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

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BA SCORE
90
outstanding
893 Reviews
He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company
New York, United States | website

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
893
Ratings:
1,969
Avg:
4.04
pDev:
17.82%
 
 
Wants:
85
Gots:
218
For Trade:
4
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Reviews: 893 | Ratings: 1,969
Photo of tattooedtolley
4.32/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an incredible dark reddish copper. Big head and tons of great "RyePA" aroma. Hops rule in the taste with enough malt back to make sure things dont get too out of hand. That delicious rye flavor is there and it really makes you long for another sip. This is easily one of my favorite rye ipas and my fave so far from He'Brew. Its a big beer, so don't let things get too out of hand, I learned the hard way one brew day and started with this before we even hit a boil.

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Photo of Keffa
3.97/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Live review.

Poured into my Ephemere tulip.

A: Pours a dark amberish orange, very small light tan head, nice legs, but no real lacing and settles to a small ring.

S: Holy hops! Beautiful aroma, juicy tropical fruits, pine, caramel, a little spiciness. After it opens up a little, it gets to be more caramel than anything. Reminds me A LOT of fresh Bigfoot.

T: Again, hops start things out. Pine and grapefruit rind up front, then turns into caramel and alcohol. Some spiciness from the rye. Alcohol and sweetness take over with a little bitterness.

M: A little thin for such a big beer, slick and coating on the palate and finishes pretty clean.

O: Pretty good. I don't think I'd have called it a DIPA, but more or less a really hoppy Barleywine. The hops are very prominent, but the hops are muscled out of the way by the huge caramel sweetness and alcohol.

Pretty good beer. Bet it would age pretty well too.

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Photo of theformula
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beer #6 in the 366 Days of Beer Quest, tasted on 1/06. This has been in the fridge for a month now, can't believe I had the willpower to resist it this long. I love rye, let's see how this stacks up...

A: Pours a dark copper body into a Duvel tulip. A healthy off-white head forms but drops away quickly to a nice ring. Super-sticky lacing is left over. Great clarity. Nice.

S: Assertively hoppy, but balanced aroma. They're not overbearing & balanced by rich malts. Spicy rye, toffee and caramel give it a strong backdrop. Hops are spicy w/ pepper, citrus and hop resins; complex. The alcohol is spicy but not too much.

M: Med.-full body, thick & chewy w/ low carbonation. Pretty intense stuff.

T: Great DIPA, akin to BR Hop Rod Rye, although I'd drink the BR first. A solid, rich malt body gives out toffee, raisins, wet grains and dark honey sweetness. It would be overwhelmingly rich if the hops didn't do their part, but they do in a balanced, quiet way. A definite, hot alcohol note is there and doesn't hide. Finish is long w/ bitter, sticky hops, caramel and rye spice.

D: A powerhouse of a DIPA, and one to sip for sure. The rye adds a nice kick of spice. As mentioned by a few other BA's, the hops are not too perceived in the aroma but you can feel them in the finish.The M.F. is too thick for my liking, though.
Great stuff from Schmaltz!

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Photo of mmcave
4.23/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into tulip glass, at first glance all I could think about was the color of the head, which in it's concentrated form was tan and almost greenish. This beer had a very aggressive head and will keep going right out of the glass if your not careful. The color is rather dark purplish, red, very polished dark wood looking. The head was huge and is now dissipating, it left clumpy lacing all the way down. Smells of strong piny aromatic hops with a tail of natural funk (definitely some rye coming through), orange peel, pineapple, malt, some spice and a subtle alcohol undercurrent. Taste is very complex, its definatly one of those D.I.P.A.s that walks on your taste buds with spiked shoes, but you love every minute of it. Its crisp, but not dry. Its definitely a more sticky piny recipe with serious body, and intense grape fruitiness. Its almost syrupy, but not in any bad way. The flavor is all that coupled with minor hints of toffee, some sweetness from the rye and a nice bitter hop character that comes to you half way through the taste experience and lingers on your taste buds. This is a nice D.I.P.A, I am very happy to be able to try this. It's got what I look for in a quality double IPA, not my favorite, but really fun. This is my first He'Brew beer so this will be what I judge all their other by. R.I.P. Lenny..

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Photo of fropones
3.91/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice amber-pumpkin color with a a finger and a half of khaki head with good retention.

S - A good amount of rye and malt in the nose. Very minimal hops.

T - Thankfully there is more hop flavor here right up front, with some spicy rye following it. A little bit of age has mellowed the hops some.

M - Nice bite, creaminess, medium-full body.

D - Pretty well drinkable for 10%. A good summertime beer.

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Photo of don1481
4.48/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap here at the Yard House in Virginia Beach.

Appearance: reddish dark amber. Head retains very nicely.

Smell: definitely has the classic IPA pine smell. With a hint of rye.

Taste: The rye comes through here but its not like most rye beers, which I liken to drinking rye bread. The hops balance it very nicely here.

Mouthfeel: not overpowering, but the hops linger more than the rye. Which I'm quite fine with.

Overall: Have now gotten this two nights in a row. I hope I can find this back in WI...

Update: unable to find this back home, so I got another pint at the Yardhouse. Perhaps its because of the Rogue swill I had tonight, but I think I underrated this. Spectacular. I've kept the review to reflect my initial tasting.

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Photo of generalnotsew
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very rich frothy two finger tan head. Color is a very dark amber that mimics the look of an American Barleywine. Sticky sweet caramel bitterness in the nose. Heard a lot of people comparing to a barleywine and so far they are right. I would put in in the same category of Double Dog so far. Great big upfront hop bitterness then mellows out into a rich, earthly and almost nutty aftertaste. Like Double Dog only no near as harsh in the end. I am guessing the earthy nuttiness I am getting is the rye as I did notice something different here. Not earth shattering but very tasty and a nice mix up from the norm.

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Photo of Ungertaker
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.
A- dark amber, one finger head that slowly fades into thick lacing
S- hops, grains, subtle spiciness and pine
T- hops, rye, malt, pepper, hops linger along with rye in aftertaste
M- thick for an IPA; carbonation stays throughout, making for an almost creamy feel
O- a wonderful beer. A spicy rye IPA with great body. 

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Photo of Steamer
4.21/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Three fingered, cream colored head with lots of retention. Deep copper hues.

S - Strong metallic hops aroma; faint citrus undertones.

T & M - Sharp and lemony; bitter and dry, but smooth going down.

Overall: A strong, well blended rye DIPA that hits the spot without slaughtering your taste buds. Excellent.

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Photo of dwilson01
4.43/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my arrogant bastard pint glass. Amber brown color, looks to me like a darker shade of honey . Creamy head that is seriously the color of sand (creamy sand? hmmmm haha).

The initial smell out of the bottle is pretty intense bitterness, you pick up the immense hopping in the smell for sure, but that creamy head mellows it out a little bit I think.

The taste doesn't disappoint dude, seriously. The initial bitterness hits you but is followed quickly by a sweet malt, it really does remind me of a flower honey. The sweetness is backed extremely well with the huge body of the beer, it's a thick one for sure, that extra rye malt really does something great for this one. I thought it would be a little drier on the finish but the malt still holds out and it's smooth as hell until the very end when the 10% abv comes through a little bit and you get some of the pungent alcohol bit I love to get right at the end of taste. Flavors I get out of here are definite honey, a bit woody flavored, mellow though like a deciduous tree in the spring when it's fruit is flowering. I don't get any citrus, but it's creamy for sure.

The mouthfeel is such an anomaly for an IPA, I haven't had a smoother full bodied creamy feeling beer in this category before. This beer goes down as easy as an imperial stout and has the flavor of a double ipa coupled with the sweet rye malt. Crazy good brew, super drinkable with just a hint of the alcohol flavor on the swallow. I recommend for sure, if you like stouts and you like ipas and you want something new and interestingly flavored this is for sure the beer to snag.

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Photo of GoldenChild
4.45/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: served in chalice - nice clear amber-copper body, frothy white head with sticky lacing.

S: Pine sap, sticky grapefruit, orange, amd caramel.

T: really nice and superbly balanced - bitter ruby red, sticky pine sap, citrus hops, some spice from the rye, sweet dark fruits, caramel, and alcohol follows up in the rear. Very nice.

M: slighlty sticky, not too heavy, smooth and complex.

O: Great beer love the rye pa's never tried a DRPA before. Got a great deal on it it was 5.78 and he sold it to me for 2.00.

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Photo of lonestar4lunch
4.32/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep reddish brown with a huge head that isn't going anywhere fast. Man I love smell of this one. Fresh biscuits out of the oven and then hoppy…awesome. This one starts off with a huge malt punch then slowly transitions to a bitter citrus finish. But even on the finish the hops don't ever really take over. The mouth feel on this one is perfect. The head retention is outstanding and just adds to that smooth, creamy, malty, citrus finish. The rye honestly shows up every few sips but that kind of makes it just a bit more enjoyable. I love rye but not when it owns the brew, this works. I have been head over heals for this one since I first tried it last year after GABF. Love it.

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Photo of prosper
3.85/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours like syrup. Light reddish colour with an orangey head - dense and creamy. Leaves lots of lace. It even LOOKS thick - the bubbles rising up seem to be moving pretty slow.

Smell is amazing. I can smell it, just sitting there on the table. Citrus hops, grainy malts, yum.

Taste is good; lots and lots of malt - some toastiness, breadiness, and fruit. Bitter. Hop flavours not as dominant here as in the aroma.

Mouthfeel is good, but heavy. It's like drinking carbonated syrup. Thanks to the Rye for that, no doubt.

Drinkability - poor. Too thick, too intense. Getting through one glass of this is going te be enough of a challenge.

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Photo of Chelsea1905
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured really dark for an IPA, almost looked like an amber.
THe head looked great to begin with, but disapeared after a couple of drinks. Very light lacing.

The smell is a lot less "hoppy" compared to other IPA's and you can really smell the malt backbone that dominates this beer

The taste is all IPA to begin with, nice and hoppy. Then, the spice, and malt take over and it really seems somewhat confused.

Mildly effervescent, but really quite drinkable for as high this beer is in ABV

Couldn't drink too many as these babies are 10% a bottle! If you want a nice mildly malty beer to unwind with at the end of the day...this will do

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Photo of Wheelinb
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

As someone who has worked in comedy, of course I had to try a beer that memorialized Lenny Bruce. Deep copper color and a fair amount of head. I got a big malt smell as I poured and I thought this might not taste as expected, but then I drank it and got a big bitter hop bite. You can also get malt and bread tastes. It feels somewhat thick, which is not a problem for me. It does have somewhat of a lingering aftertaste.

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Photo of slym
4.27/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is one interesting IPA - nothing hidden, no "notes" or anything, just an in-your-face rye IIPA.

This brew uses 8 kinds of malts and 8 kinds of hops, and it all works together without anything overpowering anything else. The rye adds a great spicyness, and I'd never guess this was a 10% ABV brew.

Just try it! Not your everyday IPA, but something kind of special, I'll even admit.

L'chaim!

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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.

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Photo of JTSbeerislife
4.33/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, bottling date not known, purchased 7/2011 from a reputable bottle shop and stored in temperature controlled conditions since.

Poured into a Corsendunk Tulip.

Pours a nice thick one finger head, settles down to a ¼” cap, easily revived with a swirl of the glass, a lively Ale. Excellent lace coats the side of the glass.
Deep brownish amber color, real Ale!

The smell is distinct roasted malt, yeast, black Rye bread, and hops, powerful.

Bitter hops come first and dominate the taste followed by very rich roasted malt, refreshing crisp acidity and a wonderfully balanced carbonation. The incredibly rich malt does not in detract from the hops, but I cannot tell if the hops are piney or citrus, they are just very bitter and distinct. Very full mouth feel from the massive malts and 10% ABV. As usual with beers of this quality the ABV is completely hidden by the aggressive flavors.

Long, distinctly bitter hop finish, with the rich bready malt following.

This is a very different Ale, something of a malt bomb yet the hops are distinctly bitter. I have to say I really enjoy what the brewery is doing here, as I enjoy brews that push the boundaries, and this certainly does. Probably the most distinctively “Rye” Ale I have drunk to date, there are many that want to be, but this one delivers! Delicious! If you find this one I highly recommend that you give it a try.

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Photo of airheadmtrcycle
4.7/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I don't know why it took me so long to get around to this highly rated beer, and company for that matter. Anyway, being a big DIPA fan and one with true respect and admiration for Lenny Bruce I'm really excited about trying it. Plus, it's exciting to have so many great beers left to try. And as fate would have it, this is a great beer.

The appearance is really interesting. It's a darker, and deeper orange than some of the DIPAs I've been drinking lately. The head is almost tan, just shy of the tan a porter or stout might have. The head was not huge, but attractive and it leaves lacing all the way down. A sexy looking brew, for sure.

The aroma is harder to describe. The rye is there, but so is a bread dough-like aroma that gets the salivary glands excited immediately. I smell hops, slightly on the pine-y side, but perhaps some lighter citrus notes as well. Not a hop bomb, but more an exquisitely balanced and refined brew.

The taste delivers on all the sexy looks and complex aromas. About half way down I think to myself, this is why I should never get stuck drinking 2 or 3 beers and stop taking chances with my hard-to-come-by expendable income. Sure I've had some big disappointments, but then you try something like this all the waste falls away. This is a special beer! I think it qualifies as a big beer, one that I'm glad I have 3 more left to drink and explore more deeply.

Each sip delivers something new - rye, hops, bread-y malts, spicy alcohol - and it all comes together so perfectly. Perhaps a myopic hop-head might find fault in its lack of huge bitterness, but that's missing the point, I think.

Lenny's RIPA is big, yet subtle, with a medium mouth feel and is quite drinkable despite the high ABV.

Perhaps I'm over-reacting, but I can only think of 2 beers I liked this much on my first try.

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Photo of froggyfrog
4.8/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One tall bomber-sized brown glass bottle wrapped in an event of a label sits proudly on a coaster on my desk, half of its guts splashed in the bowl of my crystal snifter.

In the glass this untamed liquid is aglow with beautiful rich warm ruby tones. Hypnotic carbonation bubbles steadily stream up the sides of the bowl like an army of zombified ants whose only urge is an undeniable compulsion to reach the surface and contribute to the dense ring of sallow foam clinging to the glass left by others before them. This is one of those beers that is almost too visually engaging to drink for fear of ruining the spectacle.

The aromas given off by this beer warrant another five-point rating. There is some subtle spiciness, likely a factor of the rye malt in the grain bill. I'm getting some underplayed West Coast American citrus/grapefruit hop scents and an underlying sweetness.

This brew demonstrates a quiet smoothness throughout that is impressive to say the least. That quality is showcased in the taste and mouthfeel as a light, creamy weightlessness and a flavor that deftly combines such components as cracked peppercorns with light liquid whipping cream and squeezed oranges.

The bitterness and alcohol that earn this beer the name double IPA are in residence, but wrapped up so cozily in the overall "delicacy" of the drink as to be totally approachable even by those who have no sadistic twist of psyche causing them to enjoy alpha-acidic tongue scorchings.

Fantastic.

Lenny Bruce was not afraid!

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Photo of gbarron
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 22 oz. bottle. A tribute to Lenny Bruce...hmm. Never found him all that funny. Hopefully his tribute beer will be better than his comedy.

A - nice ruby red, perfectly clear. Head is very thick, creamy and puffy. Off-white, slightly tan. Leaving adequate lacing and retention is excellent, especially considering the alcohol content.

S - aroma here a little muted. Significant citrus, grapefruit, light pine hop aroma with underlying cotton candy sweetness. Syrupy smelling, caramel, strong toffee. Higher alcohols also present. Smells good, but expecting more.

T - to mimic the previous line, tastes good, but expected more, a little disappointing. Fairly well balanced DIPA. Strong citrus, tangy hop flavor up front, followed by significant sticky malt sweetness, and then concluding with assertive tart bitterness. Hop flavor and bitterness very present and balance ultimately tips in their favor. Taste surpasses the aroma. Alcohol content evident but not overwhelming.

M - thick, sticky, somewhat viscous beer. Carbonation low. Sticky finish.

D - tasty offering, but not quite as good as it could have been, it seems. A little sticky and filling.

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Photo of edmundfitzoil
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bittersweet Lenny's RIPA purchased at Total Wines here in town and poured into a tulip glass from a brown glass 22 oz. bottle.

The beer poured a heavily red tinged deep copper with an inch of tan, medium bubbled head. The nose featured big, piney hoppiness with hints and glimpses of citrus and a little alcoholic spice at the finish.

The flavor is not like any other DIPA that I've gotten to yet. The beer begins with a big, intense hop bitterness (as expected with this style) and transitions to a mellow undwelling maltiness that is enriched by the presence and light spiciness of the rye. The piney hops rear up again then just before the finish, and are replaced by the ever so quick presence of that 10% abv. It's about as drinkable as any higher alcohol beer can beer and does seem to resemble some of the American Barley wines that I've tried.

Like I said above, this is a unique double IPA, but it's a very good one and one that I wouldn't mind picking up again if the mood for such a beer struck me.

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Photo of backfat
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into probably my favorite pieces of glassware: long stemmed tulip that was a gift from newrbrewr. Alabama dixieland delight blaring in the backround.

Looks great. It's a translucent copper with a frothy tannish head.Thick and luscious looking. I love rye beers so this may be an easy one.

First smell is blasting with rye and malt. I love it. Very sweet hops on the nose, like candied sugar hops. Some dark bread, a bit of metal, and caramel.

First taste is sweet. Made me say mmm. It's bitter, creamy, and filling, but a little too filling. I am glad I didn't buy the whole four pack just because it is a chewy one. A bit of alcohol on the back of the tongue. Whoa...I just found out this thing was 10%. Very "warming." Whew, I can feel this one getting to me. I will be buying this again. It's like bigfoot meets red's rye meets arrogant bastard. Nicely done.

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Photo of barknee
4.34/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a semi-appropriate "biertulpe" glass; showing a dual fat fingered mocha- meringue head. Dark copper and well filtered, the nose is one of cocoa powder, marshmallow, milk chocolate, vanilla and malted milk balls that wafts from the glass.
Wow. liquid candy; call it "whoppers" beer!

Moderately sweet on the tongue, and just when you think; "where's the acid," the hop bitterness sneaks in through the back door providing an ever so necessary dose of alpha's that lasts long after the first swallow.

This is a beer that's been engineered, not haphazardly created. All of the components arrive at the finish line, but far from a tie, but rather nicely spaced, allowing for the evolution of taste development and flavor profiles to traipse through your consciousness.

Magnificently crafted and creatively balanced, this is a unique and applaudable brew; or should I say; HeBrew.

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Photo of berpwillie
4.77/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a brown amber color, slightly cloudy with large white head and lacing. lively carbonation, medium body, and long flavor duration. taste of bread like malts and harsh piney hops.smooth creamy texture. probably one of the smoothest beers i've ever had. if you haven't had this beer before you are really missing out. different from most ipa's i've had, this beer is exceptional!!!!

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He'Brew Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A. from Shmaltz Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 893 ratings.
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