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Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Celebration AleSierra Nevada Celebration Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

7,596 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 7,596
Reviews: 3,154
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 11.54%
Wants: 187
Gots: 389 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Fresh Hop Ale; no spices.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-02-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 7,596 | Reviews: 3,154 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of VelvetExtract


4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A-Pours a deep translucent amber with a fluffy head. Looks quite handsome.

S-Nice grapefruit and floral hop aroma. Very attractive smell. Not overly pungent but still smells splendid. Complex.

T-Sierra Nevada scores again. I've had this before but not that i'm sitting down reviewing it and noticing the intricacies of I am fully impressed. Big hop flavor. Not too bitter. Citrus and flowery hops. I'm getting some honey as well as a bit of pine.

M-Creamy but not too thick. This has a crisp, satisfying mouthfeel.

D-High drinkability. 6.8% is almost undetectable.

Can't be beat for its price.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2010 03:51:40 | More by VelvetExtract
Photo of CASK1


4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured into a tulip. Deep amber color, and exceptionally clear. Thick, dense, beige head drops somewhat quickly to a thin layer of foam, but it leaves lace to the bottom of the glass.

S - Piney hops, with a little citrus thrown in for good measure. Sweet caramel malt aroma is very subtle at first, but becomes more noticeable as the beer warms.

T - A hop showcase, for sure. Balance of pine, citrus, and woody hop flavor up front, fading to a long, dry, bitter finish that builds and builds and stays long after the beer is swallowed. There is some toasty, bready, lightly sweet malt to balance, if you look hard for it. As the hops fade, a light alcohol flavor remains.

MF - Medium-full body, a bit higher than expected, but OK for a seasonal specialty offering. Medium carbonation helps.

D - I look forward to this one every year, and the 2010 version doesn't disappoint. Hope to find it on draft soon!

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2010 02:41:52 | More by CASK1
Photo of FanofHefe


4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle aggressively into Duvel tulip. Wow, huge 4 finger fluffy white head that leaves tons of lacing. Clear dark amber color.

Nice piney hop aroma. Citrus notes with a slightly sweet malt smell.

Taste follows the aroma with some great citrusy, piney hop flavors. Good balance of sweetness that does not diminish the bitter hops.

Rock solid IPA. Highly recommend.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2010 01:48:25 | More by FanofHefe
Photo of Daktyls


4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a nice amber-orange color with a big foamy two fingered head that hangs around for a while before lazily retreating to a fine lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: Definitely an herbal and floral hops nose is present along with some citrus notes. Nothing too overpowering, the scents mingle with each other with none being more present then another.

T: The initial taste is somewhat sweet and malty. This is followed by the floral and herbal hoppiness from the nose and adds a nice, but not overwhelming, bitter component to the taste.

M: Mouthfeel is good with a medium body and not a whole lot of carbonation.

D: Delightfully drinkable for a slightly higher ABV beer. I'll definitely be finishing the bottle and I'll certainly be sharing this one with family come holiday time.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2010 01:26:15 | More by Daktyls
Photo of BigPlay1824

New York

4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2010 Version poured into a mug

A: Pours a light reddish amber color with an inch of bubbly head. leaves a nice amount of bubbly lacing

S: Smells very slightly of hops with a slight spice note and possible pine notes

T: Nice hop notes as well as a great depth of spices

M: Nice carbonation tingle and honestly warms the mouth and body in the most wonderful way straight from the first drink. Leaves a lingering bitterness on the tongue that begs for the next sip of the brew

D: Great easy drinking brew

Overall, an IPA without the super strong citrus or hop notes seen in most but a nice depth of spices, absolutely incredible and wonderfully unique

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2010 01:17:59 | More by BigPlay1824
Photo of caddybuyer

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 version, hot off the truck.

A-Pours a veiled peach copper amber with a creamy eggshell head with AMAZING lacing.

S-A whole lotta C hop going on here, and it is all good. Carmel malts are present in quantity to balance it all out.

T-Pungent mouthpuckering citrus hops are balanced by robust caramel malts in a medley of IPA. Astringent grapefruit rind finish that goes on forever and ever. This is a robust full flavored IPA that takes full advantage of both hop and malt.

M-Full bodied for an IPA with balanced carbonation.

D-I rank this up there with Racer 5 as one of the best IPAs on the planet, but with a higher malt bill than racer and more body. This one never lets me down...

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2010 00:53:47 | More by caddybuyer
Photo of thebeerdoctor


4.68/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Young's real draught beer dimpled mug. Orange colored with a fresh hops nose. If you want this to be extra bitter serve it cold. Otherwise, a proper ale temperature is in order, where the rich smoothness of this time honored recipe comes to the forefront. The American fresh hops remind me once again that it was Sierra Nevada who ran first with the notion that an India Pale Ale style could be used as a holiday beer, and I for one, am overjoyed that they did so.
This 2010 version is the best I have ever tasted in the many years I have enjoyed Celebration. Not only is it celebratory in hops, but also malts, with plenty of strength (6.8%), putting aside its incredibly drinkable nature.
Having sampled holiday offerings this year from Anchor, Breckenridge, Avery, Samuel Adams, Samuel Smith, Shiner, so far, I have the distinct feeling that Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale 2010, is the best of the best.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 18:35:40 | More by thebeerdoctor
Photo of ChugginOil


4.35/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Good fingers worth of off-white head. Decent lacing. Color is ruby/amber.

S- Piny hop resin up front, followed by faint citrus notes and malt.

T- Rich malt mixed w/ a lot of hops and Christmas cheer spices resonating throughout. A little biscuit taste is present on the end. Good carbonation and pretty balanced given the complexity.

M- Strong balance throughout, good carbonation. Not too dry or bitter on the end.

D- This brew is a delight and makes the Holidays even more exciting. A great IPA that's great to drink.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 06:04:00 | More by ChugginOil
Photo of apbarwood


4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A warm, translucent copper color with a thin sheet of lace. A lively carbonation feeds a two or three foamy islands on the surface of the beer. Definitive pine notes on the nose with a bright, juicy grapefruit aroma all backed by a firm malt character. These aromas persists on the palate though the hops take a stronger lead. The citrus is a bit more bitter than the aroma led me to believe but it's a pleasant surprise. It starts with a nice semi-sweet orange flavor leading to grapefruit and a dry, bitter pine needle finish. There's a certain earthy quality to it, like a pine forest after a rain shower, which I assume is due to the use of fresh hops. The bitterness is aggressive but not overwhelming and doesn't go any further than the malt will allow which is a definite plus. The strong malt backbone to this one helps provide a full, smooth mouthfeel that accentuates the flavors beautifully. I found this beer to be incredibly easy-drinking and it seemed to hit almost every note. If I had to pick something to improve I would say that the aroma could be amped up a little bit and maybe just a tiny bit more malt but that's my preference. As it is it's an outstanding IPA and a definite must try. I could see myself drinking a lot of these.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 04:08:10 | More by apbarwood
Photo of mjn5036

New Hampshire

4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 has arrived- it's a good night.

I love the bottle art on this one - not quite as much as the Tumbler bottle - but its close.

This one pours and amber and copper colors with a massive off-white head white, mostly due to my over zealous pour. The head slowly returns from whence it came leaving a ludicrous amount of sticky lacing clinging all over the glass. A generous amount of foam rests upon the meniscus long after the head has dissipated.

The nose is primarily of the generous amount of fresh hops added to this one - a lot of citrus, slight piney hop, faint spice and soft breadiness.

The hops hit the palate first - a rush of floral offerings and sweet citrus hops. Following the hops is a fantastic maltiness that balances out the flavor profile marvelously. It finishes with the Sierra hop bitterness I have grown to love.

This is a liberally drinkable beer with only a faint sense of alcohol presence. It is medium bodied and smooth on the palate. What we have here is a full-bodied IPA engineered perfectly to be drunk on a cold night whilst sitting before a fire. Not your typical winter warmer but a work of art in most ways - close to perfection in all facets.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 03:36:33 | More by mjn5036
Photo of krausenman

North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-The beer pours into the glass the color of a copper penny. While it is clear that is a slight haze from the yeast. The head that caps the beer is an off white color and lasts for a considerable time while the beer is consumed.

S-Initially, there is a combination of aromas that I can smell. Citrus/Marmalade/Grapefruit, floral and herbal or pine-like aromas are prominent. The citrus aroma is dominant but there are also fruit-like aromas of ripe tropical style fruit mixed in also.

T-The first taste on the tounge is a sweet syrup/malt taste that is backed up by a solid bitter componenet. There are herbal and astringent flavors from the hops that seem balanced with the sweetness of the beer. The beer swallows with a refreshing cleansing taste of bitter hops.

M-Celebration Ale definitely has a fuller body than I would expect from an American IPA. I would characterize it as being somewhere in the "medium" range for mouthfeel. The carbonation is on the lighter side making the beer refreshing.

D-The beer is well balanced and dangerously drinkable while having a fuller mouthfeel. Overall it is packed with flavor and aroma and packs a bitter punch that makes for a great combo.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 00:54:14 | More by krausenman
Photo of djbreezy


4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 bottle poured into belgian style stemmed glass.

appearance - enormous frothy head, brown amber, transparent, sticky lacing down the glass just from the head

smell - cannabis notes, floral mixed with sweet malt

taste - bold but seemingly balanced on first sip, malt body very prominent but hop bitters are there as well, taste alternates, sweet malts, resinous hops

mouthfeel - medium/high carbonation, frothy, medium bodied, dry finish

drinkability - a flavorful and robust brew, flavor is very strong for an ipa

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2010 00:06:02 | More by djbreezy
Photo of infi

New York

4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 release, 12 oz. bottle.

Poured into a nonic pint.

A translucent, honey-hued brown color with a thick and frothy, white, two-fingered head with like a 5-minute retention. Lots of carbonated activity going on throughout the liquid, as well as amazing caked on retention- thorough stratification. On the nose is a true balance of malt and hop. The first half is a nice aromatic bouquet of the wet hops - grapefruit citrus - while the second half, however, lingers more on a delicate malt sweetness. As a whole, the synergism of the aromas work very well.

Taste is very smooth and balanced as well, with the earthiness from the hops being identified first then moving into the malt sweetness. Not as much of a hop presence in this beer, in terms of bitterness, which was surprising considering how vibrant the Pale Ale is. Regardless, not a big deal. Very subtle in all flavor components, but still mesh well overall. Also, I didn't get any "spiced" flavors as others have said before.

Mouthfeel is really medium-bodied for an IPA with a thin carbonated feel. Coats the mouth and tongue very well. Drinkability is very high on this. The 6.8% ABV hits you after one bottle though, especially if the pace you decide to drink it is only a few minutes. Definitely a holiday beer: Thanksgiving and Christmas-worthy. Considerably tasty.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 22:11:00 | More by infi
Photo of obrendano


4.63/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

great find given it's from a local 7-11

A - awesome nutty autumn brown

S - misleading a bit, not as much hops aroma as taste, but lots of very nice caramely, toasty tones

T - just about perfect, a sharp bite of hops up front and soon after a rush of dark malty taste, smooth buiscuity finish

M - super smooth, just right

D - could drink this anytime, any day, would even choose over most other Sierra Nevadas in fact. superb

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 21:09:14 | More by obrendano
Photo of DNICE555


4.55/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

What a great beer. Got a 12 pack and had a bunch of times at Eli's fresh on tap. I think the tastiest one I had was the one I enjoyed when I was playing black ops. So smooth and drinkable. Hops are so refreshing. Very dangerous at 6.8 percent. I could drink a ton of these. Very crisp. Sierra Nevada is such a BA brewery. Their stout, torpedo, pale ale, celebration, bogfoot... ect ect. They rarely miss for me.

Serving type: on-tap

11-11-2010 20:38:40 | More by DNICE555
Photo of awalk1227


4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Consumed 11/11/10, last bottle of the sixer. Time to review.

Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass

A: Pours an orange/amber brilliantly clear with two fingers of thick off-white head. Not much lacing, but pretty decent head retention.

S: Not as ridiculous as some of the fresh IPAs I've had. However, it's a pretty nice mix of malts, pine, and citrus. Overall, it's a slightly sweet malt competing with a tart citrus for strongest scent.

T: Pleasant mix of malt and bitter. The citrus/grapefruit in this one is small, perhaps slightly muted by the noticeable malt and bitterness on the finish. It's a good ride though, as any solid IPA should be. Creamy and malty in the beginning as it slides along the tongue, finishing with a citric bitter bite.

F: Pretty medium body, maybe even thicker than most under-7% ABV single IPAs. Even with no head, pretty creamy beginning mouthfeel (if you ready my other reviews, this is one of my favorite qualities in quaffable IPAs). Beneath the malt is enough carbonation and prickle from the hops to show up on the sides of my tongue.

D: My winter IPA of choice. Stays in my fridge, and I can drink anywhere from 1-4 in a night, maybe even the whole sixer if I'm with good company.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 05:29:19 | More by awalk1227
Photo of busterthecat


4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in a chilled pint glass from a 24 oz bottle.

A- reddish amber color. Off white thick head that lingers for a minute.

S- Crisp pine and citrus with little malt present.

T- Very hop forward. Fresh pine needle, pineapple. Not too resiny. Some malt back bone.

M- Lingering bitterness. A full taste that covers palate.

D- A very good brew. Nothing outstanding or special. 2 pints was enough.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 04:32:21 | More by busterthecat
Photo of NODAK


4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aroma is rather hoppy with pine resin bitterness...a bit of spiciness in the hops was perceptible at first.

Taste definitely shows those west coast hops at first, with a good punch of pine hops coming through to define the predominant taste of this beer. Not aggressively bitter at first, it just comes across as piney with a nice, biscuit and caramel malt undertone following. However, on the finish, the bitterness comes out more and has a decent cutting ending to it with a somewhat resinous aftertaste. Pretty awesome IPA. Quite bitter, more so than most, but not abrasively so.

Definitely a classic of the style and one I look forward to enjoying. It will fill the bill for anybody who wants a pretty bitter IPA without being over the top and unbalanced.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 04:23:34 | More by NODAK
Photo of whisperjet


4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from a 12oz bottle to a pint glass

a: Pours a light but slightly hazy ruby. 3 fingers of frothy head, retains well. Very prominent, sticky lace left behind.

s: They call this a hop ale and it is; smells like your run-of-the-mill IPA . Citrusy with a nice floral hop presence. Oranges and grapefruit.

t: Hops are nice and well balanced. Very earthy which I like a lot and full with a nice dry bitterness on the finish. Warm and rich with nice undertones of citrus and malt.

m: Thin/medium bodied. Smooth and dry.

d: For me this is simply a better-than-average IPA. It tastes good, I love IPAs so I will definitely buy this again. This biggest grade raising factor in this one for me was the real earthiness in the taste. Not what I expected from the nose but it was welcomed.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 03:35:42 | More by whisperjet
Photo of Tifore


4.7/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into my pint glass.

A - What a beautiful looking beer. Pours a deep red amber with slight orange hues. Lots and lots of head on this one. So fluffy and straight white looking which slowly fades and leaves little lacing bubbles all over my glass.

S - Smells of fresh citrus hops and like liquid pine tree. Very christmas-y smelling. I'm really digging it.

T - Tastes exactly like it smells. Strong hops, citrus and pine. Very floral almost. i love the flavor of this, its so smooth and the flavors just meld and flow.

M - The mouthfeel is silky perhaps even buttery. Really soft with a fair amount of carbonation.

D - I will be buying many many six packs of this brew over the winter. I love it!

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 03:24:00 | More by Tifore
Photo of dutchlq7

New York

4.25/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into pint glass.

Appearance-Deep amber, two finger head very creamy, with good retention and excellent lacing.

Smell-Piney and herbal hop smellwith some citrus notes in there. Not overwhelming.

Taste- Crisp quick hitting piney and herbal hop taste. Can detect a toasty malt flavor that gets stronger as the beer warms. But the hops rule this one.

Mouthfeel-Medium body, with a slight oily residue and a lingering bitterness.

Drinkability-Nice and Smooth, can definitly see myself grabbing a few mor sixpacks of this, and will pick it up in the coming years. gonna try and cellar a few of these for the future.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 02:36:04 | More by dutchlq7
Photo of herman77


4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours slightly hazy with a frothy and dense off white head. Great dark orange color. Great head retention that pretty much stays to the finish and thick, sticky bands of lacing. Very appealing.

S: Sweet grapefruit and pine hops. A touch of carmel and bready malt to it as well.

T: Hop forward for sure, but there is some carmel malt to balance it out. Grapefruit, citrus and pine hops. For how much hops are on the front end, it really doesn't finish bitter at all, pretty smooth finish.

M: Medium to light body. Moderate carbonation. Some slickness and creaminess to it too.

D: Good drinkability. Easy to have a few in a night. If this had just a little bit more malt backbone to it, I would give it great marks in taste and drink.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 02:27:52 | More by herman77
Photo of nickthegun12


4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

not bad beer...
these guys sure don't want you to know what kind of hops they use....they hide them well...or should i say blend them well.

brownish orange color with not much head....but its a nice head....with big fat bubbles

smell is of some kind of hops...it really bugs me to not know what kind of hops...not really piny not really citrusy...strong hop aroma nonetheless

the taste is of hops for sure...kinda citrus hops....the malt character is def there too.

creamy mouthfeel...with damn good lacing

decent drinkability....although the abv % will catch up to you sooner rather than later....

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 00:51:52 | More by nickthegun12
Photo of pumptrick


4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured carelessly into pint glass. 1 inch white head honey amber color. This is beer is much better than I remember, could be because Ive been focused on IRS' these days and straying from my norm of anything IPA. I like it quite a bit. Better than most SN that I have had, with exception of Bigfoot. Could use a bit more alchohol. Instant citrus and lingering grapefruit. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2010 00:18:36 | More by pumptrick
Photo of misinformed


3.65/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottled 10/5/10, pint glass.

A- Poured with a 4" eggshell colored head. Beer is clear, medium orange brown. Decent head retention. It settled down to a large dusting and left some thick lines of lacing.

S- Medium strength scentwise. Sweet grapefruit/citrus, but also bitter citrus. Pine. Just a touch of caramel. Sort of sharp floral hop notes as well.

T- Citrus hops when it was cold, but later the pine hop flavors took more of a center stage. A bit of caramel malt, but it is quickly overshadowed by the bitter hops. Long, but mild bitter finish. Flavor was sort of watery to be honest.

M- Lighter side of medium. Smooth, with a light oiliness, but not mouth coating. The citrus and bitterness lingers which is nice.

D- So so for me. Flavor is nice and it goes down smooth, but I don't really find myself wanting more than the two bottles I had. Strong, clean hop flavors that makes for a nice bitterness. There are other IPAs I like a lot more, but this is good.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2010 08:30:39 | More by misinformed
Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 7,596 ratings.