Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

10,171 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,171
Reviews: 2,938
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 11.66%
Wants: 218
Gots: 2,015 | 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:
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
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Ratings: 10,171 | Reviews: 2,938
Photo of maxson924
3.03/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

As far as "big craft beers" go, this is definitely not as good as Sam Adams. But it's fine, and I'll order one in a bar or restaurant if there's nothing better.

Photo of dmfrench
3.03/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

An average and forgettable APA.

A: Nice golden color, but the head is tiny and fleeting.

S: Not much there, save for a bit of citrus hops.

T: Fairly strong citrus hops with a creaminess underneath. The flavors are not well separated, and the overall presentation is somewhat cloudy like a wheatale and not very crisp like an APA, IMHO, should be.

M: OK, if not a bit grainy

D: Average

Photo of Faxmesomehalibut
3.03/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It's a standard for sure, just not up to snuff nowadays

Photo of Kulrak
3.04/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a golden orange color with absolutely no head. Smells of hops, cascade, I think. Strong hop flavor with some munich malt flavor. Somewhat citrusy with a bitter back end. I really taste almost nothing but hops. There's a little tongue scraping from the carbonation/hops. It's drinkable, but I wouldn't drink it every day.

Photo of weissbierdrinker
3.05/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale copper color with a two finger light tan head that leaves very nice lacing around the glass.

Smell is slightly soupy with some malt notes.

Taste starts out hoppy with a very nice bitterness to it, then turns to a bit soapy dry finish.

Overall it's a very good beer that I would drink again.

Photo of Frozensoul327
3.05/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I really like SNBC's beers, but this one didn't do anything for me. Poured out to a golden color with decent carbonation. Odors of spices were most present, and were slightly overpowering. Taste was complex, as i'm sure that's what they were going for. Flavors of bitterness, floral notes and hops were present. Finished with a smooth, yet strong bitter aftertaste. In no way a bad beer, but i've had better APA's. Still worth a try.

Photo of kojevergas
3.05/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

2000 reviews and I somehow haven't done this one yet. Go figure. Bottled February 1st according to the bottle code. 5.6% ABV confirmed. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard ("Use Bottle Opener"!) pressure cap acquired at a local Trader Joe's and served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average; I'm rarely impressed with Sierra Nevada, but this is indisputably a classic craft beer which did a lot historically. Regardless of what I may or may not think about the beer after enjoying it, I do respect it.

Served straight from the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Not paired with food.

A: Pours a four finger beige colour head of nice cream and thickness, and good (~5 minute) retention. Little lacing as the head recedes. Body colour is a fairly vibrant pale copper; transparent and translucent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. It's generally appealing and is typical of the style. There's nothing unique or special here, but there are no overt flaws.

Sm: Floral hops, ejected shell casings (seriously), artificial pine, soap, and pale malts. The soapiness is bothersome, and becomes more reminiscent of detergent the more I smell the beer. Bubblegum. Yeah, this spent too long in primary. An average strength aroma that isn't particularly appealing.

T: Okay. Muted citrus, dominant soapy character, light artificial pine, and some mild floral hops. Bland pale malts form the foundation. There's not a whole lot going on here, and I'm none too keen on what is. Imbalanced and badly built for the style. A bit too bitter for the style as well, but it's also too sweet up front.

Mf: Way too dry on the finish, eradicating any refreshing feel that it might have had prior. Smooth and wet up front. Too thick all around. Overcarbonated, to boot. Weak. Doesn't suit the flavour all that well. Palate presence is okay.

Dr: I'll finish this bottle, but it's really not that drinkable for a pale ale. I'm shocked at how underwhelming this beer is given its influence on the style. I'll try to revisit this on-draught; maybe this was just an off bottle arbitrarily. As it stands, this is rather pedestrian and I see no reason to get it again. Hides its ABV well. Another disappointment from Sierra Nevada.

C-

---
After the bottle review above, I tried it on-draught when it was the only decent option at a bar in Las Vegas. I actually found it to be much better on-draught, and would have given it a high C+ but wasn't in a reviewing mood at the time. I'll plan on revisiting this beer; it's so ubiquitous it'd be criminal not to.

---
11.10.14:

B-

Photo of tjsmith910
3.06/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A bit of a weird dynamic here in my opinion. I purchased this product on a referral by a friend. I was fairly disappointed the first night as I finished off 3 of them. The next night, I just wanted them out of my refrigerator so I decided to finish the other 3. Big change from one night to the next. The first night, They seemed to taste like chilled thin cough syrup. But the next night I poured them into a pint glass and it is like the flavors mixed and matched and moved around to produce a rather tasty beer.

A - Pure transparent Orange color with off white 1 finger head that dissipated in about 2 minutes, leaving a light lace.

S - I rate all beers a 3 because of my lack of the sence of smell

T - Strong, lightly bitter and almost like sourdough bread.

M - Smooth follow through for an APA

O - Impressed by the ending of the product, glad I gave it a second round.

Photo of Zorro
3.06/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I have a love/hate relationship with this brew. Some of the best and worst beers I have ever had were this brew. I believe that this is one beer that is very temperamental about how it is transported and stored.

Pours a clear orangish gold color.

Smell is malt, vanilla and hops smells bitterer than it tastes.

Taste is very mild yet full. This has a floral hop taste with a bit of oak flavor to it. A dry ale, I remember this being a bit sweeter in its draft form.

Mouthfeel is thicker than you would think.

Drinkability is good, but I prefer a Fuller's to this.

Photo of Raebies
3.07/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Nice bright orange, lots of fizz and foam. Even before I got it into the glass I could smell something fruity and wonderful. Tastes of sweet tangerine and pineapple. Mild-moderate bitter hop flavour. It tastes like dogfish 60 minute but a little different.. soft, easy drinking. It is close to an IPA style beer, but not quite so bitter.

Photo of Brevbin
3.07/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

On tap at a local spot. I usually really like pale ales but this one just didn't seem to hit the mark with me. Had great smell, but the taste seemed to fall short. Maybe it's just an old keg? Maybe It was too cold I'm not sure. I just wasn't a huge fan of this one.

Photo of ElGrecoVerde
3.07/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured an orangish yellow, which matched the scent and flavor pretty well.

A lot of fruit peel smells in this one. Kind of grassy, too. When I took a sip, my first thought was "overkill". The flavors are good, but there's no balance and they just sort of swish around with no where to go.

It had a good feel. Like some people say, good with food as it's pretty damn crisp. But it leaves me with too much of a fruit peel aftertaste to enjoy. Reminds me a lot of gin in that way. Finished a bit harsh too.

Photo of jdhilt
3.08/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a two finger white head that fades quickly to a thin layer leaving traces of lace. Crystal clear amber color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Citrus hop nose. Flavor is citrusy, no sweetness, light bitter hop finish. $1.60 for a 12oz bottle from Beverage Warehouse Winooski, VT.

Photo of rlcoffey
3.08/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a gold to amber color. Virtually no head despite noticeable carbonation. Very slight lacing. Floral aroma that isnt overpowering and wasnt that pleasant. Taste is very average for an APA. The hops are there, and leave a pleasant aftertaste, but they dont stand out like in many APAs. Good "structure" to the beer, the mouthfeel is there, but the taste is nothing special. Above average drinkability, I may have another despite being unimpressed. Its been a while since I have had an SNPA and I didnt remember it being anything special - and it wasnt.

Its a slightly above average APA.

Photo of Boozeisfood
3.1/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

I haven't really had that many Pale Ales but this was a treat. i didn't happen to pour it into anything other then my mouth.

The smell was quite Ale-ish, i noted the smell of grapefruit rind among other citrus sents.

The taste was quite alright, had the bitterness for sure and the citrus i smelled came thru in the taste aswell. i dont really have too much to say about this beer other then it's good to try but nothing i would buy again and again.

Photo of SaltyLime
3.13/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - Nice gold color with a thin sliver of a head. Carbonation bubbles were never ending.

Smell - Crisp hops.

Taste - Sharp bitterness at first, mellows out. Strong. Takes getting used to.

Mouthfeel - Bitterness dominates. Carbonation is definitely not subdued.

Drinkability - Drinkable. Would not turn down if offered for free. I needed food to fight off the bitterness. Not too happy with this one.

Photo of Jammies
3.13/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a golden color with about 3/4 an inch of foam. Great carbonation and pretty decent retention. Strong lacing. Still visible by the end of the beer.

S- A light floral small. Smells more like a pilsner.

T- Hoppy and mild. Good balance but somewhat dry.

M- very light, but still decent body. Hops leave the mouth dry. Slightly bitter.

O- Solid go to beer. Light and hoppy plus available year round. Not my favorite pale ale, but good.

Photo of musicman575
3.13/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sierra Nevada drinks like the standard pale ale in every way. I've avoided buying SN just because one can get it virtuall anywhere. I was recently at a bar (for the purpose of watching some baseball) whose only slightly hoppy beer was SN, so I had one, I mean two.

There's a lot of carbonation in this beer. Bubbles were many and always rising from the bottom of the glass. Didn't keep too much of a head though.

Pale Ale mild hoppiness - check.
Pale Ale mild maltiness, slightly musty - check.

There was one offensive smell in the beer. Within the malt, I smelled mildew.

Photo of MbpBugeye
3.13/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance
Clear amber gold. The head is sticky, leaving tons of white lacing. It fades to a pillow, fueled by tie laser etched Perfect Pint.

Aroma
The smell is straightforward. Lightly doughy malts under floral hops.

Taste
Sweet floral and citrus hops start things off nicely. A toasted grain malt presence takes things until some bittering pine finishes it.

Mouthfeel
Very sharp carbonation, its way too much for me. The body isn’t too thin though.

Overall
Not the end all and be all pale ale, like everyone claims.

Photo of MrDell
3.13/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Don't believe the hype people!

Photo of Joe_Howard
3.14/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

It was ok, but honestly a tad bit disappointing after reading all the reviews and having other Sierra Nevada beers. Don't see myself trying again

Photo of Beerocrat69
3.15/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It had been awhile since I've had one of these, and my memory was better than the bottle I just tasted. Maybe I got an old bottle (trying to give them the benefit of doubt.) I doubt anything has changed at the brewery. Beer looked golden-copper colored with a white head and nice lacework on the glass. It had a resiny, pine-like aroma. The hop bitterness was lacking and it tasted more sweet than usual. Not as dry as I remember. This beer was balanced - in a bad way. It normally finishes more dry. Maybe the bottle-conditioning never took off on this batch or this bottle. I'll try again soon.

Photo of rrenjel
3.15/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

After Taste left something to desire

Photo of cheapxceptbeer
3.15/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

This beer is alright, it tastes like a textbook definition of an american pale ale, personallly I think it is so boring I could die, well brewed, I guess this just isn't my style. I love the hop and malt forward brews by sierra nevada, but their flagship puts me to sleep. Nothing against balanced beers, I'm just not crazy about this one, its just so boring. Smooth creamy mouthfeel is the best part of this beer.

Photo of ThreePistols
3.15/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pale golden color, frothy white head that diminishes fairly quick. Hoppy, citrus, slightly sweet, some floral tones, yeasty, aroma. Flavor is citrus, bitter, hoppy, slightly yeasty and moderately acidic. Finish is bitter and slightly dry. Could have been balanced better. I would have like to have experienced more malt. Overall this is a good beer however it is not my style of beer. Too hoppy for my taste but I enjoyed it all the same.

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 10,171 ratings.