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Ruthless Rye

Ruthless Rye

Judges Rating: 
85
Aroma: 
22 / 24
Appearance: 
6 / 6
Flavor: 
32 / 40
Mouthfeel: 
8 / 10
Overall Impression: 
17 / 20

Established in 1980, Sierra Nevada Brewing Company has evolved from a tiny local brewery to a craft brewing giant. Seasonal newcomer Ruthless Rye IPA boasts complex, spicy aromas and flavors, all underpinned by a solid American IPA. Delicate aromas of pepper and warm spice lead off, followed closely by sweet, caramel malt. Rick appreciated the aroma’s “peppery, flinty, slightly tart” rye character, enjoying its give and take with “tangy, almost grapefruit” hops. Tom found the rye character subtle, “much like sticking your nose in an open bag of rye,” and felt the “citrusy, faintly piney” hops were well integrated. Tom and Rick both commented on the quite low hop aroma for an IPA. Pouring a lambent copper, Ruthless Rye IPA is a sparklingly clear and effervescent ale topped by a creamy white head. Audacious pine forest and orange grove hop notes reign supreme in the flavor, but hints of bread, chewy toffee, and peppercorns occasionally peek through. Lee proclaimed the beer “assertively bitter, brushed with swaths of grapefruit and orange peel,” commenting on the firm malt base’s ability to “rein in the rampant hops.” The hops struck Pete as “catty and piney,” and he felt they “meshed seamlessly with notes of gooey, sweet caramel malt.” At 6.6% ABV, spicy and crisp Ruthless Rye IPA serves equally well as an aperitif or a digestif.

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