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Hop Rod Rye | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

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Hop Rod RyeHop Rod Rye
4,724 Ratings
Hop Rod RyeHop Rod Rye

Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A high gravity IPA brewed with 18% rye malt. Hop Rod Rye has a floral hop aroma and subtle caramel notes with a slightly earthy and spicy rye character.

2009 California State Fair – GOLD
2003 California State Fair – GOLD
2002 Real Ale Festival (Chicago) – GOLD

Added by Quaffer on 03-27-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,724 |  Reviews: 2,080
Photo of jmfc8237
4.63/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance was of sweet brewed tea that was a bit cloudy but that's my fault. I love yeast sediment. Toffee colored head with decent retention considering it's abv. Sticky powdered malt like lacing coats the glass. Nose is boozie and packed with earthy floral hops. A slight tinge of grapefruit is present as well. As it warms more caramel and toffee are present in the entire beer and has a awesome hop presence and the buiscuity mouthfeel is not outdone. The rye being 18 percent of the grist defiantly gives this beer a crisp sharp dry finish. I love the hop bitterness and malty backbone. This is such a well balanced beer to sip on. Cheers

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Photo of bamojr
4.46/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark pale red with heavy tan head that holds for quite some time.
Small hop and malt smell no big smells from this one.
Hoppy lots of citrus and wild flowers. Sweet malt to finish on the palette.
A bit spicy but very drinkable. This is my first Bear Republic and I am quite impressed and will be back to try their other brews.

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Photo of CHADMC3
4.27/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very rich and deep copper, almost chestnut color, yet transparent, beneath a frothy tan head that leaves scattered, but sticky lacing as it dissipates.

Aromatic hops waft from the glass, a touch woody, and a touch herbal with nuances of sweet malt and generous rye.

The flavor offers much more noticeable woody hops that are quite oily. Hops become herbal and spicy as the beer warms with the rye present the entire time. The flavor is also packed with bread-like malts but it comes back to the generous hops.

Medium in body and carbonation, this beer is packed with oily, palate coating hops.

Great beer all around, another job well done from BR.

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Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz into a Vertical Jewbelation glass. Reviewed as an IPA and not a rye beer. Pours a deep red/brown with a half inch head. Just a bit of lace gets left behind.

The smell starts with rye and citrus and finishes with some earth.

Good hop/rye balance. Spicy rye, lemon, floral hops, pale malts and a touch of sweetness. Goes down super smooth with just enough carbonation.

An excellent whatever it is, rye beer, IPA, it hits the spot. Way less expensive to get a four pack than a few bombers. Whatever, I'll grab some more soon.

The style was switched from IPA to Rye Beer so I just changed the appearance score.
Easily one of the best RyePA's I've had to date.

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Photo of DCon
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this on-tap @ the iTap House in Chesterfield, MO for $3 (usually 6, but Monday night is Half off the Tap night here). Tapped into an Schlafly Pint Glass from the crazy rasta Tap.

Aroma- Starts off with a huge citrus hop aroma with a grapefruit background. Has hints of rye while keep the nose down even longer. Nice grains and very earthy. Nice IPA smells!

Appearance- Received with a 1 finger of frothy, off white head that stayed for a while. Body was a deep brown/amber color with tons of lace that follows through.

Flavor- In the beginning, has talent to be one of the best IPA's and then has too much grain and rye flavor... Wish they could have just stuck with the original IPA ingredients but they went out of their way to brew this with rye. Very interesting. Has tons of character and sweetness to the ending bitterness.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied, smooth, and has a nice, consistent taste all the way through!

Overall Impression- All around IPA, fantastic, gotta try! What else do I have to say? I'm ready to have ANYTHING from the Bear Republic Brewing Co. in bottle. Haven't seen anything yet but looking.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a very nice orange-red/amber with a nice head that leaves pretty good lacing

S: Nice and hoppy, along with some nice spicy rye and caramel malts

T: Some bitterness from the hops at first, then comes the spicy rye and malts. Also some peppery alcohol, though hidden very well. Pretty complex with all the flavors blending nicely together

M: Medium body with light carbonation. Works well with the spiciness in general

O: An interesting take on the oh-so-common American IPA. The hops work well with the rye in an odd but good way

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Photo of eric5bellies
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a very dark Amber colour with a really nice Ivory coloured head that retains very well.

S - Big piney hops aromas, with burnt sugar, malt and a little citrus.

T - Quite a malty flavour up front, with a hops consisting of citrus, mango and Orange peel that preceeds a nice long slightly sticky bitter finish.

M - Medium body and low to medium carbonation.

O - A fantastically balanced IPA with malt and hop in perfect sync.

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Photo of dogfishandi
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

picked up a growler of this at the orchard park consumer's for 12-13$, not a bad deal. a little above fridge temp poured into a snifter.

pours out a super beautiful deep bronze, red, almost brown color with a big fluffy, rocky, light tan colored head. amazing retention and lace. looks ideal!

dank, sprucey, woody, pine hops. some citrus. bready, slightly spicy rye malt with a hint of caramel.

lots of woody/ piney and grapefruit citrus hops balanced just perfectly by a bready, slightly caramel malt. some spicy rye is definatly noticable in the finish with lots of good bitterness as well.

sticky, almost a little resiny on the palate. medium bodied, carbonation feels perfect for this beer.

overall, a great drinker. this growler was such an easy kill on a nice summer night, in my backyard next to a fire. ill always come back to this beer, it seems to have just a little more to offer than your average IPA, almost like an amber rye IPA...love it!

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Photo of Bennettrox
4.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huuuge thanks to Optimator13 for this one!

A - Pours a dark deep ruby red, almost brown. An enormous sticky head follows that laces the glass with every sip. Looks gorgeous.

S - All kinds of hops! Mostly citrus, some pine, a good toasty pop-tart smelling malt, and a little caramel.

T - Damn. This is one of the tastiest DIPAs (IPA? I think not) I've ever had. Huge hop presence but it's balance so damn well with the malts and rye. More citrus, pine, toffee, caramel, and the finish is the absolute best - rye, pepper, and almost a gingerbread taste.

M - Medium carbonation, sticks to the mouth all over and goes down oh so smooth.

O - Wow I really enjoyed this one. I mean, really enjoyed it. This is a perfect example of a DIPA with great complexity and a nice rye touch. Not overly boozy like many of the DIPA's I'm seeing these days and I can really appreciate that.

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Photo of Yagman3000
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

appears a dark brown with a slight orange tint.

Smells of hops more than the rye. Nice.

Tastes of initial hops and finishes off with a rye carroway goodness.

Mouthfeel is heavier than expected.

Overall a really good beer. I don't know if I'd go all the way with an A rating but it seems b+ish to me.

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Photo of Lauthaha
4.8/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Beer pours an auburn color...almost opaque, but with just a touch of translucence. Head is a beautiful tan color, about two fingers high. Richly foamy, and it recedes leaving a layer of foam on the surface of the beer. Really pretty.

Smell: The malty rye character is boldly challenged by bitter, piney hops. A very earthy smell, very well done.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Very creamy upon entrance, and wow...it's bittersweet in all the best ways. Carob or vanilla bean, toasted sweet rye, earthy hops. A nice tangy aftertaste, full of all the great flavors aforementioned and adding none other.

Overall: Just about perfect in every way. The only things for me that could have made it better would have been a heftier head retention and maybe ONE more scent in the nose...but I'm just splitting hairs at this point, a truly good beer.

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Photo of kevanb
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This IPA is brewed with rye for a little added kick. It pours a really dark amber color with hints of garnet red as well as mild brown. Lots of bubbles rising to the top of the glass, a thin layer of off white head appears and sticks superbly to the glass throughout the session. It has a really nice citrus hop aroma with a strong malt profile that compliments the rye spicing in the nose. The flavors are really great, lots of bitter coniferous hop with citrus bursts that support and layer wonderfully with with the malt flavors and ample rye spicing. It has a nice medium body, a little carbonated for my tastes but doesn’t detract from the beer really with a nice clean crisp finish that isn’t too bitter or too soft.

Verdict: This is a really phenomenal IPA, the rye spicing adds a nice subtle touch that adds a lot to the beer. It’s really easy to drink and very approachable without compromising the quality and complexity of the beer.

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Photo of ReelBigwigFish
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got a 4 pack yesterday, and figured I'd have a breakfast beer this morning.

A: Poured into pint glass, it has a very dark red/brown color to it. Much darker than I had imagined. Creamy looking tan colored head with lots of lacing.

S: Lots of hop bitterness from a range of hops and spicy rye.

T: Bitter grapefruit, and piney hop flavors up front followed by a malty rye infused finished. Both the hop and malt characteristics in this beer are VERY pronounced.

M: Creamy, full bodied, almost too much to handle. I don't think I could session this beer, but then again, for the price, I wouldn't want to.

O: This is an intense beer, strong flavors abound. I think it's a great beer for anyone that likes a strong ale. Definitely the best rye ale I've had.

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Photo of bbkd3b
4.34/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Surprisingly dark in the color, and with plenty of hazy sediment in the center to boot. A small off-white head bubbles out of existence after only a short time, and there isn't any sort of lacing to speak of. Honestly, I don't care because the scent is too pleasant, with its seductive combo of grapefruit citrus and spicy rye leading the charge. Bready malts round off the nose giving a nice, even character and welcoming impression.

Now amplify the nose, and make every aspect of it even stronger. That's what it tastes like. Incredibly well-executed punch of bitter hoppiness, rye, and a kick of bread give this beer a complex, tasty flavor. Sensual body slides against the tongue, with the perfect amount of carbonation satisfying any beer-drinker's palate. Heck, it even goes down smooth and easy, making me wonder where in the world that alcohol disappeared to. Frankly, amazing.

Overall/notes - Well, I like the Racer 5, but this just ran right over it (pun not intended). Much more potent than I generally expect out of an IPA, and with great balance, too! Never would have thought the rye could go such a long way, but Bear Republic apparently was on to something. Well-done.

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Photo of MarcatGSB
4.05/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into snifter. No bottled date. After taking some tasting notes on Heaven Hills single barrel 25 year Rittenhouse Rye (barrel 57, bottle 33) today, this is fitting.

Appearance: Pours a hazy red amber color with huge chunks of sludge with copper colored single finger tight head. Persistent lacing. The chunks didn't seem to affect the taste.

Nose: Subdued with a bit of spicy rye notes and citrus IPA.

Taste: Alright, very impressive. Big punch of dried fruit and hop bitterness. Malty backbone provides caramel sweetness that balances out the bitter, piney mouth.

Mouth: Sticky mouthful, with a real dry finish. High carbonation supports the bright rye.

Drink and Overall: Okay, good beer. Little disappointed, but I really enjoyed it. First time trying this beer, I will have another go at some point.

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Photo of afksports
3.97/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the very first beers I had on my little Top100 quest (based on the top American beers from last August), this fine American IPA from Bear Republic in California was a good introduction to the craft beer community. Hop Rod Rye. With a flaming car on the front. Sexy.

Almost red from the tap, the murky amber body has a bit of head that lingers around just enough to keep you drinking. On the nose the head produces fermented rye, malt, and pine hops - with just a touch of citrus and sugar. The taste is composed of the same elements. While enjoying them it's easy to forget about the 8.0% alcohol you're imbibing. HRR leads with pine trees and grassy hops, comes through in the middle and back with rye and bittering hops, and all the while has a malty sweetness to cover it up and push through the alcohol.

Overall the medium bodied brew is a solid IPA, and a solid offering for rye lovers that's available in half the bodegas in New York City. That's a feat to accomplish, and although my rating may be slightly affected by my anti-rye bias, I should still salute Bear Republic for this hot rod of a beer.

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Photo of Rschis16
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Almost as brown as the bottle it came in, with a beautiful half-inch to inch foamy off-white head that doesn't go anywhere after the pour. Lacing? You betcha. Tons of hop sediment float around at the bottom, and there's even some left in the bottom of the bottle. Gorgeous beer. The smell is pleasant and refreshing. You can tell tons of hops went into the development of this one. Citrus hops? That's what I get but I could be wrong. Whatever they are, they are potent.

Whoa, first sip's reaction is "now that's an interesting and unique take on an IPA". Certainly very hoppy and robustly bitter on the back side of the taste, but also pleasantly balanced out by a certain heartiness that becomes this beer's character. The ultra-crisp mouthfeel and dry finish also help to balance out any and all flavors within. Virtually no alcohol taste at all at 8% ABV. While I can only imagine that the 18% rye malt is giving this beer its uniqueness, it doesn't take away from the overall balance of the beer. That is why this beer shines. It's unique and delicious and will be sure to please any hophead, but it's so delicately balanced that most people would be able to appreciate it. Just one of these has turned it into one of my favorite IPA's, or specialty ales, whatever it is, and it has peaked my interest for some other rye beers. Great beer, congrats and thanks to Bear Republic.

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Photo of biggred1
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep cherry tinted chestnut brown with a creamy mocha head that leaves thick rings of sparkling lace on the glass. Citrusy hops, pine sap and caramel rye malt aromas. Big resinous hop flavor with rich caramel maltiness to balance the hop oily bitterness. The rye adds a nice spicy kick to round out the flavors. Medium bodied with perfect cleansing carbonation. Bear Republic makes some fine ales, Hop Rod Rye may be the best one.

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Photo of legalpete19340
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a dark and dull brown with a finger of off-white head. Basic lacing.

S: Nice pale malt and hop presence. Bit of pine but more floral and herbal notes. Grass, apples, white bread.

T: Sweetness upfront with apple quickly replaced by bite of bitterness and hops: mild pine, herbal essence. The bitterness lingers and transitions into a nice pale malt experience highlighted by slight rye bread sourness. Ends crisp.

M: Thinner with good carbonation.

O: Great rye pale ale. Crisp, malted with a kick of rye and hops in the background but noticeable. Will always grab another when Racer 5 isnt biting enough. This is its bad bro.

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Photo of Hoptometrist
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap into a shaker glass at the Bear Republic Brewpub

A- Pours a medium brown color with one finger of creamy head

S- Rye, citrus, pine, and floral aromas. Great balance in the aroma

T- Packs a pretty big hop punch, rye, lots of spice, earthy notes, caramel, and finishes with citrus hops

M- Creamy and smooth, finishes dry

O- A hop monster with a nice malt backbone and lots of spice.

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Photo of AmericanGothic
4.42/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a medium copper color, clear with one finger of off-white head. Good retention and lace.

S: Good peach/mango aromas, both bright and deep. Quite good.

T: Sweet grapefruit and a hint of leather up front. Thin rye sweetness in the middle with some resiny pine on the finish. Tiny bit of spicy alcohol pokes through. As the beer warms, the sweet middle changes to more of a biscuity quality that persists further into the finish, but still yields to the pine at the end. I do like this.

M: Light/medium mouthfeel with good creaminess and a little oil on the finish. Creaminess grows as the beer warms.

O: Really nice and enjoyable beer, goes down very smooth for 8%. The hops are persistent but without overkill. I liked this a lot and I'm glad there's more at the store (special shipment to Iowa). Did I mention that I really like this?

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Photo of codfeast
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle into large tulip.

A: dark cherry, think creamy head, sticky lacing.

S: Hops, pine, rye, malt, and ripe bananna?

T: Sweet caramel, hit right after with hops. A bitter finish that lingers. Picking up more of the rye as the beer warms. No alcohol taste at all.

M: Medium body, medium carbination.

O: really balanced, not nearly as bitter as the smell would indicate. It's a real tasty change of pace west coast IPA.

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Photo of pjs234
4.42/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours very dark, cloudy, amber, with a near two finger head. A fair amount of lacing as the beer is consumed. There is a very lovely hops aroma. The taste is both sweet and bitter (I’d say bitter sweet, but that implies that some part of this beer is not good). The beer starts off very sweet and then the hops kick in. The hops bite is very good, but not over the top. This is a very balanced rye beer. The mouthfeel is very good too, not to heavy, not too thin. This is a very drinkable IPA, almost dangerously drinkable given the 8% ABV. Too bad I need to travel out of state to get this one.

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

Beer pours out to a mahogany body with a thin tan head that maintains some superb lacing and retention. It has a nice aroma of pine and grapefruit along with some sweet caramel. The taste is rye, caramel and a load of hops which the bitterness just bites the tongue and balances out the sweetness. This beer has got to be one of the smoothest, creamiest and best mouth feel I have ever experienced with a beer. A very good beer and just like the other two Bear Republic beers that I have reviewed this also is a must try.

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Photo of soughtbygod
3.99/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a great amber colored beer with a light foam. An aggressive pour released a great nose. The smells were Apple, citrus, and papaya. I thought that it might be too sweet for me but upon tasting it I was surprised to find a deep complex piny IPA with strong notes of simcoe hops. This is a very well rounded beer that has a lot of hop characteristic. with just enough malt to balance it out.

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Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.22 out of 5 with 4,724 ratings
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