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Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

8,503 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,503
Reviews: 2,680
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.63%
Wants: 120
Gots: 807 | FT: 3
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:
Generous quantities of premium Cascade hops give the Pale Ale its fragrant bouquet and spicy flavor.

37 IBU

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 07-05-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 8,503 | Reviews: 2,680 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of teron_reed


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This is my go to beer. I have six of them in my frig right now and will hopefully always. It has a mild flavor, not too overpowering and is perfect for any occasion. I prefer this beer in a bottle over tap or can.

This is my first review and will most likely be edited later.

08-31-2013 18:21:29 | More by teron_reed
Photo of bgjohnston


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This beer was a light amber color with a small white head and just a small amount of carbonation. Smell was faintly of pine wood with some citrus.

Taste had a small hoppy bite to it, but was much milder than their Celebration ale. There was also a mild sweetness that balanced it. I found it to be clean and refreshing, and paired well with pizza. I could drink more than one of these and be happy.

01-30-2009 19:53:24 | More by bgjohnston
Photo of EgadBananas


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Pours a golden brown/copper with a full fluffy egg shell colored head on top.

The smell, like most pales, aren't hugely aromatic in my opinion. A n even layering of slight hoppiness, malts and very mild sweetness.

The taste is great. Slight citrus, with pronounced floral hops with a subtle malt finish thats very clean. Refreshing with no lacking in depth.

Crisp with a bit of a lean towards medium bodied. I don't think you coud ask for more in a pale.

This is a great pale ale and despite being a top tier brew, I can find this in amongst even the crappiest of bars and I go to town!

04-14-2010 01:25:44 | More by EgadBananas
Photo of Antilochus

Ontario (Canada)

3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

On tap at the White Horse in Parsons Green. Served in a branded, Eurostamped SNPA pint glass. Nice! Cost 4 quid though.

Orangey-golden body, nice consistent white head. Leaves a bit of lace. Nothing spectacular here but lives up to expectations.

Tangerine, orange peel, malt backbone, a bit of rust and some pine sneaking in there as well. Quite good. West coast-lite.

Palate is well balanced for a hoppy APA, well-rounded with plenty of malt presence and reasonably fresh hop character. Pine really comes through, solid bitterness makes this a very drinkable and classic APA. Reminds me a lot of St. Ambroise Pale from McAuslan.


08-01-2008 21:00:19 | More by Antilochus
Photo of drop6301


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Appearance: Two-fingers of white head. Clear orange color with good lacing. Looks very nice.

Smell: I picked up orange-citrus notes mingling almost evenly with the malt-biscuit aroma with no overwhelming effect.

Taste: Again the biscuit and citrus-orange comes through. Very clean. The bitterness builds up slowly and then diminishes almost completely.

Mouthfeel: Medium-body, easy drinking with a dry finish. Carbonation good in the upper-medium range.

Overall: Style-wise this beer is obviously spot-on since it is listed as an example. I find it very drinkable. I've come to like pale ales that have hop character winning out over the malt.

12-01-2013 04:29:15 | More by drop6301
Photo of Absumaster


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This beer seems to be a classic...

It pours an orange, dark yellow color with not much head.

Smell is hoppy and malty, with some fruit notes. Hops are really
citrus, like lemon and lime. These are the typical american hop smells.

Taste is hoppy with distinct citrus notes and exotic fruits, a little sharp. Bitterness is a little much at first but I get used to it. A good malt backbone is supporting the bitterness, which do not balance the beer, but make a good effort. Carbonation is sizzling on my tongue. Mouthfeel is OK and drinkability is assured.

09-08-2006 14:53:49 | More by Absumaster
Photo of LarryV


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Poured a pale amber color with a 1/2" head. Smell is citrusy hops.
Taste is citrusy hops followed by a hint of sourness. Malt just barely balances out the hoppiness. One of the hoppier pale ales on the market, and a decent session brew. Nothing really special about it, just a good, solidly brewed beer.

05-01-2006 23:31:12 | More by LarryV
Photo of ppoitras


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Enjoyed on tap at The Pub, Amherst, MA.

16oz pint glass presentation. Hardly a head, but what was present was a white film over a dark amber brew, with no lacing. Light pale malt aroma coupled with a bit of hops, with the flavor carrying on where the nose left off, and an overall acceptable feel. Mouthfeel and drinkability excellent.

08-07-2004 04:02:53 | More by ppoitras
Photo of Saunapoika


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

A: Nice, dark, golden, clear appearance with initially, a 1-1/2 finger quickly receding head. Lacing continues throughout the experience.

S: Fruity, hoppy, clean smelling with just the slightest hint of maltiness.

T: Sweet up front, turning into a floral bouquet in the middle and a sharp, hoppy, dry, bitter finish. Very nicely done. The smell is very deceiving as far as the taste goes. Much more taste than the smell can deliver.

M: For me, a bit overcarbonated. A slight too much stinging in the experience for me. Had I let it sit for awhile, I think I would have been happier with it. Not bad though...

D: Not too shabby. I think with a bit less carbonation, the smoothness would temp me to quaff down a couple more of these things. I have really enjoyed the SN Pale Ale for a while now and have finally had the chance to rate it. Nice job. A great beer to try and clone as far as homebrewing goes.

03-07-2008 20:07:25 | More by Saunapoika
Photo of crossovert


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

12 ounce bottle from the local grocery store, this seems to be one of the most widespread crafts around here along with Sam Adams, New Glarus, and Hacker-Pschorr. Elegantly decorated bottle.

Pours into my pint glass with a small white head and no lacing. Its a nice amber in color, sorta bloody piss like color. I wish bloody piss didn't look like this because it's a nice looking beer, with some bubbles continuously floating to the top.

Smell is a bit pedestrian, has some floral citrus hop. A little bit of sweet malt too.

Taste has a nice hoppy bite to it, but not without some sweeter, bready malt. Has a creamier mouthfeel, not enough carbonation though. Its decently balanced.

Overall this is a great lawnmower or party beer, its got a nice kicky abv but not too much to ruin a good session. Not on par with say Alpha King though.

08-24-2009 00:11:14 | More by crossovert
Photo of 57md


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Pours copper in color with a half finger of head that dissipates quickly. Nose is pleasantly hoppy. Malt and hops are well-balanced in this offering. The finish is dry and mildly bitter. The quintessential West Coast Pale Ale - a classic that is always a solid, if not extraordinary, choice.

09-05-2012 21:20:47 | More by 57md
Photo of aggiearcher13


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

A: Deep golden yellow, leaves about a half inch or so of head that doesn't hang around too long.

S: Hops. I'm glad to have a relatively fresh one to review, as the last one of these I had was really lacking in hop aroma. A little malty sweetness is in there, but for the most part it's just nice clean, citrusy, American hops.

T: Slightly bitter, great hop flavor, lots of grapefruit. Kind of a bready malt note to it.

M: Excellent carbonation, medium body.

D: I'd say it's pretty good, very well balanced, I would consider this to be a shining example of the style.

06-23-2009 20:45:33 | More by aggiearcher13
Photo of DrWho


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Nice clear golden color just a hint of haze. Nice hints of citrus, maybe lemon. Somewhat light taste. Hoppiness is subtle, not alot of carbonation, just like I like it. It's a really good pale ale. I thought it was pretty smooth. Not much of a aftertaste.

06-29-2007 20:53:08 | More by DrWho
Photo of FlyingBull


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

I've had this on tap and in a bottle. Had to get the cans to try them. So, this one is out of a can; and I drank it from the can!

appearance: I don't know - it was in a can! But most of us know what SNPA looks like. If not, check out another review. Or better yet, get some and enjoy!

smell: Wonderful hop and malt aroma. This has a nice malty nose for a plae ale follwed by a nice hop aroma.

taste: Nice sweet malt quickly followed by strong hops leading to a balanced hop bitterness that makes this beer stand out from most pale ales. This one has got some taste!

mouthfeel: Medium body, medium carbonation that is style-appropriate.

overall: To me, this is one of the best American pale ale examples out there. It has a beautiful clear amber apperance, a nice malty hoppy nose, and a wonderful sweet maltly hoppy flavor that is quickly balanced by a wonderful hop bitterness.

comments: I think this is a great American pale ale - one of the best. I first had this back in the early 90's and I'll give credit to it for getting me started and hooked on craft beer.

09-26-2012 00:14:57 | More by FlyingBull
Photo of NiceTaps

New Jersey

3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

bottle poured into a glass

A- clear orange ale color with a small head that stays.

S- a real pale ale. citrus..grapefriut, orange, hoppy.

T-_it tastes like it smells. so good. Not too sweet .

M-full body and nice carbonation.

O- very easy drinking. time for another.

01-22-2012 04:15:11 | More by NiceTaps
Photo of IrishRedRock


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

I expected this to be extremely hoppy from some of the reviews I read, but found it to be less hoppy than many other brews. The hop flavor is definitely present, but certainly not overpowering. Very smooth and flavorful. Golden amber color with lots of bubbles. A quality beer, and for some odd reason I like the bottle.

08-03-2002 20:55:42 | More by IrishRedRock
Photo of jadpsu


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Pours a light clear copper/amber with a good head and solid lacing.
Staying true to its style, hops pretty much dominate the aroma providing some hoppy bitterness. Definite citrus piney notes come through strong. Tart.
Moderate mouth feel and bready maltiness taste adding balance and enjoyment.

03-29-2008 03:08:04 | More by jadpsu
Photo of BurnsTau


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Pours a deep amber with minimal head, small amount of lacing.

Hops are immediately recognized in the aroma, this beer has an incredible smell that just builds anticipation. First taste and the hop bitterness is immediately recognizable. There is definitely a strong hop profile in this beer that is more apparent than the malts. Malty sweetness is faint but there, but that isn't what this beer is about.

Great, great beer for hop lovers, and beer lovers of all kinds need to try this one.

04-11-2006 22:10:47 | More by BurnsTau
Photo of GRPunk


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

24 oz. bottle in an imperial pint glass.

A- Pours a deep amber color with a medium off-white head. It had medium carbonation and decent lacing.

S- Lots of floral and piney hops with some sweeter malt tones to bring it a little closer to balance.

T- Definite hop flavor is present, but it doesn't overpower the bready tones. More in balance than the aroma lets on.

M- There's a bit of a bite and tingle from the carbonation and hop flavor.

D- I could definitely drink more than one of these in a sitting. I had a 24 oz. bottle and wouldn't mind putting back another 12oz.

Overall- I consider this a good representation of the style. With the availability as it is, it isn't something I need to seek out, but it's a good "go-to" beer especially when options may run thin.

09-01-2007 02:56:14 | More by GRPunk
Photo of janubio


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

330 ml bottle, copper-amber colour with a thin head with not much retention and not much lace. Smell of hops, something like cheese rind and pine. Medium boyd, it holds well in the mouth, where I feel hops, citrus, spices (pepper?) and caramel. It's the first Sierra Nevada I have a chance to taste and I can say I'm not dissappointed at all, I wouldn't mind to drink some of them any day.

01-25-2011 22:28:22 | More by janubio
Photo of DarrellK66


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This beer would be better named Centennial IPA light. Not as heavy, piney, florally, oily, or fruity as Founders Centennial IPA, therefore making it an excellent everyday drinker. This beer was available years before most other crafts available today yet still one of the best. Kinda like the Black Sabbath or Led Zeppelin of beers, it's old, it's stinky but will hold with the new stuff and whoop your butt!

06-11-2014 00:47:09 | More by DarrellK66
Photo of CRichardsMN


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Pours out a clear amber orange body with a light though creamy off-white head. Retains head for a short while then falls to more of a film and ring which leaves lots of lace behind. Don't know if it is the norm, but there are a few floaters which eventually settle to the bottom (really the only visual detraction IMO).

Light maltiness and a nose full of hops. Much more hops than I would have expected from a straight up PA, more like a EPA or IPA.

Again, light maltiness or biscuit and mostly citrusy hops. Finishes cleanly with a moderate amount of bitterness.

Medium bodied with a crisp carbonation. Smooth and dry finish.

Not typically into pale ales (or higher) but this one is very well done. If it fit my palate, I'm sure I'd have multiples of this one around.

This is only my second brew from SN and I was a bit gun-shy (so shy in fact that not until a neighbor gave me this one did I venture forth...). The first was Bigfoot, which was not a welcome brew as it was more like biting into a grapefruit rind then getting punched in the back of the head. This beer is much more reasonable and I'm now willing to try more from SN.

01-24-2010 23:07:37 | More by CRichardsMN
Photo of thegodfather2701

North Carolina

3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

A- pours a hazy gold/orange with a white head that slowly dissipates leaving some lacing. Tons of floaties, which I don't ever remember really seeing in the bottle.

S-Citrussy hows, some malt, and alcohol sweetness

T-Nice sharp hop bitterness and a strong malt back bone. Malts seem pretty prevalent.

M-very carbonated. If you drink this straight from the can its extremely carbonated.

D-through the roof. I could drink this all day long. Great taste and smooth!

Overall, one of my favorite go to beers. I will never, ever in my life turn down a SNPA.

04-18-2012 02:19:16 | More by thegodfather2701
Photo of rodrot

North Carolina

3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This beer, along with Sam Adams lager, has been my old standby for many years when the pickings were slim at a bar or restaurant.
That's exactly what happened last night when I visited one of the many boring sports bars in Charlotte where the number of TV's outnumbers the selection of beers. The beer pours a slightly hazy, dark golden color with a pillowy one inch head. Aroma is hoppy and fruity with plenty of citrusy smells too. The taste is that wonderful flavor of Cascade hops, grapefruity and lemony, with a nice thirstquenching bitterness backed up with the solid sweetness of malt. This beer has never disappointed me and I have never had a bad bottle or a bad pint of this stuff. I'll take this any day over most macros.

02-19-2006 14:47:13 | More by rodrot
Photo of Merkur


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Beer pours a nice amber color with a bit of off white foamy head.

Beer smells very hoppy. Slightly grassy and very citrusy in nose.

Beer tastes very crisp and refreshing. The initial taste is sweet citrus hops, followed by quite a bit of bitterness. Very nicely balanced.

Beer is slightly carbonated but very balanced and drinkable.

Very solid Pale Ale.

02-25-2012 15:35:19 | More by Merkur
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 8,503 ratings.