It seemed not only appropriate but almost required that I should write my first beer review for the site about one from Oskar Blues. Oskar Blues is the parent company of REEB Cycles, and my REEB is the bike that has gotten me involved in the world of gravel races and bikepacking. If reviewing any beer from Oskar Blues wasn’t appropriate enough, it just so happens that I had picked up a Crowler of Oskar Blues REEB Rye’d IPA on my last trip to Colorado. Even two months after the trip, the Crowler had preserved the beer wonderfully when I opened it for this review. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Cracking the 32 oz can released a mingling of piney and slightly fruity hop aromas. Pouring revealed even more citrus and tropical fruit aromas and allowed the nose to pick up on the sweet malt balancing out the bitterness. The REEB Rye’d IPA poured a beautiful dark amber with excellent clarity. The deep, pillowy head showed the can had lost none of the carbonation from the time it was filled at the taproom. When drinking, a caramel sweetness is initially present on the front of the tongue, but this quickly gives way to a mild, spicy rye taste flowing into a hop profile dominated by grassy and piney flavors down the middle and sides of the tongue. The back of the tongue picks up some fruity hoppiness before a long, dry bitterness dominates the aftertaste. The REEB Rye’d IPA sets a new benchmark for the style. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA This medium-bodied IPA comes in at 7%. The hop bitterness and rye character make it a great pairing with spicy foods such as Thai and Indian dishes. IPAs such as this also go well with a good, sharp white cheddar cheese or a chili pepper dark-chocolate bar. The REEB Rye’d IPA is available on draft at the Tasty Weasel taproom in Longmont, CO or Brevard, NC and at the Oskar Blues eateries. Four-packs of 16 oz cans can be picked up at the taprooms for $14.50. The 32 oz Crowlers can also be filled at either location for 8 bucks. Cheers, Alex

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