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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.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

8,446 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,446
Reviews: 2,678
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.63%
Wants: 118
Gots: 784 | 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: 8,446 | Reviews: 2,678 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of stakem
stakem

Pennsylvania

3.59/5  rDev -11.1%

12oz can poured into a sierra nevada snifter. The brew pours a clear copper color with a rich white froth that fades to a thin film supported by rising bubbles. Overall a solid looking pale ale.

The aroma includes a faint floral to fruity hop quality with a caramel to toffee and biscuit-like grain presence that has a soft touch of butter towards the back end. Not the most vibrant bouquet but enjoyable and easily approachable.

The flavor is clean and crisp with a hoppy bitterness that is somewhat herbal and floral to fruity. Just like the aroma suggested, plenty of caramel malt that blends into the finish and is a bit buttery.

This is a light bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. Overall this is solid and very easy drinking. It is a well made brew that sometimes I have admittedly overlooked in lieu of less familiar faces and/or seasonal offerings that are not always available. This is a very good standby.

08-13-2013 15:46:36 | More by stakem
Photo of akorsak
akorsak

Pennsylvania

4.33/5  rDev +7.2%

A pint glass served at Champion's in Highspire, PA.

A: The pint has a clear amber body, an orange-brown combination that 'copper' is properly affixed to. A half a finger of white head managed to lace nicely in the oft-rinsed tumbler glass.

S: The nose has a strong hop presence for a pale ale, offering pine and citrus in abundance. A strong caramel backbone provides balance.

T: The ale opens with a very oily hop presence, one that was strong and resiny enough that 'soapy' may be appropriate. Further sips reveal the citrus and pine from the nose. Caramel and biscuit flavors drive the malt profile that is strong enough to stand up to the hops. The malt and hop pairing leaves a nmice finish in the mouth.

M: The mouthfeel, especially when fresh, is tough to beat. The hops are vibrant and oily, coating the palate with each sip.

D: A pleasantly drinkable pale ale, one that doesn't skimp on the hops. SNPA is an ale best served fresh on-tap.

11-23-2009 01:09:00 | More by akorsak
Photo of dbrauneis
dbrauneis

North Carolina

4/5  rDev -1%

Served on tap at Pine Tree Lodge in New York, NY

A: Pours a crystal clear golden orange in color with very light visible carbonation. The beer has a finger tall off-white head that reduces to a thin layer over the entire surface of the beer with some thicker patches and a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Significant lacing is observed.

S: Light smell of toasted malts, caramel malt sweetness, and then hops - pine mostly with a hint of citrus.

T: There is a light flavor of caramel malt sweetness upfront followed by the not too intense pine hop and a light amount of citrus zest. The beer has a moderate bitterness that lingers slightly.

M: On the heavier side of medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Crisp.

O: One of the early craft beers that I was introduced to and enjoyed, this beer is a classic introductory craft beer. This beer is easy to drink and very sessionable. I have had this beer many times over the last 15+ years and likely will continue to get it as an everyday kind of beer.

04-08-2012 11:55:13 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

4/5  rDev -1%

(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.

10-06-2006 21:01:55 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of drewone
drewone

California

3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

11-22-2012 06:18:33 | More by drewone
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.08/5  rDev -23.8%

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.

08-03-2010 22:17:58 | More by jdhilt
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

3.05/5  rDev -24.5%

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.

01-31-2004 02:13:10 | More by Zorro
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ

California

3.83/5  rDev -5.2%

One of the three major craft beers you'll find at many establishments on draft (the others being Fat Tire and Boston Lager), I got this at Famous Dave's BBQ when I was in Fresno this weekend. Paired with BBQ beef tips, on to the beer:

What's to say that hasn't been said? It's a west-coast classic with it's own unique beat. Typical of American styles, it leans towards the hoppy profile, with a grapefruit/citrus aroma. From draft, it has a creamy feel that's good to the last drop. I'm glad to hear from casual beer drinkers that this is on thier list for thier favorite beers, so it has appeal for everyone.

04-01-2007 19:53:37 | More by DoubleJ
Photo of duceswild
duceswild

Maryland

4/5  rDev -1%

02-04-2013 21:23:08 | More by duceswild
Photo of mothman
mothman

United Kingdom (Wales)

3.93/5  rDev -2.7%

I have had this beer many times, but I guess I never reviewed it. Well here it goes.

Poured into Sam Adams Sensory Glass.

A slight aggressive pour creating a 2 finger slight off-white head. Leaves some thin splattered lacing. Color is a clear golden orange. You can see perfectly through this beer and the carbonation bubbles had my eyes mesmerized.

Aroma: first thing I thought of was fruity pebbles, but in a good way. Earthy hops. Bready malts. Not to much here, but really good for a pale ale (it has a better aroma then some IPAs).

Taste is hoppy of course. Very balanced with malts though (no types to distinguished for me). Has some citrus notes as well. Great pale ale!

Mouthfeel is bitter at first, but then becomes very enjoyable (not saying that the bitter isn't). Leaves a chewy, hoppy aftertaste.

This beer is definitely a classic and something I will always buy. It is by far one of the better tasting pale ales around. I highly recommend this beer if you haven't tried it yet. Great started beer for getting into hops.

04-19-2009 02:03:29 | More by mothman
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4.38/5  rDev +8.4%

Well decided to buy some again, got introduce to it back around 97 in CA, one of the first micro's I've had. I've always liked the Pale Ale over the Stout and Porter. The color is golden brown and a mild taste. Goes down very easy with a great after taste. This has always been one of my favorites (Pale Ale). Highly recommended.

06-13-2005 23:29:07 | More by Wasatch
Photo of ejimhof
ejimhof

Pennsylvania

3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

12-25-2012 16:08:17 | More by ejimhof
Photo of BARFLYB
BARFLYB

Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev -2.7%

On-tap at Bourbon blue.

A- SNPA is a nice bright bronze color. Some spots of orange as well. A good sized sturdy head with white bubbles throughout stayed afloat. Some light lace stuck on the glass but barely.

S- A nice hop aroma from various strains giving off a floral aroma. I can smell a citrus a roma plus some malt leading its way to slight caramel. Very nice and pungent.

T- Was not expecting all the hops plus bitterness for a pale ale but this does fit the style. It's not overdone, it's just balanced. The malt gives off caramel at just the right time without interfering. In the finish is some toasted grain plus a bit of spice.

M- A step above medium bodied and oily. The bitterness is there but does not overcome. The malt addition works well in this nicely hopped pale ale. Creamy going down and a nice finish.

D- Good stuff, drinkable plus affordable, this one is a good package. Better off of the tap but fresh bottles are good as well. Low alcohol too which is also a plus. The balance is what sets this one off.

04-06-2009 05:42:02 | More by BARFLYB
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Enjoyed on tap at The Pub, Amherst, MA.

16oz pint glass presentation. Hardly a head, but what was present was a white film over a dark amber brew, with no lacing. Light pale malt aroma coupled with a bit of hops, with the flavor carrying on where the nose left off, and an overall acceptable feel. Mouthfeel and drinkability excellent.

08-07-2004 04:02:53 | More by ppoitras
Photo of Stinkypuss
Stinkypuss

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev -4.7%

A. On tap into a pint glass. Copper in color with a bit of lace.

S. Floral hoppage and some malts in the distance.

T. A good grassy hopping of some caramel malt. A bit of floral hops. Biscuity malt. Balanced well and nothing out of place.

M. Medium bodied and crisp. Ample amount of carbonation. Finishes slightly dry.

D. A nice pale ale. Pretty much the definition of the style. Solid and a worthy of a staple.

10-10-2008 04:04:55 | More by Stinkypuss
Photo of superspak
superspak

Michigan

4/5  rDev -1%

24 ounce bottle into signature pint glass, bottled 2/15/2012. Pours lightly hazy golden amber color with a nice 1-2 finger fairly dense white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Some good spotty lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of orange, grapefruit, herbal, floral, bread, light pine, and caramel. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and decent strength. Taste of orange, grapefruit, pine, caramel, bread, floral, and herbal spiciness. Fair amount of bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, pine, bread, and light caramel on the finish for a bit. Great hop flavor balance; with a good balance of bitterness and malt sweetness. Medium carbonation and body; with a lightly creamy and quite crisp mouthfeel. Alcohol is well hidden with pretty much no warming noticed after the finish as expected. Very crisp and smooth to drink. Overall this is a damn nice pale ale, and pretty much the standard for the style. Nice balance of hop flavors; with smooth and easy drinking. It definitely held up given the bottle dating as well.

06-25-2012 03:34:00 | More by superspak
Photo of Huhzubendah
Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

4.13/5  rDev +2.2%

Sierra Nevada appears transparent yellowish orange with a thick white head that completely coats the glass in lacing. A well balanced brew, with hop flavors in the forefront. Really drinkable, this is a refreshing beer. The carbonation level is spot on. The flavor is simple, but well done. I have has this beer all over the country, and found it to be very consistent. This is a great beer to have around when you want something light and don't want to pillage your cellar.

09-01-2010 03:41:04 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of BillRoth
BillRoth

Maryland

3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

12-22-2013 20:26:23 | More by BillRoth
Photo of brandoman63
brandoman63

Illinois

4/5  rDev -1%

11-29-2011 19:54:01 | More by brandoman63
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev -1%

A deep bodied yellow shaded in with tones of amber. A seemingly infinite number of tiny bubbles sprout up from the base and race to the top. Clarity exist but in a somewhat blurred state. The top half inch is peach hued and adhesive enough to envelop the glass above it.

Notes of citrus, grass and pine combine for a pleasant effervescence. It is a soft fruitiness that includes orange blossom and a squirt of lemon juice. The hop character is pronounced but moderate - it's not a smack to the sinus but rather a gentle tickling of the nostrils.

Hints of grapefruit and citrus fruit are noted in the flavour, too. More prevalent now, however, is the taste of lightly toasted, caramel laced malts. It's not exactly a rich, gooey presence but it adds an extra shot of flavour to what is otherwise a very simple beer.

The hops might snip at those not accustomed to bitterness but should definitely be considered restrained. The modest 37 IBU's add a nice underlying quench to each sip. Crisp mouthfeel and good carbonation only adds drinkability to what was already something quite tasty.

Sierra Nevada is rightfully regarded as the grandfather of the American craft beer revolution. Their pale ale was particularly inspirational for a generation of craft brewers that were now re-inventing old world styles and hopping at levels previously unheard of - All hail it !

11-12-2008 02:45:12 | More by biegaman
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard

Colorado

4.43/5  rDev +9.7%

Poured into pint glass.
A darker golden color with nice foaming head that did lace.
Smell of hops and then some lemon and grass, maybe a pinch of ginger.
A good taste. Balanced (or should I say imbalanced) just right for a PA. Hops are the main note, with malt and lemon in the background for body. Nothing special on the mouthfeel, but that's good anyway.
Easy drinking, dangerous...can drink several without thinking of it.

04-03-2006 15:49:37 | More by Mebuzzard
Photo of John_M
John_M

Oregon

4.44/5  rDev +9.9%

I don't want to even speculate how much of this I've drunk over the years. A considerable lake of it at the very least.

As others have noted, this really is the quintessential American Pale Ale. I know whenever I think of a pale ale, this is the beer that comes immediately to mind.

The beer pours an impressive copper orange amber color, with very decent head retention and good lacing. On the nose.... mmm.... the sierra nevada pale aroma. There's nothing quite like it. Noticeable hops and malt perfectly intermixed on the nose, with a hint of orange/citrus and ginger. The beer is mouth watering, and as always, I can't wait to take the first sip. On the palate this beer is just delicious. Again, it seems to have the perfect intermix of hops and malt, with just enough hops to keep the beer refreshing and not too sweet. In combination there is a very forward fruitiness to this beer, a mix of orange, cherry and apple I think. The beer finishes very crisply, and always leaves me wanting to take the next sip. I find this beer to be amazingly drinkable for a beer with so much flavor, and I'm not afraid to admit that at one time I could go through an entire 6 pack by myself, or would pound down 4 or 5 pints at my favorite sports bar.

I still remember the first time I encountered this beer (many, many years ago in California). I knew right then that my days of drinking miller, coors and AB products were over forever. For that I will always be grateful. Just an excellent beer. Cheers!

05-08-2007 13:11:45 | More by John_M
Photo of afsdan
afsdan

Colorado

4.75/5  rDev +17.6%

03-22-2014 21:41:51 | More by afsdan
Photo of smakawhat
smakawhat

Maryland

3.93/5  rDev -2.7%

I've had hundreds of these over the years, but never reviewed it until now..

Copper/yellow color of a nice clear. Decent head when poured on tap and lots of lacing.

Smell is kind of closed, not much going on, but nothing offensive either, faint bread and some chew.

Taste though is much improved with a very good bread finish that is subtle. Really good finish on this beer giving just enough hops and malt/bread/biscuity chew to feel decent. Easily drinkable, with a good mouthfeel that isn't too wet and is considerably better on tap than from the bottle.

12-19-2010 20:46:28 | More by smakawhat
Photo of rab53
rab53

Washington

3.25/5  rDev -19.6%

12-07-2011 02:33:47 | More by rab53
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 8,446 ratings.