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Sierra Nevada Porter - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada PorterSierra Nevada Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

2,815 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,815
Reviews: 1,321
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 11.03%
Wants: 85
Gots: 123 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-09-1999)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,815 | Reviews: 1,321 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of boatshoes
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this one many times before but finally picked up a six when looking to have some easy drinking porter recently. Thought it was about to to think about this one a little more while I drank it and log a review.

Appearance- Pours an opaque black with about one and half fingers of tan head. Pretty solid head retention and a good amount of lacing left as I drink this one down. Looks like a solid porter.

Smell- Lots of roasted malt and some mild coffe and chocolate notes. Not complex, but smells quite inviting.

Taste- A very prominent roastiness with some of the creamy chocolate and coffee mixed in that I picked up on in the nose. Very mild, but very nice.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Mouth feel is just thick and creamy enough for a porter with appropriate and somewhat mild carbonation. Drinkability is very high for me on this with just the right amount of flavor complexity to make it a good session beer.

Overall, a very solid, creamy, easy drinking porter that I'm sure I'll be revisiting many times more in the future. Isn't the best but great for the price.

Overall,

boatshoes, Dec 18, 2009
Photo of alleykatking
4.28/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle. Thought I already reviewed this but guess not.

A- Poured a deep darker brown. It wasn't black just really dark brown. Nice 2 finger dirty white head on this that stayed for a little before leaving nice amounts of lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Nice surprising citrus hops in the nose from the front. This is followed by a nice light toasted malt. There are light coffee and mild chocolate notes that come and go it seems.

T- Just how I remembered it! Roasted malts play a big roll in the front as they overtake the lighter hops. Nice flavors of coffee and chocolate play through the entire beer. Roasted malts are from start to finish with this beer.

M- Medium mouthfeel to this. Carbonation is on par for the style. Nice roasted malts are left on the palate and on the aftertaste. this beer lingers around for a short time after the beer is gone. Clean and crisp on the palate.

D- This is a good drinking porter that I tend to overlook. Flavors are bright and crisp in the beer and I will be looking for this a little more often.

alleykatking, Dec 18, 2009
Photo of RDUImperialStout
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Ah, Sierra Nevada Porter. I'll admit it's an old favorite of mine from my college days when Sierra Nevada was damn near the only craft beer to be found with any regularity. So, when I saw the newly redesigned sixer on the shelf, the only thing to do was to pick it up and see if it was as good as I remembered it.

The initial impression from the aroma was a bit milder than I recalled, a little roasty and a little hoppy but nothing that really grabbed me. I was prepared to be let down, but with the first sip came rushing back the memories of the old days.

It tasted exactly like I remembered it - bittersweet chocolate, a touch of dark roasted coffee, and a spicy and citrusy hop finish. A complex, mind-blowing beer this is not, but it's perhaps the most perfectly balanced porter I've ever tasted. Roasted without being burnt, not overly sweet or rich, and with just the perfect amount of hops to give it that distinct West Coast character without overwhelming the beer. Now, if you'll excuse me, I've got a few more of these to knock back before I get on with the rest of my day...

RDUImperialStout, Dec 17, 2009
Photo of womencantsail
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another one of those beers that I just have never gotten around to reviewing.

A: The pour is absolutely great. A dark, dark brown with a finger's worth of off-white colored foam. The head on this beer is amazing, and leaves some awesome lacing.

S: The smell of this one is a bit different than what you'd expect from a porter. The nose is full of citrus hops followed by a background aroma of roasted malt and coffee.

T: The hops are not quite as pronounced here. There is still a nice little citrus flavor, but the roasted malt, coffee, and chocolate are the big players here (more what I think of when I have a porter).

M: The body is maybe a bit thin, but still good. There is a nice level of carbonation to liven things up on the palate.

D: Another great beer from Sierra Nevada. These guys make some of the best session/most drinkable beers out there. You can never go wrong with a Sierra product.

womencantsail, Dec 17, 2009
Photo of bump8628
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a rich tan head on top of a brown beer. One thing about this beer is that it always pours up into spectacular looking beer.

Aroma has a balance of roasted coffee, caramel, and cocoa-like malts and earthy, herbal, and citric hops.

The taste is similar to the aroma in that neither the hops nor malt ever completely takes over. Instead, the firm chocolate and caramel notes of the malt play perfectly with the earthy and citric hops. It's all very well balanced, yet very flavorful.

Overall, one of the best porters that's regularly available. When fresh the the malt is sharp and the hops are bold, but as it ages it smooths out and a silky milk chocolate character comes out. In both conditions its a really good beer.

bump8628, Dec 17, 2009
Photo of Duhast500
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

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

The color is a dark black with almost no light being let through. There is about two fingers of foamy light brown head with some nice lacing left on the glass.

The smell is a slight bit roasty with some malty flavor amid some slight nut flavor.

The taste is some what coffee in flavor, some nice roasted malt and toffee flavor.

The feel of this beer is pretty light for a porter but is still medium bodied.

Duhast500, Dec 14, 2009
Photo of kaseydad
3.88/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown color with a nice tan head and some major lacing throughout the session.

An aroma of toffee, campfire smoke, coffee, and dark chocolate.

Taste has a major hit of coffee followed by a nice malty backbone. There is quite a bit of bitterness on the buds after each sip.

Very easy drink. Multiples a plenty on a chilly day. This porter is a great version of the style and can be found easily which is nice.

kaseydad, Dec 12, 2009
Photo of Josievan
4.28/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep, dark brown with just a slight tinge of red when held to the light.

Smell: Dark roasted malts, not unlike wheat bread.

Taste: Bittersweet toffee character. The roasted malt flavor is forceful but pleasant. Aftertaste is really quite sweet. Surprisingly little bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Merging on thick, but not to the point of chewiness.

Drinkability: In terms of the style, it goes down very easily. I say if you're looking to have a few American porters, have at it.

Notes: When I've had this beer previously, it tasted very much like simply a good West-coast interpretation of a porter. This is neither good nor bad, just an observation. But this time, I didn't get as much of those California hop/bitterness characteristics as I did overall great porter characteristics. I've come to the conclusion this is just a great American porter, West-coast or otherwise.

Josievan, Dec 09, 2009
Photo of Mardukk
3.93/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark Mahogany with a creamy mocha head and lasting lacing.

Smells of chocolate like roasted malts.

Tastes of roasted malts slightly smokey with a somewhat unique citrus hop finish. The hops give it a nice little bite not often found in the style.

It has a solid medium to light bodied feel that is very drinkable. I'm enjoying the balancing of malt to citrusy hops.

Overall, it's a very well made and super drinkable porter...I will seek this out again.

Mardukk, Dec 09, 2009
Photo of Trappissed
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Subtle chocolate malt in the smell, with a little cocoa. With the taste, I am getting mostly dark roasted chocolate. Also venturing to fruity(dark) and nutty. This is pretty damn good. Nice semi-creamy mouthfeel. Amazed it took me this long to locate this Anchor offering.

Trappissed, Dec 08, 2009
Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz brown pop top, classic label; no freshness date I can find; there's a code here that might be something of that nature, but it's quite cryptic.

Appearance: Dark walnut beer with amber highlights and a big, dark ivory cap that falls to 3/4 of a finger and lasts a good while

Smell: Some dry, nutty notes with hints of chocolate creme soda, with some very light roasty notes as well. This is nice, but honestly it seems more like an English Brown Ale than an American Porter

Taste: This gets back on track stylistically. Light-medium roast grains (esp. chocolate malt?), some juicy fruitiness, and a medium hop bitterness. Ends with notes of burnt malt and fruity hops. Roasted notes emerge a bit as the beer warms. Not a ton of depth, but pretty quaffable.

Mouthfeel: On the light side of medium bodied

Drinkability: Fairly high

Conclusion: This is a solid, tasty porter. Not a ton of depth, but it's straightforward and enjoyable.

BedetheVenerable, Dec 05, 2009
Photo of DoreenAndDave
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice dark color. Not much of a head. Looks nice. Smell is good. Toast and malt. The taste is excellent. Rich but not heavy. Sturdy but also crisp. Tastes malty, with nice hop bitterness. This beer has a nice depth to it, without being aggressive. Quite drinkable. Refreshing and tasty. Overall, a very very good beer. It's a nice, well crafted porter. I like it a lot..

DoreenAndDave, Dec 03, 2009
Photo of mikedashg
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a deep black with a nice sized foamy light tan head that stayed around for some time.

S - Not too much here, but some nice roasted malt and light hop presence. Smells a little sour actually.

T - Way better then the smell, again roasted malts, light hop bitterness with a little acidic twang. Light hints of chocolate and coffee as it warmed up. But my favorite part was the licorice, oak and tobacco

M - A little creamy on the palette, moderate carbonation and body. Not too thick, not too thin. Pretty darn good.

D - Nothing exceptional, but better then average porter that's widely available in my parts.

mikedashg, Dec 03, 2009
Photo of hosehead83
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a twelve ounce bottle into a standard pint glass
Dark brown/black in color with a big thick, tan head of foam
Aroma-Roasted coffee and chocolate notes
Taste-Coffee, dark malts, subtle hop notes-A bit thin-bodied, but very drinkable-Could use a little more kick, but nevertheless a nice easy-drinking porter. Would be a nice "intro" porter for newbies.

hosehead83, Nov 29, 2009
Photo of philbe311
4.15/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Mammoth rocky yet creamy light tan head comprised of alternating sized bubbles settles at three fingers a show excellent retention... Completely opaque pitch black color... A very very deep dark brown color through which only the slightest bit of light sneaks through... Some foam clings to the sides of the glass...

S - Roasted malts... Hints of coffee... Hints of chocolate... A faint hoppy presence... Excellent aroma, but a little too subdued...

T - Follows very closely to the nose... Roasted malts and coffee dominate, but neither are overpowering... Actually each is quite subdued... Hints of chocolate and a minor hop tinge...

M - Medium bodied... Slightly on the thin side... Rich and smooth... A little on the creamy side... Fairly simple and straight forward but completely enjoyable...

D - Exceptional drinkability... Not outstanding in any one area, but this beer disappeared quite quickly leaving me wanting another (and another)... In addition, this provides an exceptional value proposition...

philbe311, Nov 29, 2009
Photo of stoptime
3.15/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma: There is very little smell to this beer. I mainly get a clean, malty nose with a slight spiciness.

Appearance: Dark and cloudy, but slightly opaque at the bottom of the pour. Topped off with a thick creamy head.

Flavor: Chocolaty roastiness, a clean finish with a slight hop flavor.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, but not too thick and heavy. (As a porter should be.)

Overall, this is a nice example of a classic porter.

stoptime, Nov 28, 2009
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.24/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A classic porter. Looks delicious, dark brown mahogany appearance. Smells delicious, a little coffee and chocolate, deep burnt malt. Tastes even more delicious. Got lingering feel, could have a few of these. Used to not appreciate this beer when my palate wasn't fully developed.

Great product by a great brewery. Enjoy the massive hop assault that you probably won't see replicated by many other porters. Big, rich, bitter.

Beerandraiderfan, Nov 28, 2009
Photo of bobsy
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with ruby tones when head up to the light. A light tan head slowly fades to a fine film, but leaves concentric rings of lace on the way down, and compliments a pleasing appearance. The aroma is far fruitier than you'd usually expect for a porter, with notes of berries throughout, but after a while coffee and cocoa come through along with nuts. There's also very evident hopping that doesn't let you forget this is from the west. The berry dominance is inverted in the flavour, where the roasted malt tones come to the fore, with the fruit underneath. Again chocolate and coffee are prominent, but are curtailed by a grapefruit bite in the finish. Its certainly got a nice balance between hops and malt. Medium body and carbonation suit the style well.

As with all Sierra Nevada brews, this is extremely well-crafted, and presents itself as a very sessionable porter.

bobsy, Nov 25, 2009
Photo of natelocc787
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As with most of Sierra Nevada's offerings the appearance is top notch. Blackest of Brown with a gigantic beige head that leaves sheets of lacing as it dissipates. Nose is roasty with muted chocolate and coffee. The taste is big and bold for such a low abv, roasted barley malt, supreme blend coffee, milk chocolate wafers and finished with a nice bitter punch from the big hop presence. Mouthfeel could have been bolder, heavier and thicker. Nitpicking really, extremely sessionable and hard to beat for the price and quality.

natelocc787, Nov 23, 2009
Photo of puboflyons
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle no. 9237216-39. Sampled on November 21, 2009. The pour is a rich dark brown with nice lacing but essentially no head. The aroma is vaguely smoked with some clean hops on the nose. The mouthfeel is of decent quality. It is about medium-heavy but smooth. The taste is very clean with a nice bit of smoky malts and fresh hops. Well-balanced and likeable.

puboflyons, Nov 21, 2009
Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.18/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured it into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass. This beer pours dark brown with dark red/amber highlights on the edges when held to the light. Dark and deep enough that you can't see through it clearly. This beer produces a huge tan colored head that only takes a few minutes to go away, but produces some pretty generous lacing and stick to the glass. The smell is very good. The hops are present, but I'd say that roasted malts and coffee flavors come out first followed by the hops. The taste goes in a bit of a different order in my opinion. It's really important that this beer touches every part of your tongue, because there's a lot of flavor in this beer. For some reason, no matter what I tasted a quick taste of the hops, but it was immediately followed by the roasted malts and coffee flavor. The second portion is smooth and sweet from the caramelized roasted malts. You can taste roasted coffee beans as well right behind the malts. The bitter finish comes from the hops, not too strong, but certainly noticeable, citrus if I'm not mistaken. This is I'd say a medium bodied beer. This is a very drinkable beer, putting the fact that it's a porter aside, very drinkable. Great brew from Sierra Nevada.

AndyAvalanche, Nov 20, 2009
Photo of watkins
4.28/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear ruby-brown with a frothy two-finger head.

S: Smells of chocolate malt, almost sweet cocoa powder. Pretty subtle.

T: Nice and chocolatey on the front, opening up to a roasty, almost woody bitterness that is quite welcome and compatible with its mild sweetness.

M: A little light on the carbonation for my liking in dark beers.

D: I could have this all day long in the colder months, or just as a solid session beer. Sierra never fails to impress.

watkins, Nov 16, 2009
Photo of RustyDiamond
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Thirsty Bear nonic glass. Super fluffy off-white tannish head about 3 fingers tall. Dark brown with some slivers of red peeking through. Aroma of smoky marshmellow, malt chocolate powder. Milk chocolate on the nose, very smooth up front and creamy. Milky mouthfeel, just a nudge of hops to let you know they are there. Touch of bitter hop, maybe bitter chocolate...hard to tell. Extremely balanced and easy drinking. Dry, subtle dry chocolate on the finish. About as good as it gets for an American Porter.

RustyDiamond, Nov 15, 2009
Photo of noslenwerd
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours very dark, with little to no light shining through the glass

Very sweet smelling but not overpowering.

This beer was the perfect mix of chocolate, a bit of coffee, and finished of with just the right amount of bitterness...

I will without a doubt drink this beer again

noslenwerd, Nov 11, 2009
Photo of ZorPrime
4.72/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Adil for sending me this one. I was looking forward to tasting this Porter.

Dark black color with some red on the edges. The head is brown, dense and made of little, very fine (small), bubbles. As always from Sierra Nevada, the head sticks well to the glass. The aroma is malty, grilled (roasted) malts more precisely. Notes of coffee but not overwhelming, just enough to make it smell very good. I get some chocolate notes too. Wow, very nice aroma. The taste is mainly roasted malts with some light notes of coffee. At the end, I get some smokiness... awesome. Exceptional taste. I wish I could get this one all year here...

Mouthfeel is creamy and the finish is dry with a bitterness just well balanced. Excellent beer! Thanks Adil and Cheers to that!

ZorPrime, Nov 10, 2009
Sierra Nevada Porter from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 2,815 ratings.