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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.

8,435 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,435
Reviews: 2,678
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.63%
Wants: 117
Gots: 776 | 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: 8,435 | Reviews: 2,678 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Blitzstyle


4.47/5  rDev +10.6%

Poured from a bottel into a pint glass. A nice golden copper color pours a 1/2in head. Looks very refreshing head disapates after a min or 2.

Smells awesome not over powering not weak perfect in a way. Mostly citrus notes and can pick up Cascade hops.

Taste great just like it smells actually not to bubbley going down. Nice hop aftertase that lingers for just a min.

Gave it a 5 on drinkability. Could and have made this beer a all night session beer. Love it!!

10-12-2009 20:08:03 | More by Blitzstyle
Photo of magnj

New Jersey

4.18/5  rDev +3.5%

A - golden orange body rests below a generous white foamy head. Carbonation apparant, prototypical apa appearance.

S - sweet bready malt body lies beneath layers of tropical fruit and earthy hop aromas. Smells good but not aggressive. Masterfully balanced.

T - citrus hops blend with caramel malt. Well balanced, leans towards malty at times. Not quite as flavorful as it smells but to style.
M/D - very easy to drink, totally approachable for a newcomer to craft beers but still enjoyable for seasoned tasters.

10-08-2009 01:06:52 | More by magnj
Photo of rfgetz

New Jersey

4.2/5  rDev +4%

As a supplement to my recent review of it in a bottle...

Differences to note:
- brighter and cleaner looking
- much fuller, fresher hop flavor and smell
- carbonation much more balanced

As close as an APA can come to IPA in hop smell, flavor and bitterness. Overall, the draft version exceededs the bottle by a mile.

10-07-2009 13:49:30 | More by rfgetz
Photo of muskabeatz


4.2/5  rDev +4%

I'm excited to say that this is my first review. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a nice orange bronze color with a 1 inch head. Dissipates rather quickly, leaving very minimal lacing.

Smell consists of primarily citrus and hops.

Taste takes over where the smells leaves off, presenting a prominent citrus and hop flavor, giving way to a sort of buttery, biscuity undertone. Very well-balanced, with just the right amount of carbonation.

An extremely drinkable APA that I will continue coming back to.

10-07-2009 02:16:07 | More by muskabeatz
Photo of Mavajo


3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Tried this beer once before and was very disappointed. Decided to try it again just to see if I'd gotten an old bottle. I'm glad I did - this sample was much more enjoyable.

Pours a nice orange color with not a whole lot of head - dissipates almost immediately. Smell is of citrusy hops. Taste is similar. The citrus and cascade hops are really noticeable, but it's not really bitter. There's a slight hint of spice here. Quite drinkable, especially if you're a fan of the style.

10-07-2009 00:01:50 | More by Mavajo
Photo of Yooperduder


4.05/5  rDev +0.2%

Head is light, lingers slightly but is not overpowering. No foam mustache from this beer.

Smells wonderful, slight citrus smell with some cascade hints.

Very crisp, effervescent mouthfeel, a definite hoppiness with some crisp citrus.

Overall a great drinking beer with some extraordinary drinkability. One of those beers that you can drink mowing the lawn or out on the town. Nothing complex or mysterious, just a good honest pale ale.

10-02-2009 20:28:42 | More by Yooperduder
Photo of GordonQuid


4.1/5  rDev +1.5%

On tap pint glass.

Hazy golden, cloudy from the yeasty turbidity, a nice one inch head dissapates to a fluffy wisp and clingy lace.

Smells of Perle and cascade hops; piney and juicy grape fruit.

Tatse is exceptionally balanced malts and hops; grapefruit bite and a sweet blend with a spicey finish.

Very drinkable and sessionable.


10-02-2009 14:46:38 | More by GordonQuid
Photo of chetripley


4.6/5  rDev +13.9%

What can be said that hasn't already? Clear pour, medium head, deliciousness in a glass.
What all American Pale Ales strive for.
Consistency bottle after bottle.
I have compared SN to many and they don't stack up to it.
If there is a complaint about it I have to say the smell is slightly off-not bad, just not biscuity or malty like I would expect out of any lager/ale offering.
Can and will drink anytime. Always in my fridge.

10-02-2009 11:12:27 | More by chetripley
Photo of donniecuffs

New Jersey

4.53/5  rDev +12.1%

Poured into a pint glass. Nice amber/orange color, with a very good carbonation presence, a nice off-white head, and good lacing. The aroma is dominated by pine and citrus from the getgo, but you can also detect some biscuit and malt in there as well. The taste reveals why so few people have been able to duplicate this pale ale's success; citrus and pine hop flavor gives way to maltiness, which then gives way to a dry finish. Nice medium-bodied and carbonated mouthfeel, with a great dry finish. This beer defines 'session pale ale'.

10-02-2009 06:54:19 | More by donniecuffs
Photo of Lerxst


4.1/5  rDev +1.5%

A-Very nice light copper color. No head to speak of, I suspect it was due to a barkeep who doesn't know how to draw one correctly.

S-Nice floral and citrus notes with some spicy hops.

T-Smooth yet with a nice hoppy/bitter bite. A nice biscuity maltiness to it as well. Very nice, very well balanced.

M-Surprisingly smooth and creamy, but with a nice bite and dry finish.

D-Very, very drinkable. A great session brew to be sure!

09-26-2009 00:04:34 | More by Lerxst
Photo of joozyboozy


4.22/5  rDev +4.5%

this beer is a very clear golden orange color. the smell consists of fruit with a bit of a pine twist. the taste is great. it starts off very fruity with a hint of malts but mostly hops hops hops. i love it! the mouthfeel is smooth, lightly carbonated and a bit buttery. since it has a light alcohol rating a could drink a good amout of these before i get too buzzed

09-20-2009 06:04:18 | More by joozyboozy
Photo of 8Punisher8


4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

Between this ale and Boulavard Pale Ale, they're the beers I can always count on for a great hop taste/smell. When there is nothing else good in stock, these two are my 'fallback' beere. Between the great taste and smooth hoppy finish, this one is a winner, which is why it's one of the industry standards when it comes to American Pale Ales.

09-18-2009 23:37:04 | More by 8Punisher8
Photo of BeerSingh


3.88/5  rDev -4%

By the time I got the glass, the head was very thin, which was a disappointment. The body was brownish orange with a lot of playful bubbliness. Nice nose - a lot of grape and citrus notes, with a little bit of grain and yeast. ah, the taste was multi dimensional, with a sharp zesty bite, sweet fruitiness and a robust hop bitterness, more than average for a pale ale. A lot of carbonation there with a light palate. A very drinkable session beer.

09-15-2009 21:06:55 | More by BeerSingh
Photo of Marcrates


4.15/5  rDev +2.7%

Appearance - Pours a nice golden yellow with an inch and 1/4 head. Looks tasty.

Smell - Very sweet and citrusy.

taste - Has an immediate sweet taste, with a flowery and citrusy after taste.

Overall this is a very drinkable, yet flavorful beer. It didn't blow me away, but it may just make my top 15 or so. Only time will tell.

09-15-2009 19:58:47 | More by Marcrates
Photo of Genuine


4.05/5  rDev +0.2%

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A - That pour resulted in a bone white 2 finger head which did not last long at all. This was a bit disappointing, but in appearance only. Has a nice golden brown/tan color.

Smell - Lots of citrus and a bit of pine. I would have to say more grapefruit.

Taste - almost like what it smells. Lots of citrus and pine. Not a hard one to get down at all. I am a big fan of the hop presence in this one. Seems to be at just the right amount.

Mouthfeel - nice, clean carbonation. Maybe a medium body, since it's not light nor much on the heavy side.

Drinkability - This is a great session beer. This is the beer me and my buddies "go to beer" if nothing else is available. Very nice beer to have while working on the cars or relaxing on a sunday afternoon watching football.

09-15-2009 14:29:58 | More by Genuine
Photo of Wisconsinality


3.65/5  rDev -9.7%

A- This one pours a hazy golden color with about 2 fingers worth of head. A bunch of tiny bubbles coming from the bottom of the glass.
S- The thing that jumps out at me is the zest of the ale. The smell of grapefruit is pretty predominant. Also a hint of yeast.
T- This is a pretty good example of a pale ale. Grapefruit can be picked out right away. There may also be some other fruit like orange in there and a hint of yeast.
M- Pretty good overall, a nice medium body with a good amount of carbonation and a little bit of bite from the perceived grapefruit.
D- I could have a few of these but I think after that my taste buds would be a little worn out.

09-14-2009 22:22:47 | More by Wisconsinality
Photo of avalon07

South Carolina

3.78/5  rDev -6.4%

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had an amber color and a clear texture. There was a decent amount of foamy head and OK lacing.

S: Had a fruity, malty aroma.

T: Tasted of citrus, malt and hops (a little hoppier than you'd expect from a pale ale, but it still had a nice flavor).

M: A decent amount of carbonation with a very dry finish. Light-bodied.

D: One of the more drinkable mass-produced beers out there. Goes down easy and has a decent taste.

09-14-2009 12:42:26 | More by avalon07
Photo of bum732


4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

Pours a yellowish orange, nice creamy head with great retention. Smells of grapefruit rind, orange, other tropical fruits, light breadiness. Tastes of semi-bitter grapefruit rind with a nice subtle bready undertone. More citrus fruits in the finish ending fairly clean. Great carbonation cuts through the perfect medium mouthfeel.

The classic American pale ale, as great as its always been.

09-14-2009 02:13:35 | More by bum732
Photo of DerBayer


3.18/5  rDev -21.3%

Hmmm well not a big fan of the style and this one fits right in although the copper style colour makes it look more enticing than it is.

The mouthfeel is too dry and very flat so hmmm, the fruity esters are not too penetrant but there are no earwax hops in it.

09-11-2009 19:44:42 | More by DerBayer
Photo of KrisPaulk77


4.1/5  rDev +1.5%

Poured from the classic 12oz. stubby bottle into a Lazy Magnolia pint glass.

THE American Pale Ale pours into the pint a bright, beautiful rich golden orange color with a steady, white substantial head. Good lacing throughout.
The aroma is pure west coast goodness. To me, this is what I would hope California would smell like. The citrusy, piney twang of the hops, spicey and floral, are balanced with a good dose of malt sweetness, some bready-ness, and biscuit tones.
The taste follows suit and does not disappoint. With a smooth, even, and creamy mouthfeel, the sharp, tangy bitterness starts the show, but the beautiful sweetnees of the malt steps in to balance things out. The alcohol isn't noticed, but the hops linger and the finish dries near the end, but your tastebuds demand another sip.
The drinkability is great, and this is a stock ale in my home.
This is truly a classic American ale by a classic American brewery, and as I said straightaway, in my opinion, THE classic American Pale Ale.

09-10-2009 04:49:50 | More by KrisPaulk77
Photo of thecarster1


4.5/5  rDev +11.4%

a- bottle poured into a pint, one finger bubbly head, nice retention, good bit of carbonation, nice orangey brown color, great lacing.

s- bright, floral hops, sweet caramel malt.

t- wonderful balance, sweet and floral, tang of lemony, grapefruity hops, more hoppy than most apas almost ipa territory, little bit of dryness on the finish, mmm.

m- nice medium body.

d- wonderful, sessionable, one of the best apas i've had, when people talk about apa balance, this is what their talking about, this is my go to case of pale ale, so tasty.

09-09-2009 18:53:52 | More by thecarster1
Photo of ThreeWiseMen


2.98/5  rDev -26.2%

Sampled this on-tap at the brewery this past Thursday (09-03-2009). For those that don't know, every Thursday is cask night at the brewery. Following review written from notes.

Appearance: Two fingers of dense white head sit atop a hazy caramel body. When held to light, shimmers of yellow-orange appear around the edges. No apparent carbonation. Head retention is shorter than expected - quickly settles as a mere crown. Thick spotty lace.

Smell: Wow, lame. Hops have completely fallen out of this one. I get estery alcohol and toasted malt - that's all. This would hardly cut it as an English bitter. Boring.

Taste: Toasted malt and wood, with mild hoppy flavors in the finish. The bitterness and crispness are gone. The hops still affect the flavor profile and consistency, making the beer mildly piney, citrusy, and oily. Finishes grainy and grassy - a touch sour, a touch bitter.

Mouthfeel: There was actually more carbonation to this cask ale than I expected, which was kinda nice. Malty, chewy, light, and clean. The aftertaste is mild and centered around the barley.

Drinkability: I was pretty let down by this one. I was hoping that this cask conditioned SNPA would showcase the beer's malt profile; and while it did bring the malt side into the spotlight, I feel like this beer's shortcomings were just exposed. I didn't have a problem drinking this, but given my time constraints that night this felt like a waste. Oh well, now I know.

09-08-2009 04:57:43 | More by ThreeWiseMen
Photo of yuenglings


4.13/5  rDev +2.2%

Nice beer to drink on labor day while im relaxing. Its all preaty close to the same as the torpedo but not as strong of a taste but not weak very well balanced. I can see myself easly drinking alot of these in one sitting. I would buy this agian for sure.

09-08-2009 00:02:14 | More by yuenglings
Photo of showell


4.28/5  rDev +5.9%

This has quickly become one of my favorite beers. It's very available too. My local Safeway carries it :-) . Pours a golden amber, and you can immediately smell the citrus/grapefruit scent. Tastes like grapefruit too. A little sweetness, but not too much. A litle carbonation, but not too much. A little malt, but not too much. Overall, it would be really hard to improve the taste and mouthfeel of this beer, and very drinkable. When I want a lighter flavored beer, this is the one I go for.

09-07-2009 21:42:13 | More by showell
Photo of CptAubrey

New Jersey

4.75/5  rDev +17.6%

A: Thin white head and yellow-amber beer. A fine-looking beer.

S: Citrusy hops, caramel, and malt. Smells delicious and fresh. Makes one salivate.

T: Sweet, caramelly malt up front followed by citrusy, herbal hops. Moderate hop bitterness. Touch of grain adds depth. Every flavor is lively and fresh and the beer is well-balanced overall.

M: Fine carbonation and light-medium body with an oily finish.

D: Extremely drinkable with perfect balance and surprising depth. One of the most flavorful American pale ales I've had.

09-07-2009 20:46:36 | More by CptAubrey
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 8,435 ratings.