Terra-Rye'ZD | Left Hand Brewing Company

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97 Ratings

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: Rye Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Black rye lager

Added by JMBSH on 10-13-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 97 |  Reviews: 94
Photo of maximum12
3.08/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to mikesgroove for throwing this in as an extra to a trade a while back. Love me a good rye beer, so looking forward to this one.

Terra- is black as a good horror show. Not much of a nose on this one, faint hops, lack of hope, maybe some knife-sharpening.

Taste is a bit of a let-down. Little rye, little hops, & a healthy dose of dark spices. Creamy, but too heavy on the spices for my tastes, & the rye & lager seemed to create a rather strange atmosphere rather than playing nicely.

Pretty decent beer, but I was hoping for more in one of my favorite styles.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.18/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle. Pours a dark reddish brown with a creamy reddish tan head that goes to a thin film and leaves some lacing.

The aroma is rye malts, some candy-like sugars, some chocolate and a touch of fruits.

The flavor is sweet sugary malts, lots of rye, some fruits and some metallic hop/rye notes. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and a little watery.

Overall, it's not very well balanced - lots of sweetness and rye. I remember it being better on draft.

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Photo of Douglas88
3.38/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber shared by Eric. Pours out a very dark brown color with a bubbly light brown head. The aroma is very light; some roasted malts, and some sweet notes, perhaps maple syrup. The taste was also smooth and light; sweet hops, citrus-like hop flavors, chocolates, and a grainy/earthy malt. Pretty nice, but nothing really stood out. Not terrorizing, but nice.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.41/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a very dark brown/ plum color with a very nice sized, stiff white head. About two fingers in size and stiff as hell. Lasts quite a while. Tons of lacing down the glass. Lacing looks like a thin veil on the glass.

Aroma is spicy with the dark and burnt malts giving a nice smoothness to the beer.

Spicy flavor as well. A good dose of bitterness in the finish. Bitterness seems due to both hops and maybe an astringency in the beer. A sort of alcoholic ester taste is present even though this beer is fairly low abv.

Not bad I suppose. Certainly very different. Perhaps too much of a novelty for me to try again. I can see this one being polarizing where some people really like it and some people really dont like it. I didnt like it too much.

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Photo of rajendra82
3.46/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This collaboration beer by Terrapin and Left Hand promised to be "brew one" of the midnight project. I am generally pretty impressed with the individual offerings of both breweries, so a beer where both combined their talents was immediately tempting, when spotted at Bullock's in Marietta.

The beer poured out dark brown like mahogany, and looked translucent below the extremely stable, two finger thick, creamy head. The smell was milder than I was anticipating, as this smelled like a standard issue brown ale. The toasty, nutty, and caramelized smell was pleasant, but lacked the spiciness of rye that was so proudly a part of this beer's name. The taste was bready and sweet up front, and astringent and drying in the middle. The finish is where the spicy flavor made the use of Rye apparent. The beer leaned much more on the malts than most other offerings from Terrapin, and was probably a lot closer to the Left Hand Rye Bock in the general approach. Unfortunately, this beer was noticeable thinner than the Rye Bock, and felt a lot less bold overall. That being said, this was a very easy to approach beer, and would probably go well with a lot of red meat dishes.

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Photo of jkendrick
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Nice brown to red color with an impressive head and tons of clumpy lace.

S: Very malty with a nutty presence and of course the rye.

MF: Was too thin for me and the carbonation was just off somehow.

T: There is initially some sweetness but it doesn't last long as the rye comes in full force. If you like rye flavors, you'll like this. I enjoyed the rye, but the bitterness was not as enjoyable. Didn't feel balanced. there is a lot going on, but it is hard to discern over the intense rye and bitter hops finish.

Overall: A for effort, but the rye and unpleasant bitterness needs to be toned down a bit for this to have good drinkability and to allow for the complex flavors that ARE THERE to shine through a bit more.

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Photo of VaTechHopHead
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Mikesgroove for this, awesome trade extra

A - Don't know why it's called a black lager, it pours deep ruby red. One finger head that fades to just surface bubbles and decent lacing. Very clear.

S - Nice rye spiciness but the bitter specialty malts have more of a presence in the aroma. Zero hops and a slight boozy smell as well even though relative low ABV.

T - Ah, it's called a black lager because it has more characteristics of a porter than spicy rye lager. The bitter malts push through a lot and kind of kill the rye, but it can be tasted. Slightly acidic on the palate as well. Again, no hop presence. Big smoke flavor at the end in the aftertaste.

M - Medium body with a creamy head and low volumes of carbonation. Slightly chewy on the palate as well. Finishes dry and bitter like a sip of coffee does. Easy to drink because flavors but the acidity makes it a slow drinker.

O - Would have like to seen the rye come through more and I'm not sure how I like the dark specialty malts paired with the rye; they kind of butt heads. Overall not a bad beer but the taste is different than style guidelines.

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3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of KAF
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue X:

Collaboration beers are all the rage now--not a bad thing at all. This one is by Terrapin and Left Hand.

Very quick to froth with a massive towering head that leaves a blanket of tan lace down the glass. Tiny bubbles slowly push their way through the rye liquid, a shade away from complete black ... faint garnet highlights when put up to the light. Amazing, this beer has legs! (Meaning swirl it around in the glass and watch how slowly it slides down the side.) Spicy and grainy with sweet brownie and black currant, faint anise and licorice root in the nose. Slick and creamy full body, which shows off a lot of rye residuals. Carbonation is light and all smooth. WOW! Talk about a rye explosion, rustic and spicy from start to finish with a stand-out sweetness that obviously is a very distant likeness to a good rye whiskey, but it is there. Sweetness ranges from dark chocolate to a bowl of all-grain porridge. Earthy with some wet char in the middle from a nugget of roasted grain. Lots of bitty dextrin action in the semisweet finish.

While not the most drinkable beer to hit the streets, it is certainly one of the most original--extra points for creativity here. Unlike most lagers, where they taste best somewhat cold, this beer really blooms when it warms up. A sipper for two.

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

Pours a hazy reddish brown in color with some amber highlights. Two fingers of foamy tan head has good retention and leaves plenty of lacing stick. Smells of rye, caramel, toffee, chocolate, roasted malt, and lemon zest. Tastes of chocolate and bitter baker's cocoa up front followed by some spicy rye. Some sweetness of caramel mixes with roasted malt and a touch of smoke before a big bitter finish of citrusy hops like lemon and grapefruit. Medium in body with OK carbonation. Roasty, spicy, and a bit chewy with some chalkiness and lots of bitterness. Fairly drinkable, but one bomber is plenty for me for a while.

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Photo of katan
3.54/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz bomber

Terra-ryzed - a left hand and Terrapin collaboration.

A - A dark amber to almost black color. Very opaque except around the edges. Head formation is light - looks fairly flat. Head is lighter white in color, in strong contrast with the beer itself. Difficult to detect much hazing or yeast suspension.

S - A small amount of the rye astringency that you would expect from a rye beer. Mostly a sweet and yeast combination on the nose. Spicy and dry.

T - Starts off with some roasted malts - caramel combination. Does have a fair of rye edge in the early and mid-stream flavors. Finishes with a building bitterness and a small amount of yeast balance. Aftertaste is more of a amber malt flavor and a strong amount of post drink bitterness.

M - Beer itself is fuller in body, while the relative lack of carbonation keeps a somewhat empty feeling. The aftertaste is highly coating and oily.

D - I would generally say this beer is of moderate drinkability. The light edge of rye and bitterness does "stack" on itself as I reach the bottom of the bottle. ABV is higher but manageable. Rye beers are probably not exactly a drinkable style, I would say this one doesn't change the perception for me.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I picked up this bomber in South Carolina 2 months ago, now getting to it after 2 months of refrigeration. The beer is dark reddish brown, transparent at the edges, with a good dose of off-white foam. The smell is more malty than anything, a hint of spice that's hard to peg but just might be from the rye. The rye is easy to spot in the flavor though, kind of like a scwarzbier with rye added. Some roasted malt and whatnot behind the rye, I didn't get much hops from this. The body is pretty much medium and I deem this easy drinking, not quite chug-a-lug but not difficult to swallow.

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Photo of Goliath
3.56/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown in color with some ruby hues. A half inch tan head forms and lingers with decent retention but leaves no real lacing.

The aroma is decent. A bit of rye, slightly sweet too. Not really a ton going on in the nose.

The taste is pretty nice too. Not really aggressive, just simple and enjoyable. There is a decent rye bite in the profile, and the beer is slightly bitter. Not really sure what else to make of it.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and lightly carbonated.

Drinkability is fairly high. It's a solid beer and easy to enjoy.

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Photo of Rudgers73
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to raverjames for my very first traded beer. (a bonus beer nonetheless!!)

Pours with a little bit of thickness into my Boddingtons imperial pint glass. Deep mahogany in color with mild carbonation. Light tan head that sits at a thin covering over the beer. Interesting in the nose: Sweet, dry, herbal, pot smoke (not joking), grassy hops. Big burst of deep flavor in this one. Dry and bitter with a slight sweet backing. I can taste the rye along with some black patent malt, and herbal hops. I can still taste a marijuana character, but as the drink progresses the rye begins to push it out of the way. This makes me believe that the hops were actually the source of this flavor, as the tongue gets numbed with alpha acid and "loses the taste" after a while. Still, a nice smoky flavor comes through to keep this one interesting. Heavy in the mouth and saturated with flavor, this is a big beer regardless of it only have 6.6% ABV. Truly an American beer.

Glad I got to try one.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.6/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a very dense, tightly beaded, four-finger thic head that belies the relatively low alcohol of this beer. As the head slowly subsides it leaves lots of lacing on the sides of my glass. The head is a lightly browned, creamed-amber color. The beer is a dark, concentrated amber color that could be confused for black in a dark'ish bar; when held up to the light the beer shows a brilliantly clear, deep cranberry hue. A sniff of the aroma from the freshly popped bottle yielded a signature rye spiciness. A deeper inspection of the beer yields sweet, candied malt notes, spicy rye notes, toasted, almost burnt whole grain bread aromas, as well as a significant whole grain character that seems quite wholesome. Hop character contributes a nice sweet-citrus character and in combination with some of the caramelized malt a not of berries. After smelling this for a bit, I realize that much of the candied malt aromatics seem to be induced by citrus hop notes. This is a fairly complex smelling beer, it is only a mix of grain / malt and hop character (no fermentation character to speak of), but it remains quite interesting. I like that despite the ample hop notes, caramelized malt and toasted grain character the spicy rye notes are still able to be quite noticeable.

Thick and viscous feeling as this rolls across my tongue; in fact the texture from the rye is clearly evident, this is most definitely a sipping brew despite the moderate alcohol. Biting hops contribute a bitterness to the finish as well as an orange-zest, ruby red grapefruit and tangerine flavors to the middle of this beer. The hop character is ample, but mixes with a roasted malt character that reminds me of deeply toasted grain, a touch of bitter burnt grain, and even a touch of acidity from the burnt malt; at times the roast grain notes can almost hide the ample citrusy hop character. The hops have an almost bitter citrus oil component to it that turns to pine sap like flavors at times. The spicy rye flavors seem to get a bit lost trying to compete with the dark malt and, especially, the expressive hop notes.

Despite this being ten months old that hop character is still a bit too much in this beer. I do likely a nicely hopped beer from time to time, but here it gets in the way of noticing the nice spicy rye notes and the other malt complexity (the nose was actually more complex than the flavor ends up being). Even the roast malt and the hops seem to not do the best job of playing well together; the two can be just a bit cacophonous in the integration and aren't nearly as harmonious as one might like. Having said that this is still a nice beer, as with other heavily rye-based beers, the texture can certainly take a bit of getting used to, but it makes for a chewy, hardy-seeming beer that is nice to sip upon.

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Photo of russpowell
3.63/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this today at old chicago

Poured mahogany with a finger of tan head. Good head retention & lacing

S: Peppery rye & a bit of cocoa

T: Peppery rye, charred grain & licorice up front. Chalky dryness & burnt rye toast dominate as this warms, along with hints of cocoa & licorice. Finishes semi-crisp, but the burnt taste holds this back a bit

MF: Medium bodied, slightly over carbonated & chalky

Drank pretty easy, but the over carbonation & charred grain taste would get to me after a few pints

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Photo of BeerSox
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber into wine glass (best glass at the parents' house) shared with dad.

Very deep brown with ruby highlights when held up to the light. A thin one finger tan head slowly settles to a thin cap that covers most of the beer. Stringy lacing.

Oddly, the aromas seem almost non-existent. If I try to smell any harder I'll suck beer into my nose. A touch of tart and burnt rye aromas.

Smokey and slightly toasty rye flavors with a little bit of tartness. Some light spiciness is in the middle. The hops add a little bit of a herbal flavor to the background. Full bodied.

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Photo of Metalmonk
3.66/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a finger-thick tan head that sits on top of a glossy brown with reddish hues. Black? Not really, but quite a looker nonetheless.

Really grainy, earthy aroma--obviously the rye talking--with some spices buried in back and just a hint of chocolate cake. Not all that exciting, really.

Flavor is mostly chocolate-flavored coffee grounds, very roasty and the rye makes itself known with a coarse, bitter character. Then comes a sharp, astringent hit in the finish that must be hops battling against the intensity of the rye. Anise, smoke, milk and salt come in with some warming. It's a very different flavor that's not easy to acclimate to...takes some time and consideration, and by the time I thought I'd gotten my head around it, it was almost gone.

Texture is very slick, medium-bodied with ample carbonation. Gets kind of creamy as it warms. Does the job and matches well with the flavor it delivers.

Drinks a lot like a super-toasty porter or schwarzbier. Definitely unique and interesting, worth at least a try.

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Photo of Tilley4
3.67/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I love collab brews and this ones pretty good...

This is almost black...sort of a murky brownish red, I'd say.... It fluffs up really nicely although its a delayed effect...

Spicy nose of licorice, some chocolate, a little smoke, and that rye smell...

Huge whopping spicy rye flavors with this one... Very earthy and raw and I like it.... Its sweet but spicy in a way that's addictive...

Quite viscous brew.... Feels good going down...

I like this brew but I'm not sure if I could session it as the rye gets old after a couple of pints.... Still, a good brew...

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired from mikesgroove, courtesy of the Little Guy 2 BIF so a big "Thank You" goes out to him. Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a large light brown head that fades slowly and leaves a thick on the glass.

S: The aroma is of roasted rye malts, dark fruit, chocolate, coffee and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out malty and creamy with flavors of chocolate, roasted coffee beans and a little bit of dark fruit. There are background flavors of spice and lager yeast. The hops presence is mild but complementary. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly bready.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium-to-heavy body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, different representation of style, this is the type of beer that combines elements of several different styles which gives it a good complexity, overall though it's not the kind of beer that I want to drink regularly.

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Photo of mtstatebeer
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle. Pours a clear, dark brown with a reddish hue, big frothy light brown head, lacing throughout. Aroma is caramel and roasted malts, spiciness from the rye, nutty, and bread. Flavor is roasted malts, caramel, a hint of sweet chocolate, coffee, and nutty. Mouthfeel is medium, creamy, dry, and bitter. I really like this one, I hope they make more.

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Photo of emmasdad
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark garnet color, nicely capped off with a good finger of tan colored foam. Aromas of spicy rye bread, lightly toasted malts and milk chocolate. Very crisp and drinkable, with flavors of roasted malt, a little caramel sweetness and some late rye spiciness. A very nice collaboration, a very drinkable beer.

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Photo of gabeerfan
3.73/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark brown, almost black, with dark red highlights. Nice tan head that falls to a thin cap.
Pretty malty aromas. Definitely detect the rye in there. Dark toasted malts, dark fruits and a little alcohol. Little to no hop aroma.
Malty flavors too. Bits of smokiness along with rye and mocha coffee. A little molasses sweetness to cut some of the bitterness. It's difficult to distinguish the bitterness from the toasted malts or the hops.
Medium-thick body. A little oily and the flavors don't linger long, as in most lagers.
Pretty drinkable. Good with turkey and dressing. Good cold weather beer.
Good collaboration with Terrapin, one of my favorite breweries, and hopefully this will lead to more in the future. If you can still find this, pick up a bottle.

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Photo of jwc215
3.74/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for this one!

Pours dark brown with ruby highlights. It doesn't really get to black. It has a very thin tan head.

The smell is of chocolate, mint candy and roast.

The taste is not as pleasurable as the aroma. Rye dominates just a bit too much. The chocolate and roast fade away as it progresses. The mintiness holds up. There's a bit of acidic astringency for a lager.

It is somewhat creamy, though a bit swishy.

Could be a great "something different" beer. But a little too acidic, and a bit overboard with the rye - masking the maltiness. Still - different, not bad at all - certainly worth "checking out".

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Terra-Rye'ZD from Left Hand Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.9 out of 5 with 97 ratings