Hop Rod Rye | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

4,721 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: 4,721 |  Reviews: 2,080
Photo of rhinos00
4.57/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured this beer out of a 750mL bottle into a pint glass.

A- Dark amber with a 1.5 inch off-white head. Head slowly dissipates but is always constant throughout consumption.

S- Slight smell of hops combined with sweet malt flavor. Like a bouquet of flowers drizzled with syrupy sugar. Heaven in a bowl!

T- The only way I can describe this is like a wave coming onto the shore. The initial wave is a taste of bitter hops that you think will dominate and just stay there. On the way down (the wave receding), sweet malty flavor just rushes back up and eases the bitter hops that sits in the back of the mouth. Simply amazing!

M- Medium consistency that is oh so smooth!

D- The unique combination of hops and malt makes this an extremely interesting beer. Given the amount of alcohol and taste, this beer is extremely drinkable.

Overall, the unique combination of hops and malt makes this a high quality IPA. As the beer gets warmer, the sweet malt becomes more prominent. If you have the chance to drink this beer, do it! highly recommended!

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Photo of gyllstromk
3.36/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber with a nice light colored head and good lacing. The color contrast between head and body make for a pleasant effect when swirled.

Not much hops on the nose, but definitely a sweet malty flavor. A bit smokey as well.

Somewhat of a creamy feel.

In my opinion, Bear Republic's Racer 5 is a much better offering to the IPAs. In fact, I really question the IPA label from beer advocate, since nowhere on this bottle is it labeled as an IPA, nor does it taste much like one. I'd classify as an amber or brown based on the mix of malts and hops.

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Photo of bigkahunas4
4.67/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22 oz into my SN pint glass. A 2 finger tan head emerged, remaining at about half a finger throughout the tasting. The foam really was fantastic, as it gurgled like a root beer float. Beer was cola colored, with a nice transparent to opaque gradient from bottom up. Head had nice stickyness to the sides of the glass.

This beer was really something special on the nose - and one of my favorites to date (if not my #1). I got hints of brown sugar and chocolate chip cookie from the malts. Hop scent was oaked and fruity.

The taste notes were not as complex, but still very satisfying. A nice sticky malt beginning turned into a solid hop finish. I didn't feel it was overwhelming hoppy, but then again I do have quite a hop loving palette. Hop flavor was mainly grapefruit rind. The feel was ceamy, smooth, and dry at first. The beer resonated in your mouth, and the rye really began to come out.

I was certainly not disappointed with this beer, after going in with pretty high expectations. Very nice balance and full tasting IPA. I could drink several. Certainly a satisfying beverage and one I'd recommend to anyone.

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Photo of jdg204
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

After having Racer 5 on tap the other night, I made it my mission to grab some of this bad boy. Bear Republic is a seriously bad ass brewery and this brew lived up to the hype.

A: Deep reddish brown color but still somewhat clear. Single finger reddish white head that produces great lacing.

S: Massive hop smell with citrus fruits and earthy pine. A nice little sweet malt smell can be detected also. Really no hint of rye on the nose.

T: Orange, grapefruit and pine lead the way with a well balanced hop flavor bringing up the rear. There is a more earthy flavor than a normal IPA that must be the rye. From that point a nice sweetness hits the mouth midstream, with alomost dark sweet dried fruits that lends to a FANTASTIC balance with the massive hops. The finish is the earthy bitter hops finish that I love as it lingers on in the mouth for quite awhile.

M: Medium to heavy mouthfeel. Alcohol is well hidden but there is still a sticky resiny feel. If you like a full bodied beer, this beer is for you.

D: Extremely impressed by yet another Bear Republic brew, these guys have got something special going on. The AWESOME BALANCE of these heavy hop brews are through the roof. Absolutely going to have to try the Red Rocket and the Stout next!

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

Is there nothing that Bear Republic can't do well? This is another outstanding offering from this brewery.

Pours a deep red with a large, solid fluffy head that holds surprisingly long and leaves great lacing.

The aroma is large and, well, red. There's just no other way to describe it. It is sweet, malty, flowery, like a big bowl of sweet red cherries in the summertime.

The flavor is just as good - smooth, malty, with that spicy bite of rye, and a lovely dark cherry feel. The grain is so lovely that it might take you a moment to realize that the hops are outstanding as well - floral, a little piny, with a large, satisfying bitter bite on the finish. An altogether lovely experience, with a satisfying malt spice down the throat.

The mouthfeel is smooth and tongue-grabbing, with a bite of carbonation and a cling that leaves the hop bitterness sitting on the top of your mouth.

The power of the beer limits its drinkability a bit, but it is just a wonderful beer.

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Photo of bonbini26
4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On Tap @ the East Village Tavern

A- Pours a deep reddish copper with a huge foamy head that descends to a rocky, then frothy, cover that lasts, leaving broken rings and patches of lacing.
S- The smell is citric, piney and very resiny - spicy hops assault the nose. Some carob/rye in the back.
T- The taste is resiny, piney, grapefruity, spicy. Hops are aggressively in the forefront. Rye backs it up, as does a pinch of caramel sweetness as it progresses. Alcohol is there, but mellow. M-Finishes very dry.Full-bodied with an adequate amount of carbonation keeping it from being too thick

Plenty of hops in this one! A nice use of rye gives it a unique character, arrogant bastard used to be my favorite kick ass beer, but i think this one just took its place

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

I thought Racer 5 was great and then I had this beer. Thank you Bear Republic Bear. I only wish I could find more of their beer in Ohio.

Started off with a nice creamy head and a great hoppy smell. Dark amber color beer that was thick going down. The grapefruity and piney hop taste was ballanced by the malt flavor.

If Chappy's did not have a great selection of beers I would have had one of two more of this beer.

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Photo of hellomcfly
4.26/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice dark amber with a large fluggy head, awesome lacing

S - Citrus and floral hops combined with malty bready smells

T - Caramel malts with hoppy bite. Great rye taste is very much present.

M - Nice medium bodied mouthfeel.

D - Pretty good drinkability. I wouldn't want a ton of these. It's not insanely sessionable or anything but It isn't a sipper or anything.

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

First had this one from a bomber that a friend brought over for a MNF tasting. From bomber to pint glass pured a red caramel cloudy color with a solid lasting layer of cream colored foamy head. Had a nice hop and malt balance in the smell. Heavy hop flavor up front with a nice malty balance. I taste a trace of copper which is the only downside to this one. The feel was smooth and quite drinkable for an 8% APV. I had this on tap a week later and the metalic taste was not evident in the draft version.

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
3.68/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at the Comet.
A very dark amber brown in color with a nice two inches of head sitting atop. Smell is very malty. Lots of roasted caramel malts and just a hint of hops. More of the hopping profile comes across in the taste, but this is a malt bomb. Easy drinking and really smooth. Decent beer, but I prefer the Founders Reds Rye.

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

My first words at tasting this beer was, "Oh my God that's good." Appearance is slightly cloudy, deep copper-brown with a frothy off-white head. Good lacing. Aroma has a sharp, fresh hop nose of pine, citrus, and woods. Flavor is absolutely amazing. Lots of fresh hops up front with a complex malt backbone of toasted grains and the spiciness of rye. Moderate hop bitterness but not harsh at all. Full mouthfeel but very smooth and velvety makes this brew extremely drinkable. Watch out for this smooth beer sneaks up at an impressive 8% ABV. A wonderfully complex, balanced and unbelievably smooth IPA. Don't miss it!

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Photo of bkilpatr
4.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass. 09/22/08.

Pours a clear mahogany color with about three fingers of light tan head. The head faded slowly and left some nice sticky lacing. Aroma is piny hops and grassy hops with a generous dose of sweet caramel malt, and some brown sugar.

Taste starts with a lot of sweet caramel malt, brown sugar, and molasses. Finishes with lots of piny and citrusy hops, and grapefruit. Mixed within is a spicy rye bread-like flavor. The alcohol is barely noticeable.

Feel is smooth yet well-carbonated. It had a medium body and not too heavy. It does have a lingering aftertaste that isn't entirely pleasant. Drinkability is pretty good. The flavor is interesting, but the aftertaste kinda gets to me. Finishing the bottle isn't a problem, but I wouldn't want another.

Overall, an interesting beer. The flavor is pretty good but I don't care much for the aftertaste. Worth a try.

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

Pours a rich reddish amber slightly hazed by the yeast that escapes the bottle. The head is thick,soft and delicious looking,it holds for a good minute before dropping to a thin cap,leaving behind some luscious sheets of lace. The nose is super hoppy,packed full of citrus,and pine sap aromas. This has some of the freshest,heaviest,and smoothest hop bouquets I have yet to appreciate. Nice caramely,spicy malt balance truly makes this IPA a stand out,in the broad world of hop beasts. The body is thick and mouth coating,with a soft creaminess and impresses from start to finish with the taste bud assault that I crave.

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Photo of aqsprint
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Deep amber with 3 fingers of foam that lasted forever.

S- Usual suspects pine and citrus with a little spice.

T- Caramel malt, can really taste the rye, very good. Great balance, the hop bitterness goes well with the 18% rye.

M- Coats the tongue nicely but not too much

D- The balance, smoothness, and mouthfeel make this beer very drinkable.

Get this beer!

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Photo of HalfFull
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rather silky amber with some deep red orange hues. Nice head on the glass, and decent lacing throughout.

Quite hoppy on the nose, and increasingly so as the beer warms. Mostly of pine and woods as for the hops. Nice nose and notable malt presence as well, perhaps too much as there is some conflict with the hops.

Taste is solid. I didn't even know this was an IPA when ordered and was unaware of the ABV. The nose shows that this is a hop bomb as it warms and settles(yes, an IPA), and the taste hides the ABV almost too well. Is it the rye? Not sure about the rye component but I find this beer very enjoyable and it offers a certain coarseness of texture and pepper spice that makes it quite drinkable. A slight hint of cinnamon/allspice couple with the texture to yield a nice feel and an enjoyable brew.

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

Thanks, as always, to Kingpin for the bottle. Poured from said bottle, this is a warm reddish brown(pale mahogany?)hue, with a small white head that fades, but leaves ample lacing on the glass. Tht smell is faintly hoppy. The taste is hoppy yet smooth. The hops are citrussy with grapefruit notes predominating, although I taste a hint of pine. There is a dry note(from the rye?), as well as a smooth malty backing. The mouthfeel is astonishingly great, with intense flavors, yet a silky velvety smoothness as well. Damn you, Kingpin, for sending me only one bottle! This is a great beer!

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Photo of Spikester
4.63/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

So far my favorite from Bear Republic Brewing. Beautiful beer with a large head and copious lacings. Aroma of floral, resinous hops. Taste is bitter citrus, resins, pine, and orange-pinapple fruits. Plenty of sweet malts for the style. The rye must have a smoothing or melding effect on the flavors as I enjoy this beer immensely. Nice smooth bitter finish. Wish I could get a growler fill somewhere near home or maybe not...I would probably drink too much beer!

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Photo of BDTyre
4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice IPA with an interesting twist to it.

Fairly dark copper-orange colour with a really thick, speckly brown head. Sweet citrusy hop smell with hints of fresh baked bread and toffee. The rye adds a nice smell to it.

Hoppy, zesty taste. Yummy rye and toffee malt taste, with a bit of yeast character. Slight alcohol burn in the background, but it is not overpowering or even that noticeable.

Good carbonation, just the right amount of tongue-numbingness. Very smooth, even for 8%.

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Photo of RodBurg
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark hazy amber into a pint glass. Tan head with webby lacing.

Has a nice spicy hop aroma to it, grapefruit, pine and floral notes. Caramel malt is there with some fruity tones.

Flavor of an IPA with a spicy, bready finish. Citrus and floral hops with oily pine flavors. Finishes with the rye and some light alcohol warmth. Pretty unique not to mention delicious.

Great complex brew. Very drinkable and distinctive.

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Photo of ffejherb
4.41/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bomber into imperial pint glass on 9/17/08.

A - Beautiful clear burgundy body with deep amber highlights and two fingers of dense, rocky beige head that retained exceptionally well and left thick swatches of lacing around the glass. Lots of carbonation bubbles jetted through the body.

S - Hops aren't as dominant as when I had this on tap, but there is still plenty of pine and citrus notes backed by a burnt caramel malt and an apparent rye presence. Some alcohol creeps into the mix as the liquid warmed up.

T - Sweet caramel and toffee notes segne into a wonderful hoppy flavor with hints of citrus rind, pine and grass paired with an underlying rye presence and a touch of alcohol. The rype really comes to the forefront in the finish.

M - Full bodied and creamy with lively carbonation providing ample tongue prickle. Warm alcohol presence. Finish is moderately bitter and a bit dry from the rye.

D - This is definitely one of my favorite beers of all time, and the one that got me into rye beers. The hops really build up as the liquid warmed up. This is simply an amazing beer!

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark, brownish cherry-red, perfectly clear, with a huge pillowy head of beige foam. Lacing is out of this world, clinging like crazy to the edge of the glass. Little carbonation, and the viscosity looks high. Awesome looking beer.

Amazingly powerful and complex nose - aromas of pineapple, sweet citrus, molasses, rosewater, and tantalising hints of vanilla, resin, wintergreen and cut grass. Oh my. The plethora of flavours presented here is extraordinary. Such a wide swathe, but all intermingling, bouncing off one another, in a seeming anarchy that makes a peaceful whole. What a wonderful smelling beer - possibly the most blissfully aromatic brews I've ever sampled.

Taste is also fantastic. A delicious initial sour character bites the front of the tongue, before a welling up of juicy, luscious hop bitterness cushioned on a base of almost fruit sweetness. Tangy, slightly sour finish that leaves you wanting more, more, MORE. Mouthfeel is very nice, with a very slight effervescence on the tongue which coincides with the crescendo of hops.

Wonderful, wonderful beer - what a top notch drop. This will easily be one of the hardest things I have to leave behind here in the States when I return to Oz.

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Photo of itcomesnpints
4.4/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Amber red with a frothy off-white head. Impressive lacing. Floral hop aroma with a touch of grapefruit. A spicy hop blast on the taste buds that rounds out nicely with help of mild malted rye and barley. Medium mouthfeel, very smooth. A heavy yet very impressive IPA that I will certainly return to. Another great brew from Bear Republic. This is even better than Racer.

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Photo of RickSawyer
4.42/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark finished oak with a creamed head that rises to the occasion tremendously. As the head falls, curtains of lace wrap around the glass. Smell is beautiful. Tropical, notes of orange peel, piney resin, mint, and a bit of rye breadiness. Tastes wonderful. Begins with a wonderfully bitter hop presence full of pine, touches of lemon juice, floral citrus notes. Then a brilliantly balanced malt marches through full of bready, great rye notes give a hint of a whiskey finish, touches of red apple and caramel. Finishes bitter, dry and clean. Wonderfully crafted beer.

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Photo of Silenus89
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a hazy brown with a reddish hue to it. The head retains well and clings to the glass. Smell of bit of citrus hops and caramel and toffee in the malts. This is a very balanced brew with a creamy mouthful. Bear Republic has a gem in this one, a very nice beer to sap.

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

I poured this one from a 22oz brown bomber bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A= This ale poured a relatively clear auburn-ruby color with a gorgeous 2" dense tan head. The head stuck around a long time and eventually dropped to 1/8". Big sheets of sticky lace down the glass.

S= I detected big hop aromas up front (grapefruit mostly) followed by sweet malts and spicy, prickly rye.

T= This had a complex mix of bitter and aromatic hops, balanced well by a big sweet malt backbone and the spicy chewy rye. Bitterness was dead-on perfect.

MF= Upper medium carbonation crispness lifted the medium body significantly. The lingering head and the tiny carbonation bubbles gave this one a creamy mouth feel.

D= An outstanding ale, to be enjoyed as a sipper by itself or could easily stand up to grilled meats and barbecue. Recommended!

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Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.24 out of 5 based on 4,721 ratings.
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