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Sierra Nevada Pale Ale | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
91
outstanding
2,920 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
2,920
Ratings:
10,810
Avg:
4.05
pDev:
22.47%
 
 
Wants:
270
Gots:
2,694
For Trade:
2
Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Generous quantities of premium Cascade hops give the Pale Ale its fragrant bouquet and spicy flavor.

37 IBU

Added by kbub6f on 07-05-2001

User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 2,920 | Ratings: 10,810
Photo of Crotor
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours crystal clear light amber with two fingers of off-white head that lingers, laces, and threatend to dimple. An ideal appearance for an APA.

Smells of bready malt and slight, citrus hops. No esters. Nice and *clean.*

Tastes crisp, with prominent, bready malt. Expertly balanced with the grapefruit rind hop flavor of Cascade hops. No yeast esters thanks to the 1056... Just clean, bready malt and citric hops in perfect balance. A simple and impressive profile.

The mouthfeel is fairly light, and slightly creamy. Entirely pleasant.

The drinkability is top-notch. This'd be a hard beer to grow tired of. Leaves me wanting more. Compliments a wide range of food, and does little damage to the palate. A hell of a session beer.

Goddamn. I'm damned impressed with SNPA this time around. For about the past two years I've only had it as my "fallback beer" when at restaurants, and it's usually been served way too cold, usually in one of those frosted tulip-pilsner glasses. Drinking it now, at the proper temperature (so that I can actually *taste* it) it's way more nuanced than I'd thought. When ice cold, all that I was able to taste were prominent, citrus hops. Now that it's warmed up, I can taste the depth of bready malt, and the hops seem to be in perfect, complimenting balance. This beer must've blow people's minds when it hit the market back in the 80s...

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Photo of doho95fu
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is the beer I drink most consistently and that is due to its own consistency. Sierra is always good - never had a bad bottle. The appearance in amber and clear, the smell is good but doesn't really hit me with anything. The taste is great, with the right amount of hoppiness, doesn't blow you out with hops. Nice head and lacing.

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Photo of BigRedN
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: Poured from the 12 oz stubby twistoff bottel into a standard pint glass. Color of the beer is an orangish/copper hue with a 1/2 inch white head. Dissipated to a thin covering left good lacing down the glass. Clear with some carbonation evident.

Smell: Hoppy, mostly citrus fruit with some floral notes. There is also a hint of sweet caramel malt, but I notice mostly the hops.

Taste: Outstanding. Hoppy on the outset, balanced by a firm maltflavor in the middle. It finishes hoppy. What I want in an APA, very well balance and not too strong in any diredtion (although it maybe leans a little towards the hoppy side which for me is good for the style).

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, lightly carbonated. Smooth and well balanced beer.

Drinkability: I believe this is the first 5 I have ever given. Just a perfect beer to drink. I was wrong in a previous review. This is the APA by which to judge all other APA's. Helping this beer out is that it is available practically all over (I have seen it in gas stations) . Purchased a six for $5.99, practically a steal.

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Photo of ArrogantB
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle of a classic beer which I poured into a standard pint glass. The color is a light orange yellow and clear. The head is a frothy white cloud. The smell is hoppy and I also detect a perfume quality. The taste is crisp and also has elements of perfume. Very balanced and the drinkability is awesome. I could easily put down a sixer.

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Photo of Lothore
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Long time standby, first time getting around to reviewing it.

A- Pours a deep rusty copper hue with a foamy, 2 finger off white head that leaves lacing on the way down.

S- Grainy, lots of floral hops.

T- Bready with deep grainy undertones leading into a nice hop bite.

M- Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D- This is the quintessential american pale ale. In my opinion the best widely available beer on the market

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Photo of MSchae1017
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer was tasted in a pint glass from a bottle.

This beer pours an amber gold with a frothy white head that dissipates in to a thick film that lasts and laces the whole way down the beer. The smell hits you initially with the aroma of the hops. First of all the distict floral and citrus flavors that are so common. There is also a hint of some lightly toasted pale malts. The taste is also fantastic. The hops are obviously the focus of the beer but this does not prevent the beer from preventing some delightful sweet and toasted malts. Again the normal floral/citrus hops are most prevalent but once the beer is tasted the citrus flavor seems to dominate. The mouthfeel is carbonated well with some nice thickness. There is also a welcome dimension of bitterness associated with this beer. Overall I really enjoy this one and have to give it a 5 on drinkability. This is one I will come back to again and again.

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Photo of SargeC
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: Deep golden color with an almost perfect, off-white head. Carbonation lazily flows.

Smell: Crisp hops, sweet malt.

Taste: Beautifully balanced to highlight the ingredients. Good initial hop flavor that evolves into hearty malt flavors.

Mouthfeel: Medium body. Nice staying power with a semi-dry finish.

Drinkability: Classic American ale. Great session choice. Very refreshing and goes with everything.

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Photo of Mikeyr89
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Golden in color with a nice two finger head, the beer poured perfectly and probably had the best mouthfeel of any beer I've ever had. (Granted that number is nothing compared to most on here) This was the first time I've ever had a beer and enjoyed the hop flavor! (Again I'm new) but I do hold this beer high among those I've had for it was wonderful. I have to add it in there too, that at this price (7.99/six) it's certainly hard to beat. Full of flavor and not at all too powerful!

Very great!

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Photo of nickthetick
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: pours a clear golden orange into a DFH Off-Centered glass with a finger and a half of dirty khaki head that hangs around for a bit and is continuously replenishing itself.

S: wonderful dark citrus greats the nose with a burst of grapefruit, sweet oranges and lemon. There is a distinguishable malt aroma of biscuits, caramel and honey.

T: much the same as the nose the citrus is the most formidable taste on the palate but is not overbearing on the sweet malt notes that make up the backbone to the beer.

MF: a medium to light body with a great effervescence, crispness and very refreshing.

O: the quintessential pale ale, the one I bring to all the parties and enjoy quietly at home. The almost light body keeps it very drinkable and the malt qualities keep the palate fresh to taste the next one.

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Photo of Gusler
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

It's with a certain amount of shame that I must admit, that I rarely drink my favorite beers like SNPA, as I'm to busy with all the new beers, or some over the top beer that has caught my fancy, its a shame when we forget our "Old Friends", whether it be beer or people, something I plan on rectifying in both cases.

The beer disembogues the stubby brown 12-ounce bottle a slightly hazy amber color, the head portly and off white in color with the left over lace a fine velum like sheet, that obscures the glass. Oh what a wonderful nose, malt, citrus crisp, hop floral, and just plain sniffable, with the start rich in malt and somewhat sweet, top is middling in its feel. Finish has a determined acidity, the hops wonderfully spicy and the aftertaste desert bone dry. Sorry "Old Friend" if I have ignored you lately, it was not intentional.

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Photo of tekstr1der
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Golden pour with white clingy head. Smells of fruit and slight pine. Crisp and slight bite initiallly with a smooth, semi-sweet (amazing) middle, and clean finish. Drinkable in quantity!

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Photo of joecast
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

re-review 11/5/06
ahh snpa. good to know its available down here. pretty surprising seeing it sitting next to mgd and bud ice, the only other us imports we get. (and its not out of date, score!!)
not much to say about the beer. ive probably changed a lot more than the beer since my first review, well, my tastes at least.
upped the drinkability .5, other than that, i hope it keeps coming.
---

wonderful copper in color with a thin layer of white foam for a head.
great nose filling hop aroma.

hmm. i think i can actually taste the hop oils in this. it must have been dry hopped with the stuff. really nice.

flavor and aroma compliment each other very well.
this beer is packed full of mouthwatering flavor. but i couldnt honestly call it a session beer, if only because my pallate isnt quite trained up to handling it long term in one sitting. seriously hop accented but enough malt to back it all up.

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Photo of BeerAficionadoMCMXC
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had this beer many times in my life, but now I am tasting it professionally as an amateur. It is an incredibly balanced beer. No wonder SN has had such success with it. I hope they put out better seasonal beers though. This one gets an 9/10 in my book.

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Photo of Rainne
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got my start on APA's and this one is a classic. Had lots of bottles but dare I say I like it even better on tap.

A- Copper orange/red color. Nice head and less retention than the bottle and lacing is very nice. Pretty.

S- Something else comes out on tap. A little earthier maybe? Great balance of hops and orange as well.

T- Likewise. Hops up front and malt balanced with orange and earthy floral notes.

M- Medium body, smooth and dry. Crisper on tap?

D- Super drinkable.

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Photo of MACrist
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

LOOKS: Poured aggressively into a Nonic Pint glass. Nice 2 finger, off white, foamy head. Lots of small bubbles streaming up the glass. Color is a clear amber-orange. Leaves a fair lacing down the glass.
AROMA: Floral sweetness and honey right off the bat. Pine and citrus/mild grapefruit rind. Lots of floral/jasmine here.
TASTE: Sweet and bitterness are nicely balanced here. Mild citrus and pine notes, this beer came in a winter variety pack and the beer is exactly three months past the bottling date. Probably would be a bit more flavorful if newer, same with aroma. But that is what is available.
MOUTHFEEL: Medium light body, not overly dry, not overly slick...in the middle. Perfect carbonation to this beer, prickly on tongue.
OVERALL: I think a super fresh bottle would pop a bit more, but this is still a great tasting brew. An easy drinking, pleasant brew that would appeal to a wide audience.

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Photo of stimulus
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a deep amber / golden color with minor lacing and a very small head.

S: Smells very hoppy, like other pale ales and IPAs I've tried. Also catch a whiff of citrus a bit later.

T: It tastes very much as it smells, with hops dominating the flavor profile, along with a faint hint of citrus at the end.

M: Quite light with some carbonation. Goes down very smoothly.

D: At 5.6%, there is very little alcohol burn as it goes down.

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Photo of bkeach
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

S.N.P.A: My go to low abv summer day drinker. In my opinion this is the best representation of a basic pale ale. So consistent on the balanced hop flavor, mouthfeel crisp and refreshing, very drinkable and just plain delicious. SN has been the most consistent brewery from my experience in the profiles of their beers. SNPA is always a safe bet, and goes well with many types of food.

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Photo of MrNuggets
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Big white head with good retention. Leaves me with strong lace. The light with a mix of grain and hops. Mmmm... balance, I like balance in my pale ales. Expecially in something I will be drinking alot of. Which this one is good for. Easy on the carbonation and about as drinkable as it gets.

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Photo of mjtiernan
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz can poured into an oversized tulip

A: Fairly aggressive pour creates a nice fluffy white head. Color of the body is a hazy golden with slight copper hues. Average head retention and spotty lacing.

S: Generous citrus and floral character with hints of pine. Some tangy sweetness is a nice complement.

T: Taste has all the components of the aroma but the sweetness is muted and the hops really explode. The citrus provides a nice bite and then transitions to the floral flavor that I think is the real signature of this classic brew.

M: Body is light to medium. Texture is a little watery but the finish is dry. Carbonation is above average and those scrubbing bubbles do an excellent job of cleansing your palate with all sorts of foods.

O: My gateway craft beer. I’ve been drinking this on and off for about 15 years. A special beer with a classic flavor that is refreshing in the warm weather and satisfies completely.

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Photo of WeissGary
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is an exceptional beer! It features a fantastic amber colour, a somewhat grassy aroma, and complemented with a ’bitter but sweet’ taste. It feels like this has a lot going on in terms of its taste, body and aroma. In terms of drinking, this beer has sipping qualities; a very easy to drink yet rewarding and complex beer! I would absolutely suggest you pick this up if you get a chance, I know its quite well established in the USA but it seems to be picking up over in the UK today, if you spot it, give it a shot!

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Photo of matdot
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap from Pastis in Dunwoody, Georgia. Accompanied by Filet Mignon and Truffle mashed potatoes.

Appearance: Golden orange with bubbles and a small one inch head. Bubbles filled the sides of the glass and were not trying to escape.

Smell: Sweet, caramel and butterscotch.

Taste: The taste of caramel and sweet malt.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, not heavy at all.

Drinkability: Great I drank three pints and it did not leave me bloated like other "filling" beers. Bring another!

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Photo of BuckeyeOne
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is the ultimate in West Coast session beers. Many a BA has drunk and reviewed this widely available beer. I especially like the hop bitterness this version of an APA brings. It's got a touch of malty sweetness, just the right amount of carbonation, and is consistently tasty bottle after bottle.

There is almost always at least a few bottles of SNPA in my fridge.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Poured a brilliantly clear orange with a soft, creamy 1 finger dirty white head that settled rather quickly to a thin, sparse covering. Visible carbonation was very light.

S: The nose started out with a dry grassiness at first before giving way to a sweet citrusy nature.

T: The initial flavor starts out with a great graininess with a citrusy and light pine hopping. Quenching citrusy bite. The crisp, pale malting truly stands out here is never overshadowed by the bright citrusy nature. Finishes with a touch of grassiness and dried grapefruit. There is a reason why this is considered the staple per style. To many modern pales have been bastardized by amercian's lust for hops while neglecting the true intended crisp pale nature of the drink. This one offers a great balance with a crisp malting with a touch of malt sweetness and hopping that is balanced perfectly.

M: medium, oily viscosity with a nice feel and light dried citrus hop fade.

D: By style one of the best. Crisp, refreshing with a great malting and true to style. Case worthy by all means a go to for that summer picnic to quench the thirst with a citrusy blast.

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Photo of josiahschlender
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've been a little disappointed with the last few APAs I have had recently, so let's see if this one does any better.

Pours an attractive clear golden color. The good, off-white head leaves quite a bit of light lace before gradually diminishing to a film of bubbles on the surface.

Lots of good aromas floating upward. It's very floral and sweetly citrus. I also notice some toasted grainy malts.

Taste is really well balanced. The malts and hops interact so well, both come on strong yet neither take the stage too much. This is a great tasting beer. The malts have a wholesome, grainy taste to it. Kind of like a perfect golden lightly buttered piece of toast. Long lasting aftertaste finishes clean.

The wholesome, balanced taste is well complimented by the smooth, medium body. Again, balance comes to mind. It's a pleasure to drink, I'm wishing I had another. Very refreshing, very versatile. I could see this beer pairing well with a lot of different kinds of foods.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Out of tha bottle and into the nonic at my pad.

I call dis da king kong of beers. Straight up, tha best big micro y'all can get. No explanation. Raul almost feel ineffable. But nah, I got it.

Darn thing smell like a sack of Jedi Cush straight out of Humboldt. Ya'll can't tell me there is not a better smell than a fresh poured Pale Ale than this.

Taste? Like Mount Pompei busted an explosion all up in my mouth (in a good way). Crazy like, flavor on all cylinders n hittin' every stride.

I like this cuz it smell good, taste good, it git u faded, n tha wanksterz choke when they take a sip.

Yeeep!

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Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,920 ratings.