Style Details

Spe­cial­ty IPA - Rye IPA
BJCP Style Code
21 B5
Color ran­ges from medi­um gold to light red­dish-amber. Should be clear, alt­hough unfil­te­red dry-hop­ped ver­si­ons may be a bit hazy. Medi­um-sized, white to off-white head with good persistence.
A pro­mi­nent to inten­se hop aro­ma fea­turing one or more cha­rac­te­ristics of Ame­ri­can or New World hops, such as citrus, flo­ral, pine, res­i­nous, spi­cy, tro­pi­cal fruit, stone fruit, ber­ry, melon, etc. Many ver­si­ons are dry hop­ped and can have an addi­tio­nal fresh hop aro­ma; this is desi­ra­ble but not requi­red. Gras­si­ness should be mini­mal, if pre­sent. It may have low pep­pery rye malt aro­ma. A low to medi­um-low clean grai­ny-mal­ty aro­ma may be found in the back­ground. Frui­tin­ess from yeast may also be detec­ted in some ver­si­ons, alt­hough a neu­tral fer­men­ta­ti­on cha­rac­ter is also accep­ta­ble. A res­trai­ned alco­hol note may be pre­sent, but this cha­rac­ter should be mini­mal at best. Any Ame­ri­can or New World hop cha­rac­ter is accep­ta­ble; new hop varie­ties con­ti­nue to be released and should not cons­train this style.
Hop fla­vor is medi­um to very high, and should reflect an Ame­ri­can or New World hop cha­rac­ter, such as citrus, flo­ral, pine, res­i­nous, spi­cy, tro­pi­cal fruit, stone fruit, ber­ry, melon, etc. Medi­um-high to very high hop bit­ter­ness. Malt fla­vor should be low to medi­um-low, and is gene­ral­ly clean and grai­ny-mal­ty alt­hough some light cara­mel or toasty fla­vors are accep­ta­ble. A light grai­ny spi­ci­ness from rye malt should be pre­sent. Low yeast-deri­ved frui­tin­ess is accep­ta­ble but not requi­red. Rye malt con­tri­bu­tes to a dry finish; resi­du­al sweet­ness should be low to none. The bit­ter­ness, hop fla­vor and dry­ness may lin­ger into the after­tas­te but should not be harsh. A very light, clean alco­hol fla­vor may be noted in stron­ger versions. 
Medi­um-light to medi­um body, with a smooth tex­tu­re. Medi­um to medi­um-high car­bo­na­ti­on. No harsh hop-deri­ved astrin­gen­cy. Very light, smooth alco­hol warm­ing not a fault if it does not intru­de into over­all balance.
Over­all Impression
A deci­dedly hop­py and bit­ter, modera­te­ly strong Ame­ri­can pale ale, show­ca­sing modern Ame­ri­can and New World hop varie­ties and rye malt. The balan­ce is hop-for­ward, with a clean fer­men­ta­ti­on pro­fi­le, dry finish, and clean, sup­port­ing malt allo­wing a crea­ti­ve ran­ge of hop cha­rac­ter to shi­ne through.
Typi­cal Ingredients
Pale ale or 2-row bre­wers malt as the base, 15-20% Rye malt, Ame­ri­can or New World hops, Ame­ri­can or Eng­lish yeast with a clean or slight­ly frui­ty pro­fi­le. Gene­ral­ly all-malt, but mas­hed at lower tem­pe­ra­tures for high atte­nua­ti­on. Sugar addi­ti­ons to aid atte­nua­ti­on are accep­ta­ble. Water cha­rac­ter varies from soft to modera­te­ly sul­fa­te. Res­trai­ned use of crys­tal malts, if any, as high amounts can lead to a sweet finish and clash with the hop character.
Loo­king to add com­ple­xi­ty and varie­ty to their IPAs, craft bre­wers and home­bre­wers sub­sti­tu­ted rye malt for a por­ti­on of their base malt. Rye IPAs, Rye­PAs or RIPAs have found a place in many craft bre­we­ries sea­so­nal rotations.
A modern Ame­ri­can craft beer varia­ti­on of Ame­ri­can IPA. Rye malt cha­rac­ter should be noti­ceable, other­wi­se enter in Ame­ri­can IPA. Oak is inap­pro­pria­te in this style; if noti­ce­ab­ly oaked, enter in wood-aged category.
Com­mer­cial Examples
Arca­dia Sky High Rye, Bear Repu­blic Hop Rod Rye, Foun­ders Reds Rye, Gre­at Lakes Rye of the Tiger, Sier­ra Neva­da Ruthl­ess Rye
Spe­cial­ty IPA isn’t a distinct style, but is more appro­pria­te­ly thought of as a com­pe­ti­ti­on ent­ry cate­go­ry. Beers ente­red as this style are not expe­ri­men­tal beers; they are a coll­ec­tion of curr­ent­ly pro­du­ced types of beer that may or may not have any mar­ket lon­ge­vi­ty. This cate­go­ry also allows for expan­si­on, so poten­ti­al future IPA vari­ants (St. Patrick’s Day Green IPA, Romu­lan Blue IPA, Zima Clear IPA, etc.) have a place to be ente­red wit­hout redo­ing the style gui­de­lines. The only com­mon ele­ment is that they have the balan­ce and over­all impres­si­on of an IPA (typi­cal­ly, an Ame­ri­can IPA) but with some minor tweak. The term ‘IPA’ is used as a sin­gu­lar descrip­tor of a type of hop­py, bit­ter beer. It is not meant to be spel­led out as ‘India Pale Ale’ when used in the con­text of a Spe­cial­ty IPA. None of the­se beers ever his­to­ri­cal­ly went to India, and many aren’t pale. But the craft beer mar­ket knows what to expect in balan­ce when a beer is descri­bed as an ‘IPA’ – so the modi­fiers used to dif­fe­ren­tia­te them are based on that con­cept alone.
Ori­gi­nal Gravity
1.056 - 1.075 SG
Final Gra­vi­ty
1.008 - 1.014 SG
6 - 14 SRM
5.0 - 8.0 %vol
50 - 75 IBU