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Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Celebration AleSierra Nevada Celebration Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,290 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 3,290
Hads: 9,398
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 5.78%
Wants: 320
Gots: 1,314 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-02-2001

Fresh Hop Ale; no spices.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 3,290 | Hads: 9,398
Photo of 18Beers
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.25

Sampled out of 12 oz. bottle poured into a glass. Very good pour with tall, lasting, light golden colored head. Deep copper color with good range of color depth depending upon light angle. Nose is pinier and/or more citrusy than some lighter or more flowery hopped IPA's. Broad range of malt sweetness on the front end and finishes with a sweet yet hoppy, lingering finish. Very balanced. Mouth feel is somewhat effervescent. Not something to be expected from a festive seasonal ale but a nice twist on the typical IPA that really brings the holidays home. (556 characters)

Photo of mschantz
3.57/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Sampled on tap. Mahogany brown with slight head that diminished quickly into a Lacey ring. Nose was nutty and piney with a bit of nutmeg. Flavor was hoppier than the subtle nose but well balanced by a brown sugar sweetness. (226 characters)

Photo of Krobii
4.34/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - very rich amber tone nice heavy looking head

Smell - Pine citrus and hops. very christmasy smelling

Taste - sweet malt, bitterness hits second along with the citrus notes grapefruit mostly nice aftertaste on the tongue

Mouthfeel - Medium to heavy body on the tongue. Soft very nice

Overall - Really a great holiday beer especially a twist that it is brewed as a holiday offering IPA (399 characters)

Photo of PA-hunter
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured 12oz bottle into glass. 6.8% abv

Appearance- First off this beer pours a massive frothy head that is slow to dissipate. The color is a deep garnet color and is on the cloudy side.

Smell- Pine overules, with a the citric nature of the hops punching through. Pungent.

Taste- First, there is a sweet malt that comes through, with a toasted biscuit quality to it. This lasts for only a second, as the bitter pine-like hoppy notes begin to descend on the palate. Complex, as citrus notes mix with the pine undertones. Hints of grapefruit and mango add to the sweetness. The bitter finishes lasts until the end and lingers.

Mouthfeel- Medium heavy, and right on par for an IPA. Smooth and bitter.

Overall- An impressive IPA bursting with flavor. The use of fresh hops as advertised is apparent in the taste. If you're a hop fan, you need to try this Winter offering. (872 characters)

Photo of DarthVorador
2.43/5  rDev -41.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

An intense Hop BOMB. Very bitter and resinous, a hop-heads delight...but not so much for rest of us! To me it is unnecessarily bitter with a lack of the myriad fruity flavors of the hops from a GOOD IPA/DIPA, not to mention a complete lack of even the faintest hint of balance! Not SN's best effort, I'm rather disappointed... (326 characters)

Photo of JerryT
5/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Incredible on tap . Beautiful to behold in the glass and a wonderful aroma. I wish I had the vocabulary to describe the balance of this fine Ale. I have to give it a perfect rating.
I will look for it again at my local (220 characters)

Photo of TheItalianStallion
4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz into a mug

A: Pours a vibrant copper color with a rocky head of white foam. The head does not dissipate and caps the beer perfectly, leaving multiple picturesque lines of lacing running down the whole glass.

S: Mainly aromas of piney hops with some floral hop varities coming through. A bit of a faint grain or bread smell also.

T: Flavors of citrus hops that weren't there on the nose immedietly followed by pine. A light maltiness in the background that stands up fairly well to the hops.

M: Medium bodied with high carbonation and a crisp mouthfeel.

O: A solid winter IPA that is reasonably priced and very well balanced. Good piney/citrus hop notes without being too overpowering. I could happily drink this all winter! (747 characters)

Photo of CraigP83
4.49/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a nice amber colored beer. The first thing I noticed was when I smelled it was the hops, I think I also smelled a slight citrus odor. I usually read the labels on the beer to see if their description lines up with what I notice while tasting. The description on this label was spot on. They describe it is a complex, robust ale layered in pine, citrus and hops. (369 characters)

Photo of Brackh
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Did a little Holiday beer tasting with my wife. This is a great beer. I really enjoy the subtle hoppy smell that goes along with this beer. It has just enough bite to it too without being bitter. A very balanced and enjoyable brew. Another solid one from Sierra Nevada. (269 characters)

Photo of GerryPendry
4.44/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I always look forward to this one when the holidays roll around. A little bit more of everything than Sierra's Pale Ale, and a little bit less than Torpedo. Highly drinkable with a nice hop character, but not particularly aggressive. (I would have said differently when I first tried this one ages ago, since at the time it was one of the hoppiest beers I had ever tasted.) This is another one that will sneak up on you. (421 characters)

Photo of HipCzech
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Serving: 16 oz bottle poured into an IPA glass (2014 release).

Appearance: Slightly hazy, bright gold amber. Pours a gorgeous rocky off white head that leaves dense, intricate lace.

Smell: Clean citrus rind, pine and herbaceous hops along with lightly toasty malts.

Taste: Caramel malt, grapefruit rind, earthy and herbal (mint) hops - all so well integrated. Healthy bitterness with a crisp finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and crisp carbonation.

Overall: Boldly hoppy and bitter while still very drinkable. A favorite year after year - definitely a desert island pick. (573 characters)

Photo of illpass78
4.09/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a heavily carbonated amber that is fairly clear and clean for an IPA. Half-finger white head that sticks around a bit. Pretty good amount of lacing.

Aroma: Pine, orange peel, citrus, hops.

Taste: The dominant flavors here are pine and orange peel. Tasty IPA with nice hop bite.

Mouthfeel: A tiny bit on the thin side for an IPA, but not in a problematic way.

Overall: I don't get what's "Christmas"-ish about this beer, but it is a fine IPA. Had it with some BBQ tofu, mashed sweet potatoes and Brussels sprouts. Good "with dinner" beer. (609 characters)

Photo of williamtlow
4.36/5  rDev +5.1%

Aroma is of orange peel and pine. Piured from a bottle...nice quarter inch of tan head. Robust grapefruit and resin taste is balanced with medium toast malt (caramel). Fresh lingering aftertaste in the back. mouthfeel is substantial but not thick. This beer is a Christmastime treat! (especially for hop heads) (310 characters)

Photo of Stoutanddark
2/5  rDev -51.8%

Having lived on sixth street in Chico ca when Sierra Nevada first opened its brewery, am positive the hops being used are nowhere near as good these days. Very piney and bitter . The hops drowned out the malt leaving bitter beer face.. Some like the piney flavors however would prefer to taste some malt backbone to round out the flavors.

Also seems quickly brewed , not allowed to develop and bottled before its due time. A trend with big name brands that have to push out volume under deadlines.

World Class? Bros are usually pretty dead on however would strongly differ on this one.

Good enough to drink if offered by a host but would save my legal tender for something more celebratory as the $8.99 a six pack is expensive for the quality here. (763 characters)

Photo of Blueowl
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%

A friend and I were doing a lateral tasting of "stouts" late one afternoon. When dinner time arrived we sat down and poured a Celebration Ale to accompany the meal. The contrast in the different styles knocked our palates for a loop. It gave us a fresh start for the evenings festivities. A palate cleansing experience.
Did our afternoon of tasting influence our assessment of this brew? Perhaps, but it awakened us to fuller appreciation.
This is one fine ale. A beautiful balance of flavors. The hops played beautifully on top of the malts. We toasted one another from opposite ends of the dining room table.
Happy Holidays to All! (633 characters)

Photo of RyanK252
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at BC's Pizza and Beer

A: Pours deep golden orange amber with an off white head that fades and laces beautifully.

S: Pine and citrus hops with a touch of malt sweetness.

T: Big pine hit, some grapefruit, and nice caramel malt sweetness to balance things. Not overwhelmingly bitter.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation, quite drinkable.

O: Not overly complex, but it really doesn't need to be. Straight forward classic. (435 characters)

Photo of CraigS119
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Purchased at Walmart in Tampa, FL.

A: Rubyish-reddish-copperish
A: Fruit-tarty. Sour strawberry pie. Apple. Berry. Slight hint of resin.
F: Forget what I just smelled. There's little tart/sweet in the taste.. it's earthy/hoppy/piney/resinous/tree-barky. Some bitterness towards the end, but finishing cleanly, with a bit of sweet tree-fruitiness. Wish just a little more of that fruit flavor came through the taste.
M: Full-bodied, well-rounded, mod carb
O: I've never drank this beer and felt wintery/warm/holiday-cheery (as the snowy cabin picture would suggest- perhaps a 'cinnamon and roasted marshmallow stout' comes to mind, but I digress..), however, I suppose it's definitely more pleasurable than the typical citrus-forward IPAs around this time of year. Though I think it's a tad over-rated, Celebration highlights some great hops with subtle tree-fruit nuances and is a remarkably manly beer (in fact, it should have a picture of a lumberjack on the front or something).

*pairs well with sharp ched (1,011 characters)

Photo of zeronumber
4.75/5  rDev +14.5%

terrific ipa ! lost in all the flavors. rings the palate like a glockenspiel! hums the hops . smooth and wet. drinkability deluxe. i found another favorite. and i hesitate to say its almost amazing. almost... (217 characters)

Photo of Doctor_Bogenbroom
4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a pretty crisp, piney IPA. I like Sierra Nevada and I like this Celebration. It has lovely color and aroma, and although I would argue with its world-class rating, it is definitely a solid offering from SN. Would get it again in a heartbeat. (252 characters)

Photo of fscottkey
3.59/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: [4.25] Somewhere between amber and red. the beer pourrs with a ful 1 1/2 finger head of dense off white head. I noticed some yeast at the bottom of the bottle. Leaves fantastic lacing on the glass. Very easy to read born on date (9/30/14). No visible IBU or ABV listed

A: [3.25] Sweet brown sugar. Some citrus fruit. A little subdues - not in your face.

A: [3.75] Initially I got malty breadiness. Some sweetness from the malts. After a second sip I started to pick up a little more bitter on the back end.

A: [3.50] Slightly elavated carbonation. The beer itself nice. Good mouthfeel.

A: [3.50] If I was handed this glass and asked to say what was in it I would guess a nice craft lager. It has all of the qualities of a really nice lager. I am really enjoying it. I am guessing there has been hop fade since bottling (around 70 days ago). Still this is a pleasant beer I would drink again (914 characters)

Photo of wejohnsn
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Pours a nice burnt orange and gold color with a little cloudiness and a nice off-white head. Smell is exactly as noted above. Very intense citrus and pine hops. Tastes of citrus and fairly hoppy, but not overbearing, perfect for all night drinking. Light mouthfeel that goes down smooth and almost creamy. A very yummy brew! (326 characters)

Photo of WhiteHillsStore
4.05/5  rDev -2.4%

Pours a nice copper color with a white head that trails the glass. The smell is bright with a lot of citrus from the hops. There is also some toasted malt. The taste was very nice with a burst of hops up front and then mellowing to a nice malty finish. Very interesting take on a christmas beer. (295 characters)

Photo of barhoc11
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

This is one of my favorite Sierra Nevada beers, not incredibly hoppy for those times when you aren't looking for that. I really like fruity and floral notes that make the taste very fresh. Perfect for the holiday season. (220 characters)

Photo of HamdenHector
3.81/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: clear; bronze colored - SRM approx. 13-14; 1 finger off white head that receded to a thick collar; very nice lacing that sticks around;

S: a bit restrained; floral hops; a bit of caramel in the background;

T: floral up front; by mid-palate, it's earthy with the caramel malt coming through; finish is earthy and moderately bitter;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation;

T: nicely balanced; (398 characters)

Photo of ELS
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

I'm not a huge fan of SN. I like their Pale Ale which has been the standard for many years and I occasionally will have a Torpedo. I've also heard good things about their porter, but the only beer that I've had from them that I think is truly excellent is Celebration Ale.

Celebration Ale is great for what it's not. It's not a hop bomb and it's not a thin beer that lacks flavor. It's a perfectly balanced IPA that has a smooth, slightly caramel malt flavor that integrates perfectly with a nice hop punch. Two other great things about this beer.

- The freshness of the hops really add to the flavor.
- The price for such a solid IPA can't be beat

This year I bought a case of it and wish I could have a celebration the whole year round. (750 characters)

Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 3,290 ratings.