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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.

8,805 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,805
Reviews: 2,702
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
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Ratings: 8,805 | Reviews: 2,702 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RobertDwight
3.8/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Perfectly clear golden color. Decent white head that laces a bit. Not that much going on with the smell. Taste is pretty good, lovely hops! At first glance you wouldnt suspect this brew to pack such a bitter punch but it does. I love how this beer is hopped. This is definitley a go to beer. I could have rather one too many of these!

RobertDwight, Oct 27, 2006
Photo of boblog
4.18/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Golden clear color. Nice white head leaving a good amount of lacing.

Smell: Nice citrus hop smell with grainy, yeast scent as well.

Taste: Nice crisp along with a bit of sweet malt. has hints of citrus twang.

Mouthfeel: Light, dry and crispy.

Drinkablity: East to drink good for most occasions. Over all a very decent beer.

boblog, Oct 22, 2006
Photo of tempest
4.22/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bolder than English pale ale counterparts like Bass, Boddingtons or Old Speckled Hen. Served in a pint glass, the ale displays a golden amber color with a foamy white head. The aroma is of multi-grain bread and biscuit-like pale malts, with a sharp citrus and floral aroma. A dry, slightly tart caramel taste opens the flavor, followed by hops. Derived from Sierra Nevada's generous but balanced use of Cascade hops, the pale ale also brings tastes of lemon zest and grapefruit with a sweet, spicy finish.

tempest, Oct 21, 2006
Photo of dherling
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Straw pale color, nice forthy white head. Has an herbal, yeasty nose, some slight hop bitterness. Tastes herbal and yeasty, bellied by a nice hop bitterness. Has an overall earthy flavor with some nice malt flavor as well. The finish is mainly fresh ops bitterness. Has a dry, refreshing crisp mouth feel. Totally drinkable, and is, for better or worse, what I think of when I think IPA.

dherling, Oct 21, 2006
Photo of GimmeAles
3.68/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Crystal-clear gold, with russett highlights. 2-finger head receeds to a confident 1cm sheet which stays to the end. Collapsed head leaves nice lacing.

Floral, herbacious hops greet the nose with a slight citric prescence hinting at what's to come. Slight detection of toasted Malts.

A metallic-tinged, citric hop blast hits the tongue with some toasted malts racing in from behind. Like good lemon squares with a biscuit crust (minus the powdered sugar garnish), and hint of
toffee in the back provide some light sweetness.

A nice refreshing and light mouthfeel which is a bit prickly at first (from the bottle conditioning, presumably), settles down to smooth-out the mouthfeel. Decanting into another vessel would help lessen the initial gassiness. A solid, session American-Pale which I'm glad to see hasn't changed over the years and is widely available.

GimmeAles, Oct 20, 2006
Photo of hckyfn9999
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice copper color with a two finger head that doesnt last too long but leaves some decent lacing.

Smell is of grain along with some citrusy hops, along with some sweetness.

Taste is citrusy. Grapefruit is definitely present along with a little spice and some pale malt as well.

Mouthfeel is good and drinkability is also very good.

A very solid APA and a good session beer.

hckyfn9999, Oct 19, 2006
Photo of TurdFurgison
3.73/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had this so many times, it's bizarre I've never rated it yet. Tonight I had it on tap with dinner in Mountain View, CA. Nice clear orange color with 2-3 finger thick white foam. Good light aroma of hops, nice APA aroma. Flavor is also light, on the hoppy side. Excellent drinkability, a very nice session beer.

TurdFurgison, Oct 17, 2006
Photo of Neehan
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper with a generous head.
A complex smell of grassy grains, hops, and bitter elements.
A smooth yet biting taste of hops and grains.
The mouthfeel is aggressive but balanced enough to be drinkable.
You could enjoy anwhere from 1 to several. The best part is this very available and a great go-to beer when choices are otherwise limited.

Neehan, Oct 15, 2006
Photo of BlackJeremiah
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Coppery, golden, clear as crystal. Lots of streaming, but almost lazy in tempo. Head is white, foamy, with good lacing.

S: Biscuity malt, bready yeast--sweet scents. Hop smells are more citrusy than piney, but retain elements of both.

T: Nice, crisp hop and light carbonation melt into mild, sweet malt flavors. A complex, well-balanced, benchmark pale ale. Lemon, orange, pine tar, raisin nut bread and biscuits.

M: A bit drying, crisp, light on the tongue. Refreshing and pitch-perfect for the style.

D: An ideal--maybe THE ideal--session beer. Drinks well, with an ABV that is present, but not prohibitive to drinking a sixer during the ball game.

BlackJeremiah, Oct 14, 2006
Photo of adammills
3.53/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured this 12 ounce bottle in to a glass beer mug to see its straw yellow color and slight head. It is citrusy with a bit of bitterness to chase it. It has a nice hoppy flavor that is not overpowering. The mouthfeel is solid, making it a pretty drinkable beer. This is a solid choice.

adammills, Oct 12, 2006
Photo of AlesRTasty
4.45/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This brew is reliable. It's always good and easy to find. Sometimes when I go out this is the only thing I will drink.
A - Deep golden yellow. Small amount of head atop.
S - citrus hoppiness. very inviting.
T - Again citrus and hops. Not overpoweringly hopped, just the right amount.
M - crisp and refreshing. very nice. Light bodied and great carbonation
D - delicious, I drink this beer the most and it never lets me down. I am so amazed at how consistent Sierra Nevada can make this brew. Definitly a personal favourite.

AlesRTasty, Oct 12, 2006
Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a golden orange color with a crystal clear body and a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles. There was a thin white film of head that lasted for a bit.

S- The smell of nice pine hops had a hint of ginger and pineapple weed in the background that gave some nice depth to the smell.

T- This beer has a light pale malt flavor that was good with a light hop spice note in the finish. The hops had a dry coriander hint that was almost like ginger. There was a hop bitterness that came through in the aftertaste.

M- This beer has a light body with a tight little fizz finish that boost the hops bitterness a bit.

D- This beer had a light but good malt flavor with a interesting twist to the hops that gave it some good character.

rhoadsrage, Oct 06, 2006
Photo of tbone53
5/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

this is the best beer that i can remember ever drinking.got my first pint on tap at b j pizza in corpus christi,texas. has a slight haze.the first taste fills your mouth with flavor,has a citrus bitterness to it.this beer is so good even my light beer drinking daughters didnt think it was bad.i highly recomend this to anybody who wants to get out of their rut.

tbone53, Oct 06, 2006
Photo of marzen
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden amber coloring with a creamy white head. A strong sharp hop aroma and sharp hop flavour. Smooth and full bodied. Very drinkable ale, especially for those who apreciate hops. Not to complex, just a well hopped beer. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is an excellent example of the style.

marzen, Oct 06, 2006
Photo of uberabr
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light, golden amber. Great carbonation. Decent head with very fine white bubbles.

Unique aroma, one that leaves me looking for words outside the typical food domain. Not much complexity at all, but the hopps are such a pleasure. I don't even have a word in my repetoir to describe it. It smells like the wilderness, a mountainy backwoods spring-water purity. Truly refreshing as an outdoorsman trapped in the city. A sweet, beachy honeydew.

Mouthfeel is good; well carbonated and moderate to full, zesty body. Tastes a kind of grassy, hoppy, sour malt. The maltyness shows up more in the aftertaste. The bitterness is definitely there, and makes a unique combination with the sour quality, a wholegrain sweet, but not sugary, effect...plays quite the trick on your tongue!

It's definitely a bit unrefined, and the extreme hoppyness is a little overbearing, but in a truly American style.

I admire Sierra Nevada and particularly love this beer. This beer is everywhere in California, I'm talking gas stations and grocery stores, so perhaps it seems a little too good to be true. I have very fond memories of sipping this brew up in lake tahoe in ski lofts during snow storms, and at outdoor concerts during the summer. Definitely a session ale.

Bottom line: This APA is a trendsetter, a one-of a kind craft-brew taste from a commercial brewery.

uberabr, Oct 06, 2006
Photo of isaac
4.08/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into my rogue dead guy pint glass.

A - this is a nice looking beer - a coppery amber hue with minimal head, which left nice lacing down the glass. i would have liked to see more foaminess on top, but, i guess, that's just my aesthetic.

S - a very light smell - sweet, fruity hop juice with tones of citrus and pear.

T - again, somewhat light - very crisp with a start of grapefruity hops, a brief middle period of sweet malt, and a sort of lemon rind finish. not overly bitter, not overly sweet.

M - medium bodied - it starts off quite bubbly and stings the tounge, but afterwards is all smooth and coating.

D - high - i really enjoyed this beer, it is refreshing, simple, but not overly simple. definitely feels like something i would drink with a dog at the ballgame, but, you know, in the good seats. also, everything about this beer, from the twist cap, to the wide bottle, to the relatively low ABV, screams session ale. though not my first choice of beer, i'll always go back to this one if i have to shop at the good ol' 7-11. otherwise, i'll take a 22 oz. of something a little more interesting.

all and all, a well rounded beer.

isaac, Oct 05, 2006
Photo of peabody
2.93/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours out a nice straw/amber color very clear with just a little head with nice lacing.
Smell is orange yeast and fruit with just a slight hint of alcohol.
Taste is a little watery but caramel and grapefruit come through.
Not a bad beer but I need to try some more of Sierra Nevada's brews.

peabody, Oct 01, 2006
Photo of cjgator3
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky coppery amber color with a white lace that clings well onto the glass. Aroma is dominated by citrusy hops that give way to a slight maltiness and a bit of a metallic smell in the nose as well. Smooth bodied and a pretty simple straight forward beer (which is not a bad thing). Not overly hopped but a good amount. Overall, this is a good classic beer that is slightly better on-tap.

cjgator3, Sep 26, 2006
Photo of bgraney
4.2/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a light amber with a full fluffy head.
Nice lemony background in the aroma, nothing overpowering.
Smooth and subtle taste of nicely balanced hops and malt. Lemon taste lingers on the back of the tongue.
Medium mouthfeel, settles in slowly.
There's no limit to the number of these one might want to drink.
This was my original crossover beer and I still think it's one of the best pale ales.

bgraney, Sep 22, 2006
Photo of elricorico
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A friend brought me a bottle from Vegas this week. This is one of the beers I've wanted to try for a while.

Pours a slightly hazy orange with a finger of creamy off-white head. The head recedes, but remains as a half centimetre cap. Looks good to me.

A good toffee like malt base in the smell with a hearty dose of flowery and citrus smelling hops. Overall impression is a very fresh aroma that gets my mouth watering.

Malt doesn't keep up in the taste as much as it did in the smell. This is a beer for the hop lovers. From front to back it starts to bite on the tongue with a bitter and grainy run of hops. Some citrus tartness in the very end. As it warms more malt character starts to show, bringing a bit of that toffee sweetness to balance things out.

Mouthfeel is pretty good, with lively carbonation and a bit of body to it. My one complaint is the front of my tongue almost feels stripped. Whether it is from the hops or the carbonation I can't tell.

This is a very quaffable version of a very quaffable style. I know the Americans can get it practically everywhere, hopefully it is just a matter of time for it to come to Canada.

elricorico, Sep 22, 2006
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.1/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is an old favorite...

AP: A very active pale/Golden amber color. 2" thick frothy white head. Head has good retention.

Smell: An Herbal, yeastie malt with slight wheat and oasts scent, very hearty and herbalized hop detected.

Taste: A hearty, herbal and earthy hop flavor dominates, yeastie malt balances it very well. There's some wheat and earthy notes. The after-taste is dominated by a leafy hop flavor. Very clean tasting.

MF: A dry and refreshing crisp feel, good bite.

DA: this one is an all-time classic for myself and many others...I've brought this one to many music festival over the years and it has kept everyone very happy for the weekend. now, that's drinkability.

GratefulBeerGuy, Sep 21, 2006
Photo of tempo013
4.63/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased at Subs and Suds which is a six pack shop at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. I purchased a six pack of twekve ounce bottles.
Apperance- the apperance is a warm amber color with a nice full thick head and the carbonation seemed full
Smell- the smaell of this ale was aggressive. it was full of aromaatic flavor
Taste- you can taste the fullness of this beer during every sip you woulld take
Mouthful- every mouthfeel had a pure taste to it
Drinkability- the dinkability of this beer was to say one could drink it over a nice dinner and understand its flavor.

tempo013, Sep 18, 2006
Photo of rayjay
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Woodstock's Pizza in Chico, CA. My palate has become almost immune to hops, but the bitterness started coming out towards the end of the pint and became pretty enjoyable. Semi-sweet beer with all the fruity hops and the strong malt backing. 3.5 for drinkablity because it's too filling. A pint and a slice was hard to tackle down, even though I was pretty hungry. I always feel like I just ate 4 bowls of oatmeal after a glass of most SN beers. Hard to believe , this day and age, that this relatively tame beer was once bold and extreme, and started the craft beer revolution. Times they are a-changing!

An average beer that doesn't exactly excite me, but it's solid and consistant with an enjoyable gentle boldness. The best part about SNPA is that's it's available at every bar and beer store in the ENTIRE WORLD; even if it's the best beer there you're still not too bad off.

rayjay, Sep 17, 2006
Photo of Fuller
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - orange copper colored body with a small head that dissipates quickly leaving only a small ring around the rim of the beer.

S - floral and fruity hops are the most noticeable smell.

T - floral hops and citrus. The hop bitterness and sweetness are a nice balance. Nice bitter aftertaste.

M - crisp and smooth with a dry finish. medium bodied.

D - excellent drinkability.

Fuller, Sep 17, 2006
Photo of hermesch
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a highly respectable beer. You find it everywhere, and while it's not going to blow your socks off, it's going to go down crisp and appreciated each time.

It's a pale ale bordering on India, and finds a nice balance between malt and hops. Drink this one frosty cold, as for when it warms it tends to taste a little stale.

This beer is perrenial. Enjoy!

hermesch, Sep 15, 2006
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 8,805 ratings.