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Sierra Nevada Porter - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada PorterSierra Nevada Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

3,306 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,306
Reviews: 1,396
rAvg: 3.9
pDev: 10.77%
Wants: 102
Gots: 291 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-09-1999

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,306 | Reviews: 1,396 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kdales77
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

As always, poured into a glass:

Apperance: Dark brown to almost "cola" color

Smell: Sweet with hints of coffee and chocolate

Taste: Followed the smell, sweet, smooth with hardly any bitterness

Mouthfeel: exceptional

Drinkability: The Sierra line of beers is definetly growing on me. I think a lot of it is availability and price. Always a good combo!

Photo of ckeegan04
4.13/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Deep dark brown in color with some ruby highlights when held up to light. Thick two finger light brown head with excellent retention and average lacing.

S - Smells like a good standard porter should. Hints of coffee, cocoa, and toasted malts. A little sweetness as well.

T - Sweet chocoalte malt taste with a nice little hop bite afterwards. Spicy hop taste.

M/D - A little thin on the mouthfeel but overall very good. A very good American porter.

Photo of clayrock81
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A black cola-esque body (may have been the lighting) with an enormous three-finger head that died slowly and left lace patches. A good malt base in the aroma, with some roasted and coffee malts sticking out (I guess that's the barley malts also poking out, as on the label), and some earth tones also. A rich, thick, syrup-like medium to full body presents itself on the tongue first. The malts kick in, most noticeably it tasted like coffee, roasted malts and cocoa, but despite this it is only semi-sweet and creamy with a very dry backbite, like a regular coffee with no sugar or milk dryness.
It leaves a lingering coffee flavor and dryness after you drink it, and welcomes you back again. Perhaps the only thing keeping me from sessioning this is it really started to dry my palate, and a few of these would probably leave my throat parched.

Photo of MisterClean
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one is really easy to get a hold of.

A - Brown pour, chocolate head, nice legs.

S - Cherries, medium roast malts, dark chocolate.

T - Dark cherries, chocolate, and grass.

M - Carbonated, tangy, and syrupy.

D - Definitely good and has improved over time (or maybe it's my tastes). Still better examples out there.

Photo of chiefydawg
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Burnt brown semi-translucent body with an almost crimson hue. Medium-sized head comprised of tight bubbles gives it a foamy look. Gorgeous thick Brussels lace is all that can diminish this head.

Smells of roasted malt, molasses and cocoa with some faint smokiness. When jostled, I'm getting some trace of herb.

For as sweet as it smelled, it is surprisingly dry. This dryness opens the path for the slightly burnt marshmallow, dark chocolate, breakfast blend coffee, and smoke. All are done tastefully and subtle; and they are all kept in check by the swallow, where the bittering hops have been lurking. After swallowing the last sip, there's a pleasantly bitter yet roasy sweetwater to hold onto.

Medium bodied at best this smooth and nearly dare I say refreshing porter (literally and figuratively) surprised me. It's like they took that great yeast from the pale ale and applied it to a well-done porter. This may be go well to cut and cleanse the palate of a rich chocolate delicacy without disrupting it.

Photo of oldfashioned
4.33/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured very nicely - a deep bronze red when held up to the light, with a nice creamy head. The smell is pretty subtle for me, but I'm picking up some toasted bread with some sweet, molasses notes. The taste is very nice - molasses is the dominant flavor, but it's pretty subtle and well balanced with some hoppy bitterness. The mouthfeel is incredibly smooth but a little thinner than I expected from a porter.

This was my first porter and I was frankly expecting something a little more dramatic, but the subtlety and smoothness of this porter really impressed me. It would be a very drinkable beer any time of year (it's 95 degrees outside right now), and I'll definitely purchase a 6-pack of these in the future.

Photo of righlander
5/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Amazing... Jet black with insane lacing, minor head.

S- Amazing... black patent, chocolate and very hopped maybe some coffee.

T- Amazing... chocolate, coffee, toffee, roasty, citrus and hoppy... You got a problem with that?!

M- Amazing... serious...really nice. Medium bodied.

D- Amazing... 5.6% Drinkability anyone?

Notes to self: Simply amazing. In my opinion, the best porter out there. If you haven't tried it, you hate your life. I left a lot out of this review... so go try it and try to tell me im wrong about an A+

Photo of soupyman10
4.07/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance was a deep brown color with a solid head. Nose was as expected, and delicious: lots of roasted malt, some light chocolate and coffee, some light dried fruit. Nice aromas, and a lot of them. Flavor was a little unexpected. A lot hoppier than expected, and mostly lacking in the mild sweetness the nose was pointing at. The roasted malt is quite smooth, and rolls right into that hoppiness that sticks around in a fairly-long aftertaste. Body was likewise a little thinner than I'd hoped. Overall, a tasty beer, although not quite as good as I though the nose was advertising.

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

Pours a deep, dark brown, blackish core. Inch or two of off white head.

Smells like molasses and brown sugar. Very, very unusual aroma. I can't remember any other beer that smells like this. The taste is roasted, charred chocolate malt, some hop twinge, and that same molasses flavoring.

I'm really curious as to what this is made from. I'm guessing unsulphured molasses is a prime ingredient. A good, sessionable porter, though nothing awe inspiring.

Photo of memphischas
3.92/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: deep almost opaque brown, 1 and a half finger head with good retention

S: first thing that strikes me is the toasty malts followed by chocolate and molasses

T: delicious, chocolate/sugary tones that leave behind a coffee/cappuccino aftertaste. well balanced

M: has a good deal of carbonation with a medium body

D: very delicious, will definitely have again although I have been more impressed by other porters

Photo of gfreed
2.06/5  rDev -47.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Although it's nice and dark, that's about the only thing here that resembles a porter. There's not much to smell, and very little to taste: no coffee, no dark flavor, not much bitterness, no toastiness... nothing. Very namby-pamby. If this were coffee, I'd file it under Taster's Choice. If you want a good six-pack porter for regular consumption, buy Otter Creek Stovepipe.

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.23/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. Dark not quite opaque with some nice retention. Looks inviting.

S. Smokey barley. Hints of alcohal.

T. Malty with some coffee tones. Hops are way in the background but percievable.

M. A bit heavy as most are in this genre. Good long lasting aftertaste.

D. Very enjoyable session beer.

Thoughts: Sweet porter here from Sierra Nevada, I particularly enjoyed the smokey aspect and the hops. Good stuff.

Photo of umustdrink
3.35/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Dark brown color, mostly opaque. Offwhite head fades to an eighth inch. Small bits of lacing.

S - Toasted coffee malts with a mild green bitterness.

T - Starts out with a carbonation bite and some light bitterness. Once the carbonation fades, the toasted malts come in, dark coffee flavored with vanilla. Finish leaves a mild coffee flavor.

M - Light to medium consistency with elevated carbonation.

D - Not bad but nothin special.

Photo of allergictomacros
4.43/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Pours a dark dark ruby red with a crazy thick, creamy head and patchy lace.

S - Lots of toasty notes - coffee, molasses,dark fruit. Quite hoppy as well with a floral tone.

T/M - Soft, buttery flavour and mouthfeel is more apparent, but there's lots of roastiness, fruit and hops in this as well.

D - I find this to be a mellow beer - flavourful, but very accessible, balanced, and easy drinking. Very sessionable.

Photo of blackjack000
3.9/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very dark brown with a good-sized eggshell head. The head is very attractive, fluffy, and creamy.

Smell: An interesting flowery smell comes off the beer. A deep, roasty smell comes off underneath.

Taste: This porter is pretty well balanced, but feels a little under-powered at first. The hops and malts come through at pretty much the same intensity, complementing each other well. The aftertaste is very pleasant. A hoppy tang intermingles with a shred of baker's chocolate. I almost feel like I taste anise seed and liquorice at times. The taste seems to get progessively better. For some reason, I feel like this beer tastes like a very "clean" porter. Everything tastes very distinct.

Mouthfeel: The weight and carbonation do well, nothing bad to say about it, nothing extraordinary.

Drinkability: I would get this if I was looking for a widely available porter. It's not particular memorable, but if I'm in the mood for downing a few porters, it definitely fits the bill.

Photo of ClashmoreMike
4.39/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance = Nice dark brown with red edges. Less than a finger of whitish/tan head, that goes down to beer algae.

Smell = So nice. Chocolate, coffee, toffee, and a bit of hops. Nice malty sweetness.

Taste = Same as smell, but more hoppy. The hoppiness is very nice. It's not overwhelming at all, but it's there and it provides a nice balance to the other, sweeter flavors. A very slight hint of flowery flavors.

Mouthfeel = Medium body. Carbonation is there, but fairly understated. Very smooth.

Drinkability = I really love this porter. It's very smooth. The taste is great. It has a relatively low ABV. Nothing harsh about it. One of my favorites. (Doesn't hurt that it's well priced and easily available)

Photo of Misfit138
4.62/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First time trying the porter, I like everything I've had by Sierra Nevada.

A- Nice dark brown, light comes though some. A solid inch head.

S- Smells like chocolate, very nice.

T- This to me taste very very good. Reminds me of Highland Oatmeal Porter which is one of my favorites. Hints of chocolate, mild aftertaste. Awesome.

M- Pretty decent mouthfeel. Its not too thin or over carbonated.

D- Very drinkable. I love this beer. I think it could be a nice session beer, but I think a beer like this need to be savored and not one to drink too quickly. You want to enjoy the flavor.

Photo of Gtreid
3.53/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark chocolate color with one finger of light caramel head, which dissapated quickly to a thin rim.

A: Smells of chocolate, coffee malts, and some light hop aroma as well.

T: As expected from a Porter, bitter but smooth, just the right amount of carbonation to enjoy.

M: Medium to Heavy body. Sticky on the palate, and finishes dry.

D: I really enjoy an occational Porter, and at 5.6% ABV I could enjoy this one often

Photo of naterock
4.17/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass
I'm giving this beer a second chance because I recieved an extremely skunked six pack last year.
A: Dark Reddish brown, but not as opaque as I like a porter to be, although this could be a good sign of something different.
S: Very aromatic Malt, I felt a tingle all the way through my nose. extremely good sign, I hope it tastes this good.
T: Whew... wow that was bitter, I love it. the hops match the malt, good balance, and very strong flavor.
M: Medium Carbonation, I think it helps the hop aroma not be outweighed by the malt good job.
D: This is a very good porter, I would definitely drink this with almost anything, Red meat especially. hell, even with dessert.

Photo of ScottUCF84
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into a pint.

A- Poured a dark, dark brown with cherry highlights only if held up to the light. Pretty thick head; dark khaki, fizzled out leaving lacing here and there.

S- Its nose isn't too strong... hints of dark chocolate, roasted malt, and a touch of acidic hops.

T- Yummy, it has a very bold roasted malt flavor... along with caramel malt, toffee, and bitter dark chocolate. The finish is acidic; bitter, almost sour, from the hops.

M-Medium bodied... slightly creamy with moderate to low carbonation. Leaves a milky feel to mouth afterwards.

D- A bit on the filling side, but still very enjoyable. Works well as a very heavy night cap.

It's very comforting to know this beer is always available at the liquor stores around me... I may crave this sometime down the road.

Photo of SIRIUS2
4.16/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Deep dark brown, almost black, with an abundant 3/4" of light brown head. Clear. Great lacing.

S: Dark roasted malts, coffee, with something lighter lying in wait.

T: Great complexity of malts, from something in the range of caramel to dark roast. Toffey and bitter chocolate flavors round out the flavors and enough hops to keep the whole brew in check. The finish is mostly bitter - both from bitter roast to slightly earthy hops.

M&D: Mouthfeel is full but not particularly heavy. The body and carbonation comes together in a nice creamy fashion, making the whole experience rather creamy. This is an awesome porter! I like it a bunch and would recommend it to those looking for a good dark chewy beer.

Photo of smcolw
3.96/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Impressive initial head that recedes to a rocky beige. Thick lace left on the glass. Brown with a touch of light able to penetrate.

Strong dark chocolate aroma. A little bit of a refridgerator smell.

Spot on flavor for a porter. Strong bittersweet chocolate that finishes with a shot of bitter hop. Very good body with great carbonation.

Photo of cjohnson
4.03/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep near-black brown with a large, two-finger head on an aggressive pour. Head stays around for a while and leaves a nice lacing.

Chocolate, some lighter coffee smells in the nose. Nothing spectacular, though.

Coffee and chocolate tasting, leaning more towards the chocolate. Fairly sweet, maybe a hint of molasses or maple syrup.

The mouthfeel is a medium-bodied, and just shy of what I'd call "creamy." Pretty drinkable, could go through a few of these without problem.

Photo of osi
4.21/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Darker brown with reddish tints. Head was not too impressive. Average Lace.

S - Sweet dark malts, caramel, brown sugar. Light Coffee.

T - Dark malts, coffee, specifically dark chocolate and finishes with a very slightly hoppy after taste.

M - Good mouth feel. Lighter body than I expected which was good. Light to medium body. Good carbonation with a good smooth finish.

D - Good beer. I always like Sierra Nevada though. Classic beer, will definitely drink again.

Photo of BamaBeerBuff
3.91/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a very, very dark brown. Not quite jet-black like a stout. Thick, relatively creamy head with great retention all the way down. Prominent lacing on glass throughout, as well.

S: Decent nose. Fairly sweet for a porter with toffee and chocolate notes in the malt.

T&M: Very good taste with malty sweetness initially, followed by the typical strong, coffee-flavored aftertaste that lingers for a while. Mouthfeel is solid, with light carbonation and a smooth texture that really sits well on the palate.

D: Fairly easy to drink for a porter. Probably as sessionable as a porter could be.

Sierra Nevada Porter from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 3,306 ratings.