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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.

8,809 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,809
Reviews: 2,703
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.63%
Wants: 138
Gots: 943 | 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:
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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 8,809 | Reviews: 2,703 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of atigerlife
3.85/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a wonderful golden orange color with a large two-finger white head. Lots of carbonation seen rising. Good lacing.

Aroma of orange, hops and a distinctive floral scent.

Taste is of citrus [orange] hops, wildflowers and grass. Nicely balanced.

Mouthfeel has a medium body and is spritzy and dry. Crisp.

Overall, a very good session beer. A good standard beer to have in the fridge. Very enjoyable. Great beer for burgers or munchies.

atigerlife, Feb 19, 2007
Photo of Gmann
4.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured a clear golden honey color with a small white head that dissipated into a nice cap, left some nice lacing as I drank it. The smell is of citrus hops and caramel malts, a bit metallic. A bit of grapefruit in the taste, hops are not too pronounced but provide a lovely flavor, a nice malt backbone to balance the ale. Perhaps the best balance of flavorful hops and solid malt presence. It is well carbonated as apparent by the numerous bubbles rising to the top, smooth, and finishes with a flavorful hoppy sweetness if that makes sense. This is an extremly drinkable and flavorful APA.

Gmann, Feb 17, 2007
Photo of lehows
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light amber color with a foamy white head. Leaves some nice lacing too. Aromas of fresh hops, citrus, some malt. Flavor has a nice malt presence which I enjoyed, along with the refreshing citric hop bite. Some hints of caramel as well. Good carbonation and mouthfeel. A great classic, SNPA is just a solid APA.

lehows, Feb 16, 2007
Photo of adowney523
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is a pale brown color. The beer is cloudy, a fading one-finger was fading as it was drank.
Smell is of toasty malt with faint hops in the background.
Taste is mostly toasted biscuity malts up front. The faint hops in the finish are fainter, but the notes are citrusy and piney.

A classic American pale ale. My bottle was a bit old, so I think some of the hop character faded with time.

adowney523, Feb 12, 2007
Photo of beerphan
4.83/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottles -> nonic
no date

Pours a golden straw orange, with a decent slightly not white head that settles to dishsoap suds. Patchy lacing that is thick and sticky. Carbonation presents itself aggressively than slows to a steady rhythm.

Nose: Citrus hops, um yeah, the kind grown in Northern Cali.

The classic aPa flavor that has been enjoyed for years. Solid fruity hops with a solid yet subdued malt presense. Light grain flavor presents itself occasionally. Bittering is present and easily acceptable for pretty much anyone. Bitterness lingers tamely with just a kiss of sweetness.

Mouth is medium-full with a gentle crispness.

Drinkability is off the chart. Mostly due to an incredible easily quaffable flavor and body. Partly for being available all over. Thank you Chico!

The measuring stick. Period.

beerphan, Feb 09, 2007
Photo of ncvbc
3.83/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Considering this beer is distibuted more widely than many other beers rated on this site, I'd say it's pretty darn consistent. This being said, I still gave it a strict review. I have always respected this beer and would drink it over many others of its style. It's one you can come back to and one that you can find more easily than the rest.

ncvbc, Feb 07, 2007
Photo of MrHungryMonkey
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Light yellow/amber, clear. Mild head and carbonation.

Sweet bready malt. Citric piney American hops. Sweet and spikey.

Biscuit malt, lightly buttery. Hop comes through nicely, citric and floral. Nice balance and strength.

Moderate carbonation, mild foamation.

Nice American Pale Ale.

MrHungryMonkey, Feb 03, 2007
Photo of meadhead
4.38/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An All time
nearly any major grocery store classic
normally the best on the shelf to me
A perfect blend of those grapefruit-ty hops
and nice sweet malt backbone
balanced carbonation
and each swig can alternate in character
from start to finish
nothing too complicated
never anything to complain about
Good good stuff

meadhead, Feb 03, 2007
Photo of witster18
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

this is truly a fantastic brew...we are lucky to see this across the country at selected grocers. The nose is grassy of hops and sweet of semi-sweet chocolate. The beer pours a amber color with lots of small bubbles...but the beer is carbonated perfectly....the taste starts with the grapefruit and then graduates to some beautiful malted goodness with some roastedness to it. This is where the sweetness and richness(chocolatyness) and some other palate cleaning bitterness of late hops balance things out. Exceptional...especially for its' availability...for quality/availability/price...this is HARD to beat. At 7.49 a six i'd say it blows away most nearly ALL the imports on the shelf. SUPPORT WELL MADE DOMESTIC BREWS LIKE THIS!!!

witster18, Feb 02, 2007
Photo of theformula
4.18/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I'll join in the chorus and say that yes, this is THE American Pale Ale as far as I'm concerned. Can be found anywhere and is a great price and is loyal to its style.

Great piney/floral aroma that speaks of bitter grapefruit and biscuity malts to come.

Tastes similar to aroma. Great cripsness and pleasantly bitter w/ fresh piney hops with just enough malt backbone to make things interesting. Pretty light body and dry finish means it's as easy as Paris Hilton....to put down a few of these.

I'll keep coming back to this one.

theformula, Feb 01, 2007
Photo of Eirerate
3.8/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into my favorite mug. As expected from the style, pour produced small head which left behind little lacing. Dark golden color seemed just a bit hazy but still appealing. Got a nice aroma of piney hops but not overpowering. Smooth enjoyable flavor. I liked this beer even though I prefer a darker beer with a more prounced malt flavor. Mouthfeel is not overly carbonated. A nice balanced beer and a fine example of the style. Very drinkable

Eirerate, Jan 31, 2007
Photo of BBM
4.35/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow! I was surprised by this beer (though I guess I shouldn't have been) It pours a modest golden yellow color, with a smell of citrus and piney hops.

The flavor is very solid. The hops don't overpower the balance (as is the case with some APAs) but are noticeable and distinguished. It is balanced by a malt backbone for a smooth, enjoyable flavor. Mouthfeel is medium, not too carbonated, and smooth. Very drinkable. One of the better APAs out there for my money.

BBM, Jan 29, 2007
Photo of david131
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Golden, with a good amount of carbonation. Thin head remains throughout the drinking of the beer. There are a few yeast floaties in there as well.

S- Very distinct to me. Very crisp, grassy, hops. For some reason I always think of celery with this beer too. Also, there is a little bit of mustiness to it. But, it all adds to the subtleness of this beer.

T- The crispness of the hops are the first thing that I notice. Pretty complex for a pale ale.

M- Good amount of carbonation adds to the little kick from the hops.

D- Highly drinkable. Good beer to have if you're in the mood for something a little hoppy, but nothing to overwhelm you. Something I always have around.

david131, Jan 26, 2007
Photo of IgnatiusReilly
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap to pint glass at PJW's.

Pours a nice clear golden orange. Thin head leaves a light lace on the pint. The nose has the expected floral hop aroma for a pale, albeit mild. Hint of grain. The hop bitterness hits the palate immediately, balanced with a grainy/bready malt flavoring. Faint taste of alcohol combined with dry taste of hops leaves a crisp aftertaste. Texture of the ale comes off more thin than chewy.

A very easily drinkable pale ale. Reliable stand-by to have at any bar.

IgnatiusReilly, Jan 24, 2007
Photo of athensbeermaster
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Never had this Classic ale on tap with some spicy mexican food.
Wow the hefty malt backbone with the tangy citrus notes went down perfect. The head was a good two fingers and had some lacing down the whole glass.The flowery and musty earthtones from the hops really cool down the spicy salsa. Thanks to Garrett Oliver for that suggestion.Who needs a bad beer with a lime?

athensbeermaster, Jan 22, 2007
Photo of theopholis
4.43/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance--pours a bright copper/amber with a nice 3 finger head that appears to have some staying power. Leaves little tiny chunks of lace, but not much.

Aroma--Good balance of bittering and floral hops in the nose. Overwhelms the malt character, but that's okay. Some notes of citris and pine.

Taste--Again, good mix of bittering and floral hops. Slightly bitter and dry. Get some nice woody overtones at the back of the toungue. Also some citrus, pine and some malt. More complex than most American pale ales.

Mouthfeel--Good. Medium body with a nice CO2 bite on the toungue. Clings to the inside of the mouth perfectly, giving you a nice after-taste. Carbonation level perfect.

Drinkability--Highly drinkable. Sessionable if you go solow. Good for daytime and night time drinking. Very versatile. A good beer for people looking to leave the American macros behind to cut their teeth on.

I really do need to try this stuff on tap one of these days.

theopholis, Jan 21, 2007
Photo of beeragent
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is what a good pale ale should be! Poured from a 12oz. bottle, into a pint glass. The beer poured a light orange, with no head, and no lacing. The aroma is all hops with slight citrus. The taste is mostly hops, creating a very nice citrus flavor, with very little malt. The mouthfeel is medium. Overall, this is just a great pale ale. Very easy to drink, and a great session beer. Definitely try this one.

beeragent, Jan 20, 2007
Photo of umustdrink
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Clear orange-yellow color. Pours a thick head, fades to an eighth inch. Average lace.

S - Bitter hops, slightly piny, with an earthy malt balance.

T - Clean balance of bitter hops with sweet brown sugary malts, hints of cinnamon and pepper. For a pale ale this is very hoppy.

M - Very smooth but with some carbonation to give it a little bite.

D - One of my favorite everyday beers, easy drinking, high sessionability.

umustdrink, Jan 18, 2007
Photo of scoobybrew
3.6/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was poured from the bottle into a pint glass. It has a light, clear, copper color with nice head and decent retention. The aroma is primarily a citrus like hop scent with malty notes in the background. The flavor is dominantly hops, but it has a tasty malt backing it up. The body is medium with moderately high carbonation.

Overall, this is a good APA. It defined the style way back when and is still an enjoyable beer.

scoobybrew, Jan 12, 2007
Photo of surcorx
4.33/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance--pours a copper golden amber with a slight foam that doesn't last. Nothing too interesting.

Aroma--Medium pine hops and more hops. Citrus notes. Slight grassy notes. Complex.

Taste--Clean, bright and refreshing. Mildly bitter and dry. Pine, citrus and very mild malt. An expected slight bitter aftertaste. More complex than most. A great beer.

Mouthfeel--Perfect for the American style if not somewhat light in body. Mild carbonation and crisp.

Drinkability--Highly drinkable. The classic step up beer for nubies.

This is clearly one of America's finest beers. Everyone should be able to find it and should drink it. In this category I also enjoy Goose Islands Honkers Ale which is slightly more popular in the midwest.

surcorx, Jan 11, 2007
Photo of BlackAngus
2.3/5  rDev -43.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Light copper color, crystal clear. Nice fluffy head that lasted a while.

S - Citrus and floral aroma, but there's a subtler note of something unpleasant. I smells, I swear, like sweat. Not sure why. And not just this bottle. Every time I've had this beer, I've smelled this musky sweaty funk just below the hops. No malt aroma whatsoever.

T - Meh. Yeah, there are hops here, but nothing else. Maybe some very light sweetness.

M - Light body, extremely clean.

D - I can drink it, but there are many, many better beers out there. The best thing I can say about this beer is that it's the best thing Wal-Mart carries in the beer aisle.

BlackAngus, Jan 09, 2007
Photo of shadow1961
3.4/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Opening the pub pint of Sierra Neveda Pale Ale got
me a rocky white head over a pretty light amber brew.
Carbonation is moderate, and the nose is of malt with
citrus notes. The flavor is mildly of malt and hops. Mouth-
feel is light and crisp. As the brew warmed, definite floral,
citrus, and bisquit flavors started coming out. Which just goes
to show you a bigger bottle is the better way to really examine
a brew. There's sort of a citrus/hop aftertaste. This isn't anything
wildly special, but it's balanced and well crafted, and it would
make for a good summer quencher or session brew. Alcohol
by volume- 5.6%. Decent.

shadow1961, Jan 08, 2007
Photo of friendofthedevil
4.22/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my favorite standby beers. A hoppy taste with a clean, clear finish, not to mention being everywhere in California, has made me sample this beer a great many times. Both in the bottle and on tap Sierra Nevada delivers with their Pale Ale. While not a "special" beer, nor one to be saved for that "special occasion," it is a great brew to drink with friends in any situation. Receives a strong recommendation from me!

friendofthedevil, Jan 07, 2007
Photo of bacabuck
3.48/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Average scores for appearance and smell may have to do with the fact that it was served on tap into a pilsner glass and the head did not properly form. Bad pour by the barkeep. Deep amber with minimal head. Good lacing along the sides of the glass. Very clear and bright. Smells of oatmeal and bananas. Taste has notes of coffee, earthy tones and finishs with a very slight bitterness. Mouthfeel is nice and creamy with low carbonation. Pour me another.

bacabuck, Jan 07, 2007
Photo of zuggy9
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an excellent pale ale. It pours an nice copper-amber with good head retention. The smell is full of malts and a nice earthy hoppiness. The taste is excellent and quite balanced, a pit floral and grassy too. The mouthfeel is balanced and just right. Even though it's a bit more potent on the ABV, it drinks well and I can do a number of these.

zuggy9, Jan 05, 2007
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 8,809 ratings.