Hop Rod Rye | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

4,720 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: 4,720 |  Reviews: 2,079
Photo of Goliath
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with a large light tan head. Head has great retention with some spotty lace.

Aroma is beautiful. Hoppy with a grapefruity punch, backed by a hefty dose of rye.

Taste is equally as nice as the aroma. A hoppy burst with some citrus notes and a nice rye backbone. A perfect bittering bite on the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and lightly carbonated.

Drinkability is moderate. Moderately highly alcohol and bitter notes slow the drinking, but is definitely easy to consume.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep ruby red with a firm creamy whipped tan head. Slight haze with some bubble raising in the middle. Lots of pungant citrusy hops win out over some sweet caramel and spicy rye aroma. Again, the hops are the major player, but the rye character is worthy of your attention. Both together create a wonderfully blend of citrus and spice that would please the most disearning hop head. Body may be a bit thin, but that my make this sort of a refreshing beer.

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Photo of SirSaranac
3.96/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hmmmm... I had read a lot of reviews on this, so I was excited to finally pick up a bottle of this stuff.

A- Impressive looking IPA... mocha colored 2 finger head crowns a deep amber burgondy brew. Excellent lacing.. slight sediment. Very nice.

S- Hmmm... Was expecting more. The hops are fresh and slightly piney, but waaay weaker than I was expecting. Earthy malt... grains.. must be the rye? Rather weak indeed... at least compared to the beautiful appearance.

T- The hops and malt blend very well... almost more like an English IPA... yet still holding onto enough hop bite to distinguish itself as a true AmIPA... Light Caramel does at as a nice touch in the aftertaste. 8% abv... really? Could've fooled me... hides this badge rather well. Very smooth an well balanced.

M- Light Med mouth... Slight hop bite, and end verrrry creamy... that's my favorite part... quite creamy.

D- I could definitely drink these, and a lot of them... quite tasty, and the 8% abv is really well hidden. However, if I was REALLY in the mood for a hop fix, I'd have to look to another brew.

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

22 oz. bomber poured into a pint glass with a big cascading head from a heavy pour. Three finger of rocky off-white head slowly dissipates leaving a good amount of sticky lacing. Gorgeous ruby red color. Intense west coast lemony hop aroma, hint of caramel in the back of the nose. Taste is initially citrusy followed by a slick caramel finish. Well balanced. Medium bodied for great drinkability - I wouldn't guess that this was an 8% beer if I didn't know it - delicious!

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Photo of halfP1NT
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

Pours a cloudy brown with swirls, huge white head, amazing retention! Head was so thick like cool whip, I scooped it up with my finger. Sticks around til the end.

Smells grainy, earthy, rye, lots of hops, reminds me of the smell of new carpet (I know, weird).

Tastes like pungent rye & grains, lots of hops! Nicely balanced, complex, smooth.

Thick, complex mouthfeel, a big beer! 8% abv is well hidden, very drinkable, but not too quickly!

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

on draught in a pint glass.
a - a nice, deep brown color with a tan head.
s - smells of hops with a hint of caramel.
t - lots of hops with a bit of the rye malts as well. a very bitter beer but well-balanced.
m - medium bodied. a bit creamy.
d - I really like this beer. I only had one pint of it and then moved on, but I look forward to ordering it again in the future.

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

Pours a thick semi-transparent red color with a moderate-sized fine clumpy tan head. I'm enjoying the appearance on this one.

Smell is very malty with some hops in the background. I was expecting something similar to the Founder's Red's Rye, but this one is much different. The hops are distinct and hit toward the middle of the taste. Not bad, pretty pleasant. The aftertaste is a bit sticky and sweet but not bad overall.

A good beer with decent hop character. Good but not great.

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

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. Smallish head. Red/brown color. Smells nice and hoppy with notes of pine and citrus, but with a decent malt backbone. Taste is malty, but not in a sweet caramel way, more grain-like. Some nice hop bitterness as well. I think the rye flavor mixes in with the malt and makes it taste pretty interesting. Medium mouthfeel. Not something I would go out of my way to drink, but still good.

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Photo of dsa7783
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 Pint, 6 FL OZ bottle purchased for $4.99 from Gary's in Madison...
The two previous beers that I've sampled from Bear Republic were amazing, so I was expecting really great things from this one...
For an IPA, this sample poured a deep, dark, brown, ruby-red, crimson-colored hue with an enormous foamy head that soon dissipated, but left an impressive amount of lacing around the glass...
Strong, powerful hop aroma pervading this one... Literally bursting with fresh, bitter hops in the nose, along with pine, and grapefruit...
Taste strongly paid homage to the aroma, with a strong suggestion of freshly-picked hops, grapefruit, rye, coriander, citrus, honey, vanilla, caramel, lemons, pines, yeast, and bittersweet florals...
The 18% injection of rye into this beer is certainly evident in the taste, as this makes itself out to be a smooth, clean IPA full of intricate, delicate flavors...
Another winner from Bear Republic - I just wish I could get my hands on more of their brews in my area...
Crisp, clear, mouthfeel with a slight bitterness present...
Easily drinkable without any detection of the 8% ABV...

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Photo of jph424
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Brown with hints of red

S - Hops, caramel, smells delicious

T - sweetness up front, can definitely taste the rye, strong floral hoppy bitterness on the finish. Bigtime malt backbone to support it.

M - Terrificly thick

D - Very tasty brew. 1 bomber would probably be my limit though as the ABV and powerful flavor would probably be too much to have a few.

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Photo of sholland119
4.45/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a bomber into a pint glass.

A-Pours a rich, deep amber with a fine creamy head and nice lacing.

S- nicely balanced with lots of malt and a citrusy grapefruit nose. A good indicator of things to come.

T-Delicious and interesting all the way through. Citrus and piney hops balanced with a nice grainy rye bite all the way through. Bitter at the end but not overwhelming.

M-nice. moderate carbonation with a rather light mouthfeel. the hops don't linger on the tongue. I like that taste but don't mind that this beer does not have it.

D-dangerously drinkable. 8% ABV but does not feel that heavy.

My favorite rye IPA, from a small pool of choices but...

The rye gives a nice contrast and balance to the hoppiness. BR makes great beers and with the exception of the Racer X, this is my favorite.


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

A: RIch amber-brown with a long lasting tan head... lots of lacing.. good carbonation

S: Pungent grapefruit hops and hints of piney aromas as well... rich malt base.. it definitely takes on the grainy/rye character the name would suggest... complex and delicate

T: The complexity in the nose is a great indicator... the malty grain/rye comes through throughout... it is not to be outdone by the piney and citric hops which are in the beginning and the finish... well crafted balance that gives your flavor after flavor... good strong hop finish that doesn't overpower

M: Medium bodied... plays in the mouth courtesy of the carbonation and the hops... crisp. refreshing

D: This one is up there amongst the best... had no problem going for a second serving...

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

220z bomber. Just arrived in SC!

A gorgeous fat 3 finger head leaves lots of lacing as it perishes, settling to cover a rich bourbon-amber brew with a few centimeters of dense, thick foam.

The glass explodes with big wet hop aroma. Lots of pine and bitter citrus invite you to taste the sharp, malty brew beneath. Unsubtle hints of booze and a little rough 'round the edges, that'd be the rye. Smells intense, 'cause it is.

Q. How do you awaken a hophead who is passed out?

A. Wave a goblet of Hop Rod Rye under their nose.

The huge hop flavor carries on into your mouth on a small sip, a larger one simply coats the palate with oliy, bitter hops. Lots of American hops here - Cascade for sure, with a residual sugar-kissed bitterness that awakens the senses. Despite the hop and rye (which is quite noticeable), this is almost decently balanced with some hefty malt richness. That said, it's an extremely bitter, bracing beer.

Mouthfeel is creamy and hot, wet and boasts a sharp lingering bitterness that will make your toes curl.

Hop Rod is quite drinkable, despite the bitter factor, and is worlds better for the rye - it imbues the beer with life and character and saves it from being another ho-hum American DIPA. Hop Rod Rye has character to spare and is highly recommended. Now that it's landed, every craft beer geek in South Carolina should try this gem.

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Photo of Blueye80
3.67/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer poured great. It had a huge head the lasted quiet a bit
and the lacing was just as awesome. It had a very nice hoppy aroma that I couldn't wait to try. I just wish it tasted as good as it looked and smelled. It was just a tad too bitter for me. It is not a beer that I would want to have more than just one. Overall
it was a decent drink.

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Photo of dadonabike
4.62/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

App. It poured a lovely red/brown w/ a good amount of small bubbles forming a lasting light tan head. The lacing lasted all the way to the bottom of the glass.

Sml. Delicious! Rich! It has a heavy malt smell with pleasant rye/wheat bread notes. There are hints of caramel and honey, spice, and breakfast cereal in there. This mixes w/ the incredibly fragrant hop aromas. We found citrus (grapefruit), mint, and cinnamon. (My kids help with the smelling phase.)

Taste Wow! There is a lot going on in that bottle, a lot of good stuff. First I though of the sprouted grain breads that you can buy in health food stores, especially the ones with dried fruit. There is a big malt base that's followed by a rye sourness. Then the hops hit with bitter and herbs and pine. A great balance, it all works together. I don't feel that any one thing overpowers, but I like sour. The after taste stays with you, and you want more.

MF. This beer has a thickness and weight and the carbonation seems just right. The after taste is quite dry considering the malty feel.

Drinkability- Huge tastes, I will be going back for more.

This went well with our pasta and sauce. Then after with two stinky artesian goat cheeses form VT and English wheat biscuits, also paired nicely with an organic sharp cheddar from Nieghborly farm.

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

A- The color is medium to dark brown with raddish hues. Head is clingy and sticky with 1" of foam.

S- The rye sticks out a lot with nice caramel syrupy malts and very prominent hop tones. Earthy but roasty too.

T- Very roasty and a tad oaky. Hops are bittering and in your face. Alcohol lies in the back. Well balance and just awesome!

M- Medium thickness and high carbonation.

D- High drinkabilty to me but non hopheads will not find it as appealing I think. But, who cares?

Overall- This beer really impressed me. I would definitely seek it out again and hope I run across it again soon. Thanks to hurleymanvw for sharing this one with me.

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

Just got back from a beer hunt and found this little guy
Bottle poured into my pint glass produce a clear amber body toped off with a two fingers worth of white fluffy head

A nice hoppy (citrus and pine) aroma with a little bit of grains (rye)

Sweet rye malt hits you first followed by a generous hop bite, some nuttiness comes through as it warms

A nice clean mouthfeel to this one crisp and dry with some stickiness on your lips

A great IPA, a true must try in my books. The last pour had a little sediment but it was still worth it

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Photo of bobsy
4.8/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Oh crap...this is sublime. Bear Republic, I will try all of your beers I can find. Bottle at Volo.

Hop Rod Rye pours a nice deep mahogany, with a fluffy white head, that laces brilliantly. The aroma makes my knees weak - northwestern hops (predominantly grapefruit), caramel and nuts. The rye comes in with a really pleasing spiciness that compliment the hops perfectly. The taste is beautiful, with roasted nuts duelling for dominance with caramel malts and big bitter citric hops. Excellent balance between sweet and bitter. Crisp, spicy bitter finish and medium body reinforce the quality of this beer.

Absolutely amazing IPA that's verging on the imperial - I could drink it all night.

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Photo of Hophead101
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bear Republic - a favorite brewery of mine. Tasted tonite while watching Big Brother 9 - not that you care - but more for my record keeping purposes.

Poured into a chalice glass. let it sit from fridge temp for 10 minutes or so to warm up a bit.

The appearance was fantastic. A great looking beer - nice thick head, small and bubbly on the sides. A very nice almost dark burgandy brown. The head stuck around for quite some time. rather impressive.

Smell: great smell as well. hits the nose very hard. great hop aroma. fills the entire nostril. subtle hints of rye - predominantly a hop nose - some chooclate malt in there?

Taste: crisp top of the mouth hop taste. smell and hop taste seem to disconnected. but good flavor none the less. minimal rye flavor until the beer warms up - then it becomes much more pronounced.

Feel: lingering hop flavor which i thought was a bit too much. but don't get me wrong - the flavor is fantastic.

Drinkability: the lingering hops again takes a bit away from the drinkability.

all in all - this is one kick ass beer. Bear Republic does not dissapoint. I would have actually like a little bit more of a pronounced hop flavor and aroma.

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

Hop Rod Rye poured a slightly cloudy (bonus points for yeast!) orange color with a nice white head with small bubbles. The brew left nice lacing down the glass and the head had serious staying power. The smell was dominated by the abundance of hops in this brew. There was a subtle rye aroma in the back of the nose if you took a deep whiff in the glass. The taste was excellent. There was a distinct hop hit up front but it faded nicely and left no poor aftertaste. The rye was mostly hidden by the hops, however, a bit of a letdown since it is difficult to find a good rye. I did not let this deter me long as this beer was exceptional. The mouthfeel was robust and well rounded but did not make me fool or cringe from the high IBUs. This beer drinks well and is a great accompaniment to a strong flavored dish or as a dessert on its own! Cheers!

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Photo of Damian
3.53/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Drank on-tap at Deep Ellum, Allston, MA

Poured a gorgeous, dark, russet mahogany with a tight, frothy, two-finger head of sticky foam. Excellent retention. The head deposited thick rings of lacing all down the sides of the glass.

The aroma was hoppy yet ultra smooth. Citrusy hops, ripe fruits and a touch of sugary goodness made this beer a wonder to inhale.

The taste however did not contain anywhere near the balance or the smoothness that the nose did. "Hoppy" barely begins to describe this beer. The piney, spicy, bracingly bitter hops appeared as soon as the beer hit my lips and never let up. A touch of malty sweetness came through on the front end, with some fruitiness appearing mid-palate. As the beer made its way to the back of my palate, the slight sourness of the rye became apparent as well. The finish was outrageously hoppy, piney and bitter with the flavors further intensifying in the lingering, dry and pithy finish.

Mouthfeel was a bit thin and watery for the style with a less than average amount of carbonation.

While the 8% ABV was hardly detectable, the completely unbalanced nature of this beer made it somewhat difficult to drink.This is one brew that should be enjoyed by only the most devoted of hopheads.

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Photo of stewart124
4.65/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22oz. bomber
Pours a very clear red with a thick white head that sticks down the glass and leaves a beautiful lacing.

The smells are of strong pine notes, grapefruit, and a slight bit of mint. Strong northwestern US hops for sure. There is also a slight spicy note from the 18% rye.

Taste is very strong and delicious. The spice is subtle but up-front. The spice from the rye lingers throughout the tasting. There is a maltiness and a malt sweetness but this blends perfectly with the huge hop bitterness and aroma. Really a spectacular blend of all these characteristics. And throughout it all is that spicy rye. Very clean and crisp finish that adds to the hop characteristic. Medium in body but very, very drinkable.

The aftertaste is piney and very strong but this only makes me want to drink more. Thankfully bear republic puts this into a bomber for me to take down. Really a great beer and sets the standard for rye beers.

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Photo of luvND
4.74/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

P-on tap at Stone while on vacation in SD...aaahhh memories

A-Dark color, beautiful white sticky head

S-wonderful hops and rye

T-wow, out of this world smooth, sweet and bitter just great

M-perfectly sticky, lingers and coats your mouth

D-a 22 oz bomber would be perfect, couldnt do much more than that at a sitting, though could have used more than the 8 oz tulip from the tap

Notes-a truly world class brew, looking forward to trying it at home from the bottle if I can get it

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Photo of SurlyDuff
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Copper/dark brick color. Sticky head that with lacing that tenaciously hangs onto the sides of the glass.

I smell the rye! There's hops there in force too, with strong citrus and pine.

Very tasty. Notes of cannabis, grapefruity hops, and the slightest rye bread flavor. I am loving the hop profile in this one, really juicy and sappy.

Drinkability and mouthfeel are great!

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Photo of medic25
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from a bottle, presents a burnt amber color with a huge frothy head that lingers. Great hoppy aroma, quite powerful. Taste is powerful, strong domination by hops without being overkill. A little touch of pine with a dry, clean aftertaste. Quite easy drinking, although perhaps a little strong-willed to be a pure session beer.

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Hop Rod Rye from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.24 out of 5 based on 4,720 ratings.
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