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Review: Sierra Nevada Ruthless Rye IPA

Posted by Steve Greenlee  January 19, 2012 09:20 AM

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sierra nevada ruthless rye 003.jpgSierra Nevada Brewing Co. has introduced a new spring seasonal. Ruthless Rye IPA, a hoppy rye beer, replaces Glissade, a maibock. Word is that Glissade sold well its first year but didn't do so hot last year. (I thought I saw a few too many 12-packs piled up in the stores as we headed toward last summer.)

I doubt that Ruthless Rye IPA will have any such problems. This beer is a winner. (It's also so new that it's not listed yet on Sierra Nevada's website. UPDATE 1/28: It's there now.)

In a rye beer, malted rye subs for a portion of the malted barley, giving the beer a spicy kick. Add a big dose of hops, and you've got yourself a rye IPA.

Ruthless Rye pours clear copper with two fingers of foam. The aroma is spicy and grassy -- the hops in this beer run more toward earth and pine than citrus, though hints of orange peel come through in the taste. The beer has a strong malt profile, so this is a well-balanced beer, one that's not very bitter despite its IPA status.

All around, this is a perfect spring beer -- not too heavy, not too aggressive, not too bitter, but full of flavor and easy to drink. Ruthless Rye IPA is 6.6 percent alcohol by volume. A six-pack costs about $10.

Email me at Follow me on Twitter @SteveGreenlee.

Gary Dzen

About 99 Bottles

Gary Dzen writes about craft beer here and in the Globe when he's not covering the Celtics for He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @GaryDzen.

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