Name: Hop Rod Rye
Brewery: Bear Republic Brewing Company
Country of Origin: United States of America
City & State: Healdsburg, California
Style: American IPA
Alcohol Content (ABV): 8%
First Brewed: 2000
Bright piney, citrus hops and spicy notes on the nose. The dark bready character blends smoothly with citrusy hop flavors on the palate, while there is a powerful bitter bite in the finish.
I know, I say this every time we drink… but my travel schedule has been insane. Don’t blame me. Well, okay, blame me for the last one. We were in Florida. But we drank a LOT of beer. Didn’t write on any, but drank a ton. Anyway, we are back… for the rest of the week, anyway. Hoping to get on some sort of schedule. I might hold my breath for this one!
Let’s see if I can remember where we left off. Oh yeah, my plan for drinking. Here we go:
In the Glass: The head is thick, and sits atop the beer with authority. It seems thick from the bottle, and when the head settles it still seems thick and frothy. I like a thick head on a beer, as that means the beer itself will more than likely be thick and smooth as it goes down.
Nose: The beer smells like an IPA. I am not picking up much, if any, of the rye that they talk about. But I am sure it’s there in the mouthfeel and the aftertaste. The nose isn’t as big as I had hoped, and does not stack up to most American IPAs that I drink. The tasting notes promise for some big flavors. Let’s see!
Flavor: The beer is immediately carbonated. I don’t expect that, that’s for sure. It’s also very subtle on the tongue. It doesn’t really kick in until the beer goes down your throat and sits there on your tongue for a few minutes. The flavors at first are nearly annoying, yet come back toward the back of the palate.
Mouthfeel: I HATE the mouthfeel… initially. It’s VERY carbonated, and I hate a carbonated beer But as it settles and slides down your throat, it calms down a little bit and then settles with a great aftertaste. I just can’t get over the initial bubbles. I don’t expect that, especially with such a thick head. That sort of hurts a little!
Aftertaste: This is where the beer comes in. It nearly saves the day for the brew. The aftertaste also lingers, which I love in a beer. Especially a beer with so much bitterness. Considering how many IBUs this brew has, I expected more flavor and a more bitter aftertaste, but I’ll take it. I will take it for the time it sits there.
The beer is good, but not great. It’s just average, and for a rye I expected more. The aftertaste almost brought me back over the top, but can’t save those initial bubbles. The beer does have a big ABV, and while that is not obvious, after a few of these, and an 8% ABV, you will feel them when you stand up. With a label like that, I wanted more. Not upset, just wanted more. Either way, wherever you are tonight, bottoms up!
Hey, we are trying a beer! I think I keep talking about in every one of these blog posts that it has been a while. Because it has… we keep taking a long time in between these beers. I guess that’s what a busy schedule does to you. Oh well… we are still plugging along. And here’s the next one!
I could smell this beer as we poured it out of the bottle and then I got another whiff of it as I opened my computer to type this post. I love the smell. I’m not very good at describing beer smells, but it smells rich to me. It doesn’t have much head, but instead has a clear, very red color. Time to find out what it tastes like.
Pretty good… very hoppy. Must be an IPA? I don’t know, I honestly didn’t look up anything about this beer before trying it. I think that is also the smell that I was getting. I love the smell of an IPA. And this one is no exception.
I know I’m not very descriptive of it. But the best way I can think to describe this beer is as a good, solid IPA. It’s not the best I’ve had, but it’s far from the worst. The smell is almost too clean of an IPA smell, it’s almost… typical, and doesn’t stray from the normal taste and smell too much. I think that’s the only thing I find wrong with it – it’s kind of boring for an IPA. But it’s not at all a bad IPA. I’d buy it again if I was in the mood for an IPA.
940 bottles of beer on the wall…