Well, between having my CO2 tank leak until it was empty without even carbing up the batch, getting caught up in a super busy semester of school, and being blessed with the birth of my first daughter, I just finally got to taste a carbed and chilled version of this rye bitter.
I had a good few tastes of it without carbonation. While flat, it was unpleasant. I was worried I had my first completely screwed up, not very good batch.
Luckily, when I poured a glass earlier today, I found that it is a perfectly serviceable beer. I might even say it tastes good. I'm not sure I did a great job matching the hops with the rye. And I know the IBUs are a bit too high for the gravity. But the carbonation brings a lot of the flavors to life and somewhat balance out the extra bitterness.
Being that this was my first attempt at brewing with rye, I am happy with the results. However, I think I might go for a kit, the next time I want to try rye. A tried and true recipe will give me a chance to better get to know what to expect from rye, how much to use in a recipe and what other grains and hops to pair with it.
Live and learn. And now I'm sipping on a Speckled Heifer (Spotted Cow clone). Yum. Deliciously spring.