Using rye in pale ales and IPAs is a fairly new trend in the American
hoppy beer scene. It’s definitely a finesse job for brewers to make the
synergy of the spicy dryness from the rye, the citrus bitterness from
the hops and the sweetness from the malts all work together. Sweetwater
LowRYEder IPA is a good example of how these flavors really can work so
I received a 12oz bottle in trade with Ding. I poured it into a tulip glass.
Appearance: Orange colored body that’s quite hazy, though there’s no
sediment in it. Forms an average size, white, frothy head which doesn’t
completely dissipate and leaves some lacing on the glass.
Smell: Orange juice concentrate plus and underlying rye bread scent.
Taste: While Sweetwater LowRYEder IPA does make good use of its rye
character, it’s thankfully not a rye bomb. It’s also not the absolute
best rye IPA ever made, either. Not that it’s a bad beer, just a plain
good one. It’s actually surprisingly mild considering the style. The
brewer’s website indicates it’s only 45 IBUs which would make this
closer to a pale ale than a proper IPA.
It’s a bit mild up front, at least after the first few swigs. Light
orange candy flavor followed by dry bitterness and a bite of rye spice
just as it finishes. I do enjoy how the flavors work together, though.
There’s a distinct sweetness to the palate that imparts a slight candy
taste, but it’s a bit too short lived. It’s a tasty palate to be sure,
but a rather dry and mild one. Perhaps opting for more of a juicy citrus
taste rather than sheer dryness would make it even more delectable.
Drinkability: If you approach this as a pale ale you’ll find it’s as
drinkable as a pale ale. The mouthfeel is medium, fairly comfortable,
and not over carbonated. Despite the noticeable dry bitterness the
aftertaste is on the cleaner side with just the faintest trace of
starch. At 6.2% ABV Sweetwater LowRYEder IPA has as much flavor as
possible from this body, and it’s light enough that it would work well
with a meal or worth drinking a bottle or two on its own.