Harness IPA
Bent Paddle Brewing Co.

Harness IPAHarness IPA
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Rye Beer
Ranked #14
Ranked #5,150
4.09 | pDev: 7.58%
Bent Paddle Brewing Co.
Minnesota, United States
Harness IPAHarness IPA
Notes: Formerly Harness The Winter IPA

Harness IPA celebrates the tethered teamwork and balance that typifies the deployment of a harness. Brewed to be bold and flavorful, Harness IPA supports an enormous hop load with an anchored malt bill of oats, rye and malted barley. Climbing gear is not necessary to enjoy this beer!
Reviews: 36 | Ratings: 178 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of defunksta
defunksta from North Dakota

3.99/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a red, rum color that is clear and a mild light tan head. SRM of 16. (4.00)

Aroma: Huge aromas of red pine with some citrus. Then more redfruit to finish. Tons of ruby, red, and winter pine. (4.25)

Flavor: Flavor follows the nose. First huge dry sprucey pine. Then hints of citrus form, but not before the entire thing absolutely transforms into a wave of red, winter pine and cherry. A cherry pithy finish that tamely bitter. (4.00)

Feel: Medium-bodied. Under-carbonated. Finishes with more pine on the palate. (3.25)

Compared to Furious: Similar color. Even more piney. Red, winter pine aromas. Less fruitiness. Flatter. Even more spice overall. They took Furious and took it one notch further.

Overall: A really great red IPA. Tons of great pine spice. Similar to Surly's Furious, but even more pine and redness. It's actually a great winter drinking IPA. Lots of nice spices and winter feels. (Final Rating: 3.99)

Dec 14, 2019
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beergoot from Colorado

3.81/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Rich, copper-brown body featuring a very dense, thick and rocky head. The smell exudes notes of crystallized malt with a spicy, kind of rye-like note. Hearty malt flavor; dull sweetness counterpointed with a vibrant hop bitterness. Warm and full-bodied beer; crisp with a gentle bite on the palate.

A very malt-forward IPA yet featuring some zesty hop presence.

Jan 23, 2019
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gatornation from Minnesota

3.77/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a crimson color with a khaki head. Smell had herbal and pine hops some citrus. Taste was herbal with piney hops some dark fruits and toffee,some rye. A dry moth feel with w/c bitterness in the finish . A hybrid imperial red meet a w/c ipa.

Nov 16, 2018
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Taybeh from Minnesota

3.92/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a single, two months since canning, poured into a willibecher: clear dark copper red, off-white sudsy head, good retention and lacing. Nose is piney resinous hops and warm earthy dirty and bready notes that must be from the malt...I like it! On the tongue, a few waves: first some substantial malty breadiness, then a whole bunch of piney hops with a little citrus edge, then a little zippy ryeband citrus and more pine. Feel is substantial and a little rough (which fits, for me) and packs a hoppy oily punch, but cleans up and dries out at the end.

Jan 30, 2018
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ipeters1017 from Wisconsin

4.45/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy reddish brown with an off-white head. Lots of lacing down the glass. Smells of grassy, piney hops with a bit of spiciness. The taste is similar--this is super piney, with notes of spicy rye and a tinge of fruitiness. It's a hop bomb in flavor, but not in bitterness. Feel is a bit over-carbonated, quite dry and refreshing. By far my favorite Bent Paddle beer, and one I wish they would make year-round.

May 07, 2017
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deebo from Michigan

3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First time trying this beer.
A-Poured a can into a weizen glass, this is a heady beast. Big tight beige foam tops a dark amber clear brew when held up to the light. This head is lacy and not going away.
S-I can smell hops from a foot away. These smell like your classic west coast. Maybe the 3 Cs. Grassy, resiny and potent. I smell bitterness on the way. Some spicy rye pops as well.
T-Lots of hops and lots of that characteristic spicy pumpernickel rye flavor to go with it. The hops are definitely oily/resiny with lots of punch and stank.
M-Nice balance of moderately high carbonation and a heavy malt bill/body to carry this big ole hoppy beast. High alcohol but it doesn't show.
O-Definitely a hoppy rye forward ipa. Not my favorite style, but this is a well made beer.

Jan 20, 2017
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Cfred371 from Minnesota

4.09/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Snagged a six pack, best by 039 of 2016. I let the can sit out fifteen or twenty minutes to reach a mid 40's in temp.

Look: The beer pours a nice brown color, with ample head, and relative clarity. There's a nice amount of carbonation as well.

Smell: The aromas i'm picking up are malt, possibly some spicy notes, and a slight citrus or pine.

Taste : The pine/citrus is what I initially get, followed by some spiciness and then a wave of nice caramel/toffee.

Feel: A nice medium mouth feel, with some bitterness in the middle of the beer, followed by a mild finish.

Overall: I like this offering a good amount, and I will be purchasing more in the future. Solid effort.

Feb 04, 2016
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hardysf from Michigan

3.87/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark copper color. Maybe too dark for style? The aroma on this one is nice. Some citrus, some pine, and some earthy notes. Taste is similar to nose with some rye spiciness and some malt sweetness sneaking in. Nice bitter and dry mouthfeel. Good brew.

Feb 02, 2016
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CraigP83 from Minnesota

4.06/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just called Harness IPA on the can. HUGE head that didn't dissipate quickly, very dark copper color. Piney citrus smell, little spicy rye taste. Definitely a strong malt base

Jan 04, 2016
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zeff80 from Missouri

3.94/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a clear, copper color with a white head of foam. Nice lace.

S - It smelled very piney with some strong citrus notes. Caramel, too.

T - It tasted of pine and citrus with a sweet caramel maltiness.

M - It was crisp and clean.

O - Bent Paddle does canned IPAs very well.

Dec 31, 2015
Photo of pat61
pat61 from Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours bright copper brown forming a lacy 2” light tan foam crown that takes 4 minutes to reduce to ¼ its original size.

S: Spicy rye malt aromas with traces of spice and citrus.

T: Spicy rye leads the taste sensations with a touch of chocolate, a hint of fruit and a trace of pumpernickel. Starts lightly sweet with a mildly drying rye astringency on the finish. The malt is medium to medium high, hop flavors are medium low, hop bitterness is medium.

F: Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: A tasty full flavored beer that is worth repeating.

Dec 07, 2015
Photo of Evilyak
Evilyak from Minnesota

3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

it's ok. nice color, decent head. nothing remarkable, but nothing strange.

smell is pine. taste is pine with a touch of fruit. again, nothing remarkable but nothing strange.

mouth is a bit oily with some lingering bite. good carbonation.

i don't think i'd buy this one again, but i liked it well enough for what it was.

Nov 29, 2015
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Buebie from Minnesota

4.16/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice deep red copper color, finally decided to pour one into a glass this year. Off white head, skim of lace.
Aroma is a good mixture of delicious malt and hops.
Flavors are of the same but amped up dramatically with loads of resin. Finishes dry with a good hop lingering.
This one will be sure to please during the cold months. Reminds me of Widmer Burrr, although more potent.

Nov 28, 2015
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vette2006c5r from Minnesota

4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark copper color small lacing head. Aroma is big hop and malt, hints of earth. Taste is big hops and malts nice bitterness. Good body and flavors. Overall a big ipa.

Nov 28, 2015
Photo of ajchocholousek
ajchocholousek from Minnesota

3.89/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Fresh growler into Surly Darkness tulip.

Pours a brilliant, deep, ruby brown. Dark for an IPA. The slightest touch of hop haze. Off-white, creamy, dense, sticky, thick head develops and sticks around for daaaaayyysss. Great lacing too!

Nose brings lots of tropical notes - mango, papaya, a touch of banana, and some nice citrus as well. A hint of pine and a touch of bready, slightly spicy, chew malt character comes through as well. Great nose!

A medium +, slightly oily mouthfeel and lower than expected carb. (growler?) brings a firm piney, citrusy bitterness along with nice notes of banana, orange peel, mango, and a great, dank, herbaceous hop chewiness as well. A fairly modest, yet warm and slightly caramely malt character comes through, bringing a touch of rye spice with it.

Overall, a lot of great things going on in this beer. I typically tend towards lighter colored IPAs, but this dark behemoth has me wanting more and more this yeah. I really appreciate the way they combined the juiciness of some of the "newer school" hops with a more traditional and warming, piney, aggressive, hoppy bitterness. I'll be drinking this all winter.

Nov 06, 2015
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Can_if_you_can from Minnesota

3.19/5  rDev -22%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Great appearance, nice dark copper color.
Aroma is good, very strong piney aroma with some resiny aroma.
Taste. Dangit! Theres that soapy mid palate taste that i dont like about their golden ipa...the rye definately helps here but just not enough for me.

May 04, 2015
Photo of maedhros09
maedhros09 from Minnesota

3.53/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.25

Look: Dark hazy amber-brown with big frothy head and some lacing
Smell: Fresh sweet citrus and pine hops
Taste: Big caramelly maltiness with a nice touch of rye. Lots of hops character for the level of bitterness
Feel: Full bodied, thick, almost syrupy with gentle carbonation.

Overall: I can see why this is a winter IPA - there is nothing light about it, from the color to the flavors to the mouthfeel. The malt has a big presence with just enough rye to add to the complexity without overwhelming the palate. Presumably the oats are responsible for the thickness in the mouthfeel. The hops are pretty standard, but very fresh and fruity without being too bitter. Really, it almost doubles as a winter warmer. The year-round Bent-hop IPA will make a better warm-weather beer, but this one is a bit more unique and complex.

Update: I decided after a few more that I didn't like the way the flavors blended and the alcohol flavor is too strong.

Apr 29, 2015
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zeledonia from Washington

3.92/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Can, tasted 3 March 2015. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a clear deep reddish amber. Half a finger of off-white head due to a gentle pour. Good lacing.

Smell is full of pine, caramel malts, and a touch of sweet fruits like pineapple. Excellent.

Taste is a mix of malty and bitter. Definitely a balanced IPA, leaning towards malts over hops. The bitterness is mostly clean, but has a touch of chalk. Decent, though I'd like more flavor.

Feel is good. Medium-bodied, buzzing carbonation stirring things up.

A pretty darn good IPA. Tons of pine in the smell, smoothly integrated with the other elements. Main downside is the lack of complexity in the taste.

Apr 16, 2015
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BillRoth from Maryland

4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Was on Beer Safari in Minneapolis St Paul area and (of course) had to stop by Heritage Liquors in Maplewood.
Patrick suggested I try Bent Paddle this trip, and offered Harness as a good start.
I love some of the Rye IPAs that have come out oer the last few years, and hoped this would be one of them.

12 oz Can

Appearance: First...pleasantly surprised with the big deep amber/ruby and rusty orange color. Definitely set a mood for a winter warmer. Poured into an imperial pint glass well with big off white head. Fairly good retention.

Aroma: Caught scents of rye and a mix of fruits, some citrus...but also resin. Seemed nicely balanced,

Taste: Wow...resin forward. Big pine notes that were complemented with the sharper rye malt. Other hop flavors added a balancing sweetness and additional sharpness from the citric side. I thought it was a full bitter/bitter sweet taste that really worked.

Body: Smooth, but not heavy or oiley. Very drinkable. Especially noteworthy considering it was coming out of a can...which for me usually means a bit more brightness in the carbonation. Brightness that can be biting and distracting, not complementary.

Overall: I really liked this beer. Sometimes it seems that brewers aim for the parts ( eg citrus, smokiness, etc.) and the" whole" is the result of achieving the targeted parts. In this case I felt like the brewers had a very good idea of the" whole" as a target, and the parts were carefully selected and married to accomplish the targeted whole.
If so the whole (goal) was a big winter beer with rich color and attractive head, an inviting nose, a big complex outdoors foresty taste and would drink smooth and easy.
If that's the case...spot on!
This beer really needs to be enjoyed outdoors...in the snow...in the cold. Or indoors after the above...or after a great run at skiing.

Apr 04, 2015
Photo of JackieTH
JackieTH from Minnesota

4.09/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mangos, citrus jumped out of the can upon cracking the tab. Amazing smell before it's even put to glass. It's a deep coppery hue with tawny foam. Taste is floral and earthy, citrusy. Moderately bitter and a bit spicy. Medium body, creamy feel, crisp carbonation. This has the good qualities of an earthy spicy rye IPA along with some nice citrus elements.

Mar 08, 2015
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feloniousmonk from Minnesota

3.94/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bent Paddle Harness the Winter IPA, Winter India Pale Ale, 7.2% Alc./Vol. Brewed and packaged by Bent Paddle Brewing Company, Duluth, MN. Contains: water, hops, malted barley, rye, oats, yeast.

Appearance: slightly hazed, gleaming crimson coloration, creamy, off-white, long-lasting head.

Aroma: Big hoppiness pops right out of the glass and into the nose, a blend of citric, piney, tropical fruit notes, with spicy rye malt aromatics close behind. A particularly beautiful blend of hop flavors.

Taste: Bam! Bitter hop bite kicks it off, with smooth and semi-sweet malt flavors rounding it out. Terrific balance here, outstanding taste, and great drinkability. Tasty, tasty, tasty. Medium bodied, long, bittersweet finish. I can't stop saying good things about this beer. It hits me right where I live.

The can has something to say: "Our Winter IPA was brewed in honor of the boundless energy and tenacious character of the sled-dog. Brewed for heatiness with oats, rye and malted barley. The comfort of malt sweetness harnesses the cold crisp citrus notes from the hops. This winter IPA is the perfect way to celebrate bounding through the deep snow."

Mar 04, 2015
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cambabeer from New York

4.11/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Really beautiful, bright, reddish brown body. Healthy off-white head, leaving nice lace down the glass. Smells fantastic, hop oily, grainy, somewhat honey like from the can. In the glass, especially as it warms, the aroma is more fruity; prunes and peaches with some citrus splashes. Taste is malty and hoppy with some spices and alcohol is present. Medium body with residual hop oils and aftertaste.

Mar 03, 2015
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garymuchow from Minnesota

4.18/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A dark IPA with amber of brown and orange, rather clear. Depending upon how poured a big full beige head. Good looking.
Hop aroma with a bit of citrus and fruit, but not a fruity aroma, with a slowly appearing grassiness and earthiness. Some hints of sharpness moving toward excess but holding back in time. Hints of the malt richness which is to come in the taste.
Nice fullness in the feel, from the malt and carbonation (which is full but also very soft).
A very complex hop profile with much less fruitiness and more blending with the grassiness and then the bitterness prominent, but as this warms there are many changes. The malt come through in all it's complexity too and really gives the quality of a winter IPA, with a robustness and heft in flavor that is quite enjoyable. Bits of sweetness roam through the drink too.
This drink hovers near the DIPA line with bits of excess in hop oil (but tolerable) and the bigger feel and malt presence, but probably stays under the line.
A drink of great complexity and contrasts. Nicely done.

Mar 01, 2015
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MNBeerGeek from Minnesota

4.34/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Holy hell. Good on ya Bent Paddle. I could not think of a more perfect name or beer for this time of year. It has enough earthy, grassy hop with some pepper and citrus (both smell and flavor) to balance out the smooth malt base. I feel like they used rye in this? Some of that flavor with spice, and a bite from the hop and slight amount of the booze (in a great way) on the back end. The malts balance all the other flavors nicely to give a lingering finish where a piney hop flavor emerges. The finish lasts a long time allowing a person to savor if they want. This goes down far too easy and I am sad I waited this long to pick it up.

Feb 28, 2015
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MartzMimic from Oklahoma

4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours from the can a deep, cloudy red witha couple fingers of off-white foam. Smells of bready malts, wood shavings, citrus and pine. Tastes of caramel and tropical fruits. The piney hops build in the aftertaste, but everything is nicely balanced. Medium mouth is smooth and a bit creamy. I think this is an outstanding beer, and is well-made.

Feb 27, 2015
Harness IPA from Bent Paddle Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 178 ratings