The Costanza
Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

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Rye Beer
Ranked #64
Ranked #18,983
4.05 | pDev: 5.68%
Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
United States
Very Good
Notes: This amber-colored ale is brewed with a significant portion of rye malt and spiced with caraway seeds. A bready malt center with a dry spicy finish. Pairs nicely with the most sensual of the salt cured meats—pastrami.

28 IBU
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Reviews: 9 | Ratings: 13 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by ububru:
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ububru from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Mar 08, 2012
More User Reviews:
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akorsak from Pennsylvania

4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Went to Iron Hill Lancaster for Hop Stinger and imagine my surprise. Costanza on tap! Sweet.

A: The ale comes in a goblet, brown amber but nowhere near the darkeness of rye bread. A small head, seemingly par for the course today, leaves little lace behind.

S: I took a quick sip and can report that the nose has nothing on the taste. Bready malts, a dash of rye but not nearly as much as follows. Frankly a little boring.

T: The first sip makes up for the nose's shortcomings. Caraway, rye bread, and anise are in strong supply. Having had a number of rye beers, this is the one that most resembles a loaf of rye bread, bringing forth dark flavors and a very dry finish. The caraway is intense, a welcome addition to the ale as it brings out the best of the rye flavor. The rye-est rye I've ever had.

M: The mouthfeel is chewy, dry as though I just finished off a few slices of rye bread. The only things missing are pastrami and thousand island flavors and I'd be in deli heaven.

O: A whopper of a rye beer, with a flavor so true that it's scary. An existential dilemma: Hop Stinger or Costanza. I pulled a Kobayashi Maru and went with both.

Apr 09, 2011
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woodychandler from Pennsylvania

4.57/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Hand-pulled just for yours truly! Well, that glass, anyway.

A finger-and-a-half of ecru head with good retention. Color remained a cloudy yellowish-amber. Now, the nose was less sharp but still very spicy with rye and caraway. It makes me wonder what was done with the spent grain. I was at some place in my travels that made beer bread with the spent grain and this seems like it would be a fantastic candidate. Mouthfeel was silky smooth and the flavors were more rounded than on-tap. The rye and caraway were still evident but not at full-on, in-yo'-face intensity. Even the yeasty fruitiness disappeared into the background, re-emerging on the finish. I have long been a fan of cask ale and this just reinforces my belief that this is the go-to style for ales. More! And soon!

Jan 08, 2010
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Deuane from Pennsylvania

3.67/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Give me that glass of rye (beer) you old bag!

A-Slightly hazed reddish copper with a thin off-white head that reduced to a thin ring and left spotty lace.

S-Peppery spice notes with LOTS of caraway notes and a rye biscuit backing. This becomes more and more caraway forward with warming.

T-Sweeter than I expected and no where near as sharp and spicy as I would have liked. Caraway spiciness fills in nicely with warming though. Does move toward a drying finish but overall I felt this was a bit to forward with malt sweetness. This does not hit home with me.

M-Medium-light bodied fairly crisp and semi-sweet ending. Good lingering peppery spiciness.

D-Good overall and a nice attempt but slightly disappointing. Too sweet up front and not spicy, dry, hoppy enough for me. I admit though I LOVE the name and the chalk art on the board!

Jan 11, 2010
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DIM from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: This was a slightly cloudy dark amber color. It was served to me with a neat, foamy cap.

s: Spicy rye dominates with some minimal sweetness (the caraway seeds?) and a trace of floral hops.

t: Definitely a rye showcase. I'm not sure what caraway tastes like, but there was something strabge and sweet at the end.

m: Fairly viscous body and very gentle carbonation.

d: Very tasty rye showcase, but I like Paul's rye IPA more. Great name and a unique offering.

Jan 11, 2010
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Slatetank from Pennsylvania

4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this was served chilled in a goblet at Lancaster Iron Hill.

The color is a murky ruddy golden brown with a thick beige cap. The bead is tiny and the last stickage is good. The smell is the best part of this beer for me -the slight spice and earthy aromatic of caraway really combines well with the slight bready rye notes. The feel is smooth and lightly spiced with a goodly amount of carbonation with a slightly dry finish.

I love the way the Costanza brings a caraway seed and rye malt flavor together with a slight earthy and dry grainy yet moderately spiced and sweet with subtle caramel malt and gentle yeast fruity tinges yet there is a mild hop which gives a a nice balance to the overall flavor. This is a very good example of a Rye beer -both the rye malt and caraway well represented in the flavor and it is not too heavy which makes the drinkability pretty high with a nice dry finish that brings you back.

Mar 14, 2011
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ffejherb from Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Iron Hill Lancaster on 1/10/10. Served in an Imperial pint glass.

A - Very hazy, burnt reddish-orange body with copper hues and half an inch of creamy off-white head that reduced to a patchy veil, depositing a nice latticework of lace around the glass.

S - Not overly aromatic, with only a hint of rye malt and slight caramel and toffee notes, delivering a waft of sweetness and faint alcohol warmth to the olfactory.

T - Initial flavor is expectedly quite bready with a good helping of rye and an apparent caraway seed character, but not overdone. A warm syrupy sweetness and some earthy hop notes mask the rye character a bit, preventing it from reaching its full potential. Finishes on the bitter side, although most of the bitterness stems from the caraway seeds.

M - Medium bodied with a smooth, although a tad thin texture. Finishes with a tinge of dry bitterness on the palate.

D - The rye presence isn't as pronounced as I was anticipating. However, The Costanza did live up to its liquid bread aspect, although I wish the rye spiciness would have been a bit more pronounced. Still, this was a very tasty rye beer that was consumed with ease.

Jan 11, 2010
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Kegatron from Pennsylvania

3.97/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ Iron Hill Lancaster on 1/3/09. Served in an oversized mug. This is brewed with a significant portion of rye malt and spiced with caraway seeds.

Pours a hazy amber, with a finger of off-white foamy head. The retention is fairly rich, with a bit of a fizzy look to it, leaving some equally fizzy lacing back that quickly recedes down the sides of the glass. The aroma shoots up the nostrils with the deep bready bloom of a marble rye, with plenty of spice from the rye and caraway seeds really giving this a zippy feel in the nose. Some floral character gives this a character that is not unlike a hoppy fresh baked loaf of bread.

Spice and bitterness prickle the tongue up front, with sweet breadiness filling out the middle portion of this. Those caraway seeds really come out strong in the finish, mixing with the rye to impart a huge sourdough bread taste here that lingers quite strongly in the finish. Man, this really evens out nicely as it warms, giving the flavors a pleasant smoothness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with that same hearty prickle to the carbonation which seems to be par for the course with a lot of the beers here. Luckily this works well with all of the spice and hops, complimenting the profile more than hindering it. No trace of alcohol here at all, which greatly helps the drinkibility.

Those that like bread in a glass need apply for this newest tasty creation that's fortunately more "Costanza" than "Can't stand ya" (yes I had to insert the token Seinfeld reference here). Kudos to assistant brewer Colin on this, with the addition of the caraway seeds really adding a little something extra here.

Jan 03, 2010
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BravoTwo from Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Slightly hazy amber-brown, with a thick, creamy 1/2 inch head that laced well down the glass.

S - Bready, spicy, "seedy" with a malty and earthy nose.

T - Bread. Seeded rye bread sprinkled with caraway seeds. A really tasty loaf of bread. Oh yeah, it is beer though, not bread.

M - Nice level of soft carbonation, a little bit coarse ala seeded rye bread once again.

D - Really drinkable, keeoing in mind that this beer has a unique niche and taste. If you go into the beer knowing that drinkability is great.

Mar 30, 2010
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JunkYardJake from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Iron Hill in Lancaster served in a goblet.
Good pour with a tight foam hat. Amber in color with decent clarity. Smells of clove and rye. Not as aromatic as I expected but not subtle either. The first sip took me off-guard. Way more going on here than the nose implied. The spice hits first, than gives way to an heavy licorice profile. Followed up nicely by a soft bitterness. Very different from the previous rye brews I have had. Very enjoyable and recommended brew.

Feb 20, 2010
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jkeefe1800 from Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

May 22, 2013
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DrBier from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Jul 27, 2014
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Durandal_777 from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

May 12, 2014
The Costanza from Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 13 ratings