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Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

9,814 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,814
Reviews: 2,838
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.91%
Wants: 196
Gots: 1,616 | 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:
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
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 9,814 | Reviews: 2,838 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jascott2112
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Decided to buy this classic again, this time a 12-pack of cans with a packaged on date of 4/6/14. I do not normally write reviews, but I felt like I had to for this one.

Wow! I've enjoyed this beer before from a bottle, bomber, and on-tap...but the canned version really shines. Maybe it's just the relative freshness, but my guess is that canning really is the future of craft beer distribution.

I poured my first one into a standard pint glass and proceeded to enjoy every sip. So much has already been said about the beer itself, so I'll just sum it up with this: do yourself a favor and pick up a canned 12-pack of this stuff if you're looking for one of the best combinations of flavor and affordability available.

Photo of 311bulldog
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of FitgerFanatic
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of mobrado
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of skybluewater
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a lovely honey-gold color. Not much lacing (yes, that's probably my fault). Smells of citrus and pine, very nice. Tastes of fruity citrus, with grapefruit dominating, but it's not at all a "hop bomb". There's some honeyish malt as well.

This is a true classic, an all around good brew, and one that got me into craft beer (although I didn't think much about it then). You can't go wrong with this one.

Edit: I'm downgrading this one to all 4s, not because it's not a good beer, but because there's a specific taste in there that I don't quite like. Perhaps it's metallic, but it detracts a bit from the overall drinkability.

Photo of gbarron
4.07/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from the signature, squatty SNPA bottle. Thin layer of yeast on the bottom.

A - light golden, orange colored. Head pours quite bubbly. Big, off-white bubbles settle down into a little pool foam. Slightly hazy, some yeast in there.

S - citrus, grapefriut, muscadines. Toasted malt in the background. Strong cascade hop aroma.

T - bitterness right up front. Tart. Citrusy, flowery flavor of hops dominate then give way to light, toasty malt backbone. Hop flavor very present. Tastes like you're eating a grapefruit. Biscuity, toasty malt there, pretty balanced. Dry.

M - moderately thin body. Moderate to low carbonation.

D - highly, highly drinkable beer. Easy to pound a few of these and still have a long evening ahead. Very tasty brew. The definitive American Pale Ale.

Photo of walshclimb
3.58/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Clear golden, with thin ~1/2 inch bubbly, offwhite head that is relatively long lasting, leaving a thin lace behind

S - Moderate yeast, slightly earthy with hint of pine

T - light malt with good hop bittterness, slightly yeasty and not as clean tasting as I remember

M - medium bodied with slightly syruppy mouthfeel and alcoholic finish. A little fizzy

D - good beer, but not great for session and not interesting enough for repeat tasting. Really good for

Photo of Lukie
4.37/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured a nice dull orange, with a soft smooth head. It's different to other pale ales I have seen.

Mmm... Grassy overtones, with green apple, and citrus fruits.

Hoppy characters of course, with grassy notes, citrus bitterness, and some fruity malts in the back. Almost a tanderine and grapefruit punch in the beginning.

Incredibly smooth, with low carbonation. Almost creamy. It's a fantastic drinking beer, and could easily become a great session beer here in Oz if the price was a bit cheaper.

Photo of richeddi
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of SeanRedd
4.05/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I can't help but to feel patriotic when I enjoy this craft classic. I would join a local militia and defend this country solely for its heroic efforts devoted when brewing this precedent for American Pale Ales. Light on the malt, perfectly overflexed with hop bitterness, this beer boasts balance. Touch of dessert bread met by clean, citrus bitterness. Pure perfection when following the criteria for what an American Pale should be. I would present this hop cake at any close friend's birthday. Definitely a recomendation for any beer drinker making the transition from tastless, mass-produced, heartless, garbage drinker to craft brew enthusiast. America, once again a shining beacon of light...in the world of beer at best.

Photo of chadski
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of pajeff
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of Hoolihan
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of zoober911
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of ironwill54
3/5  rDev -25.6%

Photo of Das_Reh
2.25/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bottle into a glass.

This is supposedly THE original APA, and one of America's first craft brews. I was eager to try it after seeing the high reviews on BA.

Appearance - A nice, deep coppery color with a decent cream colored head. Lively carbonation, almost no lacing, which was disappointing. I noticed "floaties" in the beer as I poured, which settled to the bottom of the glass like bits of backwash... very unappetizing.

Smell - practically nonexistent... some citrusy hops and not much else.

Taste - Good grief... why are the ratings so high? It's a 1-note acrid bitterness with virtually no maltiness. The citrus/pine hop flavors are barely present, and a sticky, tart bitterness overwhelms the palette... I know Pale's and IPA's are MEANT to be hoppy and bitter, but there's no balance here. It's just NOT good.

Mouthfeel - Mouthfeel is medium, and frankly unmemorable.

Overall - A bitter, overhyped concoction of hops, hops and more hops. No balance, no complexity. This was my second one and I will not drink another. I'll stick to Two-Hearted.

NOTE: In retrospect I am under the impression that I may have been drinking bottles that were out of date. Will give this beer a proper re-review in the future.

Photo of aty11b
4.75/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of msinger1002
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of Dreizhen
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of njnj2000
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of JaredGolia
4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of BCborn
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of longarm
3.41/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

An old stand-by, if there's a beer that hooked me on the APA style, it was this one many years ago. Certainly as in most things related to first loves, perceptions can be inflated due in part to relative experience and naivete. It should be interesting to see how this classic holds-up to closer inspection.

Appearance is light amber, showing light hints of caramel malt. The head is decent with moderate fluffiness that fades faster than I would like. Overall carbonation, however, holds quite well.

The aroma is unimpressive for the style. Somewhat dominated by alcohol odors, but mild doses of caramel malt wisp around too. Surprisingly, the aroma hops are extremely mild and less than I expected from memory.

Flavor has mild hop bitterness with tinges of pine. Malt helps to round-out the flavors, but a slight sourness on the finish detracts from the overall flavor profile. Bitterness masks this a little, but the off-flavor is certainly present.

The mouthfeel is slightly above average.

While it doesn't live up to expectations, this beer will always hold a special place with me and warrant the occasional purchase. It's decently balanced and a good transition to the wonderful world of American Pale Ales. Although I don't live there now, when I first started drinking this beer, I lived in Northern California. I have to wonder if freshness has a lot to do with the perceived drop-off in quality in this review.

Photo of aleslover
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of pudoo
3.75/5  rDev -6.9%

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 9,814 ratings.