Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

10,187 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,187
Reviews: 2,945
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.66%
Wants: 218
Gots: 2,030 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 07-05-2001

Generous quantities of premium Cascade hops give the Pale Ale its fragrant bouquet and spicy flavor.

37 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 10,187 | Reviews: 2,945
Photo of dunit697
2.51/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I saw on Beer advocate that this was an A- so I was pretty excited, after tasting it I really couldn't see why. I also judge beers quite a bit on the balance of alcohol. I want it to be there but not so obvious, this beer did not mask its alcohol very mask it alcohol very well making it less enjoyable for me personally, especially considering it was only 5.6%. I think there is plenty of better stuff out there, but its not a bad beer.

Photo of bcgoldtoe
2.56/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

As one of the highest rated pale ales, I looked forward to a great balanced beer. I was, however, disappointed to see that the complexity I seeked was sorely lacking.

A= Solid, beautiful golden color with hints of amber

S= Better than a macrobrew but this was the first hint something wasn't right

T= Way overhopped. Needs more malt and fewer hops. Bitterness does fade into slight sweetness but does it have to take so long?

M= Excellent, one of the better balanced mouthfeels. Not too thick, not too thin

D= It's ok, once you get past the overpowering hops.

If you're not a fan of strong hops, avoid this beer. I do agree with the comment about this being Budweiser with hops. If you want a great microbrew pale ale without huge amounts of hops, I recommend Dogfish Head amber ale or Fat Tire.

Photo of thelagerheads
2.6/5  rDev -35.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Fishbine, we meet again. I've said this before with the Bell's Two Hearted Ale and I reiterate it here: I simply don't get the appeal of pale ales with their citrusy rind taste. It's an intentional thing but comes through like a tragic mistake. Why muddle an otherwise smooth and creamy beer with a brunt anvil of flavor? It warms a lot better than the Two Hearted Ale but the sugar-sucked lemon-orange squeeze of bitterness gives me no joy. Stan Heironymus, send in the Trappist Monks, the abbey has been overriden by a bitter toucan named Sam.

Photo of corywalston
2.62/5  rDev -35%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

A. Aggressive poor 1 inch of golden head. Very little carbonation. Color is golden orange.
S. Hops, pine, citrus.
T. Little hops for a pale ale. Not much after at.
M. Crisp, watery, little dry.
O. This pale ale is very forgettable. It’s not bad, but there is nothing special either.

Photo of BlackHaddock
2.63/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Brown 350ml bottle, best before mid Oct 2007, drank late March 2007.

Imported into the UK and sold in a lot of supermarkets, thought I'd see what all the fuss was about with Sierra Nevada beers.

Poured into my Corsendonk tulip glass it looked a bright traffic light amber, almost terracotta orange colour. A tight white head sat on top, bubbles replenishing the head from the base and side of the glass.

An aroma of sour hops, mashed with an iffy yeast culture, attacked my nose, obviously not a Brit Pale Ale, thats for sure.

Young, green taste, the beer isn't ready to drink yet. Made me burp straight away, which also indicates to me it isn't the finished article.

Dry and metalic aftertaste, sorry, not for me.

Not too sure what I was expecting from this beer, something smoother perhaps, certainly not the young, dry, tinny flavours which I found. I will try another in the summer maybe, to see if the warmer weather helps me see it's characteristics in a better light.

Photo of jtierney89
2.65/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a semi clear orange hue with a fluffy white head. Piney grapefruit nose. Medium in body, extremely clean. Slightly tinny taste and just a touch soapy on the finish. Fruit comes through a bit on the tip of the tongue but more of the pine. Balanced. Flavors aren't as pronounced on the tongue as they are on the nose.

Clean and balanced but with some off flavors. I know this thing has made a name for itself but so has stone, anchor, and rogue, and id take a stone ipa, an anchor steam, or a rogue dead guy over this. Its decent, but its reputation made me expect not to find these strange off flavors and overall dullness.

Not saying id never drink again, it is decent, but just Idk, somethings missing.

Photo of JohnBeerRun
2.71/5  rDev -32.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I tried this beer in Athens georgia because I had heard good things about it. The overall look was great and the smell and mouthfeel was good but it's just the taste of pale ales I can't get past. I'm more into dark roast or cream tasting beers. Not knocking this beer at all it's just more for pale ale drinkers.

Photo of breslaubrewer
2.72/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I know this is the classic example of an American pale ale ,but.... in the midwest it becomes oxidized on the retail shelves and doesn't hold up well. I've had one six pack I really enjoyed (nice piney floral aroma, dry finish, bitter spicey taste). I usually won't buy unless I know it's fresh because I get a cardboard/oxidized taste that I can't overcome and usually throw the rest out.

Photo of Brunite
2.72/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Hazy, light gold colored beer. Lots and lots of floating sediment. This bottled was handled and poured properly. Yet...tons of sediment. Not to thrilled here.

Smell: Mild....nothing noteworthy. Very subtle citrus and malt.

Taste: Average. OK bitterness...some biscuit...not very memorable.

Mouthfeel: Decent but nothing special.

Drinkability: Really disappointed here. Had hopes of making this a go-to APA due to price & availablity. I've had much better. Just too many floaters and not enough flavor for a PA. I'll pass next time.

Photo of PorterLambic
2.73/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours clear and bright, golden in color and topped by a full inch of off-white foam. Good retention, decent lace.
Smell is hoppier than expected with notes of herbs and citrus and a very light malt in the background. Would like better balance.
Taste is at least similar to the scent in that the malt takes a 'back of the bus' approach with the hops driving. Light citrus (grapefruit) note accompanies the heavy herbal/floral/medicinal hops. Less balanced than the nose.
Medium bodied with a somewhat sharp effervescence in the front. Dry finish, astringent. Hops mellow in the aftertaste but remain the main ingredient. Warming didn't improve this one, quite the opposite. Sadly, this is a pale ale more in name than in the glass. Drinks like a good lager should. Too bad it isn't labeled as one.

Photo of aquatonex
2.74/5  rDev -32%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I expected more from this Pale Ale, perhaps it was the batch that was the problem. Pours light amber. Smells a lot of hops and alcohol, kinda skunky. Tastes rather bitter with a generous portion of hops, alcohol, and skunk that stays with your tongue until your next sip. I was not impressed at all.

Photo of AdamBear
2.75/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-pale gold with a hint of orange. thin white head. there are some bubbles

S-very hoppy, but very bold and striking. its not that citrusy but i'm getting a hint of orange. there's a good strength to it.

T-starts with an oddly bitter mixture of hops and barley. there's a bitter after-taste of barley. this is quite the simple and unexciting beer.

M-medium to high carbonation which is creamy. finish is a tad dry

D-it doesn't get any worse than the initial taste but it doesn't get any better. i've heard a lot of good things about this beer but i was really let down. this is nothing special and doesn't beat the other commonly found beers.

Photo of kindestcut
2.75/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The SN Pale Ale pours a clear and pale golden amber. The head is quite frothy but dies a brave death in only a few minutes. Quite a refreshing looking beer before the first taste.

The aroma is, as would be expected, spicy and very subtle floral with strong hops. The flavor is not particularly smooth but with a bitterness that is not overpowering.

Ultimately, I think that the SN Pale Ale is not delicious but it can be refreshing...if you were very thirsty.

Photo of chicagoanbeerone
2.8/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Smell and taste of water and hops, I like it nice and bitter probley one of the most consistant pale ales around. very good and drinkable even for beginers It is close to a lager with hopier traits A nice beer that is enexpensive and to watch a football game with not so heavy just smooth and good

Photo of bucko
2.8/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

SNPA pours a copper color with a light white head and has a nice, faint citrus aroma. Tipping back the bottle and taking a sip, I find a nice, crisp bite, and while the flavor is good, it's not remarkable. I've had better, I've had worse... good, not great. It's a tasty brew and I'd certainly be willing to buy more, but this just isn't a standout in my book.

Photo of Jesstyr
2.8/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I am re-reviewing this beer after my last review was unreasonably taken down. I bought a new bottle as part of a pick 6, so I could give a new and fair review. I continue to be underwhelmed with this beer, but am now certain my prior bottle was skunked.

A: Light copper, with very little head. Fairly significant sediment.

S: Very light, some pine, some subtle not flattering metallic nose.

T: This, again, is where I was most disappointed. Very thin flavor, lacked anything particularly redeeming or strong. To be honest the metallic nature reminded me of Kirin, but it did finish like a traditional IPA. Definitely tasted pine, and a lot of hops - too much in fact.

M/D: Thin and a little too dry. Not enticing to go back for more.

I'll continue to find this beer underrated, but look forward to trying some other SN to see what all the hubbub is about.

Photo of TheKingofWichita
2.8/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

So I don't want to seem like an ass but I didn't really like this beer.
Pours an off orange color with a white head, and minimal lacing.
Smells a little citrusy with some hop character and some pine.
Tastes like hops, hops, hops, bitterness, with a little malt and citrus thrown in for kicks.
Mouthfeel and drinkability were fairly average.

Photo of WhiteOak
2.8/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Bright golden color, lacy white head.

S- Grains, floral/citric hops aroma.

T- Bitter citric hops over minerals and light malt flavors.

M, D- Light/medium body.

All credit is due for this old soldier who helped lead the initial charge, but in comparison to current competition, somewhat uninspiring.

Photo of entenduintransit
2.81/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

There's just so many better pale ales out there.

Photo of Covocali
2.84/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Average pale ale not to bitter not to sweet

Photo of BrewitYerself
2.86/5  rDev -29%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a frosted glass before I could stop the bartender.

Pours a clear dark copper, thick dense head, some lacing.

Smells of bready/slightly sweet malt with fruity/floral hops and mild esters.

Taste is pungently bitter and sour upfront. Pithy and herbal, almost vegetal. Finishes pretty clean with a moderate lingering pithy sour-bitterness. Not much malt on the palate - just a touch of breadiness and very slight sweetness.

Mouthfeel is very thin, overcarbonated.

Overall it's too bitter and sour, and not enough malt to balance. Hop aroma and flavor are a bit lacking. The flavors it does have taste stale. As it warms it releases more of a malty-sweet aroma, but there still isn't much more than bitterness on the palate. If someone offered me another, I'd take it, but I wouldn't order it.

Photo of Mitchster
2.86/5  rDev -29%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Brewed with Two-row Pale & Caramel malts. Hopped with Magnum and Perle for bittering and Cascade for finishing. OG=13.0p, FG= 2.8p, 5.6% ABV, 37 IBU.

Pours out to a clear light caramel, forming a creamy off-white head with veyr good retention and sticky sheets of clumpy lacing. Bubbles rise slowly through the beer with mild-moderate carbonation. Aroma is very bready and yeasty nearly overpowering the citric hops, with lots of bready alcohols and sharp cheesiness. Much different than I remember. Hops are slightly oxidized. Mouthfeel is middle of the road with a crisp finish and medium body. Taste begins with crisp carbonation, followed by rather non-descript hops, potent yeast, bready alcohols, malts which are barely perceptable in contrast to the hops and yeast. Mild to moderate bitterness. Crisp finish.

Much different than I remember, and different than what I had on-tap at Sierra Nevada Brewery. This is the 3rd bottle that has tasted this way. I'll chalk it up to a more refined palate, but this just doesn't do much for me anymore. Considered a "classic" American Pale Ale in many circles. Way to bready and cheesy. I would pick nearly any pale ale over this. Boston Ale is a MUCH better mass-produced alternative. If you have to drink this, drink it ice-cold. It get's nasty warm.

Photo of Offa
2.86/5  rDev -29%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap, this is at least ok, rather bopring but slightly tasty, drinkable, and reasoanbly balanced in character (unlike from thE bottle, in which form I find it dreadful)

It looks good on tap, with a nice copper body, a decent, lasting off-white head and some decent, lasting lace.

The aroma is a decent, basic ale, with a little grain, crackers, and citrusy hops, but rather muted and simple.

On tap, the taste is really rather bland, with just some hops, mostly grapefruit and other citrus, plus a light grain quality that mostly takes over in the end.

Photo of PhageLab
2.87/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I purchased a 24oz bottle of this from a local grocery store today and poured it into a 14oz tall pilsner glass w/wide mouth.

A - Complex deep amber color in the center which fades out to a pale yellow. It produced a frothy brown head which slowly dissipated. Appeared to be full-flavored.

S - Faintly metallic aroma, not much to it, hard to distinguish.

T - Highly bitter initially yet quickly turns into an almost floral aftertaste. I could definitely taste the hops, but it was not overpowering.

M - As I said, the bitterness fades fast and it is actually much lighter than I had anticipated. Nothing too special here.

D - Although it doesn't pack nearly as much punch as I had expected, it is still very tasty. I may not go out of my way to get another, but I certainly wouldn't turn one down if offered.

Photo of MNAle
2.88/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.75

1/2 inch slightly off-white head. Amber color with aggressive carbonation. Faint aroma that is pleasant, somewhat citrusy. Very mild taste, not highly hopped at all in either the initial taste, mid, or aftertaste. This surprised me. It was only about 10 weeks past its bottled date,. so hop fading should certainly not been an issue. Substantial mouth feel, especially for a pale ale. But, the overall taste is just so unremarkable. While I generally prefer beers that are not over-hopped, it is not just the lack of a hops bite that is surprising. It is just so ordinary. This is a very drinkable ale, but for all the hype about this being the prototypical American pale ale, I was expecting much more.

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 10,187 ratings.