Sierra Nevada Porter - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada PorterSierra Nevada Porter

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very good

3,231 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,231
Reviews: 1,371
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 11.03%
Wants: 100
Gots: 259 | 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: 3,231 | Reviews: 1,371 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Thorpe429
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to my dad for picking this up at International Beverage Selections in Grand Rapids. Served in a Hill Farmstead Wine Glass.

Pours dark brown with very little head or lacing and a good swirl doesn't bring anything up. The nose is very mild chocolate and roast plus some residual sweetness. The taste is quite bland. THere is some mild chocolate up front followed by light sweetness and a bit of roast. Body is medium with a fairly-full finish. Not quite enough carbonation, however. A bit disappointing, but this finishes up the "Top Beers - Beers of Fame" for me. Would like to try every beer on the site with at least 1000 reviews.

Photo of SisuPride
3.68/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours dark brown with a great thick caramel colored head.

S - Gentle roasty aroma of dark malt, caramel, chocolate, and coffee. Very subtle and mellow.

T - Much like the smell - it is very subtle and mellow. A great introductory beer into the world of porters.

M - Smooth and creamy with scant carbonation - which I like.

D - Best part of the beer - you could drink 5 of these before you realized it.

Photo of shand
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a deep brown with garnet highlights. Head is full and sticky. The smell is roasted malts and subtle hoppiness, with some chocolate present. Smells great, and also tastes great. The taste is fairly standard for a porter, malt roastiness up front with some coffee and chocolate. This differs from other porters by having a very solid current of hops flowing through it. They're never distracting, but don't shy away from making their presence known. Excellently balanced.

The mouthfeel is a nice, full porter body, and the drinkability is quite good, even if it drinks a bit stronger than it's ABV would indicate. I really like Sierra Nevada Porter. It's just a well-crafted, easy drinking porter that's available at a great price. Don't overlook it.

Photo of magnj
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

a - wonderful clear but deep brown body, 1 finger tan head.

s - nice nose. dark malts, specifically chocolate are aromatic but subtle.

t - slight fruity character up front from what I assume is the yeast. This is quickly met by the dark malts, again chocolate is present, somewhat nutty, vaguely sweet at the end.

m/d - thin body is a slight contrast to the 5.6% alcohol but makes for easy drinking. flavor lingers. Easy to drink, very solid brew by SN that probably gets overlooked by a lot of people (including myself up till now!)

Photo of KajII
3.33/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

[Best served in an English pint]

Poured a clear dark brown with a large light brown creamy head that was mostly diminishing with some really nice lacing.

The aroma was of a moderate dose of dark roasted malts and a strong leathery yeast with notes of roasted coffee, a touch toffee and molasses.

It tasted lightly bitter-sweet with hints of molasses in the beginning and finished about the same but had a nice coffee presence at the end with flavor lasting only a short time after the swallow.

Mouthfeel was dry in texture and medium in body with a nice soft carbonation.

Overall a nice porter with the flavors one would expect form a brew of this style. Definitely a classic brew here...

Photo of UconnHusky
4.47/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured bottle into a pint glass.

A - Pours dark brown with 1-inch head of a tan foam.

S - Excellent roasty aromas of dark malt, caramel, chocolate, and coffee.

T - Chocolate malt presence with slight hop bitterness.

M - Smooth and creamy with minimum carbonation.

D - Fantastic Porter...looking forward to many more.

Photo of jman892
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Dark brown, 1 finger head, caramel colored highlights around the edges

S - strong malt smell, very mild chocolate in the background

T - follows the smell, malty, burnt toast, light touch of milk chocolate

M - feels a bit thin thin, with a good bit of carbonation

D - decent porter overall, especially for the cost (8.99 for a 6 pack here). Could easily put away a couple of these any time.

Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark chocolate brown. It pours a nice bubbly head that disseminates very quickly.

Smell: Smoked toasy malts. I can smell the hops which I wish were a little more concealed in this style.

Taste: This is the best part of this beer. It is smoked and malty with a nice chocolate taste that finishes well.

Mouthfeel: The body on this porter is too light. It's overly carbonated and not chewy enough for my taste. It's like soda porter. It's also a bit too chalky.

Drinkability: It's a good beer but not a good porter. It is just average in the style. I can definitely drink it because its inoffensive.

Photo of AwYeh
3.08/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into snifter.

A: Pours an opaque dark brown/black, with less than a finger of light brown head that dissipates quickly.

S: Charred, roasted malts are very prominent here, along with a decently sized portion of smoke. Light bittersweet chocolate.

T: Many of the same flavors from smell, with additional bits of caramel and citrus hops. Bittersweet initially from the malts, bittersweet on the finish from the hops. Lingering charred flavor.

M: Medium-bodied, moderate to high carbonation (at least for the style). Lightly sticky finish.

D: This 3 doesn't mean bad; it just means average. Nothing is really drawing me to this beer to either continue drinking or be excited that more is left in my glass. Lots of other porters out there that I'd rather have.

Photo of THECPJ
3.63/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 3/5/2011

Appearance: dark brown black with a orange hue and a 2 finger mocha colored head.

Smell: Roasted malts, caramel, toffee

Taste: malts, toffee,

Mouthfeel: Mild carbonation, medium body

Drinkability: Decent porter nothing exceptional. Easy to drink.



Photo of bishopdc0
3.15/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

poured a dark brown into my British pint with a big head. the head laces well on the glass and it appears almost black, but when it catches the light it is clearly brown.

A high L crystal sweet and caramel

The taste is smooth to start, carbonation builds and leaves a dryness on the tongue. The taste profile starts sweet and malty and continues through out.

Overall i wanted more this is a very average porter

Photo of rlee1390
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Black, but as the beer dwindles down one can almost see through it. Two finger head that leaves behind decent lacing.

S-Smokey, Roasted malts. Coffee.

T-Up front hit with sweet roasted malts, coffee flavors follow.

M-Medium bodied with some creaminess, not much carbonation.

D-Rather drinkable, although not a seasonal beer a decent cold night brew.

Photo of morebeergood
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at Trader Joe's for a buck or two. Poured into a stemmed beer glass. Dark brown color with red highlights. Moderate sized white head, and plenty of lacing on the glass. Smell had a pleasant coffee aroma to it. Flavor varied at times. When cold out of the fridge, it had a roasted espresso bean flavor. But as it warmed up, it turned more towards a milk chocolate flavor. Both were not too bad. Mouthfeel was smooth yet substantial for a porter. Easy beer to drink, with low abv, great taste and a mellow body. A relative deal for the price.

Photo of AmericanGothic
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Peace Tree pint.

A: Deep mahogany color, two fingers of light, pale brown head. Fades to faint lace.

S: Roasted malt, fresh bread and a bit of yeast. Some chocolate and cinnamon comes through as well.

T: Delicious blend of many flavors. Milk chocolate, gentle roasted malts, toffee and caramel, fresh bread. All well balanced so that each gets a turn. Almost lactic sweetness emerges in the finish. Hoppy notes come forward as the beer warms.

M: Smooth, lightly creamy. Just enough carbonation to keep it interesting.

D: Very drinkable. Will gladly have a second and a third.

All in all, a very nice example of the style, and one heck of a beer. Have long enjoyed their stout, but this is my first time trying the porter. Awfully glad I went for the change of pace tonight.

Photo of JoeAmerican77
2.35/5  rDev -39.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Dark like an oil slick with a quickly relieved one and a half fingers of off white head....

Smells of cereal, molasses and ash, a little dry on the nose

Tastes of light alcohol, and slight hops, really kind of a big disappointment. Nothing here I was expecting, nothing here I was not expecting, really just a boring flavor maybe a coca cola flavor appears after a little warming.

Mouthfeel is okay, kinda light bodied with an interesting small carbonation.

I feel terrible rating Sierra Nevada so poorly but wow this really is a stinker, I would recommend almost any porter over this one. I'm glad I got it in a make your own six pack so I don't have to give away five.

Photo of StaveHooks
2.2/5  rDev -43.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - A semi-dark brown with bright chestnut edges. A 1 finger white head sink into a small formed collar and tight ceiling.

S - Musty old grain that has heavy oxidation mold, hints of dry cocoa powder, burnt rubber. A dry shake dust hops creates a mineral bitterness.

T - Same as the nose, burnt grain, black rubber material, hints of caramel and cocoa the tip of the tongue.

M - Thin, high carbonation.

I'm a huge fan of Serra Nevada but this porter is not good. I had it a few years ago and didn't like it and I still don't like it.

Photo of cyrock1
2.98/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Ruby Brown with a two finger tan head.

Smell: Roasted maltwith light coffee notes.

Taste: Burnt coffee without much else going on. A little one sided.

Mouthfeel: Hop and carbonation linger a little too long, the palate is not getting cleansed at the end of each drink.

Drinkability: Due to the ligering hops and carbonation, the burnt coffee flavor keeps coming and lingers smack dab in the middle of the tongue.

Photo of bamadog
2.03/5  rDev -47.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Review is from notes taken on 2/23/2011 and poured from the bottle to a pint glass.

Appearance: Pour is a dark brown, but not deep dark brown near black like coffee, and this one shows plenty of ruby highlights when held up to the light; starts with a 2 finger light tan head with decent retention; the body shows strong carbonation through the highlights; head eventually fades to a full, but very uneven cap with thick lumps on the side; fair lacing is left on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Pretty weak overall, and not nearly as robust as I would like; some faint hints of burnt toast

Taste: Um, pretty weak here as well; taste comes across as watery; moderate presence of burnt toast and slight citric hops; aftertaste is bitter and roasty.

Mouthfeel: Thin and very watery; carbonation is strong, and I would say too strong and it comes across a little sharp; faint stickiness left behind, but overall the finish is pretty clean.

Drinkability: Definitely the least impressive beer I've ever had from Sierra Nevada, and I likely won't be picking this one up again; weak nose and weaker flavors.

Photo of climax
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This one pours a brilliant deep brown/mahogany with ruby highlights. The clarity is perfect, and the creamy head lingers with even retention.

The aromas are deep and dark. Charred wood barrels, black coffee, and cream dominate, while emerging fruity notes add wings to the bold flavors.

The flavor is wonderful, a balance of all things good in a porter. Roasted nuts and coffee initiate the taste buds. Soon thereafter, the mood lightens with hints of sweeter dark chocolate, cream, cherries, and even a tart burst of citrus. The aftertaste blends nuts and cherries in a surprisingly clean package.

The body is medium with mild but ample carbonation. Overall it's extremely smooth and the finish is very clean with only a slightly sticky dry finish. One of the best porters I've tried.

Photo of JunkYardJake
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into pint glass.
Deep brown with lots of amber when held to light. Dense off-white head with decent retention. Floral and earthy hops balance out the chocolate malt in the nose. Palate is rich in roasted coffee and cocoa with a bit of caramel and toffee. A shade on the bitter side in the finish. Medium bodied with a slightly creamy mouthfeel. Carbonation is pretty high and lively. Pretty good American Porter that is very drinkable.

Photo of JMad
4.38/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured a 12 oz bottle into a tall pint glass...

The liquid was dark brown with red hues in the light, there was a 1 finger, light tan head that was filmy and hugged the glass. It smells like roasted coffee beans with a little bit of chocolate and a very light citrus hop scent. Tastes similar to the smell but with a few different elements. First you get some bitterness on the back of the tongue, it transitions to a roasty coffee flavor and finishes with a slight piney hop bite. It's light-medium bodied with lots of carbonation that compliments the beer nicely and has a dry finish. I think this is the easiest drinking porter I've ever had. I really like this one.

Photo of Oldscramch
3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours deep brown, with reddish tan highlights. Almost white head that recedes to a lace.

Smell: Citrusy and hoppy, smells less like a porter and more like a hoppy amber.

Taste: As hoppy as it smells. Hints of chocolate. Honestly, very much like a brown ale.

Mouthfeel: A little weak. Very watery.

Drinakbility: Fair

Photo of NATOuk
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dense dark brown liquid with a thin head which recedes to a White ring

Chocolate malts but also slight citrus hop notes. The smell is easily masked if too cold, best allowed to come up to a warmer temperature

Initial light sweetness, chocolate malts followed by a light hop bitterness. Overall taste is balanced, however my experience is that like the smell, the taste is noticeably subdued if too cold, this really opens up once warmer - the rich chocolate malts really come through strongly.

Medium body, medium carbonation. The carbonation provides an acidity to the initial mouthfeel.

Very pleasant session drink if you're a fan of porter/stout. The overall taste is more subdued than I initially expected but as a session beer it's very good.

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma is strong and smoky with malty and molasses components. It pours a dark, somewhat hazy mahogany with a fairly thick, fine-bubbled, pale tan head that leaves some good lacing. Mouth-filling aroma has tones of burnt wood, hops, molasses, coffee and unsweet chocolate. Texture is fairly smooth and fizzy, leaving a smoky and somewhat hoppy finish that sticks around for a little bit.

Photo of BigBlacke
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada Porter pours a light brownish red with a .5 inch white head.

Scents of roasty malt, faint chocolate, and a small hop presence.

Taste is of cocoa nibs, roasty coffee and everso slight bit of hops.

Mouthfeel is very crisp and light for a porter. Very thin with a high carbonation.

Drinkability is high for me due to how light this porter is.

Sierra Nevada Porter from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 3,231 ratings.