Hop Rod Rye | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

4,716 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

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,716 |  Reviews: 2,077
Photo of augustgarage
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into my Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Fairly clear rufous body with rust and bronze highlights. Two fingers of soapy/rocky beige foam crests above the glass. Lasting retention, sticky tendrils of lace.

Super fresh pineapple, grapefruit, kumquat, and pine in the nose - big C-hops through and through. Light spicy background note as well...

Superbly balanced flavor profile, with a lovely sweet/spicy rye taste offsetting the hop bomb (which has primarily citrus, but also substantial evergreen and maybe a little tropical note) that is full of flavor without being overly bitter. Light caramel and somewhat toasty malt evens the score further. Slightly earthy finish with a touch of pepper and anise (reminiscent of a Sazerac).

Moderately carbonated, medium-light bodied, slightly oily mouthfeel.

Immense flavor without an equal measure of bitterness - not nearly as pine or hemp forward as a lot of NorCal IPAs, this has a superior balance. After many years, this has only been eclipsed by Alpine's Nelson in my opinion as far as rye-IPAs go.

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Photo of Yesac
3.8/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Very dark ruby in color. Medium sized off white head.

S- Brown sugar, grapefruit, pine, malt and bitter hops, alcohol. Smells very balanced.

T- Big caramel, brown sugar, piney bitter hops, toasty malt and definite rye presence.

M- Medium body, medium-high carbonation. Not to dry, great covering on the palate.

D- Great overall, to much bitter ryeness for my liking.

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Photo of coalcracker
4.02/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Ruby red in appearance with fair head retention.
Smell: Very hoppy aroma, piney in nature. The rye malts aren't too noticeable in here.
Taste: Sharp hoppy bite that builds over a base of deep malts. These malts have a very roasted quality. The rye pulls through towards the middle/end of the tasting. Hop bite is slow to fade and remains through the aftertaste.
Mouthfeel: Medium body with a good deal of hoppy slickness on the tongue.
Drinkability: Not too heavy on the ABV. Hop character may put off the casual drinker.

Great beer for the hopheads seeking a change-up on the malt profile. Good beer.

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Photo of climax
4.7/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Hop Rod pours a deep caramel with ruby highlights. It was very cloudy with a floating haze and some scuba yeast particles. The large head was a very foamy mass which stuck around and had sinkholes in the middle. Lace was good, notching all the way down.

The nose was a fresh refreshing burst of citrus and mint grass hops. Toasty caramel was evident as the malt backbone, but never distracted from the showcase of hops.

The rye, which became evident in the nose as it warmed, was much more distinguishable in the flavor. Cocoa and caramel had a nice sweetness to add on to the roasty malt profile. The juicy grapefruit and floral punch of the hops may have outmatched the malt, but it had an excellent well-balanced enjoyable flavor. Awesome.

The body was medium and had a nice sticky feel. The carbonation was quite generous, giving a solid bite long into the lingering bitter dry/chalky finish. This is a fantastic beer, enough hop kick to be a real good IPA, and a hell of a good malt profile to make it a heavyweight of flavor.

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Photo of CascadeConan
4.77/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep orange to amber hue with an amazing frothy white head that leaves timeline lacing you could set your watch to.

The smell of this beer is outrageous: citrus peel, honey dew melon rind, mint, pine, flowers, carmel and rye. The best thing about these smells is how distinct they are, you're not going to take a whiff of this beer and just say, "this smells hoppy."

First taste is smooth, crisp, full-of-everything-you-want-in-an-IPA. Really good balance between the bitterness of the hops and the malt, and as it warms the rye character starts to shine lending a spicy flavor to the palate.

Nice full mouth feel and drinks smooth for an 8% ABV beer.

I can't say enough about this brew, it proved to me the style of IPA has some more wiggle room from it's typical hop bomb characteristics and at $4 a bomber there really is no excuse not to drink it.

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Photo of StlHopHead77
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a snifter.

A-Pours a deep,hazy,ruddy brownish-orange with one finger's worth of off-white head and decent, slick ribbons of lace.On the initial pour,tight swirls of moderate carbonation were evident.

S-Big jam and spice on the nose.Apricot preserves,white pepper,crisp,earthy rye and multi-grain toast.Some underlying floral hop notes and tropical fruit also.Very complex but unmuddled nose.

T-Orange marmalade,carraway,pine,marbled rye and caramel malt.Nice floral and citric hop bitterness with a complementary caramel malt base and a perfectly measured rye spiciness.Excellent balance of components.

M-Crisp,tart,sweet and resinous.Toasty,biscuity notes from the malts,that anise-like rye spice and tangy,perfumey hops give this beer an unbelievable structure and range.Medium bodied with appropriate carbonation and nice dry finish.

D-Drinkability is through the roof on this one.I'm ready to have another so that I can see what else I can pull out of it.

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

Presentation: It was poured into from a 1pt 6oz brown bottle into a tulip glass. There is no noticeable ABV or freshness date on the label.

Appearance: From the pour I got a deep ruby red body with some carbonation and a tall light beige head. The head is thick and long lasting which makes for some think clingy lace patterns on the glass.

Smell: The aroma has deep lemon pith and lemon oil like hops with a touch of resiny pine like hops too. I am also getting rye bready and lots of roasted/toasted malt.

Taste/Palate: There is a heavy concentrated hit of resiny pine and citrus hops backed up by a deep solid hit of dark roasted grain, caramelized malt, raison like dark fruit and toasted rye bread. The ABV is fairly well hidden but does add a touch of sweetness and warmth to the overall character which is intense. The finish is long and full of hop bitterness that very slowly fades off the tongue. Under this I also pick up some mellow sweet alcohol and a hint of an almond like toasted note. It has a very deep and complex finish.

Notes: This is absolutely crazy, deep and complexly concentrated beer. Be sure to take your time and sip this one slowly.

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Photo of benclimbs
4.57/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

amazing beer from bear republic, a simply amazing brewery

pours dark brown amber with a massive head, and tons of lacing that sticks around for ages.

smell is about perfect for a dark, rye based IPA - tons of juicy piney, fruity hops with a strong malt backbone, almost smells like a nice english bitter, but with tons of hops, also smells woody, a bit of vanilla bourbon character, so geared so complex.

taste is also geared and amazing, carries a nice smooth, buttery, buiscuity off-sweet malt character with a bit of warming alcohol and a beautiful bitter hop kick that melds with the woody notes - is this aged in barrels or is this the malts? awesome though.

mouthfeel is nice, not too dry or too slick.

this is a very drinkable ale for 8% though it is a big big massive beer at that gravity, but its still pretty damn awesome.

This may be Bear Republic's best, and this ranks up there with russian river in top nor cal brews period.

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Photo of SuperNova777
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanx to AlleyKat King for bringing this back for me from his honeymoon in LA

Notes from 08/25/10

A:Poured a ruby red color with a fingers worth of head that leaves a awesome lacing
down the glass

S:At first you get a nice tone of rye mix in with a floral hop aroma with a little sweetness
as well

T:Just as the smell detects a nice floral flavor as it first hits the palate followed up with tones of rye and malt mix together. The palate is left with a final bite of hops leaving you wanting another sip

M:A nice solid body with just the right amount of carbonation

D:Probably one of the best rye beers I have ever had. Solid flavor with easy drinkability and a great hop profile, wish we could get Bear Republic in Indiana all the time

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Photo of grittybrews
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured dark brown with a ruby tinge into a Duvel tulip. Around a finger of light tan head that slowly receded to a thin film, leaving some clingy lacing. Fairly big aroma with typical IPA notes of grapefruit and pine with hints of spice.

Moderate carbonation and a full, creamy mouthfeel. Hop presence up front followed by some mildly sweet caramel and a wonderful long finish of spicy rye and tart citrus. Refreshing and well-balanced rye IPA.

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Photo of KAP1356
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a DFH pint glass...

A - Pours a hazy amber color and a surprisingly huge 3 finger head formed and stuck around for quite awhile. It is a nice eggshell color.

S - Some nice breadiness mixed with a great deal of hop aromas. Pine, grapefruit, tangerine all meld together in a nice hop explosion in the nose.

T - Piney and fruity hops mixed with some nice rye malts. Taste is bready and light all at the same time with a nice bite to it from the hops. The malts stand up nicely to the hop presence.

M - Medium bodied and smooth with a nice bite from the hops. Nice carbonation mixes well with this one on the tongue. Nice and crisp.

D - Dangerously drinkable for it being 8% ABV. Nicely balanced beer and easy on the palate allowing for more than one to be consumed.

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Photo of CampusCrew
3.99/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hd this in Fort Worth Flying Saucer which i heard was the orignal pub to start.

The long awaited sample of this beer finally happened. it did not dissapoint. it poured a dark sopperish color. nice glows. Had a nice creamy head and huge lacing.Light on the nose but did have some citrus aromas, This is a balanced IPA and very hefty on the the body.

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Photo of OakedCanuck
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber poured into shaker pint. From notes.

A - Off-white to light tan head with great lacing. Pours a dark copper to wood brown.

S - roasty and malty with the expected citrus hops. Caramel sweetness is hidden in the back.

T - The hops and rye malts battle for dominance. This causes the taste to fluctuate between the delicious citrus/piney hops and the caramel sweetness of the malt.

M - Well balanced with the rye being profiled nicely. The taste stays with you for a while afterwards, but there is no complaint about that!

D - Very smooth for a big beer and very drinkable. Will definitely be picking up more.

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Photo of fastsrt
4.06/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle in pint glass

A: dark amber brown, fluffy head, lacing,

S: bright citrus hops, spicy, smells fresh

T: hops and rye malts blend together for some spice,

M: lighter body, expected a real heavy beer almost like double ipa.

D: easy drinker any time of the year. will drink often.

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Photo of TheJollyHop
4.15/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Floral aroma emanating from a clear, deep reddish brown body.
Pungent and juicy grapefruit, oranges, and cat pee, all on the nose.

Spicy rye upfront with a caramelized grapefruit and bread-like middle ending in a somewhat long, and somewhat drying finish. Earth hop flavors are noticeable throughout the taste. The carbonation is low enough that the body exhibits a certain pleasant weight and has a fair amount of smooth, creaminess on the tongue. A balanced and delicious rye based IPA/DIPA.

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Photo of foogerd
4.44/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- golden brown somewhat opaque tan khaki tan head with nice lacing
S- straight up bittersweet rye bready malts caramel some grassy hops some booze in there really fresh smelling hops

T- juicy thirst quenching hops dripping with hoppy goodness perfectly balanced no edge to this brew at all the malts offset the hops perfectly
M- smooth clean crisp
D- o this is great perfect all the time

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Photo of egy
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass the beer was a woody maybe oak color, a little copper, dark for an IPA; also a surprisingly small head, tan in color. The head held for a moment and then left behind a sticky lace. The smell is hoppy with a rye not of course. Some say they smell raisins, I don't really get that. I don't think this beer is as fruity as other do. The taste is a bold hoppy taste! Strong, bitter, with a smoother rye and slightly malty finish. The stickiness and some citrus notes stay with you long after the sip and the beer has been enjoyed. I personally like this a great deal. No alcohol notes whats soever. For a strong ~8%abv this beer is very drinkable, dangerous and delicious.

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Photo of craytonic
3.9/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Solid IPA, pour is a much darker than I expected, big caramel color, very warm. Decent head and lacing. Strong hop-foward aroma, but not a champ. I feel this is like meeting a retired boxer, king of his ring in his day but probably unable to hold a candle to what the world can produce now, even in his prime. Lots of caramel and some brown sugar as well as well. Taste is similar to what I just described. Medium-full body, good feel and carbonation. A bit big to be truly drinkable.

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Photo of Lukafer
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to AlleyKatking for his generosity!

A slow pour yields a dark amber/light brown with about a fingers worth of dark red head. Smells are caramel malts, some raisins, hops and rye. I taste rye right off the bat, hoppy, sweet but balanced, very good. The malt backbone remind me of a barleywine, but the spiciness of the rye and hoppiness make this a really unique version of an American IPA. Mouthfeel is full bodied and sticky. Drinkability is high with this, so glad I got a bomber and not a 12 ouncer, would defintely drink if they disributed to Indiana.

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Photo of metter98
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is slightly hazy amber in color and poured with a thin off white head that has good head retention properties and never completely faded away. A medium amount of carbonation is visible.
S: There are strong aromas of grapefruit and piney hops in the nose along with some notes of rye.
T: Flavors of piney hops really stand out in the taste and finish. There is a mild to moderate amount of bitterness that isn't overpowering due to a good balance between the malt and hops.
M: It feels medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a medium amount of carbonation.
D: The alcohol is masked rather well so this beer is easy to drink.

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Photo of CONOR8832
3.67/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Nice thick froathy tan head, dark copper in color with some redish ruby tones, not a clear beer, there are a bit of hop remenents that settle at the bottom of the glass, so you can expect a nice hoppy beer.

S - Sweet malty/carmel notes, followed up with nice earthy pine smell with a splash of citrus, mild and faded rye scent, it is there but you almost have to go searching for it.

T - Nice hop expolosion at first mixed wtih the sweetness from the malts, you taste the rye more that what you can smell, it is a good comibination of rye and hops, and the alcohol taste is present.

M - Good carbination that stays with the beer, to which acts as a trasnport for all the armomas and flavors this beer offers. IMO a little on the heavy side.

D - This is an overall good hoppy beer, not one for the record books, however I do not think my palate has had enough training to get the full effects this beer has to offer. I had a hard time trying to figure out all the flavors that I was tasting and the aromas that I was smelling. I am going to wait a few more months and give this one another shot.

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Photo of oglmcdgl
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A bottle split with sourbatchkid and enjoyed with some steak tacos.

A- two good fingers of tan creamy head for a steady pour. Head settles slowly to a bunch of sticky lace and a thin cap on top. Burnt orange brown in color with a good amount of haze.

S- a striking balance between rye malts and bold hops. Grapefruit and cut grass. Some spice and caramel.

T- rich and roasty rye malts with a ton of citrus and pine. Hops and malts bring each other to new and interesting levels. Long rye bread finish.

M- a tick above medium in body and a tick less in carb.

D- this is a well done brew. I find the use of rye to be overbearing sometimes but with the hopping used here it works beautifully.

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Photo of keithmurray
3.96/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Rich copper colour, tan frothy head which lingers

smell - pine, caramel, grapefruit, citrus

taste - hops, citrus, grapefruit, rye kicks in during the backend

mouthfeel - good carbonation, bitter upfront and on the backend, slightly sweet, medium bodied beverage

drinkability - I think this 22oz bottle will be enough for tonight

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Photo of silentjay
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours darker than expected, a hazy ruby color, that produces a finger and a half khaki colored head that retains and laces well.

lots of citrus hops, flowers, and obviously some lightly toasted rye bread.

some peppery spice, rye toast, and a bit of sweet caramel are added to the intense hops that provide lots of bitter citrus and some mint leaf and herbs.

goes into the mouth light bodied and flat, but carbonation quickly livens up on the tongue and goes down prickly which accentuates the spiciness of this beer. a tad bit of resin is left on the palate while some sweetness and spiciness lingers on and on.

drinkability is amazing, before I know it the glass is almost gone. the spicy hops work well with the inherent spicy quality of the rye to make some unique and tasty qualities that go down well. no hint of the alcohol content. well done.

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Photo of tigg924
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: brownish-orange in color, minimal head, cloudy, moderate carbonation

Smell: big rye, small citrus hops and malt

Taste: big dose of rye throughout, caramel malt, and citrus hops

Mouthfeel: light bodied, medium carbonation, sweet start wither a big bitter middle that never gets overly bitter except for the aftertaste

Drinkability: A very nice and bitter IPA. The rye is very much present and nicely done. I like this one. A sipper that I will have again, but only once per sitting.

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Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.24 out of 5 based on 4,716 ratings.
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