meditation beer. Let it dwell and warm.

 1,053 characters

Photo of acmurphy696
4.67/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a flavorful double IPA that I had been looking forward to. The aroma is nothing special, but I like the bitter rye taste although I wish there had been more balance to challenge that bitterness just a bit. Still, I like the way it felt on my tongue and I will definitely follow this purchase up.
P.S.: I just had my third Lenny's R.I.P.A., and I have to say it gets better with each sampling. Unbelievable.

 414 characters

Photo of snaotheus
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle served in a tulip. 20081634B20809 is printed along the bottom edge of the bottle, but I have no idea what it means or if it refers to the bottle or the beer. Given to me by @mr-jj.

Pours a ruby-brown, clear, with a medium head and lots of slow carbonation. In some ways, it looks a little like a barleywine. Smell is nearly undetectable to me right now, but I get something a little sweet.

Taste is true to name -- bittersweet rye. Rye spiciness with a nice level of roast makes a really nice complement to the bitter hops. Bitter hops come across somewhat vaguely or as pine or grapefruit rind.

Mouthfeel is smooth, maybe a tad still. Dry. Overall, quite pleased with the beer. With the aroma was more in your face.

 742 characters

Photo of HopsAreDaMan
4.68/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2013 12-oz bottle, purchased from Globe. Appearance is good; still some head. Really strong aroma of alcohol and dried fruits, and a bit of sweetness. The taste is amazing, due to strong flavor and many layers of complexity: dried fruits, sweetness, hop bitterness (amazing at 3 years old), perhaps brown sugar. Mouth-feel is very full, and creamy.

This is one of the best beer I have ever had. I can't wait to share it with others this holiday season!

 453 characters

Photo of puck1225
4.19/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Nice beige head and great lacing. Hoppy smell, floral and sweet. Taste is spicy rye, caramel and piney. Nice thick and sweet. Great!

 172 characters

Photo of Beerme124535
4.67/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

the flavor is wow.
The flavor starts off with quick sweetness then instant bitter hops but delicious
The look is dark with a light head
Smell is hoppy
Lots of alcohol but hidden very well
Sorry if I'm off it's my first review

 227 characters

Photo of FrothFanatic
4.88/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Flawless brew. Pours a deep bronze color very dark for an IPA very little head, lacing on the glass however is prevalent. Upon each drink you will see a nice stretch of lacing around the glass. Tastes like dessert for me, delicious. Tastes of brown sugar, sweet malty goodness and a strong note of rye bread accompanies the sweetness, perfectly balancing this brew. It's perfection.

10 out of 10, 5 out of 5, perfect brew.

 423 characters

Photo of nininik12
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smells like a loaf of doughy rye bread. Not as hoppy as some but not in a bad way. AT 10% ABV you wouldn't expect this one to be the smooth drinker that it is. Notes of toffee and caramel linger. A unique and memorable brew.

 224 characters

Photo of Biggiekrock627
2.34/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pass right by this beerif you see it unless you like the taste of stale rye bread dipped in bourbon....and i like both of these. The mouth feel is very heavy...again like eating too much bread.

 193 characters

Photo of fscottkey
3.7/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: [3.50] For an IPA this is dark. It is a medium brown color with some red hues. The beer has a minimal 1/4 finger tan cap of head. The bottle lists the ABV (10%). There is a date code but it makes no sense to me.

S: [3.50] I am getting more of a Wee Heavy scent profile. Some peat, some toffee and caramel. Nothing very hoppy. Maybe this is older?

T: [3.75] Follows the nose with caramel and toffee. It has a lot of candy like sweetness. There really is not much hop flavor to balance it out.

M: [4.00] Smooth with above medium body. There is no sense of the 10% alcohol. A tiny amount of bitter at the end.

O: [3.75] I am guessing this bottle is old. That being said this is still a tasty beer. Lots of nice malt to make the nose and the flavor pretty nice. I would like to have a fresher version to see how the profile is changed.

 854 characters

Photo of ByronDBeer
3.77/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: Dark dark copper, brown. No head.
S: Fresh hops, vanilla,
T: Malty with some hop cuts. Very strong vanilla/brown sugar, overpowering. Hint of rye but really not much, just vanilla for me.
MF: Medium, mostly forward on the tongue.

 234 characters

Photo of mchegash
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Deep red-orange, half a finger of beige head. Slightly clear.

S: Massive hoppiness. All sorts of things going on.

T: Lots of malts, lots of hops, delicious.

F: Medium-full body, moderate amount of medium-high intensity carbonation.

O: Great beer

 252 characters

Photo of dd43
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Increasingly, double IPAs try to jump through various hoops to either tame the bitterness, lighten up the mouthfeel, or quell the alcohol note. This beer from Schmaltz does none of those things. You had better go into this wanting a big ass resinous and bracing imperial or you will be sad you dove in.

Copper in color. Lots of carbonation supporting a pretty large light tan head. This recedes quickly and just leaves a foam ring as the beer leaves your glass. Big caramel and pine notes. BIG. Sticky, malty and bitter like you remember from the early double IPA days. The 10% alcohol is not fumey per se, but you're definitely not drinking this wondering where the booze is. Despite the big malt base the hops still manage to show up to the party and make a racket. I get some orange marmalade in the bouquet, and the first few sips when the head is still present lend a certain dreamsicle quality that I kinda dig. Pepper notes from the rye round out the earthy aspect of the malt base. This is a sipper, one you can crack right out of the fridge and spend a good half hour quaffing as it warms up. Enjoy responsibly!

 1,122 characters

Photo of beergoot
4.19/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Orange-copper colored body; an intense amount of fine carbonation; thick, chunky head. Big malt nose; a twinge of spiciness. Big malt sweetness to the flavor, too; subdued fruitiness; toasted grain; rye spiciness; strong hop bitterness. Heavy body.

Massive, malty, spicy, and bitter, all in one well-balanced package. Yepper...no joke about the this beautiful beast. It's just plain motherfuckin' good...

 405 characters

Photo of chrishiker1409
4.18/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: A rusty, dark brown. Pours with a finger of tan, white head. Lingers for a bit and recedes to rim of glass. Leaves plenty of lacing all the way down the glass.

S: Earthy, malty. Some citrus and pine hops.

T: Very earthy and malty. Roasted barley. Rye spice on back end. Quite bitter.

F: Medium bodied and moderately carbonated.

I like my ipa's hoppy, but this malty ipa is one of the better ones out there.

 429 characters

Photo of Dragginballs76
3.94/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours - Translucent rust color with thin off white head that leaves traces across the top once it dissipates good lacing.

Smell - Earthy tones I also get some malts and some roasted oats maybe.

Taste - Good hoppy rye flavor very bitter some citrus notes very faint.

Feel - Medium to heavy body coats the tongue burn from the bitterness .

Overall - A solid DIPA i would have it again for sure.

 396 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
2.12/5  rDev -47.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Maybe its the rye making this beer darker, but it definitely takes on a darker vibe with concentrated orange and light brown colors melding together. Too boozy in the aroma, rye again not noticeable for all its purported spicy characteristics. Couldn't pull much in the way of barrel out of it, other than the hot booziness.

Taste hit those same notes, hops don't seem to impart much flavor. Just not a style of beer that does well with whiskey, and this one especially. Could use more carbonation to help lift those hot notes.

Expensive and not good. Not gonna return to this one.

 593 characters

Photo of snilsen13
4.85/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This beer goes so deep into the flavor potential of malts while still being balanced with bitters and huge warming alcohol flavor. To bundle this with IPAs is just WRONG. There is MORE MALT flavor here than in most STOUTS. Call it a hoppy barely wine, cuz that's what it is. This beer plays with pals like Bigfoot. It's OUTSTANDING. Currently, one of my top 10 domestics. I'm sick of under-valuing this gem.

 415 characters

Photo of VashonGuy
4.31/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

It's back!! The 12 ounce bottles of Lenny's RIPA, that is. It's been two, maybe three years since this beer has been available in the Seattle area in the smaller size, so it's been that long since I've had one of my favorite beers. The 12 ounce bottle is perfect for this hoppy high alcohol beer.

The appearance isn't much to look at ... no head to speak of, no lacing, and kind of a blah effect. But the aroma is uplifting, and the taste is over the top. It's got caramel, it's got hops, it's got a bit of the rye spiciness (but less than some rye beers), it's got balance, and it's got a noticeable ABV punch.

I agree with those who think this is closer to a barleywine than to a DIPA. It's a fine hoppy sipper.

 724 characters

Photo of ajilllau
4.44/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This beer was super unique. I poured it from the bottle into a room temperature point glass. It was reddish and transparent looking which I was not expecting from an IPA. It had no head and no follow up bubbles. Not a very strong nose to it. It has a very great taste. I agree with other reviewer, if gulped or sipped to linger it has varying tastes. The latter leaves a much hoppier, bitter taste in my mouth. This is overall a great beer. It is crisp and refreshing. It feels deceivingly lighter than a 10%abv would. Sometimes IPA's feel too heavy to consume more than one. This beer does not fall into that category.

 619 characters

Photo of Simont
4.54/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Have been hanging on to this 12oz bottle for a couple of years, can't find a date but it's got at least 2 years on it.

And it's freaking fantastic. Clean sweet malt on nose with a little pepper and a nice aged/ sherry like back note. Caramel and toffee malt flavors with a little rye spice in there, hops don't stand out but there is a solid bitterness present. But for a big old malty aged beer this is just about perfect, it aged really well.

 445 characters

Photo of Mehinaman
4.19/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very tasty DIPA. Very similar to Hair of the Dog beers, especially Fred, in that it's somewhat on the sweet side, malty and very low carbonation. Unique, but very good overall

 175 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. from Shmaltz Brewing Company
4.04 out of 5 based on 1,997 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

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